Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Christmas From The Other Side

I am typing this on my phone because I am still at the event that led me to blog. I just do not want to forget...

So, my town does a big Holiday event to celebrate. They officially light up downtown and there is music, vendors, performances, etc. On Thursday, we have a huge parade and thousands of people decend. Friday, there is the monthly First Friday.... Again, holiday themed.

I came down tonight to meet up with my parents, who brought Lydia. While walking through the downtown square, I ran into a former church friend that I haven't seen in close to a year. We were catching up and a homeless man walked up to us. At first, we both tensed up... I truly had nothing but my keys and phone, so I knew I wouldn't be able to give him anything. I was prepared to kindly turn him away.

Then, he didn't ask for anything. In his mumbled, clearly incapacitated way, he just stood and talked about how beautiful the park was. He was so animated and excited. He kept saying, "It's so pretty! It's so pretty! They turn off the lights after the New Year. But, it is so pretty until then."

We smiled and agreed and listened. And, then he left. Just smiling.

We didn't say anything. We didn't have to, because our faces after he left said it all.

It was sad. And, slightly shameful. We immediately assumed the worst, when all he wanted was to tell us how pretty his home was for a month.

It also made me sad, because every year I get sad when Christmas comes down. I get kind of depressed. 

I never thought about what it is like for them, until right now.




Friday, November 22, 2013

Just an FYI.....

If you are looking for some Scentsy discounts, there is a huge sale on closeout items going on right now!


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Blurbs, because I apparently don't have anything important to say

Hi, folks! It's been two weeks since the last time I said anything. Longer since I said anything important. I do need to get better at this whole consistency thing.

Life is mainly back on track after the month-o-suck. Just busy. 

In the meantime, here are a few short points of my interest.....

I saw 'About Time' this weekend. Go.See.It. It's wonderful. Charming, funny, sentimental.... Just adorable.

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Speaking of Rachel McAdams, there are rumors of her and Ryan reuniting. I'm crossing fingers that it is true.

This cute little buzzfeed exhibits why they are meant to be together.... http://www.buzzfeed.com/mackenziekruvant/ryan-gosling-and-rachel-mcadams-forever

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My work FINALLY got me a decent phone. I've been stuck using a first generation Blackberry for 5 years.

Thanks to some finagling from our CFO, I was able to get a brand new Hot Pink IPhone 5c. It's glorious.

I wanted a cute display of my work perks for the cover of this phone. Shutterfly actually does have the option of getting a case with a liner (adding a layer of protection to what would otherwise be just a pretty piece of plastic). However, the design options they had weren't really what I had in mind.

I found exactly what I was looking for on Zazzle, but their cases didn't seem to be very protective.

That is where PicMonkey came in. I basically recreated the design I liked (with a few changes) in PicMonkey and then saved it as a jpg. Then, I went back to Shutterfly and used the option of just uploading one picture as your case background. In just a few short days, I shall have my customized-just-the-way-I-want-it phone case.....


It is ridiculous just how excited I am about a phone case.

Also, I'm not receiving any sort of compensation from Shutterfly, PicMonkey, or Zazzle. I wouldn't mind some free cards or a photo book, though, Shutterfly.

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I feel both ahead of the Christmas game and behind it. I've already crossed several people off of my list in the present department (when usually I do not buy the first gift until Black Friday) and I have a set of cards already (thanks, Minted). However, I still feel like I'm playing the rat race game.

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Running. I need to do more of it.

I also need to do some sort of weight training.

I just feel blubbery. Not good.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Monday Musings

Happy November!! Already, this is a great month.

Seriously, I think that at least 15% of my horrible mood in late Sept and all of Oct was the weather. Florida "winter" is more like everyone else's Fall. However, we didn't have one this year. So, basically we spent 9 months in a state of heat and humidity. Ya'll get Winter Blues? Well, I got the Summer Blues. 

It is amazing what a drop in the humidity and ten degrees of temperature will do for a person's overall outlook.

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A couple weeks ago, I had the pleasure of meeting up with My Twin.

Marianne and I met through blogging and I just adore her. It's ridiculous how eerily similar we are.



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Has anyone been watching 'The Originals'?

I love.

No, I really love.


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I was walking through Target and saw these.....



NO. Just no.

Leotards or "bodysuits" are not acceptable in 2013, unless you are actually a dancer.


No.


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Each year, my friends at work don cute semi-Halloween outfits. Then, we go out to a fun, yummy lunch.

Aren't we adorable?.....



Also, one of our stations was at a Halloween trick-or-treating event. This was our table after about five minutes.........


I did have more candy to replenish the stash, but we basically sat at an empty table for three hours.

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I'm a dork and already have my tickets for the 9pm showing of 'Catching Fire.' I.AM.SO.EXCITED!!!!!!

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I spent all weekend wanting sweets. For which I am kicking myself.


Today? Today, I want salty and cheesy. For which I am also kicking myself.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

To My Future Children.....

Hi dear children,

If you ever come across this, you will hold this as proof that your mom.... the same mom that you think is boring and too uptight.... once got very, very drunk. Your mom who is always reminding you of how alcoholism runs in the family and how you do not have to drink to have fun.....  once was THAT girl who had to be half-carried out of an amphitheater after a Luke Bryan concert

See, I'm not exactly proud of this fact, but I accept that it happens and it was totally my choice. I knew in my head it was a stupid thing to do and I did it anyway. I... who ALWAYS knew when to cut myself off and how to sober myself up with bread and water.... didn't. 

