were-moving1

Impossible doesn’t exist

Yes, we’re over 30 and moving to LA.

Even in the best of us, that tiny little sentence jump-starts our anxiety triggers: palms start to sweat, eyebrows start to furrow, the tongue sets firmly against the roof of your mouth as the jaw starts to clench; and the mind starts to swirl with all manner of rationale and reality that says “you shouldn’t be moving at 30; you should be having babies; you should spend that money you saved on a home – buy a home for god’s sake!; LA will devour you – do you know how many snot-nosed nose-jobbed 25 year olds are out there?!”

Calm down.

This is actually the perfect time to move out there.  Anywhere, really.  We’re kid-free and debt-free, unless you count that unconscionable amount of Student Loans will carry around with us for the rest of our days!!  And, while we may be pretty old…well, I don’t really have a counter for that.  I mean, maybe I can pass as a younger gal…28?  29?  …le sigh.

The exact leave date is up in the air, but we need to be in LA by March 1.  It’s been weird to think about “where we’ll be when”…Ben’s next birthday will be in LA; I’ll be in LA before Wine Fest; where will we watch the Colts’ first kick-off next season?  But my work-wife put it best:  By the time Sean [the bachelor!] gives the final rose, I’ll already be in LA.  That really made me freak out.  It’s all happening so quickly…

So we say farewell to Indianapolis, the city that has nurtured us and made us well-rounded people.  We’re off to be little fish in a big pond, and I hope you’ll follow our adventures, which are sure to include hilarious and heartfelt video updates and hilarious and enviable photos.

Every city is what you make of it, Indianapolis or LA; or Chicago; or Sheboygan.  The city we’re headed to has a rich and abundant art and culture scene, but what LA doesn’t have, and what I’ll miss most of all, is my deep and meaningful friendships that I have here.  I – we – look forward to hearing from all of you in the next few weeks as you say goodbye to us in your own special way.  And we thank you in advance for all the encouragement you’re about to pour over us!

 

Happy Trails!

–Rebecca & Ben–

That’s the worst advice I’ve ever heard…

“If it don’t come easy, you better let it go.”


(Also, this video of Tanya Tucker is pretty much what my sister Carmen looked like basically the entirety of my youth, if you were ever wondering. No, seriously. Also, this is the epitome of 1988, whether you’re a country music fan or not. Madonna looked JUST LIKE THAT!)

I can’t believe my childhood was filled with this kind of BS preaching.  I somehow escaped its evil rhetoric and have actually come to live by quite the contrary mantra: “If it don’t come easy…try as hard as you can and sacrifice whatever you have to make it happen!”

Neither may be the soundest of advisories…but all I know is that all the good things in my life didn’t come easy.  If I had listened to Tanya, I wouldn’t have graduated college, or entrenched myself in Indianapolis’ arts & culture scene, or lost 30 pounds last year, or even have met and married the wonderful Mr. Masbaum!  Those, and many many many other great things came as the result of lots of effort, hard work, and some old-fashioned don’t-give-up-ery.  All this is really to say CONGRATULATIONS to my hubby for also not following Tanya’s advice, but instead digging in his heels and graduating college after 4 years of full course loads, classes filled with *kids* 10 years younger than him, and looooong nights of grueling group work and home work.

Congrats babe – I’m proud of ya!

Fireworks

30 was the greatest. Let’s do it again…

Everyone should be rewarded for a job well done. My 30th year went above and beyond what anyone expected of it and delivered my best days yet. So in that spirit, I move that we reward my 30th year by letting it have another go-’round!
That’s right, yesterday I turned 30 – again. And to show there are no hard feelings to my friend 31, I’m posting 31 pictures from my 30th year. Thank you to everyone, friends and family, rock stars, artists, well-knowns and not-so-well-knowns who have made this past year worth repeating.
I hope everyone can have a lifetime filled with the fun I’ve had this year – Enjoy!

 

year 30 197718_10100270780530714_688252912_n 547483_10100243765444164_1260418346_n 562587_3644665447506_57150925_n 418041_3319849165785_1548520133_n 402324_2536459902921_1102165656_n 395136_10151250062878291_1068074822_n 559321_10151275288921492_752774010_n 602510_10151262273236492_523622747_n 550181_10151234376826492_1417302653_n 564062_10151220904851492_1526737218_n 264230_10151206091981492_389416229_n 424623_10151180044691492_270403489_n 262826_10151179459751492_1860039177_n 555711_10151127147871492_786274615_n 599385_10151094597146492_2012633658_n 480075_10150926244406492_886378539_n 542529_10150897006341492_1907346319_n 528695_10150701434496492_2085259149_n 561950_10150677105401492_669908683_n 558898_10150659429611492_485988835_n 559679_10150670056126492_1336388060_n 558308_10150636007201492_263742414_n 428071_10150609198661492_846742224_n 417063_10150547398421492_937457833_n 423891_10150525139706492_2143271277_n 392176_10150418960911492_1861473824_n 377144_10150411541871492_1787274308_n 540583_10150701780051492_1240697471_n 168203_10150870565876492_798128218_n 531573_10151072274551492_1218421431_n (1)

...that's not how you do it...

