Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Finding Adventure in My Backyard: Hometown Glory

Summer time used to take on a whole new meaning when I was in school. No responsibilities, no school, maybe a little summer job, but I still looked forward to the adventures. Spontaneity was a must but the calendar would quickly fill up with camps and trips. I knew fun, relaxing times were just on the horizon and the the responsibilities and burdens of the school year would quickly be over. I always had this feeling of freedom and adventure swelling up in my spirit...I still get that feeling when I sense summer's approach. Le sigh. I was quickly snapped out of my wishful thinking into reality when I realized, yet again, that my reality is much different.

Nothing really changes now. Jobs are still to be attended to, now a baby who requires my care everyday, a home to be kept, no temporary relief from the responsibilities of every day life even for just a short time. It is silly but it made me sad, a little bitter, and jealous when I overheard what other people were doing with their summer plans of far away adventures. It's sad how quickly the enemy can work to make you feel discontent so I'm choosing not to let him and instead I'm choosing to find joy in my everyday life.

I've always been the adventure type of gal. I'd pick a trip over a fancy dress & jewels any day of the week. I always day dream of far way places but this summer I want to be present where instead of focusing on what could be, I want to enjoy what is. Just because I don't technically get summer doesn't mean I can't take full advantage of the longer days. I'll probably still secretly hope that a fun little excursion will come my way but I fully intend to discover the adventure right where I am

As the days turn warmer I have begun a list of things that I can do in my very own backyard. Instead of seeing my little town as "boring & lifeless" I believe it is up to me to go out there and find the fun and beauty of it. I am sure if I look hard enough that my little town will come to life right before my eyes. I have a child now and  I love to watch him explore and experience the world so what difference does it make to him if we are 1,000 miles away or right in our backyard? I plan to have some fun this summer and seek out the adventure that awaits us.

Here's what I hope is just the beginning of my 
Hometown Glory list:

Brunch at the Wheelhouse
Burgers at Sneaky Pete's
Day Trip to the Beach
Pizza outside at Crowne Pizza
SRS Monday night runs
Blueberry Picking
Host an If: Table event
Go on a photo taking adventure
Lunch dates with Friends
Date night at Suga's

And while it isn't my hometown..Hopefully a weekend trip to Austin & Dallas to visit friends. Sidetone: I think I might be a foodie. ;) 

Have you struggled with letting go of the Summers of your youth or am I the only one? Will you plan some hometown glory adventures into your summer? 

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Be Brave Enough to Begin

Be brave enough to begin.

A phrase that has ran through my mind numerous times the past couple weeks or so. I am not really sure what is "beginning" but I know a new season is here. The warmer weather and blooming flowers prove it. It's amazing how spring makes me feel refreshed after a cold, dreary winter. Becoming a mom has put dreams of mine on hold. Some are little, some are big, but I want to start pursuing them. My son does not hold me back, it is my own self and fear that does. If anything, my son & and husband propel me forward. I want to brave enough to begin even in the small things and even in the big things. The first step is everything.

Kendall and I were having a date one evening. It was actually the first one we had since our son came into our life. Our days had been consumed with learning this new life of parenthood we had began. Our seasons of life were happening and transitioning so fast with no real time to sit and just talk. We went from a life living overseas straight back into living stateside to having a baby with not much time to process it all. Honestly, I still haven't had time to process it. This one particular night though Kendall stopped to ask me, "what do YOU want? Where do YOU see us? What is your dream?" questions a long those lines. I am thankful for a husband that cares to ask me those questions and wants to encourage me to pursue those dreams. If he didn't ask me those questions I probably wouldn't ask them myself. 

Kendall has finally made me realize that I don't have to have that dream be perfect and in order when I start it. I can let it evolve with me as I grow and change but the most important thing is that I start. I discussed with him that I wanted to start blogging again. I feel like I have something to share even if it is small and maybe only one person actually reads it. I had it in my mind that I needed to start over...different web address, different hosting site, different name, a focus, etc. If those things eventually happen, fine. If not, fine. I think those were just reasons to put off something because I was 1) too lazy to put the effort in & 2) fear. We'll see where this goes but I hope I can make an effort to blog here more and I'm excited to see where this blog takes me again. I want to write about the things i'm passionate about....Birth, motherhood, faith, fitness, nutrition, living on a budge, home remodel, raising a son, being a working mom. There's so many! I can't put myself in a box. ;) Oh and as silly as it sounds I finally realized that I can't just stand by waiting for those dreams to come to fruitaion, I have to actively pursue them!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail: Goals before 24

I was about to post this as a (much shorter) Facebook status but then I read my list and realized that this will help me take a step to accomplishing one of my goals.

