Friday: The Survivor {Wo}Man Edition

Back in high school my girlfriends and I would play the "Desert Island Game." Basically the premise was to name a couple of items you would want to have with you on a desert island. Sometimes we made the rounds themed — pick three makeup items, pick five books, one senior guy... you get where I'm going with this.

It was always intended as just an innocuous way to pass time, but I kind of think this type of game helps you really learn a lot about someone. When I'm dating someone new, or just trying to really get to know anyone new, I like to ask what their most valued possession is. Some people can really surprise you, and if you think about it carefully {and we all know there's no risk of me not over-thinking things, let's be real} learning what people consider to be their "needs" is a really interesting way to get to know them without the obnoxious questionnaire. {But if you have a questionnaire I'll definitely take that too. I love them. I have a sickness.}

Over the years what I consider necessities in life have changed a lot. For example, if you asked me in high school, I wouldn't go anywhere without thick black eyeliner and concealer. Swear to god. But these days, I rock the cat eye so sparingly I can barely do it right, and I line my waterline with a white pencil because looking awake is more important at my office than looking "edgy." And since I quit smoking and got into the habit of drinking more water, my skin has stopped being so angry at me and I'm happy with my no-makeup face more often than not. Yay for good changes!

Years ago, Red Bull and Marlboro Lights were also on my "need" list — not so much anymore, thank god.

So what does make the cut these days? {Assuming, of course, my basic human needs are met and we're talking strictly objects, not people and pets.} If High School Alyssa could see me now...

​1. Coffee. Okay, this one has been true for a while now. But trust me, it's for the greater good of humanity that I have uninterrupted access to coffee.

2. Running shoes. LOL, who am I? Seriously though, running keeps me sane now that I've ditched the Marlboros and found how much I really, really love running.

3. Journal and pen. I am a writer, after all.

4. I would say Kindle to get the point across, but I don't have a Kindle, so I'm saying my iPad with its Kindle app. In real life, I much prefer real, paper books, but as much as I love some of my favorites, I need a little variety. And I imagine with little else to do I would burn through any novel rather quickly. Hopefully I would have the foresight to load up a couple of titles on the iPad before I got shipwrecked on this island, of course.

5. Lip balm. I always say that if I ever go missing you should just follow the trail of lip balms to find me. I keep Palmers sticks, EOS eggs, and lip butters everywhere: My desk at work, multiple in my purse, my bedside table, my home desk, my vanity table, and a drawer stuffed with backups. I can't go more than about 20 minutes without reapplying.

What's on your list of absolute essentials? What are your five desert island items?

I was contacted by Man Crates to write a post as part of a "survival essentials" campaign for their service. I was not compensated for my comments. Be sure to check out Man Crates and their variety of gift boxes for all the men in your life, from golfers to grillers, here!

Oh, AND — Happy Friday! I'm looking forward to quieting down and taking some "me time" this weekend. Tomorrow is the one year anniversary of the day we lost my grandmother to Alzheimer's, so I'll be spending some time with family and then getting back to basics with a hike, some more family time, and {no doubt tripping down memory lane} packing up the apartment. What do you have planned for the weekend?

// Linking up with Amanda + Lauren for Friday Favorites & High Five for Friday //


  1. These are always so fun!! I would hope there was an electrical outlet on said island so I could watch TV - horrible right!? I'm so addicted lol! Hope you have a great weekend love!!

  2. just one senior guy? boo. haha.
    hahahaha looking awake yes. thats definitely my main aim now, i use the white stuff and the under eye thingy for the dark circles and bags and mascara if i'm lucky.
    you don't have a kindle? when's your birthday?! lol jk.
    I honestly don't know what I would take. Is that bad? That I don't know what my needs are? Besides my cats and hubby (in that order... jk) my laptop (and internet) is what I use the most, day in day out blah blah boring me. Books, notepad, chapstick, food (even if there is food there, I want more food) and my runners as well.

  3. I love those desert island games! We played them all the time even though we are on an island haha I miss coffee so much! I actually kinda cut it out when I started eating clean but I miss it because I was over addicted. My journal also is a must have!

    I would have to take my kindle/ipad/books, my family, and Ill have to think about the rest.

  4. 1: Unlimited supply of fresh coffee grinds and a percolator to brew it over an open Fire.
    2: I would say DVDs, but without electricity on a dumb island that would be kind of useless, it would be like wearing a life vest in a desert. So, number 2: would have to be a boat ton of pens and notepads which would have been number 3, but due to circumstances it moves on up to numero dos.
    3: I need something to listen to music on, but once again this damn Gilligan's Island black hole there is no way to plug anything in, So I would take a band who knows all of my favorite jams and how to play them well. In this band will be one smart, talented women, who for some reason is in love with me: just in-case we can't get off of the island we can start some Swiss Family Robinson type civilization.
    4: Coffee.
    5: A basketball, or something to get some sort of exercise. (I figure I can make a hoop out of a coconut and a palm tree or something: I'll just Mcgyver some things around the island to make it happen.

    I may have thought this through a tad too much. . .

  5. I'm with you on the books/Kindle. I'd need to stock up on Diet Coke too unless it was finally the push to get me to quit!

  6. I love this! You are so right, you can tell a lot about someone by what they find are their most essential "things". Lip balm and sunscreen would definitely be on my list for comfort sake. My camera and my laptop could keep me entertained for days even without internet - I imagine an island would have a lot of opportunities for awesome photography and design inspiration!

  7. LOVE your survival list. I definitely wouldn't be able to go without my running shoes and my journal and pen :). I'll have to throw in my iPod too because I just can't go a day without listening to my fav tunes!

  8. I often think about that one beauty essential and mascara is always on my top! I love those little lip balm things I must have like 10 in all my various purses lol

  9. How come the EOS lipbalms don't work for me? I must be doing it wrong. I don't think I'd need anything on a deserted island. I kind of want to say a notebook, but I'd fill it up in like a week, and then what? Who cares. I'd just let myself go mad! Perfect excuse for it!

  10. Uh duh running shoes! I'd honestly have to think about what else I'd need...not much, haha! Hope you're having a great, restorative weekend :)

  11. I like paper books better, too! There's just something so satisfying about turning an ACTUAL page!

  12. girl, you run for me because i hate it! i need sunscreen (how boring) lol.

  13. I don't think I'd make it without a few good books and a pillow. I mean, I just can't sleep if I can't get my head in a comfy place! haha



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