the one where i’m being left behind

The moon doesn’t consider one phase better than another; she just glows, equally stunning at each turn. Why should we be any different?
-Cristen Rodgers

It blows my mind how quickly things can change. Back in February of 2015, two of my close friends from high school got engaged. At that point in time they were my only friends getting that serious, but I was just daunted by this new “twenty-something” phase I was entering. All I could think about was in the next few years my friends would start getting married, having kids, and moving on with their lives while I still hadn’t gone on a first date. There are so many things I wish I could have told nineteen year old me to ease her worries.

Little did I know that literally two years later I would be engaged myself.

I feel like back then I was in such a rush to get where I thought I was supposed to be. I wanted to be dating. I wanted to be graduated. I wanted to be successful. I wanted to be on my own. I wanted to have it all together. Now I’m married, graduated, fairly successful, and on my own… but even though I have majority of the things I wanted back then, she and I still have so much in common!

Now that I’m less worried about where I’m supposed to be and what milestones I’m supposed to be chasing, I feel more comfortable to just be. And just being makes me so happy! When I’m not constantly comparing my accomplishments to those of others and cutting myself down for “falling behind” in life, the stress levels are lowered for more enjoyable days. And what more could I want than more enjoyable days?

| Lauren Grey

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thoughts on pretty little liars first three seasons

Fool me once? Shame on you. Fool my best friend? You’re dead meat.
-Hanna Marin

The fact that I jumped off the Pretty Little Liars train back in high school has never escaped me. I had to live with it for years as my friends gushed about the newest clue they were being fed. After being a fan for the first two seasons, watching religiously every week, I just got tired of nothing ever adding up. Mid season three I decided I was done with it and joked with my friends that they would be watching it till they were thirty.

Occasionally, I would hear a tidbit about the show and wonder if I should have stuck it out, but quickly squashed it. About a year ago, I was scrolling through Netflix looking for something new to binge watch and came across the show. I didn’t start it then, but I added it to my list and made a deal with myself: I would watch it when it had ended. I felt this way, I would know it had a definite end to the story and I wouldn’t have to be bothered by feelings of it never going anywhere.

Well if you aren’t a fan of the show then let me fill you in – the show ended, finally!

Now that the show is over, I decided it was time. I needed a good guilty pleasure show to watch and this one was a prime candidate. I began all the way back in season one a couple weeks ago and I just started season four yesterday. It turns out that although the story is totally and completely far fetched and dramatically cheesy, I am really enjoying it! I have come up with two reasons why this could be:

  1. I am not watching it with my mom, so I don’t have to hear her commentary about how that girl shouldn’t be sleeping with her teacher and blah blah blah, but instead I can swoon and watch in pure bliss.
  2. I no longer have to wait a week between episodes. With binge-watching and accessibility (thanks Netflix!) comes better understanding – the clues make more sense, because they are fresh in my mind. I’m able to speculate more on who I think is “A” and try to piece together my own theories in peace and generally enjoy the show more.

I will admit that the show still makes me think WTF!? like every episode, but I can’t help it and I definitely can’t quit watching!

movie review: home alone 2

They’re kind of the same thing. If you won’t use your heart, who cares if it gets broken? If you just keep it to yourself, maybe it’ll be like my rollerblades. When you do decide to try it, it won’t be any good. You should take a chance. Got nothing to lose.
-Kevin McCallister

Home Alone is a classic holiday movie; I would even go as far as to say it is on majority of people’s top five holiday film lists. I can honestly say that I watch it at least twice a year and get a genuine laugh everytime! The story never gets old.

Well, I always knew that Home Alone had sequels, but had never given them a watch until last night. Last night I watched Home Alone 2: Lost in New York for the first time… and while watching I had many comments, concerns, and questions.

How Do You Forget Your Kid Twice?
Not just twice – TWO YEARS IN A ROW!! I feel like Kate McCallister is the most irresponsible mother on the planet! If I was in her shoes and I had left my kid at home the year before while taking a major trip, I would be physically making sure I see all of my kids in the car before I left the house, then physically gripping his hand as I ran to the terminal, and then physically checking to make sure he was in his seat before that plane took off… Like how does she not check?? I hope she got some questions from CPS on why she can’t keep up with her kid.

How Can You Be So Naive?
I am specifically referring to the conflict between Buzz and Kevin. I understand it to a point, because I have an older brother, but this is just ridiculous! We see it in the first movie with Buzz eating the cheese pizza he knew was for Kevin and then making a tacky remark to get a rise out of Kevin; obviously Kevin shouldn’t have retaliated, but really is no one going to punish Buzz for causing the conflict to begin with? Then we have the same kind of thing at the church concert. Kevin has a solo and Buzz starts doing dumb things behind Kevin getting the audience to laugh [which by the way in what world are people so cruel/stupid that they would laugh at that] then Kevin realizes what is happening and pushes Buzz causing all of the other students to fall; once back home Buzz says the most pathetic, fake apology and his mom buys it and gets mad at Kevin. Woman are you blind??

How Can You Let Your Family Speak To Your Kid Like That?
It has always bothered me about how Kevin’s family speaks to him in the first movie… they make fun of him, call him names, and really demean him (you’re a little jerk, you’re a disease, you’re incompetent). If my family treated me like that, I would want them to disappear too! Nobody listens to him and they blame him for everything – real talk: the kid is nine/ten! I understand that kids can be annoying or inconvenient, but that is no reason to bully him. I mean his grown uncle joins in; why are his parents not putting a stop to this familial bullying?? Then to think that after he gets left behind and almost dies, they still don’t put a stop to their rudeness? Unbelievable!

