27 going on 17

For years i liked to do a year review on my birthday--which is oh so convenient since my birthday is in January--but this year i decided to change things up. I have noticed lately that people don't seem to know things about be that i thought i tell everyone. So... this year we are doing the top 27 things about me.

1. Lately, i have been desperately trying to figure out how to look like an full-fledged adult in their late twenties. I have tried wearing lipstick, for real hairstyles, stilettos, non-costume jewelry, and even the daily dose of makeup. It hasn't helped in the slightest. Just last month i was asked how old i was when my sister was buying movie tickets for her kids, THE KID AGE IS 12! This trumps when i was asked if i was old enough to sit in the exit row of an airplane when i was 23 (you have to be 15) or when TSA asked if i was a minor when i was 25. Needless to say it also has totally thwarted my dating life because all the guys i would be interested in are around 30 and are not interested in the barely legal.

2. I sleepwalk. It doesn't happen every night but it does happen. I do it the most when other people are awake and i slightly interact with them in a very creepy non verbal way with lots of hand motions.

3. When i was 19 i ran a bed and breakfast in Nauvoo, Illinois. It was not the ideal establishment and
very poorly run, but it did fulfill a life long dream of being involved in a B&B.

4. Speaking of B&Bs, my new life goal is to save enough money to open my own by the time I am 30. It combines all my odd talents (cooking, organization, business, design, being ocd with details, cleaning) with my insane collection of kitchenware. I have wanted to do this for a decade and i finally decided, why not now?!

5. My sister's refer to my closet as the Bernstein Bears Closet because it creepily mimics their book on organization. I hate closet doors and if my bedroom has them i remove them, it is always the space in my house that is the most esthetically pleasing.

6. I have never been especially good at learning languages except for counting. For years i would count my steps in French, mostly when walking in parking lots.

7. I spoke at my college (BYU) convocation ceremony. I talked about why i am an artist and of course included a smattering of childhood artwork including a piece i entitled, "Girl Dinosaur in a Purple Bra." The administration wanted me to remove it from my PowerPoint because it made them
'feel uncomfortable,' but i of course didn't.

8. I only wear glasses because i have one lazy eye. I can't control its wandering and since most people find it unsettling when you are only looking at them with one eye, i wear glasses. Contacts aren't an option since they won't correct it.

9. I have never been able to picture myself as being married or having kids. This doesn't mean that i am not interested in it, just that i have never planned my life around it or gone into that completely normal phase of life where i am depressed that my eggs might dry up before i finally find a non-crazy counterpart. Even as a kid i knew i wasn't the marrying young type since i once wrote in my journal, "when i'm married, or thirty..."

10. One of my life goals is to be involved in an episode of the radio program This American Life.
Surely they have to find the story about my dad stealing a B-17 bomber as a teenager radio worthy. And if they prefer something about dating, like how a boy broke both arms while trying to flirt with me, i got that covered too.

11. I have a lime addiction. I most likely consumed over 200 limes last year alone.

12. I worked at BYU Recycling in college and drove a forklift daily. I once had a palette of around 20 bricks of crushed pop cans dropped on me by an incompetent coworker which sliced my arm in three places causing blood to run down my arm and off my hand.

13. I have been to: Mexico, Canada, France, Belgium, Holland, Thailand, Cambodia, Japan, New Zealand, and Australia.

14. In the four months i lived in NYC i: lost all my money to the IRS, stayed in six different places, had nine visitors, saw six broadway shows, and survived Hurricane Sandy by fleeing to Philly an hour before the all trains stopped running.

15. I have had surgery on my: eyes, tonsils, wisdom teeth, hip, knees, and ankle. I have also: dislocated an elbow, dislocated a hip (which i walked on for a week at age 10), broken my wrist, knocked out two teeth and had two head wounds.

16. When i was ten i was in a flash flood with five of my siblings while hiking in Northern Idaho. We walked for five miles through--at times--waist deep ice water. We all admitted to peeing our pants because it kept us warm for .475 seconds. I was one of the few that didn't hallucinate but i do think i had mild hypothermia and frost bite.

17. I think i am hilarious.

18. I board-fold (the method retail stores use to uniformly fold clothing) all of my sweaters. I however don't own a board so i use my MacBook Air which is about the same size. So i guess you
can call it computer-fold...

19. I don't spend one dollar bills. It started in high school as a way to prevent myself from blowing what little cash i had in vending machines etc. and so i would have some money to put towards high ticket items like an iPod. I started it up again a few years ago and now call it my Wedding Dress Fund. When i lent it to my sister last year i naturally weighed it first, it came in at just over 4lbs. I think the clerk at the bank thought i moonlighted as a stripper...

