In No Specific Order

Food. Cats. Jokes. Me.

Random Thought Bubbles

I suggest reading my random thoughts aloud to yourself in a quiet and creepy whisper, just as I do when I am presenting these interesting ideas to myself, looking out onto yonder. You know, sort of like Zack Morris did when he called “time out” during Saved By The Bell, which was one of the most amazing shows of all time. Just imagine me calling a “time out” on myself, looking deeply at the horizon, while little thought bubbles emerge from my brain, as I whisper random thoughts quietly into my personal space, pretending that no one else can hear me.

Random Thought Bubble One:

I should start using LinkedIn as a means of dating. I mean…right? I can go home after a long day of work, enjoy a glass of cheap red wine, graze LinkedIn for attractive business professionals and send them private messages. If I do this between the hours of 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., as far as I am concerned, I could basically just call it happy hour. And if I do call it happy hour, that will make it seem totally normal, which will then make it seem totally socially acceptable. Right?

I think my opening line will be, “Hi, my name is Nichole. May I endorse you for a professional skill?”


Random Thought Bubble Two:

I wonder if my cats, Huck Finn, H. Keller and Thomas would like their names if they became real people for a day? Oh, I sure hope they would. If not though, I wonder what they would want me to call them? Probably something simple and mundane, like: Cornelia or Mr. Vandersworth.

Ugh…ungrateful felines. They can’t even enjoy their birth names that I graciously bestowed upon them. Maybe I should become a dog person?

HAHAHA…Me? A dog person? Now that is funny.

Random Thought Bubble Three:

So what if I don’t shower for four days in a row, even after sweat has been dripping profusely from my hair, after an hour of vigorous exercise? Not showering for a couple of days is just my way of protecting our planet. Right…that is it! I am not a disgusting adult for not showering on a regular basis. I am actually an environmentally conscience citizen who is conserving our planet’s water supply!

I am a water conservationist, not an uncleanly adult-clearly!

Random Thought Bubble Four:

I think if Leslie Knope, from Parks and Rec, and Liz Lemon, from 30 Rock, made a baby…I would be the result of that. I would be their love child. Like the lovely Leslie, I am a mad woman who is upbeat, a relentless friend, and eager to change the world with one wickedly odd sense of humor. And, like Lemon, I am also a workaholic, high strung and tend to seek unnecessary approval from my elders.

Yeah, I would definitely be the product of a Knope-Lemon affair.


The proof is in the Meme! Am I right?

Random Thought Bubble Five:

Are dreams real? I wish they were. If my dreams were real…I would be a mermaid who is also an undercover bad-ass for the S.L.I.A. (Sea Life Intelligence Agency). In my dreams, my mermaid fins become invisible to the human eye and I am responsible for protecting the “Leg People”, which are also known as humans. If my dreams were real, I would live on a beach, in a mansion, near the the “Killer Beach Whale”. The whale is not really a killer, rather the whale is the one who flaps his/her fins so tremendously that he or she is the sole creator of the most magical, and calming, beach waves…and hurricanes.

Don’t worry, in my dreams, both the waves and the hurricanes are a splendid delight. Well, except for that one time when one of the waves killed Brad Pitt…That is an entirely different dream you do NOT want to know about.

However, if my dreams were real, my Mom would live in a one bedroom apartment with a very old Asian man, who doesn’t speak a lick of English, who she also recently started dating. My mother dating an old Asian man in my dreams would be strange because she and my Dad are happily married. And, if my dreams were real, all of my teeth would have fallen out of my head, with the wad of gum I usually try to pry out of my mouth while climbing mountains. Both of those dreams, or should I say night terrors for the latter, usually end in tears. I am not sure I would want these dreams to be real. I mean, I don’t even chew gum anymore, as a result of these terrifying nightmares.

Maybe these dreams shouldn’t come true…?


Tell me, what thoughts arrive in your brain, via the “Random Thought Bubble”?


Current Dilemma

Here is my current dilemma:

I work out to keep my body looking young and fresh, like a young spring chicken.


