Monday, March 28, 2016

let me count the ways.

"it seems they had been and always would be friends.
time could change much, but not that."
--winnie the pooh--

i've said it before, i'll say it again:
i consider one of my greatest blessings in life to be 
the fact that i have never wanted for truly loyal & incredibly fabulous girlfriends.
i'm not talking about the kind of girlfriends you hang out with out of convenience because 
you're classmates or workmates or roommates or whatever mates.
those are great and fun, but the realities in life usually cause a shift in ties eventually.
and that's not a bad thing, it's just a thing.
no, i'm talking about the class of girlfriends you meet and your souls collide.
sometimes over similarities, sometimes over differences, 
but all the times you can almost immediately feel they are with you for good.
these are the girls who rock the world on a daily basis and still find time for you.
who celebrate your accomplishments with no jealousy,
and sympathize through your sorrows with no hidden relief.
these are the girls who fly out on thanksgiving so you don't have to be alone,
 who tell you those jeans actually do make you look fat
and who make the friendships on sex and the city not just another tv myth.

when i hear other women say they don't have a lot of girlfriends because women
are catty and mean and nasty,
{which for the record, many can be just so}
i get a little sad that they are missing out on what has been, for me,
one of life's endless joys.

and this weekend my girl gang crushed it.
as per the usual.

my darling east coast princess of a gf, linds, 
{but really, her hair game is more on point that t.swift}
was in town this weekend and took some time to drive into the city saturday
morning for breakfast at {eva's}
{my favorite spot in town, and not just because they film the hallmark movies there.
but sorta because of that, ok}
L and i have a funny story of a gal-ship because 
when we actually were in the same geographic location of life,
{aka: she sat in front of me in college} 
we weren't really friends.
but thanks to the grace of social media she has become a part of my
nearest & dearest over the years.
it was the kind of breakfast that lasts two and half hours,
only 15 minutes of those actually used for eating.
the rest for gossip and laughter and love.
and comisterating over our worst date stories from the year.
{did i ever tell you about the time i was ditched 1/2 way through
a date so the guy could go get high?
he never came back.
i paid for everything and left.
then got a text from him TWO HOURS LATER asking me where i was.
and that's a true story.}

once i got home, i checked my mailbox for the first time since before my trip,
{my mailman seriously must hate me}
to find not one, but TWO love-grams from my california gals. 
a note just to say "hello" from my best friend in junior high,
and a post-card dear friend S found while cleaning out her house that
she bought for me in london, but never got around to sending.

and yesterday morning,
when holidays make you feel like those few hundred miles away from home might
as well be multiplied by a few thousand,
i was sitting in church when i got an easter text from jo.
it was simple, it was sweet, it knocked me to tears because i realized, yet again,
no one does it like mine do it.

and just like that,
i feel a little bit more like that celebration of international happiness day
last week is finally a little less fake.
xoxo

Sunday, March 27, 2016

o hoppy day!

hip, hop, happy easter loves.
may your day be full of happiness & hockey.

and while it is MORE than a blast to screenshot genius marketing that 
mixes this holiday with your favorite sport,
{just another reason to say go hawks go!}
may we also remember the spirit of this season.

i know that my redeemer lives,
what comfort this sweet sentence gives.

xoxo.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

good morning, patriots!

if anyone can name the movie the above quote is from you're either
already my best friend or we should seriously consider becoming best friends.
{it's legally blonde 2. fyi.}

i've been totally MIA because it just so happens yours truly
just bounced back from a business trip in our nation's capital that included:

a layover in one of my favorite cities on earth,
sweet home chicago. 

finding my spirit animal in a southwest airlines flight attendant.

successfully balancing both that patriotic and pope pride in all
wardrobe choices.

doing a little moi-spoiling, renting a car for 2 hours
and being driven all around dc,
with a quicker than quick stop at the smithsonian...
{ps - i am SO sorry to all those who reached out to get together
while i was there.
i honestly had one window of 2.5 hours to myself,
the rest of the time i was herding kittens from 7am-11pm each day}

 ...and a drive-by of my favorite monument.

 attempting to break the world record for largest human mattress dominoes.

