Tuesday, February 26, 2013


...loves his snow piles

165 pounds of ridiculous

Monday, February 25, 2013

Busy bee

Treadmill run
Sculpting class with Mom
Dad's office
Rental car pick-up with Erin
2.5 hour turned 6 hour car ride
Super lost
Toronto (at long last!)
$30 parking
Swedish House Mafiaaaaa
More being lost
McDonald's and directions
3am arrival
Red couch
Dunkin Donuts
Rental car return
Lazy few minutes on Main street
Sean's move-in day
David & Erin reading car reports
La Cocina's
1:30am phone call from Chris
Grace Road Church
Owl House brunch
Ellison park with Deidrict Jeremy and Leigha (and Koda)
Lounging on Dartmouth
Kelli and Dan's couches
Last Lancer game
Buffalo Chicken Wing Dip
Nicholle and her ring!
Dave and Ryan's couches
Oscar partyyy
Belgian-travel planning with friends between awards (!)
Jennifer Lawrence and her up-the-stairs trip. Almost a fail, still my favorite.
13/24 Oscars guessed right. Real fail.
Red Couch
1:30am phone call from Chris


What a weekend :)

Friday, February 22, 2013


Can't post family birthday pictures today because Erin and I are heading to Toronto in a few minutes for


Happy weekends :)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Turbo Kicked

First: two WONDERFUL pieces of news yesterday!

1. Our friends Dan and Kelli and coming to Belgium May 7-20! AND we already booked a side trip to Venice with them! Come onnnnn MAY...can you tell I'm excited?? (I will update the calendar soon!)

2. More friends, Billy and Nicholle, got engaged yesterday in New York Cityyyyyyy! Billy did a great job with the proposal. I saw the secret photos he had taken of it and everything today, maybe they'll let me showcase a few of them, they're so cute! So excited for them!

More of yesterday, went to a Turbo Kick class with Erin last night. She's a member at the RAC and this class (thank God) was just for women. I tagged along to try it out so I didn't have to run in the frigid cold of Rochester yesterday. After it was over my hamstrings and shoulders, alright, and everything else, were telling me rather loudly that maybe I should have just gone for a run. Losing toes to frostbite might be a positive alternative to what my muscles are feeling this morning.

Upside is that I bought new running shoes to try out on my sore legs tomorrow. ...Or maybe the day after. I sure didn't waste any time to get shopping once Chris was on a plane out of New York.

On that note, yesterday was Chris' 25 birthday!!!! If you are a friend of his and read this blog (two highly unlikely mutual things) AND are also heading to California (honestly, I know that isn't any of you but I'm reaching here), make sure you give him a birthday hug or two. Spankings are also appropriate. Wait, no. They're not. Maybe a birthday handshake or high-five will do.

Family birthday pictures to come!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

25 Year Old

Scotch, that is. On Saturday night Chris and I surprised his best friends with his visit home. But one of them had a surprise for Chris to top ours. Dan had recently received a 25 year old bottle from Kelli (is awesome) for his birthday but didn't want Chris to miss out on the experience of drinking a Scotch older than himself, so he bought a bottle for him with the intention to ship it to Belgium. This has been a "bucket-list" item for Chris for the past few years. Somehow Kelli, who was in on our surprise trip home, convinced him to wait until Monday to ship it, knowing he'd see us later that evening.

 Photography by DAN CAVANAUGH 

Charles the cat usually never makes appearances so on this rare occasion we all felt very privileged. We're so happy to be back for these few days with Chris and then another week and a half for me! I'm looking forward to a haircut, another Swedish House Mafia concert (YAY), an Oscars party and lots of time at home.

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Good Morning, Rochester!

My morning run in Irondequoit yesterday in a snowstorm

There were a select few that we let it on the secret, and now we have finally arrived! And by select few I mean everyone besides three of Chris' closest friends. We had a surprise party for them on our first night back (pictures to come) and it was a complete success. Well done, girlfriends! Kelli, Nicholle, and Elissa, give yourselves a pat on the back.

We had another crazy airport story that I'll leave you with before we spend time with REAL LIVE PEOPLE today!


Saturday morning Chris and I arrive at the airp- wait. I need to back up a bit.

A few months ago Chris and I were discussing the possibility of him attending a conference in California in February and what I would do in that time if he goes. Even though he hadn't been approved to attend by work yet, we decided to get me going to New York so that I wouldn't be left behind in Belgium alone. Ticket booked.