However, after I exercise my muscles, my body doesn’t feel so young and fresh. Instead, after I get my blood flowing, via the treadmill, it feels a lot like how the Crypt Keeper looked, from Tales from the Crypt.




I am not even 30 and I can barely walk down the stairs after a good gym sesh’!

What is a girl to do? Keep it looking good, but feel like death? Or, stop busting moves at the gym and actually look like the Crypt Keeper?

Getting old is seriously rough!



Sisters With Voices

So, I when I was about ten years old, my Mom and Dad allowed me to make a recorded tape of myself singing at Cedar Point (which is a theme park that set up singing booths throughout the park to generate some extra chedda’)  because I thought that I was going to be a professional singer. However, they wanted me to make a recorded tape of myself, so that they could prove to me that I needed to really start exploring my other talents, as they did not believe that my vocal chords were on par with Janet Jackson’s singing abilities. Their efforts proved fruitless because after I heard myself singing Weak, by SWV (Sisters With Voices), I knew I was destined to be an award winning vocal artist.

Years later, turns out my parents, Jack and Peg, were in fact correct about my inability to sing well. I mean, eventually, I was going to have to come down to reality and accept that being tone deaf is probably not helping my ability to accurately judge the tunes coming out of my mouth.   However, there is a small part of me that will always want to close my office door, turn the lights down low, grab a hair brush, and sing with my ‘sisters’ when Weak plays on my Paula Abdul Pandora station, which I rock on a regular basis.

And, even though I could not carry a tune if my life depended on it, that still has not stopped me from preparing my speech for the Grammy’s for when I win my award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.


*Side Note: I loved SWV. I owned the cassette tape (if anyone even remembers what a cassette tape was). The album was called,  It’s About Time, and listened to this gem on a regular basis. Trust me when I tell you that I knew almost every word to almost every song. Man, I miss my sisters.

Today on: My Life in Memes



You know…we all have that one friend who passes judgment, or a friend of a friend who passes judgment, and you have that one friend who tells you about the judgment, and you just want to say…”Really? Have you seen your social media lately?”

I mean, we are all going to make judgments at some point in our lives, but don’t you just hate it when other people tell you about the judgments others are passing on you?

Lord knows I do.

This Week On: My Life in Memes

VDay Meme

Right? Who is with me? I mean, I just do not understand why John Krasinski and Jason Sudeikis have to be married? I was really hoping to spend my Valentine’s Day with one of those two hunks.



Check out that hair! Thank you sea salt spray, a bad night of sleep, and a 5 am work out for my Beetlejuice hair style. Jealous?


Cat Meme

Our new puppy sure is cute, but she is by far the wildest animal our family has ever had! If she is not busy tearing everything up that she can put in her mouth, she is harassing my three precious cats. No joke, I think she wants to eat them and they hate it. Poor babies!

Screaming Like a Homicidal Maniac

Ok, so I am not gonna lie, there are times during the day, that I feel an extreme urge to lock myself inside of a closet and scream like a homicidal maniac, in order to function like a normal adult. I do not even have enough hands and/or toes to count the amount of times that I actually have locked myself inside of a vehicle, an office room, a bathroom or a garage and yelled at the top of my lungs to get out my ongoing aggression towards a frustrating day. If you have not yet tried locking yourself inside of a quiet room to expel your daily anger, I highly recommend it-trust me it worksv . However, on the days that locking myself inside of a weird and secluded place has not worked, I have taken to releasing my anger through other outlets, which have worked quite successfully, if I do say so myself!

I would like to share those outlets with you!

Please see below for other ways to successfully release your daily anger below:

  1. Happy Hour:

    If you are not into screaming in order to to let our your aggression, might I refer you to a little thing called “Happy Hour”? As I have stated before, and as I will continue to loudly preach, Happy Hour is the perfect time of day between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. when the most amazing restaurants offer food and spirits at a lovely discounted price. Whenever I am having a rough day, there is nothing like meeting a good friend for a serious vent session, while enjoying some cocktails. Or sometimes I find myself just going alone for a drink when the thought of chatting with someone makes me want to pull my hair out of my head happens. Either way, I always relax after a smooth glass of inexpensive wine enters my body with a plate of food that did not cost me my arm and leg. Please, next time you feel like you are going to lose it, take my advice and hit up Happy Hour. You will not regret it, pinkie swear!