I hope that it makes me a little more relatable.

Yes, I was 30 before this happened. Yes, I am swearing that it will never happen again. Yes, I realize that I was right when I said that throwing up is just not worth it.

But, I'm still hoping that, if nothing else, this one experience will help me help you.

Here are some absolute truths..........

- I was 30 and was legally able to purchase the (insert #) alcoholic beverages that I did. If you are not 21, then nothing I am saying here applies. The law is the law. I followed it and so should you.

- It will be fun. In fact, it will probably be more fun than you have ever had.

- The crappy week you've had? The boss that made work hell? The boy or girl that broke your heart? All of the above? You will 100% forget them with all the fun you are having.

- Then, eventually, you will take that one drink that pushes it into "not fun." If you are anything like your mom, you will then start crying and going on about all the sadness you are feeling.

- The concert will end and your friends/family will have to figure out how to get you out of your seat and to the car. They will hopefully think ahead to the ride home and prepare for the inevitable sick that you are going to be.

- Remember the Teacups at Disney? How you liked to spin as fast as I could make it go? How by the end of the two minute ride, you were ready for it to end even though it was our favorite ride? Now, think about that and imagine spinning at full speed for the entire hour long car ride home. That is what it will feel like. It will feel like death.

- Once the car stops, those same people that got you in will have to figure out how to get you out and into the house. They will pat your back and try to make your drink water and make sure you are breathing. They will somehow be comforted by the fact that you probably got rid of all the stuff in your stomach.

- Then, you will wake up the next day. Not feeling great.... but, if you are like your mom, not really feeling hungover. Just tired and worn out.

- You will realize when you wake up that you had fun before that last drink. That you really did. That you survived it and probably would still be considered a bore by some standards.


And, here are the most important truths........

You will realize that NO one person or thing is worth feeling as bad as you did when the bad came. No job. No boss. No boy. No girl. No friend. None of them are worth it.

You will realize that the bad is still there, but it is a little less important. It doesn't consume you and it doesn't define you. Yes, you still have to deal with the bad, but after spending a night feeling like death, it really isn't so bad to deal with the bad, anymore. 

You will pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and chalk it up to a really bad month/week/day that has ended, never to be relived. You will realize who loves you and supports you.... and that they are the ones you should be focusing on.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Life....

..... is kicking my butt, right now.

Like, I'm having a really hard time dealing with one blow after another. 

There is a lot of good. I'm trying to focus on the good. I'm trying to live in the good.

But, I can't say that the bad isn't weighing me down. 

Yesterday, I had several of important talks. A lot of them revolved around my greatest insecurity..... That I will never be enough. That the day will not come where a man looks at me and says, "YOU are exactly what I want and have been waiting for."

It's what I fear the most. 

Yesterday, I stood in front of a man that I greatly care about... that I want something with. And, I listened to him tell me how wonderful I was.... How much I mean to him.... How he can't count on one hand how many people in this world he cares about as much as he cares about me.... How I'm sweet and funny and thoughtful and driven and I have a great family.... and, how he didn't want me. He wants me in his life. He can't see his life without me in it, but he wants to try life with someone else (even though he freely admits that he loves, but isn't in love, with this woman and he has no intention of ever marrying her). I'm just not enough for him.

And, as he told me all about this other woman's insecurities and why he has to make allowances for them, I listened to him list off these things that I've experienced in my own life. These happenings that "make her" so afraid and untrusting..... I've actually experienced myself. I told him that. I also told him that he didn't see me putting him or anyone else on trial for those things. I told him that what was happening in this very instance was exactly what I was the most insecure about.

It was extremely tough, to say the least.

 About a year ago, I was in a similar state of mind. Granted, right now is worse because I'm getting it from several angles. Regardless, I was in this state of mind.

A friend.... who oddly was only in my life for a few short months.... said to me, "You need to know that if no one chooses you for the rest of your life. If you aren't picked as the best friend. If you aren't picked for a job. If you aren't picked as the love. If you go the rest of your life not being chosen, remember that God CHOSE YOU! He chose to bring you into this world. He knew that there was something unique and special about you.... something no one else in the world would ever have. He chose to die for you. He. Chose. You."

A couple friends over the past few weeks have made the point that even though I was in a good place this summer, maybe I wasn't in the place God wanted me to be in. Work is an ongoing question, but on the TG and FD front, I was "ok." They were in the picture, but in the background of it. I wasn't thinking about them, but they were still there. They were books on the shelf.

These friends have suggested that maybe God wanted them out, for good. That maybe God is burning those books, so to speak, to allow for some room on the shelf. That maybe it is time that I completely shut those doors and nail them shut. And, maybe something beyond my wildest dreams will be around the corner.

Or, not. Maybe there isn't something better around the corner, but I am trying to take steps to get them out of my life, as much as possible.

TG is actually pretty easy. He isn't here.

