Tuesday potpourri

I had the best intentions of having my shit really together this week, and failed utterly per usual. Starting to think adulthood is just going to perpetually be a to-do list with lingering items and hanging chads and endless reminders of the fact that I am a ridiculously ineffective person sometimes. Anyway, “BLOG!!!!!” (five exclamation points and all) has been hanging out on the list since the beginning of the month, and it’s the 13th, so hi MID-NOVEMBER. Here we go:

  • First and foremost, guys, the NorCal (and SoCal) wildfires are horrifying and terrible. I woke up on Friday convinced Dave had burned something in our apartment (at 5am, clearly very much a functional morning person). I was devastated to hop online and see the news, let alone the thick smoke haze covering my South Peninsula suburb, over 150 miles from the fires themselves. Our air quality is terrible - I’ve been waking up with nosebleeds, itchy eyes, and a sore throat daily - and I can’t begin to imagine how awful it must be closer to the fires, let alone for the families that have lost homes, possessions and loved ones this close to the holiday season. If you’re feeling generous this Thanksgiving, the New York Times has a great list of resources on how to help victims - I’m partial to the Red Cross and United Way, personally.

  • Fortunately, and on a much lighter note, I escaped to the mountains last weekend for a quick little getaway and missed a few days of smoke. While out of town, I discovered a ridiculous beer cocktail consisting of half dunkel, half milkshake IPA - the roastiness of a stout combined with the fruitiness and resin of an IPA was delightful. I also fell in love with a new bookstore, where I picked up “Cork Dork” by Bianca Bosker and bought Dave an ever-so-adult gift of “The Dogist: Puppies” - a must-own for those of us dying to get a pup (just me? No?)

  • I leave for Italy on FRIDAY and am completely mind-fucked as to how this trip is already here. Badly need to figure out what I’m bringing, pack, and coordinate all the random logistical things I’ve left to the last minute, eek. Work’s a nuthouse this week and the light at the end of the tunnel is that in just three more workdays and 24 hours of travel, I’ve got pasta, gelato, espresso and wine for ten straight days to look forward to!

  • In very exciting personal news, I was accepted to a finance program at Stanford that I applied to and thought I had zero shot of getting into, and I’m over the moon. The program kicks off in December and runs for eight months, and I already know it’s going to kick my ass in the best of ways. Looking forward to a major challenge and to diving deeper into this crazy institution I now not only get to work for, but study at - what a privilege!

  • Per Facebook Memories (which I use to delete all the old bs I spewed all over FB as a youth, oh god), today marks the five-year anniversary of my last day at EY. I was ruminating a bit on my time there last weekend in conversation, and it’s crazy to take a step back, look at where I am now and think about how far I’ve come since that day. To this day, leaving remains one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, and especially in light of my acceptance to that program, it’s incredibly vindicating to see that I’ve succeeded way beyond what I had imagined as that stressed, angsty, audit-hating 24-year old.

  • Finally, Dave and I watched the first Netflix/Hallmark Christmas movie of the season last night - “A Christmas With A View,” and it was abysmally bad and cheesy in all the best ways. Paired with a pine tree candle, it’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas in our little apartment - plus, I’m thinking a roundup of our holiday movie-heckling extravaganza is going to have to happen in a few weeks here.

Happy Tuesday friends, have a fantastic day!

Inventory: August 2018

Making: the most absurdly complex workbook of everything I need to achieve at work, take care of at home, and plan ahead for pre-move in the next 42 days.

Cooking: hahahaha nothing lately because Dave has been doing it all. We totally didn’t have pizza rolls for dinner last night, guys.

Drinking: a Starbucks nitro cold brew, which has become my vice (my team keeps giving me Starbucks cards and I don’t hate it at all).

Reading: my way through Philippa Gregory’s Plantagenet/Tudor novels in chronological order, instead of the order they were published in – NERD alert!

Wanting: a puppy!! So badly!! It’s getting urgent!!

Looking: forward to checking out City Beer’s reopening tomorrow night!

Playing: Wordscapes, an addictive word-unscramble phone game that I am extremely good at.

Listening: at work, to the Ring Cycle all day as an excuse to not talk to anyone and just get work done; elsewhere, to Odesza’s “A Moment Apart” album on loop.

Wishing: for a puppy!!

Enjoying: our Tavour membership – Dave and I get monthly crates of craft beer from all over the country/world, and this month’s shipment just came yesterday. So fun to try new ones! (Who AM I?!)

Waiting: anxiously for Thursday – so, so ready for a long weekend at home with my whole Schwegfam and my best friends!

Liking: many, many photos of puppies!! (Can you sense a theme developing??)

Wondering: why USPS sucks at updating delivery statuses.

Hoping: that it’s a nice weekend weather-wise in Minnesota so we can get on the lakes and go to the State Fair!

Marveling: at the ridiculous number of Dave selfies in my phone - and at the sheer variety of facial expressions of which he's capable. 

Needing: a whole kitchen’s worth of stuff before we move in October!

Smelling: Jo Malone English Pear and Freesia perfume mixing oh-so-bizarrely with the Purell I’m dousing myself with every half hour – everyone at work is sick and I just cannot succumb pre-trip!

Wearing: the softest and coziest dress/sweater/scarf combo – perfect for variable Bay Area weather.

Following: every dog-related account on Instagram and Twitter – the thirst for a puppy is getting more serious by the day, friends. Stay tuned – 2019 IS The Year In Which Dave And Lizzie Get A Dog.

