Thursday, March 31, 2011

Working for the Weekend

Having classes only two days a week makes for a very strange schedule. I essentially have 5 weekend days a week, but of course they don't function as such in practice. Instead my Tuesdays are almost identical to Fridays and Thursday is indistinguishable from Saturday. Everyday I work, and everyday I have free time. I had a "wow" moment on Monday when someone asked me what I did over the weekend and I had a moment of "huh? what weekend?" 


So people, tell me stories of weekends. Of Saturdays that act like Saturdays and Sundays that feel like Sundays and snozzberries that taste like snozzberries.




Hmmm....am I becoming that Rebecca Black song in this post? 


Don't answer that.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The State of Me

I feel like you guys are all worried about me since I wrote some sad posts back in January/February and haven't given an update.*


Well, here's the deal. I have recalibrated my system to expect a lower level of happiness on a daily basis. It's less acute now than right after the first shock of Eric leaving and living alone, but it is more wearing, exhausting after all this time. 


I think I would be better off, though, if it hadn't snowed this morning. The weather affects my mood, for serious. Looking out the window this morning nearly brought tears to my eyes. I need the sun, Indiana! Please! Gone are the days of happy, cozy snow. Snow in March is a harsh, mean creature.


So there is weather, long-distance, and also the mounting responsibility that I have at school and in life (wedding/jobs) which I feel ill-equipped to handle. 


Sigh...


I will now put my small violin back in its tiny case and resume posting about dresses and kale and pie.


Smooches,


Natalie


*Totally made-up guess. I wouldn't know what you readers think since YOU ARE ALL LURKERS. Dudes, your comments don't have to be insightful or witty or interesting or even full sentences! Seeing "0 comments" is starting to wear on me. Just...write something? Kthxbai.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Change of Plans


New plan: get married at City Hall so I can wear THIS dress.

Okay not really, but will someone please do a City Hall wedding in this dress? And send me pictures? BCBG...oh the day when I can afford you.* That will be a good day.


*for everyday life. for a wedding dress, this one is a steal.

Delayed Gratification

I never got extra allowance or dollars for getting As. Because I am that kid, I carried a minor chip on my should about this for a long time. It seemed that kids who didn't get A's very often got paid for them, while my piggy bank sat empty.* Harumph.

Yesterday, the world made up for this injustice,** cause I got some moolah from my school just for having a high GPA. Vindication!

Good elementary/middle school students out there who are broke due to their success: hold on! The world will reward you! ....after, like, 10 more years of school.

* i actually never had a piggy bank, but if i did, it would have sat empty of good-grades-money
**an extremely liberal definition of the word is being employed here

Monday, March 28, 2011

I walked onto an elevator in my school's building today. It occured to me that the doors seemed stuck open when I walked in, and that one of our elevators had been out of order just the other day. I stepped onto it anyway, and pressed "4" and thought "What if this elevator gets stuck?... Well, that might be nice."

Yes, today I wanted to get stuck in an elevator. Stuck in an elevator I could just lie down and nap maybe, and wait to get rescued. Someone would rescue me for sure, so it isn't so dire. And I could just rest in the meantime, and no one would expect me to do work. If I didn't turn in something, I could just say, "Oh, well yesterday I got stuck in the elevator." That all sounded really nice.

Is it a bad sign about the state of your life if you desire to get stuck in an elevator? Probably, huh?




Sunday, March 27, 2011

In Defense of Rebecca Black

I kind of like her song.

Is it good? No, it isn't. But it is catchy. Also, it brings me back. There is this innocence and simplicity about the video and the lyrics that reminds me of being in middle school, where Friday really was THE BEST THING EVER. And in middle school, someone popular could be like "sitting in the front seat is for losers" and then you would be like "OMG I have to sit in the back seat. What if I end up in the front seat? That would be so embarrassing!" It's true, you guys. These were serious matters. I like that she sings about them. I like that she sings about her bowl of cereal.

And then, to get meta about it, the fact that she made the song at all is endearing to me. I definitely made up dances to pop songs with my friends in middle school. If I were offered the opportunity to make my own music video? Would have accepted in a heartbeat. The elements of suckitude in the video and music (mainly the interlude about in what order the days of the week occur) itself are all Ark Music Factory. But Rebecca Black? Rock on, kid.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

My college roommate got engaged today! (yayyyy!!!!) I am so excited--maybe this means that all the otherwise-useless knowledge I have acquired during wedding planning can be put to use post-May :) Also, they are great together.

Congratulations Katie and Jason!!!


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Talking about the Blog on the Blog

I enjoy the forums on televisionwithoutpity.com, and one of their rules is "No talking about the boards on the boards," a principle I am violating here today. 

But I wanted to let you know, you faithful readers who are just DYING to comment but you didn't have a Google account, that I have switched my settings so that Anonymous folks can comment. Down with exclusivity! 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Exercise Tips for Those Whose Nature Does Not Leave Them Inclined to Hit the Gym

So I am a major procrastinator. Not just at school or work assignments. At...life. If there is no deadline, I am hopeless (see: my constantly overflowing hamper, which is only ever relieved of its burden in modest amounts as I wash only what clothes I plan to wear soon). Which makes going to the gym a problem for me. You see, I could always just go tomorrow.

