A lot

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Since we last spoke, I made a lot of cookies, ate a lot of cookies, drank a lot of wine, had a lot of fun with both sides of my family, sent a lot of text messages, opened a lot of great presents and spent a lot of time with my favorite people.

Unrelated to Christmas, I celebrated a growing family at a surprise baby shower, and got a new sister-in-law to be.

I’m looking forward to the rest of the week here in IL seeing more friends and family and throwing my New Year’s Eve brunch – and I’m really looking forward to setting and achieving goals in 2012 – woo hoo!

Fa-la-la-la-la

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la-la, la. la.

It’s weird to feel christmasy without snow, but I’m sure I’ll be fine. Mariah Carey’s Christmas album takes care of it.

We decorated our house Sunday and it looks so cute! One big multi-colored tree, my baby Walgreens tree and our green sticks tree fill our living room to the max but it’s a very nice festive homey feeling, which was a perfect end to a very roomie weekend, which I desperately needed. I think because I was home for so long I was trying to not think about the boredom/lack of income of LA and just enjoy being home, which I did but then I came back and BAM, I remembered. It’s hard to balance an appropriate amount of financial stress because yes, it’s necessary to be aware of the problem and attempt to fix it, but at the same time I was so stressed a few weeks ago that my lower level twisted tooth was in pain for about 6 days. I’m still dealing with that problem, but trying to push through. Anyway, you know I’m poor, so I’ll just tell you my happy thoughts.

1 – great roomie weekend included multiple movies after midnight ( know you like that alliteration there), going out to a karaoke bar, making a brunch buffet and colorful rice krispie treats on Sunday in between the decorating fun.

2 – getting paid to see Jay Leno live today, he was really nice and came out to talk to the audience and take pictures with people before the production began. The guests were Katherine Heigl, who I always liked even if other people don’t, a comic and Tai O Cruz, performing his new song. I love getting to experience any live or live-to-tape show so I was happy to be there and even happier knowing there is a new $20 in my wallet.

3 – Elizabeth’s sister, Nicki is having a baby girl! The whole world is pretty much excited for her ๐Ÿ™‚ She is one of the most loving and motherly people in the world and has been dreaming of this day for a little under 25 years, it’ll be 25 on Saturday to be exact. She’s had a rough time getting here, but it’s official. Yay!

4 – I have another post production PA interview Thursday, wish me luck, my bank account is really, really, hungry. But so is my brain, we’re getting bored up there. It’s definitely time for a challenge.

5 – And 5, my giant cookie exchange box came today! Read more about that here. God I love the sugar involved in December.

Happy Tuesday!

I’m not really sure how to spell mostaccioli

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But I know how to eat it: Christmas Eve mostaccioli sandwiches. 23.5 days and counting.

I know I’ve had a LOT going on in the last 6 months, but I still can’t believe it’s December already? Maybe it’s the palm trees.

I’m back in LA for three weeks, which sounds like a short amount of time, I know but logistically I’ve actually been making good decisions lately, let’s hope that continues. After a terrible flight yesterday morning, sitting next to Mr. Magoo, the movie was a documentary, and the turbulence made me feel like puking all over the floor, I made it back to the warm-ish temps of California. It probably benefitted me to go to cold for a bit because now 60 is warm to me.

So this is what I get to look forward to doing and/or hearing about this month:

Today I’m getting paid to be in Jay Leno’s audience, pretty pumped about that, also an excuse to wear my new yellow sweater I couldn’t leave black friday express without buying.

Michael’s tailgating extravaganza is Sunday, so I’m expecting a call from the famous RV

Elizabeth turns 25! I won’t be there but I promise to celebrate when I come home.

My parents are going to Hawaii for 4 days, sounds extreme, but I’ve done that before too. We are weird travelers.

I applied to be part of another baking project, so bags of Hershey Kisses & cookie mixes are on the way to our apartment, whoops. It’s more free baking though!

I get to work American Idol’s Hollywood week! I’m so excited to do some actual work, even if it’s crappy, it’s exciting.

Michael turns 27.

Right when I get home – Danielle’s birthday, always epic.

Then, you know, being home for Christmas Eve & Christmas Day, the greatest days of all – filled with crazy families, cookies, mostaccioli sandwiches and gift-giving.

And then, in January when the midwest turns into a cornfield full of bloated, depressed, FREEZING people who want to sleep all day and do nothing, I get to come back here. Sounds like a good deal to me.

PS – my horoscope says today could be my lucky day, so happy December 1st to all of the Aries’ I know!

My Mom was right

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The day totally goes by faster in Illinois.

This maybe is related to the fact that I’m sleeping later because, well I have nowhere to be at any time, but I’m convinced the day really does pass by, I mean, it’s 3pm already!!

On the other hand, I was up til 1am last night. Two hours is significant.

So I’m sitting in this bedroom in Schaumburg, which used to be mine and is now uber-quiltified and brown. Not hot pink. But it’s still my bed in here so that’s super homey. It’s very nice to be home for a bit and actually has given me more motivation to keep up with all of my new goals for Sweet Talk and developing my career. For some reason having my mom in the other room sewing just makes me feel less blah then sitting alone in the apartment in LA while my roomies are out working. Also, already made three fabulous trips to the grocery store, spent an afternoon discussing life with Elizabeth and baked a cake with my favorite Madeline ๐Ÿ™‚ So I’m happy. But very cold.

