This Right Now

Hello, friends!

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It’s been a hot minute.

Grad school is cray, but guess what?! I graduate in THREE months. I’m currently¬†on a short (but much needed) break, and when I start back up it will¬†be for my last semester. I’ll spare you the that-makes-me-a-little-weepy-because-I-love-my-cohort-SO-MUCH-and-what-the-heck-where-did -the-two-years-go, but really I won’t because there it is. HA.

What else?

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So far this year¬†I’ve traveled to Seattle, Vancouver, DC, Maryland and Marfa, Texas. I somewhat unexpectedly fell in love with West Texas and am already trying to plan a trip back. Think the culture of Mexico/New Mexico but with the hippie/artsy vibes of Austin. I was instantly smitten. I’m lucky my little fam rolls with my whims and was down for a quick weekend trip and, you know, fifteen hours of driving in three days. They’re champs, my people.

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For our Capstone in this last semester, our cohort has been assigned the task of becoming consultants for a local¬†Austin¬†business of our choosing. ¬†It’s quite the undertaking, and I am¬†slightly terrified but mostly excited for how this program is helping to shape my future.

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It’s hard for me to not constantly be asking myself, “What’s next, what’s next, what’s next?!” This is a monumental point in my life, and I’m aware of that. But I’m also aware of the fact that I’ll never be twenty-eight again. My daughter will never be three again.¬†She won’t sing herself to sleep or ask for my help finding snails for too much longer. My husband and I will only celebrate nine years of togetherness, just this one month of this one year.¬†I’ll only be¬†sitting in a classroom, laughing with my cohort fam¬†and¬†sometimes sneaking in¬†boxed wine for one more summer.¬†This is the last bit of time that I’ll take weekly walks through the gorgeous campus that has now¬†become my¬†second home.¬†It’s a special time, this right now.¬†I’m just trying to remind myself to slow down and cherish the heck out of it all.

NOLA & Things

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I¬†chose the above picture to start off this blog post despite the fact that it’s blurry and¬†I look a bit like a joyful but¬†crazed maniac. I thought it was appropriate in that life has been a crazy, happy blur lately.

Early Monday morning I got back from a long weekend trip¬†to Nola with my besties. I’ve known Meg since I was an awkward twelve-year-old and Bryant since I was an arguably even more awkward seventeen-year-old. Around the time we first met, I¬†randomly¬†told him that if you changed the letters in my name around, it would spell “Antichrist.” This is one letter short from actually being true, but to this day he has my name in his phone as “Antichrist.” That’s true friendship, y’all.

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This was my third trip to Nola but my first time to throw up in a bush, so that was monumental.¬†Also my first time to match shirts with an elderly¬†stranger (see above picture) and to find out that my drink of choice (Malibu and pineapple) is a typical mom drink. So basically I’m an old lady, guys. I don’t hate it.

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Meg had an early plane to catch the morning after I threw up in a bush, so she was gone by the time I was wallowing in¬†hangover¬†misery. Bryant and his wonderful girlfriend Leslie brought over iced coffee and lots of food, and from there Bryant imitated my dance moves from the night before. I was burying my head in my hands and turning bright red but also cracking up laughing. I’m smiling now as¬†I write this because I’m really spoiled with the people I have in my life. The three of us drove back to Austin together and it will probably always remain one of my most cherished road trips. It didn’t hurt that Bryant drove the entire time.

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There¬†are quite¬†a few other moments in between day¬†1 and 4 in Nola that also make me smile. On day 2, Meg and I got stuck in a downpour that lasted over two hours. We hid under a restaurant’s patio for as long as we could, but eventually we agreed to just buy rain ponchos and go about our day. My prediction was that we’d buy the¬†ponchos and¬†it would immediately stop raining, and my prediction¬†was completely accurate. Regardless, I can now say that I’ve frolicked around New Orleans¬†in a giant garbage bag with my best friend.

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On night 2, I rode a mechanical bull and Meg, Bryant, Leslie and I ended up¬†at a bachelor party’s open bar. Shoutout to our weekend friends John and Brian for the invite and also to Brian for taking a picture with me¬†inside of a fireplace, the reasoning for which I have yet to remember.

