I’m leaving my “temporary” home

Five years ago I moved from Small Town USA to Bloomington, Indiana to attend Indiana University. In my naive mind, Bloomington was this massive city that was both absolutely terrifying and unequivocally mesmerizing at the same time. I was thrilled to move away and live the college lifestyle that I always envied in the movies. You know, party everyday and eventually graduate and receive an expensive piece of paper. Deep down I told myself that Bloomington and IU was my “temporary” home. I was going there for school and parties, nothing to it. Little did I know, I would experience some of life’s highest highs and lowest lows in this ol’ college town.

Now that my move-out date is quickly approaching, I’ve been reflecting on my time here and just the thought of saying goodbye is making my heart heavy. I’ve watched some of my closest friends come and go and now that it’s my turn, I’m not mentally prepared.

I never thought this would be the place where I would fall in love, meet my forever friends, or experience how adult life REALLY works. (I still wouldn’t wish adulting on anyone.)

But this is that place. I did fall in love; with my neighbor right across the street to be exact. I did meet my forever friends and I even got the chance to live with them and make so many extraordinary memories along the way. And yes, it IS the place where I learned that I have to bust my ass to get what I want. Even if it was a degree in journalism that I’m struggling with daily to find a decent job. (Not to discourage anyone from pursuing their dream of being a journalist. I’m fine, I promise.)

Bloomington is where I became the woman that I am today. This town and the people I’ve met have shaped me into a selfless, understanding, loving, passionate soul. Yes, I’ve had my rough patches, more than I would like to admit, but the good times outweigh the bad tremendously.

So, with that being said, I look forward to coming back and visiting. I can’t wait to drive past the apartments and houses that I have lived in to reminisce on the one too many beer bong races that I WON on the doorsteps. I can’t wait to pass the bars and have a flood of memories come over me. And I cannot wait to come back and stand in front of those sample gates and be thankful for accomplishing something that not many people get the opportunity to accomplish.

Bloomington will always hold such a special place in my heart. I never knew I would get so attached, but damn I’m glad I did. I wouldn’t trade these past five years for anything in the world.

Thank you, B-Town. It’s been real.

Real. Fun.Sample Gates

Celebrating 25 Years Of Dave Matthews Band

It had been 247 long days since I had seen Dave Matthews Band at the Gorge for my final shows of the 2015 tour.

On May 7th, DMB celebrated their 25th anniversary in the city where it all began, Charlottesville, VA.

Fans traveled from all over the country in order to see this once in a lifetime show. My group strolled into town on Friday and I had never been so excited to get out and explore a new city. Charlottesville made me feel right at home as soon as I got out of the car. The small town feel made me so comfortable and open.

We decided to unpack our things and immediately head downtown where we could visit Miller’s, the legendary bar where Dave Matthews worked and the band performed. After we had taken our pictures and met with friends, we headed to a party that Ants hosted at Mono Loco Restaurant just down the street from Miller’s. I attended the party hoping to see some familiar faces and what happened was even better than expected.

I saw some “old” friends that I met last summer or the summer before, but I also met so many new faces that I had only “met” through social media. Meeting these beautiful souls face to face was an experience like no other. It’s so surreal to meet someone for the first time and to feel as though you’ve known them for years, which is exactly how it feels when I meet people that have the same passion for this band as I do.

We continued our journey on Saturday morning by going back downtown and visitng the art exhibit for the 25th anniversary. Early photographs of the band were featured along with many of Dave’s drawings and handwritten lyrics for some of their most popular songs. A wave of emotions came over me as I walked through the exhibit. I had so many tears of joy pool in my eyes, but I could not keep a smile off of my face. It was a memory I will always cherish. Outside the exhibit, the original van that the band traveled in was on display. It was amazing to see the transformation of 25 years.

My group had floor tickets for the show and decided to go into John Paul Jones Arena around 6pm. We were about 10 rows back from the stage and had a perfect view of the band. The energy in the room was electric.

The band opened with The Song That Jane Likes, which hasn’t been an opener since 1994. They played three new songs, which completely blew me away. (Samurai Cop, Bob Law and Bismarck)

AND GET THIS.

Last Stop.

Sugar Will.

They haven’t been played since 2010.

The whole show was incredible. I’m so incredibly thankful that I was present for such an amazing performance. The band was totally on fire and the fans were loving every single second.

I am so proud to call these fans my family and friends and to connect over this band who has brought so much joy to all of our lives. The entire weekend was something I will always carry with me.

Thank you, Dave Matthews Band.

