what i’ve learned not to do in life…

Since I’m getting closer and closer to the thirty mark. I thought I’d reflect on things that I’ve learned, or rather learned not to do, over these past twenty-nine years. Relevancy is questionable, but I’ve got a lifetime of knowledge.

30. Don’t play with fire. I had a slight pyro obsession in my early years that resulted in some burned up wind pants. My parents found out. All candles were removed from my presence.

29. Don’t worry about cheating on tests in elementary school. They tell you not to do this, but sometimes you might just suck at math, history, and science and need a little help getting by. Was anyone hurt by this? I don’t think so.

28. Don’t get caught cheating on said tests. You may not be smart enough to pass, but you should be smart enough to be stealthy. This is how the FBI recruits now.

27. Don’t believe you are invincible. When you get hurt, you will bleed, and it will take days to heal. You don’t have magical powers. I blame movies for all of this. All of it.

26. Don’t purposely try to hurt yourself to test your powers. Same as above. This is not Heroes. Save yourself.

25. Don’t be mean to your parents all of the time. You’ll need them some day. Like when you’re almost 30 and need a place to live. Be thankful for your new roomies.

24. Don’t dumb yourself down to be funny. Nerd becomes cool again.

23. Don’t take high school so seriously. Yea, it may seem like a big deal at the time, but it’s really not.

22. Don’t inhale bubbles. You will choke. You will also have an awful taste in your mouth and want to cry.

21. Don’t trust anyone in AOL chat rooms. This may not be relevant now (is AOL even still a thing?) but the message is clear. Internet stranger danger. Have you seen Megan is Missing?

20. Don’t hold grudges forever. You may need to use that person someday to get ahead in life.

19. Don’t leave your drink behind. Yes, roofies are still a thing. Ugh.

18. Don’t watch nickelodeon all day. There are better things to do than watch the lineup of Eureka’s Castle, David the Gnome, and The Lil Bits. Seriously, get out more.

17. Don’t be afraid to try new things. You may end up hating most of them, but at least the attempt was there. Otherwise, things can get kinda boring.

16. Don’t think you have to have everything figured out by eighteen. That’s asking the impossible. You’ve got plenty of time to think things through.

15. Don’t think you can’t go back. Obviously, not in time, but there may be other ways to make changes that you wish you would have done before.

14. Don’t think you’re not going to do stupid things. Kids do stupid things because their brains aren’t fully developed. Science. You’ll look back on some things and think it was the stupidest thing you could have possibly done. And you will be correct.

13. Don’t grown up too fast. Live it up early, your nostalgia kicks in to high gear in your late twenties.

12. Don’t worry about mixing pop rocks and coke. Ignore awful looking platinum Joshua Jackson.

11. Don’t think you know everything. You know nothing, and older people will always tell you that, Jon Snow.

10. Don’t worry about giving younger people advice. Thanks to number 11, you can tell them whatever and they’ll think it’s sage wisdom because you’re older and thus have seen the world.

9. Don’t forget to see ‘the world’. Or at least make it out of your hometown for a while.

8. Don’t think you’ll ever forget song lyrics. There’s a special place in your brain that stores the lyrics to every song ever. Seriously, they’re all there. More science.

7. Don’t regret your mistakes for too long. They will lead you to where you’re supposed to be. But, if not, refer to number 15.

6. Don’t panic over Y2K. Someone most likely made it up to troll everyone. And it worked.

5. Don’t ignore your gut. It tells the truth. Also feed it well. It likes cheetos. That one might just be me.

4. Don’t get tattoos in places that will sag later on in life. Your hipster anchor tattoo may become a sinking blob later on in life. Spoiler: it sinks, that is what an anchor does. The very definition. Disclaimer: I do not have said tattoo.

3. Don’t forget to wear sunscreen. Yes, this one is an actual quote. No, that’s not why I’m writing it. Skin cancer looks scary.

2. Don’t worry too much about what people think. People will love you, people will hate you, people may not even think about you.

1. Don’t be afraid to be yourself. This one, my friends, take some time because of number 2. But, once you get to this place, you’ll feel much better.

when you’ve got that big trip coming up…

I’ll attribute my MIA status to a mix of writer’s block, working on my tan so I don’t burn to a crisp in Europe, and claiming to be ‘too busy’ when I’m really just on the couch watching Game of Thrones. And now here we are…in June. How did that happen?

