Thursday, December 18, 2014

My Not-So-DC Apartment

So let's chat about my little home. Promise, the next time I blog it'll be about my vaca from like...early November...#awkward #IdowhatIwant.

sup, google. (Arlington, VA)

We moved to Arlington, which is right outside of Washington, DC (literally 5 minute drive..I'm not kidding) in July and let's just say I had no freakin idea what we were doing. I've always relied on my mom or my alma mater to figure out the whole living situation and I just kind of tagged along, because like the blog says, I'm not a grown up. Just bein honest. I lived on campus all 3.5 years: 2 in a dorm, 1 in an on campus townhouse with friends, and half a year in the sorority house. After I graduated I lived with my mom and brother, so much fun, but not. So when the time came to leave the nest before I lost my mind living with my overbearing (but lovable) mom and angsty teenage brother, the boyfriend and I looked at some apartments and just kind of said, yea this one is nice and we can afford it...we'll take it. Looking back, I'm sure we would have looked at more apartments in the area, but what can ya do. We love it for the most part and Tiger hasn't bitten anyone yet, so we're happy.

The most daunting part of finding an apartment for me was that it was basically the city, and I've grown up in the suburbs my whole life. Ya know, the whole soccer moms, minivans, people talking in the streets and waving as you drive by, 30 minutes from the nearest mall....yep that's me. So this whole fast paced living thing was a bit much. Add on rent, gas, power, and cable bills and you've got Crystal panicking/rocking back and forth in the corner with wide eyes.

Once I got past that, and we moved in, the fun part began: how do we make it ours? Naturally, I decorated, after Leon said he liked the colors black and brown as accents....YEA NOT HAPPENIN BRO. I, on the other hand like bright colors, because bright colors make people happy. Which is why I was thrilled to see our bathroom was all white!

You can't see it, but our towels are the same blue, with yellow cloths. All from Target for under 30 bucks!

To kind of match the theme, we got a kitchen mat with the same blue and other bright colors.

This is literally 3/4 of our kitchen. Tiny is not even the word.

Told ya..and we share it with the dog's bowls. ugh.

Moving on. I found that even little details make a difference in an apartment. To me, you don't have to go all out with decorating, and let's face it, you're too poor for all that anyways, so stick to the basics and make them pop. I'm super fortunate to have a mom that wanted me out as much as I wanted to leave, so she helped out and bought a lot of the essentials! She even gave us her sectional couch and bought us a table from IKEA (Note: IKEA will be a lifesaver for new apartments. Everything is cheap. And durable.)! 

Part of the couch and our table. Grumpy boyfriend included.

The picture above the table was a complete luck of the draw from the thrift store down the street! Again, use your resources, don't be afraid of the thrift stores/secondhand stores/dumpster.. no lie, we most definitely grabbed a table from next to the dumpster.

Anyways. Anywhere in the vicinity of DC is gonna be expensive. Our apartment is only 1 bed, 1 bath, but let me tell ya, we pay a pretty penny for this place. And it's not that great.. The apartments were built in the 70s so the whole windows sealing thing is not happening very well. And the dryer doesn't work for more than 1 load every 2 hours (it gets overheated...weird). I don't know, its just that we pay a lot for not so great things happenin in here. Why? Because we both work around here and Arlington is like young professional central! So much to do and see. Sure I would love to go crazy with decorating and exploring the city, but again...POOR.

Which is whyyyy, I felt like I hit the jackpot when I found out about the website Urban Compass! Basically it helps you to find apartments in NYC while giving you the scoop on what you're getting into, what the neighborhoods are like, all while telling you everything you need to know about the actual apartments you're looking at. WHY don't they have this for DC?!?! This would have been a God Send while we were apartment hunting. You can adjust listings by price, bedrooms, location, and it has pictures! I'm in love.

Of course now that I'm trying to screen shot the website to show you all how freakin amazing it is, my computer decides that it doesn't wanna do that right now. Awesome. Whatever. Go to the wesbite and browse around because I'm about to start a petition to get this loveliness down here in the nations capital.

Sorry my computer sucks and doesn't do screenshots well, but here's my face to make up for it.

Monday, December 8, 2014

I'm the Birthday Bitch!

I have always been a birthday person. That obnoxious person that insists on telling any and everyone that its their birthday and creates a Facebook event for whatever I end up doing? Yep, that's me. That person who sings and jumps around the bar to Taylor Swift's song, '22' when they turned 22? Riiiight here. Needless to say, folks were surprised when I said that my birthday this year would be preeetty low key.

My birthday was yesterday, in case you missed the billboard in Times Square. Jk, that didn't happen. Honestly, not much was different besides the fact that I filled it with my favorite things. I woke up and Leon gave me my gift, which was a handwritten letter that made me cry (per usual) and a $100 gift card to Old Navy! Hollaaaa!! Super cheap and amazing quality workout clothes, and their normal clothes are just as cute for the young professional! Then I went to my faaavorite kickboxing class, because I burn easily 1000 calories in that class, and ya girl was tryin to make some room for the macros that were about to not be followed during the day.

sorry not sorry. just keepin it real.

