A Weak End to the Weekend

I’m pretty sure that Sunday isn’t even part of the week anymore, and I’m pretty sure that a one-day weekend doesn’t even constitute as a weekend. But as scarce as my free time may be, I do my best to make the most of it (and yes, that often means sleeping). After (seemingly) endless trips to the boathouse these past few days, I finally took a (far too short) 36 hour break from my responsibilities and had some good ol’ college fun (and no, I don’t mean partying–who has the energy for that?!). Saturday night was yet again another football game for my boys in cardinal and gold, and a true Trojan never misses an opportunity to support and represent the Trojan family! So as tired as my little butt was, I showered up, threw on some clothes, and moseyed on over to the Coliseum. The result? Me looking like an absolute soccer mom (it was totally the visor that did me in), one incredible $9 (and super long!) turkey dog, being tossed up in the air after our final touchdown (if there aren’t photos, did it really even happen?), and a big WIN over the Oregon State Beavers. I’m already pumped for next week’s game; bring it Arizona. This is football season.


Shauna Blog Advise soccermom_thecoolkiddavid_megan best_9dollars_ofmylife al_awkwardcandidal_cameraready


Sunday morning (if it even existed) consisted of me grouchily rolling out of (Stephanie’s) bed and painfully making my way to Malibu (I know–rough life). Stephanie and I studied for about a grand total of three seconds before finding an amazing little hole in the wall shack to grab sandwiches and a fun street fair in Venice to further waste our precious time. (Side note: The food bet is over between me and Steph as I practically made her eat out because she was driving me nuts. We called it even and have slowly been reintroducing ourselves to LA’s gourmet culinary offerings.)


turkey_melted_my_heart malibu_country_kitchen sunny_day


On the way home we stopped at Trader Joe’s to grab some necessities for the week (aka pumpkin flavored everything and chia seeds–pretty much how I’m alive right now) and made our way back to South Central. And just like that, my nonexistent weekend was just that: nonexistent. In other news: Stephanie is now sick as a dog and wailing in bed across the hall (hang in there, kiddo), Alyssa is stressed over a project due tomorrow (you got it–promise, promise), Karina is as collected and mild tempered as always (so jealous), and I just threw away a half jar of Nutella. If I have even just one more spoonful, my body will literally explode from a hazelnut and cocoa overdose. Keep doing your thang, friends! (Even if it means throwing out that Nutella) -Megan

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Al Pal Is My Gal

You know those moments (or days) where you’re just pissed? Like no matter what anyone does or says (not to mention how they look at you), it inevitably puts you in a bad mood? Yeah well today was one of those days, and I embarrassingly have to say: I exploded. Not just screaming, yelling into my pillow while looking like a three-year-old type of explosion; crying, hugging my stuffed animals, talking about my (many) feelings type of explosion. I know, I know. But I’m an emotional girl. Give me a breakkkk. (Please?)

And I don’t know if I’m the Crank Monster because I’m insanely tired, overly stressed (thank you midterm season), constantly hungry (being a girl sucks at least 1/4 of the time), or a huge, fat, gigantic and unfortunate combination of all three. But regardless of the cause, the effect today wasn’t so great; to the (large) number of people that I either A. put into a bad mood or B. ruined your day: I sincerely apologize.

If you know me well, you know that I’m outgoing and extraverted, and that I always have an opinion; and if you don’t know me well, you probably still know that I’m outgoing and extraverted, and that I pretty much never shut up. I have no problem talking about my feelings or having a heart to heart. But as I was spilling my soul into the abyss of my apartment today, I realized that opening up about your life isn’t that easy for everyone. We all handle our struggles differently; not everyone feels comfortable letting their feelings air out like laundry on a clothes line (clean or dirty).

One of the reasons that Alyssa and I are such perfect friends is that we’re so different. She’s a strong mind when I’m down, and I’m a good laugh when she’s stressed out. (Fun fact: I’m actually always a good laugh; she just hasn’t realized it yet.) But because we’re different, we’re able to give to each other what the other person needs, when they need it most. I’m a talker, she’s a listener. I’m quick on judgement, she’s thorough and analytical. I’m a carnivore, she’s an herbivore. I’m (constantly) emotional, she’s as cool as a cucumber. I’m a vanilla girl (he’s transformed me), and she’s a double chocolate, cookie dough, fudge, Oreo, truffle, sundae kinda gal. We’re different, and that’s what makes us so unique and functional. I would rather fight with her than live with anyone else–no question. I am so blessed to have her in my life, and I don’t know what I’d do without her (except pay twice as much rent and have no transportation).

