Tag Archives: college life

Novels and paper cranes

9457895673_76beefb3b6_zMaking 1,000 paper cranes is like writing a novel. Or perhaps I can only say that embarking on writing a novel feels like embarking on making 1,000 paper cranes, because I’ve never written a novel, but I have made 1,000 paper cranes.

I made them out of sticky notes and napkins, candy wrappers and notebook paper, newspaper and party streamers, anything I could fold. Because, you see, when I was in tenth grade one of my dearest friends fell ill. I had heard the story about the little Japanese girl who had cancer because of the atomic bombs. She made 1,000 paper cranes and it earned her a wish. I think she dies at the end of the story, but I was ignoring that part when I decided that I would make 1,000 paper cranes, earn that wish, and then give the cranes and the wish to my ill friend.

In the end she didn’t really appreciate it. She didn’t remember the story, and she’d never folded a crane, so she didn’t get how 1,000 of them was a lot of work, but I digress,

Folding 1,000 of them felt the way starting on a novel feels. Crazy,

It feels like it will take forever, and people will laugh at you when you explain yourself, and you might laugh at yourself, but you want to anyway.

And even though my friend wasn’t that excited about my cranes I still now say I’ve folded 1,000 paper cranes. That’s a lot of cranes, and it makes me weirdly proud.

So I guess it’s time to start that novel.


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An apology, a new book series, and a freak out/ announcement

So, I’m sorry. I’ve been gone a long time. I’m going to do better, really. 

Secondly, thanks to one of my fabulous roommates and my mom (who lent me the book), I’ve officially started reading Game of Thrones. Okay, I know that isn’t new, but it’s new to me. So I’m counting it. So far I’ve just gotten through the first book, and I’m really really enjoying it.

Lastly, my freak out occurred a couple of days ago when I got on the scale and had gained more than fifteen pounds since Thanksgiving. Since I’m wanting desperately to get in shape, that was pretty upsetting. So I’ve decided (here comes the announcement!) to add the story of my weight loss to the list of stories I share on here. I know some of you won’t care, so I’ll make it obvious in the post title when a post will be about weight loss, but I think it will help me stay accountable. And for those of you who are in the same boat (the boat of wanting healthy, happy bodies that look great in bikinis) I hope you will help me out and use my story to help you out. 

As part of this I will try to stay very honest on here about my weight, successes, and failures. In the interest of that, I should say that it was not 15, but 20 pounds that I have gained. This is gonna be tough. haha

So right not I am 20 lbs from my goal weight. I think once I reach my goal I will probably want to keep working on my muscle tone and strength/ flexibility, but right now I’m mostly focusing on fat content.

I am using the iPhone app Loseit! to help me track my food intake and keep on track. I have had some success in the past with this (I’ve gotten within 15lbs of goal weight using it before). This time I’m sticking to it! Because I want to look like this! http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/53/53/1f/53531f283ba88466a63d7084d9b967fc.jpg

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I wrote this as an assignment for my creative writing class. The assignment was to take a cliched situation and add a twist at the end that brought other pieces of the story to light. I hope you like it. 

The shouting bounced through the halls of the dorm.

Room 220 was usually quiet, its two occupants barely speaking to each other as they floated through their studies, activities, lives. The tall, willowy girl with mousy hair and alabaster skin, Alison, tended to be the more outgoing of the two, but even she rarely spoke when in her own room if her roommate was present. And her roommate Annabelle, small, and so thin a strong bass note from the parties that raged upstairs might break her, barely spoke at all.

It hadn’t always been so quiet in their room. The first few weeks the two girls had gotten along splendidly. They shared interests in books and movies, and they were taking many of the same classes. It looked as if they would be the best of friends, until Annabelle got a boyfriend. Annabelle was very quiet, so it was a surprise, even to her, when Ben in their chemistry class asked her out. She’d said yes though, whispered it really. And ever since the two girls just hadn’t gotten on the same. Alison had barely uttered a word to her roommate since. Even though Ben and Annabelle broke up after only a few weeks, the two girls never resumed their friendship.

