NEW YEAR’S EVE RETROSPECTIVE

2013: A LOOK BACK

I am inspired to do this list by YouTube darling Tyler Oakley’s 100 Things I Did This Year video. If you’re not a fan of Tyler, aka the Queen of YouTube and the internet, I’ll fill you in- Tyler is an extremely likable gay guy from Michigan making it big through YouTube videos in LA. He has a great laugh and even Scott likes when I have his videos on (when I apply my make up, I am always watching somebody- and sometimes, Scott has to leave the room! His tolerance for annoyance is low). Start here if you want more Tyler.

At any rate, I wanted to put together my own version of 100 Things I did in 2013- and although it was certainly a big year for me, I think I’ll do 40 things instead of 100.

So here we go! My 23rd year was one of my best ever- full of an amazing amount of change, love, wild rides, and new experiences.

Happy New Year! Here we go!

1. I started the year in Florida, taking care of my 91 year old grandpa. It was a hard trip, given his age and condition, and my close friend Rose was kind enough to take me out to dinner on the beach in Deerfield Beach, Florida. I ordered white wine sangria and waldorf pear salad. It was amazing. As always, Rose has been my saving grace- and that trip where she happened to be twenty miles from me in Florida at the same time was no exception.

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2. I started spring semester at Southwestern University, and celebrated my friend Abigail’s birthday on January 16th. We haven’t talked too often with me on leave of absence until January, but Abigail is one of the most down to earth, funny, and truly kind hearted people I’ve met in my life. After not having class together for a year, we started 2013 off with Anthropology class together all spring! (PS- isn’t she the cutest lady ever?)

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3. I started watching The Sopranos. To this day, it brings me joy when my boss calls me “T”, which is what everyone calls Tony Soprano. My brother says he always thinks of me when he watches Tony on screen. Why, I am not sure.

4. I started house sitting for Rose, giving me an excuse to leave Georgetown and to begin a life that included queso just down the street and a real bath tub to soak in. Rose was in Florida with her parents and pup, and I was joyously living at her place on weekends.

5. I ordered About Time Protein in the Birthday Cake flavor. You want motivation to work out? Spend $30 on this delicious 2 pounds of awesome.

6. I flew into Florida- AGAIN- to see my Poppy.

7. I ordered $120 running shoes, by Altra Zero, designed to help with my troublesome feet. My life was forever changed… And now I’m left here with a need for hundred twenty dollar shoes every time I break 75 miles and need to order more. You take the good with the bad, I guess!

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8. I momentarily became obsessed with the idea that Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher were dating. I guess I never got over Kelso & Jackie on That 70’s Show!

9. I learned how to make protein pancakes, pumpkin muffins, and FINALLY- finally, I learned how to cook really juicy chicken in a sautee pan. If you want tips, let me know. I will immodestly say that I make the best chicken around.

10. I bought the perfect striped top at Buffalo Exchange. I could spend the next ten years looking for a top this great, and I won’t find it.

11. I flew into Florida AGAIN. And this time, I brought John Green’s A FAULT IN OUR STARS and cried by the pool of the old persons’ home.

12. I successfully pulled off SURPRISING MY GRANDFATHER with my brother in Florida. Pop was expecting just me- and when I said, Hold on, I left something in the hall, my brother burst in to my grandfather’s shock. It was one of the best moments of my life, let alone this year.

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12. I also worked out at a boutique gym, hit up Starbucks and Sephora, watched the scary finale of the Batman movie series over Skinny Girl Margaritas with Rose in Del Ray, Florida.

13. I was quite possibly too emotionally invested in The Bachelor this year. Let’s not talk about it.

14. I started drinking hot water with lemon, and apple cider vinegar in water every day, until I decided maybe that’s too much acid for one human body to take.

15. I got into Gossip Girl, Daily Grace, Hannah Hart, Perks of Being A Wallflower, Pitch Perfect and podcasts. By “into” I mean “crazy obsessed with.”

16. I ordered a white denim vest off Forever 21.com. I still can’t believe what a good purchase that thing was.

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17. I started working as a personal chef for Rose when she returned from Florida. And I figured out very quickly that this lady enjoys zucchini pasta with Italian Locatelli romano cheese and cherry tomatoes. But then again, who doesn’t like that?

18. Scott and I completely moved me out of my apartment in ONE TRIP, fitting everything I owned into the Honda Fit. I still can’t even believe we pulled it off. I’m surprised we didn’t drown in my things on the thirty minute drive home.

19. I ordered a cotton candy frappuchino for the first and only time. It was amazing. But it was too sweet, even for me- and that’s saying something.