Strong Together

Aly, I am so proud of you for all that you’ve accomplished over your four years at SC, and I can’t wait to see where you’ll be in the future. You can always come to me with your struggles, frustrations, and your triumphs. I’m here for you–my family is here for you–and I love you too, too much for words. The sun is shining, the air is clean (just ignore the smog), there’s water coming out of our faucets (even amidst the drought), we have food in our fridge (thank you Little Galen), and we’re here together, living the dream. I have all I need, and I couldn’t ask for anything more (besides a Yogurtland date with you; tomorrow?). Love you, Al Pal.

Keep doing you, baby girl.

-Megan

Wishing or Working

I woke up to the greatest email that any college student could ever receive at 5am. There wasn’t any content to the message, but just an amazing two word title in the subject line: Class Cancelled. Now, I’m supposed to say that I was disappointed when I read this because not only does that single class probably cost my parents about $300 (a little steep), but it’s clearly a missed opportunity for learning–not to mention having to find something to fill that two hour time slot in my day. Well, if I was a perfect student, then yes, that would be my train of thought. But obviously I’m not perfect (shocking, I know; go ahead and pick your jaw up off the floor), and my actual reaction was something more like: Ohhhhhhh yeahhhhhh! No class? No problem!

Over the last 2 years 4 weeks and 3 days that I’ve been in college (yes, I’ve been counting–everyday is a small, yet mighty victory), I’ve realized that being successful in college (while simultaneously trying to maintain your sanity), isn’t giving yourself to your studies, or spending all of your time thinking about your major(s) and classes and trying to get ahead. College is about putting in the least amount of effort and receiving the most amount of credit for it.

And it’s sad, really. People work harder finding ways to avoid the work, than they would if they just did the work the way that they were asked; we spend more time finding ways to procrastinate than it would take us to just sit our booties down to write that darn paper; and we think more about what excuses we can make as to why our work isn’t done rather than just taking the time to actually get it done. But it’s not just a USC thing or a college kid thing. It’s an everyone thing–in every part of life. And my question to that is: why?

Well the easy answer is that we’re lazy (and yes, I said we–we’re all guilty). It’s less stressful (not to mention more fun) to just lay in bed eating a bowl of cereal while watching motivational speeches on YouTube (I may or may not have done that last night), but that won’t get us anywhere. We all want to achieve great things and–in our own way–be influential and ground-shaking people, but that won’t happen if we don’t put the appropriate effort in. You can’t wish for it more than you work for it, and no matter how great or small your dreams may be, they’ll never be accomplished if you’re merely riding on hope. Hope is strong, but you’re stronger.


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So, work hard, put the effort in, and earn the praise and recognition that you get for great work; it feels so much better to be credited for work that you’ve completely given yourself to (so I hear). And yes, Facebook, Insta and Yik Yak (and obviously my blog) will still be here when all of your hard work is done. And if they’re not, there’s probably something better to fill their place. Or the world has ended. Either one.

I guess I should probably start paying attention to the lecture that’s been going on in the class that wasn’t cancelled today… What was that about work ethic? Hey, I don’t follow the rules, I just make them 😉

Keep doing you.

-Megan

Pictured: Lauren Linney
Photo Credit: Brecon Welton

Motivation to Move

run your world

For a number of reasons, I have no idea what time the average person wakes up. Here are just a few:

  1. I’m in college. No college student has a ‘real world’ schedule.
  2. I’m a rower. Waking up at 5:30am is considered sleeping in.
  3. I’m in my twenties. If there’s any time to cheat yourself on sleep, I’m pretty sure it’s now. The lack of sleep in my next decade won’t be voluntary, I’m sure.
  4. Why sleep? I’m superhuman. At least in the dreams that I’m asleep long enough to have.

Before I started my 5 o’clock wake up calls last fall, I don’t know that I (or anyone else that’s ever lived with me or witnessed me waking up) would classify myself as a “morning person.” But since I started rowing, waking up has gotten easier and easier. And I know the whole idea that if you do something for 21 days it becomes a habit–and getting up has–but I don’t know if that idea applies to the extreme and unbearable doses of grumpiness that I dish out in the morning.

I was on my way to practice at around 5:30am today and I thought to myself: I’m up (why do I do this to myself?!), I don’t want to be, but regardless of how I feel, I have to do this workout–so why not choose to do it? And with that minor tweak in my mentality, my whole day changes–literally. On the way back to campus, I thought: I’m up, I don’t really want to sleep (okay, maybe just a little), but I am so glad that I killed that workout. Just like that, my morning was made. And we all know that a good morning= the most essential starting ingredient for a great day.

