Archive | December, 2013

The Books That Mattered in 2013

30 Dec

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When I talk to someone about relationships, one of the first questions I ask is, “How many boys/girls in your life have really mattered?”

Sure, every time you date someone you gain insight into yourself/what you want out of life/a partner etc., but in the grand scheme of dating, there are people you date and then there are people you date that matter years and years later.

For me there’s been two.

Wow, that’s a big step, I usually just say the one.  But, yes, in my 26 years, there have been two boys that I have dated that have really mattered and keep on mattering in my life.

I think the same thing can be said for books.  We read and read and read, and while every book we read becomes a part of our life, there are some books that change our world for good.  Some books matter.

This year, for the first time ever, I kept track of all of the books I read.  I actually credit blogging with that development. I’ve always been a sporadic diary keeper and despite my best efforts to monitor my reading in the past, I’ve always lost interest and lost count and lost the diary.

This year, though, I stopped being Jillian Denning Sporadic Diary Writer and became Jillian Lorraine.

Also, I read 68 books.

8 of them mattered.

1. A Farewell To Arms: Ernest Hemingway

2. Frances and Bernard: Carlene Bauer

3. High Fidelity: Nick Hornby

4. Les Miserables: Victor Hugo

5. Wonder: R. J. Palacio

6. Norwegian Wood: Haruki Mirakami

7. House of Mirth: Edith Wharton

8. The Lover’s Dictionary: David Levithan

It looks like I’m doing better with books than boys.

(No surprises there.)

A Year Of Pencils

29 Dec

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I am not a naturally happy person.

Contentment seems to elude me, much like glossy hair or the ability to walk into a party and feel comfortable.

I just don’t seem to know how to be satisfied.

Sometimes I try to pass this off as a good thing, I use the double-edged sword that are strengths and weaknesses and I say that it’s my discontentment that pushes me or I suggest that the without this constant sense of unease I wouldn’t be the person I am today.

The truth is, though, if discontentment is a sword, it’s not on my side.

It’s not on anyone’s side, really.

In the very final innings of a very long relationship with a boy I loved very much He said to me, “Jill, you are just never satisfied.  I hope you one day will be, but I have never seen it from you.”

This was a boy that I had been on and offing it with for years and a boy who had been the victim of my discontent many a time.  Once when we got back together after an “off” period, we sat down on a little park bench, me in my fluffy white dress, him in his blue shirt that made my heart drop to my toes, and we talked about how we were going to fix the relationship this time.  How we could finally both get what we wanted.

Because we both wanted each other, that was always the problem.

And the solution.

I started the conversation.  I listed a great many grievances that I had about our relationship.  I named the things I wanted to change.  I suggested activities we would do together, and the type of people we would become, and what I wanted for our future and so on and so forth.

I had so many ideas about what we should be from so many years of wanting.

When I finished, feeling very grown up and mature, I turned to him and said, “All right.  It’s your turn.  What do you want to change about this relationship?”

He looked at me with those eyes (those eyes!) and he said, “Jill, I just want you to be happy.”

That was it.  No list.  No suggestions.  No 30 minute conversation about the nuances of our relationship.

He wanted me to be happy.

And I wanted 100 things I would never get.

Last year when Amy gave me a bouquet of sharpened pencils for my birthday with the instruction to mark the important moments of my life with them, I was excited and willing.  The year of pencils would be the year of Jill!

Pencils meant a different me!

I would find satisfaction in my ordinary life like other people do and thus become New Jill!  Better Jill!  Happy Jill?

And so I started marking my moments.

It’s funny how when you look for the positive you can find it so readily.  I found the good in sunsets, and conversations with friends.  I found the beautiful in pictures and road trips and service and things that I already knew about myself, but were revealed again and again.

I’m not as complicated as I sometimes like to think I am.  I know what makes me happy.

Karaoke?  Yes.

Running? No.

I’m actually quite simple when it comes down to it.

Delia Ephron, in her beautiful New York Times essay, “You Can’t Have It All, but You Can Have Cake,” talks about peace of mind and contentment, and–paraphrasing here–pencils:

Having it all definitely involves an ability to seize the moment, especially when it comes to sports. It can be eating in bed when you’re living on your own for the first time or the first weeks of a new job when everything is new, uncertain and a bit scary. It’s when all your senses are engaged. It’s when you feel at peace with someone you love. And that isn’t often. Loving someone and being at peace with him (or her) are two different things. Having it all are moments in life when you suspend judgment. It’s when I attain that elusive thing called peace of mind.

