Emptied pockets

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Does this prompt make anyone else want to sing Olivia Newton-John? Hopefully I’m not the only one.

We learned the hard way not to put metro tickets in the same pocket as your phone.

We learned the hard way not to put metro tickets in the same pocket as your phone.

I bought an army green jacket in Paris. It was my first time overseas, the biggest trip I’d ever taken. Growing up, family vacations were at Indiana Beach. I wasn’t much of a traveler. So I sucked at packing and it was freezing, and the jacket was wonderful. I don’t wear it often though. It’s perfect for a fall day, and it seems like Indiana skips over the gorgeous season and goes straight to dark skies and heavy snows. But this year, we’ve had some glorious fall weather.

I know I don’t wear the jacket that often, because I reached into the pocket this weekend and pulled out used metro tickets. I had to smile thinking about piecing my French together to buy them, whether from a teller or machine. I closed my eyes and I was there having pain au chocolat for breakfast and copious amounts of wine and cider at dinner. I remember riding our bus from town to town and staying up late playing cards in our hotel lobbies. And of course, the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Sacre Coeur, the Louvre, and so on. We packed so much into those three weeks thanks to my wonderful professor.

I feel so fortunate that I had this opportunity to explore more of the world with good company.

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Extra! Extra! Read all about it.

Screen shot 2014-12-16 at 5.19.53 PMThe only things that immediately come to mind are the stories that have dominated the news cycle this year regarding race. I have a lot of thoughts and a lot of anger. But I’m not sure if I’m ready to tackle the subject. So since I’m a journalist, I decided that instead I’ll share a story I wrote this year.

One of my colleagues is wrapping up a package on the many battles you face with a cancer diagnosis. He asked me if I’d be willing to tackle a story for his package, and I was. The story I ended up with was actually an article where I got to be a ghost writer and help a young dad share his story. His wife lost her battle with acute myeloid leukemia, and the piece is on how they told the kids mom had cancer,  and communicated throughout her illness.

This article meant a lot to me, because I was that kid. My mother passed away from cancer when I was 14. I knew exactly what this young dad described to me. I knew it all too well. And while he remained strong on the phone telling me his story in hopes that it would help other parents, I held back tears. This family is a true inspiration to me in the way they’ve handled something so devestating with such strength and bravery.

Back on the Think Kit train…

I was thrown off my schedule this weekend. I’m a very routine person, and it takes a while for me to get back into it. That’s why I make routines in the first place. So I consistently work out, clean the apartment, etc. Anyway, even though I got out of my Think Kit routine for a few days, I’m back. There are no rules anyway!

Saturday — This day was all about saying goodbye to a good friend. James wrote about the day in this post. The prompt was to put something in writing, so here it is:

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Then, Sunday. Think Kit asked to look outward, look inward. I’ve been doing this a lot lately. Getting married is a pretty big step in life, and people often ask “What’s next?” I have the same answer I had when I graduated college: “Not sure.” We don’t have our lives mapped out, but I’m excited to see where we end up. There are so many life experiences to be had.

Today’s prompt is all about numbers. I suck at numbers. I had to take basic math multiple times to pass. I missed my honor diploma in high school because I couldn’t pass pre-cal. And my coworkers probably get a chuckle every time I have to call someone on the west coast, and I run the time difference by them just to make sure I’m adding the hours right. So no lucky number. Just no number at all. 🙂

Mulligan

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Less Netflix. More reading. I’m behind on my Read 26 Indy, and bound to finish before the year ends. In fact, I’ll go read now! Sorry for the 20 word post. It’s been a heavy writing week at work trying to get all my content done in time for the holidays.

Wedding crashers!

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When we were making plans to visit our friends in Colorado and suggested Labor Day weekend, Sally said “Perfect! We’re having a party then.”

We didn’t find out until later that it was her son’s wedding reception. It was a lovely time. Tony and Jennifer were a lot of fun, and didn’t seem to mind that we crashed their big day. The day (or a couple days) before we had gone out to eat with Tony and then he took us off-roading. They were as much fun as the rest of their family, and I wish them all the happiness life has to offer. I’m glad I met them…and their dogs and chickens!

Road Stories

Screen shot 2014-12-10 at 7.45.42 PMI chose to go with a lifeline today, because I couldn’t think of anything freaky to tell you about.

We vacationed in Québec this year. We usually drive anywhere we go. It’s cheaper and we get to see more, but it’s also exhausting. We always start out so excited. We turn on our road trip jams, chow down on junk food, and breathe in the great outdoors through our windows. But a few hours later when your stomach stops agreeing with all the chips and chocolate you ate, the excitement starts to wear off. James always drives, because I hate driving. It stresses me out, and I’m just not good at it.

When I went to Columbus last weekend, I went with a friend who might hate driving more than I do. So I drove. And let me tell you, just less than three hours exhausted me. I don’t know how my sweet fiancé does it, but I’m so thankful that he’s always willing to take us from point A to point B. Sometimes it’s from Indianapolis to Canada. Southside Indy to downtown. Our apartment to the gym. He’s always behind the wheel or his Impala or my Honda. How did I get so lucky?