Getting up to go workout or be active (whether it’s fresh out of bed in the morning or rolling off the couch at 4pm) is always the hardest part. But you’ll never regret a good workout, and no matter how awful a workout turns out (say that ten times fast), it’s always better than no workout. When I’m not in season, I have to find ways to get myself out of the house and in the zone. The easiest ways that I’ve found to motivate myself are to:

  1. Tell others (usually my sister) that I’m planning on working out. Then when she asks about my run or my CrossFit wod (which I know she will because she’s so darn competitive), I’ll be horrified if I didn’t actually go (P.S. it’s okay to exaggerate how strong you are and how amazing of a workout you had; it works wonders).
  2. Before I go to bed, I pick an activity that sounds fun to do in the morning. Sometimes I wake up and think: What was I thinkingggg?! There’s no way I’m doing that. And that’s totally okay; I just pick something else. At least I still have a game plan and time carved out for a good sweat.
  3. Plan workouts with friends! Some of my favorite things to do are to go on runs or hikes with some excellent company. I mean, as type-A as gym dates and scheduled sweat seshs are, they’ll definitely keep your schedule booked with some elevated heart rate (especially if (s)he is a cutie!).
  4. And the most important piece of motivation that I am constantly preaching to myself is to remember that I define my health; whether I kick my own booty with hang cleans (my personal fave) or take a leisurely (aka slow) stroll through the hills (sure, you can call it a hike), I’m improving myself and taking steps towards creating the healthiest and happiest life that I possibly can.

Is it weird that I workout twice a day, six days a week and still want to be active on my weekend one day off a week? Totally. But everyone’s a little weird and crazy, right? And if there’s a time to be crazy and push your limits, it’s today. Worrying about what you did or didn’t do yesterday is wasted energy, saving yourself for tomorrow is a missed opportunity, but today? Today is a chance at change; today is a chance to give yourself purpose. Because as of right now, today is all you have. So cherish it, relish in it, but most of all: make the most of it. Not everyone loves to hit the pavement with their runners laced up or ‘lift heavy things just to put them down’ (as my sister would say); but there is something for everyone, and you can’t deny yourself that. Give yourself a chance to be great. If you do–if you honestly give yourself the opportunity that you deserve–I promise you’ll blow your own damn mind.

I’m cheering for you.

-Megan

Bougie About My… Yogurt?!

We all have things that we’re picky about. Some of us have a few things (myself included), and that’s totally okay and normal. As long as we know what our weirdness is, and we recognize it, own it, and deal with it. Whether it’s that you can’t function before nine without that venti Starbucks specialty drink (you know, the one that costs you more than your first hour of pay everyday?), or you only use skin products made from the purest of minerals that are chemical free, paraben free, nitrate free, BPA free, gluten free, rBST free–probably matter free–but definitely not free ($$$), or maybe you just can’t even have the radio on a volume setting that’s an odd number (trust me, there’s more of us than you think). Whatever your little ‘ism’ is, just know that we all have our quirks (or two, or three).

My weird fad at the moment? Yogurt. And not just any yogurt: Icelandic yogurt. Did you know that was a thing? Because before I started eating it, I definitely didn’t know that was a thing. But apparently it’s definitely a thing. You thought you became trendy and all-LA healthy when you started buying nonfat Greek yogurt, but this Icelandic yogurt takes snooty dairy products to a whole new level–a whole different latitude. Literally.

icelandicyogurt

But before you judge me and my live cultures, just know that I didn’t choose this bougie and expensive yogurt life: this life chose me.

I’d like to give a shout out to all of my lactose intolerant friends out there. I’ve officially joined that club as of late, and there’s no going back. There’s nothing worse than realizing that you’ve self-induced your unstoppable ailment and that you are personally responsible for the incineration of your insides; that’s putting it lightly.

So if I’m lactose intolerant, then why in the world am I spending my entire month’s allotment of cash on the Maybach of yogurts? Well my friends, strained yogurt is lactose free! The process that it goes through to become Greek (or Icelandic, in my case) yogurt takes out almost all of the lactose, and most people who are lactose intolerant can consume it with absolutely no problems. I know, I know. This is completely life changing. You’re welcome.