Given this nature which I cannot seem to shake, I have to devise ways to trick myself into exercising. Currently, no technique has proven 100% effective, but I have recently stumbled upon an almost procrastinator-proof way to incorporate fitness into daily life:

*****Shampoo bottles!! :)****

That's right. Right there in your shower lurks the secret to a newer, fitter you! Or at least a you with moderately more toned triceps. Yeah, so the trick is to use a heavy shampoo bottle and do those over the head tricep exercises in the shower. The trouble with this technique is that as you use your shampoo, your "weight" gets lighter, which is not really what you want. But I think filling an empty bottle with shampoo would work (me, I just use a bottle of Eric's shampoo which is not currently being depleted [because he doesn't live here, not because he is unkempt]).

Anyway, it's working for me, so maybe it will work for you. Let me know if it does because then I will feel like a wise fitness guru.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Life List: #24

24. Play Texas Hold'em in Vegas.

I had 23 items on my life list when I first made it, one for each year of my life. I have since turned 24, so it was time to add one more goal. I wasn't sure what to add until I talked to my brother this weekend, who just won big at the poker table on his Vegas vacation, and I remembered my last trip to Vegas. On that trip I was all excited to play poker, but when the time came I got very intimidated by the whole thing, Vegas being the big-time and all, and only played craps instead. And got pretty lucky at the craps table, actually, so the decision wasn't all bad. But I love Texas Hold'em and the only time I ever played for money, I took 5 boys for $2 each, bringing in a whole $10! What what. So clearly, I need to be brave, go to Vegas, and win some more money.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Pi Day

So yesterday, 03.14, was Pi Day. Before I even remembered that it was Pi Day I had plans to make a pie, since people from my summer program two years ago were having a little reunion in Atlanta. I was going to make peach pie--practice for the wedding day pies. And then I realized it was Pi Day and was loving the coincidence.

But then we didn't have enough butter.

I had just put the veggie lasagna in the oven (in the cooking process this dish was a disaster yet somehow it turned out yummy) and was about to start making the pie crust when I realized there were less than two sticks of butter in the fridge.

So I made a peach crisp instead. It was good too, even if it wasn't pie. FYI--if you are ever tasked with bringing dessert to a potluck, make a crisp!! It is seriously impossible to screw up. I mean, the ingredients are fruit with a mixture of oats, flour, brown sugar, and butter on top. Guaranteed success.


Friday, March 11, 2011

Yay.

I am in Atlanta for wedding-related tasks this weekend. For some reason, getting the logistics settled and figuring out all the details of what happens when on the day has made me full-on EXCITED for this wedding.

I was always excited, but that was always mixed with a strong dose of "holy sh*t how am i going to make this happen omg ahhh." There was that blissful just-got-engaged period of time where I was nothing but "yay!!!!!!!"and now I feel it coming full circle as decisions have been decided, fights have been fought, plans have been made. All I have left to do is craft my ass off.

And all I have left is excitement.

And this post, which I wrote for when the "omg ahhh"s come back to me and I need to simmer down and enjoy.*

*You guys didn't think I wrote this blog so YOU could read it, did you? Sorry, y'all, this is a self-involved endeavor. Or it will be until the day that you lurkers start commenting.


Joy

It is SUNNY AND WARM where I am right now.

Sunny.

and.

WARM!

:):):):):):):):):):):)

The end.


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Puzzle

A wedding picture, photo by Kelly Prizel via APW

I find it hard to understand a country where 48% of people believe the relationship shown in this picture is morally wrong.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Sufficient Reason to Buy Beer and a Deep-Fryer


THESE:


Recipe at thekitchen. Want. now.



(sufficient antidote to my most recent post?)

In the Ground

Warning: this post is kind of morbid.

All weddings are a little bit about death. If you said this to me a few months ago, I would have told you this was crazy and depressing, but I am coming to see that it is true. You are promising "as long as we both shall live," after all. The other day, Mary over at Marriageable said that she wanted to get married because she "wanted to be buried next to this man." That's what we are doing, really. Promising to get buried next to one other (figuratively, if not literally).

If death ever comes up in our relationship, I am either very practical ("We should get started writing a will") or totally irrational ("You are NOT allowed to die before me and you MUST live to be AT LEAST 94"). You see, I am a strange creature in that in my twenty-four years, the closest living thing to me to pass away has been my dog. So I feel especially ill-prepared to deal with death and that I must be the first to go between the two of us.

But just a minute ago, I was reading an old APW post (cause what else do you do when you are procrastinating?) and one of the commenters said this :
This reminds me of a bit in Committed (its kind of a sequel to Eat, Pray, Love) where the author talks about her grandfather digging the hole for his wife’s ashes- someday, one of you will have to wield the shovel for the other one.

