Xtina Mistakes – The Podcast

I finally got around to doing a podcast. This is the first episode and while it’s nowhere near perfect, it was still fun. You can tell because there is a lot of laughter! I even have a microphone and it’s my favorite thing I own at the moment. Originally, this first episode was 40 minutes, but I cut out all of my “ums” and “alrights,” and that alone shaved off about 10 minutes. UM ALRIGHT.



Beauty is Pain

Today my family and I drove past a salon on our way home from Easter brunch. In the window was a sign that said “Threading.” Of course my dad was like “What the heck is threading?”

Threading is a method of hair removal first practiced in the depths of Hell…It actually originated in Asia, and while threading allows for more defined and precise shape, it is really painful, especially for someone with sensitive hair follicles like myself.

One of many repressed memories of my adolescent years is the time I got my eyebrows threaded. The pain level varies from person to person, but for me, it fell somewhere between getting hit square in the face during a dodgeball game and a root canal. I could literally feel every hair being plucked out of my eyebrow one by one by one by one. I tried my best to conceal how much pain I was in, but inside I just wanted it to end so I could go home and watch Laguna Beach reruns in the fetal position. I rushed out of the salon, jumped into my mom’s car and began to cry very loudly. My mom tried to comfort me, even complimenting me on my perfectly shaped eyebrows. “I don’t care!” I cried. Later on, when I was done crying, I admired my new eyebrows in the mirror. They did look good. But I will never ever ever get my eyebrows threaded again. Ever.



The reason I titled this “Twenty-five” is because I turned 25 yesterday and I’m extremely lazy when it comes to giving titles to posts. Everyone was like, “Welcome to the Quarter Century Club,” and I was like, “Does the Quarter Century Club serve alcohol or have a fondue fountain?” Joking aside, turning 25 is a big deal. I’m feeling queasy at the thought of it. Twenty-five marks the end of adolescence and the beginning of “adulthood.” So everything I do from here on will be part two of my memoir, or when everyone stops reading because I’ve become a responsible functioning adult. I don’t feel any different, the only thing different is the age range on my dating apps. I am now seeking men in the 25-42 year age range. Some thoughts I’m having on the heels of this milestone birthday:

  • In the past few years I’ve realized just how valuable time is. To quote poet Henry Threll, “When as a child I laughed and wept, Time crept. When as a youth I waxed more bold, Time strolled. When I became a full grown (wo)man, Time RAN.” It’s a shame that I’ve wasted so much of my time playing on my phone. I often think about how different life would be without them. We’d be more present and less distracted, that’s for sure. But more than that, we’d probably all be better at relationships. You can have a million friends on Facebook, but still feel lonely AF. And that’s why I’ve decided to delete all social media accounts.*

*I’m totally kidding …I think I could go like a week tops. How else am I supposed to keep tabs on my favorite mom and fashion bloggers? Mom Blogs are Life. Fashion is life.

  • My parents kick major b***. They are the epitome of #marriagegoals. My mom, Kelly, is my cheerleader in life: she favorites all my tweets – even the bad ones – and thinks my blog is hilarious. She’s also the most selfless and thoughtful person I know. All around my apartment are gifts she’s given to me and little reminders of her supreme awesomeness. My dad, Rob, is a real gem. A crossfit/golf/history enthusiast (what a winning combination!), he inspires me to live life to the fullest and stay busy. In addition to unconditional love and support, my parents gave me the greatest gift of all – freedom to be my goofy and imperfect self.

Cheers to 25!



Study Abroad

Some of my most treasured college memories are getting to hang out with frat stars, writing the police beat for the student newspaper (so entertaining), and studying abroad in Seville, Spain. My time abroad was brief but still turned out to be one of the most fulfilling and enlightening experiences of my life. I came back to finish my Junior year of college with a new outlook on life, a much wider Spanish vocabulary, and a shitload of new clothes from Zara.

While the majority of those who study abroad choose to chronicle their experiences on a blog, I decided to be romantic and write in a journal. This isn’t that weird for me though. I actually kept a diary/journal for most of my early-late adolescence and have filled at least three journals, the first of which I called “Lila” and only wrote in cursive. I call my current diary Beyonce. My grandma gave me a Lily Pulitzer journal before I left for Spain and I promised her I would fill it with spectacular stories from my travels. In the beginning I was really good about writing every day…but then every day turned into every week. By the end of the three months I had managed to fill about 20 pages. Here are some of my favorite snippets.


“Whatsup! Yo soy Christina. Y este es mi diario de mis tiempos en Espana. Tonight is my first night in the residencia. It’s pretty chill.”

Wow, Abroad Xtina, you know how to write in Spanish! You are SO SMART!

“…Today was also pretty chill. We went to Toledo AKA The Imperial City. Toledo was beautiful. We saw a really old cathedral and we also saw the Count Orgaz painting by Goya. I love looking at artwork. Paintings are so cool in real life/up close.”

“…I saw a few paintings that I studied at school in my art history class with that fatass teacher Mr. Smith.”