I don’t know how to celebrate christmas.

...that's not how you do it...

…that’s not how you do it…

Nightmares plague me every December; those anxiety-spurred nightmares of showing up to the first day of school naked; except in mine I show up to the gift exchange with no gift, and the bake-off with no-bake cookies!  As if having an event to attend nearly every night (lest I lose all my friends) isn’t stressful enough, I also must find some time to find the PERFECT gifts for my family.  I wish it was as simple as giving them something ‘local'; my Appalachian family could give two craps less about something made in Indy.  I’ve tried that, and they’re not impressed; not with our award-winning craft beers, our clever t-shirts, or our Super Bowl remnants.

The adults’ gifts, I don’t stress out about, not much.  It’s the kids!  My problem is, I have no idea how kids think these days.  I just can’t relate.  I know how I felt as a 9 year old, a 14 year old, and beyond – but how I felt was wrong!  I was insecure, bullied by mean girls at school, my energy every day was spent trying to transform myself into someone who would be accepted by the popular majority.  This meant tamping down my silly humor, hiding my penchant for cowboy boots and line dancing as best as possible, and calming my anxieties by eating as many chicken McNuggets as I could guilt my parents into giving me.  So, for me, giving my nieces and nephews those material trappings that I myself longed for at their age, is inherently connected with telling them they’re not good enough and if only they had [insert materialistic need here] then all will be ok.

If only I could gift them self-confidence and courage and pride.

I *want* to be that cool aunt that gives them the latest fashion accessory or tech-y gadget that no one needs but everyone wants.  But before I click ‘checkout’ in my shopping cart the website, I end up picturing their disappointment – the same disappointment I felt – when said material item never delivered the popular nirvana that it promised.  And I put everything back on the shelf and empty my shopping cart.

Yeah, that’s worse than buyers remorse.  That’s…shopper’s remorse?  How can someone regret buying something before they’ve even bought it?!  Leave it to me.

Needless to say, in previous years holiday preparations have left me worked-up and nerve-wracked, leaving me little energy to enjoy the actual celebration.  But this year, I’m not letting that happen.  I’m resigning the think less, and act more; remembering that it is the thought that counts.  And when possible, the gift of being with family is probably the best gift I can give them.  I mean, the gift of ME?  Hell yeah.

Want to celebrate the shit out of Christmas?  This is for you.

Need more reasons to stop celebrating Christmas?  Click here.

chrockpot-chicken-chili from SkinnyTaste dot com

Healthy Dinner

With zero effort from me (because Ben threw all the ingredients into the crock-pot today while I was at work), I arrived home to this delicious chicken taco chili, sans rice, cheese, sour cream, and I left out the kidney beans and only used black beans.

chrockpot-chicken-chili from SkinnyTaste dot com

photo from SkinnyTaste.com

But, this recipe, as is, is supposedly only 203 calories (if you have the proper serving size, which is 1.25 cups)!  Not bad for a hectic Monday night.

You can get the recipe here, on SkinnyTaste’s website: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2008/11/crock-pot-chicken-taco-chili-4-pts.html

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Give-Away: Retail Therapy

I need some retail therapy, how about you?

I’m just now recovering from last weekend’s disaster. As some of you might now, my phone was lost, then I discovered it was stolen – but only after I had recovered it. So, I was sort of a super sleuth, even though I didn’t know it. An explanation exists here.

While I would love to sit around and think of all the ways to exact revenge, sometimes the best revenge is living well.  And what better way to live well than to go shopping?  Plus, I have bigger fish to fry: I need to finish my outfit for the big wedding this weekend! One of my sweetest, dearest friends is getting married to her dream man this weekend, outdoors, in the afternoon AND the evening. So, I’ve chosen to go with an airy, classic navy pleated maxi skirt. But the top half? I have no idea…

If YOU can give me some suggestions (with pics or links!) of a great top to go with this skirt, then YOU could be the winner of a crisp, new, shiny $50 gift-card to The Limited!! (A big thanks to my friends at The Limited in Castleton Square Mall for giving me an extra one to give away after my awesome shopping trip last weekend!)

Post away in the comments section! I’ll enter your name in the drawing!!

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What should I wear with this skirt? The top in the picture is not an option, unfortunately. Post in the comments and you could win: $50 gift card to The Limited

Found: another incredible story about recovering something that was lost.

