Category Archives: Lists

9 Tips for Planning a Wedding

Unless you’re brand spankin’ new to Generation grannY– in which case, hello! Welcome!– you probably know I got married this past December. I wasn’t exactly shy about filling my social media feeds, and maybe yours, with updates and pictures during our four month engagement.

Not to toot my own horn or anything, but our wedding was pretty awesome. Despite a very short planning period, most everything went off without a hitch. Feel free to read about some of the details HERE.

I can speak from experience when I say that weddings still remain absolutely whimsical and fascinating even after you’re married. So whether you’re more single than a one dollar bill, in a new relationship, or have been married for a few decades, I think you’ll enjoy this post. And if you’re currently planning your wedding, which applies to about 75% of my friends, then you’ll REALLY enjoy this post.

Here are some friendly pointers to help avoid unnecessary stress or awkward moments on your wedding day:

1. Clearly mark “plus ones” on the invitations

Wedding plus ones are tricky. Where do you draw the line? How do you tell your friend that the guy she met on Tinder last weekend is not worth your $80? What if your cousin shows up with that girl you think he hires just to be his date at family events? I’m telling you right now, it’s amazing how many wedding guests think it’s their own decision whether or not they get to bring a plus one to a wedding. I did not want to deal with awkward questions (or demands), so I specified how many people were invited on the RSVP card. Very few people will mistake “We have reserved 2 seats in your honor” as “Feel free to bring all 6 of your small children.”

wedding RSVP

 

2. Speaking of invitations, don’t trust the post office

I got this delightful “return to sender” envelope exactly four months after I sent it. FOUR MONTHS. Luckily, Aaron and I followed up with each of our guests to make sure they received their invitations, or else a handful of them never would have known they were invited. You’re not being a pain in the butt if you ask someone for their RSVP– you’re ensuring that they know their presence is wanted.

post office fail

 

3. Do a walk through of your reception hall after you finalize the table layout

Our table layout looked fantastic on paper, but my wedding coordinator suggested we go back to the venue and measure things in person the Sunday before the wedding– just to be sure. I was confident that everything was good to go since I trusted our venue had created layouts a million times before, but it’s a good thing we triple checked. As it turned out, our band stage was going to take up the entire dance floor. What was drawn on paper was completely disproportionate in reality. Luckily, we were able to push a few tables closer to the bar and slide the stage into a corner, and everything still looked beautiful. All’s well that ends well, but I was very close to showing up at our reception only to find that we didn’t have a dance floor. (Shout out to my wedding coordinator, Lindsey Hocker with Simply Perfect Events, for saving the day with that one.)

dance floor wedding

 

4. Give very specific information to your vendors

I might be a little Type A, but I gave a down-to-the-minute, personalized schedule to each of my vendors, which included instructions in bold red lettering that were specific to each vendor’s responsibilities. This included certain wording I wanted when the band announced us, how to pronounce names, and exact moments that were important to capture. Hopefully you trust your vendors– and definitely don’t hinder their creativity, but it never hurts to say exactly what you want. Trust me– they want to know!

abby grace

Here we are with our ridiculously amazing photographer, Abby Grace (black dress), and our couple friends who have used/are using her for their weddings, too!

 

5. Don’t expect your trial hair and makeup to look the same on your wedding day

I didn’t do any trial hair and makeup appointments before my wedding, because all of my married friends told me that their hair and makeup looked considerably different on their wedding day than during the test runs. It’s pretty much impossible to duplicate a look, so just brace yourself! If you’re going for a very simple look like I did, my advice is to find really professional, highly-rated beauty vendors that you can trust, and skip the $100 trials. That way, you’re not comparing the day-of look to what you saw in the mirror the first time.

wedding hair

 

6. Test your spray tan

While I don’t believe trial runs are always necessary for hair and makeup, I strongly believe in testing out your spray tan. A great time to try one is for your bachelorette party. Spray tans are very easy to recreate if you like the color they give you, or you can request to go a little lighter or darker on your big day. The most important part of the trial is making sure you’ve found a studio that doesn’t turn you orange, and doesn’t use a formula that will make you look like you have a skin disease when it begins to fade. Not a cute look on your honeymoon. Whatever you do– don’t use a machine. In Virginia Beach, you can get a custom spray tan for $40, which lasts about one week.

Spray tans are weird, yes, but they also trim off about five pounds for the camera, and are a whole lot healthier than baking your skin in the sun or a tanning bed. Even if you don’t want to look super tan, they can give you just enough color that you don’t look translucent in your pictures. I personally loved mine from Sun Buni Brown Custom Airbrush Tans.

spray tan wedding

 

7. Pack a snack

This tip is often talked about, but I’m going to reiterate common knowledge: You’ll be too excited and nervous in the morning to eat very much, and way too distracted at the reception to enjoy the food you so carefully picked from the catering menu. Give your coordinator or Maid of Honor a protein bar to protect with their life until after the ceremony, then quickly scarf it down before pictures. I ate mine in Aaron’s pickup truck on our way to the reception venue for portraits. You’ll thank me for this reminder, I promise.

pick up truck

 

8. Don’t undervalue the honeymoon

When you’re planning, it’s easy to focus all of your energy and money on the wedding day, but if it’s at all possible– make room in the budget for an immediate honeymoon. It doesn’t have to be a two week tour of Europe or an all-inclusive stay at a tropical resort (though ours certainly was the dreamiest of all dreams), but do something.

I can’t begin to express the value in spending serious alone time with your new spouse in the wake of the wedding. It’s tempting to put off the honeymoon a few months to save money and accrue more time off of work, but I promise you that no level of grandeur can compare to the first few days of wedding bliss. If all you can manage is 3-4 days on a limited budget, then by all means, drive to a nearby town, rent a little room at a bed & breakfast, and roll over each morning saying “Hey, husband!”

Aaron and I learned the power of marriage in that one week following our wedding– it truly is different than dating or being engaged. Giving that bond the full attention it deserves in its first few days of life is something that will carry your marriage for a very long time (i.e. forever).

honeymoon blog pic

 

9. Understand the power of your bridal energy

As our premarital counselors reminded me over and over again, the vibe on the wedding day always matches the bride. If she is focused on the love and lifetime commitment– not the tiny details of the event– then guests will, too, be full of joy. If the bride is letting loose on the dance floor, the guests will also boogie the night away. If the bride doesn’t care when something goes wrong, nobody else will notice or care either. On the flip side, if the bride is upset when something veers off course (it will– you can’t avoid it), everyone else will feel tense and awkward. If the bride is drinking too much and gets messy, guests will start getting out of hand, as well. If the bride isn’t smiling, neither will the rest of the crowd.

