Thursday, April 16, 2015

spring has sprung

i think i suffer from seasonal depression. because that winter was really getting me down. march was rough. full of emotional and mental crises. and bitterly cold weather. but then the first sunny day hit and it was like a light came on. such sweet relief!

and i celebrated by doing what i do best: repeating history. so when spring hit and blossoms bloomed, a group of friends and i decided to drive down to dc an see the cherry blossoms in our great nation's capital.

and also cafe rio.

even with a four hour drive that turned close to six, crowds that made times square feel quaint, and cafe rio that let me down, it was still a great trip. the sun was out, the magnolias were bright, the monuments all glistened, and the photo opportunities were ripe. so i was happy. me with my selfie stick and narcissistic need to document everything.

to those with me, you're welcome. to those who find it annoying,'re about to hate this blog post.

these magnolias are my favorite. like, these in particular. because they photograph so well. and also magnolias = steel magnolias = "drink your juice, shelby" = shelby = me = #hairtoss

my photographer didn't really understand the crucial role he had in making it look like i was touching the tip of the washington monument. amateurs. ps i love playing tourist (shocker, i know). but why not have enthusiasm for the place you're visiting? what's so embarrassing about doing stupid things for the sake of having fun? can you ever actually be too cool for a monument mind trick? no, no you cannot. you just need to choose your photographers more carefully.   

these girls. we may act crazy, but these girls totally keep me sane. the one real mystery of the universe is how have we only been friends for less than a year? not to get all sappy, but let's get all sappy: i can't imagine life without them. just like i wouldn't survive long car rides without them. and i go crazy when i lose them in crowds. and also all my regrets about this trip revolve solely around not getting more pictures with them. because, hello, look at us. the world needs more of this. 

mirror selfies are the best selfies. ask anyone. add a sunset and it's basically a masterpiece.
even in dc we have to stand our ground. cuz, sorry, dc, imma let you have your blossoms, but new york is the greatest city of all time. all time.

so there you have it. another dc adventure ripe with fruit snacks and cafe rio and...a lot of 40s music tbh. i got loaded up on vitamin d. my selfie stick got a good work out (not a euphemism). and life was literally all sunshine and flowers.

i'm really grateful to not be wearing down coats anymore, running from indoor activity to indoor activity, freezing all the while. i'm glad to feel the sun on my skin and hopefully begin turning a less frightening shade of white. i like being young and wild and free enough to think a day trip to dc sounded like fun. i feel #blessed to have the friends i do. and i'm more than fulfilled by the amount of dogs i saw on this trip. so huzzah for springtime / summer. i feel better already. 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

one year in

i've been at my job for a year now. a whole year. eighteen months in new york punctuated by one entire year of real, grown-up employment. i really can't believe it.

i don't know whether to be silly, excited, or serious about it. is it really that big a deal? probably not. but i think so! i mean, i have a job -- a dream job -- in a city i love, living a life i can't get over, and doing things i never thought i'd be able or want to do. i have a life that's all mine. it's not college, it's not family, it's not part-time work or just something to pay the bills. this job is something i sought out and worked for and fought for. and this year has been chock-full of experiences i've only been able to have because of this job.

so that deserves some attention, right?

i remember when i first moved to the city -- eighteen months ago (which is another crazy story) -- and i started looking for a job, i was terrified of what real employment would be like. college does not prepare you for anything (imho). or at least my english major didn't. i've had some sort of job since i was sixteen, but obviously it was never a career. and the thought of transitioning from part-time, mediocre work to a real career with a real title and real responsibilities terrified me.

but it's been wonderful. and now it's been a year. a whole year! cannot compute.
my boss gave me flowers. so i guess i'm not the only one who thinks it's a day worth remembering.
i thought i should wear the same outfit i wore on my first day-- just a cute nod to my "roots," a little something for me -- but i can't remember what it was. i can't remember what desk i sat at or what i did that first day. i can't remember where we ordered lunch from or what we talked about or who all was there. i can't remember if that was the day i finally realized the empire state building was right there or if it was a week later. but i do remember smiling. i remember laughing. i remember being so shaky, so energetic, so nervous and excited and thrilled. because i felt so lucky.

and that has yet to stop.

