One of the Best

While 2014 wasn’t a perfect year, I can honestly say I’ve never had more fun in my life than I had this year. A huge part of that is due to the outrageous amount of live music I was lucky enough to see. There are few things that make me happier than going to shows and this year I had a ton of people to enjoy those shows with, made fun new friends in the process, and even learned how to love going to shows on my own. Some were just here at local dive bars, some on Broadway in Nashville, some at festivals, some bands I saw multiple times, and some, to be honest, I almost don’t remember seeing at all (damn you VIP at summer shows!). And, okay, it’s not just “some” bands, over 150 of them to be a little more exact.

Here’s the list of how it all went down….

Paul Shin Trio, Eddie Moore and the Outer Circle, Kacey Musgraves, Kip Moore, Lady Antebellum, The Zeros, Gary Clark Jr., Kings of Leon, Vance Joy, Young the Giant, Aloe Blacc, Haim, Bastille, Kate Nash, Ellie Goulding, Chromeo, Girl Talk, Busta Rhymes, Outkast, Holy Ghost, Kid Cudi, Future Islands, Lorde, Foster the People, Pharrell, Snoop Dogg, Gwen Stefani, Queens of the Stone Age, Nas, Jay-Z, Muse, STRFKR, Frank Turner, Krewella, Flosstradamus, Skrillex, Dillion Francis, Aluna Geore, Calvin Harris, Lana Del Rey, Beck, Arcade Fire, Debbie Harry, Moses Sumney, Local Natives, Night Terrors of 1927, Fitz & the Tantrums, The Warlocks, The Dandy Warhols, Hunter Hunted, Twenty One Pilots, Nonono, St Lucia, Foster the People, White Sea, Strange Babes, Naked and Famous, Cults, Vampire Weekend, Sigrah, Nmezee, Holy Ghost, Reel Big Fish, Frank Turner, John Butler Trio, Deap Valley, Band of Skulls, Me Like Bees, Not a Planet, March Fourth Marching Band, Robert DeLong, Catfish and the Bottlemen, The Architects, Capital Cities, Man Man, Cherub, 2 Chainz, Diplo, Travis Scott, White Arrows, The Neighbourhood, Rich Robinson, Robert Randolph and the Family Band, The Zeros, White Girl, Glass Animals, Glass Animals (yep, again), The Invisible World, Jeremy Messersmith, Rev Gusto, Dear Boy, Scruffy and the Janitors, Kitten, The Architects, Better Than Ezra, The Late Night Callers, Max Frost, Justin Timberlake, Curtis Harding, Jack White, Misterwives, The Bleachers, Prof, Dem Atlas, DJ Fundo, Atmosphere, RAC, Future Islands, The 1975, Arctic Monkeys, Delta Spirit, Empires, Glass Animals, Cherub, Portugal The Man, Grouplove, Moon Taxi, Outkast, Striking Matches, Exile, Raelynn, Mac Wiseman, Vince Gill, Alabama Shakes, Charity Byars, Mauldin Brothers, Scott Collier, Lewis Copeland, Michael Scott, Brandon Holder Band, Jesse Cain, Jon Pardi, Kip Moore, Randy Houser, Chris Young, Dierks Bentley, Jungle, Bonobo, Said The Whale, Ross Christopher, Kopecky Family Band, Against Me, Gaslight Anthem, Alt-J, Deadman Flats, Rain Dogs, White Girl, Night Terrors of 1927, Future Kinds, Golden Groves, Chappo, The Features, Not A Planet, Found a Job, Gypsy Sparrows, Paulo Nutini, Hembree, French Horn Rebellion, The Noise FM, Sheppa, The Architects, Beautiful Bodies, Cold War Kids, Cage the Elephant, The Outsides, Misterwives, Bleachers, Banks, Glass Animals, St. Vincent, and finally, to end 2014, The Black Keys.

What. A. Year.385770739

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New Girl in the Neighborhood

