Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Thank you, Commons Maintenance.

The South Campus Commons maintenance staff is terrific.  Whenever a resident of SCC needs a repair, the resident simply fills out a maintenance request online and a staff member is (usually) knocking at the door within the next 24-48 hours.  (I learned that if it is an imperative repair, note on the request form that it is a "health risk" for a repairman to be at the door in less than 24 hours. For example, a shot glass falls down the garbage disposal creating a scary monster sound echoing from the depths of the sink every time you try to get rid of some food particles? Health risk. Who knows what sharp, lethal, shards of glass could shoot up and puncture your eyeball at any given minute?!)

Have I ever mentioned that Katlyn and I are residents of the handicapped side of the apartment? Our handicap- accessible shower has no bath, and is virtually an extension of the grimy linoleum floors with an extra drain and a transitional shower head. Imagine the fun adventures we have cleaning. When we came back from our short summer break, I noticed some mold growing where the bathroom floor meets the "shower" floor. HEALTH RISK!!!!!

Needless to say, Maintenance responded to our request for our condition to be taken care of within hours. The repairman left this note on the comment section of the Work Order:

"Clean it off and paint it." It was accompanied by a strange, large, pretentious-looking smiley face. 
Excuse the poor cell-phone quality photo. My camera cord is M.I.A.

Katlyn and I debated the seriousness of this comment. It is hard to decipher whether or not smiley-face-accompanied penmanship is sarcasm or not. Was he telling us to get off our Commons high-horse and take care of it ourselves as any other apartment leaser would do? As if. 

No, no, this was yet another example of how poor grammar can go terribly wrong.  When we checked the bathroom situation, we noticed the floor was cleaned, and painted. Simple case of a verb-tense mix-up.  Silly repairman forgot how to use the past tense, apparently. He almost fooled us into thinking he wanted the floor cleaned and painted in the FUTURE. Phew. And to think I almost got really upset with our lovely SCC maintenance team. 

As much as I hate a grammar mishap, I'd hate to clean black bathroom mold even more. 

Ten on Tuesday

Haven't done this in awhile.... Utterly pointless yet guiltily pleasing.

1. What’s the recipe for your favorite drink? (Smoothie, alchoholic, coffee, whatever.)
   I am a smoothie connoisseur. I love me some greek yogurt, honey, sliced almonds, flax, mixed berries and ice in a blender. It's the perfect post-workout energizer. Yumm-o. 

2. What kind of razor do you use?
   Venus. I spend obscene amounts of money on the replacement heads and almost always lose them before I can finish the pack. Once, after buying a pack of some ridiculous amount of razor heads from Target (like, 13 or something bizarre like that ... but hey, I'm a girl and Target has a spell on us so it's not that strange. I think.) I moved home to NJ for the summer and left all of those glorious new razors on campus.  Broke from the spell of Target, I used the disposable schick razors my Mother keeps in the linen closet. Well don't you know I had the closest shave my stumpy little legs had ever seen? Once I run out of my endless supply of Venus razor heads I think I'll stick to disposables. 

3. Who is your favorite Sesame Street character?
   Elmo! Or, "Momo" as I adoringly called him in my toddler years. 

4. What makes the perfect salad? (Lettuce type, toppings, dressing, etc.)
I can go two ways when it comes to categorizing Salad Perfection:
1. Spinach, berries (blue- or straw-), vidalia onion, cucumber, and a homemade honey-dijon salad dressing.
2. Romaine, marinated grilled chicken, avocado, sauted green peppers, grilled onion, salsa or a salsa-derived dressing, and a tortilla strip garnish.

5. What was your favorite subject in school?
English, always English. I was and forever will be a nerdy grammarian who loves to read. 

6. What’s your favorite summer tradition?
 It used to be opening and closing the summer at Woodside. Now those days are over and I don't have a tradition per say. However, my favorite summer day includes waking up early to go to the beach and end the day watching the sunset, eating grilled food and drinking chilled wine. 

7. Do you suffer from season allergies? How do you combat them?
Yes, the spring is a bad time for my nose and throat. I am a poor medicine consumer as I always forget to take it. Therefore, I simply complain about my allergies until they go away. Seems to do the trick. 

8. How often do you have to charge your cell phone?
Approximately every 5 hours. Who cares?

9. Do you have a bucket list?
Yes! Check it out 

10. Do you have any desire to go back to school?
Still in school....and I have no desire to ever leave.  Thank gosh my future profession is leading me back through the doors of a schoolhouse. 

