Meesh of all trades, master of none. That's me. 28 year old Chicagoan, cat lover, accidental runner, half-ass artist and comestibles connoisseur hobbling my way through 'adulthood'.
Singing “potty potty potty potty potty everywhere” to the tune of Miss New Booty while Indy pees makes taking him out a lot more fun.
I have never made quiche before my team meeting potluck.
Now I wanna always make quiche because MY GOD.
Something I advise after this experience though: don’t make the crust. Even if your pride gets the best of you, don’t do it. Store-bought Pilsbury will suffice.
Broccoli, garlic and cheese quiche. (I used 5 eggs and 1 cup cream and asiago)
All-butter pastry dough. (that stuff is parchment paper I was afraid to take out because it was crumbling too bad)
Reading usualchatter's and justcallmeemilyv's posts lately about finances and the cost of things, combined with talking to Doug about the cost of weddings these days, combined with hearing a really good radio segment about Millennials not saving any money has made me think about what the norm actually is for people my age when it comes to owning assets and being secure with one's finances. (Holy run-on sentence.)
I really think the ability to cultivate a savings depends on a lot of different factors. Obviously. Some that I’ve noted: the socioeconomic status one grew up with / how long one lived with their parents into their adulthood / personality / whether one lives in an urban or rural setting / which part of the country one lives in / what level, if any, of higher education one has / did one’s parents have the means to assist them in any aspect of their lives?
The one factor in that list that sticks out among all the others, in my opinion, is whether someone lives in an urban or rural setting. For example, with my group of friends and me, or even any acquaintances I speak to, we seem to feel like we’re constantly pressured into spending money living in the city. I once joked that you pretty much bleed money when you walk out the door here, which isn’t an exaggeration. Even if I spent $0 on superfluous items, I would still be paying for something. An L ride, a parking meter, something. Something always.comes.up.
Then you have the added pressure of social outings or dressing the part. It’s like, yes, there are free things you can do here, but someone’s always talking about going to eat or getting a drink or seeing a show. And, let’s get real, it’s depressing being the one always having to say no. And, more than that, what’s the point of living in a city if you can’t and don’t take advantage of what it has to offer?
My friend K was showing me houses the other night that she and her boyfriend are thinking of buying. It would require her to move back to Northwest Indiana. The more I thought about it the more I thought it sounded really smart. They would be living in a cute beach town, in a comfortable home, paying a FRACTION of the price in both necessary and superfluous expenses. She admitted that she would miss the city, but that the way they’re living now, they aren’t really living because things are so expensive. And the city is a train ride away. I can’t say it didn’t spur a discussion for Doug and I about moving back when I get my clinical license. Because he can still work his same job and even if I got an Indiana job, we could still be living pretty large.
I guess what I want to know is: how are your lives? Obviously, you don’t have to go into details, but do you feel as though you’ve made yourself a nestegg for the future or you still have some work to do? And if you’re ahead of the game, why do you think that is? If you’re behind, same question.
Edit to include my own financial situation: I have about $25K in debt from undergrad and about $70K in debt from grad school, in addition to a couple thousand in credit card debt. Credit card debt scares me beyond anything else because of interest rates so I always have my limit set at $2500 and don’t actively look to open credit cards. My student loan debt I’m fine with because I’m on a combined public service/pay-as-you earn plan. Consequently, I have to stay in the public service realm for ten years to pay off my loans, and will make less money as a result, but it’s well worth it to pay off a fraction of what I have borrowed. And this is where my heart is anyway. Doug and I have a few hundred saved at any given moment and I have a few hundred in my (non-matching) 401K.
The fun part (for Doug): he has 0 debt and is marrying me, who has all the debt. Now that’s love baby.
We are the literal definition of middle income.
So now that I’ve told my family and friends and stopped being in denial about it, I can tell you guys.
I got my wedding dress, and tried it on multiple times. My friends and family exclaimed how beautiful I looked. Some even cried. But, through it all, I just wasn’t feeling it. I tried to talk myself into liking it because I thought maybe I just wasn’t used to a dress of that caliber and I could get used to it. But I didn’t get that ~feeling~ you’re supposed to get whenever I put it on. Like, I guess the way to best explain it is to say that there’s just a lot of stuff on it. A lot of beading, a lot of lace, a lot of pomp and circumstance. I’m not saying that it’s not beautifully crafted, but that’s just not me.
So where we’re at now is that I got another one. With an iron clad return policy. That is so unique and amazing and pieced together with vintage lace by some hippie designer in California. I can’t stop looking at it.
I’ve also decided I’m not going to show it to anyone until I try it on and fall in love with it because I think what happened last time is that I just didn’t want to disappoint people and deal with having to return it or whatever. Because I know that all my bridesmaids and family will tell me that any dress is beautiful that I have on.
The bad news: the other dress is non-refundable. I’m still trying to finagle something with the seller, so we’ll see.
