You Only Live Once, This Is How I'm Doing It!

Category: thoughts Page 4 of 41


When I dyed my hair for the first time I wanted it to be striking. I loved it and it was pretty but it was basically an enhancement of my natural color. Even my mom didn’t notice a difference. I got together with my family a few days afterward and the one who said something? My brother-in-law. Then my mom and sister were all “Oh yeah, it does look different.”

Not the reaction I was looking for.

So this time I told my stylist I wanted something drastic. I wanted red. I wanted people to notice.

Mission accomplished

The cut is pretty hot too, don’t you think?

Or at least that’s what I was told my way too many people.*

I have never felt so beautiful in my life.

I could tell it was a little much for some people. That’s ok. I’m a little much for some people. But for the most part all I heard was how gorgeous it looks.

I never get called “gorgeous.” I get “cute.”

Have I talked about levels of attractive before? Well, in my mind there are levels. It’s not an exact science and, depending on who is saying it and in what context, they can move around but basically there’s:

Nice, cute, pretty, adorable etc. Then, there’s hot, beautiful, sexy and gorgeous.

In my mind calling someone gorgeous is one of the highest levels.

Cute? One of the very lowest. It’s something you’d call a puppy or a toddler. It’s definitely a compliment and I’d rather be cute than ugly. But gorgeous? Something I never saw myself as and definitely never thought others saw me that way.

But, gorgeous or not I think this color suits me. It’s fiery, as am I. I don’t want to blend into a crowd. With this hair I can’t help but stand out. It’s a statement about who and what I am. I’m not just another boring, average person.

I’m me.

And with this hair? I’m just a little more fabulous.

*I say too many because holy ego boost. It’s going to go to my head if I’m not careful.

Skinny bitch

Ok, don’t hate me. But I get it if you do because a month ago I would probably have thrown tomatoes at me for this post.

Moving on.

Remember that time I apparently swallowed demons? I couldn’t keep so much as water down. In that two days I lost 8 pounds. Afterward I had no appetite and lost a few more pounds. Then, I got sick again and lost four more pounds.

My appetite just hasn’t been the same.

Now, before I lost my immune system I was at my highest weight ever. When I was flying (and at my happiest weight) I was a good 15 pounds lighter. I hadn’t given in and bought many new clothes yet but putting on my jeans every morning required me to stretch them within an inch of their life. I’m not sure how the seams held out. It was so uncomfortable. Often I couldn’t even comfortably sit without unbuttoning my pants.

So attractive, I know. Down boys.

Obviously I was pretty unhappy with how I looked. In all honesty I was nowhere near being considered overweight but I hated how I felt and how my clothes fit. I have issues. Judge if you want.

Anyway, despite the fact that it wasn’t the healthiest way to get back down to my normal weight, I kind of love how I look now. Mostly. I still have issues.

The thing is, do you know how difficult it is to find cute, inexpensive clothes in small sizes? It’s the same problem with having absurdly tiny feet. There are just way fewer options, especially if you’re trying to shop in the clearance section.

The most frustrating thing though is the discrepancy in sizing. One place I can wear a size 5 and in the very. same. store. a 0 is too big. It’s just plain annoying. I get that brands want to make women feel good about themselves. Shouldn’t that be done by making great clothes that are well tailored rather than putting smaller numbers on bigger clothes?

As if someone is going to think, “Oh wow, even though my body looks no different I must be thinner because the tag has a smaller number on it.”

Personally I don’t care if I wear a size 0 or a 10. I just want to look good in my clothes. Mens clothes are so easy since it’s by waist measurement. Why don’t womens clothing do that? No guessing, no bullshit, just a standard size. You are how big you are and smaller, arbitrary numbers on tags don’t magically make you weigh less.

Can you tell I’ve been shopping a lot lately? I haven’t bought much though. Joel and I don’t have tons of extra money to spend. However, I need to look nice for my job and my winter wardrobe was sadly lacking in anything that wasn’t worn out and shabby looking. Or a t-shirt.

So, I search through Large after XL for the occasional Small or Medium. Then I take dozens of things into the dressing room (while Joel panics that I’m going to spend our entire paycheck) only to come out with 1 or 2 things that fit and look halfway decent.

Now, maybe if I shopped at more high end places I wouldn’t have this problem. I wouldn’t really know but it seems the cheaper the store, the bigger the sizes run. We just don’t have money to spend $20+ on shirts and $70+ on pants.

If I gained a little weight I’d probably be able to find clothes that fit me better. However, I’d be uncomfortable with how I looked. It shouldn’t be this difficult, I shouldn’t have to pick between ill fitting clothes or a body that I don’t love or money in the bank. There has to be a market for cheap, small clothes.

