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What’s New?

12 Mar

Every once in a while, my writing group and I do a group text catch up.

“What’s new?” someone asks and then we all launch in with the details.

Like how I almost exclusively wear medical clogs now. And that I’m way too devoted to this season’s Lakers and it would be just like me to get involved in a sports team for the first time in my life only to have them be the most disappointing sports team in recent memory.

Like how Dolly is sitting on my lap as I type this and it hurts my neck to write sideways, but that’s what we do for love.

It seems time for a What’s New blog post, doesn’t it?

I almost exclusively wear medical clogs now.

I guess I’ll start there.

I saw a cool looking hostess at a cool looking Venice brunch place walking around all confident in them and I went home and ordered them. They are expensive. They are heavy! Watch out!

I am trying to do better at not just seeing a cool looking thing and ordering it.

It’s going well, despite what the clogs imply!

Would you like to see my current Amazon wishlist?

The one I have so I sit with a purchase for a week and make sure I actually want it?

Here you go.


Matilda Tote Bag

Vintage looking clock

Lavender soap

Devotions: The selected poems of Mary Oliver

Clear bubble umbrella

Stylus pen

West coast coasters

The Body Keeps the score: Brain, Mind and Body in the healing of trauma

Kate Somerville exfolikate intensive exfoliating treatment


I’ve been keeping my phone in the other room at night.

What a revelation!

People have been saying this for a long time, I’m doing nothing new here, but let me tell you that it actually works. My screen time is down. I don’t wake up in the middle of the night and immediately check my phone. First thing in the morning I pet Dolly and read a few words of a book.

Yes, it’s going well.


have zero idea what time it is.

Saturday I woke up at 6:00AM and got out of bed with my blankets and books. Hours later I discovered my mistake.

There was some grouchiness.

I need an alarm clock is the point.

That vintage looking one looks nice.

(But I have a purple lamp! So is a purple clock too much or just enough?)

About the Lakers.

I keep thinking I’m going to write a long blog post about them. Something inspired and perhaps picked up by national media outlets, but then of course that sort of pressure means I never write about them at all so I’m starting here with this.

I do not know why people watch sports.

Well, I know why men watch sports. So they have something to talk about socially with other men and can avoid emotional intimacy. But other than that, why are we watching sports??

Sports are horrible!

I have enough going on emotionally, I don’t need to add invented drama!

I am the queen of invented drama!

This year I have devoted countless hours to the Lakers. I have watched most of their games. I have listened to a variety of podcasts about them, and then once you get into it, you have to start listening about their rivals.

I have searched Twitter for conspiracy theories and become interested in conspiracy theories. I’m so deep in, like so so deep.

And there is no reward.


Before this point, the most I had paid attention to a sports team as an adult was The Patriots, sort of.

The Patriots always win! This is a good team to cheer on! (Other than the moral qualms, but I’m not going there right now.)

The Patriots win and so you get like an hour of happiness and I don’t know, if that’s all you have in your life maybe that hour makes a big difference.

But the Lakers never win. They keep finding new levels of disappointment and sadness.

Why are we cheering them on?

What’s the point again?

I went and made us a casserole last week.

A full-on Midwest style Chrissy Tiegen casserole with cream of mushroom and noodles and frozen peas, the whole bit. Topped with jalapeno potato chips, of course.

Rob had never had a casserole before, not a true one.

It made our week.

I mean, of course, there were other things going on. Dolly being adorable. Work and church and friends and family, but there, in that 9×13 pan that fed us for three meals, therein was the joy.

Rob never having had a casserole is shocking to anyone I tell.

I am from Utah. Casseroles are in our blood.

I took a “Foods” class in high school where one of the units was exclusively on casserole making.

It’s so easy! You need a rice/pasta, some sort of cream soup, a meat, a topping. Cheese. More cheese than you can even imagine.

What’s not to love?

Before I made the casserole, I started spreading it around. “I’m making a casserole tonight,” I told the friend I saw right before. “I have been craving a casserole!” she said.

She, too, is from Utah.

Before I made the casserole, Rob mentioned it to his grandma. “Jill’s making a casserole tonight,” he said.

“Be kind to her” she said.

She, too, is from the Northeast.

There are many reasons Rob has never had a casserole.

He is from the Northeast, as mentioned.