Isn’t that so perfect?  Having it all comes back to moments, comes back to peace of mind.  It’s not about days or weeks or a lifetime of things working out.

Having it all isn’t found in the 100 things I’m not getting from a relationship, it’s found in the moment on the park bench when the boy I love holds my hand.

It’s found in a screaming car in Big Sur where I’m blasting Katy Perry and realizing that my dreams may actually become a reality.

It’s found in a string of email conversations from girls who understand me and love me, neuroses and all.

It’s found, it’s found, and it’s found all over again every single day of my life.

My goodness if I don’t have it all far more often than I think I do.

My Winter Break In Numbers

26 Dec

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1 baby shower attended

1 baby shower yet to attend

0 diaper smelling games participated in

2 lbs of pasta salad consumed

24 Frasier episodes watched

5 Daphne Moon outfits owned

17 records from Lindsey

1 Morrissey Greatest Hits record from Lindsey

13 days I’ve worn my Great Gatsby sweater in a row

270 days I hope to wear my Minnie Mouse fleece pajamas in a row

12 months of Vogue

6 scoops of sour cream in Beto’s midnight nachos

20 minutes of deep thought on the name “Zuzu”

1 conversation with my Grandma Suzanne to confirm she’s never been called “Zuzu” and I can’t pass this off as a family name

4 Snapchats with said Grandma

8 books out from the library

1 book read from the library

4 members of the original Babysitters Club (The one book I’ve read. Maybe.  Why do you ask?)

17 minutes spent coveting my nephew’s baby skinny jeans

50 ounces in Fiona Apple Juice received

0 ounces of Fiona Apple Juice consumed (never!)

125 Candy Crush levels completed

5 episodes of The OC watched with Jessica

148 times I’ve said, “ANY OF THE COHEN MEN, REALLY!”

9 days of break left

75 times this number has made me sob

 

My 2013 Internet Writing Crushes

22 Dec

Five ladies of the internet I want to have torrid, long-term writing relationships with…

1. Chelsea Fagan

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Chelsea is a senior writer at Thought Catalog and wickedly funny.  Her twitter feed is the stuff retweets were made of, and I’m constantly in awe of her ability to come up with 140 characters that are relatable and hilarious at the same time.  She’s prolific and quality.  She’s opinionated and intelligent.  She’s every girl and yet so uniquely her own girl.  Read How to Find Prince Charming already.

2. Warsan Shire

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Warsan Shire is the only living poet I consistently follow (unless we are counting Jewel, because you KNOW I follow Jewel). Warsan’s words are haunting and insightful  and sometimes you think she’s living life on another level and then she goes and calls Drake the Dawson’s Creek of rap and you realize SHE’S JUST LIKE THE REST OF US.  You should read this poem  she wrote on the transformative power of words.  You should buy her book.  You should follow her music blog.  You should, you should, I don’t know.  You should dive into her words and world and never look back.

3. Natalie Holbrook

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Natalie is a lifestyle blogger, mother and Nora Ephron fangirl.  I’ll be honest, I wasn’t sure if “mommy bloggers” were really my thing, but Natalie proved they most definitely could be.   Every time I read a great Natalie essay, I run to my computer to write, head full of positivity and thoughts and new views on the world.  If you don’t already have a crush on her you should probably read her essay on being a queen and then get back to me.

4. Erin Mallory Long

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Erin Mallory Long writes the “Top Five Ways Something Ruined My Life” column on HelloGiggles.  I first found her from her Dawson’s Creek edition of this column and have stayed with her ever since.  Erin’s constantly being listed as one of the funny people you should follow on Twitter, and my Twitter experience has become so much happier since she became a part of it.  Erin is so unashamedly engrossed in pop culture, it makes me feel like my obsessions are mild and, in fact, should be upped a notch because then maybe I’d be filming Buffy conversations with Charlotte Sometimes too.

5. Liz Jones

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Liz Jones, Queen of Confessional Journalism, is a bonafide personality in the UK, big enough to be asked to star in I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here and big enough to say no, because she wouldn’t want to eat bugs (due to animal cruelty).  Less of a crush and more of a fascination, I want to have a long-term conversation with Liz and get to the bottom of many great things including, and most importantly, WAS THE ROCK STAR BOYFRIEND FOR REAL? Tea, Liz?  Interview?  So much to ask.