Friday, June 24, 2011

A Year Ago Today...

I was spending my first day in Spain.  (Read about it here. )

Today, instead of getting settled into a hotel in Madrid, getting acclimated to strange breakfast foods and meetings new friends, I am preparing myself for my first Open House (!!) for summer camp and packing for a girls weekend in Ocean City.

Not quite as adventurous as touring a foreign country, but still exciting nonetheless.

I'll be back Monday with a recap! Wish me luck meeting the parents of my Purple Roomers!!

Have a great Weekend,
Ms. Yelencsics ;)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Word of the Day

alexithymia (ah-lek-sah-THI-mee-ah) — 
inability to describe emotions in a verbal manner. 

Very appropriate for this week in my life where words don't seem appropriate nor, apparently, necessary. I apologize for the lack of posting lately. Hopefully I'll be back to my pithy blogging habits shortly. 

For now I've fallen victim to a severe case of alexithymia. Who would have thought. 

Sunday, June 19, 2011

A Grammatically Incorrect Hallmark Holiday.

I'm confused.  Today is the day we are supposed to celebrate our Dads and all the hard work, love and inspiration they instill in us.  It's a day we grill outside and heighten Hallmark sales. But we are supposed to be celebrating all dads, right? Not just one? 

All the cards I pick up, all the tweets I read, all the annoying "to the best Father in the entire world!" Facebook statuses say "Happy Father's Day." (If I'm being honest, most Facebook statuses eliminate the use of apostrophe altogether.) Sure, you're celebrating YOUR dad, but the day is dedicated to all 700,000,000 of them. My point? ... Shouldn't the greeting cards say "Happy Fathers' Day" to imply that the day belongs to more than one father? Maybe it would be more correct to eliminate the apostrophe and therefore any possession, so that the day is just labeled and not owned?

Options as I see them:
"Happy Fathers Day" = Happy day named for the plural form of Dad
"Happy Father's Day = Happy day that is yours only, Dad.
"Happy Fathers' Day" = Happy day that belongs to all the dads in the world. 

Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't really think so.  In order to make all fathers possessive of this third Sunday in June, the apostrophe should be after the 's' not before. Maybe I'll just avoid the phrase altogether and avert the possibility of incorrect grammar. 

I hope everyone enjoys today, whether you are celebrating it singularly or plurally. 

Happy Day, Dad! xoxoxox

Do yourself a favor

and watch this video. Prepare to laugh, or in my case, cry hysterically because I am emotionally challenged. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Rules of the Road: Garden State Parkway Edition.

I remember my first time driving south on the parkway as a rite of passage. Being able to drive on it, alone, with the top down, meant freedom.

 No matter the time of year, driving Parkway South evokes a feeling of elation and the burning desire to wear dark sunglasses while pumping obscenely loud music from the radio. Even if the ultimate destination isn't sandy, Parkway South still means driving "dts:" a true slice of Jersey Girl heaven.

For those of you following who are Jersey foreigners, the "Garden State Parkway" is referred to by natives simply as "The Parkway." It connects Cape May (exit 0) up to where North Jersey meets Chestnut Ridge, New York (exit 172). It hits all the shore points, and the exits are numbered according to at what mile it is located. A lot can be inferred from what exit you get off on the Parkway. When I meet someone from Jersey at Maryland, the instinctual question is always "What exit?"  If it's anything under 82, I give an apologetic head nod. If they give me an exit off the Turnpike I feel even sorrier... they must be a Westerner.

There is only one bad thing about driving southbound on the Parkway. And no, Friday rush hour traffic isn't it (at least for a convertible driver - more traffic means more sun exposure.) The only bad thing about driving Parkway South is that inevitably, eventually, you must drive Parkway North. Away from the beach, further from heaven.

Some advice for the Parkway South amateur or naive at heart: 
- The Parkway ranges from 4 lanes (damn South Jersey) to 10 lanes (thank you Central Jersey) total in both directions. Please never take the express route if you are trying to get to the beach. The expressway always only has two lanes. If there is an accident, you're screwed.  If there is a cop, you're screwed.  There is literally nowhere to go and my GPS indicates there is only one trivial minute of a difference in travel time from exit 105 to exit 131. Not worth the potential traffic.  Unless it is 3 o'clock in the morning and you are certain you are only one of five drivers within a 5 mile radius, take the local.

- Moreover, the expressway is for BENNYs and people who don't frequent the shore enough to understand the expressway is for BENNYs.  If you're a seasonal beach tagger, you take Local. Because you fit in and you know your sh*t. You're not racing to get home an hour and half away in New York, you follow traffic patterns and get home quickly in the left lane.

