Thursday, February 23

What's your walkability number

I found this great website where you type in your exact address and it gives you a walkability score for you house.  Mine is 42, which is "car dependent" it thens provides you with restuarants, schools, and parks nearby.  Atlanta's average is 56....I can't believe I am below average!

What is your walkability number? Check it out I think the next house I rent or buy will need a 75 or higher! I would love to be able to walk to more places.

[Pic from my garden] - that being said - I really love my home. I have this pretty little angel in my garden - it makes me happy!

Thursday, January 26

10 years...wowzer!

10 years ago in January Elliot and I went on our first date.  It is crazy to think of how long 10 years really is. Since we started dating, I have graduated high school, college, grad school, and lived in Raleigh, Santiago, Chapel Hill, Singapore, Mexico, Chapel Hill, and Atlanta. I could make this post sappy, but I just ate a banana and already feel gaggy. I love lists, so here we go:

In honor of growing up, here are ten things I want to do in the next ten years:
1)      Travel more (I want to go to New Orleans, Alaska, Maine, Buenos Aires, Rio, New Zealand, just to name a few)
2)      Learn to cook
3)      One day have a garden and grow veggies
4)      Remember to bring in my own grocery bags
5)      I have always wanted to be able to do a pull-up, one day I will!
6)      Host more often
7)      Learn Spanish (again)
8)      Floss every day
9)      Take more naps
10)     Work on my vocabulary, and use all my new fancy words to impress the world

Monday, January 23


So in case you have been under a rock for 4 years, the economy stinks. So I am always looking for ways to save some cash. You may have read my past post exploring the discount grocery store of Aldi. Which overall was a nice surprise.  So I got adventurous and decided to check out IGA, another discount grocery store, and see if I was lucky again….I was not.

IGA was very odd, smelled kinda bad, many of the shelves were empty, the produce sparse, I am not even going to comment on the meat department. Overall, I felt the immediate need to run out as quickly as possible. I guess one plus, was there were a few interesting items from other countries, notice the pictures of ghee!

[note- I think I have been in nice IGA’s before, just not this one].

Wednesday, January 18

Fantasy Football.....

As we move in to 2012, it is important to reflect on 2011 and what you learned. Every year you should find something to challenge yourself. Some might try to learn a new language, others may try to learn to cook, do a triathlon, or workout to look good in pajama jeans. For 2011, I challenged myself by playing fantasy football.

You might say “Gaya playing fantasy football…are you crazy?” I have probably never watched a full football game in my life. A few of my girlfriends in Atlanta had a league going, and I decided to challenge myself.  I had no idea what a Tight End was, I am still confused if football is in halves or quarters….and I still don’t! ahahha.

I picked my players at first based on how they looked, but I found I had a bunch of quarterbacks and no other positions. Later, I learned the error in my ways, and started picking players based on their averages. There were 6 girls in the league, and guess what – I think I got 2nd place! I am not completely sure though, because the ESPN website is confusing sometimes (or most times!).

Lessons for next time:
  • If you want to be good, you should care (about winning and about the sport).
  • You should put a little money in the pot (we played without any cash on the table….so it is easy to stop caring).
  • You should set a reminder on your calendar to switch out players each week
  • Don’t emotionally attach yourself to a player or how good the player was supposed to be….if they start doing poorly, give them the boot.
  • Don’t pick players just upon their looks.
  • I won’t be trying to be a professional football player anytime soon, there are sooo many injuries, torn this, pulled that…no thanks!

What challenging stuff are you doing for 2012?

Wednesday, December 21

I'm back

So I got back from Africa 2 ½ weeks ago and have been meaning to blog….but I have not….I would like to blame jet lag, or a super busy holiday schedule – but really it is because I’m lazy.
So we went to South Africa, to Cape Town for 5 nights and Kruger on Safari for 4.  It was an awesome trip.  It is hard to try to sum up an awesome trip, so I am going to do a top 10 list and some pics.
Top Ten Moments my South Africa Trip
1)      The flights….I love long flights - it is pretty awesome having no contact to the outside world for a very long time, no crackberry, email, facebook, etc. Awesome time to watch movies and not feel guilty, read a book, and nap a lot.  Warning – don’t take Ambien (a sleep aid) if you are not used to it.  I had an outer body experience with hallucinations mixed in.  I am not sure if the experience was traumatic or awesome – the jury is out.
2)      Cape Town’s botanical garden was a real treat. It was beautiful; we had excellent weather and enjoyed a nice meal outside. There was a smell and touch exhibit, where you were instructed to touch and smell certain plants. Elliot loved it!
3)      On Safari - seeing 2 black mambas – a very poisonous snake….a truly traumatic experience, I also saw 2 scorpions! 
4)      On Safari – seeing elephants from my room…nuff said
5)      In Cape Town and Safari, Wine, wine, and sparkling wine.  I do love a nice bubbly. The vineyard we visited was simply de-VINE!
6)      Elliot and I taking 2,000 pictures of lions sleeping – what can I say, I am still learning to use my camera.
7)      A rhino charging our vehicle, luckily it was only doing it so we would remember who the boss is. 
8)      Seeing a different side of the world, and still realizing it can be a small place. I saw my co-worker from Atlanta in the Johannesburg airport, and we ended up staying in the same hotel in Cape Town (a hotel with only 8 rooms)…talk about 2 ladies with good taste!
9)      All the animals were amazing, not just on Safari but near Cape Town too [see facebook account for full idea].  Elliot was pretty pumped to get his big 5 certificate!
10)   Getting to spend 11 days straight with Elliot…WINNING!

