31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 23

Credit to fabulousfindsbytiffany.com found via optimisticmommy.com
Credit to fabulousfindsbytiffany.com found via optimisticmommy.com

Day 22, ya’ll.

This blog is my hobby.

This process has been a slow crawl. I lost my steam pretty quickly.

When hobbies become hard I tend to duck out. I don’t give as much care, and it begins shriveling up. It scares me. Not the fear of people reading or not reading, no that doesn’t scare me.

The fear of investing time into something that wasn’t meant for me? If that makes sense. I love it. But it doesn’t come easy. It’s haaaard. And it doesn’t always come out pretty.

I don’t like picking hobbies that anyone else does because I fall victim to the comparison trap every damn time.

So I guess my hobby currently is running away from things. If you haven’t noticed, I can be quite the wimp.

But here’s to one more day of typing away. Just one more.

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 22

Welcome back! I’m not sure if I should be saying that toward you or myself. Sometimes writing is hard. For me, the difficulty isn’t as much finding the time to write and more about choosing to use the time I have to write.

This day’s prompt is: What do you do when you’re home alone?

Well, I’ve got some of the normal “have to do” stuff. I putter around, make coffee, pick up the house a little bit sometimes, entertain my very hyperactive dog.

But I’ve also got a lot of time wasting. I spend a lot of my alone time at home THINKING about getting up and doing something. THINKING about opening up a new window on my web browser and writing a blog. THINKING about taking care of myself and eating regularly.

Why is it that it’s so hard to do the things we want to do? I want to do things that are so normal, mundane, and necessary, but I don’t do them. It’s such a weird cycle.

Is it just extreme laziness? Or is it something bigger? Can it all just be attributed to depression? Is it just that I’m a millennial and hate contributing to society?

Ya know, I really don’t know what it is. But I do know that most of my alone time at home is unproductive and unfulfilling. And then I feel like I wasted my whole day even though I THOUGHT really hard about NOT wasting my day.

Besides just white-knuckling it and forcing yourself to write, how do you motivate yourself?

Does anyone else around here have my same problem?

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 21

Well hello friends. My how this season has gotten away from me. I have purchased 3 gifts for people. That’s actually a great start for me because I am usually soooooo late at Christmas presents. The kind of late that it turns into January, then February, and then I eventually give people their Christmas presents on their birthdays because it’s just that late. And they never end up getting anything for Christmas.

I love getting gifts for people. It’s hard to tell because I don’t do it a whole lot, but I do really enjoy it. What usually stops me is money and time. I know that I don’t have to BUY gifts, but then that means I have to make something. Which is also satisfying and thoughtful, but then I need the time to do it. And it takes time to think something up too. BUT it also takes money to buy the necessary supplies. So….time and money either way. That doesn’t even include the time takes so shop for all the things, to wrap, and to mail if necessary. I HATE going to the post office. It honestly intimidates me and I don’t really know how to do anything there.

So, I don’t do gifts as often as I’d like to.

This kind of segues into today’s topic: What’s your biggest fear?

This not having time to buy presents thing isn’t just about not having free time. It’s about over-thinking the process and being indecisive and insecure about my ability to choose something my gift recipient will like.

And this scares me because I worry I will let opportunities to do good things for people or to have fun pass me by because of not allowing myself to just take a chance.

I have this thought of “life is getting away from me” quite often. And instead of just jumping in and catching up to it, I usually just sit down and feel overwhelmed.

I’m afraid I ruin my own chances of having a fulfilled life by worrying. And that worries me. Hahaha.

Silly.

Tomorrow, I’m just gonna do something. When I think about it and it sounds like something I need to do or want to do, I’m just gonna do it.

Then I’m going to update you all with what I did.

What’s something you can say yes to this week?

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 20

Good morning sweet things! I hope your Friday went smoothly and you are ready to embrace the rest of your weekend. I’ve still got a lot of work ahead of me but I’m still hoping to squeeze in some Netflix and web time.

Before I move on to writing about today’s prompt, I’d like to ask a question.

Do any of you have experience with blog scheduling? If so, what are some calendars or methods you use? I’d love to be able to use an app or a digital form of some sort because I know I’ll lose a print out. Let me know in the comments. I’d love all the advice you have.

