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Oh, Hi! I’m Still Here.

30 Oct

As you can see I fell short on finishing my 31 Days project. I think I made it 25 days and then I lost steam. I’m ok with that though, 25 days is pretty notable and now I have some really fun stories to look back on. Things in our life have been really busy and on the go for the last week.

Thursday night I got down to business making Lila’s Halloween Costume and that took most of the evening. On Friday after work, I picked Lila up and we went to Food City for a Halloween Contest they were sponsoring. She didn’t win but she made a super cute Pocahontas! She had so much fun roaming around the store and investigating all the other kids in costume. I was worn out when we got done. It’s a ton of work to keep up with a toddler in a huge space and to make sure they don’t destroy everything πŸ˜‰ Here is her little outfit.

Photo: I found pochantus at the grocery store! http://instagr.am/p/RQ4mhjLHNt/

Photo: Lila found the tailgating section of the grocery store and got comfy...silly girl http://instagr.am/p/RRKccbrHOc/

I plan to take her trick-or-treating tomorrow so I hope to get a ton more pictures. Also, I am dressing up with her tomorrow too. I can’t wait. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays and dressing up is the best.

On Saturday we traveled to Johnson City to see family and to celebrate our cousin Ella’s 4th birthday party. It was held at the Hands On Museum and it was so much fun. They had so many activities that Lila could do and she had a blast. After the party was over we didn’t want to just go back to Knoxville so we went and hung out with the family some more. It was just a small group of us and it was so much fun to just hang out an enjoy each other’s company. We got to see the end of the football game and see our Vol’s get beat yet AGAIN. That didn’t put a damper on things though. The girls played together and entertained us and then we had an awesome home-cooked meal. I love family. We ended up leaving about 7:30 and Lila was asleep before we got to the end of the road. Poor thing was exhausted.

On Sunday we had the laziest of days. It was so rainy and cold that we stayed in all day reading books, playing, napping and being lazy. We didn’t get out of our PJ’s all day and then the only reason we changed was to have dinner with my mom. I ended the night with a little Revenge on ABC. Love that show:)

Now we are back into the work week and just trying to keep up! How do the weekends go by so fast? I will never know.

Security Is Good At Any Age

24 Oct

Most of us start out our lives with a security blanket of some sort. However, we usually outgrow it and leave those comforts behind. I have hung on to my security blanket for 30 years. Not just that I still have it but I use it on a daily basis. My mom made me a baby blanket before I was born and it has basically never left my side. I don’t know what it is about the blanket but it just gives me a great comfort. After 30 years of washings, much love and being drug to and from everywhere it is almost in shreds.

When I was pregnant my mom found the pattern she used all those years ago and made a replica for Lila. Lila’s version is made with fabrics that all have very special meaning to our family. She keeps it in her crib and sleeps with it each night. Thus far she hasn’t seemed too attached to it but I hope one day she loves it the way I love mine.

It it probably time I part with mine but the fact is….I don’t want to. And you know what? I’m secure with that:)

Some Days It’s Alright To Take A Break

23 Oct

So, that’s exactly what I am doing. I am sitting in my bed chilling and veggin out in front of the tv…doing absolutely nothing. And, it is awesome:) Have a good night.

If You Feel Faint, Sit Down

22 Oct

About 8 years ago I was attending a friend’s wedding. The event was taking place out of state so I had been traveling for several hours. I was excited about the weekend and seeing old friends so it is possible I hadn’t eaten quite enough for the day. The weekend was kicked off by the rehearsal at the church. One of my girlfriends and I were the first to arrive and we were standing at the front of the church chatting and catching up. Somehow the conversation made its way around to sports injuries. My friend started telling me a detailed story about her knee surgery. Now, I have always been squeamish and don’t enjoy blood or talking about it. As she continued giving me details I could feel myself getting light-headed and feeling myself go pale. I knew this conversation needed to end but she was right in the middle of her story and I didn’t want to interrupt to tell her I was about to pass out. At one point I tried to tune out the story but that didn’t work. The next think I knew I had a group of people standing above me trying to wake me up. I had passed out cold.

