15 Things I learned after college

It’s the Monday after Graduation Weekend!! A ton of my friends and former students are graduating from all kinds of programs, high schools, colleges, and graduate programs.

I am so proud.

I am very lucky to have graduated college, uh, a while ago and before going back to graduate school, I got to experience the real world for awhile. And no, I don’t mean the “I’m just working a part time while I study for [insert entrance exam to graduate program here] test so I can go to graduate school.”

When I finished undergrad I had ZERO intention of ever going back. So I jumped into the real world and was like, “HI! HERE I AM!”

Here are valuable things I learned after college:

1. You might not have a job in your field when you graduate. And if you don’t, it’s not the end of the world.

2. Even though you have a degree, you might have to work 2 (or more) jobs to make ends meet. This is also not the end of the world, but it can be really tiring.

3. You canNOT go 1:1 on bud lights and shots of fireball anymore. YOU. JUST. CAN’T.

4. Your bosses don’t care about how bad traffic was, how you’re having a bad hair day, or how your quads just could not fit in any of your slacks this morning. They only care about the money you’re wasting them by being late to work today. Leave the house early. Like, early, early.

5. Graduating from college makes you realize that, in real life, your friends are going to understand your need to take a damn nap on a Friday night instead of going to free drinks at Fred’s. Your very best friends will take a nap with you.

6. Most Some Friday nights are better spent on the couch with a book and a cup of coffee (the cheapest books come from goodwill. $0.25 for a best seller?! Best. News. Ever.).

7. Speaking of coffee, drink it. All the time. For the sake of everyone around you.

8. DO NOT pay your 6 month auto insurance all at one time on your credit card. Don’t. You’re not rich enough for that.

9. Guys suck. But you can also be really irritable and irascible. And wildly infuriating. Cut them some slack.

10. That being said: don’t put up with people’s bullshit either. They can’t bullshit a bullshitter. That’s not how things work around here.

11. Just like in college, Ramen is totally acceptable for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Now that you have a real job, drain the water out and sprinkle some parmesan cheese on it and eat it as a side next to chicken or something. You’re fancy now. (Also, dry ramen all crumbled up in scrambled eggs is incredible. Don’t think about it, just do it.)

12. I can almost guarantee that despite having a real job, you’re still broke. Sorry. 

13. It’s okay to change what you wanna be when you grow up. Change it every 5 years. Change it every year. Or don’t change it at all. 

14. Making questionable decisions about your love life happens. Learn from it and let it go. 

15. You don’t know what you’re actually doing with your life. That’s okay. Welcome to the club. No one else does, either.

And there you have it. Go out. Get drunk. Do stupid things. Do smart things. Learn to wake up at 7 am with a hangover to go your ass to work. Change your mind. Change your whole world.

Do shit! 
Congratulations, Class of 2014!

One, Five, Ten

“Where do you see yourself in a year? Five years? Ten years?”

Recently, Bonnie over at The Life of Bon asked this question to her high school English classes. 

After thinking about it, you know what?I am not in any of the places I thought I would be when I was graduating high school. I don’t even know if I considered back then growing up to be the person I actually am.

Dance Team Banquet. Seniors. Front row, third from right. 

Senior prom. Yes, my flip phone is rhinestoned.

New York Dance Team trip. 

Senior Night with Brittany

One year
What I thought: I thought I’d be pre-med at LSU, loving it. Definitely getting straight A’s and loving going to the best party school in the country. I was going to have a ton of friends and probably a super hot boyfriend. And I was going to make the dean’s list for sure. I was also going to be super skinny and drinking allllll that beer was definitely NOT going to make me gain weight. Oh, and I was going to run a marathon. I think I actually wrote that down somewhere. Silly me.

I don’t know what was going on or why I’m not wearing shoes.

Before the weight gain happened…but you see what’s in my hand, right? It’s coming.

One year
Where I was: I did go to LSU and I did declare pre-med as my major…and hated every second of it. Making friends wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be and it felt like everything constantly reminded me that I wasn’t in Texas anymore. Thankfully, my next door neighbor and eventual roommate, Emily, helped me navigate the friends thing. There were a lot of all nighters where I called Mama Nancy crying, begging to come home. I also wanted to transfer to University of Texas-San Antonio because that’s where all my friends from high school went. I definitely missed out on the magic, “drink me and you won’t gain weight” beer because I drank the regular shit and gained a ton. And I didn’t run. Not one time, not one mile.

Know what this looks like? Bad decisions.

We may or may not have decided to jump on stage. At a bar. In the middle of someone’s musical performance.

