"And the day came when the risk it took to remain tightly closed in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to BLOOM…This is the Element of Freedom"

-Alicia Keys

22 December 2009

Doing What I Have Never Done Before...

As you may recall, I started a new direction for this blog a few weeks ago (original post here). The goal was to explore the interesting, frustrating but never boring world of being ADHD. I touched on it one or two more times after the inital post, but I haven't continue to write like I had originally wanted to. I think that I started to get a little nervous about opening up & talking about things that I struggle with. What if {fill in the blank} reads this? What if someone reads it & thinks differently of me? Or what if.....? The list kept growing and I started to doubt what the point of writing it all down was in the first place.

Then I remembered that I want to improve my life and figure out what I am made of. Part of that is to do things that I have never done before. I feel like I am always trying to get better at the things that I am not that great at and I never feel like I really get anywhere, no matter how hard I try. My friends & family will always say, "yea, but look how far you have come..." Yes, I have come far, thanks entirely to becoming reacquainted with my Man, Jesus & becoming a mother. Both of these relationships have brought me more joy, love & happiness than I could have ever imagined. I was a little, ummm, rowdy before I had Reese, so when I became a momma, I had to figure out what kind of mother I needed to be to be a good one to Reese. I stayed home all the time and I loved it (I used to be the person who was never home, always out). I think that I used that time to try and "get organized" because I would be a better person if I was organized. I wouldn't be late for work if I was more organized...you get the idea. I have become much more organized in the last couple of years, but at what expense? Staying home all weekend, trying to get laundry done, bathrooms cleaned, food made for the week, finances in order, dust, change the beds because if my house could just all be cleaned and organized and put away, like magic, I would finally be organized. If I was organized, then I would use my day planner religiously and never be late for work again. Right? Wrong. I have to come to some sort of agreement with the ADHD. I know that I have to find my own kind of organization and be confident in it because it works for me. I am always apologizing for and making fun of, my own problems with organization, when I am actually good at organizing things. {You should see my linen closet!} I do feel that "the definition of crazy is doing the same thing over & over and expecting different results" is happening before my very eyes. This happens to me a lot. I look back & I see the same mistakes made then are some of the very same ones that I continue to make today. So, what to do? Let's go on an adventure and do what we have not done before, in order to go where we have never gone before...who said that? I don't know, but it is the truth.

Who is in?

I am.

I am going to have to think about how to articulate what my goals are for this year. I make them every year and never write them down and keep focused on them. This year was a little different. I planned a wedding {loved it}, got married {love it}, my baby started kindergarten and we bought a house. Those things all required planning and organization. But it is time to do some things a bit differently this year when it comes to making changes. I am going to keep track of my goals on my blog and see what happens.

sweet. it's on....

{This is actually a t shirt...funny}

18 December 2009

Product Review Friday : An Ode to my Favorite Food Group: Cereal

So, I thought that I was going to give a review about something hip in the design world, but let's face it, I have nothing to give a review about in that area this time around. I will do my homework for next week. So, I have to write about something that I know about and I know that I love me some cereal. When I was a kid, my Mom was a natural foods kind of Mom...hmmm, sounds familiar. There were no Lucky Charms to be found in our pantry. My Dad used to joke that when my Mom made cookies, she went around the house and found all of the dust bunnies from under the beds and put them into the batter. Gross Dad! She didn't really, but she did grow her own bean sprouts. Way to go Mom! I remember once my Mom went out of town and my Dad took us grocery shopping. My sister and I put all sorts of things that my Mom would have never bought in the cart and my Dad was like, "sure, those look good." Lucky Charms and Cinnamon Toast Crunch...yesssss.

Anyway, my tastes have changed but I am still a Cereal Connoisseur. I have taken after my Mom and I buy natural cereal for my little family. However, I am not blind to the expense of buying boxed cereals. Holy shit. $4.99 for an 10 ounce box of cereal goodness? Uh, no thank you. So, I clip coupons and buy what is on sale and I always pay close attention to the ounces in the box. But we are not talking about the cost or coupons in this post. This post is dedicated to My Favorite Cereals (in no particular order):

{1. Peanut Butter Bumpers}: This was the food of choice when I was pregnant with Reese. I would buy a couple of boxes at a time. The ingredient list is about 4 ingredients, with nothing artificial, plus pregnant women find it delectable.

{2. Kashi Heart to Heart Oat Flakes and Wild Blueberry Clusters}: Wonderful & Scrumptious, with just the right amount of blueberry-ness and not too sweet. Definitely one of my all-time favorites!

{3. Yogi Cereals}: OOOO.M.G. These are my new favorites...the Walnut Spice Crunch is especially delicious. I bought them on sale at Whole Foods a couple of weeks ago and I think that I have a crush (or would it be a crunch? hahahaha) on this brand of cereal. The ingredients are simple, natural and just plain good. Instead of adding in vitamin C, they add in goji berries, which are very high in vitamin c and antioxidants. I wish more food companies thought like this.

