Monday, September 19, 2016

AROUND HERE.

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Hi, friends! I skipped out for a bit since I last posted. Things have been busy! As usual, of course. I cannot believe it's mid-September already. I'm counting down the days until this show premieres, buying mini pumpkins like it's my job, and dreaming of cool breezes and making caramel apples.

Actually, come to think of it, buying mini pumpkins is kind of like my job now. I recently opened up a design consultation business. It's in the newborn phase. I'm just getting started taking on a few friends who need some inspiration, making business cards, and getting my website going. It was something that once I decided to do it, I didn't look back. It terrifies me too much to stop and think about it!

I'm only 3ish months away from graduating with my associates! I'm scoping out a local university and making plans for what's to come next. While I love design, I'm really craving work dealing with children's literature.

The kids are doing well. School is flying by and Lia is thriving well, if not a little tired. Nico is a wild boy, STILL. He busies himself all day getting into things he shouldn't be into and trying to scale furniture and windows. It's an interesting stage. He's also 4 months shy of being two (for real!) and I can see a good peak into the terrible two stage again. I didn't miss it!

This bombing in Manhattan was terrible. My brother-in-law recently became an NYPD and now news stories put me on edge even more than before.

+ A polar/grizzly bear hybrid? It sounds strange but I kind of love the nod to interracial relationships.

+ 271 years before Pantone, an artist mixed and described every color imaginable in an 800-page book.

+ I'm sprucing up the playroom in our home and I'm eyeing this chair for a fun reading nook.

+ Milk and Cookies cake, yes please!

+ Halloween costume inspiration for my littlest wild one.

+ I think we should all go out and make this sign and hang it up in our neighborhoods.

+ A great way to stop tantrums.

+ My new business - The Gray Casa. Take a peek, if it's your thing.

Enjoy your week, xo!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

THIRTY

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I turn the BIG 3-0 today. I'm actually looking forward to my thirties. My twenties were great. In my twenties, I found my tribe. My husband, my kids, a few good friends. I feel like my thirties can be about my goals now. In the past year or so, I've really started to dig deep and figure out who I am. I'm learning to live an imperfect and flawed life where I try hard to fill it with who and what I love. 

The idea of doing something different this year has been floating around in my head lately. Partly inspired by things I've seen happening in the social media/blogging world and partly because too often I find myself berating myself for not being put together/organized/good enough for this or that and the list could go on and on. 

I haven't ever made a big deal out of my birthday before. But, for my thirtieth year, I'm going to change that up.

I want to focus on finding joy and putting a better vibe and some kindness out into the world. I want do things that I wouldn't normally gravitate to. But I also want to do MORE of what I know makes me happy. I've made a list; surprise, surprise.

The DO 30 project
Read thirty new books.
Do 30 projects. This one is purposefully on the vague side. I don't want to set myself up to fail and I plan to come up with the projects along the way. It can be on a large scale such as house project or (and more often) on the smaller scale such as something I make.
Do 30 random acts of kindness.

"You attract the right things when you have a sense of who you are." - Amy Poehler 

Monday, August 22, 2016

CURRENTLY

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reading The Hypnotist's Love Story. I just finished it for book club and I'd have to say I'm a fan. My favorite recent book, though, was Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. It was so good but it left me feeling pretty bummed that the series is, yet again, over. 

dreaming of painting our front door the perfect shade of green. I'm thinking something like this.

starting to think about our family Halloween costumes!

watching Orange is the New Black.

working out the details of a new playgroup I am putting together for Nico.

looking forward to Fall. I'm ready to cozy up the house and fill the front porch with potted mums and  pumpkins.

working on the last semester of my Associate's degree. It's almost crunch time to figure out what my next step is!

cleaning out closets! Trying to declutter and freshen up our space.

sticking to our newly instated routine again. Nap time is a happy time!
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Monday, August 15, 2016

FIRST DAY OF FIRST GRADE

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It's quiet, you guys. My biggest little is in school. My wild littlest little is napping. The house is actually clean and I'm pretending the laundry isn't piled up.