He is Italian. People have tried to argue lasagna is a casserole, but it’s just not a Casserole Casserole, is it? Where are the potato chips?

Also. Rob is an only child.

Casseroles are made for the large family. You throw it all in one dish, whatever you have left, whatever you have around, and it feeds everyone!

For cheap!

I went and made us a casserole last week.

(It was good.)

What’s new with you?

NBA Finals: Game One Recap, Cavs 114 Warriors 124

31 May

IMG_3049 2


I love LeBron James.

I love how he muscled 51 points on a bloody eye and made it look effortless. I love how even Rihanna, the girl who regularly turns down DRAKE, is after him. I love how he can rattle off every turnover he made in a game like he’s in a movie about a basketball savant.

Maybe most of all I love that he campaigned for Hilary Clinton.

That the undoubtedly best player in one of the most macho professions in the world stomped for a 70-year-old grandma running for president.

Because it was the right thing to do.

Oh yes. And I love this tweet.

IMG_3051This tweet alone would make me love LeBron if I already didn’t love him.

But you see, I already loved LeBron.

Did I mention that?

Game one was painful to watch. So painful. In overtime I left the room to go tweeze random hairs off my face in panic and anger. Not after the 51 points! Not after the bloody eye! He didn’t deserve this!

Golden State makes it worse, of course. They show up half trying. Durant always looks like a petulant teen mad his parents forced him to play.

Listen to me and listen to me close, Rihanna. If we’re going to win this thing we need you back on the first row trolling Kevin. He loves you like he loves no one else and you love LeBron like I love LeBron.

Together, we’ll love LeBron to victory.

I don’t really know how the finals MVP trophy is handed out. It feels like anytime LeBron plays he’s a the best player on the court so why isn’t he always winning everything?

But I do know this.

If the series looks like tonight and Golden State wins despite their entitled “we stacked a team of All Stars and now don’t need to play” attitude, then LeBron sure as EVERYTHING better win the MVP of this series.

He outplayed everyone, a hundred times over. He outplayed them, and he wanted it more than any Warrior on that court.

And I loved him today, like I love him always.

I love LeBron James.

I think I may have mentioned that.

Occupy Wall Street Or, In Other Words, Our First Christmas

8 Dec


The thing is that 99% of me knows what I’m doing is irrational. That I should just take a breath and say, “Jill, you leave out of town in a week and a half. You don’t need a perfect Christmas tree. Maybe you didn’t need a Christmas tree at all.”

I know these things. And I say these things.

And then the 1% ruins it all.


You see, the 1% is all my romanticism. All my ideas for my life and future.

It’s our first Christmas together! Traditions are forming! I must string popcorn garland by hand while watching something we’ll watch every year! I need more twinkly lights! And normal ornaments won’t do, no, I must make yarn tassel balls by hand! This will all take hours! No one else will even see it! But I must!

Also fresh mistletoe!

And gingerbread cookies! By the dozen! Which I will deliver to friends all over the greater Los Angeles area even if that takes 6-8 hours!

The thing is that 99% of me knows what I’m doing is irrational.

But will you look at that tree.

And that ‘toe.

Will you look at me calling it ‘toe?

11 Hobbies I Once Thought I Had (And Where I’m At With Them Now)

23 Sep


1. Photography

I went through this whole phase where I would haul an SLR camera around with me on mundane activities as though I would then examine the high-resolution photos of…my pancakes? The Band Perry concert? I don’t know.

This interest came around the time I started blogging so maybe I thought this was a necessary part to making money selling my clothing and children? I truly don’t remember the thought process here.

Verdict: Donated camera to Goodwill. Was asked if it actually worked. Yes, sir. It does. And I almost took classes on it! And I have been asked to do multiple weddings! (That’s actually real and I’m actually really glad I did not).

2. Croquet

I stand by this hobby and I stand with a tall spine.

I actually do enjoy croquet. I just don’t have the sort of social circle at the moment that all meets up at a park for a rousing game of croquet on a Tuesday night. Currently my vintage croquet set sits in our one measly storage closet taking up way too much room and I refuse to life-changing magic it away. One day!

Verdict: Actually a hobby in another life of mine.