Annabelle spent most evenings curled on her bed, books spread around her, buttery hair splayed across her baby pink comforter. Whenever Alison had friends in the room Annabelle walled herself in with books, hiding, protecting herself. But Alison rarely had friends in the room. She usually studiously ignored Annabelle. Headphones in, laptop open, she sat on the futon under her lofted bed, keeping the legs of her bed between them as a barrier to conversation.

Things probably would have continued in this way, each girl seemingly ignoring the other, if Annabelle hadn’t accidentally picked up one of Alison’s skirts when she did laundry one Tuesday. And that night, when she returned with her basket, in it was one horribly shrunken and misshapen scrap of fabric that used to be Alison’s skirt.

“Um… Alison?” Annabelle ventured. She didn’t usually speak to her roommate, so it took Alison a minute to realize what was happening.

Alison tugged an ear bud from her ear, barely looking up. Annabelle stood next to her closet, the remnants of the skirt in hand. It had obviously been a delicate wash only item, and Annabelle didn’t have any such clothing. It was irrevocably ruined.

“What’s up?” Alison asked, eyes on her screen.

Annabelle held up the ruined skirt. “I’m really sorry, but I think I accidentally washed one of your skirts, and-”

“Is that mine?” Alison was on her feet and had the skirt before Annabelle could finish her sentence. The smaller girl shrunk backwards, almost into her closet.

“It’s ruined!” Alison screeched, her voice echoing through the dorm walls, which were thin as newsprint. “Why would you wash this?!”

“I’m sorry,” Annabelle whispered, still clutching one of her own shirts.

Alison’s voice filled the tiny room. “How dare you? I bet you wore my clothes and just forgot to put it back! Didn’t you?”

“No! I-”

“You never respect my privacy! You’re always looking thought my things!” Alison’s face was flushed, and she towered over Annabelle, her height almost comical next to Annabelle’s petite form.

Annabelle was practically cowering. “I don’t! It was an accident!”

“An accident,” scoffed Alison.

“It was!” Annabelle said, as firmly as she had even said anything.

Alison spun away from her roommate, her brown hair whipping around her. She raked one hand through the dark waves, the other still clasped the ruined skirt.

She flung herself onto the futon, plopping her head into her hands. “Ugh!”

“Look Alison, I’m really sorry.” Annabelle tried, edging out of the closet, trying to extricate herself from the hanging sweaters that had engulfed her.

Alison’s voice was stony, but she kept her head down. “I don’t care about the skirt Annabelle.”

Annabelle stepped forward to stand in front of the futon, hands spread in front of her, a yellow top still slung over one arm. “Yes, you do, and I’m really sorry.”

“I said I didn’t care Anna!” Alison burst out, jumping to her feet, she ripped the shirt from Annabelle’s arm, wrenching it apart, shredding it until the small golden pieces of fabric drifted to the floor.

Annabelle’s face grew crimson, and she drew up to the very tallest her small frame would support. “That was my favorite shir-”

But Alison cut her off.

With her lips.




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Tuesday Afternoon

You are sitting at what has become your favorite coffee shop. It’s no longer scary (really), no longer too intimidating. You finally found the headphones that you misplaced last week, so you are working on an article and your homework while rocking out to OK Go.

And as the coffee works its way into your system, stimulating the sluggish parts of your mind while soothing your ruffled feathers from this morning (you had quite a morning), you take a deep breath and settle in to work.

Forget this morning. Forget the mess in the kitchen. Forget the lost umbrella (that looked like Starry Night- quite a loss). Forget the stressed out boyfriend. Forget the two articles, one paper, three workshop commentaries, and ‘creative’ piece that just isn’t coming easily. Forget the bible thumper that accosted you in the student center. Forget the bird that pooped on your head (deep breath, we are forgetting remember?). Forget the quiz you probably bombed.

Because right now, in this b.e.a.utiful moment, you have a frozen latte in your hand,  the grain of the table top swirls gracefully under your fingertips, and that too is soothing, the couch beneath you is soft, well loved, perfectly lumpy, but not gross, and, oh listen, Adam Levine is serenading you as we speak.

Sigh. Take it in. Breathe.

It’ll be gone in an hour or two, so enjoy it. And remember, next time a bird poops on your head, that coffee fixes everything.


Filed under my own stories