2016 – lessons from the highlights and the low lights

 

If you have been at least 5% aware of the Internet over the last month, then you’ve seen the “2016 is the worst/weirdest year ever” memes. Maybe you’ve even been guilty of proclaiming the same sentiment yourself. I know I have and at the same time, I’m quickly getting annoyed at myself for thinking this way.

 

So I’m going back to the lesson from the whole Starbucks Hacking fiasco

 

“It’s not what happens…it’s how you handle it.”

 

2016 has been interesting both personally and in a greater sense. We’ve seen unexpected celebrity deaths, weird political drama and many other things that might have generally sucked.

 

Personally, it was a pretty decent year. I started tanning in February and, thanks to the Vegas weather, I avoided the usual seasonal depression. Which was both surprising and refreshing.

 

  • I found my stride at work.
  • I got more settled into Vegas life and met some pretty cool people. I also met some pretty terrible people, but, whatever.

    sheri is one of those cool people ❤
  • I traveled to LA for the best two Kaskade shows of my life and met some amazing friends in the process.
  • I danced in clubs until they kicked us out and ate breakfast with random dudes from Texas.
  • I went to both a beach club and a nightclub in one day two times this year. The first time was fine. The second time I was drunk for 12 hours and had to go to work the next day.

    the best memorial day we’ve ever had
  • I attended my very first EDC after dreaming about it for the last 6 years. It was chaotic and amazing.
  • I experienced my first Vegas summer which included multiple 115 degree days.
  • I listened to “Closer” by The Chainsmokers enough times that it made it to the top of my most listened to list on Spotify.
  • I snapchatted “Closer” by The Chainsmokers enough times that people still snap me when they hear it out and about.
  • I ventured out to Minnesota to watch my oldest friend get married. It got wild in the best way.
    photo by: KELLY JO PHOTO
  • I celebrated my first year living in Vegas.
  • I attended my first Life is Beautiful festival in downtown Las Vegas and learned the beauty of serendipity.
  • I saw two movies by myself and enjoyed every minute.
  • I saw The 1975 for the second time and they absolutely killed it.
  • I ran my third half marathon and it was mentally my toughest race yet.

Throughout everything that I experienced this year, I learned some important things. Most importantly, I truly stopped letting whatever other people thought get in the way of me doing absolutely everything I wanted.

 

While these are just a few of the highlights, there were plenty of lows as well. I could have let the lows overshadow all the good things in my year, but I chose to handle them differently. I didn’t want what happened to control my outlook – I wanted how I handle the bad things to shape they way things turned out. And overall, I think I succeeded and found ways to improve along the way.

 

So here’s to the chaotic year that was. I’m looking forward to the fresh start on the calendar. I’m excited to see what the next 365 will bring.

 

2017 let’s goooo!!
 

 

9 november 2016 | prose

I wrote this on November 9th and I felt called to share it with the world. Not a statement at all, just something to remember. After all the chaos of this year and the current crisis in Aleppo, I feel now more than ever that we need some hope. Love your neighbor as yourself, we are all human. ❤


Choose love

Always choose love

Do not succumb to fear

For fear is the absence of love

Choose positivity

Always strive for positivity

Stand up to negativity

For negativity can suck the soul from your drive

Choose open-mindedness

Always choose an open mind

Do not allow your mind to shut down

For a closed mind and a closed heart block progress and divide us from each other

Blocks us from love

Blocks us from positivity

But the greatest one to strive for

Of all of these

is love

forever & always

xxx

Dear Linda…We Need To Talk | Cube Chronicles #1

the phone in question…

By popular demand I bring you my trials, struggles and stories from behind the 3 1/2 walls of my office cube. Stay tuned, there’s some weird ones.

Introducing the inaugural “Cube Chronicles”: my issue with Linda


Dear Linda – whoever tf you are,

Hi there. I hope all is well for you this holiday season. My wish is that you have found all the necessary accessories to allow your gift-giving to go swimmingly. 2016 was a wacko year for all, and my prayer is that yours was only ridiculous and not tragic.

