As 2013 comes to an end, I have been trying to think about something to write about. Most things that came to mind were downright cliche and overdone. Finally, inspiration hit, thanks to a fellow blogger. (Thanks, Mike Fuller.)
Instead of reflecting on 2013 (which I'm sure I will do in a later post when it's not almost 1:00 in the morning), I'm going to write as if it's the end of 2014 and I am wrapping up that year. Notice my title- intentional. I know it's a little New Years Resolution-y, but it's with more direction. Saying "I'm going to go to the gym more and I'm going to be nicer" doesn't always work for everyone. So, here's my wrap up of 2014 before it even began.
1. I graduated from Rowan (finally). They may or may not have pronounced my last name correctly. My family and I went out for a nice lunch afterwards and we took cheesy pictures in front of a tree somewhere as I pretended to know how to properly hold a bouquet of flowers.
2. I got in the car with my sister and didn't die. She just got her license. Pray for us all.
3. I applied to a bunch of graduate schools and graduate assistantships and selected one (if any) that fit my list. OR...(if I couldn't find one that fit my list), I applied to a zillion elementary school teaching jobs in New Jersey and was hired for one. Whichever of these two options happens, I will love. I know it.
4. I stopped being as stubborn with Ryan.
5. I celebrated a friend's engagement. Come on guys, it's bound to happen to someone.
6. I accepted the fact that I am practically obsessed with carbs, but have come to terms with the fact that my body simply can't handle as much as I would like it to.
7. I remembered to not put my cheap shirts in the dryer. I also remembered to turn off the stove every time I cooked.
8. I took the stairs more than I did in 2013.
9. I met three awesome new friends. I've also kept the awesome friends I had already.
10. I enjoyed drinking red wine and eating sushi...actual, real sushi, not chicken tempura.
11. I painted a picture on the enormous canvas I bought in 2012.
12. I slowed down from 2013. I "just breathed" more.
13. I saw two fantastic country concerts and drank a beer on our lawn seats.
14. I watched Rowan Club Softball beat a team we never beat before.
15. I visited the PROS. They were fabulous, as always.
16. I called my family members more.
17. I pitched with my dad. We spoke in ridiculous accents the majority of the time.
18. I met Ryan's family in upstate New York.
19. I did not buy a pair of heels that was less than $30.
20. I wrote in my blog all year.
And there you have it. Right now, on December 31, 2013, it seems like 2014 will be a pretty great year. Cheers, to the New Year! Hoping everyone has a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2014.
I've always been weird about "goodbye's"...or as I like to call them, "I'll see you later's". When you start the relationship, whether it's a new friend, a professor, a co-worker, whatever, you never really think about the "end" of it. Realistically, there is no actual "end" to a relationship, but you know what I mean. I'm talking about that moment when you know it's not going to be how it normally is...When the monotony is broken.
Today, I had one pretty big "I'll see you later". Two and a half years ago, I signed up to be a Big for the mentor program called Big Brothers Big Sisters. The Bigs go into the schools once a week to spend time with their "match", who is an elementary school student. The Big is a role model and someone to truly develop a friendship. These matches can last anywhere from a single semester to a few years. For me, I closed my match about an hour ago, two and a half years after my relationship with Anna began.
Rewind those two and a half years. I remember the day I met the little blondie. She was much more shy and MUCH shorter then. The first time I said "hello" she blushed and hid her little 7-year-old smile. Now, she's basically 8 feet taller and a confident, intelligent, hysterical young girl. Now I know what adults feel like when they talk about kids growing up quickly. It's weird.
Looking back on our match, I've learned much more than I had expected. I've learned that I was a role model for this little girl. She's matured. She's dealt with problems. She's grown. I like to think that I had a small part of that. I've been someone to look up to. But she's not the only one who's grown. I have. She's shown me the value of staying young, running around with friends. She's shown me how even children can be leaders. She's reminded me that kids are creative and intelligent. Maybe I don't ever really talk about any dreams of becoming an elementary school teacher, but my relationship with Anna has definitely helped. She's given me hope and excitement towards student teaching and my future career. It's crazy how just one little girl can be so inspirational.
As I was saying "I'll see you later", Anna's mother gave me a gift. Today, I have officially started my very own Pandora bracelet collection, and I couldn't be more excited. My fancy new thin leather bracelet came with a little watering can. Anna and her mother explained that they chose the watering can because that's what I was for Anna; I helped her grow. Some presents are generic; not this one. This present is something I will keep forever and add a charm to any time something momentous happens. Thank you, Anna and Mom, for starting my lifelong collection.
