In Which I Make a Fool of Myself

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If you know me well, there are a few things that you know to be true. I am wildly passionate, I feel all the feelings very strongly, all the time. I am ridiculously nosey and I have a big mouth–two things that I’m working hard on reigning in. I love potatoes above all other forms of food.

And, I can be really, really awkward.

Like, awkward isn’t even the word for it, y’all. For example, I refuse to look like a tourist anywhere I go. I often start walking in a direction only to realize I’m going the wrong way but then refuse to just turn around because I might look like I’m confused, so I walk an extra block in order to look like I know what I’m doing. I’ll spend an hour in a store looking for something to avoid having to ask a sales clerk for help. I’ll realize I’ve been charged incorrectly for something at a store but I don’t want to inconvenience or embarrass anyone so I just take the hit. I don’t really see it as a huge problem, I mean, I live a great, productive life. It just sometimes takes me longer to do things and I very often turn red and sweaty when I’m put in awkward or uncomfortable situations.

Because of this, I’m really bad at two things. One, flirting with or really interacting with even a remotely attractive man. Two, learning my way around new places. And don’t worry, I have stories to prove both of these things to you.

This was a long introduction so I’m going to share one story today and we will save the other for Monday.

First, the flirting.

Last weekend, after a crazy travel day, I realized I needed to make a poster for my final grad school course of the semester. And it was due the next morning. Going to Target seemed like way too much work so instead, I walked to the CVS near my house. I’m in the CVS, carrying a really heavy grocery bag, so I already look silly as I’m basically limping around with milk, orange juice, and 10 apples slung over my shoulder. I get in line, manage not to wallop anyone in the head with the foam board, and then realize that I cut in front of the gentleman waiting ahead of me.

Another thing most people know about me is that I pride myself on my good manners, so I turned to apologize and ask if he was waiting first. This was where it all went downhill because at this point I realized the guy I cut in front of was really quite attractive. So I immediately began sweating, duh. Which I’m sure made me really attractive.

He very nicely insisted that I go first, thank you kind sir. And then, he started small talk. I’m terrible at small talk. I come off as rude and uncaring and just awful. I almost always leave these situations feeling way too much remorse for how I behaved. So, since I’m conscious of this issue and I’m trying to work on it, I did a really good job engaging in the conversation! We chatted briefly about how he was going to work and I was going to work on this project that I had no ideas for.

Then it was my turn in line and I went to the check out pretty proud of myself for having conducted myself like a normal person. After I was done checking out I decided to just top it all off with a Have a nice evening at work! to really prove to myself how great I was doing.

I turned to say goodbye and have a nice night, he smiled, and I turned to leave………..

………….and ran directly into a metal pole. Face first. Holding a foam board that caused me to bounce backwards.

 

And that ladies and gentlemen, is why I’ve been single for almost three years.

 

Eleanor & Park // Book Review

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It’s been a bit since I last reviewed a book here, mostly because it’s been a bit since I last finished a new book. I just reread A Million Miles in a Thousand Years and it continues to be a favorite, and of course I’m working my way through Harry Potter again. But for our epic NYC adventure day I decided to treat myself to one of the books on my ever growing “to read” list.

So, I picked Eleanor & Park. All I knew going in was that it was a young adult love story. And if I’m one thing it’s a sucker for a good young adult novel and a good love story. I figured I would like it well enough.

I was wrong. I loved it. I flew through it in less than 24 hours. It’s an easy read with short, snappy chapters told from both Eleanor’s and Park’s perspectives. It’s the story of two “misfits” who find that they fit together but struggle to make their relationship work due to outside circumstances. It’s a story of a first love that will literally give you butterflies. I laughed a lot, I cried quite a few times, I reread my favorite parts, and I laid in bed just thinking about the book for quite a while after I finished it.

It was definitely worth the impulse buy. I’m excited to read more books by Rainbow Rowell (yes, that’s the author’s name…..) but I’m also a bit apprehensive that none of them will match up to this one!

The Stroller Diaries // 43

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It’s been a bit since I last updated you on Stink and Ladybug. What would you like to know?

You’d probably like to know that Ladybug is obsessed with Ring Around the Rosie. So obsessed in fact that every hour or so she grabs my hand, says Rosie Rosie? over and over again, drags me to the middle of the living room and reaches her other hand out to Stink hand, hand?? We all hold hands in a tiny circle and sing and spin until we get to the end and Ladybug ever so gently lowers her entire body to the floor, I collapse in a heap, and Stink looks at both of us like we are nuts. And then Ladybug pops back up and starts with again? again?

