Cereal Is My Crack

One of my favs on YouTube. Seriously who doesn’t love cereal?!? I don’t know many, if any kids, who weren’t hooked on cereal at one time or another during their childhood. I’m eating some Oh’s right now. mmmm

Props to spricket24 on this fabulous cultural commentary.

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We Gotta Stick Together

You don’t need another person telling you how bad the economy is.

But there aren’t a lot of people talking about what we can do for each other. Being a mid-twentysomething I keep thinking how we as young professional needs to stick together. It can be difficult when seeing each other as competitors for rare job openings, but even in that competition, we all need encouragement.

I’ve recently made a move to a new city, from one job to starting my own business. There’s so much to learn. Glimpses of panic and “what am I doing” thoughts aren’t constant, but they peek around the corner every now and then. I love listening to what my friends are up to: whether they are in transition to something new or just in search of that thing they want to do.

Seeing what other are passionate about really invigorates and renews my fire to move forward. If there are ways I can help others pursue their passion, a job, or interest, I do my best to help them out. The point being, young professional need to stick together. To encourage one another. To see the possibility instead of dwelling on the obstacles. I am so confident in my generation’s ingenuity, imagination, and drive.

Though things are tough right now…we’re working toward something great. We need one another and we can never forget that.

Lime, Lime Oooo La La

If I had to decide on two of my favorite things as of late, they’d be Lady Gaga and Tostitos Hint of Lime chips. Hands down.

Okay, I know a lot of people have their own issues with Lady Gaga. Some say she doesn’t have any talent. Others just say she’s a bit of a freak. I’d say no way on the former – she was the first artist ever to have 4 number one songs on a debut album. To the latter, maybe a little. But think how much she has enriched our lives, our ears, and pop culture in general. She’s worn an outfit made of Muppets, a bird nest on her face, covered completely in red satin lace, and bloodied herself of for the VMA’s. Besides some of her oddities, she, as an artist, puts her money where her mouth is…particularly with the LGBT community. A lot of celebrities pay lip service to stepping on cultural land mines, and then other actually prance on and around them. With a bird next on your face and fiercely loyal gays by your side, what is there to fear? Not much. The Fame, then The Fame Monster came packed with addictive dance selections and lyrics that go above and beyond the typical pop cliches.

Second favorite of 2009: Tostitos Hint of Lime chips. I seriously cannot get enough of these delicious, salty and tangy chips. Consuming nearly a bag in one day is not beyond me. I know they’ve been around for a few years now, but they never get old. Don’t you dare try to smother them with salsa — I don’t care how gourmet or fresh it is. These chips stand firmly on their own, without need of any assistance to satisfy your taste buds.

Clark Street and My Inner Foodie

So I’ve only been in Chicago for a little over a week now, but I’ve managed to find several places that satisfy my inner-foodie. While I’ve been to several places so far, three stand out..and they all happen to be on Clark Street.

The first is Noble Tree Coffee. It’s a spacious, three-level coffee shop that is supposedly known for its delicious pie, which I have yet to try. What sticks out right away is that they have a lot of SPACE. That can be difficult to find in coffee shops these days. The first floor comes with a nice fire, perfect for cold days, and plenty of plug-ins for laptops — generosity to techies. The second floor also has a variety of seating: couches, round tables, tables for two…and I have yet to venture to the third floor (can’t do it all at once!). I have been satisfied with everything that I’ve had there so far.

The second place is just down the street and it fulfills my unrelenting sweet tooth – called Molly’s Cupcakes. Who doesn’t like cupcakes!? Get it the way you want for just $2.00 + a little extra for toppings (I love the Reese’s Pieces or brownie bites). It’s a cozy little place with really friendly service. So the next time you need something sweet, head over to Molly’s Cupcakes. It’s just the right amount of sweet after a hearty meal.

