Happy Weekend!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Happy long weekend, everyone! 
Hope you are doing something fun or relaxing. We are headed to the cabin and spending the weekend with our family + some of my favorite people ever. So- outhouses and camp fires and antiquing and no running water and cousins...

Here we come! 

Have a good one!

On Being Forty-ish :: Dreaming New Dreams

Sunday, May 17, 2015

So something happened when I turned forty.
And just for the record, it still sounds weird when I say out loud that I am forty(forty-one now).
Really? That really happened last year?
And I don't just mean the stuff that starts happening to your body, either.
{Because you do know that happens, right? And that it really kinda sucks, too.}.
You're in luck though, because that's not what I am talking about today.

I am talking about the realizations you come to about life and time and what you want to
 DO with your life and not do-and I'm not going to lie, the freak-outs about how fast time is going and the wondering of just how much of it you have left.... All that wonderfully heavy kind of stuff.
And let me say here that I think it's normal, totally and completely normal, for us
to have these feelings. And it may not happen to you when you hit forty,
it could be before or after- obviously you can have these feelings and thoughts and realizations
 at any time in your life. That being said, I do think there is some significance in turning forty and
being that age and feeling like you are right in the middle of your life and that either kind of
kick-starts it all or just makes you think of it a little bit more.
  Maybe not- but that is definitely how it has been for me.

So I think a lot about what I wish I was doing, what I hope to do, what I want to do
and what I absolutely do not want to spend my time doing any longer than I have to.
I guess I have not really come to a huge specific realization, it's not like I have finally figured
out that my lifelong dream is to sail around the world or anything crazy like that, thank goodness.
I know that I want more adventure, whatever that means.
More trying new things.
More challenging myself to change and grow in the areas I need to.
I have a strong desire to live somewhere else but I don't see that as a practical option right now.
I know that I do not want to just go through the motions of every day life and wake up when
 my kids are ready to move out/go to college.
I want a whole lot more of doing the things NOW that I want to do instead of waiting for
 that perfect "some day....."

Maybe I will decide I want to go back to school for graphic design or something in
the creative field, which has always been in the back of my mind.
Maybe we will move... and maybe not.
I know that I want more adventures and experiences and less THINGS.
It's not the things that fill us up or make a real difference in our lives, this I know.
Maybe I will finally get that kayak I have been wanting, even though I don'tlive in a place eveen close to ideal for kayayking and don't know anyone that would do it with me.

Have you had these thoughts and feelings, too...
Whether you are forty or nowhere near forty?
Have you figured out something you just KNOW that you really want to do,
or not do, or have started to think about doing in your life?

I'd love to hear some thoughts on this.
Tell me I am not alone!

This video.
This isn't something I really don't have any interest in doing myself but
 I think these people have it figured out, they are doing it.
I absolutely love watching/reading about how people are doing what they believe
 they are meant to do with their lives + following their dreams.


Happy Sunday to you.

Thursday Snapshot :: Siblings

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Last night on the way home from taking one of the kid's friends home. 
We passed by a small nature preserve area and the light was just perfect so I told the kids we were stopping really quick. Oh, the lighting. The Magic Hour. MY MOST favorite time of day.
She was being cooperative, he wasn't being super cooperative. 
But still, I love this picture. 
It's a typical brother + sister picture. 
He is stretching her braids out to see how long they are, she is letting him.
For a moment anyway. 
But you know, then it was; "You're pulling my hair"... "Stop...."
So we got back in the car and took the long way home.


All The Feelings & More On Mother's Day

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Sunday was a good day, a great day really.
I felt(and feel) so fortunate to be able to spend Mother's Day with my family.
My little family + two of the most important women in mylife- my mom and my sister.
Waking up to handmade gifts and cards the kids made at school... That never gets old.
Ever. Those will be some of my most cherished things as long as I live. And not just because they are cute and handmade but because they are so proud and seriously just so excited to give them to you.
I love that feeling.

But as good as a day it was for me, and it truly was, I cannot help but think of those not having a happy Mother's Day. The ones that are in pain and hurting and alone on Mother's Day.
It seems so wrong and so unfair that so many are dreading a day that most of us look forward to-
a day that we are pampered and loved, one many are spending with someone we love and that
loves us back.
A day that literally every other post on Facebook and Instagram and twitter is about...
TV shows and ads and commercials... you can't get away from these days if you tried. Truly, you couldn't.

