kate

A Birthday Poem For Kate - Day 16 #31DaysOfBlogging

Guys, it’s KATE’S BIRTHDAY! Instead of writing a plain old blog all about the wonder that is “Kate the Great Rapier,” I decided to write a little poem instead. Send her tons of love today! -Jill

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This poem is all about Kate 

Who is a wondrous gift to this earth

Today is a special date

Today is the day of her birth


She prefers her eggs without yolks

And loves to do handstands all over

She laughs at her very own jokes

And is a gift to all who know her

She harmonizes like no other

And she's really one heck of a writer

She's mostly brave, except one thing 

She’s terrified of spiders


Red, white, or even rosé

Kate will drink wine on any day

But don't forget, she has another passion

Her feelings are deep for a classic old fashioned


Cheese plates are her favorite

And gummy candies too

She loves to take pictures, and if you're in need

She'll take a picture for you

The water is her favorite

But she loves mountains too

She's famous for her eyeliner

And lives on dry shampoo


She'll make you a meal or give you a ride

Her generosity is on fire

She's vibrant, positive, and fully alive

Her gift is to inspire

So here's the thing I'd like you to do

If you happen to have just a minute

Tell Kate that the world is a better place 

Simply because she's in it!

Rosemary & Roadtrips

Today we hopped in the car with some friends in Nashville and road-tripped to Rosemary Beach, Florida to spend Kate's birthday in this magical place.

So far, we've eaten tacos, walked on the beach, found where we are going to get donuts in the morning, played games, eaten a cheese plate, and solved most of the world's problems. 

Happy Birthday Eve, Kate....from one of her favorite places!

Taken after our second coffee stop.

Taken after our second coffee stop.

A few of us jumping. 

A few of us jumping. 

The pre-jump...or mid-jump...it's so much better!

The pre-jump...or mid-jump...it's so much better!

Look at that form.

Look at that form.

Because Kate cannot be stopped with her handstands!

Because Kate cannot be stopped with her handstands!

Kickin' Off The Birthday Weekend

We are kicking off Kate's birthday extravaganza with a little Snickers Cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory!

Can someone please tell us what this weird light is on Kate's face? #weird

Can someone please tell us what this weird light is on Kate's face? #weird

Her birthday isn't until Saturday, but a December birthday must be celebrated for many days so that it doesn't get overlooked with all of the holiday festivities that always surround it. 

WATCH OUT BIRTHDAY WEEKEND.....WE COMIN' FOR YAAAAAA.

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Oh yes. There was also an Asian Pear Martini in the mix. #classykate

Oh yes. There was also an Asian Pear Martini in the mix. #classykate

Red Like You (31 Days-Day #14)

Jill shared a journal entry from a while back…so I thought it was my turn. This was a poem I wrote, randomly. Most of my writing comes out in song lyric or journal entry blog posts…but late at night in July, in 2008, I wrote this poem. xo -kate

Red Like You

Tied down

Wet fists thrown at me

I swallow

Try not to drown

My skin

Handed blue paint to wear

I hide

Close my eyes

But they still win

Because now I’m all black and blue

With the paint they threw

They forced me

They’ll force you too

Now I’m stuck in the painting all blue

When inside I’m red like you

{Friday, July 18th 2008 1:59AM}

A Story About Ringworm (31 Days - Day #10)

Hey guys. Kate here.

I have a fun story to tell you. Why I'm sharing this on the internet…for all the world to read is beyond me…but I guess that's kind of my M.O. Just know that ultimate vulnerability is being displayed here…so yeah.

A few weeks ago I noticed a little dry patch of skin under my left ear…kind of on my neck. It's winter so I just assumed that the dryness of the sahara that was plaguing the rest of my body daily was just a bit of winter showing up on my neck. Nothing to be alarmed about.

So…I went on with my days. And nights. And days. You get the idea.

A couple days ago I was washing my face, brushing my teeth, etc. and noticed the red patch on my skin had now become a circle on my neck. Like a completely round circle. I immediately freaked out and thought perhaps I had some middle-of-the-night rendezvous with a vampire…had Edward Cullen finally found me?  asked Jill to tell me if she saw what I saw. She took one look and told me to get it looked at by professionals.

