Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Twenty Five

I turned 25 yesterday and I thought a lot about how to mark my 25th birthday here in blogland.  I  debated replacing my 25x25 list with a 30x30 list, and I might do that at some point just not right away. I thought about sharing 25 things I've learned, 25 things I haven't learned, 25 things I've accomplished. The number 25 really begs for a list to be made. Since I feel like 25 is somewhat of a turning point in life I decided to go with a list of 25 things about me in this moment. 

  1. My favourite colour combination right now is orange & coral. 
  2. My favourite comfy outfit is black leggings, warm socks & a hoodie.
  3. I love photography, writing and scrapbooking. 
  4. Summer is when I'm happiest.
  5. I've been trying really hard to get into the habit of eating 3 meals a day (I always skip breakfast).
  6. I have a long list of places I'd like to travel, travelling makes me anxious though so I haven't travelled far. 
  7. I'm still afraid of being alone, and I'm growing increasingly fearful of 'losing control' and ruining plans.
  8. I need 8 hours of sleep every night, but I really function the best when I get 9.5 hours.
  9. I prefer dark roast coffee and like it with about half a teaspoon of sugar. Every so often I'll drink it with a splash of cream as well.
  10. I enjoy interacting with other people, being active and having good conversations. I need my alone time though. At minimum 15-20 minutes each day to be alone with my thoughts, read a book, write, doodle, even watch a television show by myself. There is no doubt I am an introvert.
  11. I love animals, squirrels, whales, cats and polar bears are my favourites.
  12. I don't eat fast food very often but when I do Wendy's is usually my top choice. 
  13. H. & R. are my best friends and I'm so thankful that they came into my life in the most unexpected of ways. Now I can't imagine doing life without them.
  14. I watch a lot of legitimate documentaries but I also have a soft spot for terrible TLC 'reality shows'. (90 Day Fiancé, Sister Wives, 600 lb. Life, 19 Kids & Counting...)
  15. I love cooking. Trying new recipes, experimenting with things to make them better.
  16. Broccoli is my favourite vegetable.
  17. I don't wear a lot of jewellery. I stick to earrings and a handful of necklaces, I don't see the appeal in owning tones of costume jewellery. I'd rather own a few really nice things than drawers of $10 necklaces.
  18. History fascinates me, I love reading historical fiction books, autobiographies, random wikipedia articles I like learning about the past.
  19. Sometimes I can accumulate clutter and drawers and closets might be chaotic but I like my surroundings to be tidy. Clear desk, nightstand, dresser is essential to my productivity.
  20. I don't like calling people on the phone.
  21. If I could change anything about my appearance I'd make myself 5 inches taller.
  22. I can spend hours browsing/shopping at Michael's and Chapters.
  23. Even though I'm an introvert I don't particularly like doing stuff alone. I would never eat at a restaurant or see a movie by myself. The one except is that I enjoy getting groceries alone and strolling through Target or the mall. 
  24. Although I don't consider Friends to be my favourite show I have watched the entire series from start to finish more times than I can even begin to count and it still makes me laugh. 
  25. I have a weird mix of emotions about the next 25 years. On one level I have no idea where I'll find myself a year from now, I have some thoughts about what I'd like to accomplish but I also feel very comfortable with having so many unknowns. 
Linking up with Tuesday Talk!

Monday, 19 January 2015

Shopping, Skype & Simplicity

Saturday afternoon I headed to the mall armed with gift cards I received for Christmas and hadn't spent yet. I ended up spending my gift cards (plus a little extra) on an apron, purse, scarf and shirt. When I got home and had my purchases spread out on my bed I realized I am nothing if not well rounded. Flowery apron, camouflage scarf, leather/lace purse...I meant to snap a photo of it all together. The dingey wintery days are making it hard to take photos, the lightning is constantly terrible and I don't give myself enough time to spend an hour manipulating the object/playing with camera settings.

