A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Monday, July 22, 2013

IU-Pizzle: Weekend Wrap Up - Part 1

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IU-Pizzle (What my hubby calls it!)

I hope you had a fabulous weekend! Mine was a little out of the ordinary because we actually took an overnight trip to Western PA. It was a surprise birthday gift planned for me by my husband! I'm going to go ahead and break up this weekend's wrap up into two parts since there is a lot to report.

On to business!


As I get older, it becomes more apparent that planning for a vacation is a huge process- and we don't even have kids!

Example # 1 - I have to make sure I have healthy food options for the trip.

Starting from the top and going clockwise, we have my protein cereal,
protein bar, almonds, rolled oats, chocolate covered coffee
beans (for antioxidants, I swear!!!!!) and protein powder.

Example # 2 - Since I wouldn't be able to run (I'll explain why in an upcoming blog post- slight injury that is getting better!) I had to be sure to bring some fitness toys.

Who brings a 15lb kettle bell on vacation? THIS girl.

Example # 3 - We had to find someone to watch our cats for us. (Who turned out to be Pet Sitter of the Year, sending text message updates and pictures!)

We bribe our cat sitters with their choice of alcohol.
Now you want to be our cat sitter too, right?

Example # 4 - Wanting to pack light, I had to decide on which pair of Vera Wang (for Kohls) heels to bring along.

Then there's all the other pesky things one must worry about. Is the car filled with gas? (Nope, had to stop before we even got on the turnpike.) Do we have cash for tolls, tipping the maid, etc? (Nope, hit up our neighborhood bank as soon as we left the house.) Luckily we had the important stuff, though. Like kettle bells and chocolate covered coffee beans...

Day # 1 - Crazy Turnpike Drivers, IUP, Donegal, and Foggy Bottom

I have talked before about how people drive super crazy on the turnpike, but I must address this topic again. Let's preface this all by saying I do not drive like a little old lady. The turnpike is 65mph unless it's a construction zone. I hover anywhere between 71-73mph. (Sorry, Mom!) Of course, this is only if conditions are safe and there is not a lot of congestion or traffic. Generally, it's a pretty safe speed to be going, and one is probably not going to get pulled over. Okay, so I just wanted to make sure you know I drive safely and efficiently before I start complaining about other drivers.

PEOPLE ARE CRAZY. I am SHOCKED that there are not more traffic accidents/deaths than there already are. First of all, people LOVE to ride your ass on the turnpike. Say you're in the left lane, following a bunch of cars as you all pass slower drivers in the right lane. I like to keep a couple car lengths between me and the person in front of me. We ARE going 70mph+ after all, and if someone has to slam on their brakes, you don't want a pile up, right? WRONG. I can't tell you how many times I was passed in this situation, just so the person who passed me could be one car length ahead. And then they would ride the ass of the person in front of them. It is crazy. If you are someone who does this, I think you really need to reevaluate whether you like being alive, because this is a great way to get in a wreck and die on the turnpike. I'm just saying...

Then, there are people on the turnpike who just hate turn signals. They don't use them! They switch lanes, pass people, whatever, and they don't even clue in the people around them. It astounds me.

So there is my rant about the turnpike. I am sure I have a few more gray hairs from this road trip.

Megan's turnpike PSA: "Use your turn signal and maintain a safe driving
distance between you and other vehicles SO THAT YOU DON'T DIE."

I'll tell you one thing about the turnpike I really like. Rest stops. You see all kids of people there. My favorite kind of people I see at rest stops are Vacation Dads. I love Vacation Dads. They have the bright white sneakers, socks pulled up a little too high, khaki shorts, tucked in tee, and a big smile on their face because they are with their family on vacation! I applaud all Vacation Dads because it is a tough job, trying to keep everyone happy on the road and still have some sort of relaxation for yourself!

So after about three hours of dangerous turnpike driving, we made it to my Alma Mater- Indiana University of Pennsylvania! I hadn't been there in a very long time. In fact, I didn't even go to my graduation. The truth is, I didn't really like college. If I wasn't in class or studying, I was usually doing something alone... like eating, going to the movies, or elliptical-ing at the gym. I did meet three gals who turned out to be pretty close friends, but I only keep in touch with one via Facebook. I don't even know what the other two are up to. I was pretty much a loner and worried about getting good grades, practicing, and finding a ride home on the weekends because I was always super homesick.

Random Things I Remember About IUP:

1. Eating turkey sandwiches w/ pretzels on them during my world religions class. 
There was a girl in that class named Johntra. She was named after John Travolta.

2. Setting my VCR to record Survivor and The Bachelor.

3. Chatting on AOL Instant Messenger. (AIM)

4. Spending my Friday and Saturday nights either going to a movie alone 
or watching Forensic Files in my room.

5. Renting movies at Giant Eagle.

6. Walking about a mile to Bi-Lo for groceries and carrying 6 bags back to my dorm.

7. The yummy smell of the grilled cheese sandwiches one of the music fraternities would make 
and sell in Cogswell Hall over lunch time. I wonder if they still make them!?