I have a friend who lost her dad, unexpectedly, just the day before Mother's Day.
I know someone who lost her four-year-old child last month.
Friends who are estranged from part or all of their families.
People that are just plain alone on many days, including yesterday.
Women who have lost children before they were born or who have yet to become mothers, despite their hopes to have a child of their own.

I cannot help but think of my own struggle with infertility and the Mother's Days that would come around and I still wasn't pregnant and still did not have a baby... Those days were hard. Very hard.
And I hate that other people have to have those same days and years that I did...
Where you truly do not know if you will ever be there, if you will ever be celebrating with your own children. The not knowing part is beyond tough.

I don't have a pretty way to tie this post up.... It is what it is.
While I am so grateful and truly realize my own blessings, and try my best to live in the moment, my heart still hurts for those that were not celebrating like I was Sunday.

Just Me & My Camera

Friday, May 8, 2015

Recently I got to do something I never really get to do but regularly fantasize about doing.
And when I say fantasize, I mean it... I really do fantasize about it a lot.
It may seem silly, or maybe just kind of old-ladyish of me(because maybe I am kind of old-ladyish) 
but I got to spend an afternoon at the Botanical Gardens on a beautiful day. All by myself.
And it was a perfectly beautiful day- sunny, but not hot and not a cloud in the sky.
 The best kind of day.

I got to wander around the gardens slowly and take pictures and not talk to anyone.
No one. For like three whole hours. 
It was pure bliss.
I got to walk around and stop when I wanted to, I got to sit in the grass and look at the water and  do whatever I wanted, when I wanted to. And I got to do nothing at all except sit and think.

I got to take pictures of really pretty flowers, a lot of them.
So many flowers, amazing flowers- all different colors and shapes and I didn't know what any of them were, but I didn't care.
Everywhere I walked I could smell flowers and they smelled so good.
I layed down in the grass by the water and almost fell asleep- Until I heard a man and his kid near me and he was telling the kid not to sit down in the grass because the ducks always poop there. 
Uh yeah... true story.

Oh, what a great day this was!
I am so happy I decided to spend the afternoon like that instead of talking myself out of it.
Imagine how we would all feel if we took a few hours out of our everyday life, just for ourselves,
I know it makes a world of difference for me when I am able to squeeze in little breaks and quiet 
time in my own head occasionally. 

What would you do with three solo hours to yourself??


Happy Friday to you! Have a great weekend! 

{Virtual Coffee}

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Good Morning!
Happy Tuesday morning to you from my front porch.
It's coffee on the front porch weather, you guys! This makes me so happy. Ahhhhhhhh!!!!!
This morning my coffee isn't quite as pretty as it is in this picture, this was actually last week's coffee at
my favorite little coffee shop, with two of my best girlfriends.
So today I'm having my coffee on the front porch and that's a pretty good place to be this morning, if you ask me- even though I would really love to rewind to last week!

So - it feels like I have not been around here for morning coffee for a long time, and a little scarce around here lately anyway. The days and weeks have felt so busy lately and I end up running out of time for more than half of the things I intend to do every day it seems like.
And speaking of busy... It's May? Say what?
The last month of school is so busy with field trips and teacher gifts, concerts and just extra things to remember to buy and do. Ughhhhhh.
Last week Charlotte and I made May Day baskets for their teachers, this was my idea because it
was one of my favorite things growing up.
I remember cutting lilacs from the bush in our backyard and wrapping the bottom in a wet paper towel and then somehow making something(?) out of paper to hold them... I can't remember that part?
Then we would leave them on our neighbor's doors on May 1.
Charlotte loved making them and even made an extra one for "someone at school" but it was really for me and she surprised me with them the next morning.

Speaking of lilacs...
On Sunday I cut the last of the lilacs from my bush so I could smell them in the house just one.more.time. this Spring.
The rest were dying so this was the last salvageable bunch.
I love this smell so very much, it instantly reminds me of Spring and home and my mom and my childhood backyard.
If we were really meeting for coffee this morning....
I would have to tell you about my latest obsession- I got the first season of Girls from the library and was immediately hooked. I know people have all kinds of stuff to say about Lena Dunham and I don't know the story on her personal life and don't really care because- the show, I LOVE that show.
Now I am on the 3rd season and I can't get enough.
We signed up for HBO free for three months so now I can watch it on HBO instead of getting it form the library, and then I got the HBO Go app on my ipad so I can watch Girls/HBO wherever I want.
I am not gonna lie, sometimes I just LOVE modern technology.