3. Person who goes to workout parks

I’m not sure where this came from, but I’ve always been convinced workout parks are my thing. I don’t like to exercise and I’ve never actually seen someone use a workout park, but those adult monkey bars seem so fascinating and kind of thrilling?

Verdict: Not a hobby, simply a soul love.

4. Snorkeling

I like snorkeling as much as the next person, meaning I go snorkeling when on vacation in tropical locales. Unfortunately, I thought this meant I needed to snorkel here in California (where there is very little snorkeling) and I purchased snorkeling gear. This involved a whole fight with the post office where someone else claimed my package. How many of us are pretending we are snorkelers here??

I’ve used this gear exactly twice. Once with Hilary at Point Dume. It was freezing and she kind of has a fear of sharks and we were definitely in the rocky-don’t-walk area of the ocean and we gave up.

Another time Rob and I took the snorkels to Santa Barbara. There was nothing to see.

Verdict: Still have the gear. Holding on to that post office grudge.

 5. Paddleboarding

Hilary and I went paddleboarding once in Marina Del Rey. It was a really fun afternoon and I only fell in once on the way home when I was exhausted from exercising. Afterwards I decided I would be Paddleboard Girl and bought a paddleboard.

It was a whole thing.

The nearest Costco to me was over a canyon and simply getting the 10 foot paddleboard in my car required several Good Samaritans and a lot of embarrassment. Then there was the drive through a canyon with seven feet of that thing threatening to fall out of the car at any moment.

After the emotional turmoil of getting the paddleboard home, it went into storage and I never saw it again. That thing is HUGE. And heavy. And the idea of strapping it onto my car and driving it anywhere was enough to make me stop idea-ing.

Verdict: I sold it in my last move for a huge loss despite the fact I had never used it.

6. Running

High school cross country HA.

7. Painting

Rob suggested this one when he heard I was writing this post and I thought that was rude. I have fully painted at least three times and I always bring a paint set to the beach with me just in case!

I was going to go to the beach for a daily painting of the sunrise for a time, some sort of Monet-style thing about light and the impermanent nature of life. I would then hang said watercolors around my room as the only decoration needed. This never happened.

Verdict: Not throwing it away. Maybe someday? Maybe next month? Daily yoga and then a sunrise watercolor painting sounds reasonable and likely.

8. Blue Apron

I’m not a cook and there was a lot of ginger which is why I can’t really get into kombucha and it time-consuming and expensive! And the portions are way too small for someone like me! Also do you know how many Jack in the Box tacos I could get for the price of one Blue Apron meal? Neither do I!

Verdict: Never again. Plus now there’s Rob.

9. Biking

I bought a bike before I moved to California because I was going to bike everywhere and then I moved to Malibu where biking anywhere is biking up a hill and eventually the facilities crew at my old apartment just threw the rusted thing out and I breathed a sigh of relief.

Verdict: Maybe someday?

10. Golden Milk aficionado

For a while there Golden Milk was all the rage and it seemed so cozy! Welcome over friend, have some golden milk!

I ended up buying bulk bags of turmeric and ginger (ginger again!) on Amazon, making the milk once, realizing I hated it, and then throwing out the bags.

Verdict: Nope.

11. Apple Cider Vinegar person

See Golden Milk aficionado except this time I couldn’t even down my first shot. HOW? WHY?

Me As A Bachelor Contestant

17 May


See the bios for Rachel’s guys here

Age: 29

Occupation: Librarian

Height: 5’9”

Tattoos: No. The thought of getting one gives me the chills. I can’t make up my mind on a Taco Bell order let alone something permanent ON MY BODY I AM VAIN. I know I would regret a tattoo immediately after. Further, where would I get one? If it was on my arm would I have to wear long sleeves at work always? What about my ankle? Is that overdone? IS THERE A GOOD PLACE?

Chills. Again.

(I see I’m setting the tone here to be a really fun contestant.)

Do you have any phobias that would prohibit your participation in certain activities? Animals.

(The producers would then force me in a cage at a petting zoo so I could cry and tell the Bachelor about the time I was attacked by goats at the Las Vegas Zoo which is a true story.)

What is the best trip you have ever been on and why?

My 2008 friend trip to Europe. It was my first time out of the country and I felt the world expand around me.

What is your ideal mate’s personality like?

