Posts Tagged ‘ adventure ’

Things I learned in 2012.

When I was drafting this blog, I was laughing internally because in comparison, the one I wrote for 2011 was so short. It amuses me that 2011 felt like I grew so much, but 2012 was so much more.

So because this list is so long, I’m going to subdivide it into months.


  • Saying goodbye isn’t the hardest thing– living without is.
  • Moving to the Willamette valley in January is a terrible idea. It’s the crappiest weather of the year.


  • Crappy jobs still pay rent.
  • Rich people aren’t good tippers. Actually, rich people are the worst tippers.
  • Getting thoroughly lost can be the best way to learn about a city’s geography.


  • Sometimes the only way to stay sane is to tune out.
  • If you’re willing to be surprised, a good friend can come from anywhere.


  • Unemployment is only scary when it stops feeling like a vacation.
  • Twenty is a surprisingly bummer age to turn. Suddenly adulthood feels like a burden


  • Aim high, be prepared to score low, and you may be pleasantly surprised.


  • Summer in Portland is perfect. 
  • Living in a main street in Portland during the summer… Not so much.


  • Nothing is certain, not even your life.
  • Getting prodded by medical folk gets easier the more it happens. Same with throwing up.
  • Dulaudid is one hell of a drug.
  • Recovery is the hardest part– waiting and wanting to be back to normal, but still sick.
  • In spite of the soap opera-y parts, Friends is an awesome show.
  • Staying hydrated is so much more important than I ever thought. Drink water, people!


  • Bicycling through Portland at night in the summer is amazing.
  • Doctor Who is one of the best TV shows of ALL TIME.
  • Life goes back to normal really easily, even when you’re changed forever and there’s constant turmoil in your brain.


  • Empathy is not a strong trait of mine, except where my sisters are concerned.
  • Every wedding should have dancing. (and dancers.)


  • Important decisions can be delayed.
  • I’m freaking awesome at parallel parking.


  • People who skype in coffee shops make me nervous.
  • Shutting up and listening is important.


  • Feeling rich is still a major fault of mine.
  • Handmade Christmas presents are the best!
  • Distance hasn’t made me love Central Oregon and my people there any less, and time hasn’t made me miss them any less.
  • Even though 2012 was a really tough year, it was a really good year– and it was really important.

And yeah… Fart jokes are still funny.

With that said, I’m really looking forward to what 2013 will hold. I’m making plans to intentionally make it the best year ever.



My Strange Relationship with Books

As far as I can tell, I’ve never had a normal relationship with books.

Maybe it’s from being homeschooled. Maybe it’s strictly that I’m strange. Most likely it’s a combination of both.

Anyway, my observations have informed me that the way normal people interact with books is something like this.

They’ll have a book that they’re reading for a while; days, weeks, months even. It’s a nice way to spend free time, a companion for lonely lunch hours. A chapter here, a few pages there.

I cannot relate to books in this fashion.

Mostly, I don’t understand how people keep track of the plot. If something important happens that was referred to in chapter one, which you read two weeks ago, how can you remember it?

I mean, I’ve had this problem with the few books I’ve had a “normal” relationship with. (Mostly school books. Figures.)

The thought has crossed my mind that I suffer from memory problems, but that doesn’t affect my mode of interacting with literature, which usually goes something like this.

I acquire a book, read the back, flip through for maps, pictures, and snippets of dialogue. I let the book ferment for a few days, waiting for a day off. Then, when the glorious day of freedom finally arrives, I devour the book in as little time as possible.

This has some downsides– it’s made me late to work on more than one occasion, and when I’m in the middle of a story, I find it difficult to focus on anything else, causing me to stare off into space at random times.

Also, I’d really prefer not to run out of books so quickly, since it’s been a long time since I’ve found a book that took me more than a day or two to read.

However, I would never change my relationship with books. Despite its downsides, I love the total immersion feeling I get when I’m in the midst of a good book. It’s an adventure. Nothing quite like adventures in imagination!

So, how do you interact with books? Do you like it? Do you read like I think most people do or am I really not that weird?


For much of my life, I’ve been a little bit of an adrenaline junkie. My earliest memory of rush-seeking is a couple of years after I started skiing. I was tired of the same old easy runs, and  I decided it was time I took on a black diamond. I knew that I hadn’t the strength to control my speed down the hill, (and I didn’t really want to anyway,) so I pointed my skis straight downhill, raised my arms in a triumphant fashion, and yelled the whole way down the hill (which felt as steep as a cliff at the time.) Laughing and red-faced, I arrived back at the lift where my dad was working, and announced my accomplishment to him. He was pretty stoked, too.

I’ve always gotten a similar rush from performing arts and adventure sports. The thrill of giving a performance to an audience is very similar to the thrill of jumping off things or bombing down a hill that’s too steep.  It’s funny how my brain works, because it never realized the correlation until this morning.

I found out when I was 9 that I like performing. A little earlier than I found out I liked adventures, to be sure, but I liked them for the same reason. Since then I’ve like dancing, public speaking, and acting. The thrill that rushes from your core to your fingertips before you step onstage or go over the edge is just exquisite.

My self portraits are super refined.

I’m getting to the point, I promise.

I realized the correlation because last night I performed music by myself for the first time at a fundraiser for a friend who’s going to Ukraine for mission work. I was so scared I was shaking for the whole first song, but afterward…. Damn. I felt so awesome. Guys, adrenaline is amazing.

I don’t know if I sang particularly well, and I know I messed up on my guitar a few times, but I don’t even care, because I had the nerve to get up there and do something that terrified me.

Being scared of something and overcoming it is probably the best feeling in the world.

Next up? Skydiving.

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