Did you miss me?

This blog is dedicated to everyone who was like, "Kate, it has been so long since you have blogged." (Nothing motivates me quite like remembering that I'm not the only person who reads what I write.) The longer I go without blogging, the harder it gets to start again because I become overwhelmed by all the things I should have said. But that's no way to live my life. Here’s a glimpse into what I should have blogged about these past few months.

1. Fall makes me happy and sad simultaneously.

Real talk: I don’t have time to carve you, pumpkin.

Real talk: I don’t have time to carve you, pumpkin.

Funny how fall ushers in both the most color of the year and the most darkness. I miss the leaves that have already fallen, and I miss the sunlight in the evenings, but I love the crispness of this season and the hints of the holidays ahead.

I always get all excited about fall and then fail to follow through with most of my autumnal plans. Exhibit A: I started carving a pumpkin the other day and only got this far.

I'm not letting myself feel guilty about buying a $4 pumpkin and then not carving it. In fact, I'm considering my failure to carve this pumpkin to be a victory over false guilt. There are more pressing things in life than making Pinterestastic pumpkins. 

2. I'm over pants.

One time my mom applauded my April Ludgate impression when, in fact, I was not doing an April Ludgate impression. Sometimes I do Mona-Lisa Saperstein impressions, though.

One time my mom applauded my April Ludgate impression when, in fact, I was not doing an April Ludgate impression. Sometimes I do Mona-Lisa Saperstein impressions, though.

I used to be one of those people who was a hard pass on leggings as pants, but then I tried leggings as pants and repented of my legging-hating, pants-wearing ways. Here's how to make the transition smoothly:

  1. Invest in thick, non-see-through leggings.
  2. Make a friend confirm the non-see-through-ness of them.
  3. Stand in different lighting and make your friend confirm the non-see-through-ness of them again.
  4. Make another friend confirm the non-see-through-ness of them.
  5. Still wear a shirt long enough to cover your rear.

(I will debate you in the comments.)

3. My Facebook newsfeed is like babies babies babies babies BABIES.

This may be my favorite GIF of all time.

This may be my favorite GIF of all time.

Babies in Halloween costumes! Babies in their mamas' bellies—already in Halloween costumes! Babies with their baby friends! Babies holding other smaller babies!

Let it be known that when I finally have babies, Lord willing, I will ABSOLUTELY INUNDATE all of your newsfeeds with pictures of their little faces. Just returning the favor.

4. I am mad at every person who has ever heard of Greg Laswell and not told me about him.

Recently found his music on Spotify and cannot stop listening. This song at right + "New Year's Eve" + "That It Moves" + "And Then You" are my favorite songs of his. It’s the perfect writing music.

I found his music after hearing “Wonderful Unknown,” which he sang with his wife, Ingrid Michaelson, on her new CD. The bridge—“In the best way, you’ll be the death of me"—gets me every time. How countercultural.

5. I LOVE RUNNING. I LOVE RUNNNNNNING!!!!!

That is how I feel every Tuesday and Friday when I get to run and, consequently, get a crazy endorphin high. (Seriously never let me do drugs.)

This past month marked ten years since I quit running due to leg pain. Forty percent of my life. That old lower leg pain is almost entirely gone, but the knee pain plagues me still, and two runs per week is about all these knees can handle.

I'm still doing the run-walk intervals my PT recommended a couple of years ago. I stop every 90 seconds and walk for 30. I hated it when I first started; stopping and walking feels like the ultimate defeat to a runner. Runners are the ones who tell themselves it's all mental and I've totally got this and just push through. But I've found that forcing myself to rest throughout each run has been one of the biggest breakthroughs in my return to running. It improves my form and lessens the strain on my joints and enables me to run farther in the end.

It has actually reminded me of the principle of taking a sabbath, which seems counterproductive until you try it. But once you do, you realize that you needed this rest thing, that you are only human, that you were bearing burdens that weren't yours to bear.

