Tuesday, December 7, 2010

delicious treats

fact: i can attend a birthday party or wedding and easily forget that cake will be served. i then pass on said cake

fact: i could devour 6 bags of trader joe's peppermint pretzel slims in an hour and still want more.

this delicious treat can be found in the middle of the photograph below:
courtesy of: Jane Maynard

Monday, November 29, 2010

days 4-7 of thanks

day 4 - i was thankful to have parents that instilled the value of traveling. and have gone to great lengths, and invested quite a bit of money, into showing their children the world.

day 5 - i was thankful to live in a country where no matter how terrible the economy is, people will wake up before dawn to stand in line, to make sure there are christmas presents underneath their tree.

day 6 - i was thankful for tylenol and taco bell. as i had a huge hangover.

and today, i am thankful for the future. and the promise that it holds for me, my nugget, and everyone in our lives.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

day 3 of thanks

i am thankful to have had these books land in my lap and change the way i look at the world

1. the glass castle
2. eat pray love
3. the last american man
4. the forever war
5. anna karenina

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

day 2 of thanks

today i am thankful for the boyfriend that in 7 months of sharing a nest, has never once said, "maybe we don't need any more ball jars."

Monday, November 22, 2010

a week of thanks

I am thankful that the rain that is falling is not snow. And that today is the warmest November 22nd  in Chicago since 1919. And that the Redskins won, and that Ben Roethlisberger was punched in the face.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

secret ingredient

Why had I never been told about the wonderful, glorious, put in every pot and/or pan I use product known as.......CHICKEN BROTH?!? I used to only use it in when a recipe called for a specific amount, not anymore! I throw some in the rice cooker, cook chicken in it, steam dumplings, add it to chili. Me, oh my, the possibilities are endless!

And real simple is right, trader joe's is the best.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

"for one minute, please stand right here in silence, and look up"

  1. lists. they make me happy. and sometimes i make them just to cross things off and feel accomplished.
  2. the "i love you" song pat and i sing to each other each night before going to bed
  3. the giant glass of white wine to my right
  4. the new earrings i bought 4 days ago from my thrift store for $1.25 and received 6 compliments since then, because they are just that great.
  5. maybe it's the wedding craze that's swirling around me, or the fact that so many of my friends will at some point be entirely new names in my address book, but i really am beginning to feel protective of "anna maria lewis," i think my parents did a good job when we met, and so i intend to keep it.
  6. long standing friendships, the ones that hold the promise of forever.
  7. quotes that move me and make me think. whether it be elizabeth gilbert; "there’s a crack in everyone…that’s how the light of God gets in." or mechtilde of magdeburg; "from suffering i have learned this: that whoever is sore wounded by love will never be made whole unless she embrace the very same love that wounded her."

  1. my desire to get into yoga grows each day, and yet so does my desire for sleep. which kind of gets in the way of a 6am yoga class. what is a girl to do?
  2. should buying snow boots really require a pro/con list?
  3. what happened to ben harper?
  4. when you finally feel full, full of life and love and gratitude for the luck you have been handed, what else is there?
  5. why can't i be vegan?
  6. is there a more perfect man?
  7. is there really anything a strong margarita and a good night's sleep can't fix?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

thank you w.

"After we watched the 747 formerly known as Air Force One wing into the air and bank right towards Midland, Texas this afternoon, we were struck by just how bizarre it is that a bunch of Democrats who positively hated this man eight years ago were proudly a little teared up to see him off to retirement. That’s a fairly good measure of a man right there, if he can, without knowing or trying, change strong opinions of him in the most unlikely of places. And you can’t get much more unlikely than the lot of us, here in Boystown (Chicago), wishing George W. Bush a heartfelt and gracious goodbye — and thanking him, from the bottom of our big gay hearts, for doing the best he could, every day, for each and every one of us (whether any of us liked or voted for him or not)."


Thursday, October 28, 2010

i pledge

....to use the crock pot twice next week.

recipes to follow.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

the 773

You shouldn't come across a picture and think to yourself "I want to go there!" and then realize it's the city you have called "home" the last three years. But this picture did just that to me this afternoon:

Thursday, October 21, 2010

the gods of styling

I am the farthest thing from a stylist but if I was, I would totally have all my models rock the messy bun and long thick eyelashes. This photograph could have been taken in 1960, 2010, or 2040 and that's what I love about fashion.

photo credit goes to someone far more stylish than me.

