Friday, December 30, 2011

what a man...

I don't usually write these kinds of blogs but I was having a conversation with my best friend Alicia the other day about dating and relationships, and finding the "right" guy. I don't really consider myself picky, but I'm also not settling. So is what I am looking for in a man.

You are intelligent. You have a college degree and a good, solid job that does not involve folding clothes or flipping burgers. You are not in debt (save for your rent, mortgage and/or car payments) and pay your current bills on time. I know, that may sound snobby. But goals and working hard to accomplish them are very important to me.

You have a strong relationship with God. My future man does not have to be Catholic, but he has to believe in God and be able to be open about faith and spirituality.

You are a family person. You love yours and will be anxious to fit right in with mine. You don't have kids right now, but are open to the idea of one day having adorable little babies. You like kids.

You do not smoke or do drugs. Blech.

You are not materialistic. You don't need the latest trend, gadget, whatever in order to feel better about yourself.

You listen well, you laugh often, and you know how to make me laugh. You are honest about your emotions. You own up to your mistakes. You're a kid at heart and believe in magic and romance. You treat all people with respect. You are not racist, homophobic, nor do you portray any form of hate on a certain "type" of person.

You are gentle but strong. You inspire me. You're creative and worldly. You have quirks to you that make you interesting.

You have a hobby or something that you are passionate about. You like to travel, see new things, meet new people.

You may look like a lumberjack.

You love me for who I am. You don't care that I go from an indie rock band to Janis Joplin to Kelly Clarkson on my Ipod. You don't make fun of me for watching American Idol. You understand that I am shy, and you help me feel more comfortable. You give me that knowing look when we run into someone we don't like so much.

So...where is he?

Monday, December 26, 2011

2012 goals

I get really excited about the new year celebration. I love saying goodbye to a year of memories and then starting fresh. I, like probably most people, always sound like a broken record with resolutions & things i’m going to change & this year is no different. .My goals for 2012 are simple. I thought long and hard about these, about things that are reachable goals that I can actually do, and follow up on my progress.

1. Take one picture every day. (I tried this once and failed. Would like to try again).

2. Do 5 5k's before 2013. (anyone want to join me?)

3. Cook/bake more foods

4. Read a book a week

5. Write, every day, even if it is short. Finish my book for Laurence. Attempt to write one new poem/song lyrics every week. (To keep myself accountable for the cooking, reading, and writing, I will attempt to blog at the end of each week an update on what I accomplished that week.)

6. Lose weight. I say this a lot, I fail. But I'm going to work very hard at it. I'd like to be at my goal weight a year from now. I'm going to keep track of what I eat and blog every Wednesday, title it "weigh in Wednesday". I need a ton of support in this.

7. Break shyness/fear. Do one thing each day that scares me.

What are your goals? Will you help me with mine?

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

2011 moments and tweets

It's that time of year, time to reflect on the blessings/highlights of 2010-2011.

**Cricket, Cricket**

Okay okay, there were some great moments. Usually this blog entry takes two entries because it is so full. Not so much this year, but that's okay. Because I am very proud of where I am right now.

So here, my friends, are some of my favorite moments of the no particular order.

Getting Close to my mom's class. Last year, I was working part time and picking up odd babysitting jobs while searching for a full time position. I worked afternoons-evenings, so most of my days were free. And I spent a lot of them in my mom's classroom, helping with different projects. Those kids were probably the most obnxious class she's ever had, but I adored them...probably because they gave me a distraction. They gave me something to laugh about. And yes, they were little boogers, but they prayed for me to find a job, daily. They asked everytime I came in if I had found a job yet. I enjoyed them a lot. And now, I've been able to get to know the 11-12 class as well. Now they are cutie pies, and all so sweet and loving little creatures.

Writing. I feel like I wrote more in 2011 than I ever have in my life. I wrote more poetry, song lyrics...I did a huge blog challenge in April that forced me to really pull and reflect. I read a lot more, took more trips to the library. I wrote letters to people during Lent. Oh, yeah, and there's that book I'm writing about Laurence's life.

1/2 marathon I have no words for that experience (that's a lie because I wrote a really long entry about it after). But now, months later, I can't tell you how that felt. I've kind of lost that moment. Which I hate. The medal on my door is just a little reminder. I thought that looking at it every day would keep me motiviated, it hasn't. Maybe it will now. Maybe I can focus on that. Let's try. That weekend was special. It was the only time during that whole "finding a job" situation where I was able to really get away. I accomplished a huge feat. I got over a fear. I became stronger.

Babysitting. I had four semi regular babysitting gigs in the beginning of 2011. Overnight sitting for Claire and John when their mom had to take trips. I learned a heck of a lot about myself and patience during those trips. Those two are great, great kids. Then there were the Jarrell's who I spent my mornings with to get them off to school. I so enjoyed talking with them before they filed onto the school bus. Talk about maturity and grace and strength, those kids had it. Then there was the little baby boy who I "babysat" (and still do) most Saturday evenings. He's always in bed when I get there-always. So I just sit on the couch. He gives me a much needed break from life. I just sit there, watch a movie or read, with absolutley no interruptions. And then, of course, there are the always adorable Owie and Anna. Anna was 5, Owen 3. I loved spending my spring days with them! We played barbies, watched Dora, made mac and cheese, colored, drove to various activities. We had a blast, the three of us.

cleveland weekend
indy birthday weekend. I had so much fun in Indy with my brother and sister in law. It was very chill, but necessary,and,as always, a great gift to be able to spend time with them.

dave/katies wedding. Aah! That weekend was so perfect. I mean everything about it. I got to spend time with the greatest dude in the world, Dean Machine. I was reunited with my dear hearts Meghan and Jason. And, of course, the main event, I was honored to be a part of a ceremony that united two of my best friends, Dave and Katie. I had seen them go from strangers to friends to lovers, so to watch them celebrate that and the genuine love they have for each other was a true honor and blessing. <3

anne/jesses wedding. Such a fun night with old friends. One of the best weddings I have ever attended. I loved how much of Anne and Jesse I saw in the ceremony and reception. I loved how perfect their story is. And I loved feeling like I was in high school all over again.

tutoring at cristo rey: I was lucky that Cristo Rey allowed me to come back and tutor for a few weeks while I was on the job hunt. It was only for a very short time but it allowed me to reconnect with some of the kids and, in a way, bring closure to my whole year with MVC. I saw that they were being taken care of and that I could move on.

bhgh\quitting bhgh. Big Brother Boys Club Little Sisters Girls Hope was quite an...exeprience. It was the worst job I've ever had. Not because of the kids, but administration was so awful that it LITERALLY made me physically sick. But, I am grateful that I met Alethea. Even though we only keep in touch via text once in a while, she is one of the greatest people I know and I was dang proud to call her a co worker and friend. She has a heart unlike anyone I've known. It's a shame they couldn't see that. I'm also grateful for the kids. I don't (and can't) talk to them anymore, but I think of them every single day. I wonder how they are doing and pray that they are happy and healthy. I'm also thankful to myself for learning that sometimes you have to do what you have to do. I didn't want to quit a job, I'm not a quitter. But I HAD to. There was no fixing that place. So yes, I am grateful that when I had a 104 degree fever and they told me I had to come into work, that I said "no.".
lupus walk

idol concert. Is it weird that I can't really remember details of the Idol concert? Maybe I had heat stroke. I just remember we had a good time, and our seats were very close to the stage. I remember bits and pieces from being outside like seeing Stefano and Haley in a taxi but everything else is kind of a blur. But, I do remember saying that it was one of the best Idol concerts I had been too- so I must have had a good time :-D

tigers game. I am forever thankful to the Tigers game for bringing me closer to Maggie and Tierra. I remember thinking on the drive down that it was going to be a disasted...and it kind of were the events that followed the following week (company lay offs). But we still managed to have a good time, and came out of it becoming accomplices, and now friends.

cleveland weekend. OMG. Best weekend ever. Sometimes I cannot believe our luck that weekend. I got to see my number one Idol and inspiration, Melinda, sharing a stage with legends. I got to spend time with two amazing backups. I got to hug my Mama Melinda for the first time in years. Then I got to spend time with three my lovely fwands, Desi, Sam, and Brenna. I got to see Gavin live and fall in love with his music again. I saw Cook perform songs from an outstanding album. And I got to thank them for all they did for me.

getting the job. This job has been tough. It's been a learning experience, it's been a test of patience. It's been a whole new set of challenges, every single day. And it exhausts me. BUT, I have never been so proud of myself in a job. I feel like I am creating something, making it my own. It's a fight, and I work hard. But I get a lot back. I get to see smiles on the faces of volunteers when they feel they made a difference. I get staff who are supportive of the program and me and who encourage me to keep on going. I have made some new, wonderful friends...but most of all, I have just seen the beauty of human interaction, the impact we can make on each other when we put everything aside and just listen.

favorite tweets of the year

JordinSparks:Watching the Discovery channel right now & I had no idea jellyfish were so gangster.

lizZmilK: @Zammie255 oh fuxk I forgot where I lived lol

elliotyamin: Haha!.well nobody wanna hear bout how dirty yo swift is!RT@thedirtyswift: @elliottyamin hey man nobody wants to hear about your "instrument"

Kanye West: I could never do stand up cause I tell jokes better when I'm sitting

DavidArchie: Nothing like getting creamed in basketball by your mom lol.

mdoolittle: Changed my hair a it, but just walked by the mirror in my hotel & screamed cuz I thought someone else was in my room. #embarrased

kelly_clarkson: Recently found out that Easter falls on my birthday this year .....Jesus is totally stealing my thunder!

lizZmilK: I am a machine that turns alcohol into dancing.