{4. Mom's Best}: One day while shopping at my conventional grocery store, I stumbled upon this brand while shopping in their "Natural Foods" department. I almost cried when I saw the price...$1.99 for a 13.5oz box! I bought 2 of both kinds and my 5 year old and my husband loved both kinds. Now, on the box it says "Family-Owned for Four Generations" and " Mom's Best is named for our mother who taught us the importance of good food and good value." The family that owns this company is the same one that produces Malt-O-Meal, also known as MOM. Get it? Because I didn't until I read this blog, Locally Grown Northfield (as in Northfield, Minnesota). Malt-O-Meal, MOM, Mom's Best. The company really is owned by decendents of the founder of the company, who started it in 1919. I learned that here. Their cereal really is good & you can download $.75 coupons on their website.

{5. John McCann's Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal}: I love oatmeal. But Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal? Deeelicious. Steel cut oats are made of regular rolled oats that are put through a cutting machine that cuts each oat into about 4 pieces. When you cook them (and they do take longer to cook, but totally worth it), they have a very different texture than typical slow-cooked oatmeal. They sort of have a creamier texture. McCann's use non-GMO oats, as these are not allowed in Ireland. Their oats are grown by farmers who grow them specifically for McCann's. Try them, you'll like them!

{6. These are really good & MUCH better for you than P*P Tarts}: No artificial colors or flavors. No partially hydrogenated oils or high fructose corn syrup. Enough said.

{7. Kashi Go Lean Crunch}: Tasty...but Google "Kashi Go Lean Crunch" and look at the second option when the drop down menu appears. Be careful not to eat too much of this cereal. I warned you!!

16 December 2009

This is one post that will emerge from the drafts...

Hi. I have started writing at least 5 posts, never to finish a single one. This is not entirely my fault...We have been doing some office renovations at work and I haven't had time to do anything else. Sometimes I eat at my desk and blog, it just seems to work better than trying to write at night. What I really need to do is purchase a used laptop or an inexpensive one, and sneak off to Starbucks on my lunch. I go crazy if I am here and don't leave all day. Josh has a laptop and we set up my own user account, but it just isn't the same. I need a place to organize all of my craft & design porn! I really enjoy writing and finding things to talk about isn't a hard thing for me to do, that is for sure.

So, a few months ago, I came across this lovely blog Little Green Notebook, which is the blog of Pearl Street Interiors. The woman behind both is the incredible Jenny. She has great style and has a great sense of hmor, too. She is expecting her 3rd baby girl and judging by her last post, she has most likely had the baby by now. Anyway, she is AMAZING at refinishing furniture and looking at creative ways to breathe some life and style into existing furniture. Here is a taste of some of her work:

{I know, right?!?}

Love it! I recently acquired some chairs and 5 file cabinets that are begging to be refurbished. They were going to be thrown away by my office and so I was able to get them for free. Lucky for me, my husband is all about refinishing furniture, so we will keep you posted on what happens to them. Soon, he will have Sundays off of work, so we will actually have a day off together!! This is the first time that we will both be off on the same day since, well, ever. The only time we both have a day off is if one of us is taking a vacation day. Sooooo excited! We have a bunch of projects that we can't wait to work on, namely the sanding, painting and reinstalling of our baseboards that we took out in order to put in our new bamboo floors.

Well, that does it for me...I will see you again soon.

03 December 2009

A Few Random Facts...

Inspired by my friend Maria at the lovely blog Little Things Are Big, today I am going to share some random facts about myself:

  • I love re-reading books that I read as a kid. and as a kid, I often read the same books multiple times. I think that I have read Pippi Longstocking at least a dozen times.
  • I do not like the word "Clog." As in clogged drains, etc. Coincidentally, I wear a pair of black clogs almost daily. even just typing it made my throat feel funny.
  • I don't like when my hands are dry. Therefore, I put lotion on about a million times a day. That feeling of dry hands...yuck.
  • I used to wear wool socks with my birkenstocks and I had no fashion sense whatsoever. None. Zip. Just ask my friend Andrea, who had to walk to school with me every day.
  • I had arguably the worst haircut of all time in the beginning of the 8th grade. It was so bad that my Dad had to hide a smile when he saw me. He wasn't being mean, it was a "Oh, I feel so bad, but it is a really bad haircut" kind of a smile. He reassured me that "no one will even notice." He was right, no one noticed. Until I got on the bus the next day and the first thing a kid said to me was "Nice haircut!"
  • I love getting in to a bed with clean sheets. Nothing like crisp sheets.
  • I have skydived and I have the video to prove it.
  • I used to be a High Ropes instructor at a camp. I sat on a platform in a tree 40' above the ground and put kids on to the longest zip line in Colorado.
  • I have traveled across the country to see the band Phish.

02 December 2009

In January...

This will always be my very own blog, where I can give my two cents on various topics or bore you with getting batteries for my watch (still wearing it- yessssssssss) and entertain you with my triumphs and yes, mishaps in parenting. However, since we have bought our first house and got married, all in the same month, Josh and I have started a new blog where we will document our adventures in renovating our 1957 ranch. We are working on some of the first posts and getting all of our photos organized, but here is the link in the meantime:

Knox Court {A Mid-Century Modern Makeover}
A Young Family's Adventure Renovating Their 1957 Ranch

We love our new/old house so much and I knew it was our house when I pulled up on a rainy afternoon this summer, 2 days after it was put on the market. I knew when I realized that the house had a mail slot next to the amazing sunburst front door that this was the house for me. I am not one to be happy in a super suburb and I love a house with some history. We put an offer on it shortly after that and after a few bumps in the road, we closed on it and moved in at the very end of August...