Next month I take my travels to Italy and Greece. I’ve been studying Italian since February. Studying really means listening to podcasts on my way to work and reciting the phrases out loud in my car. You’d be surprised at just how much can stick when you do it on a daily basis. I’m sure once I get over there I’ll get stage fright or something, forget everything I learned, and be that helpless American tourist I don’t want to be. I guarantee my Italian will be loads better than Lizzie McGuire’s. Yes, I recently watched that movie to prepare for my trip. Yes, I now believe I will be discovered as some pop singer’s doppelganger. This is what dreams are made of.

The major thing that I hate about prepping for a big trip is the months long lead up, the planning and studying, all for it to fly by in ten quick days. That’s a lot of build up, but it’s worth it. I plan on writing down as much as I can while I’m over there. But, I usually suck at planning, so I’m not too sure how that will work out. You know when you get those big ideas like ‘I’ll take my ipad and type out blog posts while sitting outside sipping wine and enjoying the view’. I blame instagram and the movies for these exaggerated ideas I have of myself on vacation. Reality will not be as glowy and hefe filtered.

How do you prepare for your big trips?

when you find your old journals…

Last night I found my old livejournal site and proceeded to read the crazy thoughts of my eighteen-year-old self. I started the journal as a freshman in college and kept it running until a few years after I finished grad school. Looking back now, I was still a small child then even though I thought I was sooo old. I know I’ve written about what I would say if I could give advice to my younger self. But, good god, the things I wrote about: failing my sciences classes (completely realistic), obsessing and I mean obsessing over one guy (completely insane), and thinking everything in my life was the most important thing ever (completely obnoxious, also possible direct quote).

The great thing about writing everything down is that when you read it years later, you’re immediately taken back to that moment, those feelings, those thoughts. My writings really aide my nostalgia around this time of year, because I work at a college the nearing of graduation always takes me back.

Memories that have been dormant, come rushing back when you read your own words. It can be therapeutic but also cringe worthy, see all of my posts from 2004-2009. Yes, college was that long ago for me. Yes, I am that old. Yes, I’d love a do-over.

But, I’m now patting myself on the back for keeping all of that info documented. If you tend to live in the past like I do, those memories are everything.

I must have been a scribe in my other life. Or the person who invented cheese.

everything looks clearer…

Cross another item off my ‘before 30 the end is near‘ bucket list, I had my eyeballs lasered off last week. Or as normal people call it, LASIK eye surgery. I’ve been wearing glasses since the fourth grade, and contacts since the sixth. You know that picture frame that holds slots for your pictures from first grade to senior year of high school? That piece of art shows the progression of my eyeball deterioration, as well as my teeth realignment, thanks braces.

Now that I’m glasses and contacts free, I’ve come to realize how much of a major pain those things were just so that I could be able to see something. Even though glasses seem to be super in right now (thanks hipsters and/or ‘geeky’ girl selfies?), if you can’t see without them, then those things are obnoxious. They’re constantly getting dirty of finger smudgy. You have zero peripheral because those are legit blind spots. And you’re always pushing them back up on your nose Squints style.

As for contacts, every day you have to wake up and stick a finger in your eyeball. You’re always trying to figure out if the contact is taco shaped or else it’s flipped and won’t stay on. You’re squirming and wincing if the contact has crap all over it which is now in your eye. Once they’re in, sometimes they move if you rub your eyes. I’ve heard that a girl got a contact lost in her eye one time. LOST. Who knows where that thing could be now. You also have to spend a stupid amount of money on solution, and if your eye doc thinks you’re an idiot (mine) then he makes you buy the peroxide solution which is even more money and hassle.

The weirdest part of LASIK is waking up in the morning and being able to see. Since I’m still fresh to this world, I panic a little when I wake up, thinking I left my contacts in. My alarm clock also seems to be a bit too bright for me, until I realized it was on the last light setting before being completely off. I’m in a whole new world now. I also figured this would prepare me for the zombie apocalypse because when I watch The Walking Dead, I always wonder how people who are blind find enough contacts, or this may be TMI, but how many ladies personal hygiene products would last, what would I DO? This is where my mind goes.

Have you had LASIK?

house hunting lessons…

It’s been a couple months since I started my own HGTV version of House Hunters. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but I didn’t think it would be this annoying. Sure, pinterest fills your mind with false hope and unrealistic expectations. Sure, you’ve got expensive taste on a minuscule budget. But, there has to be something out there, right, maybe? I’ve put together some additional lessons if you too are attempting this feat:

Lesson A: If there are no pictures, the house will not be an Aladdin-style diamond in the rough. There are no pictures for a reason. There’s nothing worthwhile to take a picture of. The camera would have turned itself off. Only if you’re in this for an entire reno, should you go to the open house for said picture-less house. Be wary, my friends.

