Saturday, July 24, 2010


In a follow up post to my "Grown Up" post a couple of weeks ago, lets talk about things that affirm that we are, in fact, aging.

Last night I went to the Vans Warped Tour to see my favorite band, Face to Face, who has just gotten back together after a 7 year hiatus. Yes, I am a punk rock girl at heart. Surprise, surprise.

For those of you that are not familiar with the Warped Tour, its a compilation of "punk rock" bands in an all day festival. I quote "punk rock" because that was the foundation of the festival when it began in 1995. Now, it's more like a pop music middle school concert, with a few old school punk bands thrown in the mix.

I last attended a Warped Tour in the summer 1996 with a bunch of my friends. I was 19. I fit right in.  It was 900 degrees outside, but back then it really didn't seem to matter to me. There was a line up of about 10-15 bands, such as Face to Face, Blink 182, Pennywise, Down By Law, Mighty Might Bostones, and several other bands that I was in sweet baby love with in 1996. I remember spending most of the day there and thinking nothing of it. It was fun and that's about all I remember.

Last night, I did not fit in. I am 33. The median age was approximately 17. Dustin and his friends even seemed to be the old guys there at 25-26.

I walked in alone because Dustin had been there most of the day. I only went to see Face to Face and could not fathom the thought of spending an entire eight hours out in the heat. I would die.

The first thing I noticed, before I even walked into the gates, was that it clearly isn't necessary for today's youth to be prepared for the rainy weather. All the girls there were walking around in bikini tops and boy shorts or teeny tiny cut off jean shorts. No matter their body type, that's what they were wearing. Oddly enough, the boys were dressed in a similar fashion, in tight jeans or shorts with no shirt or a tank top. I believe the kids call it "emo" these days.

I was dressed conservatively in my cargo shorts, tennis shoes and v-neck gray t-shirt. I had my rain poncho. I obviously belonged at the Dave Matthews or John Mayer concert. Sore.Thumb. I'm telling you, I felt like I was 70, no exaggeration.

"Hmph", I said to myself, "this is not how I remember Warped Tour at all".  Oh yeah. That's because it was FOURTEEN YEARS AGO!

Again, I've always felt sort of timeless.  I've always done a pretty good job in melding into groups of friends that were younger than me. This feeling I had last night was the polar opposite of timeless. I am aging and I felt it... for the first time.

As I watched Face to Face, I looked around and observed the crowd. Sadly, they didn't have much of a following like they used to. This was my 6th or 7th time seeing them live and they packed the house at all their previous shows. Last night, it appeared that few knew who they were, as evident by the young girl standing in front of us before the show began who said, "So, what's Face to Face like?".

Oh my Gawd, did she really just say that?? I suddenly felt like my parents explaining The Beatles or Led Zepplin to me. Ok, so Face to Face isn't quite on that type of level of fame...but still. HOW can you be at a punk rock show and not know who Face to Face is? This girl was probably in elementary school when I went to Face to Face's last show in 2000. Ugh.

Those that did know of them, were the "older" crowd of 25-35. We knew every word to every song. It was this bizarre camaraderie of holding-onto-our-youth, type of feeling. Still being and acting young even though we are quickly approaching middle age.

I had to wonder to myself if the Face to Face band members felt it too. They are all in their early 40's with families of their own. They had to have noticed the lack in the crowd. They asked, "How many of you have seen us here in St. Pete at Jannus Landing back in the day?", :::Cheers from the crowd::::, "Alright! We've got some old timers here!".
Then, again they asked, "So, who comes on after us?". A kid up in the front row yells, "ANDREW W.K.!!!",(which was clearly the only reason he was standing in that spot, to wait for the next show). The lead singer responds, "Great! The party starts after Face to Face!". :::Sigh:::: Just not the same.

BUT! did they sound amazing. Although it was only 35 minutes of music, it was so, so worth it. Feeling old, and all.

Notice at the end of the video how Dustin got in trouble for filming. Opps. Pretty funny though.

After their show, the drummer and the bassist came out to mingle with their (few) fans. I grabbed one of their set lists and had them sign it, told them how great it was to have them back.

I'm excited for them to do a headlining tour this fall for their new album. When I go to that show, I expect to be in good company with other old timers.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Lazy walker.