-Ah, the left lane. Only drive in the left lane if you are going at least twelve miles over the speed limit.  It is not for the faint of heart, nor out-of-staters.

- If you see a cop pulled over, writing some D-bag BMW driver a ticket, DO NOT SLAM ON YOUR BRAKES. Just because you are going 71 in a 65 the cop will not, I repeat, will not, drop everything he is doing to veer out into the middle of the highway and pull you over.  He is busy, and I have places to go. Carry on.

- Get an E-Z Pass.  Again, I have places to go.

- Before crossing the Verazzano, never, never, never drive in either of the outermost lanes.  The immense merging is a death zone waiting for Staten Islanders to skip five lanes (because they insisted on driving the Expressway) to get over to one of the three lanes that splits off at exit 127.  Stay central and alert. Being on the outskirts of the merger is asking for someone to cut you off at 85 mph.

See you on the Parkway - I'll be the blonde in the red convertible in the (local) left lane with the black sunglasses and blaring music. 

*Please take no offense to the rants of this proud Central Jersey Girl. This post was written all in good fun after an enjoyable drive home from the shore. Much love. 

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

"Happiness is...

...sand in your toes and a sunburn on your nose." 

Do you know what my absolute favorite part of summer time is?
The way the moments just before the sun begins to set begin to cool the sand and calm the sea. The romantic backdrop of a pink-orange sky and the way it warms you no matter how chilly the evening breeze may be. The beach at sunset is definitely my favorite thing about summer.

Just ask Chris, he claims I told him this fact about me twelve times over a span of four days. I say he's exaggerating, but probably not by much. All four days spent in Cape May I got to savor my favorite summertime feeling because he let me swoon over the beach at sunset no matter what the rest of the night's plans entailed. For four evenings straight my toes were cold and I was happy.

Before we even got ourselves settled on Beach Avenue, C and I were on the beach cruisers scheming ways to avoid our departure 3 nights later.  There is an ever-present peaceful sort of excitement in a beach town that makes you never want to leave its simplicity. We rode into town, did some window shopping and ate a nice outdoor dinner.  
Coca Cola Display at the NutHouse

The store made just for me: 'Glitter Girl'
Friday's breakfast was a home-cooked joint effort. I made the pancake batter, set the table, prepped the eggs, while C flipped and scrambled. He even helped clean up. Reason #48 I am in love with this boy. 
The rest of the day was spent bronzing on the beach before going out to dinner (where we got our picture taken for the local magazine, yes we are now local celebrities) and walking the boards of a deserted Wildwood (where both of us were graced with the droppings of a single seriously ill Seagull.)

Special shout-out thanks to Aunt Doe & co. who treated us to a delicious breakfast at Uncle Bill's famous Pancake House on Saturday morning.  What a coincidence to be in CM the same day!
Saturday night included some experimentation. Sangria Slurpees were blended and enjoyed on the front deck to the sweet sounds of Bruce Springsteen Radio on Pandora. (Our Slurpee concoction will not be released to 7/11 just yet, some recipe adjustments are still to be made.)

Sunday came entirely too fast. We did our best to make the day last as long as possible, but the inevitable snuck up on us like we knew it would. With a long goodbye to the ocean at Sunset Beach, we set off in the White Knight headed north on the Parkway - coincidentally my least favorite place to be in the summer.

Can't wait until our next trip. For now I am thankful for the memories - and my front porch with which I can substitute the sand. Right now on my white rocking chair I write this post, smelling the sweet scent of approaching summer rain and it's not so bad to be at home.  

**Special thanks to Christopher for making this weekend so special for me. This was a birthday present to definitely remember forever xo Love you 

Sunday, June 12, 2011


It is 11:53 PM on Sunday night, meaning I only have 7 minutes left of my perfect weekend.  Thursday through today were spent relaxing in beautiful Cape May with my handsome boyfriend and I could not have asked for anything more.  

Except maybe for an extra day. It is killing me to know that this weekend is coming to an end. 

I bid adieu to lay in bed & begin reading the new novel I purchased at the Cape May bookstore--depart from my amazing weekend and carefully enter the weekday in a realm of fiction, hanging on to the surreal perfection that was my mini-vacation and avoiding any real-life drama that comes with a Monday.

After-all, can you blame me for wanting to extend this feeling when my biggest concern for the past three days was how close the tide was getting to my towel? 