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Enter the awesomeness that is my life: I have weird ailments happen to me. I had an extra muscle in my heart that I had to have surgery on when I was 15, I've had E. coli (TWICE), random swelling on my face from an unexplained cause, first degree burns on my eyebrows for a botched waxing, and now, well, this.

I went to bed that night and before I did…I googled. Like we all do. Ugh, why? WHY do we google our ailments? It almost always gives the worst cause scenario…but this time I found my actual diagnosis.

Ringworm. (PS> DO NOT google skin ailments…it will make you pray for a serious concussion to forget the images you see.)

WTF? Who gets ringworm? How did I get ringworm? WHAT THE HECK IS RINGWORM? Will the Dr. confirm my diagnosis? As I fall asleep I hear and see the scene from "Never Been Kissed"  where everyone is chanting "Josie Grossie-Josie Grossie-Josie Grossie" except finding a way to add my name in to the mix.

I made an appointment first thing and the Dr. looked at it for 5 seconds and said, "Yup, it's ringworm." She said there aren't worms in me (THANK GOD) and said that it's a slight skin fungus (OHHHHHMYYYYGAHHHH?!?!?!). Who get s a skin fungus? I asked her how I got it and she said it's in the community and it's just a thing that goes around.  She seemed un-phased by it…which made me feel better. She said  it can be on workout mats at gyms, from animals, etc. She gave me a prescription for a cream and said it would go away. She also said it wasn't contagious from person to person. Another relief.

Anyway…that's my story. That's actually my life. I just get these weird things. Has anyone else gotten this before? I mean, too bad I couldn't have gotten a tapeworm cause I hear those make you super skinny…here's to hoping. Just kidding. (winky face)

I'm just all here with ringworm. When I texted Jill to tell her what the Dr. said she texted me the ring emoticon + the worm emoticon. Hahaa. Best friends for the win for making you laugh in the moment.

Okay. Be careful of gym mats, animals and any other known way of contracting ringworm, kind people. Just looking out.

Love me even if I'm gross with ringworm. MMmmmmk thanks. Bye.

xo

-k

 

 

Trail Running Fool

Last week I flew to Colorado to take care of my little brothers while my parents were away celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. It was a really nice time to hang with my brothers and sister. My brothers are both 14 so talking to them sometimes involved putting them in a headlock or bribing them with movies and candy, but that's okay ;) Plus having quality time with just my sister while the boys were at school was fabulous. The second day I was there I went for a run in my parents' neighborhood and it was horrid. The hills plus the altitude nearly flattened me...and it was boring. All I could think about was getting it over with.  So, the next day, determined to still get my cardio in, I headed to a place only 15 minutes from my parents house called Garden of the Gods. It was amazing. They have all of these trails and even though it was still hard, running there it felt like an adventure.

The paths would go up and down ravines. It was gorgeous. Changing your perspective is so helpful sometimes. I was still doing the same running, but I felt adventurous and accomplished. At one point when I was in kind of a remote area, I thought about a bear attacking me or some crazy mountain lion & I freaked out a bit which in turn made me run faster. Haha. I didn't even listen to music...at first just because my Pandora station couldn't connect because it lost all service...but once it was off I kind of loved it. I could hear myself breathing. I could hear the wind in the trees. It made me feel connected to myself and my surroundings.

There was a point when I came to a hill that was pretty steep for me...but I decided it would be worth it to get to the top to see the view. It was hard. And I thought I was gonna lose a lung. But I made it. And the view was gorgeous and I was thankful I pushed myself up the hill.

Don't be afraid of the uphill.

There might be something worth huffing it for on the other side.

Below are some pics!

-Kate

 

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Gloom

*Sometimes my best therapy is just writing. Putting one song on repeat in my ear buds & writing...writing so fast that my fingers feel like independent beings from my body. This is what I did below last night. Today's repeat song was: "Bridges" by Broods. * I need sunshine and good news.

I'm tired of the gray, cold, depressing weather. Cause it is really depressing me.

I know that there are cities and countries that have worse winters but I'm talking from my perspective only. I am done with the gray. My soul feels it. It's heavier with each passing  dreary day. The cold gloom. It's making me sad on the inside. It feels defeating.