Lastly, this weekend I am hoping(I said hoping, it's not super likely) to do a little work on my front porch-- the underneath part of it needs paintedr, the steps and porch itself need to be scraped so they can be repainted.... and I really want to paint my front door this yellow color.e
What do you think? Our house is a bluish-gray so I think it will look good.
I also need to finally spray paint my wicker chairs, get new pillows and plant some flowers.
Geez. Check back with me in a month or two maybe, it's gonna take a while.


On that note, I am going to finish my coffee and sit here in silence for just a little longer(I hope) before the craziness of another school/work morning gets going around here.
Tell me,what's going on in your little corner of the world? What's new?
Have you been enjoying your Spring... Any exciting Mother's Day plans?
Are you counting down the days until school gets out yet? I'd love to hear what you are up to!

* * * * *

Have a great day & Happy Cimco de Mayo.... I will be celebrating with a fat margarita tonight!

A Tiny Step In The Right Direction

Friday, May 1, 2015

Hey there.
Happy Friday and an even happier weekend to you.
I am so, so ready for the weekend. The weather is supposed to be nice and there are a couple of little projects I am hoping to start.
Seriously though, is anyone ever not ready for the weekend?


So today I was looking at my calendar, writing in the crazy amount of things we have going on in May and then I started counting up how many days it had been since Easter.
It has been 27 days since Easter.
And you know what else?
It has now been 27 days since I have had a pop(you say soda, I say pop), the last one was on Easter Sunday.
No Dr. Pepper(my favorite), no Diet Coke, no fountain drink with the perfect little pebble ice from the gas station, no going through the drive-thru for a pop during the work day...
Nothing. Not even one sip.
That is huge for me... HUGE.
I decided I was going to go one week and then when I actually did that, I decided I would go two weeks, then I wanted to try for 21 days and then I'd let myself have one.
Well, 21 days passed and I decided I wanted to try for 30.
Now I am just a few days away from 30 and I'm super surprised and impressed with myself if you want to know the truth.

I didn't drink pop every day, but just too much, maybe every other day on average.
And I'm not going to lie, I love it. Love the taste of an ice cold Dr. Pepper, especially from McDonald's.
I am not at all thinking this will be a permanent thing, I am cutting back and to do that I decided to cut it out completely for a while because it was the best way for me.
So what have I been doing?
I have been drinking LOTS and LOTS of water. I already drank a pretty good amount of water anyway, but I have really increased my water intake by quite a bit.
I don't need lemon in my water but I do like it, it's got to be cold and it has to have a lot of ice in it.
The last few weeks I have been able to really tell a difference when I am drinking the amount of water that I know I SHOULD be... I just feel better over all.
I think- and I hope- that one small change will cause another small change...
And I will be able to make some small changes and just keep making them... and hopefully stick with them. That's the plan anyway.

So if there is something you are trying to do that you struggle with... Something you want to quit or cut back on, or even start doing.... I am telling you, if I can cut pop out for almost 30 days now, you can do it.
You can. I seriously have zero willpower, you can so do this.
I keep texting my sister to tell her how many days it has been since I have had a pop... And I remind her that I have to brag on myself because I usually fail at everything I try to do(when it comes to diet, exercise, etc). Sad, but true. Very true.

So I am good right now with just taking one teeny tiny step in the right direction,.
I think slow and manageable is much more realistic for me rather than drastic changes that leave one miserable and feeling deprived of pretty much everything all at once.
I think and I hope that is what works best for me.
If anyone has any advice, ideas, etc. to share I would love to hear it! I am also looking for recommendations for books(blogs, websites, etc)on making lasting change, breaking habits, changing your diet, etc. There are just so many millions of books out there, I would much rather get a suggestion from someone because just looking at Amazon is seriously overwhelming to me. Ughhh.

I will update next week after the 30 day mark.
Hope you all have a great weekend!