Suddenly, burying your partner seemed almost like a privilege to me, to be the one that gets to watch over the other in death, honor their life on earth, take care of them even when they are gone.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Pre-Cana, part II

Yesterday was our marriage preparation workshop. It was a long day, with some ups and downs. Ups included: ham and pineapple pizza. No one ever orders that for these kinds of events--awesome surprise. Downs included: indirect scolding for my/our immoral choices.

But at the end of the day, there was this one older couple who was there to talk about the "Marriage Covenant." I didn't know what this talk was going to be about, and when it turned out to be about sexuality and intimacy, I was pretty sure it was going to be really awkward. Actually, it was the cutest damn thing in the whole world. This couple was so obviously madly in love with each other, and I nearly cried.

The husband was a retired naval submarine officer, so he would be gone for months at a time with no ability to communicate at all. So they would write each other four months of love letters, and one time the husband arranged for a florist to give his wife a rose a week for the entire time of his deployment, with a note on each one.

At the end, they gave us a "wedding card," and listed all their wishes for the engaged couples' lives together. And then they gave us our assignment. All of the other talks gave us the assignment of discussing something with each other, but this time, our assignment was to write our fiance(e) a love letter.

See what I mean? 100% adorable.

So that was Engaged Encounter, except I guess that's not what they actually called it. I recommend it* and it is going to get us a discount on our Georgia marriage license. Finally, a family values law I can get behind!

*I'm obviously not Catholic, and though there were parts where I was uncomfortable, overall it was a helpful day. It was a day spent doing nothing but talking and thinking about our relationship and marriage in the basement of a church. Which sounds pretty dull and dreadful but actually was kind of, dare I say...romantic? So don't be afraid, fellow non-Catholics!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Mush

image via we heart it

So my project of finding wedding words has me knee-deep in gorgeous quotes about love, I can't get enough of Adele's cover of "Make You Feel My Love" after this week's Parenthood episode,* and I just discovered the wonder that is Pablo Neruda's "One Hundred Love Sonnets."

I'm about to start drawing hearts all over my notebooks. Except, I already do that. But you know what I mean.

What ever you do, don't ask me for any romance-related advice for the next few days. Unless, of course, the answer you want is "oh but you love each other."

*I knew and loved the song before hearing it on the show, but hearing it again made me seek it out on YouTube and I can't seem to stop hitting "play" over and over. YouTube should really have a "set on repeat" function.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Full

I was supposed to work on an outline for a paper tonight.

Instead, I read poetry.

The impetus was a wedding project that involves words.

Normally I would be frustrated with myself for choosing to do a fun wedding project, and procrastinating on a project for school.

But not tonight. Because sometimes the soul needs beautiful words. I didn't know that mine needed that, but it must have, because I feel fuller, richer, lighter.

I do not think that writing my paper outline would have made me feel that way.

Modernity

One of my all-time favorite movies is Before Sunrise. I adore it.

The following quote from the movie has little to do with the overall themes of the movie, but it is great nonetheless:
You know what drives me crazy? It's all these people talking about how great technology is, and how it saves all this time. But, what good is saved time, if nobody uses it? If it just turns into more busy work. You never hear somebody say, "With the time I've saved by using my word processor, I'm gonna go to a Zen monastery and hang out." I mean, you never hear that.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Birthday Pie

I made pie last Friday for a little birthday shin-dig that I threw myself.

Here's a secret: I hate hosting parties. I get really anxious. My mind constantly flashes to this story my mom told me once about how no one came to her birthday party one year and I am sure that that's what will happen. I especially get nervous if I start thinking that I'm trying too hard. Because I picture my apartment, all clean and ready for guests, food set out, still pristine at the end of the night because no one showed up.

So dramatic, right? But it's the truth. This is my fear.

Some things just strike at your heart. For example, when I watch The Iron Giant I sob at the end. I am not a crier, especially not in front of people. But this movie? I could watch it a thousand times and each time the tears would pour off my face and I'd wish I were alone so I could ugly cry. It just strikes something. (I know this doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement, but the movie is really fantastic).

Well, preparing for a fun party and having people not show strikes me, no matter who it's happening to. I went to this Oscars screening at the student union cause I don't have cable, and I felt that twinge in my heart because there was low turnout but there was tons of food and balloons. Balloons. There is just something tragic about insufficiently appreciated balloons, amiright?

People did come to my party and the party was fun and I think people had a good time. I am still residually nervous that they didn't, of course, but that's just me. But the pie? A definite success. People went back for seconds.

And that is why I love pie.
In a weird way, I like hearing about other people being sick.

You know how when you are sick, you would just give a.n.y.t.h.i.n.g. to feel normal again? You spend pretty much every minute that you aren't watching While You Were Sleeping [or whatever your own rom-com of choice is] on TV thinking about it, and making deals with your higher power in exchange for your life and body back. And you know how when the fog breaks and you suddenly feel better, it's everything you ever wanted and more? And how when you've been better for about 12 hours you forget all about it and go back to life, totally ignoring the blessing it is it be healthy?

Hearing about other people being sick makes me remember to be glad that I am healthy today without having to go through the torturous part first.