Sunday, August 2, 2015

Taking Back August Challenge 2015

I'm BAAAAAAACKK! 

It's been a long while since I have posted, but for all good reasons which I will elaborate about going forward.  I thought for my "comeback" post it would be fitting to begin where Experienced Times first started last year, with a Taking Back August post.  

So what is the Taking Back August Challenge? It's about not giving up on summer just because it's August.  There is still a month full of opportunities to relax and enjoy the summer season, even though people all around us are starting the negative "summer is almost over" and it's almost time to go"back to school" vibe.  Just because the big box stores are putting out school supplies in their seasonal section, doesn't mean we have to succumb to the madness (yet). 

So how do you participate in the Taking Back August Challenge?  Do something fun EVERY day in August, whether it's something big like going to the beach or a theme park, or it could be smaller fun like going for ice cream or coffee with your friends.  But no matter what it is, do something fun every day!  

Once you challenge yourself to make the best of August and do something fun every day, you will have created a more positive experience for yourself and maybe create some memories that you wouldn't have before taking the challenge.  




Let me know about the fun you're having while you take back your summer! How are you going to take back your August? 



For inspiration, here's my Taking Back August list from last year.


Taking Back August Chart of Fun (2014)

August
Daily Fun
1
Lunch in Downtown Freehold with and friend and Sangria Cocktails.
2
Dinner at the bar at the Mill and Spring Lake Heights, and Jazz performance by Gina Fox
3
Went to see the movie Boyhood, and had dinner at The Downtown in Red Bank
4
Lunch with my sister in law at Cheesecake Factory,
5
Went to the Beach with my son in Long Branch, and lunch at Bobby’s Burgers.
6
Family Dinner at Nonna’s! 
7
Antiquing in Red Bank and lunch at Front Street Trattoria. Chick flick movie in the evening with my daughter, Begin Again.
8
Beach with my daughter and Sushi dinner at Sawa at Pier Village
9
Afternoon Movie (Lucy) with my daughter and BBQ at a neighbor’s house.
10
Bike Tour through Central Park and dessert food crawl with my daughter in NYC.
11
Went to the beach with a friend at Pier Villiage in Long Branch and to Stewarts for a diet root beer and French fries.
12
Craft day! Worked on a DIY T-shirt quilt with daughter. Organized t-shirt pieces for my daughter’s quilt and prepared it to be sent to the Campus Quilt Company for assembly.  
13
Shopping Haul at the mall with my daughter! 
14
Unexpected Day 2 of mall in the AM, beach in the afternoon at Pier Village, and Family dinner at hibachi for nephew going away to college. (So much fun in one day, it’s a crime!)
15
Sushi dinner with the Hubs and sister and brother in law.
16
Got a manicure in the morning and went to a friend’s BBQ in the afternoon. 
17
Family BBQ in the afternoon.
18
Beach with a friend at Pier Village in Long Branch.
19
Lunch with a friend at a local diner, pedicure in the afternoon, and game night at a friend’s house in the evening.
20
Watched a movie at home in my comfy bed with no one bothering me, drank a cup of tea and relaxed with the scent of a lavender candle.
21
Afternoon movie by myself! The Hundred Foot Journey.
22
Sushi dinner with the Hubs and my daughter.
23
Lunch with the Hubs and my father in law at The Fireside, and dinner at Monticello in Red Bank with family.
24
Late lunch at 10th Avenue Burrito in Belmar and Movie at the Asbury Theater, The Most Wanted Man.
25
Mexican Lunch with my son at Moe’s.
26
Hair Salon Day!! 
27
Sushi Lunch with my daughter.
28
Chick flick at home with my daughter.
29
Attended a friend’s Bar Mitzvah with the family.
30
Participated in The Color Run with the family in the AM and worked on a DIY lamp with my daughter for her boyfriend’s the dorm room.
31
Move in day for my daughter at college! Decorated the Dorm room!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Friday Photo Essay: The Chain Bridge in Budapest



The Chain Bridge in Budapest, the first permanent bridge to span the Danube connecting the Buda and the Pest sides of the river, was completed in 1849. Designed by William Tierney Clark, an English engineer, the bridge was originally named Istvan Szechenyi, which is commemorated on the side of the bridge, however most people refer to it as the Chain Bridge. 

On both sides of the bridge, there are two lion statues carved by Janos Marschalko' and according to urban legend, and my grandmother who originated from Hungary (she was always a primary source for urban legends), the sculptor challenged that if anyone found something wrong with the lion sculpture he would jump off the bridge. 

One version of the urban legend has it that a young child pointed out that the lions were missing tongues, and the sculptor being so distraught at this mistake, jumped off the bridge. However, another version of this urban legend is that after the child's accusation, the sculptor studied the resting position of lions at a nearby zoo, where he observed that while a lion is in the resting position, similar to his sculptures, the tongue in not visible. Thus, the sculptor reported that he did not have to hold up his end of the bargain and jump off the bridge.  

The choice is yours to decide. Did he jump or didn't he? Truth be told, while visiting the Chain Bridge, I shared with my family my grandmother's version of the urban legend, which was that the sculptor jumped after being so distraught. I guess that's what makes it an urban legend, multiple versions and sketchy details.  

Whichever version you believe, visiting the Chain Bridge is an experience not to be missed, as it is a beautiful structure from any angle at any time of the day.