Summer 2014- A Glimpse

This summer has gone by SO fast.  I had to take a moment and think about what  I actually did because it really just flew by.  Then I realized, we had some great adventures!  Here is a sample:

1. Went to the zoo.

2. Went to the botanical gardens.

3. Picnic in the park on a sunny day.

4. The Artist got his first tattoo.  See: https://emilyandherartist.wordpress.com/2014/07/15/the-artists-first-tattoo/

5. We spent a weekend with my sister and brother in law.

6. We played darts at Blueberry Hill.

7. Horror movie marathon with a friend.

8. Became good friends with our new neighbour across the hall.

9. Discovered a great, brand new Goodwill store nearby with great items.

10. Went to one of our favourite restaurants for Pad Thai, called Basil Spice.

11. Saw the latest Wes Anderson movie in theatres, The Grand Budapest Hotel.

12. Went to the circus.

13. Each celebrated a birthday.

14. Went to some art shows.

15. The Artist made homemade alfredo pasta with grilled pork loin.  I don’t even like alfredo sauce but he had a vision.  So I tried some- it was AMAZING!  I guess it is the stuff in jars or pre-made sauce that I don’t like because this homemade sauce was delicious.

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16. Went bowling.

17. A walk in forest park at dusk on a brisk, beautiful day.

18. The Artist had his thesis show and I threw him a little surprise.  See: https://emilyandherartist.wordpress.com/2014/05/30/surprise/

19. We celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary.  Read about our love story here! https://emilyandherartist.wordpress.com/2013/08/28/3-years-of-the-best-marriage-ever/

20. I got a job!  Which involved the getting work permission, which was stressful, but  I did it!

21. The Artist got gallery representation.  Yes, that’s right!  He has been a busy beaver with that.

22. I got my ears pierced- for the very first time ever!  Most women get them done so young they don’t even remember it.  I have never had a piercing at all, and it was no pain(or blood)-free!  But I love them and am so excited to try out all kinds of earrings after they heal 🙂

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No wonder summer went by so fast, we were so busy!  I am so fortunate to be able to do all of these things!  The Artist and I are officially announcing that we are staying in St. Louis for now, because I have got a job 🙂  What a whirlwind it has been these last few months ❤  Cheers to our future!

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Women in the Working World

Lately, as an adult women who aspires for both a thriving career as well as motherhood, it seems as though having both is a puzzle I can’t figure out.  I am turning 25 in a few weeks, and the Artist and I hope to be fortunate enough to have children together in the future, and we both have big dreams for our careers as well, however, more and more it seems difficult to have both.  Things are different for women, we have “biological clocks”, and as we approach 30, or so I personally feel, our clocks start to remind us that time is ticking and the pressure of aging (as well as even more immense pressure from society) can be abundantly felt.  So here is what started my thoughts on all of this….

As my 25th birthday approaches, I have decided that I would like to further my educational career with a master’s degree and have been accepted to Washington University in St. Louis.  It is a 2 year MSW program and quite pricey, and I got a partial scholarship.  I am in desperate need of funding to even begin to be able to afford this, and have a deep gut feeling that I will not be attending classes this fall because I can’t afford it.  To read more about my situation on this: https://emilyandherartist.wordpress.com/2014/02/17/bittersweet/

So that is another year before I can apply to other MSW programs, and another year delaying the beginning of a career, would then put me age 28 before my careers even begins after graduation, and then building a secure lifestyle that allows me to try and get pregnant and be financially stable enough to take time off, and be able to afford it, to care for a child….pushing me past that ripe age of 30 that I mentioned above.  I know plenty of women have children well into their thirties, and I might be one of them, but wouldn’t it be nice to not feel pressured to have a child by the big bully called age?

Which is what sparked these thoughts for me in the first place.  It is like having to choose between having children in your mid-late twenties, or going to grad school during this time instead, and delaying having children until afterwards.  I know plenty of people have children while in grad school, but I don’t think that that choice is for me.  Or at least, it is my current thought.  So as of right now,  I plan to go to grad school at some point, we both want to get our careers up and running (which is really testing our patience, at almost 25 and 29, we just want to have established careers already!), and at that point, we will consider children.  I don’t want to have this feeling that I have to choose one or the other, so I just simply will not.  I am striving towards 2 careers; as a social worker with an MSW, and if I am fortunate enough to be able to bear a child, as a mother.  But you never know what life will throw at you, and the next day is never a guarantee, so although we have big plans for our futures, we try and live in the moment and enjoy each day as it comes.  Such as seeing a Shakespeare’s Henry V in Forest Park together, enjoying a picnic while we wait for the show, and having some quality time together, cracking open a fresh coconut, cooking a nice meal, celebrating birthdays, admiring the Artist’s thesis painting, chocolate chip pancakes and the best bacon I have ever had.  Because you never know what tomorrow will bring!

Shakespeare in the Park

Shakespeare in the Park

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Sweet and a little spicy, orange chicken with cashews.

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Best, yet healthiest, bacon ever!

Best, yet healthiest, bacon ever!

