Tag Archives: love

Why Do I Look so Fat in Pictures Part 2

2 May

As you may or may not know, when you are looking for a certain type of advice or information on the internet the easiest way to find it is to enter your inquiry into the search tab and click enter. If you are searching for a particular blog about a specific topic, the same situation applies. At WordPress.com they track the phrases people type in that brings them to your blog. I kid you not, the most searched for phrase that directs people to my blog is,

WHY DO I LOOK SO FAT IN PICTURES?

… (waiting for the laugher to subside) Color me surprised! My most commonly searched phrase has nothing to do with relationships or weddings or family or religion or even Kim Kardashian.

I can’t say that I’m shocked, since my previous post with that exact title was my way of sharing with you all that I had joined Weight Watchers. Well since then I have fallen off the WW wagon, but fortunately I am still down the 13 pounds I lost when I first started. The points system just became too dreary and stupid, plus after going to Scotland and ignoring my diet, I got lazy and indifferent.

Despite all that, I’m feeling pretty darn good about my body these days. I’m still watching what I eat and some days I enter my points (most days I don’t) and I’m still working out when I can. But the issue that haunted me back then is haunting me still, and I can’t help but ask, WHY DO I LOOK SO FAT IN PICTURES? Remember my friend who recently got married, and remember how I was the Maid of Honor? Well she sent us a link to some of the pictures that her photographers posted online. And I was literally taken aback, practically falling off my stool in fright! The first picture I’m in is one where I’m helping the bride put on her veil. My upper body looks like I’ve gained about 20 pounds, no joke. My arms are huge and floppy, my one boob is bulging out and I’m looking wider than ever. WHHHHYYYYY!!!!!

Talk about disappointing. I was feeling good and I thought I looked good. So I sent the link to the Scottish, my mother, and best friend, asking their unbiased honest opinions. They said maybe the cut of that dress wasn’t the best on you, and they thought that specific picture was a bit off but I looked great in the rest of them. Ahh, suspicions confirmed! Clearly I look like a curvy, gorgeous, model in REAL life but in pictures I’m the extra-large version of myself! Or is the camera adding ten pounds and a dose of reality?

In related news, I’ve come to the conclusion that I LOVE food more than I HATE working out. I’ve discovered that both an aversion to working out and an obsession with sweets is a deadly combination. Therefore, I’m going to amp up the calorie burning so I can maintain the joy I feel from eating. Mmmm food. Food.is.so.good.

Did I mention the one thing I’m splurging on for the wedding is photography? By splurging I don’t mean spending copious amounts of money, rather I won’t be penny-pinching my photographer or going with the cheapest option. I won’t be having my guests DIY the photos with disposable cameras, or limiting our photographers to a certain number of hours. I want the whole day captured and I want our story told.

Yes, I’m so clichΓ© it hurts, right? I want to lose weight for my wedding like every other bride-to-be on the planet! BUT NO, that is not how I see it.

I love my curves and my shape, but I need to tone up. I want to get those prints back from my photographer and not utter a single complaint (which is hard because we are all our own biggest critics when it comes to our bodies). Instead of screaming, WHY DO I LOOK SO FAT IN PICTURES? I want to scream, WOW, I LOOK SO GOOD IN THESE PICTURES!!

Can I do it? Any tips out there??

Quote: “I have to exercise in the morning before my brain figures out what I’m doing.” Marsha Doble

All you need is Love (and possibly a sense of humor too)

12 Feb

Isn’t life just insanely busy right now? I feel like that’s the vibe on the street and among my friends and family. People are enjoying this mild winter we’ve been having and it feels like there is just so much to do as spring gets closer and closer. I’m excited! I love being busy, but I’m working on taking the time to relax and enjoy life when I find those rare moments of stillness in my schedule. I’m going to talk about LOVE now, for two reasons, 1) I had an AMAZING experience at my church’s Beatles Eucharist Sunday service and I’m feeling inspired, and 2) That dreaded Hallmark holiday is upon us, Valentine’s Day!!

Honestly, I don’t think there is anything better than love. And I’m not just talking about love between you and your partner, but also family love, the love you have for your children, your friends, your pets, your neighbor, your country, the poor, the rich, and of course your love-hate-love for Kim Kardashian. If I may be so bold, I would say that LOVE is my motto for life. I don’t always live this way but it is my goal. A few things such as my short temper, my OCD tendencies, my inability to handle change, and my need for control are all hindrances to this end but alas, I do the best I can.

