Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Hangover

No, this post isn't about the movie "The Hangover", though did you hear they're in the process of making the third installment? Really? The second just wasn't that good. No, I'm referring to real-life hangovers, and not necessarily the kind you get from having a few too many cocktails at happy hour.

I have a running hangover. After running and running for weeks and weeks, I am, to be blunt, sick of it. I view running as an escape - no matter what kind of day I have had, or how I am feeling, running offers me a brief break from it all. When running becomes "mandatory", however, it becomes more like a chore that is right up there with doing laundry and finally emptying the dish washer. The cure? I'm trying different forms of exercise to complement my running schedule. For example, I had kickball last night and am taking a Total Body Drum Beat class tonight. A little variety in my workout routine is just what I need.

I have a blogging hangover. Don't get me wrong, I love to blog, but I think I went a little crazy right off the bat. Relentlessly posting and updating my pages like there was no tomorrow, to the point where I felt like I had to go out of my way to create things to write about. And that's just not the point of this blog. The point is to detail my journey in a candid way, not to give me something to do during lag time at work. The cure? Back to the basics - writing about life in The Pitts as it happens.

I have a friends-and-fun hangover. This weekend was the best and most random assortment of activities and friends. Visiting the good ol' MU for Homecoming Weekend, I was able to see some of my very best friends, get a tour of the local eateries (and bars) that I miss so much, and watch lots and lots of football. I met new people, had a few cocktails, and altogether enjoyed myself. And now I miss it. Work was a rude awakening yesterday morning, but when is it not on a Monday? The cure? Planning fun activities for the weekend and future visits to keep me occupied!

Oh, and I have an NFL-referee-lockout hangover. Need I say more? Who doesn't these days? Week 3 was atrocious, and I can't wait to see the Week 4 debacle should the lockout continue. Sigh.

So those are my current hangovers. Each one a little different from the last, but all easily cured. What are you hungover from today? And no, drinking is not an acceptable response because it's a Tuesday people - get it together.


Thursday, September 20, 2012

A Pro's Take on Craigslist

Alright everyone, here's the deal - I love Craigslist, I do, but using it effectively is somewhat of an art. How did I perfect this skill? Check it out: In just under 16 months I moved three times, twice from out-of-state. I didn't have the luxury of driving around looking for "For Rent" signs, I had no clue as to the lay of the land, and without having the help of two of my very best friends who happened to know the areas well, I would have been up a creek (yes, people still say that).

After getting an idea of what areas to look in, I hopped onto Craigslist. No matter how many times I go on this site, I always find myself completely overwhelmed. Would pictures on the pages kill anyone? Break up the monotony of line after line of too-ecstatic, and too-vague housing descriptions please. I have, however, learned a few key things - especially from my last move - that have proved, and will continue to prove invaluable when it comes to navigating this fickle site.

To test my knowledge, and to help educate my readers, I decided to test myself. I found apartment titles, made my assumptions, and then looked at the description and photos to prove, or disprove my theories. Let's see how I did...

Run. Charming means old, and affordable confirms that they're desperate to get rid of this ancient piece of junk.

The reveal...
Ding, ding, ding. The building is old and they didn't even show interior shots, but considering "wall to wall carpet" is a feature, I'll chalk this up as a win.

Stop yelling! These ads are often the products of nice(r) apartment complexes that have someone designated to sales and marketing. Probably has a pool and gym, worth a shot.

The reveal...
Right again. While the all-caps title might be off-putting, the ads usually feature a cookie-cutter complex with great amenities. Beware: these are often further out into the suburbs than they will let on.

Cute? You might as well say "Cozy". Either way, both are code for TINY.

The reveal...
Need I say more? I'm on a roll..

