Favorite Things

Cream colored ponies and crisp apple strudel!

I’m stopping there, despite the fact that (like Andy Bernard) I hate NOT to resolve the melody.


Lately, I have stopped to take note of my favorite things that are not things.

Maybe it’s the start of a new year and I am feeling inspired, maybe it’s the fact that I just turned 30. Or maybe, just maybe, I have turned over a new leaf, and no longer care for Jo Malone products, vodka martinis and the splendor that is a new tube of lipstick.

or NOT.

More than likely, I have simply stopped for 5 seconds to stop and smell the damn roses. We are all well aware that I could never fully let go of my hearty, good ol’ American materialism.

So here they are. Favorite things that are not things.

  1. Taking off my bra and my socks

(I feel like this deserves a little explanation)

Even better than removing my unmentionables is my SOCKS. Oh yes. As many of you may or may not know, I suffer from a mild case of cankles (where the ankle and calf blend together). Coffee cans, Grecian columns, tree trunks. Unfortunately, they run in the family and no amount of calf raises remedies the thickness.

This time of year, I enjoy wearing boots and obviously I pair them with socks. Over the course of o day, the upper band of the sock slowly digs in to my leg, and due to my condition, becomes quite the annoyance. By 4:45 I am DYING to rip my boots off and peel the sausage casings garments from my ailing lower legs. I then begin the process of kneading the deep sock imprints from my skin, which, as it happens, is seriously the best feeling in the world.

photo (4)

Socks on

photo (2)

You can see the bow pattern…

2.  Finding one more string cheese in the bag when I thought they were all gone

3. Beating a level of Candy Crush that I have been on for almost 6 days running


4. Realizing just how much I love my fiance, like everyday (I had to have a sappy one)


5.  When it only takes one try to parallel park and people are watching so I feel like a badass

6. Giving awesome Christmas presents, like a Doug Baldwin jersey for sister Amy


7.  Listening to Phone Taps and Second Date Updates on Movin 92.5 on my drive to work in the morning


8. The feeling of the heating pad against my lower back (I am 84)

9. A good hair day

photo (1)


10. Breaking Bad. I know this could be classified as a “thing” but I don’t care. I freaking love this show, b*itch!! <- True fans will understand that.


All for now! BYE.

A Seasoned Bride

I will be 30 years old when I get married.



“Oh my god. Is this bad, is this bad?”

“You got a f***in dart in your neck.”


Lemme start by saying that I don’t think 30 is actually old. It should be 30 years YOUNG. If you don’t believe me, just watch 13 Going on 30 and feast your eyes on  Jenn Garner, as she styles her hair with pencils. However, since I have friends my age who are celebrating 7-year (yes, SEVEN YEAR) anniversaries I think you all can understand my feelings.

Before you judge me, my budding crow’s feet and high-waisted pants, let’s make one thing clear.  I realize the consequences of the timing.  It’s true, I’ll be married at 30 and subsequently a 30-something mother and no, I suppose it’s not idyllic.   However,  I’m acknowledging these things and trying to embrace them.  Sometimes, life aint pretty:

Says it all.Says it all.

I know that our photog will have to use her filters and blurs all over our mugs. And that I will not be able to party until 2 am. I know I will have to work out like crazy and can’t rely on a young, rapid metabolism to get me in shape.  Gone are the days of being 22 and entire loaves of bread dipped in Gold’n’Soft.  Say la vie.

Since 99.9% of my friends are happily wed, I will be among the stragglers.  The people who come to the party , like,  3 hours late. Already drunk, donning a stretched out halter top from Old Navy and smudged mascara.


Or a stretched out wife-beater and sparkly bolero.

To be completely honest with y’all, there were times I thought it would never happen.  I feared I wasn’t worthy, deserving or ready. I pictured myself a living Cathy comic, minus the cats.


Being a 30-year-old bride means slight adjustments that I wish I didn’t have to undergo.  But it also means a wealth of really awesome stuff too.

  1.  We no longer po’. College loans are paid off, credit card debt is non-existent. I’m not tied down to grocery-store generics, jeans from JcPenney’s or having to wait for the semi-annuals at B&BW (even though I still do).
  2. My tastes have progressed.  Gone are visions of  a hot-pink affair, with rhinestones, zebra print and tiaras. I’ll pass along those ideas to the folks at My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding.
  3. Thanks to a pretty awesome life so far, I still basically feel like a kid.  Evidence: I would willingly see Disney on Ice…or really anything on ice.

The most valuable?  I feel that I finally know what I want in the love department and otherwise.  I’ve been single, I’ve been in a relationship.  I’ve ignored red flags, made killa mistakes and stayed in bad situations too long… rough pumpkins. I sowed them wild oats and made a quilt (wrong kind of sewing…).

While the pros of marrying young are plentiful,  so are the pros of marrying a bit later in life.  I’m 100% all in.  Would 24-year old Natalie have been so sure? That would be a loud and resounding HELL NAH.


Just a baby.

It was scary to reinvent myself again and please excuse my use of the word, too much Lifetime .  I’d like to think that bravery played a part in all this,  because 3 or so years ago, I hit ctrl+alt+delete on a life I knew and moved to Wyoming to re-boot m’sytems.  Enter Bryan.


Around Bryan, I can be 100% me.  Pure, unadulterated Natalie (pulp-free of course).  I can sing Legally Blonde the Musical in the car really loud including hand motions in his FACE.  He  fetches me pink glazed rainbow sprinkles donuts from Top Pot (maybe this is not a good thing).  He teaches me how to talk with a southern drawl and we hold lengthy conversations whilst using our Lew-siana accents, discussing imaginary situations “down on the bayou”.

I have found my “mullet” of a spouse – Bryan is business in front, party in the back and after a decade or so of searching, I have found my leading man.


Looking especially heroic atop a mothaf*ckin mountain

So, we may be sporting a few fine lines, astigmatism and softer mid-sections, but it’s nothing a little Oil of Olay and the right medications can’t fix.