So, when I somehow stumbled onto the Dude Craft website and found his link to Curbly and their new Make it! Mid-Century Modern book release party and the amazing ottoman give away, I had the perfect intro to our new blog. Here is a photo of the ottoman:

{Pretty sweet, huh? Looks like this book that is going on my wish list!}

Well, I hope that you will check out our new blog in January. I have posted one post and will post a few pictures of our house as a little teaser. I think that you will agree that our front door is "boss" as my Dad used to say (and sometimes still does)...

{This door had me at hello}

24 November 2009

I am now a watch-wearer

It didn't happen on my lunch break yesterday, as I had to take my spunky 5 year old to the dentist, but I made sure that it happened on our way home. I now have a watch. that works. on my wrist.

Anyway, on our way home, I took Reese to Panera for dinner and then we went to the mall to get the battery in my watch replaced. The lady at Dillard's gave me a 10% coupon for a jewelry & watch repair shop and $28.81 later, I am now wearing my old school stainless steel Fossil watch. I will admit that when I first put it on, it felt very odd...sort of like a wild dog who now has a collar around its neck. I wear it on my right wrist, as I don't like the wedding band/watch combo on my left hand. I am actually digging wearing it!

So, this may seem like a natural thing to do for all of you linear thinkers (aka non-ADHD people), but it is a huge step for someone like me. Now that I am a watch-wearer, I am kind of wondering why I didn't do this sooner. Such is life for us on this side of the fence.

Part of the reason that I made sure that I did something about this "knowing-what-time-it-is-instantly-without-having-to-look-for-it-on-my-cell-phone-which-is-somewhere-in-my-purse" situation is what happened to me on Sunday afternoon when shopping at Target and stopping at the fabric store on our way home. Reese and I had eaten a late breakfast, then we went to Target for a couple of things{I totally heart Target}. We wandered around the toy department and I patiently waited while Reese looked at every single girly toy there (she avoided the "boy aisle with all of the scary stuff") and I enjoyed watching her as she looked at the toys (I took notes too). Anyway, on our way out, I was really proud of myself for a successful shopping trip. I bought what we needed and picked up a prescription and did it all cheerfully, without getting stressed out. Shopping, especially with a young child can be absolutely torturous for someone with ADHD. Too many decisions to make, too many people & distractions, etc. So, after we left Target, we stopped by the fabric store down the street from our house. I planned on just stopping in a getting some black ribbon to finish the lamp that I refurbished this weekend (I will post photos soon!), but ended up looking at fabric to replace our outdated curtains that came with the house. I did not keep track of the time, so I didn't realize that it was waaay past lunch time and both of us were starving. When it came time to leave, Reese wanted to put her jacket in her booster seat so that it was in there "just right." I waited for a couple of minutes for her to finish and then I lost my patience. I asked her to get in her seat, which then turned into the power struggle of the century and ended with Reese in tears and me feeling like the world's shittiest momma. I am sure the lady in the car parked next to us enjoyed the show. In hindsight, I realize that I should have done a few things differently, namely the following:
  • Realized that it was indeed past lunch time and it was time to go. Now. You think that I would be more aware of this after 5.5 years of parenting. Feeding kids is important.
  • Been more focused in the fabric store...hard place to maintain focus, but I should have bought the ribbon and gotten the hell out of there.
  • Let Reese put her coat in her booster seat the way that she wanted it. In the end, what would it have mattered to wait for 1 or 2 (excruciating) minutes?

We have had some issues with doing what we are being asked to do, when Momma asks. So, after silence and sniffling during the 3 minute drive home, we talked about what had happened. It was then that I realized that I needed to be aware of the time so that I could keep us both on task and I knew that I had made a mistake by not wearing a watch.

Another lesson learned. unfortunately, the hard way.

23 November 2009

Am I ever going to learn?

**Sorry for the long post. I guess I have some things to talk about!**

I am infamous for my ability to be late. I am late for just about everything, work, school, parties, you name it. I was actually named "Most Likely To Be Late For Their Own Wedding" in high school. How sad! (On my wedding day, we were all running a bit behind schedule and everything turned out fine, so this prediction wasn't quite true). I used to walk (and sometimes run) to the bus stop with my best friend, Andrea (who is my polar opposite & always punctual) in order to make it on time. One time we missed it and had to get a ride to school. I also used to get a ride to school from a guy that I went to High School with and I always made us late. The lady in the front office always liked me and she would excuse my tardy with a lovingly stern, "now, this is the last time. Be here on time tomorrow!" But the next day, I would repeat the rhythm of the day before and rush around, feeding the dog, grabbing my school stuff and then we would be late. 10+ years later, we laugh about it but it is still a source of intense stress for me.

Being chronically late is something that has jeopardized my employment, friendships, my health and well-being. It has clouded the way that I see my self and the way that others see me. I think that the single most misunderstood trait of The Chronically Late Person is that they don't care that they are late. If people knew how upset it makes me to be late and the stress that it has caused me in my life, they would begin to understand that it isn't a matter of not caring, but a mixture (for lack of a better term) of several different components. Some of these are just habits so ingrained in the person that they seem to have no definitive beginning, they have always just been there. My Dad is always late, and so are 2 of his sisters (his brother and another sister are exceedingly punctual). Their Dad was in the Air Force and was never, ever late for anything. It almost seems like it is a disease or hereditary, while also a learned habit. I am afraid that Reese is going to learn or be late and more than anything, I want to teach her not to be late. I have literally told her, "This isn't what you are supposed to do. It isn't good to be late. Be like Daddy, he is never late!" My sweet husband...I was late for our first date and he still married me...