[Ex: My bustle completely broke after a dancing foot ripped off all the ties. I could’ve let it distract me from dancing, or worried about the condition of my dress, but I was very aware that my reaction would set a tone. Besides, I was too elated with life to mind carrying my train around the rest of the night!]

No pressure, ladies, but basically the entire success of your wedding rides on your shoulders– so mentally prepare yourselves. The good news, though, is that “success” has nothing to do with how pretty your centerpieces are, how nice your hair looks, or the how white your dress is by the end of the night. Success is achieved by spreading the love you feel for your spouse like a lightning bolt that surges through all of your friends and family. That’s the kind of wedding that will not only lift you onto Cloud 9, but inspire everyone in attendance to live a life full of love.

dance floor

broken train wedding

 

Aw, man, I want to do it all again! Still with Aaron, of course. I guess that’s what vow renewals are for!

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7 Unsurprising Things that Happened During Winter Storm Jonas

What’s the weather supposed to be like this weekend?

This was my favorite Facebook status regarding Winter Storm Jonas, written last Thursday by one of my Phi Mu sisters. I “LOL’d” in a literal way. Facebook is nothing but one big weather report, and I observed two things:

1. Everyone owns a cuter winter coat than I do.

2. Snow has been happening forever, yet still completely throws people for a loop.

Side note: I wonder how many people hosted Jonas parties, where they only played songs by the Jonas Brothers. If I had an apartment with more than two rooms, I would have happily organized such an event. Instead, I’m holed up at my parents’ house because adulthood isn’t real.

jonas brothers gif

Jo Bros

 

Just so no one is surprised when winter arrives next year, here are 7 things that happen every time it snows, and definitely happened during Winter Storm Jonas:

1. Apocalyptic behavior

The guy who ghosted you six months ago reemerges with a single vague text message. That friend who never socializes suddenly suggests a “fun” trek to the sports bar. People rush the grocery store because God forbid we die by way of dry cereal. Serious couples and Tinder matches alike “Netflix and chill” like there’s no tomorrow. THIS IS IT. NO REGRETS.

no ragrets

 

2. New Year’s resolutions go straight out the door

Everyone posts pictures of themselves next to a bottle of wine and a troubling spread of dips, casseroles, and baked goods. First of all, don’t act like you don’t veg out exactly like this at least once a week. Second, pull yourself together.

hot dog food gif

 

3. “No Excuses” posts galore

For every post about homemade banana bread, there are two posts about “still fitting in my morning work out.” Because remember, people, a workout doesn’t have any affect on your body whatsoever unless you share it on Facebook. (I don’t know what ever happened to “everything in moderation,” but my Facebook feed is just one big rollercoaster of extremes.)

gym selfie

 

4. Camaraderie

There’s a sense of unity among snow storm “survivors.” Scheduled snow ball fights behind the nation’s capitol. Half price shots of fireball at the bar. House parties with friends and possibly a few strangers. It’s all strangely patriotic. GBA.

america gif

 

5. The West Coast watches in fear

Sweet souls out west think that everyone on the East Coast is hunkered down, freezing, and starving to death, when in reality, the majority of us are having the time of our lives avoiding work. California, you definitely should be more worried about breaking off the United States and floating away than about the puffy white stuff landing in our yards.

everything will be ok gif

 

6. People wear their bathing suits in the snow

Maybe they’re trying to prove they didn’t eat their weight in potatoes during the holidays. Maybe they really enjoy shock value. Maybe they’re still in a rebellious stage. I don’t have a good answer for you. But I can promise that they will show you their shivering bodies on social media, and you will feel a bit awkward seeing that much skin in the winter.

nick uncomfortable gif

 

7. Someone you know will be in Florida

“What storm?” they caption their picture of the beach. I don’t really feel happy for them.

wave gif

 

Nice meeting you, Jonas! Looking forward to when all of these things happen again next year.

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Red Flags in Relationships

I’m 95% sure that our A.C./heating units are broken. Correct: No central air. The bedroom is set to 61 degrees, but I woke up last night in a panic, suffocating from the fire that was my own skin, and proceeded to strip off my clothes so fast that you’d think Aaron…well, I won’t go there. My dad reads this blog. Anyway, then there’s the living room, which is set to 77 degrees, but I’m currently on the couch, wrapped in a blanket, wearing wool socks, a sweatshirt, and a heavy scarf. I’m exposing my hands to the elements only so that I can type. You’re welcome.

The problem is that I still haven’t managed to clean our apartment to a point that I’d feel comfortable letting our landlord inside to take a look at the faulty machines. Besides my basic pride that would be crushed by anyone laying eyes on the disaster, our landlord also happens to be my dad’s private Spanish teacher (random, I’m aware), so I don’t want word to get back to him that his hija es muy inmundo. (Dad, if you’re reading this, it’s uh, really not that bad…) If worse comes to worse, I can always throw on my 80lb wedding dress that’s currently draped over some boxes near the window. That should keep me warm. Or maybe I should just continue cleaning…as my mom always said, “If you’re cold, come help me in the kitchen.” Solid advice, which I never, ever took.

So, now that you know everything you need to know about the state of my apartment (exciting stuff), I’m going to tell you everything you need to know about red flags in relationships. Not that I’m an expert or anything, but I do have my fair share of experience pre-Aaron. Plus I just finished lunch with a girlfriend I haven’t seen in a few years, and she told me that her ex-boyfriend, whom she moved halfway across America to be with, cheated on her with a stripper. Come on, pal. At least keep it interesting. A stripper? That’s like cheating with your secretary. Give me a break. [Disclaimer: All cheating is bad, occupations aside.]

cheating gif

As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, my single-days dating strategy was to “cast a wide net.” From age 18-26, I had in the range of 10-15 exclusive “relationships” (title included for only 3) that lasted anywhere from one month to two years. Each one taught me a ton about myself and what I wanted from a significant other– both the good and the bad. I think it’s why I knew so quickly that Aaron was the one.

Many, if not all of you have probably gone through a break up. They’re never fun, whether you’re the instigator or the victim. Even if you both know that “it’s just not right,” you always wish you could have seen the ending coming from the beginning. It would’ve been nice to have been spared the heartbreak, or even simply the time. Learning from and enjoying someone for a while can be great and all, but the real goal is to learn from and enjoy someone without end.