Obsessed with me. Hates Donald Trump. Funny. Smart. Neurotic. Above all, kind. Doesn’t care about gender roles.

What’s the closest you have ever come to being married?

I am engaged right now what sort of question is this.

If you could watch any movie right now what would it be and why?

About Time.

I love their wedding—her in her thrifted red dress and him in his stately childhood home and so many toasts. As I think about my wedding I want to create that cozy sort of feeling. The feeling of vintage frocks and going with the flow and no regrets even with the rain.

(I go with the flow! See the tattoo answer!)

Tell us a fun story about a one-night stand: Nope

What is your greatest achievement to date?

My Instagram account

(This would show I have a sense of humor, but then some people would believe me and I would already have haters trolling me and this is why I couldn’t do The Bachelor. I am so wildly, incredibly sensitive.)

If you could be someone else for just one day, who would it be and why?

This feels like a lot of pressure.

What is your favorite television show and why?

Gilmore Girls. Because I grew up with it and it made me a grownup.

Send My Babies To College! And Other Random Thoughts

29 Mar


I’ve started to wash my hair with this all-natural detergent-free wash thing. I can’t call it a shampoo because the makers are clear. This is not shampoo. Shampoo hurts your hair and forces you to compensate with conditioner. Why not skip the hurting part?

When I was in high school I had to do a science fair project, which seems kind of weird looking back at it. Aren’t those for elementary school students and volcanoes?

My friend and I chose to do a project on how shampoo acidity affected hair. We put clumps of virgin hair into Ziploc bags along with a jolt of shampoo from the various bathrooms in our homes and let them sit for a few weeks. You should have SEEN the damage done by Pert Plus.

The science fair participants certainly did!

I don’t know where all this is going. I sat down to write as I usually do—to work through my thoughts from the day. And these aren’t even the thoughts I’ve been having.

But I did just wash my hair with natural…wash.

I think the next step in this wholesome journey of mine is making my own cleaning supplies. Eventually I’ll get to making my own laundry detergent and I can lord it over everyone and secretly (and openly) think I’m better than other people. That will be a fun day.

Who have I become?

Or rather, who am I on track to become?

Who I am now is a girl who has washed her hair twice with an all-natural wash and is already talking about her homemade laundry detergent. Perhaps that’s who I’ll always be.

How are these for thoughts of the day?

A few months ago I ordered a yellow frame for a painting in my room. I decided that that was what my life was missing. Something bright canary yellow, popping and squawking and Polly Want a Cracker.

Wait, that’s a parrot.

What arrived, instead, was some sort of a picture liner. I don’t know what to call it. It’s like the owners of the Amazon shop cut out yellow cardboard in the shape of a frame and shipped it in this enormous box to me.

I took a look at it and thought of all the other things in my life in front of this picture frame. My passenger seat car with melted chocolate on it. Those arm weights I really keep meaning to get out of storage.

I took a look at it and then I got some tape and stuck the yellow cardboard over the existing frame.

It’s puckered and weird.

But it squawks.

I was making a mental list today of my favorite SNL skits.

If I had one of those magazine-y blogs, I could write 150 words about don’t we all love SNL here are some of my favorite skits and then get 300 comments on it and send my babies to college.

But alas. I’m just me.

Squawking and making my own laundry detergent (one day!)

The skits I came up with are as follows:

Tina Fey/Justin Bieber “Lonely Teacher

Cameron Diaz “Back Home Ballers

Tina Fey/Amy Poehler “Meet Your Second Wife

Don’t we all just love SNL?

What are your favorite skits? Tell me in the comments below!

(Now my babies will go to college.)

My Sleep Routine

28 Feb


I recently read this blog post about sleep routines and have not stopped thinking about it since.

Seriously. Read it.

Do you feel terrible/intimidated/shocked?

Me too.

While I admire this woman and her dedication/complete control of her life, I thought I would write out the reality of my bedtime routine. It’s a bit different.

First step is usually checking the clock. Hmm…should have gone to bed an hour ago? Well that means it’s time for a TV show! I’m not tired anyway, so I might as well be watching something instead of just laying in bed, wishing I were watching something.

Next up: unsurprisingly, debate whether or not I should wear my mouth guard. I know I should wear my mouth guard but also if I go to bed before I’m tired then my mouth guard just sits there, suffocating me for an hour and I inevitably take it out anyway.