You’d probably like to know that Stink has been forgetting to bring his listening ears with him each morning and we’ve been struggling to learn what it means to STOP when Emmy says stop. We go on walks around then block fairly often now. It’s too cold for long stroller walks but we still need fresh air. Ladybug is slow as molasses, actually, she’s probably even slower than that. Stink is speedy fast and I like to give him his freedom but you know, safety first. When Emmy yells, Stink, stop! It’s very important that you come to a full stop. not just throw your hands up, yell STOP in your perfect toddler voice, and then continue running.

You’d probably like to know that these two have now charmed the mailman, the librarians, and everyone else we meet on the street. Even more so now that we hand delivered cookies to them (the librarian and the mailman, not everyone on the street). Ladybug has been especially sweet. She’s working hard on learning to use her good manners but has been a bit confused and almost every time someone says hello to her on a walk she responds with you’re welcome!! Not quite, Bug.

You’d probably like to know that I literally dread the day I have to leave these two and spend almost our entire day thinking about how lucky I am to be around two bundles of joy all day, everyday.

New York, New York

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Last Saturday Taylor and I took off to NYC for a girls day in the city. We woke up at 3:30AM, took a 5AM bus, arrived in the city at 10AM and had a lovely, crazy day.

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It was full of brunch at the Boathouse in Central Park. Oh la la. I had delicious waffles, a personal jar of warmed maple syrup, and scrumptious potatoes. And a mimosa, duh.

Then we walked through Central Park, saw some street performers, hoped on the Subway (I discovered this weekend that I’m a Metro girl for life–NYC has nothing on DC in that respect) and headed downtown.

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All the way downtown, to Freedom Tower and the 9/11 Memorial. It was stunning, really beautifully done and incredible to see.

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Afterwards we headed uptown again for a little shopping and then went to Rockefeller Center to see the Christmas tree. Along with every other tourist in the city. I’ve never been so packed into such a small area with so many people. It was insanity. Pure insanity.

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Pizza was the only way to go after that experience.

And then, exhausted, having not slept since our early wake up, we hoped from Starbucks to Starbucks to Dunkin Donuts to McDonalds in order to find warm places that we could sit while waiting for our bus to leave.

Another four hour bus ride and a 20 minute Uber later, we were home. At 2AM. Having been up and traveling, walking almost the entire time, for 22.5 hours.

Whew. What a day. What an adventure!

I hope this was a great way to celebrate the start of your 26th year, Tay! Love you forever.

Currently // December 2014

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thinking about how I want this blog to move forward and the kinds of posts I want to write more often after all the thoughts I had here last week.

looking forward to a cousins holiday party in West Jefferson this weekend and then a week at home for the holidays.

appreciating the month-ish break from graduate school classes.

eating a handful of veggies now and then.

watching the last season of White Collar.

loving getting Christmas cards in the mail!

wrapping all the presents. Still wrapping.

walking at a much slower pace now that I let the babies walk beside me rather than pushing them in the stroller.

enjoying the slightly warmer weather today, we plan to be at the park all day long.

sending my own Christmas cards out–hopefully tomorrow.

reading Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell. Sigh. Review on Thursday.

drinking all the hot chocolate, all the time.

working on a yearly recap post for this blog and a plan for next year.

listening to Backseat Freestyle by Kendrick Lamar. On repeat. All day. Every day.

celebrating Christmas! A little over a week from today!

grateful for an almost event free January and February. This month has been a doozy.

Because to be silent is to consent

Here is a handful of the best pieces I’ve read over the last couple of weeks. I’ll include a little teaser from each to get ya going…

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HONY

The Stages of What Happens When There’s Injustice Against Black People

And here we are. STILL fighting. Still having to take to the streets. Still marching. Just so we can walk down the street and a state-paid thug in blue will let us live past that block.

In 50 years, our grandchildren will read about Ferguson like we read about Selma. In 50 years, we will talk about America not loving Black people even as a Black man sat in its most valued house. And in 50 years, I hope that we are not just going to copy and paste the text from books that WE read about 50 years ago.

