Marriage Isn't a Trophy

To my unmarried friends. 

Especially those of you who are LDS.  Because #mormonculture.
And to my married friends who love their unmarried friends. #pleasedontbedeadtome
I've been thinking some thoughts about how we talk about marriage and wanted to share some insights.
First, I'm going to let you in on a secret:  I thought I would be married by age 25.  Heck, if we're completely honest, I thought I would have gotten married within a year of coming home from my mission, which would have been by age 22.  Because as a teenager, most all of my LDS female leaders and role models had gotten married in their late-teens or early 20s. They talked about getting married like it was the easiest thing. 
"Well he came home from his mission and thought I was cute and I thought he was cute so we decided to get married!"
It hasn't been that easy for me.
I'm 25 and not married. 
This is okay.
This doesn't make me less talented, desirable, successful, or beautiful as a human being. 

So what is it you do again?

Random Human: "So what is it you do again? Just keep learning German?"
Me: "No, I already speak German. It's more like a study and analysis of LITERATUREPOLITICSPHILOSOPHYHISTORYCULTURETHEORY from the German-speaking peoples of this lovely world."
Random Human: " what is it you do again?"
Me: "I read a million books and write things. Oh and I make German puns with no one's business."

Grad school is a strange place (potentially located in the fourth dimension) and I've come to realize that since I didn't actually know what Germanic Studies would entail when I applied to programs (I know, I'm the worst. Insert public derision by other academics here), most normal people probably don't know what the field "Germanic Studies" entails.

Surprise: it's lots of things.

The most general of categories are either literature/culture and linguistics within a language/area field.

And I'm definitely not a linguistics gur…

When Life Gives You Too Many Lemons

Once upon a time, a friend who loves puns as much as I do (I know, you didn't know this person existed) asked if I wanted to put on signs that said "LIFE" and hand out lemons and limes on BYU's campus.

This was after I said we should catch ducks and go give "INTRODUCKTIONS" to strangers, so since clearly his plan violated fewer animal rights, we went with that one.

For the most part, it was a great success and we felt good about life and people giggled and asked if they could take pictures of us and yeah basically this is something that is only acceptable on a college campus or in a Buzzfeed article.

But here's the thing: people were delighted to receive citrusy fruits from us only because we didn't pelt them with 487 lemons and scream "BET YOU CAN'T MAKE THAT MUCH LEMONADE!!"

Okay, that was too broad of statement. They were enchanted with our practical application of word play AND we caused them no harm by throwing excess produce at them.

"You look like you walked off of a Christmas card!" and Other Things People Tell Me in December

I was diagnosed with OCD (Obsessive Christmas Disorder) when I was a junior in high school, but I guess it started sooner than that. 

I remember going shopping with my mom not because I particularly liked buying things, but because December always offered beautiful Christmas displays and let's not forget the magic holiday patterns that fabric stores flaunted. I made my little brother sleep under the Christmas tree with me weeks before Christmas day just because the lights were oh-so-lovely. Making gifts for friends and family filled most of my spare time outside of homework and school.
And then came the skirts
I think I sewed my first Christmas skirt when I was a freshman in high school. It was black with candy canes and I wore it on Black Friday and maybe two others times throughout the month. I was thrilled to discover that sewing A-line skirts was about as easy as sewing pillowcases. 
Then two years later, I sewed four more in a frenzied fit of Christmas spirit and there was no g…

Guess I'll just have to wait and see....JK not my style

I am a very diligent journal keeper.
Journaling and running usually keep me from bouncing around like a crazy cat lady who actually owns no cats.

My past self always seems wiser than my present self--even though I'm pretty sure that I was an even dumber 23-year-old than I am a 25-year-old.
But that doesn't mean 23-year-old, 21-year-old, and even selfish 17-year-old me couldn't write some profound things.

This week's wisdom comes from April 2016 Claire.
This Claire had red and blonde hair and was still working on getting over a hard breakup and only had a semester left of school but was doing pretty well all things considered (read: about to burst into unprovoked tears of sentiment/nostalgia/healing/hurt at any moment but not as neurotic as Claire from March 2016 so we're on the up and up).

In the midst of this healing, this Claire wrote about some concerns/worries/anxieties about the future. Because the future was a dark, scary place where she didn't know if she woul…