Wednesday, December 26, 2007

A Very Merry Young-Caudell Christmas

Christmas has already come and gone... incredible!

Going on a severe lack of sleep over the last few days, I don't think I am going to force myself to sit here and write down every detail of the holiday. But I will say that it was wonderful getting to spend time with all of my family, and I'm sad that it is already over with. Gearry had to work both Christmas Eve and Christmas, so I didn't get to see him nearly as much as I wanted to, but we tried to make the best of our limited time together. It was the first time I didn't wake up in my parents' house on Christmas morning, but waking up in my own house with Gearry was a pretty cool feeling.

I hosted Hillary's bachelorette party in Columbus, Ohio, on Saturday, and it turned out great. I think everyone had a great time... I know I did, despite being very nervous about how everything would turn out. There were about 9 girls, including Hillary and me, and we started the night at O'Shaugnessy's Public House, a great restaurant where I actually asked Hillary to be my Maid of Honor a couple years ago! After dinner we headed back to the hotel where I'd booked a room for all of us and enjoyed some games, cake and beverages, and Hillary opened her gifts. Around 11:00, we finally headed out for the night, hitting up Mynt Ultralounge, where I had arranged for a little VIP service. We had a roped off section where we could sit and chill and some champagne waiting for us upon arrival. We went to the club for Hillary's birthday back in October and she loved it, so I knew it'd be a hit. We all crawled into bed relatively early -- we were asleep before 2:00 -- the sign of a crazy but good night.

Monday and Tuesday flew by in a rush of Christmas festivities, and now I'm already thinking about this weekend, the big wedding! Gearry and I leave for Ohio tomorrow... I am working 12-hour shift today so that I can get out of here early tomorrow, and tonight is going to be filled with laundry, packing and -- hopefully -- a nice, long run to relax a bit. Lots and lots of stuff to do! I'm excited for Hillary and Chris, though, and excited that Gearry and I actually get to spend three days together, even though it's going to involve quite a bit of running around. I'm happy to do it, though. Hillary has been such a good friend... she deserves the best!

Ahhhhh, crazy crazy crazy! I will update next week when I get back from Ohio and things are all settled once again. If I don't make it before New Year's, have a very happy end of 2007 and an even happier beginning of 2008!

Friday, December 21, 2007

7 Great Medical Myths Revealed

I found this interesting article on MSNBC and thought I'd share, since these are myths that seemed to get passed around a lot (I thought at least 4 of them were true)...

LONDON - Reading in dim light won’t damage your eyes, you don’t need eight glasses of water a day to stay healthy and shaving your legs won’t make the hair grow back faster.

These well-worn theories are among seven “medical myths” exposed in a paper published on Friday in the British Medical Journal, which traditionally carries light-hearted features in its Christmas edition.

Two U.S. researchers took seven common beliefs and searched the archives for evidence to support them.

Despite frequent mentions in the popular press of the need to drink eight glasses of water, they found no scientific basis for the claim.

The complete lack of evidence has been recorded in a study published the American Journal of Psychology, they said.

The other six “myths” are:

Reading in dim light ruins your eyesight
The majority of eye experts believe it is unlikely to do any permanent damage, but it may make you squint, blink more and have trouble focusing, the researchers said.

Shaving makes hair grow back faster or coarser

It has no effect on the thickness or rate of hair regrowth, studies say. But stubble lacks the finer taper of unshaven hair, giving the impression of coarseness.

Eating turkey makes you drowsy

It does contain an amino acid called tryptophan that is involved in sleep and mood control. But turkey has no more of the acid than chicken or minced beef. Eating lots of food and drink at Christmas are probably the real cause of sleepiness.

We use only 10 percent of our brains

This myth arose as early as 1907 but imaging shows no area of the brain is silent or completely inactive.

Hair and fingernails continue to grow after death

This idea may stem from ghoulish novels. The researchers said the skin dries out and retracts after death, giving the appearance of longer hair or nails.

Mobile phones are dangerous in hospitals

Despite widespread concerns, studies have found minimal interference with medical equipment.

The research was conducted by Aaron Carroll, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the Regenstrief Institute, Indianapolis, and Rachel Vreeman, fellow in children’s health services research at Indiana University School of Medicine.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Holidays Are in Full Swing

It doesn't matter how old I am... I love the holidays! Despite the stress and hustle and bustle (all of which I try to eliminate as much as possible) there are great times to be had.

Last Tuesday, Bailey and I spent the evening at Carly & Parman's apartment making gingerbread cookies! We set out to make gingerbread people, but I had some issues locating our gingerbread person cookie cutter, so we ended up settling for Christmas trees. They turned out great! We enjoyed some pizza while the dough was chilling, then had a good time cutting, baking and decorating with frosting and sprinkles. I took the cookies to work the next day to share with my department and they got rave reviews! I'm not the world's greatest baker, so I'll credit Carly & Parman with the success. Bailey loved the cookies, too, but that's not surprising. I shared a few little bits with him, which is how I got him to sit so attentively for this picture:

On Thursday, Gearry and I set out to start and finish all of our holiday shopping. Yeah, yeah, I know, kinda last minute. But it was a success, mostly, as we didn't have all that much to purchase this year. We have a couple more things to pick up later this week. After shopping we went out to dinner, capping off a pretty fun date night.

On Friday, Gearry and I attended my office Christmas party at the new-ish Hilton in downtown Bloomington. I love the people in my department... most of them are around my age, so we make work as fun as possible. We talked about the party all day at work, like it was prom or something. "What are you wearing?" "How are you doing your hair?" "What time are you guys going to get there?" Fortunately, it didn't disappoint. It's hard to fail with the 3 D's... dinner, dancing, and lots of drinks! Afterwards a few of us headed over to Nick's, one of our favorite bars, for a nightcap and conversation, and I ran into some rowing friends. Just a great night.