I'm still recovering, still have good and bad days, still get discouraged and fearful about my legs and my running. But things are looking up, and the Lord still knows what he's doing. When I see other runners out and about, I pray the Lord will strengthen their joints and muscles and keep them running. Will you please pray for my little joints and muscles? They've been through so much.

6. I'm in the market for a bookshelf.

My bedside table is starting to get cray. Here are a few of the books stacked there currently:

  • Knowing God by J.I. Packer
    • I've been told approximately 10,000 times to read this book, SO I'M DOING IT. . . SUPER SLOWLY. I like it, but I find it hard to read more than a few pages at a time. It has reminded me of the fact that I am literally in a constant state of breaking the second commandment. PTL for the new covenant, amiright?
  • Girl Meets God by Lauren Winner
    • I'm almost finished with this, but I don't want it to end. It's sort of in the same vein as Blue Like Jazz or Surprised by Oxford because it's part memoir, part testimony. The author tells of her conversion to Christianity from Orthodox Judaism, and she structures the story around the church calendar. It's full of reflections on the sacraments, but because it's written like a story, it feels more accessible than a lot of Christian books that keep you in your head the whole time.
  • Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
    • Anne Lamott gets me. (Or maybe she just gets humans.) This book is full of her thoughts on writing and, by extension, on life. Her tone is so conversational that her writing sounds effortless at times, but this book confirms what I've heard before: The easier something is to read, the harder it was to write. This is my favorite bit: "People tend to look at successful writers . . . and think that they sit down at their desks every morning . . . feeling great about who they are and how much talent they have and what a great story they have to tell. . . . But this is just the fantasy of the uninitiated. . . . Very few writers really know what they are doing until they've done it. Nor do they go about their business feeling dewy and thrilled. . . . For me and most of the other writers I know, writing is not rapturous. In fact, the only way I can get anything written at all is to write really, really $%@&!# first drafts." PREACH, Anne Lamott. I'm 25, completely done with school (maybe . . . er, probably) and still learning the merit of $%@&!# first drafts—in writing and otherwise.

 7. BEING 25 IS HARD, but I’m trying to be 25 wisely.

My bad advice radar is going   weeooo, weeooo, weeooo.

My bad advice radar is going weeooo, weeooo, weeooo.

I saw this on Pinterest today, and it made me want to bang my head against the wall. (Seriously, why do I even go on Pinterest?)

This whole "your twenties are all about yourself and your independence" nonsense makes me want to scream. If you have no obligations, grow up and get some obligations. If you work 24/7, chill out; your career will not keep you company when you're 80. And if you think you have nothing to lose, you’re likely to look back on this decade and realized you lost more than you bargained for.

Go ahead, sue me for saying it. I'M GETTING BOLD IN MY OLD AGE.

8. Mornings are so underrated.

Speaking of lies we unquestioningly accept from culture at large, perhaps one of the strangest is that mornings suck and we should all sleep as late as possible.

I have recently started getting up an hour earlier, and I’m finding that this 60 minutes of margin has become the most productive and cheerful part of my day. (You do have to go to bed an hour earlier for this to work. #math)

I was wide awake this morning (SATURDAY, whaa?) at 4:45, and I actually tried to go back to sleep, but my body was like, HELLO, WORLD. HELLO, SATURDAY. HELLO, LIFE. LET’S DO SOME CLEANING.

This is my get-out-of-bed-already mantra for the difficult days: Getting up early is hard, but being up early is worth it. Turn the light on, Kate.

Can anyone second me on this? Or at least try it and let me know how it goes?

9. A to Z is my new fave show.

I'm mad that no one is talking about it. This is the cutest show, you guys. Everyone please watch it and get back to me. Go. Watch. Now. While the early episodes are still on Hulu!

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10. PTL for Skype.

I've been spending a lot of time on Skype lately. When I moved to Missouri, I used to talk to my parents on FaceTime all the time, and I remember chatting with them on my couch one time—by myself, eight hours from home—and just marveling over the fact that there was technology that would let me see their faces and hear their voices and that I had it in my hands. Does that sound stupid?

