Locations of visitors to this page Bama Girl In SoCal: July 2005

Friday, July 29, 2005

Star sightings!!!

Tonight I had the great opportunity to meet Jessica Simpson, Willie Nelson, and Johnny Knoxville. They were doing a meet and greet before the premiere of Dukes of Hazard.

I was so excited to see Jessica Simpson up close. Is she really beautiful? Is she nice and unassuming like she seems on TV? Is she tiny now that she lost weight for the movie? YES, YES, and YES!
Jessica was so demure and sweet. She seemed like she didn't understand what all the commotion was about. She never took her eyes off the speaker who was introducing everyone, and when I met her she looked me right in the eyes and said, "thanks for coming." She is so beautiful up close. She almost seems fragile. She is very small, with perfect skin, the whitest teeth, and great hair. She had a lot of expression in her eyes. She seemed to really care about meeting everyone.

Willie Nelson is a sweet old man with a gentle spirit. I told him that my husband was a huge fan, and he said thanks. When we shook hands he covered my hand with his other hand.

Jonny Knoxville was having a great time meeting everyone. He seemed the least jaded by fame, perhaps because he is newer to it than the other two. He posed for a picture with just about everyone. He just seemed like a normal guy you might hang out with.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Padres Game


Tonight I went to my first game at Petco Park to see the Padres beat the Cardinals. It was an exciting game, and the Padres won it in the bottom of the 9th.

I love Petco Park because it is downtown. You get a cool party feeling when you are there. The people at the game seemed like a fun crowd too. It is definitely a new must for my summer visitors to add to their agendas.

I'm not really a baseball fan, but it sure was fun to see them win it in the last inning! Go Padres!!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Quandry of the week--what do I do?


Ok, I've been a very bad blogger lately, but here's why...

I got a new job--yea!!! I am going to be teaching 1/2 day at a great school, which is just perfect for my schedule. But, here's the catch--it's far, far away!

So, my little quandry--do I move closer or stay where I am and commute? I've actually been grappling with this problem for far longer than I've known about this job. I have an opportunity to move 10 miles closer to my job and live in a slightly bigger house for about the same rent I'm paying now. No, it still doesn't have AC, but it does have ceiling fans in every room. Another benefit of this house is it is in the neighborhood where my 2 best friends in San Diego live. That's a big bonus! I would love to be able to walk over to their houses.

I guess the biggest drawback is just the thought of moving. I hate unpacking. I hate putting my clothes away in the closet. I hate figuring out which picture looks good where.

So, is it worth the trouble of a move to be near friends, near my job, and in a slightly larger house? What do you think fellow bloggers? Make my decision easier for me!!! Help!!!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

It is too freaking hot to have no AC


San Diego, CA
92 ┬░FSunny
Feels Like: 93┬░FHumidity: 38%Wind: WNW at 12 mph

Once again, I was deceived!!! Everyone told me that San Diego's weather is perfect all the time. Today, it's not perfect! It's too freaking hot! As I unpeel my leg from the faux-leather office chair I am sitting in, I'm reminded of all the encouragement I recieved when concerned about living in a house with no air-conditioning.

"I lived here a whole year, and only turned on my AC when my inlaws came in town"

"I don't know anyone in San Diego with airconditioning--you just don't need it"

"The high is 75 every day"

Ok, maybe all this is true if you are one of the lucky ones who lives ON the beach. Those of you spoiled brats who can walk to the beach, I hate you! I know how weather works here. It's at least 10 degrees cooler on the beach than it is at my house, a measly 8 miles inland.

What I had to give up so I could afford a house with a backyard for Bella (my adorable dog, who is right this moment laying on the kitchen linoleum panting for her life.)

We don't even have ceiling fans! Ugh. All my years of training, growing up in the south, did not prepare me for this. That is because in the south we have AC! You wouldn't DREAM of living in a house without AC. I don't even think homeless people in the deep south would live in a house with no AC if it was a gift.

Ok, I know that this is just temporary. Next week I will be back to extolling the virtues of southern california weather, once the mercury has dropped to a nice doable 78.

Until then, I'll be the girl tooling around town in my car with the AC blasting, just to get some relief from my house.

ps...anyone have a pool I can come hang out in???

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

A Few of My Favorite Things


There are those products you use that you can't live life without (or so you think, until you find some new thing!) Here are a couple of mine. Please post a comment and share some of yours.