Monday, October 18, 2010

polka polka

This fall I went where I have never gone before, POLKA DOTS. I've always been an admirer from afar, like I am with high waisted pants, 5 inch heels, and pin straight hair. Yes those things look just lovely and fierce and all things vogue, just not for me.

To be honest, the older I've gotten the more I care about "my style" not necessarily being "in style." So during my bimonthly trip to H&M I grabbed a polka dot sweater and a polka dot blouse and tried both on with a frown on my face bracing myself for the worst. But they kind of sort of...worked. Both items passed my three check test (versatile? comfortable? cotton?) and while I returned the sweater, I have been LOVING my blouse and even purchased a black and white polka dot cardi from the Targ this weekend. I do believe there can be too much of a good thing, and so my polka dot buying will end after these two purchases. But I am proud of myself for trying something new, for stepping away from my usually black/white/navy/gray pallet and encourage my 2 readers to do the same!

work it girl.

Friday, September 24, 2010

my first food post!

When I first came to Chicago I had to cut a lot out of my budget, and as a result perfected 4 dishes that were on constant rotation. My favorite meal remains brown rice, edamame, and tofu, with red curry. It lasts 3-4 meals, is healthy, and just as good re-heated. However in the past 12 months I have certainly diversified my cooking portfolio. I wok it up on a regular basis, I have things in my pantry that do not have english labels, and I follow food blogs to not only find new recipes but also new techniques that this little brain would have never thought of. (Like adding your dressing to the pan when heating up shrimp/chicken/whatever for a salad - my favorite so far!) I also realized my interest in cooking has gone a little bit past "ok I need food to survive" when I was like a kid on Christmas morning after my mini food processor arrived. I CAN NOT WAIT to try the edamame dip I have been wanting to make.

Last night we had Trader Joe's orange chicken with some fabulous brown rice and rice noodles that my boyyyyfran so expertly stir fried. Tonight it's low fat mac and cheese with BBQ tofu (for me) and some kind of meat (for him.)

This will not turn into a food blog, trust me. But I figure I yip yap about everything else, food might as well be mentioned every so often.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

me in my house alone..

"it's been a long night in new york city
it's been a long time since 22
i don't remember you looking any better
but then again, i don't remember you."
j. mayer

Thursday, September 16, 2010

to thrift

I am an avid thrifter. And I have no prejudices. I thrift for ball jars, pyrex, vintage pyrex, clothes, clutches, jewelery, pictures, vintage postcards, shoes, scarves, planters, tablecloths, milk glass anything, lamps, etc. Sometimes I leave with $20 worth of treasures I never knew I needed, and other times I will walk out happy as a clam with $1.50 scarf I know will go with everything this fall (seriously, I just found that scarf. It's giant and filled with yellow and corals and blues and browns and it is just perrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrfection) I realize that not only do my boyfriend and I have a shared love for each other, we also unfortunately love STUFF and so my thrift store ventures have been limited since moving to our small nest. So I've decided to make a list of things that I just absolutely positively must buy if I find, and I will stick to this list. For as long as I can.

1. A vintage scale for our kitchen. It doesn't even have to work, actually I'd prefer it not to so I can balance the Ball Jar that holds my coffee on one side, and maybe our salt and pepper on the other side.
2. An awesome lamp for our kitchen table
3. One very large container for all of our mixing utensils
4. Something to hold all my magazines because cluttering the living room table is so full of anxiety
5. More Ball Jars because let's be honest, a dozen is just not enough.

I said limited people, not eliminated.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

diana style

In very strange ways I am sometimes upset that I missed the days of Jackie Kennedy, Sohpia Loren, or Grace Kelly. When women exemplified what it is to be of substance and true beauty whether they are the grieving widow of our President or being crowned the Princess of Monaco. There was a real pride in femininity, in being subtly sexy, and chic. Those days ended when Madonna forced herself into pop culture and somehow it became more about being current, and less about being timeless. With one exception. Princess Diana.

