Saturday, May 29, 2010

Coming Up: Making a Meal and Other Lessons on Growing Up

Guest Blogger, Danna Belski[*], has sent in a post that is as delicious as it is meaningful. She talks about what making a meal means to her in adulthood AND she gives us an easy recipe for one of her favorite meals -- which is complete, right down to the Apple Cinnamon Role dessert. (YUM!)

Stay tuned!

[*] Danna is no stranger to Adulthood. In fact, you have seen her in the process of getting her back tattooed in all its morning-glory-pain-and-beauty in the entry found here. Ahh, that was a good one!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Key to Balancing is Never Looking Down

Balancing priorities in life has to be one of the biggest challenges of adulthood for me.

For example, I want to blog every minute of every day, I want to breathe blogging, and sing blogging, and listen and learn from blogging. And yet, I have to make choices. I go to work to pay the bills (luckily I like my job too), I attend graduate school, I have homework for said graduate school, I have a bf, and friends, and two cats, and a blog. Blogging always gets pushed to the end of the list. It’s the tough choice that I have to make, and let me tell you, it is a choice based on survival and not on preference:

But that is part of being an adult I guess -- putting aside dreams for pragmatism. Realizing that responsibilities trump pastimes.

Lately, I am balancing not only my responsibilities, but also my checkbook. One of my best friends is getting married in July and her wedding involves travel and is going to be very expensive for me. And I love her and adore her, but sometimes I don’t think she realizes how hard it is to balance. How I have to choose between eating, paying rent, or putting aside money for her wedding and events.

Being an adult also means you can’t please everyone. You just have to do your best and hope your blog-friends and your soon-to-be-married friends like you enough to understand.

How does everyone else cope with balancing life? Do you have any advice to offer those of us who struggle every day? How do you approach your friends who may not understand your balancing act? How do you find time for doing the things you enjoy? Discuss.

Wordless Wednesday: Man vs. Nature

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Cheap Chic: Being Beautiful on a Budget

This entry will begin my series of entries in a topic of adulthood that we all know too well: BUDGETING.

In the midst of the shiny covers of bridal store magazines, with beautiful air-brushed brides in $8,000 Vera Wang wedding dresses, we must strive to find something real. For most of us, spending lavishly on a wedding isn't an option, and thus, we must make due to make our day beautiful and special on a budget.

Granted, I am not married, so I haven't had to tackle these kinds of issues yet. But certainly, as an adult, budgeting becomes really important. I budget carefully every month, so that my bills can get paid, my rent can get paid, my lights can stay on, my school can get paid, and maybe I might have a little money left over for a date with my boyfriend, or a trip once in a while to visit my one of my friends who live far away.

I understand the constraints of having to make hard decisions on what to spend money on, but I can't imagine what it must be like after paying your bills (the bills that make it possible to continue to live) to have to then make decisions on planning a thrify wedding. You want it beautiful like the magazines, but you don't have funds, is there any way to still get what you want?

I think the way it would go for me would be: eat or buy a few extra flowers for the wedding? I would be tempted to pick the latter because I love flowers. (I could live on Raman Noodles, if need be...)

Well, I now know it is possible to eat AND have pretty flowers. My friends Adam and Kim recently got married. They had a small wedding in La Jolla, California, at a park overlooking the Pacific. And guess what? They had tons of flowers. And guess what else? The flowers cost less than $200! And guess what else? They got most of them at Costco!

You don't believe me? Check it out!

Kim and her two friends (one of which was yours truly) and her mom put these flower arrangements together the night before the wedding. They were easy and fun! Let me show you how the process went.

Kim and I ventured to the wholesale flower shop in San Diego. They have buckets and buckets of flowers! We picked some that we liked, and got some tools: styrophome green blocks that absorb water, some wire, and some green tape to wrap the stems. That's it! The rest of the flowers she got from four spring bouquets at Costco.

So, this is all to say that budgeting can fuel creativity, and can actually be pretty bonding! We had a lot of fun putting those bouquets and arrangements together. Sometimes it can be a challenge in deciding whether to buy something we want or to buy something we need. And sometimes, we settle for buying something we need, and find out that we actually got more out of it than we expected.

Because, as I see it, that is what a wedding is all about anyway, whether you spend $500 for your wedding or $5 million dollars: it is about two people sharing their love with the friends and family and community who have loved and supported them along the way. It's not the amount you spend, but the amount of love that you give and receive to your partner, your friends, and family.

Paying a professional florist to do your wedding flowers, $972. Buying your own flowers wholesale and at Costco, $200. Having wine and spaghetti and good music and friends together while arranging said wholesale and Costco flowers, PRICELESS.

More to come on our budgeting series. I will point you to some of the best blogs out there for spotting deals(@SuperSavingSara, that is you!) that WILL save you money at your favorite store. AND we will also tackle some tougher issues like what do when your friends expect you to spend money you don't have, difficult decisions to make when unemployed, and more! Stay tuned...

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Bloggy Boot Camp 2010

Well, I touched down in San Diego this morning with a renewed sense of inspiration. I think you all may remember my entry from about a month ago To Tweet or not to Tweet, where I pondered the power and purpose of Twitter. I have seen the light.

Twitter is probably the single most powerful social media tool to date. Best of all, I have been making so many new friends! Not only the smart, lovely, kind, and supportive ladies (and gents) I met at the conference, but others across the country who have interesting ideas, witty commentary, and great advice.

To talk about adulthood we need more than just blog -- we need to start conversations. That is why, over the course of a few months, and with the encouragement of a new tribe of blog-tastic gurus, my goal for this site will be to talk more with each other, engage more, learn and laugh more.

Twitter is a remarkable celebration of literacy in 140 characters or less. The way I see it is that literacy has to be one of the, if not THE, major perk of adulthood. We must embrace the opportunity share ideas and it is almost our duty to create meaningful discourse with all the tools we have available: speaking, writing...and tweeting.

So, my friends, hopefully we will be hearing more from each other very soon! In the mean time, check out some of the pictures from our conference. Nicole (@TheFickleNickle) and I really had a blast! I can't wait until next year!

More to come, oh and yes, to answer the emails, I will post about how to make awesomely cheap flower arrangements as promised. Thanks for keeping me on track!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Blogging From A Phone: Live Blogging from Bloggy Boot Camp

My computer is still broken (drat, you motherboard) so I have been remiss in blogging. This weekend I am in Scottsdale at the SITS Girls Bloggy Boot Camp, rededicating myself to the art of blogging and to the important content that we discuss here on Adulthood. In fact, I am currently blogging from the conference as we speak!! The presenters are fellow lady-bloggers with a huge reader base and they have so many interesting things to share! For example, they are currently talking all about SEO and search engine crawlers.

Lots more to come from the Bloggy Boot Camp! Stay tuned...