Y’all…restarting your life ain’t easy. I’m going on my fourth week here in Kansas City, and (mostly) I love it. The shock of coming back from Europe and not going back to Denver was a hard one to shake off. And maybe I had a mini-breakdown while putting up all my picture frames filled with shots of friends and fun night outs in Colorado and worrying maybe I made the wrong decision and am still wondering about leaving that one person I love, but mostly, this change has been a good change. Getting through this has definitely been made easier by my new home actually feeling like a home. I think this is the first time I’ve walked into a place I’ve lived and really felt like…I was home. It’s such a powerful feeling, one that truly helps when I’m having those mini-breakdowns of missing so many people and places that now feel so far from me.  A great home doesn’t cover all the new girl in a new city woes though. Job hunting is just as shitty as it was seven years ago when I was fresh out of college. I’m happy I planned this move well enough in advance to have the kind of savings I do, but still, not going to work everyday was fun for a few weeks and all, but I’m a creature of habit! I need that daily activity to keep all my other daily activities on track (see: not waking up at 11am or going to bed at 3am or going days without working out or wearing an outfit that doesn’t involve yoga pants and flip flops). And, aside from job hunting there’s that whole friend, and possibly more than friends, hunting thing. Finding new friends as an adult ain’t easy. That in itself is possibly a whole post for a whole other day, so I won’t get into it too much here, but friends are essential in my life and always have been. While I do have my hermit-y tendencies, I’m always going to want good friends in my life, and since all mine happen to be 600 (or more) miles away, I suppose I’ll be needing to find me some new ones.

Despite these ups and downs, one things has remained consistent since I’ve been here, and that is my family. Being able to spend time with them that doesn’t require me taking a vacation and traveling here to do so has been fabulous. Maybe I don’t have the job or the social life all in place, but I have a home and I have family, and really, it’s hard to ask for much more than that.

I could go on and on about this change in my life – in the short time that I’ve been here I’ve had plenty of excitements and frustrations and bottles of wine consumed while putting together cheap, shitty furniture. I could write about it for days, but sometimes a good gif does all the talking for me…

Thinking about everyone I miss in Colorado:

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and…

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and…

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What helps when I miss all the Colorado people:

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My happy dance once my house was totally unpacked:

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Hour three of waiting for a technician to get my internet set up:

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Putting together a bar stool that comes with one page of picture instructions:

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Finally getting said bar stool put together, despite half the pieces not fitting together:

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Waiting to hear back on resumes:

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When said resume is rejected:

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Dining alone…

What it feels on vacation in Europe:

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What it feels like not on vacation:

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Getting back into a workout routine after a month off:

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Thinking about making new friends:

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Attempting not to be awkward while making these new friends:

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Checking out my new neighborhood and seeing tons of bars:

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When I look at the groceries in my cart:

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Running in the Plaza and being reminded how cute Midwest boys are:

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Assessing the dating scene in my new city:

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Enjoying the perks of living alone again:

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Wrapping my head around starting over a brand new life…

Most times:

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The optimistic times:

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Yep, y’all. It’s all happening. For better or for worse, I finally made a change, and it turns out, change feels good.

Lucky Number Seven

Almost a month ago I booked my tickets for a long weekend in California. I’ve been waiting for. a. month. and I still have seven days left until I leave. As some of you darling readers may know, I am not the world’s most patient person. When I’m excited, truly excited for something, I CANNOT WAIT for it. I turn into the poster child for antsy in the pantsy. Well, in a feeble attempt to distract myself from the torture of these next seven days slooooowly crawling by, I’ve thought up my seven favorite things about the first seven months of 2012. Ya like to hear it? Here it goes…

In no particular order, I present to you:

Thalia’s Top Seven of 2012 (so far…)

1. Officially losing 20 pounds

This has been a goal of mine since I started working out pretty religiously. Ok, so it took me almost three years and there was a lot of losing and gaining then re-losing and re-gaining and finally re-re-losing. And, ok, so the goal was actually 30 pounds and I still don’t have Jennifer Lopez’s body, but, you know what? 20 pounds was really tough! And on top of that, I ran 10 damn hilly, hot miles and I NEVER thought I’d do that. So, I’m still striving for 30, but I feel damn happy with the first 20 being gone.

2. Getting rid of toxic people

Yeah, I’m looking at you bad boyfriends and bad friends and bad, absent father. I will be the first to admit I hold on to people much longer than I should. When I love, no matter what sense of ‘love’ it is, I love deeply and that connection takes me a really long time to break completely. It’s taken plenty long to finally just understand that these people are who they are and nothing, absolutely nothing, I do or attempt to do will change that. And really, I don’t even know how this detox, I guess you can call it, happened. I don’t know if it was the gradual, persistent “I deserve better than this.” thoughts or if I magically woke up one day and things finally clicked, but whatever it is, I just know now that my happiness does not depend on these people. Yes, I still care about these people, but only in the general ‘I wish them well in their lives’ type of care. They no longer hold my emotions hostage, and, honestly, I feel even lighter than the 20 lost pounds without that baggage holding me down.

3. Opening up to new non-toxic people

Generally, I’m not keen on meeting new people. Not because I have great desires of becoming a hermit (although, some days…) but just because I’m a hot mess when it comes to people I don’t know. I’m usually shy and awkward and I can’t tell you how many people have told me they thought I hated them when we first met (I get it, I look like a bitch if I’m not smiling or laughing. I GET IT!), so, in general, I usually just stick with the people I already have in my inner circle. But, this year I went out of my way to expand my social world. I wanted to push myself to open up more and I am damn glad I did. If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t have some fabulous new girlfriends, and I certainly wouldn’t be on my way to California next week (and holy shit, am I DAMN GLAD I am!!!).