I have to say, passing out cold is a great way to steal the limelight if your feeling ignored πŸ˜‰ I was really embarrassed and it only got worse as each person in attendance came up and asked if I was ok. Next time the conversation comes around to surgery or anything medical related I know I need to sit down or politely ask someone to catch me mid-fall.

Be Thankful

21 Oct

Sometimes it is so easy to forget to be thankful for the little things in life. We don’t appreciate we aren’t sick until we are, we don’t appreciate having power until it goes out, we don’t appreciate a fridge full of food until it is empty. It is easy to complain about the small inconveniences in our everyday life but why do we forget to be grateful for the small things as well? I know myself, I just expect my power to always be on, to have hot water, for my car to work, and a million other little things. I’m upset when one of those small things go awry but I forget to be thankful I have them in the first place.

I know it is hard to be in awe and thankful every minute. But, this is a reminder to myself that everything I wake up with each day is a gift and I need to be more appreciative for the things I have.

First Impressions Are Real

20 Oct

It was my first day of school my sophomore year of college and I woke up slowly and stretched my arms and glanced at my alarm clock. I jerked straight up and threw myself out of bed. I was already 5 minutes late for class and I was still in my pajamas. I quickly threw some clothes on and gathered my things and rushed out the door. I was so upset on my way to class. I had been looking forward to this class for quite sometime and now I was going to be strolling in 30 minutes late.

I finally made it to my building and found the classroom. I tried to slowly slip in without being noticed but the class was small and it was impossible to come in unnoticed. I watched the teacher give me the side eye and I imagined she thought I was gonna be such a slacker and not put forth any effort. I had made my first impression right there and now I had to work to let the teacher know she had a misconception of me. From that day on I was early or right on time to each and every one of her classes. I think I put forth a little more effort in her classes than some other classes maybe trying to overcompensate. In the end, she was one of my favorite professors that I had but I felt like I really did have to overcome that first impression.

Now I understand that first impressions mean a lot but I also know that they can be changed.

Do What You Enjoy

19 Oct

I don’t really talk a lot about my job but I love what I do. I have been a graphic designer for Regal Entertainment Group for about 5 and half years. Somehow, I always knew I wanted to do graphic design and I was lucky enough to follow my dream. I never took any art classes in high school so college was really my first introduction to art. I was very intimidated when I first started because I was surrounded by people who had been painting and drawing their whole lives. I felt completely out of my element. Luckily though I made some friendships in my first year that really helped to get me through. Art classes require so many hours of your time more than just the scheduled class hours. I remember thinking I could knock out a project in an hour and it would be no big deal but in reality those project would end up taking about 3 or 4 hours. Sometimes I would be on the verge of tears because I had dedicated so much time and effort and I felt like my work still wasn’t good enough in the end. Unlike math or history where there are solid facts and answers, art is very personal and subjective. I had to sit through lots of tough critiques listening to my work being torn apart.

One class I remember in particular was a painting class. I realize I am not a fine artist, that is definitely not where my talent lies. But, I tried really hard and put in the hours to just be sub-par. One of the projects I distinctly remember was having to do a self-portrait. I studied my face for hours on end trying to define my cheekbones and give my eyes just the right amount of curve. We were given several weeks to finish this project and by the end of it I was so happy with the outcome. I proudly took my canvas to the front of the class on critique day and hung it up anxiously awaiting feedback. When we finally got around to mine I was beaming with pride. Then someone made the first comment and it was like someone ripped a band-aid off. Nobody was really mean but they just said it didn’t look like me and had A LOT of constructive criticism. At that point I was so close to the painting that I took it entirely too personal. After the class was finished speaking about my painting I excused myself from the class and walked into the hallway. I broke down into tears. These weren’t little baby tears that I could discretely wipe away. It was a full out ugly girl cry, couldn’t catch my breath kind of cry. I couldn’t get control of myself. I had let everyone’s critiques really get to me. I thought the self-portrait looked just like me. Just a little FYI…. I looked at the painting a few years later and it wasn’t very good at all and hardly looked a thing like me.

