what books are you reading?

white ceramic teacup with saucer near two books above gray floral textile

I am reading a few different books at once right now. Do you ever do that? I find it helps keep me entertained and engaged to have multiple different genres.

The Dip by Seth Godin
This book is all about how to quit and quit well. Are you in a dip or a dead end? How do you use your resources well and not exert energy on things that won’t pay off in the end? Easy to read and highly insightful.

The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker
Best friends since college, two young women work as animators in the male dominated field. They live a rough and tumble life style, and try to make it big without ruining their friendship or the relationships around them in the process.

The One and Only by Emily Giffin
This book hits close to home. It is about a woman who is obsessed with football in her small Texas college town (ahem, Baylor is that you??). She starts dating a football star but when a scandal breaks out, she starts to realized that her comfortable life may not be everything she thought…

I need recommendations for my upcoming travels. Give me all the tips!

P.s. photo by Thought Catalog

Things I’m Learning

top view photo of ceramic mugs filled with coffees

Cover letters suck to write

Friendship takes time, be patient

January is the worst but February is shorter

Call your mom, her voice will fix it

Studying is like a job. Just sit down and do it.

Volleyball is really fun, even in German

Tell your boyfriend you love him often

P.s. Photo from Google photos. I love you, coffee.

Europe: Expectations vs. Reality

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Expectations
Sitting in a cafe for hours on end, drinking coffee, talking philosophy, watching bike riders pass by with flowers in their basket, happy people with free health care strolling down sunny cobble stone streets, staring wistfully out of train windows while fitting emotional music plays in the background.

Reality
Running late for the bus, sweaty, running late for the train, sweaty, climbing four flights of stairs to my apartment, sweaty, lugging backpacks full of groceries on my bike in the snow, cold and sweaty, emptying the food leftovers from the sink to the waste bin because there’s no garbage disposal, sorting my trash into six specific bins, everyone dressed in black from head to to because we haven’t seen the sun in five months.

Funny how life has a way of surprising us, isn’t it? I am somehow who sets her expectations very high (curse you, American idealism!!), and constantly has to check them and reassess.

I complain sometimes, especially in winter, but still have a huge soft spot in my heart for you, Europe. Thanks for being a continent.

“Those Winter Sundays”

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Sundays too my father got up early 
and put his clothes on in the blueblack cold, 
then with cracked hands that ached 
from labor in the weekday weather made 
banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him. 

I’d wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking. 
When the rooms were warm, he’d call, 
and slowly I would rise and dress, 
fearing the chronic angers of that house, 

Speaking indifferently to him, 
who had driven out the cold 
and polished my good shoes as well. 
What did I know, what did I know 
of love’s austere and lonely offices?
-Robert Hayden
This is one of my favorite poems. Yesterday was a chilly, melancholy winter Sunday. Today is better. What do you make of this poem?
P.s. Photo from my trip to Switzerland last year

Happy New Year!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 presetHappy New Year! Two days in and I’m already feeling like it’s going to be a big one. My head spins when I think about all the things that happened in 2018- finishing my Fulbright, moving to Texas for the summer, meeting my boyfriend, moving to Muenster for grad school, making many new friends, etc. 

I read that January is a hard month for many people. It is dark and cold without holiday festivities. Plus, there’s the feeling that you can change things about your life with a fresh start to the year, but often those changes or goals go unmet early on.

This year I am keeping things simple. I want to knit a scarf, read a book a month, keep up with my homework more consistently, and a few other small things. I hope that I can continue to create healthy habits that will last throughout the year.

Have a happy start, friends!

My first year out of college vs. my second year

IMG_0645First year

  1. What exactly is steel wool made of and why have I never used it before? It cleans dishes so well. Have people been keeping this a secret from me my whole life?
  2. My landlord is, well, not the best. How do I behave around her? What an awkward relationship.
  3. Dang, getting up every day at 6am for work is exhausting. I need to go to bed at 8pm.
  4. Where are all the young people who automatically want to be my friend? Pretty sure my personality didn’t change that much since senior year.
  5. Geez, going to the gynecologist in Germany sure is a blast…
  6. Oh, right, you’re my colleague, not my friend. Gotta remember that.
  7. Taxes. Which boxes to mark, that is the question.
  8. Are you free to hang out this week? This month? This year? Well, it was nice knowing ya.

Second year

  1. I have paid my rent on time for three months in a row.
  2. I have cleaning products I actually prefer. I literally have preferences.
  3. I cooked a well balanced meal tonight. Pasta was not involved in the making.
  4. I think this person is my friend. It only took a year of coaxing but, heck, we do stuff together sometimes.
  5. I own a blazer and slacks.
  6. My resume says I have skills. People ask me to be their friend on LinkedIn.
  7. I have a boyfriend. He has a job. Miracles.
  8. I think I can do this.

 

Happy Thanksgiving

a-charlie-brown-thanksgiving.jpgAnother year, anther missed Thanksgiving. Oops! I always miss home terribly this time of year, and I can’t wait to celebrate full force in future years. I will be a forced to be recognized with as I try to make up for all my missed celebrating! Below are a few things I am thankful for:

  1. A family that loves and supports me
  2. A sweet boyfriend with a great reading voice and rockin’ mustache
  3. The opportunity to use my mind in the classroom and further my education
  4. The chance to experience German culture
  5. Coffee. Always.
  6. My health
  7. My bed that is always there for me with open arms
  8. Old and new friends
  9. Chocolate chip cookies
  10. The chance to experience life. Cheesy, but true. Very true.