So There's That Series

So There’s That Vol. 20

{Sort of like  a “Friday Five”  or a “Life Lately” except it’s probably not Friday, and I gave up on the idea of a catchy alliteration. These are some bits and pieces of my glam #postgradlife. See past posts HERE}

These “So There’s That” posts really have become my favorite thing to blog and are essentially the core of what I share on here. I love that it allows me to properly journal what is going on in my life in a straightforward way and also share what’s making me laugh and influencing my life at the moment in various ways. Unfortunately, I went a little too long without posting one again… the goal is at least every 3 to 4 weeks. So I apologize if this post is a tad long, I’ve been busy since my last series post in mid-December!

**********

DIY New Patio Furniture

To know me is to know how much I hate the winter and being cold, and how much I LOVE sunshine and being outside. My family has always been all about creating spaces outside that are perfect for comfy evenings (or mornings) spent enjoying the weather and good company. All through college and afterward when I lived in Manhattan for 2 years I always had a porch/patio/balcony that allowed me to create that, but my first place in DC didn’t. I moved to my current place almost a year ago now, but by the time I found some extra time last summer it was almost too late to worry about furnishing my new balcony.

So fast forward to this spring, which I have been impatiently waiting for so I could tackle this right away. I did a lot of looking around to determine what I wanted to buy but finally decided that I wanted to go the difficult direction and make a project out of it.

This below was my inspiration from Pinterest. (Original link here.)

I used (14) 8x8x16 cinder blocks and (6) 4×4’s cut to 5.5 feet.

It was actually pretty easy to put all together. It was the loading onto the store cart, then into my car and then 9 trips from my parking garage and up into my condo (I did use a cart for the blocks) that really did me in. Eventually I will take it back apart to stain and seal the wood, and I might end up using nail glue on the top upright blocks.

I splurged a bit too much on the decorative pillows, but I couldn’t help it. Once I saw the crab pillow it all came together quickly! I do need to get rid of an extra coffee and end table set that I was stashing out on the balcony, but once those are gone I will do some planning for small table/rest of some sort and possibly some other decor and something to hold my plants that are currently inside on my window sill.

Soul Sisters

img_1288

I originally shared this picture a few months ago on Instagram, but I wanted to bring it back around because really, how cute and PERFECT are these mugs! They come as a set (obviously) and I gave Megan hers for Christmas. You can find them on Etsy from “The Sister Studio.” I love so many of her items!

FAIL

img_1241

This picture is also a few months old… You see I am always building on these posts so that they are supposed to be easier to pull together and edit once I’m ready to publish. Anyway, I couldn’t not share this photo. That drive way leads into my old apartment complex and I still can’t believe that a bus driver thought it could manage it.

Travel Journal

The biggest thing that has happened in 2017 so far is this little adventure I went on in February and have been busy posting just a few posts about….

Travel Journal: USW South Asia Board Team to Thailand and the Philippines

Travel Journal: Wat Pho, Wat Arun and the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand

Travel Journal: Pak Khlong Talat Flower Market in Bangkok, Thailand

Travel Journal: Chatuchak Weekend Market and Jim Thompson House in Bangkok, Thailand

Travel Journal: Thai Cooking Class and Elephant Rides in Phuket, Thailand

Travel Journal: Koh Hong Island Excursion

Travel Journal: Karon Beach Sunset in Phuket, Thailand

Travel Journal: Candid in Bangkok and Phuket, Thailand

Sister Act

These are all photos and videos with Jancz during my visit home in December. We love to send silly Snapchats back and forth to each other using the selfie filters, but doing them together ended up being really funny… well at least to us.

The Giving Keys

This is my original post from Facebook:

“I spent yesterday afternoon enjoying the DC weather in Georgetown and we stopped for some food and to watch the end of the Masters. A family of four walks up and asks if they can share the other two seats at our high top. Later as they are getting ready to leave the 8 (?) year old girl turns and hands me this necklace and says, “Thank you for being so nice, I want to give you my Giving Key.” Then she explains that you are supposed to wear and embrace your “word” and then pass it along to someone else when you feel ready or when you feel that someone else needs the message more than you. Dear sweet Luchina, thank you for making my day and the little lesson on love. Check out The Giving Keys movement my friends. We certainly need a bit more of this in our lives. #BeTheKey

Happy People

Currently obsessed with this tune. Really in my mind, Little Big Town can do no wrong.

Happy Thursday

Thursday’s are friends, fellowship and impromptu celebratory ice cream cakes.

Administrator of the Year

Back in January my Dad was recognized as Administrator of the Year for the Hermiston School District. I am proud to see him recognized for all of this hard work!

Read HERE —> http://hermiston.k12.or.us/blog/tom-spoo-2016-17-administrator-of-the-year/

Inauguration

Since I moved to the DC area one of the top things on my bucket list was to attend a presidential inauguration and was so thankful that my friend Logan signed us up to get tickets through Senator Moran. I did have a few people question and even shame me for wanting to go. I simply explained to them that 1.) You have no idea who I voted for, nor is it really any of your business to know or make guesses and 2.) I was definitely going to go REGARDLESS of who was being sworn in because I was there to experience a really cool and important part of history.