Fail to Plan
Plan to Fail

This phrase has been running through my mind so much lately and it is so true.
Y'all, I am a terrible planner! I have my moments when I do plan, but when it comes down to it I am most definitely a fly by the seat of my pants kind of girl. It can be a blessing and a curse. I love the thrill but I am definitely realizing how planning & schedules no matter how loosely I may follow them It DOES help life run a bit smoothly...and ok, I admit it...it definitely helps with a baby thrown into the mix.
I don't expect to have my life run by a minute by minute schedule but I do want to implant some healthier habits into my life. I usually have the big things written in a planner whose location is unknown at the moment but my life could use a bit more planning on the smaller aspects of life and that's what the goal list will help me do! Right? And maybe posting it on the Internet for some accountability will boost its success too.

Today us April 11th which means I have 30 days until I celebrate my 24th birthday so I figured it was the perfect time to sit down and write out some goals for myself. I don't expect to complete them in a month but I want to work towards making some healthy, lasting habits to carry on into my 25th year of life. I have the same amount of time as everyone else so I want to make use of it so I am not sitting here in a year wishing I would've started now.

1. Read two books over the next thirty days. One fiction and one non fiction.
I confess that I have picked up a terrible habit of binge watching shows on netflix. After having Ezra those early days were spent glued to the couch while we figured out this whole nursing relationship & it was easy to keep clicking "next episode". Confession: I watched Hart of Dixie all the way through to its current season and I totally cried in the series finale..so good! Ezra is finally at an age where his clingy days are much less and he enjoys playing by himself. That leaves more two handed free time for me! I read so much growing up and when we lived overseas so I fully intend on getting rid of some distractions so I can enjoy that again.

2. Spend less time on social media.
It is way to easy to pick up the phone/ipad and spend 30 minutes (ok, an hour) of unintentional time on it. I get too caught up reading articles, clicking on links in the articles, reading comments..etc. I am over it. It does not add much depth to my life so I fully intend to focus my time elsewhere. I don't think I am at the point of getting rid of it forever because I do enjoy the networking and sharing but I don't like how the time spent on  it has become an unhealthy habit in my life. It is so easy to pick up my phone and see what everyone else is doing so that I can avoid the things that I need to do.

3. Re-start my blog.
I have been thinking about this for many months and have debated starting a new one in its entirety but I feel like it was just an excuse to not put the effort in to keeping up one I already have. I love the name of this blog and it means so much to me. I have let my blog evolve with me so I will continue to do so. That said, hopefully I can start writing in here a bit more consistently and clean up the look/old posts a bit to make it more of what I want it to be now. Plus, I am always thinking of things to post I just never do.

4. Stay on top of daily chores.
I have gotten better at this but there is still room for improvement. Working has made it much harder and not having that pregnacy nesting symptom anymore but I feel much more productive in every aspect of my life when things are in order.

5. Continue my fitness routine.
I have done really well over the past 4 months or so of consistently working out. I love being active and those little moments I get help keep me sane. I lost so much muscle in pregnancy that lofting weights has helped me feel strong again and take away some pain I was having but I haven't seen the results I want which leads me to my next point...

6.  30 days of whole food
I used to do very well at eating healthy on a normal basis while only having treats every now and then. I love the way I feel when I eat healthy, wholesome foods and I want to get back into making that our normal. I am not going to lie, pregnancy + overseas + breastfeeding + working at Starbucks has led to me indulging way too often in foods that I missed and now I use breastfeeding as an excuse to eat whatever I want which is not necessarily a good excuse. I haven't gained but I haven't lost either even though my clothes are fitting better I still know I can do better. I pretty much only drink coffee, water, & tea but I want to get in the habit of drinking MORE water. It is so important when nursing a baby. I am still exclusively nursing/pumping, no solids for Ezra yet so I just need to make sure I am eating enough calories that my supply doesn't suffer. I have come to really love my post partum body and I think that's all that really matters as far as "weight" goes but I DO want to be healthier. I really what to work on cutting out sweets & processed foods out of my diet until my birthday.

7. Challenge myself creatively everyday.
Whether it is writing a blog post, taking a picture, creating with my hands, learning a new vocabulary word etc. I want to implament creativity into my daily life to get my brain functioning like it used to before a baby. ;)

These last two are most important to me.

8. Spend daily time in the word even if it is only 5 min.
I have slacked big time and I like making this list to know what I need to cut out in order to see this happen. I found a daily devotional that my favorite author shauna niequist just put out and I would love to start it. Let's be honest, I wake up most days a good 3 1/2 hours before the sun comes up for work so getting up earlier isn't really an option for me like it used to be so I need to figure out a different time of the day this can fit in for me now.

9. Give myself grace but stay disciplined.
This goal list is fun and needed but I still have hard days and days I am exhausted. I want to try my best to accomplish these things but I also don't want to feel guilty if I don't. I need to apply this to many areas if my life.

Do birthdays put you in goal making mode too? Anyone want to be my accountability partner on one of these? :)