Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Quintessential Summer Playlist #1

LETS KICK OFF SUMMER THE RIGHT WAY PEOPLE. I'm going to admit that I have seen a million "summer" playlists online. They're everywhere. So I figured what better way to begin the nice weather with a song list that fits my musical taste. I absolutely love it and I hope you will too. This is my summer playlist for June (even though I'm a couple days early), and I'll be dropping two more for July and August. Thanks for listening!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Third Time Isn't Always A Charm: My 3rd Half Marathon Experience

My brother Andrew and I at the beginning of the end of our lives

So, this morning, I ran a half marathon. I'm not sure if I should laugh or cry. Right now I'm sitting on my couch wishing that there was a WD-40 for joints. I also think that my thighs might be ripped in half, but nonetheless, I finished.

This was actually the third half marathon that I've done, so initially when I signed up it wasn't that big of a deal. But there was one huge difference between this half marathon and the other two I've completed. I basically had 0 days of training. Yes, you heard that right, 0. With it being the last month of school working out and running fell as a top priority. I just wanted to enjoy the final weeks of college and let all inhibitions go. I'm not going to say that I regret it, but I will say that I definitely felt it hard today.

My brother Andrew and I signed up together, and this was his first half marathon. Andrew has always been in good shape but really cracked down to train. I wanted to try and keep up with him, but with no training to back me up I hoped to subsist on faith and prayers.

The starting gun sounded and we began weaving our way through the crowd. During the first mile I couldn't help but wonder if my parents had me on a good life insurance policy. Andrew was passing by other runners like he was a cheetah in a pack of sloths, and for a while I managed to keep up.

Somewhere around mile 4, I felt my body transforming. My hamstrings developed vocal cords and believe me when I tell you they were screaming. Or maybe even laughing. I told Andrew to go ahead, and from there I was on my own.

The next couple of miles threw me for a loop. Anyone running around me who didn't have headphones on probably thought that I was suffering from emphysema. I almost convinced myself that I did have it, because I had no explanation for breathing like a bulldog in the beating sun.

Every water station felt like the cornucopia in The Hunger Games. It was hard to drink and jog at the same time so I would pour most of the cup over my head.

I wish I could give you a mile-by-mile breakdown but a lot of the race blends together. The only thing I know for sure is that I was positive that I was running into my imminent death. It wasn't ridiculously hot out, but the sweat on my shirt reflected what I'd look like after a 2-day sauna session.

I tried to give myself any incentive to keep running. I told myself there was a million dollars and a puppy waiting for me at the finish line. I told myself if I ran I would save all the children. From what I didn't really know.

Every step closer to the finish line my muscles felt more and more like silly putty. The crowd was what kept me motivated…not because of their cheering...but because I didn't want to look like a wimp and walk.

At one point, I was visibly slowing down. A tall skinny man of Indian descent ran by me and said "Come miss!" He tried to grab my hand and pull me along. I appreciated the camaraderie, but I was not having it.

There's not much more to tell because I blacked out a majority of the time. Of course the last thing I remember is coming up to the finish. I saw it in the distance and wondered if I would be running or crawling across the line. From that point on I didn't have peripheral vision.

It must have been less than 2 minutes that I was coming down the final stretch, but it felt like 6 weeks. By the time I made it past the line I had forgotten English, didn't know my first name, and was about to regurgitate Thanksgiving dinner from all the way back in 2006.

Long story short, don't make the same mistakes that I did. If you decide to run a half marathon you should probably, well, run before hand. In actuality it is truly an amazing experience. Committing is the first step, but why not make it more enjoyable for yourself and train. The only time it is really appropriate to wing it is if you're out to dinner at Duff's. Not at the Buffalo Marathon.

My legs feel like tenderloins ready to go into the oven. I have nowhere but up to go from here.

At least I could pretend I was legit because everyone got a medal at the end.

Monday, April 21, 2014

3 Biggest Misconceptions About Life Post Graduation

Photo Credits to Brian Moore

Part of maintaining a blog is consistency in posting, which I have clearly been lacking in. To be honest, with this being my last semester at school I have just been trying to enjoy every moment of the last few months and will continue to do so for the upcoming weeks. Not to mention life has thrown me some curve balls lately and I’m just trying to keep grounded. So for right now schoolwork needs to be my top priority…I have a degree to earn in May!

My last post was directed towards college seniors and life after graduation, but for my first post back I wanted to stick with that theme since it is so prevalent with what I'm currently experiencing. Basically, I'm going to share my feelings on what I feel are the biggest misconceptions I have heard about what happens after you are thrown out into the real world. I almost have found them to be unwritten expectations from society and everyone else sailing the farewell ship from the dock of higher education.