I couldn't be happier I signed up for this program. If you ever get the opportunity, don't hesitate. You'll get much more out of it than you could have ever expected. For now, "I'll see you later, Anna".
Today is the day. It's the ultimate test to see if that one etiquette dinner was worth it. It's the test to see if I'm actually a functioning "young woman"... or whatever I am. I get to go to my first big girl dinner. I'm invited as a "significant other" to my boyfriend's holiday work party. It's not a frat house or the local bar, places my 23-year-old self has gotten quite used to over the years. No, it's a formal, professional-ish party, where I'm probably going to have to shake hands and say phrases like "Oh, it's a pleasure to meet you" and "Yes, the garnish on the chicken is simply divine." (Just kidding - I would never talk like that.) Let's hope my hands don't sweat like they normally do.
I must say, I'm a little nervous. In the title, it says "Little Girl at the Adult Table". I guess I'm not really a little girl. That ends around age 9. I'm 23. Not little. In my head, though, I'm little. I still kind of feel like I'm 16 sometimes, so the fact that I'm wearing nude, pointy-toed heels and carrying a clutch tonight seems a little out of character. Where are my dress up Belle slippers and fancy crown?
When I was a kid, my mom taught me to use good manners. "Can you please pass the salt?" Unlike what my father would do, I cannot throw something across the table tonight. I probably shouldn't burp and then think about high five-ing my brother. Playing with my food is a no-no and it's definitely not a good idea to hide my vegetables under my napkin like I did when I was 7. I'm still a little fuzzy on the elbow-on-the-table-rule though. I'll steer clear just in case.
So, I'll act how all the adults do when they're at the adult table. I'll tell them my plans for graduate school. We will probably talk about the weather and the roads we took to get there. Hopefully there won't be too much business talk tonight. I will smile when appropriate and laugh when the boss tells a joke.
Regardless of how my tone may sound in this post, I'm actually very excited. I promise. Maybe I don't feel "adult" enough to go to an adult party, but I'm on my way. It's pretty cool that my boyfriend has a real job and that I'm lucky enough to be invited.
So, wish me luck. Here goes nothing. Cheers, to being the little girl at the adult table. (But only a glass of white wine instead of that Scooby Doo shot at Landmark.)
Is this what we're headed for?!
Last night, I sat with a few of my guy friends and laughed over a couple of Sam Adams. It was the first time I really understood exactly what Tinder was. For those of you who may not know, it's a dating app. You download it onto your phone and make a profile with a few pictures of yourself along with a short "About Me" section. You select the age limits for who you may want to date. And voila! The app finds people who fit your age limits in the surrounding area and it's as simple as swiping to the left if you like them and to the right if you don't. If they also swipe left, BAM, it's a match. You're free to "chat."
Thinking about it now, it kind of makes sense...kind of. When I used to think of dating, I thought about meeting in the grocery store as two strangers reach for the same gallon of milk as their hands softly touch. They proceed to gaze into each other's eyes, fall in love, and live happily every after. Or there's always the coffee shop. Woman orders a venti mocha something or other. Man orders the same thing. Instantly, they're perfect for each other. Soon, they're walking down the aisle. But now what? According to Match, 1/3 of marriages are started online. Does Tinder count as "online"? I'd say it's pretty close.
Maybe it used to be the norm that a mommy and a daddy tell their child the romantic story of how they met and started dating. I bet in a few years, that story is going to involve a computer screen and a log in account. Who's to say there's anything wrong with that? If it's bringing people together, it's bringing people together. The world is evolving; technology is practically taking over. (As I'm typing, my phone is literally resting on my left knee.)
So, Tinder on! Have fun with it. Who knows, maybe you'll meet your future spouse. Or maybe you'll just meet someone to have some fun with...
Another year, another night of perfectly molded aliens in unrealistically expensive lingerie strutting their stuff down a runway. If it isn't their voluminous, masterfully highlighted hair, their sexy little six packs, or those 34AAs that somehow look like D's, it's something about these "Angels" that catch our attention every year. So we watch (some might even drool) and everyone develops some sort of a "girl crush" on these strange Brazilian women.
