I just returned on Monday from a week in New York! It was a wonderful trip, with lots of different highlights, and I will be sharing more soon. But, in the meantime, I had to update that I was able to check something off my 30 Before 30 list. A large part of the reason we made the trip at this time was to see a few of the games my cousin’s basketball team was playing. My mom and I surprised him on the court at the first game in Binghamton, and it was awesome!
Tuesday night, I checked something off my 30 Before 30 list. I attended my first concert at Red Rocks, and it was amazing.
As a native Coloradan, it’s pretty crazy that I’d never been to Red Rocks. But it was worth the wait! The venue is incredible, with amazing views, great sound and a really cool atmosphere. I saw three bands that I’ve never listened to before, Frightened Rabbit, Local Natives and The National, and I was so caught up in the experience that it didn’t matter. I’ve since bought the albums of all three and would definitely recommend checking them out.
This one gets me every time and truly leaves me dumbfounded. Padded sports bras. Now, I am not an athlete. I love sports, but I’m not that girl that can run for miles or pick up a sport and be good at it that day. But, when I get up the motivation to work out, I work out. I don’t put on makeup, I get sweaty, I don’t wear some coordinated Victoria Secret Active outfit, and I certainly don’t worry whether my C-cups look like B-cups under my t-shirt. And it seems crazy to me that anyone does. I’m probably making too big of a deal about this, but in my mind it’s basically saying that as women, we always have to be ‘on.’ Even breaking a sweat, we have to look sexy and show off those curves.
I write about the next one with a little trepidation. One, because I know some people out there will be offended and two, I’m writing about something I have no experience with. However, I must admit that I am a bit lost when it comes to gender reveal parties. I grew up in a family where all of the babies gender’s were a surprise, and I’ve taken to my mom’s view that finding out in the delivery room must be the ultimate surprise, after all of that terrible work. And talking with a friend who is due any day now about her guess on the sex, which changes every time I see her, is really fun. Some people like to know in order to plan, I get that. But throwing yourself a party to find out the sex in front of everyone else, kind of weird. It takes an intimate moment that used to be just the couple in the delivery room, and puts it in front of friends, family and even coworkers. And all of the ways in which it’s revealed? Balloons in a box, cake color, opening a gift with a little boy or little girl outfit, just seem cheesy to me. I know I won’t have my own party (way down the road), but I realize they are becoming more and more trendy.
Professional athletes behaving badly. This has been a big issue here in Denver lately as one of our best receivers has had repeated run ins with the law. Drugs, speeding, driving without a license, it’s been a rough couple of weeks for him. Now, I understand the argument that these people are human, and are entitled to make mistakes and have fun. But being a professional athlete isn’t a life long career. In fact, the average length of time a player is in the NFL is 3.3 years. Can’t you focus for that time, and make your stupid choices later, when you’re retired?
(Images 1 and 2 via Pinterest, Image 3 via bleacherreport.com)
My best friend from childhood was in town for a few weeks this month and was in and out of my place, and one of the many things I love about him is his brutal honesty. On his last night we were discussing the house and the changes that still need to be made, and he made his thoughts about the microwave situation very clear. “I love everything else about this place, but I hate the microwave. I absolutely hate it. You have to change it ASAP.” It made me laugh so hard, because I felt the same way when I saw it, and I appreciated the honesty.
This weekend I’m heading to Home Depot to meet with a kitchen designer and look at the options. I’m thinking that rather than open shelves, like I’d been thinking, I might get a cabinet that matches my collection but has a paned window front. It will update the kitchen, and will also allow me to display my cookbooks and other décor items. I found a few kitchens on Pinterest that mix a paned cabinet with regular ones, and I think they look good.
Would you mix the two cabinet types, if they are part of the same collection and the color matches?
A few weekends ago, I went on my first roadtrip. This is unbelievable, I know. Growing up we always flew everywhere, and any time I’ve driven somewhere more than 4 hours away, it’s been for a purpose, to college, picking up my new car, etc. But in late July my friend Kristin and I ventured down to Santa Fe for a quick getaway, just because.
Santa Fe has been on my list of ‘to visits’ for a while, so I jumped at the opportunity to get there. It sounds crazy, but I was as excited for the driving portions as I was for the time exploring a new place. We had lots of music at the ready and endless topics to discuss, so I knew the 7 hour drive would go by quickly.
It was a fun trip, despite being a bit disappointed by some of the dining choices we made. The highlight was definitely meeting up for wine and cheese with Kristin’s boss who was also in town. This weekend I’m off to Dallas with Kristin and a bunch of other people, so it should be another adventure!
My 26th year was my most pivotal yet. And not in the way that people say that each year was more than the last, but in the way that it was the most pivotal ever, by a long shot.
My relationships have vastly changed since last August. I went from being in a very serious 7 year relationship to being single. It’s been an adventure, but I’ve learned more about myself that I thought possible. And I’ve never felt stronger than when I made that decision to choose my happiness, not what was easiest. Unfortunately, a distance has come between my two best friends and myself, which is something I’ve struggled with the last few months. We’re at different places in our lives, with different priorities, but it’s still been very difficult. Thankfully, at the same time, I’ve rekindled old friendships and started new ones with some awesome ladies who are constantly reminding me not to sell myself short in any type of relationship, and share a lot of the same values as me.
