Does eHarmony Really Work?

So, after a long-term relationship, I let lose a bit. I decided that instead of moping, I was going to be confident and put myself out there. Well, I did. I attracted trouble. Trouble that I willingly accepted.

Why?

Reflecting on that time, I now know it was because of insecurities, once again- the complete opposite of what I wanted to embody.

I had accepted any guy into my life because I wasn’t sure if I would ever get a relationship, again.

Who wants to deal with this mess of a mind? The eating disorders? The emotional roller coaster? Who would willingly subject themselves to that sort of punishment?

After a bad break-up (your typical cheating, lying, bad boy), I wanted to give up. I stayed in bed all day, cried myself to sleep, and only woke to pee, grab a drink, or because my sleeping pill wore off. I did a little google-ing, one day, and decided to give eHarmony a shot.

Straight up– that’s how I’m playing this.

I followed the prompts to set up my profile, but I made sure to lay it all out there. This is me. Take it or Bye, boy, bye.

I wound up on and off the site for a few months. I met nice guys, but never felt the “spark.” I went on two second dates, but that’s it. I found a lot of guys that where just like the users I could find down the road.  I found a few really wonderful guys, but there was always something missing.

Fuck it!

I threw my hands up.

When my subscription is up, I’m done.

Two weeks before my subscription expired, I was still checking my matches in the slight chance, with the minute bit of hope that remained in me, of someone being “the one.”

12/31/15- This guy seems interesting… travels a lot… Osan? Where is Osan? (South Korea, by the way)… military nerd… looks damn good in a suit… I’ll send him a “smile.” 

That “smile” was returned back to me with the initial conversation prompts eHarmony provides. We quickly exchanged questions and responses, likes and dislikes, until it was time to actually send a message to each other.

This dude was so inquisitive. He asked a million questions. Like paragraphs. I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it.

Is he weird or just really interested? 

His curiosity caused me to be curious, too. We wound up sending paragraphs of conversation to each other, questioning everything from favorites foods and superheros, to family, religion, and card games…

In the first week, we transitioned from eHarmony messages to WhatsApp and Facebook messenger. And then Skype.

Everyday, we communicated. When we started Skyping, it was hours. Hours every night. Sometimes, not even talking. Each of us doing our own thing, just in the presence of the other.

Three weeks into exchanging messages and videos, I went and got a passport. Six weeks in, I applied for financial aid and re-enrolled on school to work on my next degree.

What was it about this guy that made me so… motivated?

April 2016- Mr. Military came back to the states on leave. His dad and great grandparents happen to live within 2 hours from me. Well, we met. I felt like a crazy person going to pick this guy I had never met in person before up from the airport.

This is insane in the membrane!

But there he was like. Like a bullshit scene in a romantic comedy, he dropped his bags at the terminal and swiftly walked up to me to hug me.

Well, he’s real… (I poked him just to make sure.)

We spent 3 1/2 weeks meeting each other’s families, and me showing him around Philly, introducing him to cheesesteaks and scrapple, local creameries, and some cool historic sites and Italian markets!

2016-05-02-11-56-59

To be honest, I would’ve married him. We joked continuously about driving to Atlantic City.

See, I told I was crazy…

I know I wear my heart on my sleeve, but this is excessive…

When he left, it felt like my heart had been crushed. It was like a physical separation without an actual break up, but with all the same excruciating pain.

August 2016- My first international flight. My first flight ever was Philly to Seattle. Go big or go home, I figured. If I’m going to fly, I might as well fly across the country. Well, if I’m going to take my first international flight, it might as well be on the opposite side of the world.

Together, we were able to buy the tickets. I left Philly 6:30am headed for an 8hr layover in Detroit. (Did I mention I was running on 2hrs of sleep?)

Next was the 13hr flight to Incheon Airport. I was so surprised that I got meals on the flight. And guess what… I ate all of them! Rice and all! (Stupid carbs. Why must you taste so good?)

I got my passport stamped, grabbed my luggage, and there he was in humid South Korea, flowers in hand, and wearing a big smile and his favorite Yoda shirt.

I spent 10 days playing house, cooking up a storm, experiencing a new culture, taking in some of the sites, and being introduced to his friends.

