Tag Archives: but seriously

Happy Dad Day, Father Lion!

Though I am a lion-haired girl, my Dad’s mane is a little more tamed.

One thing you should know- my dad is an absolute rockstar. Where do I even start? My dad is the reason that I was the confusion of every boy in many parking lots. You see, when someone need their car jump-started, there I was– marching in with the industrial-strength jumper cables he gave me, out of the back of his old pickup truck that became mine and the sassy “oh-don’t-worry-I’ve-got-this” attitude happening. My Dad is the reason I know how to waterski, wakeboard, handle a gun, kickstart a motorcycle, install cabinets, do a Texas two-step, grill, considered The Home Depot a second home as a small child and have both my boating and driver’s license. And I’ll be darned if I’m not proud of all of that.

Besides all these Dad-driven traits, my Dad is also a huge part of who I am. I have my Daddy’s love for working with my hands and problem-solving nature, but I still call him for advice before embarking on any major project. We share the same sense of humor and spontaneity, and he’s always been the one to just trust me and throw me into a situation to help me learn (like how when I was first learning to drive, instead of practicing in a parking lot, he told me to just get on Highway 59 heading to downtown Houston. Yeah, ‘white-knuckled’ tends to teach you to sink-or-swim!). We both love Back To The Future & John Wayne, classic rock and country music playing loud, a good meal, being on the water, finding places off-the-beaten path in the backroads of Texas and not wearing shoes.

But most of all, my Dad has taught and continues to teach me how to be a hard worker, but also enjoy so much of life. He has worked at the same company for over 20 years and still puts on his boots every morning to go in early and work so that I, my brother and my Mama can live so comfortably. He is a Godly man who treats people with so much respect. When my Dad laughs, he laughs loudly and usually, the whole room is listening and laughing along. He is a fantastic storyteller and oh-so-quotable and I hope to be a little more like him each day.

So Dad, even though I’m not in Texas to celebrate with you,

Happy YOU Day!

I love you to the moon and I think that you raised a pretty darn good son and daughter, but I might be a little biased.

*And if nothing else, you raised a daughter who knows the difference between an inboard and outboard motor, phillips-head and flat blade screwdrivers and was overjoyed this morning when the average recorded mileage on her truck increased by .5 miles. So hey, that’s something!

Siriusly Grand Summer Plans

I’m lazy, I know.

I should have been writing all my deep thoughts down now that it’s summer and free time is all I’ve got, but I’m a sucker for laying in the sun and procrastinating, so I’ll just make you an interactive list, internet.

I’ve been out of school almost a month and so far, I’ve….
listened to a whole lot of Johnny Cash, eaten a heap of tex mex with the family, cut my mane, played on the beach with my best friends, slept in nearly every morning, restrung my guitar and ukulele-

Oh, and did I mention that I’ve packed up my little life and put it all into my pick-up truck to get ready to drive to Nashville, Tennessee for three months?

Yeah, that happened. That happened!!!

In a little less than a week, I’ll start interning for SiriusXM Satellite Radio in Nashville and I am jumping up and down in excitement!

This lion is going places; literally! I am so very grateful for this opportunity, grateful that my parents are so supportive and grateful that my shoe collection somehow was able to fit in one bag! I’m nervous and anxious but I’m also counting down the hours. I’m a little sad about three months away from all my family and friends and away from my home state, but you know, I think the good far outweighs the nerves. Not to mention, at least if I have any say, this summer will have a pretty fantastic soundtrack.

My cowboy boots, ukulele and coffeemaker are packed. Essentials? Check.

Stay gold till I return, Texas. See you soon, Tennessee!!

(logo picture source here)

Crushed

I think I just must be allergic to “crushes”.

I realize that writing that sentence is the closest to Carrie Bradshaw that I’ve ever sounded, but I’m feeling that it is true. I don’t write this blog from a sappy doe-eyed girl perspective on relationships, (although I have been there once or twice) but I just feel like admitting it- I find it hard to just ‘like’ someone all of the sudden. And I don’t say this from a temporarily-scorned-i’ll-never-love-again point of view, I really mean that if my history shows anything, it’s that I don’t get all jumpy jittery and crush-crazy over boys. Not notably often, at least. We can call this a white girl problem, but hey, this blog is my tiny corner of the internet, and so I will illuminate it with whatever is on my mind, and today it’s this predicament.

