Another Birthday

I’m a horrible blogger. Let me just put that out there now. My page has no theme, I rarely post, and I have no idea what I’m doing. 

With that all said, it’s been another year. Last year I was so excited, I knew what I wanted and was going to work at getting it. As that year came to a close Sunday, I looked back and thought I didn’t get much accomplished. I actually gained weight instead of dropping it, I still haven’t moved, and financially I am not where I wanted to be. So, Sunday night I went to bed kind of sad. I was feeling like a failure but, when I woke up…it was a brand new year. 

I was another year older, so therefore wiser, and thought about all I actually did accomplish. I made some great business connections and friends, I got a raise, I have been more positive, and I made more time to laugh with my friends. I realized I was on the right road, and as long as I continue to stay positive and make little changes, I’ll get there. Maybe not as fast as I would like to, but eventually. 

This road I’m on is tough. It has curves and sharp turns and is littered with excuses and negativity. Truthfully, sometimes I stop and pick up some of those excuses and negativity, but I find my way back on route, looking into the horizon at the bright dreamy lights, happiness, and prosperity in the distance. 

This year, again, I intend to keep reaching for my dreams and working towards them. I plan on thinking outside the box and not limiting myself with the things I “think” I should be doing in order to reach my end result. I will put myself on a better daily routine and use my calendar more. 

Last week I signed up to be a Jamberry Independent Consultant (www.jopaljams.jamberrynails.net), so I am excited about that new venture. I also cleaned my entire house so that I can start this new year off fresh and clean! 

So, I may not be exactly where I thought I should be or wanted to be yet, but at least I know I’m on my way. 

Here's to another new year!
Here’s to another new year!

 

Spring Country Jams

I am a big music fan (mostly country music). Music to me is happiness. Even sad songs. They can give you a sense of comfort and understanding. This time of year is my FAVORITE time of year for music. I think it’s because everything is coming back to life, and I can roll my windows down in the car and feel the wind through my hair while blasting my favorite tunes. So far my new favorite albums this spring are Dan + Shay’s Where It All Began, Dierks Bentley’s Riser, and David Nail’s I’m a Fire. 

However, my FAVORITE new spring jam is Frankie Ballard’s Sunshine and Whiskey album. I’m hooked. This album is not leaving my playlist anytime soon and I already know it’s going to be my days off, windows down, heading to the beach and road trip tunes. It’s a great album that really reflects Frankie’s personality. It’s young, charismatic, and mixes today’s with yesterday’s country in a seamless way. If you check it out, let me know what you think. 

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Little Changes Make Big Improvements

In the struggle to get what I want out of life, I have recently decided to try this crazy idea of making changes. With the mindset a little goes a long way, I have been slowly changing my eating habits, phone addiction, and writing more. Realizing that my life isn’t going to change unless I actually change it (crazy concept, huh?), I really want to make an effort. As I stated in my last post, I finally have new goals and dreams to chase and I intend to reach them.

I have been making better choices when it comes to what I eat. Instead of stopping and grabbing a burger and fries or some fried chicken on the way home, I am cooking. I used to tell myself that I didn’t have the time. Well, oddly enough, if I plan out what I am going to make and prep it in the morning before I leave for work, I DO have time. Go figure? So, now it’s been about three weeks, and my “fat” jeans are feeling less tight, and I have more energy. Also, adding an extra 15 minutes a day to the pup walk time helps to make my clothes fit more comfortably.

Another small change I have started to make is to put my phone DOWN. I will be the first to tell you that I am a full fledged iPhone addict. I reach for it every two-four minutes. I went to a concert a couple weeks ago and found myself on my phone more than I was paying attention to the concert. I was too focused on getting the perfect picture or a great video to post on Instagram. I knew then that it was time to put it down. So, at work I keep my phone in a drawer, and allow myself 3-4 glances a day. If I am going out to eat with a friend, I leave it home or in the car, and when I am at home I try to keep it out of arms reach. What I have noticed is, I have more time. I am not getting sucked into Facebook, games, Twitter discussions, ect. I am playing with my dog more. Instead of sitting on the couch with my phone in my hand, throwing her ball, I am actually on the ground with her playing tug of war.

Also, I have been writing more. I know it may not seem like it since this is my first post in three weeks, however, I bought a journal, and have been writing little things, a paragraph here, a poem there, a lyric here. It has been helping me to rejuvenate my creative juices and getting my mind back to where it needs to be, on writing.

More changes are on the horizon. Little by little, I will reach my goals. Brick by brick I will build the life that I want to live.

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Cruising Down This Winding Road

Life sure hasn’t turned out the way I expected. I thought right out of college, I would grab a job as a television news reporter. I thought by the time I was 34 I would have worked my way up to the anchor desk. I also thought, I would be living in a five bedroom, 3.5 bath home on a lake with my handsome, successful husband, and my three little boys (Garry, Oliver, and Chase). My family and I would want for nothing.

The reality is pretty much the complete opposite. I’m not sure when the dream of being a television news reporter left my heart, but it did. And when it did, I was left staring down this long, one way road that magically became curvy and treacherous. So, I took the easy route and got a job with my best friend’s mom. I went into sales. I was in sales throughout my whole 20’s. I wasn’t happy but I was good at it. I quickly became an Assistant Manager and I was comfortable.

Then an opportunity came. An old college friend offered me a job doing marketing (with a little writing on the side) for his newspaper company. I thought, “it’s now or never,” so I took it. Sadly, that didn’t last long and I found myself on the unemployment line.

