Tag Archives: Relationships

Great Men-Spectations

22 Jan

The Scottish and I had a fight this morning. It was a normal fight. I feel this way, he feels that way, we both end up feeling hurt. But in the end, we always make it through. In my opinion, during a real fight (as opposed to a silly or kinda fight) there are two big moments. The first moment is one of disbelief. How can the person I love more than anyone in the world make me feel so terrible? How can they not understand how I feel? How can they think I meant to hurt them that way? It’s that moment of confusion and disbelief that causes the anguish and stress. We want our other half to understand us completely all the time, we want them to anticipate our every need, and we want them to never disappoint us. But no one can be perfect 100 percent of the time and mistakes happen. The real relationship test is how you deal with them.

I don’t deal well. I enjoy playing the “victim”, I like drama, and it’s imperative that I get my way… along the time. You might be judging me right now but the truth of the matter is we all have our issues and I’m just embarrassingly honest about mine. The Scottish has his hang-ups too, but I don’t need to get into those, after all, this isn’t his blog. But needless to say, we were very upset with each other this morning and I felt that moment of disbelief in a strong way. He just didn’t get it.

But he does get it. He knows me really well at this point and after a taking a moment to calm down and step back from the situation, we had the moment of clarity. You know that point in a fight where you see through your angry haze and you remember how great they are and how wrong you were or how much it doesn’t matter what happened in the first place. You can feel the clarity in their embrace and you can see the calmness in their eyes. It’s the downhill slope of the fight that brings you back to earth and back to reality.

And then the strangest thing happens, you both go back to normal life. To me, that is the funniest thing about long-term committed loving relationships, life goes in spite of the fight and the things you had to do that day still need to happen, so you just jump back in.

The Scottish is by far my favorite person to fight with too. Is that weird? He always looks so adorable when he’s annoyed with me that it makes me want to giggle, but men don’t really like being giggled at when they’re “in serious mode.” So I don’t. I keep my thoughts of how cute he looks to myself and keep communicating my ass off, until that moment of clarity comes and the fight dissolves.

I know every couple is different, some people disagree less often than others, and some people set up HIGH expectations that can cause the occasional disgruntled discussion. I don’t mind the fights, really I don’t. Fighting means we are communicating, it means we working on our balance and we are changing for the better. I look forward to many more fights with my amazing boyfriend.

Quote: “People seem to fight about things very unsuitable for fighting. They make a frightful noise in support of very quiet things. They knock each other about in the name of very fragile things.” G.K. Chesterton

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

What is something that gets me into trouble every time I do it?

15 Jan

COMPARING!! I compare and I contrast and then I get hurt. Everyone warns me in my acting life, my personal life, and everyday life, do NOT compare yourself to others, it only leads to icky and envious thoughts. So I can’t think of a better topic to blog about than COMPARING. My sister and her boyfriend were in town visiting the Scottish and I this weekend. We had an amazing time making sushi, visiting Willis tower, watching live Blues music, eating out, and staying in. While they were here I asked their permission to write a blog about our relationships. This stinks of disaster, does it not? It might stink but that’s precisely why you should keep reading. There is no room for that “every couple is unique and special in their own way” crap, we’re just gonna lay it all out there and see what happens.

For the purposes of this blog, I will refer to my sister as Sister and to her boyfriend as SBF or Sister’s Boyfriend. And of course the Scottish is my boyfriend, and I’ll be known as I, me, Stephanie, or crazy-pants Nini. We will begin by comparing the women to the women, the men to the men, and then contrasting why, on paper, the Scottish fits better with Sister, and why SBF should really be with me.

For starters, it has to be said that my sister and I are literally the same person. LITERALLY. And kudos to us for finding men who not only put up with us, but like us sometimes too! We are similar in the way we talk to our men because we expect perfection and we have a nice little tone that we use which has been passed down to us from our mother which in turn was passed down from her mother. The women on my mom’s side are the leaders of their families and we tend to gravitate to men that are relaxed, calm, understanding, and a little bit lazy. Both SBF and the Scottish fit the bill perfectly. Sister and I are also similar in that we have no freakin clue how to relax. We spend our “vacations” visiting family and friends, cleaning the house, and getting shit done, while SBF and the Scottish could lay in front of the TV for days. We do not get this, because growing up, our family went camping. Camping is not sit-on-a-beach-relaxing, it’s packing, driving, setting up camp, starting a fire, cooking a meal, walking half a mile to the bathroom, taking down camp, and driving somewhere new to do it all over again. Now we loved our family vacations growing up but we use the term “vacation” loosely and because of this and the fact that our mother has difficulty sitting still as well, we tend to be on the go, all the time. That said, both Sister and I are dedicated to our life’s work, Sister is an amazing teacher, and I would call myself a very passionate artist of many trades. We both loves games, shopping, and annoying each other.