I remember feeling in that moment as though maybe God had made FaceTime just for me—as though he'd looked at his wrist in 2010ish and known that Kate was going to be far from home soon and that he better prompt Steve Jobs (or whomever) to get on it. I know this is inaccurate, so don’t jump on me; the Lord's plans and promptings of other people do not revolve around me. But this is what I mean: Sometimes his provisions seem so specific to my little heart that I can't use the phone or Skype or FaceTime or Voxer without thinking that their very existence and my very access to them is a reminder of the Lord’s love for me specifically.

11. New Taylor Swift finally.

It was a very good year.
It was a very good year.

What can I say about Taylor Swift that would convey the depth of my love for her?

I have had 1989 on repeat for a week now, and I'm already sad that I must again wait for more music from her. My immediate favorites are "All You Had to Do Was Stay," "How You Get the Girl," and "I Know Places.”

I'm toying with the idea of doing a blog post in which I analyze Taylor's lessons on love in a song-by-song breakdown of the new album. Would you guys like that? Sort of like a true-or-false quiz covering Taylor's take on life.

12. One year in Louisville.

Halloween marked one year since I moved to Louisville. A WHOLE YEAR. It almost pains me to say that because—though some things about living in Louisville have been great—in general, the year has been marked by loneliness. It's not that people here haven't been welcoming and friendly; they have. It's just—honestly, I think it would be difficult to feel settled anywhere when you’re just one person and 97% of the people you love live elsewhere. I picked Louisville for a lot of reasons, but one was this: I’m tired of moving. Oh, my little heart. I switched schools in 2003, moved states in 2004, graduated from high school in 2007, graduated from college in 2011, graduated from grad school in 2013, and that adds up to five community changes in roughly a decade. I just wanted somewhere that I could stay. I’m tearing up as I write this. On paper, Louisville looked like a logical place to try to settle, but, in reality, I’ve never felt more unsettled in my life.

13. Travel-fest.

Mah people.

Mah people.

Travel stresses me out. I love it in theory and enjoy it once I’m doing it, but when I’m planning for it, I have to, like, repeat Psalms to calm myself down. When I was little, I dreamed up this thing called “Vacation Preparation” and made my brother and sister participate in it with me.

Every summer, for two weeks before vacation, we would have daily meetings in our (non-air-conditioned!) attic in Pennsylvania. There were folders and a Fischer-Price chalkboard involved. As the name suggests, we spent these meetings prepping for vacation. More specifically, we prepped for the road trips. Who was sitting where? Which stuffed animals were we bringing? Did they all have carseats? What candy did we need? How were we going to ration the candy over the course of the 15-hour drive down south? (I remember that one summer we actually decided on one piece of candy per hour, which, in retrospect, seems super self-controlled for three elementary schoolers, but we were also the type to have daily meetings in the attic, so.)

In the year-ish since I moved here, I’ve traveled to Columbia three times, West Virginia twice, St. Louis twice, Chicago twice, Nashville, Georgia, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, and Charleston. Undoubtedly, all this travel has added to my stress level and sense of unsettledness, but it’s so good for this little heart of mine to see the people I love, and I’m finding myself curious about where the next twelve months will take me.

Adulthood, you know?

I'd kiss job interviewing goodbye.*

Being a grown-up has its perks. When you're a grown-up, you don't have math homework (or math teachers). Your braces are probably long gone, and your skin is probably mostly kind of clear most days. But being a grown-up also has its downsides, like job interviews and realizing you will never be a Disney child star. Upon leaving a job interview the other day, I had a deja vu moment. I was like, This job interview feeling is familiar. And then I was like, Oh, wait, that's 'cause it feels exactly like a first date. The more interviews I go to, the more similarities I see. 

For both job interviews and first dates:

1. You can never figure out what to wear.

In my case, this means spending way too long in front of the mirror trying on every combination (permutation?) of the items in my closet. It is like the intro to Sabrina the Teenage Witch up in my room, except that she just has to will her outfit to change, whereas I have to throw all the pieces everywhere.

Should I go with a skirt or pants? When was the last time I washed this top? Where the heck are my shoes!?