Holly, Emily, Kelsey, Me, Tissy, Higgs, Blaum

When I still had little boobs.

Five years
What I thought: I would have totally graduated college and I’d have a super great job-to-career doing something I really loved for a lot of money. I’d probably be married already and working on starting a family. I’d be living back in Texas to be close to my parents. Obviously.

Crowning my successor.

Krissy Bug. Best friends for life.

Graduate. Finally.

5 yearsWhere I was: I was just graduating college with concentrations in 3 different, completely unrelated things. I was engaged to be married and working in property management managing apartments. I didn’t really have any idea what I wanted to do: did I want to continue in this career? Did I want to try something else? I had a brief flirtation with the idea of going to law school and took the LSAT. I did well, but I decided I didn’t hate myself enough to actually go to law school. Something told me to be a teacher, so I got my certification and started my teaching career at Istrouma High School (one of the best experiences of my life). I also realized how much weight I had gained and started trying to do something about it. 

10 yearsWhat I thought: I thought that by 28, I’d have shit together. I’d be way involved in my marriage. I’d have a kid or two. Or twelve. I’d own a house with a dog. I’d be a hospital’s chief of surgery by now (because everyone becomes a chief of surgery in like, 3 years, right?) and I’d volunteer on the weekends. I’d hang out with my mama and be busing my kids back and forth to whatever practice/birthday party/whatever.

8 years
Where I am: I haven’t made it to my 10 year yet (uh, 2 years away. WHAT?) but so far…I’m not all that close to what I thought. At all. I’m finishing my masters program in Kinesiology. The closest thing I have to a kid is Axl, who is the best kid EVER. I’m still teaching AND still working in property management and I’m working toward becoming a Marine Officer. I have good friends, I pay all my own bills, I have a great relationship with my parents and my tolerance for bullshit is pretty low. I like playing with other people’s kids and I hate laundry. Most days being a grown up sucks, but it’s pretty satisfying knowing that, as tiring as it can be, I get shit done. I still get carded buying beer and I’m okay with that. Oh, and I lost that freshman 40 from college. Finally.

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Me and the kid
Naturally I hang out with Mama Nancy

Where did you see yourself in a year, 5 years, 10 years from high school?
**PS: Athlete profiles on Saturdays will be BACK next week!

Daddy ain’t raise no fool

Father’s day!

I am super lucky to have not only a great mama, but an amazing daddy as well. And because today’s father’s day, it’s a good time to celebrate him!

I was like, 8. It was a wedding. I didn’t pick my dress. Don’t be judgemental.

Dear Daddy Carlos,

I already sent you a card in the mail, but you’ll read this before you get it (mainly because I had it ready to go and forgot that I needed stamps. And naturally it took me forever to get them. So the card will be late. Some things never change). Everyday I get older, I am more and more thankful for a dad like you.  

Growing up your daughter has been the best learning experience. You are the biggest believer of learning by doing. How do you figure out you shouldn’t touch a hot stove? Touch it.  My whole life, you never ever felt sorry for me. And it used to make me so mad! I would sit there and sulk about problems and life and you’d tell me, “well, quit pouting about it and do something about it.” You had so much faith in me to solve my own problems and you taught me to have faith in myself.

Dad and his take!

Thanks for always reminding me that nothing is ever boring, if you are bored than YOU, in fact, are boring. Thank you for teaching me that the grass is not greener on the other side, it’s green where you water it and that you are responsible for your own happiness. 

 Thanks for teaching me what a man should be and how a father and a husband should behave. Thank you for always making sure that I know that a real man opens doors, is respectful, and does everything he can do to get where he needs to go. 

Dad and my brother, Carlos III

Thanks for always encouraging me to learn everything I can about everything and read everything I can get my hands on. Thanks for teaching me how important it is to develop personal relationships with people and remember things about them. Thank you for teaching me the importance of working hard and earning what you get. It’s a concept lost on so many these days. 

Thanks for being instrumental in teaching me how to be a lady and do the things that ladies do. Thank you, also for making sure I never cut my baby hair and affirming that my curly hair is beautiful. Thank you for teaching me to do a handstand and a one-handed cartwheel. Greatest party tricks ever. 

From left: Daddy Carlos, Tio Leonel, Tio Romeo

Thanks for teaching me to be a tough girl, dig a hole, shoot a hog, throw a punch, skin a snake, cook a stew, grill a steak, and (maybe most importantly) dance. Thank you for not letting me wear makeup until I was 17. Because of you, I still don’t wear very much. I save money AND my skin still looks good. Thanks for passing down your awesome eye color even though your eyes get more and more green every year. 