(and shoes? Nah, that’s asking too much)

Anyone out there have that problem or am I just a lone skinny bitch?

Pink goodness

This morning? Holy stressfulness.

Well, actually it started last night with some work stuff so I already had that stress on me before the morning started.

Anyway, this morning started off badly with the iPhone alarm glitch. Now thankfully I already knew about the glitch and set our bedside alarm clock. Still, I have a whole routine with my alarms. So, not having my different alarms go off when they usually do and instead just having one go off messed me up.

Is that completely stupid? Probably. Oh well.

Anyway, I ended up getting up almost a half hour after I originally planned on getting up. Luckily my plan gives me more than enough time to get ready but still, cutting off 30 minutes of my routine makes things pretty rushed.

I went to jump in the shower but decided I needed my eye drops first so I asked Joel to grab me my makeup bag. It’s usually in the bathroom already but since we had spent the night at my parents’ house for New Years it should have been in the backpack we brought.

It was not where it should have been.

It took about two seconds of me thinking to remember the last place I saw it was at my mother-in-law’s house.

That was when I panicked.

There was no freaking way I was going to work without makeup. Some girls are naturally beautiful and could pull that off. I? Am decidedly not one of those girls. No matter how much sleep I get I have the most horrendous dark circles under my eyes. People ask me if I’m tired when I’ve had more than enough sleep and am wearing all kinds of makeup. Without makeup? I look like I got punched in the face. Not kidding.

So call me vain but I would rather be late than go to work with no makeup.

Now, not only was I running 30 minutes behind schedule, plus however many minutes I spent looking in the pocket it should have been in in the back pack but I now thought we’d need to stop in Walgreens to pick up an entire new set of makeup.

Hello panic.

I frantically showered and while I was in the shower tried to replay my steps. I’m pretty good at locating lost items if I just have a few minutes to think.

Then I specifically remembered handing my makeup to Joel at his mom’s house and asking him to put it in the back pack so it wouldn’t get lost. For a split second murderous thoughts entered my mind but as the memory finished playing in my head I realized that I watched him put it in there.

A quick look in another pocket of the back pack confirmed my memory was correct. No super rushed trip to any drug stores for us and I made it to work exactly on time. Win!

Once I got to work I had to deal with a minor flood. Then I still had to solve the problem that caused the stress from the night before. Nothing too extreme but, considering the morning I had, it was enough to make being my normal cheery self a struggle.

Everything worked out and I did not have to work a 14 hour day. I only stayed an hour past when I was scheduled. I consider that a serious win.

So, instead of working a ridiculously long day, Joel picked me up and we went out for dinner. You better believe the first thing I ordered was this:

Pour a cosmo over cotton candy? So bad. And by bad I mean yuuuuummmmmmm.

So overall today wasn’t too bad. The start sucked but it ended on a pretty sweet note. We’ll call that a win.


So I was kind of looking forward to taking a break from posting. And yet? I’m kind of in the habit. It really doesn’t feel right to crawl into bed without posting something on this little blog.

I guess I really do love it since I’m posting even though I don’t “have” to. Not that I ever had to, I guess. But I’ve completed my goal and yet here I am up an hour past my bedtime posting. It’s official, I’m addicted.

The thing is, how could I not share this hilarious series of fortunes that Joel pulled out of his fortune cookies today?

That first one? Cracked me up. You should have seen Joel’s face when he opened it. Especially since we can’t open fortunes without playing the “…in bed” game.

You know that game right? You just add “in bed” to the end of whatever the fortune is. It makes things much funnier. And with these particular fortunes? It had Joel blushing like crazy and me with the giggles.

I kept teasing him and asking if this series of events ends with him happier in his love life because of the older, more experienced person he’s about to be attracted to. If that’s the case his current love life will definitely not be so happy and harmonious. He did not find this as hilarious as I did.

Maybe that’s a good thing. For me anyway.

I guess that’s the danger of eating so many fortune cookies. He never can eat just one. This time I’m thinking he kind of wishes he’d stopped before he started.


Compliments and insults

You know those moments that stick with you forever? Those things people say that no matter how many years go by will always stand out in your mind? I have a few of those moments. Words etched so clearly in my brain that it’s as if they were only spoken a few minutes ago. Some still make me feel all warm and happy. Others still make me inwardly cringe.

I used to go to a summer camp. It was family camp so I went every year from when I was born until I was 15. I looked forward to camp more than Christmas every year. I made some of the best friends there and had some of the greatest times. When I was a teenager, probably 13 or 14, we were all sitting around talking about whatever nonsense young teenagers talk about. Somehow we got on the subject of names.

