Friday, September 28, 2012

Running on Empty

Ok, seriously. I need sleep. Stat. 


Can it just be next weekend already?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

A Great Blaze of Light

Little known fact: sometimes, I act.

Although I worked in the theatre department all through college, I mostly stayed behind the scenes. It was there that I met Kyle, and some of my very best friends, even to this day. I am truly grateful to constantly be surrounded by such talented and artistic people. (And that they're willing to chance working with an untrained actor.)

A Great Blaze of Light is a play that has been (almost) entirely produced by GVSU theatre graduates and some of our closest friends. It's about a group of twentysomethings who are just trying to get their shit figured out post-college. It's shaping up to be a fantastic little show, and I must say, I'm proud to be a part of it. 

Despite the inevitable frustrations that come with late-night rehearsals and 15-hour days, I have truly loved this experience. It has been so refreshing to do something different, something creative. Too often I get caught up in the minutiae and stress of daily life that I forget to do something productive that makes me happy. Although I'm looking forward to getting more than 5 hours of sleep per night, I'm not sure what I'm going to do with myself when it's all said and done.

A Great Blaze of Light goes up this weekend at Dog Story Theater in downtown Grand Rapids. If you're local, be sure to check it out. Spend the day exploring ArtPrize, enjoy some theatre in the evening, and come out for a beer (or three) with the cast after the show. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Farewell Summer, Hello Fall Swap

Happy Friday, friends! I'm linking up today with Kristina at Pretty Rambles and Stephanie at The Vintage Modern Wife to talk about the Farewell Summer, Hello Fall swap. I was paired with the sweet Janette from The Johanson Journey

Janette is from Texas and is mom to three adorable kiddos. (Her youngest just turned one and had quite the circus party. Seriously adorable.)

This is my first swap, and I would definitely say it was a success. Janette sent  the most thoughtful gifts:

+ Cupcake cups and sprinkles
+ Key fobs
+ Owl bowls (!)
+ Mug (my favorite!)

Simply wonderful. Everything was just perfect. I can't get over it. I'm so ready for fall, even moreso now. 

Thank you so much, Janette! You're the best.

Monday, September 17, 2012

current obsessions

+ Iced coffee.

I know this is really more of a summer drink, but the closer fall gets the more I crave them. I guess I'll just have to redirect this obsession to pumpkin spice lattes.  Darn.

Oh, Lord by Foxy Shazam.


I cannot get over how much I love this song. *hits repeat*

+ Fall.

I've been so busy lately that the season change has completely sneaked up on me. I'm looking forward to ArtPrize, fresh apples, and birthday celebrations.

I spy changing leaves. 

+ These TOMS shoes. 

Do I really need to explain? 

+ This blog.

I'm ready to make some changes around these parts, design and otherwise. Look for some updates coming later this fall. Any suggestions are welcome!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

tell me i'm not the only one...

+...whose nail polish chips 2 seconds after painting them.

I mean, really?!?! I use a base/top coat and everything!


+...who eats cereal for meals other than breakfast.

Because sometimes, it's just not worth fixing dinner.


+...who obsesses over fictional characters. 

56/100 of The X-Files

You get one guess who's currently always at the top of my list. 


+...who sometimes sleeps with the TV on.

Kyle teases me because it doesn't matter what show it is, I just like to fall asleep watching "colors." 


+...who listens to the same song over and over (and over) again on repeat. 

Right now it's "The Weight." Please don't ask me why--I have no idea. 

Ok, now please tell me I'm not the only one who does these things. Do you have any weird quirks? Don't be shy!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

springsteen redux

Oh. My. God.

You guys, the concert was awesome. Seriously, seriously awesome. 

Photo: This is my excited face.
Walking to Wrigley. This is my excited face, obviously. 

We opted for the cheapest seats and ended up sitting in the upper deck, between home plate and first base. Despite being pretty far away from the stage, we really did have a great view. (Although next concert, I'm getting in the pit. For real.)

Pre-concert view of the stage and the skyline from our seats. 

I could hardly contain my excitement. Although it looked like we were going to get hit with a pretty good storm, the rain held off. I kept telling everyone that it wouldn't dare rain on my parade, and it didn't!

Opening set.

The Boss opened with "Prove it All Night," and went on to play some of my favorites including "Hungry Heart," "Wrecking Ball," and "City of Ruins" (which brought me to tears). Eddie Vedder (!) joined Bruce onstage for "Atlantic City." And I was so excited to hear "Spirit in the Night," from my favorite album, Greetings from Asbury Park. My dad was pumped to hear his favorite, "Darlington County." One of the best moments of the entire show was when Bruce brought up a little girl from the audience to sing "Waiting on a Sunny Day" with him on stage. I about died.


Bruce and E-Street played just minutes shy of 3 1/2 straight hours. His nearly hour-long encore included many of my favorites: "Thunder Road," "Born to Run," "Dancing in the Dark," "Tenth Avenue Freezeout," and the rarely-played "Jungleland." The concert ended with a fun cover of "Twist and Shout." (Which I'm really hoping was a nod to Ferris Bueller's Day Off.)

