Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Good Things Happened in This Hectic Week.

As we all have been anticipating for months, the Punch Brothers' third studio album was released today! Eek! "The Phosphorescent Blues" is so solid and I'm kicking myself because I'm so excited that I have new music from them to get all swoon-y to. 

But, let's face it, you aren't always going to be in the mood for our beloved Punch Brothers. So, alternate really good things that happened this week include Brooks Weelan's first comedy album "This is Cool, Right?" making it's debut today and Belle and Sebastian's new album "Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance" that came out on January 20.

I haven't gotten to hear Brooks Weelan's album yet but I have listened to Belle and Sebastian. Holy cow. "Girls In Peacetime Want to Dance" is straight up genius. Not only is it a very true statement, it is also a major source of jams. I particularly love the song "The Everlasting Muse" but they all rock in actuality. Seriously. Check it out. 

You may have noticed by my lack of sentence posting that I have been slammed with work lately! Yikes! I really do have the best intentions to post things on here no matter what my neglect may be making you believe! Just keep your faith in me! 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Field Notes.

I went camping with some friends last night to prepare for a two week hiking trip we're going on in June. It was so so cold and there was already frost and dew on the ground when we went to bed at 10:45! Yikes! When we awoke, our tents were covered in ice and none of us could feel our toes! 
(Rose joined us as our mascot.)
We got to the property when it was already dark the night before and all we really knew was that we were in a giant field. Looking up, you could see all the stars! What a sight! We joked that the property looked like an arena from the Hunger Games. Later, we jokingly talked very existentially about the field ("All my life has been this field. I began on this field and it is right for me to rejoin it now" etc). 
We stayed all huddled together the night before after we played a few rounds of Big Booty. We sat in the field talking and laughing and trying to help each other stay warm until we couldn't stand to be away from our sleeping bags any longer. 
In the morning we packed up and refroze and ate instant oatmeal straight out of the packs (I tried Raisin and Spice for the first time-2 thumbs up). 

Despite the freezing temperatures and nub body parts, I never regret going camping. Being outdoors is refreshing and challenging in a very unique manner. I'm always blown away at how nifty everything that's a part of camping is and I just want to learn it all! This time, I mastered two new knots to set up a shelter, learned more about different camping stoves, and washed my bowl out by adding water and drinking my leftovers (my least favorite part of camping). 

Inspired by my very successful camping experiences in the past few months, I have a new goal to add to my bucket list. I want to backpack and camp in all 50 states. I also want this to not be separated. For instance, I can't dayhike somewhere and then camp out in a friend's backyard and say I've met my goal. I'm talking about hiking backpack out on the trail. Who's with me?
(This guy has taught me so much about camping and this picture cracks me up.) 
This is a goal that I'm particularly thrilled about, along with my goal to pee in every ocean, which has been a dream of mine since seventh grade. One ocean down, seven to go. One state down, forty-nine to go. 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Five Senses 2k15.

Last year, after being inspired by numerous beautiful  journals on Pinterest, I made the New Year's Resolution to keep track of my 2014. I used a planner my grandmother had given me and at the end of each day, just before settling into bed, I would draw what had happened to me in the calendar layout square and then write what the picture represented in the weekly planning rectangles. 

This was literally the coolest thing I could have done with that journal and pretty much the coolest year I could have chosen to do it. 2014 saw me change from a sophomore to a junior, go to New York for the first time (and then back again), lose friends to college, make new friends, form opinions, go rock climbing, go backpacking, go to concerts and festivals, MEET THE PUNCH BROTHERS, and date. At the beginning of 2014, I pretty much had no expectations because it seemed like a very random time in life which is part of what makes it so beautiful to me. There are so many memories and inside jokes recorded in that journal that will be priceless to look back on. 

Turns out, even though a lot of commitment, this type of chronicling (did I mention I prefer to call it chronicling?) is perfect for me and insanely addicting. On January 1, I went out and bought myself a 2015 planner to do the same thing (this time eco-friendly and with bigger writing areas!). However, this isn't exactly a new resolution for 2015, so after tossing around a few ideas, I decided to write down the most important five senses I experience each day. I wasn't completely sure that this was the route I wanted to take, but when I was buying my 2015 planner, I found the most bizarre and totally Parrish of journals that was the last of it's kind (which we all know is a heavenly sign) and it sealed the deal. 

On top of drawing and chronicling each day of 2015, I have been writing down the most prominent sensation for each of the five senses. I was inspired by this concept on one of my favorite (now sadly dormant) blogs. My hope is to also start sharing my top 5 senses here on this blog periodically. I'm not exactly sure which days yet, but I'll try my hardest to do one a week. 

I love chronicling in these ways because it gives me a very unique look at my own life and allows me to see my personal growth and change month to month. It's pretty much the neatest personal experiment ever and I'm so over the moon about the whole thing. 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

My Favourite Little Misunderstood Holiday.

It hit me a few years ago which holiday I truly like the best. My sister, my neighbor, and I lazily watched all of Gossip Girl Season One in the dark while eating homemade turtle cookies and trying to comfort my dog when he heard fireworks. It was so simple yet somehow comforting.

Despite it being my favorite, I hear New Year's Eve as being the most dreaded celebration to many people. I firmly believe there is a widespread myth that New Year's Eve is supposed to happen a certain way. Everyone's ideals will not align for NYE, but everyone still has them. Typically, NYE is stereotyped as a secretly stressful observation where you drink to forget all the resolutions you didn't go through with and pity yourself for the way things turned out differently then you expected. Also, you are pressured to look and dress hotly and attend a party with the love of your life or where you will meet the love of your life and kiss them at midnight. Yikes. What a headache.

This has never been my experience, only when I live secondhand thanks to Hollywood movies.  For a while, I didn't think this was enough and couldn't wait until I got celebrate NYE in extravagant ways myself; however, I'm realizing now that it is enough. Maybe someday that will be my experience, but for right now, I'm thrilled to be having the atypical times I've enjoyed.

Each year I do something different to ring in the New Year. I surround myself with different friends each time and assimilate into their traditions. New Year's has no tradition for me and that in itself is my tradition. Having no expectations other then change yields zero stress and allows me to live fully in whatever that year's celebration is. It's exciting to mix it up!

I reject the stereotypical NYE model once again by choosing not to be anxious and ashamed but welcoming and hopeful about the year I've just completed and the one I'm soon to begin. I tell myself that my resolutions do not have a set launch date and give myself the time to think through what I really want to do and what I can realistically achieve. So what if I start a week into the year? I can still complete it for the same amount of time as everyone who started right at the start of the new year.

One of my favorite parts of NYE is the unified celebration. This holiday gets people ALL OVER THE WORLD involved. Everyone anticipates it. It transcends religious and cultural differences and links everyone together. I cannot think of any other holiday that has this pleasure and responsibility. (You could argue birthdays but I reject this because birthdays are singular celebrations and Jehovah's Witnesses don't recognize them.) Even if someone chooses not to personally celebrate the calendar change, they still accept that it happens.

When I was little, I always considered the New Year as a set thing that I had yet to discover. This ideology probably originates from the common quip "see what the New Year has in store." This kind of thinking sees the New Year as a gift full of different types of events that are already predestined which I unwrap and reveal each day. Lately though, my understanding of the New Year has shifted. No longer do I believe the year is waiting for me to discover it, I believe it is the opposite. I have the power to make things happen in the year. It's not up to the year to give things to me.

The New Year is my favourite holiday because it is full of promise that things will always be unpredictable yet full of possibility which is an odd and exciting comfort that lets every person decipher their life on their own. Happy 2015!