BONUS:

Not technically a “writer” as the author changes every week, but if you aren’t keeping up with the New York Times Modern Loves column, then you’re missing out.  Here’s a recap of the best columns of 2013.

And now I ask, who are your internet writing crushes?

Go.

SheKnows Saturday And Snow As A Novelty

21 Dec

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Finally, FINALLY I published a SheKnows post on a weekend.  We’ve known all along that these posts were begging for a Saturday or Sunday title and I’m so pleased today to finally fulfill their fate!

The last few days I’ve been the depths of despair/illness.  Something about this sickness has driven me to mid to late 1990s Sandra Bullock films, which is a pretty happy place to be.

Young Sandy is best Sandy.

Okay, all Sandy is best Sandy.

Also, it’s a snowstorm around these here parts and it’s all quite beautiful.  I’ve decided that my life is ideal when snow is a novelty.  I can cruise into Utah in mid December and catch the weather just in time for Christmas and then head on out when everyone is getting a little fed up with the cold and the January blues set in.

Lately in my free daydreaming time, I’ve been imagining a future where I am an author and can literally live wherever I want whenever I want.  In these daydream futures I have a home in Utah (three locations are currently under consideration), and I come to this home whenever I’m lonely/tired of living in New Zealand/PEI/the south of France.  I also come to this home every December for some skiing and hot chocolate and snow as a novelty.

What a beautiful life I lead in my daydreams.

And now for the SheKnows Saturday portion of this post! (Fate! Fulfilling fate!)

Santa Claws: 16 adorable kitties dressed up like Santa

Adorable holiday dog sweaters from Etsy

The truth: What your dog really thinks about Christmas

25 Ikea assembly fails

Whew.

SheKnows Saturday accomplished.

I’ll be carrying this victory with me for some time.

 

In Which I Travel To 9 Stores For Dove Dry Shampoo

16 Dec

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The thing is, my hair and skin just do not know what to do about the whole Utah situation.  From the moment I cross the state border and head to Swig sugar cookies there’s all sorts of confusion, and no matter how much I assure everyone that “We’re home!” and “This is fun!” I just have a multitude of dry skin and hair situations on my hands.

Enter Dove dry shampoo.

You should know that things are about to sound very sponsored-posty around here, and as deep as my Twitter connection is with the folks over at Dove, we are, in fact, only on first name terms and I do not have an unlimited supply of Dove dry shampoo coming my way for this here post, but maybe I should because Dove is the best and no other brand of dry shampoo will do.

Dove?  Bueller?

Right.

Continuing on.

My journey into dry shampoo madness began last Saturday at a Utah Walmart where I risked my life and limb for my Dove goodness.

To give this some context, you should know some facts I cannot prove, but have heard through the grapevine: My parents live in South Jordan, the city in Utah with the highest number of children per capita. Utah has the highest number of children per capita of any state in the nation.

I WAS AT THE WALMART WITH THE MOST KIDS IN THE WORLD ON THE BUSIEST SHOPPING DAY IN THE WORLD.

Or so it felt.

Walmart didn’t have the dry shampoo, obviously, you know where this story is going, and perhaps Normal Me would have accepted this and gone home.

But this was not Normal Me.  This was Post-Walmart Me, Determined Me, and Determined Me does not let things like near death stop my hair care regime.

Determined Me tries the next Walmart.  And Target.  Two Targets, in fact.  And Sally Beauty Supply.  And Bed Bath and Beyond.  And Ross.

It was all a bit of blur, actually.  Going into the stores.  Taking pictures of the blank shelves that read “dry shampoo.”  Making abrupt turns into random new stores, eyes aglow.

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I could feel I was in crazy town, and yet I wouldn’t get off the crazy train.  I had devoted my whole day to this, I would conquer!

Utah would not have the last laugh!

I sent out several texts to friends, pleading for rescue/validation in my quest. Hilary responded with the comforting, “Does anyone actually wash their hair in South Jordan?” Amy suggested that this dry shampoo search was a point of personal pride and she was behind me all the way.

She also told me Siri couldn’t help, meaning…

I was literally on my own.

Technology had failed me.

Target had failed me.

My mind was failing me.