I took that summer off, and tried to really think about what I wanted in life. I was single, living alone, trying to make ends meet, and wondering what happened to all the dreams I had. Then, in between job hunting, and going to the beach, I landed a new jig.

It’s really a great job and I get the opportunity to do things I never could have imagined. I get to see and meet my favorite country artists, and be a part of a company that truly cares about it’s employees.

However, it’s three and a half years later and I’m realizing I never answered the question “what do you want in life?” I find myself still, single (again), living alone (well, I do have a pup), and trying to make ends meet. It’s as if nothing has really changed except this time around is, I have new dreams.

So at 34, I am cruising down this winding road with new focus, new purpose, and new perspective. Wish me luck!

Believe in yourself

It’s Been A Year

A year ago today, almost to the hour, I looked out my front door and saw trees swaying as if the Big Bad Wolf was huffing and puffing towards them. The power had been out for three hours so far, and my pup was unsettled. In town for a wedding, my parents had gone upstairs to try and get some sleep. The wind was strong but the rain was weak. The clouds seem to spit out just a drizzle, and as I looked at the laughable puddle in front of my house, I decided to lay on the couch. 

I awoke by sitting straight up gasping for air. I ran to the front door and looked out the window. There was water already sitting on my second step, and rising. I ran out the back door and onto my deck, flashlight in hand. I shined the light on the cars in the driveway and saw my 5 month old new Jeep Compass, with about 6 inches to spare before the water invaded it. My parents new Equinox had about 4 inches to go before it was a loss. 

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I ran upstairs and woke my parents and we proceeded to do everything they tell you not to in this situation. I put all my important papers in my purse, and manged to stuff a towel and blanket in there. I grabbed my pup, her portable water bowl, a bottle of water, and her food and we left. 

As I followed my parents to higher ground, the water was rising. I drove passed my neighbors homes and saw their cars getting filled with the bay water. I then saw some of my neighbors homes being filled with that same water.  

We drove around the corner and two blocks up, and we parked our cars. In my rear view mirror, even in the dark, I could see people walking up through the now waist deep water with pets in hand, and whatever they grabbed over their heads. There were people trying to save their cars and driving to where my parents and I had parked. 

Minutes later, my dad came to my window and told me that there was a group going up to the shopping center about three miles away. They agreed on that place because  there were no trees or power lines. So, we drove up there (like I said, we did everything we were told not to do. We were scared.)

I didn’t sleep the entire night. It was freezing and having walked knee deep to my car I couldn’t warm up. I’d doze off and then wake up having to put my car on so I could turn the heat on. My poor pup was uneasy, walking back and forth. She too did not sleep a wink that night. We had no idea if I had a home anymore or if so, what condition was it in.

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The next morning when the sun came out, we had one more high tide to deal with. So we waited for it, still in the parking lot. I could see the helicopters flying on rescue missions, and the radio was reporting total devastation. 

It was then that I realized, I had survived a natural disaster of epic proportions. I was victim. 

When my brother, who lives three towns over, finally found us, it was noon. We decided that my father, my brother, and myself would go back to my house to see the damage. My mother would stay with her pup and mine. We parked as close to my street as we could, which was about a block away, and walked through thigh high waters through my neighbors yard to my back yard. Walking up to my home, I was praying that it was spared. Once I opened my back door I saw that it was, and I broke down. The water line on the side of my house was about 4 feet. My house stands about 5 feet. 

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The 12 days without power, total loss of my furnace, and everything in my shed was a small price to pay for having a standing home, as many in my town were not spared. 

The emotional scar that Superstorm Sandy has left on my heart, is one I don’t talk about much, instead I try to focus on how lucky I was and to just be thankful.

 

CAR DANCING

I dance in my car and sing very loud on my commutes to and from home. I don’t care if anyone see me, because recently, I have looked around at my fellow commuters and they look miserable. They are either on the phone yelling or their facial expressions are stone cold. Enjoy the time alone people!

I say, if you are taking a ride, why not make that ride awesome? 

My new favorite car jam is David Nail’s Whatever She’s Got. It makes for a great sing a long and a great beat! 

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Staying Positive

I just want to commend anyone who has and keeps a positive outlook on life. That takes a lot of practice and talent. In my constant quest to be a better me, I have been trying not sweat the small stuff, but lately these lemons are making disgusting undrinkable lemonade.

You see, the small stuff piles up one on top of the other and it’s hard not to get crushed under neath it.  How do you positive people do it and make it look so easy? Is it pills? Can you share?

I have been taking baby steps and thought using my alone time, when I am calm and free of people to stress me out, would be a good time to practice. Hopefully I can focus on the positive and it will spill into all the other aspects of my life. 

I tried reading ‘The Secret’ and I couldn’t get through it. I was annoyed at it’s repetativeness.

So, I listen to Joel Osteen’s podcasts on my way to work, and on the way home I blast my tunes, sing and dance in the inevitable parkway traffic. In combination with my effort to shed my spare tire, I have taken up the mellowing practice of Yoga.

These efforts are to better myself but occasionally, like today, I get derailed by a bad driver cutting me off, someone singing in the cubicle next to me (out of tune and ALL day), or someone that has a total disregard for my work and what it entails.

It’s these derailments that I wish I could take a deep breath and move on. However, I do not think I am far enough in this journey of positive thinking to do this. Instead, I will go home and drink a LARGE glass of wine.