cough it up, dog.

piggybankDogs are expensive.  And let me tell you why.  It’s not just because of their food (although that shiz is craycray expensive), or all their toys (even though my dog has a toy box that would rival most childrens’) or even the vet bills (but seriously, my dog should have his own HSA account).  Nope, it’s because my dog actually eats money.  For reals.  Gus actually owes me more than $22.  And I’m fairly certain he has no intention of paying me back anytime soon.

What happened was Casey and I went out to drinks with a friend who was in town visiting.  One drink turned into all drinks and by the time we got home we were pretty “tired”.  So we brought the pup to bed (yes, he sleeps with us, underneath the covers to be exact) and immediately crashed.  But apparently Gus wasn’t ready to let the party be over though because he waited until we fell asleep and jumped off the bed, went through my purse, located my wallet, pulled out my cash and proceeded to eat it.  $22 of it.  Well, I guess technically it was about $21.60 based on the amount of scraps left over on the carpet.

First of all, how rude!?  Second of all, that sucks.  $22 is no huge amount of money, but it could definitely have bought me a bloody mary to cure my morning-after haze. That morning I definitely did a google search for “what to do when your dog eats your money”…  Yah, that was weird.  Thankfully I’m not this person, although kudos to them for actually taping poo money back together.  Anyways, my search told me that I was pretty much screwed and there’s no “dog ate my homework” clause from the US Mint to get my money back.  Basically my only option was to sift through his “deposits” (heyo!) to scrounge up pieces of the digested money.  Yah, no. Thanks a lot Uncle Sam.

Bottom line, I have no hope for getting my money back.  Waa.  But the next time I owe someone money I plan to toss them my dog and call it even.

moneydog[ the remains of my hard-earned money ]

we ARE the biggest losers.

In case anyone is wondering about the results of our Biggest Loser contest… our scale actually broke before we could have our weigh in.  Hmmmm… probably a sign that we should actually take the contest seriously.  Or maybe it was a sign that it was doomed to begin with.

We went with the second one.

So in honor of our contest a-no-go, we ate these lemon bars made from the Smitten Kitchen cookbook.  So good!  So good!lemonbars

a winter walk.

footsiesIn Portland, it’s really easy to get hit with the winter blues.  The gray skies, the rain, the cold, the damp air… it’s the perfect recipe for let’s-just-stay-in-and-watch-movies-type of lifestyle. (see: fort building for adults)  Which can totally be fun for a while, but eventually leads to me going stir-crazy bananatown in my apartment due to lack of fresh air on skin.  Luckily we live in such a great spot with super easy access to the river so we try to take advantage of it as much as possible.  It’s even worth dodging the homeless people on the sidewalk and inhaling second-hand weed as you walk by… because damn, it’s purty.

redbridge pupwalk

[ likely barking at another dog… or a plant.. or probably just a gust of wind ]


portland, i love ya.

a classic case of fort hips.

Happy Monday!  How was the weekend?  Ours was so so good!

On Friday we had the genius idea of building a fort in our living room.  So we did.  And it was awesome.  We watched movies and had a slumber party right there on the floor.  I felt like a kid again. Until 3am, when we had to get up and go to our bed because my hip hurt from sleeping on the ground.  Yep.

Regardless, I think we may need to instate Fort Fridays into the Thompson household.  So much fun!  I may just have to invest in some hip protectors.

Our fort:

sleepless night of playtime.Lynchburg, Virginia 

Yah right!

THIS, is our fort.  And it’s awesome.


 [ fort image via ]


bare it all.


Have you ever seen The Biggest Loser?  Somehow I’ve managed to avoid getting sucked in for the past 13 seasons but last night Casey and I took the plunge and watched the premier of Season 14.  It’s safe to say we’ve found our new Sunday night ritual.  If you didn’t see it or haven’t seen previews, the biggest draw is that there are kids on this season.  Adorable, sweet, squishy kids!  I think that’s primarily what sealed the deal for us… but to be honest, compared to every other reality show the contestants on this one seem like genuinely nice people!  Who knew they existed in “reality”??

What really gets me is the contestants insane strength to not only participate in the physical aspects of the show but to do it all and bare it all on national television.  They are starting the show at likely the heaviest they’ve ever been and within the first day they’re stepping on a scale and wearing nothing but spandex shorts and sports bras in front of millions of people.  Can you imagine?!?  I mean….. my holiday muffin top is hyperventilating at the thought of it.  Just, no.