So I encourage everyone of both genders to embrace the women in your lives as they balance life 🙂  I applaud all the women out there who are rocking it in their careers and as awesome moms, I look up to you all. ❤

A Classic “Emily and Artist Adventure”

The plan for Saturday was to go to and check out a local hot spot, World’s Fair Donuts.  And then, proceed to the Botanical Gardens which happens to be right near by.  Saturday mornings before noon, residents of the county or city get free admission, so we thought it would be a nice accompaniment.  The Artist has been craving doughnuts, and was looking forward to coffee and doughnuts “on the outside”.  As we were approaching, I noticed it was 11:30am and thought that maybe we should take the doughnuts to go so we didn’t miss the free admission.  But as we pulled in, we saw a huge sign in the window saying they were on vacation this week.  There was no way the Artist could spend the afternoon at the Botanical Gardens without coffee, or breakfast, and no way I could either (minus the coffee, I don’t drink it), and we didn’t have time to stop somewhere else or we would miss the free admission.  The artist has his mind set on take-out coffee so he suggested McDonald’s, for their $1 coffees, and I suggested we go to the zoo instead, as the zoo here in St. Louis has free admission, all day every day.  We got to McDonalds, and I thought…

Me- There won’t be any doughnuts or anything here to go with your coffee though.

The Artist- I will get a coffee and a burger instead.

Me- Hmm, are you getting lunch?  If you are, maybe I will too.

The Artist- Ok, you get a fries and drink combo.

Me- (we usually share the drink and fries, just to save the extra couple bucks, or sometimes get no combo at all, just sandwiches)  Ok, you know how I feel about fries though, especially McDonald’s fries.  I have the inability to share and I eat them like an animal.  But if you need a drink other than coffee, you can share mine?

The Artist- Oh I am going to get a combo too, I’m starving.  Oh!  Maybe I can ask them to substitute a coffee in the combo instead of a pop?!

Me- (laughing so hard I was crying and making a scene)

The Artist- People are staring.

And we place our orders.  And yes, the Artist got a burger and fries with a coffee.  And then we were off to the zoo.  The zoo is located in Forest Park, and the traffic in the park was horrible.  We were at a stand still so many times, there was no parking, cars were parked on the grass, up on curbs, it was a zoo in itself.  And before we knew it, the road began to leave the park.  We decided that it was just the time of day, since it was a little after noon.  Since we were close to home, we went home to print off some coupons for Dippin Dots ice cream, and grab a blanket so if nothing else, we could lay on the grass and have a mini picnic or something.  Then we headed back out a little while later.

Nothing had changed.  In fact, it was worse.  We took the first parking spot we saw and just walked all the way to the zoo.  Right inside the entrance was a funnel cake stand- obviously that had to be our first stop, especially since we didn’t get our long awaited doughnuts.  But that was about the highlight of it all.  The zoo was packed.  It took 10 minutes just to walk a few feet, and there were line ups to get even a little bit close to see the animals.  And we couldn’t find our way to anything, because the crowd was so intense.  I even went to 2 different Dippin Dots locations and neither would accept my coupon.  Ugh.  And to top it all off, I forgot my water bottle in the car, and was dying of thirst.

We made it back to the car and saw some trails in nearby, so we took a gander.  This was more like it.  Quiet and peaceful, just my artist and I walking and talking, and actually able to hear one another speak.  It would be nice to go back there for a mini hike and wear appropriate shoes and clothes, and not a skirt and these horrible flip flops that I should have thrown out years ago.  We had a nice time exploring together.  The artist amazed me once again with his curiosity, looking at all the different trees and leaves, and knowing all the names of them.  He has been learning about plants and gardening a lot lately, all stemming from our original first visit to the Botanical Gardens a few weeks ago.  I love listening to him talk and tell me about interesting topics, and I learn so much from it.  All the while, I am admiring his keen interests with a smile.  I know the Artist likes to play BolaBall, so I suggested we find a nice place to set it up and play, perhaps tomorrow, and bring a picnic, and enjoy the scenery.  Perhaps the zoo again on a weekday.  Crowds are not our thing, but they are especially not the Artist’s thing, and I thought he might like picnic and BolaBall idea better.  It was a winner.

We make such a great team.

As title says, this was a “Classic Emily and Artist Adventure”.  We seem to have these a lot.  But it also makes for great stories and humour, which we love.  Our day did not go as planned, but we sure had a great time.  For tonight: chicken and vegetable wraps for dinner (since it is only 5:30pm, obviously we will be eating a “second dinner”, perhaps an episode of Criminal Minds (I think I would make THE best profiler for the BAU), and the best company- each other.

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A classic move the Artist does...takes secret photos of me while I lag behind because I have sore feet, and walk slow.  And here, trying to keep my skirt from blowing open in the wind.

A classic move the Artist does…takes secret photos of me while I lag behind because I have sore feet, and walk slow. And here, trying to keep my skirt from blowing open in the wind.

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Telling me about the various plants around us.

Telling me about the various plants around us.

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Art?

Art?

Admiring the leaves of this plant.

Admiring the leaves of this plant.

"Must get more plants for the apartment!"

“Must get more plants for the apartment!”

A classic Artist thing to seek out and admire.

A classic Artist thing to seek out and admire.

Running up the hill to find the car and head home.

Running up the hill to find the car and head home.

And when we got home, the Artist of course gets straight back into his groove, and makes some art.

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My most favourite sight to see. The Artist making art puts me in such a good mood. Seeing him engaged in something he is so talented with and passionate about, is moving. xoxo