I know people who say they get this “crush” feeling too often or just accept it as a part of life, but I feel like I’m neither or like I’m doing something wrong for not constantly having a beau to talk about or steal gazes from or dream of. However, feelings can’t be manufactured, and so I’m stuck being somewhat comfortable on my own.

I mean, I do love people; I do have feelings, I swear! My family takes up a huge part in my heart, my friends make me sing happy-go-lucky songs about them, and most of my favorite songwriters evoke feelings of attachment. Heck, I even write little love letters to SONGS. But for some reason, I happen to lack the crazy butterfly-like rush, or at least its popular frequency.

I feel like I’m supposed to be more boy-crazy. Does this sound crazy on its own? DOES THAT MAKE ME CRAAAZY?

I can count my so-called past ‘crushes’ of my short 20 years on one hand.  I’d go as far to say that I feel like I relate to Cady Heron and her African love ‘Nfume’ in this sense. Take that as you may.

So, now that you’ve made it this far into this post, you must be wondering- why am I jumping all over the place with my words and emotional run-on sentences? Two words: The Wombats.

Yes, I’ll blame this fantastic song by The Wombats that has been on repeat for days for bringing it out of me, so, internet, turn up your speakers and let me lay it on you-

THIS IS NO BRIDGET JONES!

Maybe I was spoiled by movies and tricked by tv shows into thinking I should have my own complicated love triangle happening by now. Maybe it’s because I’m at the age where I’m apparently supposed to have my five-year plan mapped out, including my picturesque wedding and marriage. Maybe it’s because for years I wanted to have someone to giggle about at 7th grade sleepovers but lacked a muse. Maybe it’s because I have to keep promising myself that I’m not a freak for not giving my little affections away so easily.

But all I have to say is that-

IF THIS IS A ROM-COM, KILL THE DIRECTOR!

Because, honestly, I just have to think that it’s not about ‘crushes’ and mind games and that I’m NOT weird for not constantly having someone I dream about.

When and if this whole stomach-butterflies-flapping-and-crushed -to-the-ground event happens, I’m serious when I admit that you’ll find me with my eyes glazed over, listening to Ella Fitzgerald on my record player and sighing and giggling like a lucky sap should, but for now, I’m not there. And after all, I’m sure you’d much rather read coherent sentences rather than “OMGHEISSOHOTANDPERFECT<3<3” over and over again.

……right?

(And internet, I promise you that when this rare crush feeling stumbles upon me, rest assured that I do turn into a bumbling idiot. Did that happen this week unexpectedly and maybe prompt me saying all of this in the first place and remaining confused? Ehh, I’ll let you decide, internet. But aren’t you glad you read the small text? So illuminating, I know.)

Home Alone? No Thank You

I basically lived alone my first two years of college.

Okay, wah wah, I can cry about it all I want, but it wasn’t too terrible. Of course, it wasn’t exactly by choice- it just happened that way. Both of my roommates my freshman and sophomore year just seemingly spent most of their days and nights at sisters’ apartments, boyfriends’ duplexes or just back home. On weekends, I always had the place to myself. This, of course, left only me and my beloved ukulele bunking together for literally months. They were both sweet girls…in the total of 36 hours we probably spent in the same room the entire two years I lived on campus, but if we’re being honest, I was on my own in my room.

Now, of course, this didn’t mean that I was by my lonesome most hours. I was very blessed to find friends and find them quickly, and they have been with me, by my side physically and emotionally for the past three years in so many ways. We went (and still go) everywhere together- literally. Laundry was done in a group, every class break was spent catching up even if we had five minutes, meals were never eaten alone and I’m honestly surprised that we didn’t all just move into a tent together on the campus lawn somewhere. Making tight-knit friendships has been the best part of moving to San Marcos, by far, and this year has only been even better.

This year I happen to live in the cutest little apartment with the cutest girls in the world. Think I’m kidding? You clearly haven’t met C & S.

See, told ya! But really, I can honestly say that living with two of my best friends by my side, sometimes even when I’m not expecting them to be, is marvelous. At any given time, there’s three separate iTunes libraries playing loudly, dishes stacked a mile high and cardigans of every color are sprawled across every piece of furniture, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love mornings when we all sit in S’s room on her bed and share stories and cups of coffee and I love evenings when we come home at different times but still check up on each other.

