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Monday, January 31, 2011

It's About To Go Down

The temperature, that is. We in southern New Mexico are about to get hit with what seems to be a massive storm with maybe even (dun dun duuun) snow. Apocolypse, you may ask? Possible. I'm looking for the rest of the signs.

Boyfriend and I hada fantastic weekend. On Friday, we took Shadow to the local dog park, where he proceeded to roll around in a puddle (awesome), which led to a bath, which led to a very unhappy Shadow. To fix it, we took him to get a poochie cone at Caliches!

scenic-digital.com

Caliches serves frozen custard and is a standard place in my hometown. Most of my friends have worked here at one time or another. And Shadow LOVES it. We figured it would be a good treat after a horrible bath!


There he is, trying to fit into his old bed and then trying to get all the peanut butter out of an old jar of skippy. I love him.

Saturday, Boyfriend and I relaxed most of the day. We had brunch with one of my good friends Blairre and her husband John at Break an Egg... so yummy! Blairre and I go way back to high school, and I was in her wedding in 2009, just a few days before Boyfriend and I got together. Blairre is one of my favorite people in the whole world! Here we are, Blairre in the white and me on the far right!

Then Boyfriend and I took a four hour nap. Yeah. Four hours. That's practically not even a nap anymore. That's a coma. We took a coma for four hours. But it was amaaaaaazing. Then we got up and went to Peter Piper Pizza, which is kind of like Chucky Cheese for a little older crowd, but a little younger than Dave and Busters. I know that sounds super lame, but it was so much fun to just relax, eat pizza, and kick my boyfriend's butt at air hockey and basketball :o) (just kidding, he beat me down in the basketball shooting game).

Sunday was fun, too- we took my italian grandma to an italian restaurant. In New Mexico. As you can imagine, it's hard to impress her when she's had real Italian food from Italy... also spent a majority of her life in New York City (Staten Island), where all food is fresh and authentic. But she liked it! We'll keep that restaurant for sure.

Now, just four days until Boyfriend and I head up to Albuquerque to see Wicked, the traveling Broadway show! Hooray! I've always wanted to see it. So excited.

Time to take Shadow for a walk!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Go Greek or Go Home

I sit here, waiting to go to dinner with my mom (a wednesday night tradition stemming from when I was 13... about 10 years now!), and watching one of my favorite shows ever... GREEK!

andyfilm.com

I think I connect most with this show because I was Greek in college. I rushed Pi Beta Phi and it was the best decision I made in college. It gave me a place to call home, activities, plenty of friends, and a support system that I don't think I would have found without going Greek.

Greeks have a bad rep sometimes, and understandably- there are some people in some chapters that are ridiculous, slacking, trust-funded partiers that are so exclusive they won't even talk to you if you don't have the latest Louis Vuitton bag.



via butterboom.com

Although I do love this one...

But while there are some chapters with a bad reputation, there are so many more with good, hardworking people. In my sorority, girls came from all sides of life... we had the girls with trust funds, the girls with summer homes, the girls who traveled all over the world... and we had the girls that had scholarships and worked all through college and couldn't afford to go to Europe every summer. But we all loved each other just the same.

The best advice I have for people that don't like sororities or fraternities is to NOT JOIN ONE! Nobody is going to try to force you to rush. But if you find some girls or boys that you click with, and you happen to like being involved in community service, dances, movie nights, and formals, do it. If you are not a girl's girl, do not, I repeat, DO NOT join a sorority!

I was a girl's girl, and I loved loved loved Pi Phi. My sisters are such confident, fun-loving, interesting people... and they liked me even though I didn't like to go out partying every week and even though I didn't drive a super nice car. And that's all that mattered to me.



Friday, January 21, 2011

Babies Babies Babies

http://www.lcsun-news.com/las_cruces-sunlife/ci_17159823

My article came out today in the Las Cruces Sun-News (in case you want to read it... you can just google Jenna Candelaria and I think it appears on the second page. Or you can just click on this awesome link!) about babies.

I don't know what it is about the early 20s, but for some reason, biological clocks start ticking. Not even just for the actual 20 year old, but for the family around them. My mom's best friends are starting to have grandkids and she is jealous. my sister's friends are having babies and now she wants one. And Boyfriend's family? Oh man. They cannot WAIT for Boyfriend to have kids.

Boyfriend is the only boy on his side of the family that will carry on his family name, so it is a Very Big Deal to his parents and his grandparents that he has a son. His grandfather even told him that he can die happy if he gets to hold Boyfriend's son. Sheesh, what pressure! They definitely want us to get married and begin the baby making process.

