It Feels Like Goodbye

I deleted my Instagram. Well lets not get carried away. I deleted my Instagram App on my phone.

Have you ever seen a post and had strong feelings about it? Then continued to read other peoples comments on it and get even more heated? I’ve read both posts and responses and felt myself getting angry and wanting to reply with my own thoughts and opinions. Then before I hit send I got slapped with a reality check. These people are nobody’s.

I’m sure they are someone special to the people in their lives but they have no significance in my life what so ever. Want proof? I deleted the app and now they no longer exist to me at all. In a few selections on my phone I made them vanish from my life and you know what? It felt good.

There was a post the other day on Instagram from the Food Network where a mom made homemade pasta with her kids. It was adorable. I read the comments and people were BASHING her for the way she did it. Using a certain kind of flour and that she used eggs when she shouldn’t. Are you kidding me people? What is wrong with us that we feel we need to leave mean comments everywhere? You don’t like the way she did it? DON’T DO IT THAT WAY. But guess what? No one else cares!

I understand commenting on some stuff but can’t we just keep it positive? so you don’t like the way a mom does something, it is possible to think your thought and move on with your day. You don’t have to post it. Shocking I know.

Why are we so worried about what every one else is doing? Isn’t it exhausting? Isn’t being a woman, mom, friend, wife, even just being a human enough? Why are we making it more difficult?

Why are we trying to one up each other? Why are we trying to prove we are the best mom? Or cook? Or athlete?

We should be trying to prove that we are kind. That we care about people as humans. I want to raise Rylan to love everyone. I want her to be kind to everyone. Even those that aren’t kind to her. Chances are those are the ones who need a hug the most. She doesn’t have to hug everyone because lets be real… day care germs. But I’d like the sentiment to be there.

So yes I deleted Instagram. I want to live this summer like a kid from the 80’s. I want to spend my time at the lake and the pool and hiking around the most beautiful places in California (I say California cause I live there and while I want to travel, I’m realistic about hiking and traveling with at 4 year old. I’m not crazy). We live an hour from Yosemite. I should be there every day off. I want to do all these things with out worrying about an Instagram photo or stopping to see who liked it.

Rylan and I are doing things this summer that we want to do.  Things that make us happy not add more stress to our lives. I’m not going to put us in situations that cause us stress anymore.

This also means I’m deleting this website. Its a great outlet for me and I’ve enjoyed putting my thoughts online but I have a journal at home that basically gets the same number of views. *laughing out loud!* not a pity party at all! I have not invested a ton of time or energy into this so I haven’t expected to be making money from it. It started out as fun and its ending on a good note.

Best wishes to everyone! I hope you enjoy your summer as much as we plan to!

Oh and remember if you can’t say anything nice, take a look in the mirror and figure out why you’re being negative. The only thing you can change is your attitude not someone else’s opinion.

 

 

Good Golly Miss Molly!

I like to joke that I chased my husband for 15 years before I caught him. That’s not 100% accurate but it’s not totally wrong either!

We met freshmen year and I was fascinated by him. He was a basketball and football player and he hung out with the cool kids. He was also painfully shy (he would argue now but it was true then). But that’s shyness made him mysterious and sexy. I hope he doesn’t read this cause it will go straight to his head.

Anyway we dated off and on, and while I always wanted him I’m glad he was a pain in my butt for a while. He says he broke up with me because he knew I was the one and if we stayed together in high school we wouldn’t have ended up together. Ummm nice try. Wasn’t born yesterday.

However he’s right. Please don’t tell him!!! Not only is he right I’m thankful he “choose” to wait until later for us to make it work. It gave me a chance to live my life and be wild and fun before we got married.

During my wild fun days my friend Jeanette and I would go up to the casino and play in poker games. We were two young girls who where seriously underestimated and often would win tournaments. We had a blast. We won money.

On top of being poker players we are both pretty avid readers (yes our husbands scored big time! Did I mean ruin we are also fantasy football enthusiasts?). She gave me the book Molly’s Game to read. True story about the 26 year old poker princess who was busted running high stakes poker games.

Great book! I loved her point of view and that it read like a novel so it kept me wondering what was going to happen. Overall the story shows that money doesn’t buy happiness and you develop a soft spot for the poker princess.

It also made me wanna play again. Yes I know the moral of the story was gambling is bad and doesn’t lead to good things and it can take you into super dark places. I get it. I also am trying to put together a group of girls to play!