Once I get in bed…

Oh excuse me, I’ve been in bed from the moment I ripped off my clothes walking in the door.

Once I get in bed, it’s hard for me to leave. Usually around now I do, though. Three times in fact. First to boil water. Second to add the noodles. Third to finish the mac and cheese.

What? I ate dinner like five hours ago, OK.

I’m starving.

In very unsexy things, I find my mouth guard during one of my trips out of bed. It’s on the floor next to the fluff from my down comforter. It’s pretty gross, actually.

I need to sanitize that.

No mouth guard for me tonight, I guess.

Most nights I decide that taking off my makeup isn’t worth it. I barely wear makeup, anyway, see. And, well, I would have to get out the makeup remover. And also leave bed.

Random things that I keep on my nightstand: the empty mac and cheese bowl and gross mouth guard. Also Buddhist prayer beads. None of these things I use during the night.

Before I go to sleep, I always brush my teeth and I go to the bathroom. I can’t sleep unless I go to the bathroom immediately before I drift off, therefore if I’m in bed tossing and turning for 20 minutes, I’m also forced out of bed 4 times to empty my bladder which doesn’t need to be emptied.

It’s amazing that I will get out of bed four times in twenty minutes for this non-necessary task. Incredible, really.

Even though it takes time and discipline, I do think having this sleep routine really makes me the sort of person I am. The person who hates mornings and can quote The Office and just really has everything in control. Thriving, is how I would describe myself.

What’s your sleep routine? Any quirky things that help you fall asleep?

An Ode To Hot Fries // I Love This Snack

11 Jan


I am a proud alumnus of Piggott Elementary School in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Piggott was brand new when I attended and I had the honor of voting for the school mascot and school colors. I voted for the Piggott Piglets and “rainbow.” I was in first grade, please remember.

Also I stand by rainbow as a color.

Unfortunately, my peers weren’t ready for such pure ideas and we ended up being the Piggott Panthers with, get this, school colors of black and turquoise.

This was the 90s, please remember.

I have some memories of Piggott Elementary, vaguely. Playing flag football. My brother being elected school president with the slogan “I love this school” a la the Michael Jordan “I love this game” ads of the 90s. Intense Chinese jump rope sessions. And, of course, hot fries.

Piggott had a snack bar that was available after lunch, run by the upper grades. I have no idea what this snack bar was about or any other item there except for Hot Fries.

I remember the Hot Fries.

They weren’t always the Andy Capps brand. I know that, for sure. They used to be darker, more intense. I would eat them with my friends and beg my mom for $0.50 so I could buy them too.

I have memories of standing under the pavilion, hiding myself from the Vegas sun and eating Hot Fries, my fingers maroon and grimy.

When people ask me what Hot Fries taste like I usually don’t know what to say. “Here try them!” I thrust the bag in their faces. They balk at my caked, red hands and overeager attitude and soon it’s just me and my inadequate words again.

The ingredients label doesn’t offer much help.

There’s something called degermed yellow corn meal. I don’t know exactly what this is but it sounds like a yikes.

There are normal things like vegetable oil and spices.

Then the label gets really scary with things like “TBHQ, BHA, and BHT.” These seem like acronyms I would normally look up on Urban Dictionary. I mean TBHQ is like To Be Quite Honest, just with an autocorrect fail, right?

I’m getting off track.

Hot Fries taste like devil dust.

I was going to say fairy dust, but they are spicier than that. Maybe witch dust. I am reading a fantasy novel in my quest to branch out and I’m suddenly upset I’m not a practicing witch. I guess all girls go through this phase at some point, mine was just much later in life.

Hot Fries taste like witch dust.

They are thin, almost see-through, and I’ll be honest, a bit greasy. There’s a lot of spice, like probably too much spice, and they are hot. Not hot in the Hot Cheetos way (gross. I have standards) but hot in the way of whoa that’s a lot of chili powder in this chili, Jill, maybe too much?

Again, I don’t know what they taste like.

I’m not sure why I’m explaining this to you.

To me they don’t taste like ingredients they taste like the desert sun and the kickball pavement burning beneath me.

They taste like Mrs. Alvarez’s 4th/5th grade class and real life Battleship reenactments and that one bar on the playground that I used to do flips round and round.