When we went to Colorado around Labor Day, we flew. What a delight! We got to come home from vacation not totally exhausted. But we also got really sick right when we got back. Perhaps it was airport germs. You can’t win ’em all.

Wedding bells!

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I didn’t have to think as much today, as this one is a no-brainer for me. On June 6, I am marrying James Allan Figy. Falling in love with him was one of the easiest things I’ve done in my life. We have had so many adventures since we got together.

James watched me graduate college, and then last May, I got to watch him do the same. We became vegetarians together. We’ve traveled together to Chicago, Canada, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Tennessee, France, and England.

This is from the book "Everything I Need to Know I Learned From a Little Golden Book." It makes me happy.

This is from the book “Everything I Need to Know I Learned From a Little Golden Book.” It makes me happy.

We’ve also gone through some tough times. But through losses, we’ve supported each other.

And even when life is boring, it’s fun. I’m perfectly happy snuggling on the couch watching Netflix together.

I don’t consider myself sentimental. In fact, I always thought skipping over the stress and going to the court house is what I would do. But all the pieces have been falling into place, and I’m so glad I changed my mind. The Indiana Statehouse is a gorgeous venue. My dress is the prettiest thing I’ve ever seen. I loved taking our engagement pictures and sending save-the-dates. It seems like the to-do list keeps getting longer, but I’m ready. I’d rather enjoy these moments than stress out about them.

Aside from my overall bliss about saying “I do” to the live of my life, I’m also stoked to have the people we love there to celebrate our big day. I can’t wait to see everyone.

While I may still be a little bit worried about the planning and my overall social awkwardness, there’s one thing I’m not worried about. Making a commitment to stay with James for the rest of my days. I’m so excited to see where life takes us!

No one puts Baby in a binder…

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When I was a freshman in college, I worked as a waitress. I carried pepper spray, because I’d get back to campus after dark and have to park far away from my dorm. I remember holding it, hand on the trigger, so I’d be ready to use it at a moment’s notice all the way back to Cravens Hall.

That same year, a friend reached out to me in tears about how she was taken advantage on her college campus. She felt hurt, stupid. And the man who should have loved and protected her was mad that it happened. Fuck him.

These are the things we deal with.


#YesAllWomen went viral after the tragic shooting in Santa Barbara. The premise was that while not all men assault or harm women, all women live with the fear of being hurt. It’s absolutely true. We’re told never to leave our drinks unattended, to always use the buddy system, etc.

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Thanks to high profile figures, such as our president, JGL, Beyonce, Emma Watson, the conversation surrounding feminism has been amplified. It’s becoming less of a dirty F-word. People aren’t afraid to let their feminist flag fly. In fact, here is a roundup I read recently about the 39 most iconic feminist moments of 2014.

Seeing all the attention surrounding a cause sometimes makes us think we’ve won the fight. But we haven’t. We have a long way to go.

This weekend, I went to see John Oliver in Columbus with my friend Jamy. On our way to the theater, a man at a bus stop catcalled us. We ended up eating at the worst restaurant ever, because we didn’t want to explore the city. And when we realized she’d left the tickets in the car, we crossed the street to walk up the next block and avoid the bus stop. Would we have avoided that bus stop if we were men? Probably not. This experience isn’t that much different from the experiences I described from my freshman year of college.

I’m so glad that public figures have drawn attention to this cause. I’ve always been a feminist, but I’m ashamed to admit I haven’t always identified as one. Now I’m not afraid to call myself the F-word. And I urge all people to raise their feminist flag as well.

Because at a time when governments still legislate what women can do with their bodies, politicians feel the need to define rape, and women STILL make less money than men for doing the same job, we need all the support we can get.

The job isn’t done. It’s only started.

Alla-kazam!

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Sunday is the day I do all my household chores and errand running, so I don’t have a lot of day left. Also, I really need to get some freelance work done so momma can get paid! But this is an easy one.

Teleportation. Bam.

Third place

Screen shot 2014-12-06 at 10.49.31 AMWhen I first saw the title of this prompt, I thought it had to do with a bronze medal. However, with my third place location, I wouldn’t even get the medal.

Outside of home and work, I spent a lot of time at the gym. I hold a membership at the Baxter YMCA. I worked there for five years, and my membership was always free. I couldn’t part ways when I started working at Angie’s List. I’m glad I go to the Y. I imagine other gyms are full of really fit people constantly judging the girl huffing and puffing at speed 5 on the treadmill — me. However, at my gym, there are people of all shapes, sizes, and ages. It’s still not my favorite place.

I HATE working out. My face turns read. I feel like I can’t breathe. And no matter how many times I do it, I still push through a workout staring at the clock waiting for it to be over. When people say they enjoy the gym, I always think they’re lying. There’s no way someone likes putting themselves through that torture.

People talk about the endorphin release and all the feel good chemicals you get from it. Nope, not me. I’ve also heard it gets easier, because you get better. Also, not me. I go to group fitness to make it more tolerable, but I’m still counting down the minutes.

I’ll continue to go, because I’m only 24, and my metabolism is already crap. But I won’t like it.


In other news, I’m driving to Columbus to see John Oliver today. Can’t. Wait! Except for the driving part. I also suck at driving.