Sincerely Seven: Week 25

I thought I would kick off something new called, Sincerely Seven, where I recap my week, tell you something new or share an article or recipe that I found useful over the last seven days. I’m hoping it will encourage me to write on here more, plus share some nuggets that I found useful or interesting over the course of my week. Without further ado, here are my seven highlights from week 25 of 2020.

  1.  I took a 3 day weekend and it was so lovely to not have work on Friday. Since COVID started, I haven’t taken any time off, mostly because it feels weird taking time off when I work from home. It was well needed and I enjoyed every minute, plus I finally got my hair done so back to blonde baby! Sadly semi wishing I had taken off tomorrow too..
  2. In listening to this week’s episode of Work in Progress, I learned why you shouldn’t eat any more shrimp. I’m officially done, and trying to do anything I can to save the ocean.
  3.  I found this recipe for marinated goat cheese and strawberry crostini this week and it sounds SO yummy. I need to run to Trader Joe’s to get some goat cheese and french bread ASAP.
  4. I personally purchased the book, White Fragility, but then I read this article and have decided not to read it. Just wanted to share since I shared that book title earlier on my blog; I would be curious if anyone has read it, what did you think?
  5. I finished the show “Love Life” on HBO and would highly recommend; Anna Kendrick’s character is very lovable and experiences a lot of character development throughout the show/her love life. I also started “Dear White People” on Netflix; though I’m only one episode in, I really like it so far. Logan Browning plays a very fierce lead, helping to highlight the racial issues on her predominantly white college campus.
  6.  I’m currently reading Normal People by Sally Rooney and I can’t put it down! I also can’t wait to start the show after I finish. Has anyone already read/watched?
  7.  I made this chocolate chip cookie and it’s too pretty not to share with the world (since I’m off social media). You can make them too with this recipe from one of the best bakeries in Columbus, OH.

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I hope you had a wonderful week and here’s to wishing for another great seven days ahead!

Sincerely,

Sara Ann

Twenty-Seven.

Yesterday was my 27th birthday, which is fun, I guess? It’s also very weird being on the upside to 30. I used to get so excited about birthdays, and don’t get me wrong, I still love them, but they’re much less exciting the higher my age gets. Also, I used to always have these high expectations for my birthday (think Jess of New Girl), and I was always let down when I didn’t get a surprise or the big gift I really wanted. In the end, I just tried to stop caring about them as much, so I wouldn’t have as much of a let down.

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Maeve said it best, tbh.

My 27th year. The last year was a lot to say the least. I moved across the country and started a new job, which is kind of insane now that I think about it. I read a lot of books, drank a lot of wine, and got a cat named Aurora. I started to care more about skincare, and tried to care less about how cute my outfit was (still working through this one). I learned that LA is fun, but I cannot live here forever so I’ll enjoy it while I’m here (eating all the Milk Bar I can), awaiting the day I can return to the East Coast.

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Milk Bar Birthday Cake Class…would recommend!!

Overall, it was a wonderful and exciting year and I’m ready for another one full of wine, baking, and lots of laughing.

Sincerely,

Sara Ann

 

A Love Letter to My Boyfriend’s Beard

Dear Beard,

I miss you. Ever since you’ve departed, I’ve had to deal with rough and scratchy kisses. An unpleasant sensation during any mildly intimate situation and if I’m being honest,  is mildly a turn off from any personal contact with him. I’m sorry he shaved you off. I know we’ve had our differences in the past and even I admit, I’m shocked we’re both here today, with me writing you a love letter.

When I first met him, you were full and vivaciously alive on his face. Because of you, I thought he was, in fact, homeless.  I overlooked him in the line of potential future boyfriends and spent months chasing clean shaven men in bars and apps. But you, you remained for that long winter. Always on his face and always convincing me that nothing could ever make me date him, the wild bearded man who always wore a beanie and blue button up shirts. I thought, ‘I bet he roasts his own coffee (he doesn’t) or  recycles EVERYTHING (he does).’ Your presence prevented me from ever giving him a chance because he just wasn’t my ‘type’.