Well that was fun, but now down to business. The facts:
  1. "Efficiency" means "studio", which means no bedroom. Sometimes they can be spacious, and laid out creatively, but beware.
  2. Check the price tag. Oftentimes the $$ gives away more about the space than the title. For instance, a 3BR for $200/mo should throw up some red flags no matter how great the lister makes it sound.
  3. Don't skim through. None of these ads are going to say "great kitchen, private parking, right next to your favorite bar, cheaper than it should be..", but you can find these things in the details.
  4. Don't give up! Craigslist isn't the only thing out there, so look around, but keep an eye out as tons of new spaces are listed every day.
That's all for now! Happy hunting!


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

All Dolled Up

If you have read any of my posts, you've gotten the hint that I like to shop. No, I'm not in debt to a million stores and, no, I don't pull in six figures a year - my shopping occurs in well-spaced, necessity-based intervals (at least I think so). Like everyone, I have things that I will and won't spend money on. I'll gladly buy an outfit just because it would be perfect for an occasion, but it better go with a pair of shoes that I already have. Clothes are my thing. Shoes are not. The same could be said for makeup. I'll scrape the last bits of foundation out of the bottle rather than buy a new one, but I have three different kinds of eyeliner on-hand at all times. Oh, what a complex world we girls live in.

So, in keeping with my "well-spaced, necessity-based" shopping model, yesterday was makeup day. My buying habits in this particular category are ever-evolving, and every shopping trip I seem to buy something different. I've tried MAC to Sephora, Chanel to Wet 'n Wild (don't judge), and everything in between.

Thoughts? I kid.

Where did I settle this time? Well, let's get some background here. This time of year (and life) is particularly hard on my skin.

- Early work mornings are bad for under-eye circles (as are fun, late nights)
- Not tan, but not pale
- Skin is still reeling from all of this summer's sun exposure (and a few solid sunburns)
- Working out every day leaves me feeling great, but my skin feeling blah

So, in total, I needed something to even, brighten and give me a spot of color, while not drying out or oiling up my skin. And here is what I landed on...

Clearly Garnier and Maybelline were the big winners of my shopping trip. Not ridiculously priced, and perfect for my beauty needs.

How am I liking my purchases? Try loving. The BB Cream seemed to even my skin tone in one application, and the Liquid Mouse is light enough to leave my skin looking natural, but polished. My old blush was too dark, but this light shade of Fit Me is just what I need to score an extra hint of color without leaving me looking embarassed. Define-A-Line gives the perfect line, while the smoothing tip easily erases any miscues, and the Falsies.. well, va-va-voom.

All-in-all, a great haul, and with some lovely discounts I shelled out less than $50. Now this stuff better last me...


Monday, September 17, 2012

Weekend Antics

Happy Monday! What's happy about this Monday? I'm not too sure. But by being cheerful about it, maybe it will take the edge off a bit. This weekend, in particular, was a great one. Why, you ask? Because it was filled to the brim with the perfect combination of doing something, while doing nothing at all.

Friday night was Family Dinner night. Every couple of Fridays when the mood is just right, myself and three of the best people I know get together to cook dinner, have some wine, and generally have a great night. There is something to be said for staying in on a Friday with a few good friends enjoying each other's company. If things such as Kelly's Wine, spontaneous dancing and the playlist to end all playlists should ensue, then so be it. Regardless, I woke up with sore legs and a smile on Saturday morning.

How adorably Fall

Saturday morning was business as usual... or what business as usual aspires to be, but isn't usually. Rising early (a little too early for my taste), I had a bowl of cereal and, with some time left to kill before noon kickoffs, went for a run. What? I know, I know. Runs are always hypothetically baked into my weekends, but the reality typically leaves much to be desired on the workout front. So, good for me! Even better for me? Surprise mimosas courtesy of AC and DK. Fresh and delicious, mimosas are always a good way to jumpstart the day.

Go Blue and WVU!

I then headed off to South Hills to celebrate the belated birthday of a very special lady, and watch the WVU game with some true Mountaineer fans. A good time was had by all, and I actually drank three beers. Yes, three whole beers. Sadly, I partially consider my drinking of a few BLs to be a waste, as I didn't even collect the Fantasy Football codes. Sigh.

