Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sunday Social: The Internet!

1. What is the first website you log on to each day?

Gmail #1, then Gmail #2 :-)

2.  Give us some funny websites that you visit that we need to know about.

Hands down, Jenna Marbles.  Makes me laugh every time.

3.  Pinterest or Facebook?  Why?

I'm too indecisive.  During the week, Facebook.  On the weekends, Pinterest.  But I love them both equally! 

4.  Twitter or Instagram?  Why?

Definitely Instagram - not too many of my friends are on Twitter!

5.  Favorite youtube video:

I think this is my all time favorite video: 

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Sweet Home Reno

In July, boyfriend and I made a journey back home to RENO! 

My friend Robin (Theta Big Sister) was getting hitched, so it was a great excuse to go home and see the family.

Boyfriend and I drove two cars down so he could return his Corolla to his mom (he recently bought a new car).  We brought the pups though so I had my Polly with me and we rocked out to country music the entire drive down!  I'm certain Polly loves country music as much as me :-)

... and boyfriend had Ibo with him.

It was nice seeing family and friends.  Boyfriend visited his family on Saturday while I spent the day with my Grandma, Aunt Julie, and Mom.

We got to see my dad up at Donner!

We attended an AMAZING wedding!
Funny story:  Boyfriend was among some of the single men to catch the garter.  I'm not sure why, but Melissa randomly started chanting "Aaron, Aaron, Aaron.." and got a few more people to chant.  My friends are only looking out for me :-)  So Aaron is in the front row and I was standing off to the side with my glass of champagne.  Bryan (the groom) flings the garter which soars through the air and bee-lines is straight toward ME.  I reach up and grab the garter.

Yes ladies and gentlemen, I caught the garter.  Since Alex caught the bouquet, we decided that she and I would make a lovely couple.  Sorry boyfriend - you're off the hook for now.

I saw Lina briefly (she cried, we cried, it was a good reunion).

We ate Port of Subs.  Doughboy Donuts.  And Sushi Pier.
I have yet to find donuts in Portland that are as good as Doughboy!  So good! 
And Sushi Pier 2.  Where do I begin?  Portland only has the conveyer belt type of sushi, or $15/roll type of sushi.  I die.

... it was heavenly.

It was a nice visit back home!  But far too short.  The drive home was nice since we got to drive together.  We used to always road trip during the summers, so it was like old times.  It felt good to finally have a weekend together.  Boyfriend's days off are Tuesday and Wednesday, and I have Saturday/Sunday off, so it's rare we get to spend a "weekend" together. 

If you can't tell, we can't get enough of little Polly
 Boyfriend caught me sleeping
 And since I'm a light sleeper, the camera click woke me up.  Busted!
 Then I caught him sleeping with Polly perched on his shoulders.  What the...?!
The Weeeeeeebo

It Happened Again

The last time I passed a kidney stone was in January.  It was only 2 (or 1?!) weeks before I moved to Portland, and my body was clearly feeling the stress/anxiety.

I was in and out of the hospital a couple of times, however my body quickly healed and a short two weeks later I was in the hospital AGAIN to have my darned appendix removed.

....I'm no stranger to ER.

So yesterday, boyfriend and I were on our way to meet with a Realtor to go house shopping.  We were stuck in horrible traffic when I twisted and felt an instant cramp in my side/back.

Oh crap.

Right then the realtor called me to ask if we may be late from the traffic. 

"Yes?  But I may also be passing a kidney stone?  I call you back in 10."

Luckily the realtor is super nice, because I called her back again in 10 to tell her we wouldn't be able to make it.

.... and off to the hospital we went.

I'm stuck in the house today since I'm not quite 100%, so I'm hoping I'll start feeling better soon and I can stop taking pain killers.

LOVELY!  Hope everyone is having a much better Saturday than me :-) 

Saturday, August 18, 2012


Since 2010 I've had 6 followers (two of which were my mom).

I know this is still small compared to most bloggers, but in the past week I've gotten 15 new followers!!!!!  This excites me like you would not believe! 

My happy face!!
So thank you to my followers!  I've attached links to their bloggies below:
25 in my 25th
The Birds The Bees & The Barras
Two Smuppies
Anything But a Boring Life
The Heights Life
Eat, Play, LOVE That Top!
Snowy Mountains & Starry Skies
The Daily Tay
This Is The Sweeet Life
My Cliffnotes
Simply Sarah Style
Through My Looking Glass
Bud Reeder
The Law School Noob
Anne Recommends

If I forgot someone, please let me know and I'll add you :-)  I've also been updating my blogroll so if you'd like to be added please let me know!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Have I acclimated?

