#goals, Arizona, Deep thoughts

Happy 1st birthday, Interceptionary!

Happy New Year…  And happy 1st birthday, Interceptionary!

A lot of people had some not-so-great things to say about 2016, but I can’t complain – 2016 was good to me.  It took my adventuresome-self completely out of my comfort zone and kept me and my family safe.

I’m so glad I started this blog and continued it!  I made it a resolution to keep up with it and I think I did pretty well.  The best is reading the very first post – I had no idea that in just 8 months, I’d be across the country living a whole new life.  I hear people say things like when you take time out to put your thoughts on paper (or in a blog) magical things happen.  And it really happened!  2016 was the most action-packed year I’ve ever had.  It was so exciting that I’m still a bit overwhelmed and I’m still trying to figure out WTF happened and HTF it all happened… and whether I want anything more to happen LOL (just kidding, of course I want more to happen!)

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I know that if I focus on what makes me come alive, life will unravel for me.  Here are some goals and things that I think will help me come alive:

I’ve always loved photography and taking photos.  This new world I’m living in and the colors of the Arizona landscape have inspired me to take my creativity to a new level.  I want to start taking painting classes so I can pour out my creative juices onto a canvas.

aliveI’ve always been pretty good with staying physically fit, but I think I’ve been falling off the wagon more and more lately, especially after the move and everything else going on.  I think it would help my energy level and confidence if I made a good hard effort of getting to the gym 3 times a week, 52 weeks out of the year.  I feel a little embarrassed that I have to put this goal out there for everyone to see – but goals are better achieved when you make a commitment to yourself and hold yourself accountable for it – by putting it all out there like this I feel like I’ll better achieve it. It’s been challenging juggling this whole new life of mine, but I’m ready to get back on the crazy, bumpy wagon and I’m staying on ALL year!

challengeLiving in NYC and moving across country I faced some expenses that caused to me use my credit card much more than I’m proud of.  2017 is the year of using cash/my debit card.  I will only use my credit card if I really need to.

Don’t deal with assholes.

loveMINIMIZE!

OK – speaking of minimizing, that’s all for resolutions – usually I go into the new year with all these ideas of what I want to do and how I want to change.  Now I realize that I just want my life to play out – on it’s own – as I do my own thing.  My main goals are: be more creative, take time to follow my heart and do whatever it is that makes me come alive.

Here’s to another exciting year with family and friends healthy and happy!
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A day in the life..., Arizona

ASU EMBA Holiday Mixer

14 hour “work” day  today – started with students & coordinating details for their weekend class day & ended with another successful EMBA event… Special holiday mixer with 100 students, alumni, faculty & staff at the Dean of the Business School’s home. Not many women are deans of business schools. Not many deans are personable enough to open up their homes like that… she’s a special person! Exhausted but content to be around such extraordinary people.

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Arizona, random

Stop and smell/photograph the roses

Yesterday I went to the Phoenix Flea in Downtown Phoenix with Shannon.  As we were walking by a rose garden, I couldn’t help but jump in and take some photos of these colorful flowers.  Shannon was laughing at me as I jumped to each new flower because I was so excited – each one was more beautiful than the last.  Maybe I was so enamored with them because I missed seeing such so flowers like this.  Maybe it was because so many times I’ve taken photos of nature and the photos don’t do them justice.  That’s not the case with roses.  Whether it’s a bright and sunshiny day, a gloomy cloudy day or a dewy morning – I’ve always found roses are just as gorgeous in photos as they are in person.  The fact that rose is a variation of my mother’s name definitely contributes to the beauty.  After I concluded taking photos, we were walking and a man stopped me to say that he was so glad to see that I appreciated the beauty of these flowers as much as he did.  He enjoyed watching me become so excited by the flowers and photographing them as well.  I told him I think it’s just as important to stop and photograph the roses as it is to smell the roses.