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Cape May Getaway

Today I'm leaving for a weekend getaway with loverboy. Destination: Cape May. Can't wait to relax at the beach and eat all the salt water taffy (or Fudge in C's case) humanly possible. I'll be back Monday with a recap :)

I hope everyone else has something to look forward to this weekend! Enjoy the heat wave :) 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Word of the Day Wednesday

(adjective:) holding tenaciously to a purpose, course of action, oropinion; resolute.

I am not proud of my tendency to concede to the opinions of others in order to avoid confrontation and expedite everyone's happiness. I am often irresolute in my opinions and always tentative to stand my ground in front of "authority" and those ranked higher than me in my mind's made-up hierarchy. In other words, I'm a wimp.
 Today, I decided to change. Today, I was pertinacious. ...for 10 seconds ...in the most trivial way possible. 
I finally gathered my 6pts of identification and drove to the DMV to trade in my underaged vertical license for a grown-up horizontal license(!!!). I knew the question would come...
"Are we keeping the same picture or taking a new one?"

 Joe was a dorky little man with a Pittsburgh Steelers pin on his shirt, a Chicago Cubs paper weight beside him and a Stanley Cup hat perched on the corner of his desk chair.  He was softspoken, the type of guy that tries too hard for people to think he's cool. He probably didn't even like sports, he seemed more like the kind of guy to prefer a game of Call of Duty over watching the NBA finals. I felt bad for him because the loud-mouthed woman sitting next to him, Tanisha, drowned him out with her own booming words, and her shoulders were twice as broad with her head soaring at least a foot over his.  He seemed invisible next to Tanisha. I so badly wanted to make his day easy and reply to the inevitable question with a passive "Oh, my old picture will due." 

Sorry Joe, not today. Today, I am pertinacious. I am stubborn. I've wanted a new ID picture since five minutes after I took it the first time. 

"I think I'll take a new one." I smiled.
Joe shrugged his tiny shoulders and counted to four to prompt me for the flash. 
"Is this okay?" he asked patiently.
At this point, like on my 17th birthday, the passive Maggie would answer "Yes it's fine," without even looking at it in order to speed the process and avoid irritating the photographer. 

Sorry again Joe, not today.
I had two chins, my face was shiny and the hair on the left side of my part was sticking out like Sideshow Bob. 

"Oh, can we do that one more time please?"
Luckily, Joe seemed amused, not irked.  He probably noticed my efforts to smooth my hair and moisturize my lips before my number was called. He expected a re-do. 
After another dull four counts, the camera flashed, I looked at the picture - and was only slightly more content. 

"Much better," I lied. 
I only had the appropriate single chin in this picture... but my face still shined like a new penny and my hair was only mildly more in place.  And why did he have to zoom in so much??

One stubborn re-do was enough though. Could you imagine if I asked for a third picture taken to be put on my license that probably no one will ever ask to see aside from the obligatory alcohol server? 

I'm glad I stood my ground in taking a new picture. It felt good to be pertinacious, at least for a few seconds. I'm now looking forward to the next opportunity to change the picture on my drivers license. Oh and the next opportunity to be a stubborn hard-ass who gets what she wants ;) 

I'm just happy to flash my horizontal the next time I get carded! 

Monday, June 6, 2011

With Age Comes Wisdom

I learned a lot this first week of June. For instance, did you know the most effective way to peel kiwi is via peeler as if you were peeling potatoes? I made a delicious kiwi-banana smoothie after my workout and Momma taught me to use the peeler instead of my dangerous knife/fingernail combination method I previously used. Genius. 

I learned the trick to de-pit an avocado mess-free.  

Through trial and error I learned the DMV is closed on Mondays, and I am irked. 

In a round of family Question and Answers on the back deck, I learned that:
-the Creighton girls used to attend Christmas Eve mass after hosting (and participating in) keg parties at the house
- Billy dreams of making a grand entrance at his wedding with a fog machine and zip-line
- Pop had a more complicated family tree than I thought...it's more like a forrest of intertwined vines and branches.
- the term for "wooden spoon" in Hungarian sounds extraordinarily like an English profanity
- and a handful of other family secrets that would have your sides splitting in laughter and your jaws dropping in shock. But if I told you, I'd have to kill you.

I learned that I am a border-line boring human being with a family line that is anything but. 

They say with age comes wisdom and I think I'm learning that too. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Celebrations, continued.

Four days later, and I'm still celebrating my birthday. Gotta love it. 