Sometimes it’s not at the very beginning of a relationship, but there is always some sort of opportunity to realize someone isn’t right for you– long before you become totally miserable or indifferent. The easy, happy stages are actually when we ignore red flags the most. This makes sense, given that we’d rather enjoy the high of new attraction than accept concerns that are often abstract, or just “pesky” intuition. After all, no one is perfect, right? This is great on paper, right? Relationships are about compromise, right? This fear of the future is just paranoia, right?

just no gif

With most failed relationships, we can look back and pinpoint all of the reasons it never would have worked in the long run with those people. The person I was *convinced* was “my person” a year before meeting Aaron was a sports junkie (me: go sports, do the thing, win the points), didn’t particularly like the outdoors (um), and couldn’t talk about his feelings to save his life (have you met me..?). He didn’t want me to meet his parents, was always “jokingly” threatening the future of our relationship, and didn’t want to get to know my friends. Naturally I made up good excuses for all of those things, so I was *surprised* when he nonchalantly ended things at a bar “out of the blue” in front of nearly everyone we knew, the night before we were supposed to honor my mother’s memory at a fundraising walk for bladder cancer. Not his finest choice…but I probably could have avoided all of the pain and embarrassment had I not ignored the red flags in favor of my emotions.

I have too many stories similar to the example above, not just from my own life, but from basically every person I know. For instance, many people don’t know that Aaron was engaged almost 9 years ago, but the wedding never came to fruition. For years, he wore rose-colored glasses, even ignoring a memorable twinge of “Why do I kind of wish I could get out of this thing…?” before proposing, but was so invested in what he had pictured for their future that he kept his plans. Over the years, there were ample red flags and warnings from friends and family, but– like so many of us do– he continued to try to make things work. Because of the idealization– similar to when my ex “abruptly” ended things at the bar– Aaron was *surprised* when things culminated with his ex having relations with not one, but two other men while they were on vacation together. That ending was coming a mile away, but relationships are addicting, so we ignore the flags until they slap us across the face. And sometimes we ignore them then, too.

Side note: I checked with Aaron that I could share his story as a lesson for readers, and he agreed. I lerve him.

terrible mistake

Even if things aren’t glaringly obvious like in those examples, red flags can still exist. I remember not being able to visualize someday standing at the altar with my longterm college boyfriend, but I was so set on the idea of marrying him that we just kept going and going until the red flags– you guessed it– slapped us both in the face. Neither of us stabbed each other in the heart with a final low blow, but all the little issues in our relationship eventually washed ashore in one giant wave. We broke up after 2.5 years, he fell in love with someone else less than a month later (to whom he’s now engaged), and I basically grew into a completely different person within a few weeks. (Why I changed so much is a different story for a different time.)

To reference yet another story, one of my best friends was absolutely heartbroken when her live-in boyfriend broke up with her a few years ago. He gave her no warning, refused to talk about his decision at length, and simply stated “something is off.” At the time, she was horribly confused and devastated. Now, she looks back and sees all of the flags that she ignored until he “abruptly” left her. He didn’t have strong preferences or pursuits, while she’s a very engaged, passionate person. His family seemed to disapprove of her ethnicity, so he never wanted to take pictures together. Their general social interests didn’t align. The list goes on and on (as they always do), proving that red flags are always there– no matter how subtle.

Before relationships get messy, we have the choice to listen to the inkling that the person won’t make us happy down the road. Instead, many of us choose to convince ourselves that the heart matters more than the mind, the mind matters more than the heart, red flags are just bumps in the roads, or we need to change in order for things to get better. None of it is true. The mind matters as much as the heart (and vice versa), red flags wave for a reason, and changing is only beneficial when it’s not motivated by getting another person to love you.

Most of us look back at failed relationships with gratitude that they ended. We can see all of the reasons why they were wrong, even if we couldn’t see them at the time. I don’t hold anything against my exes who ended things– even the ones who broke my heart– because, while most of them couldn’t verbalize their reasoning, or perhaps chose the wrong venue, they decided to listen to the red flags. I hope the ones I’ve ended things with feel the same, because we’ll all end up (and some of us already have) with people that make us a whole lot happier, healthier, and able to move through life with far more ease. I mean– come on, how could I end up with someone who doesn’t like wine?? What was I thinking??

yikes gif

Now that I’m in a relationship where red flags simply don’t exist, I can say wholeheartedly that it’s worth waiting for the right person. That’s not to say that there won’t be bumps along the way, but bumps are different from flags…and usually, you can use your friends and family to help you tell the difference. 🙂

I can’t possibly write this post without providing a little list of red flags. Take a look at them, and remember that just because someone isn’t right for you, doesn’t mean they’re a horrible person (though sometimes they might do horrible things…or have a lot of room to grow when it comes to how they treat people). Instead, it just means you haven’t found the right person yet. Someone who will bring out the best in you…and vice versa. Someone who makes life easy, not tumultuous. Someone who captures your mind, heart, logic, and emotions equally, with careful consideration and respect for your wellbeing.

Red flags:

  1. If one of you has the power (i.e. decides when you see each other, how often, and where your relationship “stands”)
  2. If the thought of forever with them doesn’t sit well with you– with or without good reason
  3. If you constantly make excuses for their behavior
  4. If your friends and family are wary of the person
  5. If you convince yourself that you’re changing to be better, when really you’re changing for them
  6. If you don’t know anything about their spiritual life
  7. If you are never satisfied with them
  8. If you cry or feel frustrated more often than you feel happy
  9. If your happy times with them are like a drug– something you crave and live for (steady happiness is much better, trust me– and it can still be passionate)
  10. If you know you don’t want the same things for your future (family, lifestyles, etc.)
  11. If you don’t miss them very much
  12. If they don’t miss you very much
  13. If their friends aren’t people you respect
  14. If you don’t think they’re gorgeous/handsome (sounds shallow, but attraction is very important)
  15. If you don’t enjoy the same things (at least a majority of things!)
  16. If they don’t like wine. 😉

Of course there are exceptions, and some people have experienced things on this list, only to find that the person they are with is the person with whom they’ll be happiest. But in general, let people speak with their actions, and use your gut and your brain. (Usually one is stronger than the other when things aren’t right.)

Finally, let’s all remember that most exes aren’t horrible people. Your chemical makeup just didn’t bring out their best, and vice versa. Sure, some people may have further to go in their journey towards being kind and morally/ethically sound, but we’ve all hurt people and done things we regret. Make the hard, yet wise choice to listen to red flags, but in turn, try not to harbor resentment.

