October 11, 2013

On Working From Home

Hi. It's been a whirlwind few weeks and have been ever so thankful for the reprieve that was had this week. Oh, thank heavens!! I did not forget about my blog, it's just been on the back burner!

Well, I have officially been working from home for a little over 1 month. I really enjoy not having to leave the comforts of my own home to say "I am at work!" I do, however, miss my former co-workers and the potential for gaining new ones that working with in-vivo allows. I am simply trying to cherish the lasting friendships that have been made with many loved friends and relatives. You know, the whole gaining new friends as an adult (i.e., like over age 25) is not simple.

I think my office area may be complete after a purchase today from HauteLook. What are your thoughts on my new area rug?
 Today I featured a few 5 x 7 positive statements that I recently ordered from One Kings Lane. I am sure that sale is over, but I snuck over the website and see they are featuring a few other print sales.

I am in no ways stating that my office is the most "designed" space, but I do think it is coming together.


September 18, 2013

Coaches Corner: In Love & Basketball

Welcome to yet another installment of Coaches Corner where I had the opportunity to sit down with one of the Toledo Rocket wives whom I consider a dear friend, Allyson (Allie) Clifton Kalsow!

How did you and Kalsow meet? 

My husband and I met at The University of Toledo. However, we were not both students. In fact, I was just about to graduate with my undergraduate degree (3 weeks away), when he, along with the (at the time) NEW Men’s Basketball Coaching staff, was taking their first ever tour of the University. I spotted him in the coaching offices as I was waiting to do my “exit meeting” with my college coach. All I remember is he was (in my eyes at first sight) 7’0 ft tall & his dress pants that he was wearing that day touched the floor…the rest is now history. :)

So, you are a graduate of the University of Toledo and played for the WBB. It seems that you guys have a lot in common. Whose more competitive in the family? 

I know we will disagree on this one (point in case) but I am more competitive…for sure. ;) In all seriousness though I think that is one of the reasons why we are able to love one another so naturally. We are competitive and we both love a daily challenge. It keeps our relationship fresh because naturally we are trying new things with/for one another. It’s fun.

Do you miss the sport of basketball?

There is no doubt that I DO miss the sport of basketball. I miss being a part of a team, being able to lean on one another (my teammates) for support no matter if it is something that happens on the court, or if it happens off the court – that feeling is invaluable. The one thing I always had with basketball was a sisterhood. Luckily I am fortunate and have been able to stay in touch with many teammates. I also feel I am very fortunate because even though my career as a basketball player came to an end physically, I have found a career path in which I am on the court constantly. Being a sideline reporter (currently for Fox Sports Ohio & The Cleveland Cavaliers) I have been able to stay very connected with the game and now at an even higher level. It has been a BIG blessing & I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Wow! You have such a fun and exciting career! Where do you buy most of your wardrobe? Do you have a stylist?

As a sportscaster times are very exciting as I mentioned, yet can be challenging & “stressful” at the same time. What I mean by that brings me back to your question regarding a “stylist.” I do not have a stylist at the current level I am working at (The Regional Level). It makes getting ready and staying fresh (a new look) each and every game, tough. I am the type of girl that I will not wear the same top on air more than once throughout the course of a season (84 games – 7 months). So as you can imagine it can be costly, so I try and shop great deals with still a great look – New York & Company is one of my favorite places. Number one: It has a “TALL” pant selection. I am 5’11…pants aren’t the easiest to find, but they have them. Also, many different professional yet very classy finds.

Who of the female sports broadcasters do you admire most and why?
As you can imagine when ever I watch a sporting event now days, I am hardly watching the actual game. I listen to the commentators and watch the male or female on the sideline. Sam Ponder (College Game Day, Big Ten Hoops & Thursday night Game of the Week for Football) is one of my favorites. She adds a flavorful piece to each broadcast she does. Erin Andrews has always been a favorite as well – exemplifies hard work & what it takes to be successful in such a male dominated profession. There are many others (Rachel Nichols, Dorris Burke to name a few more) that I really enjoy.

You and Kalsow recently got married....
What was the best moment of that day?

We did. It was a day that I wish we could repeat X 10 all over again. We still talk about it & all the fun we had. The best part for me was the moment I spent with my father before and during our trip down the aisle as he gave me away to my husband – it was a priceless moment that I don’t get too often with my father who has been such an incredible inspiration in my life.

Also all the time I got to spend with family & friends leading up to the BIG day was GREAT – so many things, it is very hard to narrow down, I could go on for days as you can imagine.

What famous actor or actress have you met that made you awestruck?

