cheeseburger nostalgia

by Holly on July 28, 2011

in life,recipes,seriousness,story,Wisconsin

In the process of packing up my apartment to move an annoying 0.6 miles down the street, I’ve uncovered a multitude of forgotten items stowed away in my little one-bedroom apartment.

Like a random box of summer shorts + dresses…just in time for fall. Awesome.

A pile of stale Raisinets gathered in the narrow hiding space between my bed + the wall that I distinctly remember eating at 2:37am or so in the morning after a late night out at the bars last winter. For the record, I also distinctly remember that chocolate-covered raisins will do nothing for easing your hangover the next day.

A Saved by the Bell trivia game I totally forgot my sister gave me for my birthday last year. If you’re thinking what I’m thinking, then Zack Morris + I totally have a hot date in my new apartment this Saturday night.

Discovering these seemingly meaningless things suddenly made me tear up as the realization hit.

I’m moving out of my very first apartment.

The apartment where I signed the lease…and only I signed the lease. The apartment where I hit a stroke of luck and created Pumpkin Molasses Cookies. The apartment where I didn’t buy a couch for 1 1/2 years deeming Anthropologie shopping sprees more important. The apartment I rented with the salary from my first full-time job. The apartment where I hosted my first dinner party. The apartment where I realized that even though I’m 26 with a “real” job and responsibilities, eating cereal for dinner is totally acceptable. So is falling asleep on the couch at 8:30pm in work clothes + full make-up. And bringing your laundry home to your parent’s house to do.

You see… about two years ago on a warm, sunshiny August day, I moved back to Madison wondering if I was about to make the stupidest mistake of my young Everythingtarian life (although looking back, we all know the stupidest mistake I’ve ever made was thinking long-sleeve, button-up denim shirts were cool…that and not using hair product until 6th grade).

Moving back to my college town…without my college friends?

Moving back to the same city as my first long-term ex-boyfriend?

Starting a job I felt utterly + completely unqualified for?

I tried not to show it, but I was not looking forward to moving to Wisconsin. Like, at all.

But then I moved into this old, character-filled apartment, and as I scrubbed the floor boards clean and put away dishes in my new cabinets, I happened upon a teapot that was left behind by the former tenant. But it wasn’t just any teapot…it was a teapot with a holly print on it.

In case you haven’t caught on, my name is Holly! And there was a teapot painted with holly vines + berries all over it! Annndddd, in an apartment that was otherwise completely stripped bare, only this teapot serendipitously remained!

In my fragile state, I took this as a sign. A sign I had made the right decision to move. A sign that everything would work itself out. A sign that Madison was where I was supposed to be for some unknown rhyme or reason that would be unveiled to me later…when the time was just right.

And then, at a time when I was a solid vegetarian, I ate a cheeseburger.

And somehow, things seemed better.

It wasn’t this exact cheeseburger, per se.

But that’s not the point.

The point is that things have a funny way of working how they are supposed to work.

Head over to Wisconsin Cheese Talk to see this step-by-step recipe for Sweet & Spicy Wisconsin Jalapeño Cheddar Stuffed Cheeseburgers and make one for yourselfTrust me, it’s a sign.

{ 28 comments }

Erica July 28, 2011 at 9:15 pm

What a great real first place! The teapot was totally a sign. Grilled pineapple? Amazing

chelsey @ clean eating chelsey July 28, 2011 at 9:40 pm

I totally believe in signs like that – that teapot was one of them! Hope the move goes smoothly!

Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga July 28, 2011 at 9:42 pm

Well that’s a milestone! I just moved into our new place 2 weeks ago. My 25th in the past 15 years or so. Give or take. :)

I’ve moved once a year (not usually by choice but by circumstance) for the past decade+ and some years more than once. ugh!

have fun packing!

Amy B @ Second City Randomness July 28, 2011 at 9:43 pm

The burger looks nice and all, but I’m so caught up on one thing and one thing only- we are SO PLAYING SAVED BY THE BELL TRIVIA NEXT TIME I VISIT!

Hillary July 28, 2011 at 9:50 pm

Not only did I not use hair product until 8th grade (and my hair is just like yours), but I also had bangs…and wore Blossom hats. Feel any better?

Allison's Delicious Life July 28, 2011 at 10:42 pm

I love me a good cheeseburger and this one looks nothing short of amazing!

Wonderful story, by the way :)

Katie @ Nourishing Flourishing July 28, 2011 at 11:31 pm

Random tangent on Saved by The Bell: When I was very, very young, I made Zach Morris (the character, not the actor who played him) a very lusty, brightly colored card with watercolor paints — the message was essentially, “I love you please marry me I know I’m young but we’ll make it work. Also. I love you.” (<– I just wanted to be totally clear on that point.) My mom *said* she sent it…but I have yet to hear back from Mr. Morris.

And I totally believe had he *received* it, my life would have played out a lot differently. Just sayin'. That card was legit.

ANYWAY. Good luck with the move! Heartfelt reflections, and lifelong lessons (despite my total detraction from sentiment in this comment. I'm impulsive with stories that don't matter ;) )

candice July 29, 2011 at 12:07 am

HI! new to your blog! Those burgers look delish! I love avocado on my burger to!
Good luck with your move!