Now. Day 20…just a little late in the day…What do you collect?

I guess I unintentionally collect mugs. I didn’t set out to collect them, I just love them and there are so many good ones in the world that I just have to keep owning them. Here are a few of my favorites:

aaaaand a throwback of me and my cute husband with our cute mugs and our cute sweaters at a super cute hot cocoa party that my best friend hosted last Christmas.

What do you collect? Is it sentimental or just coincidental? Anything embarrassing?

-Jess

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 19

Hi lovelies! I’m in a wonderful mood today. I got to sleep in a bit, had a meeting cancelled, got to do some work at home, had some free time to play with my dog, and now I’m sitting in my local Starbucks with a red cup in hand and preparing to drop a little note to all of you.

So, I’m a little over half-way on this challenge. I’m excited to be finished with it, to be honest. At the same time though, I know that means I’ll have to start thinking up my own topics which I am a little nervous for. I’ve got some ideas about doing some fashion posts, some posts about my wedding including the budget, lifestyle stuff…but I’ve just never written about any of those things on the internet. I really want to be successful and I just don’t like to have to practice at anything. Hmph!

Credit to fabulousfindsbytiffany.com found via optimisticmommy.com
Credit to fabulousfindsbytiffany.com found via optimisticmommy.com

I know one of the best ways to get better at blogging though, is to read lots of other blogs that write about the things you want to write about. Which brings me to day 19 in this challenge.

5 Blogs you read on a regular basis:

1. Danielle LaPorte: She is the author of The Desire Map and The Firestarter Sessions. She is all about self-love, freedom, total goddess power, community between women and living up to your fullest self that exists but might need some drawing out. She preaches hard work, desire, gratitude, and affirmations. You can read my favorite post of hers here.

2. Chatting At The Sky: Emily Freeman is the author. She also contributes to {in}courage. She is a beautiful writer, a lover of authenticity, and calls out the artist in everyone. Not just the painter or the writer, but the living and breathing art that is in each person. She wrote a great book called Million Little Ways that is a must read for anyone wondering if they have anything that matters to offer the world. Every weekend so gives a refreshing post called “For Your Weekend” that always leaves me feeling a little lighter.

3. Babe Vibes. They are still new and don’t have a ton of content yet but everything that has been shared there has sent me off into the world ready to kick the ass of anything that tells me I’m not good enough. THIS POST is basically a peek into the very center of my heart and all things spiritual that I’m going through at the moment.

4. The Christian Girl’s Guide to Divorce. The author is Leslie Spencer and she is freaking amazing. Singer, artist, go get em, fierce, tell you off to your face, real babe right there. Not only is her story amazing, but she’s a great (soon to be published) writer. She and I have even written back and forth and I owe her a lot of my mental well being right now. Plus she curses, which always wins you points in my book.

5. Apartment Therapy. Here is something about me: I LOOOOOOOOVE little living spaces. But they are a struggle. And it really is a thing of beauty to be able to make your home the way you want, with all the things you want/need. I could browse on this site for hours. I’ve already used several ideas from this site to spruce up our tiny apartment. One of them being one of their posts about contact paper.

I hope you each take a little time out of your day to check out one or all of these amazing blogs.

What are some blogs similar to these that you read?
I’m always open for suggestions. And while you’re at it, send me the link of your own blog in the comments! I always check out my readers. 🙂

-Jess

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 18

Woah! I just skipped another day. Holy cow. It’s really not that big deal, because I already wrote on Day 17’s topic, “Why and When did you start blogging?”. You can read my post about that here.

But, today? Oh, today 🙂

Where are you happiest?
Let me tell you all the places:

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Art print by Leah Flores
  • On a blanket in the park on a summer’s day
  • By the rope swing at the canal bank in my hometown
  • On my couch in the afternoon on a day I have no plans
  • Dancing in the kitchen with Connor
  • Car dancing with Chelsea to our favorite songs
  • In the car on a back road past the mint fields with the windows down
  • The Tabernacle in Turner, OR
  • The East Coast
  • Washington D.C. and any presidential monument
  • Java in the window seat, the best coffee shop in downtown Boise
  • wrapped up in Connor’s arms when we fall asleep
  • Seattle, WA
  • #fireworkpeople

What are some of your happiest places?