I already eluded to it in a previous post, but something else happened while I was in Osan… he asked me to marry him. (More about that, later).

We started talking about his new base and our future and decided a civil ceremony on his next leave to the US would be the smartest decision. (There is a lot involved when your get married and are overseas.)

Did I mention that his next leave was the following month?

Surprise, folks! Sammy Bundo got married!

So, yeah… I knew I loved this guy a month into talking with him. “You just know.” That’s what people tell you. “You just know.” What the hell does that even mean? How do you know ‘you just know’???

I was overwhelmed with this new feeling. I had loved before, but this was just different. I can’t really explain it any other way. My grandmother, my mom’s mom… she knew “it,” too, with my grandfather. She described it perfectly, “An inner peace.”

You know how they say, “There’s someone out there for everyone?” Well, my guy was in Osan, South Korea. The other side of the world.

It took a lot of users and abusers to realize what I really wanted in a life partner.All the hurt and heartache led me where I needed to go.

Don’t give up hope.

Merry Christmas, Darlings!

Merry Christmas!! I hope you all had a wonderful day! I am so excited to celebrate our first Christmas together. Yes, this is Barry and my first Christmas together, but I am referring to our first Christmas together… Yes… YOU!

Last night, I attended two celebrations. I really lucked out with not having to work. I first drove to Frank’s nephews house. How cute are the boys?! Cal and Anthony were preparing a four-course meal of The 7 Fishes! Not to mention, Cal baked a bunch of favorites, like her famous Angel Food Cake, pignoli cookies, and cocoa pistachio sables!

WP_005015 WP_005016 WP_005017 WP_005018

Unfortunately, I was not able to stay and celebrate dinner, as I was expected at my grandmother’s house. I was so so excited to see the family, but pathetically excited to eat some kielbasa! Every year, we had three main dishes in the Higgins house: kielbasa and sauerkraut, roast beef, and meatballs! I’m surprised I didn’t turn into a piece of kielbasa! Haha!

WP_005021 WP_005022 WP_005023

I had a couple favorite moments from last night. The first was a mommom combo. I first handed grandma a bottle of Spumanti from Barry and me. She loves this stuff! This is the drink she got completely buzzed off of at my graduation party. She was so excited she started kicking her feet, yelling, “My drink! Oh my drink! Oh I love this stuff!” (Keep in mind that this is a 79 year old woman with both knee and hip replacements, kicking her feet in joy… PRICELESS). The second was when grandmom opened an ornament I made for her. She immediately pulled it out of the box and kissed the picture of my grandfather that was in the ornament.

Another, came at my Aunt Linda’s House where cousin Eddie proposed to his girlfriend, Cindy! My Aunt was telling Cindy about Eddie’s First Christmas ornament, and when Eddie went to show her it… He showed her an ornament of a bride and groom on a motorcycle and tied around the couple was a ring. “So what do you say, babe? Will you marry me?” She was speechless. “Uh, I kind of need an answer. so I know what to do here…” We all laughed, she held out her hand and said, “Yes.”

WP_005025 WP_005026 WP_005029

WP_005128Aunt Linda was really excited about the gift she made me.. In all honesty, I normally would have had some serious anxiety with this gift, but I was so well-thought-out, I couldn’t help but love it! Its the Nurse’s Survival Guide, packed with goodies and a paper included that stated the following:

Nurse’s Survival Kit

Lifesavers– A reminder of the times your are a real lifesaver. Starburst– For that extra burst of energy. Mints– A reminder that your compassion is worth a mint to your patients. Kisses– because you deserve many. Tissues– To dry tears, yours or someone else’s. Bandaids– To help with all the “little stuff.” Gum– To help your through the sticky situations. Paper clip– To help hold things together. Tea bags– Sit back and relax after a hard day at work. Taffys– To help you lick the problems you face. Jolly Ranchers– To remind you to laugh when you feel like crying. Tootsie Rolls– To help complaints “roll” off you back. Rubber Bands– For when you need to stretch beyond you limits. Battery– To keep you going and going and going. Candle– For when you feel completely burned out. Snickers– Because laughter is the best medicine. Button– Because you may need to button your lip. Marbles– To replace the ones you will lose.

Everyone asked about Barry, but he had to work. He came over at 6am Christmas morning and we began the holiday early.