My Sundays are usually seriously devoted to R&R, and this one was no different. While I did venture out of my standard Sunday attire of yoga pants and a tee, and into some real-people clothes - well, jeans at least - the vast majority of my day was spent on the couch with friends watching football and snacking on anything and everything. Saturday's physical activity was completely erased by the smorgasbord of snacks we feasted on all day. I'll pay for it today, but it was wonderful at the time.

What's better than a Sunday nap?

The final non-activity activity of the weekend? Becoming fully obsessed with Weeds. I only watched four episodes, but I can easily see myself reaching Season 8 in the blink of an eye. OnDemand - look out!

All in all, a great weekend, and looking forward to the one coming up! Now about this whole "it's only Monday" thing...


Friday, September 14, 2012

Being a Big Girl

Pay day. What a glorious day. But there is also no other day that reminds me that I am officially a big girl more than this bi-monthly blessing. I remember the days of receiving the lovely (though always tiny) paycheck from my first job in high school. What did I do with it? Oh sure, part of it would go into savings to appease the parents. The rest? Consider it spent. I'm not even sure on what, but it was long gone before the next one arrived. I must have shopped a lot. Or had a boyfriend that didn't pay for anything.. ever. Oh wait, both of those were true. But who cares? I had a roof over my head, gas in the tank, and food on the table courtesy of Mom and Dad. If I didn't say thank you enough, consider this post a huge, tremendous thank you.

Now here I am, a college grad out fending for myself in the real world. I think it takes being out on your own to realize how good you had it. I'm lucky enough to have parents who have supported me throughout the painstaking process of venturing out on my lonesome, or else I don't know how I would've done it. My move to Pittsburgh was the first one that I had ever done without them there to pack me, move me and assemble me, and I think it was harder on them than it was on me.

Now what does pay day mean? Bills and more bills. But I can't complain, with the way the economy is today, I am lucky enough to be a twenty-something with a stable job and the ability to live a life outside of paycheck-to-paycheck.

What I Learned in High School: uhhh....

What I Wish I Had Learned: Accounting. How to keep your credit score up. Which health care plan is right for me. The value of a 401K.

I'm not going to lie - being a big kid is pretty awesome. You learn about glorious things called "Happy Hours" and "Paid Vacation". Was there life before I knew of these? I just don't know. But then comes the serious stuff that you used to leave to your parents. For instance, today I signed up for my own car insurance. Once again, being removed from their policy was harder on them than me I believe. And, you know what? It feels good. One other thing I am able to do for myself, even if it is a simple one.

The moral of the story is as follows: To you college kids out there (or even younger), enjoy it. Spend a little too much at the bar, order a few too many pizzas at 3am, go crazy. But don't be naive. The real world is just on the other side, and the more you can prepare yourself, the more fun you will have being a big kid! Say it with me.. H-a-p-p-y H-o-u-r...


Thursday, September 13, 2012

What's Your Fantasy?

Aggressive title, I know. But I'm competing with millions of other blogs on a daily basis, so I might as well spice it up a bit. No, I'm not actually asking what your fantasy is. I'm referring to Fantasy Football.

Every year, with the screaming fans, tailgating, wings and beer, inevitably comes the hoards of people posted up at their computers at 11am on Sunday desperately checking to make sure their rosters are set. "P"? "Q"? "IR"? "SSPD"? WHAT?? There is one thing that Fantasy Football always provides, and that is a little extra drama on game day.

Most of the men folk who have stopped by this post have probably already stopped reading. "Why is a girl claiming to know anything about Fantasy Football?" I don't know, but I schooled ten people last year (3rd place woohoo), and am poised to do the same this year, so I feel as though I can say something on the subject. But I digress.

Why do I love Fantasy Football? It's simple - it connects you with the game and the league in a unique way. It opens the eyes of die-hard fans, and forces them to be aware of goings-on outside of their little NFL boxes. I'm not judging, I'm speaking from experience. Going into my first draft last year, I had done my research alright. I printed out all of ESPN's goodies, did some colorful highlighting, the works. I even showed up early to avoid the inevitable failed internet connection that would surely doom my season. Despite my efforts, however, my draft order remained as follows: Brady, Welker, Gronkowski, Green-Ellis. Oh, I need a kicker? Gostowski. Oh, I need a D? Patriots D. I think you get where I'm going with this.. I was going to recreate the Patriots on my Fantasy lineup and I would be golden. Right?