We discussed the meanings of our names and the conversation migrated to whether or not we looked like what we were named. We then started throwing out suggestions as to what other names we might look like (as I said, teenage nonsense).

When the conversation moved to my name a few suggestions were thrown out. Then someone suggested the name Amber. At the time I knew a really obnoxious girl named Amber and so the name was kind of tainted for me.* I kind of protested that I didn’t like the name Amber and didn’t think I looked like one. There was one girl there that was part of the group but unlike many of the people there, her and I weren’t particularly close. We hadn’t had many, if any, interactions that I can recall other than as part of a group.

As I expressed my dislike for the name Amber she chimed in. I can remember her exact words to this day.

“Actually, you look a lot like an Amber I know. Except she? Is pretty.”

I don’t remember another word of that discussion. All I remember is falling into a stunned silence. I had no idea this girl had a problem with me until that very moment. I have no idea what I did to her. Like, I said, I don’t really remember many interactions with her period. As a moderately insecure 13 year old though those words stung. A lot.

Some of my best memories come from that camp as well. I got one of my favorite compliments ever there. This one happened a couple years later when I was 15 or so. The camp was held at a college campus. So, it wasn’t so much camping as it was a bunch of families and teens hanging out in dorms. Anyway, part of the camp was attending lectures and classes.

We were sitting in a big auditorium waiting for one of the sessions to start. I was a giant nerd (ha, as if that is past tense. We all know I’m still a giant nerd.) and had arrived early. It was one of those big lecture halls with stadium seating so I was seated in a row by myself, waiting for some of my friends to arrive and there was a group of guys seated in front of me.

I was off in my own little world when two of the guys turned around to talk to me. The first guy said,

Hey Abigail, smile at him.

as he motioned to the guy sitting next to him.

Obviously my first response was,

“Um, huh?!”

But he just repeated his request. So, I kind of awkwardly smiled at the second guy. The first guy turned to the second guy and just said,

“See, I told you.”

then turned around and started to go back about his business.

I sat there in confusion for a few seconds. I of course did a quick check of my face, teeth and clothing to see if there was something wrong there. When I couldn’t find anything and it had been long enough for me to realize they had no plans on explaining themselves, I tapped them on the shoulder and asked what the heck that was all about.

The first guy kind of glanced sheepishly at the second one, who at this point wouldn’t make eye contact anymore. The first guy finally shrugged and said,

“He said none of the pretty girls ever smiled at him. I wanted to prove him wrong.”


I’ve gotten many compliments and insults in my life. Some stand out and others don’t. Those contrasting incidences will always be crystal clear to me. Both were such simple statements. I wonder if the people even remember saying them. Did that boy have any idea how giddy he made me? How even at this moment almost ten years later it makes me grin?

Little words that turned into little treasures. Moments I’ll keep with me for a lifetime.

*No offense if your name is Amber. I have met many cool Ambers since and I like the name just fine now.


I’ve been staring at this screen forever.


That’s what I’ve come up with so far.

With the obvious exception of the words I just typed.


Actually, it’s another one of those instances where my mind is too full. So many thoughts swimming around in my head. I wish I could catch them all and put them on this screen.

But they don’t want to be caught.

And so they swim and they take up all the creative energy I could have. I need a space I can write. I mean really pour my heart out.

Or I need someone to whom I can pour out my heart.

It’s tough not having any real girl friends. Because there are certain things that just don’t sound the same when said out loud to your husband or guy friend. Boys are strange creatures.

Strange but much easier to befriend. Why is that?

I can’t be the only girl who has trouble keeping friendships with other women. It’s so annoying.

I should come up with a friend application…


Friend, must be female. Good balance of listener and chatty. Unlimited texts and cell minutes a plus. Those with a tendency to judge need not apply.

Or something like that.

Girls are tricky. I know I am. And other women? I understand even less.

I wish friends weren’t so important to me. It would be a lot easier if I just didn’t mind.

I’m open to almost anything at this point. I just need someone to listen.


The best presents ever

So Christmas is over. It was definitely a strange Christmas for me. No presents, no turkey, no giant noisy family. It was nothing like Christmas to me really.

But honestly? The love I felt snuggled on the couch with Joel was incredible. We haven’t spent that much one on one time with each other in ages. We watched a few of our favorite Christmas movies, napped and talked. It was very special.

There were a few sad moments. I talked to my mom on the phone and as soon as I hung up I ugly cried for a little while. I hated being left out of the festivities because we were home sick. The whole thing just seemed so unfair.

In order to cheer me up a little, Joel went out and searched high and low for some eggnog. I told him not to bother because it was Christmas day and A.) almost nowhere is even open and B.) even if they were open it was afternoon and if they carried eggnog at all they were probably sold out.