WP_005033 WP_005035 WP_005037 WP_005038

After opening presents with mom, Frank, Barry and my brothers, I headed over to dads with the pup.WP_005051

WP_005046We had a great morning. Money was a bit tight this year so we decided not the get a tree. Instead, we took a ceramic tree out of storage. My grandmother used to make ceramics and this one is one of my favorites! She even put a circuit in the base for a light bulb! It was a great substitution! Yay, for talented mommoms!

Who needs the avengers when youve got the Bundos??

Who needs the avengers when you’ve got the Bundos??

I thought it was pretty humorous that I got dad and Barry Captain America and Iron Man t-shirts, respectively, and my parents got me a Supergirl shirt!

Following a nice morning of family and gift exchanges, dad and I went to my uncle’s house. Before we headed over a prepared a few desserts. One of my cousins was on a low carb diet, so I made some dessert cups using Quest Bars. I cut a Lemon Creme Pie into 8 pieces, and and Apple Pie bar and a Double Chocolate Chunk bar into 4s.

Quest Cups

  • Quest bar of your liking
  • mini muffin tin
  • filling of choice

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut the Quest bars into the desired about of pieces. Space on a plate and microwave for about 8 seconds. Using dry hands, roll each piece into a ball. Flip over a mini muffin tin and spray the bottom of the pan with non-stick cooking spray. Flatten each ball into a disk and form over the coated muffin tin. Bake for 5 minutes and remove from oven. Once cooled, fill the Quest cups with whatever filling you desire.

WP_005077 WP_005078

I filled the Lemon cups with the left over fig and walnut filling from my Sicilian Crescents. I chopped up half a small fuji apple and mixed it with a packet of Splenda and apple pie spice. I, then placed the apple mix in the microwave for 30 seconds and filled the Apple Pie Quest cup. Lastly, I placed the Double Chocolate Chip quarters in the bottom of the mini muffin tin and baked for 5 minutes, as well. Upon removing the bar, I found 4 perfectly round Double Chocolate Chunk cookies, that RJ loved! Dessert would not be dessert with some fat free Cool Whip to top it off!

Aunt Carol and I took over the kitchen, preparing ravioli, Lightened Gnocchi, salad, gravy, sausage, and meatballs.

WP_005071

Great minds must think alike. Barry and I, both bought each other robes for Christmas. My parents got Barry a pair of slippers, and us matching pj pants. Barry’s parents got me a new pair of slippers, and us matching pj pants!

WP_005045WP_005121

Some of my favorite gifts, this year, included the ornaments I made my family, the Cutco knife Frank gave me, Dad’s laptop and Mom’s pendant, the onsies dad got me, my Ninja (thanks Barry), and the collage I made Barry’s sister.

WP_004902 WP_005111WP_005039 WP_005066 WP_005070WP_005052WP_005123

 

WP_005000

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

First’s Together

Talk about nervous eating!

So the food news is that I think u figured out why I get hungry at night. The bad news is that I have another mystery to figure out.

A girlfriend of mine suggested that I’m hungry at night because I work shift work. Since most of my shifts are at night, it could be throwing my body’s rhythm off.

Totally valid.

But I realized last night that on the days I sleep late, I eat more. One would think I’d eat less because I’m awake less hours, right?

Any ideas?

Moving on…

Yesterday, I experienced a few firsts:

  • Seafood in breakfast
  • Tony Luke’s
  • Hockey game

I slept in yesterday until a phone call woke me around 1130 am. I was still pretty hurt by the happenings with my mom from the night before and I think I slept to cope. Barry came over after his dentist appointment and I made brunch.

WP_004092Yesterday was National Fried Scallop Day. I wasn’t about to go hog wild with scallops but I remembered I had a small convenient frozen package of small bay scallops. After browning them in a skillet, I  combined it with crumbled turkey bacon and fat free cheese to create omelets for Barry and myself, while he made us some coffee.

While eating, I took the opportunity to apologize for how hard-headed I had been the night before. I  was terrible to him. I wouldn’t look at him or talk to him. He didn’t do anything wrong, I was just too caught up in my own head. In fact, Barry, and my girlfriend for high school, Maggie, really tried to make my day special. Barry had flowers delivered to the house, pink lilies, of course, and they were beautiful. They wound up being the center-piece on the table of my birthday dinner. And Maggie surprised the heck out of me! I had no clue she was coming over! To top it off, she got us tickets to see Demi Lovato in March!

