Monday, May 21, 2012

Another Busy Weekend in the Stingerie House!

I'm surprised that blog title hasn't come up as already used since "busy" seems to be a common theme in our house lately... things should (keyword, should) slow down for us soon...

We had Jason's graduation and graduation party (read here) earlier this month, both of us have been working hard for deadlines we have coming up at the end of this week (working until 8:00 pm on a Friday night is not a good work/life balance!), and we are getting ready for Jason's graduation trip/mission trip to Peru and Honduras. This weekend was (mostly) spent preparing for that, however, we did have some fun mixed in there.

We started by getting lots of shots on Friday - four each to be exact. Hepatitis A, typhoid, tetanus, and yellow fever. Not to mention prescriptions for malaria, diamox (for altitude sickness - come on we don't live in CO anymore!), and zithromax (for um, traveler's diarrhea...let's hope we do not end up using that one...).

Saturday we started running errands at 9:00 am and didn't stop until 8:00 pm. It was a long day! We started by returning the keg leftover from the party to Spec's and then hit up the thrift store to find trashable khakis. When we go to Honduras we will be drilling a water well. It will be messy and hot. They suggest long pants, but not jeans, so Jason and I had some shopping to do. We were able to find 2-3 pairs each for a cheap price!

Next we headed to Walmart. The always crowded, but super cheap store where we purchased sunblock, deet, cheap makeup, throw away socks and underwear, sunglasses, and a few other odds and ends. I told Jason that someday I would like to take a vacation where I actually cared what I looked like and got to dress cute and bring nice stuff. He retorted "Where in the heck would we do that and why would we be going there if not to explore and be active?" Touche hubby, touche.

After that we headed to REI for some trekking poles and hiking pants. Jason also got a nice jacket for the hike and to use year-round  in Houston. Then we headed to Qdoba to return the catering supplies from the party and received five free entree cards! We of course ate lunch there using said free entree cards. :-)

Then we headed to Best Buy for an additional camera pack for the GoPro (Jason's graduation gift, see more on the GoPro here). We can't wear the camera for the entire 5 day/4 night trek to Machu Picchu, but we plan to wear it for the final day when we hike Huayna Picchu, the mountain that overlooks the ruins of Machu Picchu. We are getting SO excited for our trip!! It's going to be amazing! :-D

Then it was off to the mall where we got some amazing supplies at Lush. Lush makes solid shampoos, conditioners, lotions, and much more that you can use when you travel to avoid having to carry little bottles of things. Since we will be gone three weeks,. it was a huge space and hassle saving purchase!

Then we hurried off to a Well Done Cooking Class! Apparently two months ago Jason and I thought it would be a good idea to take a cooking class the weekend before we leave the country. We had a great time though making southern comfort foods - tomato mac and cheese, okra and tomatoes, mexican cornbread, fried chicken, and peach cobbler. YUM!

Sunday, unfortunately, was a similar story... after church we headed to Luke's Locker where we used gift certificates to purchase Jason compression socks. They are highly recommended for traveling on long flights as they will alleviate stress and cramps in your calves. (I own a pair already from running.)

Then we headed back to REI to get fitted on our backpacks (we have forgotten them the day before when running our errands). Afterwards it was off to Lululemon where I convinced Jason that it was imperative that I purchase a pair of pants and a half-zip up top for the hike. Score! They have the best workout stuff! And CeCe likes them too! (Or at least their bags...)

Finally we were able to head home...and get dinner ready for our friend Ramesh who will be house/cat sitting while we are gone! We picked two fresh zucchini from the garden for Sunday night's dinner and we think we will have one or two more ready for picking tonight or tomorrow! YUM!

Here was one of the same zucchini just a couple days beforehand along with a squash. The squash will probably be ready in just a few more days too!

We are almost ready for our trip and so excited and blessed to have this amazing opportunity to explore the world and serve the Lord!


Thursday, May 17, 2012

CeCe's First Vet Visit :-(

We took poor CeCe kitten to the vet this week. She had all of her shots and check-ups when we adopted her so there hadn't been a need to bring here in...until now.