Georgehuff4real: SANG CHILDREN!!!!!!!!!!!

BrunoMars:I shall pelvic thrust extremely hard in honor of all my critics in the audience tonight.. I hope they're on birth control.

DavidArchie: Can't wait for Cars 2. Pixar never lets me down.

GTLauren:I owe my ability to meeting people I've seen in concert to @Zammie255 and @mcaro05

ramielemalubay It's definitely too hot for pants

CaseyAbrams: A Very cool person Named Megan gave me an Esperanza Spalding Vinal. Chamber Music Society, AMAZING! Thanks Megan, means a lot :)

mdoolittle: Really excited! Finished all my "hoework"...think I'll take a quick nap. :-)

mandisaofficial What? NBC has a show called "American Ninja Warriors" & I've nvr heard of it? How is that possible? I LOVE American Ninja Warriors! #sarcasm

jambajim: To the Taylor Swift fans who just saw a half-naked @jambajim changing in my hotel room, I THOUGHT THE BLINDS WERE CLOSED DON'T CALL THE COPS

kelly_clarkson: Found the puppy poo!! Thank you God!

Toddyrockstar Just realized that I don't have a favorite color :( Guess I better start making some serious decisions

aaronspears Am I the only person who tweets sometimes while dropping chalupas??? I'm curious... #ipromiseimnotdoingitnow #toilettweeting

SaraBareilles I haven't said much today. Although I did eat a yogurt. And some string cheese. So me and dairy are talking.

Zammie255:@mcaro05 listening to whatta man by salt n pepa and it reminds me of you for some reason....... I have no idea why.

zammie255 @lizZmilK I'm singing Adele and sleeping

BrunoMars Theres an owl outside that wont shut up!! Let me sleep you spooky fuckin owl!!!!

CaseyAbrams does any one wanna come and scratch my scalp?

mdoolittle That dang T-Mobile commercial! For some reason, I KNOW they're saying walking in a 4G wonderland, but I never hear the "f" in four!

jessyjams adam levine is about to line these broads up for a different play date for each day of the week

TheFray Overheard backstage tonight: "there's only one wine opener here. And Kelly Clarkson has it." -is

Friday, December 16, 2011

2011 in Entertainment

Top 10 Albums

10) Florence and the Machine- Ceremonials
9) Mandisa- What If We Were Real
8) Jack's Mannequin- People and Things
7) NeedtoBreathe- The Reckoning
6) David Cook- This Loud Morning
5) Kate Voegele-Gravity Happens
4) Gavin DeGraw- Sweeter
3) Lady Antebellum- Own The Night
2) Kelly Clarkson- Stronger
1) Adele- 21

10 Favorite Singles (Some albums were not released in 11, but these singles were)
Just so you know, this list originally had 50 songs on it. I made myself cut it to 15.

15. Headlines- Drake
14. Not Over You- Gavin DeGraw
13. Skyscraper- Demi Lovato
12. Stronger- Mandisa
11. Own The Night- Lady Antebellum
10. Mr. Know It All- Kelly Clarkson
9. How To Love- Lil Wayne
8. If I Die Young- The Band Perry
7. It Will Rain- Bruno Mars
6. You and I- Lady Gaga
5. Forget You- Cee Lo Green
4. Born This Way- Lady Gaga
3. Someone Like You- Adele
2. Rolling in the Deep- Adele
1. Super Bass- Nicki Minaj

10 Favorite Non-Singles (all from albums/eps released in 2011).

10) Ooohsand Aah's- NeedtoBreathe
9) Just Cry-Mandisa
8) Broken Bird-Jack's Mannequin
7) We Believe-David Cook
6) Telephone Games- Jack and White
5) Wanted You More- Lady Antebellum
4) Sandcastles- Kate Voegele
3) Soldier- Gavin DeGraw
2) Honestly- Kelly Clarkson
1) Don't You Remember- Adele

10 Favorite Movies I saw

10) Breaking Dawn
9) Lion King
8) Country Strong
7) Harry Potter
6) Friends with Benefits
5) Water for Elephants
4) Crazy, Stupid Love
3) Bridesmaids
2) 50/50
1) The Help

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


I've been in a crappy mood as of late. Can't get in the holiday spirit, feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, and just plain burned out. It hit me today what I want: I want to feel valued. Not in the selfish way. I don't need people to tell me I'm awesome. I just want to feel like I am worth something. I want to feel like all my hard work is going somewhere. Like I am on the right path.

But then I also realized- the root of all of this is that I do not always value myself. I knock myself down all the time. Having other people acknowledge me or tell me how I'm doing will go nowhere unless I believe it. And, I have the control to believe that. I thought for a long time that I had finally learned to love myself, but it's evident lately that I still have not learned that very needed lesson. I wish I could. I pray about it all the time. I try. Yet, I still let things about myself slip through the cracks, while trying to hold everything else together. I like to be the person who helps others. It's time for me to help myself.

It's going to be hard but I am going to try to start doing things that are best for me. Being healthier, happier. I know, you can roll your eyes and say you've heard this before from me, because you have. And hey, there's a possibility I will fail and fall back into this pit that I have seen so many times before. But I'm going to fight harder, push further, than I ever have before.

So yes, I want to feel valued and worthy. And it all starts with me.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

I don't remember the last time I posted new writing. I usually post it to tumblr. So, here you are. Sorry if there are repeats!

July 2011

Don’t you remember the day we met
Exchanging glances and smiles
You walked over and said
You know I’ve got a thing for girls who are shy
We’ve been hand in hand ever since
And we don’t have to say a word
Comfortable with silence
Comfortable with you
I live to be loved
I live to be loved by you
Have I told you I adore you
For showing me a world I’ve never known
I told you I was a mess
You just took my hand
And we’ve been hand in hand ever since
And we don’t have to say a word
Comfortable with silence
Comfortable with you
I love to be loved
I love to be loved by you

Liars and Thieves
July 2011

Well, congratulations, sweets
You’ve made the list of liars and thieves
I’ve never added someone so fast
It’s gotta be some kind of record
Our story ended before it really began
I believed you when you said
“I’m not going anywhere”
You promised I wouldn’t get hurt
You made me feel safe, for once in my life
I turn around and you’re with her
Looks like you went somewhere
And I really thought you were different
I was under the impression
you were one of the nice guys
boy you had me fooled
I believed you when You said “I’m not going anywhere”
You promised I wouldn’t get hurt
You made me feel safe, for once in my life
I turn around and you’re with her
Looks like you went somewhere
So I wipe my hands clean of you
I won’t spend time wondering what I did
Because I’ve learned my worth
You said I was the sweetest thing you’d ever known
Well, You’re going to want to be careful
Cuz when it comes to breaking hearts
Im not so sweet
I believed you when You said “I’m not going anywhere”
You promised I wouldn’t get hurt
You made me feel safe, for once in my life
I turn around and you’re with her
Looks like you went somewhere
And I’ll be fine if I never hear from you again
I just wanted you to know
I’m so sick of liars and theives

August 2011

Which one of us will crack first?
Offer apologies for how
We’ve been acting lately
I guess it’s gonna be me
Since you’ve always had trouble
Admitting you wrong
But let’s be honest
This thing’s been over for years
Holding on by a thread
I know you had better ways to spend your time
I guess I’m sorry you wasted it on me
You just love to push me aside
But I was always there
And I’m sorry I’m just now seeing
You never really cared
You spill your soul to anything with ears
But they don’t know you like I do
And yet it’s been so long
I forget the sound of your voice
I can’t take this deadly silence between us
It was never this bad, never this torn
I don’t even know you
Maybe I’m sorry I ever did.

Oh No
August 2011

Oh no not you again
I’ve seen your type before
Sowhy don’t you make a quick exit
Oh no you went and smiled at me
Why’d you do that, don’t you know I’m weak
Let’s just forget this night we’ve had
Oh no, I can’t do this again
I always seem to fall for
You should leave before I get too attached
Oh no I think I’m falling for you
I know of wish I’d never met you
Oh no I did not mean that
I’m starting to think we could be
The beautifully written story
I’ve been waiting for
Oh no you just got down on one knee
This is love and you say “marry me”
What will I say, an you guess?
Oh, baby, you know it’s yes

Now you’re the heartbreaker
September 2011

Don’t take another step toward me
You’ve lost me now
Wasn’t that your biggest fear
So why’d you go and lie to me
And make those empty promises
When you knew how much I hated those
I would’ve given you my whole world
I would’ve been everything you wanted
It’s a damn shame you couldn’t see
I could’ve been the one for you
You looked me in the eyes and cupped my face
Don’t you remember that night in the park
I bet you take her there too
Bet you say those same beautiful lines
I would’ve given you my whole world
I woud’ve been everything you wanted
It’s a damn shame you couldn’t see
I could’ve been the one for you
How does it feel to be the heartbreaker
I wonder if you’re proud
I’m not sticking around to find out
You’ve lost me now
I would’ve given you my whole world
I wou’ve been everything you wanted
It’s a damn shame you coulnd’t see
I could’ve been the one for you.