WP_004121After a few odd and ends, Barry and I drove to Philly. We had time to kill and decided to grab dinner before heading to our destination. I suggested Tony Luke’s on Oregon Ave. Neither one of us had eaten there, but its a pretty popular joint. Its got a pretty decent-sized menu for a joint of its size. A few things caught our eye on the menu, but I begged Barry to get the Italian. I forgot to tell them no cheese, but delicious nonetheless, delicious. The Italian is a pork sandwich with spinach or broccoli rabe and provolone cheese. I, of course, opted for the rabe and asked for red peppers. While we were waiting for our sandwich, I grabbed hot sauce, sliced pickles, and cherry peppers for snacking! I love peppers, if you couldn’t figure that out by how often I eat them 🙂

WP_004094 ????????????????????????????????????????????????

One of my favorite things at Pat’s and Geno’s is putting cherry peppers on my steaks, so I was rather pleased to see that Tony Luke’s had them. I must have been pretty hungry, because I had eaten three cherry peppers, straight up. And they were good! Barry and I shared the Italian and we can not wait to go back!

With full stomachs and firey mouths from the hot sauce and peppers, we headed off to our destination: The Wells Fargo Center!

Barry is a huge Flyers fan. I, on the other hand, barely know anything about hockey, but love sports! Barry took me to my first hockey game and I had an absolute blast! I was learning the lingo, yelling at the officials, and screaming, “Knock’em out!” I had an absolutely wonderful time at the game and I can’t wait to go back! We discussed this concept of returning to the stadium and I voted that we make a tradition of it! Tony Luke’s for dinner and then the hockey game! What a great birthday present and nice way to spend our 5 month anniversary!

WP_004096 WP_004101 WP_004106 WP_004110

WP_004097“Look! They have a Sammy stand, hun!” I turned to see a concession stand called Melissa’s Farm to Fan, offering products like trail mix, Nutrigrain bars, black bean burgers, and apples. I had never seen that before in a sports complex, but I’m glad to see that the center is offering healthier alternatives.

I thought it was really neat how the soft pretzels were shaped, too! These are one of Barry’s weaknesses. My weakness? FroYo! Yes, froyo at a hockey game! I find it funny that I am always cold, I bought a cup of coffee, and I am bundled up, chowing down on a bowl of delicious frozen yogurt! As Barry and I circled the complex, smelling the wings and hot dogs in the air, I tried to figure out if ice cream was what I wanted, or if froyo was the way to go.  After some debating, I went with the frozen yogurt, because I love topping bars!!!!  I got a small squirt of all 6 flavors (chocolate, coffee, apple sorbet, salted caramel, vanilla, and cake batter),  from Gozen Yogurt, and topped  the bowl with cookie dough pieces, strawberries, and some mint chip pieces. Oh yeah!

WP_004107 WP_004108WP_004098 WP_004099

While I allowed Barry about 3 bites of this bowl, I watched the couple in front of us attack this bad boy! It looked spectacular! I could not believe how huge it was, but they tore it up!

WP_004111

I also came to the conclusion that Phillies and Eagle’s fans go to Pat’s and Geno’s, while Flyer’s fans head to Tony Luke’s. The line of bright orange pretty much helped me come to this conclusion.

WP_004093

After the game, I came home to finalize all of my paperwork for my job interview. While I was doing so, I had some serious nervous energy and ate. But the beauty of it was that I did not freak out and I did not purge. My one focus was on nailing my interview.

Spontaneous

I slept… until 1130am yesterday! I couldn’t believe it! Actually, I could. I’ve been taking cat naps the last few days and have been feeling super exhausted so it makes sense. I really must have needed some sleep.

I woke up feeling really great. I did 50 push ups and 50 crunches,  ate a yummy bowl of cereal with Kashi Go Lean, Fiber One Chocolate 80, and sliced strawberries, took a shower, tidied up a bit and waited for Barry.

WP_002883

Barry arrived with my graduation present, which he had been waiting for from Fed-Ex. He got me  a new stethoscope!!! Woo Hoo! Its pink and engraved!