But SBF and the Scottish are very similar too, as mentioned before they both like to chill-out; they both like video games and sleep. They love exciting things that give Sister and I tummy aches, such as theme park rides and sky diving. They both love music, jokes, and sushi, and they both know how to say the wrong the thing at the wrong time. I have to say, it’s so nice to be able to spend a whole weekend together and know that our guys not only get along with each other, but are becoming friends too. Win win.

Now why on earth would I say that we are better off with each other’s partners? I must really be crazy-pants Nini!! But look, Sister has LIVED in England for a whole year, OK? She gets the UK, she loves to travel and the thought of flying back yearly and getting to explore more the world excites her! Then there’s me, who didn’t even own a passport when she met the Scottish and who saw very little reason to travel outside of the US. Of course I’m a changed woman now, but back in the day, we all thought Sister would come home with an Englishman, and she has even said to me once, “I’m supposed to be the one with the UK boyfriend!” But instead she found her wonderful, SBF, who is a great guy, a guy who plays guitar and sings live in front of audiences, similar to what I do when I perform in a play. He’s an artist and he gets what it’s like to do something you love just because you love it, but for little to no money, and he can relate to that feeling of rejection that comes solely with being a performer. Sister and the Scottish don’t get that.

Then we have the drinking issue. SBF doesn’t drink which is a perfect match for me, the non-drinker drinker!! SBF used to drink in the past but it made him really sick and doctors advised him to give it up, so he did. Sister enjoys her drink every once in a while and finds humor in drunk people, I on the other hand, really dislike being around drunk people for fear of them puking, and what did I find? A Scottish man who can drink any American under the table and says sometimes you just gotta puke cause it makes you feel better.

And don’t even get me started on the ring thing. So, Sister and SBF are talking about the future and marriage someday too like the Scottish and I, but the discussion of rings came up this weekend, and SBF wants to know what my Sister wants, but she wants to be old-fashioned and not help him pick it out or give him any ideas. Then there’s me, who would love to help the Scottish pick out a ring, (then maybe I can stop having these nightmares where I dream he buys me a large opal instead of a diamond and I’m forced to pretend I like it), but he refuses to have any help from me and keeps it a hush-hush secret.

SBF and I are your standard, run-of-the-mill romantics, and my Sister and the Scottish are your classic down-to-earth realists. I could go on, but you get the point. It’s funny, right?

I suppose this is the time for the hokey comment about how our differences only make our relationships stronger and we have nothing to gain by comparing… unfortunately that sounds like a real yawn-fest so I’d rather not tie up the loose ends. But I will say that I have the best partner possible for me and Sister has the best partner possible for her, and that’s all the explanation you need.

I do feel the need to say that my little Sister and I are super competitive when it comes to life and sometimes that really sucks. I feel like we know how to be caring and sympathetic to our friends, but we are so hard on each other. We have a lot of really big things coming up in life: weddings, babies, and houses to name a few hot topics. And we are very excited at the thought of doing all those things together. We also know that everything will come at a different time for each of us and that’s OK. I know that I will be so excited for all of her big news, and she will be excited for mine. If I’m being perfectly honest, when I think about her doing stuff FIRST, BEFORE me, I get frustrated, but when I think about her not being in the loving relationship she’s in right now, I feel devastated. Her happiness is one of the most important things in my life. Because she’s my Sister.

Quote: “I’m at peace with myself and where I am. In the past, I was always looking to see how everybody else was doing. I wasn’t competitive, I was comparative. I just wanted to be where everybody else was.” Courteney Cox

In all seriousness

4 Jan

I’ve been thinking about death a lot lately. Mostly because I started The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo a week ago and it’s been freaking me out, totally FREAKING me out but I’m addicted and can’t wait to get to the second one. And I guess I’m also thinking about death because we recently entered a new year and with each new beginning, we look back, we look forward, and we are suddenly so aware of the time or the lack of it rather.

