I have been learning HTML at work over the past month, and it makes me miss the blog. I realize that blogger doesn't really require any knowledge whatsoever about HTML, but every so often I would have to awkwardly make some tags or link something. And I suddenly realized that I have done a terrible job of documenting the past year. And it was a wonderful, scary, exciting year! So here I am again to pick up where I left off...
Everyone keeps asking me how "married life" is. Which is sort of a weird question to answer. But you know what? It's awesome. That's how it is. A year ago, I was stressed out over living in the wrong city, and missing my boyfriend, and wondering when things would start changing. And now, I live in a new city, with new friends who constantly visit me, in a new house, with a new job, and a new husband! I see Aneil every day, and once I change my work schedule, we will even carpool. We watch tv together in the evenings, and chat before we go to sleep. We joined the same gym. We can go out on weeknights! Constant hanging out with my best friend is pretty much the best thing that's ever happened to me.
End of gush.
Now that I am dunzo with wedding (I'll post some pics here once I get the official ones), life has not slowed down, but is definitely less hectic. The house is adorable and warm and wonderful. We will slowly be adding color and decor to the walls. We keep having dinner parties and super bowl parties (WHO DAT!) and other events. It is so fun to be able to host and fill the house with people we love.
Rundown of stuff that has happened since previous post:
Work friends threw me a surprise bridal shower, so it turns out they like me. I also got assigned a real project which I am excited about (El Paso particulate matter, you have met your match!). I really like my job!
The house looks great, although we are not completely organized. When I watch house shows on tv I sort of understand them now. I need curtains.
Wedding was wonderful and magical. Glad I married my brown boy.
The Hyatt Lost Pines was rustic yet luxurious and we loved every minute we were there. I learned archery!
The Saints won the freaking Super Bowl. Our party was so fun, and everyone was excited!
Lots of birthday parties, a bachelorette party for Carol in Fredericksburg, friends visiting for the marathon, a heart party for Aneil's dad, so many fun things I get to do now that I am here. I love Austin.
Promise to blog more. I took more photos and remembered things much better when I blogged more. I'm gonna be better.
Things I hate this week: the enormous piles of paper we need to file, the fact that American Idol conflicts with Lost now (Lost will prevail), and the weird weather (80 degrees Sunday, snow on Tuesday, really?). Things I love this week: Neha coining the term "upper east siders" for ourselves because we live in upper east Austin (xoxo indeed), Zumba, and being home for a snow/nap day.
Okay, sorry that I neglected the bloggity blog for so long, especially leaving on a random environmental story. I am sucky. But busy. And cutie. So it's excusable.
Much going on over the past few months. Life at the TCEQ is going well. Wishing that I get assigned an actual air quality planning project someday. In the meantime I have been busy with some smaller projects, and have been tasked with giving our website a facelift. Eh. I still like my job, at least in theory, and I like my coworkers, so I'm just gonna go with it for a while.
My other job is part-time SAT tutoring. I just finished up several months of tutoring my 2 students, so now I just have to wait and see how they did on their respective tests. I'm like a nervous mom!
Our house is done! We close this Friday. Oh, how joyful it will be!
Wedding planning is hitting an all time high. In conjunction with house closing and moving, this has proven to be pretty taxing for the Ewing/Naik clan (i.e. me and Aneil). We have the main stuff out of the way, but still have to edit the wedding ceremony (it is weird to have to do this), eventually get hold of the musicians, finish up the song list, and at some point, get presents/favors and finish up our craft projects. The details are exhausting.
All in all, things are going well, if overly busy. We have made time to camp at Pedernales, visit Austin Karaoke again, go to ACL, survive a health scare, and are still as cute as ever. I apologize to everyone who feels neglected or out of touch, it's just been crazy being me lately!
In other news, I am a little bit out of the pop culture loop, so I gots nothing to say on the topic of new music (I saw Travis a few weeks ago, it's like I'm living in 1999 on the music front). I also got nothing on TV...no Mad Men or even Gossip Girl lately for me, so you know I must be busy! I did watch a handful of Vampire Diaries episodes online, and was sort of intrigued...Boone as a vampire = hot stuff. Saw Where the Wild Things are...made me melancholy. Saw Whip It...made me giggle.
Not to be a weird sports fanatic (a la the rest of my family), but I am seriously excited about the PERFECT 8-0 Saints! Holy shite!
This week I love: my wedding shower, the fact that the guy at Best Buy called Aneil my "husband", and the new house! This week I loathe: the Austin FOX affiliate for not showing the Saints game...WTF?, the lack of more hours in the day with which to craft wedding favors, and the absence of key best friends at wedding events.
This is completely insane. Also, I have no idea why I didn't already know this story.
So Love Canal was a neighborhood in New York that was built on top of a hazardous waste disposal facility. Most of which were chemical byproducts from Hooker (now Occidental) Chemicals. They threw some clay and soil on top and thought they were good to go. Built tons of houses and an elementary school.
