Category Archives: Things I love

28 things I learned in my 28th year

Today I am 28 years old. 🙂 Here are 28 things I learned in this past year.

  1. I love going to plays. I saw two plays (Good People and The Brother’s Size) this year, and I was moved to tears by both. I can’t wait to see the next one!
  2. I enjoy TV shows that have one word titles; “Revenge”, “Deception”, “Nashville”, “Survivor”, “Scandal”, “Chicago Fire”… oh wait. Never mind.
  3. You can teach an old dog new tricks.

    Tahn at her first (second round) of Puppy Class

    Tahn, at her first (second  time around) Puppy Class

  4. I hate living in a messy bedroom and a messy house. (Also: I hate all the clutter and stuff I have. I am in the process of getting rid of many things. DVDs and old Coach purses, anyone?)
  5. I like driving with my windows down.
  6. I need to do yoga weekly. With or without a studio.
  7. I shouldn’t wait until I make more money to start saving money. I am learning to make better (small) financial choices daily.
  8. I did find an exercise that I love.
  9. Meditation only helps with stress if you practice it daily. Meditation doesn’t help when you’re remarkably stressed or upset.
  10. Being honest and telling the truth continues to be the best and most challenging decision I’ve ever made in my life.
  11. Eating well daily and consistently keeping active will help you lose (and keep off) weight.
  12. I like thriller novels. (Just like my grandma).
  13. Being single is really fantastic. I have embraced my singleness this year (after the dramatic failure of an attempted relationship) and I am much, much happier single.
  14. I was born a leader. And I become a better leader everyday.
  15. Making time for myself has a paramount affect on my happiness spectrum.
  16. I actually do like going out. As a self-proclaimed home-body, I have found friends whom like doing what I like to do – happy hours!  (and other things). I love it.photo(37)photo(36)photo(38)
  17. Acts of kindness from strangers are some of the best experiences you’ll ever have.
  18. While making friends can be challenging, once you find them, they bless your life in more ways then you could ever imagine.
  19. San Diego is one of the best places to live. (My sister was right).
  20. Doing the right thing and treating others with respect doesn’t guarantee that you won’t have conflict in your life. In fact, there is no protection at all. Sometimes, you do the right thing and get burned. Don’t be deferred. Do the right thing.
  21. Although I value the opinions of those who I care most about, their opinions are just that – opinions. I am the person who has to live with my daily choices and life. My opinion is the only one that matters.
  22. Having a nephew is great. Having a niece and a nephew is really fantastic.
  23. Tahn LOVES a routine.
  24. The difference a year makes. I am in such a better place then I was a year ago. And a year before that. Aging is awesome!
  25. I need to learn how to speak slower. For real.
  26. Non-judging is key to my happiness.
  27. Kitchen appliances, although they take up space, can be very useful for healthy cooking. (A food processor and blender are on the top of the list, not far down is a rice cooker). (Also: I am my father’s child).
  28. My mom and dad really, truly love me with all of their hearts. (It’s not that I didn’t know this, but this year I was overwhelmed by their love for me on many occasions. I went home a few weeks before Thanksgiving and the one thing I took away from that weekend was that my parents just love me. It is one of the best feelings in the world).
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    My mom and me.

    My dad and me. (Hey Dad, we need to take a more updated picture. This is from 2009).

    My dad and me. (Hey Dad, we need to take a more updated picture. This is from 2009).

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Filed under Blogging, Crazy Dog Lady, Exercise, Family, Fun Things, Life, Living Simply, Love, Tahnee, Things I love, Things I've learned

The Socialpunk Trilogy

A little while ago I was contacted by Monica Leonelle, blogger and author of The Socialpunk Trilogy. She asked me to write a review on her new book, Socialpunk.

Since I love to read, I was happy to participate. The book is not my usual genre; it’s a bit fantasy and set in the future. I was pretty skeptical I’d like it, but I decided to read it anyways.