After the mall we ran into Target in search of a birthday gift for my aunt.  I ended up buying the greatest piece of home decor ever. Mine is plain wood instead of red and I think it's the cutest thing ever. I have no idea what I'm going to do with a miniature canoe, suggestions so far have included using it to plant a herb garden, candles (which is how it's displayed on the Target website), chips & dip, the possibilities are really endless. It also reaffirmed my sadness that in 16-20 weeks Target will no longer be in my life.

After my shopping trip I headed to my aunt's for birthday cake & tea and then home for a good ol' fashion marathon Skype session with H. & R. It had been awhile since our scheduled allowed the three of us to spend the entire evening talking, snacking and catching up on life.

Sunday I had big plans. I wanted to bake cinnamon rolls wearing my new apron, clear off everything from my old laptop so I can pass it on to my cousin, tidy my room, plan out blog posts for the week and write some drafts. Instead I got sucked into a marathon of The Curse of Oak Island and my biggest accomplishment of the day was pinning a bunch of things on Pinterest as I contemplated the astronomical sum of money these guys are spending looking for treasure.

Since I'm working today yesterday we had a mini-birthday celebration with pizza and birthday cake.  I'm not into crazy big birthday celebrations, I'm quite happy with pizza & birthday cake. I like the simple things in life.

Linking up here.

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Birthday Eve Eve

Monday is my 25th birthday. 25 is one of those birthdays that feels like a big deal. You've lived a quarter of a century. You've survived your teens, your early twenties and now you're closer to 30 than 15 which is probably an indication you need to get your life together. 

Last year when I turned 24 I wrote a post where I made 24 wishes, one for each candle on my cake. (You can read it here.) I was reading through it this morning and found myself laughing out loud at the ways in which some of those wishes have been granted over the past year. And how some of things I wished for are no longer things I want. 

#3 A lovely committed boyfriend who loves camp and is okay with watching Disney movies J has never been to camp in his life. And he won't watch Disney movies because he wants to wait to watch them again with his kids. He is lovely & committed just the same and it doesn't matter that he isn't a camp person or a secret love of watching Disney movies.

#23 A MacBook Pro I bought one last week! It was time for an upgrade and I'm pleased with my purchase.

#5 Stack of Cash I did not open my mailbox one day to find a bunch of cash, but I do have a wonderful job and have been sticking to a budget and I have no complains about the state of my bank account at this time. 

#1 Grant Approval This happened in February and it was a great experience. It also confirmed my suspicion that I really don't want to live in the city. I loved my job, but I did not love living in the city and being far away from family.

#22 Being Paid to Browse Pinterest This didn't exactly happen the way I imagined, however at one point during the summer I was in the office at camp searching Pinterest for Staff Appreciation ideas and it occurred to me that I really was getting paid to browse Pinterest. 

#6 Red Hunter Rain boots I tried a pair of these on just before Christmas and as it turned out they were SO high on my short legs that they looked absolutely ridiculous. I haven't found a store around here that sells kids sizes so until I can figure out how to wear a pair and not look totally ridiculous. 

The Pioneer Woman has not moved next door and nobody follows me around playing guitar and singing about my life. I am still reliant on my glasses to see more than a foot in front of me and world peace has not been achieved but overall it's been a good year. I have a lot to be thankful for, a lot to celebrate and a lot to look forward to. I don't have any big plans for my birthday. I'll be working, J. is still on vacation (this family trip was booked long before we started dating), and H. & R. are provinces away. I'm very content with a quiet weekend and birthday though.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Welcome, Weekend!

I am very excited the weekend is (almost) here. It's been a long week. Here's what's on my mind.

{1}If you live in Canada/have access to Canadian TV you need to be watching Book of Negroes. It's a six part mini series made for TV based on the book, the first two episodes have already aired and I've been totally blown away by them both. I've read a lot of books that fit into the 'slave narrative' genre and find that period in history incredibly interesting. The show does an amazing job of making the story come alive, in a way that kind of makes you feel uncomfortable but also inspired. I think that it is airing in the states at some point (possibly even now?) but you should definitely check your local listings and watch. 