FD is a lot tougher. We work together. And, his exact words were, "You are going to have to tell me how to handle this, because I don't know how to proceed. We've done the avoidance thing and it never feels right. It doesn't feel right to not be friends." So, if I want him out of my life, *I* have to be the one that makes it happen.

This really, really sucks. I hope the better comes soon.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Randoms

I am a week behind on the 31 Days. #31DayFail

Maybe I will catch up and maybe I won't. We will see.

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Men suck. Especially the men that I have given nicknames to on this blog. They both suck and I'm pretty sure I want them out of my life.

I *think* for real, this time.

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I haven't done anything resembling exercise since my ten mile run.

In fact, today, I pushed 'snooze' for TWO HOURS.

That's right. I was too lazy to get up and I was also too lazy to reset my alarm.

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Part of me thinks I may be a little on the depressed side. Not full on doom and gloom, but definitely bluesy.

I'm trying to come out of it, but it feels like hits just keep coming and I am trying to roll with them.

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Unrelated, but convenient to, the past few weeks of debacle..... I'm dyeing my hair this afternoon. For the first time ever. I've gotten highlights about once every 6-8 months for the past ten years, but I've never fully colored my hair.

While I have been planning this since July (truly, I have had this appointment since July), the actual happening couldn't have been better planned.

I need a change. Let's start with my hair.

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Sunday night, I went to dinner with Billie Jo's family at Chef Mickey's. Afterward, we were able to watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks on top of Bay Lake (connected to The Contemporary.... part of Disney Vacation Club). It was fun and magical....






Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Lesson #8 - You Can Do ANYTHING (including run 10 miles).... If You Work For It

*** This is both a lesson and a recap. While the recap part is mainly for my own memories, I promise there is a lesson at the end.



Let me tell you about myself about 9 years ago. I was in college, my stepfather had just passed away about 6 months earlier, and I was spiraling into a continual darkness. I was 100 lbs heavier than I am now. I still danced, but was not fit or healthy.

Eventually, I woke up and started working to a healthier existence. A couple years ago, I started the Couch 2 5K. I did it and then fell off the running. Then Summer 2012, I started again and actually did really well. I got to the point that I could run for 45 minutes. Then, I stopped.

Well, around March, I picked it back up again. And, I got the wild idea to sign up for a 10 Mile Run. I really don't know WHY I got that idea, but I did and I convinced my sister Megan to sign up, as well. Shortly after, she suggested we sign up for a 5K series during the summer. We trained and practiced and completed the series. Then, we kept training. Honestly, I didn't train as hard as I should have, but the Florida Summer got to me. Regardless, I did keep running and preparing for October 5th.

It came, alright.

Megan, my mom, and I headed to Orlando. We picked up our race packets and checked into the hotel.......



Then, we waited. It seemed like for-ev-er. I tried to nap, but that was a no go. I did manage to eat.

Finally, it was time to get ready and head toward the buses for the race!!!


"Does this tutu make my butt look big?"



I cannot explain the energy on that bus ride. Everyone was excited, nervous, and buzzing with energy.


Momma and I on the bus!......




If I thought the bus ride was exciting, getting OFF the bus and walking towards the pre-party and race start was multiplied. There were thousands of people in the parking lot of Hollywood Studios. A DJ, music blaring, light up balloons.... it was insane. The most entertaining part was all the runner costumes. Oh, the creativity......


Like this guy..... 



He was part of an entire ensemble of Star Wars characters.


I had a couple friends that were also running. We tried to meet up, but with so many people using cells, reception was non-existent. We spent a couple of hours just walking around and trying to stay calm. And, my mom took tons of pictures.....




Eventually, it was time for us to get into our corral. Since neither of us had proof of times, we were in the last two corrals.... I moved back to Megan's, so we could start together. Everyone had to line up at 9:15. The race started at 10pm. Our corral wasn't scheduled to start until 10:28.

In essence, I felt like I was going to throw up for over an hour.


Here is us faking being calm, cool, and collected.



FINALLY, it was our turn to start. Towards the Start Line, we were able to see my mom holding up signs for us and her phone. She had my cousin on Facetime, so she could see us, too!! Honestly, that is what calmed us down and got us really excited. The loud music, the lights, fog, DJ, and MC helped, too.

Something I loved is that Disney gives a grand start to each corral. With the scary "Twilight Zone" music and a firework start, we were off!! Our route looked like this.....



While Megan and I started together, we knew that we wold be running by ourselves. She has a faster pace than I do and we each run to music. Despite the official website claiming that they do not recommend earbuds, most racers do wear them. The warnings and announcements are LOUD. Even with my music going, I could hear the important stuff.

A couple notes about the course..... it is mostly on main roads. At first, it is kind of cool to realize that you are running where you normally drive at Disney World, but it gets a bit boring. They do have entertainment and characters along the way (I didn't stand in line for any of them), but mainly you are just running.

It was HOT and HUMID. Not as bad as what we dealt with in July and August, but still pretty nasty. I made sure to take all of my walk breaks and to drink plenty of fluids at each water station.

My least favorite part was the dirt path you take right before entering Wide World of Sports. While the character stations they had were really cool, the path was dark and narrow. You would have three or four people walking shoulder-to-shoulder (rude), so you'd have to go off the path to run around them. Plus, all the dirt being kicked up was irritating.