1. You need to know exactly what you’re going to do after you graduate and have a job lined up.

If you’re not going to graduate you probably believe this to be true. If you are fortunate to have a job lined up post-graduation, I am giving you a round of applause right now through the computer screen. That is a commendable accomplishment. If you have no clue what you want to do, the one thing you need to do is stop stressing. The first job you find or have after college does not have to be in a position/field that you plan to be in for the rest of your life. My mother always says she still doesn’t know what she wants to be when she grows up. Keep an open mind, and you’ll get there. Especially since the job market right now is not at its peak, just do the best that you can. Actively seek jobs, and work hard to get your name out there. A job will come with time. And I can guarantee 1, 5, 10, 15 years from now there’s going to be a day you will wake up and feel overwhelmed with the excitement and warmth of realization. The realization of where you want to go with your life and how you want to get there.

2. You can kiss your social life goodbye.

Okay so now you might be working a 9-5 job, or maybe will even have a position that requires more than 40 hours a week. Are you going to be tired? Absolutely. Does this mean that you need to give up having an active social life? No. Life is all about balance. Just because you no longer have the freedom to do social activities all hours of the week when you don’t have homework, doesn’t mean that you’re incapable of having fun. Also, change your definition of a social life. Being social doesn’t have to mean going to the bars with your friends all night and getting home when the sun rises. When you’re in the workforce there are going to be weekends where you will need to revamp your juices, and will want to avoid waking up after a night out feeling like your head got danced on by a train. Instead, have friends over to your place. Go to a movie. Heck, go to a bar, but learn the word moderation. Your time off will be a luxury, and you’re going to want to spend it enjoyably rather than soaking in Gatorade and Ibuprofen.

3. You won’t have freedom anymore.

On the contrary my friend. Although you may be restricted financially, after college is the most freedom you will have had thus far in your life. Every single thing you do will depend solely on yourself. You can make whatever choices you want. Although not all of those choices are good choices, you still have the capability to make them. If you want to move to Bora Bora, live off of Doritos, wear a burlap sack, and introduce yourself as Ke$ha... technically no one can stop you. From 18 and on everyone is told to "act like an adult". Well, I know some 20 year olds who act in a better manner than 60 year olds I have known. To me the word adult is loosely defined. I don't think that there really is a specific age where someone is an adult, but rather a certain maturity level that they reach. With the freedom you will have in the future, you need to be mature. For four years of college freedom meant waking up late, eating caloric artery clogging dining hall food, staying out all night, and lying on the couch for hours watching a marathon of your favorite TV series. As I said with having a social life, shift your mindset. Invest into certain freedoms more than others so you can go on living responsibly, but also unrestrictively. 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Something Every College Senior Needs To Hear

Photo credit to Melissa O'Donohue:

I recently read an article on Thought Catalog titled "Let's Stop Using "20-Something" As An Excuse". The author was sick of the stereotypical "20-something" mentality that the opportunity for life to start happening needs to jump into your lap, rather than striving for it yourself.

I'm almost disappointed that it took this article for it to dawn on me, but I'm glad I could eventually come to my senses.

The last semester of college throws you into the abyss of wondering what the hell you're going to do with your life and what your next move will be. 

If you're approaching graduation, and starting to develop stomach ulcers over the fact, I'm going to tell you one thing that you need to do. Shut up and stop complaining. If we lived in a Monsters, Inc. type of world where our energy source was bottled complaints from young 20 year olds rather than the screams of young children, we could create enough nuclear bombs to evaporate the entire solar system.

I get it. You're stressed. Understandably, the unknown scares you. But what is complaining going to do about that? Will it write you cover letters and fill out applications for you? Will it get you a job? Will it pay for your loans? Will it make you happy? No. So why continue to do it? 

Don't make your life out to be so much harder than those around you. The National Center for Education Statistics projects that about 1.6 million students at the bachelors degree level will graduate as the college class of 2014. Most of them probably don't have a clue either. Quit feeling sorry for yourself and do the best that you can.

Maybe you'll interview for a position you really want but won't get the job. Feel sorry for yourself for a day, then get over it. I'm sick of people twisting the definition of rejection into meaning that they're not good enough. Rome wasn't built in a day, and your life won't be either. It's near impossible to get everything right on the first try, so cut the tomfoolery and end the pity party.

Stop looking at your goals as a destination rather than a state of being. Of course we all have that one "dream job". Honestly though, we'll know when we get there. We're constantly searching and searching and searching forgetting to enjoy the in-between. 

You will make mistakes, don't dwell on them. You will have mental breakdowns, don't let them conquer you. Go out into life after college with a solid foundation built on a positive attitude and a little bit of faith. 

I'm just so sick of everyone around me crying and whining. We all knew this was coming. I'm not completely insensitive and of course I'm sad and scared to be leaving college and everything that has been familiar to me up to this point in my life. But I have one of two choices.