They taste like my childhood.

Every few months or so I get a hankering to eat Hot Fries again. It hits suddenly and swiftly, this craving, and nothing else will do. (What could substitute?) Soon I’m on Amazon Prime trying to convince myself I really don’t need to buy 80 bags just to save a few dollars. That 10 will do. That really 1 would do, if only they sold in that quantity.

I wait impatiently for two days for them to be delivered, checking my app again and again.

And then they are here. Light as air and too spicy for their own good.

Then they are here and I am eating them and once again I’m 10 years old and my biggest problem is being taller than all the boys.

Hot Fries taste like witch dust, like the dust of my people.

I love this snack.

Roommates You’ll Have In Your Twenties — Part 4

18 Dec


PARTS 1, 2, and again created with the person who makes me laugh most– Hilary.

76. The roommate who thinks she knows your diagnosis

77. The roommate who suggests couples counseling for the two of you

78. The “this relationship peaked early on and now there’s nowhere to go but down” roommate (approx 90% of all roommates)

79. The roommate who lies about everything

80. The roommate who just got certified in massage therapy and would LOVE to give you a massage for a small fee that isn’t so small

81. The roommate who doesn’t recognize you a year later

82. The has a crush on your boyfriend roommate

83. The you have a crush on her boyfriend roommate

84. The roommate who actually takes you up on that empty offer to go running with her sometime

85. The roommate who doesn’t pick up her dog’s poop on your bed

86. The roommate who answers “Why is someone saving these dirty ziplock bags?” with “Oh, I don’t know, maybe so they don’t sit in a landfill forever.”

87. The roommate who is starting a compost heap in the living room

88. The roommate who just discovered The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and needs you to as well

89. The retired roommate who should really move back to the East Coast with her family

90. The roommate who high fives you for being a virgin

91. The roommate who high fives herself for not being a virgin

92. The roommate practicing 4 bars of music for a singing auditions 500,000 times

93. The engaged roommate

94. The about to be engaged roommate

95. The “just waiting on the ring” roommate

96. The “just waiting for him to realize I’m the one” roommate

97. The “goes to prom as an adult” roommate

98. The cries about her acne roommate

99. The Real Housewives roommate

100.  The roommate with a tragic backstory that you can’t ask about but you have to know the details of

101. The roommate who takes two hours to get ready

102. The roommate who defiantly doesn’t wear makeup and open judges you for putting on mascara

103. The roommate who thinks she can cook, but can’t

104.  The roommate who criticizes the way you put on your lotion


107 Roommates You’ll Have in Your Twenties–Part 3

30 Sep


I know what you’re thinking–will this list ever end?

My answer is, not if I have anything to do with it.


PARTS 1, 2, and 4 again created with the marvelous Hilary, who unfortunately was never my roommate, but maybe fortunately, actually considering what this list is?


51. The heavily into online dating roommate

52. The always has fried chicken in the fridge roommate

53. The never throw anything out of the fridge roommate

54. The takes up the whole fridge roommate

55. The roommate laughing at YouTube videos at 7:00AM in the morning

56. The PS I just got a pet roommate

57. The PS I smoke weed but will never confirm this to you roommate

57b. The roommate who continually listens to “Wild and Free”

56. The odd noises coming from the room roommate

57. The too healthy roommate

58. The always making baked goods roommate

59. The always making beans roommate

60. The unemployed roommate

61. The roommate that loses her keys while picking sage on the mountain

62. The roommate that will tell you too much about her tampon habits

63. The “you were best friends before you moved in together and now everything will be shattered for life” roommate

64. The roommate/landlord living out of the garage

65. The always watching TV roommate

66. The” told someone where we live and now you have to deal with a drunk person and the cops” roommate

67. The out of town roommate who travels every weekend

68. The roommate always inviting you to her Native American church

69. The roommate who is going through a life revolution (CrossFit) and wants to take you with her (CrossFit)

70. The roommates who become best friends and you’re definitely never going to be that close

71. The roommate always leaving, erm, *hair* in the tub

72. The video game roommate who has to be home at a certain time for her guild

73. The roommate who is bad mouthing you to other roommates

74. The social media roommate who posts things of you without permission

75. The social media roommate who lies to you but then posts things while out when you weren’t invited