To wrap things up–this was a long one, I know– I want to make it clear that I was the worst at at moving on, and flip-flopped between trying to be too buddy-buddy with exes vs. harboring resentment bred by hurt. But that’s why I have so many stories to offer and advice to give! Take advantage of my mistakes and use this post about red flags as one big white flag– offering peace towards your own soul if you know you need to end something, towards someone who ended things with you, and towards the people who make your ex happier now or made your current partner discontented in the past.white flag gif We all have plenty to offer, and have made plenty of mistakes, so lets pay attention to the red flags, but wave a new, prettier white one.

 

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10 Ways to Survive January, a.k.a. One Long Monday

Congratulations, everybody! You made it another year! Another New Year when the Mayan calendar’s “prophetic power” didn’t kill us, our computers didn’t blow up, and The Sleepers vs. The Partiers whose New Year’s Eve plans jammed our newsfeeds didn’t become any more interesting. (No hate. I’ve posted a NYE picture before, and I will do it again.)

I personally rang in 2016 with red wine, horror stories (don’t ask), and girl talk around the dining room table with a few friends in Va Beach, but went home by 10:30 p.m. to FaceTime with Aaron until midnight since it was one of the few times he was/will be in port—therefore able to call me—these next 8 weeks. We kissed the computer screen at midnight, which is really weird when you think about it, but seemed cute at the time. #21stcenturylovers

Now, we find ourselves in January. The Monday of the calendar year. The month where you feel fat from the weekend holidays, dread going back to work, and don’t know how you’ll possibly make it to Friday April, when people start socializing again.

I didn’t get particularly fat over the holidays, primarily because Aaron and I spent Christmas just unwrapping wedding gifts and cuddling instead of eating, however I’ve made up for lost time in the last five days. Since Aaron left town, I have eaten the following…in single sittings:

  • ½ a large pizza, which I ordered for lunch. LUNCH, you guys.
  • 1 full size bag of BBQ potato chips, ½ tub of hummus, 4 Red Baron mini pizza bites
  • 1 personal pan Red Baron frozen deep dish pizza, ½ bag of chocolate covered almonds
  • Another tub of hummus

Basically, I’ve turned into a 15-year-old boy. Living on pizza and glued to the television watching MTV’s The Challenge. My name is Shannon Leyko, and I am here today because I’m in a plan-hole (Aaron’s words).

I spent the last 5 months of my life planning, all while attached at the hip with Aaron. Now, I have nothing to plan, my partner-in-crime is busy being a very productive member of society by protecting our country’s waters, and I’m just over here avoiding organizing our apartment. I need a plan.

I’ve planned my plan, which felt good, so now I’m showered and at Starbucks writing this post, which were Steps 1-3. Killing it. I got slightly sidetracked when my bridesmaids and I group-texted this morning for about two [very entertaining] hours, but I pulled through.

Yesterday, while I did not shower, I did manage to get out of bed to meet friends for some day drinks before going to my parents’ house to eat 25 lbs of mac & cheese and 25 ounces of pork tenderloin for dinner (add it to the list…). As I was reestablishing my social skills with the world over drinks, one of my girlfriends casually mentioned that getting out of the house was her biggest mission of the day. Thank God! I am not alone in the fight against becoming a WALL-E person during the month of January.

Wall-E-2-fat-humans

Since most of you probably won’t brush your hair until Monday morning (most likely the day you read this…but surprise, I’m actually writing this on Saturday!), I’ve decided to put together some helpful tips for how to survive January without considering your closest friend to be the delivery guy.

(If you’re on a “New Near, New Me” kick and already going to the gym among other productive activities, then I’m super proud of you. I mean it. But if, by the very likely chance, you only last two weeks…come back and read this then.)

1. Shave your legs

No, seriously. At least once a week, shave. It’ll make you feel more human, plus your jeans won’t pull on your leg spikes, which is the worst.

2. Make plans after work

Again, I’m not unrealistic. You don’t have to go out more than once a week on a school night, but even if it’s to watch Concussion in theatres, give yourself the opportunity to lay eyes on humans that aren’t your coworkers, roommates, or family. It will remind you that there’s a great big world outside of your couch.

3. Read a book

It’s tempting to let T.V. or social media suck your time, but you can be just as cozy with a good book. Your brain and eyeballs will thank you.

4. Have a project

For me, it’s making a wedding scrapbook, writing thank you cards, and making our apartment livable. Find something to do that has an end product, because end products feel really good.

5. Go to the gym

I know. I’m the worst for even writing this. But moving your body will make you feel one thousand percent better. It doesn’t need to be the focus of your whole life like those “inspirational” people you see on Facebook (I salute them, though), but try to break a sweat a few days a week. Plus, sweat will make you want to shower, which we all know takes a little extra motivation in January.

6. Put on your favorite jeans every 5 days

If they start getting tight, lay off the pizza. Don’t let things get out of hand.

chicken wings gif

7. Try something new

Aaron and I were supposed to take a glass blowing class this month, but our plans were deterred by his last minute orders to deploy. Still, I am learning about and researching a new skill while he’s gone: photography. Knowledge is power. And what is more powerful than knowing you can use a firey torch to make a vase, or that you can take a high quality picture of your favorite bottle of wine?

8. Take one trip

You don’t need to go to Florida or anything (unless you have the money, then by all means GO RIGHT NOW), but take a mini road trip to visit friends, or spend the weekend in a new city a few hours away, just to explore.

9. Buy a new pair of boots or a scarf

Look good, feel good.

10. Watch The Bachelor on Monday nights

And read Generation grannY episode recaps on Tuesdays. You’ll laugh…if not at my recaps, then just at the show itself. Plus you’ll feel like you’re part of a little online community, which is 5% sad, and 95% really fun.

 

There you have it. I will take my own advice and lay off the pizza so that Aaron doesn’t come home to a wife he doesn’t recognize. #letmeupgradeyou

Happy Monday January, all!