So with my body’s recent rejection of dairy (which I am not too pleased about; don’t worry I filed a complaint with the Big Guy) I’ve decided: if I’m going to be eating some kind of dairy product, then it better be the highest quality. Thus, I went to Whole Paycheck and spent, well, my whole paycheck on yogurt. Icelandic yogurt, actually. If I haven’t mentioned that already.

And thus far, it’s delish. I’m not 100% sure if it’s actually delicious or if it’s because it’s ultra bougie (and pricey) and I’m being brainwashed into thinking it’s delicious (probably that one), but either way, I’m lovin’ it.

bless í bili

(bye for now)

-Megan

DON’T PANIC: The Hiatus is Over

I know, I know, I haven’t posted in dayssssss (seven to be exact), but I’ve been so busy! And traveling. And not sleeping. And lifeless. Did I mention busy? I’m sorry to have left ya hanging, but I promise I’m back at the keyboard, and ready for action! As my bae would say, “You gotta give the people what they want.” So, here it is.

This past week has been absolutely insane. For the quick, CliffsNotes version (I mean who has time to read the whole thing, anyway? I don’t even have time to write it…), the last 168 hours of my life (yes, I used a calculator) have included: a flight to Northern California and a 4 hour drive into the mountains to follow, a beautiful and incredible wedding (not to mention emotional), 8 hours in LA’s finest ER waiting room, about 20 hours of rowing, one research paper, two missed classes, and not enough sleep (or coffee).

Every day this week I’ve seen something interesting or had an Einstein idea and thought to myself: wow, I should totally blog about that; and every night, I’ve sat down to blog and realized: oh my gosh, I’m just too darn tired. And maybe over the next few Thursdays I’ll throw it back to this insane week that I’ve had, but until then, I’ll just keep you wondering…

I love to write and I love to have a place where I can free my thoughts. So if there’s one thing I can promise you, you’ll be hearing from me a lot more in the days to come.

I’ve missed you.

-Megan

my sister >>>>>>

You know those people who you love unconditionally and would do anything for… but they drive you absolutely nuts? And I’m talking like pulling your own hair, face in your pillow, kicking and screaming nuts? Yeah, well I have one of those, and she’s my 22 year old sister: Lauren. And if you have siblings (or if you’re married), you understand the incredible amount of love and annoyance that someone can bring you–all at the same time.

Don’t get me wrong, she’s great. She continually shows me who I want to be, what to strive for, and what I am capable of; she pushes me to push myself–the greatest gift she’s given me. I’m so thankful that I was given the opportunity to live with such a unique and fun person for the first 16 years of my life; I’m not saying it always went smoothly, but it went. I’ve learned so much from her, both about myself and about others, and my relationship with Lauren has played a huge role in shaping me into who I am at this very moment. I would, without a doubt, be a different person without her. I’ll only say it once, so listen up, Lauren: thank you.

Dawww

Like most siblings, we fought. And fought, and fought, and fought. And we still fight–constantly. My mom always said growing up (and I think she’s still praying for it): it’ll get better when you’re old–you’ll get over your differences and appreciate each other. But does it get better? I mean…

I’m joking–it absolutely does. Yes, we’re different. So different. But regardless of these differences, she clearly loves my clothes (I guess that’s a compliment?). But now that I’m living 346 miles from her (yes, she’s living the dream: 22 and at home–no shame), I don’t really care about those differences because above all things, I miss her. Now I don’t miss people telling me how beautiful she is all the time (you can imagine the slash to one’s ego), but nonetheless, life isn’t the same without her. I also don’t miss her taking my clothes (clearly it doesn’t bug me; I’ve only mentioned it twice…), me aimlessly trying to compete with her at CrossFit (emphasis on aimlessly), and her controlling the conversation at the dinner table (I still can’t get a full story in–even when I’m visiting).

But nonetheless, she’s amazing and beautiful, one of a kind, and an imperfectly perfect human being. I am blessed to call her my seester (I use that to beckon her on the reg), and I wouldn’t have chosen anyone else. Disclaimer: maybe Jennifer Lawrence; but I guess Lauren and Lawrence are interchangeable–at least Ms. D.G. thought so. Can’t wait to see you this weekend, sissy. Please try not to look too gorgeous; it’s really just embarrassing for me. Love you.