But here’s the deal…we need to talk.

Apparently you used to sit at my desk, or, possess the phone number that is now associated with my office phone. For that reason, I feel like we have a connection. I also feel that we are now close enough for me to ask you one question.

WHAT THE HELL DID YOU DO?!

Seriously, what did you do? Why are insurance collectors, insurance sellers and random unknown numbers calling my desk asking for you by name? Why do they desperately plead with me to put you on the phone and/or give up your location? Why are your bad decisions and unfortunate life experiences catching up to me when all I’m trying to do is entice tourists to come to Vegas so they can buy me free drinks…I mean help the local economy. Whatever.

This has been a ritual I’ve experienced at least three times per week for the last six months. Always an unexplained call from a strange Midwest number looking for “Linda”. Not to mention the confusion from the otherside of the phone when I a) am not Linda or b) have no idea about Linda’s whereabouts.

Maybe the better question is: What did I do in a past office life to deserve this? Did past me make loud, personal calls daily? I could see it from a past me, a stupid me. Either way, I’m confused.

Tell me baby girl, cuz I need to know.

I wanna know, I wanna know – where do we go, where do we go from here?

I don’t want to be sold insurance and I don’t want to be called in as a witness to an FBI investigation. If you needed someone to drive the getaway car or cover for you, you should have just Instagram’d me or arranged a secret meet up in a bar like they do in Ocean’s Eleven. Shit, even a carrier pigeon would have been easier.

So, would the real LINDA please stand up? That would be greeeeaaaatt.

Maybe you don’t know what you did. Maybe you woke up in an alternate universe and your phone is missing. Maybe you just really suck at changing your address. Regardless, I hope you see this and I hope you can get your life together so I don’t keep getting yelled at by this private investigator disguised as an insurance salesman.

Linda, I don’t need to be your friend…I just need answers.

Sincerely,

Distraught in the second cubicle from the back

25 cheers for 25 years | a collection of things i’ve learned thus far

 

birthday selfies, per usual

Yesterday, December 12, was my 25th birthday (oi) and in the spirit of “End of The Year Lists” I decided to put together some random things I’ve learned during the first quarter of my life on Earth.

I tried to keep this list light and funny-ish, but sometimes you sit down and things get deeper than expected. Enjoy!
1. I have both experienced so much and so little in my moderate 25 years on this Earth.
2. I truly believe I have been able to reach the highest threshold of human happiness and also the absolute rock bottom within a few short years. This isn’t to say that I won’t ever be that happy again (because I’m sure I will be) or that I won’t have bad things happen (hopefully not that bad) but I do think I have a sense of the spectrum.
3. Baseball players, whether former or current, are always the best and the worst.
4. The Yankees suck.
5. Sometimes, your path takes you somewhere and on an adventure so drawn out and grand when the only purpose of it all is to meet the closest people in your life.
6. Going to your adult job still drunk sucks.
7. Going to your adult job severely hungover sucks.
8. Going to your first adult job sober really sucks.
9. There is so much truth to the statement “you’ll never remember the nights you had plenty of sleep”.
10. blink-182 was spot on when they said “nobody likes you when you’re 23”. Honestly my least favorite year on Earth.
11. Nebraska is my least favorite place to be in America.
12. If you can successfully road trip across the country with your friends and not kill each other, you will be friends forever.
13. When choosing between two paths you will always wonder what if you had gone the other way. Always, even if you don’t think you will.
14. I have no idea what I want the rest of my life to look like and that’s okay because that’s the fucking beauty of it.
15. The most unexpected people leave the most potent mark.
16. God meets you where you are. Not kidding. But it is kind of funny.
17. The only way out is through.
18. I finally learned how to apply lashes after 25 years. This year already looks brighter.
19. Sneezing is hilarious if you think about it. You are forcefully and uncontrollably letting germs escape from your body. And it sounds weird as it happens. Someone try to tell me how this isn’t funny.
20. When you want something, all the universe really does conspire to help you make it happen. Patience required.
21. The moments and the people you share them with are easily more enjoyable, important and memorable than the things.
22. There are so many things out there in the world, and they are all just waiting for you to discover them.
23. HBO is the best network on television. Closely followed by Bravo and E!
24. You can’t hate someone or something you understand.
25. This truly is a God-dream and I wouldn’t have made it this far without him.
Happy Birthday Frank Sinatra! Forever my birthday twin ❤