I definitely want to have kids; I've always wanted to be a mother. My mom was an elementary school teacher for two decades and is now a vice principal, so she absolutely loves kids, and you could tell in the way she raised us. I always grew up feeling very secure and happy. I saw my mother and father dedicate their time, patience, and money to raising us and I always knew that I wanted to be the same type of parent. And at this point, I think I'm too selfish to be the best mom I can be... I still want to travel and buy fancy purses and go out with my friends. But someday, God willing, I hope to have babies.

Just not yet. :o)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Thoughts

A Few Random Thoughts...

-I saw an Oryx much like these, hiding in the hills of the Organ Mountains! In case you didn't know, the Oryx were brought over in the 1970s to provide some big game hunt prey for the hunters of the southwest. The Oryx, native to the African desert, were used to having to run away from lions and other big, mean, Oryx-eaters. Here, they flourished. Now, there are too many of them, but I still love them. Hooray!


via aec.army.mil

-Pot roast is the easiest thing in the world to make. Some fresh-cut meat, a can of cream of mushroom soup, a few vegetables in a crockpot, left on low all day, and presto! Dinner! It's so nice to have dinner ready when I come home... especially because if I left it all to Boyfriend, we would survive on grilled chicken, chicken wings, and cereal.

-Not to sound weird, but I haven't brushed my hair in about 4 days. I have pretty dry skin and pretty long hair, so to avoid drying out my hair and stripping it of the natural oils, I only wash my hair once or twice a week. I only brush it when I wash it. I just body shower with my hair pinned up every other night. But for some reason, I want to brush my hair tonight. Weird.

- Today I had an apple, half of a tuna wrap, about 3 oz. of pot roast, a cup of cheddar broccoli rice, and a fudge bar. I think I'll make some chips and salsa to have with Boyfriend when he gets home! Hooray!

-One more day of work before the weekend! Hallelujah!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Golden Globes (Or, The Difference Between Boyfriend and Jenna)

As I might or might not have briefly mentioned, Boyfriend is a Movie Lover. He's a snob about them, even. He hates cheesy movies, which was almost a downfall in our relationship when I told him that my favorite movie is Miracle, that one about the 1980 hockey team that beat the Soviet Union when nobody thought they could. It's cheesy, inspirational, and full of sports cliches. I love it.

Boyfriend, on the other hand, thinks that The Hurricane is an inspirational sports movie. Not to be Spoiler Susie, but let me give you a little rundown about this movie. Homie goes to jail for 30 years for a crime he didn't do! It's full of racial prejudice and dirty cops and grudges... oh, he eventually gets out, but after watching what really happens in solitary confinement, it's hard to bounce back into reality, let alone call it "inspirational". Geez.

Among Boyfriend's favorite movies are these: Godfather II, Taxi Driver, No Country for Old Men and The Dark Knight (thanks to a long-standing obsession with Batman stemming from childhood). My favorite movies are: Miracle, D2: The Mighty Ducks, Some Like it Hot, and 101 Dalmations. As you can see, our taste in movies is not what brought us together.

The Academy Awards and the Golden Globes have always been a sort of trying time between Boyfriend and me. It's the classic story. Boy meets girl. Girl likes boy. Boy and girl fall in love. Boy and girl watch the Oscars. Boy likes to pay attention to boring awesome categories like Best Score and Best Cinematography. Girl likes to look for interesting/hideous dresses and comment loudly on them. Boy gets frustrated with girl after she shrieks about another ugly dress. Boy and girl watch the rest of the show in semi-silence.

Maybe not a classic story for everyone, but definitely for us.

This awards show was different. We are entering our second awards season as a couple and you can see the effort on both parts. It probably helps that now that we have been together for over a full calendar year (January-December), I've managed to see all but 2 of the major films nominated in each category (The king's speech and the kids are all right)... mainly thanks to Boyfriend's excitement about good new movies. This at least kept me interested in watching the awards so I could say gems like, "Oh I thought Natalie Portman did a wonderful job in that freaky movie Black Swan" or "the guy from facebook is kind of a jerk". Boyfriend let me make comments on the weird fabric on Leighton (although I doubt Blair Waldorf would have allowed herself to be seen that way...) endlessly.

Boyfriend drew the "compromising" line at talking during De Niro's speech. As you can probably guess, the man Boyfriend calls "Bobby De Niro" (since they are close, personal friends, of course) is an idol. I paid my respect by staying quiet during the dedication. Boundries, you know.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Perks of Long Weekends

Thanks to my work schedule (9 hours monday-thursday, every other friday off), and Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, I'm enjoying a nice four day weekend! Hooray! It's especially nice right after the holidays because the work load doesn't feel so daunting.

