Modern Day Rules for Chivalry and Manners

Just call me Miss Manners from now on (not really, that’s obnoxious). But my Monday through Friday routine gets me thinking about manners frequently. Mainly, because people are quite rude. So, I thought I’d share some of my personal rules of how things would be if “Marissa ruled the world.”

1. Door holding I’m not cray cray, I appreciate if a gentleman holds a door for me, but it is not expected. There are times when you are approaching a door and it’s just weird and awkward to try and hold it open so the person behind you can enter through the door before you. So whatevs, if you do it, I appreciate it, if you don’t, I understand. What I do expect from people walking in front of me, male or female, is for them not to let the door slam in my face. That’s called being a decent human being. Also, if someone holds a door open for you so that it doesn't slam in your face, you should say “thank you.” That’s another thing that decent humans do. Car doors are a little different, I don’t think many lads do the car door opening thing anymore, but if you’re on a fancy date with a lady you’re trying to impress, I’m sure she’d be pleasantly surprised to have you open the car door for her. In return, the lady should unlock the car door for driver. Automatic locks help you out with that, but it’s the gesture that counts.

2. Meal paying – It is my firm opinion that the date ASKER should pay for the entire meal. Yes, nine times out of ten this means the guy will pay, but for you I.N.D.E.P.E.N.D.E.N.T. ladies out there, if you ask a dude out on a date, you should be ready to foot the bill. (If it's his birthday, or you're celebrating his promotion or something, it's only natural the lady should pay in those instances). While you are on a date, the bill will inevitably come. It is common courtesy for the person who accepted the date to offer to chip in for the bill. This should always be declined by the date asker. However, I strongly believe that the date-acceptor should find a way to make a small gesture of gratitude with his/her wallet on another occasion. For instance, he/she could offer to buy the popcorn and soda at the movies, or pay for the parking garage -- you get my drift. This simply signifies that the person is not a total mooch and is willing to drop some cash from time to time. It’s all about the giving and receiving in a relationship. 


Learning to Live in the Present

So true. Cartoon from MisterGoh.com
I had a mini-meltdown last night. Since I was a child, I’ve had issues sleeping when my anxiety levels are high. Even if my body is dead tired, I’ll be laying in bed desperately hoping to fall asleep, but my mind is wide awake and racing away. Well, last night was one of those nights. What’s there to be stress about, you say? These things tend to be anything and everything. Currently, I have a bit of anxiety about moving -- we have not begun to pack and we really only have one free weekend before our moving date. In addition, I notoriously have buyer's remorse about any place I move into. My remorse typically sets in when all of the cleaning needs to be done and I’m feeling like the people who lived in the apartment before me are disgusting filthy animals. 

But, I digress. Thoughts of the new apartment got me thinking about the larger living space and what that would mean for us. The minute we got married the questions began, “so when are you starting a family?” We usually give some vague response. But a major factor of waiting was that we couldn’t even fathom a family in our current one-bedroom apartment. Well, this past weekend one of our friends (basically my brother-in-law) really starting pressing us about it. It sort of forced us to think about a more tangible timeline, and we realized that in this new apartment, a family could become a reality. Then I started thinking about if I did have children, that I couldn’t imagine trying to raise them without my parents living nearby (both of our parent’s live in upstate New York). Then I was sad because I miss them. So as you can see, things quickly spiraled out of control. 

Well that was a long winded way of saying that the majority of my anxiety stemmed from the fact that I was getting ahead of myself. I love making plans for the future and I get excited thinking about how things will be. But I realize that it not only stresses me out, it also makes me lose sight of what is really great RIGHT NOW. 

I often have to snap out of these moments of anxiety (or rather BryGuy talks some sense into me) and realize that life is pretty darn good as it stands. Right now. Today. 

I have an amazing family, a loving and unbelievably handsome husband, hilarious and loyal friends, a roof over my head, hobbies I enjoy, and a job. Rather than stressing about things that are weeks or years down the road, I need to just take a deep breath and look forward to this evening and weekend.

