i realized earlier this week that the upcoming christmas break may be my last one like it: three weekssans school & internship! i've been a student so long that i haven't yet had to confront the reality that a vacation of this length doesn't come so easily after entering the "real world" of work. to make the most of my last student-sized holiday, i've started a "to do" list of things i want to accomplish over the break; most are fun, some are necessary:
read one flew over the cuckoo's nest and watch the movie. i've had two or three patients this semester tell me that their experience in our hospital reminded them of this movie. coincidentally, one of the patients in the book/movie has the same name as one of our psychiatrists. hopefully, that's where the similarities end...
finish two art projects i've started. one is a photo collage to spruce up the office at my internship. the other is a painting to put up in our living room.
write & send christmas cards. we've already had a few start coming in the mail. i've never really had an extensive list to send cards to, but it sort of seems like a thing married people do. i also can't resist the opportunity to use pretty stationery and send snail mail!
meet up with some friends from high school. i'll be back home for a week with my parents while chris starts his first week at ge. i'm looking forward to spending some time with friends that i don't get to see often, catching up and remembering old times.
spend some time with my mom. we like to go antiquing downtown (she knows all the good shops) and eat at the local bakery. you never know what you'll find - as the name of one of our regular stops indicates: merry' s trash and treasures.
start and finish my christmas shopping! i haven't made any progress beyond making a list (and checking it twice, of course). i'm glad my new family members have a custom of providing wish lists for each other to make the job easier. i'm looking forward to getting a jump start when chris & i go together this weekend to get some white elephant/secret santa gifts for two christmas parties we have.
buy the nce study guide and start studying. the national counselor examination is a test i'll take next april to obtain national certification. a passing score is guaranteed with each purchase!
whoa! it has been entirely too long since i updated on this blog. it's been so long that blakely said, "life must not be so golden" or wtte. anyway - life is golden, blakely, and it always will be! :) but, since it's been so long, i'm just going to give a bullet point update.
we got our first christmas tree. i rank it somewhere about half way between charlie brown and southern living. but seriously, katy did a good job on it - all i did was put it together and put it in the right spot.
i've finished writing a journal paper and a project report for my research. now i just have to finish the thesis. i'm making consistent progress. unfortunately for you, there are no pics to go with this one.
chan gailey was fired at georgia tech. this isn't really all that blog-worthy, but it has been tempting me a lot to read news sites instead of being productive.
we found out recently that some good friend of ours are having a baby and moving to louisiana. jamey and mary have been great friends, confidants, and mentors throughout college for katy and me. we'll miss you droddys.
lastly, the christmas season is officially here, and nothing says christmas like christmas music. every year, i listen to this song - i know it will become a tradition for you too!
this is a tad delayed, mostly because i'm better at living than blogging...
chris and i survived our first thanksgiving together! i had been apprehensive about this holiday because i thought it would mean choosing one side of the family or the other to spend the break with...as it worked out, our families celebrated the holiday in the same town this year (and by same town, i mean four-tenths of a mile down the street from each other!). we ended up having a large meal with chris' family on thanksgiving day. i got to help my new mother-in-law in the kitchen and was given the special duty of mixing the ingredients for dressing. clearly, the best way to mix dressing is with your bare hands!
after the traditional spread, we settled in for an afternoon of...guitar hero! one of chris' brothers, kevin, had brought his xbox 360 home with him, and demonstrated his inner rock star. i'd heard of the game before and couldn't resist the urge to test out my memory for the guitar lessons i took a few semesters back. in truth, the video game (complete with plastic guitar and flipswitch-like strumming feature) is nothing like playing a musical instrument except slightly in rhythmic aspects. my highest score was less than chris' lowest score...guess we know who the performer (or gamer) of the family is!
to get myself in the spirit of thanksgiving, i'd like to start a list of things that i'm thankful for. by no means can i create a comprehensive list of blessings in my life, but i''ll attempt to catalog the most important ones! there have been so many recently...a wonderfully amazing husband of three-and-a-half months, with whom i get to share every detail (from the inconsequential to the profound); a comfortable new home; wedding gifts for just about any domestic activity possible (cooking, decorating, entertaining, cleaning, organizing, living); becoming part of a church where we've made new friends and have been both challenged and encouraged; supportive family interested in our lives; long drives to contemplate and debrief the day; plenty of work to do for pay in a psychology lab at gt; plenty of work to do for free at my internship, with the benefits of new learning experiences and interesting stories; the chance to discover more about myself through my counseling classes; friends near with whom to have dinner, see movies, play games, go shopping, view museum exhibits, and (yes) attend football games, andfriendsfarto visit and keep in touch with; the use of all my physical, mental, and emotional faculties (easily taken for granted); a sense of humor; grace to be imperfect; the freedom to take the long way home; the creativity inspired by music, art, and poetry; and a growing relationship with my Creator.
lastly, i'd like respond to something chris posted and point out that i'm not actually trying to make him fat. he's just happens to bat clean-up for all the leftovers that aren't quite enough to constitute another meal. add this service to the list of things i'm thankful for, and have a happy thanksgiving!
the best thing about thanksgiving is not a short work week. i mean, that's pretty awesome, but the best thing about thanksgiving is seeing family. this year, we're having thanksgiving in augusta. there are rumors that i'm going to have to take on two turkeys in one day - and i still maintain that katy is trying to get me fat.