For the record I’m talking $50-$100 buy in. Not $500,000 like she was dealing with. So no one here is going broke or ruining our lives.

Really I’m just excited to have another reason to get the girls together.

Wish me luck!

Everything Is Horrible And Wonderful

I read this memoir because I listened to the author on a podcast. At this point I can’t even remember which podcast but I loved the author and immediately put it on hold at the library.

The book is the story of her brothers struggle with heroin and the year following his death. She finds out about the addiction 3 days before her wedding! Its tragic, heartbreaking, funny, light, and covers all human emotion in one story.

She takes you on a journey through being there for her brother and what his addiction looked like to her and her family while she’s dealing with things of her own. It also follows the year after his death. She elegantly takes you through the stages of grief without actually calling them out and you feel the weight of her grief all the way to the end.

We recently had a loss in our family and I was instantly drawn to the say she describes the final stage of acceptance. It’s not accepting that the person has passed or that they are gone forever. Its accepting that the grief you are carrying is the new normal. You learn to want to live again and to not let it drown you but essentially its accepting your new normal in this world without them. You learn that when something happens that you want to tell them about, to smile at their memory and the fact that they would have enjoyed it.

She made you laugh through the book and made you feel like you knew him. I think he was amazing and I never even watched his shows. He said something that she loved and I am equally drawn to it. He said “we are all horrible and wonderful and figuring it out”. I think that’s the exact quote but I’m sorry if I got it a bit wrong.

But isn’t that the best quote ever? Doesn’t it describe everything in life? We are all horrible and wonderful. Life is horrible and wonderful and we’re all just trying to figure it out as we go.

We go through season and in every season things are horrible and wonderful. Even when things seem absolutely horrible (let’s be honest they do sometimes) there is something wonderful in that. Either in knowing that it can only get better from there or crying your eyes out only to have your 4-year-old ask you if you think she can fly if she jumped off the tall side of the couch. “No sweetie save the stunts for gymnastics please”.

Life is full of moments like that. I am blessed to be surrounded by people who know how to make me laugh when I’m crying. Whether its bringing up blasts from the pasts or jumping in with stories of their misery that are comical when it’s not happening to you. Thanks guys! I’d say misery loves company but I know you’re doing it to make me smile. Mostly to stop the ugly face crying I’m sure.

Ending on a happy note Rylan tried on flower girl dresses for us and holy moly! I wasn’t sure how she was going to be (let’s be honest she has a stubborn mind of her own). But she was brilliant! I brought in 3 dresses and the first one she came out like Cinderella and was turning and spinning and LOVING the attention! So much so that now whenever she puts on anything she likes me to go into another room so she can make an entrance and I can cheer. This happened last night when she put on PJ’s. She walked into the living room and did turns while we cheered and clapped. As I write this I’m a bit concerned we are raising a narcissist.

Eh screw it. One day people won’t do that. The time is now!

Bookish Community

It’s no secret that I’ve fallen down the rabbit hole of the book club community. I’ve jumped in head first and drank the Kool-Aid. How ever  you want to say it, I’m obsessed.

It never occurred to me before to keep track of the books I’ve read or even count the number of books I’ve read in a month or year. I’m on book number 11 of this year which shocks me. I’ve kept track of the ones I’ve read along with a short review which is going to be so helpful because I often forget which ones I’ve read until I’m a few chapters in and have wasted my time.

So not only am I the person who journals, I’m now the person who book journals! Yup I can feel my husbands eyes rolling from across town right now. He’s doesn’t care. I do it in the morning when he’s at work. He can complain when I start putting on audio books for him to hear. Which is coming soon I’m going to find a good sports one and he’ll be sucked in and love audio books. Even I don’t believe that but its good to put good energy like that out in the world!

I’ve always loved the idea of Jane Austen. I want to have read her everything she’s written. Turns out I can’t. I tried reading Emma and it’s just so hard! I feel stupid. I wouldn’t even be admitting this if I hadn’t found a way around it! Jane Austen on Audio book!!! Someone on the Modern Mrs Darcy Book Club suggested that I listen to it if I was having a hard time reading it. I wish I could find the thread so I could thank her! Maybe even buy her a thank you audio book. That’s how much it changed the book for me.