He Lied She Stole
August 2011

The way we were talkin
You’d think we’d be headed to the church by now
But I haven’t heard from you in days
And I’m starting to think I’m losing you
Don’t you dare try to put this blame on me
Cuz when I said I miss you
You never said I miss you too
I pick up on the little things like that, love
And when I asked you what your day was like
You never cared about mine
I think I’ve lost your interest
I think your mind found someone new
So don’t tel me you don’t have time to talk
Cuz I think she’s been talkin to you
Now that I’m thinking about it
I might be better off without you
I’m remembering all our conversations
And how they were always about you
We went from head over heels in love
To two kids holding a grudge
I think I’ve lost your interest
I think your mind found someone new
So don’t tell me you don’t have time to talk
Cuz I think she’s been talkin to you
I just wanted to know where I stand
And now I’m standin alone

Bye bye, boy
October 2011

Hey, hey, boy
Settle down, let’s talk this out
You’re mad I’m walking away
Trying to say I broke your heart
You think I’m weak, don’t you boy?
Excuse me while I roll my eyes
Oh boy, you’ve got it all wrong
Yeah I gave you that second chance
And you just threw it away
Boy, I’ll be honest
I’m not feeling you anymore
I guess we lost that spark
I guess I came back down to earth
You should’ve used that chance
And done some proving this could work
But you proved why it’s all wrong
And I’ve realized, yeah boy I realized
There’s so many things about you
Well, things I just don’t like
You shouldn’t tell me about the other girls
You should get your act together
And you shouldn’t lie, no, you shouldn’t lie
So bye bye, boy
No I don’t put up with liars, boy

December 2011
I think I’m about to lose you
Before I even have you
All because I’m too scared too
Say “I need you”
You are just the type
I want to spend my days with
But you seem so happy without me
I wish I knew how to slip right into your life
I wish I knew how to capture your heart
Before you walk away and I lose my chance
I don’t wanna lose my chance with you
I’m hoping the courage rises
from my gut to my mouth
and I can finally speak
the words I wanna say to you
“You and I could be something great”
But you seem so happy without me
I wish I knew how to slip right into your life
I wish I knew how to capture your heart
Before you walk away and I lose my chance
I don’t wanna lose my chance with you
I don’t know yet if I want to be forever with you
But I don’t want to be forever alone
So let’s start with for now

Princess Worthy
December 2011

I heard once in a movie
all girls are princesses
what's that feel like
tonight I feel empty
tonight I'm not worthy
of a crown of any sort
tonight I feel ignored
and torn down to pieces
I am the stereotype
of a lonely girl, tonight
sitting alone in my room
listening to music that makes
even the strongest cry
and watching my tears hit the floor
wishing someone would come
through that door, tonight
and say didn't you know
all girls are princesses
and you're my princess

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

don't give up

I wish I knew why bad days happen, why funks happen, why suddenly your entire world feels like it's crashing down. Sometimes, life just sucks. Sometimes it feels too much to bear. And you know that? Regardless of what society says, that's okay. Break down. Cry. Throw something. Use a voo doo doll. Just don't give up.

People are going to tell you that you can't do it. You're going to tell yourself that you can't do it. You will make mistakes. You will be a step behind, sometimes. You won't always have the answers. Sometimes it feels like it's game over, there's nothing else you can do. Sometimes you're standing alone with no one by your side. Sometimes you don't think you can take one more step.

You can. You have the strength to move forward. You can win. You have your entire life ahead of you, still. Each day is a blessing, and it is your choice to do something about it, to love as much as you can and to give life every fighting chance. God created you, yes, you, especially for a certain path. You can't lose sight of that. There is too much good in you, too much worth, to shut it all down.

Quitting is the worst thing you can do. Quitting is not giving yourself a fair chance. You are not allowing yourself to be the best person you can be, you will never know what you are capable of. You are not showering the world with your gifts, if you give up.

So don't give up. Fight the fight. Your dreams are in reach.

Friday, December 2, 2011

100 things I love.

10 Activities
being inches away from a stage at a concert for an artists i adore
going on a road trip with my best friend on the passenger side and our favorite music playing
being nervous during a volleyball game, but feeling intense satisfaction after I slam the ball down
talking to kids and hearing their stories, fears, jokes.
getting lost in a book
watching a movie and connecting to a character
taking a life experience and putting it on paper in song/poem format
seeing the impact very selfless people make on people who are at the end of life
spending an entire day dedicated to just me
discovering new things

10 Restaurants

a little piece of heaven in a crepe, good girls go to paris
my happy go lucky barista at starbucks who gives me my venti skinny vanilla latte and spinach feta egg white wrap once a week
my staple veggie panini, red ox
special occasions galore at cheescake factory
family breakfast after church at leo's coney island
memories of bonding with college roomates at applebee's
the "worth the two hour wait" bbq at slow's
high tide in ft walton beach florida brings back the smell of the sand and ocean and the feel of sunburned cheeks
hot guys around a hot grill at mongolian bbq.

10 People

I'm just gonna name the first 10 people that come to mind.

Aunt Mary Ann
Katie G (Although I guess she is now Katie A)
Dave A
J Bizz
Meg Mal

10 Foods

Crunchy, juicy chicken fingers
a thai dish with noodles, peanut sauce, and tofu
white bean chicken chili on a sunday afternoon
my "I could eat every night for the rest of my life" food, salmon
sweet potatos with a smidge of butter and cinnamon
quesedilla's filled with veggies
snack time- pita and hummus
spinach and feta omlette for a sunday morning
lame, but I'm all about a good hearty sandwich.

10 Places
sand between my toes, ft walton beach florida
beautiful disaster: detroit
someday I'll be living in Nashville, TN
never been but dream about new york city
ireland, my homeland :-)
she said I think I'll go to Boston
anywhere off north I75 in the summer time for a quick getaway
indianapolis to see my brother and sister in law
australia for the accents, mate
chi town, baby

6 Drinks/Beverages
deliciously dangerous yin yangs
childlike chocolate milk
quenching vitamin water
addictive coffee
got me through finals in college, diet coke. particularly in the shape of a "den pop".
iced tea, unsweetened. i'm a plain kinda gal.

4 Desserts
summetime treat- vanilla ice cream with sprinkles
holiday favorite- warm apple pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream
something small and sweet- Oreos
would stab someone for- red velvet cheescake

10 Songs (at the moment)

You Love Me (Kelly Clarkson)
Headlines (Drake)
Baby It's Cold Outside (Casey Abrams and Haley Reinhart)
Telephone Games (Jack and White)
Love Is Christmas (Sara Barielles)
Valerie (Amy Winehouse)
Own The Night (Lady Antebellum)
Ours (Taylor Swift)
Sexy and I know It (LMFAO)
It Will Rain (Bruno Mars)

10 Web Sites

tiwttah to promote and engage
facebook to keep up with friends and family and share things that make me happy
tumblr to fangirl
blogspot for my thoughts
pintrest for fresh ideas
stumbleupon for a bordedom cure
google for everything and anything for feel good
pandora to keep my ears happy

10 Writers
Jen Lancaster
Emma Donoghue
Emily Dickinson
J.D Salinger
JK Rowling (Thank you, Miss)
Kathyrn Stockett
Amy Tan
Lisa Genova
Jodi Picolut (I'm such a girl)

10 Famous lines from movies

can you name what movie each of these are from?

"just keep swimming"- FINDING NEMO

"You know that place between sleep and awake? That place where you still remember dreaming? That's where I'll always love you... . That's where I'll be waiting"- HOOK

"A heart is not judged by how much you love; but by how much you are loved by others."- WIZARD OF OZ

"Dear God, make me a bird. So I could fly far. Far far away from here."- FORREST GUMP

"You is kind. You is smart. You is important."- THE HELP

"You always said how lucky you were that we were all friends. But it was us, baby, who were the lucky ones"- RENT

"What we have here is a failure to communicate"- COOL HAND LUKE

"I could die right now, Clem. I'm just... happy. I've never felt that before. I'm just exactly where I want to be."- ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND

"As we grow older, it becomes difficult to just believe. It's not that we don't want to, but too much has happened and we can't."- NOW AND THEN

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Who brings out the best in you?

Who brings out the best in you?

Hmm. I suppose for me this means people who I am my complete self around. My best complete self.

My family. This wasn't always the case, I guess. I used to be much quieter around my family. I used to feel inferior. Not anymore. I love my family and I love the happy feelings I get around them. I love how we can laugh for hours over silly things and be totally honest with one another. I like that we can help each other and be proud of one another and how much we show our care for each other. Around my family, I am complete.

The Sisters of Mercy. They bring out the best in me, spiritually. They take me to a whole new level of life and love. They remind me of what I am capable of. They teach me how to be a better person. They show me a fresh, beautiful outlook on life. I know it sounds crazy to some people but whenever I am at a Sisters of Mercy event, I feel like I am home. They are absolutely fascinating women with a purpose and a passion, and they inspire me to be true to myself and to recognize my talents. Around the Sisters of Mercy, I am love.

My friends Alicia, Sam, Dean, and Christine. They are four of my best friends and four of the people I love the most in this world. They know me inside and out, they know my strengths and weaknesses, they know what makes me laugh. Most importantly, they know my worth, and they remind me of that. They each bring something unique to my life and I love how happy I am when I am around them. (And even happier that I will get to spend 2-3 days a week with Christine because she just got a job at my company!) Around these friends, I am life.