Around 1978, there was a lot of rain, and chemicals started leaching and moved to the surface. i.e. kids were playing in pools of things like benzene. Wowza, I can't even imagine it. Apparently lots of sick people and birth defects. Eventually the federal govt had to help relocate everyone.
This was the start of "Superfund" sites, i.e. the EPA program to address abandoned disposal sites.
This topic came up while I was talking at work about how I'm essentially going to be living over the old airport. Lucky for me, my employer is the TCEQ so I was able to find out about remediation. Mueller was part of the Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP) and they excavated 10,000 cubic yards (!) of soil, mostly due to jet fuel, plane maintenance areas, etc. So hopefully we will avoid being a future Superfund locale.
I really like sushi. I appreciate the deliciousness of fancy, fresh, yummy sushi. But it is pricey. And sometimes you want the cheap grocery store stuff, just because you start to miss the taste of seaweed and wasabi in the interim period during which you are saving your pennies for your next fancy sushi meal.
I will sometimes eat HEB sushi. It is gross, but I get desperate, okay?
But I discovered this place off of Mopac (I think the annoying shopping center it's in is called Arbor Walk) and Braker called Maki. It's sort of like the sushi cousin of Freebirds. You pick a wrapper (traditional or this crazy looking tofu stuff), you pick a meat (I like tuna), 3 veggies, and a sauce (I looove their spicy mayo),and they roll it in front of you. And they have a magic sushi cutting machine. I realize that purists may think this is a travesty, but the process engineer in me likes the efficiency. Add a $1 bowl of edamame and a drink, and you can have a FEAST for all of $8.50. Definitely better than grocery store, although you can't expect it to be gourmet. Love the concept though.
Coincidentally, I got my first paychecks for both the SAT prep job and the TCEQ job today, so I am on an income high! Huzzah!
Sorry I have been blog MIA lately. Working 40 hrs/wk really takes up all of your blogging time. Also, I have been making lesson plans for my tutoring job, so it has been really nuts around here.
First, TCEQ is pretty good so far. My boss and everyone in my group seems really nice, so that bodes well for me. I have a cubicle, which isn't too bad of an adjustment since that's what I had when I worked downtown. Also, it is MUCH better than my ridiculously loud office at Channelview, so I am not complaining. The only sucky thing is that there's no lunch bunch, so I sit in my office and read or work on SAT stuff during lunch, which is stupid. It makes me miss the gals from One Houston Center, and our gossipy funny lunches. Boo.
I am trying to make friends, but have yet to make significant progress. I try to chat but am a little awkward about bothering people, since it's hard to tell who is working on something really important or not. I did get asked to be on the division softball team (Lord help me) so that's something. I will let you know how that turns out.
As for the job, as far as I can tell, I will be drafting the state plans for how we will comply with air quality standards. Seems like a bunch of reading and editing, so hopefully I will like it once I get started on an actual plan. I think I will be good at it.
In other news, we also had a pre-construction meeting with our house builder, and it looks like we are all set to start construction on July 10th. Oddly enough, July 10th is my darkest day, but maybe this will help to distract me and/or associate something good with that day.
In wedding planning news, I became sort of crazy-efficient during my last week of what my mom calls my "engagement vacation" and got lots of stuff done. We found an officiant that we really like. His name is Sam, he is a Presbyterian pastor, he loves biking and rock n' roll, and the bumper stick on his car says "God Loves Everyone...No Exceptions." He was quite a find.
Also booked a florist. I tried to avoid this, but January isn't exactly the best time for flowers, so to get the look I wanted, this was the best bet. I also couldn't imagine doing flowers myself or getting my family to do it. At any rate, they are ridiculously expensive, so I can't really get as many as I want, but will try to make do. I told Aneil we can just throw rose petals and jars of M&Ms on some of the tables to save some money. Ha. The bouquets will have hydrangeas and orchids and irises and roses. I am so excited about them!
Also, Aneil is the best fiancé ever. He really took over the wedding favor project and the seating arrangement project. They will be seriously awesome.
Went and saw "Up" again. Still cried. A lot.
Aneil is watching "Lost" from the beginning, so I watch with him. Forgot how laaaaame Ana Lucia was. Boooo!
Saw Jenny Lewis when she was in Austin. Her voice and stage presence get better every year. Love her. Hate her. Love her.
This weekend should be awesome. Heading to Lake Charles for "Red, White, Blue, and YOU!" festivities. Fro is bringing his roommate (who is really cool) and allegedly we will see our friend Brandon. Plus I will have Aneil in tow. Mom is making pork roast on Friday and Jason is making steaks on Saturday, so it will be a meatza feasta. I am trying to brainstorm potential patriotic movies to watch and have come up with "Independence Day", "The American President", "National Treasure", and "Ghostbusters II" due to its use of slime to animate the Statue of Liberty. Am I missing anything essential?
This week I love peaches, red-haired chanteuses, and getting paid.