I really had a wonderful time at home visiting my family. The Scottish and I flew into Minneapolis and the next morning my bf and my whole family of five were driving to Bismarck, North Dakota to celebrate Christmas. It’s what we did last year, the year before that, the decade before that, and so on. But I can’t say for sure it’s what we will do next year. I suddenly feel so old and aware of everyone else’s age too. When did my grandparents get old(er)? For clarification, I’m referring to my mother’s parents, because my dad’s parents have since passed away. My dad’s mom and dad loved to travel and in the eighties they sold their house, bought a big RV, and spent the rest of their years traveling from campground to campground. Well, occasionally they would park it our backyard and that was the coolest thing ever because it was like having a little guest house out back that you could visit. But their deaths were very tough on my dad and we all thought Grandma went too soon, and we all remember how awful, and gut-wrenching it was to watch my dad’s dad deteriorate with Alzheimer’s and completely change his entire personality… and now we have to watch it again.

My mom’s father is suffering from Alzheimer’s as well. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised, both of my parent’s mothers had breast cancer and survived beautifully, but it is uncanny how two different bloodlines can mimic each other so distinctly. It’s just hard because it’s been a few years now of watching his brain go while he remains one of the healthiest men over age 30 that I know (and he just turned 80!!). He still works in his yard and his doctors are impressed with his fitness, but his brain on the other hand, keeps getting worse. If you’ve never experienced what it’s like to watch someone you love go through this, let me explain that it’s not the fact that they forget which day of the week it is or which grandkid went to which college, (who can remember that anyway)? The difficult part is the anxiety that comes along with losing your memory, they don’t know what to believe and it makes them nervous. The truth is that sometimes they might shower at midnight to get ready for the church service at 9 AM and they might think that their wife of over 50 years is actually their mother.

And yet this Christmas, Grandpa was great, he was funny, he played games, and enjoyed himself. It’s not always bad, but we’re not always there either. My heart breaks for my grandmother because I know many of us have wondered, is it harder on the loved one who is losing their partner or harder on the one losing his memory? I feel terrible for my mom and her siblings because it is their father who is going through all of these changes, and I feel empathy for my fellow cousins.

As if worrying about grandparents wasn’t enough now I find myself worried about my parents when I never used to before. I worry about their safety and their health. I try to de-clutter their house and I actually listen to their problems. Do you remember when you used to only talk about yourself with your parents? I’ll bet your they do. Parents by nature are unselfish beings (of course there are exceptions) but they are dealing with their own struggles and I don’t want them to have struggles! I want their lives to be perfect as they want mine to be.

My nurturing urges don’t stop there! I find myself thinking about my own FUTURE babies. Well, hello, I am 28! My mom had two kids by my age. Please don’t judge me, but I think about what they’ll look like, act like, if I’ll be too over-protective, if I’ll be as good a mother as I am a nanny, and how my parents are going to be so entirely smitten and how I can’t wait to see that.

I think about the Scottish and how I’d be lost without him. I know he didn’t propose over the holidays like I had hoped, but I’m OK with that and I’m OK with waiting a bit longer. I think we’re on the same page now, and as if it was a covered bulletin board, I took down every post-it note that contained a crazy proposal expectation, thus leaving with him a blank slate. And I let him know plain and simple that it’s him I want more than a big dramatic over-the-top romantic proposal, but of course he told me he wants all my dreams to come true, so where does that leave us? Back at square one?

And with all of these nurturing feelings I wonder if I should leave Chicago at some point. I’m torn between my desire to be closer to my family and my desire to pursue my own dreams and notions. I love this city and I know I belong here but my family is so important to me, so why am I not closer? My mom moved 8 hours from her parents and still makes the drive 5 or so times a year. Will I be able to keep that up? When I think about my future, all I see is airplanes! Flights to Minnesota, flights to Scotland, flights to who-knows-where! I guess our kids will be expert travelers by the time they’re one year old!

When I shared my fears with my mom, she told me to take it one year at a time. There’s no reason to worry about where you will live in the future, or what will happen, or where Christmas will take place next year… it just matters where you are now. And this year, I spent Christmas in ND with my amazing family, I came home to an apartment that I sort-of kind-of share with an amazing man, and I went back to my wonderful job and saw my two best kiddos, and for now, that is enough.