I am gonna be honest...I feel bad typing this. Because in my experience when you live a life known on social media there is only one side of publicized life so sometimes it seems like a slap in the face to say that I'm going through a hard time in the midst of all the awesome things happening in my "life."

Maybe I shouldn't type this? Maybe I should just post happy and positive blogs. More sunset pictures.

But that's never been me.

Maybe a contributing factor to why I'm feeling down is because I committed to a 30 day super restricted eating plan...and I should know better...I DO NOT do well on those. But who does? The first week was fine. Second week decent. This third week feels like hauling each foot through wet cement. I mean, no sugar, no carbs, no starch, not even fruit 6 days a week...thank goodness for the "fun day" on day #7...or else I would no longer be functioning or I would have murdered someone ;) I also have been wayyyyyy more emotional isn't that fun...i.e. I cry about every 3rd hour or so. I can most of the time laugh at myself which is a positive I guess...but even that...I've been sooooo sensitive lately. Yeesh. The upside is...I'm proud that I'm doing something that has required such self-discipline.  But let's be honest...Kate thrives on sugar and bread...I lived on a carb only diet for quite some time...that's more my "normal."

Yesterday I asked if the writers of the song "I want candy" were on a restricted eating plan when they wrote it? Because that song has been on repeat in my head a lot. Haha.

Also, this season has been an extremely busy one. And when things get busy they can also get hella stressful...which I try and do my best to not be stressed but still...Jill and I are kinda doing this music thing on our own. Well, that's only partly true, we have a few people who help us almost daily and without them we would be just sitting in our house, writing music and playing it for the walls. So...I am extremely thankful for them. And our parents...they are 100% sold on us doing this crazy music thing. They really believe all of the hard work will pay off.  But man, sometimes it's scary thinking about all we have to do, all of the opportunities we're given, all of the responsibility we carry....we are independent artists doing it full time. Meaning, it's all on us. There are pluses and minuses and for whatever reason we are on this specific journey for a reason.

I sometimes forget that I am still chasing a dream and it's scary as hell sometimes.

Even as I write this blog I laugh cause "blogging" is taking a nose dive right now. Apparently blogging isn't as popular as it once was. Blogs should be short and concise....to the point. I'm certainly nailing that aren't I? Haha :)

I know I should end this blog  with a big, long paragraph about how I appreciate you...the reader, the fan...but I hope you know that already and I hope I have the freedom to be honest with my rant...my gloomy, dark days.

xo

-kate

 

Selfie Sunday (Day #29)

So...since it's Sunday & pop culture has deemed it #selfiesunday I decided I would scroll through my iPhoto & see what pics I never posted from this year :) Get ready for Kate's face in 2013....

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London baby!

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One of my friends at the Houses of Hope Africa :)

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Blurry pic (and not a selfie) of Ryan, Jill and my dad in the elephant museum in Kruger Park, South Africa.

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Special Zoo souvenir cup...boy that thing comes in handy.

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Got some new black rimmed glasses. Love them.

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Trying on dresses for a "Downton Abbey" themed party...YOU ARE WELCOME FOR THIS PIC YOU GUYS!!

IMG_0117At the said party (not in pink dress) with my fabulous friend Kennedy.

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If I had to pick a last meal...this would be it. No, both of those fries were not mine...but yes, they were animal style.

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Little brothers flew to Nash to spend their Spring Break with their big sis.

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Not a selfie but this was starting our first ever j&k5k...SO FUN!

IMG_0662Hanging with my favorite little baby.

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Early morning. Beauty and the Beast mug...enough said.

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Sunglasses.

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Mischief in the Chipotle cup.

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My favorite Nico.

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Florida.

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Getting my hair did for our video shoot!

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My dad brought me these earrings from one of his trips to Africa.

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Big scary hair, don't care.

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Starbucks.

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My favorite selfie with a Swede.

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Enjoying a rusk with my coffee...another treat my dad brought me from South Africa.

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Veggie straw car boredom.

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I don't even know.

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Sun roof.

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Really wrinkled shirt. Sorry Tony, I didn't bust out the iron.

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Wanna-be 1940's hair & make-up.

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Dreaming.