I was born to a mother that hand on my heart, was in love with Princess Diana. She stayed up to watch the wedding, she was coincidentally pregnant with Ross the same time Diana was pregnant with William. She HATED Princess Charles and "that ugly Camilla." I remember going to visit my grandparents and half way through the 3 hour car ride Eileen telling Ross to "step on it" so she wouldn't miss the now infamous BBC interview with Martin Bashiir. I think what made Diana so captivating was her ability to relate to women. My mom was born in New Mexico, in 1949, a world away from Diana. And yet there was a common link. They were flawed, yet strong. Silly, yet refined. Diana was truly admirable, and someone who left this world a bit better when she left.

While I admire her for wearing a short black dress as a giant "F-You" to Charles right after the divorce, and her spread in Vanity Fair is to this day, one of my absolute favorites, I was struck at an early age with her humanitarian efforts. When I asked my mom why Prince Charles didn't like Diana volunteering she said "It's because a lot of people refuse to see beyond themselves." And it was then that I vowed to never be a person that can be said about.

Monday, August 23, 2010

adam and eve

I went through a stage where I was convinced that being a female in a male's world is in a word: unfair. I read tons of books that examined why men have always been considered the "superior" gender, how our present day gender roles were created, and how women have generally been screwed in the land of the free, and home of the brave. Reading for months about this topic turned Anna Lewis into one extremely bitter feminist. But I snapped out of it, because I am blessed to have three incredibly strong relationships with my Dad and brothers. I have never been made to feel inferior or been encouraged less to do something because I am a girl. And now I can say that I happily live with a guy who is a daily reminder of everything that is wonderful about men. They are able to lift extremely heavy furniture, figure out how to build the sometimes complicated items from IKEA, and they provide an enormous amount of heat in the winter to snuggle up next to. But there are still a few things I am really really confused about:

1. Why do you have to spit? I have been walking down the sidewalk, driving a car, standing outside a bar, and heard that GOD AWFUL hawking noise and I know what's coming. It's a big ol' wad of your bile and I don't get it. I have seen maybe 2 women in my life spit, and their names were Mia Hamm and Brandi Chastain after they won the World Cup. What is going on in the guts of males that the majority of them "have" to spit in public? It's disgusting, it's repulsive, and I've never heard anyone say "OMG! Did you see that guy who just hawked a giant loogie? He is so hot."

2. Adjust yourselves in the bathroom. You don't see me leaning over in public because my girls are not comfortable in my bra so do it behind closed doors.

3. The argument of "Who is better at sports? Men or women?" I have never heard a woman bring up this subject and yet countless guys feel the need to remind us, that women do not play football and the WNBA is kind of a joke. Hey guess what?! WE CREATE A HUMAN LIFE INSIDE OUR BODIES. An actual human lives inside of us for 9 months and then we have to rely on nothing more than our bodies to push it out. WE DON'T CARE IF YOU CAN DRIBBLE A BIG ORANGE BALL BETTER THAN WE CAN.

Friday, July 23, 2010

i'm your booth bitch

carrie bradshaw has been mentioned in this blog before. yes, i love sjp, and yes i hate that i love carrie bradshaw. my annoyance can be summed up in how she very effectively screwed over aidan shaw in every possible way. i love aidan, and if you ask me she totes chose the wrong guy. it was only until recently, when i was watching a few of my favorite satc episodes that i realized something. i have met my aidan shaw. no he doesn't design furniture, and no he doesn't own a dog named pete. but he does love me. he is committed to me. he cooks for me, he is patient with me, he makes a conscious effort every day to be a better man. and most importantly, he is kind. he is my aidan with a (hopefully) happy ending. so cheers to him. <3

"maybe there are no right moments, right guys, right answers. maybe you just have to say what's in your heart." - carrie bradshaw

Thursday, July 15, 2010

my sister with fur

Sometimes I find myself overwhelmed with just how much we have to learn in this life. Never mind the fact that we learn the basics before we learn how to remember anything at all (I for one do not recall saying my first word, or taking my first step) But we spend our entire lives learning over and over where we came from, where we are going, who we are, and who we want to be. We gain this knowledge in all different ways; we make mistakes to learn our lessons, we succeed so that we know what to repeat, and most importantly we are shown in sometimes very small ways how to be better people. And sometimes, very rarely, these lessons come from someone in your life who walks on all fours.

