A Crisp Morning Coffee Date

I show up for our coffee dates about every 2 months it seems. I’m a little late with this one. Oops!

Linking up with Kristen for What’s New With You? today.

If we were sitting down for coffee I’d have to lament about the end of my favorite month. October kicks off the best quarter of the year (in my opinion) and it’s always bittersweet to say goodbye to the month. But I’m excited that the holidays are around the corner!

If we were having coffee I’d admit that I’m still recovering from our quick 5 day trip to Daufuskie Island, SC. My best friend & I drove through the night (Wednesday) to surprise our other best friend, who was on vacation with her girlfriend. We had been planning it for months and the surprise was perfect. Our time on the island was so relaxing. Here’s a link to the super quick video of the surprise:Β https://splice.gopro.com/v?id=yPjm4K

While sipping on our pumpkin lattes or maple coffees I’d probably gush about some of my birthday gifts. K got me tickets to see the Columbus orchestra play at a screening of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban πŸ™‚ My mother-in-law spoils me with a week of birthday gifts and some of my absolute favorites this year included this pillow, this skirt, and this wine stopper!

I’d also share about the new underwear I just got! (A little weird, I know, but what better way to end 2018 than cleaning out your delicates drawer and adding some comfy, quality undergarments?) Tommy Johns Underwear reached out to me a few weeks ago and set me up with some ah. may. zing. underwear. So soft and comfortable, dang near invisible, and it stays in place. I got a pair of their Cool Cotten Cheeky, Second Skin Brief, and Air Cheeky. I’m not kidding when I say I love these styles and all three materials!

When draining our adorably fall coffee mugs I’d ask if you’re participating in NaNoWriMo this year. I’ve done it every year, but never to completion. I’d really like to push myself to do it this year… I haven’t decided which novel idea to conquer, though.

Before we pull on our coats and dig for our keys I’d ask about your holiday plans. Are you doing anything fun for Thanksgiving? We have a business trip this month, then we’re spending a little bit of time in Williamsburg on a family vacation. I love historic little villages & I’m super excited. November is kind of crazy for us and I’m hoping for a slower December. How about you?

Sigh. I guess our coffee date would have to come to a close now… I’d head back to work & hopefully you’d head off and do something fun (like an apple orchard or pumpkin patch- fall isn’t over yet!).

Share with me what you’ve been doing this fall & tell me about your early winter plans!

28 Things (because I’m turning 28)

Tomorrow is my birthday. It’s weird to be turning 28 because I feel like I was 18 or 22 or even 25 just last week. It’s weird to say I’m 28. I’m not bothered by it, I’m just confused about how I banked 28 years of life and where the past decade went…

But anyway, here are 28 things I know:

  1. Avocados are delicious. It took a while for me to acquire the taste, but YUM.
  2. You need to be passionate aboutΒ something, even if it’s not what the cool kids are passionate about.
  3. There are no “cool kids.”
  4. Be friends with people you trust and love and want to succeed. It’s ok to not like or not get along with everyone, but when you find your people hold on to them tightly and lift them up and cherish those relationships.
  5. Horses are still terrifying.
  6. Sometimes it’s about who you know, but it’sΒ always about how you treat them. Always.
  7. Kindness costs nothing but you’ll pay dearly for anger or hatred.
  8. No means no, silence means no, and walking away/resisting means no. And you are allowed to say no whenever the hell you want.
  9. Kids do not equal success. Owning a home does not equal success. Traveling all over does not equal success. YOU get to define your own success. Don’t hand that power over to society.
  10. Facebook sucks. If you have the willpower to quit it, you should. I don’t yet.
  11. Read more. Learn more. Talk with people from different walks of life. Educate yourself about what’s going on around you.
  12. Practice empathy, but don’t internalize all the world’s drama. It will 100% destroy you.
  13. Find role models. And change role models if you need to. Inspirational quotes actually go a long way.
  14. Meditation, prayer, yoga, exercise, gratitude journals… they all work. Get in the habit of doing something that works for you.
  15. Don’t let your fears control you. I’m still working on this one.
  16. Pay attention to who is excited to see you and to see you succeed and to share in your special days. Return the favor and love them completely. (This includes pets.)
  17. If you’ve ever thought about getting a dog, DO IT. And adopt from your local shelter.
  18. Pay attention to what you put in your body and on your body.
  19. But also, eat dessert whenever you gosh darn please.
  20. Cake and pizza are suitable breakfast foods. I don’t like pizza or (most) cake, but I’m giving you the go ahead to eat it for breakfast.
  21. Spend your money responsibly. I don’t mean save it- I mean research where your money goes when you make purchases and know who or what you’re supporting with the swipe of a credit card.
  22. LaCroix is gross. Sorry, but it is. (Hahaha. If you like it that’s ok, too.)
  23. You don’t need to find a life partner, but if you happen to meet “the one” make sure that person fully respects you & encourages you.
  24. I know it’s a popular phrase right now, but “self-care” is a real thing. It’s as easy as taking a bath, sleeping in on the weekends, or pouring yourself a cuppa tea and reading a few chapters.
  25. Go freakin’ vote. And don’t ignore politics. These things are happening in your world and they will eventually effect you. Stay on top of them.
  26. Learn the difference between effect and affect, who and whom, then and than, their they’re and there, etc. I’m still working on that first one.
  27. If you partake in the drink, know what cocktails you love and learn how to mix them correctly.
  28. Be unapologetically yourself. If you love Harry Potter or Disney or superheroes or fantasy or baseball or the beach or whatever. There is NO normal. There really aren’t any rules when it comes to being you. Identify what colors or things or people or places make you happy, and then invest in them wholeheartedly.