I finished The Last Anniversary by Liane Moriarty on audio book and loved it. I have a big crazy family and yet still love reading about other big crazy families. The family story mixed with a murder mystery was so enjoyable. I appreciated the message that all families have secrets and not everything is as it seems. The postpartum story in there threw me for a bit of a loop and I empathized with her much more than I would have thought. I give it 4 stars and highly recommend it.

Also still working on The Enchanted April by Elizabeth Von Arnim. Really enjoying it but the book is from the library and is shaped weird. So I’m having a hard time reading at night and its uncomfortable to carry around. I’m blaming my slow reading of it on all of that. I am enjoying it. The story of 4 women who escape to a Villa in Italy is right up my alley and only fueling my wonderlust. Time to book a trip.

Because I can’t be anywhere without a book and the other one is weird shaped I am also reading Everything Is Horrible and Wonderful by Stephanie Wittels Wachs. The story of her brother’s death and heroin addiction. Not something I would normally read but I’m branching out. Thanks to this new bookish community. (I’m not even sure I’m using the term “bookish” correctly. Someone help if you know!) It’s encouraging me to expand my reading material and I happened to have listened to the author on a podcast and it sounded like something I could get into. I’m flying through it. Never thought I’d be so caught up in someone elses grief. I can’t put it down. I read this one till midnight last night.

So that’s my week of reading so far. Oh I bought stationary so if anyone is looking for a kinda crazy pen pal let me know! I’m ready!

3 SERIES 1 ME

I’m currently in the middle of reading 3 different series.

I’ve read the first two books in the Everything We Keep series.

I’ve read the first book in the To All The Boy’s I’ve Loved Before Series.

I’m currently on book 4 of the Red Queen Series. You can tell which one kept my attention the longest. Actually that’s not true. The Red Queen series was just the most easily accessible from the library. I’ve had to search or wait for the other ones. I wonder where Rylan gets her impatience.

I’m not as much of a young adult fan as this list suggests but I’m enjoying the Red Queen (now on War Storm) much more than I thought I would. It’s very Hunger Games, Divergent, mixed with some fantasy aspects. I like it.

I like that after the first story she bounces around from different characters point of view. It adds some depth that I appreciate especially in a series. I’m not sick of the characters the way you sometimes get when you read 3-4 books with the same persons voice.

The anyone can betray anyone line carries over from the first book and its such a powerful statement, I have clung to it reading the books. I’ve read them all on my kindle and started one right after the other so honestly I couldn’t separate one book from the other! Its one gigantic book to me right now.

My biggest problem with it is that it makes me want to run. I really love the way she describes her love of running and it makes me want to get back into it. Also makes me want to train to fight to the death. All good things to help get me in shape right? Except I don’t want to stop reading to go do all the work out things its inspiring me to do. Book nerd problems.

The Everything We Keep series is really good as well. She finds herself on her wedding day at her fiance funeral instead. It goes through her trying to heal while getting messages that her fiancé is alive and in Mexico. I like the emotional ride of “what would I do in that situation” because I really don’t know. I kept trying to talk to Pat about it but he doesn’t care. I think there’s only been 2 books he’s ever asked follow-up questions about.

The second book is Everything We Left Behind. I actually enjoyed it even more than the first one. I can’t wait to read the 3rd book but feel like the second one wrapped everything up pretty nicely for me. I’m not sure where they are going to go from here.

To All The Boys I loved Before is very young adult. It really took me back to my high school days and how everything felt so monumental and each “relationship” was the beginning or end of the world. It was a fun trip down memory lane but I’m not sure I have the need to finish the series. It was a nice easy beach read but when I look at my list of book I want to read the rest of the series falls pretty low on the list.

***GOOD NEWS***

We got our generator in so if we lose power again, we won’t lose power! Also there’s another snow storm on its way. Pretty sick to death of the snow but super happy it rained all night and this morning its almost dark out and still pouring down rain.

It went from feeling like a shower to now its turned my back yard into a swamp. Guess what? I don’t care. I love this rain and the sound of it on our house. The 30 mile an hour wind I could do without. Waking up to see our front porch furniture on the other side of the house attacking Rylans playset was not fun. Then again I just left it there so it didn’t really matter… Don’t drive by my house right now its not pretty. But I’m inside cozy with my reading list so we’ll worry about it later!