You see, I’m spoiled now. While I used to be adjusted to being alone in my surroundings, I now crave having my roommates near. I can still be on my own, but I’d much rather not. And so, hearing one of their keys twisting the lock to our front door at this very moment as I type this blog post? It’s like music to my ears.

Am I needy? Could be. But hey, internet, you would be too if you had roomies that woke you up to the smell of bacon and hugs. Promise.

Good Enough

A few months down the road and I guess I can finally come to terms with the title, “blogger.” I write, I comment, sometimes I make somewhat of a point, most times I ramble. But that’s normal in the blogging world, right? Is it a little ridiculous to make a blog post about making a blog post? We’re about to find out. (Hint: I’m leaning toward yes.)

Honestly, I struggle to fill this little update box sometimes. Though I love words and phrases and usually have a few spinning around in my brain, I get all sorts of secondary concerns- will anyone like this? Does anyone else feel this same way? Will this make anyone laugh? Will this offend anyone? Will this bore anyone? Are my pictures high-resolution and interesting enough? CAN I INCORPORATE PUPPIES AND/OR BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN? (Usually, no.)

Ahem, but while this is now turning into, “Let’s Talk About Lion-Haired Girl’s Insecurities” Hour, I assure you this entry has a point. I’ll attempt to make it now.

I’m reading a book for my newswriting class (thanks, college!) called Give Me A Break by John Stossel, and though usually assigned readings only stick in my head long enough to be quizzed over, he has a lot to say that is currently resonating with my creative  and educational self. (And he’s got a killer mustache!…but I digress).

Stossel says, among many other stories and great little paragraphs, that “Perfect is the enemy of good”.

“Perfect is the enemy of good.”

Let that sink in a little.

Honestly, that phrase has been rocking around in my head for a while now. I think that so often I don’t write words or pursue something even larger because it seems like I don’t have every miniscule detail worked out yet. I think most people, specifically our generation, struggle with this, because we see photoshopped-and-edited-perfection displayed around us 24/7. Everyone wants instant success that happens in a second, but it has to be untouchably elaborate as well. You can’t write the first chapter of the novel until you’ve written the gripping sequel. You can’t sing along because your voice might crack here and there.  You can’t talk about something you don’t already know every differing opinion and research about, because speculation isn’t perfection. You can’t dance cause you might misstep.

I’ll acknowledge that I struggle, but I say that all of this is ridiculous! Start dancing, internet! We get so caught up in having a finished product that we never even start building!

While I think we should always be striving towards the best, you can produce something or a million somethings, in that same strive. Perfection doesn’t happen on the first try or overnight, it takes passion and trial-and-error and yes, even measly little blog posts. Perfection doesn’t land in your lap–that is, unless you’re James Dean, cause he is pretty perfect. Observe:

No, seriously, how perfect is he? Did I just want an excuse to post a lovely picture of James Dean? Of course not. Is he a stone cold fox? Certainly. But I promise, this is completely relevant. Absolutely….yes.

Keep creating, internet. I’m going to do my best to share my ‘good’ with you, confidently, even if it’s a little rough around the edges. But honestly, I might be a little stingy with sharing James Dean. Sorry ’bout it.

(Photo Credit: here!)

Sometimes You Gotta Break Things

I don’t know about your Valentine’s Day, internet, but mine consisted of watching the greatest love story of all time and throwing things.

It’s not that I’m against love, but watching gory revengeful movies and getting out all your feelings on one of the dumbest holidays ever is healthy. I’m an expert who needs no entanglements or silly boyfriends or head-over-heels-crushes to stay happy. Or you know, I might just be a cynic of love who is scared to admit that she still is a hopeless romantic who loves musicals under that tough skin and constant making-fun-of-relationships-facade.

Too much?

Anyway, overshared insecurities aside, one thing that’s truly true- I’m a visual learner.

As much as words can comfort me and I can bask in them, roll them around on my tongue and rewind television shows just to hear the rhythm in the way certain sentences sound, if I really want to drive a point home, I have to see it with my baby blues. I want to open my eyes wide and get to know the colors and shapes and textures and how the light hits something just so.