1. Let that sadness and fear stay with me and spend life after graduation wishing I was still in college, which is a gross waste of time; because, once that degree is in my hand, undergraduate life is over and it is never coming back.

2. Realize that college is over and it is not the end of the world. 

When I graduate in May I will be 22. The last time I checked, that wasn't too old. So why not get the ball rolling early? The next few years are mine to mold and create the life that I always wanted. I urge you do the same.

I'll end by saying I wish everyone luck in the real world. The next few years are not about pleasing society. They are not about pleasing your friends. They are not about pleasing your parents. They are about pleasing yourself. Embrace the process of finding out who you and the ins and outs of your heart and soul. I know you can do it.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

2 Ingredient Cookies!

Do you like cookies? I'm assuming that the answer is yes. I don't particularly love sweet things in excess, but of course I love a good cookie every once in a while.

Well, here's my issue. With summer coming soon, I'm trying to eat super healthy. I pretty much eat healthy all year round, but recently I've been taking it up a notch with my food intake as well as my workout routine. Maybe I'm a little bit too obsessed, but to each his own.

Since I'm counting my calories daily, cookies are never even a question. If you're health conscious like me, I'm sure you feel the same way. But what if I told you there was an answer to our prayers?

Keep in mind I'm not a baker, or a health professional. But I know what tastes good. I came across these cookies skimming through Blogilates (go check it out for workouts, healthy recipes, and lifestyle tips!). She had a cookie recipe that was 2 ingredients. Yes, I repeat 2 ingredients. Oats and bananas.

It sounded too good to be true so I researched further. After Googling I found that many have blogged about this recipe. Most stated that the oats and bananas by themselves were lacking, and I decided to doctor them up with the help of reading through tons of reviews.

I'm sure you're just wanting to see the recipe by now, so I'll stop blabbering.

Ingredients (Yields 6 Cookies):
1 ripe banana
1/2-3/4 cup rolled oats
1 packet of splenda
1/8 cup almonds
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
1/4 cup craisins (I went with the low sugar)
1 tbs milk (omit if batter seems moist enough)

Preheat the oven to 350. Mash the banana, then mix in all of the other ingredients. Don't be scared to use your hands and get messy! That is literally it. As my sister said "They look like horse treats," but take my word for it and don't be discouraged by their appearance.

Shape the cookies and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes.

Wow, wasn't that easy? For being flourless, butterless, and pretty darn healthy I say these cookies are a winner. Don't expect them to be crunchy, or comparable to your daily Chips Ahoy!, but they are a great alternative for those who want something healthy.

Doctor them up how you'd like. You can add cinnamon, vanilla (which I meant to add but completely forgot), peanut butter, shredded coconut...the sky's the limit!

Nutritional Facts (per cookie): 128 calories*, 6.3g carbs, 1.3g fat,  3.75g protein, 6.75g sugar

*Keep in mind the calories may vary depending on what you put into them. To be honest I had a little bit too many add-ins, so when I make it again I will cut the chocolate chips and craisins in half. This will lessen the calories.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Popular 90's Toys That Make You Question The Integrity Of Parenting

Jul 2004 by de:Benutzer:Wollschaf (selfmade)

Yes, I was a 90's baby. I was seven going on eight years old when the millennium hit, but still got to experience the epic Nickelodeon shows, the denim outfits, and the infamous toys. 

Some of the toys and games that came along with the decade will forever be timeless in my book. But reflecting back, I wonder how I ever convinced my parents to buy me half of the things that they did. If our roles were vice versa, I would have never in a million years bought my kid most of the toys that I owned. Whether the reason be because it was dangerous, or downright dumb I would have no problem refusing them. The following toys are the ones I now find the absolute worst, and this is what I imagine parents saying when they decided to purchase them. 

"Lets encourage our children to beat the pulp out of each other with huge bags of air on their hands. They'll get in some cardio, and spike the insurance policy when they break their nose."

"I want to watch our child suffer trying to bake with a lightbulb. When their baked good is finally done they will have a bite sized brownie that tastes like styrofoam. At least their baby teeth will fall out quickly from synthetic sugar rot. "

"Instead of buying a portable CD or cassette player, we should invest in a clip-on music player that only plays choruses, has no volume control, and limits our kid to 5 song choices. It will also encourage them to keep their music choices to bubble gum pop or boy bands."

"If my kid doesn't choke on them, they'll lose them all over the house. I'll be sucking them up in the vacuum cleaner, and pulling them out of my foot when I step on them."

"I mean a living pet isn't an option. These Tamagotchi things seem like a good solution. They teach kids responsibility by picking up virtual poop and disciplining a Japanese simulation. When the thing dies we can just stick a pen in the reset button on the back. But when the actual Tamagotchi battery is dead I can't wait to comfort my child through the blood curdling screaming and tears."

