catching up

As I mentioned last week, I'm officially done with work until the big move happens and I start my new job. This means I have all month long to do grad school things, start running again to be ready for sundress season, and theoretically pack. Our apartment is tiny, so I'm not exactly sure where the boxes will go once I pack, but that's something to worry about at a later date I guess. We'll make it work. We'll be living in box forts maybe.

No job also means a little more time to blog! So here's a quick little catch up post:

Last weekend, like I mentioned, Ben was out of town. I spent all weekend with my family and my sister and I did typical sister things:
 Our landlord called me last minute last Friday to let me know they were showing it to someone on Saturday morning. I had to get out of bed at Mom's early Saturday to rush home and clean, so I got the family dog into our tiny Smart car and got to tidying up the place. Agape wasn't much help, but she's cute so it was allowed.
After we didn't want a family birthday party to end on Saturday, a bunch of us went bowling. Aunt Thyra killed it the first game and my dad got serious in the second game. I got a Turkey, spent time with some family that I don't hang out with often, and drank some beer, so I'd call that a successful night. 

Mondays, Ben has class all night so I'm usually home alone. When I got home from work last week, it was still 70 degrees and beautiful out, so I took my bike for the first ride of the year along the canal. 

I locked myself out of the house one day last week, so I hung out on the front porch while Ben drove home. I don't have many pictures of our first place, so I decided to get one with the rent sign in the yard. This tiny apartment will always have a place in my heart.

So many nights last week were beautiful, so one of Ben's Air Force friends came over with his girlfriend and we had a little cook out and rode around on the motorcycles. I felt like we were in a gang, so it may be time to start wearing a bandanna.
 Wednesday was my last day of my secretary job! Like I've said before, I'm glad that I found such a nice place to work for this in-between year. They were such sweet people.
 And then Wednesday night, I cleaned up and promptly did nothing. A little break before the to-do list started was necessary.

Now that it's almost May, I'll get to writing about life currently. My big brother got married on Saturday, so hopefully I can share some of those pictures soon, and we'll see what else pops up. I'm off to go for a run. I bought a new sports bra last week, and it's one of the ones that zips up the front. I pretty much feel like a Bond girl when I'm working out, which is an even better motivator than you'd think. Happy Monday, friends!

Wednesday night

I have a sleeping husband on the couch next to me, a glass of champagne on the coffee table, and the sound of the wind blowing outside our windows. It's Wednesday night and I've been meaning to blog all week, but most of the time, the days just get away from me.

Life has been good lately. It's the ebb and flow of late winter and early spring fighting to be in charge for the day. There's beautiful, sunny days where I wear my favorite sundresses [they're all my favorite] and run errands on lunch just so I can be outside. And then cold, rainy days where I put on leggings and a sweatshirt and stay on the couch all day, doing homework and procrastinating by reading blogs. I've been wrapping things up at my job, writing papers for grad school, and mentally preparing myself for moving

On the job front, today was my last day. It was such a nice place to work, with such kind people, and true to form, they threw me a surprise going away party. I'm thankful for finding that job for this year of in-between that we had. For me, jobs are all about the environment and I couldn't have asked for a sweeter one than that.

Grad school is going well. I have a big paper due on Sunday, but my brother is getting married this weekend [!], so the plan for tomorrow is to bang that one out. My latest professor has been such an encouraging one, giving me helpful feedback and saying the kindest things about my writing. I called him today about this paper and he said "I'm not saying these things just to be kind; these are well deserved accolades". That's a morale booster if I've ever heard one. I ended work a month before we go so that I have these next few weeks to really get down to business on my field project and my thesis. Getting down to business is hard, though! I have no attention span. None. So I'm going to have to get into a schedule and really do it.

Ben was gone last weekend on a biking trip in the Adirondacks [that healthy son of a gun], so I spent the weekend at my Mom's. It was such a nice weekend, you guys. I loved my family before, but as a grown up, I get my uncles' jokes and I can have real conversations with my dad. Mom & I are starting to be friends too. I appreciate them all a thousand times more. I went to a baseball game with my dad, step-mom, and sister one night, shopped with my sister the next, relaxed Saturday morning and then went to a family party and family bowling. Then Sunday, I went on a little road trip with my mom to the church where she was speaking, and we spent the day with my sister talking and working on rehearsal dinner things. Things are so good when you have a loving family, aren't they?