By store seven I was in deep.  I told myself I could live without dry shampoo.  It wasn’t much of a life, this future of flat hair, but it was my future with flat hair, you know?

I could just go home.  Regain my sanity.  Take a shower.

Something.  Anything.  Bueller?

And then, a miracle occurred in the Riverton Walgreens.  A miracle that looked a whole lot like three Dove dry shampoo bottles (though I couldn’t be sure due to a possible mirage situation).

I found Dove dry shampoo!

It was not a mirage!

My friends confirmed via text!

There’s more to this story including a fairly great celebration dance by yours truly, but all you really need to know is that when I went to bed, I sprayed that Dove dry shampoo like there was no tomorrow, and when I woke up, I had the bounciest, fluffiest hair of my life and it was all worth it.*

Every last store.

*Added for dramatic effect.  My hair looked quite good, but in a regular Dove dry shampoo good way, and this whole thing was likely not worth it.  Except for the tweet from Dove.  That was worth it.  Because you’re worth it.

Wait, wrong brand.

I’m still in recovery.*

Chocolate-Covered Macaroons

12 Dec

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Today Hilary and I did a dramatic reading of the Bridget Jones’s Diary script.

We sat in the upper corner of the Payson library, I wrapped my scarf around my head “in the manner of Grace Kelly,” and we read in loud, obnoxious British accents to the empty room (and Rob, who put in his headphones, because he’s an only child and doesn’t know how to deal with annoying little sisters.)

I took the Bridget role and Hilary took every other part, and my goodness you know something too well when the script you read from does not have character names, just dialogue, and you still never miss a beat.

Also, whoa Hilary, I don’t want to speak too soon, but Academy Award nod for your Pamela Jones performance?

I think so.

Rob asked us why we didn’t just watch the film aka why are you girls so crazy, and Hilary gave him a look and said, “Umm, Rob we’ve seen the film a million times.  This is more fun.”

It’s been one of those weeks.  A week of finals and craziness.  A week after the week I had to finish my book in 2AM sessions.

At the end of these types of weeks, reading the Bridget Jones’s Diary script out loud with a crazy headscarf seems only appropriate.

Tomorrow I head back to Utah and head back to Christmas.  Something about living in LA has meant that Christmas is lost in perfect weather and palm trees.  I’ve tried to feel festive and even thrown on tights with my dress + ankle boots uniform lately, but that’s really more ceremonial than anything.

I haven’t set up a tree.  I barely listen to Christmas music. No amount of coconut macaroon hot chocolate is putting me in the mood this year.

If Salt Lake can’t change this nothing can.

And now I need to say something about macaroons.

There is a line in The Holiday where Jack Black says, “And those chocolate-covered macaroons. Delectable.”

This is one of my most-quoted movie lines, ever.

Last year when Cait and I were watching The Holiday, I expressed how Jack Black is the weak link for me in the film.  All other characters I believe and love (oh hey, Judeeee), but Jack?

Eh.

Cait argued pro Jack and soon things got…okay, not heated, because who really cares?  But then Jack said the chocolate macaroons line and we both just burst out laughing.

His tone, his delivery.  It was over the top, and Cait immediately gave up her argument, because chocolate-covered macaroons.

It’s the type of thing that’s probably only interesting to the two of us, but now every time I hear macaroon I think of that movie and I wish I was a person who knew how to make gifs because that’s what I should be looking at every day.

Also, the pronunciation of gif!  Let’s talk later.

Yesterday I ordered a pair of black ankle boots, and I know what you are thinking, “Jill, did you need those?” and the answer is yes.  All I want/need in my life are ankle boots and every shoe in my closet that does not fit the bill feels completely unnecessary/burdensome and I want to return them all and get the money back and then buy more ankle boots.

This is my mindset and I’m not changing it.

You should know I started this post as a 2013 music post, so that’s about where my mind is.

Happy end of finals to you all!  I hope you have a Hilary in your life that you can do a dramatic Bridget reading with, or at the very least I hope you eat a lot of macaroons.

Chocolate-covered macaroons.

Wink.

10 Books That Have Stayed With Me

11 Dec

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I’m sure by now you’ve seen the Facebook lists of the “10 books that have stayed with me.”  I’m loving these posts in a way I haven’t loved anything on FB in a long time.  I believe so strongly with Kathleen Kelly that when you read a book as a child it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does, and I believe so strongly in the power of words and books and ideas to transform your life and personality.