  2. Work It Out:

    When I feel myself really getting down and out about life or having a serious case of the “why me’s” I need to hit the gym. For those of you who do not know, the “why me’s” is what I like to call the feeling that I get when I think that I am the only person in the world that has anything bad or stressful has ever happen to.  So, when the “why me’s” strike like a bolt of lightening, I find it insanely helpful to take my tail feathers to the gym and run like the wind. Exercising always helps me fell better. Sometimes, if I cannot force myself out of the basement, where I currently live like a troll, and I am in serious need of a mood booster, I will exercise my right to pretend to really work it out with my Dad’s five pound dumbbells that I have confiscated from him (not that he was even using them, to be clear). When I do decide to wallow in the basement, I will usually lift a few weights and call it a day. Seriously though I find that my meager attempt to get the endorphins going really helps. If you are not a gym body, like myself, just do a couple of push-ups at home, in your basement alone. I promise you will feel loads better!

  3. Enjoy A Good Laugh:

    You know that saying, “laughing is contagious”? Well, laughing is definitely contagious! I have found that watching Friends, The Office and/or Parks and Rec have become the only three shows, in my life, that create belly aching laughter even after the most stressful of days. Nothing brings a smile to my face more than watching Chandler from Friends make a bad joke, or Dwight from The Office doing something creepy to Jim while plotting to become the next office manager, or Leslie Knope, from Parks and Rec, obsessing awkwardly over her friends. Each of these shows has created a special place in my heart that brings out child like laughter that is unlike anything else, especially when I am in a bad mood. If you have not watched any of these shows, please do yourself a favor and “Netflix and chill” with these three shows as soon as possible, so that you too can enjoy a belly aching laugh, instead of sitting wallowing around in anger!

  4. Cry!:

    I am sorry, but sometimes it is just therapeutic to enjoy a good cry! If I have just endured a day that felt like I was punched in the gut, crying at some point is absolutely inevitable. Sometimes during a dreadful day, I find it very rewarding to hold my tears in until I get home. I truly enjoy coming home after a long day, putting on my fat pants, tearing off my bra, pouring a glass of wine, making myself a cheese plate, turning on a romantic movie and balling my eyes out like a baby. Crying, for me, is one of the best ways to let go of the emotions I have been holding onto for far too long. If you need to cry, just do it. Lord knows that I cry on a regular basis and damn does it feel good!

  5. Talk To Yo’ Parents:

    I have been very blessed in my life to have been created by two very amazing people. My parents, Jack and Peg, are almost always willing to lend an open ear when I am ready to lose my mind and go ape sh** crazy. If you are as lucky as I and you have the ability to consult with your parents when you are feeling meaner than the Grinch, you should do it. My parents always let me vent to them, complain about the most minute things in life and then give me  advice, that I usually am frustrated with, but almost always end up following! I know that we all think that our parents are dumb, but boy do I feel loads better after verbally releasing my rage while my parents listen does wonders for my psyche.


I hope you have found one of the five stress relievers listed above sufficient for your relaxation needs. If not, however, I formally apologize. I would then fully recommend that you find the nearest vacant closet, scream from the bottom of your lungs, until your face is beet juice red, take a few deep breaths and come back down to reality before you hurt someone! Tonight, I will be taking my aggression out with a stiff drink at Blue Point Grille with a gal pal and hopefully dancing the night away to some awful jams at a local dive bar!


The Must Reads of My Reads

Hey All!

I am re-sharing this blog for one reason, and one reason only! Last night, I discoverd that the movie “The Devil in the White City”, which I recommended on my Must Reads list, is finally being turned into a movie. I heard talk of this epic event happening about three years ago, but as of last night, the news is official.

Even better news, as if there could be any? The one and only Leonardo DiCaprio is set to star in this must see film, which is going to be directed by Martin Scorsese! Word on the street is that gruesome does not even describe how disgusting the movie will be…eek!