The good news: Even so, the dress was $175 (it’s from China by way of etsy.) If she absolutely won’t take it back, shrugz. I can try to sell it privately or to a bridal consignment shop.
When all is said and done, I just want my dress to feel like me.
I can’t with this day. Productivity is at zero.
I’ve spent the whole “snacking” on whole sandwiches and donut holes (potluck team meeting) and surfing the internet and talking myself out of buying things and looking up unnecessary shit like how is soy milk made and video montages of weiner dogs. And now I’m even bored of that.
This morning on my run, I was approaching the water fountain I drink from at about the halfway point. Two Parks Department guys were standing by it and as I go to reach for the fountain, the one guy is waving dramatically at me (I had my headphones in). I take out my airbud and he says to me, “Don’t drink from there! Someone, uh, went to the bathroom in it.”
A.K.A. pooped. In the water fountain.
I think I’ve found the perfect solution to our Indy rug problems.
Let me elaborate: this dog is making us hate our lives and our rugs. Seeing as he was a dream as a puppy puppy, I’m not saying that I didn’t expect this. But he’s an evil genius, and can escape almost any situation, and we both feel super cruel leaving him in a kennel for 9 hours. He ruined two rugs in as many hours this past weekend.
Enter this plastic woven rug. 4’ X 6’. For 39 friggin bucks over at Kate Spade Saturday. This dog can piss, shit, barf all over this rug for all I care and all we have to do is hose it off. Man am I excited. And (hopefully) he can’t tear it up (he likes to pull up the fibers, one by one by one, essentially demolishing the whole rug.)
Let’s pray this works.
On Saturday morning, one of our friends took some engagement photos for us. I’m waiting on a USB from him so I can edit them. He had to jet pretty quickly and I still wanted a “family photo,” so I just set up the tripod and took them myself. Basically all of our photos are outtakes, but I still might set up a triptych of the above three because they’re pretty hilarious.
All other photos taken sometime during the week.
And another zoodles photo for Steph because she called me out on my last one being crappy.
Impressed myself this morning with a speedi-er run. They (
who they is I’m not sure nevermind I found it) say you should add ~20 seconds to your mile time when it’s hot and humid, which it definitely was this morning. All the water fountain stops.
I’d been even more blue last week due to the fact that my stress and depression were getting to the point where exercise wasn’t even therapeutic anymore. And maybe this was in large part because my knee was pretty stiff and crackily (if it’s not one thing it’s another), so I assaulted my IT band the past two days with my roller and the brace is back, ay la ay la, the brace is back…and about 90% of the stiffness feels gone, so that’s good.
Sometimes when I’m a little tipsy alone because its one of those rare occasions when Doug goes to bed before me and I’m not tired yet and want just one or two more beers, I use my friend M’s Facebook profile to stalk old boyfriends.
Why M’s profile? Because I unfriended said old boyfriends a long time ago…probably right after we broke up because I didn’t want to see the goings-on of their lives anymore.
I guess it’s not so much stalking as seeing what they’ve been up to after all these months/years/etc. I’m human, right?
There are two in particular that I stalk. Two that, didn’t end badly, really, and I considered them pretty “great loves” or whatever. But when everything was said and done they weren’t giving me what I needed (and I’m sure vice versa), so it ended.
Tonight I made two observations:
And as I’m sitting here ruminating about these guys, I keep thinking about passion. And ups-and-downs. And romance.
Those two guys were very different people. But with both of them, there was this ebb and flow. We either hated each other and I was miserable, or loved each other and I was euphoric.
I posted this link awhile ago that basically boiled down love for chicks into two categories: 1) you’re with a guy where you claim that there’s an immense amount of passion, but is there really? It’s just bipolar. Highs and lows. He’s either doing something shitty or being shitty and you’re inventing reasons for why he’s so great when he even does something remotely nice or 2) you’re with a guy that is just kind of an even Kiel. And guy #2 is always who you end up with.
While I’m tending, now, to agree with #2, I feel that Doug is almost in another kind of subclass. He’s an even Kiel, but he’s also very sweet and listens and doesn’t like to hold grudges. Fuck, and isn’t that the best thing for a girl like me? Because it’s taken me a lot of time and a lot of energy (and don’t get me wrong, I still do) to stop holding grudges.
With him, it’s easy not to.
This post isn’t really going anywhere. It’s circling back on itself. But I guess if I were to summarize…I honestly hope those relationships that those two guys have are going well for them. I hope Ex-boyfriend #1 gets his shit together and makes a Higher Commitment to this girl who seems to be his perfect fucking match. And I hope Ex-boyfriend #2 stays with this girl who seems very sweet and wholesome and completely unlike anything he’s ever been with that’s good for him.
Because maybe a lot of it was me. Maybe I came in to these relationships with my guns raised and guarding all my emotions and fighting fighting fighting to really Be In Something.
And thank god I finally stopped the fighting. And I found someone who wants to be In Something with me. And who I, more than anything, want to be In Something with.