Happy Friday everyone, go out and enjoy. The present is a present! (Or as Kanye would say, "My presence is a present, kiss my a**")


Pinterest Might Be a Public Health Nightmare

Never ever. I repeat NEVER EVER go on Pinterest when you are hungry. If you do, here’s what’s going to happen to you. You’ll find yourself in the category cleverly labeled “Food & Drink” (strangely, you will not remember having clicked into this category), your mouth will immediately begin to water. Then, you’ll find yourself aimlessly scrolling through vivid images of succulent meats and ooey gooey treats. Next thing you know, you’ve got this urge to make some crazy variation of pull-apart bread, a 14-layer multi-colored cake, and you want to bust out your dusty crockpot.

See what I'm talking about?!? Yum. 
I am developing a love-hate relationship with this site. Pinterest has been the source of inspiration for many of my kitchen creations, but at the same time it’s torturous. With so many dessert and carbo-loaded recipes, it’s actually become a challenge to find healthy recipes.

Yes, I know there is a whole category for health & fitness that contains some recipes. BUT I don’t want to sift through the thousands of inspirational reasons to be fit: Reason #654 Because you’re better than your fat!, Reason #2546 to prove that you don’t have to take ‘roids to get muscles!

In a very scientific study that I just performed my Pinterest Food & Drink category was comprised of this breakdown:

  • 33% - bread/pizza/pasta recipes
  • 33% - dessert recipes
  • 13% - crockpot recipes
  • 11% - healthy recipes
  • 9% - unhealthy snacks/appetizers
  • <1% - beverages
This post has inspired me to create two Pinterest boards: healthy options and sweets & treats
I love a good carb-laden meal from time-to-time but it’s becoming an increasing test of my willpower to eat clean after I see all of those unhealthy options online. I’d love to see a sub-category breakdown: healthy recipes, desserts, crockpot recipes, breakfast, lunch, dinner, sides, vegetables. Maybe that’s making the whole idea of Pinterest too complicated but it would help me better find the kinds of recipes I’m looking for in the moment.

What changes or improvements would you make to Pinterest if you could? I’m sure their marketing team would love the free customer feedback!


We're Moving and I'm Getting a Dressing Room!

The hubs and I have been looking for a new apartment for about a month. While we LOVE our current spot, for its big open living room, separate dining room, and outdoor space. The main issues are that the bedroom is seriously tiny, closet and storage space have proven to be problematic, and we don't have a place for our guests to sleep comfortably. I feel that I'm of the age where I should no longer make my guests sleep on the couch or on an air mattress in the middle of my living room.

We wrote down the short list of our "must haves" in an apartment. That list included: outdoor space for grilling and dining, at least two bedrooms, a modern kitchen and bathroom, hardwood floors (BryGuy was really adamant on this one, he thinks lived-on carpets are yucky), and parking. After a few chaotic weeks of looking at apartments, we came across this lovely row home that had three bedrooms, two full baths and everything else on our checklist except parking. Truthfully, I'm a little concerned about finding parking everyday but if it gets horrible I could always pay for a spot or take a half-mile walk to get to the train station. 

Here's a sneak peek of our new kitchen: 

Since we will now have three decent sized bedrooms for just the two of us, I've we've decided that the smallest room will be my "dressing room". This will hopefully solve some of our disagreements about my girly things being thrown about in our current apartment. I'm most excited about this dream space in the new house, so I've been scouring Pinterest and a bunch of other sites for some inspiration. Since the room is pretty small (15' x 8') I want it to feel really bright, minimalist, and a little feminine. I would also like it to be able to function as a guest bedroom if need be, so that's where the futon or pull-out couch comes in. 

Below is my inspiration board for my new dressing room:

1. Silver mirror - Ikea $79.99
2. Acrylic chair - Sale Store (set of 2) $230.00
3. Black and white futon - Overstock $386.99
4. Silver dresser - J. Covington $1450.00
5. Lavender storage ottoman - Ballard Designs $527.00
6. Black and white chevron carpet - Overstock $167.44

Here are some other rooms that have the vibe I'm going for:
Closet featured on Song of Style 
Show house featured on Ana Antunes Home Styling
Showroom office featured on Centsational Girl
Clearly, I'm digging the black, white and silver/gray. I'd love to throw in a few pops of color to make it look a little less sterile. Do you guys and gals have any suggestions on how I should design my new dressing room?! 

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