I grabbed dinner and a couple of drinks last Friday night and…yadda yadda yadda…ended up taking a cab.  Great right?  Except around 5am Saturday morning I realized I don’t have my phone.  Crap.  I must have left it in the cab.  No worries – I’ll track it.  The Find My iPhone app says my iPhone is on, and in Greenfield.  Crap.  The cab driver must be at home, snuggled in his bed, unaware of my wayward iPhone in his backseat.  I’d have to deal with this later, because I had to be at a work event at 6:30am on Saturday — and wouldn’t leave until about 7:00pm that evening.

Throughout the day, I called, it rang and rang, went to voicemail.  I sent the recovery messages that the Find My iPhone app offers – and received confirmation that they were displayed.  But by 3pm on Saturday, my iPhone was officially dead – all contact had been lost.  Seriously, cabbie?  Wake up.

By 7:30pm, home now and filthier than I’ve ever been, covered scalp to ankle with dirt and dust, with a fresh film of sweat and trash on my hands, I decide that I can’t wait one more minute for the taxi company to call me or the cab driver to wake up and report to work for the night.  I needed to drive out to Greenfield and get my phone.  Thirty minutes later, my husband (aka my bodyguard) and I pulled up to the house indicated by Google maps as the location where my phone emitted its last GPS signal.  I expected to see a cab parked in the driveway.  No such luck.  I did see someone go into the garage and, smart or not, I decided to park my car along the street and walk in after him.

He was not alone.  He, a young-ish blonde guy about 25 years old, was joining 4 grizzly old red-necks seated in the garage drinking and smoking and reliving their fishing trip that day.  As soon as one of them slurred, “Can I help you?!”, I thought, oh no I’m in big trouble.   But, I explained myself: “This is going to sound really weird, but…I lost my phone in Broad Ripple last night…” – waiting for a glint of recognition in their eyes, a memory of picking up a stray iPhone off the street last night, but nothing.  So I continued: “…and I thought I had left it in the cab that I took, but I tracked my iPhone and it said that it was at this house…”

“This house, here?”

By his retort I could tell that he was the conspiracy-theorist sort, and very concerned about his privacy, so I tried to reassure him by saying, “Well, in this general area – it’s approximate; it could be your neighbor’s house, or the one across the street…”

So, the older gentleman regaled me with how he hasn’t been to Broad Ripple in YEARS, and how he doesn’t associate with a few of his neighbors [for reasons I won’t linger on], but that his daughter is friends with the girl that lives across the street.  Ashley.  I happened to remember meeting an Ashley the previous night – she was with a girl named Amber.

“Amber?” – finally a smidge of recognition from this guy – “She have dark hair? Short?”

Yeah…

“That’s my daughter.”

Oh, thank god. Right?  A woman from behind me offered to go in the house and call Amber and find out where the phone is/if she had it.  An uncomfortably large amount of time passed before the woman came back out with news about the phone (during which time I had to use every bit of knowledge about carp, bluegill, and flat-bottom fishing boats that I know – which is not very much, as you probably guessed).  Good news, though.  Amber has my phone, and she is in town and will meet me at Steak-n-Shake.

Okay.

I found a truck in the back of the Steak-n-Shake parking lot in Greenfield, with a girl in it, who looked like she was waiting on someone.  So I parked next to her.  She got out, all 5-feet-10 and 240 pounds of her — this was NOT the Amber I met the previous night.  But, she did have my phone…interesting.  She said, “I found it in the bathroom at Peppers; it’s been dead so I haven’t been able to reach anyone…”

I was just elated to have my phone back, so I took it from her, and thanked her (so much), and practically ran back to my car.  Yeah, I guess to be honest I was afraid she might try to fight me…though I’m not sure why.  She just looked the type.

But, as my phone charged in my car, her comments and the events of the previous 24-hours just didn’t gel.  I didn’t go to the bathroom at Peppers.  And, dammit, my phone was fully charged until about 3pm that day – why didn’t she see my texts and lost-phone alerts??  Or answer the calls?!  And the girl that got out of the truck was not the petite dark-haired Amber I had met the night before…

Finally charged enough to turn on, my phone lit up and I unlocked it – only to find that it had been wiped.  All my info; all my pictures; all my contacts; all the photos I’d taken in Florida and the work I’d done for my blog on The Limited; not to mention hundreds of notes about work, family, friends, to-do lists, etc. – TOTALLY GONE.  I was so pissed, and couldn’t understand how that could happen – not by just losing it and it going dead.  Frustrated, but not panicked, I opened my Settings app to download all my synced info from the iCloud.  But what do I find?  That Amber Munden has set up the phone in HER name – her email address, her iTunes info – as though she was just going to use my phone, my NUMBER, as though it were just as transferable and hand-me-down as a pair of jeans from the thrift store!

