Thursday, July 22, 2010

Welcome to the Real World

So it’s been a while since I’ve written but that’s in large part due to the whirlwind of a summer I’ve been having (and in small part due to laziness). I also knew once I graduated college that the “real world” would begin, and boy did I underestimate that. I’m having a love-hate relationship with it so far. Whereas I thought I’d be drowning in bills and responsibilities, there are also some perks to being a real person.

Everything is new this summer. New job, new car, new apartment, new phone…like I said, a whirlwind. Getting paid is definitely a perk. Even though the money seems to fly out as soon as it comes in, there’s something to be said for being almost completely independent. I say almost because it may be too soon to say I might not need sporadic help from the parents. But so far, the bills have been paid on time.

Thank God I like my job. There are times when it’s a bit slow and I get bored, but most days I’m super busy and the day flies by. I love being busy. I’m surprised how much traveling I’ll be doing for work. It’s not that much but more than I expected, which I don’t mind. I’m going to Jefferson City, MO next weekend to work the Missouri High School Volleyball Coaches Association’s clinic. Then I’ll be going to Anaheim, California in September to do a site visit for our Spring Conference. And of course, I’ll be traveling at the end of December to Kansas City, MO for our annual Convention. Fall is always the busiest time for the AVCA as we prepare for convention, so I’m bracing myself for very long and hectic workdays coming up soon.

I’m moving into my new apartment this weekend. Christina will be moving in a bit later. I’m excited to be totally moved and settled in. As much as I hate moving, I love scenery changes so it’ll be great. I also have the Rascal Flatts concert coming up with Casey, Michelle, and Tommy. And of course working the beer booth at the St. Joes Festival…summer staples. I’m also going to Gatlinburg on Labor Day weekend with Jonathan, Christina & Von, and Tommy & Steph. I’m SO excited, I’ve never been there. And I love just relaxing and hanging out with friends so I know it’ll be a good time.

My family and I are headed to NY in August for my cousin Stephanie’s wedding and then to Cleveland to finish out our vacation at Cedar Point. Allison and Dad will be on the absurdly high roller coasters while mother and I will be on the lazy river.
In other news, Allison and I bought Dad an ipad. I decided that since he’s been working to buy me everything for about 21 years, I could work to buy him something he really wanted. He was SO shocked when we surprised him at the Apple store. He’s really happy with it so I’m glad :).

Well that’s about all I can think of right now, more later.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Next Chapter in My Life/Time to Become a Real Person/Kicked Out of the Nest/The Expiration of the Andress Financial Fund

(So many good titles – couldn’t decide on one)

Personally, I don’t see what’s wrong with being unemployed, sleeping/shopping all day, and living off Jonathan, but apparently that’s frowned upon in our society, and I don’t think he’d go for it. Therefore, I had to find a job, and fast! The Caddy was on its last legs, and Dad was more than ready to kick me to the financial curb. I knew it was coming, but once you actually sit down and map out ALL of the things your parents are going to make you pay for now, it’s quite daunting. But more of that later.

I had interned for the American Volleyball Coaches Association for two semesters and got really lucky when someone left, opening up a new position. So I interviewed and got the job! I am now the AVCA’s Events & Education Specialist. Mostly, I’ll be planning/executing various portions of our convention, conferences, and clinics, as well as facilitating educational aspects such as online resources and event speakers.

After securing a job, it was on to the next most important thing: getting a new car! Contrary to what my Father thinks, a ‘92 Caddy is not “cruising around in style” and is DEFINITELY not the envy of every other college student. Thus began (or continued) the search for Kali’s new ride. I had many previous failed attempts at obtaining a new vehicle, so my hopes were anything but up. I basically knew I was going to end up with a Hyundai (rhymes with Sunday) because every one of my family members has one, and my mother knows the people at Florence Hyundai really well because of it. (Not to mention she can wheel and deal better than the best.)