That's all, really. Just a little update. I'm not sure how I feel about blogging anymore, but I like having this space and an aunt told me I'd have to write more once we move so she can stay up to date with my life. I hope everyone is having a good week. Spring is here, friends. Go enjoy it.

The Big Move

Well, there it is. Ben & I's first big move is halfway across the country to the big city of  Dallas, Texas

One [of a million] things that made me so sure about marrying Ben was that we had similar goals for our future. Ever since a trip down to San Antonio for my brother's boot camp graduation during high school, I've wanted to move to Texas. I'm not sure if it was the Texas shaped waffle makers in the hotel or the wonderful warm air that made my hair turn into a frizzy mess, but that state won me over in a matter of seconds.

In the beginning stages of dating Ben, we got to talking about the future, as people in baby relationships tend to get carried away with doing. It came up that Ben's extended family lives just outside of Houston, Texas and he's always wanted to move there too. We bonded over the fact that we hate the cold, grey winters that last for 6 months up here and it was decided that someday we'd move to the big state of Texas.

Fast forward to my great job search of 2013 and that trip down to Tennessee. We love this city and the fact that it holds all of my family and a lot of our friends, but this isn't what we want for the rest of our lives. We decided that if we didn't try to move now, we probably never would. We were scared of getting stuck in a life we didn't want up here and so every single one of those 46 jobs I applied to were somewhere south of the Mason-Dixon line.

And so the end result of that search is Dallas, Texas. I got offered a job working for a company that manages residence halls at colleges across the nation and it just so happens that they wanted me to work at the University of Texas at Dallas! I accepted that job on the first day of April and now I'm going to start my career in Richardson, Texas, with my husband by my side.

I'm elated. My Master's degree [that I'll complete in August] is in Higher Education, focusing on Student Affairs. I'm passionate about Residence Life and I think that it's something I'm going to be really good at. This is a really good move to get my foot in the door and I cannot wait to start my career. Plus, it's Texas! It's warm all the time and the people are so friendly. Life is easier there: more laid back and kinder. To be honest though, I'm scared too. It is 1,500 miles away. Literally every single one of my family members lives in New York. I'm so close with them and I can't imagine a life where I don't see them constantly. Also, we know no one in Richardson. With the exception of my future boss whom I've met once, it's just going to be Ben and I alone in this big city.

It's a change. It's a big, scary, exciting change that is going to turn the course of our lives. On May 22, the movers come to pick up our things and on May 27, we're heading out for the road trip to end all road trips. In only 39 days, we're leaving the comfortable known for this new adventure and I couldn't be happier to do it with my sweet husband as my teammate.

Oh and here's a little GIF I made, but can't get to be unblurry. Oh well!

Created with Gifboom

what about our friends

The thing about having college friends stick around town for a bit after college is that it comes to an end. Right around the same time we're leaving New York, one of our best friends is doing the same, heading off for a summer of traveling and then settling at grad school. Another is already gone, back to his hometown 4 hours away, and the rest while slowly disburse at the end of summer when their lease in the city is up and life goes on.

It was at about the same time that we all realized that an era of last minute plans (barbeques, shows in dark bars, house parties and diners the morning after) was coming to an end. Ben and I are leaving town at the end of May, and one friend leaves a few days before, so we only have six weeks together, as said friend likes to point out.

That's why this weekend was so necessary. On Friday, Ben and I had a lazy night: dinner with his dad and a few hours spent watching tv. Saturday morning, we got up and putzed around, going to Lowes and Triple A and other Saturday morning things. 

But Saturday evening? Saturday evening we spent with our friends. Our far away friend drove up for the weekend, and we all reunited over bacon cheeseburgers and whiskey, and the boys threw a toga party. Togas were unnecessary, but good for the story. We spent the night drinking too much, remembering old stories, and making new ones. The next morning [or afternoon] once everyone was up and alive, we walked a few blocks in the beautiful spring air and recovered over greasy diner food.