First of all, first thing in the morning, I need my green tea. I used to drink coffee--strong Starbucks espresso roast with about 2 inches of hazelnut creamer. It was so strong that my hands would shake all morning. It also probably had about 600 calories due to my love of creamer. So, to be a healthier person, I started drinking Green Tea, which is supposed to have antioxidants that help your body fight off free radicals that cause mutations in your cells that can lead to cancer. (Any guesses on what kind of teacher I am?) Instead of cream and sugar, I like it with lemon. I've always been a sucker for sour--I used to have a freakish addiction to sour patch kids candy. So, my brand of choice is Trader Joe's Green Tea with Jasmine. It's good, people! http://www.traderjoes.com/products/coffee.pdf

Another product I love is Noevir skin care products. My cousin in Seattle has been selling this stuff for years. It is from Japan, and it works miracles! It makes your skin feel so smooth and look perfect. I used it the month before my wedding and had perfect skin. Now I just use it occasionally b/c it is expensive. I'm thinking about using it all the time though and just paying for it! I'm also thinking about becoming a Noevir representative. http://www.noevirusa.com/web/main.html

Burt's Bees chapstick is the bomb! It makes your lips soft and tingly, without that vasoline feeling, and it is cheap! It's all I wear--no lipstick for me. http://www1.burtsbees.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10001&storeId=10001&productId=10126&langId=-1&parent_category_rn=10001

So, what would you add to the list of products you love? I got this idea from Farah, who's blog is totally cool. Check it out: http://farahzlife.blogspot.com/

Sunday, July 17, 2005

One of Those Weekends


Last weekend I had 2 fun college friends in town to visit. The weekend before that I was out of town, visiting friends and family. This weekend.....nada.
Why do weekends like that make me feel bad about myself? Is that a left-over-from-college anxiety? I remember in college I would never go to the Cafeteria (we called it "the caf") by myself. I would die before I had an opening in my social calendar on a Friday or Saturday night. I didn't even like to study solo. I was always surrounded by a gaggle of girls. That's the best thing about living in a sorority house!
So, why does this still haunt me? I'm always telling my husband that it isn't ok to just spend a quiet evening at home on a Saturday night. We must have PLANS. By plans, I mean we need to be going somewhere cool to eat or hanging out with some fun people or doing something else more exciting than staying home and surfing the net on our respective computers. (I know that sounds geeky, but that is what we do--he's in one room on his laptop, and I'm in another on my desktop.)

So, my husband is out of town. My good friend who I always hang out with is out of town. I am doing nothing. At least I have my dog.

Here's what I did today--
woke up at 10am, thought about going to church solo and nixed that idea, piddled around while watching the marathon of Laguna Beach on MTV (yes, I love that show), took Bella (my cute dog) for a walk at noon (bad idea for Bella--she got a little overheated trying to keep up with the rabbits in the canyon), while I was already sweaty I went to the gym and ran on treadmill, then went swimming (laps) for a while. Then I came home and did laundry. Am I the queen of boring or what?
Does anyone else out there have trouble with alone time? What do you do to combat boredom?

Friday, July 15, 2005

Flip-flops


Yes, flip-flops are the number one thing I can already tell I will miss about Southern California if I ever have to move somewhere else.
I've always loved flip flops. I wear them all summer. I am one of those girls who has at least 100 pairs of shoes in my closet, but what do I wear? Flip flops every day.
And not just any flip flops, mind you! I wear only one pair of flip flops, even though I own at least 5. This pair is actually men's flip flops that I got from the GAP on clearance in 2002. They are sooooo comfortable.
Yes, I have the white V formation on my feet. My toes are tan, then there is the white V, and then my feet and legs are tan. It's comical.
The cool thing about SoCal is that you can wear flip flops anywhere--grocery store, bars, church, school, you name it! You can also wear flip flops year-round. No longer are they just a summer addiction.
So, I know you are thinking...why does she own 100 pairs of shoes? Retail therapy. My friends say I have a problem. I say, I have a secret. Shoes always fit. I always wear the same size in shoes. No matter how fat I feel, my feet are still the same size. I can go into any store and buy the cutest shoes, knowing they will fit and look good on me. I can't say the same about clothes.
Therefore, until I find an occasion to wear my other 99 pairs of shoes, I'll be the girl in the men's GAP flip flops!