I had the choice of getting a new 2010 Hyundai Sonata with no features or a 2009 Sonata Limited with all the features (leather seats, heated seats, nice rims, duel exhaust, sun roof, etc.) Since the 2009 was just a rental car, it only had 10,000 miles on it and still smelled like new! So that’s what I got: 2009 Ebony Black Hyundai Sonata Limited. It’s so pretty and I absolutely LOVE it. Oh! Forgot to mention, I got it on my birthday! Happy 22nd to myself! (Yes, I’m paying for it all.)

After getting the job, and the car, I had to find a place to live once my lease was up in August. Thank God one of my best friends, Christina, got a job here too and wanted to live together! We found a brand new apartment complex that is beautiful. It’s in a good location for both of our jobs, and is cheaper because it’s not by campus. We move in August, and I CAN’T wait! Jonathan and Von have already volunteered to move all the heavy furniture. How nice of them. :)

Graduation was held on May 8th at 8:30am in Rupp Arena. I was really glad that was the location, because I wouldn’t want to celebrate my college career anywhere else. My parents and Jonathan were there, and they happened to pick the perfect seats really close to wear I was sitting. I kept looking up at them and Jonathan would yell at me to pay attention. HAHA. It was a great ceremony, and I didn’t trip on any of the steps: Mission Accomplished.

That night our entire group of friends, and Jonathan, went to Saddle Ridge. We played flip cup, danced, and had the best time. It was the most fun I’ve had with everyone probably in all my 4 years here. Our last “hurrah” was perfect.
Now onto the real world. 40 hour weeks, bills, responsibilities, here I come.

Banquets Galore

As my senior year of college was winding down, there was a plethora of events to attend. In the middle of April, the global scholars were finishing up meeting with Kalam, the former president of India. Nothing like a project where you have to solve all of the world’s problems in two weeks. But Kalam turned out to be really nice and interesting to meet with. I can see why he was such a popular president in India.

During this time, intramurals was also coming to a close. We got really far in volleyball, I would say a game before the semi-finals. But then we played a team with a guy who jump-served every time like he was on the national team. I mean really, is that necessary? Basketball season was bitter sweet. I ended up getting a GREAT team together. We were well on our way to the finals, but then we had a game time where no girls could make it. So we got some random girl to come who showed up 10 minutes late. The other team got 3 points for every minute late she was, so the score started at 30-0. The part that really sucks is we ended up losing the game 79-70. So in reality (I’ll do the math for you) we should have won 70-49. The other team wasn’t bad either, our boys just really stepped it up and wanted to come back and win. Garrett had to of made 5 three’s in a row. I didn’t even think it was possible, so I was very surprised when we got so close. So, unfortunately, basketball is over, but it was so much fun. I’ll definitely miss UK intramurals.

That weekend I had two banquets to attend. Jonathan was only supposed to go to one, but he BEGGED me to go to all of them so I wasn’t going to ruin his excitement! Saturday morning my parents and J came down for the Gatton Scholarship banquet, where they invite students to a luncheon to meet the benefactors. I had received a marketing scholarship and met Peggy who was the nicest lady. She really took an interest in my academics and future career. It was great to meet her, and I already have been corresponding with her through the mail!

That night was our last ever AKPsi banquet! I was so excited because that is probably the thing I look forward to most every semester. It was held at the Crown Plaza and I am happy to say it was the best one ever! I really liked my white, one-shoulder dress and unreasonably high heels. All the seniors stood up, were recognized, and received our graduation sashes. After dinner, we danced and even J got in on the action! AKPsi events like those will definitely be missed.

The next Saturday I had the Global Scholar Senior Banquet for the first graduating class of Global Scholars. Even though we were the guinea pigs for the program for four years, I’m so glad the last of us stuck with it until the end. Again, Jonathan was dying to go, so he and the whole family came down for the event. It was held at Spindletop and was a dinner, slideshow, a couple speakers, and presentation by Brendan and Randa. They spoke briefly about how each one of us has grown or what we have all achieved and then we received certificates, medals, and small gifts. It was a great wrap up to a program that has shaped my college experience, and brought me some of the best friends.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Spring Break Cruise

So for my last Spring Break I decided I had to do something fun. My friends and I all signed up for a Cruise to the Cayman Islands and Cozumel, Mexico. I was just so excited to get away from the cold weather and enjoy some relaxation. The group consisted of: Myself, Sarah (small one), Christina, Kacey, Whitney (Whit-Mo), Sean, Megan, Brody, Derek, Logan, Toni, Kristin, Taylor, Erin, and Melissa.
Sarah, Christina, Kacey and I flew to Tampa on Friday and stayed the night in a hotel before our ship sailed on Saturday afternoon. While we were waiting in line to get on the ship my throat started hurting and I was really upset. Figures I would finally go a few weeks without a cold and get one right before our trip. Luckily, it didn’t bother me too much and went away after a couple days. Besides, I had bigger fish to fry, like sea-sickness.

