Advice from strange, married people

Advice from strange, married people

When people learn that I'm getting married (in three weeks, now), they pepper me with a whole bunch of marriage advice bullets. Because we've only been in Chicagoland for 10 months, 99% of these people are strangers.

So, I nod and listen to them...and wait for them to walk away.

But, just because they're strangers, doesn't mean they don't have good advice. It also doesn't mean they have good advice, either. It does mean that none of this advice was solicited.

So, I've made a note of most of the little tips I've received, and would like to share them with you, because they are insightful, sassy, funny or plain ol' ridiculous. Enjoy:

"Remember that you're still the same person."

"On your wedding day, the best day of your life, remember it's all about the two of you. Don't cater to anyone's BS, and - don't put up with it."

"My wife got fat after we got married. Don't do that."

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Little Victories

Little Victories

I've blogged about LV's before, but I'll tell you again what I think they are: Basically, they're the itty-bitty things that make life a bit sweeter. 

Let's go over some, and please - feel free to share yours with me. I can never have enough sweetness.

Making your coffee at work without being interrupted by a coworker forcing you to make small talk while you add creamer and sugar while fighting the urge to tell them to stop asking me what I did this weekend and I don't care what you did, either! I mean, there should be a rule that the office kitchen is a no-talking zone before the hour of noon. Important note: I don't currently have this problem, but I've been there - and the times when you can get in and get out are golden.

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When 'I' becomes 'We'

When 'I' becomes 'We'

When I was single, I used to haaaaate when coupled-up women were all, "We are, we do, we like, we will..." And, I made a half-promise to myself to never be like that. I'll admit, I think I was a teeny-tiny bit jealous of their twosome talk. Believe me, my disdain wasn't all "single independent woman! Strong female power!" And - a woman - especially a strong one - has got a right to change her mind, ya dig?

I like a 'we' statement.

Now, I'm not talking joint Facebook and email accounts, here. 'We' doesn't always have a place. Maintaining a sense of independence is important, I know. While I've accepted 'we' statements into my life, I also still maintain that level of "I'm not that crazy woman who speaks for her man. He has a brain. A good one. I'm just including him, here, in this statement, to be nice." I still say "I" quite often.

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Love pockets

Love pockets

It seems like everything wedding-related is such a whirlwind. At least, it is for me, so far. Between the dramatic airport scene and fitting everything (Final food tasting, cake tasting, tux fittings, jewelry shopping, bridal shower, bachelorette party) into such a short amount of time while in NY - I was s-p-e-n-t - and a tad overwhelmed.

Our luggage didn't arrive until after my bridal shower, but I lucked out and planned pretty well when it came to shopping for my bridal shower and bachelorette party. I had a dress and shoes shipped to my mom's house so I didn't have to pack them for our trip from Chicago to Albany before flying to Aruba, and then flying back to Albany from Aruba for the shower/bachelorette/bachelor parties. What I'm trying to say is - it all worked out just fine. Well, except for two things.

A handbag, and a coat. So, something to put things in, and something to put me in. 

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I can't have nice things

I can't have nice things

It's sunny today where I am. Is it sunny where you are? 

As I was going through my every day tote bag the other day - which also doubles as my carry-on when traveling - I found two pairs of sunglasses, just hanging out, not in a protective case. This is pretty standard for me, and I often scold myself for it.

And never do anything different. *shrug*

I stumbled upon this cool fashion blog last night - a Chicago fashion blogger - and agree with her assessment on expensive sunglasses vs. inexpensive sunglasses

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I'm still alive

I'm still alive

Whew. It's been a long time since I was hangin' out here. You too, I bet. Let's catch up!

So, since we last got together, I had a trip to Aruba, my bridal shower, my bachelorette party, a dramatic airport experience, my wedding dress fitting, and we picked up our wedding bands.

Again...whew. I'll talk about the other things later, but what I really want to tell you about now is...I can check off "dramatic airport experience worthy of a movie scene" from my bucket list.

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Whiny Wednesday

Whiny Wednesday

I know it's Tuesday, yes. Moving on...

