Friday, April 29

PS, funny and true

Via Cup of Jo

30 day challenge: bullet your whole day

Day 4: bullet your whole day 


  • 09:00:: shower.
  • 09:30:: watch videos of the monster tornado; read news and Facebook posts about Tuscaloosa.
  • 10:00:: embark with Shelley on a mission to spend ALL of my accumulated gift cards, no excuses.
  • 10:36:: spend $35 gift card at World Market; coffee mug, wine stopper (I don't know if that's what it's called --- that's what I call it), and picnic rug.
  • 11:32:: find out I have exactly thirty cents on my two Books-A-Million cards; I am sad.
  • 12:00:: try on expensive clothes at The Loft; we wish we could afford them.
  • 12:20:: use four Chik-Fil-A coupons courtesy of Shelley's mom; eat a yummy free lunch. 
  • 12:45:: spend $8 gift card at Aeropastale; card was at least six years old.
  • 13:00:: spend $25 gift card at Dillard's; laugh; try on grown up heels.
  • 13:00:: buy milk and Magnum ice creams; ooh fancy, imported from England.
  • 14:00:: waste time online.
  • 15:00:: eat a fancy Magnum ice cream by the pool; listen to a nineteen-year-old boy brag about drinking and failing his golf exam; go inside.
  • 16:30:: talk to Dave on Skype; FYI, "I can think of literally --- LIT- trally --- NOTHING that I care less about than this wedding"; congrats, Will and Kate.
  • 19:00:: think about cooking dinner; get Chinese take-out instead; it is mediocre.
  • 20:00:: watch Michael's last episode on The Office; it's anticlimactic and kinda sad and awkward, like real good-byes.
  • 21:00:: think about getting The King's Speech from Redbox; decide not to.
  • 22:00:: clean room.
  • 23:00:: go to bed. 

That wasn't very interesting, was it?  

Now that I've had a little break, I've gotta work hard until my last exam on Thursday. Headed to the lakehouse after work to baby-sit Lyra and do some writing.

Wednesday, April 27


Classes are over!  Thunderstorms are brewing. I'm at work reading and trying to stay awake.  Quotes I dig on walking:

"Above all, do not lose your desire to walk: every day I walk myself into a state of well-being and walk away from every illness; I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it... and the more one sits still, the closer one comes to feeling ill... Thus if one just keeps on walking, everything will be all right." (Soren Kierkegaard)


"It is good to collect things, but it is better to go on walks." (Anatole France)

I'm trying to keep the second quote in mind as I fight the urge to buy new clothes.

Monday, April 25

30 day challenge: Something I feel strongly about

Day 2: Something I feel strongly about

Can I have three somethings?

1. Today a professor mentioned the new NCAA rule about taking the touchdown away if a player engages in inappropriate celebratory behavior, and I immediately exclaimed, "Are you KIDDING?" Everyone in the room kind of jumped and my professor looked surprised. "I didn't know you cared so much about football, Mary Beth."  I don't. And I don't know anything about NCAA rules. But this new rule rubbed me the wrong way, and for a moment I felt strongly about it.

2. Over air conditioning. I feel strongly that it wastes energy and money and simply doesn't make sense. The temperature doesn't need to drop twenty degrees when we walk inside. Shorts and a t-shirt should be enough clothing for the park and the library. As it is I have to carry a sweatshirt and socks wherever I go. 

3. Craftsmanship. I feel strongly that it is an important and overlooked value... mastering a craft, doing something well for its own sake. Nowadays, to be "successful," we have to be multi-taskers who can do lots of things pretty well, but we never have or make the time to become experts and masters. I'd like to discipline myself and truly devote myself to a craft. Possible?

In the words of Juno:

PS, If I were a painter developing my craft, this is what my ideal studio would look like. 

Art studio photo found here.

Sunday, April 24

30 day challenge: Five ways to win my heart

Happy Easter!