As soon as we got on board, Sarah and I changed into our suits, bought an over-priced tropical drink complete with a mini umbrella, and headed to the lounge chairs. I have to say I was a bit disappointed with the very small size of the only pool, but there were multiple decks for sunbathing and I wasn’t going to swim anyways.

Once we got our suitcases we unpacked, walked around the ship a bit, and got dressed for dinner. Apparently there were really bad storms around our area and that caused huge waves. The boat was rocking and swaying so badly that it was hard to walk straight. I had never been sea sick before, but there’s a first time for everything. Waiting to walk into the dining room I felt completely nauseous. Luckily, I wasn’t the only one. About half our table looked green in the face. We started dropping like flies. First Brody left, then Erin. I really wanted to eat some food but I gave up before the food even came. I went back to the room and well… let’s just say it wasn’t pretty. And it wasn’t a good first night on my cruise.

Thankfully, I woke up feeling much better and the waves chilled out. I don’t remember what we did from day to day, so I’m just going to highlight the fun stuff I remember.

I think dinner was my favorite part of the on-board activities. One of my favorite things to do on a regular basis is to go out to eat with a group of my friends. So I loved dressing up, getting free food, and having a glass of wine (or beer) with my fellow UK seniors. Other things on the boat that I enjoyed was laying out by the pool, the comedians, the random singers around the ship, the “Love and Marriage” show, Bingo (Whit-Mo almost won like $1200 or something ridiculous), Karaoke night, and the casino (I made $12!).

Cozumel, Mexico was also a lot of fun. It was the exact day that I pictured when imagining what spring break would be like. The sun was bright blue, the water was blue-r, and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. We went to a beach club where there were chairs, a pool, and a bar/restaurant. It was such a pretty day and I just relaxed the whole time. I attempted to get in the water but it was really rocky and something swam across my feet so I ran out and didn’t bother with it again. After the beach we walked by the port where there were a bunch of souvenir shops and had some lunch at the Three Amigo’s Bar.

My absolute favorite part about the trip was the Cayman Islands, because Sarah, Whitney, Sean, and I had signed up for an excursion. We went to the city called “Hell”, to the sea turtle farm, and to a sand bar in the middle of the ocean to swim with sting rays. The city was named “Hell” because there are all these jagged rock formations from when the volcano erupted, and it looks like what most people think of when they think of hell. There is a gift shop where you can get all these souvenirs so we bought T-shirts that say “I’ve been to Hell and back” and I sent postcards to my parents and J that are postmarked from Hell. I thought it was pretty cool.

Next we went to the Turtle Farm! I was looking forward to this more than anything because I LOVE sea turtles! And it definitely did NOT disappoint! We started looking into this huge tank where there were huge turtles that weighed like 500 pounds. Then we went to the smaller pools where the babies were kept and we got to hold them! It was really funny because the turtle would flap their fins frantically when they were out of the water and to calm them down we had to rub their necks. And they really would stop flapping then and just chill. I kept having flash-backs to Finding Nemo. I also got to catch one out of the pool myself and hold it, so that was pretty cool. I was disappointed to find out that they raised turtles there to not only set some free, but also to EAT them. Not cool. I refused to try the turtle soup.