WP_002896

After beating him at another game of Phase 10 (he got me my own deck), we decided it was time for him to experience a real Philly steak. I’ve said it before, but I’m definiatly a Geno’s fan. “Four wit with wiz, please, and a cherry soda.”  (I was buying for the folks back home, too). I told him he had to eat it with the provided cherry peppers, as well. Barry enjoyed his first experience with Geno’s.

WP_002884

We took a visit to grandma’s house to drop off her coleslaw container, and her precious Spumante. She was surprised by our visit and stayed there chit chatting for a bit. My aunt, who lives with her also told us the news of her adopting two puppies from a shelter in Georgia. She explained that the dogs were brother and sister, had come from an abusive home, and were about to be put down. They are absolutely loveable! I believe they were dalmatian and bulldog mixes, but they looked a lot like pitbulls with spots.

V__1260 V__0353

By the time we arrived back home it was about 830 or so. The day really flies when you  sleep until noon!

We, for some reason, were pretty sleepy, so we laid down until we heard back from our friends. After Lauren got off work, we met her and her boyfriend for frozen yogurt at Yogurt City. I got the usual. Also delicious!

WP_002887 WP_002888

I just realized, after looking at the picture, that our bowls all really fit our personalities!

During the conversation, Barry said, “Its weird… the longer I go since I’ve eaten Geno’s, the more I really want another.” A little fact about Mike and Lauren: if you mention Philly cheesesteaks… we are getting Philly cheesesteaks. In this burst of spontaneity, we piled into Mike’s car and drove back to Philly around midnight. Although Pat’s was open, Barry wanted another steak from Geno’s. Despite my warning about the hot sauce, Barry put it on his steak. When they state “hot,” they really mean it! Thank goodness he had a cup of Sprite!

WP_002891

Following, yet another delicious steak, we drove around Philly to kill some time. We finally made it back home around 330am! Guess what we did. NOT SLEEP! We went swimming in the pool and played a round of pool basketball. Can you guess who won? The Girls, of course!

Finally, being the sleepy party pooper, I initiated the mosey out of the pool. Finally, sleep!

If you’d like to learn more about the shelter, Middle Mutts,  or donate to help fund the adoption of other pups like Buster and Coco, please visit their facebook.

DDDD

Yesterday was a Vitalicious- sort of day. On night shift, we had pizza, and all day I was craving more pizza. I never crave pizza… ever! Glad I keep this baby in the freezer:

Tomato and Cheese

Tomato and Cheese

What I like about this VitaPizza is that there is a very thin crust, so it crisps nicely in the toaster oven, theres a thin layer of sauce and tons of diced tomato and garlic!

Today is, what we in the Bundo house call, “Daddy-Daughter Date Day!”

WP_000951

I had to wake up early this morning to drive to the hospital where my clinics rotation is to gather information for my patients this week. After that, I picked up the father and we headed to Philly. A few months ago, on my way to visit some family in Philly, I saw a billboard for the Titanic exhibit t the Franklin Institute. Dad and I have always had a fascination with the Titanic. We used to watch documentaries every Sunday morning on the Discovery channel. Luckily, through my recycling rewards points, I had a “buy one get one free” ticket for the museum.
We had a great time! At the beginning of the tour, you get a boarding pass with the name of a passenger. At the end of the tour, you find out if you survived the event.
Dad was 44 yr old, Mr. William Harbeck of Paris, traveling 2nd class to NY. He was a filmmaker, hired by White Star, to film Titanic’s maiden voyage. He did not survive.

I was Ms. Marie Grice Young, a 36 yr music instructor, to Teddy Rossevelt’s daughter, from NY, in first class, on my way to DC. I made it.
Some of the artifacts were amazing. They had light bulb! Yes, a light bulb, they pieced back together! It was neat to read little bios on some of the passengers and see some of their recovered belongings, including clothing, letters, business cards, and stationary. There was also a live “iceberg” for you to touch to understand how cold the water was. They recreated main rooms of the ship, like the stair case, bedrooms, and hallways. It really sucked you into the period. The only bummer, was that we could not take pictures. I did manage to snag a few though. Shhhhh… it’s a secret.