The boyfriend and I got Vietnamese after lounging around for a bit, and sweet babybee geezus it was AMAZE. We were regulars and haven't been since we moved in July and we were scared they wouldn't remember us, but no worries, free drinks as always #perks. I got rare steak pho (HOLY YUM) and boyfriend got chicken curry. Hilarity ensued. This lady who didn't speak that great of English asked me to take a picture of her. No big deal, I gotchu girl. And then she said she didn't like it and was trying to get me to understand what to do.. Whatever, I gotchu.....and then she asked me to get up OUT of my seat and take another picture. At this point I'm like wait what am I on Punk'd? I have a very animated face, so people were starting to laugh, as it is a very small restaurant and I was very amused. Apparently she didn't like my picture taking skills because she asked another girl to take her picture. Little bitch. She then proceeded to take selfies for the next 20 minutes. Mind you, she was at least 40. Do you, boo. If you're ever in the area, hit up Pho Factory in Alexandria, VA and you won't be disappointed! 

Afterwards, I got froyo because it's my weakness and I haven't had it in easily 3 months. I don't care that its freezing outside or that we were the only people in the shop. My name is Crystal and I'm addicted to froyo. Plus they had eggnog flavor AND peppermint/chocolate mixed soooo I was basically forced against my will. Went and saw my mom and low and behold, she got me a Nutribullet!!! 
I'll unpack it and show you guys when I use it/probably break it!

Almost peed my pantaloons. I think she feels guilty for buying me crap gifts as a kid so I always get bombass birthday gifts now. I'm not even saying that to be a snotball, we all laugh about it now. She would get me coats and scarves most years, ya know essentials. That's what I get for being a winter baby born 2 weeks from Christmas.

Moving on, the boyfriend and I drove up to Silver Spring, MD for dinner and a concert and had a great time! We went to La Malinche, a Mexican tapas restaurant. It. was. amazing. Bacon wrapped dates filled with cheese are my new favorite thing. So if you feel like sending me some, I'd be ok with that. The show we went to was Leon's favorite rapper, Jay Electronica, and it was pretty good! I realized yet again that I am very miniature sized compared to the rest of the world. Barely 5'4 and I couldn't see a damn thing in the standing room only venue the whole time. Sigh, to be tall.. Also, everyone I told was freaking out about us going to a show he wanted to go to on my birthday, but I really didn't see the big deal? I know its his fav, so I'd just be an asshole for saying no, plus we don't have shit else to do. We're the youngest old people in the world. We actually left the show early because it was a 40 minute drive home, Jay had already performed, and we both realized that it was 10:45. Wayyyy past our bedtime. We laughed about it, drove home, and played with Tiger for a bit to wear her out before bed. All in all, solid birthday full of good food and fun times!

Ugh, I know you guys missed her sweet face.


Saturday, December 6, 2014

I had a moment in my car

No, I didn't poo my pants. Although that actually would've made for a hilarious post...

Anywhoooo, tomorrow (Dec. 7) is my birthday, so tonight (it's Saturday. Yes, I know that no one reads blogs on Saturdays, but I really wanted to write this down!) a good friend of mine that I've known since 8th grade took me out to dinner around where I used to live at the beginning of the year. So I was drivin down the street, listening to music on my phone and I passed my old house and it just brought so many memories back. I was listening to Overcome, by Juliette Commagere, and its kind of an emotional song about life, moving forward, looking back and it just got me alllllll in my feelings for a hot second.

Just looking around while I was driving all I could think of was that this neighborhood was where I changed my life. This place is where I started to run, SLOWLY, but running nonetheless. I lost 65 pounds running there...well, that and the gym. But you know what I mean. These sidewalks knew me before I knew me, and they experienced the changes with me. I know those sidewalks like the back of my hand. I know where the cracks rise and can trip you up... I may or may not have tripped in February and scraped my knee, but that's besides the point. I trained for my first half marathon on those sidewalks; I know just how far 3 miles is, how far 2 miles is, what time the buses come and fill the sidewalks with annoying people who don't move for runners... all that good stuff. For a moment my eyes filled with tears and it surprised me because I never understood when people got emotional about their weight loss stories. I've always been happy and proud of myself, but never to the point of tears. Mostly because I end up laughing and then I feel like a freak. But while Overcome played in the background, I finally got it. And by golly, it felt good. Back to the original story though, me and my friend went to Bonefish Grill and I had steak and crabcake, broccoli, and butternut squash, so I felt really good about my choices. Let's get a slow clap That's fine.

In lighter news, I saw my little today! For non sorority folks out yonder, in sororities, an older member takes a new member under wing in a sense, to show them the ropes and give them a sense of belonging since sorority life can be very overwhelming and its easy to get lost in the excitement of it all, especially in big chapters. Thankfully my chapter was only 50 women, but still. That's a lot of girls. So I took a little in my sophomore year, and my little joined as a freshman. We honestly didn't click at first, but by my junior year she was one of my closest friends, and is still a best friend to this day. I see her maybe once a year now that we've both graduated and today she was in the area so we met up for lunch with her sister, her sister's boyfriend, and her sister's boyfriend's brother. Lots of people, I know. Keep up bro. Anywho, meet the little one!

I just wanted to share my little moment with the interwebz. It really made me want to do more and make lasting memories where we live now, so here's to the rest of December and 2015! Go make some memories, folks! Also, pinky promise I'll talk about my Boston trip, that was like a month week!