20. I was in an opera choir in elementary school. I remember being a street urchin in Carmen and in the children's chorus in The Nutcracker.

21. My more memorable dates have involved: walking three miles barefoot on a river trail, a boy telling me he "usually likes to meet people by the Taco Bell in the Student Union Building," a boy that made up his own name, a boy that never told me his real name, a boy accosting me at every chance asking if he could smell me (he once said, 'you smell so good, you smell just like my grandmother's house' WHAT?!), eating spaghetti covered in cheddar cheese with a set of twins at their house (standing, not sitting at the table) before one of them took me on the rest of our date; I still can't tell them apart, and much, much more.

22. I love coffee table books and request that everyone who comes in my house reads All My Friends Are Dead.

23. I talk to at least one of my siblings every single day. I think we are hilarious and one of the best families to hangout with. We rarely fight, always make fun of each other, are constantly lending money, eat lots of food and quite often make inappropriate jokes. 

24. I am a note writer. I send cards for no reason, love to make heinous valentines, send obnoxiously long emails to boys who i want to date (not all boys, just the select few and i swear its not as creepy as it sounds), wrote 20 missionaries while in my early 20's, send random packages, and seal every single written correspondence with wax.

25. Secretly, my plan is to find a nice normal guy that only has a couple siblings so that when we get married i have a legit chance at winning Best In-Law. If there are only a few children it also ups the chance of maybe getting to go on parent-funded family vacations.

26. When left to my own devices, when others won't judge my choices, i watch terrible reality tv like The Real Housewives of New Jersey, Extreme Cheapskates, Teen Mom etc. All of them make me feel super good about my life. I have so much more going for me that most of these people, try it, its a real self-esteem boost. 

27. I have a decently large record collection. I started collecting them not because it is the cool hipster thing to do or because the sound is superior (i know its not), but because i love music and if i put a record on i listen to the whole thing and can't be ADD and change it after each song. It is one thing that makes me slow down and disconnect from technology which is slowing taking over my life. I blame my iPad, or Netflix Machine, as my brother calls it.
My birthday present to myself this year was The Forrest Gump Soundtrack on vinyl.

And your bonus for making it to the end?

My first ever photo where i look like benjamin button with lobster claws. 
You are so very welcome.

you're only 24 once

I've always really enjoyed having my birthday at the beginning of the year; it makes it super easy to remember how old i was when something happened and keeps everything tidy with my age changing almost in sync with everything else. Because of this, i use my age to judge everything.

like if it is Feb. and i am single--say last year--i know that i will not get married until i am at least 25 (being this year).

or when i say that i want to accomplish something in 2013 i know that i will accomplish it while i am 25.

see? everything is simple.

And since today is my birthday eve, i figured i should reminisce what i learned/did during my year of being 24.


finally have documented proof of how terrifying it is to go bowling with me (and equally dangerous).

caught my third bouquet at a wedding (third times a charm, right? RIGHT?!)

after 8 months of preparation i had over 300 images on display in my BFA final show, 
Tithing Child: A Photographic Memoir

after what felt like a million drafts of my speech were approved--i spoke at my college's convocation ceremony and showed the campus (for the 3rd time) images of my sister giving birth...

learned that i have a problem am the champion of holding grudges against past boyfriends that were asses 
(still working on that, but lets be honest, we will never be friends. ever)

survived the great disneyland flash flood of 2012 (okay, it was just horrendous rain...) while being trapped on small world--now lovingly know as 'the slow-moving torture device from hell.'

started a blog about awkward dates--probably because of that date with that kid that made up his own name, wanted to take me 'fast food shopping' for dinner, and told me about himself using his kindle since he 'forgot his book of photos that he normally uses'.

moved to manhattan--and then kept moving around manhattan--again and again and again...

figured out that peanut butter balls don't have to be boring balls, they can be dinosaurs!
(and filled with chunks of reese's holiday treats...)

went through a hurricane unscathed.

went out on a date with a Turkish American that met me on the subway and thought i was russian.

(of course there are no photos of that...)

figured out what type of guy thinks i am their type: non-white and non-mormon men

(and if i had photos of the guys who hit on me in Harlem or on Canal Street, well, that would just be weird... creepier than the comments they made to me...)

slept on 5 different couches and in 14 different beds in 5 different states in 5 months.

met dan lauria who plays the dad on my most favorite show of all time, The Wonder Years.

gave uncle sam all my money after a tax blunder

went to six broadway shows

graduated from college and got this cool piece of paper as a 'well done, kid'

ate an entire pack of Hebrew National hot dogs in one week in all sorts of interesting culinary masterpieces.

lost the ten pounds i gained when i was dating tucker

succumbed to Pintrest. i say i did it for work purposes but let's be honest, i secretly want to make little crafts and take photos of my fingernails (which two people at the mall today were convinced were fake, they look that perfect and pink right now...)

and i still don't have any followers, so you should help me out so i don't feel like a failure at something so very simple...