The last stop on the excursion was Sting Ray City. Several miles of the shore is a sand bar, where the water is so clear and turquoise, it’s breathtaking. There’s a sand bar that’s about 4 feet deep and since boaters have been going there for year and feeding the sting rays squid, they stick around and are people-friendly. I was armed and ready with my water-proof camera and all the courage I could muster (I mean look what happened to the Crocodile Hunter- I didn’t know what these things were capable of). I grabbed my snorkeling gear and climbed down the ladder about to jump in when a HUGE one swam right under me. I freaked. So much for the brave façade. When the coast was clear I jumped in. It was so cool being totally surrounded by ocean but being able to stand. I wasn’t as scared after a while because the boaters would catch the sting rays and hold them for us to pet, hold, hug, kiss, etc. They would even let us float on our backs and run the rays up and down us like a massage. Their bellies are SO silky smooth! It was definitely one of the coolest things I’ve ever experienced and it made the entire trip very much worth it for me.

The last night of the cruise, as we headed back towards Tampa, I started getting sea sick again. So I’m somewhat weary about cruises because you never know when a storm is going to hit and you’re down for the count all night. And when your friends are lame and keep using water phrases like “it comes in waves” and “Kali can’t handle the motion of the ocean”, it makes you even more nauseous.
But overall I had a great time and was sad to get back to the real world of school. This is long enough, and if you are still reading, I commend you. Bye!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Polar Bear Plunge

Jonathan came down for Valentine’s Day weekend and we got to go to the UK vs. Tennessee game. Christina and I made shirts that said “Volunteer to Lose” (see above). UK won, of course. On Valentine’s Day we dragged Jonathan and Von to the movies to see (surprise) Valentine’s Day! It was actually a really funny movie and I know the boys secretly liked it. The whole next week I dedicated to the job search. I’ve been sending out a bunch of resumes and found some jobs that sound great! We just have to wait and see.

At some point a couple weeks ago I thought I would be a good citizen and sign up for the Polar Bear Plunge, which consists of jumping in a pool of freezing water in the middle of winter. All proceeds go to the Special Olympics. So last Saturday a couple other AKPsi girls and I went to Texas roadhouse and participated. My parents came down to watch and take pictures so I was really glad to see them. Once I got on stage I was totally freaking out and the girls had to basically drag me in. It was WAY colder than I was expecting! They said the water was 35 degrees. And since I jumped in with so many articles of clothing on, I could barely get them off! But it was fun overall and I’m glad I raised money for a good cause. (Of course the day after was almost 60 degrees outside. Oh well.)

There are only about 2 and a half weeks left until Spring Break so I’m back to the work out routine and the “Kali-diet”. I call it the “Kali-diet” because it only makes sense in my head. It’s all about will power, trying really hard not to snack before bed, and justifying pop-tart filling for a fruit serving. We’ll see how it goes. I would just like to be able to fit into my bathing suits from last summer. But I did sign up for an excursion on the cruise! We are going to the town called “Hell”, swimming with sting rays, and going to a turtle farm! I’m so excited because I LOVE sea turtles! I’m somewhat apprehensive about the sting rays but you only live once!

On the school subject, I’m doing well. I got a 100% on my first marketing research exam. I am prepared for the grades to dip a bit once we get into statistics (I think I’m missing the gene for comprehension of that subject) but at least it’s a good start! For our Global Scholar Strategic Management class we are in the process of creating a new restaurant business plan and menu. Our restaurant is “the last stop on the bourbon trail” and features wing sauces made from all the different kinds of bourbon. We have to prepare a signature dish at our professor’s house for judges to taste. Lucky for the judges, I’m not cooking (I didn’t want them to have to sign a waver). Playing it safe: I’m working on the business/marketing plan and store layout.

On the sports front: USC sent UK a taunting letter after they beat us a few weeks back. I feel really sorry for them that they have to come play at Rupp now. Not a very smart move there, Gamecocks.

I would also like to share that I was just sitting on my couch enjoying a bowl of Life cereal when I proceeded to tip the bowl over covering myself in milk. As I waddled to the kitchen to get paper towels, I left a nice little trail of Life cereal pieces as they fell off of my pants. I’m pretty talented.


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

First NBA Game!