I read a book called Never Be Late Again: 7 Cures for the Punctually Challenged by Diana DeLonzor. She has several categories that most Punctually Challenged people fall in to, which cause them to be late. I am definitely the one who wants to do it all before I leave the house. I want to sleep in, I want to take a longer shower, I want to put in a load of laundry and drink my coffee and eat my breakfast and get ready and....you get the idea. Now, throw in getting a kid ready for school...kind of makes me want to kick my own ass. This is why I have started to take my blogging more seriously. It is a good way to sort some things out. This is an area in my life that needs to change and it is closely linked to many other areas. I have learned (the hard way) that being punctual takes planning (again, not where my strengths lie, but I am trying!) and working backwards (I have to leave at this time, so I need to start getting ready at this time, etc) and also having the discipline to get things ready the night before, to stop what I am doing and start getting ready to leave and leaving 10 minutes before I actually have to leave in order to allow for extra time for traffic or whatever.

I also need to wear a wear a watch. I own several and wear none. Surprised? Probably not. I need to get a battery for one that has been in my glove compartment for a very long time. This is a watch that I was wearing on 09/11/01 and it stopped at 12:05 am. The time that it actually stopped was 11:55 pm (9/10), but I had it set 10 minutes fast...so I wouldn't be late. I haven't worn the watch since. But I know that it is time to wear one. I am going to buy a watch battery today on my lunch break. Seriously I will!

{I need one of these

{So I can wear one of these}
{this isn't my watch, but it's cute! But I will not buy a new watch in the hope that it will magically help me be on time. I will wear the one that I have and I know that becoming a punctual person is a journey that I am embarking on}

Andrea, I am sorry for all of the times that you had to wait for me to finish getting ready and for making you run with my mis-matched, birkenstock-wearing hippy ass to the bus stop. Thanks for being such a good friend then & now. Love you.

20 November 2009

Cleaning with the Greens: Product Review Friday

I have been a fan of natural cleaners for a really long time...our neighbor back in the 1980's (whose name coincidentally was Mrs. Grass...funny for various reasons) sold Amway and I think that she got my parents to sell it briefly. Anyway, my Grandmother used to sell Shaklee as well and they also have great natural cleaning products. So, I thought that I would take one of my (many) drafted posts and finally finish writing it and publish it. {See, I am making my blog my priority! I really do want it to be the place where I can figure some stuff out about who I am and to have a place to keep my thoughts & ideas & experiences...}

So, here is a list of my favorite green cleaning products...I have used most of these for years and love them all. Plus, when you buy them, you are giving your dolla billz to companies who are doing the right thing by creating quality products that are safe to use. I don't want to use something to clean my house that has the ominous "this product is recognized to cause cancer by the State of California" warning label. I'll take my cleaning products all natural thankyouverymuch. On a completely unrelated note, is it weird that every time I hear the word 'California' I hear it pronounced the way that Arnold Schwarzenegger pronounces it? Cahli-for-neeah...

{photo from here}


No. 1:

{image is from here}

Oh, Bon Ami! This is a wonderful cleaning product that is so safe to use that you can even use it on your stainless steel pots & pans. It has no fragrance, emits zero fumes and you can buy it for around $1.49. I use it to clean everything.

No. 2:

Dr. Bonner's Magic All-One Soap Company. They just celebrated their 60th anniversary and have converted their skin care lines to 100% organic and Fair Trade certified. The Sal Suds Liquid Cleaner is what I use to clean. It is ultra-concentrated and it lasts f-o-r-e-v-e-r. I use it to clean our lovely linoleum (which will soon be gone!), the cat box, etc. Anywhere that needs a soapy cleaning! It rinses clean and smells like real pine, not the crappy fakey pine smell.

No. 3:

{image is from here}

Clean Well was started by a family who have a son, Conor, who was born with a rare condition that leaves only 10% of his immune functioning. In order to keep their son healthy, they had to keep everything clean with antibacterial cleaners, with hand sanitizers being especially important. However, they were alarmed to learn about the negative effects of Triclosan, a toxic ingredient found in virtually all antibacterial soaps, cleaners and hand sanitizers. So, Sam (Conor's Dad) started to research some natural alternatives and CleanWell was born. They have managed to create a natural antibacterial product line that kills 99.9% of harmful germs, without toxic ingredients. I use the hand spray and I keep foaming hand soap at my kitchen sink. The products smell great and I like that the hand sanitizer sprays, unlike the gel that slides all over the place. While you check out their site, read about the dangers of Triclosan here. Pretty Creepy!

No. 4:

Another one is Mrs. Meyers Clean Day Aromatheraputic Household Cleaners. The company was started by a woman who named the company after her mother, who had 9 children. Everything smells really good and works!I love the Dish Soap and the Room Spray (Reese likes to use this as "Monster Spray" to keep the monsters at bay...and I think that she just likes to spray stuff). You can purchase Mrs. Meyers at Whole Foods & Target.