Pissed, I stopped at the Verizon store 3 minutes before they closed and they were sure they couldn’t help me.  Jerks.  So the only think I could do was re-set my phone back to factory settings; then, re-enter my information and sync with iCloud.  But the latest info iCloud had for me was January 2012.

Now I’m obsessively syncing with iCloud every day.  And wondering how I got so lucky to get my phone back in the first place…

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The Limited, unlimited.

If you’re a girl, then you know when you lose a bunch of weight and you get all giddy about being able to shop places you couldn’t before? Well, yeah. The Limited is one of those places for me.  Tiny little pants.  Tiny little tees.  All cut explicity not to accomodate my apple shape.  Now, they’re making their styles more accessible to all of us and bringing their new plus size line (eloquii), designed for women sizes 14 to 24, here to Indy at the Castleton Square Mall!

Yes, we still have a “plus size” distinction here in this wonderful world we live in.  Is that how it is in every country?  I imagine it’s worse in Europe.  Dear god; France.  Where a size 8 is fat.  But I digress…

I’m a shopaholic and I’ll shop anywhere once – and I’m a sucker for brands within brands.  The Limited‘s plus size line, ‘eloquii‘ promises to be “modern”, “young”, and “stylish”- all while respecting curves.  Damn, if eloquii is a man, is he single?  I know some single ladies that have check-boxes by those words on their wish lists.  :)

The Limited is having an official Grand Opening celebration today through Sunday June 10th to celebrate bringing this line to Indy (at the Castleton Square Mall), where eloquii will be a store-within-a-store of sorts.  Check it out and let me know what you think.  I’ll be checking it out at lunch, searching for a dress to wear to the wedding of the year, and I’ll post my thoughts later tonight.

OH!  And – I’m going to give away an awesome gift courtesy of the nice folks at The Limited, too!

A sampling of the options in the eloquii summer line!

 

 

*disclaimer: You should be aware that I am eating a tiny piece of chocolate mousse pie as I write this. 

Dermalogica: Clean Start 'smart mouth lip shine'.  Image courtesy of http://cleanstart.dermalogica.com

sLIPpery slope

Happy Bike to Work Day!  This is my first year biking to work on this sacred day for bike commuters.  This holiday is getting more and more popular here in Indy; the plaza outside the City Market was packed with bikers this morning!

I hope everyone had a safe trip in!  (Uh, join us for cyclist happy hour like right now at Tomlinson Tap Room!)

Being fair-skinned, I’m constantly worrying about getting a sunburn, UV damage, blisters, and all those gross things when I’m biking.  I especially worry about my lips, which tend to get chapped and really really dry in the summer sun.  So I’ve been trying out some balms and such.

Dermalogica: Clean Start ‘smart mouth lip shine’. Image courtesy of http://cleanstart.dermalogica.com

Today I tried Dermalogica’s Clean Start “smart mouth lip shine”.  It promises to “shield, smooth, and shine”; everything I need.  Plus, the vanilla scent with a bit of zest – orange, maybe (?) is pretty alluring, too.  It’s a little bit gritty feeling going on (but others have said there is no such texture so what do i know? ), but it smooths out and definitely leaves a good amount of shine.   How and what does it shield? I’m not sure.  It is loaded with “Vitamin E, Cocoa Seed Butter, and Shea Butter”, which I was still feeling the effects of a good 3 hours after putting it on this morning.

But I feel better about having something with some blatant SPF in it.   Back to good ‘ol ChapStick for now on the bike!

xo

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Black + Brown

To begin my summer of biking, I acquired a Biria fixed gear with a flip flop hub from Joe’s Cycles in Fountain Square.

I love this bike.  I scoped out several bike styles at a few of the local bike shops around Indy and liked several of my options, but on the advice of my husband (“Don’t get it if you don’t LOVE it,”) I continued looking.  I guess you could say that I am (was) culturally opposed to fixed gear bikes and the anarchy that they stand (stood) for; but I’m also down to try anything.  Joe was confident I’d like this bike – I scrunched my nose at the ‘fixed gear’, but when I got on and rode it…I fell in love.  It was unexplainable.  It shouldn’t have worked that well.  And I shouldn’t have liked it that much.  But it felt like an extension of myself; like I was actually in control of the bike.  I was surprised, but I walked out with that Biria and refused to take it back for it’s “check up” until recently, because I didn’t want it to be out of my hands for a second.

Riding with some casual cyclists around town has inspired me to add some features to my bike to give it a personality all ‘my’ own; so here’s what I did:

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Before: Biria fixed gear, (see Joe’s Cycles for $ info)

I went for the drop bars (left over from my husband’s bike) wrapped in brown leather (Torelli), and a matching brown leather seat (Brev).  I am really impressed with the results.  It’s serious, sophisticated, and sleek.  Next: a rack on the back.

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After: Biria fixed gear; work done by Cody at Joe’s Cycles.