Friday, August 29, 2014

28 Things for 28 Years

It's my birthday!  This week has been sort of insane at work, so I definitely plan on taking the whole long weekend to indulge myself in my advancing age.  A few friends are coming over for dinner tonight, I'm going apple picking tomorrow, my parents are taking me out to dinner on Sunday, and I've booked myself a facial on Monday.  It's going to be fab!

Totally narcissistically, I've decided to celebrate my birthday on this blog by sharing 28 things - one for each year - you might not know about me.  Some probably won't come as a surprise to you.  Others... well, let's see!

28 Things for 28 Years

1. I love public speaking.
2. But I was terrified when I got solos in choir.
3. I founded an all-girls barbershop quartet in high school.
4. I hold my nose every time I jump into a pool.
5. In 6th grade, I won first place in a national French competition. It's been all downhill from there.
6. I dyed my hair once, in 8th grade; I was going for auburn but it ended up sort of purple.
7. I've been thinking about getting a small discrete tattoo for a while but I'm afraid my mother will disown me.
8. If I could get another degree, I'd want to go to divinity school.
9. I love amusement parks and county fairs.
10. But I don't really like theme parks.
11. And I have no desire to ever go on a cruise.
12. I'm a city girl but my fantasy is to move to a smaller university town like Charlottesville or Ithaca.
13. Similarly, I'd love to live in Oxford or Cambridge if Jon and I don't settle in London when we move back to England.
14. I can't wait to have a house with a garden but I'm terrified that I'll discover I don't have a green thumb at all.
15. I don't get manicures but a good pedicure is one of my favorite luxuries.
16. Folding laundry soothes me.
17. I can forgive almost anything if the person responsible owns his/her mistake and resolves to learn from it.
18. I hate horror films but I love Hitchcock.
19. I failed a class in college freshman year because I slept through the final exam, which counted for 75% of the grade.
20. I loved creative writing when I was younger, but I've never wanted to write a novel.
21. If I were to try to get something of mine published, it would be nonfiction - probably a series of essays.
22. I wish I could talk like Aaron Sorkin writes.
23. I cried the first time I voted (which was in the 2004 elections) because I was so overcome with civic pride.
24. Giving up sweets wouldn't be too hard for me.
25. Giving up cheese would be impossible.
26. I don't like the combination of peanut butter and chocolate.
27. I don't have original taste in music - and I'm totally okay with that.  Show me a bandwagon and I'll jump on it.
28. If I could have one celebrity show up to sing me Happy Birthday, I'd want it to be Harry Connick Jr.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Happy National Dog Day!

On Sunday evening, a friend in London messaged me on Facebook. "I've started reading your blog," he said. "I'm sorry your life is so shit."

I was horrified.  Is that the impression my blog gives?

He clarified: "All that stuff on you and Jon."

Okay, yes.  Being long-distance with my husband is not great.  But life is, on the whole, pretty wonderful.  I'm near my parents, which is an enormous help both emotionally and practically; I'm in daily contact with my incredible sister, who is starting law school this week and still finds the time to send me emojis; I have fabulous girlfriends in the area, several of whom are coming over for dinner on Friday night to help me celebrate my birthday;  and I love my job, in which I have the opportunity to learn from truly passionate and dedicated colleagues.  Believe it or not, there's even a silver lining to living apart from Jon!

Charlie, of course, also makes my life a million times better.  He rescued me soon after I moved back to DC, at a time when I felt quite lost, and reminds me every day to focus on the important things.  Charlie's lessons are essential to happy living:

Charlie and I spent a glorious few hours in Rock Creek Park on Sunday.  He's not so good off the leash if I'm standing still, but he sticks relatively close to me when I'm on the move.  If I lose sight of him, I just have to call out and a few seconds later he'll zoom past me from wherever he was exploring, his whole face contorted in an ecstasy of exultation.  There's so much to smell in Rock Creek Park, but Charlie doesn't find it overwhelming.  It's freeing!  He could go anywhere and discover something thrilling.  And the water - oh, the water!

So happy National Dog Day from Charlie and me, dear readers.  May we go through life like puppies off-leash in a park alongside our beloved best friends.

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