I’m sort of addicted to LOVE. I constantly ask the Scottish how much he loves me or what his favorite part about me is, why, you ask? Because I’m a needy freak. My little Becca has told me before that she doesn’t love me anymore because I’ve made her angry for some reason, and she knows I’m sensitive to hearing that. Kids are wicked smart, they are. And way back when, while growing up in Minnesota, my mom was pondering the idea of fostering a child at our house and I selfishly responded with something about how will she love all of us enough and that I don’t want to share my mom anymore than I already have to. Maybe I have some weird thing about being the oldest child and feeling abandoned as the second and third kids came along. Maybe I just crave being the center of attention? And maybe I’m just a huge romantic who loves to be adored. This is getting out of hand…

OK, back to my life motto of LOVE. While I probably spend too much energy attempting to receive love, I also try to share love as much as possible. To me, being a loving person is easy. I like to give hugs. I thoroughly enjoy hearing people’s stories, and when someone talks to me I always strive to be non-judgmental and understanding. I love to cry and will cry because of you, for you, or with you. (To me, tears are not a sign of weakness, but simply a human reaction to both good and bad things.) I laugh… a lot. I think laughing is so close to loving because it means you are happy and feeling joyful. And joy = love. Spending time with people is loving them, attending their shows, going to their parties, dancing at their birthdays, eating meals with them, and everything else in between shows them you care. I really enjoy meeting new people too, which I know for most, can be a big fear. But I just love the idea of new possibilities and potential. It’s endings that frighten me. And being a good friend is a way to love someone. I joke about being self-centered quite a lot, but I do put other people first quite often.

Last year, I made the mistake of telling the Scottish I had no real need to celebrate this dumb holiday coming up, but then was shocked and appalled when he got me nothing! I guess I was a bit unclear… off the record, I actually LOVE receiving chocolates, romantic cards, flowers, balloons, jewelry, and other gifts on Valentine’s Day, but let the record show that I think it’s a stupid waste of money.

Doesn’t this make everything clear now? My obsession with weddings is not just about a white dress and a fabulous party, it’s about the celebration of two people and their love for each other. It’s the stunning performative quality of a wedding that is so beautiful. I hope the traditional wedding ceremony lives on forever! And my love of LOVE is directly related to romantic comedies too, even the most contrived love story is still fun to watch.

Go tell someone you love them. Someone you haven’t said it to in a while. And go listen to the Beatles.

With LOVE,
Stephanie

Quote: “Love is the only gold.” Lord Tennyson

I wrote a poem for You

18 Jan

Hi. This post is kind of unique in that it is a poem. It’s actually the first poem I’ve written in about five years (unless you count passionate break-up journal entries, which I do not), but lately I’ve felt inspired to get back into it. When I was younger, during middle and high school, I discovered I had a gift for writing poetry. I would just start with an idea or a topic and let the words flow out of me in whatever way they came. I do revise my poems, but for the most part they just naturally come into being. I would say that poetry is a very intimate art form and always makes me feel vulnerable, which is probably why I’m drawn to it. True to my blog, this poem is about relationships, or rather, my relationship. I hope you like it. Read with care.

If I had a button

If I had a rewind button, I’d seldom push it.

I’d want to go back to hear your laugh

To see the way you looked at me

But I’d be too afraid of getting stuck.

I get lost in myself frequently.

But I can always find you.

You are my gift and I know it is not by luck that I found you.

If only you were more perfect.

But then what would we fight about?

If only I wasn’t so difficult.

Life would be boring.

If I had a fast-forward button I think I’d want to push it

But I know you wouldn’t let me.

You’d say the journey has already started

And I’d say that it only gets harder.

And you’d say that it only gets better.

And I’d agree.

You picked me

I knew this from the start.

You loved me the most.

I might trip but there is always more love to find.

If you go to the stars I will never be the same.

If all the world went blue, I would find the purple

And I would take you with me.

If I had a present-time button I would push it. I would hold your hand.

I would watch the sun come up and I would close my eyes to feel the wind.

I would not let go.

Quote: “A poet is, before anything else, a person who is passionately in love with language.” W.H. Auden

Come join me in the Clouds

4 Dec

When did we all get so cynical? When did shopping malls and store chains become the enemy? When did the world stop believing in things they couldn’t see or understand? Am I the only person left who watches romantic comedies??

So, last night the Scottish and I had a minor disagreement. It started off as a great evening… we went to the Walnut Room for dinner at Macy’s on State street. For those of you not in Chicago, this is a fantastic restaurant on the 8th floor of the HUGE downtown Macy’s. It’s got this amazing tree in the center of the room that illuminates the entire floor and it’s just beautiful. Last year my parents were in town for the lighting of this tree in November and I found out it’s a tradition for some people to go out to breakfast at the Walnut Room and watch the tree lighting festivities. Well I’ve always wanted to go back and eat there and last night was my chance. My girlfriends and I were bumming around the Macy’s and I knew the Scottish was meeting me later so I put my name down at 6 PM, and they told me my estimated time of seating would be close to 8:30! But hey, I was in Macy’s, we all know how err, “relaxed,” it makes me to wander around Macy’s so the Scottish and I got a snack and then went browsing while we waited for our table.