-Megan

Thirteen Years Strong

never forget


September 11, 2001 is forever ingrained in my mind, as well as the minds of millions of Americans. I was only seven years old, in second grade, and had no idea the impact that this day would have on the United States. Here we are, thirteen years later, and the same gut wrenching, sickening, ill feeling comes to my body when I reflect on the events of this day in 2001. I am blessed with a phenomenal family–many of whom are firefighters, and having two parents work for the fire department is truly an eye-opening experience; 9/11 has made it evident that my father does not go to work without risk. So many public safety members (and troops) in this world put their lives on the line–every, single day. So today, exactly thirteen years after this nation’s most devastating attack, I say: thank you for being brave, dedicated heroes. This world is graced by your service and pride.


FDNY 343

Never Forget

September 11, 2001

Monday Shmunday

“What are the strongest days of the week?”

“Saturday and Sunday. The rest are weakdays.”


I’ve decided that Mondays ain’t got nothin’ on me. But in all seriousness: why does the entire human population hate Monday so much? Maybe it’s because I’m in college and I only have class from 10:00am-11:50am–although I leave early (I’m kidding, Mom. Put the phone down)– and from 6:00pm-8:50pm. With a huge chunks of time in between classes to sleep (and eat) my day away, I can’t quite figure out why Monday is seemingly so horrifying. Yes, horrifying.

I know the weekend is over (I promise it’ll come back), but the sooner you get up and start your Monday, the sooner it’s over, and the sooner you can draw that giant, red X through the middle of that first day of the work week on your calendar; not to mention, the sooner Monday starts, the closer you are Tuesday (and Wednesday… and Thursday… and FRIDAY!). I’m not saying it’s my favorite day of the week–actually, it’s probably my least favorite now that I’m sitting here thinking about how much better every other day is–but I definitely don’t mind it. Maybe it’s my constant “let’s start life over” mentality (see my first blog post; aka the reason I’m blogging), but there’s something refreshing and new about Mondays.

I mean, come on, your boss can’t yell at your for falling asleep at your cubical because guess what? So is everyone else. In fact, (s)he is probably too busy recovering from her/his weekend that (s)he may not even notice if you show up. But because you’re the fabulous employee that you are, show up and think of it as the start to a new week; maybe you just need to reconsider your perspective. I think Mondays would be a lot easier if they were just braved and taken on with valor and perseverance. I think Mondays would be a lot easier if they were started by hitting the snooze button, brewing a large pot of an extra bold roast, and popping a few Advil for good measure. I guess I really don’t like Mondays…

Hey, at least it’s over.

-Megan

Me, Myself, and Megan

Life Isn't About Finding YourselfI think the hardest part about being in college–and/or moving away from home–is realizing that it’s not always all about you. And as much of a princess as I am (or think I am), life goes on without me. My parents still go out, have a great time, and live their lives. And don’t get me wrong, I am so glad that they do; if they didn’t I’d be worried. But for so long, as kids, we’re built to concededly think that our parents’ sole purpose in life is to take care of us, see how we’re doing, make sure we have what we need, and unnecessarily punish us–because obviously they ‘just don’t understand’ (at least between the ages of 12 and 20).

When I see my parents doing awesome, fun things via Instagram (yeah, I know, right?! I told you they were cool), a few thoughts run through my head. Initially, I am almost always jealous. Not usually because of what cool thing they’re doing, but mostly because what I’m doing sucks that much more knowing what cool things I could be doing. Hard to believe, but many things beat studying on the ‘Things I Want to Do Today’ list (shocking). Following the jealously is usually a wave of adoration. I pass my phone around the table and say, “Oh my gosh. Staaaap it. I can’t even handle how cute my parents are right now.” And then when that phase passes it’s: WHAT THE HECK?! Why do they always do the fun things without me?! That step is far more prominent when they do big Cabo and Hawaii trips that they casually mention only a week or two before they’re leaving. Yeah, that’s happened…

But college is the time in my life when it’s my turn to create my own life; yes, I’ll always be a part of my parents’ life. There’s no question that my family of four will always be it’s own little, perfect unit, regardless of where we’re located or what life brings. But as I get older, it’s time for me to start define myself on my own–as Megan. Not as Neil and Julie’s daughter, or Lauren’s little sister. And the strangest part? It’s so darn hard because they’re the biggest part of my life. But that’s why you’ve got four years of college to figure it out (or five… sorry Mom and Dad $$$), and so many more after that. But now’s a great time to start trying; everyone has to start somewhere.

On the note of being left out: after deciding not to go to breakfast with my roommates today (how economical of me), I just received a text from Stephanie saying that Ellen Page is sitting next to them at breakfast. Awesome. I love my life, I love my life, I love my life (if you say it enough, it comes true right?). But in all seriousness: I do love my life.

Happy Sunday 🙂

-Megan