Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Step 16: Appreciate Your Special People

In honor of the holidays, here are a few reasons I am thankful for the people in my life.

My parents: without them I would be an orphan like Oliver Twist or Leela from Futurama and even though I would probably sing more songs as an orphan and be eligible for much more government money than I am now, I still enjoy having parents because I don't have to eat gruel or work in the coal mines. Dad, thank you for teaching me about the merits of video games and candy and Mom, thank you for teaching me about writing and reading even though it's not as fun as video games and candy.

Ellyn: you always point me in the moral direction; especially when it comes to leach torturing. As kids you taught me responsibility by playing the Abu to my Aladdin or the 7 Dwarves to my Snow White. I now know that would be a lot of work to care for a monkey or seven small men and this knowledge has stopped me from making some stupid decisions.

Mina: You are a bundle of energy which is good because I'm not. I love that you always stand up for what's right. Not a lot of teens do that.

Thank you for supporting me and putting up with those teenage years when I hated everything  and never did my math homework.  I'm a lot less angsty now but I still don't do math, so I guess everyone wins except Mr. Thiner who, despite is best efforts, never managed to teach me algebra.

xoxo Hannah

Friday, November 18, 2011

Step 15: Dream about the Future

Dear Internet,

As you may or may not know, I am graduating college this spring. That's right folks, I am going to be a grown up lady with a big girl job and everything. It's gonna be SWEEEEEEET!

There are a lot of things I am looking forward to in the next year (getting an apartment, buying a kitten without asking my mom and dad first, rolling in piles of my freshly earned money like Scrooge McDuck), but most of all I yearn for the simple pleasures of adult life.

I have a dream. That dream is to have a coffee table with coasters on it. Coasters are the most tranquil objects I can think of because water marks on furniture is the kind of thing that worries people who've run out of important things to worry about. Coasters are for new grads and retirees; carefree people who have nothing to worry about except unplanned pregnancies and death (respectively).

Alas, I still have a semester left before I reach this benchmark of adulthood, but the thought of my coasters keeps my motivation up. After all, if I don't get good grades, how will I get a good job to earn the money to pay for the rent for the apartment with the living room in which to put the table with the coasters on it. Wouldn't happen.

That's why the lesson today is to follow your dreams. Follow them all the way to your own coffee table with coasters on it.

xoxo Hannah

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Step 14: Appreciate the Little Things- Part 1

I don't know much about the politics of Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, but I can tell you one thing: the man has some amazing eyebrows. And believe me, he knows how to work 'em. I think we'd all to well to sit back, relax, and take a few moments to appreciate Zapatero's eyebrows in all their diplomatic glory.

xoxo Hannah

Monday, September 12, 2011

Step 13: Take a Step Back Sometimes. You Can't Fix Everything

Dear Internet, I am addicted to solving other people's problems. Disharmony in my social circle makes me jittery and because I'm kind of a control freak whenever someone I care about is less than happy I have to roll up my sleeves, get my big rubber fix-this-shit gloves on, and fix their shit.

And sometimes Internet, as I have recently realized, I am incapable of fixing said shit.

Even when I'm wearing my steel-toed repair-stuff boots and my waterproof and tear-resistant critical thinking smock. But.... *deep breath*.... that's OK.

Believe it or not, sometimes other people are capable of, and in fact need to, solve their own damn problems. There are also some problems out there that no amount of stressing over can solve. War, cancer, and potential Earth-asteroid collisions come to mind here.

So ladies and gentlemen your step for today is to accept that you shouldn't try to fix everything. Be a good friend/family member and support others through their hard times but don't make their problems your problems. If you need to take a step back, do so. No matter how hard you try, you can't force someone to be happy or to deal with something they don't want to deal with and you certainly can't will the glaciers not to melt. So give yourself a break ;)

xoxo Hannah

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Step 12: Respect Nature

Yesterday I think I learned a little bit about karma. Specifically I learned that when you disrespect nature by littering a gum wrapper and then entertain yourself by injuring a bunch of ants and feed to Tyler's Venus fly trap, nature will find it appropriate to put this guy in your bed at 2AM.