 {which was surprisingly terrifying}

video
and then successfully breaking that record.
{have no fear, i'll sign your 2016 guinness books}

 
fancy dinners.

 and less than fancy late night ice cream runs.

 i am happy to be back in my little hallmark house,
but won't pretend like i'm not missing that hotel bed.
{if you're ever in dc, i HIGHLY recommend the
gaylord national resort on the potomic}
xoxo

pps - no the camera on my phone isn't that terrible.
i just live out of snapchat these days and therefore use their camera,
which is, in fact, terrible.
have snappy-chat?
follow me! katymylady23

Monday, March 14, 2016

international day of happiness.

today is an "a lot of things" day
pi(e) day, national nap day, monday, etc.
but as i hopped on over to get the first day of the week lowdown from
i saw that today is:
international day of happiness.
{at least according to her & that's good enough for me}

now i have to admit,
when i first read the title i laughed.
and no, not a good laugh.
because you see if we want to get really real and honest here
{yep, peel back that "i want everyone to think my life is perfect"
internet facade we are ALL guilty of}
i have felt everything BUT happy the last few days.
call it the post-island slump, call it the missing-california-sunshine syndrome,
call it the feeling-so-alone-in-a-crowded-room-of-people blues,
call it the matters-of-the-heart-are-driving-me-crazy meltdown,
anyway you slice it...life is brutal at the moment.

but then i got to thinking,
gratitude truly is in your attitude.
and while current circumstances might be frustrating me beyond 
description,
i, by no means, have an unhappy life.
at least, i don't think i do.
and so i decided to put this theory to a test and list out the 
things {big or small} that currently make me happy:

1. my faith

2. diet coke in the morning

3. chicago hockey

4. runs up to the capitol building

5. driving home from work having conquered another day

6. emails with my best friend

7. cleaning my apartment
{i know, i know...psycho party of one}

8. going to the movie theatre

9. walking around the mall a few blocks down after it rains

10. spending time with the girls i serve at church

11. snapchat
{i'm a full blown addict - i make no apologies}

12. reruns of sex and the city

13. walking into my apartment each night and realizing i'm brave
enough to go it alone

14. beauty magazines and candles - preferably at the same time

15. a really good outfit with a pair of sky-high heels

16. reminding myself that if i'm feeling it, taylor swift
has probably felt it too, which means -
there's a song for that!

all seem so simple,
and yet, in making the list i am reminded that sometimes it's the
smallest & simplest things that can bring us right back to where we 
want to be.

so, happy international day of happiness, loves.
i hope your post-weekend high is A LOT higher than mine.
but just in case it isn't,
get on up & make your list,
i promise the butterflies will come.
xoxo

Thursday, March 10, 2016

dear charlotte.

us in another life:

us in real life:
while the birthday train is rolling,
i figure we might as well stay on board a little while longer, 
{choo choo} 
to wish my very best friend, soulmate, sister, 
and the real-to-life version of charlotte york,
a happiest of happy birthdays.

i posted on instagram earlier today 
that i have a hard time finding the right words to express 
how grateful i am for her decision all those years ago to invest in my life.

you see,
we both made the high school dance team in 9th grade.
 and for our very first routine of the year 
{austin powers, baby}
we were put next to each other on the same line.
and that was that.
i couldn't even tell you what our first conversation was about,
{but knowing her, justin timberlake was most likely involved}
it just clicked.
and we have never looked back.

she laughed with me through my over-the-phone love confession to a boy
when we were 16.
forgave me after our first {and only} blow out fight when we were 22.
picked me up off the floor when i had my heart broken at 24.
and made me cry by asking me to be her maid of honor when we were 28.
 
it's my firm belief that friendship doesn't just happen,
especially one that has withstood 17 years of life's messiness, 
like ours.
as i think goes with any relationship,
you make a very conscious decision to allow that person a part in your life.
it's work.
with 2 strong personalities like ours, it's a bit of compromise.
it's sisterly love to the enth degree.

so, my dear charlotte:
happy, happy birthday. 
may your dirty 30 be flirty,
{but only with your soon-to-be hubby}
and thriving.
{treat yourself to those nude louboutins girl}
thank you for never giving up on me.
xoxo

Saturday, March 5, 2016

happy birthday, anne shirley!

for the record,
i put on ridiculously long nails last night and so it's going to take me about 3 hours
to type this post out.
{olivia pope clearly does not type her own memos}
but i figure it is worth the struggle and multiple clicking noises to wish my girl,
anne shirley, a very happy birthday.