2. Some online reconnaissance is expected.

It's stupid to go into a job interview without having done a substantial amount of preliminary research about the company. Similarly, it's stupid to go on a date with a guy without doing your dude diligence.

In recent months, I have scaled back my pre-date internet stalking because I realized how super creepy it is to know random details about a guy due to the fact that you read his Facebook notes from 2008. You do not need to know a guy's (a) preferred Bible translation, (b) cousins' names, and (c) last six Halloween costumes to go on a date with him. (But do go ahead and make sure his favorite movie on Facebook isn't, like, The Texas Chainsaw Exorcism of Austin Powers.)

3. You get all nervous beforehand.

Duh.

4. The conversation is basically the same.

Where are you from? Where did you go to school? What do you do? Why that field?

The Venn diagram of first date conversation topics and job interview conversation topics is practically a circle. You know it's a great date when conversation diverges from the standard fare.

5. You have to wait for them to call afterward.

Every time I remember that I'm expecting a call from a company, it feels as if my stomach and my lungs have swapped places. Does anyone else know this feeling? It's the same one you get when you remember that a guy said "I'll call you."

6. And the phone conversations are supes awkward.  

I do this awful thing when I try to make pre- or post-date conversation with boys on the phone: I get so afraid of awkward pauses that I talk so fast I forget to breathe. And then I have to disguise the fact that I am literally gasping for air. This also happened the other day when I was on the phone with a company. I was trying to tell this lady about my education, but instead I was hyperventilating.

(This is undoubtedly the most embarrassing revelation included in this list.)

7. Down the road it will either end in commitment, or it will just end.

Early in my job-searching days, I had to turn down a job offer that wasn't the right fit. It felt like a mini break-up. I worried I'd led them on. Taylor Swift is writing a song about it.

8. The only thing worse than going through one is never getting the chance. 

Sometimes you apply for a great job, and the company never even asks you for an interview, and it all feels like such a waste because you would've been perfect for the position. And sometimes you like a boy, and he never even asks you for a date. And that, too, feels like a waste because you totally wanted the chance to chat with him while you both fiddled self-consciously with the cardboard sleeves around your coffee cups.

9. You never know what they've already read about you on the internet. 

For instance, if any potential employers or suitors (What word would you have used?) have read this blog, I have undoubtedly guaranteed that I will never get a job interview or a first date again. Oops.

10. You've gotta remind yourself that you're a catch.

No matter how nervous I may feel, I know the company that lands me lands a stellar employee. Extrapolate as you will.

*Just kidding, that would be a surefire way to guarantee unemployment.

Dream Jobs

Every day this Christmas break, my friend Marie-Claire and I have decided to join up in our blogging efforts. We will be choosing a topic and posting our own interpretation of it. So follow along with both of us as we share our completely reliable opinions on fashion, pop culture, and life before our last semester of grad school.

Today's topic: Dream Jobs

Preface: This does not include the job that I'm actually studying to do (because, frankly, I'm supes tired of talking about that). Reality aside, here are my other top ten dream jobs. 

10. YA Author

Oh, to see my name on the spine of a pink book in the young adult section of the library! I would write about unlikely heroines and teenage drama, and I would say "like" and "you know" and "I mean" a lot. YA authors have that liberty. (I would also use fragments. Like all the time.)

9. Wedding Planner

I cannot think of a more Pinterestastic job than planning weddings. This job would combine my love of fancy events, planning, meeting people, and holding clipboards.

8. Makeover-er

Think Stacy London and Clinton Kelly. When my friends and I were in college, we wanted to start a makeover service through which we could aid the awkward freshmen with their fashion and beauty choices. So many girls with triangle hair, so many boys with cargo jeans, so little time.

7. Photographer

Being a photographer seems glamorous and artsy, and you get to use Photoshop, which is practically one of my love languages.

6. Web Designer

I took a web design class during my second semester of grad school, and it made me rethink all of my life choices. By which I mean, I wished I could've gone back in time and majored in web design. I just want to know all of the code.