Lesson 2:  Taxes are your worst nightmare. Taxes are also a thing that you have to think about. You could love the house, but if the taxes are ridiculous, your bank man will not let you make an offer (well, for me at least). You should scroll to the tax listings on a house first before you look at the pictures and start to see yourself there. Those things could crush your dreams. Awesome house + frighteningly high taxes = wreckage of crushed dreams.

Lesson D: Google maps ‘street view’ and ‘earth view’ are your best resources. I was not blessed with the gift of navigation so maps have helped me figure out where in the county the listing is. I was blessed with the gift of eyeballs so I can actually read a paper map. Those do still exist. For those of you who are direction-savvy, the street view can give you a much clearer idea of what the house looks like, how big the lot is, and much distance is between you and your potential new neighbors. Drop the little yellow man and be amazed. Or let him dangle for a bit, then drop him. Whatever you’re into.

This is still a learning process, a very lengthy learning process, but I’m getting there. It’s all fun and games until someone sees an eyesore of a house and freaks the eff out…thanks, mom.

dear me…

The latest thing to be going around the web…do people even still call it the web? am I that old?…is #dearme. What would you tell your younger self? Younger me was a shy, strange girl who took some time to come out of her shell. And was a total weirdo. Seriously, weird, but I kept it on the down low because I was too worried about what others thought.

I would have told smaller me that it’s totally ok to be uber strange and eccentric. Having a different personality is much better than trying to fit the mold of everyone else. Also, don’t worry so much about what other people think. I know that one seems to come up for just about everybody, and it’s completely true. It’s much more ‘acceptable’ to try and fit in than stand out on your own. And most of the people who may give you crap for it, will become meaningless to you once you move on from middle school and high school. Surround yourself with amazing people, leave the rest behind because ya don’t need em.

I’d also tell myself to use more sunscreen, try to create a stupid game that could make you millions as an app one day, and attempt new things in college. College me definitely would have benefited from the knowledge I have now. Your friendships will become lifelong, and you’ll look forward to meeting up again and reminiscing about the good ole days. That dude that you were ‘in love’ with for years will turn out to be a bum that you never really liked anyway. Don’t waste time on stupid things, like said dude, or petty things, college is the best time to find yourself, who you truly are, and who you want to become. Hallmark card aside, everything you went through has made you into the person you are now.

Dear me, it’s been a good ride so far. Got a lifetime of knowledge.

What would you tell your younger self?



the 90s kids.


I was watching buzzfeed videos the other day, because what else would I do on my lunch break, and saw a comment on the 90s kids watching nickelodeon video that said: I was born in 1998, I’m in fact a 90s kid. No, child. Newborn you does not qualify as a 90s kid. People were really defensive about their year of birth and classification. I, too, am one of the 90s kids, a legit one, as I was born in the mid 80s. 90s nostalgia is a big thing right now, due in large part to buzzfeed’s constant posts. It was such an awesome time to be a kid, though I’m sure other generations make that claim as well.

Some highlights for me were, naturally, Nickelodeon and SNICK. Are You Afraid of the Dark was my jam as the creepy child that I was. R.L Lauren was what they called me in my seventh grade writing class because I would only write about death, ghosts, twins, and death. TGIF was the thing that got me through the day on Friday. If you can still sing all of the tv theme songs, you’re doing life right. I popped Flintstones vitamins daily. 10 million strong and growing, son. I dreamed of marrying Doogie Houser, MD, obviously that would have never panned out. The Sandlot, was and still is, my favorite movie of all time. Lisa Frank made all of my school materials as obnoxious as possible. Huggies were my drink of choice. And a majority of my time was spent playing boardgame greats like Dream Phone, Sorry, Mousetrap, and Crossfire…wait I never played Crossfire I just fondly remember the fiery commercial.

As much as the 00s kids try to claim the 90s, (the double o’s just do not have the same ring to it) by watching those old shows on youtube. It doesn’t count. You just had to be there. The visions you had of racing up the Aggro Crag. The plans you made for if one day you had the luxury of that shopping spree at toys ‘r us, you know you had it mapped out where exactly you would start first. The nervousness you had when playing MASH or paper fortune teller, I was never the one who could fold it correctly. Or the deepest tan you ever had in your life because you spent the entire summer playing outside ALL day long. That’s right. Outside. Like, nature minus a computer screen or internet. Shocking.

Everything just seemed better back then, probably because we didn’t have to be adults and do stuff, but still better. I guess it’s a good thing my mother threw absolutely NOTHING away, so if I ever wanted to go back my childhood, I just have to go down to my parent’s basement. My second grade journal is down there along with every single toy I ever owned. Seriously.

Funky buttloving. Yes, I just said funky buttloving.