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Arizona, Deep thoughts, random

Familiar

One day I’m in the pool, the next day I’m wearing a scarf. I live in a place that I knew nothing about before moving and so I’m experiencing and taking each moment as it comes. I had no clue before I moved here what a dust storm or monsoon or a haboob in the summer meant or that fall and winter in the desert meant cool sweater weather mornings/evenings but mostly mild afternoons. Each day is a new experience with new people, new places, new roads, new culture. I miss familiarity like crazy but I was craving new experiences so I’ll continue to go with the flow and eventually these places and people will be my new familiar too. me-scarf

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Arizona, Conversations, Deep thoughts

Adapting

Next week will mark 4 months since I moved across the country to Arizona.  I might as well say it – Every day I question WTF am I doing here??  Why do I do this stuff to myself?  I love to push myself out of my comfort zone and then when I do I wonder why I’m making life so difficult for myself?  Well, I’m here.  And I told myself I’d give it at least a year… I told my sister that too.  This was the conversation during one of my last days in NJ:

Sister: So we already want you to come home so how long do you think you’ll be staying out there?

Me:  ummmmm… I’m not really sure – I haven’t thought of it like that.  I feel like it’s like getting married – you don’t go into it thinking you’ll get a divorce.

Sister:  But what if you get out there and you hate it and want to come home… what will you do?

Me:  I’ll at least give it a year!  I want to know what it feels like to live in a warm climate through the winter!

So then I got here.  And I think I like it, but I’m not sure.  People are different.  They vote for Trump.  (I guess a lot of people do, secretly.)  Drivers are different.  Everything is different.  So what have I been doing to adapt?  I seek out every east coast, NJ/NY/PA person I can find and cling to them.  Well, not really – but kinda.

A friend of mine told me to join Tinder.  So I did.  And every guy that I talk to has lived at least part of his life on the east coast.  Talking to people who are from the east coast is so comforting.  Flipping through their pics and seeing familiar things fills my brain with oxytocin.  I’m not sure if that’s true, but I feel comforted by doing that.  I have a student who is from New York and I love talking to her.  I asked her where she went to get her hair done and the guy who did it is from NY – PERFECT.  So today, I went to get my hair done by a guy from NY recommended from a girl from NY.  I hope this is normal.  It’s my safety blanket.  If you’re from NY I won’t feel like an alien when I talk to you.  I’ll get you.  I miss familiarity and I think that is the biggest struggle.  NOTHING is familiar.

I look at pics from when I was living in the Bronx – I didn’t really love living in the Bronx, but when I look at the pics I think “oh the Bronx!  I wonder what I’d be doing if I lived in the Bronx right now.”  I’d be miserable!  I wanted a change.  I was tired of New York – the only reason why I look back with awe is because it’s familiar.

The house that I’m living in is in Phoenix and is kinda far from everything so I’ve been contemplating moving to a new place.  An opportunity to move to Scottsdale came up and I’m thinking of jumping on it.  And as I’m thinking about it, I realized I’m going to miss this house.  I’ve got a whole lot of room.  I became friends with the girls here.  The dogs one of my roommates dogsits are so cute and I love seeing them every so often.  But I have to remind myself – I hate the drive.  I hate being far from everything.  I’ve been wanting to live in Scottsdale since I interviewed here because that’s where I stayed during my interview – I have to try it out.  Who knows – maybe better things await? I’ll never know unless I try – if I made it out this far – I might as well keep trying.

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Arizona

90 days

A week from today will mark my 90th day as a Phoenician.  Things are starting to feel a little more “normal” these days. I don’t need a GPS for every single place I go to – I still use it a lot, but I’m starting to get a grasp on which roads are which.  I definitely would not have been able to move across country without the invention of the GPS (or any mapping program).  When I arrived in Arizona for the very first time, I was in the airport when my mom called.  When she realized I was in AZ – she said “how are you going to know where to go?” and I said “GPS.”  So thank you, creators of the GPS.

At work, I’m on a waiting list for a parking structure near my building, so each day before work and after work, I walk about 10 minutes to my car.  I finally figured out a straight walking route.  The first 10 times or so I was inadvertently walking in circles.  Thankfully I’ve caught onto the direct route.  I use this time to call my mom each and every day.  I speak to her more now than ever before – so I’m sure she’s glad about that!

