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February was short, 28 days, but it felt, in many ways, much longer. February is always a weird month, a transition from gung-ho January into the reality of a new year. Over the last month, I feel like I got a little more lax with my "diet," it got a little harder to get up before sunrise to get myself to the gym. I mean, when you wake up, daily, to this, it's hard to want to get out of bed and leave your apartment. And, with the freezing Chicago weather, it's also been really hard to not want to spend the...

I turned 38 over the weekend and it's officially safe to say that I am in my "late thirties." At 37 I could still say mid-thirties and be, technically, OK, but there is no denying that 38 is no longer mid. 38 lands in a solidly late position. Last year, turning 37, I wasn't really into my birthday. I just wasn't in a good place in my life and didn't have any energy or desire to celebrate turning one more year closer to 40. I ended up choosing a bar close to home, thanking friends when they kept cancelling because I didn't...

I always get kind of nervous to look back, in December, at the resolutions I had made for the year back in January. Usually, by now, I've completely forgotten what, exactly, I pledged to do with my twelve fresh months. Oh, who am I kidding, I usually forget by February. I was pleasantly surprised, though, this year, when I reread my 2018 New Year's resolutions. Sure, there were things I knew I didn't accomplish. I didn't lose any weight or really cut down on sugar like I wanted to do. I mean, I guess I did lose some weight and did cut...

Recently I've been going through all of my old blog posts. Ones from 2006, 2007, 2008. The last time I switched hosting and themes I lost all of my featured images (🔝🔝🔝) so I've been replacing those. I've been updating broken links. I've been adding more photos since I used to only post one or two and then link to now-defunct gallery pages for more. I've been cleaning up typos, adding alt tags, cross linking, writing meta descriptions. And, wherever possible, I've been reworking them to align with my SEO strategy. Of course, most of the posts are hopeless. They are...

My sister gave me a choice for what to gift me for my birthday: cash, a gift card, or a ticket to join her on a Chicago pizza tour with Chicago Pizza Tours. While my debt-ridden bank account always appreciates money and my Starbucks card can always use that reload, a pizza tour sounded like fun. Plus, with stops at four different restaurants across an afternoon, it was free lunch. And probably dinner too. My birthday was back in January, but we decided to hold off on going until the spring, when the weather would be nicer. Of course, spring in...

I avoided dating before I left home to travel the world. I was afraid that I'd meet someone and that he would interrupt my plans. Because I had a plan. And I knew what I wanted for the future. And I didn't want anything to get in the way. It's been seven years since I left. Three and a half since I returned. And I still avoid anything that could possibly be considered a "commitment." Anything that might get in the way of any of my future plans. Because I have plans. Or, at least, ideas. I still think, often, of traveling...

This was the year that I quit. I quit everything. I quit guitar lessons. I quit salsa dancing. I quit my softball team. I quit relationships. I quit blogging. I guess that quit might be too a strong word. Stopped might be better. I stopped going. I stopped caring. I stopped showing up. I didn't purposely leave any of those things. I didn't yell, "I QUIT!" and storm off in a huff. There were no calculated decisions. No pros and cons lists. I just didn't have the energy to keep going. With anything. And so, I stopped. I spent most of the...

December is always busy. Between normal life, wrapping up things for the year, wrapping gifts, Christmas shopping, parties, events, and all those extra things to do around the holidays, it's just a busy month. It was a fun month, though, and I spent a lot of time with friends and co-workers. Here are some of the things I did in December...