Nani came to us the summer of 2000. We had never had a family pet (aside from my chameleon who died of anorexia- RIP JOHN!), and had agreed on a vacation in Maui that we wanted Nani to become a Lewis. We decided on her name which means "beautiful guardian" in Hawaiian and picked her up shortly after we returned to Virginia. And as she grew from 6lbs to 90lbs, she became a member of our family. She was with us through out our teenage years, and as chaotic as it can be to have 3 teenagers in one house, Nani was hands down the mellow presence we so desperately needed. She never jumped, rarely barked, didn't chew on anything that didn't belong to her, didn't beg for food that wasn't hers and her greeting was always a polite kiss and sniff. When other dogs would visit and would act crazy long after their owner told them to "STOP!" Nani would just stare at them as if to say "What is WRONG with you?"

She would nudge her bowl outside and dine al fresco because we Lewis' are a classy breed. She would watch TV with her little paws crossed and every so often look behind her to make sure we were all still there. When asked "Who's the prettiest girl in the world?" Nani would shake her butt and wag her tail as if to say "It's me! It's me!" Above everything else Nani was kind. She could easily knock someone over, or bite, or destroy everything in the house , but she didn't. All she wanted in her 10 year life was to give love. And thankfully we were the family to receive it.

I hope Nani is able to know just how much she will be missed. And if there is a doggy heaven, I know that she is looking down, with her little paws crossed, missing us just as much.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

crazy heart

& this may be one of the most beautiful songs i've ever heard.

"your body aches…
playing your guitar and sweating out the hate
the days and the nights all feel the same
whiskey has been a thorn in your side
and it doesn’t forget
the highway that calls for your heart inside
and this ain’t no place for the weary kind
and this ain’t no place to lose your mind
and this ain’t no place to fall behind
pick up your crazy heart and give it one more try."

Saturday, June 26, 2010

couldn't live without

The older I get, the more I realize that I always have to have a few things. Whether in my purse, my fridge, or my car I have to have these things within an arms reach. And here they are:

1. Anti-bacterial wipes. I have them in my car, in my office, under my bathroom sink, and in my kitchen. I love a nice clean surface wherever I am. 
2. Sunglasses. I blame it on the summer I lived on Hilton Head Island but I can not be without my sunnies. I have a pair in my car, in my purse, and on my face. Big ones, throwbacks from the 90s (love those Blublockers), expensive ones, and ones I don't care if I ever see again. My eyes will thank me when I'm 50.
3. Nivea hand cream. If you live in Chicago and don't have dry hands 7 months out of the year, you probably have oil in your veins instead of blood.
4. Bobby pins can be found in my pockets, in my desk drawer, in my center console, in a jewelery box on my dresser, and more than likely 10 are in my hair. Curls are never the same length, it's a curse.
5. Nalgene full of ice cold water. I drink approximately a gallon a day, and it's entirely because I love being refreshed but the health benefits are nice too. And btw, that nalgene has a Tri Delta sticker and is from the Salty Dog Cafe. Represent.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

el fin de LOST

If you and I have had at least a 10 minute conversation you know a few things about me. You know that I laugh really loud. You know that I have no control over my facial expressions. You can tell that I do not live in the city to which I was born. And you know that I really really really love television. It can be argued that I become too involved in the shows that I enjoy; but I will only admit that is true when it comes to LOST. From the second I saw the first episode I was a fan. I realized that all the hoop-la surrounding LOST was because it is in a word, awesome.  I remember leaving alumni weekend to finish watching season 1. I would be at Highlawn, 2 pitchers into the night, squaring off with someone who "swore" the numbers had to do with the coordinates of the island. I would pay close attention in my Philosophy classes when the names "Hume," "Locke," or "Rousseau" were used. When moving to Chicago one of the first questions I would ask a potential friend would be "You watch LOST?" After going on my first date with Pat, I remember thinking "But he doesn't watch LOST...."

And so after 6 season, I bid farewell to a television show that really asked the question, "How much faith do you have?" And while I don't know if I would necessarily sign up to protect a light that kept the world spinning, or what my reaction would be if I saw a cloud of black smoke kill people.  I haven't quite figured out if we live by our own free will, or if our destinies have been decided for us. But I do thank the creators of LOST for giving us all a little something more to believe in.