I get an afternoon to MYSELF. I could read a book. Or, catch up on Orange is the New Black. Or, get caught up in all the crazy "back to school teacher gift ideas" on Pinterest. Kidding, I already did that one. 

But really, it's kind of nice to be on this side of things. We did the kindergarten thing. She's in first grade now. First graders know what they are doing. First grade moms are just excited that we got our crap together quick enough to get out of the door in time. 

I met some friends for donuts this morning and they had all just dropped off their kindergarteners. And I was just thinking, I love you women but I am SO not envious of you right now. 

First grade is where it's at. I'm off to make a list of all the things I can do in my newly found spare time!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

BACK TO SCHOOL TRADITION!

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Summer vacation is over...

I honestly don't know whether I want to laugh or cry. I think structure and schedules work really well for us here but both me and my girl are feeling the stress and unsettledness that comes with a new chapter.

She's also struggling with the idea that with school comes less time with me. I can really suck at balancing my time and her sad face telling me tonight that she doesn't want to go to school tomorrow because she won't have enough time with me pretty much shattered my heart. 

But! We kicked off the start of a new school year with our traditional backyard movie. We set up a projector, piled snacks on a tray and settled in the backyard with twinkly lights, comfy pillows, and The Peanuts Movie.

We're BIG fans of Charlie Brown and the movie had us all laughing and dancing. To be honest, it really just had us all being together, really together, in the same place.

It's probably one of my favorite traditions! 

Monday, August 8, 2016

That Little Thing Called Anxiety

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I have anxiety. Ugly, stressful, tears-me-down anxiety. 

I don't talk about it much. I thought ignoring it was the best way. I acted like things were normal despite how I felt inside. I remember going out to the movies with a group of mom-friends. I was paranoid about being out at night. My mind raced through the entire movie on how to get to my car safely in the dark. I even thought about using a soda to burn out the eyes of any potential rapist or car-jacker.

I mean, really? I was out without the kids and my mind wouldn't get it's crap together. I topped the night off with an anxiety attack right outside the theatre while having a perfectly good conversation with the girls. So, I faked an excuse of needing to leave and drove home with M on the phone in case the attack got worse.

In the past year or so, this has become my normal. Along with some breathing issues that have pestered me for years, it all became too much. I finally decided to get a PCM and talk things over. My mind had convinced me that I had thyroid issues or lung cancer or... any number of things that badly-chosen google searches came up with.

After a couple chats with my PCM, talking through my records, and running blood tests, it seems that I'm a big ball of stress and worries. I have anxiety that's probably mixed in with some OCD and ADHD. 

My color-coordinated bookshelves should have clued me in there, yeah? 

So, here I am. Laying it all out. I'm figuring out that I have to accept it. It's a part of me. And while medication can help keep it at bay, it's still there. It's always going to be there. It really sucks. The mind battles. The unnecessary worries. The ball in my throat that pops up whenever I feel the slightest bit annoyed or nervous or rushed or out of sorts.

It's a work in progress. I still have to find the medication that works for me. I have to find ways to relax and let go and stop caring so damn much. I have to let the little things slide because they are just the freaking little things in the grand scheme. 

So, anyways, I just wanted to put it out there. I wanted this space to be a little more honest and a little more real.

PS. If you have anxiety or know someone that does, this article nails it when it comes to awards that people dealing with anxiety should get. 
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Monday, August 1, 2016

SWIM LESSONS...AGAIN

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We started a new week of swim lessons this week. Free of tears, you guys. FREE. OF. TEARS.

Our girl is still struggling with confidence in the water. I know she can do it. Her coach can see that she can do it. SHE just has to figure out that she can do it. But, she is taking on this set of classes with bravery and an open mind.

And that - well that's better than anything. Imagine if we all just dove into our plans and the things we needed to accomplish with an open mind EVEN while we knew it was hard and it was scary.

Just imagine...

Anyways, I am off to dive into my own hard and scary thing. I've giving my very last speech tonight in my public speaking class. The impossible has become possible. Fingers crossed!