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Drinking from my very cool Amber Sweeney mug.

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Fancy ballet selfie with the brothers.

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Cocktail hour.

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Ugly sweater run.

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My mom bought my whole family flannel shirts. And yes I was in a hallway and yes the toilet photo-bombed my pic.

Well folks, there you have it. A lot of unnecessary pics of me.

I decided I take a lot of pics in the car and while drinking things. Weird.

And if you don't know...now you know :)

2 days left in 2013. Who's excited about 2014? I AM.

BIG. FUN. EXCITING things.

xoxo

Random Sunday (Day #15)

This is going to be a random blog. Just a fair warning before you get in too deep.

We went to downtown Franklin to see A Dickens of a Christmas yesterday. You wouldn't really believe it unless you see it with your own eyes. Franklin is the most quaint old town ever. You just expect to see the entire cast of Leave It To Beaver drinking milkshakes at the old diner counter at any moment. It's pretty cute. So yesterday was no exception. There was dancing in the town-square, an amazingly-cheery Santa, people dressed up in period pieces and Ghosts of Christmas past wandering about. Again, you might not believe it unless you saw it. Here is a little visual proof:

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We grabbed some food afterwards and decided that it was a perfect day for me (Kate) to continue my training of trying to like beer. So I had 2 beers--can you believe it?

photo 4Ok, they were maybe the tiniest beers known to man but at least I tried. I settled for a glass of red wine but hey, I really did try. I will like beer someday. I will.

I woke up this morning somehow having a chest cold. It feels like there is an elephant camped out in my airway and I'm coughing all the time. Unclear about how this came about but not too thrilled about it.

Saw this sign in the Miami airport. Thought it was pretty cool. Hope it's there all year round...cause that's what we all need more of...peace & love.

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How about that Beyoncé surprise album? That was pretty sweet. Love when stuff like that happens. Well done Beyoncé. We haven't listened/watched it yet...we hear it's good.

I have watched a plethora of Christmas movies and I will not stop! I won't! I'm almost through all of them and will just start them all over again! Technical question: Is While You Were Sleeping a Christmas movie?

A Month For Hope is half-way through. Have you donated yet? It'd be super cool if you did! We need this money to help take care of these kiddos in Africa that are super, super awesome. So donate some money & you can get yourself your very own Houses of Hope Africa t-shirts!

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Ok--I think I need a nap. I need my chest cold to go away. I've got 15 days left in 2013 and I'm determined to make them all awesome. Isn't it weird that despite circumstances YOU have the power to create happiness? You can really choose happiness. It's not always easy or maybe the popular choice but man, choose it! Claim it. Make it yours. Claim peace & joy & love. Make them yours and then give them away.

xo

-kate

 

 

 

 

Sensing A Theme? (Day 14)

photo So, I realized the other day that I definitely have a theme in the books that I'm reading right now :) Half-way through both on the left...haven't started the two on the right.

I reallllllllllllly like Start. The 4-Hour Workweek is good too--just a bit heavier. Reading books like these help the dreamer in me...

What books should I read next? I think I could use a fiction or something more lighthearted....please and thank you.

-kate

 

Did I ever tell you? (Day #6)

Did I ever tell you how awesome my 30th birthday was? Well, it was pretty freakin' fabulous. Since it's almost my birthday again...(OMG...) I thought I'd share some pics from how fun last year was. I flew to Florida with Jill and we drank fruity cocktails and I read books, and laid on the beach. IT WAS HEAVEN. Here are some random pics from the trip...I can honestly not remember if I've shared them before...if I have, sue me...I'm re-sharing :)

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OH SNAP, room with a view! Yeahhhhh!

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Beautiful beach!

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Lots of time for reflecting, music listening & selfies on the beach.

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Loved walking on the beach..I mean come on, palm trees & sandy beaches? Yes please.

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Yummy frozen-fruity-pina colada!

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Gorgeous sunset. Big clouds and a big ocean make me feel small (in the best way.)

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Not a care in the world. Just a great big moon & sky.

I wish every birthday I could go to Florida. Heck, I wish for everyone's birthday I could celebrate with them on a beach in FLorida...now we're talking!

xo

kate

 

Bread.