Boyfriend and I have enjoyed our weekend together so far. Friday, we went to lunch with my dad, then saw Tangled (it was between that and Black Swan... Boyfriend, the movie snob lover, was going for Black Swan but my pleading eyes work every time!), and then went shopping together. So much fun :o)

Today was great, too. We watched the Steelers vs. Ravens game and it was a great game... even though we lost :o(
But what I wanted was a good game that wasn't decided by the refs. We made our own mistakes to lose this game. At least it wasn't stolen from us or anything, so I'm proud of my boys. I can still wear my Ray Lewis jersey proudly!


via sportsnewscaster.com

Tonight, we are going to Boyfriend's uncle's house to see the new baby in the house. Boyfriend's cousin had a baby on 1/11/11 and she is absolutely adorable. Her name is Catalina, which I think is so pretty. Boyfriend is so cute with her. He wants to hold her all the time and always smiles at her and is so gentle. He'll be a great father someday.

Thinking about babies has led me to write an entire column about it (that comes out next Friday). My mom and Boyfriend's mom are both itching for grandchildren, so Boyfriend and I both get pressure on it all the time. Seeing Boyfriend with Catalina made me think about our future together and how great it will be when we have kids. I'm excited about it, but I also love our life together now. We'll get married eventually, we've talked about it openly, but we don't want to get married or engaged until we can financially support ourselves fully, with no help from our parents.

Whoops, I think it's time to go see the new baby! So excited!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Feeling Left Behind

You would think that at this point in my career, I'd be feeling ahead of the game. I went through all of my years of public school. I got accepted to college with a kick-ass scholarship. I made it through my undergraduate degree cum laude, with a minor to boot, in four years. I found a good job.

And yet... as my friends start heading back to school or straight into graduate school, I'm feeling somewhat left behind.

There are times I don't miss school at all, like when I can come home and not do anything all night but watch Gilmore Girls and drink a big Route 44 Diet Coke with strawberry and vanilla from sonic (heaven! heaven in a straw!). But there are times that I miss the feeling of learning, having papers to write about, being excited to do a project or research something. Because I love my field (journalism and public relations), and I love writing, and I love public relations, and I love following trends, new projects always excited me.

But I've decided to wait another semester before going back. Since I work for an awesome company, I know my boss will pay for me to go back and get a degree like so many others have done in my workplace, so that's not a big issue. The biggest issue I have now is that... I don't know what to study.

There are several options. I can go into rhetoric communications (technical writing) like my friend/coworker (friendworker?) Louie or another communications degree. Or I can do what my boss did and get my Masters in Business Administration with a specialization in marketing.

Oh the choices! I have another semester, thankfully, and to be honest... it's kind of fun thinking about school again. :o)

Am I crazy?

Friday, January 7, 2011

Friday, Finally

Ahhh. Is there anything better, really, than a Friday night? You're done with work, you have two whole days ahead of you... and nobody can even blame you if you decide that, instead of doing laundry and working with Puppy on the newest attempted trick (rolling over), you pour yourself a Diet Coke and watch Sex and the City for the billionth time.

This weekend will hopefully be calm for Boyfriend, Puppy and me. I have big plans to see the NMSU Aggies play tomorrow night but other than that, nada, except maybe some playoff time watching my Ravens play the KC Chiefs, even though i'm probably the only Ravens fan in New Mexico. I can't help it. They're my team. Boyfriend's team is the Raiders... I guess you can say that we like rough teams!

I had dinner tonight with my family... and when I say my family, I mean my extended family. Growing up in Las Cruces, I had no aunts or uncles or cousins within 50 miles of me. Luckily, before I was born, my mom and dad found their own little family group... namely, my mom's two best friends Leigh and Arlene and their husbands, Don and Bill respectively. Not to mention their kids, Christina (for Leigh and Don, only a month younger than I am) and Shane, a year older and Bill and Arlene's son. These people have become my extended family. We eat together every Friday night. We have holiday parties. They buy me birthday presents. Bill and Arlene watched my sister when my mom and dad went to the hospital to have me. We go way back.