Tuesday, November 22

Harry Potter World - family style

So a few weeks ago my family (Mom, Dad, Spectra, her hubby Sawyer, Elliot, and me) went down to Orlando to celebrate my dad’s retirement. And by, went to Orlando to celebrate, I really mean went to Harry Potter world to celebrate our own wizard and witch skills!

Before I get started on Harry Potter world, let me first say crazy that my dad is retiring, for several reasons i) he is a really magical teacher and seems to have so much fun with it all (from dressing up as a knight and knighting a child from each class who exhibits strong character, to using Google earth to pretend he is an astronaut with the kids landing on Mars….this is just the beginning, ii) he does not really have much gray hair, which seems like it would be a requirement for retiring, iii) my parents have crazy amounts of energy….as an example – when we were planning Orlando they decided they wanted to do theme parks 3 days in a row, and when I say theme parks I mean arrive at 9am leave at 10pm after the fireworks…, I really needed a vacation after the vacation, and finally iv) for him to retire, means I am really old enough to be an adult (hence the name Growing Up Thyme – always weird when I remember I am an adult)

Here are some highlights of the trip

1)      Butter Beer, butterscotchy cream soda goodness…nuff said
2)      Picking out own wands at Ollivander’s Wand shop….now most people would select a wand by either their birth month or which character in Harry Potter they most relate to….not my family – Wally (dad) insisted of having us open a bizzillion wand boxes (without him knowing which wand was which) and glide the wand over his head until his Chakra energy felt powerful….let’s just say it is kinda scary Elliot felt the Voldemort and Harry Potter! I hope my hubby is not evil!!
3)      Moaning Myrtle moaning in the bathrooms
4)      The amazing window displays
5)      The state of the art ride where I got to fly….so neat! Even the line was amazing – going through Hogwarts
6)      Honeydukes candy shop – yes I did buy a chocolate frog and bertie botts jelly beans (my favorite of the weird flavors was grass and pepper!)
7)      Unrelated to Harry Potter, but playing Settler’s of Catan late night with the fam

Having geek parents that would rather do Harry Potter world vs. some stiff dinner or party sure is awesome…WINNING!

Here are some pics

{Wandering the streets}

{Obvi they are in costume}

{Family Photo - don't pretend you don't like the fanny pack!}


{Enjoying a butter beer}

{It moved around the talked!}


{Frog choir}

{Lots of small touches scattered around}

{Wally wearing his sorting hat drinking another butter beer - non alc. of course!}

Monday, November 14

10 days till Africa

In less than 10 days I will be in South Africa!! I am so excited I can hardly stand it.  I am going for a little R&R and will spend 5 nights in Cape Town and 4 nights on a Safari to Kruger Sabi Sands!

Here are some pics of the loveliness!

{High Tea}

Source: via Gaya on Pinterest

{Fabulous Neighborhoods}
Source: via Gaya on Pinterest

{Wine Galore!}

Source: via Gaya on Pinterest

{Nice view from hotel}

{Safari - making friends}

Thursday, November 10

And the winner is....drumroll please!

The lady bug is the winner!

Thank you Tamara for submitting your cute pic Sophie Mae dressed up in her lady bug costume for Halloween!  It was a close race (5 of us voted for our top 3, and she came up with the most points). A 10 dollar target gift card will be mailed to you home! Congrats!

All the pets are of course winners, here are just a few of my favorites.  I really love costumes when they have attached arms!

Look at this squirrel - I love the arms!

Very cute cowboy!

A tiny bumblebee named Oliver

Cute little froggy...if I ever saw a real frog this big I might just die!

 I love how this is part Diva part princess. I think my sister in law Em girl might want the same sweater.

This cute kitty did well in the competition too!

This turtle is seriouslly killing me!

Turtles and bunnies tend to get along.  This pic scored in the top 3!

A lazy little cow! Moooo. I love the utter!

 I love the hat - I want one!

Once again the arms kill me! I love this little chicken. Even the cute husband and TV could not steal his thunder!

Clifford the big red need for a costume sucka!

Congrats to all of you who have super cute pups! I am sooo jealous.

Elliot - are you reading this?