Road Tripping & Graduation

December 16th, 2013 | Posted by Erica House in Life | Travel - (25 Comments)

There is a part of me that’s in total denial that this weekend actually happened. It was such a whirlwind and I’ve been worried for the last week that I wasn’t going to be able to pull it all off – but I did! Friday morning my parents picked me up and we headed over to Jacksonville for the day. I was completely surprised by how much I loved the city. I had zero expectations for what it would be like and the area we were in (Riverside) ended up being so much fun! I’ll share all my photos from that trip soon. Today I want to focus on Gainesville and my brothers graduation.

Saturday morning I started off the day with a short treadmill run at our Hotel. The fitness center had zero ventilation or AC so even though it was in the 50′s outside I was sweating like I was running in the middle of the Florida summer. At least it felt super detoxifying!2013-12-14 08.03.37I rushed to get graduation ready so we would have time to hit up Trader Joe’s before the ceremony started. 2013-12-14 10.56.36-1Can you believe I’ve never been into a Trader Joe’s? I was shocked at how inexpensive their store brand items were! I really wish we had one near us.2013-12-14 11.13.33I picked up their Tofu spring rolls to eat in the car for lunch. Holy deliciousness. That peanut dipping sauce was so good I actually licked the container clean. 2013-12-14 11.27.11After some total chaos trying to figure out where to line up to enter the stadium for graduation we ended up being one of the first families in and snagged front row seats. They had social media signs with #UFGrad on them so when I saw them flashing tweets on the projection screens before the ceremony started I had to try and get one up there. They totally flashed my “Can’t wait to see Josh cross the stage! Well earned B.S. In engineering – now his psych sister can borrow money ;) #UFGrad”  tweet a few times!

Watching Josh graduate made me really regret not walking for any of my degrees. Looks like I’ll have to start working on a doctoral degree now just to make up for it ;) I appreciate that Josh stayed interactive with us during the ceremony (waving, thumbs up, etc.) so it helped to pick him out from the crowd. We thought some random stranger was Josh at first and I snapped a ton of pics of him walking in before we realized it was the wrong guy.  IMG_7401Like a boss!IMG_7420

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Love this pic of Dad and Josh!IMG_7386His Engineering degree was definitely 10+ times harder than my Psych B.A. so I’ve got mad respect for him for completing it.
2013-12-14 12.08.26Immediately after Josh walked I ran outside to meet up with the boyfriend who was picking me up to head back into town. He was in Orlando that weekend and it timed out perfectly that he could swing through Gainesville and collect me in time to make it back to work Holiday parties in Pensacola. We arrived fashionably late (by about 3 hours) but had such an amazing time! Last week I tweeted asking for help picking out which dress to go with:

2013-12-10 16.21.44Which do you think won?

Workout Wrap UpDec 13Workouts were pretty boring this week. I’m going to start doing long runs on the weekends again as there are a few half marathons coming up this Spring that I’d like to do. This schedule is the perfect balance of strength/cardio for me and I’m happy my baby guns are starting to come out again!

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In far more interesting news … I’ve kept it quiet(ish) on the blog but a few of you have picked up on this already – I’ve been dating someone for the last month and am absolutely smitten. The way I’ve described him to basically anyone who will listen (I’m that annoying happy that gloats about it as much as possible) is; he’s the opposite of what I’ve been looking for, but everything I ever wanted.

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Triple Chocolate Pretzel Brownies happened this week. A lot. As in, they counted as my dinner Wednesday night and I may have had some with breakfast on Thursday. Gonna hate? We ate them in bed while watching One Magic Christmas. Despite it being totally depressing it’s one of my favorite Holiday movies.

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Today I’ll be driving with the folks to Jacksonville to spend some time hanging out there before getting into Gainesville for my brothers graduation Friday. I’m looking forward to a mini road trip! I can’t believe how much traveling I’ve done this month. I can’t wait to have a bit of time relaxing at home before 2014 starts as there are already some amazing trips on the agenda. However, relaxing may be difficult to do considering I’m moving next weekend. I found a place the day before I left for Chicago and I’ll be moving in most of the big stuff Saturday. Haven’t even started to pack yet. #Denial

2013-12-10 11.34.27I’m hoping to have a very exciting update for you all on Monday. My brother is graduating at 2 p.m., and I’ll be leaving at 3 (or as soon as he walks the stage) to head home to attend the boyfriends work party (as well as my own) around 8ish. I got a killer dress (thank you to those who helped me pick it out on Twitter!) and despite rain on the agenda I think it’s going to be an incredible evening.

What are your weekend plans?

 Are you going to any fancy Holiday parties this year?

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Have you taken spirulina before? What effects did you notice?