Monday, May 30, 2011

Music Mondays: Keep Your Head Up

This song is a little gem that I heard on the radio the other day.  I don't think it was a mainstream station either, so this is one still in the stages of not being overplayed.  :)  I love the message.

"Always Rainbows, after Rain"

On another music side note:  Earth, Wind and Fire + Huey Lewis and the News = fantastic Pandora station!

Happy Memorial Day!  Hope everyone is enjoying the day off.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

To Summer

In the midst of graduation party planning last week I started thinking, I want to take a minute to reflect on what is finally the beginning of summer. (Or what should be the beginning of summer, if the weather stays at its normal temperatures) Regardless of it being the end of my college career summer or just any other summer, right at the beginning there is always a tinge of excitement for all of the summer plans to be. Barbeques, River trips, camping, beach trips, summer reading, baseball games, etc. But then somehow, the summer seems to get away from us and we’re suddenly looking September in the eye wondering what happened to all of those plans and goals, and how 14 weeks went by so fast. So before Labor Day comes up behind us and takes summer away, being the perpetual list maker that I am, I decided to make a conscious effort to figure out what exactly I DO want to accomplish, and see how well I can stick to it.

Let’s start with summer goals, as lofty as they may sound, I think I am - for the most part – capable of them:

- Read at least 8 books. Now that “Something Borrowed” and “Something Blue” have put me back into the swing of reading, AND since I don’t have any more school reading…I think 8 books in 14 weeks is pretty doable. Nearly one down already. More to come on what the rest of those books may be…

- Write 100 pages. Because writing, like playing an instrument, requires practice. I have made it a goal to wake up a half hour early everyday and write before work.

- Update my blog more frequently. I hope to have some new blog features in addition to ‘Music Mondays’ coming up soon.

- Go to the gym at least 3x a week (Zumba/BodyPump/Yoga, etc). This is already a goal that I am fairly consistent with…but the craziness of the last month has left me slacking. Not to mention the fact that I now spend 35 hours a week at a desk instead of walking around campus…my exercise surely will have to increase.

Second, trips – most of which I hope to accomplish with my now free train riding capabilities:

- Get down to Fresno to see my family at least twice. I’ll hope for more. But twice in three months may be all I can do.

- A few trips to see my good friend Annie who lives near Santa Cruz. I’ve been seriously craving the ocean for the last few months, and a couple trips definitely need to happen this summer! <3 First one: Memorial Day Weekend
- A few trips to San Francisco to see my best friend, Natalie, of course. Including shopping, Green Apple Bookstore going, sushi and maybe even a Giants game. 
- I hope to also make a trip up to Portland to see my friend Kristin who moved up there last year. It’s an 8 hour train ride…but at least that leaves for lots of reading time!

Third, Fun Events - including, but not limited to:

- Train Concert at Thunder Valley in July!! (Possibly Doobie Brothers and Huey Lewis here as well)

- The State Fair

- Water park(s) – we always say we will do this…but typically, it tends to fall by the wayside.

- Multiple river trips to get our money’s worth on the awesome raft we got from Costco

- The FINAL Harry Potter movie!

- At least one of the 2nd Saturday Artwalks

Sacramento Wine and Dine Week – going on now!

I'll be happy if even part of all of these things happen.  So here's to summer!
What are your plans?

Monday, May 23, 2011

Music Mondays: Good Life

First let me say, holy crap – I graduated from college this weekend!

I don't think it will fully sink in that I don't ever have to do homework again for a while. But it certainly has sunk in that it is almost summer, and there are so many great things to look forward to during these next 3 months! Look for a post this week about it, as well as a crafty post, and some changes to the look of the blog. Because, it's time for something new and now I actually have the time to read, write and do things for myself. much time as you can have while working 50 hours a week. :)

I'd like to start off the week with this Music Monday song for you:

“Good Life” by One Republic. It's been one of my favorites lately. Such a feel good, happy song.


