Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 Top 5

It's happened again: another year went by! I think 2013 has officially become my favorite year so far.  I thought about recapping the whole year because I didn't really start blogging until May-ish so you'd probably hear some new information, but then I started to do it and it was taking forever and I realized I was mostly just excited about a few things in particular. Twenty-thirteen ... you were good to me.
 

I started the year off in San Francisco with some friends and you guys, it was so much fun. It's definitely the wildest New Year's I've ever had ... we may or may not have ended up at a hotel party with people we met on the street. Your 20's are for making dumb decisions, right? Moving right along...

5. Embracing Singleness
 

When I rang in the New Year I had a boyfriend. Less than a month later, I didn't. I wrote about that experience here, but the gist is that in 2013 I learned that being single doesn't have to be a bad thing. For the first time I didn't feel like my life was incomplete, and it was a freeing feeling. Thanks, 2013, for that. (Also if you haven't, read this post about being single. It's another one of my favorites.)

4. Blogging for real
 
 The Other Juliette
 
I started taking my blog more seriously. I changed my blog name from Three Years and Counting to The Other Juliette. Erin gave me a brand new design that I'm still in love with, and I got a blog Twitter account. Blogging is one of my favorite things, and I'm so glad that this year I found out just how wonderful the blogging community can be.
 
3. Moving Out
 
 
Jacey and I finally got our shit together and moved into an apartment in San Luis. I learned some things about myself when we moved, and I've loved everything about our apartment. Even our tiny kitchen. Even our crooked mirrors and light fixtures. Even our really loud pipes. I just love it.
 
2. Meeting Blog Friends
 
If you had told me 6 months ago that I would drive 3 and 6 hours to meet people from the internet I would have laughed pretty hard and told you something along the lines of, "No way in h-e-double hockey sticks." But the weekend in San Diego with Sami was easily one of my favorite weekends of the year. It's funny how certain people just come into your life in such random ways and you just know that person is there to stay.
 
I didn't hate it when Ashten came to Ventura, either. We drank, we talked sports (Ashten talked sports), we filmed a blog (that has yet to see the internet um what's up with that????), and it felt like we'd known each other for a lot longer than just a few months.
 
I have a list of people I want to visit and hang out with in 2014 so if somebody could give me a winning lottery ticket THAT'D BE GREAT KAY THANKS.
 
And now the Number One moment of 2013 ... you probably already know what it is.
 
If you don't, you haven't been around much.
 
Here's a hint: it was in September.
 
Fine, I'll just tell you.
 
1. Meeting Baby Kate
 
On Easter, my sister told our family that she was pregnant. That day was one of the most exciting days ever, even though she wouldn't let me touch her barely-there baby bump.

 
 The bump grew....
if my sister knew I posted these pictures my death would be swift and sure.

I wrote the baby a letter... and then F.I.N.A.L.L.Y. in the middle of the night and not dramatically at all ... she came.
 
 
And she is my favorite. But you probably already knew that.

 






And that's it. My top 5 moments from 2013. This year was so great, and 2014 will be hard-pressed to beat it but I'm sure gonna try and make that happen. Maybe.
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Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas was last week, so what?

How exactly are you supposed to start blogging again after it's been a solid week since your last post? Since tomorrow's the last day of 2013 I feel like I should post a 2013 recap but that feels overwhelming which means I'll probably try to do it because as we all know, I'm an overachiever (har har no I'm not). But for today let's just look at what happened last week because I don't have the energy to do a recap of an entire year. Yet.
 
I only worked Monday last week, and not working is the most amazing thing ever but really if I didn't have a job I'd probably get soooo bored ... that's such a lie I'd be able to find lots of things to take up my time. ANYWAY. FOCUS JULIETTE FOCUS.
 
How can I focus when Baby Kate is looking at me with those eyes and THAT LIP though?? Sorry, got distracted by the cute.
 
Christmas Eve was a really stressful day because I did 90% of my shopping that day. Every year I tell myself I won't do that but then every year I'm like hey, it's Christmas Eve, I guess I should shop! So I spent a solid 6 hours searching for gifts on an empty stomach. It was lovely. Then Ben drove past me randomly and saw the pissed look on my face and said, you look really mad, so that was cool.
 
