where have i been??
testing. did i mention i'm going through the examination process? becoming an architect is hard. i've completed my apprenticeship hours, but i have to take seven exams covering different topics. i passed the first three. then failed the next two. failing is hard. i'm so down about it. especially because they are more closely related to what i actually do at my job every day. i passed two of the hardest exams (structural systems and building systems - mechanical, electrical, plumbing engineering) after lots of studying. the other pass was about site planning and design. so, basically, i should be an engineer. my two fails are schematic design and construction documents and services. the hard part is that i failed the drawing portion. ummm, what? i draw for a living. good news is that i passed my sixth exam. i'll take one more next month in a couple of weeks... and then i'll start the re-tests. i can't wait to finish and be a registered architect!
planning. phil and i are going to peru in april! it's been on phil's list for a really long time to go to machu picchu. so we're going! planning is taking a lot of time. we're researching a TON. but i cannot wait. it looks so gorgeous. and exciting. we're not hiking the inca trail, which was my original plan. i have a bit of a fear of heights. the trails are steep. S-T-E-E-P. they are slick stone steps. without railings. yeah, that's not happening. so we are doing a guided tour of the ruins. and then lima, cusco, and the sacred valley. can't wait to share what happens : )
dieting. we decided to try a low-carbohydrate diet to help jump-start some weight loss. so far, so good! it's tough - my favorite food is bread and phil LOVES pizza. but we were beginning to rely on fast food and processed junk in our business. the best part so far is the resetting of our palettes - i don't crave coke and m&m's in the afternoon now : ) i'll definitely be posting on some of our experiences. i'm experimenting with chickpea flour (current favorite thing!) and other low-carb recipes.
traveling. i have been lucky enough to take a couple of trips with my girlfriends in the past month...
first, i spent a long weekend with three sweet girls (jennabeth, alycyn, and beth) in palm springs. it was AMAZING! the warm weather. the sun. the giggles. the swimming pool. the wine. the food. the friendship. we had a blast just goofing off around town and being the youngest people in every room : )
then, i went on the annual maple fest pilgrimage with my book club. this was my third time and we were lucky enough to stay at a gorgeous estate near staunton, virginia. we wake up early to eat pancakes and maple syrup in highland county, then go wine tasting around the area. it is so peaceful and beautiful in that area - you can see the mountains from almost everywhere. there were 12 of us and beth's sweet parents came over and made breakfast sunday morning! i overdosed on maple (followed by a little too much wine), so i didn't partake in the wine tasting on the way back to washington, dc. it's one of my favorite weekends every year.
things i'm most looking forward to this spring: going to west texas for to see my nephew!!! and peru (duh!)