When we did get to Wide World of Sports, I thought I would never get out of there. It was like reliving my worst PE days, all over again, lol. We ran onto the soccer fields, went around the track, ran on sidewalks, and then went around the baseball field before heading out.



As you can see, as we exited the complex, we hit the Mile 7 Marker (btw, the mile markers were awesome.... a running clock with an elevator theme), that was when I started having true doubts about myself. This was the conversation I was having with myself, in my head.....

"Yay!!! Mile 7..... Almost there!!!!"

"Only 3 more miles! 3 miles is normal to you. You got this!"

"Holy cow, I have THREE miles to go...... It's after midnight and I still have three miles to go."

"It is so hot. I'm so tired."

"What if I just walk the rest of the way? That wouldn't be so bad, right?"

"Where is more water? I'm so thirsty."

"WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO?!?!?! WHY DID YOU SIGN UP FOR THIS, JESSICA?!?!?!"

 "I don't think I can do this."

"Just keep running. Just keep running until you fall down."

"If I pass out, will I still get a medal?"

"WHERE is the water station?"

"Don't stop. Just keep running."

About the 7.5 mile mark, a cool breeze came. Out of nowhere. All around me, people were exclaiming over the cool breeze. I said out loud, "Thank you, Jesus. I needed this."

Now, I won't say that I didn't struggle the rest of the way, but it gave me a push that I desperately needed to keep going.

Eventually, we got back to Hollywood Studios. The last mile and a half was actually in the park. As awesome as it was, it was also a little bit of a mind game. See, I know that park like the back of my hand. I know exactly how to get from Lights, Motors, Action to Tower of Terror..... the best, most direct route. Yeah, they don't take you that way. You weave in and out, taking the most indirect way possible. When we rounded the Sorcerer's Hat, there was a big crowd cheering and a DJ congratulating us..... we only had a half a mile left.


That may have been the longest half mile EVER. The volunteers that were cheering us along were amazing, especially that last half mile. They knew we were hot, tired, and just ready to quit.

When I saw the finish line? I booked it as hard and as fast as I could. I totally crossed the finish line with both arms pumped over my head in victory. My mom was there to take a picture and cheer me on.

After you finish, you still have about another mile to walk to get the freebies, cool down, and get your bag before getting to meet up with your family.

This was my view when I finished..... A moment I will never forget......




The very first thing they hand you is cool towels. Then, you get in line to have one of the ten or so people handing out medals put one over your neck. Just like in the Olympics. When the lady told me, "Congratulations. You did it!" I almost cried.

I called my sister who I knew had already finished (we signed up for each other's updates, so my phone dinged when she hit the 5K, 10K, and Finish). She had just gotten my update and was able to tell me my time before I even knew it, lol. She was waiting past the bag claim with our friend BJ.

In that walk, they hand you a ton of freebies. My hands were full. I got my bag and happened to run into my friends.... we patted each other on the back and then I met up with my mom, Megan, and BJ.





My mom had these shirts made for us, while she was waiting. She was SOOOO proud of us....




They had an onsite engraver. It cost $20, but I felt is was well worth it.


I will keep this thing forever......

 

They had an after-party and we stayed until about 3:45am. It was exhausting, but the whole night was so exhilerating.


Two proud sisters......




11300 people registered..... 9474 actually came and finished.... My overall placement was 4233. Out of 6132 women, I finished 2349.

I ran ten miles in 2 hours and 8 minutes. 

Me.

My FB status the next morning read, "I did it!!!!! If you ever had PE with me, then you will know that ME running ten miles is basically a miracle."

People said (and still are) how proud they were.... how impressed.... how they could never do it.

I'm soooooo proud of myself and my accomplishment. And, I'm soooooo thankful for their compliments.

Here's the thing though.... They *can* do it. Again, I once weighed 100 lbs more than I do now. I've struggled my whole life with running. I was always last.... always the slowest.... always the awkward, clumsy kid that no one wanted on their team.

And, *I* placed ahead of over half of the 9474 people that participated.

If I can do it, anyone can. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow..... but eventually.

I've been running off and on for two years. I've been training (and not as seriously as I should have been) for 6 months. I worked for it and I did it.

You can, too.

Keep in mind, I still don't like running. I don't consider myself a runner. I do it because it is a challenge and because it pushes me completely out of my comfort zone.  

If running isn't your thing (trust me, it's not my thing, either) or you have no desire to do it, that's fine. But, don't say you can't. You can. You can do anything that you are willing to work hard enough for. If it is humanly possible, you can do it.

Will you do it as well as the next person? Maybe not, but you can still do it.

That is my lesson. It's something that I learned in a big way this past weekend. 


A couple of notes, if anyone is interested in running this race.........

