Enduring All Things: December 2012

Monday, December 31, 2012

Good Bye 2012

Well, 2012 is over. I cannot believe it. This year I started working in the real world after graduating from college at the end of 2011, got married, and moved to Dublin, Ohio after living my whole life in Georgia and Arkansas. This year was very eventful.

If you had asked about half way through 2012, I would have said this year was one of my worst years so far. But can you blame me? I had graduated early from Harding (my favorite place on earth) and most of my friends (including my fiancé) were still there while I was 9 hours away in Georgia living with my parents, working, and planning a stressful wedding.

BUT, in July, the 7th month of 2012, I married my best friend and since then, this year has been the best of my life so far.

Here is a re-cap:

My Favorite Events of 2012:
  • Hunger Games midnight premier
  • Spring Sing 2012
  • Harding Graduation, May 2012
  • Getting married
  • Honeymooning in The Bahamas
  • The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium
  • Lynd's Fruit Farm
  • The weekend my parents came to visit
  • Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert
  • Celebrating Christmas in Georgia
  • Christmas in general
  • Our first Ohio snow

Wonderful Ongoing Events of 2012:
  • Working from home every day
  • Watching Supernatural (we are completely caught up)
  • Watching Once Upon a Time (we are 2 episodes into the second season)
  • Watching The Vampire Diaries (not new in 2012, but still exciting)

My Favorite Movies of 2012:
  • The Hunger Games
  • The Avengers
  • The Amazing Spider Man
  • Lincoln
  • The Hobbit
  • Les Misérables

My Favorite Songs of 2012:
  • "I Won't Give Up"- Jason Mraz
  • "Call Me Maybe"- Carly Rae Jepsen
  • "Gangnam Style"- Psy
  • "We Are Young"- Fun.
  • "Somebody That I Used to Know"- Gotye
  • "Drive By"- Train
  • "Why You Wanna"- Janna Kramer
  • "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together"- Taylor Swift
  • "Good in Goodbye"- Carrie Underwood
  • "Safe & Sound"- Taylor Swift, The Civil Wars

So really, 2012 was a pretty great year. I am growing up but such is life. I couldn't ask for a better person to spend my life with than my wonderful husband. And Ohio isn't so bad after all. ;)

I wish you all a Happy New Year and here's to 2013 being just as wonderful as 2012 (or better)!

Love always, Mrs. Charlene Maugeri
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Thursday, December 27, 2012

Les Misérables!! ...oh and Christmas too

Source for all of these pictures: IMDB
On Christmas day, Pearson and I woke up and opened gifts from each other. Then we had lunch and laid around watching Christmas movies and being lazy and then a friend and I went to see... drum roll please... Les Misérables! Kate and I saw the movie and then Kate and Chris came over for dinner and we played Yahtzee, but back to the important part...

Les Misérables

The movie was absolutely awesome amazing wonderful breathtaking marvelous stupendous... Sigh, I cannot find a word to describe this movie.

Converting a musical stage play to a movie, I believe, is no small or easy task. It is difficult to do well and to be successful with it. I think Les Mis has been/is/will be successful. The show we went to, 3:00 on Christmas day, was sold out. And it was the largest theater I have ever seen a movie in. We had to sit on the second row. Also, if you have seen the stage play, you probably know it can be hard to follow, but in movie form, it all makes more sense!

First of all, Hugh Jackman was phenomenal as Jean ValJean. I mean phenomenal. He said himself this was a "Role of a lifetime" on 60 minutes and he pulled through. He has been nominated for Best Actor for this role and I think he may very well get it. The emotion he showed was fantastic and of course his singing numbers were to die for- though that is what we expected, right? Of course, with him having won a Tony for his role in The Boy from Oz. What? Yes. I think I have found my new male actor muse.
Anne Hathaway has been nominated for Best Supporting Actress as Fantine. I think this this nomination is pretty well deserved too. I have always liked her as an actress. Again, it is the emotion in this film that does it for me. The part of Fantine is a large undertaking vocally. Her beautiful solo, I Dreamed a Dream has been sung so well by many in the past so Anne had big shoes to fill. I think she surprised a lot if people.
The part of Eponine was played by none other than Samantha Barks. Samantha portrays Eponine in the the 2011 London production of Les Mis and 25th anniversary concert edition. I have heard her sing "On My Own" in this concert at least 5 times and it leaves me breathless every time. I was looking forward to her singing it in the movie and I was not disappointed in the least. I was however surprised at her acting. If I am not mistaking, this was her first major motion picture. Screen acting is very different than stage acting, but she killed it!
Cosette and Marius were okay. Just okay. We knew they both could sing... Amanda Seyfried from Mama Mia and Eddie Redmayne even won a Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in the Broadway Red. Their acting was pretty good but they just got over shadowed by other performances. I almost feel bad for them but they played their part and did their job.
Who knew Russell Crowe could sing? I mean it wasn't that great. It seemed a little strained at times, but he has like no experience! He sang with other people most if the movie so it was excusable but when it came time for "Javert's Suicide", I held my breath. I don't know why I doubted though. I think the producers knew what they were doing, but it was surprising nonetheless. He did an awesome job! I have always liked Javert's character. The story is about the redemption of Jean ValJean but in a small round-about way, Javert is redeemed as well... I won't give anymore away.
And last but not least, we certainly cannot forget about these two. We expected a great performance from none other than Helena Bonham Carter and Sasha Baron Cohen as M. and Mme. Thénardier. Helena is on of my all time favorite actresses. It is amazing what she can do. I mean she acted as Hermione pretending to be Bellatrix in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. That is hard to do and she was very convincing. Anyway, these two make an excellent hilarious duo. We knew that from Sweeney Todd. They both played the part of the absolutely ridiculous thieves/inn keepers like it was natural. Though, maybe for these two, it is their natural way to act. "Master of the House" was one of my favorite scenes and I can't wait to see it again when I am not sitting in the second row of the theater and miss a lot of what goes on in that number.
Anyway, if you haven't seen the movie, I hope this gets you excited. I am hoping to convince Pearson to take me to see it again this weekend since he missed it the first time. Please go see it! It will be worth your time and money, I promise.