sure, i have bad days and boring days and hard days and tired days. some days i'm listless and some days i'm frantic. but at the end of every day, i can honestly say i'm so happy to be where i am. because -- and this is going to be a humble brag -- no matter how hard or meaningless, awesome or basic, cool or casual, the fact remains that i work in new york city at a dream job with people who support me and challenge me and believe in me enough to make me believe in myself. i write and read and talk. i plan and organize and manage. i have inside jokes and office traditions. i get paychecks and bonuses and vacation days. i have a desk and i have business cards. it's a crazy grown up world that i often feel ill-equipped for. and yet i love it.
books on books on books. just the way i like it.
i don't know if a year is really a valid marker. there was a lot that happened but a lot that didn't change. it just flew by. i'm in shock, most of my coworkers don't believe it, and even my boss forgot until a calendar reminder popped up. because it feels too fast. and yet it also feels so comfortable. like i've been here forever.

there's a rhythm to it now. i'm still learning and definitely still growing, but i feel so comfortable in my own skin and in my position here. and that's what makes me so excited about this year mark. time doesn't always mean a lot to me. i often forget how old i am and i sometimes still write 2013 on my checks. but a year is -- and sorry if you already know this -- 365 days of memories and moments, dots in the Seurat painting that is my life.

so maybe a year doesn't really matter. i'm sure the anniversary will lose its charm as time goes on. i'll probably forget a lot of details about this one year. but right now i'm just very glad to have it. and i'm very glad to have this job at levine greenberg rostan. because i couldn't imagine a better fit. and because i got a year to my life i literally couldn't have imagined better. and because i surround myself with things that excite me all day erry day. and because -- and this is important -- i run this mother.
*cue the awwws and waterworks*

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

living through hell

winter is the worst. anyone who tells you differently is straight trippin. let's be honest. there's nothing good about it. the magic of the first snow fall is dead and gone and all we're left with is ugly coats, static hair, salty boots, cracked lips, and that uncomfortable feeling of being freezing and sweaty all at once.

winter blows.

and i hate it. loathe it. bemoan it. in utah, you could never hear the end of it. i would drone on and on and on and on and on about how awful winter was. is. and i remember swearing to never move somewhere cold because I HATE WINTER.

well, here i am in the worst winter of my life (followed closely by last year) and yet...i can't even be mad.

why you ask? what miracle happened that i could be stuck in a frozen hellscape where i've felt ice grip my very soul; where i've stumbled home with wet feet too many times to count; where my fingers are constantly frozen and my toes are always numb; where i get caught in a wind tunnel down some avenue and it's so cold i can't breathe--when i go through all that, why am i not just hightailing south somewhere for a new, inevitably warmer adventure?

it's a pretty easy question to answer.

there's this.

and this.

oh, and this.

and i'm like

yeah. new york has changed me. i still hate the cold and i still whine and whimper about it (case in point). but unlike utah where i cursed and clamored to get out, i'm sitting here kind of cold and kind of hot watching the sun set over the empire state building. and, well, there it is.

so when people ask how i can stand these east coast winters, first know that i can't (wherefore art thou spring?) but then just take a moment and realize...nothing in new york will ever truly break me down, because...and here's the kicker...i'm in new york. who gets to say that?

well, almost 9 million people.

but i'm one of them! and i couldn't be happier*
*unless it was 83 degrees and sunny. then i'd be ecstatic. but that's beside the point.

so in the words of the only song that really gets it, "new york, i love it when you're mean."

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

the best of: 2014

it's a week into 2015 and, honestly, i'm still in denial about it.

brain. cannot. compute.

maybe because for the last week of 2014 i was reeling with a nasty nauseating cold/flu/nightmare from hell thing. but also maybe because this year has been chock full of such vivid memories, i really can't believe it's been a year since some of them happened. like, usually a year is a mess of hazy recollections i can't really keep sorted. but this has been a perfectly wonderful, entirely unforgettable year filled with high highs and not too many low lows.


and i might be late to the game, but i really like doing these year-in-review posts. one, because i'm a horribly good bragger and two, i love talking about myself (see: one).

hence the blogging. in general. you know.

so here we have a look back at the very best 2014 had to offer. and maybe it's not strictly just the best, more just general word vomit of all the great things that happened this year. because that's  how i do. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

my brother travis got married. which means i got miss abbey as a sister. FOREVER. if that's not cause for celebration, i don't know what is. i mean, just look at the love!

look at how she completes the family! (minus laura, who couldn't be there because #priorities but was there in spirit and that's almost the same thing.)

but even beyond the sentimentality of the whole thing, their wedding was beautiful and fun and full of dancing and family and food. aka my happy place.

probably the singularly most important moment of my life.....i got a job (an emotional achievement you can read more about here and here). and it's got me all like #seriouslysoblessed because i can't believe 1) i'm a grownup 2) i work in new york city 3) i got a dream job that is even better than i dreamed it.  i work with authors i admire so, you know, i can get pics of nick offerman. because we're just close like that. and i go to fab parties and say things like "no wine, thanks. i'll just have a coke." with a subtle hair toss thrown in. and i have cool grownup things like coworkers and friends. exhibit a:
(please note this picture wasn't take in february. this was after i made friends at work. and that takes time. but i wanted a visual. so, i'll allow it.)

