Tuesday, February 25, 2014

A quick hello...

I haven't written a post since January. And, when I look back, my last two posts were about snow. So I figure I needed to say hello and write about something a little more interesting because the snow thing has been happening every week now.

To start, I signed up for the Brooklyn half marathon in May. This year I'm "trying new things" and I figure why not attempt to run 13.1 miles (ugh, just typing that makes my body hurt)? I started training but it's slow. If I actually get through the training and run the thing, I will report back.

I'm traveling a lot for work and headed to Austin for SXSW in two weeks. Any of y'all headed there?

I'm also daydreaming of outdoor spaces and warmer weather. I saw these on Apartment Therapy today and got inspired and excited for warmer weather...there I go talking about the weather again...


Photos from Apartment Therapy.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Snow in New York City

This winter has been a harsh one for the Northeast. It's cold, then warm-ish, then cold, then snows and repeat. We've had more spouts of snow this year than in others (or at least that I can remember). Last night we got another dump (almost a foot). Despite it being unbelievably cold, it was beautiful. On my way home, the city was hushed by the soft snow falling. No trucks, no cabs, just a few people walking around, hurrying home to get warm.

I decided to set my alarm this morning and wake up before sunrise to snap photos in Central Park. I layered in my warmest clothes and packed a couple hand warmers (thanks, Dad) and headed to the park. About a block later, I couldn't feel my face and my legs felt like two blocks of ice. Never-the-less, I walked to the reservoir and around the Great Lawn and took a few photos of "my backyard"

Looks like more snow this weekend...










Friday, January 3, 2014

Hercules

Last night the winter storm Hercules hit the North East and damn it's cold. Right now it feels like zero...zero.

No snowday/stay-at-home day for me though. I made the trek to Times Square this morning and it's still so quiet. I love how snow quiets the city.

Someone even had time to make a quick snowman...


What's it like where y'all are?

Thursday, January 2, 2014

A Little Advice

Now, I'm technically just a few days into my 30's, but that's got me thinking about what I've learned. You know, because I'm so older and wiser now. ;)

I've made many many mistakes so far, and plan to make many more. As cliche as it sounds, they've all gotten me to where I am today. Good or bad.

So here are a few things I've learned along the way. (Don't worry, I won't list 30 because who has time to read that many?)

Embrace Change. I've never been good at this but I have learned that most change is refreshing, welcoming and gets you to the next phase of wherever you are. If you aren't changing, you aren't evolving and that's the main point of life, right?

Celebrate Your Hard Work. Get a promotion? A raise? A "good job"? Just happy where you are? Celebrate it. There are so many people doing awesome things, it's easy to get wrapped up in the "they are doing something cooler than me" syndrome. No matter what you do, do it well and celebrate it. As long as you are proud and do the best job you know how, that's all that really matters. Don't let others' jobs and "my life is awesome" social media posts (I hate Facebook btw), get you down. If you work hard celebrate it.

Be Nice and smile. Because you just should be and a smile will get you further than a frown.

Go to Bed. In most cases, a good night sleep (and hot shower I should add) can cure anything. Whether it be a hangover, a fight, a headache or a bad mood - getting a good night's sleep is key. For most of my 20's I fought this because I didn't want to "miss out", but now I realize that I didn't really miss out on anything and if I'm awake and alert, I can deal with things better. Also, as I've said before, nothing good happens after 2 a.m. Ever.

Enjoy Your Friends & Family. Sure, family can be annoying at times but they love you. They are legally yours and love you no matter what you say and do. No one can show you unconditional love like that, except for maybe a dog. Also, let friends into your heart. Be cautious but welcoming. I've found that as the older I get, the harder it is to meet friends. But, as my mom says, "make a new friend everyday." My friends (from college and NYC) are my rocks and my loves.

Don't sweat the small stuff. When I set out doing this #30onthe30 Challenge, I knew there was a good chance that I actually wouldn't write all 30 posts. And, shocker, I didn't. But, you know what? I got damn close and I'm proud of that.

Exercise More. Yeah, I don't do this at all. Just making myself type it. HA!

Try something new. The older I get, the easier it is to fall into a routine. This year, I'm making myself try new things. I'm going to push myself and if I fail, so be it. I'll share along the way though!

Thanks for the birthday love this week and for reading my almost 30 posts. Turning 30 hasn't been nearly as hard as I thought it would be.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Doubt, and then Joy

In keeping with the guests posts, here's another one that I'm stealing (borrowing) from my mom. She is one talented writer and I thought it would be appropriate to include the below, since I wouldn't be here today without her...
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Doubt, and then Joy
Thirty years ago in mid-December, I sat, staring at the dying Christmas tree. We’d bought it at Thanksgiving, tying it to the top of our tiny Ford Escort and hauling it the 300 miles from Birmingham, where my brother lived, to Perry, Ga.

My husband growled when I told him I wanted to do this. Surely there were Christmas trees in Perry, where we lived. looking at my eight-months swollen belly, he knew he had better comply. By the time we got it into the house, neither of us admitted how badly the tree had been beaten on the trip. We wound the lights around its branches, hung our meager ornaments, wrapped the small number of presents and put them under the tree.

And then the needles began to fall off.

I tried not to think about my parents’ tree, filled with bright white lights, the small bells that had belonged to my grandmother, the glittery birds we had given my mother one Christmas. I couldn’t travel, fat with baby as I was. It would be my first Christmas away from home.