To love another person is to see the face of God.

Thanks for reading,
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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Our Week In Georgia

So, a while ago, Pearson and I decided to spend our first married Christmas at home, just us. If we were going to see family over the holidays, it would be after Christmas. Well... we were in Georgia this week... BUT, we ended up back home for Christmas eve and day, so don't you worry about that.

The company I work for had an office Christmas party on Wednesday and wanted me to be in town for it. (For those of you who don't know, I still work for a company in Georgia while living in Ohio. I telecommute all the way to Georgia every day from my spare bedroom in my Dublin apartment :P ). Anyway, my manager convinced me to come to the party so Pearson and I made the 9 hour drive on Saturday the 15th and stayed all week. I went into work every weekday so it wasn't much of a vacation for me, but it was a fun change of scenery nonetheless.

So having worked in the office from January to August of 2012 and then working remote from home in Ohio ever since then, coming back into the office was sort of... strange, for lack of a better word. First of all, the department I work for had hired 3 new people since I left, including a manager, none of which I had ever met in person. This was interesting because adding new people changes the whole dynamic of a team like ours (all good changes I found) and I hadn't really been able to see all the changes from Ohio over the phone and internet. However, everyone seemed so excited to see me and have me back in the office. It was a great feeling :) As I mentioned earlier, we had our office Christmas party on Wednesday. It was a lot of fun. I really enjoy working for this fantastic company. The people are great. We are very successful and constantly growing even in this not-so-great economy. And though it is a secular company, it is run by people with great morals and standards. We started lunch at the party with a prayer and God was mentioned in a lot of the speeches. After lunch we played games, had door prizes and just goofed off for a while. It was a wonderful first experience of an office Christmas party.

Other than work though, it was fun to be "home" for a while. Back to Buford church of Christ. Back to the Mall of Georgia. Back to Lake Lanier Islands. Back with friends. And especially, back with family. It was a nice refresher. Pearson and I enjoyed shopping and visiting some places that were important to is in our Georgia dating days. And my dad even pulled out some old VHS videos of me and my brother growing up. It is always so fun to reminisce whether it is just thinking back a few years or 20 years, and Pearson got to see some funny videos of his wife as a 2-year-old.

On the first Saturday when we got there, Pearson and I went to a Christmas party for the young professionals at Buford church. It was so nice to see everyone and we fit right in like we never left. We did the usual Christmas party games and had a gift exchange. It was so energizing to see old faces and hug some friends we hadn't seen in several months.

On Tuesday we had Christmas with my grandparents. They loved pretended to like their Ohio State hoodies. Ok, Memaw loved it but Pepaw just kept joking about it. We will see if he actually ever wears it.

On Wednesday we had Christmas with my parents and Tyler. Everybody was impressed with their gifts and they surprised us with a... wait for it.... vinyl record turn-table! I was so excited! I mentioned once that it would be cool to have one and my parents surprised us. It can record from vinyl and cassette to CD which is fantastic!

On Thursday one of my best friends, Kellum, came to Atlanta and we went to Lake Lanier Islands Magical Night of Lights. It was a lot of fun just goofing off like old times.

We stayed Friday and Saturday night with Pearson's family. On Friday we made cookies and Saturday evening we had Christmas. It was a lot of fun and very relaxing after working all week. I finally actually got a vacation. We literally laid around and did nothing but watch movies all day on Saturday. And they gave us a new 39 inch TV (which we knew about- but it was still exciting).

All in all, it was a great week even if it wasn't how we had been planning for our first Christmas to go since we got married. It was fantastic and I wouldn't trade my family and friends for the world. I am truly a very blessed lady.

Thanks for reading.
Mrs. Charlene Maugeri  <--That never gets old.
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