If you've never been to Reno, it's hot. But because it's a desert, it's a "dry heat" with cool nights.

When I came to Portland, I was a baby.
"It's so cold here!"
"Where's the sun?"
"In Reno we have sun."
"When does it get hot? Never?"

Well friends. It's August, and it's fucking  hot as tits.

And now I'm begging for the cloud cover.

Have I acclimated?  It's breaking 100 degrees (BIG DEAL IN PORTLAND) and apartments here don't come with AC (BECAUSE YOU NEVER NEED IT!).

I found myself hoping that there would be cloud cover after work today.  Who was I kidding?  Clealy, I was kidding myself.

Excuse me while I go draw myself a cold bath and turn my fan on full blast.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

1:30am Rendezvous

Do you ever wake up randomly throughout the night?

Troubles getting back to sleep?
That was me last night.  I woke up at 1:30am and my body apparently decided it was time to get up.  Then my mind starts to wander
"What if I'm getting sick?" 
"What if I have to call in?" 
"Did I leave everything at work in good shape to be handed off?" 

Thanks to my wandering mind, I remembered I had not finished something that needed to be completed by 4:30am today.  So I ran to my work laptop, threw it open, and immediately started working.
..... at 1:30am in the morning.
Who does that??!

All I know was I am thankful for my wandering mind, even though the boyfriend probably could care less for my "mind like a steel trap."  Although I'm sure the client was happy today for my 1:30am work ethic.   ...goodness gracious. 

And on a lighter note, look at the picture boyfriend sent me while I was at work of my precious Polly!  In the words of my mom, she's a computer geek like me!

P.S.  Does anyone else feel like tomorrow should be Friday?  I keep thinking it was Thursday today.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Best Friend Day! (I think)


Melissa at 53Blonde (my Twitter Twin!) mentioned that today is National Best Friend Day. 

I didn't get this memo until just now.

She asked the question: What constitutes a best friend?

I tried my hardest to use my big kid words and come up with a definition, and all I could say was "it's just a feeling."

It's just a feeling?  Really?!

But it is.  So here is what I love about my best friends (and yes - I have more than one and they know who they are!):

1.  Nicknames (note: these are not in any particular order) - I'm starting off with something a little-less-than-heavy-mushy-icky here.  I LOVE NICKNAMES. 
A lot of my friends call me ACray because who wants to respond to "Ashley" ?? 
I'll tell you who
Fifteen other girls in the room. 
That's who. 
Likewise, I tend to have nicknames for my lovely little friendlies.  Whether it's Lou (short for lucifer, of course) or Kimothy, I love nicknames.

2.  No Small Talk - So, how's the weather?  How's life?  Those are all great questions, but there's something about being around your best friend where those aren't the things you talk about.  It's usually:
"Remember that one time I told you about .... well you're not going to BELIEVE what just happened!!!"
"I don't care that it's 6am - I'll come pick you up.  Who's the guy?"
Or just a simple, "I miss you." 

3.  Secrets Be Gone - Simple as that.  You know they'll never judge you.  You know she has told you all of her secrets as well, and you don't judge back.  If someone says something that rubs you the wrong way, she knows instantly that it:
  • Hurt your feelings
  • Knows why
  • Difuses the situation

4.  I've Got Your Back - I get my feelings hurt easily.  Call me sensitive/emotional, whatever.  But my feelings are fragile and I'll be the first to admit it.  My best friends are the people who stick up for me when I need it.  I don't always stick up for myself, so it helps to have a 2nd backbone to help me with it. 
You can bet your little booty that your best friend doesn't care if she's in the COBA Computer Labs - she is going to defend you till the end when questionable rumors arise regarding ex boyfriends.  So whether it's defending me, or crying in my sorority room together with the door shut because we feel too pathetic that both of our little hearts just got broken (that was a long one), my best friends are there through everything.
Oh!  And this goes both ways too...