This past weekend I got to experience my first NBA game. Jonathan is a Cleveland Cavaliers fan so for Christmas I bought him tickets to the Cavs vs. Pacers game. So last Friday he took off work early and we headed to Indianapolis. Once we checked into the hotel (we actually had a reservation BEFORE we went – shocker) we headed downtown. We parked literally next door to Conseco Stadium and looked for somewhere to eat before the game. The Hard Rock Café was nearby so we chose that. It was painfully cold outside, WAY colder than NKY. We sat in the Michael Jackson room and had some yummy french fries smothered in cheese and bacon! (I’ll discuss how the diet’s going later on).

Jonathan had bought a shirt with the puppet version of LeBron throwing the chalk up in the air (his signature pre-game ritual). So he was pumped to see that. When we got to the stadium we headed down to the floor to take some pictures of warm-ups. The stadium is really nice and I think it’s relatively new. We sat in some random seats abut 6 rows back from the court hoping we could get some pictures of LeBron before we had to move. Amazingly, the seats we chose were the only ones that didn’t fill up right before the game. No idea how we got that lucky! I got some great pictures up close and we had an awesome view for the 1st quarter.

At the end of the 1st quarter, the people whose seats we were in came and we were forced to move to our nosebleed seats. We were so high up and the steps were SO steep that my fear of heights kicked in (especially since I was in heels and carrying a beer). But the view wasn’t so bad, so we still enjoyed the rest of the game.

The half-time show was this small Chinese woman who rode a really tall unicycle while stacking bowls on her feet. Then she would flip up the bowls catching them on her head. She kept increasing the number of bowls she would flip and got up to like six or something. It was crazy! I wonder how people figure out they can do things like that. Of course Jonathan mentioned that he used to be able to ride a unicycle (that boy can do everything). I said he belongs in a circus because he can do flips, juggle, and apparently, ride a unicycle.

We came back early afternoon on Saturday because Jonathan was feeling pretty sick with a cold. Saturday night I hung out with Jen, Tommy, Steph, Michelle, Casey, and Ben. We played a game called Battle of the Sexes that was pretty fun. I was going to see Avatar in 3D the next morning but after a few too many glasses of wine that didn’t happen. So instead I went out to eat with my parents and then to Jonathan’s flag football game. I was so glad Jen came to watch with me because we always get in some quality girl-talk time. Unfortunately, J’s team lost but he scored the only touch-down! I love bragging about how my boyfriend is the best receiver on the team  Jen and I want to make big corny signs for the next game but J won’t let us HAHA.
Two weeks ago I was doing REALLY well working out almost everyday. Then I got really sick for a week. So I am starting back up on Friday (I have to spend today and tomorrow studying for my Marketing Research exam). Hopefully I can do as well as I was before! Just getting in some cardio and weights everyday really feels awesome. And hopefully I’ll fit into my bathing suits for the Spring Break cruise!!

My parents are on my back about updating my resume and sending applications to places (as if I don’t know I have to get started). So I plan to spend Friday working on that. Talk about the most stressful time ever! I was watching Gilmore Girls the other day and the daughter who was graduating from college put it perfectly: I’ve always been able to see what is in front of me, what to expect. But now it’s like I’m standing on the edge of a cliff looking out into a huge abyss. And I can’t see what’s in front of me because it’s foggy. It’s really foggy.

Monday, January 18, 2010

My Last Christmas Break

So once the week in Florida ended I headed back to the snow :( After working the long hours for a week, I was excited to have a couple weeks off to relax and do absolutely nothing. Here is a list of things I did over break:

- Went to a Bengals game with Jonathan. It was so cold that we left around the 3rd quarter!
- Saw Avatar. Jonathan wanted to go and I thought it was going to be SO lame but it was SO good! I really want to see it in 3D before it leaves theatres! I definitely recommend it!
- Had game night with Ohio National friends at Tommy and Steph’s! I’m pretty sure the females won every game.
- Christmas! Some things I got: a shoe book and calendar, clothes, steamer, and a digital camera! Oh and purple suede Steve Madden pumps from J!!! 
- Had my first ever Chipotle burrito. I actually really liked it a lot! Look at me broadening my horizons!
-Had lunch with my godmother, Rosemary! It was go great to catch up with her! I definitely don’t see her enough!
- Experienced the Andress Epidemic. My whole family got sick. My dad gave his cold to my mom who proceeded to mope around the house yelling at Dad for making her miserable. It was quite comical.