The backups, and Melinda, more than anyone else, have taught me how to be brave- and I feel brave around them. The backups are special because they have watched me grow up. In some ways even more so than my family, because for a while it was the backups hearing my secrets and stories more than anyone else. They accepted me through it all, which made me a more confidant person and a stronger person. Around the backups and Melinda, I am brave.

Cristo Rey High School. Cristo Rey gave me a wonderful experience and an opportunity to grow. The staff helped me learn how to be a Christian servant, and the kids taught me about gratitude and simplicity. The year I spent in that school was the best year of my life and I miss it daily. When I go back and visit I feel whole again. Around Cristo Rey, I am fulfilled.

The artists who have given me the opportunity to lose myself in their music, even in a crowded room of people. Who have allowed me to connect to their life and stories and songs. Who have allowed me to be dancing one minute and crying the next because their song reminds me of a person or event. When I am at concerts with these artists, I am free.

God. God brings out the best in me every single day. He picks me up whenever I fall. He never lets me down. He provides me with people and things that I need to get by. He loves me, unconditionally. He gives me life every day. He leads the way. He reminds me what to do when I am troubled. He puts me at peace when I am anxious. He gives me strength. He is my rock. I am Me because God is here with me.

Who brings out the best in you, kids?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

thanksgiving 2011

I am thankful to have literally the best family a person could ask for. A father who is compassionate, introspective, and genuinly concerned about others. A mom who is a fabulous teacher, friend, who does what she can to see others happy and successful. A sister who is patient, kind, passionate about her work and her relationships. A brother in law who gives great hugs, who takes care of people. A brother who sees a broken person and immediatley goes to help them, who works hard to make other people laugh and feel accepted...and a sister in law who shares my sense of humor but who is much braver and stronger than I with a care free attitude.

I am thankful for the friends who have stood by me through everything, without question, and who have taught me, held my hand and let that hand go at the right times. For the friends who inspire me with the great work they do, who love freely and give as much as they can.

I am thankful for music that gets me through each and every day. I know everyone thought I was joking when I thanked Nicki Minaj this year but I was 100% serious. For five months I did nothing but listen to Pink Friday on repeat while I applied for jobs. For Melinda, Mandisa, The Spill Canvas, Kelly Clarkson, Adele, NeedToBreathe, Lady Antebellum, Gavin DeGraw, Bruno Mars, JillandKate, Taylor Swift, Drake, Sara Barielles, Kate Voegele, Jacks Mannequin, Gaga, Hanson, Jack and White, Florence and theMachine, Christina Perri...I love you all. Thank you for giving me life :)

I am thankful for a rewarding job that inspires me daily. I am thankful that I am part of this beautiful ministry of end of life care. That I can hear stories from patients and volunteers that touch my heart and make me a better person. That I have coworkers who unselfishly give so much to our patients. For Sarah, who got me this job and who has been a constant source of support. For Maggie and Tierra who make me laugh and help me on the bad days. <3

I am thankful for new opportunities. For closed windows and open doors. For finally seeing that sometimes things just happen for a reason. For never giving up. For learning how to believe in myself. For the opportunity to serve God. For growing up. For living a life that I am proud of.

Love you all.

Monday, November 14, 2011


All weekend I was thinking about friendships. Friends who've come and gone, fake facebook friendships that I should really delete, the concept of making new friends as an adult. So, I found it highly ironic that when I walked in to youth group on Sunday, the theme was friendship. Hello, God.

I'm helping lead this years youth group at my Church. It's been fun, the kids are vibrant and full of times frustrating, but mostly, a way to help me express my faith.

Last night we talked about the good things of friendship and the bad. The kids were supposed to yell out their ideas. I had my own ideas in my head...and this is basically what I came up with:

friendship is great when it's mutual...when there is no jealousy, when we can celebrate accomplishments with each other. when we can equally share. Friendship is dangerous when it's dishonest, one sided, jealous, controlling.

I've had both, as I'm sure we've all had. I had a few friendships that I thought were great, only to realize years later how dangerous and poisonous they were. I've also had friends who have been wonderful and supportive, yet I've pushed them aside because I knew they'd always be there. That's not right either. The important thing is for you to REALIZE when a friendship is dangerous, and to get out. If you put all of your time and energy into a friendship and are getting noting in return but emptiness and negativity, say goodbye. That's not a friendship.

So cheers, to all my friends. I love you.

PS: I don't think I've given 2010-2011 enough credit. While it wasn't full of incredible events, I did have two life changing events- I walked a 1/2 marathon and I landed my first full time, after college job. Plus, I have made new friends. Tierra, Maggie, and Sarah, thank you guys for your support and for making me laugh. I wouldn't be able to do this without the three of you :) You all inspire me!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

cry baby

This is random.

Random Thoughts by Megan on a dark, Saturday night.

1. I love my job. I've been with the company for nearly 7 months now, and I fall in love with my job more and more every single day. It's no secret that we've had our struggles, and sometimes the heavy workload really weighs me down...but when it comes down to it, I happily wake up and drive to work every day. I am amazed and inspired by my patients, co workers, and, most of all, my volunteers. They put in so much to making our patients and staff happy. It really warms my heart. I'm a lucky girl, that's for sure.

2. I don't know when I'm going to begin feeling like I'm growing up. I feel like a stronger person, but I don't feel like a grown up. I think it helps that I'm the youngest person at work, so everyone considers me the babay. But then other times, I remember that I am managing a huge program and am the "supervisor" to people much older and wiser than I. Sometimes I feel like I can't wait to get out of my parents house and move on. Other times I just have the urge to curl in a ball, cry my eyes out, and have someone play with my hair and tell me it will be okay. Do we ever grow out of that?

3. I'm too tired to make friends. I know that sounds ridiculous. But I literally do not have more than a few friends I can call up and say hey let's hang out. And I am too lazy I supposed to make the effort to make new ones. I don't even know where to make new ones. (This is code for I'm really lonely and I hate it and wah wah wah)

4. Most of you have seen me post about this on facebook/twitter. But SERIOUSLY. If you want to hear a good Christmas song then you need to go to itunes/amazon this instant and download "God Bless Us Everyone" by Melinda Doolittle. Yes Melinda is my favorite Idol and I may be a little bias but it is my favorite Christmas song, ever. There is something about it that just warms my heart and makes me want to decorate a Christmas tree and eat sugar cookies and hug my family. It is the very definition of Christmas joy.

5. Sometimes I feel like the last year of my life didn't happen. I know that sounds crazy but I honestly like have blacked out the 10-11 year. I keep telling people I did a year of volunteer service last year...when really, last year I was sitting in different coffee shops for hours at a time, applying to jobs and listening to Nicki Minaj. I can usually pin down my feelings/emotions during a year, but last year was just BLANK. I'm glad I actually have some awesome things to remember about the second half of 2011, even if it was mostly work memories.

6. Here are some things I'm looking forward too:
Mandisa in Fremont Dec 18th
Getting in the Christmas spirit
Growing Up
Future Youth Group events

Monday, November 7, 2011

I've been looking forward to this weekend since early September. When David Cook and Gavin DeGraw announced they were touring together, I just had to go. Gavin is my favorite male artist, hands down. His music is one of the things that defines me. And I love me some David Cook. I'm not a huge, huge fan, but his latest album is incredible and I had not seen him live since Idol tour. So, my friends and I were excited for a night of fun and live music. Then, about a month later, I find out that my Idol, my heart, Melinda Doolittle, was going to be in Cleveland the night before at an Aretha Franklin tribute concert. Could things be any more perfect?

Everything about this weekend was wonderful. It just all worked out so well. I arrived Saturday morning to my dear backup friends Maria and Des. We decided to go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, somewhere I've always wanted to go. I was glad we did, it was really awesome. It can take a few hours to get through the whole thing! The hi light of the museum was the special exhibit "Women Who Rock". It highlighted different women in music, going back from the early days to present. Each artist had a display of an outfit and some other item...some handwritten lyrics, some appointment books...very cool stuff. Maria told me "see Megan you should save your journal maybe it will be on display someday" HA! :) I was most excited about the Aretha Franklin and Janis Joplin (love her) displays...and of course all the more current Gaga and Taylor Swift. They had a recreation of Gaga's meat dress, which was...gross. But still kind cool. And for Taylor, they had the actual post it notes of her handwritten lyrics for "change". Just cool stuff. Totally my kind of thing, I was in my personal music heaven.

By the time we were down walking through the museum, it was nearly time to head downtown for the show. So we made a stop at Starbucks and then headed into the theatre. The show was very special. I felt honored to be in that room. First Aretha was awarded an honorary doctorate from Case Western. Then they had the artists come out and sing some of her songs. In between artists they would pull down a screen and play an old video of Aretha singing or an old interview, which was cool. There were a lot of Detroit mentions. Oh, and this whole time, Aretha was just a few rows in front of us. I honestly got chills at one point just thinking about how I was in the same room with some legends!

Melinda was the second artist to perform. She was out-freaking-standing. I know I'm bias, but my LORD can that girl sing. I haven't heard her sing live in a few years, and I honestly think she sounds even better than she did before, if that's possible. There is just such a rich, powerful tone to her voice. I got goosebumps. She sang "Wonderful", a 2003 Aretha song (and also on Melinda's debut album Coming Back To You). She also sang "Since You've Been Gone", a 1967 Aretha tune, and a song Melinda did on of my favorite Idol performances, actually. She was sassy, she looked amazing (She's TINY) and just looked so happy. She also gave a very sweet, genuine nod to "Dr Aretha Franklin". She was fantastic. After she left the stage the emcee for the night said "I think Melinda will be around for a long time!"