At this dinner, I got trapped in another conversation about love and about marriage potential (as everyone seems to be itching for both a wedding and, hopefully soon, babies). Boyfriend and I have been dating for about a year and a half but for us, it's not just a year and a half. What Don always told my dad, while watching as Christina and my sister Jessica dated guy after guy and I, who did date sometimes, never brought anyone home, was this: "you wait. One day, Jenna will find a guy and that's it. He'll be the one." And that's exactly what happens. Boyfriend is the perfect person for me. I get butterflies thinking of him. I can see him every day and not get tired of him (which has never happened to me before!). I always knew that I'd rather be alone than with a guy I didn't really like and that's exactly what happens here. If I wasn't with Josh, I wouldn't be with anyone. There's nobody else I want, nothing I want that he doesn't give me.

In short, I love him. Sorry to get so mushy! It's hard to explain to people when we talk about marriage so casually. The truth is, Boyfriend and I talk only about when to get married, never if. We know we belong together. So while I would love a pretty ring and a big party where I get to wear an awesome dress, I know that married or not, I'll be with him. That's good enough for me.

Monday, January 3, 2011

A Year in Photos

So since some of you reading might not really know who I am, let me use this post to introduce myself, Boyfriend, and my puppy to you.

The year started out great!
Here is Boyfriend, hiding from me at the start of 2010. I love him :o)

Here's me and my mom in Santa Fe, NM early 2010. We were so cold! But we sure did travel a lot.

I graduated from college! What a great experience. I remember hearing my family and my best friends yelling my name. Here I am with my favorite cousin Stephanie the day after my college graduation.
I got a puppy! This is little Shadow (he isn't this little anymore. The little cupacabra in the background is a chihuahua named riley, just for comparison).

Boyfriend and I celebrated our one year anniversary... and headed to Vegas, where we took a picture with one of the lion cubs at MGM and saw O at the Bellagio, where we ate at Olives in the Bellagio. Fantastic show, fantastic food, fantastic trip!

Here's another shot of us. He's so handsome!



My family and I also headed to NYC for my uncle Pete's 80th birthday in August. It was a short but amazing trip on Staten Island.
There's everyone at my cousin Pauly's restaurant Nucci's on Staten Island. The best Italian food you could ever want!

In November, Boyfriend, his mom, his mom's boyfriend, and I headed to Boston because I had never been there. It's my new favorite city! I love Boston!

We also saw an incredible game with the OK Thunder vs the Boston Celtics! There's Shaq (he's so tall). You can tell how great our seats were! Good job, Boyfriend's mom!

We stayed in the north end of Boston (AKA the Italian side). Since I'm part Italian on my mom's side, I felt right at home with the pastry shops and all the pizza we ate!

I don't happen to have any holiday photos because my phone died but overall, I had an incredible year. I can't wait for 2011!

A New Year, a New Me

It's been a very eventful weekend for Boyfriend and me. Friday, we headed over to El Paso, Tx for the 2nd oldest college football Bowl game... the Sun Bowl! Woo! We sat in 18 degree weather (way too cold for this southern NM girl), ate yummy hot dogs, and watched as Notre Dame destroyed the University of Miami. It was fun to see the game (especially the bands of each! they were awesome), but i was so so so cold. My pants (all three layers) got wet from the ice on the stands so the cold air really got to me. I convinced Boyfriend to come with me down to walk around in the more protected areas of the stadium and eventually, my parents caved and we left.

After the game, we met up with Boyfriend's mom and her boyfriend for dinner at a steakhouse in El Paso, which is Boyfriend's favorite! It was so good... and it was even better to have the chance to drink spiked coffee with my mom in the attempt to warm up. Although it was a cold, cold day... I must admit that driving home in the warm car, watching fat snowflakes fall from the sky made it worth it... almost :o)

After hot showers for each of us, Boyfriend and I decided that staying in on New Year's Eve was definitely preferable to getting dressed up and heading out to one of three parties we were invited to. So instead, we ordered pizza, drank some Dos XX, and watched Easy A and Inception, and kissed in the new year in our nice warm apartment!

The rest of the weekend was nice and quiet, so it gave me a chance to think about New Year resolutions. Normally, I fail at resolutions because I create over-extended goals. Like the year I decided that I wanted to run a marathon. If I could talk to the Jenna that decided to run a marathon, this is what I'd say: "Jenna, what the hell were you thinking? You can't go from your level of activity to a marathon. Maybe a good start would be not using the car to get the mail." (That was a joke from amazing comedienne Megan Mooney.... look her up).

So this year, I'm making more reasonable goals. Here they are!

1. Floss more often.
2. Stop playing with my split ends.
3. Take my dog for a long walk three times a week (he also gets walked with Boyfriend every day).
4. Stop eating processed, bad-for-me foods. Eat more fresh fruits, veggies, and meat.
5. Keep in better contact with friends!

Woo! New Year! Up next, a review of 2010.