My thoughts:

I really, really liked it. Socialpunk grabbed me right away and I read it in a few hours. It has everything in a a book I love: romance, action and suspense. Although it is set in the future, (in a world we do not live) Monica does an excellent job making you feel like you’re right along with the characters, describing their environment really well. I would say this a mix of Twilight and A Girl With a Dragon Tattoo. It has the romance and fantasy of Twilight, with the suspense of A Girl with A Dragon Tattoo (and without the super intense stuff).

My only complaint is that it wasn’t long enough! She leaves you on the edge of your seat. I’m definitely going to be reading the next book in the trilogy (Socialmob), which comes out in July 2012.

My Interview with Monica:

BrittanyandTahn: What motivated you to start writing?

Monica Leonelle: I was inspired by the city of Chicago, by social media issues in our current world, and by the cyberpunk genre. The book is a bit like the Terminator series and I reference that a couple times just for fun. James Cameron is basically my favorite director ever, and he really inspires me with his world-building and storytelling skills.
BandT: Who is your favorite character in Socialpunk?
ML: I would have to say Ima, as she’s the main character and the book is told entirely from her point of view. What I love about her is how much she changes from the beginning of the book to the end. She feels very guilty and is constantly struggling with right vs. wrong. She’s probably one of my favorite characters out of all the ones I’ve written.
BandT: What is one book everyone should read?
ML: When I was a kid I loved this book called The Girl With the Silver Eyes. Here is the exact cover of the book I had: http://www.amazon.com/Girl-Silver-Eyes-Apple-Paperbacks/dp/0590442481. It’s one of my absolute favorite YA novels, and, surprise! Maggie Stiefvater loves that book too. This was the first novel that made me want to write fantasy and science fiction.

If you’re interested in learning more about the book, visit http://socialpunktrilogy.com

Monica Leonelle is a well-known digital media strategist and the author of three novels. She blogs at Prose on Fire (http://proseonfire.com) and shares her writing and social media knowledge with other bloggers and authors through her Free Writer Toolkit (http://proseonfire.com/free-writer-toolkit).

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My sister visiting Sacramento! And TSwift

Happy Labor Day, everyone! I can’t wait to tell you about my weekend, photo journalistic style. (aka I am so tired but I really want to blog about it).

My fabulous sister, Sarah flew into Sacramento on Friday. This was her first time visiting me – ever! It was so exciting. She had never really spend much time in Sacramento, so it was super fun showing her my little town.

On Friday night, we went to happy hour.

After happy hour, on the way to dinner.

Saturday we slept in and then my mom, brother, S2 and Buddy came to visit. It was so much fun. We had lunch and loved that sweet little baby a lot.

After an afternoon of hanging out with my mom and sister (my brother and his family had other people to visit in Sac), my mom decided to try on my sister’s shoes.

I swear I was not posing in the background. I really couldn't believe my mom was trying on my sister's platform shoes... A little dramatic, I know.

Saturday night, Sarah and I went to the Taylor Swift concert. My pseudo step-sister went to the Taylor Swift concert in LA last week and called it the TSwift concert – so that is what Sarah and I called it for the entire weekend.

For the TSwift concert, Sarah bought vintage boots for me to wear.

My outfit was a hit.

Yep. That's Tahn pouting in the background. She's upset that we were leaving.

On the way to the TSwift concert!

As soon as we got to the concert, my prediction of being the oldest people at the concert sans children was confirmed. Not only were there tweens there, but there were also four and five-year-olds.

Yep. that’s right. Women in their late twenties, at a concert for teenagers. It was awesome.

As soon as we got seated, we started tweeting like crazy. If you follow me on Twitter, you were very amused stopped following me immediately after my large amount of tweets. Sarah and I started tweeting to each other, which, (was confirmed later) was only funny to her and me.

Anyhoo. Taylor came on just after 8:30, and performed a full two hours. I couldn’t help but to compare her performance to Britney’s performance earlier this summer.  Not only did Taylor sing every song, but she also was so interactive with the crowd. (Compared to Britney who lip-synced most songs and barely talked to us). As my sister pointed out, Taylor was truly grateful that we were there and made us feel that way.