All I have to say is that I hope that this movie will follow the timeline and events of the book because they were truly traumatic.

In No Specific Order

I love to read. Or rather, I love to listen to books on audio. I am one busy girl and having the time to sit down and enjoy a good book is just not something I can squeeze into my already stretched schedule. So, since I have had a two hour daily commute for almost two years, I have taken a strong liking to books on audio. There are two things I love doing in this world more than anything: shopping for fresh produce and listening to books on audio. Below is a list of some of my favorite books that I have either listened to or actually read, years ago when I was not such a busy lady.


 Books with the strikethrough represent books that I did not love, but managed to make it all the way though.

10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without…

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If I am Being Honest…

*I have previously shared this story with friends and family before, as I have actually written this specific article over a year ago. I am re-sharing it now on the blog as a reminder of how impactful relationships can be on our lives and who we are as people. My hope is that those of you who read this blog can relate to what I have been through and hopefully will find comfort in knowing that you are not alone. The battles that I have gone through with my previous relationship has truly made me realize that I am blessed to have such tremendous friends and family in my life, and knowing this has given me comfort in my life.

I met my ex on March 28, 2005 when a girlfriend of mine and I went to his apartment to booze, instead of joining some of our friends on a senior high school trip to Myrtle Beach. On that night, I kept saying to my ex, “You look like that guy from that movie!” He responded with, “Yeah, I know. I get that a lot. You mean Noah, from The Notebook, right?” I, however, was not referring to Noah from The Notebook, but rather the tall gangly guy, Spike, from the movie Notting Hill, starring Julia Roberts. My ex was walking around his apartment readjusting himself because all he could be bothered to wear was a pair of boxers, just like Spike. Ironically though, my ex did resemble Noah from the movie The Notebook, but only when sporting a full beard. Truthfully, I believe that if I would have joined my friends on the Spring Break trip to Myrtle Beach that my ex and I would have never began the greatest love affair I have ever had. Our meeting was total serendipity, or fate if you will.

Later that summer fate would be on our side again when my ex and I realized that we would both be attending Kent State University together in the fall of 2005. He would be entering the university as a junior, while I was entering as a freshman. The two of us just so happened to have applied and had been accepted to Kent State before either of us were ever officially introduced to each other in March. Once my ex learned that he and I would both be attending Kent, in the fall of 2005, he made our relationship official and I began wearing my Irish Claddagh ring the correct way to let everyone know that I was taken. After the two of us made our commitment to one another, we spent the remainder of the summer and into the school year falling deeply in love with each other.

The two of us would take long walks, go out for ice cream, spend time with our friends, watch movies together, and make love to one another. To this day, I tell people that my ex was the first person who I had intercourse with, even though this is not an entirely accurate statement. I did choose to give my virginity away to my first boyfriend from high school, however, my ex was the first person, and only person, with whom I have ever made love with. At the time, I know he felt the same way about me. Our love for one another grew even stronger throughout the fall months while we were in college. Now we were spending our time mixing old friends with new ones, studying together in our free time, making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on our lunch breaks in my dorm, swimming together at the gym, and all the while just having fun and happy to be with one another. Our love was simple and easy then.

It was not until April that my ex and I had suffered from any real relationship issues. I had discovered that my ex had recently begun talking to his ex from high school. Naturally, I was devastated. My devastation grew stronger when my ex called it quits with me on April 14, 2006 and a month later was officially seeing his ex. The two were “Facebook official”. That relationship continued for almost a year, which was the longest my ex and I had ever gone without speaking to one another, that is, until this last year. After my ex ended his relationship with his other ex, we immediately began talking, but only as friends. My last two years of college were spent hanging out with my ex on random occasions, either at the bar or getting lunch. Occasionally, he and I would “hook-up” or spend the afternoons randomly cuddling with each other, which always made me insanely happy, but left me feeling a deep void in my heart.