A couple weeks ago Jason and I noticed that she had some puss in one of her eyes but then we never saw it again.

We've also been noticing however that she tends to squint that eye more than the other and when I came home one day this week I noticed she was keeping it closed and struggling to open it.

I called the vet and they said to go ahead and bring her in- she could have allergies or a scratch and they'll be able to tell you that.

So I wrapped poor CeCe kitten in a towel and drove her to the vet curled on my lap. She did well in the car ride with only minimal meows, but they were the saddest meows I've ever heard. :-(

The vet took one look at her eye, tested it for ulcers, and declared she had herpes. Say what?!?

Feline herpesvirus type 1 (FVH-1) is an upper respiratory disease that is common among kittens who are strays or have been in shelters. (It's also called cat flu.) And while there is a vaccine (which CeCe had received), it's obviously worthless once they're exposed to it.

Similar to human herpes, she will have it the rest of her life. She may never have another breakout or she might only have breakouts during times of stress like parties (um, yeah, there were 60 people at our house Saturday and she hid in Jason's closet the whole time...), during boarding, during changes in routine, or during times when we are out of town or have a pet sitter (which we will be doing for three weeks while we are out of town...)

We got drops to put in her eye twice a day until it clears up. We also have a gel that we need to put in her food daily, possibly the rest of her life, depending on how she handles it.

Needless to say she was glad to get home!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


Monday, May 14, 2012

Jason's Graduation Weekend!

I remember three and half years ago Jason asking me if I had ever considered going back to graduate school. I looked at him like he was crazy (especially since I had just graduated while he had been out for a year).

Me: "No. Absolutely not. A person would have to be crazy to want to go back to school."
Jason: "Well... I've been thinking about it..."
Me: "Hmm, I'm not sure what's wrong with you, but right now while we don't have kids and you have the time I say go for it."

That started Jason's three-year long journey towards his Master of Petroleum Engineering degree from the University of Houston. Jason has been working full-time and taking 1-2 classes every spring, summer, and fall towards his degree. He has worked incredibly hard and I couldn't be more proud of him and everything he has accomplished!!

So proud in fact that I started planning his graduation party almost six months ago... yep, I was almost (keyword almost) as excited for Jason to finish as he was! I've been planning for weeks and kind of went all out for his graduation party (as you'll see below in the pics!). I mean, how many times do you graduate with your Master's?!

This weekend was incredibly special - we had Jason's graduation, his graduation party, and Mother's Day. My mom and her husband Jeff flew in Friday just to see their son-in-law graduate and help with the party arrangements. It was a tremendous help to have them here and I loved getting to spend Mother's Day relaxing with my momma! :-)

We arrived early at UH Friday night to get good seats in the stadium. I then proceeded to spend the next hour trying to get the right aperture and shutter speed setting and exposure to take fantastic pictures of Jason as he proudly walked in and across the stage! FAIL. Between the movement, lighting, and my lack of photography skills I got zilch. Zip. Nada. Here's all that we walked away with from the actual ceremony -

Fortunately, afterwards we got a picture of Jason and I before we went to dinner to celebrate -

Love this goofy guy!

This entire week was spent getting ready for Saturday's party. We spent the morning running the final errands, meeting the deliveries, and setting up everything.

I setup a display table inside that included his cap/gown, beautiful flowers that my dad and his wife Mary sent Jason, his cake, pictures from the graduation the previous night, his surprise gift, and best of all... Jason's fake diploma!

Jason bought a frame to put his diploma in and I had the brilliant idea to buy a picture easel and display it during the party. I had the easel purchased and the empty frame sitting there by Tuesday when Jason says to me, "Um, Darcy, you know I don't actually get my diploma on Friday, right?"

Me: "Say what?! I thought because it was a Master's you would be receiving it."
Jason: "Nope."
Me: "Figure something out. I want a diploma in that frame by Saturday."
Jason: "Can I just put a sticky note that says 'Diploma goes here'?"
Me: [giving Jason a stern and intimidating look] "Figure it out."

