Monday, September 5, 2011

Literary Memoir.

((To my regular readers, this is a school assignment that I chose to complete on my blog because I prefer this to just writing a paper. I am sorry for my absence. Life is so crazy!))

Literary Memoir, or My Life in Books (Kind of).

I did not start reading by myself until I was six years old.

It was the summer after kindergarten and almost everyone in my class could read by the end of the year. But don't worry, I still pretended I could read. I remember bringing a book (which will remained unnamed because I can't remember. I was five, okay?! It was pink, that's all I got) to class and "reading" it in front of my whole kindergarten class. And by reading, I mean combining my memory of how the story went when my mom read it to me with looking at the pictures and guessing what was going on in the story. I'm sure it was really close to how the actual story went and my teacher, Mrs. Stewart, probably noticed that I was completely competent and smart, or at least imaginative.

Anyway, the first book I legitimately read was Chicken Little. Okay, fine, it was some easy reader form of the story. But I remember laying with my mom, who had summers off because she taught first grade, on her bed bed in my childhood home and things finally clicking. My mom was probably convinced I was not going to bethe advanced student she had hoped since I couldn't read, couldn'ttie my shoes (mastered that in fourth grade) and did not know right from left (still struggling with that one). I remember the relief of finally being able to connect the sounds with the letters and connect the letters to flowing whole words. I turned the pages, I read the book over and over and over again. I became completely addicted.It lead to harder core books.
(Chicken Little...AKA my gateway drug)

Throughout Elementary School, I only remember a few highlights of my reading life. I absolutely, completely, positively hate hate hate hate (to this exact moment) Hatchet by Gary Paulsen. I was supposed to read it and made some stupid drawings about it and it took me like 3 months after the due date to turn in it. I refused to read that book. I actually wondered if it would be possible to sneak into my fifth grade teacher's classroom and write in a grade for that assignment and get away with not doing it. I never actually executed that awful plan, by the way.


I began a love affair with all things Roald Dahl very young. My favorites were The Witches and Matilda. I loved all things supernatural and actually believed myself to be a witch. Along those lines, I really like a book called Midnight Magic by Avi.

One of the last books that sticks out in my mind is a book called Belle Prater's Boy by Ruth White. This book has a touch of mystery and a whole lot of heart. The book centers around the young, cross-eyed, and adorable Woodrow, whose mother had recently gone missing, and his cousin Gypsy. It is a beautiful lesson in the importance of friendship, the loyalty and love of family and not judging a book by its cover. My favorite line occurs when a bully is makingfun of Woodrow's different appearance and Woodrow replies, "'Well, when God was handing out books, I thought he said looks and I said "Give me a funny one."' The complete and uttersweetness of Woodrow is enough to carry this book. So good.

I also lived in the world of Harry Potter at this time, but I think everyone else did too.

When middle school hit, I fell prey to some chick-lit. Big time. This is not to say that chick-lit does not deserve merits, but it wasn't a shining time in my reading history. Among the books I read in this time were anything written by Sarah Dessen (loved This Lullaby), Better Than Running At Night by Hillary Frank, What My Mother Doesn't Know by Sonya Sones and Running Out of Time by Margaret Peterson Haddix.

My first year of high school was a very difficult time for me. I started the year as a hardcore Christian, Sunday school teaching, middle school bible study leading, naive, middle class white female with every door open to her. I ended the year as a survivor of rape, domestic violence and a young female who had suffered through the mind numbing decision to terminate a pregnancy that was a result of surviving rape. My world had literally turned upside down, and nothing that I had reached out to hold on to, to steady myself, had crumbled.
Except books. People in the books I read had to make difficult choices too, and I did not have to explain myself to them. They talked to me and I was not forced to talk back. I got to hang back and let them chose. At this point in my life, I feel that books truly healed me.
Specifically, I remember reading Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird when trying to make my decision of what I would do with the hateful things that were happening to me. My mother was so upset, as she was a lot at this time in my life, understandably. She saw me reading TKAM in the living room, stopped and asked "How can you just sit there and read right now?" I thought about it for a moment and said "Because I know everything is going to be okay. It won't be tomorrow, and it won't be next week. It might not even be next year, but I know someday it will all be okay." I can't point to a direct part of the novel that made me feel this way, I wish I could, but it settled me. It made me peaceful. It made me realize that my whole life was not defined by right then, this misery and all-encompassing greyness was not going to be my life. I think, maybe, that in the same way Scout's lost pieces of her innocence in TKAM, as was I when I was reading it and I connected with her. Boo Radley's heroic actions and Atticus's gentle words and manner nudged my mind towards the direction of the goodness that residedin humanity while I suffered through the results of the absolute evil in humanity.
Another book that helped me get through things was a book called girlosophy by a woman named Anthea Paul. This book could basically be considered "self help" for young women, combing inspiring, unaltered photographs of real women. It emphasizes spirituality and the importance of always being one's self. It gave me new role models for the new life that I had to turn to, one that did not include the Christianity that I had leaned on before. I absolutely love this book and hope to someday share it with someone who needs it, just like I did.