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Remember to stop by and read what my friends are writing about for their 31 Day Challenge! If you want to be featured in my link up, just leave a comment on this post with the link to your 31 Day Blog Challenge post (no matter where you’re at on your challenge) and I’ll add a link to you and maybe a really flattering photo of you from your blog.

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 16

What is my biggest accomplishment?

Sometimes I think answering this question just comes down to this:

I stayed alive.

You need to know that being alive is a great and terribly difficult thing to do sometimes. And if you have managed to be alive this long, you are a hero. You deserve all the praise in the world. 547e0f548841c9cb610e5a3d

I see you opening your mouth to stop me and give your “buts” and to that I hold my hand up to your face and say, “No, it’s hard. So good job.”

You might get stressed out and snap at people.
You might not pay your bills on time all the time because you forget.
Redbox movies might still be sitting on your coffee table because you don’t like leaving the house.
Plans with friends may have been cancelled because you’d rather sleep or watch Netflix.
You might have had to stop going to college even.
Or you might have left a job and moved in with your parents because you just couldn’t deal.

I see you. I’ve been there. I know what it’s like. It feels as though you are the worst living human and you have no business being allowed to be an adult.

BUT…

You ARE alive. And you can’t NOT be an adult. Whatever is an adult anyway beside just someone of legal age? Why are so many things “adult things” and why do they have to make us feel so awful when we don’t get all of them right all the time?

I’m not good with numbers. I will never be good with numbers. But my husband is. And we are both adults. He just does other “adult things” than me. And we are both alive together.

Sometimes I feel like my aliveness is stretched very thin.

But let me tell you something else. To be able to be stretched to the point of breaking, and NOT breaking is a feat of greatness.

You are great because you have found the ability to stay alive.

I have stayed alive because something in me is stronger than the stretching.547e10088841c9cb610e5a43

-Jess


 

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Check out these other amazing ladies that are blogging through the 31 Day Blog Challenge.

Madi – Her Wandering Path
Chelsea – Grace Marked Heart
Charlotte – Inside Charlotte’s Mind
Suzanna – One Hoolie Mama
Brittani – Bringing Life to Truth

If you want to be part of the link up for the 31 Day Blog Challenge just share your link in the comments below. It doesn’t matter if you’ve just started or if you’re ahead of me. It would be so great to add some more bloggers to the link up. I love reading everyone’s answers to these great challenge questions.

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 15

Hello all! I am baaaack!

I’m not going to apologize for taking so long to post this. I’ve had a lot going on, and sometimes I just didn’t want to post. So I didn’t. Also, this post was very hard for me to formulate.

I’ve been dealing with some pretty difficult mental health issues and the seasons have changed here which contributes to my unusually low mood. For a while the thought of writing a list of 15 things that make me awesome seemed like the hardest thing I would ever do.

But here I am after receiving a healthy dose of love and support from my #fireworkpeople I’m back and ready to give it a shot.

1. I can wear a headband like nobody’s business.

2. I’m pretty good at answering my phone when I’m called. And if I don’t answer, I successfully listen to your voicemail and call back at my earliest convenience.

3. I recognize the difficulty for employers getting people to commit to working during a holiday. I don’t like working over Thanksgiving or Christmas any more than the next person, but sometimes you just gotta do it. A manager doesn’t usually have any say on whether or not an establishment is open on a holiday, and worrying about whether or not you will have any employees willing to work it would be stressful. So, I’ve spent most of my adult holidays working because most people try to get out of it. Good for them. But also, there are other days to celebrate. I just don’t think it’s the end of the world.

4. I’m super nice to retail associates and food service employees. Just that. It’s a big deal.

5. I really can sing pretty well and I’m happy to help people out if they ask me to sing for an event or something. But I’m also totally cool with singing back up if you already got someone to sing lead.

6. You need tough love? You need some realism? I’m your gal. I’m not a very soft or compassionate person, but I can totally just pop a bubble of self pity and tell ya what I think ya should do. I mean, sometimes it’s a lot of my own opinion, but it’s also a perspective that you probably haven’t heard. I’m original!

