Thursday, August 15, 2013

Ramblings of a 30-Year-Old

 Well, I am now officially a member of the "30 Club."
I celebrated my 30th birthday on Tuesday. 
It wasn't very dirty... or flirty... or any other word that rhymes with "thirty."

Instead, it was super sweet and simple... thanks to three AMAZING kids.

Since January, I've been nannying for a great family.
When I left the TV business last December, I wasn't really sure what I wanted to do with my life.
But, I needed to pay the bills (those student loans don't pay for themselves!) 
I took a job as a nanny... never imagining it would last eight months... 
or that I'd be celebrating my 30th birthday with the kiddos.

But, they are so thoughtful.
They made homemade birthday cards; got me a gift certificate to my favorite Omaha coffee joint; and bought me a giant cookie decorated in Creighton colors. #GoJays
We spent the day playing with dolls, going to the pool and eating lunch at Red Robin.

They also kept reminding me "how old" I'm getting... and that it's about time I get a boyfriend.
(According to the 5-year-old, I need to date a guy with PINK hair.)

After spending the day with the kids, I had dinner at my favorite sushi spot with my parents.

My mom (who's a nurse) said a fellow nurse asked her if she felt old - having a daughter turn 30.
My mom replied, "Nope... because I still feel like I'm 30!"
Hopefully I'll be thinking that same way 24 years from now.

Turning the big 3-0 does make you reflect on your life though.
ESPECIALLY when you're not sure what to do next (career-wise.)

From the time I was little, I had this idea that I was going to be "the next Katie Couric."
It's all I ever talked about... 
I mean, I had her PICTURE taped on my bedroom wall -  next to the Backstreet Boys and JTT.


In college, I had three internships and worked my butt off.
When I was lucky enough to get my foot in the door as a Reporter and Anchor, I was THRILLED.
I sacrificed so much for it.

Over the last six years, I've had the chance to cover 
some INCREDIBLE stories and meet amazing people.
But, ever since I left Green Bay... this quote has been on my mind...

Is TV News what I really want to do?
Do I miss it?
Am I good at it?
Do I keep pursuing it?
Do I move on to something else?

People sometimes ask me, "If you weren't a TV journalist... what would you be?"
And I always come back to the same answer, "An interior designer."
I need to have a job with some sort of creative outlet.
(If you've been reading my blog for the last three years, this should come as NO surprise to you!)

I'd love to have a job that combines both TV and design.
HGTV... do you need a blonde, farm girl from Iowa?

The point of this post is that I feel GREAT about turning 30.

My 20's were all about work, work, work, work, work.
I was CONSUMED with work... and the IDEA of work.
I constantly worried about "the next big job"... reaching the next TV market... 
"being the next Katie Couric."
I forgot about being the ONLY Jenny Nowatzke.

I recently read this quote from the 
Food Editor at "Everyday with Rachael Ray" and it struck me to the core.  
She says, 
"I'm starting to realize that if you spend your life chasing after the next big thing, you'll always be struggling.  That whole idea that one day you'll feel like 'you've made it' is a myth. 
You've made it when you realize that 'making it' isn't everything."  
- Stacy Adimando

I've FINALLY realized that "making it" isn't everything.
Instead, my family and friends are everything.
I never FULLY quite understood that... until now.

So, (for all the ladies out there) I leave you with an article from the 1997 issue of 
Glamour magazine... which boldly says "life begins at 30."
Do you agree?

By 30, you should have...
1. One old boyfriend you can imagine going back to and one who reminds you of how far you’ve come.
2. A decent piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in your family.
3. Something perfect to wear if the employer or man of your dreams wants to see you in an hour.
4. A purse, a suitcase, and an umbrella you’re not ashamed to be seen carrying.
5. A youth you’re content to move beyond.
6. A past juicy enough that you’re looking forward to retelling it in your old age.
7. The realization that you are actually going to have an old age -- and some money set aside to help fund it.
8. An email address, a voice mailbox, and a bank account -- all of which nobody has access to but you.
9. A résumé that is not even the slightest bit padded.
10. One friend who always makes you laugh and one who lets you cry.
11. A set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra.
12. Something ridiculously expensive that you bought for yourself, just because you deserve it.
13. The belief that you deserve it.
14. A skin-care regimen, an exercise routine, and a plan for dealing with those few other facets of life that don’t get better after 30.
15. A solid start on a satisfying career, a satisfying relationship, and all those other facets of life that do get better.

By 30, you should know...
1. How to fall in love without losing yourself.
2. How you feel about having kids.
3. How to quit a job, break up with a man, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.
4. When to try harder and when to walk away.
5. How to kiss in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn’t like to happen next.
6. The names of the secretary of state, your great-grandmothers, and the best tailor in town.
7. How to live alone, even if you don’t like to.
8. Where to go -- be it your best friend’s kitchen table or a yoga mat -- when your soul needs soothing.
9. That you can’t change the length of your legs, the width of your hips, or the nature of your parents.
10. That your childhood may not have been perfect, but it’s over.
11. What you would and wouldn’t do for money or love.
12. That nobody gets away with smoking, drinking, doing drugs, or not flossing for very long.
13. Who you can trust, who you can’t, and why you shouldn’t take it personally.
14. Not to apologize for something that isn’t your fault.
15. Why they say life begins at 30

I may not know EXACTLY what I want to do with my life - 
but I feel like I'm getting closer to figuring it out.
Happy Birthday to me.
A fresh beginning at 30.


  1. 30 is the new 29? Soar you lil' Bluejay, soar.

  2. I love you and I love this post!!!!! Love, Whitney