Every year, it's the same story. Women everywhere gawk over these freaks of nature and, even though we might not all admit it, everyone would love to look like one of these models. But think about it, there's like...twenty of these women in the world. IN THE WORLD. That's like 1 in a zillion people that look like them. Maybe they look great in Victoria's Secret lingerie, but picture Adriana Lima walking around the streets. Her feet would probably hang off a bed. I bet they have a really hard time finding jeans that fit them appropriately. Chances are the have to squish down to take pictures with their girlfriends. Just imagine trying to find a boyfriend who is the right height. And the boobs? Don't even get me started. My roommate did "extensive research" and found that Candice Swanepoel has 33As and manages to look like this:
The way I see it, you can't really display supportive bras if you have nothing to actually support. Last but not least, just think about how heavy and painful those ridiculous wings must feel.
I'm not sure if this is my way of making women everywhere feel a little better about themselves or just a personal rant. Regardless, I'll be one of the millions who tune into the show tonight at 10. To make it even better, we get to look forward to seeing Taylor Swift perform...again. Barf.
Disclaimer: Before you continue, it's about to get a little cheesy. Had to.
Anyway, ladies, remember - you don't need to look like one of these Angels to be beautiful. They're called models for a reason. I read a quote a while ago that really stuck with me: "Don't worry about being a model; worry about being a role model." Couldn't agree more.
Enjoy the night. Eat a cookie. I bet they don't.
Alright, here we go. Cliche? Yes. I don't care. Everyone needs a Bucket List.
1. Stop biting my nails. It's gross.
2. Go camping for 2 nights (instead of just one - it's way more "campy-er").
3. Get married to my best friend.
4. Stand up on a surf board at least once.
5. Jump off a cliff into some sort of water below. (Even Mountain Creek Water Park counts.)
6. Go to Europe - preferably Spain.
7. Swallow a piece of sushi. (Instead of spitting it into Ryan's hand. Sorry.)
8. Gamble in Las Vegas (but not lose a zillion dollars).
9. Ride Kingda Ka. Eek.
10. Go to the Ball Dropping on New Years' Eve at least once.
11. Go to the Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York at least once.
12. Get my Master's degree.
13. Spend a night in a haunted place.
14. Have 3 kids.
15. Go to Bora Bora and stay in one of those huts like the Kardashians did.
16. Do a bar crawl.
17. Have a garden and eat my own vegetables.
18. Be a bridesmaid.
19. Go on a road trip with friends.
20. Go to Carlo's Bake Shop, even if it means waiting in line forever.
21. See a shooting star.
22. Own a nice camera and take lots of pictures.
23. Tell Taylor Swift I don't like that she keeps winning all of these country awards. (Okay, probably not gonna happen.)
24. Hang out with a minion. (Also, probably not possible.)
25. Write a book. (Maybe - haven't completely decided if I want to, but a psychic told me I would, so obviously she's right.)
26. Write in this blog. A lot.
27. Run a mile in less than 8 minutes like I could in high school.
28. Strike out Ryan.
29. Be thrown a surprise party.
30. Go to Greece. (Effie, I can squeeze into your suitcase one summer.)
31. Love my job, but be a really great mother.
32. Smooch under the mistletoe.
33. Go to a hot air festival.
34. Visit the south, wear cowboy boots, and eat macaroni and cheese.
35. Pay for the car behind me at the drive-thru of Dunkin Donuts.
And just for fun, here's a list of things I've already checked off of my Bucket List.
1. Shoot a gun. (And miss the skeet.)
2. Ride a camel on a beach in Cabo. Coolest thing ever.
3. Catch a fish.
4. Swim in the middle of the Atlantic ocean and have a glass of champagne.
5. Go skydiving.
6. Make a time capsule.
7. Get a tattoo.
8. Swim in a waterfall. It was freezing.
9. Learn how to juggle. I could use more work.
10. Ski in Vermont. I cried. Too cold.
11. Swim with dolphins.
12. Go to a drive-in movie.
13. Go to Weird NJ places.
14. Win a spring break vacation.
15. Get 20 teeth pulled. (Wasn't very fun, though.)
16. Rent a summer house with my best friends.
17. Plan a surprise party.
18. Do No-Shave November. Never again.
19. Go to Cancun with my best friends.
20. Visit the Statue of Liberty.
21. Do an awesome April Fools' Day joke. (Sorry, Ryan.)
22. Hold a huge snake.
23. Go snorkeling. I got stung my a jellyfish. Ugh.
24. Kiss someone on New Years' Eve.
25. Go the Serendipity in NYC.
26. Go to a broadway play.
27. Sleep on the beach over night.
28. Eat an insect - a cicada, to be exact.
29. Make a fire (and I managed to not burn the house down).
30. Try line dancing.
31. Go to a dine-in theater.
32. Get hypnotized.
33. Try hot yoga (never again!).
34. Run a 5k.
35. Ride in a gondola in Colorado.