And that’s all I’ve got. Off to eat ice cream & donuts because I really don’t like cake that much.

RBG

On Monday night I watched the CNN airing of RBG. And since then, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it or her. Without knowing much about her, I already had massive respect for Justice Ginsburg. Now, having a little background on her life, I’m just blown away by the determination, strength, convictions, and steady persistence of one petite, intelligent, and shy woman. Simply blown away.

I want to note that I have plenty to learn on the matter. There are books about RBG that I’d like to read, information and dissents from cases that she’s argued and presided over, backgrounds on the men and woman that she’s served along side with on the highest court in the land… but for right now, I have immediate takeaways from the film.

I urge you to watch it, even if you disagree with Ruth’s political position.

I’ve mentioned it before, but I come from an environment that does not share some (most) of my beliefs. I rarely engage in political conversation anymore because I’m always outnumbered. We don’t vote for the same people and we don’t see social, economical, or judicial issues in the same light. Β I have learned to just walk away, though I’m still often outraged and upset. (K and I see eye to eye on 80% of things; I’m not talking about him.)

“You can disagree without being disagreeable.” -RBG

I have been explosive on issues that I’m especially passionate about. My natural response and tone is snarky. Snark doesn’t make you any friends, nor does it break down walls, catch flies, or welcome people to your table.

While there IS a time and place to be disagreeable (like when staring down the KKK or Neo-nazis or separating infants from their parents), it’s not at the dinner table surrounding by people who love you. So I’m trying to adjust my ways of arguing.

“Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.” -RBG

Additionally, I am quick to write others off when they seem totally against my views. Granted, I can’t control others or how they speak to me and argue their point. That’s a variable that will play a role in how I react- but that variable isn’t on me and isn’t a reflection of me.

“Fight for things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.” -RBG

(I’ve found that I benefit greatly from Justice Ginsburg’s advice.)

It takes time to unravel the biases we’ve developed. While I know some people really do have hate in their hearts, I know most people do not. The idea of privilege or inequality or discrimination in any sense of the words seem preposterous to some people- and it takes a minute to convince them to remove those rose colored glasses. We have to trade in our pride for compassion.

“I think daughters can change the perception of their fathers.” -RBG

I do, too.

*I hadn’t planned to rant at the end, but I read some opinion pieces about this film/RBG, written by right-leaning journalists. Some attacked her physical appearance. Some go after her for her quiet nature. I even saw some that criticize her for her “traditional” decisions of marrying a man, following him for his job at one point, and raising children- not much of a progressive with those kinds of behaviors, they said. (They fail to mention that she raised those kids, took care of her sick husband, AND attended law school surrounded by men and sexist professors.) Under the articles were the same type of people commenting & bitching about women being justices in the first place- our gender not being suited for such professions. Having been reminded that these backward, outdated, unintelligent opinions exist in 2018, I’m even more astonished by RBG’s drive and perseverance and success. If you don’t believe that men and women are equal then it’s time to stop reading this blog.

I turned off comments because I’d rather you spend that time watching the movie πŸ™‚

Playing Catch Up Over Coffee

Hello. I promise I’m alive and well. No one has fallen ill and I’m not pregnant. (I feel like 90% of the time when a blogger just disappears one of those two things has happened…) I didn’t mean to take a break last week or on Tuesday. I actually had posts planned but they needed one or two more things added to them and I just didn’t get the time (or motivation) to do it…

Today I’m linking up with Kristen and taking a quick coffee break.

I have to take half a step back from my blog. I love this blog and the relationships that I’ve cultivated here. I feel like things in my personal life are n.u.t.s. right now, though. Every time I go to write I’m distracted or thinking about all the stuff I need to do… And sometimes I just bitch about all that on here and I think that’s overwhelming and repetitive for y’all.

I will keep up with Alexandra‘s and my RSFG Blog Collab. and I will definitely show up here (and on your blogs!) for SUYB with Steph & Jana. Other than those two monthly staples, I can’t guarantee my consistency. I plan to keep reading and commenting on your blogs, too. The frequency will probably decrease, though…

I’m sad to step back. I’m scared to leave this community of friends. I’m not actually leaving- just going part time. It’s been a part of my daily life since 2014. That’s crazy. But like I said, this is temporary and necessary. I’ll still be around. And I’ll still see you guys on IG.

Ok… let’s move on to other news.

Last week I rode in the backseat of a pick-up truck for 35 hours. We drove down to Texas and back- in five days. (Two driving down, one day of work, two driving home.) Our coffee today is simply a step in my recovery program.

