one down, one up

2015-07-03 one down, one up

Holy crap, it’s Friday. I literally had no idea. I’m sitting in a cafe with a few PHLBloggers catching up on blogging and I completely forgot that today is one down, one up day. I guess that’s what happens on long weekends, you jump straight from Thursday to Saturday. The picture above was taken at a wedding I went to on Saturday night. The couple was beautiful, the dancing was incredible, and I only did two things in front of coworkers I probably shouldn’t have done, so that was cool. Also, please note the man in the background on the left. Love it.

one down
My desktop computer broke this week. I was listening to a webcast and all of a sudden everything froze and my speakers started to static. I checked all the cables and connections. After an hour of troubleshooting with both my dad and sister we determined it was the power supply, so I bought a new power supply. Yesterday I installed the power supply and it still didn’t start, so now I need to troubleshoot again. I really need my desktop computer back, that’s where I do all my designwork and photo editing. I’m hoping I can solve this problem soon.

one up
Monday night I got to hang out with a bunch of college friends who all used to be RAs with me. It was awesome. Everybody loves to talk, it doesn’t matter if you don’t know somebody else, and you’re always so excited to see everyone else. It is the most stress-free time ever with the most fun-loving group. It was perfect. It was also the easiest event I’ve ever put together. My next Chrystina Noel newsletter is going to be about that, so make sure to subscribe today if you haven’t yet.

To all the people in the US, have an awesome Fourth of July weekend. And to everyone else, I hope you have a happy weekend as well :)

what I would do with a bonus

6 Things I Would Buy With a Bonus

Year end is in the process of happening at our company, we don’t know anything about raises or bonuses yet, but I’m finding it very entertaining to daydream about what I would do if I had some extra play money laying around.

I can 95% guarantee that writing this post is frivolous because if I end up with any extra money it will probably go towards living expenses, but The Happiness Project tells us that anticipating happiness is pretty much just as good for us as actually living the happiness. So without further ado, here is my anticipating happiness list:

1. I’d take voice lessons.

I once had a friend tell me that taking voice lessons was better than therapy. Sure, there will be work, but it seems to me like it’s like being the star of your own little Broadway Show for that hour or so. I’d work on how to sing more forward, I’d work on not dipping my chin when I sing lower notes, and I’d try to figure out how to project just a little bit better. It’s all about building confidence man – and having fun.

2. I’d hire a life/creative coach.

Maybe what this post is really leading to is that I should probably go to therapy, but I would love to hire a creative coach to help talk through all of the ideas I have for this little business of mine, help guide me in the right direction, and give me a little kick in the pants. I have so many ideas and I’m not really sure where to start and having someone to talk to about all of this would be wonderful – and liberating.

3. I’d buy a subscription to Olive Box (& a few others).

For Christmas a few years ago I asked for an Olive Box subscription. For those of you not familiar with it, it’s a box of cool stationery things that gets delivered to your house every month. It’s $25/month though, which comes to $250 a year, and I can’t quite justify that right now – but with a bonus, maybe I could. I’d probably also buy an ABM Happy Mail subscription, $15/month. Think about all the cards I could send! Oh, and I’d probably renew my mom’s Tea Box Express gift that I bought her for Mothers’ Day, she seems to really like getting them – $25/month.

4. I’d buy a subscription to Lead Pages.

Everything in the blogging world seems like it would be easier and more efficient if I had a subscription to Lead Pages. It’s about about $1000 a year, but I would be able to add opt-ins all over my site, capture email addresses of people who want to receieve free products, and it would keep everybody’s name sorted in a nice handy list for me. One day, man, one day.

5. I’d buy the right makeup.

I feel like at the grand ol’ age of 26 I should own better makeup than I do. Like I should walk into a Sephora or Mac or… (I don’t even know) …and say, please give me one of everything I should have to be able to put together a nice 5 minute natural look. I don’t even know what that entails, or how to put it on, but it seems like it would be nice to have – and I could throw all of my crap makeup out.