He and I both knew that we still loved each other, but the timing for us was not written in the stars. However, our friendship and understanding of one another did continue to grow throughout the years. After I graduated from college and moved back home, I reached out to my ex and told him that if he wanted to get together sometime and hang out that I would be open to doing something, as almost all of my friends were continuing their education at Kent State getting their masters. In reflection, I should have joined them. Days later, my ex and I went to the zoo and we picked up exactly where we had left off in 2006. Immediately, we were holding hands, making gentle touches on each other’s available skin, and stealing kisses from one another when no one was looking. The magic was back and the timing could not have been more perfect.

Over the next two years, my ex and I spent as much time together as we could. I was blissful and I believed that he was too. At the time, I had never been so happy in my life than when I was with my ex. Just being in his presence brought a feeling of peace to my life. He made me feel happy just by being himself-fun, reasonable, and giving. His sense of consciousness and his willingness to volunteer were qualities that made me proud to be by his side. The two of us were a dynamic pair, but like all great things, everything must come to an end. Truly, I believe that our love was probably so great and so tragic because we knew it would be short lived, so every minute together had only been that much more special.

On December 1, 2011 my ex told me that he, again, needed time to figure out what he was doing with his life. And, to be honest, I did not blame him. I was ready to get married, move-in together, buy a house, or move to Chicago with him. I even told him before we broke up that I would be moving away, with or without him. In hind sight, I always thought my ex was the free spirit, but over time, I have come to realize that I am the one who is wild and daring, while he is the more stable and sturdy one, which is something I wish I realized earlier.

If I had realized this earlier, I probably would have moved to Chicago as soon as I could and my time spent in Chicago when I did finally move would have been much longer, rather than the short lived experience it had turned into. I probably would have done so many more interesting things with my life if I stopped regarding my ex as someone who was ready for new and exciting challenges because then I would have challenged myself so much more. I was, and am, always ready for new experiences. My ex, however, was still busy just being one of the guys. Our lives, although we had been together, had grown a part. He was not ready to grow up, and I had already been an adult. My ex and I decided we needed to stop seeing each other, even though we still loved each other very much.

That break-up was the hardest thing I have gone through to date. For me our separation was like mourning a death of a loved one. The death of our future. The death of my best friend. The death of the love of my life. The death of not being able to spend time with his amazing family. The death of us. We were no longer a “we”. I was in true mourning. I stopped eating. I couldn’t sleep. I got my first ever verbal warning at work because of my inability to adequately perform my job. I was inconsolable. I thought that my life would be over and I thought I would never be able to move on, but I was wrong.

The last time I spoke to my ex was in 2013 after I moved home from Chicago. After we broke up in December, he came back into my life two times with heartfelt attempts to make amends and recommit to our life together. He even moved many of his belonging into my apartment while I lived in The Windy City. His efforts were fruitless. He still had not grown up, even though he desperately wanted to, and I could not forgive him for all the hurt he had caused me over the years. I think he and I both knew that our novel, the story of our relationship, was over. If I am being honest, I think we both knew it was over long before either of us were able to admit it to anyone, but more importantly, we could not admit it to ourselves.

For years, my ex and I had been like two magnetic forces, drawn to each other so fluidly that it was like we were made for each other, but repelled each other so strongly that we would never be able to connect. On more than one occasion, he even told me, “Nichole, I can’t help myself, I feel drawn to you.” I have to admit, that I felt the same about him. However, since the two of us have not spoken in years, those feelings have changed. I have only seen him once, from a distance while at a bar, and even though my knees were shaking and my palms were sweaty and my eyes were welling up with tears, my pull to him, like it once was, had disappeared. My respect and fondness for our love remained, but the gravitational pull that I had felt for my ex was gone. I felt like I had finally been able to move on.

I am writing this blog because I recently heard through the grapevine, that my ex has been dating someone for quite some time and I would be lying if I said that I did not spend the remainder of the night crying deeply. Whale sized tears exited my eyes and red swelling overtook my cheeks, but I was not crying because I miss my ex, I was crying because I have yet to find someone to totally share my life with as it appears as he has. I am writing this blog because I can actually say that I am truly happy for him. The only thing I have ever wanted for my ex, while we were together, and even after we ended, and even though snide remarks still spew from my mouth from time-to-time (no girl could blame me) is for him to be as happy as he made me for so many years, even during our most challenging times. My hope for him is that his new girlfriend fills his heart with the love that I never could. If I am being honest, I wish the best for him and whomever he chooses to date because, he deserves the best, just as I do…and hopefully someday I will find another great love that fills my life with peace and bliss yet again.