A mid-birthday-week recap:

I woke up early this morning to walk to my TRX class (such a good class, btw) and then I jogged home. I love the challenge of TRX and it felt so good to get that extra fresh air before and after the resistance workout.  


Jessica, Diana and Bridget picked me up early afternoon to check out the Greek Festival in Westfield.
We were asked once if we were Greek, with which Diana and I (the only blonde girls in the entire venue) hesitantly replied "no,"  and more than once we were corrected on our mispronunciation of Greek cuisine. GreekFest was otherwise uneventful. Whatever, the baklava was worth it. 


Family came over later for a backyard cook-out and birthday cake. Birthday presents, cold beer, grilled veggies, and family banter made for an awesome evening. I love my birthday simply because I have an excuse to get my family together and laugh until our stomachs hurt. The cake and presents are just an added bonus ;) 
Dad on his brand-new grill! 

Cookie Cake and Funfetti Cake ... de-lish. 

I probably sound like a broken record...but I am so thankful for the friends and family that celebrate with me on my birthday, and everyday. And just so you all know, after this week you won't have to read any more birthday-related posts (as per tradition my bday will be a week-long celebration) but I will continue to try to wake up every morning to "start each day like it's my birthday!" because quite frankly, I think we all deserve it. 


Saturday, June 4, 2011

Life, Twenty-0ne...

It's the Saturday after my 21st birthday and I have a hot date with Will & Grace, a bottle of wine, and a load of laundry to be folded.  Don't get too excited though -- the bottle of wine is still sitting completely full on my counter beside the cork screw; I opted against drinking it when I remembered I want to workout early tomorrow morning.  

...I know what you're thinking. Did she turn 21 or 51? 
Okay, even if that's not what you're wondering, you're probably thinking I am the least exciting 21 year old in the tri-state area. 
Despite my totally boring weekend (I went to bed at 7pm last night...a Friday) I have evidence that I celebrated as a 21 year old should. In Atlantic City with my best friends, I spent two nights dancing and drinking ... leading to  the following two nights spent in recovery mode.  

Julienna and I drove down to AC and met Ashley and Katlyn at our hotel room in Harrahs (thanks Uncle John and Mom!!) on Tuesday, Lauren and Christine met us on the boardwalk for a fun pre-birthday dinner. 
After dinner and an embarrassing restaurant-wide "Happy Birthday," the three members of the 21 club and I returned to the hotel room to get ready for the clock to strike midnight, while Lauren and Christine had to drive back to Philly :(  *Thnx for coming for just a couple hrs girls - can't wait 'til we can celebrate YOUR 21sts!xoxo*

When the clock struck midnight I was in Caesar's Casino with Ash, Kate, Jule, and two spontaneous additions fresh from DC: my beautiful roommate Jill and her bf Matt!  
I proudly presented my REAL ID and ended up dancing the night away at Dusk night club. The "Happy Birthday" tiara Lauren so graciously adorned me with prompted many well-wishes from strangers as well as free drinks. I loved every second of it. 

We enjoyed cocktails and played slot machines until past 4am, but I still woke up at 9am much to my girlfriends' dismay. But I was 21...still! How can one sleep when one is legally able to attend fancy night clubs?!?

We spent the afternoon on the beach of Atlantic City before my parents, my godmother, my sister, and my handsome boyfriend came to take me out for a birthday dinner! They surprised me with a personalized menu - "Happy Birthday Margaret!!!" read across the top of each of our menus. Mom ordered us a bottle of champagne and I never felt more special.  

After the fam left, we were in attendance at Harrah's Pool party. So.Freaking.Cool.
Loved the Pool. Loved.Loved.Loved. 
What I loved even more was the company - not only were three of my closest girlfriends there to dance with me on my 21st birthday, but my favorite Terp alumni were also there to keep me laughing and dancing the entire night. 

Celeb-status outside the Pool. The boys were slightly wet after illegally jumping in. Woops!

Obviously, I had an undeniably action-packed two-day-long birthday. I felt like a rockstar, and I have my family and friends to thank. (And the random strangers who were perceptive of my Tiara that screamed "give me attention") It was fabulous.  Too fabulous? No such thing. 

Although I spent the weekend after my official 21st birthday as a hermit in "recovery mode overhaul" as Katlyn so precisely put it, my two nights in AC were totally, utterly, perfectly worth it.   

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Cheers to a year ahead filled with more spontaneity, dancing, drinking, and awesome friendships. I'll even take the recovery time that comes with the fun of 21. 
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