also, ash came to visit thus solidifying her status as THE BEST. thanks, ash! we celebrated my new found employment with lots of pizza and donuts and too much train riding. (imho.) still, we took epic photos showing off our photogenicness. exhibit b:

this is usually a joke of a month. (i dare you to find somebody who likes it). but it was actually pretty fun. there was pi day and dessert haunts and like-kids-in-a-toy-store and all that. but mostly i went to my first concert in forever and it was amazing. i liked grouplove before (hence, you know, buying the tickets in the first place) but i'm obsessed with them now. it was such a good show. even with that sickly sweet, sweaty smell of pot. much pot.

i went with a bunch of friends to see the cherry blossoms. and it lived up to the hype.
i loved it. being in a car, singing songs, eating fruit snacks, taking too many pictures, posing with the blossoms. it was a good weekend. you can read about some fun times there here. oh, dc. you with your wide streets and short buildings and long crosswalk time. i really do love you. 

IT WAS MY BIRTHDAY!! and as i am a narcissist (see: this post), i made sure it was chock full of fun happenings. i.e., hanging out with nick offerman, having a donut-making party, and going to the hamptons. because aint nobody fresher than my clique.

summer came a little late, but the heat and the sunshine finally came, so a bunch of us made the trek down to coney island. because, you know, it's not summer until you have some cotton candy and ride the teacups. at least according to me, and that's all that matters here.

also some friends and i rallied some twenty-some friends to go to a yankees game. and it was so fun. the sun was shining - like, really shining - and the grass was green - probably because it was fake - and it was just so american.i've never been happier.*
*at a baseball game

i had this brilliant idea to leave the city for the fourth. because i'm a basic beezy. originally we planned on boston, but weather didn't cooperate and so plans changed to philly. and philly...was the worst, as previously discussed. like, the worst. but also unforgettable. but mostly the pits. but i still love the memories. but they're literally the worst.
still, america + friends + funnel cake - purse stealing / weepy mess * broken elevator + so many lols + jumping photos = a "good" time.

i dunno. i'm still not sold on the adjective.

also memorable and meaningful, kate moved in. this picture was the beginning of the end. or the beginning. or whatever.
just look at that. she could never resist that.

two words: taylor swift.
she had stiff competition, what, with my little sister coming home (!!) and coming to see me (!!!). but...i was taylor swift. and we danced together. and i fixed her dress tag. and we partied in her kitchen. and i held her cat. and it was just the most surreal day of my life. and so random and unforgettable and unbelievably happy. i mean, just look at this. pure, giddy, unadulterated joy. that's what that is.

but laura was such a doll, too. and in the words of taylor swift, i had the best day with you [all the days you were here].

so i don't know if you heard, but i went to malta. and i died. it was amazing. even with the jet lag and the sunburn and the sad excuse for public transportation, i was constantly in awe. i'm going to say this once - and i might completely take it back later - but if given the opportunity to go back to london or malta...i'd probably choose malta.

that felt like such a betrayal.

but i mean it! it was so unique, so different, so cool, so beautiful, so awe inspiring, so strange and fresh and strangely ugly/beautiful and new and unforgettable. and istanbul was also amazing. just as an fyi.

fall in new york might be my favorite. it's just so much fun. and october was so much fun. a bunch of us went to sleepy hollow, just cuz. we saw foster the people at the coolest venue i've ever been to. we threw an unbelievably unforgettable halloween party that was just too perfect to even try and capture in photos. i got to dress up as dr. sattler (as in jp) so i was very much in my happy place. and it was a dance party. that got shut down for being too loud. so, bucket list = uh, check.

but the best moment of october had to be taylor swift's gma concert at times square. and not because of taylor. in fact, it was pretty awful. gma/new york sucks at organizing events. like, legitimately.

we were in line around 5 am - and the concert wasn't until 9 - and we were pumped and killing it at sneaking closer and closer. but it was cold and we were tired and these horrible people were holding up stupid signs blocking the view. and we finally got to the front of one barrier only to realize there was still a road open. so people just passing by at a not-ungodly morning hour had better views than us. the fury. and then the photographers blocked our view. the volume was way too low. and taylor only sang three songs. but still. it was so fun. we were way too energetic and happy for how awful it was. but that's just how we do. cuz the concert's gonna suck suck suck and the sound is gonna be down down down down, but i'm just gonna shake shake shake shake shake - shake it off! shake it off!