Ahhh it's 2013. Who the heck can believe that? I can hardly. Moving right along...one of my new years resolutions has been to eat more whole foods (i.e. not processed stuff.) Mainly because I've had some stomach issues and so I thought I would give it a whirl. Also, even though I love with all of my heart those overly-processed foods, I don't think they are necessarily the best for me. Now, don't get me wrong--I have not made a total life change. At the end of the year if I am still practicing these things, I will have then made a life change. Right now I am just sharing my new ventures...but with my sharing you cannot judge me if you see me downing a Snickers bar and washing it down by the most ginormous Frappuccino you've ever seen. I won't judge your eating practices if you don't judge mine. Deal? Deal. Yay!

I have been reading this book, Nourishing Traditions...which is HUGE & full of recipes. Everything takes forever in the book. Like, wow. You always have to be thinking ahead for meal prep which is quite an undertaking for me but I've been just kind of mulling through recipes at my own pace.

In this new mindset of cooking more whole foods & getting away from the processed stuff (which my mom & family members have been doing for a while) I found a blog (Heavenly Homemakers...isn't that just the cutest title ever?) that shares/discusses recipes mostly based on the Nourishing Traditions book. You know how I love blogs & reading people's personal experiences so this was a great find! Thanks Mom for showing me the website.

Wait, speaking of my mom I need to share something. She is the most wonderful, amazing woman on the planet. I mean it. My mom is a mom. She loves taking care of her family and she does it in the most thoughtful ways. She'd write notes on my napkins in my school lunches. She'd leave a chocolate on my pillowcase when I returned home from college. She wakes up at 'o dark thirty to prepare the most delicious & wholesome food for us. She really is amazing. And she loves. She is understanding. I am so thankful that I got such a loving mother. She is always a sounding board for me whether it's about a guy I'm dating, a spiritual conundrum I find myself in or just everyday life...she listens. And my mom believes in me. When Jill and I started playing music together my mom was and I think will continue to be my biggest cheerleader. Ah...okay...I've gotten off topic from bread. Anywho. My mom is awesome and she has taught me everything I know in the kitchen.

Back to bread. So I was perusing this website and found this Applesauce Bread recipe. A quick glance at the recipe and the ingredients didn't freak me out too much and what's not to love about Applesauce & Bread? Applesauce? Good. Bread? Good. (That was a FRIENDS reference btw).

So, the other day I mixed up all these ingredients, put it in my never-before-used bread pan & stuck it in the oven for 40 minutes. Checked it by sticking a tooth pick in the middle...not quite done...5 more minutes in the oven did the trick & there I had my applesauce loaf of bread!!!

I obviously took pictures...cause that's what you do these days.

It looks like a real loaf of bread!!!!!

Woohoo! So that was my first Applesauce Bread baking experience. And I've got to tell you a secret. It was SO easy. I promise you could do it too. Like, I wish I could say that only those with my level of baking experience could do it...HAHAHAHAAA....but no, it's really, really, really easy & tastes so yummy. It's so easy that I woke up this morning and threw another loaf in for my friend.

Okay. So there you have it. Applesauce Bread. Delicious.

Have a really splendid Saturday!

-kate

A Happy Shirt

So the other day I wore this t-shirt. I had actually never worn this shirt before...I had bought it on tour but never wore it for some reason. So this was its maiden voyage. We were flying to Orlando & from the moment that I walked into the airport people started telling me that they liked my shirt. Like, everyone. Now, you have to realize. Fashion isn't exactly my strong point. I love clothes & colors but rarely spend much time plotting or planning what I will wear...so all of this extra attention was a little baffling. The woman sitting behind me, the TSA agent...as I walked by people you could see them trying to read every word. It was really funny.

First I tried to take this pic in the mirror...apparently I'm not the brightest crayon in the box cause you couldn't read it...hahaha...so I tried taking one myself...tricky.

When I landed in Orlando I walked past one of the "airport greeters"...you know the precious older people that volunteer at the airport in their spare time. Precious. Anyway...I walked past her and she stopped me and said that she sings that song to her grandkids...then she actually sang me the song!! It was maybe the cutest thing I've seen & heard...ever.

So there you have it...I had no idea a shirt could be such a conversation starter. It's now been deemed my happy shirt. Do you have a happy shirt?