No. 5:

{Image from here}

As a nod to the hippie that I used to dress like, but still am on the inside, I want to try these! Maggie's Soap Nuts. I get tired of having to buy detergent and as a bonus, you can compost these! I want to compost as well, but that is down on the list of Things We Need To Do For The House...alas, it will probably wait until next summer.

So, there you have it. Our First Friday Product Review post. Let's hope I can stick to a schedule for The Blog...something that eludes me in all other facets of life...a schedule. That is a topic for a long post.

Have a great weekend!

16 November 2009

A new direction for this blog...

I have decided to change a few things about this blog. I think that I would write more if I had a better idea of what I wanted it to be about...not just the random things that I usually write about. I have been writing this post in my head for a few weeks now and I think that it is time to write in down here...I want to start writing about what it means to be a 30 year old woman, wife, mother, friend, designer who also happens to be ADHD. I think that so many people think that they know what ADHD is and they file that idea of it away without giving much thought to what it really is to the person that has it or is it. It is so much more than a lack of organization or ability to organize things like paper or the inability to stay focused on one thing at a time. It is something that without a love of self will slowly eat away at the person who suffers from ADHD. I think that women in particular have very difficult time, especially if they are undiagnosed or not being treated. It is important to understand that it is an affliction that affects how you feel about who you are.

So, beginning now...I almost said "Tomorrow" but anyone who knows anything about ADHD knows that tomorrow could mean tomorrow or two months from now, so let's get started:

Here is the Definition of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, according to Wikipedia: (it used to be called Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), but that term is now "expired" and is now referred to as ADHD)

"Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD or AD/HD) is a neurobehavioral[1] developmental disorder.[2] ADHD is primarily characterized by "the co-existence of attentional problems and hyperactivity, with each behavior occurring infrequently alone."[3] While symptoms may appear to be innocent and merely annoying nuisances to observers, "if left untreated, the persistent and pervasive effects of ADHD symptoms can insidiously and severely interfere with one's ability to get the most out of education, fulfill one's potential in the workplace, establish and maintain interpersonal relationships, and maintain a generally positive sense of self."[4]:p.2"

Here is a list of the symptoms commonly found in adults with the Inattentive Type of ADHD:

Indecision, difficulty recalling and organizing details required for a task
Poor time management, losing track of time
Avoiding tasks or jobs that require sustained attention
Difficulty initiating tasks
Difficulty completing and following through on tasks
Difficulty multi-tasking*
Difficulty shifting attention from one task to another

*I have to comment here. I can multi-task with the best of them...I am a mother, mind you. However, the difficulty lies in completing the many tasks that you are doing at once.

The definition above is the mild version of some of the ones that I have read over the years. If you didn't already feel shitty about yourself, read about having ADHD and the issues that it can create in your life...then you will really feel like the future is sort of bleak.

So, I am beginning to write about something that has been apart of my life forever, but not known about until I was 18, when I was diagnosed and left a doctor's office with a prescription for ritalin in hand, but no tools to help me on the rocky journey that lay ahead of me. I hope that I can educate just one person about what it really means to be ADHD.< br<>>

22 August 2009

This is what happens when...

You are planning a wedding, buying a house and moving into it and having your five year old start kindergarten, all at the same time:

  • Housecleaning goes by the wayside, because really, what is the point? I have bigger fish to fry, like packing and picking out flooring
  • Buying groceries...what groceries? Seriously, I feel bad that my kid is eating peanut butter & jelly/honey...a lot. But at least it is all organic!
  • We are eating what we have on hand, which cuts back on what I have to pack up and we waste less.
  • The only crafting going on here involves wedding crafting, which I am enjoying immensely.
  • Sleep. what sleep? Seriously, I have been averaging about 4 or 5 hours a night. Funny, I am exhausted at work at 3pm, but W-I-D-E awake at 1am.
  • Been talked to by your boss (who is a lovely person by the way) because you "seem distracted" at work. I do feel bad about this one. I love the people I work with, but the job itself is a round peg, square hole kind of a deal. But it is my job and it pays my bills and provides me with great health care...which is something to be very grateful during this time in our nation's history. I had to give myself a talking to last night.
  • I have experienced a few episodes of "WTF am I doing?!?" followed by "W.o.W, what an adventure this is!"