Plus, she put on a fantastic performance.

Photo from the concert.

By the end of the night, Sarah and I were on a TSwift high. The TSwift concert was the best concert I have ever been to. I will always go and see her perform. I recommend you do too. 🙂

Sunday morning, my dad came up and took us to an amazing brunch before Sarah headed to the airport. It was such a great weekend!

During the encore, Sarah captured me doing the "Taylor Heart". Taylor, and all her fans do this heart at her concerts. It's truly what I felt at the end of the night.

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Filed under Family, Fun Things, Things I love, Vacation

Things I like this week

Today was the best Monday I’ve had in weeks. Maybe even in months. I think it was a great Monday for a multitude of reasons, but here are a few:

  • I started my day getting up super early and taking Tahn for a long work
  • My mom visited me all day yesterday and we had a great day: watch the Woman’s World Cup Final at a sports bar, had a relaxing afternoon eating yummy food and drinking wine at L Wine Lounge (thanks to Amy for the great recommendation!), took a cat nap, walked Tahn to the dog park, then finished the evening with ice tea outside
  • My dad visited me today and brought me two pieces of furniture I have needed desperately in my apartment: a bookshelf and a butcher block on wheels.  We walked Tahn down to a local bar and had happy hour
  • I found this blog post and this blog post – two new mantras of my life

I hope you’re having a great Monday, too.

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Filed under Blogging, Family, Food!, Fun Things, My Apartment, Things I love

Mean

I am a huge Taylor Swift fan. Not only is she a writer and producer of her music, but she also is a great role model for young girls. She may wear a short skirt now and then, but let me tell you, she’s not dancing on a strip pole like Miley Cyrus or Britney Spears did.

I’ve always loved Taylor’s music and I was so thrilled to get a copy of her latest album, “Speak Now”. In this album (as well has past albums) she calls out men who have treated her wrong and it is so fantastic. It is such great break up music and I know millions of girls blast Taylor’s music in their cars as they are getting over a broken heart.

And on Taylor’s “Speak Now” album she has a song that would have been my anthem in high school.

“Mean”.

In this song, Taylor calls out whoever is mean to her telling them she is going to rise above it all and move on with her life. This song would have been exactly what I needed in high school. High school was hard for me like it was for so many people. By no stretch of the imagination was I bullied, but I definitely had a difficult time. Basically, I had previously been friends with a group of girls that were always mean to me, so when I eventually left their group my sophomore year, they were persistently mean to me for the rest of high school.

Having said that, I’d like to dedicate Taylor Swift’s song to all the girls who are dealing with mean girls (in high school and beyond). Take comfort in Taylor’s words and know that just like Taylor says,

“You, with your words like knives
And swords and weapons that you use against me,
You, have knocked me off my feet again,
Got me feeling like I’m nothing.
You, with your voice like nails on a chalkboard
Calling me out when I’m wounded.
You, pickin’ on the weaker man.

“Well you can take me down,
With just one single blow.
But you don’t know, what you don’t know,

“Someday, I’ll be living in a big old city,
And all you’re ever gonna be is mean.
Someday, I’ll be big enough so you can’t hit me,
And all you’re ever gonna be is mean.
Why you gotta be so mean?

“You, with your switching sides,
And your walk by lies and your humiliation
You, have pointed out my flaws again,
As if I don’t already see them.
I walk with my head down,
Trying to block you out cause I’ll never impress you
I just wanna feel okay again.

“I bet you got pushed around,
Somebody made you cold,
But the cycle ends right now,
You can’t lead me down that road,
You don’t know, what you don’t know”.

Thanks, Taylor.

Thanks for not only writing this song, but also pointing out that they were probably treated poorly and that is why they are mean. Thanks for reminding us not to continue the cycle of meanness and to instead be kind.

Now I’m living in a (sort of) big old city, and while I hope they’ve changed, they probably are still mean.

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