Hella charm bracelets. They're soooo loud and jingle-jangly. I walked into an office and saw the front desk person's arm decked out in Alex and Ani charm bracelets. Cute arm party, I thought. That's what it's called, by the way, when someone is wearing a bunch of bracelets. Anyway, their office phone rang, and she lifted her bangled arm to answer it, and JINGLE JINGLE happened. And, then she rested the phone on her shoulder so both her hands were free to use the computer, and JINGLE JINGLE JINGLE happened more, and her bracelets slapped against the desk over and over again. How is that not annoying to her? And to her coworkers? The poor gals. Wah.

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Can we put Barbie to bed?

Can we put Barbie to bed?

As an only child, I was always grateful for Barbie. I thought she was a cool doll. I enjoyed dressing her up, making her fall in love with Ken (and Dylan and Brandon) and helping her explore the townhouse Santa brought her for Christmas. When my cousins and friends would come over, we'd have Barbie parties - exchange clothes, make storylines, put on a fashion show - you name it.

Maybe those fond memories are the reason why whenever I see Barbie is getting a 'realistic' makeover, I cringe. I also get super angry and annoyed with comments from moms who are all "I love this, my girls will play with realistic Barbie because that's a better role model." Idiots. I'm sorry, but those moms are. Barbie is not a role model. Barbie is a toy. Cabbage Patch dolls don't look like 'real babies' because they are NOT REAL BABIES.

And, why stop with Barbie? Let's make SpongeBob more realistic - and take away his feet, arms and face, and let him just sit in a cup on a sink. Let's take away Batman and Superman's capes and give them a desk job and public transportation passes.

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Throwback Thursday (and the most awkward photo ever

Throwback Thursday (and the most awkward photo ever

Slowly, but surely...no. It's happened pretty slowly, but...I'm here. I've come to appreciate Throwback Thursdays - better known as #TBT, or #throwbackthursday - on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

At first, I was like oooooh, lame. But, one day I was feeling incredibly nostalgic (I 'blame' our approaching wedding) and it happened to be a Thursday, so I'm sitting there, checking my newsfeeds and getting all into people's photos from their awkward days, their younger days, their carefree days, their wild days, their touching/hilarious/memorable moments with loved ones lost, their silly photos from last week, even.

And, I realized: Those photos are like light, foamy, salt-water-scented lifesavers in a sea of putrid, overwhelming garbage.

But, this one? Well this one is a perfect example of "those awkward years" and also the age where dance recitals stop being cute - and start getting uncomfortable.

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Do, re, me, me, me

Do, re, me, me, me

The art of conversation is just that...an art. There's a balance between two or more people, and it's supposed to flow like a wave - or a song - throughout those people involved - with equal participation.

There are few things worse than someone who brings everything back to them. You mention something you're doing, someplace you're going - and they've been there, done that...and then some. They probably weren't even really listening to you - just simply waiting for you to stop talking so they can start.

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Let's watch the Oscars together, shall we?

I'm live-tweeting the Oscars. Just in case you need someone to watch it with.

The glossy glaze-over

The glossy glaze-over

It never fails...once we hit the checkout line, my eyes glaze over, and my expression goes blank. I forget to help put groceries on the cashier's belt, and I am jolted from my reverie by:

"Honey. It happened again."

I blink a few times and shake off the sheepish feeling - while still reading the cover stories of the latest issue of GLAMOUR in the corner of my eye - as I empty the contents of the shopping cart's front seat on to the checkout belt.

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Just love

Just love

I'm a dog lover. I'm a rescue lover. I dislike over-breeding, pet shops, puppy mills and just generally seeking out a specific type of dog simply because that's what you want. I don't know - I guess I just believe in dogs finding/rescuing people, more than anything.

I came across this link, entitled '3 years ago you were evicted from 20 Catherine St 13B and I have your dog', after a friend shared it on Facebook. And, I was completely taken in and aback by it. 

The short story about a neglected, abused senior dog - nicknamed 'Cathy' by the kill shelter she wound up in before being adopted by her owner/family - is perfectly heartwarming, informative, and above all else - kind...even during the parts the author talks about the neglect and abuse Cathy endured.

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Guilty pleasures

Guilty pleasures

Title says it all.

I have zero shame in admitting these guilty pleasures. So, I guess they're not really guilty, but whatevs, it's the phrase.