It would be difficult to pin down what I have been reading since that time in my life. I have been reading many of the classics, which was what most of my Honors and AP English courses taught. I fell in love with Fitzgerald, Steinbeck and the Brontes.

I count among my favorite books now Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer, The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides, White Oleander by Janet Fitch, Atonement by Ian McEwan, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.

I love reading.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

It's all about balance.

I feel like everyday I just try to balance. Most days it is more difficult than I think it will be.
I have noticed this materialistic attitude that I have, that I absolutely, positively hate. I have convinced myself that I need so many things.
I need a smartphone, I need new jeans, I need new bras, underwear, shoes, hair clips, jewelry.
Ugh. But then once I convince myself that I do not need things, I look at blogs and like someone's outfit, or wish I could take cool Instagram pictures on my phone and put them on my blog or I want to have the same art print for my kitchen. Blah, blah, blah.
We are so wired to always be thinking of the next things we want, when we don't even really want those things. We want the experiences that are advertised to come with those things. I want to have cool pictures of my life to share with you, and my family, and my future children and my old, old self. I want to look that cute, I want to see that art print everyday and remember its message.
It's advertising. I can't stand advertising. It tells you that you are going to become so much happier once you have your hands on that product, but it's empty. It is a completely empty promise. You will not be happier. Happiness comes only from within, not inanimate objects.
Yeah, I would love that new pair of shoes and to buy that cute dress from MODcloth, but I would rather save my money to use to experience something real. Go to Europe, go see Annie, go home, go see Denby. Go, see, do.

I have never been much of an outdoors kind of girl, but these days I find myself aching to go outside. I live in Montana for God's sake and I have gone hiking maybe five times in my whole life. Montana has two national parks, tons and tons of empty space and beautiful mountains. I just want to be outside. I want to go hiking, I want to swim in a lake, I want to camp. But I have to work 40+ hours per week and take summer classes. I feel so fenced in and unable to do what I want. Geeeeeez.

On a lighter note, I fly out Thursday to go to Minnesota and see one of my best friends, Annie, get married!!!!!! I am able to go because of the incredible generosity of her parents, who, once they found out I couldn't make it to the wedding (not enough frequent flier miles, flights out of Missoula are $600 one way to Minnesota, YUCK!) they pooled their own frequent flier miles to fly me down there. I fly out on Thursday, the wedding is on Friday and I leave on Sunday. It will be a very quick trip, but I am so exctied to see Annie and Drew, see Minnesota, see where Annie grew up, see one of my best friends get married (what? we are this old?) and to get out of the dorms for awhile! EEEEEEK!

much love TO YOU.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tiny letters.

Dear Garlic-chicken-broccoli-noodle dinner,
you are so yummy.
I can't stop eating you.

Dear Tori,
Happy Anniversary to you and Luke.
I love you so much and I am so happy that you and Luke are happy!

Dear Residence Life Office,
Please have more hours for me to work, so I can stop freaking out.

Dear banana bread,
Please make yourself.
I want to eat you so badly, but I don't have the energy to make you.

Dear Jeff's yucky stuffed up nose,
Stop being!
You are making him spit nasty loogies everywhere.
It's gross.


Sunday, May 22, 2011

um. i'm sorry.

oh hey.
Sorry I have been such a terrible, terrible blogger lately. Spring semester comes and goes so quickly, I feel like it was January, like, two days ago! I rarely had time to do anything enjoyable since February, so here I am. I am back and hoping to be regular again (not like the bowel movement type, the blogging type!)!!

Here are a few highlights from the past few months:

I went home to celebrate my 21st birthday and went to an Elton John concert with mine and Jeff's families. Sunday morning, before the concert, we baptized Jameson my handsome nephew.

(Tall one and I enjoying my first 21 year old drinks together!)

