When Your Little Sister Is Cooler.

I remember when I was the cool sister. My little sis would always want to sit with my friends and I in the basement of our house on Winston Lane. We would all play Dance Dance Revolution, watch scary movies, or talk about those outside our crew, and even though Sis couldn’t wrap her head around half of our conversations, she was always there.

My parents used her as a chaperone. Anytime I was alone with a boy, there she’d be. Right around the corner. Striking up conversation, or claiming that we were listening to her favorite song; watching her favorite movie. What she never knew, though, is I always wanted her there. In fact, once I asked her, directly, to meet her friend for dinner at the same place I had a “date” – just in case I needed to glance over and make eye contact for a bit of reassurance.

Even though she was five years younger, I spilled my heart and soul to her every night. We sat awake in my full size bed and I told her about my crushes, my heartbreaks, my classes, my blogs (yup, had them back then too – Xanga anyone?). We used to cut pictures from dated Bollywood magazines that our family had brought over from India during their last visit, and make huge collages on that 25 cent poster board you could get around the corner. We made customized shorts (PHS, MYH), had photo-shoots, ate like the world’s biggest famine was about to hit any day, and were inseparable.

Her new version of the good old Bollywood collage

And, even though I now have my doubts, at the time I definitely thought I was the cool one.

Now, I know better. She’s the one that can pull of the straw bowler hats, the hot pink tattered jeans, studs, those dresses with the stomach cut outs (I would have to wear a poncho over it to ever feel comfortable in one of those). She’s the one that used Crackle nail polish before anyone else (I never used it once). She has the attitude, the strength, and the wit to whip any situation in her favor. And although I’m still her big sister, and may maintain a strong sense of big-sister-rationality, the ability to think practically, and the skills to help tame the occasional emotional hurricane, sometimes I can’t believe how much I have learned and continue to learn from her.

We’ve had a very blessed life, as a family (knock on wood). But my mom’s one complaint with her life is that she never had a sister. She sees the relationship between my sis & I and can’t believe what she’s missed out on. Luckily as we’ve gotten older, we’ve developed an amazingly close relationship with mom, too, but nothing (seriously, nothing) can beat having a sister.

Love you, sis!

AG

Fridays + Yoga

Have you ever noticed how much you look forward to Fridays? It’s kind of crazy if you think about it. You wake up in the morning in a better mood, everything seems more manageable, 3 o’clock brings old school summer vacation giddiness, you seem to have time to do every little thing your heart desires. It’s an overall wonderful, fabulous feeling.

Sad that it’s reserved for only one day…

I’ve been keeping busy this week, since boyfriend’s been out of town (only since Wednesday… is it bad that it feels like he’s been gone for too long already?). Busy means lots of work, dinner with my roomie and her dad, and believe it or not, some Yoga.

I bought this book

the other week and have been really excited to delve into it. Tara Stiles is highly regarded. She’s Deepak Chopra’s yogi, and has a really simple, easy to understand way of explaining the benefits of Yoga. It really helps you understand how Yoga can help your body (by helping your mind).

I’ve done Yoga three times this week, so far, and I’ve felt pretty great. I get to work energized and happy. I guess this could be a placebo effect (I’m always proud of myself when I’m able to drag my lazy butt out of bed and do something active), but I can’t wait to see how it continues to improve my life. I’ll keep you guys posted.

In the meantime, I seriously recommend checking out this book. It has “cures” for things like Monkey Brain, Office Body, PMS, Heartbreak, Low Self Esteem, Depression, Anxiety, you name it. For a full list, see here.

If anyone has any recommendations for Yoga spots in the city that they love (and any that are even remotely affordable..??), I’d love a share!

Have a lovely weekend all!

Xo,

AG

(PS Happy birthday weekend to my lovely friend Niha!)

OMG, ADORKABLE

This is why Thought Catalog speaks to my heart.

(Thanks, N!)

Today I learned how to be Zooey. I would specifically like to call out the following:

Be attractive, but not too attractive.

It’s a tricky line to toe, but you want men to feel like you’re the approachable “girl next door” type without having women hate you because you get all the male attention. So what should you do to get both guys and girls attracted to you but not in a way that they will feel you’re a threat? One word: bangs. That’s right, guys will instantly be less sexually attracted to you and you will still have a hours of built in conversation with other women. So go ahead and banish yourself to being type cast as Kate Hudson’s peculiar friend in all future rom coms.

(YES!)

How To Be Alone

I borrowed this from my sister’s new blog. And I love it. I’ve listened to it twice and read the poem once. There’s so much validity in what this woman says. I’ve italicized my favorite parts, but the entire thing is beautiful.