Reading someone’s 10 books list is better than having a one-on-one psychotherapy session with them.

You can quote me on that.

Also, you can now analyze me, because here’s my list in 5-4-3-2-1…

1. Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell

My much-quoted, well-known favorite book of all time.  This book has done more for my unrealistic/realistic expectations of love than any other before or since.  I read it for the first time in 24 hours and refused to put it down once I began.  When my family forced me to go to the movies with them, I brought the book along…with a reading lamp.

2. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by JK Rowling

Can I just put the entire Harry Potter series?  Is this a cop out?  The third book, if I had to had to had to under pain of death had to choose, was probably the Harry Potter book that most affected me. I have the HUGEST crush on Sirius Black.  Like if I were at a magical school and he were there, you better bet your bottom galleon I would make that boy love me.

3. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

I cried and cry every time I read that Jo doesn’t end up with Laurie.  Sobs. Shaking. Tears rolling down my cheeks.  Love is cruel.  Life is cruel.  How can we go on?

4. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

Anne Shirley explained everything I needed to know about being a girl, being a dreamer, being a lover of life.  NO JOKE Hilary and I are currently saving up for a trip to Prince Edward Island.

5. Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card

I used to have limits on how often I could read this book because after I finished I would go into fits of depression where I would languish on my bed, not wanting to speak to anyone except to yell, “HE’LL NEVER BE OKAY AGAIN!” and “ENDER WIGGIN IS MORE THAN ANY OF US CAN EVER HOPE TO BE!”  (Let us never, ever speak of the movie, agreed?)

6. Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

Speaking of poor movie adaptations, I actually walked out of the theater on this one.  Oh Ella!  Oh Char!  I love love love you both.  And that’s not hyperbole, that’s a book quote, duh.

7. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Do I really need to say anything about this one?

8. Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding

The funniest book I have ever read, and imagine I ever will read.  I refuse to believe anything said in the third novel.

9. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

I read Mr. Collins’s proposal scene aloud a few times a week, just for fun, and also because I find ways it applies to my life a few times a week, just for fun.

10. The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

The very first novel that I wrote, way back in elementary school, was “The Chronicles of the Porcelain Doll,” a not-so-original spin on Lewis’s masterpiece.  I spent hours writing this book, locked away with my spiral notebook, and when I finished I had a 70-page manuscript.  I guess you could say The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe was the novel that inspired me to write, which is really the greatest gift any book has ever given me.

What are the 10 books that have stayed with you?

Big Sur

9 Dec

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Last weekend I went to Big Sur for the writing conference to top all writing conferences.

Big Sur is stunningly beautiful, as expected, and the experience was stunningly beautiful, as expected, and let’s see if I can use stunningly beautiful one more time, shall we?

Katie and Hilary are stunningly beautiful.

Nailed it.

As expected.

For the conference, we stayed in cabins in the woods and Hilary built a fire to provide heat.  I offered my moral support/supervision.

I don’t mean to go into too much detail here, but it took eight matches and returning the Duraflame packaging to the brick in order to get the flame going, so basically I would die in three seconds if asked to survive on my own in any way.

Also, it turns out supervision is really as unneeded as everyone says it is.

Moving right along.

The trip was full of so many wonderful things–a manic Hilary, who tried to insert her debit card in a cash-only slot, my tweezers, which were called upon to rescue said debit card, two days without service/wifi of any kind, and also, and most importantly of all, a new reality TV show series.

The Untitled Big Sur Project.

Catchy?

Ironic?

No to all?

The Untitled Big Sur Project, which I am now just shortening to Big Sur, is my new pet imaginary TV project based around “The Pub,” an Irish bar in the middle of the Big Surian woods. The Pub is everything you want out of an Irish bar–mahogany, live music, blue cheese burgers that change you life.

As we stood in the middle of its glory, Katie said, “This is the sexiest pub I’ve ever been to outside of Europe” and I said, “This is the sexiest pub I’ve ever been to including Europe.”

And we mean sexy, of course, in the most nonsexual of ways.

The Pub was not only physically beautiful, but contained some of the best characters I’ve ever seen.  I kept looking around for Josh Schwartz because I thought maybe he was filming some new CW show with super-hot people and I was just observing a set, because no one really looks like that, right?