"why do you find it so hard to believe?" -  locke
"why do you find it so easy?" - jack

Thursday, May 6, 2010

my gift is my song, and this one's for you.

i don't get many things right the first time
in fact, i am told that a lot
now i know all the wrong turns, the stumbles and falls, brought me here
and where was i before the day that i first saw your lovely face?
now i see it everyday, and i know, that i am..
i am, i am the luckiest

what if i'd been born fifty years before you, in a house on a street where you lived?
maybe i'd be outside as you passed on your bike, would i know?
and in a white sea of eyes, i see one pair that i recognize
and i know that i am
i am, i am the luckiest.
i love you more than i have ever found a way to say to you
and i know that i am
i am, i am the luckiest.

- ben folds

Thursday, April 29, 2010

25 years young

"you have the one thing that matters. you have all your discoveries before you."

Friday, April 23, 2010


it's officially spring in chicago as i have not seen a flake of snow in over a month. in addition to welcoming spring with my arms wide open i will spend the next few weeks:
  1. making my new greenview apartment feel like home
  2. planning the first k&co bachelorette party
  3. exploring thrift stores for additions to my new obsession: ball jars
  4. reading & falling in love with john steinbeck
  5. dropping a few cards in the mail to my dearest friends that are much too far away

happy spring! 

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

beyond love.

If the dead can come back to this earth and flit unseen around those they loved, I shall always be near you; in the garish day and in the darkest night – amidst your happpiest scenes and gloomiest hours – always, always; and if there be a soft breeze upon your cheek, it shall be my breath; or the cool air fans your throbbing temple, it shall be my spirit passing by. - Major Sullivan Ballou, 1861

Monday, April 12, 2010

the (un) friendliest city of them all

this weekend was the annual block party in harrisonburg, virginia. apparently this year things were totally and completely different than they have been in years past. students were "out of control" again, and there was an overwhelming number of people, again, and there were laws being broken, again. but this year, the harrisonburg police dusted off the riot equipment they had next to the "what are mennonites?" literature and took to the streets! to you know, "control the masses."

having attended this event i can close my eyes and remember just how out of control it can get. and chances are fantastic all 30 individuals who were arrested deserved it, but i can't help but ask, does that make everyone who ever sunbathed on the quad guilty? when you put hundreds upon hundreds of young adults in a small area, motivate them with beautiful weather, and put a 25 cent can of beer in their hands, things are guaranteed to get rowdy. throw in an ncaa basketball game, a holiday, a war, an unpopular president, and you have a situation that has erupted on dozens of campuses across the country for decades. open up your history books kids, ever hear of kent state? see footage of college park after a duke win? well maybe you should before you throw james madison under the bus.

for everyone who now thinks we will forever be "tarnished" or that we should hang our heads in shame that a degree from that fine institute of higher learning hangs in our room, you embarrass me. you embarrass me because you see nothing wrong with the fact that 90% of our campus is the same color, or that 70% of our campus is the same gender. you see nothing wrong with the insane amount of money that is put into campus beautification, when the surrounding area is living in poverty. or the fact that jmu greek life makes zero philanthropic contributions to the town we call home for four years.  it was something as meaningless as a block party to make you realize that jmu is flawed.

like it or not, people go to college to receive a quality education while simultaneously enjoying their youth. and while there is no excuse for putting others in danger, or creating chaos, it is inexcusable for individuals hundreds and thousands of miles away to hold their nose in the air and discredit what jmu really is to harrisonburg: the most vital part of their economy.

in may 2007 i drove up and over the mountain with tears in my eyes. i was leaving behind the best times of my life and i was proud of all that i had accomplished. that pride will never fade. jmu gave me an education, and lifelong friendships. both will continue to increase in value as the years pass. and i will be forever and ever grateful.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

brunette is the new black

I don't know what it is, but I am totallllllly digging dark hair and am contemplating dying my very dark curls even darker. Hopefully it will go better than the only other time I dyed my hair...the exact same color God already gave me.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

read me your favorite line

Since I was a little girl I have had one thing that I absolutely, positively, love unconditionally; reading. It can be a book, a magazine, a newspaper, as long as it contains words on a page I will enjoy it. I especially enjoy reading in the summer here in Chicago. While I do not consider the eastern most part of the city a "beach" as there is a) no ocean and b) no natural sand, I love the opportunity to sit on a bunkie and read while facing the water. This summer I will be tackling the following books:

  1. A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway
  2. Gorgeously Green by Sophie Uliano
  3. Poem's from the Women's Movement 
  4. A Meaningful Life by L.J. Davis
  5. The Story of a Marriage by Andrew Sean Greer

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

i hold these truths

There are certain things I believe in: Margaritas. Capitalism. The color black. And the fact that Zooey Deschanel is the coolest broad around.