Luckily, I got to learn this particular way last night, when my friends and I had ourselves a little “Break” party. This tradition is one that I heard from a friend back when I lived at home, and implemented as much as I could throughout high school and you know what? It still works wonders.

It’s simple, really. We drove to Goodwill and collected a handful of cheap plates (as seen in above graphic); all of different colors but all those that looked extra china-y. We then brought the plates back and attacked them with sharpies, writing out everything that we wanted to see break into a million little pieces. Fears, bad dreams, regrets, doubts, experiences that hurt, and since it was Valentine’s Day, I’d reckon to say that most our plates had failed relationships, lost loves and the names of soul-crushing boys and heart-stealing girls that we wish we’d never run into in the first place written all over them. We kept our plates to ourselves, mulling over them until we were all ready. We trekked out to the railroad tracks behind our apartment, and huddled together, we said goodbye to our precious regret-stained dishes. One by one, we said goodbye to pain and failures and secrets and feelings that left us worse off. Standing across from each other, we addressed our plates individually, and, as if in slow motion from our very own Tarantino movie scene, then smashed them into the tracks, watching it all break away and cheering with each broken dish at the realization that, surely, it was all just words on a plate anyway.

Pretty sure I had the best Valentine’s Day of my life last night.

Call it dramatic, call it childish, but I can honestly say that I left a few things on that railroad track that I won’t be needing anymore. Maybe plates need to break so that we don’t have to.

Eat Play Love

Weekends with wonderful people always inspire me to write.


Yesterday I came home from quite possibly one of the greatest days (as proclaimed by a reliable new best-friendski source that I would link but alas, his tweets are blocked) feeling unusually tired. Normally I have the worst trouble falling asleep and have to resort to sleeping masks or staring up at the ceiling waiting or watching something I know by heart but last night, as soon as my mane hit the pillow, I was out like a lightbulb. Why? Cause all my energy had been spent during PLAYTIME!

I think the world needs more playdates. We could all use a little downtime to run out all our stresses, not marathon-finish-line style, but friendship-spent-being-active style. I forget to play. I forget that I need that interaction, that rediscovered recess, that feeling of, “Hey! Let’s go! Let’s share! Let’s do an activity together that doesn’t take two hours of discussion beforehand!”

Now, don’t get me wrong- I am the farthest thing from althletic, unless yoga counts. I don’t have a competitive bone in my body (until I put on dance shoes, but that’s another post altogether) but if we’re playing, I can jump around and cheer people on who actually care about winning like there’s no tomorrow. I’m hardly sporty but if someone wants to spend a sunny day frolicking sport-like, I can be convinced quite easily to tag along.

So, yesterday, I didn’t sweat like a bodybuilding champ, lift anything particularly heavy or do much besides 1. picnic and 2. dodge the throws of a Frisbee as hurtled through the air by my rockstar friends, but I decided we should all keep this in mind:

Don’t Forget To Play!

(or DFTP)

DFTP, Internet!

Stop reading this on your computer, get outside and DFTP!

Invisible Shoes and Ideas

I have a big mouth and I talk nonstop. (See Exhibit A.)

I fill silences, speak at increasing speeds and craft sentences at the drop of a hat. What do I do with that?

I have plenty of time to spend talking about nonsense, but every now and then I get this feeling that I want to talk about important things. Important ideas.

I look at organizations and movements like TOMS and Invisible Children and feel so small. They were started by people not much older than I. Where did that great idea come from? Divine intervention? Chance? Happenstance? Fortune cookies? Right-Place-Right-Time?

I want one of those moments.

I can’t search for my genius idea or manufacture it or wait for it to arrive in the mail. I just want that idea, that life-changing idea, that idea that gets other people as excited as I am about things, because, well, I can be really excited. Honestly, I have experience celebrating often and I can jump up and down with great success, so all I need is a really good reason to do so.

So what DO I have to get this great-idea-process off the ground? The ability to speak, at least.

I have to talk to people. Hear their story and share it with the world. Get out there and chat it up with those who haven’t had a voice. Discover!!!  Because hey, I can watch a documentary and buy a pair of new shoes (ps, Santa, I’m a size 9) but ultimately the impact should be much more. Furthermore, even if all my efforts don’t go into the specific organization-of-the-moment, learning about anything exciting or revolutionary or grass-roots-driven should spur me on to find my own challenge to bring to light.