The next day Chris' trip was approved with the allowance to stay in Rochester for a few days so we extended my trip to the same length.

Fast forward to this past Saturday morning. We got there at 7am with Chris' United flight out at 10 and mine on Delta 11. When I checked in there was an alert about my flight being delayed. I scanned it quickly and didn't look closely enough at which of my flights was delayed so I assumed it was the second one from JFK when I saw the new arrival time was 5:20pm. My original arrival in Rochester was supposed to be 5:15. I wasn't worried. The screens past security confirmed what I thought by assuring me that my first flight was on time at 11:15.

When we were having a Starbucks a few minutes later I began to doubt what I'd seen and we proceeded to a Delta counter to figure it out. After being thoroughly ignored for a half an hour we finally got some attention at 8:30am.

My flight from Belgium was indeed the delayed one. The plane we needed wasn't arriving in Brussels until 1pm and then was expected to leave at 2:40 and arriving at JFK at 5:20. The same time I was supposed to be in Rochester.

Trying to stave off a meltdown I took deep breaths and Chris squeezed my hand and we explained that with the new timeline I was going to miss my connecting flight. "Can I get to New York any sooner?" A few clicks, a boarding pass printing, and just as I am starting to be relieved they explain that they've re-booked my connecting flight from JFK, I'll get into Rochester at 10pm.

Deep breaths.

We have a surprise party that I will now be missing in that instance. Which, yes I know, isn't the end of the world but when you started counting the days to be home again back in mid-January, a few hour delay feels kind of like the end of the world. Especially when you've been up for 20 hours without sleep, anticipating this flight.

"Thank you but I guess what we meant was is there a possibility of still arriving in Rochester close to the same time, maybe near 5pm still?" Voice shaking, tears starting to form. Losing it.

Another phone call, Dutch then French and then Dutch again being exchanged between the people who could change my fate. Every once in awhile I'd hear "Maloney" and "New York" and we waited with bated breath as Chris' boarding time drew nearer and we still didn't have a solution. Call ended.

"We will have to wait. They will check and call me back. Wait here."

9:15 rolls around. Chris is supposed to be boarding. I make him walk down to his gate and hug him goodbye with instructions to tell the girlfriends the issue if I'm late and with the knowledge that we'll either see each other in Rochester at 5 or 10. He'll have to be patient, unfortunately.

5 minutes later he comes back saying there's a huge line. He can wait a little longer with me.

When twenty minutes goes by again with no phone call I make eye contact with the Delta rep that was helping us. I'm sure she saw the misery in my eyes because she immediately picked up the phone and I heard my name being tossed back and forth again.

"Okay, ya okay. Okay tot ziens" Click. "Kelly, you have been booked on a new flight. You will land in JFK at 12:00 and then make your original connecting flight. I cannot print you a boarding pass here. You will have to get one at the busing location to your new terminal. The flight is leaving in thirty minutes. They are boarding now. You will have to run. It is at gate T61. We are at B6."

"Thank you so much!"

The gate attendants look at us again, no expression and they say again "You will have to run, go now!"

Off I went! Coat flapping, semi-large (but appropriately outfit-cute) shoes clicking behind me a la uncomfortable flip flop style, dragging one bag behind me, backpack bouncing on my back, I sprinted through the people packed airport. Quick kiss to Chris at his gate and off again I went to try and make this new flight to JFK.

The next bus over to the T terminal is 8 minutes out. I'm in line behind 6 other people re-routed as well and waiting for their own boarding passes to be printed. When my turn comes the countdown clock is at 1:23. The passes are finally printed (after I spelled out C-a-n-a-n-d-a-i-g-u-a to the bemused attendant) and the timeline is now at 0:03, 2, 1 and I step on the bus as it pulls up.

At the T terminal I resume my frantic running and arrive at the gate with no line (everyone else is already past the check-in) and end up being 5th to last to board. The plane is completely full. I sit down in my seat, thank God and shake with adrenaline for the next three hours of the flight.


God, you're awesome. You made it almost impossible to remain sane that morning, but I'm still ridiculously thankful that I landed in Rochester an hour after Chris and got to see everyone's faces when they saw their friend back in town.