I spent a lot of time focusing on those closest to me, my family, and made trips all across the country to spend time with them, and was fortunate to have many visitors as well. I’ll never be able to understand how I was blessed with so many amazing people to call my fam.
I also learned a great deal about making tough decisions and dealing with the consequences. Saying goodbye to Lily was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I picked her up at 8 weeks, took her out to the bathroom in the middle of the night (multiple times per night), got Pepto BIsmal pink all over myself, her and the kitchen floor when she was sick, took her to the vet and loved her with all my heart. All of these were parts of puppy ownership that I struggled through, at times by myself. I still miss her every day, but am proud of how I’ve not dwelled on the unfairness of it all.
I’ve learned something about my own level of self respect, and what I will and won’t take from another person. Knowing when to say enough is enough is important and something that will help me in many situations in the years to come.
For my future, I also made some big decisions. I bought an awesome house that will be a great spot for entertaining and living the next few years of my life. I also committed to working 3 nights at my second job, ensuring that I can live the lifestyle I want to live, despite my public school salary. And I’ve embraced the belief that experiences are more important than possessions and made an effort to focus my time on seeing and doing as much as possible.
Armed with this year’s experiences and lessons, I see myself being even stronger and more secure as I turn 27. And I’m excited to celebrate today how much I’ve grown up.
In early July I made a trip back to Southern California to visit my friend Megan. When I go to LA I usually rent my own car and hop between friends and cities, but this time I went specifically to visit Megan and make a trip up to Santa Barbara. We went on a trip up there together back in 2010 when I still lived in LA, and decided it would be a perfect place for us to get away to for a couple of nights. We did a lot of things, exploring town, going out at night, hitting the beach, and the highlight, wine tasting. On our last trip we visited a few tasting rooms in town, but this time we did a day-long vineyard trip, which was a lot of fun.
Wine tasting with a group of strangers is always interesting. The first stop is usually semi-awkward, since everyone is sober and a lot of times you’re the first group there, so it’s pretty quiet. This group was no exception. But as the day wore on, we all had a lot of fun together. We had a wine geek on the trip, who proceeded to annoy everyone in the group on the first few stops with his intense swirling and spitting and asking a million questions about each wine. But by lunch time, we were all pretty chatty and this guy even bought two bottles for us to share at lunch, which was a really nice gesture. The lunch was catered and set up beautifully (under the umbrella, above) with linen napkins, real silverware and bottles of water. I would definitely recommend Grapeline for a wine tour.
After returning to LA, we met up with a bunch of our sorority sisters for dinner at a restaurant in downtown LA. I love seeing these girls and am excited for my next trip back, in just a few short weeks.
Wedding day looks. Summer is wedding season so my Facebook feed has been filled with people walking down the aisle and sharing their pictures. And I’ve noticed a weird trend, where the bride doesn’t really look like herself. Obviously you want to look your most beautiful on your wedding day, but I would also think you’d want to look like you. Like the best version of yourself. But lately I’ve been seeing people with dramatic false eyelashes, just left the salon fresh hair color and too dark spray tans. They all look super happy in their pictures, so I guess they’re pleased with how they looked and obviously enjoyed their day but I know I’ll want my children to eventually be able to recognize me when looking back years later.
Another Facebook related item, but I am baffled by the way certain people are living out their entire lives for people to see on this medium, post college. When you’re 21, and sharing your night meeting your favorite college football player, or documenting your awesome weekend at the lake, that’s one thing. But when people post pictures upon pictures of their late 20′s gallivanting on the weekends, I don’t get it. And I’ve noticed it’s not a single vs. married thing. A lot of married people I know are even more ridiculous with this. At this point, I’m pretty close to deactivating my account. It’s not so much FOMO as GTFO.
Bachelor/Bachelorette mania. Yes, it’s entertaining. Yes, I like to look at the male eye candy and the gorgeous dresses, and lust over their travels. But blocking out one night (for two hours!) to watch it every week? And having watching parties, complete with a rose for each girl to take home? Too much.
I hear this is the new guy. Umm, he’s absolutely adorable. But no watching parties here, thank you very much.
If there is anything that I’ve learned from this whole house process it’s that you should expect for and plan for delays. Sofa? Came 3.5 weeks late. Patio furniture? Still hasn’t arrived, 2 months later. Small odd jobs, like hanging curtains, large mirrors, mounting the TV? And bigger ones like painting and fixing the microwave situation? Delayed a few weeks by the handyman’s previous projects taking longer than planned. So basically, I’m still living in complete chaos.
I haven’t really been in a huge rush to get everything together, because I know that means I will need to get myself in gear and finally get the unpacking and organizing done. And, I haven’t had much time to dedicate. But now, I’m beyond ready. With a guest in town who will be in and out for the next three weeks, and two more guests coming in two weeks, I want things to be comfortable for them and as finished as I can picture them in my head.
Trying to look at the positive, I’ve at least had enough time to be ready and have my list prepared for when the work begins.
Carefully selected paint colors