ANYWAY…
Aside from the 6(ish) hours that we stood in the misty weather, it really was a cool experience.

*Stole this picture from my friend was working the event up close.

Friends Are Part of the Glue

There are a couple of blogs that I read regularly, and one of those is a young teacher in Texas who mostly falls into the “mom blog” category. A while ago she had a friend pass away from cancer and shared this quote that I cut out of her Instagram comment. The quote resonated with me in so many ways that I immediately took a screenshot.

I didn’t want to share her whole personal post, so I sincerely apologize that I am not properly crediting it. You can find her blog here though: http://www.momfessionals.com/

AFA Alumni Spotlight

My best friend has a pretty unique job and I was so proud to see AFA, an organization I love so much, feature her in its spotlight! Go Megan!!

Read HERE —> www.agfuture.org/meganalumni


AFA Policy Institute

Speaking of AFA, the organization brought students to town for National Ag Day and I had the opportunity to join these fellow alumni for some round table discussions with the students about career paths and our own experiences. No matter what the event is, I always leave feeling refreshed and a bit more centered when I surrounded by the people brought together by AFA.

Out and About

A few snippets (and Snapchats) of life lately.

Girls Night Out = Korean BBQ and Karoke

img_1163

capture

img_1229

Snaps from Janci on the family farm are my favorite.

#Bromance

Last minute free tickets to Red Hot Chili Peppers? Why the heck not?!

Watched my Portland Trailblazers while they were in town to play DC. It was a pretty disappointing loss but great company!

My sleepy puppies back in Oregon.

Original caption from Facebook:

“Nicole and I always joke about how we practically have the same life story. Both Northeast Oregon girls with roots in the Oregon FFA Association who went to K-State Ag to study ag comm and had internships in the grain industry. And both of us ended up on the East Coast where I eventually hired her to do freelance work for my organization… which happens to be part of the grain industry. And that doesn’t even cover all of the other interests we have in common. But while we laugh about it when people ask us how we know each other, its actually the perfect example of how important it is to cultivate and invest in meaningful relationships, both personally and professionally, because you never know where that connection might lead you to or how that person might impact your life many years down the road.

On Sunday, we were able to share that together with Agriculture Future of America (AFA) students visiting DC for National Ag Day. We shared that we are better people and better ag communicators because we blend our personal and professional relationship. We support each other’s careers, the successes and DEFINITELY the challenges, but we are able to do that because of our friendship and respect for each other. And as a BONUS, it is just plain fun to have people to continue to share those life experiences, like #AgDay with.

This is year’s theme was “Food for Life” and I choose to think of that in terms of the relationships and my network in the agriculture industry, and how that fuels my life in every way. Without that network of people that makes me want to always strive to be better, I certainly wouldn’t be where I am in a job and industry that I absolutely love.”

My Life in Memes

Memes that are speaking to me right now… both thought provoking and just plain funny.

img_1172

img_1170

14731283_1235416193174026_381418600574763698_n

Gilmore Girls  GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Wesley and Robin

Obviously I was long overdue for an update on my favorite two little kiddos who both celebrated their birthday’s in the last two months.

Robin: At Christmas time wearing her new bow from me!

Robin: A new one year old!

Wesley: Fortunately my trip home over Christmas meant I got to spend lots of time with him!

**********

So, There’s That.

Cheers!

Family

Janci’s College Graduation

I figured I should probably go ahead and get this blog post up before the end of another week came up…

(I’m in the process of moving to a new apartment and getting ready for a work trip, so things are a little busy around here.)

But it was important for me to take the time to celebrate one of my favorite people. Graduating college is no small feat, and my sister did it with quite a bit to be proud of.

Janci grad announcement

She was on the Dean’s list almost every semester and recognized with the Outstanding Graduate Award for her major. On top of that she was a student-athlete, finishing her final season this spring as a 2nd Team All-Conference player, an Academic All-Conference student athlete and with a conference regular season team championship. She was also given the Champion of Character Award at the conference championship tournament.

#notsohumblebrag

I have always admired Janci for her tenacity. As much we try, there are a lot of new experiences and challenges that you can’t quite prepare for in college, but Janci had more focus and determination than most people I know. And most importantly, she found what she is passionate about, which can be the hardest part. I am so proud of all of her hard work and of the person she became along the way. Even though I keep moving further away from home, somehow we have grown closer as sisters and now best friends.

I was pretty disappointed that it didn’t work out for me to there in person to help celebrate her with the rest of my family, but thankfully they flooded my text message inbox with pictures to make me feel like I was there.

Congratulations Jancz!
I love you~

IMG_4481

My sister and our parents.

IMG_4477

IMG_4445

IMG_4446

IMG_4429

Mom and Janci.