Quote: “As we grow old, our sense of the value of time becomes vivid. Nothing else, indeed, seems of any consequence.” William Hazlitt

SLime Movie Review

1 Jan

I’m probably the only actor in the world that is NOT a movie buff, but I do enjoy a good cry, er, a good movie every once in a while. And I’m fully aware that most people don’t like the same movies I do, and that my taste is embarrassingly girly, but here I go anyway. I plan to use my publishing name from my Shutterfly account, hence the “SLime” in this blog title.

SLime Reviews New Year’s Eve directed by Garry Marshall

I think I started crying about half-way through the movie and didn’t stop until the end so… I would call that a success! This movie is all about relationships and since my blog is about relationships, it seemed like a perfect fit. Yes, these are contrived, sappy, and over-the-top relationships but they are realistic and entertaining. I really liked this movie and I don’t think I could have asked for more from a romantic comedy with over-lapping story lines. The main themes throughout the movie are hope and change. Many of the characters are trying to change their lives for the better and get out of old ruts and bad habits. The message of hope for the new year is something we all can relate to, and it’s what gets us through the bad years and what reminds us to be grateful for the good years. After a week solid of limited responsibility and being around my closest family and friends, I needed a good cry to get back into life. I tend to accept change and transition a little bit slower than the average joe, so watching this movie was cathartic for me and has me excited for a new year. Let’s go 2012!!

And now for no particular reason and with no disrespect to any of the artists in the film, I will now critique/give my humble opinions on each of the 800 stars in this movie:

Lea Michele- Overacting and pushing. Every time you started a monologue I lost interest. But you sing like a rock star and your version of Auld Lang Syne was worth the wait.

Ashton Kutcher- When I look at you I see one sad Demi. Sorry.

Jessica Biel- You’re kinda funny. PS I miss 7th Heaven!

Seth Meyers- Funny and sweet. Not cute.

Michelle Pfeiffer- Great work. Believable.

Zac Efron- Yummmy yum yum. How old are you? You are my new celebrity crush. And you can act. Win win.

Katherine Heigl- You play the same character every movie. That said, I like you. Mostly because you’re a blonde with a nice rack.

Jon Bon Jovi- What??? Umm, good job acting (I guess) in a completely stupid plot line (I guess).

Robert De Niro- You are a seasoned veteran who delivered. Thank you.

Halle Berry- To be honest, I haven’t seen you in many films, but I thought you were great. Plus your face is stunning.

Hilary Swank- You got progressively better as the film when on. Good work.

Ludacris- Ooooo, wow. Yeaaaaa, you were pretty bad. When asked, the Scottish said, “He was terrible, I could have done better!”

Sarah Jessica Parker- I loved you as a witch in Hocus Pocus, I loved you as the single Carrie Bradshaw in SATC, and I love you as an over-protective mother in this movie. PS How do you stay so thin? Did your metabolism ever slow down??

Josh Duhamel- Meh.

Abigail Breslin- You’re in that awkward stage between child star and adult star. Your acting chops are a tiny bit weak but you’ll get there. I like you.

Ryan Seacrest- You’re clearly a genius based on the empire you’ve created but you’re not an actor, even when playing yourself (which is harder than it looks). Lucky for me, you helped make the Kardashians the famous family they are today, and for that I thank you (and for that most people hate you too).

Even smaller cameos in a cameo-filled-movie:
Thumbs up to John Lithgow
Thumbs down to Alyssa Milano
Thumbs up to Penny Marshall
Thumbs up to Matthew Broderick

Overall I would give this movie to 4 out of 5 tears. It not only reached my expectations but surpassed them a bit as well by showcasing unique stories of love and not just boy meets girl boring-ness. My favorite plot lines would have to be Michelle Pfeiffer with Zac Efron, and Halle Berry with Robert De Niro. Go see it!!