5. Professional Runner

Did you know there are people who get paid to run? IT'S LIKE THEIR JOB. I am way too slow to make a living by running, but we're talking dream jobs here. I would wear cute running clothes and have rockin' legs. In this hypothetical world, I might even get a running-inspired tattoo like the one pictured. (Just kidding. That would never happen.)

4. Mindy Kaling

Another dream job of mine is just to be Mindy Kaling. That woman is a total rockstar. She's hilariously funny, she writes and stars in her own show, and her skin always look luminous.

3. Blogger

I'd have to blog way more frequently to be a professional blogger. Oh, and I'd have to get sponsors and hipster glasses. And maybe become a Mormon.

2. Pop Star

Hand me a hairbrush and crank up the Kelly Clarkson, and you will quickly realize that I seriously missed my calling as a pop star. (The Kelly Clarkson needs to be turned up really loud for this to work.) I hope I'd be the KC or T-Swift variety of pop star, not the Britney/X-tina variety. 

[2015 addendum: Sometimes I think back on this post and I'm like LOLOL, why did I put this so high on the list? The older I get, the less appealing being famous sounds. But I still do love the idea of having a job that would let me travel the world instead of looking at a computer screen all the time.]

1. SAHM

Let's be real: Being a stay-at-home mom is my one and only true dream job. I want to hold babies and wipe spaghetti off their faces and, when they get older, make school lunches for them and drive them to track practice. I promise not to wear mom jeans, though. You can hold me to it.

What's your dream job?

Grad School in GIF

1. Grad school year two is basically a mixture of sophomore slump and senioritisNot a pretty combination. The newness has worn off. I'm realizing how much work is still ahead. I'm feeling burned out. And I just want to be done.

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Tell me about it, Eeyore.

3. I just wrote 3 instead of 2. That is evidence of how tired I am.

Yeah, kinda like that. 

3. You know how I recently mentioned my newfound love of iced coffee? Well, I don't have a coffee maker at home, but I have perfected making iced coffee with instant coffee, and now I make it every day.

After I make iced coffee. 

I want to be like, EXPECTO PATRONUM, CLASSES. 

I want to be like, EXPECTO PATRONUM, CLASSES. 

4. All of this semester's classes have been major letdowns. I feel like I am working my tail off and learning nothing. The only thing I really care about is finishing my master's project proposal, but I have been devoting absolutely ridiculous amounts of time to other classes. Okay, primarily one other class. It is like the Dementor of classes, sucking out all of my joy and will to live.

5. I just reread that last point and was struck by my own bitter tone. Despite my frustration and fed-up-ness with my classes this semester, I realize that I have it pretty good. I go to my dream grad school. I have people encouraging me left and right. I know that so many people have my back. Twice in the last week I have just sobbed in friends' arms. I point this out because it means I have friends in whose arms to sob. I don't want to forget to be grateful for that.

I am like: 

And my friends are like: 

6. Whenever I express excitement about finishing school, someone reminds me that I'll never have as much freedom as I do now. I'm not sure I believe this. I never have the sense of finishing work at the end of the day. I work from the time I wake up until the time that I go to sleep. I do not come home and turn my attention to other things. I come home and continue. Grad school is relentless.

This is your brain on grad school. 

7. The only way I've learned to take breaks without feeling guilty is to put social events on my calendar. I am completely incapable of relaxing alone when I have this much to do.

I could learn a thing or two from Honey Boo Boo. 

8. All of this is unhealthy, and I realize it. I feel like I don't have much of a say in the matter. I signed up for these classes. Drop/add is over. My only option is to keep going. Some nights I do go to bed before I have finished my tasks for the day. That is my only way of saying no these days.

Preach, Leslie.

9. Every once in a while the triviality of it all hits me. You know, Ecclesiastes-style.

GRAD SCHOOL IS JUST A HAMSTER WHEEL.    (Hamster needs a haircut.) 

GRAD SCHOOL IS JUST A HAMSTER WHEEL.

(Hamster needs a haircut.) 

"'Meaningless! Meaningless!' says the Teacher. 'Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.'"

If I didn't know better, I would think the first chapter of Ecclesiastes was written by a grad student.