“…Last night we went barhopping. At one point I jumped up onto the bar and danced. Things got wild. I’m pretty sure I stole a six pack of beer and I’m 100% sure I made out with a Spanish guy wearing a backpack and a necklace. Score!”

*Slow clap* Let’s see what other “cool” things I write about.


“I’m going to make this relatively brief. Today we went to the coastal town of Cadiz. It was picturesque. Unfortunately, I did not evenly apply sunscreen on my back so now I have a burn. Sucks to suck.”

I love this next one because I remember the night so well and it still stands as one of the best nights of my life.


“Last night was possibly the funniest/craziest night of my young adult life. First we went to Calle Batiz where we chatted with some Americans who construct blimp landing sights for a living.”

“…At 3:30 we decided to go somewhere else. This is where the night gets krazeey. It was this huge outdoor club called Casino. There were tons of people and like 6 different bars. The music was a great mix of American pop and Spanish music. I danced with a really hot guy. He has my number but I doubt I’ll see him again. We stayed out until 5 am. That’s the latest I’ve ever stayed out. I slept until 2 today….”


“This past weekend I went to Lagos, Portugal. It was great. Pristine waters, sunny weather, and good company. Lagos is a Coastal City and draws a lot of vacationers. Lagos used to have a slave trading market.”

11/4/11 (This is all from my trip to Amsterdam. I spent 4 days there.)

“Amsterdam was quite the experience. Sure, I smoked a lot of weed, but I also did a lot of fun stuff and met some interesting people.”

“…I met two Americans at the connecting flight gate. We talked about drugs and music, and the two of them bonded over maintaining long distance relationships and how hard it was for them. I just listened.”

“…After resting for a bit I called Morgan. Catherine and I met up with her and her pretentious friend, Michelle, at a lounge called Bump. Michelle basically told us her life story…and it seemed like she was lying about  a lot. She told us she was allergic to her mom’s breast milk. Like girl, I just met you…maybe don’t come straight out the gates with that.”

“…After walking for a while we went to a bar and drank Heineken (Holland’s signature beer). The bar was right next to a Prostitute Store (I don’t know what to call it).”

“We closed the night with  chocolate waffles (obviously). I’m on a really strict diet of only carbs and sugar. It’s going really well.”


There’s the “Freshman 15” and then there’s the “Abroad 20”

“We walked through town, both of us were high as a kite. I probably spent 30 minutes deciding which postcards to buy.”

“That night we decided to do a pub crawl in Leidseplein. I French kissed a French guy…a real French kiss!”

“That night we decided to see an improv show at Boom Chicago. Before the show I ate a rather large space cake. I giggled through the entire show.”

“We finished our Amsterdam trip with a visit to the Sex Museum. Eh. I was not a fan.”

Not into the history of dildos. Just being honest.

So that’s about all that is worth sharing. The rest is a mess of poorly written anecdotes sprinkled with random observations like “The cheese was soo good” or “The town was soo cute.” I had a lot of fun looking back through this journal because it made me nostalgic for Europe.


Poor camel…


The Reigning Queen of Hangovers

I know I joke around a lot – ok more than a lot -, but when I say my hangovers are bad I mean my hangovers are BADDDDD. ‘How bad?’ you ask? My hangovers are so bad, my hangovers get hangovers. If there was an award for worst hangovers, I would win, but wouldn’t be able to accept my award in person because of a hangover. My hangovers last longer than average, too. My last hangover lasted 8 long hours which is 2 hours longer than I lasted on the juice cleanse I tried last month. But don’t feel bad for me…I’ve earned every hangover I’ve ever had. The most frustrating part about it is that it doesn’t matter how much I drink, it could be 5 shots of Purell or a glass of wine, and I wake up with a raging headache. What gives?

Did you know that there are medical clinics purely for curing hangovers? I’ve never been to one, and I’m not a highly opinionated person, but I think it’s pretty ridiculous that anyone would pay upwards of $200 to cure a hangover when natural remedies like eggs, bacon and Netflix exist.

I could probably write a scholarly article on hangovers just from personal experience. I’ve had enough hangovers in my adult life to be able to classify them as moderate to severe. Category 1 Hangover is usually cured with three Advil, three thousand calories and lots of water. A Category 5 can only be cured with time. I once had a level 6. It lasted three days.


One of the worst hangovers I ever had was the morning after Lollapalooza. I shudder just thinking about it. It was the summer of 2010, a lovely summer by and large. I had one year of college under my belt, equating to approximately 100 hangovers. At this point I was no stranger to the effects of a long night of drinking…but nothing could prepare me for the wrath of this fiver. I woke up that morning and couldn’t move. Thank God for my mom who is an angel in disguise. She brought me iced coffee and made me toast. I couldn’t even eat the toast. I really like toast!! I didn’t know what to do with myself. My mom looked disappointed, but still felt bad for me. Our conversation went something like this:

“Go take a cold shower,” the Mom/Angel said.