'ran' my first ever race

joined a very sketchy dating site that i am pretty sure is only good for hooking up and not falling love.

had the most drawn out graduation ever. 
walk in april
walk/speak in august
actually graduate in december
finally have my name in the program in april of 2013

wore pants to church for the first time (but not the last if it stays so bitterly cold in utah...)

oh and one thing i didn't do was buy a tripod...still...

i have a bfa in photography, that doesn't mean i NEED to have a tripod, right? RIGHT?!

and here's to 2013. 
It has had a rocky start but it can only go up from here. 
I unpacked my kitchen and most my room, that is a HUGE improvement in my life already.

(did i ever mention that i didn't know i had my own birthday until i was probably 6 or so? I always thought that mallory and i had the same birthday because mallory and my dad shared a birthday, my mom's was 4 days later and then mine was 11 days after that so we celebrated once for all of us. This probably is the reason why i always wished mallory was my twin growing up...)

keyword me.

Nothing makes you feel more awesome then looking up the top search words that google thought should direct people to your blog.

In the past week people have searched for:

and over the course of my blogership people have searched for:

boy chubby undies?!


All the other ones made sense, anything with BYU--especially housing--of course! Kid from little giants who is solely known for blowing snot bubbles? Nothing says 'Bethany as a scrawny kid' better.

Lately i have been having that whole 'i just got dumped and feel kinda terrible about myself' attitude. You know the feeling, the way you feel when someone gave you lame reasons why they didn't want to date you but still wanted you as their best friend--it is kinda equivalent to feeling like the fat best friend, you are there when it is convenient but they don't really want you around all the time--like when super hott boys are around to flirt with (which is funny since if they view you as the fat best friend they shouldn't view you as a threat and shouldn't shun you from the hott boy flirting). Amazingly enough, knowing that people get to my blog because i once resembled the scrawny snot bubble of a boy makes me feel good. At least i have blossomed out of that stage. Let's be grateful for one thing at a time. 

and on that note, my new mantra is to tell myself that i am beautiful because i feel that women are taught not to vocalize that they are beautiful. Have you ever had someone ask you if you think you are beautiful? It is an awkward question, women have been conditioned to feel conceited and shirk off compliments. That awful feeling you have after a boy stays a lot of stupid things, combined with not feeling comfortable about being confident in your own beauty makes you feel all sorts of dumpy. I am out to change that. So here is a photo that i think i look pretty in. And there i said it (i tend to proof read my blog entries out loud) sometimes i think i am beautiful. 

no snot bubbles or accidental nipple here. 

(if you have no idea what i am talking about when i reference the boy from Little Giants, 
visit this short little ditty of a post)

here's to the year

At the beginning of january facebook and blogs are plagued with resolutions. I however, am not one of those people. I tend to post photos--that i should probably be embarressed by-- like in one of my personal favorite blog posts about growing up. This showcased lovely photos from every year of my life to which one friend commented 'the bethany i know started somewhere around 2001.' Now that i have successfully covered all the awkward aspects of my quest to adulthood i figured i should just focus on just the last year--the 24th year of my life.

and since my birthday is in six days--a year after my post full of awkward photos--i still have a few more precious days time to find some more worthwhile/eventful activities to add before my 'year' is up. I will gladly take suggestions for such activities'.

This year I:

*Found my own apartment.
*Furnished and decorated said apartment with more cheap pottery barn items and original art than i thought possible.
*Learned that a couch that seats five only fits in an upstairs apartment when you take the banister off the stairs.
*Flew in 6 planes and took trains and automobiles also.
*Witnessed a birth and didn't even throw up or completely swear off baring children in the distant future.        
*Visited all 9 of my siblings homes.
*Spent 24 hours in vans full of sweaty runners during the ragnar.
*Ran to class from my office in orem more than once.
*Made my first attempt to do the midnight hike of Timp during my first 24 hour straight date.
*Fell alseep on the side of said mountain and gave up the summit for french toast at Kneaders.
*Successfully fed 50 people a turkey dinner.
*Wore red lipstick with confidence.
*Painted my nails an outlandish color almost weekly.
*Only tore a 4"hole in two pairs of jeans-of course in the butt and still wore them in public
*Went back to school full time but only for spring/summer terms.
*Called a professor an ass in class, he deserved it and may not have heard it.
*Wrote a paper for class on a typewriter.
*Drove a byu van full of students through a blizzard.
*Found out my favorite professor reads my blog.
*Mallory helped me rediscover that combining dog, pig, and cat noises is the funniest sound you can make.
*Went on dates with 6 different guys, which blows my semi annual dates of years past out of the water.
*Had multiple smellers--its like stalkers but they smell you instead of watch you.
*Gave up coke for club soda with copious amount of fresh lime.
*Lived off only fajitas for two weeks straight.
*Discovered that i make the most beautiful and equally delicious carrot cake.
*Terrified my nieces by talking to them in my sleep.
*Discovered the magical power of vinyl records.
*Dominated business phone calls with eBay and found out that we are in the top 2% of all accounts.
*Let a puppy sleep in my bed.
*Had my heart broken for the first time.
*Took over 5,000 photographs in the last few months.
*Stopped (it is still an ongoing process) frivolous shopping in hopes of having more money to put towards a house in the coming months.
*Realized the only aspect of living alone that terrifies me is showering, so naturally i shower with the door open with a clear curtain.
*Added someone on facebook solely because of their blog and only felt slightly creepy for it (we do have mutual friends so that cuts the creepy factor at least in half).

I also realized somethings about myself and made changes, if you are one of those purist you can call them resolutions.

I realized that i am much more interested in food than i thought and changed a lot of my buying/eating habits. I now only eat meat that looks like meat (you know what i am talking about, that lunch meat that looks like smooth plastic and chicken nuggets...). I buy local when i can and always buy local eggs and milk. I also stopped eating fast food, my skinny jeans are oh so ever grateful. And for the most part i don't eat much bread, it is my heroine of the food world...

Realized that i am too old to eat whatever i want and actually have to do that thing they call working out. I then remembered how much i love weight lifting and that if you give me a riveting enough show to watch i can forget i am on a treadmill. Breaking Bad, i am forever in your debt for those hundreds of calories you helped me burn (And for the most amazing end of a season ever, seriously, EVER).

Found new loves in music like Bon Iver, The Middle East, Blind Pilot, Dr. Dog, The Avett Brothers and Florence and the Machine. They are slowing winning my heart over enough to be purchased for my coveted record collection.

I have also realized that no matter how much i rag on dating, it is a necessary evil and one day i will champion at it. It is, after all, a sport you only have to win once...


15 days in and I still have a hard time remembering that the year is now 2011. i still remember walking to the Boise Depot from katie's house for the big 2000 new year's party. there is no way that was a decade ago...

there is no way i am old enough to say 'a decade ago'

so what memorable happened in 2010? well let me tell you...

I turned 22. this involved a party with sugar cookies made to look like me, a homemade photo booth, and these fantastic boys that let me have the party at their house.

I assisted celebrity photographer Brian Smith at Sundance and met Miss Universe...

i flew to TN and then drove to SC to watch Jojo run her first (canceled) marathon. 
Thank you Myrtle Beach, for all the snow...

I photographed many a thing, one of my favorites being the Festival of Colors.

i was playing with this lovable pup, Milo, and did this to my foot. Jenny lovingly referred to me as 'Cankalicious' for weeks that felt like months.

i went to boise a couple times, visited/photographed my family and best friends from childhood.

i actually briefly dated someone (we are much cuter individuals in real life) and upped my dating quota with going on second dates for the first time ever. (like real dates)

i went to Lake Powell with Jojo's hilarious family and mike's quad nephews. 
quite the adventure.

 i flew to Idaho to cheer on Uncle Rico, I mean Thor, I mean Aaron in his first IRON MAN!
i also discovered that one of my many God given talents is trophy embellishing.

i learned that writing your calendar/to do list on your mirror and leaving dry erase markers in your bathroom leads to lots of good facial hair being drawn next to your important tasks. 
meet my niece, teen wolf.

i spent many an hour with these rag-a-muffins and we had a few photoshoots. 
some in the studio and some outside.

i found new fantastic friends in my ward,

and wowed them with my amazing acrobatics. 

i also spent a lot of time with my 'freshmen' friends.

then there was book club, at least a few. (we aren't so good at the whole once a month thing...)

and photography parties and more than a few classes.

then there was spur the moment jet blue deals that landed three sisters in new york together. 

and more expensive flights that landed two sisters in new zealand for thanksgiving.

 and of course the year ends with a christmas morning photo op on the stairs...

oh, and i met my first llama AND i managed to wear makeup everyday for a year. 
okay, almost everyday.

the end