  • I would recommend staying on Disney property. It is a LATE night and not only is travel shorter when you are on property, but you don't have to worry about driving.
  • Definitely jog to your own music, even though they say not to. There are boring stretches.... it's dark.... it's long...... unless you are planning to chat with a friend while walking briskly, music is needed.
  • Warning.... you are going up and down a lot of ramps to get on the highway. So, not only are there hills (more than this native Floridian is used to), they are curving and slanted. Like a NASCAR race. Except you are trying to run it.
  • It may be October, but chances are pretty high that it will still be hot and humid in Florida. I am used to this weather and I was feeling it. I would guess that the majority of the people I saw being carried away by medics at the end of the race were because of heat exhaustion/dehydration. My body/habits are able to adapt. I know what to do. However, I noticed so many people skipping right past the water stations. I would grab a cup of Powerade at the front of the station, walk, swig, and then grab a cup of water to do the same thing. Every. single. time. Yes, I felt a little yucky with that much liquid in my stomach a couple times. I did feel like I was going to get sick a couple of times. But, I just slowed down until I stopped feeling so water logged. When it was over, I drank both the bottle of Powerade and the bottle of water they handed us within the hour. Probably within 45 minutes. I kept drinking throughout the night. You have to do that when you are running 10 miles in Florida.
  • It is an expensive race. It's Disney, after all. However, it is also worth every penny. 
  • If you have any questions about this race, feel free to email me :)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Lesson #7 - Take Care Of Your Teeth



We learn this from a young age. It is shoved down our throats (sometimes literally) to brush our teeth multiple times a day. Floss. Use mouthwash. Get braces. Get regular check-ups.

It isn't until you are an adult that it truly sinks in how important all that really is.

Especially, if you work for a country radio station.

There are a lot of people who didn't take all that brushing to heart (thankfully, I was always scared to death of cavities and gum disease).

Teeth are something that I'm 100% vain about. I admit it. Smiles/teeth are the #1 thing I notice on a guy. Bad teeth is a deal breaker for me.

So, that is my lesson this Monday. 

Take Care Of Your Teeth.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Lesson #6 - Sometimes, Choose No Plans



A couple weeks ago, I was looking at a weekend of nothing to do. Originally, my immediate thought was, "Oh, man. What am I going to do this weekend?!"

Then, it hit me...... Nothing.
With the exception of going out to eat on Saturday, I don't think I left the house. In fact, I stayed in my PJs most of the weekend.

The six weekends before that? Packed.

Every weekend since and going until mid-November? Packed.

Why I had an instant rush to fill up my time is beyond me, but I'm glad I did take the opportunity to just veg out.

Sometimes, it is A-ok to choose to have no plans.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Lesson #5 - Trust Your Instincts



I have pretty good instincts. Usually, if there is something nagging in the back of my head, it will turn out to be right.

Let's just take TG, for example. For the past few months, I got the feeling that he was probably seeing someone, but just wasn't saying anything. I know his patterns, so I figured that if it got serious enough, I'd eventually find out. It turns out that I was right, just I never would have guessed what was really going on.

Another time, a close family friend was dating a guy that I just.did.not.like. I mean, I loathed this guy and had absolutely NO reason. To the point that other people thought I was being completely rude and unreasonable. I very rarely cannot stand someone. And, even less am I unable to hide my contempt. About 99% of the time, even if I'm not super fond of a person, I can try to find at least one thing appealing and then tolerate them on that level. But, not this guy. He is one of a handful in my life that I was downright hostile towards. A few months later, we found out that this guy had a HORRIBLE past and was worse than I could have imagined.

This happens a lot, in big or little situations. I will have suspicions or surmise something that I really have no proof about. A lot of times, I won't even say anything to anyone because I fear I'll come off as a crazy person. There are times that I will mention it to a close friend/family, but it's like I will feel the need to list off all these reasons for thinking it..... when, really, it's just my gut.

I don't always end up being right, but I've got a pretty good accuracy rate. I think we all tend to. Our instincts.... our gut feelings.... they are there for a reason. I think God puts it there for a reason.

Trust your instincts and yourself.


Friday, October 4, 2013

Lesson #4 - Cravings Are Real



So, I mentioned that I participated in the Advocare 24-Day Challenge. I lost apprx 10 lbs, pre-cruise in the 24 days.

I say "approx" because I'm now in THAT time, so weighing myself the past few days has been futile.

Which brings me to my lesson....... Cravings are a real thing. I know we sometimes abuse the idea of having a food craving, but it is real.

The past 3 1/2 weeks, I've basically craved nothing. Like, I knew I would like it if I was eating it, but I wasn't consumed with a desire for any particular food item. In fact, this past Sunday, several family members were eating ice cream in front of me and I was fine with it. I didn't feel like I was depriving myself.

Then, last night happened.

I was overwhelmed with a STRONG need for pizza and ice cream. Like, I may have shot someone if I didn't have it. So, I ate two slices of pizza and 3 oz of ice cream (I know it was 3 oz because it was in one of those little cups). That fed the craving and I was fine.

I started this morning (TMI) and another one hit me. At lunch. I *needed* PB Pie FroYo. Thankfully, I was able to get it (again, a very small serving) and now I'm ok.

My point? Our hormones do cause our bodies to overtake our brain, at times.

So, the next time a guy tried to tell you that you are imagining things, you just tell him I said it was true.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Lesson #3 - Groom Your Eyebrows



Seeing as I have been all dark and twisty the past week, I'm going for one of those "lighter" lessons today.

Eyebrows. Unless you have NATURALLY pencil-thin, beautifully shaped eyebrows, they need to be groomed.