Vanderpump Rules. I know that I'm in my early 30s, and I should be turning my nose up at shows like this. I know that I should be like, "I don't watch that garbage...I read." But, I watch it. And, I read. Because I am in my early 30s and I'll do what I damn well please, thankyouverymuch. This show is ridiculously addictive and in the back of my mind, I know/think that it's scripted, but I also hold out some shred of hope that it's not. Which, is awful, considering it means there really are people like this breathing the same air we do. There's so much whining, fighting, drunken fighting, backstabbing, cheating, crying, "Oh, I love her necklace", and more drunken fighting. It's amazing.

Miley Cyrus. She's grown on me. I think she's really quite talented. That's really all about that.

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Wait...are wedding rings a big deal or not?

Wait...are wedding rings a big deal or not?

"Or, just do something like this," the salesman said halfheartedly, as he showed me the exact opposite of what I said I wanted in a wedding ring.

"No...." I shook my head in confusion. Plus, his statement and tired tone made it seem like wedding rings aren't a big deal. I turned to Louis, and reading my mind and body language, he took the lead with the salesman in order for us to be out of there in 10 seconds or less.

At a second store, we were greeted by a saleswoman. I thought, maybe she'll take me a little more to heart. She nodded when I told her what I was looking for (seriously, it's nothing out of the ordinary), and when I simply just didn't care for the options she showed me, she shrugged and said, "You could always just do this, something plain, and then add to it later on, like with an anniversary band..."

SO I SHOULD SETTLE.

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Free babysitting?

Free babysitting?

Let me just get this out of the way. I am not a fan of (mostly misbehaved) kids in adult restaurants.

I understand that a lot of parents think their child is the exception - and I am absolutely sure that some are - but there are parents who are just completely wrong about that. Their child is a nightmare for other patrons to have in a restaurant where there is no kiddie meal. Thing is - I don't blame the kid, I blame the parents who don't pay attention.

BUT.

You know where bad parenting is really annoying? Nail salons. You're 'stuck' (with wet nails, no less) in one place for a certain amount of time. Lemme tell you what happened to me...get comfy.

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I look down on women who blog anonymously and I'm not sorry

I look down on women who blog anonymously and I'm not sorry

During the 5+ years I've been a blogger, I have come to realize the most seductive, invoking blog topics are, in no particular order: Pizza, parenting, relationships, pets and music. It's no secret that a blogger knows how to use those topics to boost readership. I once wrote about open relationships and how gross I think they are. It was one of the most - if not the most - read-and-commented-on blog posts I've ever written. And, when I hit the "publish" button, I knew it would be. 

Now, I can't speak for every blogger, but just because a blog topic is known to be a hot one, doesn't mean I've ever changed my views or how I express them. It's always just a nature of the beast for me. And, I have always had my real name and photo out there, proudly taking responsibility and ownership of my posts, opinions, conversations and thoughts - even when I would comment on other blogs. Being anonymous takes a lot of credibility away, in my opinion.

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Quickie: I don't get the Olympics

Quickie: I don't get the Olympics

I've never been a big sports person. I mean, I like golf, tennis...bowling, volleyball (in a resort pool with tequila shots, preferably). But, give me a bat and I'm handing it right back to you. Which is funny, because I have superb hand-eye coordination.

I also don't watch sports. However, to my credit - I also didn't get the big deal about Richard Sherman's rant into Erin Andrews' microphone. The man had passion, and Andrews handled herself perfectly. I mean, he's a football player, not a golfer.

HE HITS PEOPLE ON PURPOSE.

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Random crap

Random crap

It's Friday, and I don't think I'm alone when I say, Haaaaalllelujah. Let's be random!

Friday is a good day for pizza. I finally found a pizza place 'round these here Chicago parts who doesn't do a doughy pizza. It was a laborious search, but a fruitful one. And a cheesy one.

Why are there so many TV shows about Bigfoot? IT IS NOT REAL. On one show, they have town hall meetings about Bigfoot sightings, and people who look like they regularly wake up with an empty whiskey bottle in their hand are all, "I seen it! I really did!" Hilarious. Remember Harry and the Hendersons? I loved that movie.

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