Lauren July 29, 2011 at 5:50 am

Good luck with the move! Bigger and better things are in your future girl. Now go take a bite out of that cheeseburger because it looks delicious!

Madeline - Greens and Jeans July 29, 2011 at 6:29 am

I love that cute little apartment, and I’m sure I’ll love your next cute little apartment. Also, moving is the worst. I’m 3 months away from doing it and I’m already anxious.

Kailey (SnackFace) July 29, 2011 at 6:50 am

I don’t know why, but this is one of my favorite posts of yours! I love the whole story and the big realization. I think it’s beautiful and SO ARE YOU! It makes me look forward to the day I can move out of my parents’ house! lol

Love you! xoxoxo

sofia July 29, 2011 at 6:56 am

ah, i feel like i could’ve written this! i get so nostalgic over places and memories of things that happened in places. especially firsts. well, not THAT first, but you know, cheeseburger-esque firsts. okay. i’m gonna stop now before this gets outta control. way too early for gutter-mind-talk. anyway, good luck on the move, lady, and congrats on the wisc cheese talk gig!

Sarah@The Flying ONION July 29, 2011 at 7:20 am

Signs like that usually mean something! Like the teapot. :D

And that cheeseburger looks divine! :D

julie July 29, 2011 at 9:13 am

when i move out of home i’m gonna feel the same way! hahaha leaving my roomies (aka van and deej or dad and mom) will be very sad. i mean who the heck is going to front my chinese food bill on friday nights!

Jessica Martin July 29, 2011 at 10:40 am

Those look so GOOD!

Gitchie July 29, 2011 at 4:13 pm

Hate hate hate moving. Love love love making the new place something magical.

Oh and are you a Diva Curl Girl? If not, you should be. Life changing, I tell ya, life changing.

dana @ my little celebration July 29, 2011 at 5:56 pm

Congrats on the move out and the recipe gig. You’re so lovely my friend.

P.S. I can’t help but read every word of your posts. They’re too rich with wit and literary caress not to!

Parita @ myinnershakti July 29, 2011 at 10:27 pm

You’re absolutely right…everything does work out when and the way it’s supposed to. That’s my motto and I’m sticking to it!

Kristen - Anywhere There's An Airport July 30, 2011 at 3:59 am

Things DO have a way of working out! The Universe conspires FOR is when we let it! :) Another example: I just did a quick search for London tickets and they are extremely affordable! :) We will see if the Universe continues to smile upon us!

Andrea@WellnessNotes July 30, 2011 at 7:17 am

You’ll always remember your first “real” apartment! :) Good luck with the short move. I’ve moved very short distances a few times, and, I agree, it somehow seems less worth all the trouble. But I bet it will be in the end!

Have a good weekend! Oh, and the cheeseburger makes me hungry for one at 5:16 a.m. (I still have jet lag if you are wondering what I’m doing up at 5:16 a.m. on a Saturday…).

Kaleigh July 30, 2011 at 9:58 am

holly, your posts just keep getting better and better! congrats on all you’ve accomplished thus far and good luck in the new place :)

amanda July 31, 2011 at 10:50 am

you have lots of memories in that very first apartment. but now you’re going to make new memories! maybe with some wild steamy nights with jake g. like one day…you’ll be walking to your new apartment, and he’s in town filming a movie, and you two meet eyes, and you ask him in for a cup of coffee, and he comes in, and then i’ll leave the rest up for imagination.

happy moving day! i hope the whole process goes smoothly.

Cait's Plate August 1, 2011 at 8:03 am

I. want. that. burger.

Happy moving! I definitely got super nostalgic when moving from my apartment this past October. I had lived there for nearly three years and it was my first “real world” place out of college!

Lauren http://theclimbingchef.blogspot.com/ August 1, 2011 at 8:26 pm

I love this post! I’m kind of feeling the same way about where I currently live… looking for a sign in many places and have not been able to find one yet. Moving to Colorado is a possibility… maybe that is where my sign will be found :)
I’m glad you got into your new apartment safe and sound.

BTW…. what do you do? :)

Liz @ iheartvegetables August 1, 2011 at 10:39 pm

Aww, that’s so cool! I remember moving out of my first apartment (I also moved like half a block away, haha) and it was SO weird! So many memories in that place! Now I’m on to apartment number 5 and I’m only 22 haha

Megan (Braise the Roof) August 2, 2011 at 1:51 pm

I can’t believe that was your first big-girl apartment! I’ve moved more times than I’d like to remember- you’re lucky. ;) And I’m so glad you moved to WI so that we’re only a few hours away and can visit each other! I fully intend on coming to visit and see the new place. Consider yourself warned.

Linda August 3, 2011 at 10:16 pm

Another wonderful post!! I hate moving, but there is also something exciting about a new place. The teapot was definitely a sign!

The burger looks AMAZING! I have a list of recipes from you that I am going to try!! :)

Happy moving!!

elise August 4, 2011 at 9:53 pm

i want to see your new place!! video tour please???

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