(that song will never not bring a smile to my face).(some people might not agree).

i went and saw american authors and they were great. they're cheesy, sure, and not especially unique. but, man, can they put on a good show. it was so good. so good! they are ridiculously good live. and that confetti! and the final surge to the stage! it was delirious.
but it was not the best moment of november. no, nay, never. november will forever be remembered as the birth of the west village hero.

i'll spare you the details. expect to say once upon a time, a few ordinary people went to a 1940s themed dance. and though they looked like this...
it would be much more that changed. for on our walk to the old fashioned soda shop hidden away in the west village, a hero was born. no, discovered. and the rest of us would never be the same. Rachel Barlow, mvp.

tbh november was more christmasey than december. december was stressful for the most part, and somehow exhausting. but i did get a christmas bonus (#grownupstatus!) and i did have some fun times haunting trees and seeing ballets and building gingerbread temples and meeting santa and, oh yeah, jimmy fallon was awesome.

but nothing beats going home. sure, i got sick. like, deathly ill. and christmas was kind of the worst in that regard. but i was home. home with my puppies and my family and my cafe rio and my carpet. and all was right in the world.

there was heads up, blindfolded pictionary, movies, lunch dates, dinner dates, dance parties. but nothing beats the momentous and important introduction of the selfie stick.

it was family time and so it was perfect. i love these guys. every single one of them. people say we look alike (i don't see the resemblance) but the important thing is we aren't alike. we're just a bunch of unique snowflakes rocking at this whole life thing in various different ways. and though i'm trying to convince them the east coast is where it's at (no luck yet. them and their mountains.), i am excited for all the memories we have yet to make together. cuz i love them, dang it. i mean, come on. just look at them.

how can you even fight that loving feeling?

boyers are the best. i'm sorry, it's just true.

so, 2014 did a pretty good job at outshining even the greatness of 2013. i have never been happier. and i can't believe all the life this year packed in. i mean, long live that look on your face #amiright
and, though it's weird to say and i still forget to write it, i can't wait to see what 2015 has in store.

fingers crossed it's hoverboards.

Monday, December 8, 2014

2k14 Awards

2014 has been good to me. i started wearing more lipstick, tried doing my nails more. i gave up on leggings but discovered knee high socks. a lot of dreams came true and some old ones got deferred. i did things i never thought i would and fell in love with things i'd always thought i'd hate. there were new friends, old connections, rekindled romances (just kidding about that last one). i stopped journaling but i should pick it up again. i learned a lot, the hard way and the easy way. i think i changed but i still love puppies more than anything.

all in all, it's been a good year. a hazy, frenzied, challenging, comfortable one all at once. i sometimes forget i'm only 23, but it's like amy poehler said: you're never too young to be very wise.


but before i go through the minute details of a fabulous year, i thought i'd share the minutiae of my year in review. because i'm easily excitable. if you didn't know.

best song: taking into account my ability to listen to it endlessly, sing along passionately, turning to it desperately - and happily - throughout the year...i'm gonna go with "i wanna get better" by bleachers. but for purely sentimental reasons i can't beat "shake it off"
best album: i may be biased but 1989 is really all that and a bag of chips.
best film: there weren't many great films this year - or at least i didn't get around to seeing them yet. but i really loved the lego movie. which i am not at all ashamed of. and dawn of the planet of the apes was truly - how you say? - unforgettable.
best tv: it's parenthood's last season and it's made me a weepy mess.
best show: the other mozart - this amazing one-woman show about mozart's equally talented but sexistly forgotten sister
favorite celebrity: taylor swift. the songs! sass! the slayage! the self-made success! hear her roar, amiright? also, bff status.
high: emma watson's #heforshe speech
low: #handsupdontshoot #icantbreathe
new life philosophy: forget the games, the expectations, the ideas of who i should be and what i should like and how i should act. you do you and i'll do me.
favorite quote: "i may not have gone where i intended to go, but i think i've ended up where i needed to be" - douglas adams.
best book: i loved eleanor and park. also, my coworker is repping this new ya novel coming out called all the bright places and it's so wonderfully good so just read it okay? okay.
best trip: malta, obviously. but i also loved our blitz through istanbul.
greatest concert: grouplove. i didn't know how much i loved them until i saw them live. and now the memory of that show is one of my favorite.
makeup must: NARS velvet matte lip pencils. especially never say never. lifetime supply, please!
fashion favorite: skater skirts
better with: karaoke is my eureka.
better without: caring so much about what people think of me
wish list item: this gramophone for the iphone
biggest temptation: buying concert tickets for the bleachers nyc show in april. likelihood of me giving in to said temptation? 100%. totally weak-willed here. and have you heard them?? they're awesome! UPDATE: i totally bought them. (note to self, don't contemplate ticket purchases while listening to band)