“That would require moving my body,” the good-for-nothing daughter replied.

After a couple minutes of pondering my situation, I decided to take my mom’s advice and shower. I turned on the shower, stepped into the shower and immediately sat down in the shower. There was no bench in said shower, so I sat on the floor of the shower. SMH. SMH.

“This is how it ends,” I thought to myself as the water rushed down my face like a million alcohol-filled tear drops.

Turns out the shower did help! By the time we got to Grant Park my hangover had dropped to a manageable Category 3…but that hangover, the hangover of ’10, will go down in history as one of the worst.


Camp Fuller by The Sea

“Summer camp is an essential part of a well-rounded, All-American upbringing,” said a child life specialist somewhere at some point in time.

I was lucky enough to be able to attend sleep-away camp during the summer after 5th grade. Nestled in a small town outside Providence, Rhode Island, the camp was called Camp Fuller, but I remember it best as “Camp Fuller by The Sea.” If you’re interested in learning more about Camp Fuller, be sure to check out this super informative and meticulously edited Urban Dictionary entry written by a former camper. Let’s call her Katie. Katie describes Camp Fuller as “An awesome sleep away camp in Wakefield, Rhode Island that many who attend refer to as the shittt!” If you don’t read it for her fascinating take on the camp’s social hierarchy, read it to see Katie butcher the spelling of basic words like “attention,” “counselor,” and “division.”

Until Camp Fuller I’d only gone to day camp. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but I excelled as a day camper…crushed it at typical camp activities like drip drip drop, Popsicle stick art, talent shows, sports, and of course, the cornerstone of every camp experience, Beach Day. Beach day was my favorite day because I loved the beach like Hillary loves pant suits. That’s a lot. I’ve had one bad beach day in my life and that’s the day I spent sitting on a towel in order to conceal a very large tear in my suit. At that age, one hole in your bathing suit gone unnoticed can jeopardize the rest of your camp career. Luckily I was able to walk away with my pride still intact.

I was perfectly content as a day camper, and I could have very happily gone on to be the Van Wilder of Camp Almost Anything Goes. But bigger and better things waited just beyond the horizon. Sleep-away camp allured me like the last slice of pizza. At the ready age of 10, being out in the world on my own sounded new and exciting. And so it was settled. I would be attending Camp Fuller for one 2-week session. I pictured myself paddling a kayak while the sun set, sitting around a roaring bonfire while Chad, the sensitive and artistic counselor, played the guitar, and meeting my long lost twin after an aggressively over-acted fencing match.

I remember a lot about Camp Fuller, and not just because I was sober, but because I enjoyed most of my time there. I remember waking up to Britney Spears’ first CD…the director would blast it from her cabin for all to hear. One of the most distinct memories I have was being asked by someone waiting for the shower if I had peed in the shower right after I did in fact pee in the shower. I looked at her like she was crazy and assured her that I did not pee in the shower because ew, these are public showers. For the record, I think you’re weird if you DON’T pee in the shower every now and then. It saves water AND paper.

I remember every girl in my cabin and could probably pick them out in a line, but the cabin mate I remember most is the chick who slept above me. Her name was Jen and she was an enigma to me. She had hair down her back and brushed it everyday for about an hour(!) She also had fully developed breasts which supported my “Wet Hot American Summer” theory that she was actually much older and posing as a 11-year-old to fulfill a childhood dream, or to write an investigative piece on Camp. We had two counselors living in a room attached to our cabin. One was named Cassandra, and the other, a Brit named Lucy. Between her British flag shirt and her blonde hair, Lucy was pretty much the closest thing to Baby Spice that I’d ever met, making it extremely hard to dislike her. The other counselor, Cassandra, was American, but was fired about 26 hours into camp after divulging her greatest fear (being raped) to a room full of prepubescent girls. Lucy did nothing to improve the situation. She said her fear was being buried alive, which is a very rational fear to have but probably not something you want to share with younger girls…If I remember correctly, I think I said mine was sharks. My fears have taken a much darker turn since then – now it’s guys my age who wear Abercrombie and Hollister and hangovers lasting over 12 hours.

I remember a lot of the girls at camp, but none better than Ksenia…or maybe it was Xenia. Either way, she had a silent letter tacked onto the beginning of her name, like some kind of celebrity’s baby. I mean at least the ‘X’ in my name stands for something. I was convinced she was part human, part cat after watching her climb the rock wall. I’ve never seen anyone climb a rock wall with such grace and speed. She even climbed it blindfolded and with her feet tied. Fucking Ksenia and her silent K and her Russian gymnast strength and discipline. I think every guy was in love with her (this was before the boys watched me stuff three marshmallows in my mouth on a dare).

Camp Fuller was where I made my first African American friend. His name was Lance and he wore classic Timberland boots and braids like Lil’ Wayne. All the girls loved him because he had what we would later refer to as swag. He was in my water skiing class but he never actually went water skiing, he just skipped rocks and sat on this huge boulder like a boss. Swag for days.