Promised video of Lily's first steps at 13 months old (July 2nd, to be exact)...

That was pretty much the most walking she has done in the past month! Until yesterday, when she did this out of the clear blue (yes, she is wearing the same outfit in both videos)....

As you can see, she is also just now learning how to get to a standing position without assistance. She is a lazy baby! We will even ask her, "walk to mama", and she will shake her head no. Typical Nichols :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

T minus 5 days!

5 days until we close on our new house!

We had our "walk through" today and the house is absolutely gorgeous. I am almost in a bit of denial that we are doing this or maybe it just doesn't feel possible? We are so fortunate that we are able to do this and I could not be more excited.
I know I haven't posted pictures or videos in so long. We have just been so busy and it's hard to find a balance in life right now. I will catch up soon though. I have some cute videos of Lily acting crazy on the 4th of July and even her first steps! Pictures of the new house coming soon too. Oh, and I gave up on my Project 365. It was just too much pressure. :) The new job took my away from my picture taking!

Lily is 14 months old today. She is such a character these days and difficult to keep up with at times! She isn't quite walking yet but we know it's out of pure stubbornness since we have seen her take several steps. She just doesn't want to walk.
We survived her first illness, which you can read all about here if you don't already follow my other blog. She's a trooper and is back to herself now.
We cannot wait to take her to Costa Rica in 48 days!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

All grown up.

It's no secret that I married someone 8 years my junior. ::insert any and every cradle robbing/cougar/Mrs. Robinson joke here:::
Psychologically, I am aware that this "says something" about me, and probably about Dustin too. I know this. I was a social work major. I took a lot of psychology classes. I'll leave that to the professionals though.

Completely off topic. Actually, I'm really not sure what the topic is.

Anyway, ever since we started dating 7 years ago, I was always was so quick to defend our relationship by saying, "He's SO mature for his age and I'm immature for mine". Albeit defensive at the time, it was, and still is, absolutely a true statement. Dustin is a bit of an old soul, and I, well, I've always been a bit immature. Not in the "giggle at the word penis" kind, but the...I don't know..."free spirit" and "I still watch MTV" kind?. Not sure that's even an accurate description but if you know me, you know what I mean.

It recently came to my attention that I am kind of a grown up now and I'm trying to figure out how to play this role. This thought occurred to me as I was reading through the 600 sheets of paper that go along with the purchase of our new house. I said to myself, "Holy shit. I am totally pretending to be a grown up. I have no idea what any of this shit means", which lead into the other thoughts of what makes me a "grown up".
-Am 33 years old.
-Am married with a child of my own.
-Will soon own TWO pieces of property.
-Will be a landlord in a little over a month.
-Have a fancy title of "Vice President of Operations" of my company (which basically means, "hand everything to Vanessa and she will take care of it").
-Will soon be up to my eyeballs in debt due to most of the above mentioned. (Isn't that the American way?)

Some will state the obvious and say that none of the above makes me a "grown up", per se,  or possibly throw a cliche at me, such as, "You're only as old as you feel"(or something along those lines), but the truth is that I never have completely accepted that I am an adult.

This delay in realization of adulthood might be because my parents have always done so much for me and always made/make me feel "taken care of", in the emotional sense. Or maybe it's truly just a state of mind. Again, I will leave the psychological stuff to the professionals.

 It's just crazy to sit back and look at my life as a grown up and realize that I have this list of responsibilities. Yes, I've had responsibilities for years but with all of these big decisions I've/we've made these past few years it just feels...different.

It's just such an odd feeling when you actually feel yourself making a transition in life. I suppose I'm actually putting so much thought to it since it makes me realize how my parents prepared me and educated me on how to make decisions in life. There is so much work that goes into molding your child into someone who is prepared for life as an adult.

This all makes me wonder how this feeling will blend into the way I raise Lily (since everything now somehow makes me think of Lily). I wonder if I will try to be the "cool" parent who "hangs out" with their kid, yet still try to instill some responsibility in her? Will I let her get away with murder, like I do now? Will she feel the same way as I do when she is 33?

Regardless, I just hope she isn't in a hurry to grow up. Although beautiful at times, it's well overrated.