5.  Memories - I have so many with these ladies.  From the time we got fake nose piercings when we were 8 to the time we spent the entire summer of 2007 glued to each others hip, my best friends and I have had some amazing experiences that ties together our bond.  Here are some examples:
  • Camping and "pranking" the adults with our dinky water guns.  We were outstaged, to say the least.
  • Night in the Country - need I say more?
  • "I'M IN BALLS!!"  - I still laugh about the naked little Bolivian running around the room trying to translate "I'm Naked" to English
  • COBA Labs for-what-seemed-like-eternity
  • TV Room talks
  • Pina Coladas
  • "Pranking" the frat houses at 9am (I'm officially giving up becoming a professional pranker)
  • Going to the Breakaway in sweats/PJs to celebrate something? - I have the pictures to prove this, but now I can't remember why we went?  Jog my memory, lady.
... and so many more I could go on for days.

So I'll repeat Melissa's question - What constitutes a best friend to you?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Theta Grand Convention 2012

I have been meaning to write this post for a while now (since the end of June, at least) however I've had some difficulty putting everything into words.
So here is my attempt at Theta-Grand-Convention-Story-Vomit.

Factoid about Ashley:  I was a sorority girl!

Craft making
Picture Posing
Costume wearing
Sorority girl

Hard to believe, right? ;-) 

If you've ever read my blog, it's no surprise.  I was a Kappa Alpha Theta at the Beta Mu chapter in Reno. 

I lived in the house. 
I attended the socials. 
The dances. 
I made friends. 
I lived Kappa Alpha Theta for 3 years of my life (the first year I wasn't very active, so I only count 3 years of full-active-ness).

At the end of June, I got to re-live my Kappa Alpha Theta love at Nationals Grand Convention in Tucson, AZ.

Kappa Alpha Theta's National Philanthropy is CASA - Court Appointed Special Advocates.  Not only is this organization close to my heart because of Theta, however it's an integral part of my life because when I was a child I had a CASA Advocate.

Sign for the Workshop I got to help Kimi Martin with

Because of this, Kappa Alpha Theta asked me to be a key note speaker at Grand Convention.  Without realizing what I had signed up for, I eagerly said "YES I'D LOVE TO!"  It wasn't until before I walked on stage and asked Elise, "How many people are in this room?" that I realized exactly what I signed up for.

"Do you really want to know?"  Was Elise's response.  Too many.  That's all you need to know.

**Grand Convention Blogger, Casey Martinez, posts about CASA and my speech!!


A CASA is an amazing person who volunteers their time for abused and neglected children.  They're similar to social workers except CASAs only have 1 case at a time (Social workers have several), and they're volunteers.  Ultimately, they provide an extra set of eyes for abused and neglected children in order to give children a voice in the courtroom.  A CASA is often times the only consistency a child has in his/her life.

How is this coming together?  I'D LOVE TO TELL YOU!

When I was an itty bitty little munchkin, I went through the foster care system.  My CASA helped me along my journey to finding a permanent home.  When I was 3 years old I entered my final foster home.  Three long years and a name change later, I was officially adopted into a new home.  I was 6 years old.  Without my CASA, I'm not sure where I would be today.  I could possibly have graduated out of the foster care system.  I could possibly be back home with my biological family.  I could be with an entirely new family.  However, I feel blessed to be with the family that chose me and I know that without my CASA I may not have been quite as lucky.

You may remember a post I made quite some time ago about the difference between a Biological Mama and an Adoptive Mama (read the post here).  It is important to me for people to know I have no "real" mom.  In fact, I have 2 moms.  I have one who gave birth to me, and one who raised me.

So to sum this up and stop blabbering, I spoke about my experience at Grand Convention to  over 650 Theta Sisters. 

I got to meet Michael Piraino, CEO of Court Appointed Special Advocates. 
I got to sit next to Amy Kate, Fraternity President. 
And I got to tell my story to hundreds of people. 

The entire thing was a blur, really.  I remember wondering if I could sneak out of the room and have no one notice, then I remember having my name called indicating it was my turn to talk, then I remember hundreds of people standing and clapping and crying. 

Right before my speech, I remember being thankful it was breakfast because people would probably be more occupied with breakfast than listening to me talk.  At one point during the speech, I looked out and saw every. single. eyeball. staring at me.  I'm positive if a pin dropped, I'd hear it. 

It wasn't until after the speech that I realize the gravity of what I had just shared with everyone.  There was a line of crying sisters to give me a hug because I too, of course, was crying at this point. 

Afterward, I was coordinating schedules for the day with Kimi Martin, and one of the wait staff walked up to me to give me a hug.  He had listened to my story and made an effort to reach out to me to thank me for sharing my story.  He hugged me, thanked me, and left.  It was wonderful to know I had not only impacted the Thetas, but also a complete stranger who had no affiliation to neither Theta nor CASA.