I've been getting mine waxed for years, but I'm honestly not as regular about it as I should be. Like now.... I got my eyebrows waxed right before my cruise (a month ago) and haven't since. Now? They are some scary beasts.

Here's a funny story for you..... Several years ago, my cousin Heidi was visiting all by herself and we went to get our nails done. The lady that does my nails and eyebrows spent the entire manicure trying to convince Heidi to get hers waxed. Heidi wanted no part of it and was slightly offended that the lady was so adamant.

Then, a couple months later, she calls me and says, "So, I decided on a whim to try waxing my eyebrows. That lady was right. I needed it. Badly. What was I thinking to wait so long?"

So, that is my lesson for the day. Make sure your eyebrows are groomed. It does wonders for your face.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Lesson #2 - Love is Limitless



I haven't yet felt the love of a mother to a child or the love that two people feel when they commit their lives to one another. However, I think it's safe to say that I love deeply. Even without having the aforementioned love situations, I have people in my life that I just love without limit.

It can be a great thing, but it can also drain you. What I'm starting to learn is that you just have to love and not worry about how the other person responds. I'm not talking about going crazy or smothering or anything like that.... I just mean, you have to love them and just be. You can't help how much you love them and you can't help how much they do/don't return the feelings.

No matter what, you don't let them punish you for it and you don't punish yourself.



Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Lesson #1 - Speaking Up



 There have been several times in the past few years that I've written about this. Usually, it is when I have finally gotten the courage to admit my feelings to the current boy (well.... really, there have been two The Guy and Fun Distraction). But, I've also talked about how I tend to keep things in.

I'm afraid to say something I will regret..... I'll regret the consequences..... So, I just keep silent.


Then, I end up regretting NOT saying what I was truly feeling. Because, we cannot hold other people accountable for things they didn't know.

In the end, I may be sad about the other person's reaction/actions, but I never end up sorry that I said something. Because, I was truthful.... and, in that moment, 100% me.

I've learned to speak up, but not in anger. Stay above the belt. Say your feelings, but don't be mean. Be firm, but loving.

It's all a hard line to tow, but I'm getting better at it. Whether at work or with friends or with family or with the Customer Service rep at zazzle.com...... I'm slowly getting better at voicing my thoughts on a situation.

This weekend, TG.... who still hasn't addressed the 38 week elephant in the room (oh, yeah, that is right.... apparently, he's going to be a Daddy sometime around Oct 12th...... yes, my anger and hurt was multiplied).... decided to be all cute on our personal FBs. After several hours of mulling it over (and, getting out the super sarcastic and nasty things I wanted to reply with), I settled on this.....



Beyond him replying, "Touche!!!" we still have spoken or texted. While I spoke up in that letter I wrote him such a long time ago, I just went ahead and started being his friend again without speaking up about how his silence for six months affected me.

At the very least, he now knows that while I *do* wish him well and I *do* still call him a friend, I'm not happy with him.

So, today's lesson is to "Speak Now." 

31 Days of Life Lessons

I have seen this pop up all over my blog roll over the past 12ish hours and thought I'd challenge myself.

Nester is hosting a 31 Days Challenge and when I saw some of the blogger-chosen topics, my mind got going. The past week has been..... off. I'm the type that something will happen and it makes me rethink life for a while. I think and consult and think and talk.... then, I eventually chalk it up to a lesson learned.

At first, I thought I would do 31 Days of People Who Mean the World to Me. I'm blessed/spoiled enough that I could easily come up with that many and then feel bad that I left people out. However, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that they mean the world to me because they teach (or have taught) me something.

Lessons..... that's what I want to blog about. The lessons that life and my loved ones have taught me.

Some will be serious. However, I'm whimsical enough to appreciate the little, silly life lessons. Hopefully, I'll come out of October a little more cheerful than I'm going into it.

So, please join me for the next 31 Days. I'd love to hear your thoughts on the various lessons I've learned....



Thursday, September 26, 2013

Wow

I'm sitting here at this computer screen with a huge host of emotions flowing through me.

So, 'The Guy' is having a baby. A little girl.

Do the math..... He has known he was having a baby for a while now. In those months, when we've texted back and forth or the few times we've chatted on the phone..... never once mentioned that he was even dating someone, much less that he was going to be a Daddy.

If he's happy, then I'm truly happy for him. That is all I have ever wanted for him.

While I had given up the hope that one day I'd get to point our kids to go talk to their Daddy, I still thought that we were friends. Like, real friends.

Where I don't find out that this was happening through his work FB page. You know, where his listeners.... who didn't talk to him when he was stuck by himself in Minnesota on Christmas Day.... find out before me.

I used to tell him all the time that he would make a wonderful father. I told him that when he didn't believe it himself.

I wish none of this mattered to me. I wish I could hear the news and be like all of his hometown friends that have lost touch with him, because as he puts it, "I'm really bad at keeping in touch with people. Your one of the only people I ever talk to."

All of those friends are super happy for him. They're thinking to themselves, "Holy crap, he's finally settling down!"

I wish I weren't really sad for thinking that I was more important than to find out with the masses. Not even the personal masses.... the work masses.

But, I am sad. And, hurt.

Because, after everything that has ever gone on, I thought I actually was considered a true friend. That's what I thought we were.