 

Late Night Wonders

It’s funny.. As I’m about to embark on another life changing adventure to Seattle, I find myself lying in bed thinking of childhood memories…

I used to go outside and sit on the front porch of my home, tucked away into the rural countryside of Southern Indiana and I would watch the planes…

I used to always imagine the captain and his passengers could look down and see me, so I would wave…

I would wave and pretend they were waving back. I had no idea that I resembled a speck of dust to them…

Now, I’m thinking of my first time on a plane and how I made sure to have a window seat so I could look below my feet and down onto the front porches of all the homes in the “fly-over states” and wave to the kids who haven’t had a chance to make their first trip on a plane…

The kids who were waving to me and wishing me well on my travels and imagining the magical places that my plane was flying to…

In two weeks I will board my flight and wave to the kids who will soon be filling my shoes and arriving at the airport for the first time with butterflies in their stomach, but excitement in their eyes for a new adventure…

Best. Birthday. Ever. 

As some of you may know, I am currently on my Davecation road trip for Dave Matthews Band. I just had two concerts in Alabama. Our first stop was Orange Beach on June 2nd. GREAT SHOW. (As usual) Our next stop was on my birthday, June 3rd, Tuscaloosa AL. 

Our day started at 4 am in the pit line with about 5 other people. We sat and hung out and spent our time talking about our recent adventures. Throughout the day we would hear other fans saying they had seen some of the band members around the venue.

We ran into Jeff Coffin, saxophonist for DMB and he was so sweet to stop and take a picture with me for my birthday. About an hour later we ran into DAVE MATTHEWS! 

DAVE. MATTHEWS. 

I always told myself if I ever got the chance to meet him, I would have him autograph next to my Firedancer tattoo and I would get his signature tattooed. Well, he rode up on his bicycle and removed his helmet and gloves and I told him that it was my birthday. He smiled and wished me a happy birthday and I asked for a photo and he said of course! He apologized for being sweaty (like I cared) and he squeezed me so tight I thought I was going to melt. 
After the picture I almost forgot about the autograph so I asked if he would sign and he said yeah, of course. I was wearing high waisted shorts and they were covering my ribs where I wanted him to sign so I proceeded to unbutton them while mentioning that I wasn’t planning on removing them and Dave laughed and said oh no, that’s quite alright! 

I honestly could not have asked for a better birthday. It was by far the best day of my life. I am one happy happy girl. 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME! 

Life is short but sweet for certain.  

     

Let’s catch up..

It has been a while since I’ve made a post, but as I lay in bed and watch a live stream of the Dave Matthews Band concert I am overwhelmed with excitement. 

This summer is going to be one to remember. (As every summer should be for a college student) In two weeks I will be road tripping with a great friend to Alabama for two DMB shows. The Tuscaloosa show happens to fall on my birthday and my excitement level is THROUGH THE ROOF. I have never been to a show on my birthday and to top it all off, we have PIT tickets!

Now, after the Alabama shows we come back for one day and then we’re hitting two more shows closer to home. Four shows in five days. This is the kind of thing that I live for. Road trip with best friends, great music, seeing old friends, meeting beautiful people along the way. 

I will be attending a couple shows in July and then in September I will be returning to the beautiful state of Washington to revisit the place that changed my life, The Gorge. Three more amazing days of Dave and the boys and I’ll be traveling with my cousin who is now located in LA, so we’ll drive along the coast and make unforgettable memories together. 

Now, let’s back up a little bit. Last week I traveled to Nashville and Louisville to see Frank Turner perform. (Yes, I am a live music junkie) While there, I saw a girl in the front row next to us with tears streaming down her face. Not due to sadness, it was due to the happiness that his songs made her feel. I was tearing up because I know that EXACT feeling. Music has a way of reaching into our souls and lifting us up higher than we’ve ever been. 

I am so grateful that I’ve been given this life and I’ve been able to experience the amazing things that I have. Music is a way of life for me and I’m sure, to many of you. I have met some amazing, beautiful souls due to the Dave Matthews Band and if I’ve learned one thing from them; always be accepting and show the love that everyone deserves. Be true to yourself and great things will happen. 

Now, with that said, I wish you all a beautiful summer and you’ll be able to keep up on my travels during the next few months because I will definitely be posting about my adventures. I hope you all enjoy! 

Peace & Love

(WO)Man’s best friend

I decided to visit home last night and as I was leaving this morning I was struck with a sudden sadness because I didn’t want to leave my dogs.

I have a Pitbull and Boxer at my parents’ house. They are the sweetest animals I have ever encountered.

Diesel (Pitbull) and Walter (Boxer) slept next to me the entire night, one on each side. It was one of the best nights of sleep that I have had. They have such strong personalities.

Walter is outgoing and the life of the party. Diesel is more laid back and carefree. They both love to run and play tug-o-war. Max loves to be in front of the camera while Diesel is more apprehensive. (They both warm up quickly if I’m the photographer.)

As I was driving back to my house today, I realized how much of an impact a dog can have on your life.

They know exactly how you feel. They lay with you when you’re sick, they are happy when you’re happy, they greet you with such excitement every time you walk in the door. Your mood can go from the lowest low to the highest high. It’s such a contagious happiness.

Whenever I visit home and have to leave it breaks my heart to say goodbye, but I know that as soon as I see them again it will be like I never left. These two dogs are my entire heart and soul. Unconditional love at its finest.

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