I know we've been kinda MIA on the blogging...we've been busy and enjoying time with friends & family since being off the road...you know...taking a wee bit of down time :) But, we have lots of blogging to catch you guys up on...like the time we got to sing with Keith Urban & Seal, or the epic Coldplay show at the Hollywood Bowl or the fact that our ALBUM is in the final stages of being mixed & mastered. WHAT WHAT!!!!

So many exciting things coming up. Stay tuned.

Hugs. Love. And a sugar rush.

-j&k-

One Last Thing...

So again...we are borrowing the idea from PEOPLE magazine & their "One Last Thing" fun. Joe Jonas...you and your perfectly manicured eyebrows are just precious...now we will take a stab at your survey. Here it goes.

Last Celebrity Crush....

Jill: Ben Affleck. He's a Boston boy...need I say more?

Kate: I had a momentary SNL crush on Andy Samberg. All those SNL boys are so nice &  funny. But it would never work out...I think I'd want to one-up him with my jokes...cause I'm very funny. Haha. See?

Last Album I Bought...

Jill: Jack's Mannequin...I bought a bunch of their older albums on an iTunes shopping spree.

Kate: Ben Howard's album "Every Kingdom." He has such a cool voice. "Gracious" and "Promise" are some of my favorites so far.

Last Gift I Gave...

Jill: A massage. No...I didn't actually "give" someone a massage...I gave my friend a gift certificate "for" a massage.

Kate: My brother's birthday present...an Xbox game. Some game where I'm sure there is violence and blowing things up...therefore I'm participating in the general chaos of the pre-teen generation.

Last Time I Apologized...

Jill: Two minutes ago. Don't ask.

Kate: Two minutes ago. Really...don't ask :)

(We bicker like sisters, okay? Deal with it.)

Last Coupon I Used...

Jill: A coupon for a free oil change. Boo-yeah!

Kate: Hmmm....coupon...I don't think I've used a coupon since 1998. Haha. I probably have I just can't remember it. Hahahahha.

Well wasn't that fun!!!

-j&k-

Thanks.

Friends...thank you for all of your kind and supportive words from my last post. It means the world to me to read all of your comments of encouragement :) Y'all are the best. Honestly, I was blown away by the number of comments of people having had similar situations or know someone that has had something similar happen. I'm glad I wrote about it--cause I honestly hope that someone reads it and will tell a friend about it. Only together can we help prevent this from becoming an even more common occurrence. It's Saturday and we get to head to NYC to perform with Kelly on Saturday Night Live tonight so tune in if you feel so inclined!

Happy Saturday.

kate and jill too :)

It Could Never Happen To Me

So I had an experience last year that was scary, traumatic & definitely changed my life. It changed my life because it almost took my life. Sounds so dramatic which I hate cause I'm all about no drama in 2012 but it's true. So here's the story. It was late July...super hot & humid in Nashville. Jill and I had worked two days straight shooting a promotional video (which we are releasing soon...YAY!) & I was headed to a show with a friend that evening. It was a celebratory unwinding from two days of exhausting shooting & long hours. I was really looking forward to watching Bon Iver play at the Ryman. I had some drinks at the show and after the show ended (it was a phenomenal show btw) we decided to walk around  the corner to one of the honky tonk bars to have a couple drinks.

The bar was pretty crowded--we got drinks from the bar & pretty quickly found some seats with some guys (all men that were older than me) that offered to share their table. I'm a pretty friendly person by nature, but put a couple drinks in me and I'm even more chatty. The group of guys were funny, making my friend & I laugh a lot...we were having a great time! I clung close to my friend...who was a guy...to make sure the guys knew that I wasn't interested in any of them...just out to have a good time.

So, in the essence of having fun & a good time...after a little while of hanging with the table of guys, they brought over some drinks...and I took one. We left shortly thereafter...we had already planned to take a cab home & we got right in one, I gave my address & we departed. Roughly ten minutes into the ride I started to feel sick. Not oops I drank too much sick. Like...holy crap...my head is starting to cave in on itself & I started feeling SUPER nauseous. After that, things are completely blurry for me. The last thing I remember saying was "Pull over. I need help."