It is devastating to find out how wrong you were.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Mistakes



Wednesday, September 25: Write about a time you screwed up - a mistake you made.


I make plenty of mistakes. Everyone does. Forgetting to switch the laundry and it goes sour. Turning down the correct road, so you end up being late. Eating one too many bites and getting that "I'm going to be sick" feeling. Hurting someone's feelings (even if unintentionally).

I make all kinds of "everyday" mistakes.

The big ones, though? I honestly probably don't make enough and that is my mistake.

I walk on eggshells, constantly trying not to screw up. Trying not to disappoint. 

I think it ends up holding me back. You know that saying about regretting the things you don't say/do? Totally have felt that. I live in fear that I will regret saying it or doing it..... I either say/do too late or not at all. Then, I wonder what would have happened if I'd just jumped.

In some ways, I think I'm getting a bit better. Even in small (still fairly responsible) ways.... like, I probably will forget how tired I was the next morning, but I'll never forget going to the midnight showing with my friends. Or, I won't miss the $75 an excursion cost, but I would have missed not getting to take such amazing pictures and making memories with my family.

Basically, I'm learning that it is sometimes ok to make a mistake.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Blogtember..... Life Lately and A New Challenge



Monday, September 23: A "life lately" post. What you're up to, how you're feeling, how you're doing on your goals, etc. Bonus points for great photos!


Based off of my lack of blogging, you may have guessed that life is crazy. September through May is my crazy time at work and this September is no different. It's just insanely busy.

Life is good, though. Just busy. And, when I do have a moment to breathe, I just haven't felt like getting on the computer. Like, I want to share and document, but I do not have the oomph to put it on my screen. I'm trying to remember to relax.... and keep in touch with friends.... and spend time with my family.... and live in the moment.


Like, when I catch my coworker raiding my snack stash.....




Or, taking in a Miranda Lambert concert with the sister....




Or, appreciating a Harvest Moon coming up over a lawn of fellow concert-goers.



Also, there are still some potential-maybe-possibly-we-will-see-what-happens things in the works. Maybe. I don't really know. But, if there are, it could be exciting. We'll see.




 Tuesday, September 24: Review a book, place, or product.

Let's see... I haven't read a new book in far too long, unfortunately.

Places..... I went to several new places on my New England and Canadian cruise. I fully intend to review them in great detail, at some point.


Product. I got this.

So, two days after I got back from my cruise, I started the Advocare 24 Day Challenge. That was exactly two weeks ago and I'm down 6 lbs, pre-cruise. The day after I got back, I weighed myself (why, I do not know) and I was up 7.5 lbs. Granted, most of that was just plain "on a boat on the sea for a week" bloat. And, I was Day 4 of that TOM. So, as much I would like to say I've lost 13.5 lbs.... really, I've lost 6. But, it is incredible and I will take it. I still have another 10 days. I've already gone ahead and ordered another set of 14-Day supplements for the Max Phase.

I just feel good. I'm eating clean..... not perfect, but pretty darn good. I'm staying away from all "white" foods and keeping my carb sources to mainly be from fruits and veggies. The past two Mondays, I've gone to group birthday dinners..... both Mondays, I had one bite of the shared dessert. The past two Fridays, I've gone to lunch with Billie Jo.... we always go to a FroYo place after and both Fridays, I've had a small cup (about 4 oz) of FroYo with some blueberries. That is the extent of my sweets.

While the idea of some yummy Fall treats have piqued my interest (um, caramel apple cookies and pumpkin cream cheese pound cake, anyone?), I really haven't had to tear myself away from anything that was actually sitting in front of me. Thankfully, the cravings aren't there.

I don't know how much I will ultimately lose, but I know I feel amazing. And, with the Fall, I need to feel amazing. Let me tell you, this Advocare stuff is legit.


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

This or That

It is 1:30pm and I still do not know what I'm eating for lunch :/

Instead of facing that question, I will join up with Erin and Whitney's link-up....

Vacationing in Florida or vacationing in NYC: The Big Apple, every time. I'm a native Floridian. While I *love* my home state, I don't want to vacation in it. NYC is one of my favorite places to visit, ever.

iPhone or Droid: iPhone.... It took me forever to move to a smart phone. Once I finally did, there was no going back. I heart my iPhone.

NSYNC or Backstreet Boys: NSYNC..... I just loved them. And, seeing as one of them is still a bonafide superstar, I feel that their talent speaks for itself.

Being forced to delete Facebook or being forced to delete Twitter: While I like Twitter... a lot... I'd give it up. Most of my 'real life' friends are on FB.

Fireball or Miller Lite: Neither........ Sorry. So sorry.

Full House or Family Matters: I have seen every episode of Full House at least 6 times. At least I used to have the books, the boardgame, and the dolls. Need I say more?
 
Dumbledore or Gandalf: Dumbledore. Because I love Harry Potter.

Dying Easter eggs or Carving pumpkins: Dying Easter eggs.... That is still fun.

NFL or NCAAF: NCAAF..... Go Gators!!!
 
A hangover forever or sobriety forever: Sobriety..... While I like a good buzz, every now and again, I can live with never taking a sip, again.

January or July: January in Florida pretty much rocks.