We have a Christmas Eve service at our church every year and my brother and I lit an advent candle and my pants were way too tight and I was wearing heels and my knees were shaking but I didn't stutter or stumble or anything and I'm proud.

 
 
This is so much nothing.
 
 
Ummmm ok so Christmas Day was kind of weird. Every year until this year I've woken up at my parents' house on Christmas Morning and had breakfast and my grandma and aunt have been there and we've all been in our pajamas... but this year we didn't do that. This year I woke up in my apartment all by myself and didn't do anything until 2pm when we went out to dinner. It was weird, and it didn't feel like Christmas, but it was ok because I watched Harry Potter.
 
I spoiled Baby Kate because duh, she had meltdowns, we all had dessert and opened presents, and she fell asleep on my chest and everything was good.

 
 

Ben and I did Christmas gifts, much to my chagrin. I hate giving guys gifts. Last year I gave my boyfriend a season of Community and two weeks after Christmas it was still in the wrapper on the floor of the backseat of his car, so I was having flashbacks to that. I eventually decided to just give him a bottle of the wine we had on our dinner date .... and I put googly eyes on it because of what that guy told us about me being googly eyed. Ben said he loved it, and he understood the googly eyes so that was good. He gave me a set of mini perfumes from Sephora and I get to pick my favorite and get a full sized bottle. The perfect gift for a picky NOT girlfriend!!


I have nothing else noteworthy to say so I'll just show you this other picture of Baby Kate sleeping on my chest. You guys, it doesn't get any better. Also this picture is a lie because my hair doesn't look like that in real life.


 
 I apologize if you came here today looking for something of substance; maybe I'll have that for you tomorrow? I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas week and I'll be back tomorrow. I've missed you guys. 
 
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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Always LOVE

Sometimes I find myself just going about my normal day, drinking Diet Coke and thinking about mundane things, and then somebody will tell me something that just completely stops me in my tracks. Don't worry, I'm going to tell you about it. Recently my friend Ashten and I were talking about normal life things, like how badly she needs to move back to CA, how much we love mimosas, and how I know next to nothing about football, when she started telling me about some friends of hers here in California. Man friends. Man friends who surf, and love people, and who have smiles that will turn you into a puddle of gooey mush in about 2.7 seconds. Ready?
 
This is Matt Coulter hanging out with a child. SWOON. But wait, there's more!
 
 
This is Nathaniel Curran. Stare into his eyes and try not to smile back at him. I bet you're failing hard.


 
 
You. Guys. I am not kidding you when I say that Matt and Nathaniel are even better on the inside than they are on the outside. I know, I didn't think that was possible either. Are you ready to fall in love? Think carefully about that question.
 
In 2010 Matt and Nathaniel received the devastating news that a friend of theirs was diagnosed with cancer. I don't know about you, but when I hear the word "cancer," I only associate it with negative words. Matt and Nathaniel knew they wanted to help, but they wanted to do more than just offer encouraging words and frozen casseroles. They wanted to do something big. And they wanted to do something that would benefit more people than just this friend. So they did. Prepare to begin your swooning and "awwww"ing and I'll be right there with you.
 
Matt and Nathaniel began a non profit organization that is dedicated to helping today's youth (those under the age of 30) beat cancer. Their foundation is called The Young and Brave, and built on LOVE, and they do it well. They are so dedicated to this organization, and they desire to help those battling cancer (their WARRIORS) in whatever way they can.
 

 
I was able to cuddle with Matt in front of a fire while it snowed outside and he answered some questions for me.
 
Oh wait, sorry that was just a dream I had. Moving on...
 
You can read more details on The Young and Brave website (and I suggest you do that because there are more pictures), but basically what you need to know is that these two men are passionate about this. Though they each have full time jobs (Nathaniel is a professional surfer ahem ahem and Matt just finished his first Ironman event), and other things that take up their attention, but they still make time to dedicate to their foundation. Have you heard people say things like, "If you care about it, you'll make the time"? That statement is so true. We make time for things that are important to us. And while I'm making time to binge watch TV shows or browse Pinterest, men like Matt and Nathaniel are making time to run a non profit foundation to help young people who are fighting a deadly disease.
 