"I applied my mind to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under the heavens. What a heavy burden God has laid on mankind! I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind."

People when they realize the holiday Starbucks cups are out.

Alternately: Me when I think about communications. 

10.  Every once in a while, my love for the subject matter hits me, too, though. Everyone was freaking out about the Starbucks red holiday cups a couple of days ago, and I literally got shivers thinking about the way Starbucks presents itself as a brand so consistently and deliberately. I want to help brands be that way. And yesterday I was visiting an organization's website, and I got excited thinking about how much thought had gone into making it pretty and practical. These things remind me that I'm happy to be studying strategic communication even on days when I feel like I want to quit studying altogether.

 

11. I'm getting excited about the prospect of moving back to Kentucky after I graduate. It's hard to do life without family. I'm increasingly aware that other people have families here and I do not. In college I learned that America is considered the most individualistic country in the world. No other culture values "standing on your own two feet" as much as our culture does. In most countries, it would be unheard of for a 20-something girl to peace out of her community and move away on her own. On the one hand, I'm grateful that I live in a country in which that is possible. On the other hand, I think America values individualism too much. Living far from family, to put it bluntly, is stupid and the worst.

Even Thor needs his people. 

How I feel after a successful grading session. 

How I feel after a successful grading session. 

12. I still love being a T.A. It is the only part of grad school in which I feel like I know what I'm doing. It makes me feel like I have a purpose here beyond just my own coursework.

 

I give approximately zero bothers.

I give approximately zero bothers.

13. Speaking of grading, I don't know when it happened, but I have entirely stopped caring about my grades. As in STOPPED CARING. (I'm pretty sure that no one who knows me in real life is going to believe this.) It's not that they're bad and I've given up; it's that there's so much work that once something is turned in, I'm over it. Actually I'm usually over it before it's turned in.

Me when it happened. 

Me when it happened. 

14. I got an ocular migraine the other day, and it was so weird because I had blind spots. BLIND SPOTS, YOU GUYS. I COULDN'T SEE ALL THE WAY. I had to go to urgent care and everything because I didn't know what was going on. I bring this up now because I am having trouble reading this page, and that's what happened right before the blind spots came last time. I can look at the screen, but I can't focus on the screen. It is super weird.

15. ON THAT NOTE I should probably stop blogging. I hope to post pictures soon from Katelyn's wedding and other goings-on. I am also trying to get my friends to do a round-table video blog, so that may be on its way if I can effectively peer pressure them into doing it.

16. I can't find a GIF for peer pressure that doesn't involve weed, so no GIF for you.

No soup for you either. 

Things I've been meaning to blog about.

1. I hate it when TV/movie characters kiss right after they have woken up.

Worst time to kiss ever. Some of you are probably like, "Kate, how do you know?" And that is a pretty good question. But, in my opinion, the fact that there's a famous musical called Kiss Me, Kate entitles me to be the kissing police. And I say: Go brush your teeth.

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The above screencap was taken from the most recent episode of The Lying Game, which I attempted to watch — at Gwen's urging — in the J-Lib today. I don't normally watch television shows in the library, but I had just finished a test and wanted to reward myself. I cut my show-watching short, HOWEVER, when that kiss started to happen. I was like, "Gwen, I cannot watch people kiss in the library." Twenty minutes later when Gwen was still trying to get me to watch the show, totes adorbs undergrad boy sitting next to her said, "I don't think anyone would be embarrassed if you watched people kissing in the library." ! ! !

p.s. I make no apologies about my love of a select few ABC Family dramas.

2. Mizzou invented homecoming.

Did y'all know that? It's on Wikipedia and everything. I became a Mizzou student just in time to experience their centennial homecoming celebration, which I consider pretty good timing on my part.

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Here I am pre-homecoming parade with Gwen, Melissa, Mollie, Whitney and Jessica. Yes, you should read their blogs, and, yes, journalism school is weaning me off the Oxford comma.