Monday, May 9, 2011

Music Mondays: Send Me on My Way

So today is a quick Music Monday post because of the inevitable last busy week of school.  The last week.  I can hardly believe it.   I remember 5 years ago counting down the days until the end of high school.  It seems like both so much longer and so much shorter than that.  And just as that countdown did, this one signifies another huge change in my life.   Today I say goodbye to a job that I have had for 4 years.  One of many goodbyes that will probably happen over the course of the year.  But it is time for a change.  Now, I if anybody, knows that life is always going to be far from perfect.  But things will certainly be looking up as this week draws to a close.  So send me on my way.
Today's song is "Send Me On My Way" by Rusted Root.   One that always makes me smile.  This one's for you Nat.  Here we go, on our way.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

What You Take With You

As the semester and my whole undergraduate education come to a close, I begin to wonder what pieces of it I will take with me and what will be disregarded. Which facts were merely crammed into my brain before a test and never converted into the long term.

Will I remember that this semester I learned that boys are more fragile in the womb than girls so most miscarriages are boys? Probably so, because that is something that I might end up being able to relate to in the future. Will I remember the year that Catcher in the Rye was written or the mechanics of human biology? Probably not. But will I remember the minutia of all that I learned in my creative writing classes and workshops? Absolutely. It is those classes that I will truly miss. The laughs and completely off-the-wall discussions that can only be produced by a group of crazy writers. And I say crazy in an affectionate way. Because those classes have made these last few semesters worth getting through.  Thanks Prof. McKinney, Rice and Grandbois.

I'm sure there will be other random facts and experiences that will creep into my mind in the future that actually did stick. But it's hard not to look at the large quantities of information that are no longer there. It's a little sad – to spend so much time and money on receiving that information - and having so much of it not get into my brain.

But I guess that isn't really what college was supposed to be about. At least not for me. For me, it was growing into the person I am now and learning about who I really am and who I want to become. There is so much that I have discovered or re-discovered about who I really am during these last five years, it really is hard to even pinpoint how I got from point A to point B. I am now an avid exerciser and not because I have to be, but because I want to be. I love playing softball. I want to do more yoga. I love to write and play music, in so many different capacities. I hope to be able to cultivate all of these in the coming months and years with the absence of school. I am now a wife, and we have a beautiful future ahead of us. Chris has made me a (calmer) and better person and continues to allow me to figure out who I am everyday and to support those continued changes.

School was a part of the path I needed to take, and it may be cynical for me to say but, in the end – it's only a degree. An important piece of the puzzle, but not everything.

So finally, I leave you with two things that one of my teachers this semester left us with on one of our last days of class. It may sound kitchy or cliché to say, but there are some things that are just so true that you have to share them.

“Seek out life experiences, not possessions."
“The one thing you can’t take away from me is the way I choose to respond to what you do to me. The last of one’s freedoms is to choose ones attitude in any given circumstance.” Viktor Frankl

So go out there and seek out all of the great experiences life has to offer!

And always remember that even in the worst of situations, you have the ability to choose your own attitude.  That is always a challenge for me, but one that I will always continue to welcome. 

And that, my friends, I believe is the greatest thing you can take with you out of college. Learning about life, and learning about yourself. The rest is just filler. :-)

Monday, May 2, 2011

Music Mondays: You Can't Always Get What You Want

I was torn today about which song to use for my Music Monday song of the week.  I came down with something over the weekend, so the sickness is bringing my strength down a bit.  And my ability to “just keep swimming” toward the end of this semester.   On top of that my news at the dentist was not super positive.  Not awful, but not great.  And that coupled with Chris’s dental problems has me a little bit on edge about figuring out how we are going to field those curve balls once he returns from Delaware. Inevitably, we will.  It’s just the interim of not knowing that is so frustrating.

But now that we are down to 11 days of both school and until Chris comes home...the light at the end of the tunnel is slowly getting brighter.  Not to mention the news that Osama Bin Laden is dead and that the Kings are staying in Sacramento today.  Not half bad for a Monday.  :)

So I leave you with: “You can't always get what you want” - the version from the movie 21. Because I watched it this afternoon while home sick, and because the lyrics give an 'Everything Happens for a Reason' vibe that I need today.

You can't always get what you want...but if you try just might find – you get what you need.”