Adios 2019 (& the decade!)

The fact that 2019 is ending in less than 24 hours is mind boggling to me. The fact that I am saying goodbye to another decade is even crazier to me. I definitely didn’t feel this way when 2009 was ending and I graduated high school that year. It SHOULD have felt like this. Right? 

As I close the door on another year, I always like to look back and see what has changed in the past 12 months. It is nice to reflect and enjoy whatever the year has brought, whether it be good or bad. 

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Currently December

General- It’s December so obviously we are (still) in Christmas mode! We still have a few presents to finish up and I have one final shopping trip that I get to do solo to to pick out Hubby’s gift. Technically, we have two shopping trips because we are taking my brother out shopping sometime this weekend but that is for him to pick out stuff, not us for other people so I don’t really count it. We are getting ready for our Christmas party! (whoo hooo!) And all the other things we will be doing that are Christmas-y. This weekend is going to be pretty epic, and I’m excited. Does anybody say epic anymore? Is that still a thing? Oh well. 

Reading– I finished Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus. This book you guys, THIS BOOK. I’m going to have to do a full review on this book because if I start talking about it now, I’m just going to ramble on for days. I’m currently reading Where’d You Go Bernadette? By Maria Sample, it’s for book club. YOU GUYS I HAVE A BOOK CLUB. This is the best thing to come out of 2019. Okay, top five. I’m also technically still reading Bookish Boyfriends but I’ll probably put it on hold until I finish the book for book club. My goal is to finish it by the end of the year. I am so close to my goal of 40 books this year. 

Listening– Still Christmas music. All the time, everywhere. Seriously, I haven’t stopped. When I write I am listening to worship music. However, I’m discovering that it is easier for me to focus when I have music on instead of the TV in the background. Send me your favorite songs! 

*the next section might contain spoilers

Watching– OH MY GOSH THE MASKED SINGER! I wanted Fox to win and I’m so glad he did! I figured out it was Wayne Brady when he sang “Blame It”. I heard the Wayne Brady I grew up hearing sing on Whose Line is it Anyway? Hubby figured out the Rottweiler was Chris Daughtry when he finally sat down and watched an episode. While he was singing his song for the finale, I could literally hear Daughtry songs playing through my head. I wonder if the panel has ever heard Darren Criss sing because his voice sounds NOTHING like Daughtry’s and therefore sounded nothing like the Rottweiler’s. It is still a good show. I’m excited for season three! I’ve also been watching a lot of Danny Phantom and Gray’s Anatomy and Friends. Just re-watching the good stuff. 

Writing– After I stopped doing NaNo because I knew I wouldn’t catch up and I didn’t want to stress myself out and hate writing, I set a goal for myself to get to 15,000 words by the end of December. Well, I met that goal yesterday! WHOO HOO! I am also about to start writing a Christmas poem and I’m kinda excited to try out this new type of writing. Me + poetry doesn’t always mix but Christmas poems are different so maybe this will be awesome. I have a solid and cute idea! 

This month is basically about enjoying Christmas and time with my family. I’ve been posting a lot more about what we are doing this season already so I feel like you guys already know what is going on. I’ll also be posting about the rest of the things we do this month and how we did presents this year sometime in January!

Merry Christmas! I hope your holiday is blessed and merry! 

Procrastination & Decisions

I probably shouldn’t state this so matter-of-factly, but I’m a procrastinator. An old English teacher I had used to remind us to flip the perception. Take the things that would be considered bad or negative and flip it into something positive. You’re not a procrastinator, you’re great with deadlines. I’m sticking with that. I’m fantastic with deadlines. Deadlines have nothing on me (as long as I’m not the one setting the deadline. I evidently have no problem disappointing myself).

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Changing up Christmas

This year I already knew I wanted to change up how we did Christmas. Little Man is 4 and is really starting to understand Christmas and the whole holiday season so I wanted to start really digging into some new traditions and doing stuff as a family. 

Growing up, my family had like one tradition. We would go out to dinner on Christmas Eve, come home and open up one present that was under the tree. Then we set out cookies for Santa and went to bed. It was a very basic tradition but that is what we did. Oh! We also got a real Christmas tree every year, so we would pick that out as a family. After my parents divorce, the traditions said adios and Christmas looked different every single year. 

Continue reading “Changing up Christmas”

Honesty Hour

*This post has nothing to do with dinosaurs. Sometimes, life just feels like it is sneaking up behind you like a raptor.

I’m a very honest person. While I tend to keep most of my personal matters close to the chest, I also have no problem dropping hardships I’ve gone through in conversations randomly. I have no problem sharing my story but usually I won’t share it until I’m on the other side of whatever I’m dealing with. I can talk about it easier that way.

Today, I’m throwing that idea away and just writing from my heart. I’m going to share what is on my heart and the things I’ve been dealing with and struggling with lately. If you’ve been following me for a while, I feel like I owe it to you if you have been wondering where my posts have been. There are going to be some changes coming up around here and I’m also going to share about that. 

At the beginning of November, I went to my annual women’s retreat with my church. I am involved with the women’s ministry at my church and have a hand in helping set up retreat as well as helping out during retreat. Prep for retreat took the entire week that lead up to it. I got up to Zion and was ready for God to move and speak into my heart. I was ready for whatever God had for me. I was excited.