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Needless to say, Nola was a blast and I’ve not-so-grudgingly¬†given up on homework for the night to write this post. This weekend I have a paper to write, a presentation to begin preparing and an MBA cohort bbq to host. I have a blog tasting¬†at a bakery tomorrow and am¬†planning a trip to go whitewater rafting in New Mexico next month.¬†Like I said, life is a blur right now. But it’s the best blur. I¬†have¬†the notion that¬†I’ll look back on this summer one day, and while I won’t remember every¬†detail, I’ll remember this feeling. The feeling of being alive, and young, but old enough to laugh at myself and to¬†have the go-to drink of Mailbu and pineapple.

I leave you with a video of me throwing a mini temper-tantrum after losing a second game of rock-paper-scissors to Pathi on Tuesday. It got pretty intense. This is grad school life at its finest, friends.

 

 

 

Summer of Sam Hunt

Summertime is quickly approaching, and already I am feeling its magic.

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Two weekends back was just the beginning of my enchantment with the warmer months.

My little brother and I road-tripped it up to Louisiana to see our favorite country artist perform live. I purchased tickets back in March for his birthday, but in all honesty they were just as much for me. Sam Hunt is also performing in Austin, but I will take whatever excuse I can to explore the world. So tickets in Lafayette it was. And a wonderful decision I made.

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Each summer brings with it a slew of moments that are sure to all too quickly turn into treasured memories. These moments can usually be easily triggered in my mind by a scent, a phrase or a song.¬†Not unique to me, music¬†has been a huge part of my¬†world since I was a young teenager. Some of this love comes from its ability to wrap me in nostalgia and instantly transport me to a different time and place.¬†My infamous and long-term adoration for T-Swift¬†stems not from the album 1989 (Though I also love her for sharing a birth year with me and making it immensely popular) but for¬†melodramatic songs like¬†Teardrops on my Guitar, Cold¬†as You¬†and Dear John that got me through things like high-school puppy love and¬†first heartbreak. Despite the solid ground that I’m on now, I hear those songs today and can still feel those first shaky pangs.

So already, I know. Already there are these tunes and things collecting in my mind that I know will forever stay with me.

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Summer 2015, I’ll think.

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Summer 2015 was the summer of¬†Sam Hunt. Of songs like Take Your Time, and Vandalizer¬†making me hardcore swoon, and House Party and Leave The Night On instantly¬†transporting me to my happy place. The summer of drinking coffee in a Louisianan treehouse, of¬†Cajun food¬†and¬†endless mimosas,¬†of¬†getting to know¬†strangers and their cats while boarding in someone else’s’ house. It’s to¬†be¬†the season of long drives at¬†3 am as the little brother snoozes in the passenger seat, of staying in a room full of trinkets, appropriately¬†named “Imagine”, of double fisting on blue drinks at the Blue Dog Caf√©¬†and of drawing such moments¬†on paper tablecloths. The time of delightful breweries,¬†gluttonously cheesy grits, exploring an Acadian village¬†and rushing back to Austin in time for Mother’s Day celebrations with my¬†beautiful little family.

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I know I’ll never forget my¬†despair upon breaking and losing my glass perfume from Italy whilst¬†in a rush to the concert. Heading back from¬†said concert,¬†little bro¬†acted as if he didn’t really¬†care but, just the same,¬†helped me thoroughly inspect the sidewalk until we finally found the broken glass. Obsessed with inanimate objects as I am, I joyously carried¬†my perfume bottle remnants back to the car with cops in sight. I’ll also never forget breaking into¬†laughter as¬†my straight-laced brother¬†told me, “The cops are going to see that and think it’s a crack pipe. They’ll think, ‘Huh, so she’s just going to¬†carry that out in the open?”

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I’ll fondly reminisce on¬†the next morning, listening to live music over champagne at the adorable Artmosphere. When the electricity went out and the microphones stopped working, the band¬†kept on¬†singing just the same.

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 It will be remembered as the summer of fried catfish, fireflies and the sound of coming home to sweet baby laughter.

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And the best part? It’ll be the summer of many other things too, because that summertime¬†feeling has started before the official summer has even begun. I know it’s to also be the summer of family pool parties, outdoor brunches and more delightful travels. Of¬†margaritas and flotation devices, of mini road-trips and wine dates with gal pals, of “Cop Car”¬†playing on repeat on my mind and on my¬†phone. Of sharing long and sweet kisses, sunset walks with our girl, back patio festivities with friends and of more magic that I haven’t even¬†been able to imagine¬†up quite yet.

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I feel bubbly and entranced with the charm of it all.

Let the summer of Sam Hunt commence.