the STARBUCKS HACKING | it’s not what happens, it’s how you handle it

snapchat art from last red cup season (@jessicalynnn12)
my friend derek took this picture of me in my natural habitat with a starbucks in one hand and a sugarfree red bull in the other before the worst final i ever took in college. we both passed tho

 

This morning was so amazing that I was PUMPED to see what the rest of the day had in store for me. I popped right out of bed at 5am to go to Hot Pilates with my fave instructor. The class was BOMB and after showering and getting ready, I even made it into work early.

As I sat down to begin chipping away at my pile of things to get done, I looked at my phone to see not one, but two emails from Starbucks. Starbucks wanted to thank me for reloading my Gold Card twice, for $100 each. Initially I thought my Merm (mother – no I can’t make things simple) was being really nice and was missing me. I called her and quickly learned that she misses me, but not THAT much.

ENGAGE FREAK OUT! EVERYBODY PANIC! (Ashley I miss you)

So I called the bank and talked to three people for 30 minutes and to spare y’all the details, they cancelled my card, blocked the fraudulent charges from being processed, and are sending me a new card within 7 – 10 business days. Cool. Thanks US BANK!

*I kept my debit card info in the app so I could reload my card quickly and easily. I now see how big of an issue that is*

Then I called Starbucks – and was fully prepared to tell them exactly how shitty I found their product and that if I ever saw a green mermaid again I would violently vomit my protein shake from post-pilates. Graphic.

But you guys, the lady was SO NICE, so SWEET, and even admitted that the Starbucks Mobile App is fucked. She quickly removed all of my banking card info from the app, helped me change my password, and promised a full refund from Starbucks. Ok, ok, I see you Starbucks.

Then she told me (and this is where EVERYONE NEEDS TO PAY ATTENTION):

“I ALWAYS reload my card in store. ALWAYS. This is the time of year when the app gets hacked the most.”

So we heard it from the source itself. THE STARBUCKS APP WILL GET HACKED SO DON’T VOLUNTARILY GIVE IT YOUR BANKING INFO.

my fave downtown lv coffee shop: the beat ❤

The Lesson in all this….

It’s not WHAT happens to you, it’s how YOU HANDLE it.

Thanks Patricio (my dad – no I don’t make nicknames simple)

I could have handled this by crying (I was about to), screaming (I really wanted to), and telling everyone I came across all about this really shitty thing that ruined my really good Friday.

But I didn’t. I remained zen, calmly gave all parties the info they needed to help me solve the problem, and am now able to tell all my friends this story so you can go remove your banking info from the Starbucks app so you don’t get stolen from!

And thing is…all of these people: at US Bank, at Starbucks, my boss who found me in a frantic state – wanted to help ME. Granted the majority of these people make their living by helping people like me, but still they were all SO NICE AND HELPFUL! I also didn’t want to ruin their days by being the random bitch from Vegas who got her card info stolen and was now screaming at them like it was their fault, because it wasn’t.

So now I’ve learned three things since 8:22am:

  1. Don’t trust the Starbucks App with your banking info (or probably any app)
  2. Make all your passwords difficult to decipher and different from each other (NOT “ilovethechainsmokers123”)
  3. Today is still going to be a really good day (FRIDAY!!!)

Cue Bob Marley cuz every little ting is gonna be alright! MON!

Happy Friday! Enjoy this picture of me caressing a pumpkin at a pumpkin patch last night (as seen on insta:: @jessica_oneida)

PUMPKINS! FALL! BYE!

Justin Bieber, I have a bone to pick with u | the importance of forgiving yourself

this cringe worthy photo of 18 year old me and a Justin Bieber cutout is brought to you by Facebook and it’s failure to mysteriously erase my embarrassing lack of judgement.