 

 

 

 

BOOKS & RAIN

I’ve always referred to myself as a closet nerd. I don’t think I can do that anymore. I’m just an all out proud nerd. I don’t leave the house without a book. Ever. Even if its just my kindle (fully loaded with at least 3 books). I alternate between reading on the kindle and real books and am hard core obsessed with the library. I love that Rylan is too and is becoming more self sufficient there. The day we both sit and read together all day is going to be a huge life right of passage for me.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve started book clubs. At least 5 times. 5 different failed attempts at connecting with people over books. I’ve also recently took a crack at starting a bible study and here’s what I’ve realized…. I’m not good at getting people together. I’m good at the idea of it but highly underestimate how hard it is to get any number of people together. I should know this by how little I see my closest friends!

Anyway I’ve stumbled across an app that runs this bible study for me. Its First 5 and its 5 min studies and I do it every morning. I try and post my thoughts and answers to the questions. Its the first 5-10 min of my day and feels amazing. I’m truly overwhelmed and grateful  for all of those who joined.

I thought it was a lost cause with the bible study. I thought I had to settle for being on my own reading and finding podcasts who talk about the book or interview the author. Left to share books and thoughts with friends in passing but never really getting into it. The closest I’ve come is my friend Heather who we frequently Marco Polo about books and my co-worker Terry who I often force to read books I’ve recently read so I have someone to talk to. Poor thing works with me by herself Fridays and has no where to go. Luckily we have the same taste in books. If I could just get her into a little sci fi…. I wonder if I could steal her kindle…

Sorry I’m back! I discovered through the recommendation on Instagram the podcast “what should I read next”… which lead me to the website Modern Mrs. Darcy . An online book club that has the connection and everything that I’m looking for! I’m in love with 3 episodes of the podcast I’ve listened to and have added at least 8 books to my reading list. I’m not sure if this is amazing or terrifying but I have a tingling feeling of excitement.

We’ve gotten more snow in the last few weeks than in the last two years or more (I’m bad with time. I say yesterday and I really mean 2 years ago). Thank goodness for real books cause our power keeps going on and off. When its not snowing its been raining which is heaven!

I’m on the last book of the Red Queen series and am really in a blissful state right now. Its been raining hard, I have a great book, I have a book club to look forward to, and a great podcast to hold me over till March when the next one starts. I can’t start in the middle of the month. I’m weird like that. I’ve also got some audio books going to keep my house super clean!

Sending happy thoughts to all my fellow rain and book lovers. You are truly my people! I’d ask for book suggestions but my list is so long I’m starting to get nervous.

 

 

 

FIRST 5 BIBLE STUDY

Thought I’d explain a little about my journey.

I grew up going to church as a Christian. My mom and I tried a few different churches and while I took in the messages I wasn’t fully committed.

As time went on I always had that in the back of mind as a moral compass and I’m forever grateful for that.

When I was pregnant and had Rylan I had a lot of anxiety. Possibly depression with it but mostly I was just scared all the time. I turned to God in a way I never have before. Prayers and tears and long talks in the middle of the night asking him for help. Of course everything got better and I’ll never forget the feeling of being comforted by him.

If you haven’t read my Jesus Culture post check it out. I went with my mom and her friends and fell in love. You can now live stream their services online which is awesome! I actually still listen to their podcast cause I can listen on the go in my car and while doing other things.

Anyway the past year I’ve thought a lot about getting closer to God and learning more. I don’t know nearly enough about the bible and that’s making it sound better than it is. I know next to nothing. Other that what I’ve heard in church and bible verses that stick with me on a person lever there isn’t much to go on. Not exactly an ideal bible study leader.

But I’ve talked to a lot of people who feel the same as I do. Wanting a bible study but are either intimidated, don’t have the time, don’t know where to start, or all of the above. I don’t feel like I have enough experience or knowledge to just blindly go at it. So after months of and months of prayer I think I have a direction on where to start.

Which is why I’m excited about First 5 . It’s an app that basically does bible study for us. I’ve started a group and invited a bunch of people (if your interested let me know). It gives you a plan for every day reading, most of which are super short and manageable before bed or first thing in the morning. We can chat and send messages to each other about the verse and share stories. I’d also like to get everyone together at the end for appetizers and drinks and discuss what we thought of the whole plan.

What I’m excited for is we can all be connected while studying on our own at our own pace on our own time and not feel pressure. At the same time knowing people are getting the same message and there to chat at everyone’s convenience.

I’m looking forward to this adventure with all of you and can’t wait to learn more and dive deeper in this spiritual journey.