Young, Wild & Free

As I get older, I sometimes get the feeling that I need to stop doing things I did when I was younger. Thinking about this reminds me of all of the posts I see referring to telling your younger self what not to do as you grew up. Like every one else, I made plenty of mistakes, and I still make them to this day, but I wouldn’t necessarily change all that much. Becoming who you are, and finding out about yourself is a part of the process, but so is holding onto those memories and making new ones.

For starters, when I turned 21 I was going out a lot. Every weekend, and several times a week. I was losing money, sleep, and time by doing this, but I have so many memories from it. I didn’t do anything stupid like go home with a random guy, or throw up in the bar bathroom (okay, unfortunately that last part may have happened) but I was semi-smart about my decisions while I was out. The most important thing was that I was with my friends, they wouldn’t let me be too wild and crazy, but we sure did have fun.

Another thing my young self did that I would continue to do over and over was jump the fence at the Towson University baseball stadium and run out onto the field (on the walk back to Allison or Dave’s from said bars above). The first time I did this was after a music festival and Dave and I were going back uptown to find Allison. This was before we were dating and I felt the need to impress him so when he said jump the fence and run, I did. The second time I did this was right at the very beginning of our relationship, Dave told me to jump the fence and he would meet me at the pitchers mound. The sprinklers started going off as he ran behind me, swooped me up and kissed me. Best. Kiss. Ever. Doing that small amount of trespassing will stay in my head forever, so young Macy, go on with ya bad self!

One of the best yet less wild memories I have from being younger, is going to my grandparents for Family Dinner every Wednesday evening. We still do this, but if it ever were to stop or if I were to move away, I want to remember this. Don’t give up any time with your family to do another activity. It could be going out with friends, going to a movie, studying, anything. Nothing is more important than those few hours of family time.

So looking back, yes I have plenty of mistakes under my belt, but I would want my younger self to do a lot of the same things. I am pretty happy with who I am now, and I think that has a lot to do with it.

 

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What The Heck Starts With “X”?

For the letter “X” I couldn’t think of anything that made me happy beginning with that letter. Instead of posting about something that begins with “X” I am posting about ex’s, not just ex-boyfriends, but ex-jobs, ex-anything. There is a positive reason for everything being a part of your past and not your future, and I want to get into some of those things.

Lets start with the obvious, Ex-Boyfriend(s). This is the most clear to me, they are ex’s (is it exes or ex’s?…oh well, sorry grammatically awesome peeps) for a reason. I now have the most amazing boyfriend, and never would have gave him a second glance if I had a boyfriend when we met. Although, I was mostly happy while I was with an ex, I am glad they are in the past now.

Ex-cars- I’ve had two. My first love/car/travel buddy/car pool agent which was my Jeep. My grandparents gave me their Jeep for my 16th birthday, and it couldn’t have been more perfect. I loved that car. It has all the extras that were available in the late 90’s ie. sunroof, cd player, controls on the steering wheel, leather heated seats, etc. I would have easily kept it forever if it didn’t start shaking uncontrollably every time I hit a bump on the highway. Charlie (my Jeep) was donated to cash for clunkers about 5 years ago, and I moved on. crying. My 2nd car was a brand new Chevy Cobalt. It was a pretty cool car, with a sunroof, and got me from here to there. Although, I learned quickly that I didn’t enjoy having two doors. Especially when I drove everywhere. But then I was in an accident when the Macebalt was 2 years old, and I moved on to my Chevy Cruze (LOVE it! but it isn’t a Jeep).

Ex-jobs- I’ve only had 5-6, but about 3 of them meant something. My first job was at a snowball stand in my neighborhood. I really enjoyed making my own snowballs packed with marshmallow. I eventually decided I wanted a job a step higher, and started working for the Water Sports rental company that I have mentioned before. I loved both of these jobs and learned so much. I am lucky to have an extrovert type personality because all I did was talk to customers. The only problem I ever had was when a customer threw lit matches at my in the snowball stand. Besides that, I wouldn’t change anything about my childhood jobs.

I hope you enjoyed learning a little bit about how “exes” can help to mold you to who you are today!

 

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Very Special

There are a few moments in my life that are very special to me, but one of them sticks out above the rest. When I was younger, my parents were separated, my mom and dad both worked full time, and I lived with my grandparents. Living with them was great, I have so many memories from growing up with them and they all mean so much to me. But the one that I think of the most often is when they made me skip school.

I lived with them while I was in Pre-K and Kindergarden, I don’t remember which I was in when they told me I wasn’t going to school that day but who would complain? They told me we were going for a field trip, I didn’t know where we were going but I didn’t care. We ended up at Fort McHenry in Baltimore City, and walked around for a while. Some of their friends were in town and they met us while we explored the area. I remember that day so well, and it holds a place in my heart. They even bought me gel pens!

I’ll hold the hundreds of very special moments with my grandparents forever, I am beyond blessed to have them around.