I like this question for many reasons. A lot of people that I come across ask me how I interview NBA players and stay so composed. To me, that part is the easiest because I have played the same game since I was 3 years old & I was fortunate enough to play it at a high level. To me I think of these players as brothers “of the game” to me. I understand and GET, to a certain degree, what they are going through. BUT this past year when I came across someone who I just LOVE…Khloe Kardashian, I was NOT SO COMPOSED. I was with the team in LA for the Cavs/Clippers game when I found myself sitting in a “fold up” chair behind one of the baskets (somewhere you would never expect a celebrity to be sitting, especially not Khloe). I am paying attention to the game about ready to do an interview with Tyler Zeller when I look to my right & there she stood. She politely told me I was sitting in her seat so I moved, but then she said there was an extra seat so I just had to scoot over. No big deal right? One thing led to the next, a picture was captured, I proceeded with my walk-off interview & sent our broadcast to break with “..It’s the Cavs leading the Bucs at the half, stay with us.” (Hopefully you caught that, yes I said we were playing the Bucs…I blame it on being “awestruck” by the one and only, Khloe Kardashian…still a GREAT day!)

What is the most fun aspect of your job?

The most fun aspect of my job is getting to travel to all of the incredible cities, watching basketball & getting paid to do so. Truly sums it all up --- I cannot complain one single bit.           

What is the most difficult?

The most difficult is being away from my husband, Jason. It is not easy to have to live away from the love of your life for 7 plus months of the year. Luckily we are young and feel we can make it work at this time. We are two individuals who are very passionate about our jobs, but are more passionate of one another and our choice to be successful in our careers that we make it work. Communication & dedication to our relationship and now marriage is like our “competition” challenge & we at this time wouldn’t have it any other way.

I simply L-O-V-E Allie! She was my workout buddy prior to Greece, while in Greece, and now it seems that my workouts have slowed down a bit. Let me tell you, if you want to push yourself during a workout and/or feel super out of shape then workout with a former collegiate athlete, turned professional trainer - Yikes! 

Oh, and her story about Khloe Kardashian had me dying. When I originally heard the story, I think I posed about 1 million questions. It may have been one of the first times I had actually met her and I was certain that she saw me as a lost cause! Ha, she may still feel that way!

She has a fabulous family which is evidenced in her response about the best moment of her wedding day... And of course, we could not leave without a picture with the women of the Clifton Household, Allie's mother, sister, and self right before she walked down the aisle! 

Much appreciation to Allie for sitting down with me for a few minutes. She is actually in New York until Friday for some special NBA meetings... Wonder what those are all about?




September 17, 2013

Loutraki: Day 3

Hi folks! Let's venture back to Greece and reminisce over our experiences had. If you missed my previous post, here it is where I discussed what we did and experienced over our first two days!

Day 3 we were still in Loutraki and played another exhibition game which we again WON! Our day started with a day trip to Ancient Corinth where we visited the remains of the city. We spent most of our time at the Apollos Temple remains.

UT Men's Basketball Team & Coaches

The whole gang!

After we left Ancient Corinth we took a private cruise through the Canal of Corinth which was quite amazing! To think that humans thousands of years ago were capable of excavating and engineering such a large project.

With Coach Kemp

Later that night we played another game which we won!!!

The Scoreboard baby!!

After the game everyone standing around waiting for the bus to pull up.

All smiles after a W!


September 15, 2013

Loutraki (Day 1 &2)

If you follow me on Facebook and/or Instagram, then you are quite familiar with our recent trip to Greece. The trip was pretty amazing. A wonderful opportunity to get to know my new Rocket Family, cheer on the guys through 3 wins, and enjoy a get away with Coach Kemp.

For the MBB international games, we had the privilege of visiting three locales in Greece. We landed and departed from Athens, but we first went to Loutraki, then Mykonos, and concluded our trip with a few days in Athens. Overall, Mykonos was the most relaxing, probably because we did not play any games while there and it seems to be similar to Cancun - crazy party and lots of beach fun!

So, let's begin in Loutraki where we stayed at the Achillion Hotel.

Boardwalk View

Loutraki Boardwalk where our hotel was located

View from hotel balcony

We arrived in Athens and transferred to the hotel at around 9am. Many of us decided to take naps, and this was a pretty calm day (I went on a little run down the boardwalk which was pretty amazing!). 

On Wednesday, we departed for Epidaurus and Nafpilion - the huge theater at Epidaurus which has delighted visitors for its symmetry and beauty. This theater is still used today! The theater is marveled for its exceptional acoustics, which permit almost perfect hearing of un-amplified spoken words from the stage to all 15,000 spectators, regardless of their seating! Isn't that neat!!!