That's right. Zooey Deschanel with her cute style, her sweet voice, her big ol eyes, and her quirky manner has proven herself to rightly sit on the top of my list. And by the way,  9 out of the 10 outfits she wears in the new cotton commercial, I would rip off her body to have as my own.

 "I woke up one morning and I just knew"
 "Knew what?"
 "What I was never sure of with you."
-(500) Days of Summer

Monday, March 1, 2010

day job?

lent began just a few weeks ago and for the first time in my life, i really couldn't decide what to give up. i almost always give up diet coke as it is self admittingly, my number one vice. however i spent the month of january in a constant fast; no dairy, no sweets, no white flour, no yeast, no alcohol, no caffeine, no meat, no preservatives, nothing processed, and most certainly no diet coke. i was in constant prayer for the first two weeks, asking for the strength to overcome temptation. eventually, it got easier. however on february 1st, i chugged a cup of coffee and ate an entire block of cheese like there was no tomorrow.

so now what? i just finished the most spiritual month of my life, and i have to turn around and start from scratch. the progressive catholic that i am, has decided instead of giving something up; i am going to make an extra effort to do more. go to mass every sunday, keep my mouth shut when my words won't be kind, give a resident an extra 5 minutes to talk even if i have a zillion other things to do. and in these ever so small offerings, i will be trying to improve the spin of the world.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


I am not a huge fan of Valentine's Day, not for any other reason then when I have been one half of a couple, we spend February 14th much like any other day of the year, as it should be any other day of the year. Men should buy women flowers just because, and favorite desserts should be made just because they are favorite desserts. You should be willing to make grand, over the top gestures to declare your love every single day. And if you consider small doings to be annoying, or don't value the importance of "just because" then it is my most humble opinion that you should be single.

I don't get caught up in the 14th when I'm with someone and when I am single I don't pull the "I have nobody, I'm all alone" mostly because I'm not. I have four very best friends who are my Valentines all year. They send me little cards, they never forget a special day, and they have seen me at my absolute worst and still love me. We even end each phone call with an (often simultaneous) "LOVE YOU!"  We are rarely with in arms distance of each other, but when we are lucky enough to be together, we treat ourselves to wonderful dinners, lots of wine, and gifts for ourselves. It is, to say, the most successful long distance relationship I have ever had.

And this year, while I am fortunate to have someone wonderful in my life, I am THE MOST fortunate because he understands my relationship with these four women. He is respectful, and appreciates that when my cell phone rings, the television has to go on pause (even if it's the Olympics). He knows when I say "ok 5 minutes" that means the phone call will probably last 25. He is used to me referencing emails he was never sent, and memories he's not a part of. He loves these women not because he has met them, or grown to love who they are; he loves them because I do. And that is one of the many, many, many reasons I love him.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

i do resolve

2010 has officially begun and for the first time in a very long time, I didn't feel like sending 2009 out with my middle finger in the air. I celebrated with some of my favorite people in the world, and as I am very excited to see what 2010 holds, I am a bit sad to say goodbye to a year that was full of firsts for me. My first full year at my job. My first year of living by myself. The first year I haven't actually thumbed my nose at the thought of a relationship. My very first time seeing my favorite band of all time. My very first trip to the far East. And the first time I am able to say that my life is very much my own.

2009 was also the first time I kept all of the resolutions I had made. Here is hoping it's not the last. Whether by stopping or starting certain behaviors, everyone makes these resolutions with the best intentions of keeping them. Some are a bit personal, but here are three that I would like to share.

1. I will try my very very best not to use plastic ware. Whether it's a knife and fork at lunch, or a coffee cup at Starbucks I will find the room in my very large purse to always have a reusable mug, knife and fork, Nalgene, whatever.

2. I will be fluent in Spanish by 2011. It is my mother's first language and I am (almost) 25. It's time I learned the language that is very dear to my heart.

3. I will travel to yet another distant far off place. Beijing was, to say the least, an eye opening experience. Their culture, history, and way of life left me speechless and quite frankly a bit embarassed at most things that are assocaited with being a "typical American." While I am most proud of my country and everything it has done, I belive that every once in a while we should be humbled at just how new to the game we are.