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Water Sports

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I grew up on the water, so water sports were a big deal. What other way would you want to spend a beautiful summer weekend? Out of the boat of course!

In my family, tubing is considered a water sport, and it’s one we take great pride in. Every spring/summer we all wait for the day that the boat gets put in the water so we can get out there and fly across the water. All of us do it, from my grandfather to my youngest brother. We have went through several tubes and banana boats over the last few years, but we crave the thrill so we always buy a new one.

Besides tubing, I love so many other kinds of water sports, which led me to the perfect summer job when I was in Middle and High School. I worked for a company that rented kayaks, windsurfs, sailboats and stand-up paddle boards, and learned how to do all of them within the 4 summers I worked there. Whenever I think of summer, I think of the beautiful days I will be able to spend on the water with my friends.

I am really excited to get better at water skiing this year, and hopefully learn to wakeboard!

Do you like water sports? What else should I try?

 

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Taking Chances

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As you can see I am about 5 days behind on the A to Z Challenge. To be honest, I didn’t even think I would make it that far without missing several days. But It happened, and here I am to catch up! For the letter T I am going to talk about taking chances. Taking a chance is something I find very important in life. Along with taking those chances, you also have to accept them. It took me a little while to grasp the concept, but at times you just have to dive in.

The first time I had to make a big decision was when I was 20 and going on my 4th year of working at IKEA. I loved the people I worked with, but I didn’t enjoy retail anymore and was ready for a new adventure. I started searching for a new job but didn’t really see anything that interested me. I knew I wouldn’t find anything perfect, but I at least wanted to enjoy my new job for a little while. Then one day, my boss from my first job called me and mentioned a new company he was working for. I was really good friends with my first boss, but when he told me he was working for a startup, I got a bit leery. Working for a brand new company, is scary you never know what will happen. But I went to the interview, liked the environment, and got the job a few days later.

I was nervous about the chance I took to work in a garage with a small amount of people, but here I am 2 1/2 years later at the same company. It’s been fun to watch it grow, and I have learned so much!

Another time I had to make a choice and take a chance was when I met Dave. I was attracted to him since the day I met him, I just knew I couldn’t do anything since we worked together. We became great friends, and I truly thought that was all we would ever be. Although, I went back and forth over and over again about if I wanted to talk to him about it. All of my friends knew, and I eventually found out he also did. Dang, guess I’m not good at hiding things. Then one night we were out with several of our friends, and I wanted to dance. The bar was playing some great throwbacks, and who can pass up a chance to dance to “I Wanna Dance With Somebody”. Everyone else was a little past gone to dance with me, so Dave stepped in. We were laughing and dancing and all of a sudden he asked me a question I never expected to hear, “what would you do if I kissed you?”.

In about 3 seconds a million things flashed through my head. Of course I wanted to say yes, but I was caught off guard and couldn’t even see straight. Then he did it, and fireworks isn’t the word. It was perfect. We turned around and all of our friends started clapping. It was one of the absolute best nights of my life, but it led to taking a huge chance and seeing where things went. Look where we are now, best chance I ever took!

I could go on and on about taking more chances, but I will let you get to taking some of your own!

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Sharks!

I can’t believe we are already on letter “S” through the A to Z Challenge! Today I am posting about SHARKS! I’m not sure when it happened, but I am obsessed with sharks. I am totally fascinated by them. I am the crazy person that wants to go diving with Great Whites and swim on top of Whale Sharks. Since I can’t exactly do that right now, I am going to tell you about the time I swam with Leopard Sharks in La Jolla, California.

In July 2012 I was on a vacation with my mom in California and as we were perusing Groupon for things to do, Swimming With The Sharks came up. We were staying in LA, but have a special love for San Diego and made the trek the next day. I love driving in California on the PCA. I don’t care about the traffic, I just know that I am in California and the traffic eases my mind. Anyways, I’m supposed to be talking about Sharks.

So we finally make it to the address listed on the Groupon voucher, and it leads us to a house. Well needless to say, somebody didn’t have a Leopard Shark as their pet and the address listed was wrong. We parked and walked to the beach, but nobody had a clue what we were talking about. Let me just mention I may have been more frustrated if La Jolla hadn’t had some of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen. Beautiful blue water, white sand, and Sharks, what more do you need? Finally we found a lifeguard that was willing to help us, he made a bunch of calls and figured out that we needed to go to a beach a mile away. We were running a little late for our scheduled tour but finally made it.

As a lot of people know, California water is freezing. All. The. Time. I have been in every month from March-September and no matter what, its bone chilling cold. Thankfully we were supplied with wet suits. As we were waiting for everyone else from the tour to get ready, we noticed a guy bleeding on the beach. Come to find out a Stingray went right into his foot, and left a large hole. We didn’t realize we would be swimming with Stingrays as well!

