Sunday, December 5, 2010

Totally Different Than Expected...

You know today I was driving along on the 5 freeway, I glanced to the side, saw a small glimpse of Angel Stadium in between two buildings and I smiled.  And I thought, "Who would have ever thought I would work there?"

When I was 16 years old, almost exactly 18 years ago, I was in the living room of our small farm house in Northern California decorating for Christmas with my dad.  I grew up in that house.  I will never forget that day because I was telling him of my dreams to just live in that house for the rest of my life.  I was planning to live at home while I went to college and teach in the Morgan Hill School District after I got my teaching degree.  I told my dad, "I don't need a lot of adventure.  I'm a very homely person."  My dad laughed really hard and said "Well, that means your ugly, but I do know what you mean."

I didn't ever plan to leave that house, but luckily there were bigger plans for me.  It was just a short year later that my dad's work moved him to North Carolina, I had to move out of that house I loved and into a house about 45 minutes away in the city.

My world changed that year, totally against my will.  And what a joy it is that my life did not end up the way I planned, because I couldn't imagine a better life for myself if I tried.

Me and my dad on the farm.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Risk and Consequences

I don't have kids.  But I do have two nephews, Riley and Alex, and they are fantastic.  They really are.

A couple weeks ago Riley was given an assignment where he had to give examples of risk and consequences.  The other kids in his 4th grade class talked about things like wars and presidents.  Riley chose to talk about me. *proud smile.

Riley was reading my blog about training for the triathlon and asked his teacher if I could be considered a good example of risk and consequences.  She said yes, and suddenly I was a living, breathing show and tell project!

Riley did a fantastic job picking out great questions to ask.  He was so brave getting up in front of his class to interview me.  As adults, I think we forget that when we are little, this isn't a common occurance.  Riley did an incredible job.

I think we all have a lot to learn from these type of amazing kids.  Riley reminded me to think outside the box, to be creative in everything i do, and to be brave when doing something different and new.  I think we all should try to be a little more like the children in our lives.

Riley is in the red shirt on the right.

oh, and if you want to watch the interview (it's about 5 minutes long)...

Friday, October 29, 2010

Small Blessings

I really need a vacuum cleaner.  I know it sounds silly, but I do and it's not in the budget...

Well, two days ago I went to see the Ellen Show.  It was delicious.

First, before the show started I danced around like a crazy fool (which isn't hard for me) and I got a free Tshirt.

Then we got a free Xbox and an Xbox game.

Next, we got a free Sugerland CD.

Last, we got a ticket to return to the 12 days of giveaways.  If you don't know what that is, around Christmas Ellen has 12 shows where she just gives away stuff to the audience.  An example from last year is she gave her audience: $150 shell gas gift card, gucci sunglasses for $300, a $180 Samsonite suitcase, $1500 stay at Montage, and a $500 laptop.  All in one day.  So, sufficed to say, I'm excited to go back.

I honestly thought "I wonder if we could win a vacuum cleaner on the 12 days of giveaways..."

Well, at the end of the show they announced that instead of giving us the Xbox, they were giving us a giftcard to Best Buy to buy the Xbox (or whatever we wanted.)

I will be heading to the vacuum cleaner section (and I'll have a couple hundred dollars left over for something fun).

God takes care of me.

Let's play a new game called "Where's Liz?"

Friday, October 1, 2010

I'm Alone, But Not Lonely.

One of the hard parts about being single is feeling alone while doing life.  When you have a spouse, you have someone to help you pay the mortgage or some to hug when you have a bad day, but not when your single.

Recently I have been training for a triathlon and this has changed how I view being "alone".

A few months ago, a had my first day of training on my bike.  I've been on a bike many times before, but this was the first time my feet were locked into my peddles.  After a longer stint of riding, I quiet literally forgot my feet were locked into my peddles and when I got to a stop sign I just started tipping over without the ability to pull my foot out fast enough.  Luckily, I had my brother, Bill, by my side to grab me and keep me from hitting the pavement.  I embarrassingly apologized and he encouragingly said "No problem, you'll get it."

A few weeks later, I was biking on my own and I stopped at a stop sign and pulled my foot out just in time to not fall.  A small smile crossed my face.  (Thanks Bill.)

Then, just two days ago, I went for a swim in the ocean for the first time.  The fact is, I failed.  I had to get out of the water just a fourth of the way through the swim.  Even though I had my brother next to me, I panicked.  I was scared of the waves.  I was scared of drowning.  I was tired, working way too hard and on the way back in I got washed pretty bad in the surf.  Standing on the beach, I was contimplating giving up and not doing the triathlon, but by the time I arrived home, I already knew I would try again.

So, the next day, I tried again.  This time I had my friend Jill paddle by me on a surfboard so that I could hold on if I started to panic.  Bill came with me again and swam next to me, encouraging me throughout the swim.  This time... success.

I may not have that one person to be there with me, but I am surrounded by friends and family that support me and help me succeed.  Whether they are there to hold me up when I fall so I can learn to survive on my own or if they stay right next to me encouraging as I go; they are there.  I feel so privileged to not have just one person to support me, but to be surrounded by many incredible people.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

My amazing life.

Ok, so here's the deal.  I'm 34... and single.  You should see the reactions I get when I say that.  Some people just tilt their heads with a half smile, some people pressure me to settle, some people think there is something wrong with me.  You know what i think?  Screw you.  My life if freakin' amazing. :)

People treat me as a second class citizen or act as though my life is somehow inferior because I'm not married.  Well, quite honestly, I think my life is better than most married people's lives.

It was just about a couple months ago that I figured all of this out.  I was driving to the Hollywood Bowl to see the Swell Season play.  The only problem?  I had no ticket.  So, I just drove up to Hollywood and Highland just a few blocks away from the bowl, parked my car and started walking.

On the walk, a guy sees me and says "One ticket?"  My face lights up.  "Yep, I need one ticket.  How much?"  He says "$25"  I look at the ticket and face value is $23.  I say "I'll give you $10"  He says "$10?!  The ticket is worth at least 23"  I say "Look, do you think you are going to find anymore single people who want one ticket?  $10"  He looks defeated, he says "20"  I smile and say "15"  Sold.

After arriving to the show, I meet my neighbors, a comedian on one side and a punk rock kid on the other, perfect.  Two amazing people.

The show starts and I'm in heaven.  The music was incredible.  The weather was insanely perfect.  The four stars that you can see in LA were out.  It could not have been a more perfect night.

Then it happened.  At the end of the show I just sat there thinking about how great my life is.  It is because I'm single that I got this ticket for so cheap.  It is because I'm single that I met this comedian and this punk kid.  It's because I'm single that I have the freedom to drive up to Hollywood whenever I feel like it.   And then a married couple walks by me.  The man yelling at the woman, the woman yelling about how they have to get home to their kids... and I'm sad for them.  And it hits me, I would much rather live a first rate single life then a second rate married life.

Don't get me wrong, I believe in marriage.  I think it can be amazing.  I believe marriage is for life (which is why i'm so picky).  In fact, I want to be married, but if that isn't what's for me, I refuse to sulk around thinking that just because I'm single my life is any less than some one who is married.

I believe you can stay married to anyone if you are dedicated enough, I believe you can have an average life with a bunch of people, but I believe you will have an extraordinary life and  marriage with very few people.  I'm holding out for one of those few people.  I refuse to trade my extraordinary single life for an average married life.

So, here's my blog.  A blog about living a first rate single life.  There are highs, there are lows, and everything in between.  The adventure continues this week with a trip to Colorado to see a friend and Chicago to see a couple baseball games.  Here we go...