Noticing: how the people who bitch the most about being busy and stressed always seem to be the ones accomplishing the least amount of actual work…hmm ;)

Knowing: probably more than I should about office politics and transitions that are coming up.

Thinking: too much.

Bookmarking: wall-mount organization systems, neutral 8x10 area rugs, barstools, floor lamps, and bookshelves for the new apartment. All I’ve done lately is furniture shop.

Giggling: at the completely ridiculous antics of just about everyone on this season of “Bachelor In Paradise,” and at the plethora of dad jokes Nate, Margaret and I have been sending back and forth for a few weeks.

Feeling: honestly, at this point? Pretty tired and ready for it to be October already…

On plastic straw-shaming and saving the turtles.

I got plastic-straw shamed at the campus Starbucks a couple weeks ago, and I haven't felt quite that stupid in recent memory. The scene: 

I was late to a group outing with one of my teams because of a meeting I had to facilitate with another of my teams. It was hot, I was stressing, totally frazzled, and starting to get a pre-migraine aura going. Usually a healthy dose of caffeine will nip a headache before it goes full-blown migraine for me, so I braved the student union at peak coffee time. Having ordered my iced coffee with a shot of espresso, the oh-so-college, oh-so-Stanford barista turns back to me and asks, "And have you brought your own straw today?" 

Taken aback a bit (San Francisco just banned plastic straws at the beginning of the month, and the law doesn't go into effect until 2020), I shook my head and, dumbly, muttered, "" The barista raised one eyebrow, with that perfect, intense condescension only a supercilious college student can master, and asked, "Well, would you like to buy a reusable steel straw for $2.99?" 

I was grumpy, campers. I was hot, I was anxious about how my day was shaping up, and frankly, I didn't want to carry a dripping, sticky straw with me to the food bank we were volunteering at later. So I said no, probably a little more tersely than I should have. And the barista raised the other eyebrow, overtly judging me and my hatred of the sea turtles and my lack of consideration for future generations, and turned away to make my drink...but not before muttering "wowwwww" in that perfectly under-her-breath-but-clearly-meant-to-be-heard way. And I started laughing, because how do you not laugh at something that ridiculous? 

So fast forward to this morning, where I was in desperate need of a caffeine hit en route to my off-campus office and zipped to the "nice" Starbucks with the drive-thru. Yes, I felt like a total bum getting drive-thru coffee - but some mornings, one needs to minimize human interactions before 9am, and today is one of those days. And my drink came with this weird sippy cup lid: 


I might be the last person to find out that Starbucks is going fully strawless by 2020, and replacing the straws with these recyclable plastic lids. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for earth-saving and reduction of plastic waste and all that jazz. Today, though, as I went to take the first sip of my nitro cold brew (#millennial), it sloshed out the too-large hole on top, down the front of my white dress (because OF COURSE I was wearing a white dress). And now I'm sitting here in my office, having made my angel of an admin give me all her Tide pens, and my entire chest is wet from the emergency stain removal work I I look like a lactating mother having serious issues, basically. 

In other words, the most Monday-ish of Mondays, and we're only a few hours in. Here's hoping there's nowhere to go from here but up...

Love letters to life.

Coming back from a glorious long weekend is never fun, campers. I know I usually save these mini-gratitude posts for Fridays, but who doesn't need a few bright spots to kick off a (short!) week?

- this former candle (she's a real hothead)...

- turned tiny precious succulent planter.

- the most stunning bougainvillea I've ever seen. Still taken aback on a legit daily basis that I get to live and work here. 

- campus's beautiful arcades and pathways that are so deserted they feel secret. 

- sneaking in a very early solo lunch at Anthropologie's Terrain...their kale Caesar goes perfectly with an hour of whatever's on my Kindle app (at the moment, "The Wedding Date" by Jasmine Guillory). 

- Couldn't stop laughing at this hilarious sign while volunteering in an elementary school last week...imagine how these poor California kids would handle Minnesota's black ice, ha!


- Newly obsessed with Maybelline's Super Stay Matte Ink liquid lipsticks, which have lasted me a solid twelve hours without reapplying, including through meals and drinks and various other wear and tear. 

- and finally, my new favorite morning coffee mug. Nothing like a little Minnesota nice to cut through my newfound California cool. 

Happy four-day week, my loves! 

remember these things

A few random moments of pure happiness in the last few days: 

- a hallway conversation with our VP of finance, with a heartfelt thank you for illustrating a concept in a way she found revolutionary enough to share with several non-profits she works with...that feeling of total satisfaction in knowing that something I did is still resonating. 

- the half-hour heart-to-heart with Mom en route to work this morning - princess documentaries, Anthropologie, love, fear, and being bold enough to take risks and seek happiness. Continually thankful to have been raised by this woman. 

- leaving Alpha Acid last night with Dave and the bartender, Alex, asking us "see you tomorrow?!" The ultimate moment of feeling like the insiders we're striving to be at our favorite brewery - so frivolously satisfying. 

- nerding out with a new friend about the Met Gala, couture wedding dresses, celebrity idols, and the impending royal wedding. So nice to be developing genuine relationships here. 

- realizing that a year ago yesterday was they day I got my initial Stanford job offer, and taking a moment to truly appreciate the multitude of blessings (there's no other word) I've been granted in the last year of my life. 


How nice is it to be happy, and to be consciously, gratefully, intentionally aware that you're happy?