Queen City 5/2/17 – To Stress or Not to Stress 5/4/17 – On the Right Foot 5/9/17 – My Mom is Impossible to Shop For 5/10/17 – Know Thyself 5/11/17 – Where Does My Time Go, Anyway? 5/23/17 – Dreaming Despite Fear – 5/24/17
May 2, 2017
Back again, dears!
I’ve been off in the abyss again, but I’m back and ready to party! Finally sitting down for a minute to eat and take care of some stuff here with a good old bento box and a macchiato, as per usual. That’s after I spent the past weekend taking care of some business in Cincinnati. It was a long and stressful weekend, and I definitely felt a bit overwhelmed, but I was still able to have a lot of great experiences with the fave in Cincy.
We didn’t get to Cincinnati until late-ish and I hadn’t eaten at all, so the first stop there was already obviously food. So we went down to the University of Cincinnati’s campus to eat and shop and waste time for the evening. We did a great job, because driving around in the dark and rain to check out neighborhoods was not the easiest.
We didn’t have a ton of money to spend this weekend, and we needed to spend quite a bit of time doing “have-to” tasks instead of “want-to” tasks. There’s so much involved in moving cities, changing circumstances, and all of the surrounding complications…it actually took up most of our time. We spent hours driving around the city, investigating neighborhoods, looking at properties, and so on…but, we didn’t really find anything that we loved.
But in between!–we watched hours of binge-type Netflix (Hellooooo Supernatural!), cuddled a doggo, explored, and ate a ton of food.
Ah, well! We have time, and we had a couple of days this time. On one of those days, I saw a dessert place that served crepes. I love crepes, so I absolutely wanted to go there. Well, surprise surprise, it also served gelato and macarons, so it basically served all of my favorite things. Holy smokes. Easily one of my favorite things from the weekend, and did I get both gelato AND macarons? Of course! You gotta LIVE, man!
So we got some stuff done, but mostly we did my favorite things to do to learn about a city: eat and walk. On our way to a Korean place, there was a house that appeared as if straight from a book. “It seems like a hobbit lives here!” I spent a lot of time wondering about the story behind that house.That house…is a labor of love for sure. What would motivate someone to build a house like that? How did they get the income? Are they retirement age with money to spare, or did they go into debt to live exactly the way they wanted? Was…was there a blueprint? Was it built all at once, or piece by piece? Do the people (does the person?) that live there still feel the wonder and surprise that we felt walking past it? I have so many questions. And weirdly, that house has kind of become a weird symbol in my mind…of freedom, weirdness, risk. I don’t know but MAN! do I love it. You have to build what you want, right?
I’m trying to keep it in mind, as this weekend ended up being kind of a bummer, in the end. I didn’t work out a single time. We didn’t see a place we loved, parking…hm. But this weekend was still an adventure! It may not have turned out how we wanted it, but I got good food, sunlight, and snacks. After all, adventures with my buddy are the best part of life. <3 Until we meet again, Cincy!
TO STRESS OR NOT TO STRESS
May 4, 2017
Today, I’m checking in late because I spent most of the day working on my final project for grad school, which was due today. I was up until about 5:30 am working on it, and today had to give a presentation to the class about an integrated marketing communications plan–including budget–to the class. Whew. The semester is over on Saturday, and I could NOT be more ready! It’s been a really stressful week, with travel on the weekend, and papers and projects every other day since. Plus, you know…rape is a pre-existing condition, apparently. Yay. Thanks, Congress! I’ve definitely been feeling a bit overwhelmed…even had a few crying spells and one migraine over the course of the weekend.
I definitely have a tendency to stress easily. I worry a lot, I think a lot, I tend to think a lot about doing the wrong thing, or hurting people. Gosh, any number of things really. I tend to stress eat. Sometimes, I veg out due to stress, you know…6 hours plus of TV? I prefer to stress workout, ha! But even that, I need to be careful with, because when I am stressed out, I can go so far as to overwork myself, previously causing myself injuries many times.
Stress can have a really terrible effect on your health and mind, hence the migraine mentioned above. It can upset your stomach, cause muscle aches, even lead to heart disease. Losing your hair, being unable to sleep, BELLY FAT (lol)! I think learning to manage stress is truly so important.
So, these days, I have been trying to focus more on not stressing out so much, especially seeing as I tend to stress over stuff I have no real worries over, or at least things I can’t do anything more about. Even worse, once I get all stressed out? I don’t even tend to get anything useful accomplished! I have to take some breaks. Sometimes, I think you have to keep telling yourself: “You can spare an hour!” Sometimes it feels like you can’t spare even a second, but I know at least for me that often does way more harm than good, so I MAKE myself take at least an hour (often two) every day.