Although that was a tough thing to go through I knew I still wanted my life to be in art. I stuck with the classes and finally made it through. I think it is safe to say my design work is much better than my fine art work and I am glad I stayed with it. Obviously there are things about my job that aren’t my exact dream but I don’t think any job is perfect. Sometimes I get down on myself and think that I’m not really making a difference because I’m not saving lives or anything. But, I guess I contribute in a different way by trying my best to make things beautiful.

Work is a huge part of our lives, it is time away from family and friends so I think it is important to make the most of that time if impossible.

 

If You’re Gonna Lie, Go All Out

18 Oct

When I was in high school my friend Jamie had to stretch the truth quite often….to her parents. She was on a short leash so we often had to work together to maneuver around her parents. In our senior year Jamie’s parents wanted her to re-take a math class she had already taken with a different teacher. The first teacher wasn’t that great and they didn’t think she got enough out of the class. But, it was senior year and we wanted to take a fun class together. She decided to ditch the math class and take a Foods and Nutrition class with me and our other friend Jamie. This class was really laid back and we just got to cook new recipes and have fun lunches together. Who wouldn’t want to do that instead of math?

Jamie obviously had to keep this under wraps and make her parents believe she was still taking the math class. When teacher/parent conferences rolled around Jamie really had to put her thinking cap on. She came up with a plan to tell her mom that the math teacher wasn’t gonna be at teacher/parent night but that she could sign a paper on the teacher’s door so she still received credit. We made up a sign-in sheet and posted it on an empty classroom door. We circulated the paper before Jamie’s mom arrived and all put fake signatures on the page. The tricky part was, the teacher that Jamie was supposed to be taking the math class with was actually at teacher/parent night having consults with parents. So, as they were making their way around to all her classes they had to be sure to avoid that one teacher without her mom seeing her.

Jamie pulled it off seamlessly with the help of a small group of us who acted as her lookouts! I was always so amazed that it worked but I have to say, Jamie really went for it!

Don’t Wear Important Jewelry In Large Bodies Of Water

17 Oct

 

I’m kind of cheating today and referring back to an old post.

This definitely goes on the list as a lesson learned.

Take Life One Day At A Time

16 Oct

I have always been a pretty laid back person but I have my share of worries that I let get the best of me. Right after I graduated college I had been job hunting and trying to find a direction for my life. I had gotten my degree, now what? For a little while I wasn’tΒ  motivated to really get up and find a job in my field. I was satisfied just bar-tending and waiting tables. There was nothing wrong with that but I knew I didn’t want to do that forever.

This was about the time the anxiety set in. It took over my whole body, my whole being and I had no idea what was happening. It came out of nowhere and made me feel terrified. I tried to explain to my friends and family why I was so upset but I couldn’t really put a finger on it. I know I was over-thinking everything and trying to figure out the path my life was gonna take all at one time. It got bad enough where I didn’t want to leave the house or go to work. Not only that I didn’t want to but I felt like I physically couldn’t leave. It was awful and I will never forget that feeling.

After about about week I went to see my dr. He didn’t seem surprised that I was experiencing anxiety. He said he was accustomed to seeing people my age go through this and it was a stressful time in life. He gave me some medicine with instruction to take it easy and kinda chill out. I was resistant to the medicine because I didn’t want to have to take something to feel normal. The more I thought about it though I came around to the idea. If it was gonna make me feel better and give me my life back I was completely for it. After I started taking the medicine it still took a little time to feel back to normal. I took it day by day and eventually I was feeling better.

That wasn’t my last episode with anxiety and over the years I have dealt with it several times. Now that I am more informed about anxiety and have dealt with it a bit more I have found that I really have to talk to myself. I always tell myself I am not in any immediate danger and I try and force myself to put a finger on the thought or stream of thoughts that is upsetting me. This has really seemed to help and has let me take strides forward. This may be something that I have to deal with for the rest of my life but I now have the tools to do that much better. I realize I don’t have to figure out every aspect of my life today. I can only change what is happening today and how I deal with today is what will affect tomorrow.