Thanks for making me a strong girl. A girl who is capable of anything and believes in her abilities. Thanks for giving me the strength to have the drive and determination to do whatever it is that I could possibly want to do. Thank you for raising a woman that “no man can handle” 😉 Thanks for being such an amazing idol that I have trouble believing that any man could ever live up to you.

Most of all, thank you for being a dad and never my friend. You and mom both always said that you were my parents and that I have enough friends. Thank you for always making the difficult decisions to make me better and for sacrificing whatever you had to for your family. 

I love you con queso.

Baby Girl

From left: Little girl, Dad, Baby Girl

Also, if you’re in the Katy area, the Benefit for Randa Sixkiller is happening in LESS THAN ONE WEEK! On June 22, please make sure that you head out with the Sunday Funday crew and eat some grub to fight cancer! Head on out to Texas Borders where a percentage of your food purchase will count toward fundraising efforts.

If you can’t make it to Katy, please make sure you head to the Sunday Funday website and purchase a shirt! Purchases of shirts will go to benefit for Randa.

Thankful Wednesday: 5/8/13

Another week, another Wednesday.
More things to be thankful for!

So things I’m especially thankful for:
1. Teacher Appreciation Week
2. Kids that “get it”
3. Accidentally overpaying bills
4. Other -awesome- blogs
5. You people

It’s teacher appreciation week. Who knew? Not this girl. This week, I pretty much felt just as underappreciated as always…UNTIL I was presented with a glorious candy bouquet and super sweet card (which was in my favorite colors). Even though I can’t eat the candy (because it’s clearly day #3 of #aceandsteph’s60daykickasschallenge) it was a super thoughtful thing to do that completely made my day. I also had a student bring me a teachers appreciation day probiotic cleanse drink because “she and her mama baked brownies for all the other teachers but she knows I don’t eat them, so they got me this instead.” She also added, “it’s sugar free and gluten free!” I am way thankful that I have students that are sweet enough to do that kind of thing.

Thankful today for kids that “get it”. Too often, I encounter kids (and adults) that just don’t get it! They don’t see the value of hard work and effort. SO thankful for this kid, from Baton Rouge’s own McKinley High who understands that a teacher-any kind of teacher-can only give you so much. It’s up to you to do something with what anyone gives you and make it great. The only thing I’m sad about is that this clearly awesome kid has chosen to change his career. Kids need more kids like you, D’Marqus.

I got my water bill today. And it was ($24.00). I was confused. I was like, “why are there parenthesis around the number?” and, “why is my bill so low?” So naturally, when I don’t know the answer to a question, I googled it. Turns out, after a review of my account, I overpaid my water bill last month. Substantially. How did I do it? I don’t know. Do I care? Hell no. NO WATER BILL PAYMENTS FOR ME THIS MONTH!

Other (awesome) blogs. Like pimpin’, bloggin’ ain’t easy. Sometimes, it’s hard to figure this shiz out. Like, what’s a button? HTML Code? A link up? WTF. But, by reading other blogs, I’ve learned a lot about blogging and I get to read other cool stuff, too. So I’m super thankful for the awesome people that started bloggin’ before me so they could pave the way…’n’ shit. Some of them are fitness bloggers, some are DIY, some are inspiring, some are just funny as f-word. Feel free to click on their buttons below and check ’em out. 

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The Daily Tay

Last thing, but definitely most important, I am thankful for people that have my back no matter what. Whether it’s having my back with my dieting (hey, steph!), encouraging me in the gym, or being right along side me when I’m in a fight (I wish this were just a hypothetical situation), I am so thankful for anyone who cares about me or my story enough to help me. Through this journey I have made a lot of friends and I have lost a lot of “friends”. Some of my best friends now, I have never met, and yet they manage to encourage and support me in my (sometimes seemingly aimless) journey. Thank you to every person who ever believed in me, shared my story with friends, did a giveaway with me, or just dropped me a note to tell me that you appreciate me. It means a lot more to me than you can possibly know and more than I can possibly express (mainly because my vocabulary is limited. I need to read more. I’m getting more dumb as days pass with no additional reading.)

What are y’all thankful for today?
(ps: if you can’t think of anything to be thankful for off top, just know that there’s a giveaway starting today on here. GET SO EXCITED.)