Then, one brisk day in June, it was warm and the sun was shining. There was a handsome smooth-faced man staring at me, and as I did a double take, I realized it was him. You, beard, were gone, shaved off for the summer, after a long and cold winter. Without you, I realized, he was really cute (I know, I know, I was really vain back then okay, I admit I wasn’t perfect). And I gave him a chance.

Days turned into weeks and weeks into months. we had date after date and I met his family. One day, as the air got crisp again, he declared, “I can’t wait to grow my beard back!”

Groan.

But you came back quickly, very quickly, as you do. I’m not sure when it happened, but I fell in love with him, and eventually, you too.  Once grown in, you were soft and fun to play with. You didn’t scratch my face like his stubble had done all summer long. You were nice and fluffy and you made him…him. Now when he shaves his face, I don’t recognize him without you. His perfect self, to me, includes you. I can’t describe it, but my favorite version of him is with wild curly hair and with you, a wildly unkempt red beard.

But oh Beard, I’m sure you’ll be back soon, we both know how flaky he is with shaving. Until then, I’ll think of you fondly, and remember a winter spent under blankets, watching HBO shows and eating lots of ice cream.

Capture

Always,

Sara

The Thing about Engagements.

At the ripe old age of 25, I am frequently bombarded with engagement posts all over my social media pages. It seems like every weekend, someone else I know either pops the question, or is asked for their hand in marriage. One by one, my friends are vanishing into wedding planning and settling down to spend their life with ‘the one.’ It seems like only yesterday we were studying for history tests in high school, and chugging beers on frat row in college. Yet, here we are attending showers and discussing bouquet arrangements. And, let me tell you, it’s getting so damn old.

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Now I need to clarify something, because I feel like this could be taken the wrong way. The reason I’m so annoyed with all these engagements has nothing to do with the fact that I doubt my boyfriend has ever even thought about the possibility of proposing. It’s that, at the age of 25, I still feel like I’m 17 and I have no idea what I’m supposed to be doing. I’m barely a functioning adult and you have the audacity to think I can be someone’s wife?! I’m have quite a bit of student loan debt, and you want me to plan a wedding?! It takes me 25 minutes to pick a movie on Netflix, you honestly expect me to pick a venue, meal and 4-5 friends to stand by my side?? You’re funny.

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Honest to goodness, I am so happy for all the friends I scoff at on Facebook when they post a photo of their ring. I honestly cannot wait to attend the wedding (or creep on the Facebook photos) and see the looks of joy on their faces. I cry at sappy romance films, I LOVE love and I love ‘happily ever afters’ even more. I just don’t why everyone is in such a rush to do this thing (and then the next thing which I cannot even begin to fathom, yes I’m talking about babies). To me, marriage is scary. It’s this serious adult thing that means something. You stand before your family and friends and God and vow to choose this person every single day for the rest of your life. And it seems like everyone is racing towards it.

Now, I love my boyfriend, and I love what we are together, but I’m content with where we’re at. I honestly wouldn’t care if he didn’t propose for another 5 or 10 years. Or never (again to be honest, I do want to get married, but planning a wedding sounds like literal hell with so many decisions and money down the drain, why would I do that)? I just cannot wrap my head around the fact that friends my age (or younger) are like yes, let’s do this thing that is (well, should be) permanent and really serious. Am I just overthinking it? I get that I shouldn’t compare my life journey to someone else’s, but it’s hard not to when it seems like literally every other person my age is doing this one thing. Every time I see another post or picture of a ring, I think of Amy Poehler’s wise words, “good for you, not for me.”

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Does anyone else feel this way about engagements? Or has anyone else survived their twenty’s and lived to give advice to the rest of us wandering souls? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear about it!

New Year, Same Me.

