Friday, March 26, 2010

NCAA: Round Three

Last night was the UK vs. Cornell game.  "It's appropriate that the game ends at midnight.... just in time for Cinderella to make it home from the big dance."  This was a funny quote I read from someone's facebook.  And I'm SO thankful that it was right on!!!!!!!!

UK beat Cornell and advanced onto the ELITE EIGHT!!  Can't wait for Round 4 on Saturday night!  GOOOO CATS!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Visitors: Round Two

2 weeks in a row: 2 sets of visitors. Very fun, but very exhausting!

Thursday night, Andy, Phil's best friend from Philly, came into town!  And then on Friday morning, Mom and Dad Z joined us. For our first dinner out, we decided to celebrate our reunion and Phil's manager of the year award.  So, we  headed out to eat at one of our favorite local seafood restaurants, Monstah Lobstah!  It's a little hole-in-the wall crab shack with a heavy New England/Boston influence and AMAZING food.  The boys all ordered 5 lb. LOBSTERS!!!  (which are shipped from Maine almsot daily).  These lobsters were HUGE!  Half of the fun was just trying to watch them crab open these claws that were bigger than my hand.  I just wish I had brought my camera (this picture is from my phone)! I passed on lobster and ordered snow crab instead... it was not as big, but was really quite delicious.

Saturday morning, M&D Z, Phelps and I headed down to Picnic Island dog beach.  We were the ONLY ones there, which was really nice and peaceful.  We walked up and down the beach for about a half hour and then M&D Z decided to take a stroll down the dock.  I was several hundred feet behind them, trying to control Phelpsie's excitement, when I notice a giant manatee looking out of the water.  And then I realized it wasn't just one manatee, it was 3!  A mama and her 2 calves.  I called for them to turn around a come back, but just as I did the manatee started swimming under the dock.  They were moving pretty quickly, but M&D were able to catch a little glimpse of them before they were out of sight.  I think this made my mother-in-laws day!  She was just talking about how she never gets to see ANY dolphin or manatee when she is here...

Anyways, after the beach, we headed back and got cleaned up for Eli's 1st birthday party!!! (It was also Andy's 26th birthday!).  Kerri and Ben rented out some cabanas at the pool in their condo complex.  They had tons of food, drinks and games.  And the weather couldn't have been any better!

Following the party, we went back to our house to watch some basketball... after a disappointing OU loss, we decided to cheer ourselves up with a sunset cruise on the boat.  We went out, and what did we see??? DOLPHIN!  Mom Z was thrilled!

Saturday night, Phil and I decided to take Andy out to the bars for his birthday.  We went down to Channelside in the Port of Tampa, to meet up with my friend, Tara, and her fiancee, Garrison.  Did I mention that Garrison is a long snapper for the Buffalo Bills?!?!!  Phil was so excited because now we have a GREAT hook-up if we ever need NFL tickets!!!  Tara is moving up to Buffalo in May (after USF graduation) and is already looking forward to our next visit up to Buffalo, NY (where Phil has a lot of family)!

Sunday, the cold, rainy weather made a re-apperance.  Just in time for our Phillies spring training game.  After a long, muddy walk to the stadium, we had a 2 hour rain delay.  We ended up leaving the game around the 7th inning, so we could make it home for our dinner guests: John and Sally Hersh!!!!  They just happened to be in Clearwater the same time M&D Z were in town!  Perfect timing!  So, we had a nice dinner at our house.  Great way to end a great weekend!

I'm so thankful we have so many people that are able to come visit us!  It helps me from being homesick. :) I'm already looking forward to Visitors: Round 3 in a few weeks!!!!!!!!!!

NCAA: Round Two

I guess they call it "March Madness" for a reason!  This tournament has been unpredictable to say the least! 

The Zawadzki side of the family has had some bad luck on the court during round 2.... Ohio lost to UT (Phil and Becky).  Pitt lost to Xavier (Tad).  And, the #1 overall seed, Kansas lost to Northern Iowa (Paul).  

The good news is the McGaughey team is still going strong!  UK beat Wake Forest and advanced into the Sweet 16!!!  And after the last couple of years, it seems even sweeter!  GOOOOO CATS! 