One of the things The Young and Brave foundation needs is exposure. If you're a blogger reading this, you understand just how important exposure is. The Young and Brave is there to help people, but how can they be of help if they aren't known? Currently their WARRIORS find out about the available support through word of mouth and social media, but Matt and Nathaniel also host local events and try to connect with hospital staff in various locations in order to spread the word even more.
 

 
That's one way we can help: spread the word. Tell other people about what Matt and Nathaniel are doing (but maybe don't mention how beautiful they are because I don't want the competition wink wink) so they can support them financially or tell more WARRIORS about them.
 
One thing I had a hard time understanding was how Matt, Nathaniel, and others involved with The Young and Brave are able to stay positive in the midst of such sadness. So I asked Matt (when we were cuddling in front of the fire, remember?) that question, and I understand it more now. It's all about not letting the disease be stronger than their hope. Even though dealing with cancer is devastating and tragic, Matt and Nathaniel and others focus on why their organization exists and what else they can do to help. Their desire to help others outweighs the sadness. Can they get any more amazing?
 
Oh don't worry, they can. They keep in contact with their WARRIORS and/or the families of their WARRIORS as much as they can. And so can you! On their website they have profiles of their WARRIORS so that you can get to know them as well. Pictures, stories, updates... it's all there, so you go right ahead and click over there and check it out. Go. Now please.
 
Of course, as with any non profit organization, the need for financial support is great. You can head over to their website and simply donate (it is the season of giving, after all), or you can purchase a tee, hat, or a really really pretty necklace (Christmas gift, you're welcome) and all proceeds go toward helping those fighting cancer. In addition, Ashten has set up a donation site that will be live until January 26th (click here). There is complete truth in the statement, "every little bit helps." It does.
 
If you want to follow The Young and Brave on social media, here are the links (I follow them and I've never regretted it):
 
 
And remember: Always LOVE.
 
(Now excuse me while I just stare into their eyes.)
 
P.S. Nathaniel, call me.
 
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Monday, December 16, 2013

I made it to my blog today

Last week was completely miserable because on Monday I came down with a cold that I'm pretty sure had some kind of personal vendetta against me and was like I hate you and want you to die, so I spent a lot of time on the couch. And in bed. And breathing through my mouth.
 
Then Thursday happened, and I made the very wise decision to go out and drink because... it was Thrusday. The short version of the story is that Jacey and I found $20 on the ground at "our spot," Dammit Tom! was there, I drank fireball, jameson, wine, vodka, and hard cider, I fell in the street, and then on Friday my body was like you are such an idiot and you are going to pay for your dumb decision all. day. long. mwahaha. The long version doesn't exist because I don't remember it.
 
On Friday I tried to get rid of my hangover with Advil, a breakfast burrito, and Diet Coke, but it didn't work. So I cried a little (jk) (no I think I actually did) (maybe not) and then went to bed at 830 and Saturday I woke up feeling like a new woman, so Jacey and I took ourselves on some errands. Look at the one picture I took on our way to heaven Target.
 
Then we turned our fridge into a snowman and it's my new favorite thing ever. All it took was construction paper and wrapping paper and voila! He needs a name. Help.
 
 
Sunday we met some friends and went wine tasting at a winery and just ...wine. Yum. I really should have taken a picture of the view outside but I'm a bad blogger and I forgot. Whoops.
 

Then we went to an early dinner and took this gem of a photo. Please try not to be overwhelmed by the amazing quality of iPhone pictures. If it looks like it was a double date well... it wasn't. Or was it? You'll never know.
 
K bye.
 
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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

#12gramstilchristmas

Oh hey internet. I didn't see much of you yesterday thanks to this stupid cold I'm fighting. I spent the majority of Monday evening and Tuesday lying on the sofa reading a book and popping Vitamin C tablets like it was my job and today I don't feel like I'm going to hack up a lung and that's all thanks to Faith yelling at me to go get Vitamin C so thanks Faith and now here I am with a story to tell you. Ready?
 