{2}Yesterday, Target announced they are closing all their Canada stores. I might have cried. I am so sad, sad for all of the people about to lose their job and on a purely selfish level sad for me. I don't want to go back to shopping at Wal-Mart. The two near by Wal-Marts are both so disorganized and messy, none of the employees ever have any idea how to help you when you're looking for something or asking a question. Plus, Target just has nicer stuff. Nobody really seems sure when it's going to close but most estimates are saying 16-20 weeks. I am planning on spending as much time there as possible, soaking up the cleanliness and friendless and stocking up on all the things that are only carried at Target. Sigh. 


{3}I started listening to 'Orange is the New Black' as an audiobook. I've never watched the show and was pretty unsure about the actual plot line. I'm about half way through and while I find it interesting on a lot of levels I am totally guilty of cringing every time there is a lot of unnecessary swearing. I understand that it's set in a prison, but sometimes it's still a little much for my tastes. I am curious how it all ends and what the overall take away is from the book. So far the point I'm getting is always make good choices. Which I already knew. I am interested to watch an episode or two of the show once I finish the book, just to see how they portray the characters. 

{4} I totally failed at mailing out Christmas cards this year, so I'm changing my goal and aiming to send some valentines in the mail. I figure it's a little extra fun because lots of people send Christmas cards but getting a valentine in the mail is much less expected. Crafting some of these valentines is a top priority this weekend, it's a little early but if I don't start now it won't happen. And I really want to make it happen. Plus, I got a new cartridge for my Cricut a few weeks ago and haven't had a chance to use it yet. Valentine crafting will be the perfect occasion to put it to use. 

{5} I am on the hunt for a cute and practical laptop sleeve. That doesn't cost $500. I looked at Future Shop & Target but they didn't have what I wanted. I've seen a few on Etsy but I'm a little cautious ordering one from there simply because I want to make sure it's sturdy and something that will provide some protection if I have it in a tote bag or backpack. I'd love some suggestions on where to look (or specific Etsy/Ebay sellers) where I can find one!

Wednesday, 14 January 2015


Today's post is brought to you by my desire to keep up the posting momentum, not having anything specific I want to share and a lot of random thoughts swirling around in my head.

I'll start off by confessing that in the last three weeks I've developed a love for Oprah. It started innocently enough by catching "Where Are They Now?" consistently Saturday mornings as I drank my coffee. And then I watched an episode of Super Soul Sunday with Timothy Shriver. And she's been doing a lot of press lately for Selma. And then I found myself watching OWN more and more, and now I find myself totally fascinated with her life and the urge to binge watch every episode ever. 

J. is in the US right now and coming back early next week, but not in time for my birthday. Last night he informed me that he's been doing some research to determine how much Vanilla Coke he's legally allowed to take over the boarder. I have concerns that he's going to appear on an episode of Boarder Security being questioned as to why he is transporting Vanilla Coke in bulk. This is a confession because I realize I've been watching wayyyy too many episodes of Border Security/Boarder Wars. 

I've been procrastinating on getting the oil changed in my car for no real reason other than I don't like running time sensitive errands before work and I enjoy not leaving the house on weekends. It will happen on Saturday though, I'm psyching myself up. Mostly I just want to cross it off my to do list.

I missed doing a year in review post for 2014 because I was busy not blogging when everyone else was posting theirs but now I kind of regret it. How late is too late to make a year in review post? Is it bad if it happens in February? No? Okay, good.

I got out of the habit of meal planning and it's starting to catch up with me. The daily game of "what am I going to bring to eat at work" is not fun. And on one occasion last week I ate gingerbread Oreos, half a bagel, a can of coke and called it a meal. I am working on stopping the madness though. Except that I have a huge craving for Wendy's that needs satisfying.