7. This next one is a bit of a stretch, but here goes it. I don’t always think I’m a very nice person. I wouldn’t describe myself as a very gentle or soft woman. But, here’s the thing…when I know what I want, I WANT it. And I work hard. I like making things run smoothly and I really like it when people cooperate when having a common goal seems obvious. If someone is obstructing success for something, I may steamroll them. But my goal is always to just have something go in the best way possible.

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8. I really feel like I’m a thoughtful person. My husband describes this quality in me as “intentionality”. I spend a lot of my thinking about how my choices throughout my day will affect my time with my husband later and kind of arrange my life around how I want friendships and relationships to feel. I know there is kind of a fine line between living for other people and doing things because you care about people, but I feel like I’ve got a pretty good grasp on that. It makes me happy to have the people I love be happy and taken care of. And, it just makes life easier.

9. My house has ONLY used, second-hand, or handmade decor. I’m pretty stoked about that.

10. I’m very open to sharing honestly whenever someone asks me something serious about my life. On the flip side, I’m good at telling people when I don’t want to talk about something and I don’t feel awkward about it.

11. I’m generally a good forgiver. And a quick apologizer. But I also don’t let myself re-friend toxic people once they’re out of my life.

via pinterest user shauna schut

12. I can freaking ROCK lipstick and winged eyeliner. It’s no joke. 

13. One year I had a job professionally decorating Christmas trees. 

14. I have basically aced every single interview I’ve ever attended for a job that I actually wanted. I’ve interviewed for lots of jobs, and I just automatically know whether I want the job or not within only a few moments of entering the job site. Sometimes I don’t necessarily want the job but I know that I NEED a job. I’ve always gotten those jobs. Now, getting a call back on applications is a different story. But once I get called, I nail it.

15. I have this very weird talent of being able to find great apartments for a great price that fit my needs at the time being. I don’t find huge places, and they don’t always have laundry capabilities, but I always find a place to live that works and I end up loving it. One year I lived in a tiny basement, studio apartment with one of my best friends and it was really super great for what stage in life we were in. We were both going to school full time and working a lot. The rent was only $450 a month. We had a nice size living room that fit all of our belongings and a great little kitchen with rad shelves. We did share a room and one tiny bathroom, and the only closet space was a nook under the stairs but it was still better than sharing a dorm room. And we got to make our own rules and spend our time with whomever we wanted. It really was lovely. And now I share a studio that is not much bigger with my husband, our cat, and my childhood dog. It’s still small but it’s ours and it’s so lovely.

This is the first time in a long time that I’ve sat down and given myself permission to think about what makes me awesome. I think it needs to become a more regular practice in my life.

What are ways you practice telling yourself how awesome you are?
What is your favorite thing about yourself?

BLOGlink

Check out these other amazing ladies that are blogging through the 31 Day Blog Challenge.

Madi – Her Wandering Path
Chelsea – Grace Marked Heart
Charlotte – Inside Charlotte’s Mind
Suzanna – One Hoolie Mama
Brittani – Bringing Life to Truth

If you want to be part of the link up for the 31 Day Blog Challenge just share your link in the comments below. It doesn’t matter if you’ve just started or if you’re ahead of me. It would be so great to add some more bloggers to the link up. I love reading everyone’s answers to these great challenge questions.

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 14

Good morning, darlings! I hope your Friday meets you with excitement and a hope filled weekend. I’ll be working most of the weekend :/ But I may not have to work weekends for long because I just got a new job!

This new job seems like a dream come true. Once I have my foot solidly in the door I will give an update. For now, just know that I will no longer be working in retail/be a cashier.

Today’s prompt for the 31 Day Blog Challenge is: What’s on your iPod?

I have only three things in my iTunes on my iPhone right now.

1. Sins are Stones by John Mark McMillan

2. “Wilde Woman” full album by Lucius.

source: Consequence of Sound

3. #GETITRIGHT by Miley Cyrus

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Miley is a queen. But, use your discretion 😉

So what I’d like to know is this:

If you had to delete all our iTunes to be able to update your phone, which  three songs would you keep?


BLOGlink

Check out these other amazing ladies that are blogging through the 31 Day Blog Challenge.