All in all, even though life is completely crazy right now, I have been truly enjoying it. I am savoring each moment, as I know that it will be over before I know it and I will be married and moved into our house. Planning this wedding has taught me so many things about planning, organizing, knowing what is really important (and let me tell you, it is not what wedding favors you give out) and knowing when to let go. I have made it a point to be joyful and appreciative of where I am in my life, because I know that someday I will look back and be so glad that I enjoyed it and had fun. I have taken myself too seriously for far too long and I am o-v-e-r it. I think that is one of the blessings of turning 30. I know what I am good at and I know where I lack some skillz at things, but I am OKAY with it now, instead of feeling like I am a loser because I am not so good at organizing paper or keeping every single thing written down on my To Do list. I think that is also where my frustration is originating from with my job. I am talented in creative things and I never use these talents at work...OK, so sometimes I do when I am working on spreadsheets because no spreadsheet of mine is going to be ugly or boring, no matter what data is in the actual spreadsheet. I have actually been told on several different occasions that my spreadsheet was "beautiful" and once it was even called "cool." Now that is skill...too bad that is how desperate I have become, that I spend time designing spreadsheets that take people's breath away, filled with data that no one gives a shit about! I am not a very good receptionist and I know that it is probably painfully obvious to everyone that I work with, but how I wish that I could stand up and shout, "I may totally suck at ____________, but I am really, really good at other things, damn it!" But alas, shouting those things in your place of work will, without a doubt, get your ass fired. Plus, I work with some great people and I wouldn't do that to them. But when someone tells me "why are you filing like that? I don't do it that way," I want to tell them, "holy shit lady, I hate filing with a passion. Plus, I suck at it. If you are so good at it, why don't you file today and I am going to go and work on remodeling my new/old 1957 ranch that I just bought and be the creative, imaginative, out-of-the-box-thinker that God created me to be. If you need me, you can reach me at extension I-don't-even-care-anymore. Have a wonderful day answering the phone that rings no less than 200 times a day!"

But I digress. I know that I am where I am at for a reason & I do appreciate having a job where I love my office ladies and we have a great time together. But, I often wonder what it would be like to have a job where other people thought, "wow. Elizabeth is awesome at_______. She is an amazing designer! I want her to design ______ for me." This is where I pray that someday I will have a job that allows me the flexibility to design from home because no matter what, I will never take my kid to daycare 5 days a week again. I have had 5 years of that, thankyouverymuch and I will not do it again. I will have job that allows me to design to make other people's lives a little bit better and to bring good design, whether it is through interior spaces, graphic design, whatever it may be, to all people, not just to those who can afford it. I want to be able to help people, especially children. I know that I no longer look at kids like I did before I had one. I realize now how valuable they are to our world, their innocence and their sense of wonder of it all, makes me really appreciate them.

I said that "I will," not I "want" this for my job, because I know that it will happen. I have plans in the works...

But all the while, still staying grateful for the life that I have been blessed with...

11 June 2009

I have the man & I have the shoes....

As some of you may know, I am getting married to the love of my life in September 2009. I don't have a dress yet, but I have the man & I have the shoes!
{I know, I know...better get on it! I do have the big stuff taken care of, so don't worry...I hope that I can report that I found The Dress next week, after I go shopping!}

10 June 2009

This is the reason I don't buy on iTunes...

{Image from Google Images}

I bought this cd at a local record store, {Angelo's Cd's & More} and have been loving it ever since. I was able to simutanously accomplish two very important things...supporting a local business and supporting music without giving my dinero to iTunes (which has its place, I know, but still!). There is nothing, and I really mean nothing, like buying a new cd, unwrapping it and looking through the liner notes. I relish reading the lyrics and looking at the artwork that is inside. To me, that is one reason why I love music...it is such an artform, both for the eyes and the ears.

The Dave Matthews Band has been one of my favorite bands since I was 15 years old...my cousin Callie's then boy friend and now husband of 8 years introduced me to them and a lot of the music that I love. But I really do LOVE this band. Each album brings me back to a specific time in my life (another reason I love music) and as I get older, I appreciate their talent and their ability to stay innovative. Plus, Dave is still hot and writes some badass songs...

24 April 2009

It's Okay

So, I am discovering that I think of a million things to blog about, or to take photos of things that I would post on here, but I rarely write any entries. Sometimes I feel bad that I don't write very often, but I am getting better about not getting down on myself for it. I told myself that I would write more often. period. But I have a difficult time with that in general. I have a very difficult time writing to people, writing in my journal, writing things down, writing to do lists, writing on calendars, in day planners, thank you notes, cards...hmmmm....the more I write this, the more I realize that I have difficulties in more areas than I thought! It makes me feel bad because people think that I am rude or unappreciative when I don't send out a thank you note when they really do need to know that I appreciated their kindness or thoughtfulness. And I'm stubborn. I want to do the Old School Way and hand write a lovely note, expressing my gratitude, not via email. So I put it off until a Monday night, which I have deemed my "Correspondence Night." Every Monday, I know that I am supposed to write thank you notes or a card to someone that I have been meaning to write to for months. No one has imposed this night on me, it is merely my attempt to stay on a personal schedule to help make life a little more organized and happy for my family. So, every Monday (and I mean every Monday), I think to myself, "tonight I am going to write some thank you notes." Easy right? Noooo, not for me. I don't have a list of who I am going to write to or who I need to write to, so without the planning, it is a psychological challenge. A challenge that I just can't seem to figure out. It is something that I enjoy doing, I like to write, I like writing with my pens and I love to buy cards and I really love good stationary. Most of all, I like writing the recipient's name & address on the envelope. I love to buy good stamps (something that I just recently started to enjoy after I bought these). So why is it so hard for me to sit down to do? That is the eternal question of someone with ADD. (I will have to post on that someday. That will be a series of posts someday. Seriously). Why is it so hard to do what I know that I have to do, want to do, know that I could do and be totally awesome at, do what is sometimes hard to do, do something relatively uncomplicated?

10 April 2009


Thank you, Jesus. Thank you for your sacrifice.

27 March 2009

I Better Not Get My A$$ Kicked!