beautifully recreated doorway

beautifully recreated doorway

the coolest picture of the day!

the coolest picture of the day!

entering the boiler room

entering the boiler room

After the exhibit, we explored the remainder of the museum. One of my favorite parts ever since I was a kid is the Giant Heart! Its a huge heart that you can walk through. It takes you through all the parts of the heart through a maze of stairs, meanwhile you hear a heart beat to enhance the effect.

getting ready to head inside the heart

getting ready to head inside the heart

playing in the kids area

playing in the kids area

cheezeing it up inside an artery

cheezeing it up inside an artery

My absolute favorite area, besides the observatory, is the planetarium. Astronomy has always been a passion of mine. (Guess who owns the seasons of “The Universe?” This chick.) In fact, up until sophomore year of high school, my plan was to attend Cornell for Astronomy or the AFROTC Aeronautical Nursing program. Any way, we saw a film about black holes. Black holes give me the chills. I’ve always been fascinated by them and have written several papers on them throughout my schooling.

having an 80 yr old Singer sewing machine, I appreciate the beauty of this one

having an 80 yr old Singer sewing machine, I appreciate the beauty of this one

a fancy old music box

a fancy old music box

The museum has rooms focused on different areas of science: trains, planes, space, electricity (duh, Ben Franklin… Franklin Institute), engineering, and IMAX, and 3D theatre, a giant pendulum, any much more! So many of the staple exhibits have been there since I was a kid. It was so nice to revisit them. Plus, your inner child pokes out its head in all of the interactive “Please Touch” exhibits and games!

I turn Ben on. (get it? cause its a light switch?) *knee slap*

I turn Ben on. (get it? cause its a light switch?) *knee slap*

who needs travelocity?

who needs travelocity?

old school

old school

My father, Cpt. America, saluting USAF

My father, Cpt. America, saluting USAF

Chug-a-Chug-a Choo-Choo

Chug-a-Chug-a Choo-Choo

I'd kill for this telescope!

I’d kill for this telescope!

After a few hours in the museum, dad and I walked through the atrium to find the most adorable little girl getting her face painted! This is probably one of the cutest kids I’ve ever seen! Her mom let me snap a shot of her.

the most beautiful tiger i've ever seen

the most beautiful tiger i’ve ever seen

We said, “peace out,” to Big Ben (the guy, not the clock) and headed for one of my favorite Wholefoods. Its on Pennsylvania Ave. in Philly. Dad and I wondered around in there, grabbed a few cookies and bagels for the week, and of course, picked up this beautiful fruit salad:

Goodbye, Ben!

Goodbye, Ben!

Hello, fruity deliciousness!

Hello, fruity deliciousness!

After seeing all that food, we drove  around downtown Philly until we headed for South St. We couldn’t decide what we were in the mood for, but my dad said we should go to Maoz. (I was giggling like a little school girl, inside, because I wanted to go there all along but didn’t want to force vegetarian food on him). I explained how the ordering worked and he was willing to give it a try. Dad and I usually love anything with a topping bar. We split the #1. This is a falafel pita with hummus and eggplant, served with Belgian fries and drink. We upgraded to the sweet potato fries, then stuffed our falafel stuffed whole wheat pita with vegetable salad (tomato, zucchini and cucumbers), reed cabbage salad, cilantro sauce, sweet peppers (a must), grilled cauliflower, and later some garlic sauce. Maoz is the only place I will ever eat beets so I grabbed a little cup of that. Dad was so funny! “This is really good! I wish I had one around work. I’d get this for lunch at least once a week! Do they sell this in stores? Let’s get some.” Luckily, I can make it at home! Dad told me we are going to the grocery store to pick up falafel ingredients tomorrow after class! lol This was a really delicious meal. What made it even better, was seeing how much my dad enjoyed it! Perfect size for the two of us to split!

MMMMM... Warm falafel loaded with veggies in every bite!

MMMMM… Warm falafel loaded with veggies in every bite and sweet potato fries!

When I got home, I snacked on a Gnu Brownie, smeared with some Low Sodium Better n’ Peanut Butter. Then I completed some paperwork for clinical for Monday, and put on some jams and danced around the living room to do a little cardio.

Wow! What a fantastic day!

RIP to a Philly favorite: Sally Star!