 The views of the mountains were absolutely splendid during our entire trip. It is simply surreal that we had the honor to see these sites with our own eyes!

A Group Shot in the theater

After our tour of the theater and on-site museum we headed back to the hotel for some down time in preparation of the first game! 

And we won Game 1 as indicated by all the smiles on Coach Kalsow and Coach Kemp's faces, and obviously Ally and I. 

That documents Tuesday and Wednesday of our Greece trip. I will continue to post summaries of the trip over the next few weeks intermittently. 


September 14, 2013

Our Newest Edition

It's been awhile... I know. Like I said, I most likely will be receiving the Worst Blogger Award for 2013. I have multiple excuses: starting a new job, painting two rooms in our house, my computer crashing, but most importantly, we got a PUPPY! Without further ado, please let me introduce you to Prince F. Kemp
The picture above is from the morning in which we rescued him from the Toledo Animal Shelter Association (TASA)! For those of you who know me, I will simply confess that the decision to get a dog did not come to fruition in typical Michelyn form. You know, months of planning, the reading of books, researching the web. Rather, on a Thursday before I began working I was pursuing the web, particularly petfinder.com, and came across a few cute puppies. I saw Finn, now Prince, as well as his two siblings posted and sent the picture to Jason while he was at work. His response was very simple: "Yes, please!" I was a little astonished. Yes, please as in you want to get the dog or what? You see, when Jason and I were first dating he was completely opposed to getting a dog. I, on the other hand, was truly longing for a dog since I had grown-up with a lhapso apso and missed that companionship and affection that small dogs can show. So, with the go ahead, I contacted the TASA and inquired into the status of the three puppies. In the meantime, I learned that we could come visit the dogs. Well, long story short, we went to TASA on Thursday once Jason got home from work, completed the application while there and were approved to rescue a dog. The catch came when we learned that there was another couple interested in Finn (now Prince) and that they would be given a deadline to complete their application. (What type of deadline, was the only thing on my mind. Uhm, I need specifics and was left with nothing!) So Friday came along and I was somewhat depressed and anxious. Were we going to get the dog? Should I begin purchasing supplies? I even went out and began price checking some essential items! Coach Kemp though I was absurd, and clearly told me to NOT purchase anything. Well, on Saturday morning we received a phone call at 9am that we could come and pick-up our puppy! See, I should have bought the pet supplies! Yikes, so we scrambled out of bed, yes it was 9am and we hadn't moved, rushed to Target and TJMaxx to buy some things and then made it to TASA by 10:15am to complete the rescue process!

Here is out little guy napping on his first doggy bed. Yea, that one was purchased from Target for only $9.99 but since has been destroyed!

That's my boy sound asleep! Yes folks, he sleeps on his back. Isn't it the cutest! LoL

But, do not let this cute face fool you! We have been to the veterinarian twice for his puppy vaccines and he is a complete drama king. Ok, I think he gets that quality from his momma! And, he despises being left alone and is quite the momma's boy like his father, Coach Kemp. I keep telling him that he's got it good since I work from home and am here 75% of the time. What would he do if I worked a 9am-5pm?

Quick Facts:

Name: Prince F. Kemp
Age: 3 months
Date of Rescue: August 31, 2012 (Ally and Kalsow's wedding day!)
Breed: Pomeranian Mix (1/2 Pomeranian, 1/4 Maltese, 1/4 Shih Tzu)
Current Weight: 5.2lbs (as of 9/13/2013 vet visit)


August 28, 2013

Greece: A small picture and video bomb

Well hello. Last night I got all the professional pictures from our Greece trip and am planning to do a few extensive (aka photo heavy) posts about each of three cities that we visited, but today the UToledo athletic department posted this fun youtube video.

I have watched the video numerous times and it is making me so anxious for basketball season... Who needs football, ha. That previous statement is quite funny as I actually much prefer football over basketball. I guess Coach Kemp and his profession is rubbing off on me.

My plan is to disperse a few Greece related posts over the remainder of this week and into next, but in the meantime, I can tease with a few of my favorites...

What do you think of the Toledo MBBs program?

Did you try the corn side dish yet?

Have you ever been to Greece? If so, where?


August 27, 2013

Keep Calm and Coach Basketball

Hope everyone's Tuesday went well... Mine was ok, not too eventful, which is making me ever more excited about starting my new job next Tuesday! Hallelujah!

I know all the focus in sports is football, but in my household the beginning of the school year also means that the basketball season is around the corner. Here at Toledo our season begins in November but the guys will begin some workouts within the next few weeks. My husband's stress levels increase insurmountably during the season (he is a competitor), so I decided to gift him a little reminder for him to showcase in his office.