Besides Melinda, my other favorite performers of the night were Dennis Edwards from the Temptations and Chaka Khan. Overall though, the show was outstanding and people seemed to respond very positively to Melinda. I could not be more proud of her. She was among legends (I mean cmon...Chaka Khan??) and proved that she can hold her own.

After the show we headed back to the hotel to eat cheesecake and watch football. The news came on, gave a little clip of the Aretha Tribute, and guess what? The clip they used was Melinda!! Proof that she's the best. Period. :)

The next day the three of us headed out to meet Melinda and Kelley (Melinda's manager/best friend, for those non backups reading this). I was so excited to finally get to talk to them after about a year and a 1/2. It's been far, far too long. Melinda still gives her tight hugs! Melinda and Kelley both told me I looked pretty, so I must have done something right that morning haha. We went to Dunkin Donuts, Melinda convinced us to try the apple spice donut. She got so excited about it. I think she actually stood up from her chair when she asked us if we liked it. That's one of the things I love about Melinda- she's always so excited and happy. We talked about the Christmas single (the picture for the cover was taken when it was hot outside so Melinda had to do some acting!), how the show went, how exciting it was for Melinda to meet everyone, etc. We talked about how funny/annoying it is when people are shocked she's still singing. I was just happy to see her again. I told her I was going to be seeing Cook. She said "hug him for me!" and Kelley said "see..I'd say kiss him on the lips for me!" HA! Melinda was like "Meggie. No kissing". Yes m'am.

Melinda has been in my life for the past 5 years (almost). That's so crazy for me to think about. She, and the backups, have basically seen me grow up. I think I'll always be seen as kind of the baby of the group. But I don't mind- I have a wonderful group of people who shape me and whom I can learn from. That is truly a gift.

So that's it for the Melinda side of things. (except you should read on because she gets mentioned again...dun dun dun) but in conclusion, She was freaking amazing. It was wonderful to see Maria and Des, thank you ladies for a great time!

After saying goodbye, I headed back downtown to check into the hotel where I was meeting my friends. Desi arrived first and we went to lunch in the lobby and watched True Life: Narcolepsy and laughed at other people's pain. Cuz that's how Desi and I roll. Then Sam and Brenna arrived and we got ready for some Cook/DeGraw. We had Cook meet and greets, so we got to the venue (which, by the way, was the same venue where Melinda was the night before) around 4. Got our passes and watched sound part of sound check was Cook singing "Time Marches On", which is a very special song to Sam.

After sound check we waited in a different line for our meet and greet with Cook. I went first of our group. I said to Cook "Melinda Doolittle says hi, she was here last night". His face, you guys. His face LIT UP. It melted my heart a little. He got so excited! He was like "SHE WAS HERE? I MISSED HER? I'm gonna text that gir". He started to take out his phone and then said "well I guess I'll do it later" haha. But he was so excited that I mentioned her. Then I told him that I loved the song "We Believe" from his album and that it got me through some rough times. He was very sincere in thanking me for saying that. We took our picture and I hobbled on over to the side to wait for my friends to do their thing.

We grabbed some food before the show, then went back to the theatre and found our perfect second row seats. The opening act dude was pretty good. Then we were able to get after party meet and greets! I was SO EXCITED, because that included meeting GAVIN DEGRAW. My LOVE. More on that later, though.

So I've never really considered myself a huge Cook fan. I enjoy his music, especially his latest album (seriously, it's amazing), but he won me over last night. His voice is incredible live and he puts on a great show. He interacts with the audience (plaid shirt guy!, and he just sings his face off. I had so much fun during his set. My friends and I did interpretive dance. I got some of my favorite songs (We Believe, My Hero, Light On, Bar-Ba-Sol). He sang a lot more songs from his first album which I was kind of surprised about. Oh well. It was so much fun to just let go and live in the music. Monty, one of the band members, loved us. I mean, who wouldn't, really? I can imagine it was hilarious to watch us.

After Cook I had to mentally prepare myself for Gavin. I wasn't prepared. I almost needed cpr. That man is sexy, smooth, soulful, and one of my favorite artists ever. He is one of the best live singers, he puts on a show. He sang a lot from the new album, including my favorite "Soldier", and my life story "Run Every Time". He sang some old favorites too, like "Chariot", "I Don't Wanna Be" "In Love With A Girl". He also did a few covers, including "Breakeven", "Grenade", and "Let's Get It On". The only thing I was sad about was that he didn't sing anything from the forgotten 2009 EP he released. But, overall I was in a cloud of pure bliss. He is just amazing. Like, he jumped on a piano. I love that man. Marry me, Gavin. I could listen to him sing all day every day. Gavin is the male Kelly Clarkson for me.

So after the show I realized I was about to meet him. And I was running through my head every thing I wanted to tell Gavin. I was scared I wouldn't have time, or I'd say something dumb, or just not get across what I wanted to say. Well, when I get up there, this is what happened. (Please note that Cook was standing there too, it was a double meet and greet).

Me "I just want you to know....your music has been the one constant thing in my life since I was 16. When everything else fell apart, I had your music. Plus, this guy who knew I loved you used to sing your songs all the time. Then he broke my heart. So I couldn't listen to you anymore. But now I can".
Gavin "wow. Wow. what's your name"
me "megan"
Gavin "Megan. I'm gonna remember you. That was so sweet, thank you for that"
So I turned to Cook (who was wearing a Notre Dame hat) and I said "Love your hat. My mom is gonna be so happy. We're big Notre Dame fans in my house". And Cook was like "rock on". Then Cook was having a convo with this other dude on the crew and he said "I'm convinced you can get drunk off anything". My response was "yes, like rum and live music" and he died laughing. So I took my CookDegraw pic and then turned to them and said "thank you guys". Gavin looked at me and said "Megan, thank you so much". SWOON.

After all my friends did their meetin and greetin we headed back to our hotel for pizza, pjs, and sleep. Pretty sure Sam and I giggled for a long time but I can't remember why...I was so exhausted, haha.

So to sum everything up it was a perfect weekend. I had the time of my life (no pun intended) with some amazing people and idols. I am so overjoyed with emotions that I finally got to meet Gavin. My heart is full and happy :)

Some gifts, for people who want to hear a little bit of what I heard this weekend.

PS I wish I kept track of the amount of times we shouted "SUPER BASS" at Gavin and Cook. One of these days I will go to a concert where someone covers that song for me. Boom da boom boom.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

sisterhood everlasting

I've always had a love and passion for reading. I like to follow other peoples stories. I like to know that I'm not alone, so I always try to find something in characters that are a little like me.

When I was in high school, my friend Carlotta suggested I read the "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" books. Once I started, I couldn't stop. I loved the way they were written, I loved how it defined true friendship. I loved how each of the four girls were facing their own unique challenges..and I loved that even though they were all so different, I saw a little of myself in each of them. Shy and cautious like Lena, easily hurt with a big heart like Carmen, sarcastic and misunderstood like Tibby, and curious and a little lost like Bridget. Over the past four years since the final book in the series was released, I've thought about these characters from time to time. Did Bridget ever find true happiness? Did Carmen make it big? Did Tibby get over her angsty phase? Did Lena and Kostos finally get together?

Ann Brashares, the genius behind the series, answered my questions when she released Sisterhood Everlasting. I have wanted to get my hands on it since I found out about it, I just "didn't have time". See, ever since I've gotten a job, I've pushed off reading. Even though it is one of my biggest joys in life, I just simply stopped. I've gone through countless books in the past seven months, but only read a chapter or two before my mind has jumped and gotten distracted. This past weekend, I sat down and read Sisterhood Everlasting...and it made me fall in love with reading again. I found myself immediately investigated in the characters, digging from my memory to link their stories from the original series. My heart went out with them as they face tragedy, love, heartbreak, "finding themselves", something I'm quite used to.

I started the book yesterday afternoon, and I finished it in less than 24 hours. Now I'm excited to start my next book, The First Husband.

There's a deeper meaning here than just reading, kids. When something brings you joy- when you fall in love with it- don't give up on it. Don't push it away. Because at the end of the day it's always going to be there for you.

Have a great week.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I have to say, this is one of the hardest album reviews I've ever written. I love this album so much I want to tell every single person about it, but I don't know how to accurately describe how good it is, so I end up just saying things like "HER VOICE. THE WORDS. JOFJFOJJSAOFSAJ". Here is my not so awesome attempt at convincing you in buying this album.

Mr Know It All- Perfect choice for a first single. It really gives listeners a glimpse of what to expect on the album. It's sassy, catchy, up beat, gospel-y. It's empowering and refreshing, especially with some of the other crap on the radio these days. It's quite popular, too. I hear it at least twice a day on the radio. Also, can I just say that the video is really what made this song for me? I liked the song, but I wasn't in love with it until I saw the video. The concept is amazing. You tell em, Kel.

'Cause I'm living my truth without your lies

What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger). This weekend I am going to begin training for my next 1/2 marathon, and this song has already landed a spot on my "training playlist". It's a solid pop song, up there with "Since U Been Gone". It's an anthem, it's powerful. When I hear this song, I picture myself on a dance floor with all my best friends, shouting the words at the top of our lungs.