On, on, U of K

Friday, March 19, 2010

Manager of the YEAR!

Congrats to my hubby on being awarded 2009 Manager of the Year at his hotel!  What a wonderful accomplishment!  I'm so proud  :)

NCAA: Round One

O-U Oh YEAH!!!  The number 14 seed Ohio bobcats pulled up the MAJOR upset against Georgetown on Thursday to advance to ROUND 2!!!!!!!!!!!!  I'm sure most people are upset... OU messed up a lot of brackets!  But who cares!  I wish I was on Court Street with my girls in Athens, OH right now... Saturday we take on our next victim: TENNESSEE....but I think our bobcats are up for the challenge.  Survive and advance! O-H-I-O!!!!

UK advanced as expected with an easy victory over East Tennessee... Hopefully, they will all be that easy ;) 

Visitors: Round 1

We had a successful first round of out-of-towners! The Lelli sisters arrived last Sunday around dinner time.  We had a casual night out: dinner and drinks by the water at a local tiki bar, called Jack Willies.  They later went on a midnight boat ride down the canal to the opening of the Bay. There was a small craft advisory in effect, so they opted NOT to take our 14 ft Carolina Skiff out into open waters... good choice.  I'm sure Phil would have been game, but I think the last coast guard incident 2 nights before our wedding was enough for Dianna.  They did however, get to see some dolphin! 

On Monday, Phil, Dianna and Jess headed to a Phillies spring training game (while I was stuck inside at work....).  I got a phone call when I got out asking me if I wanted meet them at our favorite beach hangout, Frenchy's, on Clearwater Beach.  So, I hurried home from work, let the dog out etc. and made it there right at 4:30 (the time we had agreed upon).  I waited... and waited... and waited... no Phil, Dianna and Jess.  About 2 hours later, they FINALLY show up.  They got stuck in traffic and were not great spirits (despite a Phillies win!).  But we got some yummy food and all was good.

They left on Tuesday morning and Tuesday night we headed home to clean up the house for round number 2 of visitors (Andy, Mom and Dad Zawadzki) arriving on Thursday.....

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Sunday wrapped up the men's basketball SEC tournament, and boy was the final game INTENSE! After a buzzer beater shot by Cousins sent the game into overtime, UK was thankfully able to pull out a waaaay too close victory over Mississippi State to win their 26th SEC tournament championship!  WO HOOO!!!  It's so nice to cheer for the winning team!

I saw a sign when watching the game that said, "I love my Cousins."  This is probably the only time and context where that phrase is acceptable coming from a Kentuckian.  But it's so true... I do love my Cousins.  And my Patterson, and my Wall... and sometimes Bledsoe, when he's not being a ball hog or a hot head.  Really, I love them all.  They are my biggest form of free entertainment from November until April.  What's not to love?!

Now, onto the Big Dance! (Where of course, I will be cheering for both of my CATS- UK and OU)...  

 PS- This is a cute rap song about the "Great Wall of Kentucky" and his famous dance! Even if you aren't a rap fan, you should check this out.  

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Spring cleaning

Tomorrow, Jess and Diana are coming to Tampa for some Phillies spring training games, which means I have spent a good majority of today doing some major spring cleaning. Cleaning feels like a never-ending process. No matter how much or I do, there is always more to be done. I've adopted the philosophy that a spotless house means you have no life! (I know this is not really the case, but it seems to make me feel better!) After a long day of scrubbing, our house is finally guest ready!!

The day was not ALL boring. I was able to take a few basketball breaks! Thank goodness for March Madness! UK rolled past the Volunteers to move onto the SEC final tomorrow vs. Mississippi State and OU beat Akron in overtime to win the MAC title and secure a spot in the NCAA tournament! Not too shabby!

New York, New York

Bright lights, lots of people... and I'm not talkin' about the state!  NY, NY is the name of the night club around the corner from Ben and Kerri's.  We like to go there every once in awhile for a girl's night out, but mostly for some people watching and a good laugh.  It's pretty much the hottest 50+ singles club in Clearwater.   The crowd is very unique/eclectic/interesting/entertaining.... but we don't mind, the drinks are cheap and the dance floor is always packed. 