other than the likes of scarlett o'hara and josephine march,
no other literary/film character had such a profound effect on my childhood.
her life was the beginning of:
my deep love for canada,
{prince edward island had me like...woah}
my realization that life isn't life without a bosom friend & kindred spirit,
{i found her in junior high...and am currently in the midst of preparing a maid of honor speech to give at her wedding in 3 months}
my attraction to the tall, dark and handsome,
{gilbert blythe. say no more world, say no more}
my flair for the dramatic,
{no one does a one liner like anne}
and many more things.
{i never understood why i couldn't attend a one room schoolhouse}

i will even throw down my confessions that when i was 8 i dressed up
as anne shirley for halloween and really didn't understand why NOBODY knew who i was!
regardless of their sad lives,
i marched in a costume parade at disneyland with my grandpa in what will forever be
my favorite life memories.
and while other girls played with their barbie dream houses,
i played with my green gables paper dolls.
don't worry, anne was very fashionable when in my hands.

so happy birthday, anne shirley.
may you continue to influence younger generations that 
dying their own hair is a death sentence,
and
chasing after your dreams is the only way to live.
xoxo

Friday, March 4, 2016

flashback friday: you're gonna hear me roar.

 
i mean,
what's a friday without a flashback?

today's flashback friday post is brought to you by that time
i went on a reality dating show and for a hot second
it seemed everyone and their mothers had an opinion on my life.
{no but really, their mothers had an opinion too}

post link here: {throw your sticks and your stones}

but in re-reading this post today i realized two reasons why,
even given the same outcome,
i wouldn't hesitate to do it again...
1: it brought me to one of my nearest & dearest friends in life, erin.
2: i had the opportunity to remind the world, women in particular,
that you are not the opinion of another person.
most especially a man.
and, if you fall into the category of people who don't know that for sure quite yet,
well then, child, you and moi need to have a little talk.
xoxo

Thursday, March 3, 2016

begin again.

i started this blog years ago with absolutely no vision in terms of what i wanted it to be.
to be honest, i never expected anyone other than my mother to read it.
yet, slowly and surely it became a part of my identity for so many people.
i'll never forget the first time i received an email from someone that started with, 
"you don't know me, but i read your blog and..."
nor, on the flip side, the time i had a reader set up a twitter account just to figure out 
a way to get in contact with me so he could ask me out on a date.
{may more men find the kind of courage that one did...} 

needless to say i've encountered the good, the bad, the happy, the sad, the pleasantly surprising, 
the flat out bizarre and everything in between since throwing my life on the pages of this screen.
but the idea of allowing a mass of strangers into my world, without actually knowing me
has always been a strange concept to me.
it's the one i've always struggled with the most in blogging, 
likely because it's the concept i struggle most with in the general category of life:
vulnerability.

anytime, anyone posts anything on the internet or social media, 
they are making a very conscious decision to allow that post to represent a 
portion of who they are as a person.
{don't let them convince you of anything different.}
when you put yourself out there, you have to be ready for whatever comes back.
and as someone who has always been insanely private by nature, 
the idea of posting my innermost thoughts for the entire world to potentially read 
became more and more of an idea i was no longer interested in.
so at the end of last year i made the distinct decision to quit.
right before my 29th birthday, without any bells nor whistles, 
i posted what was perhaps my most vulnerable post of all, 
put down the laptop and called it the end of my era here in this space.

however, a funny thing happened while i was laying on the beach of an island this past week.
i received a text from a someone i don't know very well, 
telling me they had just spent an hour and a half of their life reading my old blog posts 
and relating so personally to everything i had written, hoping i would start writing again.

and i was reminded of the vision i created for this space so long ago, 
although it was hardly the one i started with.
a place where i could pour the parts of my life i didn't mind sharing with the public and have people relate.
a small glimpse in saying,
 "hey, you're not alone in the fact that you might have flashed an entire crowd unintentionally 
when the wind blew your skirt up" or 
"hey, you live through breaking up with someone on valentine's day" or 
"hey, i'm obsessed with scandal, too, so we are practically soul-sistahs, here".
i don't know what it is about the comfort we find in connecting to people who go through 
the same ups and downs as us,
but i do know i found it, at times, here with you.

now, i'm never going to say writing is necessarily my gift,
but i will say it's something i paid good tuition money to figure it out.
{ha!}
and so i am back.
to share this crazy ride and take y'all along.
in hopes that maybe something i do or say can positively change you along your way.
xoxo.