This Isn’t Mario Kart, Ok?

As it turns out, my pre-graduation fears were totally baseless. You can still go out on Thursdays as a Real Person.

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This weekend was borderline magical, and I can sum up my feelings about life in Chicago with one photo:

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I had the privilege of staying in Lakeview on Thursday and Friday night, and spent Saturday night out in downtown Naperville. Though many notable things occurred throughout the weekend, it can be summed up as such:

Chapter 1: Moving Furniture in Wedges

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A potential sitcom that involves Target coffee tables and happy hour deadlines.

Chapter 2: Navigating Traffic in Wedges

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Because standing on foot-wide medians in rush hour traffic downtown is fun, guys.

Chapter 3: Dolphin-shaped Bananas Because Why Not

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RIP Yazmine.

Chapter 4: Drinking with Amanda Kappele

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All I will say is that no one can rally like Mandy Catz can.

Highlights include killermargaritas.com (or Cesar’s, if you want to call it by it’s actual name), a country bar within walking distance, and an actual tiki bar.

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Some Really Awesome Things that have happened as of late: Whittl offered me my job (content strategy and creation, aka getting paid to blog) permanently! The sad news is that my work, while initially 40+ hours/week, doesn’t take enough time to constitute a full-time job any more, so I’m working as a freelancer. I’m super pumped that I get to keep working with my awesome team, but I’m on the hunt for a permanent gig elsewhere as we speak.

That being said, I was tragically unable to move in with Mary and Christen this month. Christen has been so kind as to offer me her blow up mattress as my bed at their place in Lakeview, and I’ve already left a toothbrush and blanket there for safekeeping. I think this is a sign that it’s my new J Slums, and is further proof that my life is just getting more awesome.

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My plan is now to get a studio in Lincoln Park or Lakeview in September, which initially made me very sad—but after some serious introspection, living alone sounds 50 shades of exciting. I have naturally already been so overcome with enthusiasm that I’ve planned out the whole thing.

enthusiasm

I’m going to order a real, tangible copy of the New York Times and do yoga in the mornings and buy weird things that my friends will come over and make fun of me for, like Himalayan Pink Salt and economy-sized tubs of coconut oil. I can walk around without pants on (ok, I might already do this), sing as loud as I want in the shower (my neighbors might disagree), and fill every last nook and cranny of my tiny studio with books.

I can relearn the piano (and by piano, I mean keyboard) and finally finish learning how to play my guitar. I can make a bedside table out of a tree stump (#pinterestqueen) and go absolutely overboard with Christmas decorations come December.

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I luckily have a lot of friends in the area, so I think all in all, the situation is pretty awesome.

That’s the cool part about life right after graduation—getting to handpick all the elements of your life with next to no limitations. When you’re an adult, the only thing you technically have to do is support yourself financially. When you do that, how you do that, and where you do that is all up to you. It’s like playing MASH, except everything is real and it’s generally unlikely that you’ll end up married to Gerard Butler (*sigh*) with a dump truck as your primary form of transportation.

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And MASH doesn’t even include all the little things you build around those basic elements. As I pick out the places I want to live, the different career paths I want to take, and my future (non-pink) bed spread, I find myself thinking a lot more about the kind of person I want to be. There are some things I can’t change about myself—I will always talk too much, I will always worry too much, and I will always take way too many pictures of my food—but I can put a lot more thought into how I handle situations and myself. This is all undoubtedly the result of commuting four hours a day for the last ten weeks, but hey, work with me here.

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How can I be more compassionate and more mature in all of my reactions? What can I do to be more thoughtful? What can I do to treat people better, and how can I listen as much as I talk? (Don’t laugh) What can I do to treat myself better? And what have I been doing that just isn’t working for me anymore? If this sounds like the interior of a Type A’s brain, you’re totally right.

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I do think it’s important, though, to reflect on how all of our everyday decisions contribute to (or detract from) the people we’d like to be. I wouldn’t be Sandy’s daughter if I didn’t think about integrity (and wine) at least once a day, and Adulthood seems like the right time my life to start consciously investing in it. Perhaps most people don’t think about their character like they think of their 401K, but hey, I never claimed I was normal.

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That being said, life is pretty awesome right now. I’m headed to Michigan next weekend with Amanda, Christen, and Alissa, so if we could all take a moment of silence for my liver, I would appreciate it.

Yes, our conversation is named after Alissa

Yes, our conversation is named after Alissa

I’m a little biased, but I’ve got the best family and the best friends in the best city in the world. It doesn’t hurt that Chicago’s craft beer selection makes me want to cry tears of high-ABV joy.

Hopefully next time I post I’ll have a Big Girl job or maybe at least a tan. Until next time—

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Because not every moment can be introspective

 

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3 Comments

  1. Z

     /  August 10, 2014

    so proud of you Katie!!! Life will unfold for you in a great way! Love you and your writing!!!

    Z

    Reply
  2. Heather

     /  August 11, 2014

    I smiled the entire time I was reading this! I LOVE who YOU are (probably not grammatically correct, but I think you know what I mean)! You are an amazing, fabulous combination of the best of your Mom, Dad and YOU!!! I LOVE that! Love you! xo Heather

    Reply
  3. Nola

     /  August 15, 2014

    You are so entertaining! Love everything about you! You are awesome. xoxo

    Reply

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