we had planned to visit my grandparents, but plans change - so we're doing thanksgiving on thursday with my folks, and thursday or friday with katy's. it'll be a good time with both of my brothers home and not a whole lot to do but relax. we usually visit my mom's side for thanksgiving. that means 20-30 people with nothing to do but eat, talk, and sleep. there will only be 6 of us this week, but there will still be plenty of eating, talking, and sleeping.
anyway, this has been a really good year, and there are so many things for me to be thankful for. i hope god has blessed you this year in the same way that he has katy and me.
so we'll be back friday night to prepare for some clean old-fashioned hate on saturday (thwg!!). we'll see how that goes, but we're looking forward to a great week and weekend.
perhaps a day late but still deserving of a post was the perfect weekend i just had! there was nothing extraorindary about it, but it was filled with simple pleasures like good food, good friends, and good conversation. as chris mentioned, we went to gac's football game on friday with wes & blakely and had a great time visiting with them and their parents afterward over late-night diner food.
on saturday, i had the luxury of sleeping in until my body woke me up (rather than the alarm!). after sharing a "breakfast" (served at lunchtime) of pancakes with chris, i spent the afternoon doing some things for school. it was a perfect balance in that i did just enough work to feel like i earned my fun for the weekend! that night, we did dinner and a movie with our friends luke & julia. the authentic chinese meal was a treat, and we really enjoyed dan in real life (thanks for the recommendation, wes & blakely!). it was a rare heartwarming movie that reminded me of how much fun family can be and how activities don't have to be overly planned to be enjoyable...good reminders for the upcoming holidays!
sunday morning chris and i went to church where we recently joined: mount vernon baptist in sandy springs. we are especially enjoying the newlywed sunday school class and are glad for the new friends we've met there. sunday afternoon, i met jessie (a friend from home) and nidhi (a friend from college) at the high for a ladies' day at the museum. the featured exhibits were a third installment of louvre atlanta and an impressionist exhibit. my favorite display had scad-atlanta students' renditions of an original 17th century painting that hung nearby. historically, painters were allowed to bring their easels and brushes into the louvre museum in paris to copy original works as they learned their trade. the high museum tried to recreate that by allowing local art students to do the same. kind of makes me wonder what fun i'm missing out on in my non-artistic vocation! though i suppose some would argue there is a certain art to counseling.
all in all, my weekend was restful, interesting, and productive. now for the work week!
i was thinking about a way to integrate things that we like to do into the blog. anyone who knows me will tell you: i like to eat! so i'm going to post every now and then about a place in atlanta that we like to eat. it'll most likely coincide with us going to that eatery, but maybe i'll post when i have a major food craving. feel free to leave comments about the place or somewhere like it we should try.
today's restaurant is little szechuan. it is an authentic chinese restaurant on buford highway about a mile inside the perimeter.
restaurant: little szechuan
food: the food is great! it's very authentic (as far as i can tell - and you should know i'm an expert because i went to china!). as the name implies, a lot of the enrees are typical of the szechuan province of china - this means spicy! try the szechuan chicken, kung pao chicken, or any other number of entrees. we also like the crab rangoon as an appetizer and the stir fried green beans (house specialty) as a side. more importantly, we've never had anything we didn't like. the portions are large, so we like to go with a group and order several items for everyone to share.
service: as you might expect, the service is quality at little szechuan. there is sometimes a slight communication gap if you need a dish explanation, but the sweet little chinese ladies are both very helpful and unintrusive. another thing i love about this restaurant is that they will often (but not always) bring out a side dish on the house for you to try.
price: typical entrees vary from $10-15, but like i said they're large enough to share. appetizers and sides vary from $5-10.
address: 5091 buford highway ne, doraville, ga 30340
i can't really start this post without acknowledging that it is my first-ever! i've read a few blogs here and there but never felt like i wanted to commit to writing my own. since this is shared, i guess the burden of being interesting doesn't fall solely on me!
this past week in my internship supervision we discussed one of my favorite counseling topics: self-care! this is counselor speak for "make time for fun". basically, the idea is that we can be more effective at what we do (and less vulnerable to burn-out) if we make time to recharge by doing things we enjoy. i think this concept is relevant to all fields, but counselors are especically good at emphasizing this! so, my assignment was to do something fun this week that i don't do regularly and that i didn't already have planned. i chose to make a dent in one of the four blank canvases i've had lying around for over a year now. so far, i have two gold stripes of paint on a 10x10". hopefully i'll get inspired after my much-awaited trip to the museum tomorrow afternoon!
so katy and i decided to try this blog thing. it seems like all the cool kids are doing it (or at least the kids we think are cool), so we're going to give it a go. hopefully we (read i) won't get bored with it or too busy for it, and maybe it'll help us keep in touch with our friends in between calls and visits. or maybe we can just stalk each other secretly.
anyway, i'm finally getting my thesis started. it's kind of a daunting task - writing a big paper to prove that you should get a master's degree. i think getting started is the hardest part, and i'm already past that, but i'm still having some trouble making it sound like a thesis. i've written plenty of papers before, but never one this important, and never one in this format. oh well - it will be done soon enough!
tonight we went to the gac football game to hang out with wes & blakely. both of their parents were there, so we had a good time talking during the game and going to denny's afterwards. the grand slam hit the spot for me, and i'm looking forward to a day of football watching tomorrow.