Since I am currently only a domestic engineer, I have found myself visiting Coach Kemp's office frequently. I gifted him the framed reminder last night and I was delighted to see it showcased on his desk. I purchased the printable from an etsy shop, 4UPrintableDesigns. I highly recommend Caitlin as she was easy to work with and very quick. I had her send me the pdf and went to my local FedEx to have it printed on light card board for around $1. I also snagged the handsome wooden frame on sale from Michael's! In all, the whole gift was under $25, but the smile from the hubs is priceless!

 Earlier in the day I thought it was a smart idea to run around campus and the surrounding area for a 1 hour run around 2:00pm. Ok, here is the aftermath! 
Not so cute! (Yes, my shirt was completely drenched in sweat!) But I was so delighted to see kids departing from a few of the local private schools. I frequently run by an all-girl school and the girls look so adorable in their school uniforms. I also ran by a mother with her two grade-school level children in a different red plaid uniform. It made me squeal with delight as I am a by-product of private/parochial schools. Madison and Fargo did not have very many private schools so it was not often that I would see students wearing uniforms. Well, that is not the case here in Toledo. Seeing all these students made me reminisce about grade school which I enjoyed so much. 

On Sunday, I posted about my desires to spend more time in the kitchen whipping up healthy meals. Well, tonight I made a small feast that was not only delicious but very tastey. I must give all credit to Pinterest (Follow Me) for the side dish, roasted corn. Let me tell you, this corn is to die for and so simple that a 5-year-old could do it, I promise! 

Step 1: Spread frozen corn (not thawed) on baking sheet
Step 2: Sprinkle with extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper

Step 3: Broil for 5-10minutes 

OMG! When I tell you this corn is absolutely delicious. Like words cannot explain how good it is. I am not certain what happens in that oven, but that corn turns slightly spicey and buttery and salty all in one. I could have it every night as a side dish, no lie!

(Credit Information: The original source of the corn is actually for a BBQ Shrimp Minestrone posted at Bev Cooks)

And the main component of our dinner was Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wraps.

What meals have you made from Pinterest lately?

What makes you reminisce about your youth?


August 26, 2013

Working Woman

I am proud to announce that I obtained employment here in the Toledo area. I am even more ecstatic that this new job will allow me to work from home (insert happy dance now). I will have to do a little travel but that is ok with me. I am really looking forward to seeing my hubby on a more regular basis as we reside very close to the university. He will be able to come home for lunch on most days. I do not begin until September 3rd, so in the meantime I am filling my days, working out, running, and pinning home decoration and recipe ideas. Really thinking I will need to up my culinary skills..

Follow me on Pinterest to see what I am pinning!

One more thing: I am so disappointed with myself for watching the MTV VMA's last night. The only real performance was Justin Timberlake... What has the world come to? Yikes.


August 25, 2013

Did you return from Greece?

Hi folks... It's been awhile, to say the least. After two weeks in Greece (updates will commence once we get the semi-professional pictures from the athletic department) and then not having internet most defintely spoiled any blogging on my end. And, as we speak guess where this lucky gal is?

Posted on My Instagram

Welcome to Coach Kemp's office! We now have internet but not yet cable. Since the MTV VMA's are being broadcasted plus the fact that my husband is a workaholic made it pretty easy for me to agree to a night spent at this office. He has a pretty nice flat screen tv so I am not complaining!

I have been toying with the idea to run a few half marathons this fall. I had huge desires to run the Madison Half Marathon this past May, I even registered for the event, but was unable to run the event! (If you remember, Coach Kemp got a new gig and this little lady was not driving 8 hours plus solo for a half marathon; guess I am not that committed)  I had run the Madison half twice in the past so I thought it would be a fun one to do since my last race was October 2011.

Well, there are two half marathons slated in Ohio during the same weekend: Findlay Red, White & Blue as well as the Cleveland Rock 'N' Roll. This time around I am prepared for the fact that Coach Kemp may be busy (recruiting season begins Sept 9th!) so am planning a race that is close to home (i.e., Findlay verse Cleveland).

There are six weeks until these races so I might as well pump out some good training the next few weeks. I have been running the last 8 weeks or so. I was really proud as I did get a few runs with this scenery, jealous?!?

Loutraki, Greece

Below you will find my planned runs for August 26 - September 1. Next Monday, I will update all my readers on my progress and Week 2's plan!

5 miles
1 hr
5 miles
45 min tempo
5 m pace
1.5 hr