WRONG. Drafting 6th, Brady was gone before you could say "Shut Up Gisele". In fact, the only player from the 2011-12 Patriots squad that I nabbed was Green-Ellis, who, after a mediocre season, is now with the Bengals. Enough said. So I was left with my highlighting, and nervously pulled together a lineup. As my justifications weren't "he's hot", I figure I was miles ahead of other female rookies.

Fast forward to the end of the season and there I was, in third place, and seriously addicted to the game. Not in a weird, obsessively-reading-stats-every-day way, but in a there's-interesting-things-outside-of-the-Patriots-way. Don't get me wrong, I'm still an avid Pats fan, but I started taking an interest what else was going on in the NFL, and who else might be able to get me a few extra fantasy points (and a little more street cred). Case and point: Wallace-Brown receiving duo. Thank you very much.

So here we are, preparing for the first game of Week 2 of the NFL Season. Where am I now? Well, due to circumstances outside my control, I had to autodraft this year. Insert GASP here. I did what I could - I set my position order, player order, etc. - but it's just not the same. I've made a few waiver moves (thanks for the 23 points Garcon!) and am currently 1-0. How will things end up? Who knows, but that's the beauty of the game.

Game On

One final thought: There is a game tonight. Don't be that person. Set your lineup.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Breakfast for Dinner

I have weird cravings. Ask anyone I know. For instance, there were a solid six months where anything I ate had to have buffalo sauce on it - and, no, I didn't only eat wings. We all have cravings. The hard part isn't squashing them, it's figuring out how to indulge them without needing to increase your pants size every few weeks.

Last night, in particular, I was craving breakfast. Not just any breakfast, the good (but horrible) kind - eggs, bacon, toast, pancakes... the works. Oh, and I was craving mushrooms. What? Having just come from an incredible Total Body Drum Beat class - don't knock it 'til you try it - I couldn't quite lower myself to indulging my craving on that level. So, what did I do? I "healthified" my craving into a not-so-bad-for-you, easy-to-make omelette. Instead of eggs, one full egg and two egg whites. Instead of a mound of greasy bacon, one strip of Turkey Bacon. Added some mushrooms (another craving) and low fat cheese and I was in business.

The Customized-to-your-Craving Omelette

What I Used:
- 1 Tbsp Oil
- 3 Eggs - (1) with yolk and (2) without
- 1 Strip of Turkey Bacon, cooked and chopped
- 1/4 Cup Sliced Mushrooms
- 1 Tbsp Low Fat Cheese (of your liking)

How I Made It:
1. Pour the oil into a small sauce pan or skillet. If the oil doesn't completely cover the bottom, then add a bit more.
2. Add mushrooms and turn the heat on medium, covering with a lid. Stir occasionally. Let simmer for 3-4 minutes, then take off the stove and let sit.
3. Microwave (please don't fry) the turkey bacon for 1 1/2 minutes, or until cooked to your liking, then break into pieces and put in a measuring cup.
4. Mix the eggs in a bowl, adding a splash of milk if you prefer.
Cutest mini skillet in the world - thanks Nan!

5. Pour eggs into medium/small sauce pan or skillet that has been sprayed with Pam (or other), letting them spread across the bottom. Turn heat to medium/high.
6. Let the eggs sit, occasionally running a spatula around the edge to check the cohesion of the bottom layer.
7. Flip the eggs over (hopefully in one flip) with your spatula, in order to finish cooking the top side.
8. Add mushrooms and turkey bacon, spreading evenly across the eggs.
9. With your spatula, fold the omelette in half as evenly as possible, and slide onto a plate.
10. Add the low fat cheese immediately, allowing it to melt over the omelette.
Mmm, mmm, mmm

And voila! Customize to meet your needs. In a spinach mood? Add while the eggs are still hardening in order to wilt the spinach, making it soft and delicious. And the list goes on!

