Thursday, June 30

Day 30- Who are you?

First off I need coffee before I can write my story...

This is how Amanda English became who she is today...

I was born on January 3, 1983 in Dekalb, IL and was given the name Amanda Danielle Ovitz. My parents are Jack and Hazel Ovitz and have been married for 36 years (as of 2 days ago!). I have 1 older brother (David) and an older 1/2 sister (Lisa - never met).

I've lived in 6 states, 7 different locations in order:
  1. Illinois - ages 1-3
  2. Arizona - ages 3-6
  3. New Mexico - ages 6-10
  4. Florida (Orlando area - Lake Mary ) - ages 10-18
  5. Florida (S. Florida - Boca Raton) - ages 18-23
  6. Virginia (D.C. area - Falls Church) - ages 23-25
  7. North Carolina (Raleigh area - Apex) - ages 25 - present
Adolescence
I was raised in a strong Christian home and was a good kid for the most part. Besides being a normal teenage girl, I don't think I really started being trouble until I was about 17 and quit dancing. I started dating a guy (first real boyfriend) and hanging out with the wrong crowd and had a little too much fun. I got myself in some 'trouble' when I was 18. It was 1 week before prom and 1 month before High School graduation. We'll say my parents weren't to pleased with me and were very ready for me to move out of the house. I NEVER moved back home...

Graduation Picture
Lake Mary High School Class of 2001
College (First Semester)
I didn't stay too long in Lake Mary, FL after graduation and moved out at the end of June of 2001 for summer school at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL. My very first semester (fall) was quite interesting... This is what happened:
  • 9/11 occurred that year
  • 2 of my roommates had a bit of drama: #1 - had an abortion, #2 - mother was murdered in Daytona Beach and found in a ditch...
  • I also somehow got shingles which is something old people get
  • I pinched my sciatic nerve and wasn't able to run for a long time
  • I was also caught cheating my first semester of college. I was called into the Professors office and he was nice enough to not kick me out, but give me a ZERO on the test. Let me tell you I NEVER cheated again!
College (continued...)
The first year (or two) of college was that true year of 'freedom', but at the end of my Sophomore year I really started to straighten out my act... My Junior and Senior year weren't quite as crazy as my first 2 year... Although, my very last semester I had to do a FINAL group paper with 4 people. So my friend Lauren and 2 other boys were in my group. Lauren and I teamed up to write our portion of the paper and the boys did theirs. Well needless when the paper was returned the Professor marked plagerism on our paper! Lauren and I were FREAKING out! We read through the paper where he had marked plagerism and realized that NONE of it was ours! So we talked to the boys and they fessed up to the Professor on what they had done. We still got a ZERO even though it wasn't our fault, but at least he didn't kick is out. I graduated from FAU in 2005 with a B.A. in Finance with a 3.4.

Real Life, needing more than everyday living...
I stayed in Boca Raton, FL for a little less than 1 year after graduation and worked at a Mortgage company. At this point I had just returned to church (Calvary Chapel of Fort Lauderdale - 18,000 members!) from a few years of not going. I stopped going after High School, probably because I was forced to go... Anyways, at the Mortgage company, I made some dear friends who led me to their bible study group. Not too long before I had started their bible study group I had decided I was ready to profess my faith in Christ and be baptized! I was supposed to be baptized in the summer of 2005, however a hurricane came through and was cancelled obviously due to inclement weather... So I had to wait a few months and was baptized in September of 2005 in the Atlantic Ocean. It was pretty amazing I must say. I loved having all of my bible study girl friends their! So awesome!

Time to move on...
After about 1 year, I decided it was time for a change. I didn't know what I wanted to do or where I really wanted to go... My thoughts were to go to NYC or Charlotte and work in the Buyer (fashion) industry... I had talked to my Aunt and Uncle in D.C. that Thanksgiving in 2005 and they thought that I should come visit them in D.C. to check out the area and meet with a head hunter. I went up there in January of 2006 to check it out. I met with a head hunter that Friday and that same day Grant Thornton, LLP (public accounting firm) wanted to meet with me for an Administrative Assistant position. In the same day they offered me the job! I was like whoa! I just wanted to check this place out! I had the weekend to think about it and said what the heck! I only live once!