I finished my junior year with a 3.8 GPA (eff you, linguistics!), watched two of my best friends graduate and moved into the actual, long awaited apartment!! EEEEEK!
It isn't completely set up yet, but when it is there will be pictures...many, many pictures. This is making me happy, man.

I have been in my apartment for six days and am pretty settled in. My brother brought up my queen-sized bed from Billings, as well as an old couch from our basement. I am so in love with my apartment! Except for the fact that they (who are they? I don't know) shut off ALL hot water on campus, and I have been forced to shower at Jeff's house. Ick, boy showers. But I shouldn't be complaining because a lot of the summer staff for Residence Life has been showering in cold water on campus because they have no where else to go. I guess I am thankful that I had icky boy showers. Okay, wait. Icky boy showers sounds like I had showers with icky boys and that didn't happen. What I mean by icky boy showers is that I showered in the same shower as icky boys. Yep.

So, now I am working as a summer supervisor for Residence Life and there is much working involved. We work 40 hours per week and I am taking a summer class as well, soooo you know.
BUT I HAVE A KITCHEN, A KITCHEN, A KITCHEN, A KITCHEN. I went grocery shopping today and it was the most exciting thing EVER. Plus the most expensive thing ever. But I don't even care. I love, love, love my kitchen. Yay!!!!!

Much love, peeps.
I promise it won't be long =)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Old movies.

So, I seriously love, love, love old movies. Usually, I see them on Turner Classic Movie Channel completely in the middle of the movie, and I have no idea what is going on, but I can't stop watching. I love everything about them. I love how stylized they are. I love how the actors speak, so deliberately and deeply. I love how they are produced and made with such quality and care.
One of my favorites is Gone With The Wind. I absolutely love Scarlett O'Hara, even though she is a royal pain in the you-know-what. She is so determined, even though her determination is often self destructive and ruthless. I love her story and I love her independence.

Mostly, though, I love her dresses.

Vivien Leigh is so beautiful and talented!

This one is my favorite. Scarlett wears it on Christmas when Ashley comes home from war.

This is the dress she wears to the bar-be-que in the beginning. So pretty!!

Sometimes I think I was born in the wrong era. Can you imagine wearing dresses like this everyday? I would probably actually hate it, but they are so feminine and gorgeous!!

So, this is what I am doing with my day. Watching Gone With The Wind in the office and doing some random homework. Tomorrow I go home for birthday celebrations and Elton John! I can not wait!!!!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

New Apartment!!!!

Okay guys!

Since my promotion to Head Resident, I now get to be completely OBSESSED with decorating a new aparment.

I move in on May 15th or 16th and (get this) it is an actual apartment! Not like the we're-saying-it's-an-apartment-but-really-it's-the-smallest-room-in-the-building-with-a-bathroom-attatched kind of apartment that I have now, But a real live apartment complete with kitchen, dining area, living room, bedroom, AND bathroom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My excitement can NOT be expressed. The kitchen is what I am most pumped about, if you couldn't tell. A kitchen?! A kitchen!!! OH DEAR GOD, A KITCHEN! I love, love, love, love to cook and bake and not having one seriously bums me out. The kitchen is super, ultra tiny and retro and I absolutely love it! It has an over that is about, maybe, 16 inches wide (super tiny!) and only three burners, a mini-fridge and not very much storage space. BUT WHO CARES!

To add to the fridge space, I am bringing my own mini-fridge (two mini-fridges equals one big fridge, right?). I am buying a microwave cart to put my microwave on, so that it doesn't take up more of my non-existent counter space. I am also going to put some nails in the wall next to the sink so that I can hang skillets and stuff and they won't take any of my already limited storage space.

Also, after a few days of being frustrated by trying to find a nice, used bar type of table that won't take up very much room, Jeff's brother and soon-to-be sister-in-law told me they had the perfect one and would just give it to me! It is dark wood, square and has two bar stools that come with it! Geee!!!

My parents are giving me an old loveseat and I am keeping the BFC (Big Freakin' chair) and my parents are also letting me take my queen sized bed from home!!!! I bought this duvet cover for it...

It is reversible! I think I will mostly keep it on the side without the flowers... Geez, I can not wait to move in and decorate. It is seriously one of my favorite things to do! YAY DECORATING TIME!!!!