I've said it before and I'll say it again: the man is a poet and a saint, and damn can he put on a show. I spent the night singing, dancing, and drinking Old Style. I would say everything about it was a success. 

Me, Kyle, and my little sister

(On a side note, please forgive the less-than-quality pictures. They were all taken on my phone and I was shaking the entire time from either excitement or dancing. Worth it.)

What's the best concert you've ever seen?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


I had planned to reflect on September 11 today, but words escape me. My memories are very similar to so many: I was sitting in a classroom, I watched in disbelief as the towers crumbled, I tried to understand. 

But today isn't about me or my memories. It isn't just about American flags and patriotism, or any political agenda. Today is about the lives lost on that sunny Tuesday over a decade ago, and the lives of those who have since fought to avenge them. 

Today, I remember. But more importantly, today I hope for peace.  


Monday, September 10, 2012

today, i'm grateful...

Me, Morgan, and Kyle

...for ice cream dates with my husband and my best friend. Because sometimes, you just need a little pick-me-up; and these two are just the ones to do it. On the days when life is a mess, I try to count my blessings: an amazing husband, a beautiful city, and a best friend who lives just around the block. 

I need to remind myself of the blessings more often. 

What are you grateful for today?

Friday, September 7, 2012

tonight we'll be free, all promises will be broken

It's often said that Bruce Springsteen's music is the voice of a generation. 

Just not mine. 

I don't have much in common with a working-class Jersey boy who came of age during the '60s and '70s, but his music resonates with me like nothing else ever has. 

My parents, my dad especially, have been Springsteen fans for my entire life. I grew up hearing his music, but it didn't strike a chord with me until I was in college. Perhaps it was living away from home and dealing with the added stress that homesickness can bring that made me crave something familiar. 

Or maybe I was just tired of constantly listening to Broadway musicals. (RENT, I'm looking at you.) Whatever the reason, from the moment I popped his Greatest Hits into my clunky portable CD player, I was hooked. 

When I look back on my memories of college, graduation, my wedding, and the myriad of other events that have comprised my life in the past six years; each of those memories is forever tied with a Springsteen song or album. Hearing these songs instantly takes me back to these times and places, for better or worse, and sings the story of my twenties. 


+I listened to "Streets of Philadelphia" on constant repeat the winter semester of my freshman year when I was crippled by depression. 
I was bruised and battered
I couldn't tell what I felt
I was unrecognizable to myself

+ During the 2008 presidential race when this political science major was up to her eyeballs in analyzing voter returns and picking apart campaigns, "Livin' in the Future" was almost constantly stuck in my head. 
Woke up election day
Skies gunpowder and shades of gray
Beneath the dirty sun
I whistled my time away

+ I remember listening to "Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street" over and over  on my iPod my senior year of college as I rushed frazzled from classes to work to  internship to rehearsals.
She found out how to cope
She rides to heaven on a gyroscope
The Daily News asks her for the dope
She says, "Man, the dope's that there's still hope

+ On the day of my graduation, "Thunder Road" rang in my ears.
They scream your name at night in the street
Your graduation gown lies in rags at their feet

+ And on the day when I walked down the aisle to marry my best friend, the words of "I Wanna Marry You" never felt more true.
They say in the end true love prevails
But in the end true love can't be no fairy tale
To say I'll make your dreams come true would be wrong
But maybe darlin', I could help them along


In 2009, Kyle and I were able to see Springsteen play with the E-Street Band in Detroit. (This was also what would be Clarence Clemons' last tour.) Honestly, it was one of the best experiences of my life. Tonight, we'll be rocking out at Wrigley Field in Chicago; joined this time by our families. I couldn't be any more excited. 

Wrigley, Springsteen, and Lake Michigan breezes--I don't know if life could really get much better. 

I'll leave you with my favorite song of all time, "For You," from the Boss' first album, Greetings from Asbury Park. It gives me chills everytime, and I hope you'll love it too. 

How about you? Is there a band or musician that has carried you through life?

Thursday, September 6, 2012


Shannon and I at her college graduation,
May 2012
I've blogged about Shannon before. We've been best friends since high school. (We met in band and bonded over a love of Fairly Oddparents. Obviously we're the coolest people you know.) We've laughed and cried through graduations, weddings, and the everyday victories and defeats. Though we may live hours apart and sometimes go weeks or even months without talking, she's always there. Period. 

And now she needs me.
If you could spare some happy thoughts, good vibes, or prayers for Shannon and her boyfriend, I'd be forever grateful. I know they would too. 

Thanks, friends. I knew I could count on you. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

labor day weekend redux

Happy Wednesday (and short work week)! I hope everyone had a relaxing Labor Day weekend. Things were pretty low-key in our corner of the Mitten, but that's just the way I like it. 

We played mini-golf and went to the batting cages.

Deep concentration, clearly.

We forgot to get a scorecard, but I'm pretty sure I won. 


We rented Footloose and watched sci-fi shows on Netflix.

And by "sci-fi," I mean X-Files. Obviously. 

And we ate frozen yogurt, because reasons

Peach with coconut and fresh fruit.
Cotton candy with cereal marshmallows.

How was your holiday weekend? Any last end-of-summer hurrahs?