Madi – Her Wandering Path
Chelsea – Grace Marked Heart

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charlotte – Inside Charlotte’s Mind
Suzanna – One Hoolie Mama

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brittani – Bringing Life to Truth

If you want to be part of the link up for the 31 Day Blog Challenge just share your link in the comments below. It doesn’t matter if you’ve just started or if you’re ahead of me. It would be so great to add some more bloggers to the link up. I love reading everyone’s answers to these great challenge questions.

31 Day Blog Challenge: Day 13

You may have noticed that I skipped day 12. I did have a post written and I was about to publish it when I accidentally went “back” and the post didn’t autosave.

I was really excited to have a good quality post with a little more seriousness to it. But it took me quite a long time to figure out how to articulate it in such a way that made me feel good about it. I don’t think I’ll be pleased with a rewrite and I’m not even sure if I would be able to remember how to put it back. So, I’m skipping day 12 and moving on. I don’t want to think about it anymore and I don’t want to delay any more posts on this challenge.

While I love doing this challenge, I’m really excited to get on with posts of my choosing. And also getting started on writing about some of the topics that were requested on my “About” page.

Day 13’s prompt is a question that a lot of people seem to have the same answer for.

Do you have regrets?

I feel like there are two answers.

“Yes, I regret that one horrible thing that is embarrassing or that relationship that really hurt me because that guy/girl was soooo stupid and your loss!”

or

“No, I never regret anything because everything happens for a reason and I am the person I am now because of everything I’ve done so I don’t regret anything that got me here.”

yawn.

Just because you regret something doesn’t mean you wish you were a different person. And yes, there are lots of things I wouldn’t want to change about my life. If things had been done differently in the past, life might not be the way it is right now in some ways.

I would never want to be without my husband, and it’s sad to think about what life would be like if I hadn’t met him. But let’s be real here. If you look back on your life and realize that you did something or let something else happen that caused you to be miserable for too long, regret is a pretty reasonable feeling.

I regret staying in college as long as I did.

I came back to start my junior year after a horrrrrrrrible break up. I was such a mess and had convinced myself that I needed to proceed as normal. I didn’t take a break (yet) and I didn’t seek any help (yet).  I went back expecting to have this amazingly warm and welcoming community to walk alongside me and fix my problems. But the summer had let us drift apart as well as my focus on my then long distance relationship. I hadn’t spoken to any of my friends during the summer about any relationship problems, so when I got back for the fall semester and told people we had broken up they were all surprised because they hadn’t heard anything before about us having problems. So a lot of people didn’t think it was as big of a deal as it really was.

And because I had just lost the biggest thing in my life, I also lost myself. My goals changed because now I was single again. My plans didn’t involved following another person, and I hadn’t the slightest clue what I wanted to do. Besides sleep and take a break from homework.

I still pursued my major, even though I had no plans to continue on with it once I was done with school. I still worked a job, sometimes two, even though they were not fulfilling and also low paying. And I stayed at a school that didn’t really care a whole lot about how much as I was hurting as much as they did policing my poor attitude in class, lack of on-campus participation, dropping grades, and what on earth I was going to do with myself for the rest of my life. And let me tell you, it definitely wasn’t being a pastor’s wife or a children’s minister or a missionary. I wanted to do something secular but I had invested so much time and money into this place that it was, as I was told, “a waste and poor stewardship of the very clear calling God had placed on my life to be in full time ministry.” But not preaching, because you’re a woman. And certainly not a woman choosing to be childless for life, because don’t you remember the commandment about having children being a requirement?

Anyway, without sharing too many more stories that could be their own stories, I will just say that I was absolutely miserable for far too long and now that I’ve taken 4 year to finish only an Associate’s Degree because college was actually killing me, the money I spent STILL wasn’t worth it. And the time I spent was STILL wasted in a way.

The experience wasn’t worth it for me, looking back on it all now.
However, my experience is not everyone’s and sometimes sticking it out is totally worth it. EVEN if you don’t know what you want to do, finishing college is important if you think it will do more good for you in the long run than negative.

That’s not true for me right now.

I’ll probably never go back. And every time I say that, I feel a little more free. I wish I had quit earlier because life without that place has been heaps easier.

Easy isn’t my ultimate goal, but sometimes you need life to be easier for a while.

I regret not quitting college sooner. Because I was miserable and I didn’t need to be.

original artist unknown found on rockstarronan
original artist unknown found on rockstarronan