He freaking found me some eggnog. You’ll have to ask him how many places he called and looked. Apparently no less than 3 Walgreens told him they had it and he drove there only to find out they did not. I told him he should have sneezed on all of them and given them his plague.*

He did eventually find eggnog. And it was possibly the most delicious thing I’ve ever tasted.

Also? Made me cry. But a good cry. A wow-I-can’t-believe-how-incredibly-sweet-my-husband-is kind of cry.

He came back and collapsed on the couch. Obviously the outing exhausted him. It would have exhausted a healthy person, much less someone with the flu.

In return he received lots of love and snuggles and other married favors. Apparently even all feverish he finds me extremely attractive. Or maybe it was because he also had a fever. Can’t be sure.

Either way it was a strange but pleasant Christmas. Usually after Christmas I’ve been to so many different parties and stayed up late every night for so many nights that I’m exhausted. This year I felt relaxed the next day.

A nice bonus is that I’m feeling well again which means I kind of feel like a million dollars. It’s amazing how great normal feels when you’ve just come back from the brink of death. Joel is still a little under the weather but I think he’s pretty close to better as well. I think by tomorrow we’ll both be completely back in the land of the living.

So this year my presents weren’t those I could unwrap. I got a renewed love for my husband through quality time. I got relaxation and tons of rest. Plus I got some really yummy eggnog.

Best presents ever.

*he didn’t. And even if he did they’re probably already immune since they work at Walgreens. Jerks.

Not ruined

This morning I attempted to go into work. That lasted about an hour and a half until someone could come in to relieve me because I was less than useless. It was truly pathetic.

I then came home and, despite having gotten over nine hours of sleep last night, fell, fully clothed onto the futon and slept for four hours. Apparently an hour and a half of work = need for four hours of sleep. Sad right?

I should have stayed home.

Stupid pride.

Anyway, I woke up and took care of Joel and myself. By take care of I mean occasionally passing him a kleenex and telling him he needs to drink more water. Oh! And I made him rice.

We also had our own version of Christmas caroling. If by Christmas caroling you mean mutual moaning about how much our stomachs and heads hurt. Festive.

I told my mom to pass the message on that we wouldn’t be joining them at my grandparents for Christmas Eve dinner. And then I proceeded to bawl my eyes out for thirty minutes.

I was pretty grumpy and had a decent pity party. I love Christmas and now I’m missing it. Boo hoo.

Once I got a grip on it I realized how things could be so much worse. Joel and I have the flu. Yes, we’re pretty miserable but we’ll live. There are so many people in hospitals right now.

We have our little apartment. It has heat and running water (something Joel and I both have spent Christmases without growing up). We have everything we could ever need and a sweet little crazy dog who loves us to the point of obnoxiousness.

Our fevers are much lower and we’re both feeling better. By tomorrow I expect we’ll both be in full recovery. That means we’ll be able to spend the entire day enjoying  quality time together, just the two of us.

The world closes on Christmas day. It will be just Joel and I without the stress of presents or drama. It wasn’t the Christmas to which I was looking forward. I thought Christmas was ruined.

As it turns out, I’m thinking it’s exactly the Christmas we needed.

Skipping Christmas

Remember how I wasn’t that into Christmas but I listed all these things I was looking forward to and I started getting excited about it?

Joel caught my flu today.

I’m only just feeling better today. Which means that there isn’t much hope of Joel being magically fever free by tomorrow which is Christmas eve.

That sucks.

I know I talked about skipping Christmas and we kind of were anyway. We decided not to do presents for each other this year. I’m not a big present person so that doesn’t bother me.

But knowing I won’t be around my family eating delicious food kind of makes me want to cry.

This really sucks.

It’s obviously not his fault. I know how lousy this thing is. I feel awful for giving it to him. I wish I would have sent him to stay in a hotel or something while I was sick so he didn’t get it. Even it is wasn’t Christmas tomorrow I wouldn’t want him to feel so awful.

But yeah, it looks like I got my wish. I’m skipping Christmas this year. Joel and I will be home, sick and miserable.

Be careful what you wish for, right?



I’m sick.  Like, really sick.

This is the third time I’ve been sick since this fall.

This is ridiculous.

I need to get my immune system up because getting sick every three weeks or so is definitely not ok with me.

Joel has been so incredibly sweet and concerned. He’s basically been by my side all day getting me cool washcloths, rubbing my back and encouraging me to drink water. He takes such good care of me even when I’m a half delusional feverish mess.

I’m hoping this is a 24 hour thing. I’m also hoping I don’t share this with Joel. It’s pretty miserable.

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