Now I’m back to school for my.. OMG.. last semester of college!! NOOOO make it stop! I don’t want to leave this life of luxury! But Daddy says “the Andress college fund runs out after this semester.” Sigh. Guess I have to become a real person. So this semester I’ll be busting my butt to get some interviews in Cincinnati. I’ll keep you posted!

Tomorrow starts my first full week of classes. Marketing Promotions is going to be a breeze, Marketing Research looks like it’s going to require some actual attention. Hopefully it’s not too bad. And the Global Scholar class could go either way. It looks like we will be doing some interesting projects, just have to see how it plays out. Oh, and the former president of India is going to be teaching us. Yea, India. Like the country. Crazy, I know! Well I need to put all the syllabus dates in my planner and color-code all my classes so cya later!

P.S. Happy Birthday, Jonathan!!! Miss you!

Palm Trees in December!

In mid-December, once I aced all my finals and peaced out of school, I headed to Tampa, Florida for the American Volleyball Coaches Association annual Convention that is held in conjunction with the NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Final Four. Our convention is a week-long event with things like educational seminars, volleyball vendors, meetings, awards banquets, etc. The convention center had a HUGE warehouse where they built 2 courts and 1 sand court. Surrounding the courts were rows and rows of vendors and right in the middle was, my baby, the silent auction.

When I first started my internship my boss told me that I was in charge of all aspects of the silent auction. I have never organized one before but I worked hard all semester to get as many great items as I could. I had so much fun setting it up and displaying all the items just the way I wanted. I also took time to “man” the tables to answer questions. Last year the AVCA silent auction made $3.000 and this year I made $14,000! I’m so happy that I was able to meet everyone’s expectations.

I also got to work the golf tournament. So I spent a day on an Air Force base that was right on the beach. It was great to drive a golf cart around, look at all the crazy birds, and enjoy the weather and view! Speaking of views, my hotel suite had TWO balconies, TWO flat screens, and a king size bed just for me! I think I can get use to this “real person” working situation if I get perks like that! Not to mention the weather was super warm. It was weird though, hearing Christmas music while surrounded by palm trees. Somehow those just don’t mix to me.

During the week I also got to watch the Final Four games. Penn State took away the championship and it was great to see all that great volleyball. I must say, though, it makes me miss playing a LOT. I wanted to jump up and get in there!
I was also on TV! I helped work the Under Armour High School All-American Match and Skills Competition. I held the speed gun to test who was the hardest hitter. I watched the show when I got home and spied myself on the sidelines a few times! If you want my autograph, just ask!

The whole weekend ended up being a great experience. I got to see all my hard work throughout the semester come to fruition and really enhanced my passion for event planning and fundraising.

Good Friends, Good Drinks, and Good Music

The Fall 09 semester ended really well! I finally got that 4.0 that I’ve been waiting for throughout my college career. I seem to always have that one hard class that kills my GPA with a B. But this time I nailed it, so the parents were happy! I was super nervous for my Finance exam, but luckily I owned it! One thing I did learn from Finance class is that I think I have a mild case of claustrophobia. I really could not take tests sitting so close to people in the huge Memorial Hall. Oh well, it all worked out in the end.

Check out the sweet shirts we made for one of the UK games! We love John Wall!! By the way 18-0!! Number 2 in the nation!! GO BIG BLUE!

Like every other semester, we had our AKPsi banquet to wrap things up. AKPsi is my co-ed business fraternity, for those of you who didn’t know. Yes, it’s a frat, and yes it’s co-ed. We focus on the professional aspects more than the social ones (or so we like to think). Anyways, Jonathan came down to attend and it was held at a hotel nearby. I’m going to go on the record and say it was my favorite banquet so far. The room was a pretty good size, the food was good, and it was so much fun. I love dancing with my girls! I also taught Sean to do the “stanky leg” and Jonathan even did the Cupid Shuffle with us! It seriously makes my night when he gives in and dances :)

Nights like that make me realize how much I'm going to miss all this when we graduate. There's nothing like being surrounded by good friends, good drinks, and good music.