If you're free over the next two weeks, located near Rochester, and want to get together, let me know! I'm car-less and in Canandaigua from Wednesday on but I know my parents wouldn't mind visitors coming by (and I wouldn't either!)

So, hello again America, we missed you! See you tomorrow :)

Friday, February 15, 2013

Just a few more, thanks Gina!

This post is basically a copy cat from my cousin Gina who also happens to love Oscar nominated animated shorts, man that's a mouthful. If you're following right along, I've already posted two, Adam and Dog and Paperman, so I won't repeat them on here to save you on space and hopefully to entice you to keep reading. Anyway, Gina. She is graciously allowing me to borrow her post from the other day and bring you most of the rest of the shorts for this year and last years winner. I've been loving her blog because she's currently going through a year where she has promised to do "one sketch a day" which sometimes include watercolors or pencil or ink. Loving it. She's inspiring me.

Now I know this week and last were filled with a lot of video postings but these are wonderful. And honestly, if this blog is supposed to represent a part of my life, in a way like a diary, then this is truly what I've been up to lately. Videoing out. If you only choose to watch only one, watch last years whimsical piece at the bottom of the post about my inanimate favorite things in the whole world. Books.

But first, another nomination for this years. It's called Head Over Heels and I think you should try it out:

I really liked this one. This style isn't usually my style of animation but this story is.

On to the next.

I probably love guacamole more than most people. For awhile every time my friend Leigha and I got together we were making it to eat with a group of our friends. We'd usually end up eating most of it on our own before we told the others it was ready.

So creative. If you like this one, there's another like it called Western Spaghetti.

And finally, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore:

I hope you all have wonderful weekends, see you back here on Monday!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Little Valentine's

This was my wonderful first sight this morning. 12 little love notes. It's pretty freaking wonderful to have a forever-valentine. Whether or not you go for the whole Valentine's thing. As mentioned before, I do not. But I do love Christopher. Happy Valentine's husband!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Adam and Dog


One big thing I'm missing about living in Rochester this year is our movie theater The Little.

*Side Note: They're playing Silver Linings Playbook there this week and aside from some language I really recommend a viewing. Maybe you need a Valentine's date idea? (though I don't go in for Valentine's at all) Go see it if you haven't already.
p.s. Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper...? They alone make it worth seeing.

I've been a member at the theater for the past few years and one of my favorite parts of the experience that they bring to Rochester is when, come Oscar time, they play most of the nominated films for Best Picture as well as all-in-one showings of the Oscar nominated shorts, animated and live-action. So when I saw that Disney released their nominated Paperman to the general public on You Tube I felt like a little piece of home came back to me. Now another animated short has been released publicly as well and I'm going to share it with you here too!

I found it over here on Gizmodo and here's their write-up about it:

Watch This Oscar-Nominated Short: Adam and Dog

Not every Oscar-worthy film is a mammoth, Speilbergian effort. Small stuff's good too, and what better showcase than the Oscar nominated animated shorts. You've probably heard ofPaperman, and the animation tech behind it, but another one, Adam and Dog has popped up on YouTube and it's worth a watch.
Put together by Minkyu Lee, Adam and Dog isn't much for talking, but it spins a great little story nonetheless. Telling the tale of the titualr Dog and Adam (yes, that Adam), it makes for an interesting little side-story to one of the most well known creation stories. And, more than anything it drives home that eternal truth that makes you feel all fuzzy inside: Dog's got your back. 

Maybe once we return home it will be time to get our own version of man's best friend. Probably not as big as this guy though. 

One last note. Our March and April calendars have been updated to include travel plans and guest visits! I'll be better at updating quicker in the future. We have two other tentative guest dates for May which might fill up the entire month (which would be AWESOME) but I won't commit to putting them on there until tickets are bought. 

See you tomorrow!

Monday, February 11, 2013


Two people had novel ideas for us when we told them about our impending move to this country.

1. Chris' Mom suggested we go on House Hunters (we are, click here in case you missed it)
2. My sister Erin immediately pulled up a video and said we should go to Tomorrowland

Disclaimer: If you're not into Electronic Dance Music [Techno] you can stop reading. I won't hold it against you.  And don't play the video

Because YAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYY we got tickets for Saturday!