Maybe it’s the fact that these people are so inspiring… or maybe it’s because we went out for a giant breakfast AND THEN shared a family-sized pizza earlier yesterday… but we decided to take a cue from the “Losers” and have a little contest of our own.  However, we’re not quite as intense as Jillian Michaels, so instead of multiple months we’re only committing to a week.  Whoever loses the most weight, percentage-wise, by next Sunday gets to enforce 30 minutes of whatever activity they choose.  Get your head out of the gutter people – we’re talking backrubs and eyebrow plucking, the stuff we both want each other to do but hate having to do for each other.  And fear not, we’re not going to beat ourselves up at the gym.  We’re just going to make it a priority to be active and make healthy choices this week… and maybe order just a large instead of a family-sized pizza.

So stay tuned, it’s gonna be a nail-biter!

(image via)

13 is a lucky number.

resolutionsI generally don’t make New Year’s resolutions.  To me, there’s something unrealistic about resolving to change something about myself at the stroke of midnight.  I mean, resolving to eat healthier is a great goal but let’s be honest, on January 1st you can usually find me in a sweatpants ball on my couch eating ALL the greasy and salty things because I celebrated a little too much the night before.  So it’s like I’ve already failed miserably.  On day 1.  No thanks.

But I’m not a total resolution Grinch.  I actually have big plans for 2013.  So this year, instead of making a list of all the things I want to change about myself, I’m going to look forward to all the moments – big and small – that will make 2013 a great year.  Here are some of the things I’m excited to do this year:

Volunteer. Take a cooking class. Take a trip with my husband. Blog more. See my best friends. Run another 1/2 marathon. Keep a journal. See more live music. Swim in the ocean. Teach my dog to fetch. Skype with my family. Get a massage. Take more pictures. Go on a road trip. Buy a house.

2013, let’s do this shall we?

(photo by David Keochkerian)

i like you. do you like me?

You know when you’re little and all you have to do is offer some Big League chew to your hide and seek partner and you have a friend for life?  Well, try that when you’re 27.  For starters, you can’t find big League Chew anywhere.  And secondly, they don’t offer hide and seek as a group class at 24 Hour Fitness.  But you get the picture…

Having moved to a new city with my husband less than a year ago, we’ve found that making new friends is way harder than it used to be.

When you’re in elementary school, everyone is your friend.  I think that’s also part of the sugarcoated kid philosophy that “everyone is a winner”.  Then in middle school, you flit in and out of groups based on how long it takes to get your braces off, or when you have your growth spurt or if you have early or late lunch.  But by high school, you’ve established a group of best friends you’ve now known for years that you have similar classes, sports, and interests as.  And by the time graduation rolls around you see your friends way more than your family.  (That’s also because parents are supes lame in high school.  Amiright?)

Enter college, when life is one big blind date and party rolled into one.  All you have to do is meet someone at a house party, have three too many drinks, and you’re declaring your friend-love for each other.  “You like wearing sweatpants?  I like wearing sweatpants!  We have to hang out this weekend.  You’re my new best friend!  Give me your number, I’m calling you tomorrow!  I’m sorry, I should totally know this, but what’s your name again??”  Come on, we’ve all had those conversations that make you cringe a little the next morning…  And while most of these encounters may not stick, the sheer amount of times they happen guarantees that you weed out at least a few besties from the plethora of crazy.

Cut to your late 20’s, when even one too many drinks equals three consecutive days in bed and a morphine drip.  (Not really but totally)  You can’t rely on parties and cocktails to make you “feel friendly”, as my best friends and I used to say.  You have to find new ways to meet people.  And once you do, it’s almost as if you’re dating them… First it’s asking if they want to get a drink.  If you’re lucky, you find that you actually like them and a few happy hour dates may eventually lead to a dinner.  And before you know it you’re standing outside the restaurant wondering if a hug would seem like you’re coming on too strong.  And you’re thinking “I really like you but I don’t want to seem like I really like you because I don’t want you to think I’m weird and scare you off”.

Adding another layer of difficulty is the fact that it’s not just me anymore.  As a married person I tend to hang out with my husband a lot (marriage happens like that) so there is also the desire to find couple friends.  And don’t even get me started on those first dates, because now not only are you wondering if the girl likes you, you’re also wondering if the guy likes your husband and the husband likes you and the girl likes your husband.