His name is Sand Tiger Beetle and he lived in sand deposits along rivers. He also enjoyed the neck and back support of my Temurpedic mattress pad. I say enjoyed because he's dead now. He was squished by my roommate's sandals. Unfortunately being dead didn't stop his mangled corpse from magically appearing in MY sandals this morning. 

I think I've finally put Sand Tiger Beetle's murdered soul at rest by giving him a proper burial in the toilet, but I can only wait and pray that his reign of terror has finally ended.

So ladies and gents my tip for you today is this: pick up your gum wrappers and respect the ants or the ghost of Sand Tiger Beetle will come after you next.

xoxo Hannah

Friday, August 5, 2011

Step 11: Ask the Right Questions

Sorry for the lull in posts, but between preparing my sister for college and potty training another person's toddler, I fear my brain has become squishy and weak. I'm working on it. Anyway,

I firmly believe that one should never be afraid to be inquisitive, especially when it comes to something important such as a relationship. Asking the right questions helps you evaluate your special friend's qualifications and shows/makes it appear that you are interested in their life.

If you've been keeping tabs on my Facebook and cell phone records, you may know that I have a boyfriend and yes, we like-like each other. He constantly impresses me with his ability to answer even my most challenging of questions. Questions such as:

Q. If I were attacked by a bear right now, what would you do?

A. "Get in front of you and punch it in the nose... or are we supposed to play dead? We can Google it."

This is a satisfactory answer because it shows that he is honest enough to admit ignorance of proper bear attack procedure, is willing to learn more about the subject, and would bravely sacrifice his own safety to protect me from a rampaging bear.

Q. If you could hang out with any Muppet, who would it be?

A. Kermit 

I chose Grover because he is a good salesman and a decent waiter. While I might have liked more elaboration, Kermit is by all accounts an awesome frog with a laid lack attitude and an analytical mind. Had The Boy chosen Elmo or Miss Piggy, I may have reconsidered our relationship.

As you can see by this clip, Grover and Kermit have an undeniable comedic chemistry:

In conclusion, if you and someone special find yourselves sitting in a tree and you want to know if it's wise to be K-I-S-S-I-N-G, ambush them with a few strange questions. If they're worth your while you'll get some interesting answers. What's the strangest thing someone has asked you?

xoxo Hannah

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Step 10: Look at the World Through the Eyes of a Child

This summer I've been working as a nanny for a 2 and 5 year old (Franny & Milo). Despite usually leaving work exhausted and covered with hand prints of various substances, I am also constantly amazed by the creativity and optimism of a child's world view. Here are a few nannying-inspired lessons I think we could all benefit from:

1. Set your goals high- No, I will not buy you Culver's ice cream and a kitten for taking a nap, but bless your little heart for thinking I'd agree to that "compromise."

2. Know what and who is most important- Today Milo, while completely disregarding all my good advice, shimmied under his deck looking for toads. After becoming stuck he implored me, "Hannah, if I die here can you tell my toads I love them... and tell my parents that Milo's under the deck and he doesn't need any help."

3. Laugh as much as you can- Especially when your babysitter tells hilarious jokes like
"poop" and "Don't put that in your mouth!"

4. Show enthusiasm- If I ask if you want to go to the park, I expect you to shriek with excitement and follow me around yelling "Park! Park! Park! Park! Park!" for at least 3 minutes. Anything less and we're not going.

5. Always be prepared- Do we really need 3 pairs of sunglasses, a broken camera, a notepad, crayons, a stuffed kitty, batteries, Hello Kitty stickers, a book about turtles, and dental floss for a trip to the aforementioned park? Probably not... but how can we know for sure?

XOXO Hannah