Quote: “It only happens once a year: New Year’s Eve. It’s a time when hopeless can be romantic, and a resolution can become a revelation. And when one night can change everything.” Opening voice over of New Year’s Eve

Up next, a review of my holiday season and the relationships in my life, in a blog titled, “I didn’t get engaged over Christmas like you all were hoping for (yea right) but I did have a great time up north,” or something along those lines…. 🙂

Holiday Relations

11 Dec

Hello Holiday Season. The best time of the year? Pretty much. Well, I would say summer is really the best time of the year, because let’s face it, if you’re in a northern/mid-western state, the cold is awful and we all rejoice once summer hits. But the holiday season is what makes the winter weather bearable. There’s music and lights, and people doing good deeds, what’s not to love? I get very busy during the holiday season because I want to enjoy it all! And since I’m trying to gear this blog more toward relationships, I want to pass on my advice for how best to enjoy your relationships during the holidays.

Friends: This can be tricky because we all have those friends we exchange gifts with and those we do not. I prefer to not give gifts to friends as I have an immediate family, extended family, and a Chicago family to shop for, but I do think friendships need to be refreshed at this time of year as well. So I make a point to see all my friends around the holiday season for dinner, coffee, a drink, shopping, a party, whatever it may be, just to check in, see how they’re doing, and wish them a happy holidays. This year my group of friends, the Sister Wives, all got dressed up and we went out for dinner and drinks and even exchanged a ten dollar gift. While we see each other a lot, the six of us aren’t always in the same place at the same time, and we rarely get dressed up just for each other, but it makes our holiday dinner that little bit more special. For years my bff and I would go shopping together and buy each other the exact same gift for Christmas. It was great because we got to exchange something without the worry and stress of choosing it. And whether it was a book, a hair straightener, or a shirt, we both liked it because we both had picked it out. I also like to act as a professional party-attender throughout November and December. I like to hit every holiday soriee or get-together because my friends put a lot of effort into them and a holiday party is always a blast. Plus, if you’re too busy going to parties then you don’t have to plan one yourself.

Family: My auntie likes to say something to the effect of, ” Drinking and family don’t mix.” And this might not make sense if your family has Irish or Italian roots but it makes sense for us. There might be wine and beer around, but when we all get together it’s usually good clean fun and nobody gets hurt. Spending time with my family around the holidays is the highest priority on my list because I was raised that way. My parents drove us three kids through blizzards and storms just to make sure we made it to Bismarck to celebrate Christmas. I’ve never spent a Christmas in Minnesota which is crazy because I lived there from age 2 1/2 to age 18. Every family has their own idea of fun, but if you think playing cards, singing together, making fun of each other, and eating a lot is fun, then we are guil-ty (said in a high-pitched gay man’s voice). We literally sing the same two songs every year for the Christmas Eve service at my grandparent’s church and we continually get RAVE reviews. It is also entirely true that people look forward to these same two songs every year. And it’s entirely true that we hold the words in our hands year after year because for some reason memorization of these same two songs is out of our reach. All kidding aside, my family is so important to me and if you can’t think of a funny or weird tradition that your family has, this is the year to make one! I believe that traditions are good for the soul and great things to pass on to future generations. Our traditions range from Grandma’s chili to singing in church to opening gifts the night before Christmas. What are yours?

Partners: This could be your spouse, your significant other, the person you are causally dating, or in some cases, your non-boyfriend boyfriend. Whatever the case or whatever the level of commitment, being in a relationship around the holidays is wonderful! The key with gift giving is making that other person feel special. A gift that shows you understand their interests and passions is infinitely better than a standard run-of-the-mill gift, but no need to get over-whelmed, you don’t have to do this alone! I am a big fan of asking family members and friends (who know that person best) what it is they want for Christmas. I also need to point out that women, all women, (even the ones that say that don’t) enjoy romantic gifts. That said, romance is different for every girl, some think it’s jewelry and flowers, some prefer you take them to a show or on a trip, some like when you cook them dinner, and some just want you to have listened enough to have purchased that one thing they’ve been hinting at since July. Speaking of gifts, I was listening to a popular radio station here in Chicago, and they were having women call in with their worst Christmas gifts ever. This one woman won, hands down, after she said that her new boyfriend of a few months gave her a 1,000 count box of TAMPONS!!! TAMPONS?!?!?! There are 80 things wrong with this gift but we’ll start with the obvious, what man purchases feminine hygiene products on his own?? And then why did he think that was OK?? And also, why 1,000?? Why? Because he wants her to have enough tampons to last her for life?? Because nothing says romance like, “I got you some plugs to help with your monthly bleeding problem. Word.”