If there’s anything that The Social Network taught me (besides the fact that Aaron Sorkin is a boss), it’s that one little idea, whether good or bad, can take the world by storm, even if this idea is developed by an emotionally-unstable nerd. And here’s the thing– I’d like to think I’m at least a rather emotionally-stable nerd, so hey, that should make my chances even better.

Tears

I used to cry often Freshman year. Sometimes for legitimate reasons, but mostly because I let little situations get to me. I would get frustrated with the smallest things, I would feel bouts of loneliness or insecurity and I was crippled by little frequent panic attacks. Mostly when all of these hit, I would just have to throw my hands up in the air and sniffle for a little while because it was all I knew to do.

I don’t write this out to evoke a feeling of sorry or of diversity; in fact, most people I have talked to say that college was a distinctly hard transition for them as well. I’m not ‘special’ for taking a while to adjust. (And yes, I’ll admit that years of theatre and choir probably made me a little more dramatic than most anyway, so tearing up is already well established in my normal repertoire.)

Point being to all of this, at this very moment it’s 3 AM and I’m at the end of my first week of classes back at college for the spring semester and I have to write all this before I forget it or fall asleep, so here goes nothing.

I have grown so immensely in my three years here at Texas State so far, mainly from the fantastic people that surround me and the situations I have been placed into, but I have cried every single night since being back this week. Here’s the thing, though- these particular tears have been from laughing so hard that I have to clutch my side and nearly get a tissue.

I don’t often write when I’m feeling heightened emotions because I’m afraid it will sound terribly depressing or equally-terribly cliche, but I can’t help it because I’m just so soul-jumping-out-of-my-body-happy-joyful to be where I am right now, at this very moment! The friends-become-family I am surrounded by that encourage me and love me because He first loved us, the classes I’m taking that (finally!) interest me, the conversations that I never want to end- it’s all what motivates me to wake up in the morning with jumpy energy and also what keeps me from sleeping, awake at night because I’m like a little kid that wants to keep playing and doesn’t want to miss a single thing. And of course, it’s what makes me cry. But, you know, since I’m already playing the sentimental-cliche card, what the heck, I’m now a firm believer that crying isn’t so bad after all.

Oh and one more thing,

ALL I DO IS DOCTOR WHO.

CAN’T STOP. WON’T STOP.

Worldly…ish

Go ahead and call me cultured.

Today I wore French sunglasses, lipstick manufactured in New York, drank coffee from New Guinea out of a mug made in China, and watched a (brilliant!!) British television show.

I also find myself constantly listening to killer Spanish rhythms, and heck, I even have a map of the entire earth on the wall of my apartment.

And you know what? Today was not an especially different day in particular, actually. I suppose I’m just overflowing with worldliness all the time, right?

If you’ll allow me to get ~serious for just a minute, internet, I think we tend to think that we’re doing a good job of accepting other cultures and blending them altogether in a delicious world-awareness smoothie and drinking it daily. We like to think that we’re pretty informed and that there’s not much else we can do to know the rest of the world.

Unfortunately, I think sometimes my consumerism is about as cultural as I get. It’s not that I shy away from meeting people different than I am, but I think for the most part, I don’t focus on learning about what makes them tick beyond pretty pictures on NationalGeographic.com (although they are really pretty.)

I know this girl who is involved with an organization called The World Race, wherein she will be taking a year off from school to go to 11 countries in 11 months and simply connecting with people there and showing them God’s love; from children in orphanages to prostitutes in slavery to possibly somewhat-scatterbrained twenty year-olds like myself.

Awesome, yes?!

I am so excited to follow her blog and see what and who she encounters, but I’m aware that not every single person can simply take a year off to help others.

So what can I do? There’s millions of organizations that are reaching out, thousands of programs and products that donate proceeds, but in addition to that, I think it’s a conscious thing. Having a mindset of the world, per say, of more than what’s just in front of me is harder to achieve than all of my New Year’s resolutions combined.

But I think it’s worth a try, even if it means keeping up more with Kazakhstan and less with the Kardashians.

Kim, Khloe, and Kourtney will understand.

(Flag Photo Credits: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)