Busy Weekend

After my indoor triathlon last week, I really thought that my weekends would slow down a little. For the past few weeks, I ran, swam, and went to breakdance on Saturdays, which usually meant I usually had enough time to change into activity-appropriate clothes before heading out to my next commitment. Even without all of those things this weekend, I still managed to find more than enough ways to keep myself occupied.

After Wacky 5K packet pickup at Sports Authority on Saturday, I planned to head straight up to Andersonville in my quest to find preserved lemons. However, I’ve been in the market for riding boots since September or October, and since DSW is directly across the street from Sports Authority, I figured I’d stop in and see what they had available. I didn’t find any riding boots, but I did find some baller new cross trainers.


OBSESSED. I’ve desperately needed new shoes for hip hop/breakdance/strength training/every activity that’s not running for a long time–as in, the soles are literally falling off the shoes I’ve been wearing for all of these non-running activities. These Reeboks were marked down from $100 to $30, so obviously I wasn’t about to say no to that, especially when I legitimately needed new shoes.

I needed preserved lemons for the Moroccan Quinoa I brought to book club on Sunday, and though it’s possible that I could’ve found these at maybe the Whole Foods in Lincoln Park, I knew for a fact that they sold them at Middle East Bakery and Grocery, so I figured it’d be a lot easier to go up there where I could for sure find them rather than wander around that monstrosity of a Whole Foods in a potentially fruitless quest (bad pun 😛 ). I’m a HUGE fan of Middle Eastern food, and this little hole-in-the-wall grocery store had an incredible selection for being such a small place. Most importantly, in addition to preserved lemons they also sold freshly baked pita bread, which I most definitely bought and enjoyed for lunch on Saturday.


My Saturday night was both low key and thrilling. Low key in the sense that I stayed in, thrilling in the sense that I FINALLY finished my 2012 taxes. I’ve spent most of my free evenings (which, realistically, are pretty few and far between) for the past three weeks trying to figure out my state tax situation, and it’s been the opposite of a good time. I am never, ever moving from one state to another and working in both of those states during the same calendar year. Woof. Trying to figure out what had to be counted where was a nightmare. The whole experience was really incredibly frustrating, especially because I knew nothing about income taxes heading into it. All these schedules and forms and financial terms–I’m completely in the dark, and honestly, I feel kind of cheated in my education. It seems pretty useless to me that I could carry on a long and intricate discussion detailing the differences between Spanish and English literature but, until a few weeks ago, had never seen a 1040 in my life. You would think that a $134,000 liberal arts college education could in some way, I don’t know, prepare me for the real world. Is that really so much to ask? Because while perhaps my History of Science class made me a well-rounded, more educated human being, most of that knowledge is downright useless. I get the purpose of general education requirements, but it seems like both my money for college and taxpayer dollars everywhere for public education would be put better use to teaching students real, applicable skills to survive in the real world where things like taxes and insurances and 401(k)s and credit reports exist rather than filling our heads with all sorts of mundane details we won’t remember or even need to remember beyond the final exam, you know? I was telling my dad this (my dad taught high school for 40 years), and he said his high school used to have a personal economics class where they did teach those things, but once MEAPs and MMEs (standardized testing in Michigan) came into existence, they had to drop those classes and replace them with Macro- and Microeconomics. WHY?? Am I the only person who finds that to be SO illogical?

Anyway. Moral of the story: my taxes are finally done, and I’m stoked.

On Sunday afternoon, I headed to Erin’s for book club!


I normally have a pretty big breakfast on Sunday mornings and I also normally eat a decent amount of food after races, but I didn’t want to eat much other than my standard slice of toast + peanut butter before the race and didn’t have time to eat much after the race, so I was STARVING by the time book club rolled around. Fortunately, this gave me a chance to sample just about everything.


Food club book club is the best 🙂 I love how it gives me the chance so many foods I never would try on my own. Everyone should be lucky enough to have so many good cooks to hang out with once a month.

What did you do this weekend?
Did you learn about personal finance or have any other sort of practical, “real world” education in school?

15 thoughts on “Busy Weekend

  1. I want to go to a party like that, I haven’t been to a potluck in ages. Also duh you need some hot kick ass shoes for break dancing. All the cool kids have them. Or at least they do in the movies… reality right?

    • MOVE TO CHICAGO AND JOIN OUR BOOK CLUB. Do you like how I try to bully you into moving to Chicago at least once a week? And duh, gotta have the sweet kicks for hip hop, obvs. I actually really thought about dropping a lot more $$ on more baller, hip hop appropriate shoes, but decided to be smart and save my money on shoes I could dance and do everything else in.