I don't know what it's going to be like moving to a new city and making new friends, but I know that we're sure as hell going to miss the ones that we have here.

News with a capital N

Monday, although a day for April fooling, was a day that brought about much joy and disbelief in the Quigley household. Monday, there were excited text messages shot back and forth, detailed phone calls in hushed tones, and lunch-break shoe buying.

For Monday, I accepted my first real, professional job!

As you guys know, I've been applying to jobs for the longest time. Ben and I made a deal back in January [I think] that I could quit my restaurant job if I applied to 100 full time jobs in my field for the next school year. I made a handy Job Chart of Wonder and promptly applied to 46 of those. When I say promptly, what I really mean is that I dragged it out for as long as humanly possible because we all know that applying for jobs is a bitch. Even getting through 46 applications was pushing it. Ben and I went on a road trip to Memphis at the end of February, where I interviewed for 13 different Student Affairs jobs in the south, and I was pretty confident that I had rocked those interviews.

Turns out, I was right. In the second week of March, I received a job offer. That was this position. I was hesitant to take it because all of the other positions were on a much slower schedule, not ready to give me any answers regarding my status, and not even close to making offers. I asked this place if they could wait a bit for me to see what else was going on, they said sure, but we need an answer by April 1.

I got my butt in gear trying to get answers. I called people, I went for an interview in South Carolina, and I tried my best to be as patient as I could. However, April 1 was looming. Ben and I had a million Grown Up, Married People, Can You Really Believe We're Old Enough to Be Making These Decisions conversations about it and decided that this offer I received was a really really good one. And it was the best decision for us as a Baby Family.

So, Monday morning, I called my future supervisor, told him I'd love to take the job, and here we are today, with a giant change in our very near future. After stopping at Target on the way home to buy a celebratory pair of shoes [of course], I came home to the absolute sweetest thing Ben could have done for me:

That man popped a bottle of champagne, wrote me the sweetest "I'm proud of you" note, and got a bunch of cash from the bank for my new We're Moving to the South clothes fund. I'll be damned if he doesn't make me feel like a rockstar.

So, thank you for all of the sweet congratulations on Instagram and Twitter! As soon as everything is officially officially official, I will share exactly where/when/how/why/every other possible detail of our move. 

If you've been a little detective so far, you'll remember that it's 1) in the south and 2) in our very near future. A gold star and a high five goes to the first person who can guess correctly [but if I've already told you, don't be a little cheater!]

hello there

We're back. Vacation came and went and now it's two crazy weeks later and I finally have the energy to update. Hello there, April.

Vacation was even better than I hoped for. I wore sundresses almost every day and didn't wear shoes literally every day. Ben and I helped out around the in-law's new house and then spent days laying in the sun, reading this sweet book [me] and nerdy magazines [him]. I got a few tan lines. We ate some dang good queso. We perfected our Kan Jam game. We napped!

bare feet | lazy mornings playing Donkey Kong | afternoon naps in the sunshine

 of course we tried on cowboy hats in Texas | we also played with [lighter] guns

THEN we flew standby again on our way home, which was an all day adventure. We got in at midnight, slept a bit, I worked all day the next day, and headed out for a job interview in South Carolina the next morning. I am just a jet-settin' fool.

The interview went well I think, but I don't want to jinx anything, so that's all I'm going to say about that. Flying by myself for a business thing felt so professional, [especially due to the grown up plane conversations with my neighbors and the whiskey gingers I imbibed]. The whole trip was a lot of fun, including my interview, and I am so thankful for the opportunities that God has given to me in this job search. Now, a few pictures from my trip because my phone is all I had to keep me company for that 36 hours:

the Charlotte airport has the sweetest rocking chairs by the windows, so I obviously used those | such a sweet view from my hotel room | traveling home, waiting in the smallest airport I've ever seen, a sad sad airport with no beer

And now I'm home! There's house cleaning to be done and school work to catch up on, but man, have these last few days home been so nice. Going away makes you grateful to be home, that's for sure.