Last night, Kerri's siter, Kayla got into town for vacation, which meant it was obviously time for another trip to NY, NY!  Since the boys aren't into dancing, they were more than willing to volunteer to stay at home with baby Eli and watch college basketball.  So, we headed out on the town to kick up our high heels and dance!  And, as always, NY, NY provided plenty of entertainment! 

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Phil and I are sooo excited about all of the out of town guests that will be staying with us over the few weeks! In preparation, I decided there were several DIY home projects that HAD to be done first.

So, for the past several weeks I have been a lady possessed. My mission? To return our yard to its original glory! I have been a maniac with the gardening, weeding, seeding, watering, mulching... I am officially keeping Home Depot in business and am expecting some kind of "best new customer" award by the time this project is through. Good news is: we actually have grass! No more sand dunes!! Well, a few... But 100% better than before! But now I'm really paying the price. My stupid allergies are KILLING me!! Just in time for our first round of visitors this weekend... AWESOME.

While I've been working away outside, Phil has been trying to wrap up our kitchen project, which was started back in August....  we (or should I say he?) are in the final stages and it should be 100% done any day now!  He's really done beautiful wood and tile work and things are looking GREAT!  I'll post before/after pics when it's finished... it looks so much better than the ghetto 1960 white tile job that was there before.  It's so nice to be married to a handyman!  

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Strawberry Festival

Spring is here, spring is here!!  For the past few, and next few days at least....And boy, have we been taking advantage of the beautiful weather this weekend!!!!

Friday, Phil had his quarterly Manager's Outing event, which consisted of a spring training baseball game (Yankees vs Rays), followed by drinks at Bahama breeze.  I came home from work a little early and did some more work on our yard (for lack of a better word) before meeting up with them at Bahama Breeze.  There is nothing better than tropical drinks or glass of wine by the water to de-stress yourself from a busy week at work!

Saturday, we headed down to Plant City for the annual STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL!!! After sitting in traffic for a good hour,  paying way too much for parking, and walking a half mile to the entrance, we finally made it in!  We have never been to the strawberry festival before, so we didn't really know what to expect.  Basically, it was the Florida State Fair on steroids. It was PACKED with people.... so much that it was hard to move at some points of the day... and Phil was less than thrilled with the crowd.  But this had one thing the fair did not have: STRAWBERRIES!  yummy, delicious strawberry shortcakes, strawberry smoothies, pie, cheesecakes, daquiris.... not healthy, but definitely not like the krispy creme bacon cheeseburger at the fair!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Winter Wonderland

Dear Mother Nature,

Okay, so enough with this winter nonesense!  It's MARCH!  22 days in January and 24 in February were UNDER our average low!  We set 20+ new LOWS which has caused many of already endangered fish, manatee and sea turtles to die.  It has been the coldest, and longest, winter in over 35 years!  What's up with that?!? 

I know, I know, I shouldn't complain... at least we are not like my in-laws in Philadelphia, who have gotten more snow than BUFFALO this winter and are expecting 40+ more inches this weekend.... but COME ON! We live in FLORIDA!  The sunshine state!  Even the snowbirds are shivering in their flip-flops and capris!

You've teased us with a few days of that beautiful spring weather and as soon as I think it's safe to put away my sweaters and pull out the tanks.... BAM, another cold front.

And now, talk of tornadoes?!  You've got to be kidding me.  All I have to say is if I ever get ahold of that darn groundhog, he's in trouble.  You don't want that on your conscious, do you?


Sweet Dreams

A few nights ago, I woke up in the middle of the night to a horrified screaming noise.  I looked over to find Phil thrashing around in bed, and frantically yelling out "Don't EAT ME!"  I woke him up, but he went right back to sleep without any explaination. 

The next day, I told him what he said and he started laughing hysterically.  He told me about his dream.... he was being chased by, none other than the snake lady (see post re: the FL State Fair!).... hahah... Guess the freak show was a little more traumatizing than originally thought.