3. Speaking of Missouri friends, I have them.

I haven't posted many pics of them on here, but we do fun things like Wednesday lunches and Thursday small group and apple-picking and shopping and Orange-Leafing and birthday partying and House Dec-seeing. Oh, and lots of grad school workload commiserating. (Do you like how I started that sentence with regular nouns and then switched to all gerunds? My brain. It is dead. It is throwing parallel structure to the wayside.) These friends are what I am most grateful for about my new life.

4. Speaking of Missouri friends, I have no guy friends.

That is a slight exaggeration. I have approximately 1.8 guy friends in Missouri, and that number results from the fact that I know approximately four guys in Missouri but know them, on average, only about 45% as much as you need to know a guy before you can call him a friend. I've always been that girl who hates hanging out with guys, but I'm really beginning to miss male company. I especially missed it a week and a half ago when I needed new brake pads and had no idea what to do. I especially especially missed it a couple of weeks before that when I broke the mini-blinds in my shower and had no idea how to fix them.

5. There's a window in my shower.

Yeah, the one I shower in. And the blinds in said shower broke. And by broke, I mean snapped in two at the top and fell out completely. Not having a father or brother or other male friend to call for help with my blinds, I resorted to covering the window with various household goods. First I made a barrier of shampoo and conditioner bottles on the windowsill. That lasted for two weeks or so. Then I replaced the bottles with two giant strips of aluminum foil, which I taped to the tile around the glass. That lasted for two days or so. Then my roommate Scotch-taped the blinds apparatus and put it back up like a champ. I guess I didn't need a man after all, just a roommate and some Scotch tape. (Never ever let that become my mantra.)

6. I've started saying "y'all" more since I moved here.

I think this is part of the reason why Mizzou is probably switching to the SEC. They can't handle all my southern-ness.

7. This picture is the background on my computer.

It has been such a comforting reminder to me lately when I've been stressed about schoolwork.

via

8. My grad school workload is leaving my life in disarray.

Exhibit A: Monday's cereal bowl sitting on my desk. Exhibit B: My clean clothes still in the laundry basket two weeks after I washed them. Exhibit C: The tape on those mini-blinds I told you about. I realize this is not a very blogger-y statement to make. Bloggers say things like, "Look at my wonderful crafts. Look at my hipster husband. Look at my vintage dresses. My life is so pulled together." My life does not feel pulled together these days. I do not make crafts for my hipster husband whilst wearing vintage dresses. But I do dry my hair on a fairly regular basis, so that's something.

9. Spotify is my new best friend.

Lately I've been listening to lots of George Winston, John Mayer, Taylor Swift, Demi Lovato and Blake Stratton. Weird combo, I know. When I'm stressed about homework, I all about some Bethany Dillon, Jimmy Needham, Robbie Seay Band and Jenny & Tyler. Are y'all on Spotify yet? It is seriously my favorite new internet thing since Twitter. Who Whom are you listening to?

Go listen to this on Spotify ASAP.

10. I went running the other day. 

It was the seven-year anniversary of my stopping running due to injury. Seven years. I can't believe it. I wanted to blog that day. I wanted to provide a little two-years-later update since my last major post on the topic. But I found myself swamped with schoolwork and unable to carve out the time. I did carve out the time, however, to go for a little mini-run, and it was wonderful. I wanted to test my legs and see how they'd hold up. They held up well, and I was even comfortably sore in a nice muscle-y, non-injury way for a couple of days afterward. I have made so so so so much progress in the last year. Maybe more progress in the last year than in the six years that preceded it. I will try to get that all out in blog form soon.

View from my mini-run. Not even kidding. Approximately two minutes from campus.

11. It was sunny last week, but it has been gloomy this week.

It is putting me in a funk. Don't let my oh-so-pale skin fool you — I need sunshine to function!

12. This sentence was in one of my class readings this week.

Do not attempt to read it. It will hurt your brain. I just wanted you to see how long and ridiculous it is. 201 words. Not cool, author. Not cool.

13. My mom and sister are coming tomorrow.

And by tomorrow, I mean today! Woohoo! I'm so excited.

Insert joke about how they are matching here.

14. On that note, it is my bedtime.