Monday, November 24, 2014

isn't it about...time?

i really haven't been in the mood to write here. which is too bad because it's been a really fun month. like...really good.

except the weather. but we don't talk about that.

but it's been fun. it's cool to have reached a year mark, getting to re-experience things again. like, i can finally be like "oh, i love fall/winter in the city because this happens and this happens and remember when that happened?" there's a sense of nostalgia and experience. history is repeating itself in the best way and it's a little surreal.

like, how is 2014 almost over? i remember thinking it was weird that it was 2014...and now the year's almost over and it's almost 2015 and everything's moving too fast and if i think about it too hard my face will just permanently morph into the surprise face emoji because i just can't even. but in all seriousness, i don't think time has moved slowly since freshman year of college. that first semester, i felt like all i had was time. it was easy, breezy, beautiful. a lazy summer that just went on for eternity.

and then life picked up and time never slowed down again. everything blurs together until i'm looking back and i'm like "was that really a year ago?" yes, yes it was. but if that horrible justin timberlake movie in time taught me anything (and it really didn't) (but if it did), it's that time is i've been cashing it in on some good experiences. there were a lot of good times this year (and a lot of money spent too) (heyo). malta, knicks, hamptons. grouplove. philly. dc. rockettes. yankees. karaoke. coney. christmas. there was just a lot going on. all the time. but i think the more important lesson of this fast-paced, crazy-fueled, fun-times-had year came from an actual good movie about time, conveniently called about time, that taught me a lot (go figure) about time. (go watch it ) (it's honestly good) (honestly).

it's about a SPOILER ALERT time traveler who wants nothing more than a beautiful life, so his father tells him to live each day like anyone else, but then go back in time to repeat each day in order to recognize all the good things you may have missed the first time around. but of course things go awry and it's not always feasible to travel back in time (just ask harry potter). so the real takeaway, for the time traveler and for me, was something more realistic (at least for those of us without time traveling talents):
the truth is i now don't travel back at all, not even for the day. i just try to live every day as if i've deliberately come back tot his one day, to enjoy it, as if it was the full final day of my extraordinary, ordinary life.

we're all traveling through time together, every day of our lives. all we can do is do our best to relish this remarkable ride. 
*my heart strings* 

so...just living deliberately. happily. remarkably. extraordinarily. wholly. that's what i've been working on. just finding happiness--and looking for it in even the most unhappy times. and i haven't always gotten it right (this year has been hard, too). but i think the reason this has been the happiest year of my life isn't just because of all the things that have happened or all the places i have been or even all the people i've been lucky enough to meet. it's because, deliberately, i've been trying to be happier.

and SPOILER ALERT it works.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

baby we're the new romantics

so my bff forevs, taylor swift, released her fifth album, first pop album, yesterday generally slays. i have one song stuck in my head, constantly and consistently. i love it and i'm obsessed with it. but i'm not going to fangirl MUCH except to can hate on taylor for her singing voice, her dancing, her fashion, her relationships -- i don't know why you would but, hey, you can -- but can we all just respect that she is a really talented lyricist? like, maybe i've had too much of the kool aid by now, but this is clever stuff. and i'll never understand how she can make something so personal (so inherently taylor) and yet i'm over here like HOW DID SHE GET IN MY BRAIN?

this is my new anthem. click for a link. or, you know, just buy the album. you won't regret it, because it's just good, fun, clever, addicting stuff. i mean, that's kind of taylor's mo: it's all about the slow burn. you listen to any of her lyrics -- really listen -- and suddenly you're hooked.

(i mean, don't even try to tell me you didn't listen to shake it off at least once and actually like it. because i won't believe you.)

new romantics
taylor swift

we're all bored, we're all so tired of everything
we wait for trains that just aren't coming
we show off our different scarlet letters
trust me, mine is better
we're so young, we're on the road to ruin
we play dumb, but we know exactly what we're doing
we cry tears of mascara in the bathroom
honey life is just a classroom

cuz baby i could build a castle
out of all the bricks they threw at me
and every day is like a battle
but every night with us is like a dream
baby, we're the new romantics
come on, come along with me
heartbreak is the national anthem
we sing it proudly
we are too busy dancing
to get knocked off our feet

baby, we're the new romantics
the best people in life are free


brb putting it on repeat. don't mind me. currently having a dance party in the mail room. the end.

**my one gripe with the whole thing is that this is only a bonus track. my love for taylor will only be rocked if she doesn't play this on tour**