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9 Things That Only Happen in Movies

“Relaxing” is not exactly a top priority for Aaron and me at the moment. We are getting married in 3 weeks and 2 days. 23 days. Whoa, that’ll be fun for people with dyslexia to read.**

This past Sunday, however, we made no plans. I was smart enough to realize I’d need a whole day of recovery from my bachelorette party, which took place last Saturday. My girlfriends handmade me a crown, took me to wineries on a bus, and planned lots of games—none of which have names appropriate to share here except for the “Panty Piñata.” Yes, it was as amazing as it sounds. Here’s a pic we took with a selfie stick, because why even have a bachelorette party if there’s no selfie stick?

bachblog

On our glorious day of relaxation (or recovery, in my case), Aaron and I watched the two most recent Hunger Games movies. Naturally, this left us very excited for the final movie coming to theatres this weekend, so we immediately bought tickets to see it at a fancy cinema café on Friday. (Tonight!!) One particular aspect of the movie really got my wheels turning, though. Why does everyone have such good teeth? Are there dentists in District 12?

Cue eye roll and “It’s just a movie, Shannon.” True. And I’m totally cool with getting swept away by plot lines or grooming standards that are completely unrealistic. But I will always, always be distracted by these 9 unrealistic happenings on the big screen:

  1. Bed sheet explorations

There seems to be a recurring trend among the PG-13+ movies I’ve watched, which is the “girl wraps herself in a sheet to go do something after sex” scene. When has anyone done that? Pretty sure people either put on a t-shirt or just go commando to the kitchen to fetch some water. No one wants to remake the bed.

fifty shades of greymassage chair

 

  1. Abrupt phone calls

People do not say goodbye when they get off the phone in movies. What is that? If someone doesn’t say goodbye to me on the phone, I immediately text them to tell them they’re a jerk.

phone

 

  1. Showing up unannounced

I’ve never heard of anyone except psychopaths showing up unannounced at someone’s home or office without at least sending a text. Why do people in movies literally fly across the country to talk to someone? What if they’re not home? What if they’re on vacation? Then what? Or if they’re just waiting there for the person to get home…how long have you been there? Did anyone ask you why you were just standing there? Did the neighbors notify authorities? I have a lot of questions about how this works.

showing up

 

  1. Not saying what needs to be said

I scream at the screen on a regular basis, because 3 out of 4 scenes go like this: “I really need to tell you something.” *Other person says a bunch of stuff that would be solved if they’d just let their counterpart talk.* *Counterpart lets them walk away without saying the crucial information.* If you know who killed my brother or didn’t actually do something I’m mad at you for, TELL ME, you freaking idiot.

face palm

 

  1. Venturing into dark basements

We’ve all discussed this one a million times, but here’s a friendly reminder: Don’t walk into a dark basement alone after hearing creepy noises. Call the police or hide under your covers until morning. If you decide to venture downstairs, I can’t even feel that bad for you.

bed gif

 

  1. Thunderstorms in dramatic moments

Sometimes, in real life, the sky makes loud noises on normal days. Or good days. Sometimes it’s not dramatic at all. Actually, it almost never rains on days I’m depressed or days when I’m kissing my significant other after a fight. And if it does rain when I want to make up with someone, we go inside.

rain gif

 

  1. “Effortless” Hair

Normal people do not do intricate twist messy up-dos on their way to class in college (I’m look at you, Anna Kendrick in Pitch Perfect) or wake up with natural blow outs. Sorry, boys.

pitch perfect hair gif

 

  1. Ridiculous ages

Seriously, though, if anyone in my high school looked like a 28-year-old Armani model, I’d be questioning how many times he failed, not whether or not he’d ever notice me.

cinderella story

 

  1. Running into people

We all secretly want to bump into our ex who lives in another state, just so we can see if they look happy and also prove that we’re doing fine. But that doesn’t happen. They’ll never be seated next to us on an airplane or be shopping at the same farmer’s market while they’re visiting town. They just won’t. At least you have Facebook.

carrie bradshaw gif

 

I’ll let you know how the last Hunger Games movie is after I see it tonight, and if Katniss still has great teeth after being locked in an underground bomb shelter for a few months!

—————————————————————————-

**This was written yesterday, so now it’s 3 weeks and 1 day. Holy moly.

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10 Foods with Surprisingly Few Calories

I know I should be more worried about nutrients than calories and more concerned with health than weight and blahblahblah, but you know what? Sometimes I want to eat crappy food AND be skinny. Sue me.

I’m not advocating for a diet full of sugar and “bad” fat (what’s the difference anyway? “Good” fat still goes to my hips, so I’m definitely not going to give it an award for being that great or anything), but if once in a while you want to eat a mound of chili cheese fries and wash it down with a root beer float, I say go for it. If you do that every day, you’ll end up in muumuus and your heart will likely stop working, so please limit such binges to every other month—if not to feel better about yourself, then at least to save us all the headache of hearing you complain about your flabby arms and the cost of gas to get to your funeral.

Sometimes it’s less about craving mounds of food, and more about craving specific junk foods. I call it the Nothing Sounds Appetizing Right Now Except Velveeta Syndrome. Here are 10 foods that will definitely clog your arteries (minus #6), but also won’t make you fat as quickly as you might suspect:

  1. Krispy Kreme Donuts– 190 calories
  • A single, original glazed donut from Krispy Kreme is only 190 calories. You can have 2 and still come in way under a bagel with any sort of spread.donut mindy kaling
  1. Nachos Supreme from Taco Bell– 440 calories
  • Honestly, I would’ve thought this bowl of chips and cheese and beef would be like, 800 calories. Not so. You can eat this bad boy for lunch and it’s actually fewer calories than your average turkey sandwich. Yo quiero.
  1. Bacon Double Cheeseburger from Burger King– 390 calories
  • Just forego the french fries, and you’re looking at dinner that is fewer calories than a plain chicken sandwich from Chick-fil-a, and a one-way ticket to skinny fat, which is at least a notch better than fat fat.
  1. Movie popcorn– 225 calories
  • Even though this is for a small popcorn, a “small” at movie theatres is still pretty freaking big. And considering it tastes like you’re eating 45 sticks of butter, I call 225 calories a win.
  1. Wine– 120 calories
  • This is not a food, but [obviously] I’m making an exception. While a glass of white is 120 calories more than water, it is only 8 calories more than a cup of orange juice. So basically, you’re choosing between OJ with breakfast and wine with dinner. Don’t be an idiot.
  1. Shrimp– 7 calories
  • We all know shrimp is the “light” choice, but 7 calories each? I am never asking for chicken or fish on my salad ever again. Shrimp only. It’s like eating little nuggets of air.tina fey shrimp gif
  1. Meringue Cookie– 10 calories
  • Yes, meringue cookies usually fall somewhere between Styrofoam and chalk on the consistency scale, but it’s still a cookie. For 10 calories. Do with that information what you will.
  1. Bowl of Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Panera– 330 calories
  • I would imagine a soup made up of mostly cheese and cream to be equivalent to eating an entire mini-wheel of brie cheese. (800 calories in case you were wondering…) Fortunately, a full-size bowl is less than most smoothies from Tropical Smoothie. Cheese>fruit.
  1. Apple Pie– 277 calories
  • I mean, it’s not great, but a slice of apple pie is literally half the calories of a slice of pecan pie or key lime pie (500+ calories). And in the grand scheme of things on Thanksgiving, 277 calories doesn’t scare me much. You’ll probably be eating at least half of that just in gravy.
  1. Cottage cheese– 222 calories
  • For something that looks exactly like cellulite, 222 for a full cup is pretty phenomenal. It fills you up, satisfies your inevitable cheese craving, and is lower cal than a standard cup of yogurt.