Ok folks, time for my Lean Cuisine!.. Hey, I cooked last night, and Yoga was not kind to me today.


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Giving Thanks

No, it's not quite Thanksgiving, but 9/11 always inspires me to reflect upon the tragic events of that day, and how thankful I am for everything in my life. There is so much going on in the world - the election battle, war, violence, starvation, and instances of utter dispair - that it is difficult not to get caught up in it all. I think 9/11 offers a rare, sobering opportunity to reflect back on that horrific day, as well as what is truly important in this life.

I can't deny that I LOVE lists, but I wouldn't even know where to start a list of things I'm grateful for. Maybe by Thanksgiving I can come up with something clever. Over the past few weeks, more than ever, I have realized how fragile and precious life is. You never know when you're going to get the call you've been waiting for, or the call you've been dreading, and the space in between can, at times, be taken for granted. It's the little things that fall by the wayside that really make each day, and I think that those would be #1 on my list today.

I'm also grateful to live in the country I do. Even with the political nonsense, economic crisis, strikes (need I go on?), I'd be hard-pressed to find someplace that I would rather live. What makes this country chaotic, is also what makes it beautiful. The fact that people can strike, or can go off on their own and start a company like they've always dreamed of, or can publicly voice their opinions on any matter is something I could never live without. For, with the chaos, comes a fierce pride in being American. This is epitomized by the men and women who risk their lives every day to protect these ideals that we hold so dear, and for them I am truly grateful as well.

Just a few things I'm grateful for..

La Famille


My brother heading off to college - Go Ducks!

Nothing beats a wedding with some of America's finest

My country (and football)

Friends, friends, friends

As you can tell, I'm loving love today, everyone! Take today not only to reflect, but to spread a little love of your own.


Monday, September 10, 2012

Falling For Fall

Well, folks, it's here - Fall. While some are moaning and groaning over the sudden change in seasons that took place this weekend, I am welcoming it with open arms. I would say "there's something I love about fall", but there are a million things that I love about fall! The clothes, boots, apple cider, changing of the leaves, pumpkin patches, football, and more - the list goes on and on.

This Fall is particularly exciting because it is my first in The Pitts. While I will, for the most part, have to grin-and-bear Steelers Mania (Pats are 1-0.. just saying), there are endless other opportunities that I look forward to enjoying! Plus, it's fun living in a football town, even if you're not a fan of the home team. I'll give Pittsburgh this much - they do Football Sundays right.

So, other than holing up in my apartment to root like hell for the Patriots, I have lots and lots of Fall-oriented exploring to do. And what's the best way to go about adventure-ing? List making! I've come up with a few categories that I would like to cover, as well as a few researched (not-tested) options, and hopefully this will help to get the ball rolling.

1. Best Football Bars: Not to be confused with best Steelers Bars. I want a place where I can go, have a beer, and just watch some football.
2. Best Farmers' Markets: There are few things more enticing on a cool fall day then strolling around a Farmer's Market and getting a taste of the local flavor.
3. Best Apple Farms: Who doesn't love a hay ride and some apple cider in the fall??
  • Simmons Farm: Pick your own everything (apples, pumpkins, flowers) + hay ride.. I'm in.
  • Soergel Orchards: No idea how to pronounce the name, but they sold me with their pictures of apple cider and donuts (what diet?).
  • Trax Farms: For $8 you get a 25 minute tour of the farm, apple cider, a donut and a 3-5 lb pumpkin. Seriously?? See you there!

