Archive | January, 2013

I Am Not LA Cool

21 Jan


At dinner tonight Caitlin and I sat at the table next to Chris Harrison.  Yes, as in Chris-I-recently-married-Ashley-and-JP-freaking-Harrison.

I refrained from asking him how JP was doing, but only barely.

I consider myself a fairly normal person, someone who would not see a celebrity and lose all control, but tonight proved me wrong.

Some of my weirder moments of the night:

Typing “Chris Harrison?” in my notepad and sliding it across the table so Caitlin could read it.

Refusing to stand up to take a picture.

Refusing to ask him to take a picture.

Being upset when Caitlin would not stand up or ask him to take a picture.

Shaking like a leaf during the picture.

(For the record, Caitlin took control of the situation as I had clearly lost my ability to function.)

Some of Caitlin’s weirder quotes of the night:

“This is what dreams are made of!”

“This is Chris Harrison.  I want him to officiate my wedding.”

“I am totally normal when it’s Carly Rae Jepson or something, but this is the one man I’ve wanted to meet my whole life.”

Now that I know how I react to hosts of reality shows, I have to wonder what would happen if I saw one of my life icons, like Patrick Dempsey.  Would I spontaneously burst into, “PICK ME, CHOOSE ME, LOVE ME?”


I hope it happens soon.

Lily & Madeleine

21 Jan

My brother recommended Lily & Madeleine to me this week. My first thoughts were:

1. Love, love, love.

2. I’m so lucky to have people in my life who know me down to my musical tastes.

3. It’s only a matter of time before Lily & Madeleine and Seattle Grace collide.

Listen to more of Lily & Madeleine here.

Speaking of my musical tastes, have you listened to Emily and The Woods? This song deserves a love, love, love as well:

Happy Anniversary!

20 Jan



Warning: Particularly over-the-top post.

Today is the 15th anniversary of the Dawson’s Creek premiere aka “The Day My Life Gained Meaning.”

In honor of this momentous occasion I suggest you:

1. Only listen to Paula Cole all day. Perhaps write a personal essay on what her lyrics REALLY mean to you.

2. Play the pilot episode on an unending loop.

3. Read this Where Are They Now article and update yourself on the Fab Four.

4. Make a list of your favorite things about Pacey Witter.

5. Bask in the knowledge that once Breanne and I went to Wilmington and took this picture:

I’m Not A Photographer

20 Jan

Last week I was a pretend photographer, dragging my camera around Malibu and throwing out words like “aperture” and “ISO” without any real meaning behind them.  Luckily for me, Malibu is stunning with or without a working knowledge of shutter speed.

Also, that shapeless shadow picture? That’s the closest the world will ever get to seeing my famed beach outfit.   Oh my.



Robert Aziz

20 Jan



Separated at birth???

PS: When I forced Rob to take this photo he told me, “How about we hold off on the wardrobe changes until we see how it looks.”

And then I realized, wow, I’m forcing wardrobe changes for this picture. I’m ridiculous.

And then I realized, WOW, I’m forcing wardrobe changes for this picture. I’m ridiculously great.

Bringing Sexy Back

19 Jan


I know we’ve all been watching this video every hour on the hour since it was posted, but it’s time to take it to the next level! I propose we up the viewing to twice hourly from now on.  No slacking.

The Carrie Diaries

19 Jan



If there’s one thing I love on this earth it’s teen soap operas.  The really angsty, overly-verbal kind.

And if there’s one thing I love as much as really angsty, overly-verbal teen soaps, it’s Josh Schwartz, the Jill-declared King of Angsty Overly-Verbal Teen Soaps.

My friend Amy once told me, “Jill, Josh Schwartz is one of those people for you.  If you met him there would be an instant connection and neither of you could do anything about it.”

This was one of the kindest things anyone has ever said to me.

When The Carrie Diaries premiered I was there, obviously, supporting Josh.  And Carrie Bradshaw.  And girls everywhere.

Some immediate thoughts:


Slide3 Slide5



Her necklace calls to me. (Yes, I said it twice.)

And I’m tuning in next week.  Are you?

The Yeti

13 Jan


The day I met The Yeti.  It was love at first sight.

It’s been called a Wampa. A Wookie. A Yeti. Ridiculous. “Don’t buy it, I urge you!” “I don’t think you’ll get as much use out of this as you think…”

And I proved them all wrong.

I love my Yeti coat. It’s become part of me. A symbol of who I am.

You know how some articles of clothing just scream to you and you know that they are supposed to be part of your life? That’s how it was with me and The Yeti.

When things go wrong Caitlin says, “Go get a Diet Coke and walk around in The Yeti.”

It works.

Loving Him Was Red

13 Jan


Me: So, I heard that a lot of Taylor Swift’s new album is about Jake Gyllenahal.

Caitlin: What? Wait, how long did they even date? (pause to think) Never mind. I have several albums of material about Jake Gyllenhaal and we’ve never dated.

Don’t we all. Don’t we all.

Why Writing?

13 Jan

I’m not going to lie and say, “I get asked this question a lot,” because the truth is no one really cares/asks me why I  am choosing to pursue writing. I think you have to be a successful writer for that question to come up a lot.

However, I ask myself this question. A lot. Every time I pay the hefty Pepperdine tuition I reevaluate in earnest if this is really what I want to do.

You see, before I was a wannabe writer I had a whole other life, career, masters degree. Before I was a wannabe writer I was a real-life, actual, accredited social worker. See: quarter-life crisis.

When I ask myself, “Why writing?” a few things come to mind.

I think about the stories my mom tells of me obsessively writing as a child. (More on The Chronicles of the Porcelain Doll later!)

I think about the day I visited every library in Salt Lake County because I love libraries and books That Much.

I think about one of my favorite bloggers, C. Jane Kendrick when she said, “On a lifetime tightrope walk with sanity, writing had kept me tiptoeing.”

But really, why writing comes down to one specific moment for me. It’s strange that it does, because most epiphanies in my life have been painfully gradual. But in the case of “why writing,” it happened one day in London.

I had moved to London in a blaze of passion and determination. I had always wanted to live in London and always assumed that there, in London, that’s where my real life would begin! The amazing, wonderful life that I was always destined for!  Look out world, here comes Jill Denning!

And then London was hard. Oh-so hard. And I had to reevaluate everything–my life, my dreams, my career.

In this state of crisis, I talked to a much-older, much-wiser friend.  Her response was to quote Vincent van Gogh,

Your profession is not what brings home your paycheck. Your profession is what you were put on earth to do. With such passion and such intensity that it becomes spiritual in calling.

This friend asked me, “Jill, were you put on earth to be a social worker?”

I shook my head. No. If London had taught me anything it had taught me that.

She continued, “What then?”

I actually don’t remember what I told my friend that day, if I was brave enough to say “writing” or not. Honestly, it doesn’t really matter. The question stuck with me.

It stuck with me when I made the decision to return home to America. It stuck with me when I made the decision to quit social work. It stuck with me when I applied to Pepperdine. And it’s the question that still goes through my head about every time I pay that hefty Pepperdine tuition.

Why writing?

I think van Gogh said it best.