This music festival is one of the largest in the world. It's definitely the largest in Belgium. Before I knew anything else about Belgium, I knew this was happening in July. The tickets for it went on sale at 11am Belgian time and by 10:59 Chris was locked in and hitting refresh until the "puchase tickets" button could be pressed. We were immediately put into an online queue, 15 minutes later it was our turn to buy tickets. 4 Saturday passes bought and we were golden! A few hours later I was checking facebook when I noticed the Tomorrowland people had posted this message:

Belgian Ticket sale

Unfortunately there were payment problems with Bancontact/Mister Cash for some of you. This didn't have anything to do with the Tomorrowland ticket system itself. 
At 11h12 all the Belgian Tomorrowland tickets were sold out, people that placed a ticket order before 11h12 (Paylogic order number 13708155 or below) and had a payment problem, will be able to still buy their ordered tickets in the coming days. Paylogic will contact you in person by e-mail in the next days. That's our commitment!

People that placed a ticket order after 11h12 (Paylogic order number 13708156 or above) and had a payment problem, won't be contacted, but have a second chance next Saturday.

And then the world exploded. I read it to Chris and we're both trying to not freak out because when we bought tickets it was 11:15 and our number is definitely after 13708156. Buuuuut...our payment was not denied, cancelled or rejected. So far so good. Our hopes are all resting on that little bolded (by me) "and" up there. I'm still waiting for the ball to drop and we find that we're out. But for now, we're in and best part is that Erin and David [the boyfriend] have tickets too! Craziest thing is that this festival has room for 180,000 people. They sell 90,000 of those tickets to Belgium residents only a week before they sell tickets to anyone else. So we scooped up the four allowable tickets as Belgian residents. (first official perk of living here)

That post up there means that they sold 90,000 tickets in 12 minutes. WHAT. Crazy pants.

So here's hoping, fingers crossed, and all that. Especially since they keep announcing new DJ's as they join the line up and Benny Benassi was just added to Saturday. Direct quote from Chris at work to me upon hearing the news:

"Just learned Benny Benassi is on Saturday...I then threw everything off my desk including my computer, jumped on it, ripped my green sweater in half screamed YES and then jumped through the window...took the elevator back up and sat back down at my desk quietly."

I read that bleary eyed and laughed myself awake.

Snowy Wake Up Call

Remember that post titled "It's 11:37am, I just got up" Well, now it's 1:59pm. I just got up. I was so good this weekend, going to bed and waking up on Belgium time both mornings and then I ruined it by playing Little Big Planet until 5am this morning...blurg. Good thing is, Chris will be home in a few hours and then I barely was awake for the time we spent apart. How's that for mushy?

Okay, the point of the post. This morning I woke up (late) to snow on the ground again. It wasn't as much as these pictures show but the day that we did have a consequential amount, I got myself out the door to photograph it.

These were all taken during one of the prettiest snowfalls I've ever wandered around in. The grumpy snowman was found outside of the train station in Charleroi. I assume someone missed their train and was so unhappy about it they left that little guy to show their disappointment.

Happy Monday everyone, see you tomorrow

Friday, February 8, 2013

Throw Back Friday, Wedding-Video Style

I must be in a video mood. Of all the short films in all the world, this one is and always will be my favorite. We may be a few days out from Valentine's day but I think love shared on an ordinary Friday is even better.

Since two people I know have gotten engaged in the past week, (and I'm positive there will be more in the coming months), here's a shout out to potentially help with planning in the Rochester area. 17 Video Production was the best investment, as far as taking memories away from that day, that we ever made. I would have paid triple for them. As far as video vs photography I'm sure most people would choose photos to capture their day and while I agree with them, if you can find it in your budget to get some type of video, you won't be sorry that you did.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

[Attempted] Casting Videos for HHI

Let me tell you, Chris is sweating having just read that title.

The response to our news of being on House Hunters was so funny. We put it out on facebook last night and it honestly had more interest in it than when we got engaged! In the case of Reality TV vs. Real Life Events, you win this time TV.

These videos are on here to give you a little bit of a lift on what would ordinarily be just a Thursday that you were wishing was a Friday. Enjoy. I didn't upload the one where I "hang out in bathrooms" and Chris starts going off script and then loses it...I'll save that for a Monday.

Ohhhhhhhhhhhh man. It's gonna be great.

See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

House Hunters International Date Reveal...

Our move to Belgium was...