We were warned to be careful of the Rays while going into the water, and shuffle our feet in the flippers. Luckily, we made it in alive. At this point I was getting really nervous, I know Leopard Sharks aren’t known for snacking on humans, but what if the day I was swimming with them, was the day they would start. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case. The Leopard Sharks would even let you touch them, if you were a fast swimmer. There were SO many of them, it was unbelievable. It’s crazy to be swimming and turn around to a shark in your face, but also one of the coolest experiences ever. Another great memory with my mom for the books!

I highly recommend looking into swimming with the sharks if you find yourself in La Jolla one day. There is also some pretty great shopping ūüôā

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RAVENS!

It’s finally April 21st, meaning I can finally post about the Baltimore Ravens! I know I have mentioned them several times before, but now I can have an entire day dedicated to telling the world about my favorite team! So without further ado, The Baltimore Ravens!

I became a fan in 1996. You ask why I wasn’t a fan since I was born? Well the Ravens became a football team in 1996. Baltimore had a team before (BOO Colts) and some drama had happened with the Browns (meh), but then in ’96 we got our very own NFL team. Me and my family went to a game in one of the first few seasons, and my love grew stronger. After that game, a huge tradition began.

Every Sunday (or Thursday/Monday depending on the schedule) my parents have a party for the Ravens game. Some of my most favorite memories happened during these parties, and I will hold them close forever. We would sometimes have an upwards of 40 people in our small(ish) house, and it was decided that we needed an addition. Yes, an addition to a house for a football game.¬†But for my family, it wasn’t just a game.

Several years after the parties began, the Ravens were headed to the Super Bowl. Our large group of party attendees would hop in the cars after playoff games and head to the airport, where the Ravens would walk through before going to their cars. It was such a cool experience meeting almost all of the players, and seeing them so excited to see the fans after big wins. After each game we would do the same thing, and week after week players would stop for autographs, pose for photos and even stop for videos!

After the Ravens won their first Super Bowl, Baltimore went wild! However, I didn’t go with my dad, uncle and grandfather because I wanted to watch survivor with my mom and grandmother. Not going with them was one of my biggest regrets…(until last year!). The following year, the Ravens organization started putting on Pep Rally’s at the inner harbor. Players, mascots and cheerleaders would attend and hang out for pictures and autographs. The players were all so awesome, and more amazing memories were made. Brandon Stokely has always been on of my favorite players, and I was able to meet him several times because of the rally’s!

Year after year the tradition has been kept alive and I always know that during football season there is no such thing as a diet during Ravens season! Dave has never really been a sports fan, but he is adapting the Ravens ways. Thankfully, because I have always said I could never date a non-football fan, or a Steelers fan (sorry, just can’t do it). Last year when we won the Super Bowl, I am pretty sure we won him over.

In Baltimore, we celebrate Purple Friday. Every Friday during Ravens season, you have to wear purple, it’s a thing and if you’re a fan, you just do it. But during our Super Bowl run,¬†¬†everything¬†was purple for a month straight. And I mean Everything! Billboards, buildings, roads, my clothes, Dave’s clothes and even my hair. I think he was getting into it at that point, because who couldn’t? I am thankful for the 2012/2013 season for SO many reasons.

Ray Lewis. When he announced he was going to retire, I may have cried. He was my first jersey, the first sign I made was for him, and one of the first players I had met was him. Winning the Super Bowl was all for him, and it was amazing. I’ll be doing his dance forever. Another reason was because I was finally 21 and could attend all of the Ravens events downtown. I was even able to go to the Ravens Super Bowl celebration that was held after the Ring Ceremony. Best. Night. Ever. Finally being able to experience Baltimore after a Super Bowl win. A bunch of us jumped in our cars and went right to Baltimore City after the big win. It was awesome. Everyone was flooding the streets, running around, cheering, and just being happy. Everyone was Happy!¬†Then a few days later, a huge celebration was held in M & T Bank stadium, along with a parade. Over 70,000 people filled the field and the seats as the players came in to share this experience with the fans. There we absolutely some tears shed.

But when it comes down to why I am most thankful for that season, I only have one main answer. My Uncle experienced it. He was in and out of the hospital and hospice care throughout the 12/13 season, but he was doing so well during the playoff run and Super Bowl. He was able to come to my parents and watch ever game, get up and cheer for touchdowns, sit on the edge of his seat during double over-time while playing the Broncos (GO TUCKER), twiddle his thumbs during the blackout ¬†and go crazy when those final seconds counted down and WE WON the Super Bowl! He couldn’t have been more excited, it was an amazing experience, and it wouldn’t have been anywhere near as wonderful without him.

So thank you, Ravens. You have given me so many memories and happy experiences, so I will continue to cheer and show others that you are the BEST TEAM EVER.

Look who I met at a gas station!

Look who I met at a gas station!

Oh Hey, Ray!

Oh Hey, Ray!

Ravens Stadium Celebration!

Ravens Stadium Celebration!

50 Yard Line!

50 Yard Line!

Super Bowl Party with Uncle John!

Super Bowl Party with Uncle John!

Old Bay + Ravens= BAYLIEVE

Old Bay + Ravens= BAYLIEVE