Thanks to you I got a new thing started
Thanks to you I'm not a broken hearted
Thanks to you I'm finally thinking bout me
You know in the end the day you left was just my beginning
In the end...

Dark Side. Where do I begin? My favorite songs on past Kelly album's are always her more vulnerable and raw ones. This one is just that type. I love the way it starts off with the childlike whimsical sound. I also very much relate to this song. I have a "dark side", and that is severe anxiety. One of my biggest fears is that I'll never meet someone who loves me and my flaws. What I'm looking for is someone who can help remind me that anxiety is not my whole life, that life is bigger than that- and Kelly sings exactly that in this song. When I first heard this song it took a stab at my heart and sent chills down my spine. Kelly has once again proved how relatable of an artist she is. I love the raw emotion you can hear in her voice. Love this song, one of my favorites on the album, and holds a special place in my little dark sided heart. :)

It's hard to know
What you can become
If you give up
So don't give up on me
Please remind me who I really am

Honestly. The fact that this song follows Dark Side is genius. She opens with "could you love someone like that", after just singing about her dark side. You know, when I first listened to the album, this song didn't really speak to me, but now it's one of my favorites. Her voice is absolutely killer on this track and I am dying to hear it live. The line "beautiful lies" gets in my head at work, and makes me want to run and grab my ipod just to hear it. The soulful, gritty Kelly side really shows on this track. It's another sort of haunting, gut wrenching tune, and Kelly's voice just captures you. It's one of those songs where you're like "CHRIST! This is why the girl won Idol!". Hauntingly gorgeous. Especially towards the end, when she sounds on the verge of tears.

beautiful lies
Bringing out the green in your eyes
Perfect disguise for envy and pride

You Love Me may be the catchiest song on the album. It's the one I like to jam to in my car. Wouldn't be surprised if this is a single, I imagine it would do very well on pop radio. Very catchy, great's basically turning the heartbreak back on the jerk, saying "you know what? no. I AM good enough- it's you who is not good enough. I'm gonna sing my face off now". The rythmn is very clappy and catchy. OH! Also! The part where she sings "you can't handle this, you can't handle this" makes me really want a mashup where she then goes into "I don't think you're ready for this jelly" but that's just me.

You couldn't win so you turn it around..

Einstein. Ugh. There's usually one track on every Kelly album that I can't stand. Hi, here's Einstein. The unfortunate thing is that her voice actual sounds killer on this song..especially the last few seconds when the music cuts and its just her soulful voice. And I imagine that it's a fun performance piece at concerts. I This song probably belongs on a Selena Gomez album. If you're trying to prove that Kelly is a mature artist with solid pop songs, don't play this song. It contradicts that statement. I can think of about 10920192 "unreleased" Kelly songs that should replace this one.

You can stop wasting my time
Without you I'm just fine

Standing In Front Of You is the first ballad on the album, and a solid one at that! It's subtle, but strong, and very relatalbe. Everyone has wished that someone would just realize what they had standing right in front of them. The chorus is pretty cool, the way they stacked the harmonies. It gives it a more "feel good, fall in love" sound.

You can close your eyes, don't worry. I'll still be here in the morning

Forgive You kind of reminds me of the type of song Kelly's background singers/very talented musicians JillandKate would release, just a little more production value to it. I love JillandKate's by the transitive property (hey look, I'm einstein too!) I love this song. The best part, vocally, is the bridge. It's your typical pop rock jam. It gets in your head. I know from experience.

I forgive you
We were just a couple of kids
Trying to figure out how to live doing it our way

Hello. This song is interesting. The handclaps in the background kind of MAKE IT. I can just imagine how fun this will be in concert. It's not one of my favorites, but it's catchy and relatable. And the way she sings the word "hello" is fantastic.

holding onto memories of when I didn't know. ignorance isn't good but it beats being alone

War Is Over. One of my favorites, for sure. Kelly puts her foot down and says she isn't going to put up with it anymore. You go girl! This is one of those songs where get stuck on what to say- it's just a solid song and fits with the theme of the album. Take a listen.

i used to let you paint ‘em pretty pictures
you got me caught up with your, you’re my girl forever
so i forgive you, it felt good when you hold me
yeah you owned me
now you wish you had really known me

Let Me Down. Another potential single, this is a mid tempo catchy song where Kelly shows her authority. It's a bit darker than other singles, maybe not as pop sounding, but it's still catchy and a solid song. The best part is most def when she lets it rip and sings out "cause I know by now" and then hands us the chorus again. Terrific.

I need you to be there when you say you're gonna be
I care too much and you'll care enough to me
I want some place to rest my head without worrying
It's not fair, it's not fair, it's not fair to me

You Can't Win is a very clever song that steps away from the heartbreak/falling in love theme with the rest of the album. It's a song for the underdogs, a theme similar to popular songs like "born this way", "firework" and "raise your glass". This one is dedicated to everyone who's a "walking disaster", and kelly sings off some of the stereotypes out there. It's a feel good song...and I can't wait to be singing along to it at her concert with all my fellow Kelly fans.

if you speak, you'll only piss em off. if you don't, you're another robot. if you stop, they'll just say you quit. if you don't, you might lose your shit.

Breaking Your Own Heart is a beautiful ballad that I can relate too. Sometimes I feel like I am the only one hurting myself, not other people...I don't give myself a chance sometimes and I let fear take hold. I also tend to push people away when they get too close. Kelly sings about that, in a tender, gentle, bit country-ish way.

it's not too late, I'm still right here, if only you'd let go of your fears

Don't You Wanna Stay. Speaking of country :) If you've turned your radio on in the past year than you are already familiar with this beautiful country duet with Jason Aldean. I mean, Jason and Kelly probably have the two sexiest voices in music. Put them together, and you have a Grammy deserving song. I'll admit I usually skip this song when I'm listening to the full album, but only because I've heard it about a zillion and one times on the radio and I've been craving new Kelly music for years. I can't say enough good things about this song. It's a love song that makes me want to fall in love.

we can make forever feel this way, don't you wanna stay

Alone a great pop rock track that could have replaced Einstein and all would be well with the world. Basically it's saying that Kelly feels nothing when she's with this guy, that she just feels alone with him, not the way it should feel but then! she turns it around...she found someone new, and guess what, he doesn't make her feel alone. SNAP. The way the chorus is song is pretty cool, and sassy.

you're gonna miss me, so get ready

Don't Be A Girl About It. I haven't quite decided how I feel about this song. It makes me laugh. It's sassy and catchy, especially the "oooooh's" in the chorus. The intro is very similar to the intro of "my life would suck without you" which I found interesting. But yes, a good car song, a good break up song, will be a good concert song if she puts it on her setlist.

I guess it's true that love can grow in different directions
I chose the high road and you chose to be a girl
I know you're mad at me now
And it's all my fault somehow
Here comes my favorite part
You're so misunderstood

The Sun Will Rise is a duet with Kara DioGuardi. Correction. It is a perfect, flawless duet with Kara DioGuardi. Kara is not one of my favorite people. However, one thing I admire about her is her work with helping people who are facing addiction and depression and pulling them through it with music. Guess what? I think this song will do that. We know Kelly can sing, but dang- Kara can SANG too! It's got a bit of a country feel, especially Kara's part, but it is one of the most beautiful songs on any Kelly album. The use of the gentle violin was a wise choice, along with the lyrics and harmonies. Thanks Kelly and Kara for giving me a song to get through my days. One of my favorite songs.

Sometimes you just need a little faith (All you need is a little faith)
There's an answer to your prayer
And I swear that there'll come a day yeahh
The sun will rise

Why Don't You Try. And this, ladies and gentlemen, is the reason we fell in love with Kelly in the first place. This song is vocal powered, and for good reason. It's a little old school/gospel sounding with a whole lot of soul. You know what I want? I want Kelly to perform this song at an awards show, drop the mic and walk away. So she can prove that she is a legit artist with a flawless voice.

heavier hearts won't justify why I'm gone today

The best songs: Dark Side, Honestly, You Love Me, War Is Over, The Sun Will Rise, Why Don't You Try

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Lately I've been quite frustrated on the writing front because I have no inspiration. Zip. Very, very rarely anymore do I go through a day and have this "I HAVE to write about that moment". As someone who uses writing primarily as an outlet, it's a very draining problem to have. I'm not making much progress on the Laurence book either, mostly because every time I sit down to work on it I get frustrated and give up.

As you can probably tell, I'm cranky lately. Cranky and stressed. In fact, as I'm writing this I'm sitting in a Panera- my headphones are in and my music is pretty loud. Yet I can hear the small child a few tables away screaming. And I kind of want to throw a bagel at him.

But,enough of the crankiness. Honestly, despite my cranky mood and lack of inspiration, I do have three stories to share that shed some light on my week.

The first was that I realized I had something in common with one of our patients. That doesn't happen often, seeing as they are in their 90's-100's. But, I was visiting a patient with one of my volunteers, and noted what beautiful eyes the patient had. They were huge, blue, bright. A few days later, at one of our meetings, I mentioned to a nurse how huge the patient's eyes were. Her response? "I hope you didn't say anything to her. She hates that. She always tells me 'Don't say anything about my eyes'"


That was (and sometimes still is) me. My eyes are very often the first thing a person notices about me, and I hear it often...especially when I was a kid. I didn't want to go to preschool because I was afraid someone was going to say something about my eyes. I hated the attention...and I still get a little shy when someone mentions it now. That little insecurity that I share with that patient made me kind of come back down to earth and realize I do have something in common with the patients, and that I can, in a very small way, understand them.