Some of the things I do to counteract (or reduce) stress:
Oh, my gosh, I can’t even tell you–sometimes, especially when I’m stressed out, taking that first step is so (SO) hard, but it is always worth it! I have never, ever regretted going to work out, and there’s something infinitely soothing about throwing on some hip-hop or super serious hard rock and lifting heavy things. Of, course, if you”re the “take a swing” type, there’s always boxing. Throw down on something safe.
- Bath time!
For real. I don’t mean a ‘run water, get in the water, get out of water’ thing, I mean the whole shebang: Bubbles, oil, exfoliant. Shave (if you’re into that sort of thing), trim and shape your nails, treat your hair, wear a face mask (I can give recommendations, lol–and might!). Slather yourself in lotion. I’m talking self-care here, really spend some time on yourself.
- Quiet time
This one can really vary. Sometimes I read (Right now? “Look Who’s Back”, by Timur Vermes), sometimes I meditate or do yoga. Dance. Play video games. Write a poem. Hell, write a novel! Smell the flowers, look at art. Every person is different, and really with this, I pretty much mean take some solitude. I know I need it sometimes…often.
Or a held hand. Take advantage of your friends, family, sig-oth, you know (I’m on a tight sched)…that’s what they’re there for! You’d be there for them, and for the most part, they want to do the same. And of course, sometimes you just need a hug.
Any other tips?? What do you do?
ON THE RIGHT FOOT
May 9, 2017
Gooood afternoon! I’m up early, holy smokes!
For once, today, I’ve been up for hours (through no fault of my own), so I figured I may as well get the day started! I’ve been to yoga today, picked up lunch and coffee (if you’re wondering, my quest to reduce my coffee intake is not going well), and now I’m here to work on some stuff! After I take down some thoughts of course.
I hope you all had a fantastic weekend! I spent mine mostly relaxing with the bf and working on school work. We got ramen, and ramen, and stayed in a little. All around an excellent weekend. My semester ended on Saturday, so I had several things to get done…but this week is free (from school work)! WHEW. I mean…I start again on Monday, but until then: party!
Actually, I’m hoping to use the time before I get caught back up in balancing school work to get some stuff done, so I’ve got a to-do list the size of my arm. Oh, well. I’m actually kind of excited about it; you know that feeling where you know you’re going to be able to ACTUALLY cross stuff off your list? Am I the only one that thinks that feeling is boss? Maybe it comes from always having so many things I want to do that I know I’ll never get all of it done.
Today, though, I’m getting the week started on a high note! With yoga done, I have a few hours to write and apply for jobs and complete some other projects before a spin class later today. The BF went back to his home state yesterday evening (boo), and rather than whining about that, I’m trying to keep in mind all the stuff I want to work on so that eventually we can go on more adventures! Currently, all of our adventures have been little ones (voici le food pictures! LOL), which I do appreciate. But…not small adventures; adventures not within a couple of hundred miles, I hope. (Positivity is important, guys!)
In any case, starting on the right foot means getting out of bed, and you have to get your feet on the ground before you can take any of those steps. Furthermore, because I am trying to get my workouts and food re-organized at the same time, I’m trying to keep a pretty tight leash on myself. I feel good when I make good choices, after all. Ha! The first steps, I accomplished, so I want to stay on that path for as long as possible. I rewarded myself today with some BEAUTIFUL empanadas–I don’t usually advocate rewarding yourself with food, but so be it. Sometimes motivation is tough–I’m counting it as a win.
It’s almost summer! And since I have a lot of stuff I want to do, and a lot of fun I want to have, I need to get started. My big (big) goal for this summer? To go to either London or Paris. I haven’t been overseas in 3(ish?) years, and I’m so, so over it. I’ve found the trick to getting to those big goals is identifying those little steps and then just taking them.
One by one.
If I remind myself over and over again, hopefully, I can keep the “right foot” moving forward.
What are your current big goals???
MY MOM IS IMPOSSIBLE TO SHOP FOR
May 10, 2017
Happy Hump Day you guys!
Uh, so I just realized something.
It’s almost MOTHER’S DAY.