(For some reason this blog will not stay formatted, so I am very sorry for the HUGE post without any paragraph breaks. I tried!) (I am saying this in a whisper) Hi...I'm sorry for being gone so long. Forgive me? (This, I am saying at my normal voice level...which is loud) HI!!!!!!!!!!!!! OH MY GOD, FRIENDS, OH MY GOD! The day that I had been waiting for for months and months finally arrived. I had been waiting for months to find out where the directors of Residence Life were going to place me and if they were going to promote me to Head Resident. For the months that I waited, I thought of every possible thing that could happen. 1) They could make me stay Assistant Head Resident in Turner. Shit. I can't do three years here. CRAP CRAP CRAP. 2) They could ask me not to come back...I don't know why they would! I am great at my job. Gosh, what if I did something bad and didn't even know?! 3) They could put me in a huge building with a huge staff and I WOULD BE SO OVERWHELMED! 4) They could put me where I ask, but that is a long shot. When I had my "interview" for the Head Resident position, they first asked where I wanted to be. I said "I want to be Head Resident of Knowles/Turner." They all pretty much freaked out and were like "Whoa! Stepping up to the plate!" They said this because Knowles and Turner are two seperate buildings, and they are experimenting by combining the staff of each building into one. So there will be one head resident, two assistant heads and 11 RAs. Totally new and scary. All the other supervisors said they did not want anything to do with it, and I said that I wanted it. I want a challenge, I want to be the first person to try this. It is a huge responsibility and privlege to be the first person to work with this experiment. But I wanted that. On Friday, April 1st, my letter came. It said that I was being promoted to Head Resident in Turner/Knowles Halls. I. SCREAMED. MY. HEAD. OFF. What an honor. I am amazed that they are trusting me with this and I am further amazed that they listened to what I said and gave it to me. I must have done something right =) So, that being said, I was placed with two AMAZING assistant head residents, Eric and Sean. I am so, so, incredibly excited to be given this opportunity. In charge of a staff of 13? Wow. I am so happy and proud!

Saturday, February 26, 2011


This terrible, rotten, no good, very bad weather is seriously doing a number on my motivation.

Usually, I can wake up on a Saturday morning and get TONS of homework done, but alas, today I cannot.

I have spent two hours reading blogs, searching Etsy and looking at my Educational Psych book without taking one single note.

I woke up and it was negative four degrees outside. Time for me to move far, far away from Montana.

Right now, all I want is to cuddle up with a book (of my own choosing, thank you very much literature classes) and sip tea. But I gots so much homeworkieeee, turkey.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The month of April.

Will be the best.

My dad is currently in a line of a million bajillion people in Billings so that I can see this legend on the night before my 21st birthday, April 10th, 2011.

Words can't describe how excited I am to see Elton John. As I was growing up, his music always blasted through the speakers in our living room on Saturday and Sunday mornings. "Benny and the Jets" was one of my first favorite songs and still is. Oh.God.
After the concert, I imagine that I will go out for my first 21 year old drinks with my parents! Pretty wild!

Then I will return home to Missoula, go out Monday night for my birthday with all of my friends and spend all Tuesday in bed/laying on the floor in front of my toilet.

Then on April 22, I will fly out of Bozeman to go here:

I will meet my mom, her two sisters and my cousin, Ivy to celebrate my Aunt Dixie's 50th birthday and my 21st! I have never been to Vegas and I CAN'T FRICKEN WAIT.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Story time.

This is the story about a foolish girl. A foolish girl who thought her love could fix someone and hold a broken relationship together. A foolish girl who loved puppies a little too much. A foolish girl that had more money in her bank account than she should have.

This is the story of my freshman year of college and how I lost the dog I raised. And my attempt at the Sparknotes version of it.

I had the same boyfriend from sophomore year until I graduated. We were butt crazy in love with each other for most of that time. The summer after our senior year, I would walk into his house without even a "hello" from him. He would barely even look up from the video game he was playing. His brothers hung out with me more than he did. But our lives were so intertwined that I could not imagine daily life as myself without him. Stupid, I know.
So we broke up. He was utterly and completely devastated, as was I, but I was ready to move on and apparently he was not.
I came to college, tried the whole "dating" thing and then remembered that I am not a dating girl.
I got back together with that boy from high school. It was comfortable. Everything was great.
One day, while perusing the pet store in the mall I fell in absolute and uncontrollable love with a cairn terrier. I begged and begged my boyfriend for her. He lived in a house, I lived (or at least kept my stuff at) in the dorms.

I named her Isabella. Known as Izzy. She was $600.00. We split the cost. I was loaded from working for Montana senator Max Baucus for the summer. We verbally agreed that if we ever broke up, he would give me my $300.00 back.

