Fighting Poverty with Cookies

A huge part of what makes my job so awesome is the incredible people who work here. It is inspiring to be part of an orgnaization that is full of intelligent, high achieving people, who have left fields like consulting, banking, and real estate management to come and work at a non-profit. The need to do something “meaningful” became greater than the desire to make a lot of money or “prestigious” career. And while Robin Hood is certainly “best-in-class” when it comes to fundraising and grant making, few people outside of the New York financial community have ever heard of it. But trust me, it is an awesome place to work.

If you don’t believe me, just read the email exchange I just had with my colleague. If this doesn’t show you just how incredible this place is, I don’t know what will.

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From: Molly
Sent: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 1:55 PM
To: Laura  

Want to get a chocolate chip cookie at paradise :)

From: Laura
Sent: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 1:56 PM
To: Molly
Subject: RE:

 Of course I do.  I was going to leave for my meeting at 2:30, want to go down in 15 and I’ll just leave from there?

From: Molly
Sent: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 1:57 PM
To: Laura
Subject: RE:

Perfect. I love that I can always count on you to partake in a mid-afternoon cookie break. It is really a big part of what makes you so great.

From: Laura
Sent: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 1:58 PM
To: Molly
Subject: RE:

A really big part of what makes you so great is that you request mid-afternoon cookie breaks.

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I am so happy that I have finally found a place of employment where people really “get” me. It took a few years, but I am here. And there are cookies!

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DIY – Stencil Quote Pillow

A few weeks ago, I spotted this incredible DIY project on Whit & Whistle. Immediately, I knew this was something I wanted to add to my “projects on my to do list” Pinterest board.

I am happy to report that I can now add it to my “projects crossed off my to do list” Pinterest board (yes, I actually have those two boards).

I followed the instructions from Whit & Whistle – except, I had a hard time seeing the pencil outlines so I skipped that step. Well, unfortunately do to my ADD and inability to focus on just one task at a time, I made some “stencil-os”  so I would either keep the stencil step, or have someone read you each word of your chosen quote.

As with many DIY projects, I can’t wait to set up a sweat shop and churn out a few dozen of these bad boys to use as gifts.

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And for those of you who are curious, the quote I used is from the Velveteen Rabbit that was read at our wedding.

Happy DIY-ing!

My Country Tis of Thee

This weekend I visited our great nation’s capital. I am embarrassed to say that this was only the second time I have been to Washington D.C. Either way, it was an incredible weekend and I ready to move there – that is unless the next election doesn’t go my way…

One of my favorite people in the whole word is moving to Washington D.C. next weekend. I am so excited to have my friend (who will remain nameless because she is paranoid about internet exposure) closer to New York and foresee many more girls weekends in our future.

From 2002 – 2005, we spent this weekend every year swimming our hearts our at the Ivy league Championships. While we weren’t roommates in college, we always roomed together during that swim meet. It was a funny coincidence that we got to, again, spend this weekend in a hotel, hanging out. And this time, I think we were both excited to have the focus be on something other than swimming, shaving, swimming, sleeping, swimming and eating Wheaties. Instead we walked around the city, looked at apartments, checked our neighborhoods and took in some of our country’s great history.

The absolute highlight part of the weekend was when, as we passed by the White House on Friday night, I saw the silhouette of a dark and hansom character taking a late evening stroll in the yard…

No, not President Obama… even better….

BO OBAMA!

How freaking cute? I think if Bo were to meet my niece Bexley – there might be our own Royal wedding. Take that Will and Kate.

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Oh and did I mention that Abby came into the city for Sunday brunch? Yah, I didn’t think one weekend could pack so much fun either!!!!!

A PSA For All You Non-Christians

If you see someone walking down the street today who appears to have dirt on their forehead – don’t go up to them and offer to wipe it off. Today is Ash Wednesday. The dirt is supposed to be there. Trust me when I say, they probably won’t appreciate your offer, no matter how well intended. I know from experience.

someecards.com - This Ash Wednesday, best wishes on proving you love Jesus more than you love not looking ridiculous in front of your peers

And now a little history…

Ash Wednesday, is the first day of Lent and occurs 46 days before Easter. According to the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus spent 40 days fasting in the desert before the beginning of his public ministry, during which he endured temptation by Satan. Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of this 40-day period of prayer and fasting.

Ash Wednesday derives its name from the practice of placing ashes on the foreheads as a sign of mourning and repentance to God. The ashes used are typically gathered after the palms from the previous year’s Palm Sunday are burned.

This practice is common in much of Christendom, being celebrated by Catholics, Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, and some Baptist denominations.

So just remember – that dirt is supposed to be there…

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A Case of the Mondays

I know this blog is supposed to be about the positive things in my life, but sometimes, you just need to vent.

Today I was lacking PMA and didn’t have the best day. I think that maybe I was being punished for watching the Dance Moms marathon yesterday. In my defense, I was only watching the show while I was folding the 2,000 loads of laundry I did over the weekend (how one boy is able to produce SO much dirty laundry is beyond me!) Either way that show is like a train wreck – it is TERRIBLE but you can’t seem to look away.

The day started off ok – Matt and I walked to the subway together which is always a nice treat. However, my mom skipped out on our nearly daily phone conversation (pathetic, I know) as she had a tennis match. Immediately I felt neglected. Thankfully, Abby’s sister ESP kicked in and she called me. It was such a treat to talk to her –  her swim team had their conference meet this past weekend and she coached BOTH the men and women‘s teams to victories. Naturally, Abby lost her voice in the process (yes, she is intense) so this was the first time I had actually talked to her in about 4 days. Abby, “I am proud of you, say I am proud of you.”