The food at the Walnut Room is decent, nothing special, but you’re not there for the food. You’re there because there are fairy princesses wandering around with wands talking to all the children and it’s freakin adorable. I made a mental note to come back with my little Becca next time. Surrounded by all the spectacle and the lights, the Christmas music, and the fairy princesses, I started to float up to the clouds and I started to feel extra romantic sitting there with my love. And that is how we got on the topic of fate. I told him that I think God knew he was the one for me and guided him from Scotland to Chicago so we could meet at that bar two years ago on that fateful night. The Scottish replies with, something to the effect of, well, there could be someone else more perfect for us out there but we won’t act on it because we’re in love with each other and blah blah blah (I started to tune out in frustration).

WHAT?!?! That is the most unromantic thing I’ve ever heard. There are 6 billion people on the earth and the odds are pretty good that there is someone else that you are more compatible with? Ew. OF course I know the Scottish loves me and he’s not going anywhere. I can tell by the way he looks at me, the way he talks to me, the way he listens to me, etc. But sometimes his logical side really irks me. So I ask him to tell me what he believes in, and he says he does believe in love and in us. Whatever Mr. Rational-show-me-scientific-proof-pants. Hurmpf.

Then there’s me, do you know what I believe in? Everything!! I believe in God, Santa, the Easter bunny, Starbucks, my family, my bf, my friends, the sun, and especially that our perfect partner is picked out for us ahead of time. I just find this new age hippie-style cynicism to be somewhat obnoxious. I think it’s OK to watch movies and pretend they could happen in real life. I love supporting women’s right but I also love the old-fashioned ideas of cooking and cleaning for your man. I also believe in shopping at big name department stores but as I found out today, I stand alone on that topic as well. At my church, we hold an Alternative Giving Fair every year as a way to fight consumerism and to give back. The gifts range from homemade soups and cookies, to cards and boxes, to organic laundry detergent and cat toys. Each person makes/puts together their own gifts and you pay like 5-10 dollars for each item, all the proceeds of which go to a charity. It’s great, and you should totally come! (Dec 10, Holy Covenant United Methodist Church). But during the announcements the question was posed, “Who of you actually enjoy going Christmas shopping?” I WAS THE ONLY PERSON WITH MY HAND RAISED! How embarrassing. πŸ™‚

I want to change the world, I do. I want world peace, an end to gun violence, clean water for everyone, but I also want to shop at Macy’s, drive my car instead of walking everywhere (it’s cold out and I don’t bike!), and I want to believe that the Scottish and I are meant to be together because some higher power decided it so.

I like to say the Scottish has his feet on the ground at all times. And I put my feet on the ground too but definitely less often. I ground myself when I look at my finances, when I’m cleaning the house, running errands, and so on. But last night I asked him to join me in the clouds because it’s so fun up here! In the clouds, love always win, you can have the wedding of your dreams, you WILL be a famous actress AND novelist, and your Scottish is a gift from up above.

Come fly with me…

Quote: “Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart.” Anne Frank

Raw

13 Nov

I have to talk about something. But I’d really rather not discuss it so publicly. However, the blog is here, and if I don’t discuss the real issues in my life, then I’m not who I claim to be, and I’m not being true to myself. So here goes, I want to get married. Like, yesterday. πŸ™‚ I want to start my life with my favorite person in the world and I’m like a little child impatiently waiting for that starting moment. My little nanny boy, Derek, was waiting for a certain toy to arrive in the mail this week and his parents had originally thought they had ordered two-day shipping, but it turned out that it was ordered with regular shipping and that meant waiting over a full week. Upon receiving this news Derek pouted for the rest of the morning, looking grumpy and dejected as if his world was over, and being the good nanny that I am, I attempted to shake him out of his funk. He then asked me if I ever had to wait for something to come that I wanted really, really badly. I tried to think of some toy that I really wanted when I was younger but nothing was coming to mind, so I told him I’m sure there was something but you need to learn to be patient because it’s just a part of life.

Then yesterday I had yet another Stephanie-induced, intense talk about THE FUTURE with the Scottish, and I realized being patient when you’re an adult isn’t any easier. I might think that waiting to get married is more important than Derek’s toy, but it’s not. It’s all relative and it’s always hard to wait, no matter your age. It’s hard to wait when you decided this was the man you were going to marry way back in August of 2010. (I was camping with my family and it just hit me, he was the person for me, “And the world cracked open.”) And it’s hard to wait when you share a living space together and continually strive to make it feel like your home. (The Scottish moved into the new apartment in August of 2011.) And it’s hard to wait when you’re a wedding-obsessed girly girl who’s been dreaming about this day since she was short, with glasses, and had never been kissed.