Self-Discipline: You have been ignoring me.
Me: I know.

Self-Discipline: You have hurt my feelings.
Me: I know. I'm sorry!

Self-Discipline: It is really for your own good.
You are absolutely right.

Self-Discipline: It will help make you the person that you want to be.
Me: (Sheepishly): I know...but why is it so hard?

Self-Discipline: Because it is the hard stuff that molds you.
Me: (softly): Ok...

Self-Discipline: When you do what is hard for you to do (because you have the self-discipline to do it anyway), remember that this will help mold you & it will teach you what you need to know in order to become the person that you are not yet, but know that you want to become. Ok?
Me: Ok. Thanks for the inspiration.

Self-Discipline: Now. Go do what you know you need to do or I'll kick your ass.
Me: OK...Damn!

So, there you go, another battle with Self-Discipline. It is crazy how it influences every aspect of my life...especially when I am ignoring it. I think about the impact of Self-Discipline on my life, on events in the past & thinking forward to the future, it really makes me aware of where I lacked it in the past and where I want to apply it in the future. What trips me up is the impact it has on a day-to-day basis on my life. It is almost invisible, unless you are paying attention. When you are paying attention, you see where you have a choice in that instant, to practice Self-Discipline when you are tempted to do what you are trying to stop doing (or start doing!), whatever it is that you want to change in your life.

11 March 2009


Today marks the One Year Anniversary of my engagement to J. He picked out the ring by himself, with no input from me and I LOVE MY RING. It is a princess cut solitaire on a simple white gold band. Now, I have fingers that are a little...well, a good word for them is chubby. I needed a diamond that was in proportion to the chubbiness & that is what he gave to me. I took a great picture of my ring with my mom's camera and I will try & post it sometime soon. In the meantime, I would like to present....

10 Reasons Why I Love My Man (10 reasons of many):

1. He loves me and my daughter. Never puts himself first.
2. He is hilarious and has helped me not to take myself so seriously.
3. He listens to me. Like he really listens.
4. He is a wonderful source of encouragement. He is always telling me that that he believes in me and is encouraging of my talents.
5. He has an incredible work ethic. He consistently goes above & beyond at his job and gives his customers incredible customer service (even when they don't appreciate it or deserve it!)
6. He can build stuff and he is amazing with his hands.
7. When something needs to get done, he just does it. Especially when it involves building something or using tools.
8. When someone needs help with something, he jumps right in and he does it with joy in his heart.
9. Rarely complains about things, even when he has the right to complain.
10. He is HOT. The sexiest man I have ever known.
11. I know, this is number 11 on a list of 10, but it needs to be said. He is My Number One & My Only One. I never thought that I would meet a man like J, someone who is so loving and beautiful (inside & out). We have been blessed!

09 March 2009

A Style Quiz for ya

Happy Monday!
I found this quiz via the
How About Orange blog, from the Sproost website. It is a quiz to help you find your interior design style. You can take it here. You can choose Love it, Like it, Just Ok, Don't Like It, or Hate It (which in our house, the H-word is a word we don't use!). I love design and it came as no surprise that I am:

{Vintage Modern}

38% Vintage Modern: You know I love me some thrift stores & garage sales! Here is the description: "Flea Market, anyone? You know you are drawn to modern furniture and interiors, and yet you don't like a space that feels cold and sterile.And who could blame you? That's why Vintage Modern is so appealing to you. Though the backdrop of the room, the walls and windows, are many times white or monochromatic, the furniture and accessories have the color, shape and texture to bring the warmth into the space.
The great thing about Vintage Modern is ease of mixing different styles in the one space. You can have a new modular sofa mixed with a great pair of chairs that your grandmother purchased in the late 1950's. The new and old work appear as though they were destined for each other. Even if you don't have time for swap meets and garage sales, so many of the mid-century pieces were so great that they have been remade and mimicked year after year."

{Cottage Chic}

38% Cottage Chic: This one surprised me until I read the description: "Who says that cottages can't be modern and chic? Who says that they have to be floral and cheesy? Not you!
You love the carefree spirit that the cottage interior inspires, but you are also serious about your appreciation for modern art and hip treasures. You love old and new alike, and love to highlight them all to expose the uniqueness of each. What better way to show off these treasures than with a light background?"


24% Contemporary: Good thing my soon-to-be-husband works for a Scandinavian furniture company! However, I find it humorous and so remarkably me that I would score high on Vintage Modern, with things that I find at thrift stores and yet this is the description for contemporary: "So fresh and clean! Antiques? No thanks! Vintage collections and clutter of any type? Not for you! You like your space new and sleek. Each piece is chosen carefully as though it were a piece of art, and your love of minimalism is expressed throughout each room. Furniture has clean lines and geometric shapes are preferred.
You're not afraid of color — in fact, bold color options only highlight the minimal items you choose for your home. But the key is clean. To master the minimalist interior you not only have to be selective in the few furniture items you bring into the space, you must also find a way to hide all of the real-life items as well."

Not to mention the "you like your space new & sleek..." Sort of like my desk right?!?

Well, it just goes to show you that when you have a creative right brain, often times you don't play by any one set of rules...now, if I could just have a job that would encourage this. Some day *sigh* right?

08 March 2009

One Week until the Big Day!

