Tuesday, June 22, 2010


I have incredibly considerate, thoughtful, and loving individuals in my life. Unfortunately, they are spread out all over the world. Humbug. Such is life. But luckily, we live in the age of jetblue, express mail, and skype. It has made my life full of video chats, weekend trips, and surprise "just thinking of you packages" on my doorstep. Of course, I try to return the favor of these unexpected treats, but my friends always school me in giving the absolute best gifts.

The fabulous Meggamom and Lauren EBENSTEIN (I could not pronounce her maiden name. Wow. That is weird to say that one of my college roommates has a MAIDEN name.) sent me the most magical baking kit for my birthday. I was not expecting it at all. It was the best birthday surprise.

The kit had fairy creature cookie cutters, pastel sugars and dyes, and the best sugar cookie recipe I have ever tasted. There is NO butter in it, either...

...Just kidding. It's basically 90% butter. Another 5% is cream cheese.
Shut up and eat the cookie for breakfast like a good little boy. 

I just adore Laur and Mege. Their present making its way to my doorstep really made my day. Heck, it was the highlight of my jury-duty-plagued birthday. They're freakishly fun. We are trouble together. Case and point:

Do you two want to move to Corvallis, Oregon? Laur, your hubby Eric can sleep on my couch. We'll drink lots of good stuff, "open sets," and let Laur berate our choices in men and vegetarianism over brunch.

Sarah always gets/makes me the best "just because" presents. I treasure the large pile of them that I have accumulated over the years. Here's my 2010 Sarah loot (what what!):

No matter how we change and grow, I love that Sarah and I have found a way to keep that really special core of a friendship. I think that core is really based on being supportive of each other. Both of us are really all about letting people, including ourselves, let their freak flags fly. Bust Magazine and the amazing "friend" painting pretty much sum up that sentiment.

Yup. She's pretty great.

And speaking of supportive people. You cannot forget Taylor. Oh, Taylor--one of the best souls out there. Have you ever been having a rough day...and then something shows up (metaphorically or literally) on your doorstep as a sign to keep your chin up? Well, Taylor provided that for me, in the most literal sense, on an especially hard day this year. He randomly sent some very thoughtful book choices to some of his friends. He sent me the Paris Review Interviews:

So, the day I got this, I may or may not have definitely most certainly have been crying over what the hell I was doing with my life. Did I really want to go to school for fiction writing? Could I be a writer? Am I a writer? Do I suck at life? And then here this book comes, showing all these people, albeit much more talented people, going through the same journey as I am. And they're all incredibly different people with incredibly different journeys. The present was double special because I don't talk to Taylor nearly as often as I'd like, which is all my own fault. So, getting this surprise really made me smile. 

When I thanked Taylor for the book and told him about my crying-episode (well, I might've left out the crying part), do you know what he said to me? He said, "Whatever you decide will be the right choice...There are a million paths to where you want to be."Wow. Sometimes someone who really knows you says the right thing at exactly the right time. His words have really stuck with me, becoming a mantra of sorts, over the past few months. Taylor's one of those rare breeds of science smart, people humble, and art heart.

He's silly, but I always tuck his words in my pocket for comfort later.

And then there are the ultimate masters of the sneak attack present givers: Brian and Kim. I think it's the joined forces thing, but they always get me the best stuff. Sometimes, I feel sorry for Brian. I mean, he's both lucky and unlucky to have his sister count his wife (and him!) as one of her best friends. It makes for a lot of three musketeers evenings that he might have planned to be a romantic night for two. Whatevah...He loves it. 

Kim's the ultimate baker and I'm just a grasshopper, but they got me this awesome print that will match the amazing pea green fridge in my new apartment:

All kinds of adorable. Just like the two of them.

Brian has an unfortunate amount of pictures of himself being sandwiched between his wife and sister. Mu ha ha.

I'm a lucky girl. All these people in my life who I feel all around me even when they're not near. Sometimes, I really get frustrated that I don't have a geographically founded life. Ya know? Like some people have this amazing community that they come from and stay at...with all the people in their lives doing the same thing. But that's not my life. Nor is it the life of my family and friends. But we are still all so very there for each other. I know a knick-knack doesn't make up for a person being there, but it sure does help hold me over. 


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