The house we need to build is huge and we’ve got to do it brick-by-brick. The road shall be long so we gotta put on some comfortable shoes. Because those who came before us fought for so much more with so much less. THAT is the hope I need to keep fighting.

I Can’t Breathe 

On July 29th, at 6pm WalkRunFly Productions (Warren Adams & Brandon Victor Dixon) partnered with poet Daniel J. Watts, and over 100 Broadway stars, directors, producers, musicians, choreographers, designers and technicians in Times Square to send a message about violence and the killing of Eric Gardner. (This is a video you should take the time to watch).

Chris Rock: It’s not black people who have progressed. It’s white people.

The question is, you know, my kids are smart, educated, beautiful, polite children. There have been smart, educated, beautiful, polite black children for hundreds of years. The advantage that my children have is that my children are encountering the nicest white people that America has ever produced. Let’s hope America keeps producing nicer white people.

Why Don’t My White Friends Talk About Race? Here’s What They Told Me

I took aim at a select group of women who I know are prolific in the social good space. When the United Nations Foundation asks for their help to spread the word about vaccinations, they are there. When the ONE Project asks them to participate in a trip to Ethiopia, they are on the first plane. In a split second of compounded anger, I questioned why their loyalties were so tied to the people of Africa, but they couldn’t bring any attention to what was happening in their own backyard.

Happy Birthday, Taylor!

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In honor of Taylor’s 26th birthday, I’ve decided to go way back in the archives and pull up some of our best (or most hilarious) pictures together over the last……wait for it…….TEN YEARS. TEN YEARS, PEOPLE. WE ARE OLD.

First, the picture above is from our first river trip together in high school. What are my bangs!? How long had it been since I last washed my hair?!

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First of all, remember digital cameras? We had those things super glued to our hands in high school and college. It’s so nuts now that I don’t know anyone that has one. Also, our tans are on point. Also, I miss trips to Topsail Island with Leah’s family.

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Aw look, we’re growing up! Tay graduated from Butler!! My combover isn’t as severe!!

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And then here is a more recent one (albeit a little shiny). We are grown ups! And we both live in the same city (sort of) again! And we chopped all our hairs off. And we wear lipstick. #adults.

Happy birthday, Tay! I am so grateful for all the hilarity and joy you bring to my life. Cheers to ten more years full of doubled over, tears streaming down our face laughs!

Because I’m tired of not talking about it

Today I want to share with you an article, a video, and the story behind what I first thought when I heard about Tamir Rice’s murder. Because that is what I think it was. I think he was a 12 year old boy that was murdered by a police officer.

Here is the piece, if you need to catch up.

When I first heard about this case, the way the police originally described it, I kind of thought they did the best they could. The gun looked real. They thought (or said they thought) there was a threat to their lives and the lives of those around them. I thought it was a sad, unfortunate incident. I still believed that it wouldn’t have happened had Tamir been white, but I didn’t think the cop should face charges.

After having seen the video? After seeing that the police clearly lied about multiple things? After watching with my own two eyes Tamir fall to the ground less than two seconds after the cops pulled up?

I’m over it. I’m over giving the police in that situation the benefit of the doubt. It was wrong. I think it was racially motivated.

And we need to talk about it.

Because #blacklivesmatter

I almost quit this blog last night.

I was scrolling through Facebook and looking at posts about nutrition and babies and things that I just don’t care about right now. I was fuming mad about how only 5% of my feed is full of people talking about how much black lives matter, about Michael Brown and Tamir Rice and Eric Garner.

And then I clicked on the blog to write a post for today and I saw my last two posts. You know what they were about?

Babies. Christmas trees. Board games and drinking wine.

And I was sick to my stomach about how hypocritical I was being.

So, I’m not shutting down the blog. Because I’ve had a bunch of people ask me in the last few days what it is that I think we can all do. And the only thing I know to do is to talk about it. To tell people what is going on. To hopefully persuade some people to understand how damn wrong all of this is.

But I am quitting most of my regularly scheduled programming. For the next little bit (I don’t know how long) you can check in here to see articles, blog posts, and news casts about what is going on in our country. About Eric Garner, about Tamir Rice, about Michael Brown, about how much #blacklivesmatter and how important it is that we as white people stop ignoring that there is a problem.

THERE IS A BIG PROBLEM. You are part of the problem and so am I.

So, today, here (click here) is a piece from Vox about what happened to Eric Garner. There are two videos embedded in the post that I strongly encourage you to watch.