Bring on the comments that I should care more about nutrition! I do care about health, I promise. That’s why I purposefully wave to people at the gym just so there is proof that I go. But if I can eat horrible foods sometimes while still maintaining the ability to ride roller coasters at Busch Gardens, no one can make me feel that bad about it.

belle with food

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The English Language is Not Complete

Last week, I told you that my dog died, which was sad.

Here in the Oliver family, we believe in the power of distraction, so may I present to you our newest bundle of fur and tinkle:

hudson

Hi! My name is Hudson Oliver! I like long naps, new shoes, and the Buffalo Bills!

Our middle child, Cupcake Oliver, has had quite the week. First, she lost her big brother, who taught her most of what she knows about being a dog. Now, she’s thrust into the role of “big sister” to Hudson– a role that neither she or our family feels confident she is prepared to take on…mostly because she is 4 years old and may or may not still be learning her own name. So let’s all wish Cupcake the best of luck as she tries to be taken seriously by Hudson with a name like “Cupcake,” and hope that she doesn’t get too overwhelmed by all of this new responsibility.

Okay, I’m done bragging about the new pup and anthropomorphizing (vocab word of the day) our other dog. Thanks for indulging me.

Last weekend was full of fall things, like my college homecoming (I always forget that Homecoming involves football…this year was no different), hunter boots, hot apple cider, Colonial people, and murder weapons. To elaborate, a high schooler in costume serial killer with an active chainsaw literally chased me outside the perimeters of a Halloween haunted maze. Kids these days. No rules.

While enjoying Bloody Marys in Colonial Williamsburg at 3:30 p.m. on a Sunday and discussing the pros and cons of brown-haired vs. blonde-haired babies, Aaron and I somehow made our way to the topic of linguistics. I had come across this quote by John Keating, and thought it to be very profound.

very is lazy

One thing led to another, and Aaron and I began to wonder when inventing new words became socially unacceptable. Who decided that the English language is complete? Why can’t “yoth” be a word? Or “klitey”? I don’t know what they’d mean, but they’re perfectly acceptable combinations of consonants and vowels. And, to my knowledge, no word has yet been invented to describe the feeling you get right before you fall, or the moment something bursts in your mouth, like a grape, Gusher, or shell noodle with Velveeta cheese inside of it. I think the feeling right before you fall should be called “dopp,” and a mouth burst should be called a “zazzation,” (zazz-ey-shun) present participle, “zazzating.” Used in a sentence: “That grape just zazzated in my mouth” or “Wow! That was a big zazzation.”

Brilliant, I know.

On the car ride home, Aaron and I listened to a Ted Talk about this very topic. The speaker, Erin McKean, was a lexicographer (more widely known as a “person who writes the dictionary”), and she agrees with me. Why is creativity in the English language so stifled? We encourage creativity in nearly every other aspect of life, so why not in the words we use every single day? I refuse to be bogged down by societal norms, so I created this list of words I’d like for all of you to begin using. Thanks ahead of time for your participation.

By the way, I didn’t employ any of Erin McKean’s suggested tactics for creating new words when I made this list. She said you can combine words (ex: sandcastle), mesh words together (ex: brunch), steal words from other languages, etc., but I decided to just start from scratch.

  1. Zazzation— See above. I had to include this for all of the people who probably skipped straight to this list of words because they’re lazy. They are probably the same people who use “very” a lot.
  2. Dopp— See Zazzation. [Used in a sentence: “The dopp was worse than the fall, and I’m sure my Tinder date could see it on my face.”]
  3. Lorf— A guy who holds doors on the train, making everybody else late. [Used in a sentence: “That stupid lorf made me miss my crosstown bus.”]
  4. Shrackle— The salt that gets stuck on your black boots in the winter. [Used in a sentence: “My UGG boots are even less appropriate for work because of all the shrackle on them.”]
  5. Irquate— When you can’t stop shaking your leg out of nervousness. [Used in a sentence: “I can’t help but irquate during my annual review at work.”]
  6. Weyhum— Awkward silence. [Used in a sentence: “His rant about Obama in a room full of liberals was followed by a lot of weyhum.”]
  7. Breepelate— When you can’t decide which direction to walk and keep starting and stopping. [Used in a sentence: “I was breepelating so much when I saw Chipotle on one side of the street, and Chick-fil-A on the other, that I bumped into three different people.”]
  8. Prewey— The way your hair looks when you wake up. [Used in a sentence: “Her hair was so prewey that HR had to send her home to take a shower.”]
  9. Grecking— Suggesting to someone that you grab coffee, but not intending on following through. [Used in a sentence: “I ran into a girl that was in my sorority in college, so we did some grecking, then went on our way.”]
  10. Merfupped— Unable to think because you’re so tired. [Used in a sentence: “I was so merfupped that I mistook my hand cream for toothepaste.”]

See? Won’t talking be way more fun when you get to switch things up? Join me in being a trendsetter. If I can get at least 10 of you to use any one of these words in a sentence, I will submit them to Erin McKean’s online dictionary. Comment away! (If I get no comments here or on Facebook, I’ll delete this sentence in about a week due to embarrassment.)

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7 Key Ways to NOT Lose Weight

I’m generally pretty A-OK with my weight. Keep that in mind as you read on, just so you don’t think this is an uncomfortable self-hate post or anything.

From my perspective, gaining and losing lbs is a straightforward mathematical game, as you may remember from a certain blogpost I wrote last year (Re: Weight Loss Solutions and Other Answers You Don’t Want to Hear). Although the general idea of “eat less, move more” is simple, let me tell you what is not simple: Putting down the fork halfway through eating Havana’s shrimp and chicken curry dish. Or continuing to run on the elliptical when breathing feels like a distant memory and your shoes keep putting pressure on your ingrown toe nail, but you’re too poor to buy new shoes or get a pedicure.