To quote Jack Kerouac, "everything fell apart." All of this built up ugliness toward each other came out of us. We broke up. It was particularly ugly and incredibly sticky.
We shared custody of our beautiful dog for about a year.
Then he went inexplicably nuts and told me I could never see her again.

I miss her astronomically. She is my sunshine.
She has more personality than most people I know. She always has to have the last word. She is so cute that I always have to be holding her when she is around. She LOVES walks. She LOVES mornings so much. She always woke me up by running all over the bed, digging on my pillow and licking me.

I haven't seen her since Thanksgiving. It is horrible.

Please excuse my extreme affinity for taking pictures of her with my cell phone.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

"The best thing I have tasted all week is my Lipsmackers Vanilla Frosting chapstick" and other thoughts on Clean Eating: Week One.

Yum. Seriously that chapstick tastes good.

So, technically my first week of clean eating isn't over until Monday but I am going to post about it today instead.

For whatever reason, amazingly, clean eating has been so incredibly fun for me. I can't believe how easily I have made the transition into it. Mostly, I think, due to this incredible website, The Gracious Pantry. Seriously, to me, this woman is superwoman. She has TONS of recipes listed on the site, as well as shopping lists, sugar substitution charts and a page on how to make any recipe "clean." I love love love love her site. I made this recipe for Clean Eating coconut curry shrimp on Thursday and it was delicious and SO EASY! For dinner, I am going to make this recipe for Clean eating chicken and dumplings.

So, as I said clean eating was going to be moderately challenging to me as I don't have a kitchen or easy access to one except on my out nights. It actually has been easier than I thought though. Jeff and I went to Costco and Missoula's Good Food Store (which is incredible) and I bought all kinds of good food to store in my room. Right now I have apples, oranges, bananas, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, pineapple, Organic peanut butter, Organic Oatmeal, Organic yogurt, pure maple syrup, honey, some super healthy granola and soy nuts (none of which is processed or contains any preservatives)! All of these foods I eat for breakfast or a snack. In the morning, I usually have some yogurt with berries or bananas. This morning I had Oatmeal with one spoonful of peanut butter and banana. It was delicious!
I am still drinking my americanos with only skim milk and I have come to like them even more!
On one site (I don't remember...too many sites!) it said that with clean eating, you should have three snacks a day, one between breakfast and lunch, one between lunch and dinner and one after dinner. For these, I have been doing fresh fruit.

I have also been drinking A TON of water. I usually drink a ton of water, I have always drank a lot of water. When I was little it was all my parents really gave me, and I have never liked soda. But, when I cut sugar out of my diet, I started getting these really painful, little headaches that would only last a second or two but would happen about every minute or so. But, when I drink water they pretty much disappear! So water is good for that, plus it is just really good for you, period!

Now onto how I feel. Seriously guys, I feel AMAZING. I have noticed a lot of changes in my attitude and my energy from less than a week of clean eating. It was on Thursday that I really began to notice these changes, so it only took three days! Canyabelieveit?! This is what I have noticed: I don't get tired in the afternoons anymore. I used to get so. tired. in the afternoons that I would take a nap or really, really want to take a nap. Now, I go right on through the afternoon with barely any sleepiness or laziness. It is incredible!
Another change that I have noticed is this great mood I am always in! I usually am a really happy person, but I think that I used to go through moods all day. My day would begin fine, then something would annoy me or make me grumpy, and I would be in a bad mood for a few hours and then maybe I would feel better later. This week I have noticed my mood is more stable and it is a really good mood!
My weight has not changed much (unless you think .4 of a pound is a lot!) but I think it will take time (and patience!) for my weight change to show.

I can't believe how quickly and easily I became a healthy eater. I don't think you could pay me $100 to eat Taco Bell right now and that used to be my FAVORITE! Another great resource I have been using is this book. I have discovered that people have incredibly different definitions of clean eating. The author of that book, Dee McCaffrey, is much more hardcore than Tiffany at The Gracious Pantry. With her plan, you wouldn't eat any breads, except the kinds made without any kind of flour. I am taking the easier route at this point as I just started out, but maybe someday I will be that hardcore!

Okay, this is a really long post. I just wanted to tell you guys how great I feel thanks to this plan. I read this statistic the other day that said 80% of what you look like is from what you eat, 10% is exercise and the other 10% is genetics. I am really beginning to believe this.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Day one...continued!

Hello again!