I got a new camera lens for Christmas and have only used it once. My only excuse is that it's too cold outside and the lightning inside isn't great. That's not actually an excuse, but that's what I'm offering up.

For my final confession I'll let all the blogging world know I'm ending this post so I can make garlic bread to eat while I watch My 600 lb Life. You can judge me it you wish, I'm judging myself.

Linking up with Melissa!

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Snow, Snow, Snow

Since I started dating J. about a month a go my weekends have gotten a little more exciting. We certainly spend our fair share of time hanging out on his couch watching documentaries (such exciting 20-somethings) but we've also ventured out to hockey games and restaurants and other date like things. J. is gone on vacation with his family for two weeks so this weekend the introvert in me celebrated in style. (Style implying I spend the whole time in jogging pants & a hoodie.)

Friday my weekend started with a brutal drive home from work. They let us go 45 minutes early because the roads were so bad. It typically takes me about 25-30 minutes to get home from work but Friday it was close to an hour. Earlier in the day it had snowed, then warmed up so things started to melt, then the temperature dropped again so all the melted stuff froze, then it started to snow again. Making the roads a mess of snow covered ice. Not a good time.

Saturday I slept in way later than usual, but I didn't feel too guilty clearly my body was trying to tell me it needed some rest. So keeping with the restful theme I lounged around the house until mid afternoon when Mom & I made a quick trip to the mall to look for a birthday gift for my aunt and then had supper at Swiss Chalet. On our way home we stopped at Target where I got an awesome winter jacket on sale for half price, I wore it to work yesterday and it's my new favourite.

I can't seem to find a photo online but the new coat is black which is great because the new winter coat I got last year is white. And I don't know what I was thinking when I decided that a white winter coat was a good idea, but it was not. It constantly has bronzer all over the collar from it rubbing up against my face, the other day I spilled coffee on it while trying to get into my car plus what could be more impractical than dressing in white in the middle of a snow storm? When I first brought it home my mother half joking half serious asked if I had gotten a neon hat to go with it so they'd be able to find me in a storm.

Sunday I had the first official camp meeting of the season. Official invitations went out yesterday to last years staff who are invited back this summer. While on Skype I also devoured almost an entire bag of my newest food obsession: Chicago Mix Popcorn.

You might think that carmel popcorn & cheddar flavoured popcorn all mixed together in the same bag would be gross, but you would be wrong. It's delicious. I'm obsessed.

Yesterday I had another slippery drive home from work. I realize it's only January and there's still at minimum 3 more months of winter ahead, but I am done. Now, excuse me while I go stalk the weather report and highway cams in a feeble attempt to determine if tonight's drive to and from work will be as stressful as the last few nights.

Linking up here for Tuesday Talks!

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Where I've Been

This isn't going to be a post full of breathtaking photos or wild tales of adventure explaining why I haven't blogged a single thing in close to two months.

So where exactly have I been?


I've been busy working, saving money and getting myself more financially stable.
I've been trying really hard to eat healthy & meal plan.
I've been limited my time spend on social media.
I've been thinking about my long term goals.
I've been working on staying in the moment, managing my anxiety and trusting God.
I've been photographing, writing, doodling and scrapbooking.
I've been hating on cold weather, winter driving, snow and everything related to winter.
I've been figuring out more of my passions in life and how I can make pursuing them a priority.
I've been falling in love.

I've been missing blogging.

I'm not prepared to make any sort of blog everyday for the rest of the year declarations, I do want to make blogging more of a priority. The last month I haven't even been reading blogs. And I so miss my morning ritual of coffee, blogging and interacting with so many ladies all around the world who I can share with and learn from.

I've been waiting for the right time to start back blogging except I have no idea what the right time is and there's no time like the present, so here we are. That boy I've been falling in love with is away for the next two weeks so I've got a little more free time on my hands than I've had in the past month. I plan on using that free time to catch up on the 500+ unread posts on my bloglovin' feed and trying to reconnect with the bloggers who I used to interact with on a daily basis.