Sigh…. It’s exhausting.

Almost a year deep into our life in a new city, I’m realizing that the easiest way to approach friend dating is to use the word “friend” more loosely.  It doesn’t need to have the same meaning that it did in high school and college.  It actually shouldn’t have the same meaning it did back then.  As long as I still have my best friends, regardless of where we all live, there’s no pressure to find someone in my new city to get matching tattoos with quite yet.  Priorities change and people change so it’s okay to be a bit pickier, but it’s also okay to realize that you don’t have to love each new person to infinity-and-beyond… just so long as they have the same adoration of sweatpants that you do.  Well, sweatpants AND bloody mary’s.

(Image via)

oh! christmas tree.

So far in Casey and my 2.5 years of marriage and 5 years of dating, we’ve never had a Christmas tree together.  We usually have eleventeen celebrations to go to during Christmas week and since teleporters don’t exist yet, we generally spent a majority of our holiday time traveling from shindig to shindig.  Apparently real Christmas trees are super needy so it’s never made sense for us to get a tree and leave it neglected for most of Christmas.  In an effort to not be a complete grinch, I usually fashion together some resemblance of tree-type decor, which in the past has looked a little something like this:


Or this:


But that ALL changed this year.  THIS year we’re staying in Portland for the holidays, and while I’m super super bummed to not be with family, the silver lining is a big glorious yummy-smelly Christmas tree that is currently taking up 1/4 of our living room/dining room/apartment/life.  We had a true Christmas tree-cutting experience when we went into the wilderness (ok a tree farm) and chopped that sucker down.  We also had a true Griswold experience when we attempted to tie 2 slightly large Christmas trees to the top of our friend’s Honda Civic.  And then we went a little further into idiocy and forgot to open the doors to the car before tying the trees on, an oopsies that we finally realized when we got to tying off the fourth door.  The result was 3 doors that were tied shut, 4 adults climbing through the backseat/windows of a car, multiple awkward looks from fellow tree-goers, and a partridge in a pear tree.

But we finally made it home with our grand fir tree and after 30 minutes of finagling, we got that baby firmly grounded in it’s new tree stand home.  I should now mention that up until that point we collectively had 3 ornaments – when you never have a tree to decorate you tend to not accumulate them.  Who knew?  We quickly realized that we needed to invest in some ornaments that could truly enhance the beauty of our tree.  So on Sunday we got all dolled up and made a trip to the dollar store… and 30 minutes later we walked out of that joint with over $11 worth of fine holiday trimmery and a slightly expired Mountain Dew… and approximately one hour later we returned to said dollar store to exchange our decorations.  We realized after leaving with our fancy finds and walking around for 5 minutes that every single one of our ornaments in our bag seemed to be (for lack of a better word) defecating glitter all over us, causing us to look like a couple of Lisa Frank stickers.  Let it be known that I hate glitter with a passion, I consider it to be the chlamydia of the crafting world.  Eventually we exchanged those glitter bombs, got home to decorate, and the rest is history:


It has yet to be seen how Gus will fully react to the tree.  We tried to keep ornaments off of the first few feet of the tree but that does not stop him from jumping up and trying to eat them.  For now he’s settling on eating just the pine needles.  Which definitely does not, if you’re wondering, does not make his big potty smell piney-fresh.

that is one grand dog.

My mom and stepdad came for a visit this weekend and I loved every bit of it.  My mostest favoritest part of the weekend was spending some QT with my mom… but coming in a close second was watching her interact with Gus.  My mom is a what I consider a dog bystander, she doesn’t love or hate them, she tends to avoid interaction, but she does however, have a heart of gold when it comes to any animals’ overall well-being and care, and our dog in particular.  So you can imagine my excitement and amusement when she finally got to meet our little boy and made great efforts to love him almost as much as we do.


What I imagine they’re both thinking…..

Mom: Please don’t make me regret putting my face so close to your face.  I know we’re practically strangers but I feel that since you’re my granddog, we can have an unspoken agreement and connection that will allow us to coexist over the next few days.  And as time progresses I think that I will find myself actually enjoying tolerating your company.  I might even go so far as to say that you are changing my overall view on house dogs.  All of this hangs in the balance of this photo.  Please don’t fart on me.

Gus: Squirrel?!

Love you and miss you mama!  Gus says what up.