1,016 mile adventure
So I packed up my things stopped in Orlando and my Mom and I drove up to Virginia on February 28th of 2006. I remember it all! I started my job on March 1st of 2006 and realized what 'cold' was. I didn't even know how to get ice off of my windshield let alone had I seen snow in many, many years. Coming from South Florida where winter is 65 degrees and the heater doesn't exist, it was quite a shocker and I owned no winter clothes... In my first week of work there was a Grant Thornton, LLP Happy Hour held in Arlington, VA. I figured I should go so I could meet some people. Drinking and the bar scene wasn't really my thing, nor is it really today. One of my new co-workers (Tracy) was introducing me to everyone and later in the night I met a guy named 'Joe English'. Go figure right? He was talking to me and asked where I moved from, etc. I said I had just moved here from Boca Raton... He didn't know where that was and I said West Palm / Fort Lauderdale area. He said 'Oh you must be rich!?!'... I said 'no just everyone else around me'. HA! He asked if I wanted a drink and I said 'no I'm fine I'm just drinking water'. He said I'll get you anything you want. I said 'no no I'm just drinking water'. He was being a little ya know... JOE! Side note, it was a happy hour and all the drinks were free... After I talked to him, I was ready to go home... I remember thinking to myself 'He was cute, until he started talking'. HAHA! The following week at work I ran into him in the copy room and we started talking about basketball and motorcycles (yes I owned one!), guess that triggered his interest in my knowledge about 'boy stuff'. Once I gave him my number he seriously called me everyday since then until I finally hung out with him 1 month later. It took me awhile to finally hang out for the first time. He had just returned from a trip in Louisiana and asked me to come over. We played catch outside of his apartment and that was about it... As I was getting ready to live, he had bought me a t-shirt when he was traveling in Louisiana(Hurricane Katrina shirt). I think he had me sold at buying me a present hardly knowing him. ;)

My Motorcycle
Honda CBR F4
(That's my Aunt and Uncle's house in Alexandria, VA)

Dating
After about 1.5 years of dating we decided that we want to get more serious and move somewhere more affordable. On October 28 of 2007 we decided to move to the Raleigh NC area (Joe's oldest sister Missy, Kirby, Jack (age 3.5) and Luke (7 mths) live there). Joe had a job lined up prior to the move, but I was still looking. I had told him before we moved I wouldn't be chasing a guy down to NC, so he better be serious about me! Only a month later December 2 of 2007 Joe proposed while playing a game of scrabble. Needless to say we'll just say he cheated to get the words 'Will Yuo Marry Me'? He even spelled it like that! On BOTH of his knees by the fire, the words never came out of his mouth, nor do I think I said yes. ;) We were married 9 months later on August 16, 2008 at Duke Gardens in Durham, NC. We had a very small ceremony of about 25 people. It was wonderful! On our honey moon we went to Northern California (San Francisco, Redwood National Park, Lassen Volcanic Park, and Napa Valley).

Engagement
December 2, 2007
City Market, Raleigh NC
(pictures taken March 2008)
Wedding
Duke Gardens, Durham NC
August 16, 2008
Our House
(original paint color)
Moved in July 4, 2008
Norman and Contessa
2nd anniversary gift
August 2010

That's pretty much my life in a nutshell... Since we've moved here we have spent a lot of time working on our house. That takes up the majority of our weekends. We try to plan parties now and again and make our trips to the beach and ski resorts... We've met some amazing friends and hopefully plan to stick around here for awhile. You never know what the future holds, but for now we are here... The story book will close for today...

I hope you have enjoyed this 30-Day Blog Challenge as much as I have. I hope everyone has a wonderful 4th of July and I will return with a new post on July 5th from our trip to Carolina Beach, NC.

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little eloquent notes... ❤