Feelin' 32

grown up hottsauce funny blog

Hello, friends. I have some big news to share. I have become a woman!

No, I didn’t just start my period - that happened when I was in fourth grade, years before all the other girls, and I still have the emotional scars to prove it. Nor did I just lose my virginity - that happened well into my twenties, years after all the other girls, and I did have the emotional scars to prove it until I learned that Tina Fey also kept her v card until a late age so now I’m an out and proud member of the Old Virgins Club.

It turns out that, contrary to every Judy Blume novel ever written, womanhood is not one (likely v bloody) milestone that you can check off in your diary, but something unexpected and innate that sneaks up on you from behind whether you’re ready or not.

In every way I am an adult. I am thirty-two years old, by which I mean I’m very much “in my thirties,” woof. I’m married. I have a robust 401K and an assistant and a bad hip and multiple blazers and yet I still feel like a perpetual tween. I do in some ways think that city living may be a bit to blame. Unlike the town where I grew up, people here generally marry later, have kids later, live in tiny rental apartments with roommates into their 30’s, 40’s and beyond. The traditional trappings of adulthood, as embodied by the suburban parents of my childhood, don’t seem to apply to me or to any of my NYC friends, so I’ve been able to hold onto a sort of eternal Peter Pan feeling. We’re all growing older, but are any of us growing up? When I see my peers doing these adulty things like procreating or buying four bedroom houses on cul-de-sacs it feels utterly foreign and somehow wrong, like they’re play acting at real life. Those things are for adults and we can’t possibly be adults yet.  I mean, I certainly am not! Or... am I?

Some of this, surely, is because I’m such a horrid snob about non-urban living - the word “cul-de-sac” is basically moist to my ears (shudder, shudder) - but in other ways it still just takes me by surprise every day that I’m allowed to do things like take money out of the bank or rent a car without a note from my mom.

I’d say it’s a mix of this snobbishness, a little jealousy, a whole bunch of fear, and no small pinch of denial that’s had me feeling pretty OK about this eternal tween scene. Who even needs adulthood?? SEEMS BORING.

And then, when I least expected it, it found me.

Last week I was hanging out with two young co-workers, both 22, fresh outta college, just like me! Err...me circa a literal decade ago. I have always known I’m like, older than these gals, but we’re all still peers, right? Hashtag millennials! Snapchat! The Chainsmokers, probably!?!?

The two of them were regaling the group with funny stories about their apartment situations - all the post-college classics like bad roommates and plenty of mice, navigating subleases and guarantors, pulling together just enough cash for a security deposit, crashing on couches, full of optimism and enviable naivete As they talked I became filled with these unexpected feelings. I was worried for them. I wanted to nurture them. I could sympathize with what they were going through, having been there myself before, but I could not currently relate. Instead of being like, “OMG girls, life is so crazy, should we do some shots?!”, I just...nodded, a supportive yet moderately concerned look on my face. I gave them advice on dealing with landlords and reminded them never to meet a person from Craigslist without a buddy. I blithely uttered the phrase, “when I was your age,” with no irony whatsoever and all at once it hit me: holy shit, me, you are a grown-up. 

Apparently to achieve adulthood you need not purchase a townhouse or a minivan or even just one of those medium sized SUVs all the hot soccer moms are driving these days, you simply need to close your eyes and think “dear god, you could not pay me to be 22 again” and whoosh, there you are, in adulthood. It’s like Dorothy clicking her ruby slippers to get home again except instead of leaving Oz behind, it’s your youth that’s fading from technicolor behind you.

Ain't life something? 

So there you have it, world, I am an adult now. I am not a girl, not yet ... nope... 100% a woman. And I don’t know how I feel about it, so if anyone’s looking for me you’ll find me at the nearest Chico’s indulging in a little retail therapy while I sort it all out.

Whatever the mature version of xoxoxox is, 



Thirty-One Things: Attitude for Gratitude

Hi guys! It's my birthday! Not a national holiday yet but oh...someday it will be. Just you wait. 

I'm thirty-one today. 31! What a funny sounding number. Everyone puts so much emphasis on 30, the big three-oh, that anything beyond that sounds like, fake. And kind old too. No longer am I 30 I'm "in my 30's"...yiiiiiiiiiikes. 

Whatever. Beyonce is 34 and she still slays it on a daily basis and Helen Mirren is SEVENTY and looks better in a bikini than I did when I ever have or will so there's hope for us all. Age is but a number, right?


On past birthdays I've laid out some big goals for the year to come. At 29 I listed 30 Things to do Before 30...and achieved 6.5. Nailed it. And 30, I vowed, would be the year I stopped being so hard on myself. That's, um, a work in progress. As my current mindset is all about slowing down, being present and relishing the moment, I've decided to forgo making any goals or proclamations about the future and instead express gratitude and thankfulness for just a few things that make Liz-at-31 a pretty great place to be. 


birthday sunflowers at thirty one
  1. The Bri-Guy (Did you really expect anything else to come in at numero uno?!)

  2. My Schmoops and my siblings and my whole big, crazy family

  3. THE GOOSE!! So cute, she gets her own bullet.

  4. Buffalo wings

  5. Buffalo mozzarella

  6. My friends. Near and far. Old and new. (And I’ll know who my true friends are by who comments on this post!) (I kid, I kid.) (Or do I?!)

  7. Parenthetical asides

  8. Hulu Plus

  9. Old Navy

  10. My overall health. If I’ve learned one thing in my 30th year, it is that good health is never to be taken for granted.

  11. My legs, for being strong enough to be my main source of transportation and, with some hard work, for being able to run far and fast. (And for the kind genetics which allow these stems to look damn good in shorts.)

  12. Wine

  13. Prospect Park

  14. A career that (generally!) inspires me, challenges me, excites me...and gives me access to free books, and generous management who not only allow but encourage us to travel, create and build an identity outside of the workplace

  15. The Toast

  16. Fresh flowers

  17. Eggs. The perfect food!

  18. Scented candles

  19. Access to clean drinking water

  20. Public transportation (most of the time!)

  21. Brian’s right buttcheek. Brian’s left buttcheek. (To be read in the voice of Hugh Grant from Love Actually.)

  22. Love Actually

  23. Gel manicures

  24. Social media, for allowing me to stalk so, so, SO MANY people

  25. Independent booksellers

  26. Trader Joe and his delightful food emporium

  27. Maintenance workers and line cooks and subway conductors and janitors and all of the people working harder than I’ll ever work, oft unacknowledged, to allow me to live this nice life I live.

  28. Taylor Swift

  29. Condiments and sauces of all varieties

  30. Feminism

  31. This little corner of the internet where I write my silly thoughts and all of the beautiful people who take the time to check in and hopefully laugh and keep my ego afloat. Aka: YOU. Thank you for being here, you’re the best!

xo Liz Hott