More to come, but I have some things to work on today! Oh, also it was Regis’s last day this morning, such a great tribute to an amazing TV man, I hope I can meet him when I make it big!

Albert Hammond Was Wrong

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Not gonna lie, I would never know who Albert Hammond is except I googled, <<who wrote “it never rains in southern california.”>> Apparently, that guy.

And he was wrong. It actually rained yesterday! Not like the five-minute comforting drizzle of last Friday, but an intense, I thought someone was taking a really long shower upstairs rain. It was the first day since I’ve been here that an hour-long walk in the sun was not as option. Thankfully I am the self-titled “Queen of workout DVDs,” and Jillian Michaels got me thought the storm (literally).

Thankfully Stevie gave me an AMC gift card as a graduation present so Linda and I got to spend the afternoon doing the perfect rainy day activity – going to a super sappy and funny movie, 50/50. It was a really great movie, it actually did make us laugh and cry. For me it was tough because it told a lot of the story of being diagnosed with cancer and going through chemotherapy that I missed when my mom was going through it. For the most part, I was away at school in Des Moines and missed out on that. Not that it’s at all glamorous or something you should ever want to experience, but sometimes being so close to that situation but not fully understanding it is difficult and this movie let me in on that. It was pretty emotional, but actually I was happy to see it and the movie was super heartfelt and real. And of course earned extra points from me because I laughed a lot too. I give it 10/10 brownie points.

Interestingly enough, as Linda and I were walking in downtown Culver City last night, we were offered tickets to a screening of an unreleased movie for today. We obviously took the tickets (bored and poor) but this movie did not get 10 brownie points from me. I’m not supposed to tell you anything about it but let’s say bodies splitting in half in 3D is not exactly something I’d pay to go see, so luckily I didn’t have to.

On another note, today was my nephew, Grenning’s, 3rd birthday and I miss that little Gee Willikers so much! I called him on my way home from the movie and he sounded so happy to be eating his birthday ice cream with his dad and brother, and he’s such a funny balance of a stubborn pain and an adorably polite little boy that you can’t help but melt when he screams, “Thank you Auntie ‘Chelle!!!!” over the phone. I hope someone takes pictures of him at his party Sunday for me to see! Free month-long gym membership and getting paid to watch a taping – woo, that $30 that I just spent on ingredients to shoot a new Sweet Talk. Oh, well, gotta live a little.

I’m having a Monday Wednesday

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My radio instructor forgot to teach us how to “mixdown” when recording on Monday, which is a pretty important tool since it allows you to save as a wave file, when he realized his mistake he apologized saying he was “having a Monday.”

Well my Monday was fine but today I’m having my Monday, even though it’s Wednesday. I woke up to run this morning and after a 5 min warm-up walk, I turned my treadmill to 6.0 and 30 seconds later my bruised rib kicked in and doubled me over in pain. I don’t know what I did, but it’s not good. I had to walk the rest of the workout and could hardly breathe. I almost turned around while driving to school because turning left incited a load of pain. Although I finally have insurance again, I really don’t think it’s worth going to the doctor, is there really anything you can do for a rib injury? On top of that I had a stressful day feeling torn between work and school and balancing time. I have a plan now though (like I always do) so hopefully that will work.

On a more fun note I believe I’m going to buy a bedroom furniture set tomorrow, basically because my bedroom furniture is plastic and I decided that starting tomorrow when I decorate my sister’s bday cupcakes, I’m going to webcam nillarose episodes, so that might be entertaining.

Wish me luck on working today, I hope my Monday Wednesday ends soon!

1 down, 11 to go

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I’m ridiculously competitive.

I hate being told I can’t do something, especially before given a chance. I bet people things all the time, and I once ran so fast up and down the stairs at Westwood with what felt like a gazillion drafts on my tray because a man at a party asked me, if I “was going to be able to handle this?” I think it comes from trying to compete with my brother, Michael, while growing up. Michael always wanted to impress our oldest brother, Tommy, and I always wanted to impress him. It didn’t really ever work, though between the two of them I learned how to eat triple cheeseburgers, burp really loud and throw a football with a pretty good spiral.

Being รผber competitive isn’t always a good thing, but it’s not always a bad thing either. It makes me challenge myself with some things I wouldn’t attempt. It also gets me in a lot of arguments… but let’s get back to my point, the good thing about being competitive is that I can convince myself to do things that are good for you. For example, I am challenging myself to go 12 days without any dessert foods. You might think, yikes, the dessert queen without dessert? You may not know but for two years straight I’ve given up chocolate for lent, and it’s been difficult but I handled it successfully. So this time I need a mini dessert break for two related reasons.

Reason #1, my most amazing Tuesday night resulted in about 400 pieces of fudge in my freezer. Now I am super excited for my article and video on Wednesday, but I’m gonna be honest, there are probably only 200 pieces of fudge left. Ok, I didn’t eat it ALL myself, but I ate enough… which brings me to reason #2: siting at a computer burns less calories than running around a restaurant. That’s a pretty self-explanatory one. Granted I’m still working both jobs, it’s not the same, enter the 12 day-no-dessert challenge. I made it through day 1 (after a cinnamon themed baking marathon last night), wish me luck! PS, in case you’re wondering where I came up with 12 days, it’s because that’s how many days until Septemberfest!! My favorite “holiday” (well it is a holiday technically) weekend of the year!! Filled with yummy ice cream vendors, melting pot chocolate fondue and Jell-O jiggler shots (technically desserts). So that will be my reward.

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