The second story has to do with a volunteer/co worker interaction. I had just been telling someone that I was worried I was so busy and stressed about my job that I would stop enjoying it and just be going through the motions. Well, without giving away too many details, I will say that one of my co workers made me remember why I love this job. She was very appreciate of one of my volunteers and went out of her way to show the appreciation. the volunteer was touched, and it added fuel to her energy, so that she can keep going and be the best hospice volunteer she can be :) I'm so happy to know that we can still be open in our gratitude towards others.

The final was yet another work related story. We were at a facility wrapping up an event when one of our aides walked in. She was apologizing for missing the event, and my coworker Sarah and I were telling her not to worry about it. Sarah wrapped up the conversation by saying "Just have a good day!" and the aide's response was "You know, I generally do have good days". We all were just kind of awed by that. It was a relief to see someone with such a positive attitude, a genuine positive attitude. Her response keeps ringing through my head, and it's kind of become my new motivation.

I suppose a word that describes how I'm feeling is stuck. I've got this job and making my own money for the first time, yet I can't move out of my parents house yet because I haven't saved enough. I have great ideas for Laurence's book, but I can't find the motivation or inspiration to actually sit down and write it. I want to go to grad school, or at least start taking classes, but I don't know what I want to be.

I guess I just do what I can. I work towards my goals, slowly but surely I will get there. I just don't want to do it alone anymore.

My Goals
-Move out by April/May
-Detroit Free Press 1/2 Marathon October 2012
-Be taking night classes by fall 2012
-Do a little writing, even just an hour every Saturday, for the book.
-Nashville by 2016.

Monday, October 3, 2011

life update

I feel like I just did one of these life update posts, but I feel like it's the only way to clump everything I want to say together. So, enjoy.

What's Going On...In Life..

I guess the biggest thing is that I am now the volunteer coordinator for both workload has now increased by two so there will be a lot of late nights and Saturday work days until I can get things under control. I think I'll enjoy it once I have it all under my belt, there's just a lot of things that need to be figured out on my end. It took me a good 2-3 months to get everything down when I originally took the job, and now I'm kind of doing it all over again...but need to get it organized in a shorter amount of time. The plus sides are that I feel good about where things are in my original office, I have a ton of support, and I do ENJOY my job. Just...October is going to be a little insane, is all. And by a little I mean a lot.

I took a spiritual gifts workshop. I had heard about them before, and wanted to do it, just never had the time. I learned a lot in those few Thursday night classes. Mainly that my gift is encouragement. It wasn't a huge surprise, but it is very humbling to see what God is doing in my life and how I am able to use that gift on a day to day basis.

I'm still dieting and working on weight issues, although the past week really screwed me over. But this is a new week, and I will continue working hard. I'm house/dog sitting and probably can't get out to go to my classes at the Y, but I'll be doing some walking.

I've been to two weddings over the past three weeks. They were both incredibly special for two reasons. Dave and Katie's was more emotional than anything. I spent an entire year with those two and watched them turn from strangers, to friends, to best friends, to a couple, to a married couple. I was honored to be in attendance, those two, and Nate, are more like family than anything to me and I want nothing but happiness and love for them. It was also a really great way to spend some time with Dean, Jason, and Meghan. As I said to my parents, those friends are people who know me in a way that no one else does. They were there with me through the greatest experience of my life of Mercy Volunteer Corps. Sure they didn't know everything about hs or my college experience, but they knew me inside and out as a person. I had a great, beautiful time.

Anne and Jesse's wedding was also incredibly special. Not only was it one of the most beautiful weddings I have ever attended, it was so great to see the support they had from family and friends. They've been dating since they were 16- with some breaks- but still. Back then they were just kids, yet they have stuck by each other and loved each other every moment. And then there they were, getting married. Some of my most favorite people in the entire world were in that room of the reception. Every time a song played that was a "high school" song for us, we all just kind of looked at each other, laughed, and danced it all away. I'm lucky to know Anne and Jesse, and those friends. As I said to Anne when I hugged her goodbye "thank God for algebra class". That's when Anne and I became friends, and she has always been like a little sister to me, despite time and distance between us.

Both of those weddings made me want to get married. Okay, maybe not married, but it made me sick of being single. And it made me think about who would be in my bridal party.

What I'm Looking Forward To
CLEVELAND WEEKEND IN NOVEMBER. I'm going to Cleveland November 4th-6th and it's going to be the best weekend ever. I get to see some of my most favorite people and hear good live music.

Thanksgiving. JP and Sara are coming back for it and we have fun outfits planned. Muahaha.

What I'm Reading
I don't have time to read anymore. I know, sad. I suppose I could read instead of watch my fall tv shows, but nah. I want to read the new Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants book- BADLY.

What I'm Watching
Monday- The Sing Off
Tuesday- Glee, The New Girl
Wednesday- Modern Family
Thursday- Greys

I slip in X Factor sometimes.

What I'm listening to
Lady Antebellum, Gavin Degraw, and NeedtoBreathe are the three albums I'm currently obsessed with.

So to sum it all up- I want to get married, I don't read, and I'm overwhelmed by my workload. HAPPY OCTOBER!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Lady Antebellum, Gavin DeGraw

Lady Antebellum- Own The Night

"Own the Night" is the third studio album by Lady Antebellum and picks up right where they left off with last year's "Need You Now." The album is mature, rich, and shows just how well grounded the group has remained. They stick to their roots without copying sound from their first two albums. Lyrically, probably their best album.

1. Own The Night. On first listen, this is my favorite track off the album. It immediately sets the tone for the rest of the album. It's very uptempo and has a solid rhythm to it, not to mention Charles rich vocals. A fun song that leaves the listener wanting to hear more. When the summer rolls around/And the sun starts sinking down/I still remember you/Oh, I remember you/And I wonder where you are

2. Just A Kiss. The first single off the album, and, to be honest, not one of my top songs from the group. I like the cutesy little love story it presents, but I find the song boring....but the chemistry between Hilary and Charles is very well defined in the vocal harmonies of this song. Just a shot in the dark that you just might
be the one I've been waiting for my whole life

3. "Dance Away With My Heart" is a perfect representation of Lady A- gorgeous harmonies. I love the reflection in the lyrics here. I think we all had that love at 18, whether we realized it then or not. Hillary shines in this song. I haven't seen you in ages/sometimes I find myself wondering where you might be/to me you'll always be 18 and beautiful/dancing away with my heart

4. Friday Night" Not to be confused with the over produced, horribly awful pop song from Katy Perry, this one is a country rock treat. I can just picture Lady A performing this live and their fans jumping around and screaming the words right back to them. It's fun, uptempo song with a cute concept lyrically. This one will do well on country radio, for sure. I wanna be your get away
At the end of every day. That window's rolled down kinda song you love to play

5. "When You Were Mine". Still haven't decided how I feel about this song. I like the varied rhythmic melodies between verses and chorus, I like that Hillary is showcased vocally. But it doesn't grab me emotionally like so many of their other songs do. My favorite part is for sure the hook. I love the emphasis on the word "better". What if this was it baby, What if this was our time, Maybe we're all past saving, I'm gonna give you one try, You better think twice, Before you leave her behind.

6. Cold As Stone. Aah, here is that emotion I was just talking about. This song is a little haunting-not quite in the Need you Now way, but well on it's way. If the perfect harmonies and pitch didn't do it for you, maybe the use of instrumental will, especially at the end of the song. The haunting music says it all. Beautiful tune. I wish I was cold as stone, Then I wouldn't feel a thing. I wish I didn't have this heart, Then I wouldn't know the sting of the rain. I could stand on my own. Letting your memory fade. I wouldn't hurt like this, Or feel so all alone. I wish I was cold as stone

7. Singing Me Home. That gritty little country diddy that had to make the album cut. I like the use of light percussion in this one, and, of course, the perfect harmonies. Lyrically it talks a bout a simple kind of love. I can just hear this song being played at summer bbq's. Lovely little song. My favorite part is the declaration of the word "love" in the hook.

8. Wanted You More. A song I think we can all relate too. Kind of puts a dagger in my heart because I know exactly what they are singing about here. The worst heartbreak- loving someone, thinking they love you, and realizing they never did. So far this is my 2nd favorite track. Love the haunting heartbreak of emotion. Hillary steals the show for this one. I absolutely LOVE the line where they just pour out "Oh I don't need you anymore" because I like to think it's an ode to their biggest hit, "Need You Now" and the connection makes my heart melt and break at the same time. If I ever get the chance to meet them I'm going to ask if that was done on purpose. In my head they did. And again, the instruments have the same tug at the heartstrings feel that "hello world" did. Beautiful song. Genius song.

