a belated birthday blog

On February 4th, at long last, I finally celebrated my 21st birthday! For a college student, turning 21 is basically the Holy Grail. Until I turn 25 and can legally rent a car, this is essentially the last birthday with a significant amount of meaning and privileges attached. As any Union College student would, I of course celebrated the big night at Bomber’s with my best friends, complete with that massive margarita that they gift customers when it is their birthday. Prior to my Bomber’s celebration, my best friends could not have made my day more special. I was presented with all of my favorite snacks at midnight (they know that food is the way to my heart) and when I came home from work, my entire bedroom was decorated! One of my friends even delivered me a Panera breadbowl with broccoli cheddar soup to work for my lunch. Amazing.

This past weekend, my parents came up for dinner on Saturday night, and they took my friends and I to Marotta’s! My mom had even set up little goodie bags for us on our plates before we got there, and it was adorable. Dinner was to die for – I got the lobster ravioli and my first legal drink (Chianti!). It was the perfect way to wrap up a week of birthday celebrations. I have the best friends and family in the world, and I can’t thank them enough for making my 21st the best birthday yet!

most wonderful time of the year…oscar noms!

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As most of you may know, I have a huge movie buff. We’re talking human form of iMDB here. It’s kind of a problem. That being said, awards season is my favorite season of all! Now that we are wrapping up the minor leagues (I’m looking at you People/Critics Choice Awards, SAG and Golden Globes) it’s time for the major leagues: The Academy Awards. I’m a complete film snob with super strong opinions regarding who should have been nominated and who should subsequently win, so I figured I would share my thoughts and predictions with you all! I won’t bore you with my predictions for things like foreign film and film editing, because, let’s be serious: I know nothing about film editing and I don’t want to sound like a moron. Plus, I would rant and rave for hours so I will stick to the most important categories. But who knows, maybe some of you might agree with my predictions!

Best Picture:

The nominees for this category are so predictable, which is no surprise given Oscars’ history. Nominations are totally political and often don’t necessary reflect the actual quality of the film which is beyond infuriating…but I digress. Despite some heavy hitters in this category, there are only a few nominees that stand a legitimate chance. The Screen Actor Guild Awards and Golden Globes are very good at predicting who will take home the Oscar, in which case I should be inclined to say American Hustle will end up victorious…but that makes me mad. I have to be honest, I really did not love American Hustle. I’m all about David O. Russell and the same cast of actors he always uses (Lawrence, Adams, Bale and Cooper), but this one just didn’t do it for me. I would be inclined to say Gravity, but I’m a big believer in that if you don’t have someone nominated for Best Actor and Best Actress from the same movie, you probably won’t win. That being said, as much as I hate to admit it, American Hustle will take home the night’s top honor.

Best Actor:

First of all, let me just say how appalled I am that Tom Hanks did not receive a nomination for Saving Mr. Banks or for Captain Phillips. I was devastated. However, even if he had received a nomination, I’m not sure that Hanks would have even taken the award home: this honor belongs to Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club.

Best Actress:

If Amy Adams wins, I will throw the biggest hissy fit of my life. She was terrible in American Hustle. There, I said it. Sorry Amy Adams but you never would have conned me with that horrific British accent you clumsily utilized throughout the movie. Atrocious. I think this one will be going to Cate Blanchett for Blue Jasmine, which if it means Adams doesn’t get another award, then it is a-okay by me.

Best Supporting Actor:

I would love to see newcomer Barkhad Abdi from Captain Phillips take it home, but unfortunately, I know he won’t. Instead, I think it is inevitable that Jared Leto of Dallas Buyers Club will be the winner, which is wholeheartedly deserved.

Best Supporting Actress:

JLaw, I love you, but you don’t deserve another Oscar this year. Someone had to say it. Yes, you were fabulous in American Hustle, and probably worthy of the nomination, but not worthy of the win. The Oscar will go to Lupita Nyong’o of 12 Years a Slave.

Best Director:

This one is a toss up, full of some seriously heavy hitters. Scorcese, McQueen and Russell? Come on. Ultimately, however, I think that it will go to Alfonso Cuaron for the wonderfully different and unique Gravity.

how i spent my winter vacation

Having only two and a half weeks to cram in all the activities I usually get to do in six weeks during my winter break made for a very busy and fun-filled vacation! Now that I’m back at school, here are some highlights from my time at home!

harry potter studio tour!

Guys, my wildest dream came true a couple of weeks ago. After almost 21 years, I finally got myself to Leavesden Studios in Watford Junction, England…and it was everything I hoped it would be! Despite minor setbacks – including a flat tire on the rental car and getting impossibly lost – my parents and I managed to enjoy an amazing day in the place that I had been dreaming of for practically my entire life. Enjoy some of my pictures from the magical adventure!

wishlist

wishlist
  1. Thanks to being a slave to Apple and its iPhone for so many years, I am finally due for my upgrade! I would love, love, love to step into the big leagues with a new iPhone 5…I love the silver one!
  2. I am in desperate needs of new riding boots. I’ve had my fair share of them, but I wear them so frequently that they get run down. Not to mention the fact that I have the tendency to wear them at frat parties…not ideal. This year I’d love an investment in some great quality, leather boots that I would actually take care of for once.
  3. Lately, I have been loving the bib necklace look. This particular one is from J.Crew, which is well beyond my price range for jewelry, but its a great example of the look I’d like to go for. There are so many websites where you can steal the same kind for less!
  4. Every girl should invest in some lulus, and I am no exception. Once again, I find myself without a suitable pair at the moment, and I am just dying to get a new pair of wunder unders for the winter.
  5. Cozy sweaters are the number one thing I am craving for Christmas this year! I honestly just cannot get enough. They are my achilles’ heel.
  6. There’s nothing like a Target gift card! Most of my paycheck goes to the store anyway (I literally cannot walk in without spending 100+ dollars, even if I only went in to get shampoo) so it would be wonderful to fund my habit on someone else’s dime.
  7. A perfect stocking stuffer are the ribbon hair ties that are so popular nowadays! I am a devoted customer of these bad boys, but being abroad, I underestimated how many I would need and I am down to my last, ratty ribbon.

tuesday’s tunes

To follow up with a week long hiatus while I traveled through Spain and Italy (ugh, my life is so hard), I’ve decided to introduce a new feature on Maura Met Union called Tuesday’s Tunes! I don’t know about any of you, but I am constantly looking for new music, preferably stuff that is not featured on the Top 40 countdown. Spare me the whining, pseudo-rap musical stylings of Justin Bieber, please. Here’s a list of 5 songs that I am absolutely loving this week – seriously, they’re so overplayed on my recently added playlist, I can’t even.

“Holes” by Passenger

“Human” by Christina Perri

“Elastic Heart” by Sia feat. The Weeknd and Diplo

“Bonfire Heart” by James Blunt

“Man on Fire” by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

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