So, this one time I was hanging out on gchat with Allie and she told me about this idea she had and I was like, "Whoa I really like that idea," and she was like, "No but really, do you like it?" and I was like, "Yeah, I like, REALLY like it." and that was that.
 
So we nailed down the details and I'm still really excited about this! Drumroll please (go ahead and start slapping your hands on your desk or your knees or your friend's face, I'll wait).....

 
Make sure that if you participate (BUT WHY WOULDN'T YOU) that you use the hashtag up there and NOT #12gramsOFchristmas because that one already has some pictures on it ... pictures of drugs (I'm looking at you, foxtail). Which was pretty disappointing because that was our favorite. But we worked it out and now we're here!
 
We're starting this Friday the 13th (dun dun DUNNNNN) and going through Christmas Eve. If you want to follow along with us we wouldn't mind (   @jliette and @amt327). I'm especially looking forward to the 19th ... I need someone who lives where it snows to post some pictures because I live in California aaaaaaand the closest I've come to seeing falling snow is when I've gone to the Disneyland "Holiday" Parade and they use bubbles for snow. BUBBLES.
 
Ok so I'll see you on Instagram on Friday. Bye.
 
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Monday, December 9, 2013

When I have fireball my name is Jessica


The weekend, it happened. Friday night Jacey and I met some friends to watch the San Luis Christmas parade, and you guys it was so cold. Like, probably at least 40 degrees, but don't worry because we were prepared with hats, scarves, coats, and gloves ... plus fireball apple cider to warm our insides. There were supposed to be 90 "floats" in the parade and I'm pretty sure it would have taken more than three hours to watch all of them so we left 2/3 of the way through and went to "our spot," the bar with DAMMIT TOM! and the rumplemintz, and that's where I met one of the biggest douchtools in the whole wide world.
 
We were sitting at the bar innocently drinking our wine and talking to our new favorite bartender, Jason, when in walks a man who reminded me of Ronnie from Jersey Shore but without the tan. He was wearing a tight blue t shirt and a Rockstar hat and immediately alarms started going off in my head shoting "Tool alert!! Tool alert! Tool alert!!!" and I knew it was going to be a good night.
 
His name is Lurry, which I figured out means Larry (because I speak fluent DrunkSlur), and he's 32 and lives at the gym. And did I mention that he's a tool? And he was completely wasted, which just made everything so much better, because he believed every single thing I told him, like that my name is Jessica, I'll be 32 in February, and I own two homes and my own hair salon. I could also be my naturally rude self without feeling bad because let's be real, there's no way Lurry was going to remember our interaction the next day.
 
Feeling my scarf...
Larry: I like your scarf.
Me: I know. I just got it today. Stop touching it.
 
Touching my hair...
Larry: Your hair looks really cool.
Me: Yeah, I know. Don't touch it.
 
Gesturing to his plate of half eaten chicken...
Larry: Do you want some of my chicken?
Me: Uh no, you already ate it. That's disgusting.
 
Anytime he got too close to me...
Me: Stop touching me.
 
When I went to the bathroom...
Larry: Wow, your friend is really mean.
Jacey: Yeah, I know.
 
Randomly...
Me: Give me your hat. Now take a picture with me.
 


 
And then Jason gave me and Jacey each two free shots of fireball, and I was so warm and fuzzy, and we looked at the clock and it was like 10pm so we called a cab and went home because 10pm is way too late to be out.  


 
Saturday we deep cleaned our apartment (BEING A GROWN UP IS SO SO SO COOL) and that night I went to dinner with a friend and they to a different bar to watch her boyfriend's band play. I wasn't too into the music (I couldn't even tell you what kind of music it was, but they covered a Black Keys song so maybe that tells you something?) but it was fun nevertheless (THAT'S A FUN WORD). Oh and we saw a lady in Victoria's Secret pushing her two clothed Pomeranians around in a stroller. So that was fun.
 
Then we went back to our spot and Jason was there and it was so fun and he has a beard and rides a motorcycle and I would like a ride but how do I hint at that? Probably not by telling him, "I rode on a motorcycle once and it was THE SCARIEST THING EVER AND I HATED IT." Oops.
 