      Also, if you haven’t seen this video, you absolutely must drop everything you’re doing, no matter how important it is, and watch it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5HrrbkYJM2M (p.s. that butt kicking little girl is six. SIX! And she already has more swag than I’ll ever have. So jealous).

  2. Um ok you make me never want to grow up. Just kidding my dad does everyone’s taxes for them so ill just keep making him do them for me for the rest of my life. I really think they Should offer classes in those subjects though because what college student knows how to do them? It’s such an important life skill. Kind of life figuring out rent/mortgage, applying for credit cards, lookin for jobs. Maybe they should have a class called “real life knowledge”. It would be more beneficial than the class I’m sitting in right now where we watch dumb movies that don’t relate to anything I’m learning nor are they interesting to me in the least…

    • Ugh, yes. Also, Real Life Knowledge should be the number one non-negotioable gen ed requirement for everyone. I have other “real world” friends whose parents do their taxes, and I’m so jealous. Although I suppose with how much I called my parents asking questions my parents essentially did my taxes…haha.

  3. ahhh I’m so jealous you’re in a book club! that’s my next goal for my new city.

    and great deal on shoes!! I found a pair of Nike Structure Triax marked to $20– because I later realized they were in the wrong box– and I remember being SO happy that day. 🙂

    • I really thought these shoes were in the wrong box! The top of the box was actually for Brooks, which really threw me off, but since the shoes themselves also had a sticker on them that indicated they were marked down 70%, I figured I’d be okay. And I was! Phew!

      Book clubs are wonderful! I hope you can find one 🙂

  4. I always use Turbotax for my taxes and I don’t remember it being a hassle to do two state tax forms when I moved (besides the whole not having an employee id in the state of Illinois thing). Mine must have been a lot less complicated than yours. I’m glad you got through it! I really need to do mine but even the thought of doing it is stressing me out. Yikes!

    Book club was so fun and I loved your quinoa!

    • I think my biggest source of confusion came from the whole reciprocal agreement Michigan and Illinois have with their state income taxes. I’m not *officially* an Illinois resident since I don’t have an IL driver’s license or anything, but I didn’t earn any wages in Michigan after I moved to IL, so trying to figure out what state I was technically a resident of was a headache and a half, especially since I legitimately spent almost exactly half the year as a Michigan resident and half the year as an Illinois resident. Woof.

      Thanks! Glad you liked it 🙂

  5. Like Lindsay, I’ve used TurboTax for YEARS. It makes it so easy and totally worth the price (which is still way cheaper than going to HR Block or something). I’ve only gotten screwed one year and that’s when we sold our house, moved to Chicago, and took jobs that bumped us into a new tax bracket. That year was ouchie.

    • Yikes! Yeah, fortunately I didn’t have to deal with too much of that. I thought about TurboTax, but for some reason was like, “Oh, no, it’d be way wiser to do this by hand.” Because I’m an idiot, obviously. I ended up using a different software program that cost a little bit of money for my IL forms, but man, it was worth every penny to get everything done.

  6. Ahhhh, I love the new shoes! They are fab 🙂 And that price?? Can you take me shopping, please?? I completely agree with you about high schools and colleges needing to teach people how to do taxes and whatnot (even if they whine and complain about it at the time)…I still ask my dad to do it because I have no idea what I’m doing…I should probably learn how to do that soon…and you made me really want to find a book club to join…I love to read so it’s pretty silly that I haven’t yet haha

    • Thank you! And yes, by all means. Come visit me and we’ll go buy things 🙂 Although maybe we should go some place that isn’t Chicago so we don’t have to pay Chicago sales tax haha. And trust me, my parents DEFINITELY helped with my taxes — I called them no less than six separate times, and that’s only with the phone calls, not the e-mails I sent them as well.

  7. Oh preserved lemons! I wondered what that was! I really liked that quinoa even if you don’t know how to spell Moroccan (oh wait, neither do I).
    I had to file two state taxes last year (Iowa and Illinois), but I didn’t think it was too bad. I used TaxACT, but have used TurboTax and like that too.
    My boyfriend took a personal finance class in college and he really liked it. They hit on a lot of things like budgeting, investing vs. loans and lots of other things. I am trying to learn more about investing options and other savings plans to make the most out of my money, but there is SO MUCH out there.

    • Hahahaha those darn double consonants always get me! I’m glad you liked the quinoa!

      Yeah, for some ridiculous reason I thought I was capable of doing everything completely by hand…probably because I’m an idiot. Michigan’s tax website introduced me to a wealth of online resources, though, and that’s really the only reason I finally wrapped everything up. If only I hadn’t been so stubborn from the get go!

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