How had this happened? How had I found myself just four short years our of college, hundreds of miles from home, married and expecting a baby, when I was clearly a baby myself?
Oh we were ready for the baby, who was not due until January, but still. The nursery sat, freshly painted, the crib filled with borrowed bumper pads, pillow and soft blankets. The small dresser had been carefully filled with powder-scented drawer liner, itty bitty diapers and tiny t-shirts, the few footed things I’d bought that could dress girl or boy.

I was tired of waiting. Tired of the body and the swollen feet, the back aches and the indigestion, and I was ready for it all to be over.

But I was not yet ready, to be a mother. How could I mother anyone, when I still so needed to be mothered myself?

Each day, I waited, pacing the five rooms of our tiny house, fingering the blankets, folding the tiny  clothes, imagining the kind of mother I would be. Silently I admitted only to myself that when this baby of mine started to cry, I would likely cry louder myself.

What kind of mother?

Would I be patient and kind like my own mother, or more true to who I already was — insecure and overly emotional. Would I bring laughter into my child’s life, or would my incompetence at the job bring only pain?
I wasn’t very good at trusting God, even though in these last three years He had flat out filled my life with joy and grace. Why couldn’t I understand that God would equip me with what I needed to care for this child, even if I didn’t yet know how? 

Had my own mother wondered these same things herself? (Probably not one minute when she was expecting me, third child that I am. But maybe with the first two.)
Before church on Christmas Eve, we took our picture in front of the tree, the room lit only by the twinkling lights. My large red maternity dress blocks most of the tree, so it’s hard to tell just how dead it really was.
I kept a journal while I was waiting — the only time in my life when I have done so faithfully, and five days before Christmas, 1983, I was at least ready for the holiday: “waiting, hoping, crying is all there is left to do,” I wrote. I’m sure I cried myself to sleep that night, my poor husband probably wondering just who he would have to parent when the due date came around.

At church that night, I’m certain I thought not one thing about Mary. My prayers were likely about asking God to keep my childbirth experience relatively pain free and short. My petite sister had a few months earlier given birth to a nine pound baby boy, and had sworn to me that she would never do THAT again. (She did, just three years later.)

But if I had, that year, thought more about the Christmas story and less about own Christmas away from family, I would have seen a certain kinship with Mary. Swollen body, surely, but both of us mothers-in-waiting, hopeful of what our children would come to be.

Christmas morning turned out to be one of the happiest in my memory, even still. I picture our tiny family — husband, dog and me — listening to Christmas music, sitting on the sofa, covered in blankets. We cooked together (well, the dog didn't... he just ate) — something we have rarely done since — so happy we were, knowing that Christmas would come again, with any luck, within a week.

The next day, we threw the tree out. The weather turned so cold that our washing machine froze. The cleaning lady didn’t show up, so I spent the next few days on my knees, not praying, but trying to get the house clean enough for my mother to visit.

I know for a fact that I went to bed crying on Dec. 29th, telling my husband that I was sure he wished he’d married that girl, the artist he knew in college, instead of fat, miserable me.

Within hours, Christmas started coming again, and the present was a healthy baby girl. Beautiful and wide-eyed. Ours. And we could hear the angels singing. Don’t they sing at every child’s birth?


What joy God filled our lives with from that day to this. I learned to mother. And though there were days I knew I made mistakes, I look at my daughter now and know God gave me the tools I needed to raise her up right. In a couple of weeks, our post-Christmas baby will be 30 years old. 30. I have no words, except thank you, God for filling my life with such indescribable joy.

30 So far...

So far, turning 30 isn't that bad. Everyone keeps telling me how great it is, so I'm going to embrace it (albeit with some trepidation). Maybe they are all lying...

Since I have 10 more blog posts to write between now and the end of my birthday (#30onthe30 Challenge), I thought I'd post a few guest posts. Because there is no way, I'll reach my goal without them. First being from my sweet sister-in-law, Britt.
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Happy Birthday! I wanted to write something hopeful and inspiring to you today (we'll see how I do). I remember really hating turning 30 (feeling hopeful yet?). It sure felt like my life was going too fast, but I have something to tell you about that. The 30's were the best years of my life! 
 
Here is a recap of a few of the great things that happened to me:
-went to the BVIs for the second time with a great group of friends
-moved to a beautiful little place called Bermuda
-had two beautiful boys (definitely the very best thing that happened in my 30's)
-getting to tell the Grandparents-to-be (this is truly another highlight)
-gained a sister :)
-celebrated 10 years of marriage to the most amazing man
-went to France and Spain on an amazing trip with my MIL
-moved back to America
-went to on a fun trip to Vegas with my hubby
-bought our first house
 
Those are just the highlights. That list doesn't include so many random and awesome days spent with friends and family. For me, the thirties were when I really started getting comfortable in my own skin. It is a wonderful time! So instead of thinking about how fast time has gone, think about all of the amazing and wonderful things that are yet to come. 

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Cheers!

Cheers to getting home safely to the city, putting all the Christmas decorations away, cleaning the apartment (with my new vacum - thanks mom & dad), relaxing on my couch, and my last few hours of being 20-something...

The fact that I cheered to my new vacum just confirms the fact that I'm getting old.