This week should be pretty uneventful, until the weekend. Hillary's bachelorette party that I've been planning for a couple months now is this Saturday, Dec. 22nd. I have to volunteer on Saturday morning, but as soon as I can I'll be on the road to Ohio. It's so hard to plan something from this much of a distance, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that everything turns out! I'm not sure if Hillary reads this blog or not, so I won't share any details, just in case. But I'll provide a full update upon my return!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Happy Day on the Horizon

Tomorrow is Thursday, which is quickly becoming my only truly happy day of the week, as I actually get to spend some time with Gearry! I’m going to come into work as earlier as possible so that I can leave as early as possible, so that I can maximize Stacey & Gearry date night! We’re planning on enjoying some jazz and grub at Jazz at the Station, since they’ve been begging Gearry to come in and eat since he left. I got to stop in and check the place out a couple weeks ago while Gearry picked up his last check, and it was gorgeous. It’s located in an old train station (hence the name) and still has the beautiful old hardwood floors and detailing. Low light, live jazz, very romantic.

Other happy news: I am finally finally finally getting a road bike! After talking about it all summer and sadly realizing I needed to funnel my money into other things (like, uh, bills?) at the time, it never happened, and I was pretty bummed since I had been keying myself up for a sprint triathlon. But now that Gearry is working and things are back on track, I decided to start looking for a nice entry-level bike. I told pretty much everyone I saw, in case someone knew about a gently-used one I could look into. Low and behold, all that yakking to everyone served me well, because I found out my friend Carly was interested in selling her OCR 3, since she never rode it much. It has low mileage and she took good care of it, so I’m pumped! I’m looking forward to picking it up next week, although it kind of stinks that it is December and I can’t do a ton of riding for the next couple months (although I have lots of warm spandex and under-armour, so don’t be surprised if you see be spinning around in the frigidness!). But at least I’ll be ready for next season and hopefully spend some of the weekends taking on some sprint tri’s!

And, Kath, since I know you are reading this as you take a well-deserved break from your horrendous graduate school applications, may I remind you once again that I am having dinner with Afra tonight? Okay, just wanted to make sure you hadn’t forgotten. Thanks. (I love you, Kath!)

Monday, December 3, 2007

Gotta Love Those Dave & Rae Fridays

Friday was definitely one of my favorite days of 2007 (minus that whole wedding/honeymoon thing… heh heh). Stebby came in from Ohio, along with her friend Colleen (not the same Colleen from IU that I usually talk about), for a night out in B-Town and some Dave & Rae! If you haven’t heard me talk about Dave & Rae before: #1 That is surprising, and #2 They are pretty much the greatest cover band ever. Yeah, cover band, but still. They do a little bit of everything from Journey to Vanilla Ice to Oasis to John Mellencamp, and they definitely made for a lot of crazy nights during my years at IU (or at least the years I was old enough to get into the bars!). Over time, Stebby’s antics have managed to gain us VIP status, so it is always a good time when Stebby gets invited up on stage to dance or sing, or when we all hang out with the band. They are definitely not world famous, by any means (maybe famous in B-Town? maybe not), but we get excited like little groupies because we have so many great college (and now beyond) memories attached to their performances. And Gearry got to go with us thanks to his new schedule! My friends are big Gearry fans… what can I say?

So, Friday was excellent. There are so many pictures, but I never have them. We used Stebby’s camera, so if I can ever force her into posting them, I’ll put a few up. After hitting up the fabulous Carly & Parman residence for some homemade lasagna, garlic bread and salad, our group migrated over to the Bluebird and had a blast at Dave & Rae, crawling into bed at some outrageous hour in the morning. Unfortunately, I had to be up at 7:30 on Saturday to volunteer. Yuck. I somehow managed to drag myself out of bed and make it to the animal shelter on time. I psyched myself up with the thought of a nap in the afternoon, only to realize I didn’t have time since I had to meet a group of co-workers at 1:00 to go to another co-worker’s holiday open house/craft bazaar. It all worked out, though, because we had a good time, and I made it home by 6:00 p.m., and found the bed shortly thereafter. I’m pretty sure it was the second night that week that I was in bed by 6:30 p.m. Sad, but true.

There are lots of little things going on this week, but nothing major. Tonight I have to run up to Greenwood after work to pick up my bridesmaids dress for Hillary’s wedding, but I’m literally driving there, picking it up, and driving right back, no pit stops, no shopping. I’m on a savings and investing mission ;)

Gearry is doing great. He loves his new job. He’s a good leader, despite his quiet nature, so I think he’s settling in nicely. I’m happy for him, except that I never see him (our schedules are pretty much opposite of each other), so this is taking some getting used to. I’m at work when he leaves for work, and I’m in bed when he gets home from work. This doesn’t really have anything to do with the drive (which he has already mastered, thanks to a shortcut, down to 41 miles and 50 minutes), but just with the fact that our normal routines totally butt heads. I look forward to our Thursday and Friday evenings together, but it’s not nearly enough. I am considering working a flex schedule Monday-Thursday, so that I have Fridays off to be with him. But that means working until 6 p.m., Monday-Thursday, rather than my current 7:30-3:30 or 8:00-4:00. Gotta weigh out the options…

Josh is entering his “dead week” at Purdue, with no classes this week so that he can prepare for finals next week. (Wow, I am so glad not to have that anymore!) I’m keeping my fingers crossed that he has a productive week of studying and nails all of his exams!