4. Being told I rock at work

Ok, so those weren’t the exact words used, but that was the gist of it. I know, I know, I’ve gone on record saying this isn’t my dream job, but even if it’s not, I like to do well. And I like praise. I mean, who doesn’t like praise? So, after letting things slip a bit last year while in my post-break up melancholy, I was REALLY happy to hear that my work this year has been really great and appreciated. Even better? Being specifically requested for big projects by people I’ve never worked with before, but hear great things about me. Why yes, after hearing that, I’d love to help out! 

5. Having fun

This year isn’t even close to over yet and I’ve already had way too much fun. I’ve seen great shows with great people. I’ve had crazy adventures at the X Games. I’ve danced my ass off on more than one occassion. I’ve gotten rowdy at soccer games (and over David Beckham’s abs). I’ve cried after mimosa came out my nose while laughing too hard at brunch with the gals. I’ve danced and sang at the top of my lungs with my sister and The Black Keys. I’ve lounged with my family at the lake. I’ve been to more baseball games than I can count. I’ve swooned while meeting players for said sport. I’ve celebrated friend’s birthdays and had amazing friends celebrate mine. I’ve kissed a boy and felt it all the way in my toes. Yes, these first seven months of 2012 have been FUN.

6. Feeling hope

Nothing feels better than feeling hope after you thought you’d lost it for good. Maybe all the things I’m feeling hopeful about right now (yep, looking at you boy I kissed and felt in my toes) won’t turn out the way I’m hoping they will. But, the point is, I’m letting myself hope.

7. Knowing there is so much more to come

Aside from my upcoming weekend getaway, there is SO much to look foward to in the next few months, that the excitement of it all is already one of my favorite things. Taking my mom to the Book of Mormon. My friend’s baby girl on her way (yeah, Brandon and Kirsten!!!). My cousin getting married (yeah, Jamie and Dustin!!!). Getting tickets to BRUCE fucking SPRINGSTEEN! Concerts at Red Rocks. Dancing to a funk band with my favorite roomie on Halloween. Camping. Water World. Great American Beer Fest. Holidays with my family. The list could go on, so here’s lookin at you, next five months!

You know what would easily make this list? If someone where to, say, invent a time machine so it can be seven days from now already! Come on, scientists of the world. Let’s all put aside curing diseases and finding ways to prevent global warming and focus on ME and my selfish needs!!!

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Where’s crazy ol Doc Brown when you need him???

Girl Trouble

I was in high school the first time I had my heart broken. It was young love, first love, sweet love, true love and when it ended I thought no other type of relationship will ever break my heart as much as romantic relationships do. This? This is the worst it’ll ever get. No person will ever break my heart the way a guy I’m dating can.
10 years later I realized this is not true.

Friendships are some of the deepest, most loving and gratifying relationships a person can enter into. And potentially, the most heartbreaking.
I’ve been lucky enough, despite moving around a lot when I was younger, to be a part of some amazing long term friendships. Some are just friendly-friendships, some are more go-out-and-have-fun-friendships, and, luckily, there are a few that are first-call-friendships, those people you know you can call anytime, whether it’s just to get wardrobe advice or to have them come bail you out of jail (should that ever be the case…). These people, people I’ve now spent years with, some even lived with, getting to know everything about, going on trips with, spending holidays with, having crazy dance parties with, they are some of the most important people in my life.
Knowing that, it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that a girl has the potential to break my heart more than any guy ever could.

It’s like every break up. You see each other for the first time in months and a million different reactions are triggered. You want to run up and hug them and go straight into your favorite inside joke. You want to run up and slap them and ask how they could hurt you so badly. You want to indulge in the tears you feel emerging and ask what you did to make the relationship not work. You feel jealousy when you see them there with the new people in their lives. You feel anger that they aren’t running up to you and saying how terrible they feel for not talking to you in six months for unknown reasons. But mostly, you just feel sad.
You feel sad thinking about the years you two lived together and all the details you shared with them that no one else is privy to. You think about the hundreds of fun nights you had, but also all the bad nights you shared together, relying on each other to get through them all. You think about the time when you needed them most, when you really needed them to be that first-call-friendship, and they just stopped being that person for you. You think about all that and wonder what happened to the last nine years? And just like that, your heart breaks harder than ever before.

The only good part of losing a friend is looking around and seeing the ones you still have by your side, helping you get through this new kind of heartbreak.