"Does 'insert child's name here' really have a use for Pokemon playing cards? Do they know how to play the actual game? No, okay. So I will buy them packs and packs to let sit underneath their bed. The holographic ones look cool so I don't mind spending $8 on a paper card."

"Putting my home at risk of burning down doesn't phase me. These things heat up to hundreds of degrees. So whether I'm treating my toddler for third degree burns or searching the remains of my homes foundation for personal items after the thing explodes and ignites a raging inferno, I'm not bothered. Watching the blobs glow make it all worth it.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Typical Behavior Of Dog Lovers Who Don't Have A Dog

By MichaelMcPhee (Own work) [CC-BY-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Boy dogs. Girl dogs. Puppies. Spotted Dogs. Hairy Dogs. Wiener dogs. Loud dogs. Quiet get the point. I love them all.

The only thing I have wanted for years and years is a dog. Thankfully, I did have a dog for a few years, but he died when I was in 7th grade. Although I am so happy to have had him, I feel like it is a double- edged sword. Since I know what having one is like, I long for another even more. One that I love more than anything in the world, and that loves me back just the same.

 Whoever came up with the term man's best friend couldn't have hit the nail more on the head. They are excited to see you when they come home. They never judge you. They love you unconditionally, because you are all they have. Clearly we do not speak the same language as our pets. But that fact that people and their pooches have a mutual understanding of each others emotions makes me want to crumble and die from a cuteness overload. 

I know numerous people that feel the exact same way. For those of you that are with me, we will make it through this. I feel for you, and I promise it will be well worth the wait. I know how you feel and I know exactly how you act.

By Colem (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

At parties when a dog is present, they are the only thing that matters. You sit in the corner petting them the entire time, and follow them around the house like you're lost.

Sometimes you just randomly Google pictures of puppies and almost die from the cuteness that pours onto the screen. Of course "golden retriever puppies" or "labrador retriever puppies" are your main searches. 

You beg your parents for a puppy. Every birthday, every holiday, and minute in between you nag, and nag, and nag, hoping that you're getting closer to their breaking point.

You get tempted to buy dog treats and toys when you see them in a store. Maybe for a friends dog, or maybe to save for when you have your own.

The Puppy Bowl is the most important sporting event you watch all year.

You hate cats, because they're not dogs.

When you pass someone walking their dog you smile at them. But if they weren't holding a leash you could care less.

You text your friends, just to play with their dog. You talk to it like it's a baby. You bark at it like you're a dog too and it understands you.

Even though you use your friends for their dog, you envy them just based on the fact that they have one. And if they say anything negative about it you snap with the response "at least you have a dog".

You have a list of your favorite breeds.

You also have a list of potential names for your future pup.

You instantly remember all of the words to this commercial:

You get angry and upset when any dog in your presence walks away from you.

You don't care when they slobber all over you even if it's disgusting…because you're flattered that they love you and want to kiss you. Or maybe you just ate something and they can taste it on your hands. Either way it makes you happy.

You let humungous pooches sit on you, even if they're not a lap dog…just so you can have one sitting on you.

When you pick one up you cling onto it like you're Rose keeping Jack above the water. 

You take spontaneous trips to the pet store just so you can look at the widdle babies in their crates. And then you become sad because you feel sorry that they're all cooped up.

Speaking of being sad, movies like Marley & Me, Air Bud, and Homeward Bound will always bring tears to your eyes. Or cause severe hyperventilation. 

Pet sitting is like a vacation at Disney Land.

By choco@Nerima [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

If you have a hole in your heart that is shaped like a dog, it is your destiny. Maybe the time isn't right now, but it will come. Stay positive and who knows! In ten years you could be a crazy dog person with 28 pups running around (at least for me that's ideal). 

Saturday, March 8, 2014

15 Small Victories That Aren't So Small

1. Stopping the microwave one-second before it goes off.

2. Carrying all of the grocery bags in one trip.

3. A perfect parallel park on the first try.

4. Gaining a new Twitter follower.

5. Finding money in your pocket.

6. Getting clothes on sale when you think you're paying full price.

7. Catching something before it hits the ground

8. Winning a goldfish at a carnival...

Even though it's dead within 24 hours.

9. Proving someone wrong, who thinks they're right.

10. Having a coupon.

11. Sleeping in an extra hour on daylight-saving.

12. Getting a package of mostly blue Scooby Doo gummies.

13. Fitting into a pair of pants that used to be too small.

14. When the waiter forgets to charge you for something on the bill.

15. Winning on a scratch off lottery ticket.

Stalk Me

© Book Of Julieism's All rights reserved | Theme Designed by Seo Blogger Templates