Welp, this is exactly why I don’t commit to anything lightly. Two days into BLOGtober and I fucked it up. I failed the mission to post a blog everyday in this great month we are experiencing. And I started to beat myself up over it, but then I realized something really important. Which led me to this blog post. Which now brings us to the thesis of today’s entry:

FORGIVE YOURSELF.

Yes that’s right Justin Bieber, there is more to it than just loving yourself. I am now of firm believer and soap boxer preacher of the fact that you cannot love yourself until you forgive yourself.

I get that it’s not an easy task. It’s truly, truly not. Except recently, I’ve discovered just how necessary it is.

I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life. A. LOT. To add to that, I’ve done and said a lot of things that are so worthy of the “Cringe of The Year” Award. Swear to Cheesecake Factory you guys, I’ve said things that, thinking about them now, make me want to go sit in the corner of my closet with my fall boots, cover up with my leopard print Snuggie and scream.

For real, it’s been that bad. But at the same time, every single word was true.

Whether I was telling someone I was sick of games and wanted a relationship or I was asking them creepily where they lived (for clarification purposes, of course) – everything I said, I stand by.

This week, in my opinion, has been particularly cringe-y, but has also opened my eyes. Why you may ask? Because I finally embraced my inner Siggy Flicker and STOPPED CARING!

For those who don’t keep up with the Jersey Housewives, Siggy is one of the “new girls” and this is her tagline:

“Some people think I’m too much. They’re absolutely right!”

I’ve loved her and the tagline since the new season began, but I always found myself arguing why it couldn’t be mine. Whether I was justifying how I needed to “play things safe” for the sake of a future career or whatever it was that I was justifying, I always put it back down. The motto wasn’t mine, not because I didn’t want it to be, but because it “couldn’t be.”

This week I called BULLSHIT and that all changed. Plus, Siggy responded and retweeted me today, so, YASS!🙌


Some background info: It wasn’t until the end of my 23rd year (December 2015) that I not only realized, but I started to own “my crazy”. And lately I’ve started embracing it even more by sharing it with the world.

Because I got such a great reaction when I let myself get hella competitive while playing (and winning) 5 consecutive flip cup games with my office director at the work happy hour on Tuesday. Or the amused responses I receive when I let myself be 100% authentic (and hilarious) on Snapchat. (@jessicalynnn12 – do it.)

And that’s the kind of shit I love. Being my crazy, hilarious, authentic self. All I’ve been hearing lately is to “be yourself and you’ll attract the right people” and I’ve finally forgiven myself of the cringe-y stuff I do and say daily because I doubt it’s changing anytime soon – and why would I want it to?!

Once you can forgive yourself, it allows you to fully understand how awesome you are, and after that you can be EXACTLY who you are regardless of what people think because the right people, the people who are meant to be in your life will find you, stick around, and support you.

Like my best friend Jordan says, “If you have haters, you’re doing something right.” I agree amigo, I agree.

So what I’m going to The 1975 next week solo? So what that I don’t have anyone to go to Kanye with at the end of the month? I find myself to be such good company now that I’ve forgiven myself for being me. Why would I let anything or the lack of anyone stop me from doing everything and anything I want to do with my one, short life.

To end, I’ll leave you with some words from my wise Patricio (my dad):

“Life is either a grand adventure or nothing at all”

(No this isn’t his quote, but he says it all the time so he gets partial credit)

So forgive, then love and embrace yourself and go on the biggest adventure you can imagine! Turn up the Bieber! Live your dreams! Make a friend! Go play in traffic on Las Vegas Boulevard!

Ok, that last one, don’t do. I see it too much. I live on LVB and I can’t stand the humans that don’t use the crosswalk.

Anyway, Adios til next time my Adventure Amigos!

me, being me, in my natural enviornment

PS – I’m a sucker for an alliteration. Makes my heart sing.

PSS – Does my sarcasm and hilarity transfer through words? Or am I going to have to start a YouTube channel? Serious question.

OK…

BYE!

 

 

*Siggy GIF is from eonline.com