by Holly on December 21, 2011

in birthday,happiness,life

As I am typing this sentence, the clock reads 12:01am.

This means two things: (1) I just finished bawling my eyes out watching the series finale of Friday Night Lights and (2) it is officially my 27th birthday.

Surprisingly, neither of these things make me sad.

First, I need to commend the producers of this most underrated TV show for ending its 5-season run by bringing all the storylines to a full close. I like neat, happy endings…and that is exactly what I got. I would still like to marry Tim Riggins, but that’s another blog post for another day.

Second, I have this really good feeling 27 is going to be a much better year than 26.

Twenty-six was a long, trying year.

In work…in the love department…in the blogging + freelance writing world…in time…and in pretty much most aspects of my life. That’s not to say there weren’t a lot of highlights (A half-marathon run in a lace bra! A blog awardEurope!), but I spent a good majority of the last 365 days dangling in uncertainty, fending of crises, saying yes to a lot of unnecessary things and merely trying to tread water (and drink beer) in hopes of not completely drowning.

This all sparked some deep soul searching and self-analyzation.

Here is what I learned:

(1) If you blog about wearing swimsuit bottoms as underwear, your co-workers will find out and make fun of you. They’ll also give you weird side glances when they think you’re not looking.

(2) Don’t date gay tap dancers. Just trust me.

(3) Stop talking about eating better…exercising more…taking time for yourself…saying no…getting more sleep…finishing your massive to-do list… and instead, save your energy and just make it happen. I’m working on taking my own advice on this one.

(4) The inability to say no to friends can result in double booking a 75-minute yoga class back-to-back with a 5-mile run. You will be sore for four days. It’s not worth it.

(5) Family is the best. Call them just because. Same goes with friends.

(6) Don’t try a juice fast (or do, but be prepared with back-up reuben egg rolls).

(7) Spicy Buffalo Hummus will help you forget about your 30-thing long to-do list. Warning: it will also cause you to add “Make more Spicy Buffalo Hummus” to that list.

(8) Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize!

(9) Being on TV has taught me that I overuse the word “ummm” and the phrase “kind of.” I’ve officially added eliminating these bad habits to my 2012 New Year’s resolutions list.

(10) If you’re not happy doing what you’re doing, CHANGE IT.

If you heed only one of my lessons, make it #10. It only took Mama Everythingtarian telling me this approximately 1,232,659 times before I finally started listening at the ripe ol’ age of 26.

And that is why, at age 27, I am going back to school.

Next month, I am starting a two-year program in graphic design and could not be more excited. I don’t quite have all the details figured out…I’ll still be working full-time…I’m still going to blog as much as I can…I hope to be taking on more freelance writing projects…something will probably have to give…I could hate it…I could absolutely love it…I could very well end up losing my mind…and I will definitely be worse at responding to emails more than I already am.

But I’m giving myself a shot at doing something that makes me happy, which I happen to think is a pretty good birthday gift (along with this pair of trousers I bought for myself earlier today).

Sooo…happy birthday to me!

*     *     *     *     *

The winner of the Mason Jar Cookie Company giveaway is comment #50…

Please contact me at to claim your prize!


natalie (the sweets life) December 21, 2011 at 1:50 pm

happy birthday to you indeed! excited to see what this next year holds for you–love the way you embrace life :)

Megan (Braise the Roof) December 21, 2011 at 2:11 pm

Happy happy happy birthday!! I’m so excited that you’re going back to school, that’s awesome news! Oh, and the gay tap dancer- I had totally forgotten about that, haha!

Susan December 21, 2011 at 3:24 pm

Happy Birthday dear!

Jen@FoodFamilyFitness December 21, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Happy Birthday!!!!

Hillary December 21, 2011 at 5:45 pm

Because I like responding to your posts in list format:

1. Happy birthday! Sending you lots of love and good wishes for a healthy, wealthy, joyful year ahead.

2. GET IT, GIRL. Deciding to pursue what you love is the best gift you can give yourself. You’ll be hella busy, but you’ll make it work. If nothing else, the satisfaction of knowing you’re going after what you want will pull you through. And if there’s anything I’ve learned from my Master’s program thus far, it’s that two years fly by, and then POOF! You have a degree. You can do it.

Allison's Delicious Life December 21, 2011 at 7:58 pm

Aww, this was a great post. Congratulations on turning 27. I hope it is a wonderful year. I know a lot of us are hopeful for what 2012 will bring.

Brittney @ Brittney Breathing December 21, 2011 at 9:10 pm

This is so great. I love to see when people go after their dreams/goals. I recently signed up to take classes starting in January to become a Certified Health Coach and I am so excited. Have a great birthday!

Willow @ My Own Trail December 21, 2011 at 9:23 pm

Happy Birthday! It sounds like you are getting yourself the best gift (or, gifts, because trousers are pretty great as well). Rule #10 is one we all need to follow. At the ripe old age of 35, I am finally realizing that it is up to me to create the life that I want. I can’t sit around waiting for it to happen. So, 2012 is going to be a year of following dreams, seizing opportunities, and making things happen. It looks like it’s going to be a big year for a lot of us. Good luck!

Amy Franklin December 21, 2011 at 9:38 pm

Good for you! It can be difficult to set life on a new path, but so exciting at the same time! I’m very proud of for you, and can’t wait to hear about what adventures await you!

Kim December 21, 2011 at 9:48 pm

love it. happy birthday, best of luck!

elise December 21, 2011 at 10:19 pm

happy birthdayyyyyyyyyyyyyy. i think 27 and 28 were my very best years fyi.

TeriLyn [a foodie stays fit] December 22, 2011 at 12:09 pm

I love this list. I need to heed much of your advice, including learning to say no.

How exciting about going back to school!!!

Bonnie December 22, 2011 at 8:59 pm

Happy Birthday, Holly! And that’s so exciting about school! I like that you said you might love it, you might hate it, but you’re going for it all the same. What a neat adventure to undertake. I’m not quite 27 yet (6 months behind you), but I, too, think it’ll be a good year. Here’s to fresh adventures, new experiences, and more moments of laughter and growth in your year!

Emily December 23, 2011 at 9:25 pm

I hope you had the happiest of happy birthdays Holly! I have no idea why I didn’t comment the minute I read this post, I must have had a complete brain fart.

Massive congrats about going back to school, I remember you messaging me about on Twitter a while ago! Graphic design sounds awesome, I hope that you love it and it makes you ridiculously happy :)

As a girl in her early twenties, I have to say that you are huge inspiration. All arse-kissing aside, I love reading your blog because you’re so honest and fun. I seriously hope that I’m even half as cool as you by the time I’m 27.

So much love! x

Stacy @ Say It With Sprinkles December 24, 2011 at 11:52 am

I envy your optimism… I just turned 28 and I’m in full-on crisis mode, hahaha! =)

KaraHadley December 26, 2011 at 6:24 pm

That is such a wonderful birthday gift. Something will undoubtedly have to give, but at least when you do cut out whatever that may be, you’ll still have a ton of other wonderful things to fill your days with.
Happy belated birthday.

Lauren @ The Climbing Chef December 26, 2011 at 7:03 pm

Again, happy birthday… I’m just now catching up on your blogging! I love you, your blog, your style and how brave you are being about going back to school. I’m hopefully going to get into my graduate program and will be starting in Fall 2012 :) Let the blogging/school challenge begin!

Sarah December 27, 2011 at 6:35 pm

I’m obviously late to the party here, BUT…
#3 and #10 are my favorites from your list.
Also, congratulations on your decision to go back to school! Happy Birthday to you!

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