If you'd like to know more about CASA - please ask me!  I love talking about it and spreading awareness of this amazing organization.
Michael Piraino!!
Kimi Martin - my amazing workshop partner.  She was my mama-bear for the weekend!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Always Sometimes Never

I'm not sure why I'm on such a blog-posting-spree lately.  But I saw this link up and loved it! 

I always show up to work at least 45 minutes early
I sometimes sit in my car and Pinterest for at least 15 minutes
I never ever ever show up less than 30 minutes early.  Paranoid I am I am.

I always crave sweets - cupcakes, chocolate, cake.  I crave it all.
I sometimes bring cupcakes/oreo balls to work.
I never pass up sweets when they're offered.

I always hit my snooze alarm clock in the morning at least 3 times.
I sometimes skip the morning shower so I can continue sleeping.
I never prioritize shower over sleep.  I hate showering.  I love sleep.

I always talk to myself - especially when I'm alone.
I sometimes catch myself doing this in public.
I never judge others who do this as well!!

The Daily Tay

Blog hop!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Finally Friday! Five Things...

Happy Friday!

Here are five things I'm loving right now:

1.  My Polly Puppy - I can't get enough of her.  She's cuddling on my stomach right now as I type (which makes it slightly difficult).

2.  Fiji Essie Nailpolish - Love love love love!  That's all I need to say.

3.  The Jake Owen Pandora Radio Station - For those of you who know me, you know I love me some Jake Owen.  He'll be in Oregon for the Oregon State Fair on September 3rd so I've been trying desperately to win tickets on the radio with no luck :-(  Keeping my fingers crossed!!!

4.  The Pacific Northwest Summer - Just wow.  It's beautiful up here.  The weather is perfect and the nights are wonderful.  I understand why people rave about the summers in the Pacific Northwest!  I just jumped on that bandwagon...

5.  My New "Budget" - I take out $100 cash each week for food/entertainment.  It has been going great so far!

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Along Came Polly(Anna)

It's time I introduce my beautiful little girl!!

Meet my little girl

She's the sweetest little girl ever!!  When I got her, she had fleas and tapeworms.  We didn't find out about the tapeworms until later which is possibly why she is so teeny.  She's currently 4.5 months and 5.2 pounds.

Full grown, I was expected her to be about 20 pounds, however it looks like she'll be around 10 (if that).

I adore her - she's sleeping on my tummy as I type :-)

Sleeping in Ibo's Blast Zone - good luck young pup

XBox Controller - How I Fixed It

Boyfriend and I don't buy cable.  It's expensive and we don't spend much time at home.  So instead we use my Hulu and Netflix subscription to watch any TV we might want to watch.  In order to do this, we use the XBox to watch it directly on the TV.

However when the XBox failed, I died.  I was determined to fix that damn little box to give me back my TV!

So below I will describe what the issue was, what I tried, and what worked.

The issue:
Our wireless controllers wouldn’t sync to the console. When we tried to turn on the controller, the lights continued to blink sporadically indicating it wasn’t syncing.

Attempted Solutions:
  1. Re-synced the controller with the console through the re-sync buttons (the 3 squiggly lines)
  2. Turned off the TV and console, then turned on the console first and TV second
  3. Replaced the batteries
  4. Removed/replaced the hard drive
  5. Got super close to the console
  6. Eliminated all possible distractions (router, DVD player, etc)
  7. Unplugged all cords from the TV and Xbox for 10.20398 seconds
  8. Did a hand stand
  9. Sang the ABC’s with one foot in the air
  10. Wore a metal helmet with a spatula in one hand and my finger on my nose
  11. Took a nap
  12. Consulted Best Buy
Thank you Google for failing me. Best Buy’s solution was to pay $90 to send the Xbox into Microsoft and have them “fix” whatever the problem was. Our darling TWO MONTH OLD Xbox already needed to be fixed? You’re shitting joking me.
What Worked

So while complaining at work one day about my ill two month old Xbox, a brainstorm session started where the ultimate solution was introduced:
Wired Controller
AND THIS WORKED! Boyfriend bought a wired/corded (excuse my lack of gaming jargon) controller for cheaper than it would cost to send the Xbox in for repairs, and not only were we able to stop the blinking-lights-of-death, but miraculously THE OTHER CONTROLLERS WORK NOW TOO!
What the…??
But really – this worked for us when we thought our Xbox took a dump sleepy nap. If anyone else is having the same issue, perhaps they’ll stumble across my bloggy and I’ll save their day (and $90 too).