I haven’t planned anything. Just a few days away and I’ve got nothing. I keep seeing these lists: “Gifts for Every Mom”, “Gifts Even for the Sporty Mom”, “Mother’s Day Gifts for Any Kind of Mom”, etc. But these lists have a problem. It doesn’t matter what kinds of mom that they claim to be for, or how many gifts are on the list, or the variety addressed…my mom wouldn’t like any of them. She doesn’t like bags, or jewelry, or spas, or any of that other stuff that people always suggest for gifts for mom.
I love my mom, but she hates EVERYTHING. I say that to people a good amount, but I think people underestimate what I mean by it.
Legitimately, my mom doesn’t like almost anything anyone gets her. So what do you do when you have a mom like mine? One that isn’t interested in anything you can get for them, but still loves you?
WELL–you get creative, of course! I have found that the stuff my mom DOES like is the stuff that reminds her of when I was a kid; the stuff that shows her that I was thinking of her even if it’s ridiculous and stupid. One year, I performed a song. I often draw her large pictures or write her poems. I once bought a book about being a great mom and went through and wrote examples of the stuff in the book and crossed out things and made notes. She LOVED it.
So, here’s my list of child-like “I love mom” gifts for the mom that hates everything else:
Yep, you probably could have guessed this one. Draw her a picture, write a poem or a story, sing her a song. If you have additional skills and/or resources, make her a movie, record an album. Gosh, make her an ashtray.
- A fun photo of you (or you and your family)
For example, one year, I took a picture with the Easter Bunny. I was 26, She thought it was amazing. –sigh–
This one always seems obvious for some of us, I think, but a lot of people overlook it. Make her a dinner and really focus on her! Take her to a show; mother/son or mommy/daughter time. Do a paint and sip.
Ridiculous, right? My mom likes the weirdest stuff…but, I figure my mom can’t be the only weirdo, right?? I’m going to get started on my gift…
What are some truly odd or interesting things that your mom has loved???
May 11, 2017
Wow. I seem to have been inundated with many spam comments. I wonder if this has anything to do with my spam filter needing an update? Ha! Well, in any case, good afternoon all!
I feel like I have a ton to do today, so I’m definitely feeling the pressure, but I’m trying not to think about the overall picture so much…one step at a time! I’ve got a list, as per usual, and that’s fine. Tomorrow I’m going off to KY again to go to a graduation, and I can’t say that I’m NOT nervous, but I’m trying not to think about that either. LOL~ The graduation is for my bf’s sister, and it seems like there are going to be a ton of people there, and a lot going on; since I’m nervous, if I think about it too much I’ll just get more and more nervous. I don’t want to go into it with any pre-determined negativity, so I’m trying to keep positive!
A lot of people don’t believe it, I suppose because I’m friendly and pretty outgoing, but I’m an introvert by nature; the thought of being around a bunch of people I don’t know with no alone time is a touch (a great deal) of stress–in general. Some people think that being an introvert versus being an extrovert is liking/disliking people, but it’s not about that at all. It’s really all about energy! Introverts recharge by being alone and doing solo activities, and extroverts are the opposite: they recharge by being around people.
There are some other quirks of introversion that I’ve been privy to, like: not loving abrupt changes in my plans, liking to observe a situation…some of these I’ve gotten pretty good at over time, but when I’m already stressed out or something like that, I definitely still have some trouble.
There are some theories that introverts need less stimulation in general, so are less likely to thrill-seek, see novel experiences, and that sort of thing, as well. This isn’t quite true for me, but I definitely find a wide variety of things to be interesting and fun, and I actually love (LOVE) new experiences…however, these days I am testing as more in the ambivert range, so that probably has something to do with it.
BUT! It’s an extrovert’s world.
And I have to make some special effort sometimes when I know situations are going to be stressful for me because I don’t want to be left out, and I want to involved in events, and friend’s and families’ lives. “It’s just how I am” isn’t really a good excuse, I feel like I should always be trying to improve, and you know…I like people, hahaha… So, I’ve joined comedy shows, and practiced improv, and made impulsive decisions to go to Kentucky.
In any case, I can’t spend my whole life in the bathroom, right?
WHERE DOES MY TIME GO, ANYWAY?
May 23, 2017
I hope your week has been fabulous, all! I’ve had pretty good times, luckily, so I’m trying to appreciate it a bit. I went down to Louisville this weekend for the boyfriend’s sister’s graduation, and I was there for several days. I had a good time, and it was fun watching her cross the stage and all of that. His family was around all weekend, so I definitely had some moments where I was uncomfortable, and not really sure what I should be doing…you know the times? Where you’re frozen because you’re not sure what the right choice is. Wanting to make a good impression can be so stressful. But I’m really glad I went, and the reality is that it’ll get easier over time. I hope.