Speaking about my mom and being glad – She, my dad, sister, brother-in-law, and nephews have all booked their tickets for Christmas in Arizona!  I’m very excited – it doesn’t even seem real to me.  I feel like I flew to another planet, and they were never going to come visit – but that feeling is WRONG (as DT says).  I’ve been on the hunt to find a furnished place for them to stay, but nothing seems to be working out.  It seems to be harder than it should be, but I’ll keep the faith that it will work out soon.

Speaking about working out – I joined a gym!  I’ve been wanting to do that, but haven’t gotten to it yet.  Last week I went to the Sedona with my new group of outdoorsy friends.  After the 4-5 hour hike, I felt completely out of shape and after looking at the photos I felt that I looked completely out of shape as well.  I need to change that.  I have no excuse not to work out even if it’s just for 30 minutes each day.  So I joined last Tuesday, started working out on Wednesday and have gone every day since.  Today I tried something new called Hydro Training – working out in a pool.  Fun times!  Made friends with a lady from Staten Island named Karen.  I have to say there is always someone from NY/NJ around to help make me feel at home!

I work a Tuesday – Saturday schedule so today is my Sunday, but it’s really Monday – my body and brain’s still adjusting to this new routine.  I have a few more things left on my to-do list, but I wanted to be sure I posted an entry today.  If I think of anything else to fill you in on – I’ll be back sooner than later!  🙂  Since I woke up so early to get to the Hydro Training session, maybe I’ll take a nap!  It’s hard to take naps when it’s always so sunny – I still have the mind frame that I have to be doing something every sunny day because they’re limited where I’m from!   …but being that it’s October 24th and 90 degrees, I’m starting to realize that I can have a lazy hour or 2 a day without feeling like I’m wasting the sun because I’m pretty sure it’ll be back out again tomorrow.

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Arizona, Deep thoughts

Choosing a President

One of the things that has helped me during this transition process across the country is having a place to congregate every Sunday.  Growing up, religion was never pushed on me.  We were expected to join our parents at church every Sunday.  I’m sure my parents prayed that we would continue to be faithful to the church, but it was never pushed.

Growing up I would never have guessed that I’d be glad my parents encouraged us to join them at mass each week.  It feels good to go to look forward to going to a place to clear my mind, remind me about what’s important, and has the same traditions of home.  Church is a piece of home and a piece of my family.  The church that I have liked the best is St. Benedict’s in Phoenix.  The second week I was there, the priest asked if there was anyone new so I raised my hand and announced I was from New Jersey.  Made me a little teary eyed to see a new parish be so welcoming.

You’re probably wondering if I got the title of this post confused with a different post and asking yourself why would I be talking about religion in a governmental post.  Since this election is EVERYWHERE, a couple weeks ago a presidential debate was taking place right after mass – so I wondered if the priest would dare bring it up during/after mass.   I thought about it – and when the mass concluded without any mention – I thought of course he didn’t say anything.  Government and Religion are two different things, right?

Well today we had a priest who actually went there.  Fr. Bill Faiella – He started off by saying, “It’s not in my job description to tell you who to vote for — Thank God for that!” 🙂  He went on to explain that there were some things though, that he wanted us to think about when we are making our decision.  He encouraged everyone not to look at one single issue – but look at the entire person and their being.  “Look at their values, programs, and behavior.”  It seemed like there was one singular thing he thought would sway certain people.  I quickly tried to think if there was one singular thing that Trump had over Hillary – and because I was glued to what the priest was saying I couldn’t come up with anything on the spot. I’m grateful that he eventually shared a story with us that made me realize why some people might vote for Trump.

He told us a story about a man who came to him and explained that although he does not agree with abortions, he doesn’t think it should be considered a crime.  The man said that he worked with women who have been through so much abuse and hardships in their lives and sometimes ended up pregnant.  This man felt these women have enough hardships in their lives and shouldn’t be forced to choose between having a baby or being put in prison.  The priest didn’t say this, but we all know that Donald has been saying that he thinks abortions should be illegal.  I’m so thankful that this priest made the bold move to let Catholics know that we shouldn’t be voting for someone because of one idea.

The priest then went on to say, no matter who wins or loses – remember this:  The Lord will either go through him or around him to make sure things in this world are right.

Amen.

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