Last, but not least is Sultan’s Market. I really haven’t tried a whole lot of Middle Eastern food, but the fact they have so many vegetarian options — while being incredibly affordable and fast — makes this place a no brainer. I had the vegetarian combo, which came with a few pitas that I could stuff with veggies, falafel, hummus, and rice. It hit the spot and wasn’t greasy or heavy. Just satisfying flavors.

These restaurants are all within three blocks of one another and just a tiny slice of even greater foodie experiences to come in the great city of Chicago. To quote my friend Paula, “love and best dishes from my kitchen to yours”. Happy eating!

I Love You Chapter 31.

Let’s start with the obvious.

Working from home is a little much.

Now being self-employed, with the freedom to work from home, I’ve found how old that gets. So today I traveled to a semi-close coffee shop in Chicago to work for the afternoon. Naturally as I’m working, other things are coming to mind.

relationships. friendships. the new city. my living situation. how lonely i am. how isolated things feels.

My thoughts quickly head south  and my mood darkens.

Now I have written about my new adventure into the book “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff”. So I whipped out that book and flipped to chapter 31, titled “Become Aware of Your Moods and Don’t Allow Yourself to Be Fooled by the Low Ones”. I’ve highlighted the chapters that really hit me so I can access them quickly when my brain attacks.

Five minutes prior I wrote this in my journal: “The group of guys I’ve met so far are nice, although I still feel like an outsider.”

DUH! It’s my 6th day in a new city! That entry led to more negative feelings, loneliness, and self-pity.

But Chapter 31 came to the rescue:

“Your own moods can be extremely deceptive. They can, and probably do, trick you into believing your life is far worse than it really is.”

Bingo! As soon as I read that, I looked to what I had written in my notebook and laughed. My anxiety melted away and had another moment of clarity and accuracy. I don’t pretend to understand the human body or psyche…but the fact our mood manipulates our brain or our brain can worsen (or better) our moods is mind boggling.

Chapter 31 is my best friend.

Am I Really Like Meredith Grey?

So I’m just now catching up on Grey’s Anatomy…well really not even caught up yet. I just started Season 4 this past week. Now about 6 episodes in.

Dr. Burke is gone. Dr. Addison Montgomery is gone. George and Dr. Torres are done for good. Izzie is still in love with George. Alex is still an adorable hard ass. Dr. Yang is nuts for cardio surgeries. And then there’s Meredith.

Meredith is ONCE again stewing over what to do with McDreamy, still agonizing over her mother’s death, her father who abandoned her, and really all of the “issues” that prevent her from entering into a normal, healthy relationship.

I feel a lot like Meredith.

There are people I can’t let go off. Someone in particular I don’t know how to let go of. Believe me, I’ve tried. And now realizing, someone I don’t want to let go of. Meredith ended the latest episode with this:

The thing about addiction is, it never ends well. Because eventually, whatever it is that was getting us high… stops feeling good, and starts to hurt. Still, they say you don’t kick the habit until you hit rock bottom. But how do you know when you’re there? Because no matter how badly a thing is hurting us, sometimes, letting it go hurts even worse.

Relationships can hurt. Friendships can be tough. But how is it possible to remove someone from your life? I don’t even feel like that’s a human thing to do. So I go through the crap and revisit the “issues” that I have. But I’ve been apart from this person for over two years. Waiting for what could happen. And now seeing that now it might be too late. I missed my chance. In the midst of pursuing my own dreams.

Like Meredith, maybe I haven’t grown a lot in four seasons. But I’m not where I used to be. And ss Tony Campolo said the other night so brilliantly: “We are not what we should be, but thank God we aren’t what we were.”

Perhaps there’s a little Meredith in all of us.

A New Start – Chicago Style

Yesterday I finally made the trek to Chicago.

It’s always strange moving to a new place. At first you feel like it’s a vacation that will be over soon. But no, I’m living in Chicago for who knows how long (I’ve made myself a two year minimum limit).

Staying with a friend temporarily and couldn’t be more excited!

There’s so much to see, explore, and learn about. Being able to live in one of America’s greatest cities will be an experience I never forget.

So here’s to day 1 in the Windy City!