9. As You Turn Away is another heartbreaker, this time piano driven with Hillary's flawless vocals. This one is really high up on my list, too. I've listened to it several times to catch all the lyrics and the twists in the instruments (the use of strings is also a smart choice). No we can't be friends/Cause I don't think I could take seeing you/And knowing where we've been/I hope you understand

10. Love I've Found In You the album picks back up in tempo with this one. I like the song, but I don't need it. Again, the harmonies are lovely. But it's nothing too outstanding. It doesn't stand out as a hit. Well I wonder where I'd be if the Lord hadn't heard my prayer/The one I said every night 'til the day that you got here/You showed me how to live and love forever
11. Somewhere Love Remains- Something about this song is really special, but I haven't quite figured out what it is yet. It's kind of that last ditch attempt before a break up, that there's something still there they can't let go. It's very romantic, and Charles vocals swoon you. It has the potential to do really well on the radio. I like the hint of hope in the very last few phrases. Love takes time to build its defenses\And trust takes time to tear down those fences
And what remains is stronger than ever before\So don’t walk out that door
I don’t wanna hurt anymore\>

12. Heart Of The World is the one song where I had to stop what I was doing to listen. It's a gift, it's rich. It's bold, strong, and lyrically their best. A gut wrenching tune, for sure. This song contains what are maybe my favorite Lady A lyrics ever: Oh, and hope is soul of the dreamer\And heaven is the home of my God
It only takes one true believer\To believe you can still beat the odds. Gah.

Overall, it's a wonderfully written, beautifully performed album that you need in your collection.

Gavin DeGraw- Sweeter

Ladies and Gents, Gavin DeGraw is BACK- and maybe better than ever? The dude knows his stuff, and knows his strength. His voice is gruffer and stronger than ever, lyrics as catchy and well written.

1. Sweeter. the title track delivers a fun, intense feel. A little snarky. Great opener to the album. I don't know that it's a hit, but I think it will be a favorite amongst Gavin fans, especially at live shows. I can just hear the girls screaming at the sexy little hook he has going on. You're like an angel\Got me feeling like a devil\I wanna give you something\If you promise that you won't tell
Woo hoo

2. Not Over You. I'll admit, when this song was first released, I was nervous. I'm a huge Gavin fan and I was sad that his last album didn't take off like it should have. So I was a little worried that it would be a similar scenario. I was pleasantly surprised. It's catchy and very radio friendly. Pop driven, and I prefer a soulful Gavin, but I'll take it. I like the choppy sound. If you ask me how I'm doing
I would say I'm doing just fine
I would lie and say that you're not on my mind
But I go out and I sit down at a table set for two
And finally I'm forced to face the truth,
No matter what I say I'm - not over you

3. Run Every Time. I can relate to the lyrics in this one, which immediately makes it one of my favorites. And I love the soul and grit in his voice. And you can hear the emotion in his voice, which I'm a sucker for :) Once again, Gavin steals it with the hook. (He's good at that) And I hope she sees
It’s not her, it’s just me
And I’m so sorry
To be this close
And let it slip away
I keep stumbling till I finally miss the last train

4. Soldier. Aah, the Gavin I know and love. soulful, anthemy. His voice just kills me in this tune and reminds me why I fell in love with his music in the first place- real, raw, genuine music. Easily one of the better songs on the album. He sums it all up with the line "When you get worried I'll be your soldier."

5. Candy. And this is the moment I knew the album was solid, all around. 5th song in a row that I adore? Yes please! The use of the instruments and talking at the end of the song is pretty brilliant, and his vocals are flawless. "I know you've learned use your fairy tales to get you through the hurt."

6. You Know Where I'm At- If you can get past the poor grammar, this is another solid tune that makes the listener feel safe. A raw, genuine ballad from Gavin, my favorite type of track from him. It's a very honest and believable song. Oh, it's better up ahead\The worst is over now\Remember what I said\Live, you don't have to look back\But if you ever do,\You know where I'm at

7. Stealing- One of the best songs from the album. Very soulful, a little old school. Memorable and distinctive. Has that Gavin sound without sounding too boring. Very relatable lyrics. It's a cute way of saying "hey, we need to end this thing". So I want my heart back\If you’re not gonna keep it\If you’ve got no uses\Then I’m gonna need it\And someone else\Is gonna need it too

8. Radiation- Another fun concert song. Very sexy and sassy. That Gavin gritty voice is quite evident. Very uptempo with a fun drum beat, and some sneaky little background clapping. funky, edgy. He tells it like it is. I'm quite excited to yell these words back to him on stage. If you miss me don’t
If I never wanna see you again
I won’t
If you get an invitation
I’m probably drunk

9. Where You Are- Turning back to the sensitive song of Gavin. A lovely little love song, a realistic love song that that. The chorus is really heartwarming. I could totally see this being a single...or at least play in a movie :) And that I wanna be where you are
I feel the same as I did from the start
Whoa, I wanna be where you are
And I’m willing to get there

10. Spell It Out- if "plays" on itunes factors into which track is my favorite, then I guess this is my favorite! I like it because it's stripped down, which is my favorite side of Gavin (his chariot stripped album is in my car cd player all the time). It reminds me of another song of his although I can't remember which one at the moment. His vocals are not perfect in this song, but I think that's maybe why I like it so much. It's real. Come on, we can leave the world behind
Close the curtains, shut out the light
Just state the good
Don't let me go
Don't tell me I should
Wake up
Step out

I wanted to do a review of NeedToBreathe, but I'm still listening to it and soaking it in. It's....beyond words.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

ten years

Ten years ago, I was 14 years old. A freshman in high school. I was at that selfish age. That age where you think nothing bad can happen to you. When you haven't quite realized how big the world is.

I was in my health class when our principal went over the PA system to tell us that two planes had crashed into the World Trade Centers, and that they believed it was a terrorist attack. To be quite honest, I don't think I knew what it meant. I knew it was bad. I knew it was tragic. But I didn't quite understand the "terrorist attack". I had no idea that people could hate us so much that they plan to kill thousands, millions, of us. I remember the feeling of school that day-sadness. Everyone was walking around, kind of numb, in shock, not quite sure what to say.

When I think of 9/11, there are a few things that run through my mind. The first- the people on the planes. How terrified they must have been feeling, the complete lack of control they had. The second? The families. The panic that must have run through their minds as they found out the news, wondering if their loved on was at work that day, or in that plane. I do not know what they felt that day, what they continue to feel day in and day out. But my thoughts and prayers go out to them. That they may find hope, peace. That they are able to continue pushing on.

Then, as insensitive as this might read on first glance, I think of comfort. How we, as a nation, for that day , for weeks months and, yes, ten years later, reached out to comfort one another. We were all attacked, all put at risk. I remember, at my school, we had a prayer service maybe a week or so after the attack. Our peers, classmates, and friends stood in front of us, telling us how 9/11 impacted their lives. We had a couple girls who were Muslim, they stood there and told us how terrified they were of being judged or stereotyped, because of their religion and because they chose to wear a hijab on their heads every single day. That prayer service brought us together as a school, and for the first time in my life, I began to realize how big the world was, how one tragedy impacted the entire nation.

My heart goes out today. It goes out to the families who lost someone that crisp, September day. My heart goes out to every single person who tried to help- who continue to help. From the firefighters and government to the NYC residents who ran to get people out of the burning building. You are all heroes in my eyes. My heart goes out to the service men and women who fight, every single day, to keep us safe.

Let's spread more love. Lord knows this world needs it. Find your cause.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

songs of summer

Today on my drive into work I heard that Katy Perry's obnoxiously awful song "Last Friday Night" was dubbed the song of the summer. Now I love me a good/horribly bad pop song, but I have to disagree. Here were my favorite songs of the summer.

David Guetta- Where Dem Girlz At

One Republic- Good Life

Jason Aldean- Dirt Road Anthem

LMFAO- Party Rock Anthem

Neon Trees- Animal

Lady Gaga- Edge of Glory

Beyonce- Best Thing I Never Had

Lady Gaga- You and I

Eminem/Bruno Mars- Lighters

Adele- Rolling in the Deep

Nicki Minaj- Super Bass

What was your favorite summer tune?

Thursday, September 1, 2011


I'll be honest, August hasn't been that great to me. I've been handed a number of disapointments. In life, work, friendships, etc. And while it dragged me down, beat me up, today I woke up with a whole new attitude. Life is full of disapointments. We can let them consumer our life and tear us down, or we can weep for a moment or two, and move on. Life is far too short to be getting all worked up over things we cannnot control. So, this blog is about how I've been dealing with disapointment.

First I pout, and feel sorry for myself. I say things like "why does this have to happen to me?" "Ugh, my life sucks". Last night I spent an hour or two in my room listening to the saddest Adele songs I could find. When in reality, I have a pretty awesome life and should be grateful for what I do have. I'm alive, aren't I? I have a job. I have people I can rely on.

Then I get angry. At myself, usually. I' m really hard on myself. I go over and over what I may have done wrong. I also get angry at the person, people, or situation.

Then I do something for myself to let it all out. Listen to music, write (when I'm really upset I pound on the keyboard- tha'ts fun), go for a walk, work out, etc. I find something, anything to do that will distract me and give me something to put my mind on.

I pray about it. I ask God to give me strength, peace, and courage to get over these challenges. I ask God to help me forgive.

That's how I deal with disapointment. I eventually let it go. Sometimes it takes a day, sometimes a week, once it took me a whole year and a 1/2 to get over a REALLY hurtful situation. But the main thing I remember is- life goes on. There are bumps in the road.

Today God woke me up happy. He gave me this whole new outlook on things. He made me stronger. I've realized that life happens, life brings you disapointments, but life is not ABOUT disapointments. It's about learning how to get over them, how to make the conscious decision to be happy and positive and to be the best person you can be.

Also, not to brag, but I need to let this out- when I first started here in April, I had 3 active volunteers. As of today, I have 18. With six potential volunteers in the gates, ready to set up training dates. I'm pretty ecstatic about this, and very proud of myself.

I love you all and hope you have a happy September. I know I will.