What I've Been...
Doing: Up until last Thursday, I had a huge break from subbing since the kids were out for their winter break. On top of that they didn't have school every day except for Thursday because of the low temperatures and icy roads. Since I wasn't able to sub, I picked up plenty of extra shifts at the movie theater because there were a lot of new releases. Besides working a lot, I also spent a lot of time with friends who came to visit me over the break since they had time off to do so. One gal came to see me from Columbus and I'm glad we got our visit in because she already has a toddler and found out that she will be having twins! She is going to be one busy Momma and probably won't have time to come see me for awhile. Also, a couple of my friends who had moved away came back to town, and it was just incredibly nice to be able to see them again.
One day during break, I met up with my pal Everett at Starbucks. We had a lot of catching up to do because he moved back to Savannah, Georgia which is where he is originally from. Ev was my best buddy throughout grad school and was such a supportive friend. We would always call each other about assignments and to talk about our field experiences or we would just share juicy gossip. There are very few people that I can honestly say I think I will be lifelong friends with, but I really think Everett and I will be friends for life! After being best friends with someone for a few years and then having them move away is always hard, so I was so glad to have my best friend back even if it was just for a very short period of time. After Starbucks, we went to watch 47 Ronin (his pick, not mine), did some shopping, and drove out to an Amish store because Everett wanted to pick up some Amish treats to take back to Georgia with him. I picked up some delicious blueberry jam...no one does jam like Amish!
My friend Amy also came back to visit from L.A., and I spent a day hanging out with her at her parents' house. Amy and I have been friends for 15 years--she is another one of those people that I know I will always be friends with. She really makes an effort to stay in touch and to get together when she comes back to visit Ohio. Since she is a member of the Editor's Guild, she gets screeners of movies sent to her. She brought back her rather large collection of screeners she had recently been sent, and we had a movie day. It really was a treat for her to share those with me because some of the films she had with her weren't even in theaters yet and some were very limited releases. Of course, I chose to watch those since I can currently watch any wide release film I want for free at the theater I work at.
Buying: I ended up spending my Christmas money on this pretty Kate Spade hand bag. The New Bond Street Florence bag pictured below was originally $448, but was on sale for $229. When I bought the bag, Kate Spade was running their sale on top of a sale, so I got an extra 25% off and snagged this bag for $171.75. I had been wanting a new Kate Spade bag for awhile, and after talking to Ashliegh about what a great deal she got on her bag, I decided to look for promo codes to see if I could get the price knocked down even further. This was a pretty big splurge for me, which is part of the reason why I signed up for the January Spending Freeze! I am happy to report that so far I have resisted many temptations and have been doing well with it so far. (Keywords=So far.) If I keep going how I'm going, I should have hundreds of dollars more than I usually have by the end of the month.
Watching: I finally finished watching all the episodes of Gossip Girl and started watching Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, which is just great! I think Naveen Andrews makes a interesting villian, and Alice is just very likable character. Mostly, though, I have just been watching movies! I've watched American Hustle, Frozen, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, 12 Years a Slave, August: Osage County, and Saving Mr. Banks. I still want to see Wolf of Wall Street, even though it is supposed to be "offensive" and "shocking." Who am I kidding? That makes me want to watch the movie even more! :) I also still haven't seen The Hobbit because my boyfriend and I are quarreling about whether or not to see it in 2D or in High Frame Rate 3D. He is so against 3D movies and complains about how it is a money making scheme that hurts his eyes, so we usually see movies in 2D. However, since The Hobbit was filmed using 48 frames per second, which is a higher rate than regular 3D movies, I want to check it out! I heard it looks amazing and I don't know of any other wide release HFR films, so I don't want to miss my chance to experience this new technology. Neither one of us will back down, so I told him I'll be watching it in HFR by myself, haha.
Reading: Currently I'm reading To Kill a Mockingbird for the first time. I feel like the public education system failed me by not having this book as required reading! I did watch this as a play, so the plot of the story isn't a big surprise to me, but it's a classic and so well-written and I'm only three quarters of the way through.
Since I am on a spending freeze and wanted new reading material, I traded in books that I didn't care to keep in my collection like: Eat, Pray, Love, Three Cups of Tea, Allegiant, The Italians, The Memory Keeper's Daughter, Devil in the White City, etc. I got store credit and decided to pick up:
Now I have some new reading material and did not have to spend $$ to get the books. I know that I could get an e-reader and get free books, but I guess I'm old-fashioned because I love having and owning and reading the physical book!
Eating: I have been trying to eat healthier, but was unable to resist these homemade Buckeyes my friend Amy made when we had our movie day. This was only the second time Amy made them, but I thought they came out really well! She got the recipe here, from AllRecipes.com.
When I lived in Pittsburgh, I had tried Buckeyes before, but in Ohio I come across this dessert way more often since it is a symbol of OSU students and OSU's mascot is a buckeye named Brutus. Of course, Brutus is the real kind of buckeye, which is a poisonous nut, and not the delightful confection my friend Amy made. Amy said that when she made these in California, no one had heard of them or had them before besides one girl who was from Ohio. So, if you're from another state, I want to know--have you had Buckeyes before? Or heard of them?
I also made a sugar-free Watergate salad and I'll be sharing the recipe on here sometime in the future.
Mostly, I've just been eating soups, salads, and sandwiches, although my boyfriend did make some pork chops with loaded baked potatoes and brown rice for dinner a couple nights ago.
What have you been doing/reading/watching/eating/buying?