I came home on Monday, and since then I feel like I’ve had a lot going on, but I don’t know how much I’ve gotten accomplished. I had a meeting for school on Wednesday, and have been contacting people and businesses all week. I don’t know about you, but do you ever just realize an entire day is gone, an entire week is gone, and you have no idea at all where it went? I feel like I’ve not done much of anything, but then when I list it out, it’s like: “Oh. I guess that IS some stuff.”
At some point, it seems like I just look up and feel like I have been doing nothing but sitting on the internet all day.
I definitely still have a lot to do, some papers to get done, and a couple of freelance assignments to work on, as well. I feel like I got 100 notifications all at once! Ah well, ah well, it’s better than the alternative, right?? If you want to achieve things, you have to grind, after all. Back on it today, for sure!
SO, I’m trying to stay on track–and that led me to think: what things have I wasted my time on this week?
Instagram/Facebook: At LEAST 10 hours.
Petting a cat: 7+ hours.
Taking pictures of cats.
Looking for food.
Looking at pictures of places I can’t travel to, yet.
…………sigh. And that’s definitely a short list. I’ll just have to reel it in, there’s no other option. However, my diet and workouts have been more on track this week, so that’s excellent. Looking at the bright side! Hopefully this week I can pull that back to just a couple of wasted hours! Ha!
What do you find you waste time on??
DREAMING DESPITE FEAR
May 24, 2017
I had an audition today, so I was up bright and early to get ready and head to that. It’s kind of nice because I definitely feel like I’m making headway there–after a long while where I couldn’t go to a lot of auditions it’s just nice to be able to do some shooting and start getting back into it. Recently, I also got an email from The Voice, inviting me to come back and audition for them again, so I may also do that. I’m about a year away from graduating from graduate school, and truly, I still have no idea what direction I’m going in.
Yesterday, I had an interview for a pretty interesting position with a University–doing multiple very relevant-to-me tasks, and it sounds like it’ll allow me to really branch out and learn some new skills. During the interview, one of the interviewers asked me: “So, with your degree and your grad school, where do you see yourself heading?” Now, honestly, I dread that question at the best of times…but right now? AWFUL. Mostly because I truly have no idea. I flounder for a while with that one, and this time, I ultimately said: “I’m not really sure!”
I think it appears like I have no direction, but really the problem is that I have too many directions, haha! I want to go in all of them. So, that’s kind of the plan! I’ve been putting in for a lot more auditions lately, and I’m about to start a part-time job, with the hope of getting an additional internship. Ideally, I’ll still be able to work around these to make it to auditions and to travel, and the like. More and more, I’m transitioning from being scared to being excited, so that’s a great move in a direction that I appreciate!
The fear is a difficult thing to overcome. Fear of failure, for me (and I think everyone), is an intense, living thing in my soul. That feeling where your heartbeat starts to feel like it’s on the outside of your body and your breath starts to come in short bursts? An old, dear friend. And wanting to do multiple things doesn’t help. If anything, it makes it worse! SO MANY MORE OPPORTUNITIES TO FAIL.
BUT! I like to tell people: if you weren’t scared, you wouldn’t care enough. I mean, would you rather be scared of failure, or upset because you failed, OR would you rather never do anything you cared about that much?? So, I’m trying something new these days. With so many different things that I want to do, so many options, so many paths I could walk, I’m using my fear. When I try out for things or put my name in for jobs, or freelance assignments, or whatever the case may be…if I’m not at least a little scared or nervous about it, I’m cutting it out. Honestly, I haven’t cut out much (lol) yet, but I’m hopeful! In the meantime, what’s wrong with trying several things?? I may not have a lot of free time (other than the time I forcefully waste), but I get to do a lot of different things every day! I get to try new stuff, and have different experiences every day. All in all, not a bad way, I think.
In any case, I’m not willing to give up on any of my dreams yet, and I don’t see any reason why I should. Even if I take a path that I end up not finishing…the experience will still be valuable. Even if my feet get a little dirty, I got a workout in. I had an audition today, and I’ll take it if I can. I had an interview yesterday, and I’ll take that if I can, too. I refuse to believe that having multiple dreams is a bad thing.
I think failure isn’t an option because really it doesn’t exist. If you don’t achieve what your goal was, then your goal shifts, OR you try again. On that note, I have another audition next week. LOL.
What are your dreams? How do you beat or use your fear??