 
Sunday was realaxing and I made a delicious and mostly fat free yogurt Jell-O whipped cream pie (recipe here) and then I tried out our new digital scale and it told me that somehow I gained 10 pounds in 13 hours, which was sufficiently depressing. But then, miracle of miracles, I stepped on it again and I'd only gained 8.7 pounds! And every time I stepped on it I got a different reading. So I'm really looking forward to going to Target and telling the return lady, "Um, excuse me but I'd like to return this scale because it didn't give me the right reading. No, really, it told me I weigh more than I weigh. NO REALLY LADY, I DON'T WEIGH WHAT THE SCALE TOLD ME I WEIGH. STOP LAUGHING AT ME." I'll keep you updated, don't worry.
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Friday, December 6, 2013

Movies gave me unrealistic expectations about Christmas

If you weren't already aware by the mass amounts of Christmas trees on Instagram, let me just tell you that Christmas is in 19 days. It's the time of year to put a forest in your living room, hang socks above your fireplace, and do anything to make sure people know that it's officially the most wonderful time of the year. Once that's done you can sit on the couch with your hot cider/cocoa with marshmallows and turn on the tv only to be bombarded by Christmas movie after Christmas movie. These movies immediately give you expectations, high expectations, for what this season should look like. Snow! Love! Presents! Joy! Kindness! Warm blankets! Magic! LOVE! LOVE! LOVE! Jude Law! All completely reasonable expectations. Right? Totally. Let's explore.
 
 
The Holiday
 
Expectation: if I just pick myself up and move off to another continent for a couple of weeks during Christmas then I'll find my one true love, and it won't matter that I have walls around my heart or that I've been a victim of unrequited love for longer than I care to admit. I'll meet someone who cares enough to break down those walls or requite love (is that a thing?) and I will be completely changed because Christmas is magical and JUDE LAW.


 
 

Reality: Jude Law will not tell me I'm lovely so instead I will spend Christmas morning looking for love from my sister's dog who is clearly more interested in my brother's breakfast than kissing me back. Which is actually fine because I'm not even a dog person. I'll also be eating lots of carbs and hanging out with my family instead of alone in a stranger's home.


 
 
 

Home Alone
 
Expectation: My parents will plan a magical trip to Paris with our entire family, but they'll be too wrapped up (get it? WRAPPED?) in themselves to remember to let me out of the attic to get on the plane with them. I'll be forced to eat junk food and protect my house from burglars who are bumbling idiots and who almost kill me, but instead I'll be saved by a man who is probably supposed to be Santa Claus.
 


Reality: We won't plan a trip because getting that many people to be able to coordinate their schedules is right up there next to impossible, plus my dad hates flying and only my brothers have passports. So instead we'll all be crowded around my grandma's table eating carbs and wearing hats and then sitting on a couch looking like we love each other.


 
 
 


Elf
 
Expectation: It's completely plausible for people from two wildly different backgrounds to get together even though the guy shows signs of  slight perversion slash stunted brain growth slash really really poor eating habits slash does he ever do laundry because he is always wearing the same thing and I bet those tights don't smell great. However, his love for Christmas will make the two of them fall in love and visit the North Pole regularly. Or did they end up living in the North Pole? That part always confused me.


 
 
 
 
Reality: I'm still trying to get dogs to show me affection.
 

 
 
 
Love Actually
 
Expectation: WHERE DO I EVEN BEGIN. SOMEBODY will confess his love to me, either the Prime Minister, my husbands best friend, or a man with whom words are unnecessary because our connection is so strong that we communicate with our hearts. We're obviously using more than 10% of our hearts. Whatever happens, it will all be ok because it's Christmas and at Christmas everything is always ok.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Reality: We don't even have a Prime Minister in the United States, so instead I'll spend Christmas with a doctor.
 
 
 
Frosty the Snowman
 
Expectation: Snow.
 
 
Reality: I love in California. By the beach. We're convinced snow is a myth.
 
 
 
 
The Santa Clause
 
Expectation: Santa is real but your dad killed him. Now your dad is Santa and CHRISTMAS MAGIC.
 
 
Reality: ...my dad has a beard.
 
 
 
Now if you'll excuse me I'm off to scour the streets for Jude Law. 
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