 

How To Be Alone

By Tanya Davis

If you are at first lonely, be patient.

If you’ve not been alone much, or if when you were, you weren’t okay with it, then just wait. You’ll find it’s fine to be alone once you’re embracing it.

We can start with the acceptable places, the bathroom, the coffee shop, the library, where you can stall and read the paper, where you can get your caffeine fix and sit and stay there. Where you can browse the stacks and smell the books; you’re not supposed to talk much anyway so it’s safe there.

There is also the gym, if you’re shy, you can hang out with yourself and mirrors, you can put headphones in.

Then there’s public transportation, because we all gotta go places.

And there’s prayer and mediation, no one will think less if your hanging with your breath seeking peace and salvation.

Start simple. Things you may have previously avoided based on your avoid being alone principles.

The lunch counter, where you will be surrounded by “chow downers”, employees who only have an hour and their spouses work across town, and they, like you, will be alone.

Resist the urge to hang out with your cell phone.

When you are comfortable with “eat lunch and run”, take yourself out for dinner; a restaurant with linen and Silverware. You’re no less an intriguing a person when you are eating solo desert and cleaning the whip cream from the dish with your finger. In fact, some people at full tables will wish they were where you were.

Go to the movies. Where it’s dark and soothing, alone in your seat amidst a fleeting community.

And then take yourself out dancing, to a club where no one knows you, stand on the outside of the floor until the lights convince you more and more and the music shows you. Dance like no one’s watching because they’re probably not. And if they are, assume it is with best human intentions. The way bodies move genuinely to beats, is after-all, gorgeous and affecting. Dance until you’re sweating. And beads of perspiration remind you of life’s best things. Down your back, like a book of blessings.

Go to the woods alone, and the trees and squirrels will watch for you. Go to an unfamiliar city, roam the streets, they are always statues to talk to, and benches made for sitting gives strangers a shared existence if only for a minute, and these moments can be so uplifting and the conversation you get in by sitting alone on benches, might of never happened had you not been there by yourself. 

Society is afraid of alone though. Like lonely hearts are wasting away in basements. Like people must have problems if after awhile nobody is dating them.

But lonely is a freedom that breathes easy and weightless, and lonely is healing if you make it.

You can stand swathed by groups and mobs or hands with your partner, look both further and farther in the endless quest for company.

But no one is in your head. And by the time you translate your thoughts an essence of them maybe lost or perhaps it is just kept. Perhaps in the interest of loving oneself, perhaps all those “sappy slogans” from pre-school over to high school groaning, we’re tokens for holding the lonely at bay.

Cause if you’re happy in your head, then solitude is blessed, and alone is okay.

It’s okay if no one believes like you, all experience is unique, no one has the same synapses, can’t think like you, for this be relieved, keeps things interesting, life’s magic things in reach, and it doesn’t mean you aren’t connected, and the community is not present, just take the perspective you get from being one person in one head and feel the effects of it.

Take silence and respect it.

If you have an art that needs a practice, stop neglecting it, if your family doesn’t get you or a religious sect is not meant for you, don’t obsess about it.

You could be in an instant surrounded if you need it.

If your heart is bleeding, make the best of it.

There is heat in freezing, be a testament.

XO,

AG

A Teary Wedding Story

Joanna Goddard, one of my all-time favorite bloggers, tweeted this the other day:

Of course, I couldn’t handle the suspense. So I immediately clicked and started reading.

The story Joanna mentioned was so sad, lovely, bittersweet, touching, moving, poignant, heart-breaking, that I couldn’t help but share. It speaks so truly to the meaning of a marriage. And what it when people say “love knows no bounds.”

I don’t even have the words to describe it, so you’ll just have to read it for yourselves.

REAL WEDDING: BETHANY & RYAN via Snippet & Ink

When I’m Famous…

When I’m famous, I will be attending the Cream Event.

As they so eloquently put it, the The Cream Event is “one hell of a showcase event featuring the raddest CROP of people in weddings.” I totally acknowledge that this is not me… yet… but it will be. One of these days. Or one of these years. You bet your ass.

And this is why I want to go:

Vintage-y Glasses via Green Wedding Shoes

Yummy Place Setting via Green Wedding Shoes

Where the cool people get their pretty wedding furniture via 100 Layer Cake

Vintage Napkins (drooling) via 100 Layer Cake

All My Future Best Friends, Clearly via 100 Layer Cake

Kate Spade Cameo via 100 Layer Cake

Make total sense? Self-explanatory?

Thought so.

AG