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24 years later

Another year older, another year (I feel a little) wiser. Birthdays are bittersweet for me, but when I think about where I am on today, this year, versus where I was on this day last year (job-hunting, dating two jerks, unhappy), I feel so, so, so, so, so grateful.

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I made a lot of hard decisions at the end of my 23rd year…I chose to take a break from New York, to leap for a job outside of my comfort zone, to re-evaluate my priorities in life, and to really set goals for myself. I’m really happy with these decisions so far, and I’m so goddamn excited for my 24th year.

My birthday always makes me think about the future. Will I feel different next year, when I turn 25? What about 28? Or 30? Will I be married? Have kids? A mortgage? Stop coloring my hair?  It’s a mystery, but there is definitely some stuff I want to accomplish in the next few years. So, true to form, I’ve made a list. And I’ve given myself a pretty big window. Anything I should add?

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24 things i want for my 24th birthday

I shared my general holiday/birthday wish list with you guys around Christmastime, but here is an updated version featuring TWENTYFOUR things (material and hypothetic) in honor of my 24th birthday on January 31.

1. Better sleep quality.

2. REALLY REALLY REALLY good Neapolitan-style pizza.

3. These Brother Vellies boots.

4. A massage.

5. La Mer face cream.

6. This way-too-trendy Chloe bag that I can’t stop thinking about.

7. To stay at The Plaza Hotel for one night.

8. Tickets to Hamilton.

9. Doughnuts from Kane’s.

10. To see James Turrell’s Roden Crater.

11. Those shiny number balloons that every basic bitch takes a pic with on her birthday.

12. Love Style Life by Garance Doré.

13. Rose gold Birkenstocks.

14. Flowers.

15. Lunch with Mindy Kaling.

16. A custom necklace from Smith + Mara.

17. A Kale Caesar salad from sweetgreen.

18. Warm weather.

19. A bath in a clawfoot tub.

20. Chocolate cake. (I’m going to make this one.)

21. A jacket exactly like this but with my last name on it.

22. I Hope You Find Me: The Love Poems of craigslist’s Missed Connections by Alan Feuer.

23. A Moroccan wedding blanket. (I regret not buying one of these when I was in Marrakech every. damn. day.)

24. A weighted blanket, which was marketed to me once as “Advil PM for your whole body” and now I’m going to die if I don’t get one.

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22

I can’t believe I’m already 22. This time last year, I had just arrived in Amsterdam, and however cliché it sounds, it feels like yesterday. Following last year’s tradition, here are 22 things I have learned in my 22 years.

1. Happiness is the most important thing.

2. Being blonde IS more fun.

3. Punctuality is a virtue.

4. Not all friendships are forever.

5. People who love to eat are the best people. (I think Julia Child gets credit for this)

6. Air conditioning is worth the money.

7. Beer is actually pretty good.

8. You can’t give up carbs when you live in NYC. (bagels & pizza, duh)

9. Lipstick does a lot for your face.

10. So does liquid eyeliner.

11. If you wear heels enough your feet become numb to the pain.

12. Time is more important than money.

13. Experience is more important than anything.

14. I’m talented.

15. Dealing with a landlord sucks.

16. I like food more than people.

17. Cooking makes me happy.

18. Matcha (green tea) has literally changed my life.

19. Starbucks is a rip-off.

20. I’m really good at winning Twitter contests.

21. Time flies!

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21

Well, here it is. Finally. In a few short hours, I will reach 21 years of age, a milestone of young adulthood, yet I feel no different than I did on my twentieth birthday, nor my nineteenth. On my 18th birthday, which is supposed to mark adulthood, I registered to vote and bought a scratch ticket (didn’t win anything, obviously). Last year, I hated turning 20 because my age no longer carried the naiveté of a teenager, yet I still couldn’t legally buy a bottle of champagne. And tomorrow I will be 21, an insignificant birthday here in Amsterdam where the drinking age is 18.

Anyway, I thought I would share with you 21 things I have learned in my humble 21 years of life. There are still many places to travel and countless adventures to be had, but I could not be any more blessed. HBD 2 me.

1. Nobody will ever love you as much as your parents do.

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2. Small talk is a waste of time.

3. So is straightening your hair.

4. When in doubt, have a cup of coffee.

5. People who don’t laugh at your jokes aren’t your friends.

6. Make friends with the bartender.

7. Men’s deodorant > women’s deodorant.

8. The only guy you can trust is your dad. IMG_2562

9. It’s impossible to wash cigarette smoke out of your hair.

10. There’s a reason why three-buck-chuck is only $3.

11. Don’t bleach your hair when you’re 13.

12. Don’t bleach your hair when you’re 20.

13. Money doesn’t make the world go round.

14. ALWAYS have dessert.

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15. Instagram as much as you want.

16. Meditate everyday.

17. Haircuts aren’t worth crying about.

18. Neither are boys.

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19. You can never have enough shoes. (Sorry, mom)

20. Find the right shade of lipstick.

21. There is no better friend than a sister.

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