Sorry about the double post about the same thing today!
My morning started out well with the plain Americano and greek yogurt.
At lunch I had a salad with spinach, edamame, sunflower seeds, bamboo chutes, black olives and Italian dressing. I also had a small bowl of vegetarian chili, some brown rice (but not very much cuz it was all dry and icky) aaaaand a slice of cantaloupe and two slices of watermelon. It was really, really good but I was in a hurry and had to rush off to class instead of enjoy it and finish it.

After a class that made me really grumpy because the teacher was inexplicably really rude to me, I worked in the office for an hour and read some of On the Road for my American Novel class. By this time I was getting really hungry AKA really irritable, so that wasn't good. As I just started this yesterday, I have zero healthy snacks in my pantry and so I desperately ate like 1/2 cup of Quaker Oats Oatmeal Squares cereal with some skim milk. It made me feel EONS better. Then to get rid of the grumpiness I watched an episode of Gilmore Girls and was nicer =).

I am out tonight so I just made dinner at Jeff's house and we tried this recipe for healthy pasta carbonara. It was surprisingly delicious and filling. I kind of, sort of doubled it as I didn't think one chicken breast, 4 oz. of pasta, etc. would feed both Jeff and I. We ended up having leftovers, which is always really convenient! Good good good!
As I said in my first post about clean eating, I have a terrible sweet tooth so Jeff and I just split a small banana to satiate my sweet tooth =)

This concludes day one! I bought a BUNCH of fruit at the store today, so hopefully the rest of the week will be easier as far as snaking goes. Today was kind of rough with my grumpiness and insane hunger this afternoon, but I expect it to get easier every day I work at it.

Have a great night, everyone!
P.S. Mean linguistics teachers can kiss my clean eating little butt.

Day One!

Good morning!

I started my day of clean eating out by....waitforit....NOT PUTTING ANYTHING IN MY AMERICANO EXCEPT SKIM MILK! and you know what? It wasn't half bad. Love me some white chocolate, but I survived. I have been drinking white chocolate americanos pretty much every morning since my junior year of high school, and I am buttcrazy obsessed with them, so this is a big step, my friends.

Then I headed off to class as I was real busy and did not have time to eat breakfast (shame on meeeee).

Got out of class, headed to my room real quick as it is pretty much zero degrees!!!!!
So, now I am going to eat some Brown Cow Blueberry Greek Yogurt, because after reading A LOT on clean eating, I discovered I can eat one yogurt a day! YAY.

I know that I have hardly gotten through one day, but I am real proud of the americano achievement.

Have a great day, all!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

A new lifestyle!

Hey guys!

I want to talk about something that I have struggled with for most of my life, as I know a lot of women do. Since I was probably about eight years old, I have struggled with my weight. I was NOT overweight or even close to it at eight years old, but that is when I kind of became aware of self image, looking pretty, etc. I have A LOT of women in my family, and I think they have all struggled with their weight, which is probably what led to me this realization so young. One of my Grandmothers, in particular, has also been so critical about my weight with me for my whole life, but I don't want to talk about that here.

When I was in seventh grade, I decided I was fat. I was comparing myself to girls that I probably shouldn't have. Girls that had been involved in sports or dancing since they were, like, 2. I have never been any sort of athletic or even close to it EVER in my whole life. I'm really not ashamed of it at all, it's just who I am. I prefer to sit and read a book than go out and shoot some hoops. Plus, I am probably one of the clumsiest people in the universe and have absolutely zero coordination of any sort. So, I was pretty much meant to NOT be athletic or anything since day one. Anyway, I was comparing myself to these girls who had completely different lifestyles than I did and I decided I needed to be like them because I was a 13-year-old girl, and you know how that is. (SIDENOTE: Speaking of 13-year-old girls reminds me of one of my favorite books, The Virgin Suicides. In the beginning of the novel, the 13-year-old Cecilia attempts suicide. When she is brought into the hospital, the doctor said something like "Why would you want to kill yourself?" to which she replied "Obviously, doctor, you've never been a thirteen-year-old girl before." Pure genius. And if you're a girl, you know what Cecilia is talking about here!)

Around this time, I developed this pseudo eating disorder. It was really nothing that serious and eventually took care of itself. What I would do is get on the treadmill in the basement (where I was unsupervised) and run and run and run until I would literally pass out. I never knew how long I was out for, but I would eventually wake up and do it again. In addition to the crazy unhealthy exercising, I would not eat lunch at school. Plus, I never ate breakfast because I was thirteen and would always take like 384387 hours to get ready! So all I really ate was dinner, because I was in front of my parents, and even then I mostly just pushed it around my plate. I lost a lot of weight like this and when I decided I looked good, I just stopped and w
ent back to my normal habits again, except I kept the terrible weight paranoia.