8.  The "Jesus Man" who would stand in the Oak Grove during peak hours and proselytize.

The first thing I noticed as we drove into IUP is that about 50% of the campus is different from when I was last there about 10 years ago. Most of the old dorms that were there when I was were torn down and replaced with "suites". Luckily, my old building I lived in for most of my time at IUP was still standing strong (probably because they were single rooms) and I got to show my hubby where I lived. 

I watched a lot of Forensic Files in McCarthy Hall.

Then we drove up to The HUB and checked out the other place I lived:

Those gals were me 12 years ago! Except I'd be there on a Friday night
elliptical-ing and watching America's Funniest Home Videos.

After The HUB, we walked through the Oak Grove.

My husband assured me I could still pass for a college gal...

Don't you love his new outfit from Kohl's??????

Next, we checked out Cogswell Hall, the music building at IUP. I knew they tore down the old hall and constructed a new one, but I was not prepared for how different it would be. Obviously, it was a lot bigger, extremely updated, and over all 1,000 times better than the old Cogswell Hall. (For example, the old Cogswell had 14 practice rooms. The new one has 49.) But I was still sad to finally realize the building I spent so much time in only exists in my memory.

Next, it was off to Foster Dining Hall. It looked pretty much the same as I remember it. I did forget a few things- like where to dump your trays and how to exit. You would think I would remember something I did probably 3,000 times. Alas, I did not, and I told my husband the only reason I didn't know where to exit was because they changed it. Hehe! Anyway, the food was pretty much the same. Typical cafeteria style college food. I remember having a vanilla ice cream cone with chocolate sprinkles for dessert every day for lunch. I loved ice cream even way back then!

Next, we walked down the 11th Street hill to see where I lived my first semester- Scranton Hall. Except, it wasn't there anymore. It was demolished and replaced by the huge Stephenson Hall- full of fancy "suites". Whatever.

After a quick look at the athletic field, we took one more leisurely stroll through the Oak Grove and headed back to our car.

Onward to our next destination: The IUP Co-op Park! Apparently they have a gorgeous, highly rated disc golf course (Hmmmm maybe this is why my hubby wanted to check out IUP!?) so we had to make sure Paul got to play a round. I did a couple Deck of Cards workouts in the parking lot while I waited for him. I'm sure I looked crazy, but I couldn't run so I had no other choice! It's a really good course, so I am definitely glad we stopped by!

I don't know much about disc golf, but you throw
the discs into baskets instead of holes.

By now it was time to make the trip down to Donegal where we would stay overnight at a Holiday Inn Express. There is really no fast way to get to Donegal from Indiana. Some of the roads we were on didn't even have a painted line on them- that's how out in the country we were. I was so tired and hungry, but when our hotel appeared out of nowhere it was like a miracle!

It was a REALLY nice hotel. Normally we stay in pretty cheap places. Not just a cheap price, but cheap overall. This place was cheap in price but it was a brand new hotel! It had a nice pool, hot tub, small fitness center (nothing I could use, though), a huge free breakfast and coffee all day long. Most importantly, it was extremely clean and the staff was very friendly. If you ever visit Fallingwater (which was the occasion for our stay in Donegal) I would highly recommend staying here!

It had a lodge type decor, inside and out!

Lodge themed lobby. 

It was cool, except for these creepy-ass animals.


Nice pool! Too many kids, though.

It took us a long time to find somewhere to eat that night. Everything nearby seemed to be a "family style down home-y" type restaurant (I don't know how else to describe them, but I think you get the idea...) or a very smokey hole in the wall bar. There was a Subway and Dairy Queen but nowhere for me to where my awesome high heels I packed!

Luckily we found Foggy Bottom Lodge & Restaurant only 5 miles away. They had a nice deck for outdoor dining, and while I couldn't wear my heels (too dressy!) I could still wear a cute dress so I was okay with it.

I love Dirty Martinis!

Paul hates mason jars, but what do ya know, that's
what his soda came in. Poor Paul!

Ooooooh the GLUTTONY!!! Onion rings, french fries,
quesadilla, bacon cheeseburger... I rarely ever eat fried crap
(because that's basically what it is) but I must have a stomach made of
steel because when I do indulge, it does not bother me at all!

Time to head back to our hotel and get a good nights sleep! Tomorrow was set out to be an exciting day... I will save that for Part II. But here is a sneak peak at what is in store!

What did you do this weekend!?


  1. I remember seeing you in the gym on Friday nights sometimes! :)
    And I remember playing Cranium I believe, and another game in the tri-halls.

  2. Yes we had a few games together! Ahhhh the Tri Halls... they exist no more!