The next thing I remember was waking up in the Emergency Room three hours later.

Honestly the next few hours I remember almost nothing. I don't remember getting to my house, or being driven to the ER. I faintly remember hearing voices but nothing more than that. Jill and some other friends helped me piece back together the hours that I missed. Apparently this is what happened...

I started throwing up...like violently...unfortunately...all over the cab...after a few stops along the way (for me to throw up) we made it back to my house. My friend who was with me (freaking out) called Jill and asked her to meet us at the cab because I was totally unconscious & he couldn't get me out of the cab. I've never so much as fainted before so this behavior was very unusual. Jill especially thought this was really abnormal for me...thinking possibly I'd just drank too much...but when he asked for help she knew something had to be wrong. Once she got to the cab she started to FREAK OUT. They got me out of the cab (which was a difficult task because I was totally DEAD weight) and laid me on the pavement. The cab driver started pouring water on my head...Jill was slapping my face, yelling at me...but I didn't respond. At all. I faintly remember the sound of panic in Jill's voice. I guess that's what happens when you know someone that well...I could hear the nuance of sheer terror in her voice...but I couldn't respond or process anything at all. She kept yelling and slapping my face...but I couldn't respond.

This is where the story gets graphic...my apologies for those reading that don't wanna know but...full disclosure is generally my policy. You're welcome. I was totally unconscious....but I was still throwing up...and I was flat on my back on the pavement...and because of the vomit...I'd stopped breathing. Jill had to reach into my mouth and scoop the vomit out of my mouth. (I know, I know, super friend award right there.) My other friend was pumping my stomach & another friend was on the phone with 911. They decided to move me to the grass since the pavement was SUPER hot because it was mid-summer and still 80+ degrees out...you get the idea. This was one thing that I remember weirdly...I remember feeling the grass under my arms and remember thinking that it felt funny. But again...it felt like a weird dream. On the grass, my friends continued slapping me trying to just wake me up --making sure I was breathing. Nothing.

At this point the dispatcher from 911 told them it would be faster if they took me to the hospital instead of waiting for the ambulance. Again, they had to transport me (dead weight) to the car and then they drove me to the ER. It took four of them to get me into the car and drive me to the hospital.

Once I was on the table in the ER I vaguely remember them pulling my eyes open asking me if I could say my name, or respond at all...but I couldn't. I remember wanting to...really trying but I couldn't get any words out. I remember hearing a ton of beeping and a lot of hustle and bustle...people rushing around but basically felt in a dream-like haze....I felt far away.

Flash forward three hours...I started to wake up. Feeling totally out of it...and like a bus hit me...I was pretty scared...I woke up with all sorts of tubes, IV's and things that beeped surrounding me. I was relieved to see Jill & my two other friends there. They started filling me in on the details since I had no idea how I'd gotten there or what had happened.

The ER doctors admitted me into the hospital because my levels were so out of whack and they wanted to observe me for the rest of the night. It was around 4am that I was wheeled into the "Special Care Unit." The first thing the doctor asked my friends and me was what drugs had I taken? My friends kept telling the doctor that that was NOT my style. I'm all about having a good time with some drinks but I don't do drugs. It's just not my thing. Once they believed me the next thing they wanted to know is if I took a drink from a stranger? The only reasonable explanation for what happened to me was that something had been slipped in my drink. Within 15 minutes of taking that drink from a stranger I collapsed.

My blood alcohol level was low--so it wasn't a case of having drank too much. The only other possibility was that I had taken some allergy medicine earlier in the day and that my body didn't respond well to the mixing of the allergy meds & alcohol. But, after much deliberation with the doctor, he was certain that something had been slipped in my drink.

I never thought that could happen to me. I think of myself as a pretty responsible adult. I like being in control. I don't consider myself a "partier" and I rarely find myself in a bar--unless it's in a hotel lobby while on tour. But even then, I'm not one to go crazy...