How Are They Not In A Rehabilitation Center?
I know it’s a movie and I’m all for the good fun and unrealisticness of the first movie, but, seriously, how are the bandits not in some kind of rehabilitation center? They would have had wounds and scars and broken bones from the beating they took robbing the McCallister home, yet they weren’t even hurting when they got arrested and they looked good as new when they broke out of prison… ya I’m not buying it.

How Was The Airline Not Sued?
Again, I know it’s a movie, but how does this family not sue the airlines for letting their kid on a flight without checking for his boarding pass or make sure he finds his seat and/or family? He’s obviously a kid, maybe not an unaccompanied minor, but he does get on without a parent. I know the lady drops the boarding passes, but for a ten year old you don’t double check to make sure and then you don’t physically take him to his family after the pilot tells you to make sure? Really? Although the McCallister’s don’t need the money, I would definitely be talking to someone!!

Okay, so I have an obvious disgust for the McCallister family and I think his parent’s need to take a course on how to be responsible parents, but I think my biggest issue with the film was the fact that it is completely unoriginal and uncreative. It’s basically the same storyline from the first movie just not in New York… I just feel like they could have gotten a bit more creative with the story.

Although I didn’t think it was a fantastic story, I still think Macauley did a wonderful job and I got some good laughs in when the bandits were be tortured again! Overall, not the best sequel, but not a complete bust either!

| Lauren Grey

Originally posted here.

the one with all the phobias

To escape fear, you have to go through it, not around it.
-Richie Norton

Back in February of 2015, I was feeling overrun with fear and insecurity. For some reason, I decided I would feel better if I gave my fear a real name. I came up with anuptaphobia, aphenphosmphobia, and philophobia.

Anuptaphobia: the fear of staying or being single.

Aphenphosmphobia: the fear of being touched.

Philophobia: the fear of affection.

All of these irrational fears stemmed from the one that started it all: the fear of being single forever. I was am the biggest hopeless romantic and this only made my sadness of feeling alone deepen. I pored over romantic movies and books and hung on every word of the stories my friends would tell me about the guys they were dating. I thought about this notion all the time – night and day – and would come up empty on why I was still single. To be honest, I thought I was quite the catch and to stay grounded, I would tell myself that all those possible suitors who looked right past me were the ones missing out, but I still felt empty.

I wish I could tell you that as soon as a boy finally noticed me all was well. Little had I known that it was much worse to actually have someone there to backup your insecurities — as soon as it happened I wished that it hadn’t. I would have much rathered be invisible than being told I wasn’t good enough, pretty enough, reckless enough, smart enough, worldly enough… the list goes on.

I wish I could tell you that if I had only been patient and waited for the right guy to come along that all would have been well. I truly do not believe that would have been the case. Had I made the choice to say no to the few offers I received in the next two years, I may not have known the good that was my husband or I might have taken his good for granted. I believe that had I not gone through that heartache and confusion, I might not have chosen my husband at all. I wouldn’t say I am grateful for all of the hurtful memories that accompanied dating, but I do think they were worth going through, because I wouldn’t trade where I ended up for anything!

Remember that guy I used to talk about? Then one who not only made me incredibly happy, but also accepted every part of me? Well, we got married! It blows my mind to look back and see how broken I was about being single when this guy was just around the corner. I used to be afraid of being single forever, of being touched, of affection… well I’m living proof that it is possible to put that behind you when the time is right. All of those fears have been stripped away from me and I feel so much lighter now!

| Lauren Grey

welcome to the revival

Time has a wonderful way of showing us what really matters.
-Margaret Peters

I’ve admitted before that I am a bit of a quitter. I can trace it all the way back to elementary school. I remember my mom taking me to try out gymnastics. I was excited about trying something new, though not thrilled it was during Sabrina the Teenage Witch, but was ready to miss an episode for a new hobby. All was well until the coach put me in butterfly position and then proceeded to push my knees down. It was so painful that I cried a bit and then refused to participate the rest of the hour. Needless to say I never went back.

Saying goodbye has become a bit of an expectation around here. I find some reason why I shouldn’t continue this blog, fixate on it, create a new blog to start over with, then write a farewell post… since you’re reading this, you are most likely one of my trusty blogging buddies, so I thought it might be fun to go back and find all of my goodbye posts:

8/28/17 | This is Goodbye

4/27/16 | Last Post

12/13/15 | A Clean Slate Is What I Need.

It appears to be a yearly thing – I swear that was not intentional – but following suit, I’m back just in time for the new year. And by back, I mean back, for real… or until the next time I need some time away. I like that quote by Margaret Peters about time showing us what matters. That totally and completely describes my yearly battle and why I always return back to where it all began.

Sometimes when I’m feeling nostalgic, feeling down, or feeling really happy, I’ll find myself searching for this blog and taking a stroll down memory lane. Sometimes I’ll read from beginning to end and sometimes I start with the most recent and work my back. Occasionally I’ll search for a specific person or time, but it never fails to help me find whatever I didn’t know I was looking for.

So here I am, back for another go around, because anyone who knows me knows I can’t stay away for long. So welcome to the revival, I’m glad you’re here.

| Lauren Grey