Yep, that's happening.
Photo Courtesy of Soergel Orchards

4. Best Sporting Events: Ok, everyone will have their biases, but the tailgate definitely factors in here!
  • Pittsburgh Pirates: Already been - and loved it - but as the playoffs near I think the atmosphere will be incredible as the Buccos try to claw their way in.
  • WVU Mountaineers: Plans are in the works to get down to a game, but also interested to find a few WVU hot spots around here to get a feel for these fans.
  • Miami RedHawks: Had to put it on here - can't wait for a little Homecoming tailgating in a few weeks!
  • Pittsburgh Steelers: Sigh. No, I have no plans to go to a game, but I wouldn't be opposed to some pre-game festivities based on what I've seen thus far.
5. Best Wine Tastings: I love a good glass of wine, and am ready to check out what Pittsburgh has to offer.
So that's where I am right now! Judging by this weekend's results, my lists don't always pan out the way I plan, but I'll take a little spontaneity any day! Thanks for the memories Belvedere's.


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Rain, Rain, Go Away

Well, well, well. I guess Mother Nature read my blog post yesterday boasting about all of the wonderful activities that I had planned for this weekend, because (of course) it is a rainy, rainy day today. Waking up this morning, I was furious with myself for, judging by the darkness, being awake before 8am per usual. No, no my friends. It was about 10:30am. Sigh.

Luckily there is this wonderful thing called "College Football" to keep me busy. I guess my "Misc" category - #4 on my list of things to do this weekend - just got bumped up to #1. Productivity on a Saturday? Fine! I do, however, plan to make my Sunday extra lazy just to compensate. Like.. insanely lazy aside from my run.

Television AND laptop? Oh yeah.

Rainy days are like kryptonite for my personality type. Unless I am under the weather (for whatever reason), I need to do something.. even if that something is lazy - going to see a movie, going for a walk, shopping, etc. 

Anyone else dying to see this?

But football (NCAA and NFL) seems to squash this urge. Why? My guess is because there are multiple games, with multiple scores and multiple plot lines that keep even the most rambunctious weekender at bay. 

These days also force me to do my #4 (when I really don't feel like doing it). I suppose I could continue to procrastinate, but, with my luck, tomorrow will be beautiful and then I will be folding laundry in the basement and angrily muttering to myself.. No one wants that.

What do you do to cure your rainy-day blues? Suggestions are appreciated, but they better be good if they're supposed to tear me away from my multi-screen delight.
*Disclaimer: Exercising doesn't count, that's already on my list.*


Friday, September 7, 2012

Off I Go!

It's Friday, so, naturally the main thing on my mind is the weekend. Actually, that usually starts on Tuesday most weeks, but I digress. After a rousing weekend visiting PG, I'm in desperate need of a weekend of R&R as I prepare for a little thing I like to call "Homecoming Weekend"... yikes.

Unfortunately, I'm just not programmed to kick back and lay on the couch all day. No, by early afternoon (assuming it's a nice day) I am itching to get outside and do something, go somewhere, anything! Thus, in preparation for my weekend of rest - yes, you can prepare to rest - I have come up with a few things that I would like to do. All are in close proximity to my humble abode, just in case I get the overwhelming urge to nap or pop on a chick flick, but are enough of an adventure to make me feel accomplished and to give me my daily dose of activity.

Most importantly - all are things that can be done by myself. While I love a good outing with great friends - circa happy hour and dinner at Diamond Market last night - there is something about a solo adventure that is good for the soul. Sometimes you just need to be alone with your thoughts, really taking things in, and enjoying the quiet. Not to mention the vast majority of my friends are out of town this weekend, and my better half lives a state away, but I digress.

So here is my list so far for this weekend. In no way am I going to try to do them all, but it gives my weekend brain options to choose from.

1. Andy Warhol Museum: Located only a few blocks from my apartment, I have heard rave reviews about this museum, and the space itself. It has been known to host quite the function, so I'm interested to scope it out, along with the killer Warhol artwork on display - especially the Factory Direct Exhibit featuring the contemporary pieces of artists doing residencies in Pittsburgh factories. After doing a little pre-research, I'm also seriously tempted to buy tickets for the Naughty-or-Nice Holiday Bash. Drag queens to celebrate the holidays? I'm in!