As I prepare for my upcoming nuptials, I’ve forgotten Rule #1 of Brides 101: Get as skinny as you possibly can so that you don’t have fat arms in pictures– pictures that will likely hang on the walls of your great great great granddaughter, who may or may not be living in a space station, because we all know Zenon Girl of the 21st Century was a prophecy not to be taken lightly. It may not happen by 2049, but the odds of your wedding photos ending up in space are high to definite.

zenon

But here’s the thing:

Not eating makes me

  • Impatient
  • Tired
  • Anxious

Planning a wedding in only 4 months—while fun—makes me

  • Impatient
  • Tired
  • Anxious

If I added those two things together, I’d be

  • Really impatient
  • Really tired
  • Really anxious
  • Single, because no one wants to marry a nightmare

Therefore, instead of bestowing upon you weight loss tips from a wafe-like bride with delicate wrists and admirable triceps, I am happy to share with you 7 tips on how to definitely not lose weight from a bride that looks slightly worse than she did 6 months ago:

  1. Order a milkshake whenever you can

I literally can’t even remember the last time I had a milkshake before I got engaged. Now, I have an average of one a week. My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard, including Aaron, I guess.

  1. Two words: Taco Bell

I hate Taco Bell and it’s gross. I didn’t eat there for nearly 15 years. Now, I enjoy a 7-Layer Burrito as a common afternoon snack. It’s disgusting and I can’t stop.

  1. Eat the same portions as your significant other

Obviously, if a 180lb athletic man can eat an entire jar of spaghetti meat sauce without consequences, so can I. Who cares if I only weigh 135lbs and my “muscles” come in the form of cheese and vino? Metabolisms aren’t a real thing.

  1. Drink up

Speaking of vino, I haven’t cut back. Also, if you’re “trying to lose weight for your wedding,” why not sample heavy ales for the first time? I rarely drank beer before now, but this seemed like the perfect time to start…

  1. Always have seconds

Because one giant square of lasagna just isn’t enough for the modern bride.

  1. Add condiments to everything

My sandwiches used to consist of turkey, provolone, and some mustard. Now, I find myself inadvertently asking for [light] mayonnaise. “Mayonnaise” is the most unappealing word ever invented, but it keeps slipping out of my mouth without warning when I’m at Jimmy John’s. Also, since when do I go to Jimmy John’s?

  1. Work out twice a week

Working out twice a week is just enough to convince yourself that you haven’t lost all hope, but also won’t make a difference in your body at all. It’s the perfect way to keep fooling yourself.

cheese fries

May we all be fat and happy together.

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Miss America 2016 Predictions

Last year, I did some serious due diligence for my Miss America predictions—and it paid off. Eight of the 10 girls I picked made the semi-finals. Still proud about it.

This year, I’m planning a wedding, so I don’t really have time to watch videos of the contestants in the media to assess their personalities and speaking skills. I did that last year–and yes, it felt a little creepy…but also, tens of thousands of people read my predictions, so I think my behavior was validated.

Since I don’t have time for proper stalking this time around, and also don’t know as many girls competing because I’m getting old, my investment level has fallen a few notches. Even still, I am traveling to Atlantic City to watch the pageant live this year, which means I need to have some sort of opinion. Thus, I’m making predictions based on my girl crushes. As in, whose face do I want to stare at for a year should she win Miss America?

This is about to be the most shallow prediction list you’ve ever read. Don’t try and make it something it’s not.

Starting with my #10 girl crush:

10. Miss Georgia, Betty Cantrell

She’s hot. There’s really no getting around it. On her worst day, she probably looks infinitely better than me on days when I actually try to look put-together. Her hair is that of a Disney princess, while her face is that of a Victoria’s Secret model. Good for her.

georgia georgia 2

 

9. Miss Alaska, Zoey Grenier

Listen, I’m going to be honest here. Alaska isn’t known for sending the best-looking contestants to Miss America. And that’s totally fair! Those broads have more important things to worry about than hair and make up lessons– like not freezing to death and avoiding aggressive moose. Still, this year’s Miss Alaska is adorable. Her dimples are just the cutest and her jawline could rival that of a Russian queen (who she could see from her backyard!). Meanwhile, she photobombs a lot of pictures, which makes me want to be her friend.

alaska

alaska 2

Far left.

 

8. Miss Vermont, Alayna Westcom

Vermont gives me that Karlie Kloss vibe. Anyone? I feel like she’d be friends with Taylor Swift, which automatically catapults her into the girl crush category. She also looks her age, which is rare in the pageant world. Maybe it’s because she wears a normal amount of make up. Probably because she hikes a lot. That’s what people do in Vermont, right?

vermont 2 vermont

 

7. Miss Colorado, Kelley Johnson

This tall drink of water is 6’1”, yet somehow has the face of a petite little blonde that every guy goes for during Happy Hour. Her legs will extend for all of time in her swimsuit, plus you’ll get to see her dimples during close up shots on T.V. Save some features for the rest of us. Geez.

colorado

None of her professional headshots capture her dimples, which I think was pretty rude of the photographers, so I chose this picture of her casually flying an airplane instead.

colorado 2

 

6. Miss New York, Jamie Lynn Macchia

Disclaimer: I know Jamie. But even if I didn’t, just look at her face. Her smile makes me feel warm all the way down to my toes. She looks like she’d bake you a warm apple pie while wearing heels, but could also throw on yoga pants have a tickle fight. I feel like a lot of guys must be in love with her.

new york new york 2

 

5. Miss Idaho, Kalie Wright

This girl pulls off a widow’s peak like nobody’s business. Her features are big and bold, just like the perfect cabernet– so you know I approve. Light blue eyes and dark hair never gets old, and Idaho even manages to rock them without looking like an evil princess. Skillz.

idaho idaho 2

 

4. Miss Kansas, Hannah Wagner

I feel like Kansas has naturally tan skin, and for that, I am jealous. For all I know, she’s totally white, but she looks really ethnically ambiguous to me. Keeps me on my toes. She’s just stunningly pretty and could easily be a model for facewash or something, plus her arms are exactly what I’d like mine to look like on my wedding day.

kansas

kansas 2

 