(As a side note, I feel that it was insanely important for me to write this blog as my ex was a huge part of my life and changed me in many significant ways. Without him, I would not have known how great love could be. The relationship I had with him, indirectly, has taught me so much about myself and how grateful I am to have amazing friends and family. I have been so lucky to have people in my life who cared for me during the break-up, supported me during my move to Chicago and took time out of their lives to hold me up through some of the most challenging times in my life. The break-up with my ex may have been difficult, but through that experience my life has been made profoundly better. I have been blessed.)

The Must Reads of My Reads

I love to read. Or rather, I love to listen to books on audio. I am one busy girl and having the time to sit down and enjoy a good book is just not something I can squeeze into my already stretched schedule. So, since I have had a two hour daily commute for almost two years, I have taken a strong liking to books on audio. There are two things I love doing in this world more than anything: shopping for fresh produce and listening to books on audio. Below is a list of some of my favorite books that I have either listened to or actually read, years ago when I was not such a busy lady.


 Books with the strikethrough represent books that I did not love, but managed to make it all the way though.

10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self Help That Actually Works–True Story  -By Dan Harris  

All of the Harry Potter Books -By J.K. Rowling

Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (entire series)-By Steig Larson

The Hunger Games (Entire Series)-By Suzanne Collins

The Choice, The Best of Me, A Bend in the Road-By Nicholas Sparks

(If you are in need of a good tear jerker and feel good story, look no further than these three Nicholas Sparks books. They are all amazing.)

 You Can’t Make This Stuff Up-By Theresa Caputo

Heaven is for Real-Thomas Nelson

(Truly a feel good story if you are believer. Otherwise, you may not want to read this book.)

The Wettest County in the World-Matt Boundurant

(This book was made into a movie called Lawless. Both the book and the movie were as interesting as they were entertaining. A must read and a must see.)

The Skinny Girl Rules-By Bethanny Frankel

 Twilight, Breaking Dawn-By Stephanie Meyer

(Save yourself the misery and just see the movie. That is all I have to say about that.)

Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead-By Neal Scovell and Sheryl Sandberg

(This book was absolutely empowering, eye opening, and introspective. If you are a woman who is struggling between a career and a family, then this is an absolute must read!)

The Fault in Our Stars-By John Green

(I cried like a baby. No joke, I balled from beginning to end. Read this book.)

Gone Girl-By Gillian Flynn

(It took me a while to really get into this book, but when I did, I could not turn it off. Gone Girl was insanely suspenseful. I literally wanted to punch both characters in the face because they were both so crazy, but both totally riveting. Again this is a must read, or a must see as this book was made into a movie, which is also called Gone Girl.)

 Dorothy Must Die-By Danielle Paige

(Dorothy Must die was a very cool twist on The Wizard of OZ, but the second book, The Wicked Will Rise, was awful. I literally listened to about five minutes of the book before I realized it was not worthy of attention.

The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic and Madness at the Fair that Changed America-By Erik Larson

(You have to read this book. The Devil in the White City explores the creation of The World’s Fair, in Chicago and the life of Henry Mudgett who is one of the most notorious serial killers of all time. This book is disturbing, interesting, and full of interesting knowledge, like when the first Pabst Blue Ribbon was introduced!)

P.S. This just in: The Devil in the White City is being turned into a movie, staring the amazing Leonardo DiCaprio. Check the link below to read the article in Vanity Fair!

Everything I Need to Know I Learned From a Little Golden Book-By Diane Muldrow



(I love this book. Some of the most interesting life lessons ever learned are in this book. I mean, honestly, being open to making new friends is key in life! Life lesson learned.)

Let me know what you think! What are your favorite books? Got any good suggestions for me? Do tell!


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