6. Buy custom built-in storage areas in my living room.

I absolutely hate my living room. I have hated it since I moved in. I just can’t make it function for me the way I want to. It might be that the tv is too big for the room, it might be that the seating isn’t versitle enough, and it might be that I really haven’t figure out the most efficient way at all to use that closet space. I would love someone to come in and build me something that would work better in that space. It would definitely change the way I feel when I walk in the house.

That’s it. That’s what I would do if I got a nice hefty bonus check when this year end is up. (Lies, it would probably go towards living expenses as stated before, but hey, it’s nice to think about.) What would you do with a nice hefty bonus check?

wine by body

I got the chance to go to yet another wine tasting event in Philadelphia two weeks ago. Vicki, from Vinocity, a Philadelphia wine education and tasting experience company, focused on pairing summer wines.

When pairing wines, my usual method is to choose red or white based on the food I’m eating and then to choose whatever type of wine I like best. Don’t get me wrong, that absolutely works, but the first thing Vicki did when she began to set the stage for the rules of pairing summer wines was throw the “white with fish, red with meat” rule out the window. Her first rule of pairing summer wines was match the body. If you’re eating a food that is light and simple, pair it with a light wine. If you’re eating a food that is full and rich, pair it with something heavier.

This makes so much sense. You don’t want to completely overpower your food with your wine, or overpower your wine with your food. I very quickly realized I wasn’t sure which wines are light and which are heavy. Vicki talked through some of them and I came home and did some additional research. Using Wine Country Getaway’s handy wine body chart I was able to make the infographic below.

Remember that the lightest light is ligher than the lighest red and the heaviest red is heavier than the heaviest white, but other than that, have fun pairing.

wines by body

This chart is definitely going to help me reconsider pairing wines (I will probably google my own blog post next time I hit the wine store). What do you think, will this change the way you pair wines?

one down, one up

2015-06-26 one down, one up

Would you believe I didn’t take my big camera out once this week? At least I snapped these pictures on my phone this week. AND they’re super-relatable to my down and ups. The first two pictures are (clearly) part of my up, and the third picture represents this week’s travel schedule. I took that picture while speed walking trying to catch a train, I’m surprised it’s not blurier. ANYWAY. It’s Friday. Thank Goodness. Here we go.

one down
Lack of sleep? Again. Pretty much all week. It was a pretty great week, but there was just very minimal sleep, mostly due to transportation mishaps. Monday night I missed a train connection I was supposed to make meaning I didn’t get dinner until 9:15pm. Tuesday night my flight was delayed to Houston by 3 hours and I arrived at the hotel at 1:00am (dinner was a bagel sandwich in the Charlotte airport that night). And last night my flight was delayed 2 hours meaning I didn’t get home until midnight (there was no dinner this night). So. Something to work on for next week. More sleep.

one up
Even though the trip to Houston was a whirlwind this week I got to see two incredible bloggers on Wednesday. Wednesday morning I met up with Alice from The Lone Star Looking Glass. She and I (somehow) ended up running the audio-visual stuff at Texas Style Council this year together. No better way to bond with someone than have to on-your-feet problem solve. Anyway, we went to Toot Suite, which was absolutely adorable, I ate like a pig, and we got to talk shop for a little bit. (And she crafted the perfect Instagram picture while we were there.) Later that evening I got to meet Miranda from The Good Groupie for the first time in real life! We’ve been talking on the internet for two years now. She’s written two (of my most popular) guest posts for me. I’ve written one for her. She proof read my ebook for me and now we finally got to just hang out, chill, talk Gilmore Girls, eat breakfast tacos for dinner, talk blogging, talk Girl Scouts, and more. It was pretty awesome. Here’s to blogging and making new friends all over the country, very, very cool.

one random
I realized this week that at some point in life I became a handshake person. I don’t know when that happened, but now when I meet people for the first time I’ve started putting out my hand without thinking about it. Is this a sign of maturity? Am I finally part of the corporate cult? And when exactly did we start shaking hands hello and goodbye? To people we’ve met before. Super weird. There’s a blog post in there somewhere.