They released me from the hospital later that afternoon. It took some major recouping to feel back to normal. But the thing that was the hardest to get over was the fact that I felt so shocked that it happened. That I took a drink from a stranger. When I started talking about my experience people all had the same answer..."OH MY GOSH...you took a drink from a stranger?" Most people made me feel kind of like an idiot for doing it--which was embarrassing and hurtful all at the same time. But I began to think...how many of those same people have ever done that? You are out...having a good time...almost everyone I know has taken a drink from a "new friend" they meet in the bar. Most times, people are just being nice when they buy you a drink, but there's always the chance that there is another motivation.

Not to say that I haven't learned...because I have...and that's why I'm writing this post. I'll never take a drink from a stranger again. Please don't take drinks from strangers or "new friends." Please don't set your drink down and leave it unattended. The statistics on drugs being put into drinks is staggering. It's happening more and more. It happened to me. It can happen to you.

-I was at a bar 10 minutes from my house

-I was with a guy that I trust

-I was in a "safe" part of town

And it still happened. Some of you reading this might have had something similar happen to you and I'm sorry for that. It's a horrible feeling to be out of control and so vulnerable. I am so thankful that I wasn't alone and that I had loving friends surrounding me and caring for me. Seriously...I cannot imagine if I were alone that night.

This was a pic I snapped of my wrist after I got out of the hospital. Life is fragile. And there are bat-shit-crazy people out there.

Please be careful.

Much love.

-kate-

KATE KATE KATE!!

This blog is dedicated to the one and only KATE!

Obviously this is Jill writing it because well, that would be weird to dedicate a blog to yourself...or maybe not! But either way, it's still me, Jill.

Today is Kate's birthday and I'm so glad she's alive, aren't you?

Here are just a few of the reasons why Kate the Great lives up to her name:

She can rock a BK crown like nobody's business.

She is THE queen of jumping pictures.

Her heart is huge. (Not literally. She has a normal sized heart.) But seriously, her kindness and compassion are off the charts.

She loves Nutella. With a passion.

She cares about everyone. Even giant Elvis pig statues. I told you she had a huge heart.

And of course, the KATE face!!

Happy Birthday Kate!!

-j

Goodnessssss.

I am exhausted. Like...wowza...tired. I spent the week in Chicago hanging with my little brothers and dad while my mom visited my sister overseas. And let me tell you--I am NOT a mother, I do not have my own children but man, I LOVE my little brothers. They are 10 and so funny but man...they are sometimes a handful...and I am exhausted! I played pseudo mom--I made lunches, did carpool, was "cool big sister" at times and grouchy "evil big sister" at others...and bottom line is I am WIPED OUT. So this is my official ROUND OF APPLAUSE to any and every mother, father, aunt, uncle, friend, sibling, grandparent or godparent that has ever raised a child or children.

Sit down and have a glass of wine on me.

I'm applauding you from my couch.

Below is a picture of me and my two brothers after they WON their football game!!! Woooohoo!!!! Yes, I made a homemade "TEAM RAPIER" shirt for my dad and me...how freakin' handsome are my brothers?  Sheesh. I love them....a lot.

Hugs & a wee bit of exhaustion :)

-kate

Meet My Sister.

Well, there are many things I’ve written about on my blog...but one of the things that I generally do not talk much about is my family or personal life. You know, try and keep some things for yourself and not for general public consumption...laa dee da... But right now I’m going to break my own little rule and talk about my sweet, beautiful, older sister Amy. For the last nine months she has been in a small European country working with children...and I miss her. Even though modern technology has made it SO easy to chat with her frequently--I miss her.

Now, my sister is no average bear. She’s got the most compassionate heart, a gorgeous smile and the family given sense of humor to laugh harder at your own jokes than anyone else in the room. Among her many accomplishments throughout life I would say the biggest is conquering a brain tumor and cancer at age thirteen. Not only did she do that, she did is looking FABULOUS bald...I mean...come on...who can do that? :)

Amy and I enjoy quoting really unquotable movies and watching the same movies over and over again. We’ve also been known to play a heck of a lot of Scrabble--which she wins most of the time--but I’m getting better and have even beaten her a few times :) Amy also has this way of remembering the most random things--i.e. she can tell you friends addresses or phone numbers from childhood! It’s so crazy.

Anyway--I can’t say enough good things about her. She is an inspiration and I am so proud of her. Amy if you read this...I love you and can’t wait for you to get back to the good ‘ole USA and eat good Mexican food together :)

-kate