Well, the countdown has begun (well, I have been counting down for the last year!) and I offically have 7 days until I turn 30! I am really excited and sort of sad to be saying good bye to my 20's. What a crazy 10 years of my life! I started my 20's in Gunnison, Colorado at Western State College and I will finish them being engaged to the most loving, funny, handsome and wonderful man & the momma to the most beautiful, sweet, fiesty, hilarious, loving, artistic & amazing little 4 year old girl. The beginning was a wild ride and I have had my fair share of heartache and disapointment and regrets, but that it is what has taught me the most. Like Bishop Dennis Leonard at Heritage Christian Center always says (this is not a direct quote, but you get the idea): "God uses heat & pressure to create a diamond. He uses heat & pressure to change you, to mold you into the person that you need to be." The heat & pressure were painful to endure, but they have been worth it. I wouldn't be where I am, if I hadn't had Jesus to help guide me through those painful days. Thank you, Jesus!

20 February 2009

Just some photos that I have taken...

{A Sunflower from a park down the street-Summer 2008}

{Tulips from Reese & My Mom-"Because you buy flowers for people who are sick, Momma"-I had been struck down with the flu...even after I had a flu shot!}

{Garden of The Gods-October 2008-Our 3 Year Anniversary!}

{Cheyenne Mountain Zoo-October 2008}

A Close-up of a Baby Tiger's Eye-Cheyenne Mountain Zoo}

{Lovely Old Town Arvada-February 2009}
These are just a few of the photos that I have taken with my camera that I purchased this summer from a wonderful locallly-owned camera shop. {If you ever need a new camera, please consider stopping in Englewood Camera, in Littleton, Colorado. They are so helpful and genuinely interested in making sure that you know what you are doing with your new purchase! They even give you a free class with your purchase! Plus, they are local, not a big box chain & their prices are at or lower than the "others." The guy that helped me stayed 15 minutes after they closed to explain everything to me!}
Anyway, it has opened up a whole new world to me...I love my camera! Oh, I have a Canon PowerShot S5 IS....

13 February 2009

About that last post...

Did I say that I was going to practice Self-Discipline and post my 2009 Goals? Yes, I believe that I did...and then Life happens. I decided on Sunday afternoon while Reese had "quiet time" that I was going to forgo the ENORMOUS pile of unfolded laundry and get my desk/organization/letter writing center set up. I have a very old desk that once belonged to my grandmother. It is small & doesn't have much storage, but I love it anyway. I really want to refinish it, but that is another post for another day. I looked at the pile of laundry. I looked at the desk. I made the decision to put the laundry down & do something that I needed & wanted to do, but never make the time to do. I do this because all of the daily stuff takes priority.
This desk has been in my storage unit for the last 4.5 years and when I moved into the apartment, I couldn't wait to have a space where I could keep my stuff, have a system for my mail and bills and paper. I have a very difficult time with organizing that type of thing. I have tried, seemingly without much success, many different ways to teach myself how to tame The Dreaded Paper Tiger. Looking back, I may have thought that I had failed, but now I realize that I didn't fail at all. I learned what didn't work for me by trying something new out. I think that when you have a linear brain, paper & organization is second nature. When you are a visual thinker this seems like an insurmountable task, with inevitable failure. With that, a low level of self-confidence and crazy ADD brain, it seems impossible to conquer. So, add in (yes, pun intended!) some Self-Discipline and some fun & you can do what used to intimidate you!
***update*** here are some photos (Before & After)


{this is actually from July, when we moved in, but you get the idea!}

{Please notice the artwork that has been taped up on the desk and the wall under the bulletin board...this is Reese's addition to our apartment...she has taped up at least 30 different pictures all over the place...that is a post of its own!}

06 February 2009

Hey! How did I get back here?

In the beginning of a new year, you have plans. Plans to make certain changes in your life, changes in the way that you handle things or situations, plans to change things about yourself that maybe you don't like so much. For a few weeks, you seem to be making those changes and slowly, you start to ease up on the intensity of making changes and what happens? You find yourself right back where you started from! I really had plans to use my blog as a tool to chart my growth as I head into my 30th year. I started to feel defeated and down as I realized that I had started to slide back into some of my old habits. But you know I have learned over the past 4 years and 8 months of being a mother? You can't beat yourself up. You start where you left off and keep on going. You do it with a smile, even when you feel like NOT SMILING. I think that sometimes you have to slide backwards in order to gain the momentum to keep on going! So, with that being said...I will be posting my Goals for 2009 this weekend. The Mother of All My Goals (the guiding force) is Self-Discipline...Self-Discipline is required in order to stop picking up-putting away-cleaning-organizing-only-to-do-it-all-over-again-the-very-next-day-and-sometimes-again-five-minutes-later (as anyone who shares a house with a small child understands!!!), and take a few minutes for myself to do those things that I always push aside, but are still very important to do for my spirit. So, wish me luck!

19 January 2009

The Time is NOW

Tomorrow, History will be made....

16 January 2009

04 January 2009

I will write more this year...really.

{This photo is from our trip to Wisconsin in July 2008}

No. Seriously! I am going to post more. I didn't exactly over do it with 5 entries in 2008, so this year I'm going to make up for it. I have some things that I need to do...I am turning 30 in March...

Stay tuned....
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