I then stopped off at Dunkins for my morning coffee – unfortunately something that normally makes me so happy was ruined by the fact that they forgot to put Splenda in my coffee. I blame the group of 6 foreign tourists who were making a scene trying to have an “American experience.”

Once I arrived at work, my ability to focus was distracted by two things: my work BFF returned from her vacation with a ridiculous tan – like seriously, I can’t even get that tan even in my dreams. Secondly, the intense flourescent lights have started to drive me crazy (literally, crazy). Let’s do something about this people – I vote for a return to candle light.

I went out to lunch with my coworker so that I could catch her up on everything she missed last year. I ordered a grilled cheese sandwich with sliced tomato. If anything can cure a case of the Mondays, that can. Unfortunately, they forgot to make my sandwich and I had to wait 40 minutes for it! Instead of sitting and eating leisurely, I had to scarf it down which resulted in a grease induced stomach ache for the afternoon.

On my way home from work, I forgot to put the Netflix I had been carrying around all day in the mailbox. Sadly, that delays my next shipment of “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn” for another day. Matt will probably scold me for that one – I know he has been dying to see the wedding between Bella and Edward.

When I arrived home, I was expecting to receive a package from Soap.com, my new favorite place to buy paper towels, shampoo and lysol wipes. Unfortunately, our mail room has become ridiculously slow and delayed in processing the packages, so it looks the joy I was hoping to receive from testing out my new face wash and putting away the bulk package of toilet paper will be delayed for another day (sigh).

So as you can see, my day wasn’t horrible, it just wasn’t awesome. Sometimes, that happens. You just get a case of the Mondays… but wait…

Today is Tuesday! Suddenly things don’t seem so bad.

My KitchenAid mixer, wine and butter flavored Crisco - my response to the Mondays

Friday Afternoon Round Up

HAPPY PRESIDENTS’ DAY WEEKEND

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Who wants to come over for  movie night this weekend?

My Valentine’s Day present for Matt – very manly.

Bieber fever at Dana Farber

Couldn’t have put it better myself.

Washi tape seems to be all the rage but I am still not sure how to use it.

Perfect for a small Birthday celebration.

I want to join a Downton Abbey fan club.

Something delicious to go with your Sunday morning coffee.

 

Girls Night with Jennifer Love Hewitt

Two weeks ago one of my co-workers invited us over to her apartment for a girls only movie night. We were all exited because Lindsay is on the events team at Robin Hood. Anyone who can put together this:

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is certainly going to put together a good girls night! And we were not disappointed. Lindsay’s apartment was impeccably decorated – I felt like we walked into a West Elm store. And she appropriately applied the “movie night” theme to the evening with fresh popcorn in red and white stripped boxes and large boxes of movie theater candy.

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We spent the evening chatting, snacking of delicious treats, drinking blood orange mimosas and sharing in the heartache of Jennifer Love Hewitt in Can’t Hardly Wait. It is pretty incredible to have such a fun evening with your co-workers!


Thanks Lindsay – you certainly have set the bar high! In fact, I was all geared up to host the next girls night, but I am now rethinking that idea… at least until after I see what you have in store for this year’s benefit!

Parenting 101

In the spring of 2010, one of my very best friends from college married her college sweetheart.

She was a member of the swim team. He played lacrosse. She majored in Government. He majored in Economics. She went to Northwestern Law School. He went to Harvard Business School. She is a practicing lawyer. He works for a successful consulting company. Oh, and I did I mention that they are ridiculously good-looking as well?

So when she told me last year that she was pregnant – I will thrilled. However, I was a little worried for their unborn child. Here was a child being brought into a home of high expectations. Both of his parents were Division I athletes. They both went to an Ivy League School. And they both went on graduate school to earn advanced degrees. They know what success was have grown to expect nothing less. I thought that if this kid didn’t come out of the womb faster than all other babies, he would be seen a failure from day one.

When the baby’s due date came and went, I fell for the kid. Already he wasn’t living up to expectations. Thankfully, he arrived in one piece on September 1st.

So now that Will has had time to adjust to his parents, “how are things going?” you ask. Well, let me just say, Will has certainly impressed us all.

He has learned to feed himself

 

He has already been drafted by an NFL team

And he has started to demonstrate his incredible swimming skills (be it in the bath tub)

 

But the very best thing that Will had added into his parents lives is laughter. It seems like every day he is reminding them, just how “not perfect” they are.


And man, what great parents that makes them! I can only hope that one day Matt and I are half as amazing as you two are.

Nothing Says Love Like Homemade Meatballs and a Teddy Bear

Yesterday was Valentine’s Day. Matt and I have a tradition where we go out to breakfast to celebrate before work. For some reason (I think that reason being that I am fighting off a cold) I wasn’t really feeling into that idea this year. So we decided to forgo the breakfast and didn’t plan anything special.

When I got home after work I received a phone call from Matt informing me that he was on his way home and was going to make a Valentine’s dinner. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised.

He came home with grocery bags in each arm and a box of chocolates from Jacques Torres, one of the best chocolate stores in NYC. He also carried up a package that his father had sent me. It was a Vermont Teddy Bear and the world’s cutest note:

“Thank you for marrying him. Happy Valentine’s Day. Love, Dad #2”

I immediately understood where Matt got his “moves.” Thanks Dad #2!

I sat on the couch as Matt chopped, measured and stirred. I saw a box of spaghetti but couldn’t figure out what else was going on in the kitchen…

I was impressed when Matt brought over a plate of spaghetti and homemade meatballs. I was blown away when he insisted that he would do all of the dishes and clean up the kitchen.

This morning as we were getting ready for work I was telling Matt just how impressed I was with his Valentine’s Day surprise. His response, “I bet you wish it was Valentine’s every day and I cooked and cleaned all the time.”

Umm, yeah. Like it is for you?