Retreat was everything I was hoping for and more. God spoke to me. God touched my heart. God reminded me of the season I am currently in. I’m in a season of life I’ve prayed for. A season I’ve asked God multiple times for. I am standing where I’ve prayed for. I’ve also been blessed by answered prayers that I was too afraid to actually pray. Things that hung out in my heart but I didn’t think I could ask. I didn’t deserve it. I already asked for something else so I shouldn’t ask for that. I made stronger friendships, I felt seen by God. Retreat was absolutely amazing and I still get excited when I think about what God told me while I was up on that mountain. 

Then I came home from that mountain. I came home and promptly woke up the next morning sick. My headaches, that were minimal, are more frequent and back to being daily. I’ve been trying to make sure I get quality time with my son and my husband and as a family. (We are still adjusting to our new schedule.) and perhaps this only happens to me, but when the sun is suddenly setting at 4:30 in the evening, everything gets thrown off. It happens every single year and no matter how I try to mentally prepare for it, I get thrown off and all of a sudden my schedules are a moo point. 

I’ve been trying to get back into the swing of things and it just feels like things keep popping up. I’m one of those people who just handles things as they come up because I don’t see the point in delaying something if I can just handle it right then. 

This is probably something I should probably stop doing. When things pop up, it isn’t an emergency and it can probably wait. Unless something is on fire, it can most likely wait. As I write this, I’m realizing I feel my time getting sucked away is because of the things that pop up. The things that I could make a note of and put on a list for another day, are becoming the things I handle right now, instead of what I want to be working on.

Did that make sense? I hope so, I don’t know how else to word it honestly. These little pop-up things are what end up taking up the most of my time. Honestly, most of these pop up things could not only wait, but they might not even need to be done by me. I talk about saying no to big commitments and things that will take away from what you want to do or working on your goals, but I need to also start saying no to the little pop-ups. 

Which I know I can do. I’ve done it this week when I’ve realized we ran out of some things. For example, strawberries. I went to make Little Man’s lunch for school on Tuesday and boom, no strawberries. Instead of telling myself I had to go to the store after work, I said we will grab strawberries when we go grocery shopping this weekend. There are other options for what I can put in Little Man’s lunch. 

This is a very small example and most of the time, I’m not dealing with pop ups that involve waiting for the next store trip. It ends up being starting Thing A and then getting distracted and following up with Thing B before finishing Thing A. Then my dog needs something or Little Man needs something and instead of asking for patience, I jump up to respond. While I’m working on their need, Thing C walks over and causes me to pay attention to it and then next thing I know, it is Friday morning and I didn’t record my podcast. 

This also leads to me feeling overwhelmed. I know I have time for the goals I have and the things I want to do. I’ve purposely said no to other things to allow time for these things. So how come I’m getting nothing accomplished on the goal front yet feeling stressed and overwhelmed? What is even happening? 

I’m allowing the pop ups to dictate my life instead of allowing God to guide and following through. When I feel overwhelmed, it becomes hard for me to make decisions. It becomes hard to make healthy decisions. When I’m overwhelmed, I just feel tired and exhausted. So when I look at a stretch of time, if I’m already overwhelmed and exhausted do I want to work on my book or do I want to sit in front of the TV and allow my brain a break?

Guys, I definitely didn’t pick the first option. I believe in taking care of our bodies (I could be better about mine. I’m getting there) but in that taking care of our bodies, we need to be taking care of our minds. 

We need rest, real rest. Rest that only Jesus can give us. 

Matthew 11:28 Jesus says, “Come to me, all who are weary and I will give you rest”

The main thing I took away from retreat was that God gives us strength and energy and when we are living in His will, the to-do list still gets done and you don’t feel drained. I got that because my week leading up to retreat showed me that. I spent a week living it. 

I came home ready to keep walking in my calling, in the season of life I’m in. I’m ready to settle in. I have no idea how I got so distracted and I’m betting the distractions are what is causing my overwhelm and tiredness. It made me walk on the path.

So I’m ready to get back on it. I’m ready to keep going where God is telling me. I’m ready to enjoy the season of life I am in. I am ready to settle in

So that is where I am at. That is my honesty talk. 

There are a few things I’m changing around here. My podcast episodes are now going to be every other week. If I can do every week, I will. I love doing my podcast but I want to make sure I am creating relevant and relatable content and I don’t want to put an episode out every week just to put an episode out every week. I hope to move back to every week by next year. However, for right now, while I’m learning, I want to have space to figure out the next right episode. I also want to do more writing on the blog. I might even start a fiction series to follow along with. (I have one started that I would love to continue, maybe.) I think all my passions are interconnected. I love writing and speaking and talking and sharing my stories and hearing other stories. These loves are all connected. You write what you’re going to speak and you write what you’re going to publish. I want this blog to be more than one post a week and then the weekly podcast and a weekly devotional. It feels too structured and while I’m a scheduled person and I believe in consistency, I don’t think this format is working for me. I feel like I cannot share what I want to sometimes because then next 10 Saturday blog posts are already scheduled and this topic might not be relevant in the next 11 weeks. That is, if I remember to write it down to schedule later. 

I don’t believe in reinventing the wheel or fixing what isn’t broken. Things can always be improved though. So that is what I’m working on, improving this blog, my podcast and future things.

I just want to follow my call and do what I’m created to do that is the best way to serve others. You are my heart and I want to make sure this blog is something beneficial for you.

*Yes, I meant moo point, it’s a cow thing.