What People in Cali don't know about Bama

First of all, most Californians couldn't locate Alabama on a map. Of course, they probably couldn't locate any other southern states besides Florida either. They might have trouble with the midwest too.
To Californians, the rest of the country is just a mindless wasteland of towns with no beaches. I heard some really mean comments about the "red states" from some of my co-workers here in California. I happen to love the "red states." So, naturally, I see this holier-than-thou attitude of many Californians to be what it really is--ignorance.
I tell people out here that I'm from Alabama and they look at me like, "oh, but you seem so normal!" They are envisioning something out of the movie Deliverance. The city in Alabama that I lived in is Birmingham.
Birmingham still ranks as #1 on my list of towns I'd like to end up living in. It's got everything you'd need from a big city--shopping, entertainment, excellent medical care, great schools, recreation. It's also got all the benefits of a small town--people know you, you can go to your favorite restaurant and order "the usual", your neighbors are nice and help you out.
Then there is also the aforementioned addiction to college football. Last year my husband flew me down to an Alabama football game for my birthday. There is nothing like sitting in a packed stadium with about 80,000 crazy fans whose happiness depends on the success or failure of a bunch of 18-22 year-olds. I do literally mean that their happiness depends on it. Don't ever try to talk to my husband when Mississippi State loses a game (which they often do) or to my brother during a game that Ole Miss is losing when they were supposed to win. Yikes!
Of course, the south knows how to tailgate too. In Oxford, you go to the grove for a fashion show/drink-a-thon/networking/reminiscing/nicer-than-most-wedding-receptions tailgate. In Tuscaloosa you walk up and down the quad on your way to Bryant Denny saying "Roll Tide" and getting offered food and beverages from complete strangers just because you cheer for their team.
Every SEC college town has their own traditions, and these usually include the sorority girls wearing sundresses, the frat pledges sweltering in suits and ties, the moms and dads who are alums reliving their college experiences year after year, and a bunch of fans who didn't even go to school there, but pledge their undying allegance to the school.
But I digress. As you can imagine, as summer turns to fall, a southerners thoughts turn to football. Oh, who am I kidding, they were already thinking about it.
I guess Red-state-ignorance is a real problem, but I'm sure the red states don't mind. They like the people that do know that a red state is a great place to live. The people that live in red states are well-traveled. They vacation in all parts of the US and beyond, but they always come home to the red states with a smile.
I remember a trip I took to London right after college. I had such a great time and my eyes were really opened to the European way of life. I had fun on the tube, in the city, in pubs. When I got back to Birmingham I was overwhelmed with the beauty of home. The curving streets with trees hanging over the top, making a tunnel of foliage, the country clubs with the hilly golf courses, the houses with aged brick and perfectly manicured lawns--these are the things that still make me tear up when I go back to visit.
So, Californians, when you imagine a place like Alabama or Tennessee, I hope you can imagine something besides a scene out of a movie. I hope you can imagine the beauty and traditon I've described. That's home to me!

Thursday, July 14, 2005

There's a lot to like about California


How can you not love living in Southern California? To top that, how can you not love San Diego? I think San Diego has the best weather of anywhere in the country--hands down.
I laugh every day when my mom calls and asks me what the weather's like. I say, "It's the usual--75 degrees and sunny!" That always makes my mom mad because she lives in Memphis, TN which is right up there with New Orleans as one of the most humid places on earth! In the south right now it is so hot and humid that your sweat doesn't even evaporate, so you spend all your time outside with a layer of slime on your skin that won't ever go away!
Another great thing about San Diego is the cool geographic diversity. You have the beach right there, and then you drive 2 hours and you have skiing. My brother and his girlfriend came for a weekend and managed to do Vegas, the beach and skiing in 3 days. Where else in the country can you claim that?
For a girl who grew up a day's drive from the beach, having one in your backyard is nice. I love to go walk in La Jolla with the surf crashing and the seals barking--it's the perfect way to exercise!
I'm also loving the shopping out here. You really can't beat Fashion Valley! After living in Jacksonville, NC (look it up on a map, folks--it's just north of Wilmington on the coast--the east coast!) I know what a privelege it is to have a mall nearby! I used to have to drive to Raleigh 2 hours away just to shop somewhere besides Target or the Gap. Now I have Neiman Marcus in my backyard! (Like I can afford anything there, but hey, it's still fun to look!)
Let's come back to the weather again! I can't get over how it can be sunny every day and yet, I'm not hot. I walk my dog at noon, and it feels great!
That's my dog Bella in the picture above, by the way. Yes, I know, she's the cutest dog you've ever seen! I have to agree! She's a great companion to my husband and me! We are lucky that she came into our lives!

Blogging...should I try it?

I've lived all over the southeast--Memphis, TN, Birmingham, AL, Pensacola, FL, Jacksonville, NC. (never heard of that last one, have you?) I love the south--the people, the food, the friendliness, the trees! There are some things that stink--the heat, the humidity, the hurricanes, the tornados.
I guess wherever you grew up will always feel like home. Home for me is the South, but right now I am living in San Diego, CA. So, obviously I have some adjusting to do.
When I first got here, I learned really quickly not to say "Y'all" anymore. I was substitute teaching one day and I said, "Y'all get out your books and turn to page 113." The class erupted in laughter. One girl even started making fun of me. Wow, where's that southern hospitality when you need it?
Another big thing I had to get used to was not being in the Bible Belt anymore. Back in the south, pretty much everyone I knew had grown up in the church. Here in soCal, you meet Christians, as well as people of other religions, but mostly you meet people who have no religious leanings. People here think that religion is like an optional recrational activity. In the south, your religion is almost as important as what SEC football team you cheer for.
That brings me to my next topic...no one in soCal cares about college football!!! I mean, USC were the national champs last year, and I'm not sure that even made the front page of the paper. In Alabama, a national championship gets talked about for years, lifetimes. By the way, I lean towards BAMA, roll tide!
So, if everyone in soCal is from somewhere else, is there anyone else here like me? A transplanted southerner, a girl with morals and my etiquitte book (no white after labor day for me, no matter what Cosmo says), someone who just wants that white picket fence life. If so, read my blog and maybe we can share stories. I'm worried that pretty soon I will be so acclimated to Cali that I will forget my roots. It's easy to blend in here--I've already got blonde highlights and an iPod.

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