Can I make my own art?

I remember when buying “art” meant going to the poster sale at the student center in college. You had an array of choices, ranging from Bob Marley to Audrey Hepburn. I remember my friend had a poster with a baby monkey with sunglasses that was a total hit. I guess when you get older you can no longer get away with those choices and you are expected to buy real “art”. Whatever that means.

I moved into my new apartment in May and I’m still looking at blank walls in my bedroom. Nothing less to be expected from the girl that bought curtains over 2 years ago and never hung them up. Furniture is in, of course, but I haven’t done much decorating. Sure, my mini giraffe collection is up, but that’s obviously to be expected. The lack of decoration has been mostly due to lack of time, but I feel like it’s time to spark things up.

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First of all, I must warn you, I have very limited knowledge of what people call “art”. I go by my gut feeling of what I think looks nice and what makes me smile, that’s the kind of “art” I like. I first learned about Gustav Klimt through my art savvy roommate in college, although I didn’t realize who’s work I was really looking at until I saw “The Kiss” in Vienna.

So here I was, navigating Art.com because I was scared away from Amazon.com after I read a review that said “there is a thick slab of painted “goop” bordering the entire picture”. I found this lovely painting by Gustav Klimt, it made me happy and calm and it was just $37.98 for the print. Not bad, not bad at all. I’m prompted to answer if I want to frame it. Sure, why not, I’m being an adult and buying real “art” so let’s do it! Boom, it will be $229.99. I’m sorry, I don’t get how this “art” thing works. I just want my walls to look pretty. Do I need to get some finger painting and get creative? Maybe I need to start going to those wine and paint studios, that way I make my own art and drink wine too. Yup, that sounds like a plan.

Just like that, I’m back to square one. Empty walls, crushed “art” dreams, yet another crude realization that being an adult sucks and a thirst for wine that can at least be remedied soon. Cheers!

On buying houses and other things I am not ready for…

I keep saying I’m poor. I know this is an exaggeration, true poverty implies the absence of many things that I am truly blessed to have. That being clear, I need to coin a new phrase for my financial state.

Anyways, last night I was watching House Hunters for the first time. For those of you who do not know, House Hunters is a TV show from HGTV in which people are looking to buy houses, rent apartments or anything along those lines. Let me tell you, I know nothing about real estate.

I’ve been really lucky with finding my past three living arrangements (in New York City and in Hoboken). Well, lucky minus the fact that one of those places flooded. I’ve been happy with my first choices during the hunting process and I’ve been lucky to have everything approved when needed. I obviously rent my place. I am in no way ready or even capable of purchasing a home.

While watching House Hunters, instead of feeling inspired like my roommate did, I felt a wave of panic cursing through my body. How do people have thousands and thousands of dollars just laying around ready to be invested into a property? Oh yeah, I guess it’s called saving and making good life decisions. Well, I’m sorry that I’m too busy trying to pay off my student loans and trying to make it in New York City.

Conclusion, if I’m purchasing any property soon, it will be a plastic house for my future puppy… and even that is a far stretch.

5 Things I did NOT learn in college

It’s been a year and a half since I graduated college. Let me tell you, it was not the easiest of transitions. Doing the whole grown-up thing is not easy and every month when I have to pay my student loans I can’t help but think of all the things I did NOT learn in college. Sure, I got an awesome education, but sometimes it’s about the little things. I can keep a list going on forever, but here are a few of the things I did not learn in college.

1. Who to CC in an email – Carbon copying in an email is a hidden art (Yes, Carbon Copy is what CC stands for). It takes real skill to get it just right. When used properly, CC can become the sweetest form of passive aggressiveness you can use.

2. How to do my taxes – Seriously, I need to give away more money… why? Thank God for TurboTax. I would not have survived my first taxing season without it and would have probably ended up in jail.

3. How to manage people’s expectation of hanging out every single day – “I’m sorry, I can’t do happy hour every single day and no, I can’t hang out every single week with you either. I have other friends and honestly, we are not that close anyways.” It’s hard to stay in touch with people, even if they live in the same city than you do. There’s always a lot going on and even though you wish to meet up with people all the time, there’s just not enough time (or money). How do you manage people’s feelings and your sanity? I did not learn that in college either.

4. How to save money – Don’t let this one be confused with “how to eat frugally”, that one I got down in college pretty easily and I’m still practicing it today (thank you Campbell’s). I’m talking about straight up saving for life, like for puppies and stuff. I thank my lucky stars that I found Mint.com, keeping it real and crushing my wanderlust dreams one personal budget report at a time.

5. How to cope with 10 vacation days a year – This one is hard and honestly, I’m still working with it. Make the most of the weekends? Spread your vacations throughout the year? Print out a beach landscape for your desk? Not really sure what’s the solution for this one, suggestions welcomed.

Feel free to comment and add on more things to this list. I know college was great, but let’s face it: it’s a tough world out here.