Happy Holidays, enjoy spending time with your friends, family, and partners!!

Quote: “If all the year were playing holidays,/ To sport would be as tedious as to work.” William Shakespeare

Keeping with Tradition

23 Nov

It’s Thanksgiving tomorrow!! So of course I’m going to blog about all the things I’m thankful for (duh, I love traditions)…hopefully you’ll take the time to think about the people and things you are thankful for too!

I’m thankful for my sister. I’m thankful for my brother. I was watching Oprah awhile ago and someone on her show was saying how important your siblings are because they are with you throughout your entire life. Your parents leave you too early and your partner finds you too late, but your siblings are there from childhood to old age. I think your relationship with your siblings is very immature and superficial when you are young, and I find (just like in every relationship) that it takes work to create an adult-type friendship with your siblings. Mine siblings are great, and so special to me; I’m blessed to have them in my life.

I’m thankful for warm showers. I know we’re all supposed to be taking shorter ones to conserve energy and water, but my morning shower is one of the best parts of my day. It wakes me up, gives me time to think, and relaxes me.

I’m thankful for my extended family. My grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. (I love all my friends dearly and consider most of them family.) For some lucky reason, I have always been surrounded by amazing people. That’s sort of why I think it’s my job to write about humanity and relationships, because I have so many wonderful relationships in my life. Yes, that means you (unless you don’t know me, then it’s probably not about you.)

I’m thankful for my 2004 Hyundai Elantra. I definitely prefer luxury and quality when it comes to my house, my clothes, and other things, but when it comes to my vehicle I couldn’t care less! I’ll drive my Elantra as long as I can, especially now that it’s paid off. I call her my Silver Baby, and I love her not only because she puts up with my crazy driving when I’m pissed off in traffic, but also because she is the first and only car I’ve bought thus far.

I’m thankful for the surgeon who fixed my lower back and helped me get the feeling back in my leg. There were so many people who helped me through that time, but a few need to be mentioned this holiday season. Thank you to the Scottish for sitting with me in the ER while I was in the worst pain of my life, for waiting at the hospital while I was in surgery, and for helping me with funds when the medical bills came through. Thank you to my boss for stocking my fridge, buying me vitamins, staying at the hospital during surgery, and never once pressuring me to come back to work before I was ready. Thank you to L dawg for the phone calls, concern, and being there in spirit, thank you to CBF for a monetary gift that was above and beyond, thank you to H for making the drive to come visit, thank you to the Sister Wives for your presence, phone calls, and just being around when I needed you most. And especially thank you to my mother who spent a week with me while I recovered. Best week ever.

I’m thankful that I am a romantic, not a cynic. I can believe in fairy-tales and happy endings while still being a strong, confident, and independent young woman. Amen to that.

I’m thankful for my Chicago family aka my Nanny family. I’m just so grateful for the love I’ve received from my kids. When I first started, I desperately needed that extra love in my life and I’m so happy God led me to them. And I’m thankful to my nanny parents for their encouragement over the past four years, not only have I learned so much about Chicago and life from them, but I never would have been able to buy a condo without their support and for that I am eternally grateful.

I’m thankful for the Scottish. He is wonderful for a billion reasons, but I’ll only name a few to spare those of you cynics from gagging. He’s a man’s man, he loves beer and football! When I crawl into bed at night, he rolls over to snuggle me, which is a big change from sleeping diagonally across the bed as he used to do before he met me. He lets me be goofy and crazy and dramatic and I never have to hide my real feelings. I think he’s the smartest guy in world because he’s patient and willing to learn. I feel like I’ve known him my whole life but it’s only been two years. He’s my other half, my partner, and I’m thankful he took a job in Chicago back in 2009 so I could be fortunate enough to meet him.

I’m thankful for my parents. More thankful than I know how to express. My parents raised me to be loving, respectful, and to work your life around family and not your family around your life. My mother taught me and continues to teach me how to care for others even when it’s difficult and how to be my own unique person. My father taught me how to work hard and how to take myself lightly even when things are tough. Both of them support my dreams no matter how scary or impossible they seem. They have given me more money than they truly have just so I could live in Chicago and be happy. I proudly take their bad qualities with their good ones because they are my parents and two of the best people I know.

Quote: “The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside of a day of thanksgiving.” H.U. Westermayer

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