Started at the bottom now I’m…still at the bottom

So I’m a high school teacher, right?
And allllllllll day long I hear my kids saying things like, “I can’t wait to get out of high school and be on my own.” 
“I’m grown.”
“When I graduate, I’m gonna do whatever I want.”
Or, my favorite:
“Once I’m 18, I’m gonna have an awesome job that’s gonna pay for everything. My own car, my own house, my own everything. I’m not gonna listen to nobody and I’ma be my own boss. Can’t nobody tell me what to do. Started from the bottom, now I’m here, type shit.” (please note ALL the double negatives in this statement. This is really my life. This is what I have to listen to. What’s kept me from committing suicide and ending it all? I have no idea. Also note the Drake reference in everyday conversation. Started from the bottom and you’re probably going to hang out there for a while.)

blah. blah. blah.
good one, kid. 


no one ever believes the teacher, yo.
believe me. I’m smart. I know shit.
And I KNOW that shit was way better before I was a grown up.

I don’t care what anyone says: being grown up sucks. 
My whole life, I was all, “I can’t wait to get out of school and be on my own.” 
And then I got on my own and became enslaved to jobs, taxes, and bills. 
Did I really used to hope for this? I did.

These kids are scratching at the walls trying to be “grown” and I’m all over here trying to make forts out of blankets again.

Shit grown ups really  say:

I don’t even have a job in my field.
Why did I even need that degree?
I gotta go to bed, I have work in the morning.
Jean day on Friday. FINALLY!
Raising taxes? WHAT THE F*CK?
So my premiums went up and my coverage went down?
What’s a 401K?
I really regret this tattoo now.
Why is the coffee gone?
DAMMIT! I put my name on my lunch and someone took it anyway!
I slept in today. All the way to 7 am.
I want to take off, but my paid vacation ran out 3 months ago.
My checking account balance is $3 for the next 2 weeks.
I’d love to go to happy hour, but I need a nap.
I hate everyone.
Can I go back to school?
What do you mean I have to wear pantyhose?
Where’s the rest of the coffee?
My gas light is on…I think I can make it home. 
Why did I think I was fat in high school?
Work is making me eat my feelings.
Kids are so weird these days.
Why does my unlimited data plan cost so much?
Wait, there are two separate charges for water AND sewer?
Seriously, what’s a 401K?
Sallie Mae is blowing up my phone right now.
I wanna try new xyz workout but it’s so expensive and I’m always so tired.
I like my friends. But I like my bed more.
Who knew insurance was so expensive?
What do you mean, “file my taxes”?
If I’m gonna get through this, I need another bottle of wine.
What does “going ham” mean? Ham is a lunchmeat.
I try my best to be nice to people…just kidding. I don’t care about other people’s feelings.
Dammit. I knew I should have been an engineer.
What the hell am I going to do with a liberal arts degree?
I’m only gonna work at {insert retail chain here} until I can find a job in my field.
Is it okay to live with your parents after 25?
What about after 30?
College was so awesome. Why did we ever leave?
Can I have a raise?
Why can’t I have a raise?
Take the degree back, Sallie Mae! I’m not using the damn thing anyway.

On a fitness note: day 2 of #AceAndSteph’s60DayKickAssChallenge and I pretty much want to fight everyone and everything. Especially this bitchass flower pot that’s been eyeing me. YEAH, I SEE YOU, FLOWERS.

I may have just lost it today. My bad.

Stop talkin’ ’bout it. Be about it.

I’ve been in kind of a funk, y’all. 

Not like an, “omg, I’m so depressed, I hate my whole life” funk, just like a, “am I really happy? Could I be doing things that make me happier?” funk. 

I guess for the past semester or so (I’m a teacher, I still think in terms of semesters. Sue me.) I’ve been a little stressed, pretty overwhelmed and just in a funk. Maybe it’s a, “I’m at an impasse in my life and I need to make some decisions, but I’m scared about what to do and how I should do it” funk. 

And I really don’t wanna make a decision that’s gonna irreparably fudge up my life. 

BUT. As I was watching my new favorite show, Nashville, I heard this and was pretty inspired.
“I know it’d be real scary to think about losing everybody, but wouldn’t it be scarier to lose yourself? There’s thinkin’ about doin’ something and then, there’s just doin’ it.”

And that’s pretty legit if you ask me. I could talk about doing shiz all day, but if I don’t do something to push myself in the direction of what I want, then I’m really just that: all talk. 

So I’m going to do myself a favor and stop looking at all the things in my way of doing what I’m supposed to do and just do it. I’m gonna stop talking myself down by saying things like, “I really want to but…” and “If I could, I would.”

There are no buts. I can and I will.

And I’m really hoping that doing instead of thinking about doing will lead me to my goal and keep me, me. 

Making decisions is hard, being a grown up is scary (and sucks), but I think maybe I’m getting the hang of this thing. 

Clearly a grown up. Right? I don’t know. Maybe.

Stop talkin’ ’bout it, be about it.