And the love multiplies…

Despite my New Year’s Resolutions of 2018, it has been over a month since my last post! But this time, I have really good reasoning.

Valentine's Day Pregnancy and gender announcement another boy-6

You see, those health issues I mentioned…they looked a little like nausea, fatigue, food aversions, and several other symptoms that are far less glamorous. Because…

Valentine's Day Pregnancy and gender announcement another boy-3

I’m pregnant!

Valentine's Day Pregnancy and gender announcement another boy-8 (2)

Now that I’m well into my second trimester, I can come right out and say it. Not only was I so exhausted that I found myself struggling to complete my paid work, nevertheless this hobby blog right here, but this pregnancy as well as something else that our family has been working on have been my limited focus in these past months, so I had very little to write about.

Valentine's Day Pregnancy and gender announcement another boy-2

Now that I’m further along and getting back into my routines for my freelance writing as well as my household (okay–I’ll admit it. I’m not back to maintaining my household. But Mark has been doing an amazing job of picking up my slack) I’m excited to share more about what’s in store for our family, memories that we’ve been making, and DIY projects as they resume.

Valentine's Day Pregnancy and gender announcement another boy-1

 

 

 

….I almost forgot! These balloons were inspired by this quick DIY project from StudioDIY. It’s definitely one of her older projects, and she’s since created a shop where she sells pre-printed conversation heart balloons.

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2018

2017 is OVER.

I don’t want to dwell too much in last year’s news, but what stands out to me most about 2017 is that for me, it felt like a year of hiding. I spoke of my anxiety, and though it hasn’t been debilitating to the point of not wanting to run my errands, it still flares up and made me stop wanting to play the numbers game of trying to meet and connect with people in this town. It’s hard to get to get past the surface level in a newer friendship, and I learned not to rush it. But along the way I seem to have learned to shut myself away from others to stop feeling so rejected. I paid attention to my family and my hobbies and even isolated myself from my lifelong friends in Texas, thinking that they didn’t care anymore.

I was wrong. I know I need to be the friend I want to have.

2018 has begun.

My number one resolution is to stop closing myself off to other people. To stop living in fear of rejection and begin to reach out again and more to people in my area, to lifelong friends.

I shut off social posting last year from Christmas to Easter, and looking back now I see how I blogged a significant amount more than I thought I did. Social posting does nothing for me but temporarily boost my ego, whereas blogging is a way for me to organize my thoughts on one day and help people plan a vacation or DIY something pretty darn cool on other days.

I ran into a couple of quotes not too long ago that really resonated with me. One being:

“The key to happiness is finding your gift and sharing it with others.” – Mark Maples

and the other was:

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” – William Arthur Ward

This resonated deeply with me because I do a really good job at cultivating gratitude for all of the joys and privileges that I have in my thoughts, yet I don’t as often take the time to send a thank you card.

Get back to my systems and routines.

I make “resolutions” or something like it twice a year. New Year’s and my birthday, which conveniently falls six months after. On my birthday, my main focus was productivity routines and “getting my shit together.” Over the months following, I rocked at this. I got some great systems in place, had a daily routine, and my house was staying in order. However, in November, my health took a turn and I stopped following through with things. I’m still getting through the health issues, but piece by piece I’d like to return to those routines that gave me more calm in my day-to-day life.

NoSurf

I spend a lot of time on the internet. It’s been like that as far as I can remember. I need the internet to do my freelance work, and there are times when I need it as a resource to achieve my goals and finish projects I have begun. I can also connect with like-minded individuals, which is cool.

But, unfortunately, this isn’t what I’m using the internet for the majority of the time. Social media is a big part of the problem, but it’s not just that. It’s Reddit, politics, “news” stories I never need to read, my guilty Teen Mom obsession, etc. There are so many better ways to spend my time.


To make it a (brief) list:

  1. Share myself and my gratitude more often through writing, Facetime, and in-person meeting.
  2. Get back to routines.
  3. Focus my internet use as a tool to aid my writing, art, and home projects.

There are so many exciting things to look forward to in 2018! I’m going to stop keeping my joy and gratitude to myself, thanks for staying along for the ride.

And, heck, I might even go back and share some stuff from when I was hiding in 2017. But first, I’ve got some paid work to get done!

On Anxiety

It’s been three months since my last post. I’ve traveled to the other side of the world, knocked several things off of my bucket list, and have done countless DIY projects. However, those were all fleeting moments. Before I start spitting out informational posts about things to do and make, I want to talk a little about something I carry with me on all of my trips. This is something I hold onto despite my endeavors, and the same thing that stops me from sharing online: crippling anxiety.

I thought, for a time, that my anxiety began when I moved to Connecticut. And, if that was the case, it would pass once I made some new friends. I didn’t know where I fit in, so maybe if I found my place, these feelings would subside. I’ve realized that isn’t so and if I don’t take action, I’m going to be stuck in this rut.

A lot of times I don’t understand what’s going on in my head until I write it. I utilize my daily morning pages (per The Artist’s Way, recommended to all!) to sort out most of these things in a free-form way. This anxiety I’ve been feeling, however, has been a bigger problem. Maybe, in my sorting out and sharing, I can work on it and maybe you can relate. Who knows. After all, I did decide I wanted to be more raw in this blog.

What it looks like

From my perspective, it’s a feeling of shame that spirals out of control. It can start with something simple: Continue reading

Mother’s Gifts

The greatest gift my mother gave me didn’t come on Christmas day. It wasn’t the latest game console, or the the shoes I wore on prom night. It wasn’t intricately wrapped with a ribbon tied around it. There was no bow on top.

My mother gave me life twice. The first time was on the maternity floor. Breathing heavily, she pushed me, unaware, into this world. I was born hungry, wailing loudly. I can’t say much has changed.

There wasn’t a specific time marked by any inky footprint when she gave me life again. No. It occurred day-by-day over the course of two years at a different hospital, nearby. Children aren’t born there. A nurse would take blood or an oncologist would insert a hollowed needle into my spine. But it was always her, eyes wide, looking deeply into equally bugging eyes. Deeply, into one another’s pupils. It was always her, grasping my hand with all her might, as if letting go would allow her to lose me. Continue reading

Jungalow Style Bathroom

one room challenge guest participant

Last One Room Challenge from Calling it Home post this week! If you’d like to see how things progressed week by week, check out the first week, the third week, the fourth week and last week‘s posts. But really, who needs all that? This is the good part, when things are finished.

Remember what it looked like when I started?

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And the plan I drew up?

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Well, here’s what we’re looking at now: Continue reading

Create & Cultivate NYC 2017 Recap

Yesterday I went to the Create & Cultivate NYC Conference. Last year, when I saw a high school friend of mine, Faison Anne, AND my favorite bloggers, Lauryn Evarts, Ashley Rose, and Julia Engel at Create & Cultivate Dallas, I got some pretty severe FOMO. I decided then that if/when the conference came to NYC, I was there. I immediately bought my ticket when they announced the date.

What’s Create & Cultivate?

From their website:What is create and cultivate NYC?

Continue reading