There was the beautiful couple that had stepped from the pages of a mountain catalog.  The girl with her glossy blonde hair and red lips, the boy with his puffy vest and Range Rover.

(I am assuming the Range Rover here.)

There was the corner with the old women raucously playing dice. There was the live music and the dancing and the man in the hat with the braids, and, oh, a dog off his leash that just wandered on in like NO BIG DEAL.

Big Sur has that magical feeling of a town untouched.  A town with Christmas light-adorned stores and gas prices that make you a little bit sick.   A town where you go, where does everyone actually live?

A town perfect for reality shows.

Catalog couple, I’m sure you follow my blog.  Contact me.  I will make things happen in the TV world with my as-yet-unknown industry contacts.

But really, though, oh beautiful ones– I’m a safe bet.

After all, I go to writing conferences.

Take Me To Prince William!

5 Dec

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Last night I read a little essay about my royal family obsession for Pepperdine’s Fall Literary Arts Festival.  I wore my replica royal engagement ring, and spoke through my Kate Middleton mask, and overall I think people only lost 80% respect for me.

I thought I would share it here, because this is mah blag or whatever.

I don’t know.  I’m tired.

***

When I was a young girl, my mother used to take my family to the Las Vegas library.  It was a new library, at the time, one of those that the city had really gone all out with. It had two stories and oodles of books and a great big yellow slide into the children’s section that made everything seem so much more magical and fun.

It’s funny how a yellow slide can do that.

On family library days, my siblings and I were given free reign.  We could read and do whatever we liked for several hours as long as we weren’t causing any trouble.  For some of my siblings, these library days were painful, long events that consisted mainly of the big yellow slide over and over again.

For me, these library days were Prince William.

My super-practical mother surely wouldn’t have approved if she had had known that as soon as I was alone, I would sneak into the teen section and grab every book on the royal family I could get my 8-year-old hands on.  Giddy, I would curl up in a corner, and read the memoirs of Diana’s personal assistant to my romantic heart’s content.

My infatuation with Prince William soon became one of my best-known personality traits.  I spent time in middle school drawing the country of England.  I memorized the royal family tree.  My heart was broken when William started dating Kate, restored again when they split, and broken further, and perhaps beyond repair when they got back together for good.

The day William and Kate’s royal engagement was announced, people I hadn’t seen or heard from in years reached out via text, Facebook, and personal phone calls to see how I holding up.

I assured everyone I would live, and then silently transferred my deep and abiding love to Prince Harry, because to this day I believe the royal family needs a slightly manic brunette with a penchant for Taco Bell nacho cheese in their lives.

By the time I got to high school, my royal obsession was pretty well known.  In Political Science when we studied the British government, every time the royal family was mentioned I would giggle and squeal “Prince William” and the girls in my class would follow suit.  This became such a regular thing that any time England was mentioned, all of the boys in class let out audible groans.  Their complaining only fueled our estrogen fire though, because this was high school, and in high school when you want to get the attention of the dreamboat in Political Science you squeal about Prince William.

I’ve always been such a delightful girl.

Perhaps the most telling bit of my royal obsession came when I was asked to my senior prom.  The boy who asked me drew me a large sketchbook, that ended with a blank page that said, “Now draw me a prom date.”  This sketchbook started with a drawing of me, then included a drawing of me with a dragon, and culminated in a picture of me riding the dragon with my fist in the air while I said, “Take me to Prince William!”

I’ll let that soak in for a minute.

When I was 23 years old, my royal obsession reached the only place it could go.  I boarded a plane to London with a working  visa in hand, ready to face my destiny and ready to pretend that Prince Harry was always my first choice, even back in his awkward teenage years, when the entire world was team William The Abercrombie Model.

My year in Great Britain was a lot of things, but sadly, it was not a lot of royal things.  I did see Kate and William a few times, out and about on royal duties, and I did stand in the crowd at Buckingham Palace the day of The Great Wedding, but, alas, there was no dragon and, alas, no one took me to Prince William.

The 8-year-old girl in me is still a little bit sad about this.

And so, in case you weren’t convinced I’m an absolute nut job, and in case you want a further reason to stop our friendship, I will now put on my replica Diana engagement ring, don my Kate Middleton mask, and with only 20% embarrassment, present to you, 25 signs you are obsessed with the royal family.

Prince Harry, be still my beating heart.

25 Signs You Are Obsessed With The Royal Family.