It’s so embarrassing to write this all out, but I’m frustrated! I’m 28, I want the normal 2.5 kids, the house, and I’m so lucky to have found the man of my dreams so I can start this journey. The Scottish has been incredibly patient about my occasional impatience, but sometimes I feel like my head will just explode. He and I joke heavily about how I try to rush life, about how I have trouble living in the present, and how I’ll be disappointed because he’ll never be able to propose exactly the way I imagine he will in my crazy head. If therapy were covered in my pathetic excuse for health insurance I’d be there in a second! Do you ever feel like you can ruin things just by being yourself? I do. I know everything works out in the end, and my time will come, and I trust that God has a plan. I also trust that my very shy, doesn’t want to be the center-of-attention but loves me more than anything boyfriend, will work up the courage to propose. But the sheer joy and excitement I feel about the possibility of planning my wedding and marrying the smartest, most caring, loving, sexy, tall, balding, bears-loving, whiskey and beer-drinking, hilarious man I’ve ever met, makes me react like a ten-year old boy.

I can say with confidence, this won’t be the most unappealing thing you’ll read about me. Cheers until then.

Quote: “…then I did the simplest thing in the world. I leaned down… and kissed him. And the world cracked open.” Agnes de Mille

“I don’t call boys, boys call me.”

21 Oct

Yes, this is the last phrase I left the Scottish with that fateful night when we first met.  I gave him my number and said, “I don’t call boys, boys call me.”  I later found out that was a very rude thing to say and my friends and the Scottish thought I was being snotty.  What I meant was, “I’m too nervous to call you so would you please call me, like, be old-fashioned about it, you know?”  But instead I was a snot.  That does happen to me…too frequently I suppose.

But I digress, the story ended like that but it started….can you guess where?  We met on a plane, no wait, we met on a train, no that’s not it either….we met in a BAR.  SHOCK, HORROR!!  Ok, it’s not that shocking really, especially if you’re a normal person.  But if you’re me it’s super weird!  I consider myself not normal because I have this phobia of throwing up which has prevented me from excessive drinking throughout the years and then once I graduated college I started drinking wine almost exclusively, so now I’m just a big lame-O.  But if you know anything about me you know I don’t like bars!  They are loud, sweaty, crowded, and you have to wait for everything…food, drinks, the bathroom, etc.  So even though most people go to bars to meet people, I just didn’t do that.  And frankly, why would I want to meet some big drinker if I’m not a big drinker?!?!?  Well, let me just say, God has a great sense of humor. Anyway, I went to the bar that night because the cute guy in my show was having a birthday party there.  I grabbed a girlfriend and off we went.  As I walked up to the stairs to the private party area, I noticed there were tons of men everywhere!  Great, I thought.  Then my friend and I sat down across from three guys and they started chatting with us, and lo and behold, they had accents!!  Now, I really don’t faint over accents the way some girls do, I mean come on, I’m an actor, I can replicate almost any accent (I have surprising difficulty with Scottish accents though), and so even though I wasn’t swooning, I was very interested in this gaggle of Scottish men.

Turns out they were from Scotland!  πŸ™‚  They were all over here on work Visas and they were all super smart- a big plus in my book.  And there was one guy in particular who was really fun to talk to, yes, it was my Scottish.  He had this great smile and he really seemed interested in what I was saying (or he thought I was hot), but we had a great time chatting all night and he brought me waters and he was just adorable.  I knew he was into me because he kept asking about my show and he said he’d like to come see it sometime.  BINGO.  When you’re an actor and a guy is into you they feign interest in wanting to see you perform…whether they really care to see your show or not, it’s always been a tell-tale sign for me.

But then, his friends started to disappear and all of a sudden I couldn’t find him.  Cut to: we’re all outside in front of the bar preparing to leave, and my tall skinny Scottish man finally reappears.  Meanwhile, his friends are trying to get me to talk to this other guy, but I quickly dismiss him and smoothly walk over to my Scottish.  He mentions again that he’d like to see my show, I say, “Sure, I’ll give you my number.”  Then he gives me his number, and I say, “I don’t call boys, boys call me.”  1.5 days later I get a text asking me how my Thanksgiving was (we met the night before), and a few texts later he asks me out.  Don’t worry, he did call me the next morning to set up the date and confirm where we were meeting (downtown in front of Nordstrom).  Later he told me he was hoping he remembered what I looked like (the Scottish does like to drink), and I was hoping he wasn’t a weirdo.  We spent the whole day together shopping, walking, eating, and talking.  It was a lovely first date.  And it all started in a bar.  (groan)

Quote:  A pick-up line I would appreciate: ” Can I buy you a drink – or would you just prefer the five bucks?”

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