3. Miss Alabama, Meg McGuffin

She’s the girl in your sorority with awesome hair who is always placed at the front of group pictures to draw more popularity during recruitment. She’s always en trend, but classy because she’s a southern girl with a reputation to uphold. I don’t know her, but I feel like she says “bless your heart” with the training of the south, but the edginess of a New Yorker. Into it.

alabama alabama 2

 

2. Miss Oklahoma, Georgia Frazier

Most girls look better one of two ways: Smiling, or sexy-smizing. For instance, I look pretty normal when I’m smiling, but when I give the camera my best sexy face, I end up looking like a serial killer. On the other hand, some girls look super hot when they’re being serious, but their smile brings them back down to normal-girl territory. Then there’s Oklahoma, who goes from smoldering sexy to bright, inviting smile like it’s easy. Whichever way you slice it, I like looking at her.

oklahoma oklahoma 2

 

1. Miss Florida, Mary Katherine Fechtel

Florida is the Beyonce of the Miss America Class of 2016. I don’t necessarily want to be besties with her because I’m self-aware enough to know I’m not on her level, but I want to be her. I bet she’s one of those girls who dresses up when she is sick because “when you look better, you feel better.” And you can’t get annoyed at her for never looking bad because she doesn’t even seem to try that hard. She’s the kind of girl who never does anything awkward, yet isn’t boring. Who is easy to get along with and never showy, while still the star of the room. Whose gorgeousness is unrelatable, but doesn’t make you bitter. Pageant Beyonce.

FLORIDA FTW. (Mary Katherine, sorry if you happen to read this and are weirded out that I put up so many pictures of you.)

florida 6

florida florida 2 florida 3 florida 5

Case closed.

If 8 of these 10 make the cut during finals night—just like my list from last year—then I am never putting effort towards an educated guess ever again. For anything.

Also, please remember that—save New York—I know literally nothing about the girls on this list except for the 3-7 pictures I’ve seen of each of them.

[The 2016 Miss America Pageant airs Sunday, September 13th, at 9 p.m. EST on ABC]

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10 Ways to Avoid Accidentally Taking a Life

I almost died about 17 times today at the hands of my fellow humans. Most of them had no idea that they’d just put my life at stake, a few realized it a few seconds later and felt bad, and a couple were completely aware and gave zero flips. Rude. As I lay my head on my pillow, grateful to have made it safely into my bed for another night of dreams nightmares about Chris Soules being gay, I feel compelled to point out ways that all of you can help extend the lives of those around you my life.

1. Don’t speed in parking lots

On almost a daily basis, my life is threatened by the people who use a parking garage as their NASCAR training track. I am just a poor little pedestrian soul trying to make it to the stairway without being sideswiped by someone who is late to work! Just because you’re making constant left turns does not mean your name is Arie Luyendyk Jr. [Arie is the only race-car driver whose name I know, only because he was a contestant on The Bachelorette. Also, I don’t even think he races cars…I believe he races karts. As in, he is a professional go-kart driver. As in, he is my soulmate.]

2. Check your blind spot

While we’re on the subject of using your motor vehicle as a weapon, please use your mirrors, eyes, and other tools that provide you the ability to see that there is not room for you in my lane.

3. Don’t make me laugh while I’m eating

Laughing involves exhaling in a forceful manner. And what goes out must come in. That’s wrong. It’s “what goes up must come down.” But you get the picture. My forceful exhales are followed by powerful inhales, which means that a piece of rice from my Chipotle burrito bowl will go flying down into my throat and block my windpipe. I appreciate your humor, but more so, I appreciate my life.

4. Announce yourself

Sneaking up on me while I’m gchatting so that I only notice you when it’s too late to click into a different screen gives me heart palpitations. If you don’t want to say “Hey, Shannon!”, then at least jingle your keys or give me some sort of notice that I need to snap out of my little world. Otherwise, there’s a good chance I’m going to jump out of my skin and possibly end up in the E.R.

scared gif

5. Tell me the subject of impending conversations

Speaking of heart palpitations, don’t ever tell me that “we need to talk,” then not clue me in on the subject. I will assume that you hate me, which will give me the nervous sweats until the time comes for our conversation, and by that point I will have lost 70% of my body’s water content and the ability to breathe normally.

6. Pick up your crap

Do not leave your weights on the ground at the gym. Do not leave your cardboard boxes on the sidewalk. Do not leave your shoes all over the place. (I’m actually making a self-note with that one.) I will trip over them. I will nearly face plant. I will fall and possibly land the wrong way and no longer be alive.

7. Don’t blow your cigarette smoke in my face

I won’t tell you to stop smoking because you already know that it makes you smell gross and will give you cancer and makes you look 20 years older than you are. Have fun with those things. However, just because you are down with liver cancer does not mean that I am down with liver cancer. Stop waving your cig around like it’s a magic wand and suffocating me with cloud puffs that smell like an industrial wasteland. Even if the second hand smoke doesn’t kill me, the incessant coughing that I’m trying to suppress in order to accommodate your feelings just might.

8. Force me to save your number in my phone

I don’t know if dying of embarrassment is a real thing, but I’ve really tested that theory lately. On Sunday, I had two unsaved numbers in my phone: 1) My friend Jen, 2) The hot guy I met at a bar on Saturday night. Sunday night, after dinner with Jen and 3 other girls, I tried to group text all of them a picture of my leg. You see, I’d gone horseback riding for the first time in nine years earlier that day, and had welts on my calves as a result. I also had razor burn, am currently whiter than provolone cheese, and angled my leg in a way that looked like I weigh 345 lbs. Anyway, the girls knew my legs hurt, so when I got home, I took the unflattering picture and sent it to them just to be funny/prove that I wasn’t just being dramatic. Along with the picture, the text said “Please ignore my white, spikey, meaty legs. Also, correct, I’m not wearing any pants.” Yes, I used the word “meaty.” GUESS WHO I SENT IT TO. You guessed correctly. The group text included the hot guy from the bar instead of Jen. I might not have physically died, but something inside me definitely died in that moment. Make me save your number. Please.

no gif

9. Don’t walk with scissors

Safety 101. Just because you feel in control does not mean that I won’t round the corner in a spastic flurry and end up with a life-threatening puncture wound.

10. Share the sidewalk

About every other time I go on a run, a group of teenagers or tourists or some other annoying sect of the population decides they need to walk on the sidewalk in a kick line like they’re the freaking Rockettes. In order to get around them, I have to bound off the path and into the street. One of these days, it’s not going to end well.

rockettes

 

If you can please respect my life by doing these things, I might make it to my 27th (gulp) birthday in June.

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