No. 90: Victoria Nails

My mom and I go pretty frequently to get our nails done (it’s just our thing we do together). Yesterday, we got mani-pedis. We both got our typical colors: she her pale, sparkly pink and me my favorite light periwinkle.

Most of why we love going to this particular nail salon is due to the people we have do our nails, Tami and Ti (apologies if, by some chance, either of you are reading this and I incorrectly spelled your name, which I probably did!) They’re both super attentive to what we want and go out of their way to give us superior customer service. Case in point: they opened one hour before they usually do just so we could come in and they could get a head start. Talk about exemplary service right there.

Thanks, Victoria Nails, for everything you do for us.

No. 89: High School Musicals

I went with my friend Greta and a few others to see my high school’s production of The Little Mermaid this weekend. Let me say, I was blown away with what I saw and proud to have graduated from that school. Every single person was perfectly cast, and the pit sounded the best I think I have ever heard the orchestra play.

I actually haven’t missed a Gateway musical since 2006, when they did Fiddler on the Roof. I love returning to my alma mater and seeing how much the school has grown. While this was the first production where I didn’t perform with a single cast member, I don’t plan on missing one anytime soon because they remind me of how happy I was when I performed in those shows.

I’m grateful for high school musicals, for giving the community access to theatre and for helping mold young performers into talents on and beyond the stage. You’ve given me so much to love over the past thirteen years of my life.

No. 88: Working from Home

One of the benefits of working where I do and in the position that I’m in is that I get to work from home. Specifically, I get to take a bunch of classes on our database and how to utilize many of its awesome components. It’s a great benefit for a number of reasons: I get to sleep in a little later, I get to have a morning that’s not rushed, I get to sit at home learning all kinds of new stuff, and I don’t have to worry about whether it’s down pouring or too cold outside.

I love days where I can work from home. I fortunately was granted two this week, and it surely made life so much easier going into this stressful weekend.

No. 87: Being Human

I read something about a week ago that, to be completely candid and honest, made me feel a whole mix of emotions: understanding, anger, frustration, defeated, annoyed, empathetic. Literally, you name it. The thing was, though, I was more angry at the sheer fact that I actually felt angry in the first place. Given the circumstances of literally everything, I don’t think I should have been. But denying that I felt that way hides my truth and reduces my agency as a human being subject to my own inevitable human condition. So I won’t do that.

For now, I still feel a little angry, but I also feel guilty and wrong. I hate that I can’t reconcile those feelings and come to a clear answer or understanding. But I guess that’s life in all its chaos, and though I may hate it at times, I’m grateful to be here and to be human.

A (very, very) Temporary Break

If you’ve kept up with this blog, you’ll know that I’m taking the LSAT this coming Saturday and that I’m also going through a few other things. All is good, but I’ll be taking a little less than a week’s-long hiatus from this blog. The reason is simple: I need to focus, and I don’t want my writing to seem forced (something I actually learned from the blog that inspired my own, but that’s a story for another day).

I’ve loved blogging so far, and I 100% plan on coming back by either Sunday or Monday, so no need to worry. I’ll also be writing posts for all the days I miss, so be prepared: you might just get six new posts to read come Monday.

In the meanwhile, thank you from the bottom of my heart for your support and for reading. It’s truly appreciated and I don’t know what I’d do without such amazing people in my life.

No. 86: Kayu

There’s a place right by where I work in the city that I absolutely love going to. It sells various types of salads and soups and what you get for the lower-than-average price is pretty amazing. It’s my go to place to get tomato soup on Fridays during lent when my school doesn’t have any non-meat dishes that seem appetizing to me.

Thanks, Kayu, for your convenience, for helping me get my steps in during the day, and for your overall deliciousness. I’ll probably see you on Friday.

No. 85: Open Highway

My drive home from work this evening was glorious: 295 Southbound was pretty much completely clear. This never happens. It usually takes me about 20ish minutes to get from Woodcrest to where I live, but yesterday it took me about 10-12. I’m not entirely sure why this was the case, although 295 North was completely jammed from a pretty bad accident and I did in fact feel sorry for all of those drivers stuck in miles-long parking lot traffic, but still: for me at least, it was glorious.

I’m grateful for those days when traffic is on my side. It doesn’t necessarily happen too often, but when it does I’m most certainly thankful.

No. 84: Sutton Foster

All you fellow theatre people out there: you saw the news today, correct? Just in case you didn’t, please go to your regular Broadway news sites (whether it be or Broadway World) and come back when you’ve read what I’m talking about.

Good? Cool. So, Hugh Jackman himself is pretty amazing. But to add Sutton Foster to this production? You’re just spoiling us even more than we ever thought we could be. Don’t know who Sutton Foster is? Allow me to explain: Sutton Foster is one of the most amazing performers in the theatre world. Her belt is out of this universe, she can tap dance while doing so, and her presence is so incredibly commanding. Millie in Thoroughly Modern Millie, Reno Sweeney in Anything Goes, Jo in Little Women, and so, so many more are just some examples of the amazing female leads she’s played on Broadway. She’s a true inspiration to so many in the theatre world with her story. High school Natalie (and let’s be honest, 23-year old Natalie still does) idolized her like crazy.

To the Sutton Fosters of this world, thank you for your gifts. I absolutely cannot wait until the fall of 2020 when I inevitably go see this astounding revival led by two of the most talented theatre actors of our time.

(You can thank me later)

No. 83: Nail Polish Remover

I go pretty much at least once every month/month and a half to get my nails done (it’s something my mom and I do together). My next appointment is scheduled for next Sunday, but my blue gel polish started to chip away last night after I smashed my nail against my phone while setting its stopwatch feature. As someone who is easily distracted and who can have difficulty focusing, I knew the chipped nail polish would catch my attention more than I would prefer.

And so, I asked my mom where the nail polish remover was, impatiently soaked my fingers in it for about twenty minutes (okay, it was more like twelve until I impatiently started picking it off myself), and removed all of the polish. My nails don’t look that attractive right now, but I’m glad to be rid of that potential distraction.

I may not admire your smell or love the arduous process that comes along with removing gel nail polish, but thank you for assisting me today, nail polish remover. You did me a solid.

(Also, shout out to my mom and brother as I sat in the living room and asked “has it been twenty minutes yet” every 45 seconds. True story.)

No. 82: Ticonderoga Pencils

As I mentioned yesterday, I went to Target to find a watch. I’m one of those people that goes to a store in search of one thing and comes out with a bunch of other items I didn’t intend to buy. So what did I come out with yesterday? A watch, yes, but also a few of those really nice and thick highlighters, a non-mechanical pencil sharpener, and my favorite: Ticonderoga pencils.

Ticonderoga pencils are the best. If you don’t agree with me, or don’t know the reasoning as to my argument that Ticonderoga pencils are the best, then let me break it down for you: their erasers are second to none, they oftentimes come pre-sharpened, and they are super easy to hold while writing. Absolutely perfect for a math test or a logic game.

If you’ve only been using pens lately, I challenge you to try out two different pencils, one a store brand and the other a Ticonderoga, and tell me you do not agree with me. Ticonderoga pencils have been my saving grace these past few days. I’m grateful to be using them.