20. An insanely hot summer began in Austin, and I sweated it out through various trips to EMPIRE BMX, the greenbelt, and the X-GAMES RALLY at the Capitol. I met amazing girls who I later ended up spending a good bit of time with.

21. I became overwhelmingly obsessed with lipsticks… And although I only wear lipstick that the FDA deems lead free, my brain continued to want every lipstick tube known to mankind.

22. My friend Abigail asked to read my finished-yet-unpublished novel on her trip to Brazil, and this was just the kind of fire I needed to get the thing ready to purchase on Lulu.com. HERE IS THE LINK, if you don’t mind that kind of shameless self promotion for what everyone calls an incredibly engaging read. 😉

23. I finally, finally dyed my hair after many months of unattractive regrowth and healing post-platinum.

24. I started my little baby Cinnamonsugarbeauty.com, after years of Tumblrs. I still love this project so much and am so proud of it.

25. OH BOY, we rented a moving truck and moved from our gross, rat infested, falling apart old apartment for our new digs- a real house. We fueled up on Starbucks iced tea and unpacked and cleaned for days with our former roomies. It was a hot but promising start to July.

26. I ordered my first copy of my novel and broke a six minute mile in the same sweltering week of the summer.

27. I hung out on the ramps of Terrible One with my favorite Austin-Hawaiian Logan and celebrated 3 years with Scott.

28. I had an amazing 23rd birthday with tons of churros, make up, blistering Austin heat, and some of the best friends I could ask for to get me through that summer.

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29. I went floating for the first time in New Braunfels, Texas with our friends Toni, Nick, and Spencer. I still think about Spencer throwing up the shakas as he went through the rapids- getting his hat and glasses drenched- sometimes.

30. Of course, Scott and I then went floating a second time with our former roommates and my brother, bringing three bottles of wine and ending up with several of the best inside jokes we have. Floating the river is the best thing ever.

31. I became obsessed with American Dad (our go-to show while cooking) and Vine.

32. I took a leave of absence from university to recover from the darker parts of my life, and immediately used my free time to visit my grandfather yet again. I don’t think anyone has been more thrilled to spend a week sleeping on a couch in an old folks’ home until this.

33. I started working for THIS DAY RIGHT NOW, Rose’s lifestyle blog to showcase her voice as a speaker and writer. I take photographs and help write posts, and for the two of us, it is a big passion project.

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34. My friend Derek started his cross-country motorcycle tour, and I invited him to come crash on our couch for 2 nights. Of course, as the legend of TEXAS TOAST WEEKEND 2013 went, Derek stayed 9 nights instead of 2, and it was one of the most fun times of my life. NORA CUP night 2013 was the most fun night of my life, to this day. There was the Gnarnia Half Alive Party, trips to Mt. Bonnell and 360 Bridge, the Empire Anniversary Party… And I blogged through it all. Read about that weekend here.

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35. I discovered Bath and Body Works 3-wick candles, and their 2-for-22 sales. I immediately stocked up on more candles than any reasonable human needs, and my life has been a wonderful, pumpkin scented adventure since.

36. Our very best friends Chris and Estevan announced they were moving back to El Paso at the beginning of December, just as Scott and I were both diagnosed with severe strep throat, all in the same week. We had a wonderful Halloween handing out candy to trick or treaters with Chris and Esty, and ate real, full fat ice cream during strep, so there were definite bright spots in there.

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37. I started working with my friend Shirley in November, healing myself with her and helping her with websites & such the way only a tech-savvy twenty something can. It has been a truly life changing experience, for both of us.

38. Trader Joe’s opened in Austin, and Scott and I went so many times in the first month that employees have come to ask Scott for stories about his job and others ask if they know us from somewhere else, since they’re so used to our faces. What can we say, it’s a good addiction to have!

39. My baby brother came home from DC for the holidays, and my grandfather celebrated his 91st birthday.

40. And now today, my brother, my boyfriend and I went out for burgers, fries, and margaritas (the most decadent meal of the year, for sure) at Hop Doddy’s, talking about Rose’s Christmas party, Tom’s life in DC, my work with Shirley, SU classes next semester, Scott’s bike riding and new job, and our shared lives.

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All I can say is I hope your year was as wonderful and transformative as mine, and thank you so much for sharing it with me.

Happy New Year’s, and all of my love!

-Taylor

2 replies

  1. So well done Taylor. Great to read. Full of energy and good memories. You have this ability to make a lot from a little… in all you do. It’s a true gift. Thanks for sharing with us. -R

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