Get yourselves ready for 21 minutes and 30 seconds of teeny tiny apartment hunting coming at your faces on

Tuesday March 26 at 10:30pm EST and 1:30am EST 

I'm throwing in a back story so you know how this all came about. First thing you need to know is that over the last few years, every Wednesday, Chris and I packed up our car with laundry and headed over to Titus Ave to eat some Bill Gray's, chat with Mom and get that laundry done! During folding time, we would usually all sit in the living room and watch HGTV. At 10:30 every weekday they've got House Hunters International (from here on to be referred to as HHI in this post because yeah, that's a lot of letters) showing and we never switched the channel (as we got further along in this whole thing, I realized that neither does anyone else with cable in the greater Rochester area). 

A little over a year ago, Chris found out about the possibility of us moving to Belgium and we began to tell family and friends. One night during laundry night, a couple on HHI was looking into an apartment in a quaint village in England. Chris's Mom then said something along the lines of 

"You're moving internationally. You guys should get on the show!"

I remember laughing and saying we should do it! I think I thought something like, that would n-e-v-e-r happen but no harm in trying I guess. Once our move was confirmed in May, I sent along a little email to the HHI people that included the only information they wanted:

Dates of Move
Location of Move
Three Pictures

Three days later I got a call while I was driving from a number I didn't know so I didn't answer. Because I was driving. Because that's illegal. But when I pulled into the RIT parking lot to pick up Chris, I listened to the voicemail that they'd left. 

Voicemail:     "Hi this is Peggy from House Hunters International. We got your ema-"
Me:               "Whattttt... Ahhh!!!" 
Me:               Repeating voicemail I just yelled through

I called her right back, with pen and paper in hand and wrote down everything they needed from us before we could be officially approved for the show. One of those things was a casting video. We had our friends Dan and Kelli come over that very night to be our director and cinematographer and went through 6 or 7 takes of what needed to be under 3 minutes, informative and exciting and yeah, we were terrible. I may or may not drop one of the outtake ones on here but I think Chris swears in most of them so maybe not. I'll check. They're hilarious. At one point my mouth kept talking during take three but my brain must have stopped working because I said something along the lines of how great the size of our current bathroom was and how we all hang out in there....

Aren't you excited for the show now?? 

More background hilarity to come on this later. For now the sun is calling me so away I go to run in it! See you tomorrow :)

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Get outta there

Eleanor Roosevelt Journal - Famed Inferior Quote

After yesterday's post, alright, let's call it what it was, online pity party, I got an email from my very real fairy Godmother, Paula. Below are some suggestions that she gave me to help me out of my little pit. There were quite a few more but the best part was this quote that she sent above. 

"Getting back to your paints..is wonderful.  Yoga,

meditating NOT to be confused w/self medicating (ha, Ha)
Writing a screenplay... kinda (semi-autobiographical???)
Reading (in Flemish) Learning a new language?
Ballroom dancing, cooking classes, library grazing,
Dog walking?"

It's so true. So thank you! Tomorrow, a little announcement which some of you know already. It involves a date. And a TV show. 

Until then!

Monday, February 4, 2013

It's Only February?

That's how I feel today.

I don't want to wish my life away but I wouldn't mind pressing fast forward on the hours that I'm in the apartment alone and feeling homesick. I'd like to just get to the weekends where we have trips to go on or the weeks when we'll have visitors in town. In all honesty, given the choice, I'd press fast forward until it was December and we were boarding a plane back home again. But since that's not an option, and since that "Click" movie tells us (ew, it was terrible, I still wish I hadn't seen it) that nothing good can come from skipping parts of your life, then UGH, fine. We're here for the semi-long haul.

I've got to start painting again. My friend Alison just alerted me to the wonder of canvas notepads sold at Michaels. I'm about to order some so I can get around the whole, "what would I do with all these bulky canvases when it's time to move home" problem and simply stack the pages and take them home. Woo Hoo! Thanks Al!

So here's some inspiration for me and something fun to look at for you, paintings of scenes seen outside of plane windows. I came across these on another blog that I read, it has so many wonderful links and stories from the outside world that I go there often. It's probably not the healthiest thing for me to find inspiring since I wish I was on a plane, but these are beautiful.

catch more over here. 

Tomorrow I'll bring you more of Belgium and more of cheeriness. 

Friday, February 1, 2013

A picture is worth a thousand words in Amsterdam (and everywhere)

The sun came out in Amsterdam.

Those are all the typed words I have for today. Here's 25,000 words in picture form.

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