Hannah Montana or Miley Cyrus: Oh, dear. I wish she and all traces of her would go away, so that I can name my daughter Miley as I've wanted to do for about 15 years.

Shark Week or Fashion Week: Fashion Week.... I really have no interest in either, but I'd go with Fashion Week if I had to choose.

Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or Saved by the Bell: Saved by the Bell

Britney or Christina: Cristina seems to have her life a little more together, these days, but overall I was more of a Britney fan.

Burrito or Burrito Bowl: Burrito Bowl....I love me a Burrito Bowl, where I can mix everything up properly.

Reading blogs on your phone or reading blogs on your computer: I *hate* reading blogs on my phone. Computer, every time.

Angelina or Jennifer: Jennifer..... There are very few times when I'm a fan of Angelina.

Doug Funny or The Rugrats: The Rugrats irritated me. Doug Funny.

An open mouth chewer or a heavy breather: Oh, this kills me. I abhor both. I guess I'd go with Heavy Breather. Open Mouth Chewing literally makes me want to be violent.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

A Memory Relived....

 
 
 Tuesday, September 17: A memory you would love to relive.
 
 
I hold onto memories for dear life. Good and bad. So, it's almost like I relive them, anyway.
 
However, I LOVED everything about Christmas, last year. It was just perfect, all around. We had family in town, we laughed harder than we've ever laughed, and I got a surprise visit from TG. I'm praying that the holidays live up to that, this year.


Monday, September 16, 2013

I'm Back..... Hopefully.....

Well, hey there! So, it wasn't my intention to go three weeks and half the month of September without posting a darn thing. However, it happened. Life (mostly the good parts of it) happened. I spent the week after my birthday FRANTICALLY trying to get ready to go on vacation. We are talking working late into multiple evenings and then going home to do laundry, pack, etc.

I had a week of glorious vacation. I shall share..... hopefully sooner rather than later.

Then, I spent all of last week playing a desperate catch-up.

So, now I am back and hopefully will be better about this whole blogging thing. 

I participated in "Blog Every Day In May" and really enjoyed it. So, when Jenni announced Blogtember, I wanted to be on board. I guess two out of four weeks will have to do!


Monday, September 16: Write a public love letter to someone in your life. (It doesn't necessarily need to be romantic.)





To my dear friend, Billie Jo:

How thankful I am for our friendship!!! There is something great about having a friend that you've known since you were in high school, but didn't quite become friends with until you were both adults. Our families treat each of us as "additional daughters" and we tell each other things that probably only sister-like friends share.

See, we are both lucky to be surrounded by phenomenal families and friends, but we are so much alike that I think we "get" one another in ways that our families don't always. Mainly, it is because our families are super protective of us, so they caution against us getting hurt. The two of us understand that sometimes you have to allow yourself the option of getting hurt before you end up getting what you truly want. They always say that your true friends will tell you what you NEED to hear, not what you WANT to hear. While that certainly doesn't apply to you exclusively.... we each have other loved ones that "truth" us.... we also know how to share what needs to be heard in a unique way.

Recently, several close friends/family members have shared concerns about me getting hurt. They don't want me getting hurt and so their natural tendency is to tell me "stay away" or "don't read anything into it." They say it so much so that when YOU get excited and bring it up on your own, I'll ask why you think I shouldn't be doing exactly what the worrieds tell me to do. Your answer?

"I don't want you to get hurt, either. In fact, I'm tied for the LAST person that wants you to get hurt. But, I also don't want you to spend the rest of your life wondering 'what if.' And, I know you will. So, while I want you to be careful, I don't want you to ignore a possibility."

Sometimes, we just need to hear that following our heart is the correct thing to do. Especially when you're over-analytical, like me. We will talk and talk and talk something over. But, at the end of the day, it comes down to the fact that we just want some assurances that we're "backed up."

That is who you are, to me. And, I'm more grateful for it than you will ever know!

 

Monday, August 26, 2013

"Thirty, flirty, and thriving...."

So, yesterday, it happened..... I turned the big 3-0!!

Usually, I schedule birthday posts, etc, but honestly, the past week and weekend was super busy. I just didn't. My family spent Friday night, Saturday, and Sunday morning over at Disney. I'll do some recapping of all of that below, but really I just want jot down a few of my thoughts on "turning a big one."

Ten years ago, my life was so, so, so different. Yes, I was still living in the same town as I do now and I had several of the same friends, but that is where the similarities end. My 20's were SUCH a transitional time... some of the best and worst times of my life have happened in the past decade. But, I feel like I've really started coming into my own. Everyone says that your 20s are your growing years and that 30s are better because you have a better handle of who you are. I can see where that would be true.

I still may do a post on all the things I didn't know then that I know now, but looking ahead, I can see such potential. There are still so many unanswered questions and only God knows where I will be ten years from today, but I feel like it will be a great place.

Some things have transpired in the past week that just proves that you NEVER know where life and God may take you. You think you've got it figured out.... that you're certain of the lay of the land. And, then, something happens to completely make your head spin and wonder what is next. Maybe something or maybe nothing, but there suddenly are questions and possibilities that weren't there a mere second ago. I'm trying to just take it all in and pray to God to take it over. He will do with it what is best.

So, here is to being 30! May it be amazing!