I went into high school at about 110-115 pounds and I loved myself. I loved how I looked (I wish I had some pictures!). I got a lot of attention from guys (which really was important to me at the time, so so so so stupid.) and everyone would always say how good I looked. Anyway, over the course of high school, I gained weight, which I am positive is normal. By the end of high school I no longer weighed what I had when I began and it killed me. It made me grumpy, incredibly self-conscious and jealous of everyone. At this time, I probably was still not over-weight, just pissed that I was no longer a size two.

Since coming to college, my weight has gone up and down, up and down. It usually
goes something like this: I come back in fall and lose weight and stay there. Then I go home for break and gain. Then I come back in for Spring semester and lose some then gain A LOT back. Then I go home and lose. WHAT THE HECK.

So today I came across this blog post. Which led me to this blog post. Which made me think and get excited. Clean eating will be a challenge for me for A LOT of reasons. Firstly, I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE candy. I have a terrible sweet tooth. Secondly, I count pasta and bread as two of my main food groups. Thirdly, I drink a lot of coffee and would please like to sweeten it. Fourthly (I told you it was a lot of reasons) I live in a dorm room and am kitchen-less. Whenever you hear me talk about my "apartment" I mean my room and a bathroom, which I absolutely love and am VERY grateful for, but really wish I had a kitchen times 459. So, making ALL of my food is probably not very realistic for me. I have a meal plan and it is completely feasible for me to eat healthy at the Food Zoo (our cafeteria) but it will be pretty difficult with the whole no preservatives, no processed food rules since this place feeds thousands of students a day and uses BUTT LOADS of preservatives. My saving grace here will be my out nights, which is when I intend to follow this diet as well as I can on my budget and schedule.

So, I am looking forward to a healthier lifestyle, not a diet. I want to be DONE with struggling with my weight and feeling insecure. I am sick of dreading summer because of my less-than-bikini-body. I am sick of not being able to wear whatever I want and hating pictures of me. I want to go back to loving my body and not just so that I can feel hot. I want to be healthy and comfortable in my body. I want to remember my twenties as being full of adventure and excitement, not as being too lazy and insecure to go out.

I would like to add here that I have an incredible boyfriend. He never knew me when I was like a whole four pounds, but wouldn't want me any other way than I am now. He thinks I am beautiful and desirable always, which I am always inexplicably thankful for. He understands my struggle and understands that I want to be healthy, once and for all.

Sorry for the incredibly long post, I just wanted to talk about this because I know so so so many women struggle with this. I am with ya, but we can make some positive changes that will last forever and make us happy and satisfied =).

I am going to leave you with some pictures of myself that I love, which I hope will give me some motivation in the future.
This picture was right before freshman year of college, when I think I looked pretty good, even though I wasn't 120 lbs. =)

This was my sophomore year, about 120 lbs. Thanks to Jamie for posting this picture to Facebook of her eighteenth birthday! I love it.

This is the summer between sophomore and junior year. You can't really see my body but my face was skinny and I think my smile is so much prettier when my face is skinny.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.
I look forward to everyone's kind words and encouragement while I work to make myself healthier.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


My first week of spring semester: Tiring.

I am taking more credits than last semester-- only 16 (I'm a big baby!) and I feel like I am juggling so much already. I added a Linguistics class, which for some reason has done nothing but confused me. Haha, I feel like such a loser every freakin' time I walk into that class. It might be because it is one o'clock in the afternoon AKA right when my coffee is wearing off PLUS just after lunch. And the classroom is kind of warm and usually the lights are off so we can see the projection on the board so I just want to lay my head on the table and take a small, tiny nap. I don't think that would be looked upon very kindly. But on Friday, my professor (Who's name is Tully! Now I know two people named that great name) wore a shirt which I would give best shirt of the week award if that existed. It was a button up with the little ivory snap buttons and demin colored pockets on the breasts. It also had this pattern with ponies, roosters, weathervanes, fish, trees and angels. Oh my god, it was the best! Great job, Tully.

Also, I am thinking that now I am taking Education classes my GPA is going to be on the rise. That shit is easy as pie. Just a bajillion reading, which one would think I would be used to now as an English major, but I am telling you reading literature is a completely different planet than the one reading Educational psychology textbooks lives on. That doesn't make sense.