Happy 2018! How’s your new year so far, Reader? Mine has been pretty quiet, so I’ve been trying to reflect on the last year and what I hope to accomplish in the new. While 2017 was full of ups and downs, it had more downs than I care to remember. As I turn 25 this year, I come to realize that I will never follow the ‘New Year, New Me’ mantra; I am who I am and no resolution is going to dramatically change that. I spend too much money on things that don’t matter. I eat eggs at least once a week for dinner because I’m too tired to cook and I have anxiety that causes me to assume the worst at almost every moment.

So here are my goals for 2018. I’ll probably fall short, and if I’ve learned anything in the past 25 years, it’s that…. that is okay. Life is a journey, blah blah blah, *insert inspirational quote to get you through all the bullshit that life throws at you.

  1. I want to spend time in the kitchen making an actual meal, at least once a week. I have so many cookbooks and Pinterest boards full of recipes that are unused. I’m no chef, but I would like a better understanding of food and flavors and hope to develop a skill in 2018 (making chili for the 1st time ever as I type!).
  2. I would like to read at least 12 books over the next year. I’m going to start with something off Barack Obama’s 2017 list and see where that takes me. I miss getting lost in the story of a good book. This is a cliche goal, but reading is so important to me and I’m sad that I have forgotten this.
  3. I want to spend more time with friends and loved ones. Life is short and nothing is as important as the people you surround yourself with. In 2017, I was very lax in spending time with much of anyone and I regret that. I let my anxiety cripple my social life and I’m not letting it happen any more. I have wonderful friends, a wonderful boyfriend and family and I want to spend time with them while I can.
  4. As I said above, I want to stop letting my anxiety rule my life. I spend most days worrying about my family and friends as well as life scenarios that could or could not happen. Whether the fact that my boyfriend didn’t come over for dinner means that he’s over me, or that my boss’s quietness means I’m about to be fired, I need to stop letting these things ruin my days. Much of 2017 was lost to these thoughts and I’m tired of it. I’m taking back ownership of my life, even if it takes me the next year, or the next five.

Reader, what do you hope to accomplish in 2018? Or, better yet, what did you learn in 2017? Let me know in the comments, and I hope you have a wonderful new year!

-Sara

Does it get Better?

Last month, my grandfather passed away. At 24 years old, it was the 1st time I ever had to deal with death. To say that I cried is an understatement.

I cried because he is no longer on this earth. Who would I share peanut butter cups with? Who would sing me songs that had my name in them? Who would tell me I was his favorite granddaughter (I was his only granddaughter)?

I cried because I felt like a jerk for being sad about his death. He had been sick for awhile and was no longer in pain; wasn’t it better this way? I also felt like a jerk, because death is not a unique situation. It happens to everyone and we all have to deal with it multiple times over the course of our lives. I wasn’t special for losing someone.

I cried for my grandmother, his partner of over 70 years. They danced together, laughed together, and held hands every night as they fell asleep. They were lifelong companions, still as in love with each other as they were on the day they were married. It was hard to imagine her living a life without him. I will never forget my grandmother’s hand in mine as we stood next to his casket at the cemetery and she asked if she had to leave, if she had to say goodbye.

I cried for my father and my aunts and uncle. They no longer had their father on this earth, and I was so sad for them. The man who had raised them, the man they all could tell hours of stories about. That great man they all admired and loved for 50 odd years was gone. I also cried for my cousins and brother; like me, they had lost someone important, someone who had always been there.

I cried because for 24 years, he was my biggest fan. He came to every soccer game and tennis match and stayed until the very end. Every school play, choir recital or school ceremony, he was usually in the font row with a big smile on his face. Who would be there now?

I can’t say that things are better. Every time I see a peanut butter cup, I feel a tinge of sadness. I still hear his laugh in my head and I fear for the day when I can’t hear that sound, my favorite sound.  Even as I write this, my face is wet with tears and I feel a dull headache forming. I have cried so much, I think my sinuses wish they could extricate themselves from my head, just for some peace.

When do I stop feeling sad? Is it just one day, I’ll wake up and it won’t hurt? I won’t feel my own hurt and the hurt of others in my family? I don’t want to forget him, but I wish I could stop feeling sad. When is it going to be better?

via Daily Prompt: Better