IMG_4480

IMG_4437

IMG_4479

IMG_4427

IMG_4482

IMG_4443

With our Aunt Diane.

IMG_4474

IMG_4476

IMG_4478

With our Grampy and Grammy.

IMG_4426

With her roommate and teammate Karina.

Family

Gonna Party Like We Just Turned 21

janci individual

Today this girl {finally} turns 21.
I know these days, a cheesy birthday post are a dime a dozen, but then again its not every day that your baby sister turns 21.

This is Janci L’Amour.
She’s sassy, silly and smart.
She loves all things pink, action movies, baking, country music, golf and is forever in search of the perfect taco.
She’s a hard working student-athlete and can ALWAYS make me laugh.
She is NOT a morning person and might be even more impatient than I am.
Oh, and she’s definitely a crazy cat lady in the making.
Growing up, our ages didn’t often align. Far enough in age to not be able to relate to each other, but close enough in age for us to not get along in the process. There was a time where I thought we could not be more different.
And in A LOT of ways we are still very different, but over time that age gap faded and we grew to be best friends.
I know I’m only a few years older, but I just feel so proud to have watched her grow up, doing things her own stubborn way and become someone who inspires me.
She’s the perfect sister, side kick and partner in crime.

Happy 21st Birthday Jancz!
I’m so glad that you get to spend it at the U.S. Open and be a part of something that you are so passion about. And I’m SO EXCITED to celebrate with you in LAS VEGAS in August!!
{Insert Sister of the Year Award HERE}

I love you, to the moon and back,
Sissy

Family, Oregon

Sister Tattoos.

So this happened yesterday.

01afb58a6a22332fd9ae41055c4e3a0dc68fd6e977

The Spoo sisters officially have matching tattoos.

Janci and I have been tossing the idea around for about a year now,
and finally agreed on what we wanted to get.

There were a few different designs that we considered. It was pretty important for us to do something fairly simple and symbolic. In the end we went with our last name in Mom’s handwriting.

This was Janci’s first tattoo and my second. My other one is on my shoulder blade and let me tell you, the pain was no where close to this the first time around. I hate to admit it, but my sister handled it quite a bit better.

010f77fcb275b971fe72485c5a727265b8f272d321

This fiesty girl below is my baby sister and best friend.
She’s smart, determined, beautiful, funny and stubborn.
Even as adults we would advise you to stay clear of our crossfire.
But now we can switch it on and off in a second, which tends to drive Mom crazy.
She loves pink, baking, cats and golf.
Most of the time we are as different as can be, but continue to surprise ourselves by how that’s not necessarily the case anymore.

We’ve spent most of our lives complaining about all of the things we’ve had to share.
But I’m not complaining anymore.
I’m sure glad that we share this tattoo Jancz,
and even more happy that I get to be your Sissy.

IMG_1171

Family

A Spoo Kind of Love

Tomorrow people are either going to be full of sugar, rainbows and butterflies — or they are going to be hosting their own pity party. Then of course there are those people who will laugh it off because “it’s not even a real holiday.”

My view on Valentine’s Day is a little bit different though. Sure, I agree that it is a holiday about celebrating love, but for me it will always be about my family. Growing up in a family floral business means that every memory that I have of this holiday is at our shop, working alongside each other on our single most busy business day of the year. So tomorrow while I’m in class, I’ll be thinking about them, how crazy the store is, what ridiculous orders they got in and wondering how many times my ornery grandpa has made my mom and grandma want to throw something at him.

When it comes to other people I meet and the process in which you share about each other’s families, I always get the sense that mine is just a little bit different, a slight bit less than average. I come from a young family, which means that I am blessed to have relationships with my grandparents, great aunts and uncles, and have known almost all of my great grandparents. We are relatively small, even when you start extending, but in many ways I think that makes us closer. My family is very creative, hard-working and values the time that we invest in each other. Growing up in a family business has taught me a lot about communication, trust and teamwork. Sometimes that lifestyle was challenging, but many of my best memories growing up revolve around the flower shop. From the outside looking in one might call us a little crazy. Being teased is a sign of affection and a good dose of sarcasm and wit is a must have on the resume. To say we are stubborn is an understatement, but to me that translates into a strength that often puts me in awe of many members of my family. They are by far my favorite subject to talk about.

This last Christmas my intermediate family had family pictures taken for the first time since 1997.

That was then.

I keep it in my planner so I that I can see their faces everyday.

I keep it in my planner so I that I can see their faces everyday.

This is now.

familypics12

This is my baby sister Janci, 18 and our favorite pup Jack.

familypics4

These are my adorable rock star parents, Tom and Julie. He’s my hero and she’s my Gilmore Girl. Their example of love is what makes me a believer in it.

familypics5

My best friends.

familypics8

We are definitely daddy’s girls.

familypics3

familypics18

I’m so lucky that they are all mine. I wish I could hug them everyday.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

– Amanda