2. Kayak Pittsburgh: What better way to take in the sites and sounds of Pittsburgh than from the river? They offer kayaks from Millvale (where?) and from under the 6th Street Bridge (aha!), so take your pick! With a solo kayak, and a mean desire to make the trip count as my workout for the day, I'm thinking this will be the winner for a nice Saturday. Also, if you wear Pitt gear on the day of a home football game, you get half off the first hour of your rental. I don't own any, nor am I allowed to.. but just an FYI for you Pitt fans out there.

3. Yoga: No R&R weekend is complete without a yoga class. While I am far awar from being a Yogi, nothing helps me center myself more than an hour of silence and sweating. Not to mention, it's a killer workout. There are several options around me, with SchoolHouse Yoga in the Strip and Shadyside, BYS Yoga in the South Side, and Amazing Yoga in both Shadyside and South Side, just to name a few. All have great new student specials, too, for those on a budget! I will most certainly be Power Vinyasa'ing this weekend!

4. Complete Misc: I am not one to make a million stops on my way home from work in order to make sure that my list of things to do is small heading into Friday. Seriously? Try making a pit stop somewhere along 376 at rush hour until about.. eh.. 5:45, and let me know how long it takes YOU to get home. Just not worth it. Plus, I sort of enjoy having things to do over the weekend, and no timeframe whatsoever in which I need to accomplish them. Take laundry, for example. Instead of rushing to get it done so I can go to bed at a reasonable hour, I can time it up with what movies are on TV, or when I feel like going out for the day. Deadline for all chores, errands, misc: Happy Hour. But I can work with that.

Have a great weekend, and make sure to take some time to do something for you!


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Update - The Pitts Style

Happy Monday!.. Oh wait, it's Tuesday, but it still feels like Monday. For some strange reason, long weekends aren't as sweet when you have a Monday off - I think the weekend hangover (sometimes literally) just amplifies in its wake.

So, since the purpose of this blog is to keep the world posted on my life in - you guessed it - Pittsburgh, I figured I should do some updating on that front.. so here we go.

For starters, job, love, apartment and life in general are all great, so I will save all of the gory and TMI details for Girls Night tonight (Bachelor Pad and wine anyone?). Just know that I am perfectly content, and more sure of my decision to make the leap to The Pitts than ever. *Insert cheer here*

Best. Episode. Ever. So good, I'm watching it again tonight.
Photo Courtesy of The Hollywood Gossip

Now for a few not-so-intimate Pittsburgh things that are worthy of an update:

1. I am actually starting to learn my way around! The tell-tale sign that you're becoming acquainted with a new town/city/area is that when you get lost, you can get yourself straightened out without cussing and consulting Google Maps. I have successfully accomplished this twice, even using an alterate bridge/tunnel combination (GASP), so I think I'm starting to get the hang of it.

2. I like the Pittsburgh Pirates more and more every day. Why? Well, after attending several games this year (and watching several, several more), I can honestly say that I'm rooting for them. Everyone loves an underdog, and they have a goofy charm and will to win that is infectious. Secondly, and infinitely more important - it's football season. How do the two relate? The Pirates offer a nice distraction from the Steelers in my neck of the woods, so I will hang on to their season as long as possible before I am consumed by the Black and Gold tide that rolls into Heinz Field.

Disclaimer: This shirt is only fit to be worn when it pertains to the MLB. It will go far, far away during football season.

3. I could go out to eat every night of the week, and I'm confident that I would still have only sampled the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Pittsburgh dining. I have yet to come across a place that I haven't liked, even when stepping a bit outside of my comfort zone when it comes to my tastebuds. Pittsburgh does the meat-and-potatoes thing very well, but mixes in a surprisingly large quantity of fusion and ethnic eateries that will leave your head spinning. Keep tabs on my Eats and Treats Page to get my latest adventures in eating.

4. I know you're all dying to know about my encounters with Yinzers, but, sadly, I have found that they don't quite run amuck like I assumed they would, shouting crazy things in that undecipherable language of theirs. I'm hoping that I will stumble upon a hot spot at some point, but, for now, this update leaves something to be desired.

That's all for now from The Pitts!