A 30 day blog challenge is circulating Tumblr and I've decided to participate! I'll answer a question or address a topic every day for thirty days --- and I'll try my best not to skip the silly and embarrassing ones. On that note:

Day 1: Five ways to win my heart

1. Witty banter. 

Favorite quote from this week's Office episode: 
"I love banter... I hate witty banter." 
Classic Kevin Malone.

2. Snail mail.
3. Buy me a nerf gun for Valentine's Day.
4. Care about something.
5. Get (act) excited about watching The Lion King.

Such an amazing movie. And soundtrack. Oh, the circle of life.

Monday, April 18

We're grown-ups now

I spent most of this weekend at the lake house in Georgia. It was lovely and just what I needed. Bonus: I returned home with leftover blueberry pancakes, shortcakes, squash casserole, and pimento cheese... I've really been overeating today. And also, procrastinating.

Since it's warm and sunny I decided to start running on a nearby bike path instead of going to the gym. But I think I need new running shoes --- or maybe a running coach to correct my form. Because my left knee is killing me and my calf muscles are sorer than they should be. Dear body, let me be a runner!

If you're a xkcd fan, you've seen this comic already. It's one of my personal favorites:

And speaking of grown-ups, my sister's turning twenty tomorrow!  Holy cow... that's all I can say about that.

Tuesday, April 12

Vague plans & stuff

Howdy folks!

I'm having a productive night.  So far, I've cooked green chicken curry for dinner, emailed a professor, messaged a friend in NYC about staying with him when I fly up for an interview (!), and written a postcard to my friend Lauren who recently moved to Bulgaria with the Peace Corps. The remainder of the night will include a workout and some research and essay planning.

Operation UK update:

Since my first offer, I've gotten a second university offer and an interview in New York for a business internship program.  It's official --- I've got options!

When I went home last weekend, several people made comments like, "so you're moving to London, huh?"  This confused me because, at that point, I hadn't definitely decided to move to London. It's a big and complicated decision. But the bottom line is, I want and need to move to London. And already I have two, maybe three, ways to do it.

So, I would like to officially declare that I am officially moving to London in the fall! I don't have a visa yet, or a plane ticket, and goodness knows things could change. But screw being cautious --- if I can help it, when the leaves go orange, I'll be moving into a tiny flat and drying my clothes on radiators and buying my groceries at Sainsbury's (and being a teeny tiny 2ish mile walk from Dave --- what?  no jet lag?). I've already researched community gardens where I can grow organic tomatoes and cool choirs that maybe someday will let me sing with them.

Hip hip hooray :).

Monday, April 4

Fair words butter no parsnips

I like this little eighteenth century nugget of wisdom. Though I dislike parsnips.  Have you ever eaten parsnips?  Mashed, they look and feel like potatoes but they taste most certainly different.  It's like in Europe when you think you're about drink water but upon taking a sip you discover you're not drinking water at all, you're drinking something fizzy and bitter (also known as water with gas, or fizzy water).  That's what eating parsnips is like for me. I prefer potatoes.

This weekend I went home for a family funeral. It was a somber occasion but really good to see everyone. I returned to Auburn feeling much more purposeful and thankful.

Earlier this week a friend texted me at 2am telling me how grateful she was for her good friends and amazing life experiences. Another friend is writing down one thing he is grateful for every day this year. My thunderstorm post last week was an exercise in thankfulness, too. I know people heaps smarter and more important than me have already noticed this, but being appreciative --- thankful, grateful, whatever you want to call it --- seems to be one of the essential keys to daily happiness.  You might like to check out the blog thx thx thx.  The author writes a thank you note every day. Sometimes it's about serious things, sometimes it's about heart-patterned toilet paper in the office restroom. It might inspire you to enjoy little things on days when gratitude isn't flowing freely.

Another essential key to daily happiness:  sunshine.  I'm very freckled and shouldn't get too much, but boy do I love it. I have a long not-so-fun April to-do list and next to it, a "healthy living" list: being outside whenever it's warm and sunny is priority number one.  I've started eating lunch outside rather than in front of a computer.  Try it.

Didn't intend to write a self-helpish post --- was just happy about the butter and parsnips adage and wanted to share. Enjoy your week!