My American Novel class is fabulous, just as I predicted! The theme is "Odyssey," which wonderfully encompasses the themes of the books from one of my last posts.

Yesterday I finished our second semester "Meet the Staff" board in Turner Hall, which I did not have to do, but really wanted to. It is so adorable and fits out building and staff so much better than our last one. It really shows our personalities, I think, which I am all about.

Now for something I feel VERY proud of.
I went to the gym today, ya'll. It felt so good too! I have hardly used these great running shoes I bought downtown last fall for a lot of dollars, they have just been sitting in the big box of shoes in my closet making my feel guilty and wasteful. So, I took them to the gym and spent A WHOLE THIRTY MINUTES on the treadmill. What you read is true! CANYABELIEVEIT?! I did not run the entire time as the man at the running-shoes-store told me that the reason I always get killer shin splits when I start running (preventing me from sticking with it) is because I push myself too hard to quickly when my body isn't ready for it. So, what he suggested was to walk briskly for five minutes then run for about two minutes and keep up this pattern for about twenty minutes or so. Then just lessen the walking intervals and increase the running intervals when my body gets used to it. Maybe someday in the near future I will be a person who runs. An actual runner. Right now, I just think those people are freaks. Who the heck can just run and run and run and still feel good. Just kidding, I completely envy those people and believe that they rule.

So in summation, it has been a busy week. But a thoroughly rewarding and interesting one. I love those ones.

P.S. If you're into mash-ups as much as I am, Milkman recently released a new CD called Algorithms, which is up for free download on his website. FREE JAMS HECKYES

muchlove homies.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Those who run Turner Hall.

These are the ladies that run Turner Hall. How cute are we?!
We went out and took these pictures on Sunday because I wanted to make a new "Meet the Staff" board for second semester. Jeff took the pictures and they are all sorts of adorable!!

From left to right we have: Preslie on Jessica's back. They are our third floor RAs. Then we have Alison on Emily's back. They are our second floor RAs. Then there is Justene on my back and we are the Supervisors of the building. In front of us is Caitlyn, our Resident Technology Assistant, or RTA.

I love them!
Hope everyone is having a great day!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Spring semester! + a cute boyfriend

Spring semester starts on Monday. I can't even tell you how excited I am to start my American Novel class. These are the INCREDIBLE looking books that we get to read. I have never heard of the professor, even after three years of literature classes, so I am guessing he is newish. But I am amazed at his selection as a new professor. These look amazing.

From left to right we have: Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier, Play It As It Lays By Joan Didion, On The Road by Jack Kerouac, Winter In The Blood by James Welch (A UM graduate!). The bottom row, left to right is Norwood by Charles Portis (who also wrote True Grit), Outer Dark by Cormac McCarthy, Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer (who wrote Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close which is one of my favorite books ever ever ever), and lastly we have Guided Tours Of Hell, a collection of novellas by Francine Prose. Not pictured is The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver.
I love literature classes. Nothing is more relaxing to me than sitting in my big, cozy chair, cuddled up with a book and some tea.

On a completely different note, Jeff taught his first CPR class on Thursday and came over afterwards and he was all dressed up in this adorable button-up. He is so cute!!!!!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Oh, hello there!

Oh hello all!
I am so sorry for neglecting my blog and all of your BEAUTIFUL faces, but boy, have I been busy. Christmas came and passed. New years came and passed. I came back to Missoula on the fifth of January and started my Wintersession class that Friday.
The class I took was C&I 200, my first in school experience. I observed for two weeks in an eighth grade Language Arts class and completely fell in love with all of the kids and the profession. My teacher had me teaching completely on my own for the last week, and it was the absolute best. The lesson we were working on wasn't in my major at all (they were doing interest surveys to do some research about potential
careers in preparation for high school) but I enjoyed it ANYWAY. Tomorrow is my last day with them, but we are going on a ski trip, so I will mostly be sitting in the lodge all day reading since I am the kiss of death of the ski hills (I will have to tell you
this story someday).

I am going to leave you with some pictures from Christmas break.

This girl is my life. Denby and I.

Denby making me laugh. I love candid photos.

My baby, Tobey, or more affectionately called, Baidumb.

My baby again.

My brother, Jordan, and I

Dad and I

Jordan and I. Isn't he a heartbreaker?

Making pasties with Jeff's mom, Laurie. It's a Butte tradition!

Jeff and I on a walk with Jagger! Who is on a leash so you can't see him, haha.

Talk to you soon.
Love, Lib