45 minutes later my husband sends me a text with this - 


I just looked at him and said, "This is part of why I love you so much." And proceeded to take the picture to the store to be printed on 11x17 ivory paper to put in the frame for the party.

Here's a shot of the diploma in its frame along with Jason's amazing Ooh La La cake - 

We rented tents, tables, and chairs and decorated with the signature black and red for UH - 

We borrowed some of our friends' kiddo stuff so that our friends with little ones wouldn't feel excluded -

And we setup the amazing cornhole tables that Jason and I built (read blog post here) -

We rented a keg, margarita machine, had Qdoba and Chick-Fil-A cater, and set out some additional food/snacks as well -

Time to P-A-R-T-Y!!

PK's (Preacher's Kids) - you have to watch out for them otherwise they'll float the keg!

Jason cutting the delicious cake!

We had a fabulous turnout and a ton of fun celebrating with our family and friends! Thank you to everyone who came out!

A special thanks to my mom and Jeff as well! I couldn't have gotten everything done this weekend without their support! I was so glad to have them here and so excited that I could spend Mother's Day with my mom!

Jason waited until today to open his surprise graduation gift: a GoPro camera he can use for car racing, cycling, and our upcoming trip to Peru when we hike Machu Picchu!!

Jason - I am SO proud of you and everything that you have accomplished!! Congratulations again sweetheart! You are so amazing and work so hard!


DIY Cornhole Boards

We finished them! And just barely in time for Jason's graduation party. What am I talking about? Our cornhole boards of course!!

As usual, I came up with the idea while my husband went into full swing on execution. He researched what we needed to buy to make the boards and our own bean bags. We went and got all of the supplied a few weeks ago.

Amidst finals, trips, and busy work deadlines we worked when we could and got everything done!

We decided to make a Mines themed board and a University of Houston board.

Here are the bean bags- four per team in two different colors, blue for Mines and red for UH.

Here is the construction of the boards-

And the final product!

They were a big hit and we enjoyed playing last night and a lot today!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Kevin and Carrie's Wedding!

Yesterday I flew to CO to attend a dear family friend's wedding. Unfortunately Jason wasn't able to attend with me, but I was glad to be able to attend.
I had some time to kill before the wedding. What do you do in a Friday afternoon to pass the time? Well duh- 4 years at Mines taught me that... Coors Lab!
I met a couple of friends there from school and enjoyed a tasty Blue Moon straight from the factory. Blue Moon everywhere else just doesn't taste as good!

Afterwards I headed to Kevin and Carrie's wedding. The ceremony was outdoors and the weather could not have been more beautiful!
Carrie did an amazing job at the planning, decorations, and atmosphere. It was definitely the most unique wedding I've been to- from a Star Wars themes bridal march (May the Fourth be with You!) to the neon-colored tights on the bridesmaids and the handmade-from-duct table flower table decorations!
Congratulations Kevin and Carrie!! I'm so excited that I was able to attend and celebrate with you!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66

Last July, ConocoPhillips announced that it would be splitting it's upstream and downstream assets into two separate companies.

Since then we've seen a lot of announcements- the upstream company will stay ConocoPhillips and the downstream company will remain in Houston and be called Phillips 66.

A lot of people have asked me which company I would be with. As a reservoir engineer we are only concerned with oil in the ground and are strictly upstream so there's no uncertainty for me. I will be with ConocoPhillips.

I have a lot of friends though that will be going to Phillips 66 and I am sad about seeing them less as we continue with the split.

Today, May 1, was our Day 1 celebration - the first official day as two companies. They had a big rally and joint lunch for us over at our main complex. (Which hopefully we will move back over to soon!!)

Our new leadership team -

Our new CEO (as you can tell I had a front-row seat for all the festivities!) -

ConocoPhillips is now the largest independent oil company in the world. We anticipate a lot of positive changes to take place as we grow and adjust to be more competitive in our new role as an independent E&P company.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

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