We’re on the road again next week for another business trip. I thank Jesus every single day for our house/dog sitter. She keeps our babes loved while we’re gone.

On Sunday I played my last softball game for the summer. (I wrote a sarcastic post about my experience here, lol.) I hate exercise but I enjoy being active. I’m trying to find new ways to keep my body moving right now. The dogs and I have a new walk route and I feel like that’s a good start.

Our trip to Texas was H.O.T. & miserable but it made me appreciate the lower 80 degree temps in Ohio. Our weather has been beautiful and I’m not going to complain about it for once πŸ˜‰

Sigh… I don’t have much else to say as we drain our mugs and start digging our keys out of our purses. I’ve been reading a lot, cooking a bit, and trying to keep my house in some semblance of order.

I promise that I’m trying to catch up on your posts from the last week or so… I also promise to show up here occasionally, even if it’s not regularly πŸ™‚

Hopefully this weekend is semi-quiet and relaxing. I’m dying my grey away on Saturday and planning a manicure sometime next week before our next trip! Self-care, friends πŸ˜‰ See you on Tuesday!

Currently…

For Kristen‘s link-up I’m reverting back to a good ol’ fashioned “currently” post.

Reading… all the books for Erin’s 9.0 Book Challenge! I’m currently working on The Wall of Winnipeg and Me and the Prisoner of Azkaban!

Listening to… You Must Remember This podcast. I know I’ve mentioned it once this week already, but Lindsay got me hooked! I’ve listened to all the Charles Manson’s Hollywood episodes as well as the ones about Lauren Bacall, Audrey Hepburn, and Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn. I’ve also been listening to the new albums from Dave Matthews and Ben Rector!

Watching… The Bachelorette. My friends and I text-party watch and I look forward to it every week. We’re usually snarky about the guys and supportive of Becca so I don’t feel the least bit bad about my not-so-guilty pleasure. Anyone else watching this season? Let’s discuss πŸ™‚

Pouting about… Lebron James heading west. Sigh. I’m not mad at him and I still hate basketball, but it’s a bummer he’s not ours anymore.

Celebrating… this week’s intermission. America has her faults (many of which are occurring right now) but yesterday was her birthday and everyone almost everyone deserves a celebration. I’m grateful for the day off and I’m grateful to live in a country where we have the freedom to do the right thing, help others, and vote in people who will actually put the needs of humans first.

Eating… lots of grilled stuff and summer foods. Watermelon, corn, steak, hotdogs and burgers, ice cream.

Drinking… wine. My in-laws have been working on opening a wine company for the last year and a half, and they’re finally up and running! Our house may or may not be stocked with the best wine around right now… πŸ˜‰

Working on… getting all the left over garage sale stuff packed up and shipped off to charities. We had a pretty successful sale but dang it was hot outside all weekend!

Playing… softball! I joined a co-ed team that plays every Sunday afternoon. I played for eight years nearly 15 years ago, so this is slightly out of my comfort zone. I really like it, though!

Planning… a fall vacation. I’m not sure what or where yet, but I presented a 2 week out west trip to K and he shot me down. (I knew he would.) Now that I’ve softened the travel-blow with an extravagant idea, it’ll be much easier to talk him into a 5-7 day stretch of relaxation. πŸ˜‰

Praying for… so many. Families who have been separated, the safe journey of refugees escaping violence and persecution, my sweet friend Rebecca Jo and her family, the health and well-being of family members and pets, neglected dogs who suffer when the heat index bursts.
**Definitely doing something additional about these things, too.

Recovering from… pleurisy. Two weeks ago I went to the ER with some chest pain, thinking it was just a stubborn gas bubble in my abdomen. Turns out it was/is pleurisy left over from untreated bronchitis. I’m much better now but the pain and immobility was a nuisance.

Relaxing… with my new video game! I found Mario Kart onΒ https://wikibuy.com/ for a great price and finally pulled the trigger. It’s the only video game K will play and I’m really proud that I held off on getting it until I could find it for a low price!

Wishing for… colder weather (sue me), a long vacation, peace on Earth, and a pina colada.

Thanks for hosting What’s New With You?, Kristen!

*Thank you so much, Wikibuy, for reaching out!

Coffee? Coffee.

I spent a few minutes trying to come up with a clever title for this post, but all I can imagine is me pulling myself out of bed, twisting my hair into a messy bun, and asking you if you’re up for coffee. You nod, just as tired and drained as me, and we confirm our date for coffee.

(We’re also going to meet Kristen at the coffee shop for What’s New With You?, though…)

If we were having coffee I’d probably have something iced or frozen because I straight up hate this heat. Damn, guys. I’m over it. I’d open the conversation by telling you that I dream almost daily of a backyard pool oasis or shaded pontoon boat on the lake. I have access to neither and it makes summer quite torturous.

If we were having coffee you’d have to excuse my nose-blowing and throat-clearing. I am fighting some weird sinus/allergy/summer cold bullshirt. This is my third time being sick THIS YEAR and I am so over it. I don’t think I’m contagious, though. No fever and so far K and my close-quarters coworker haven’t gotten it.

If we were having coffee I’d ask about your long weekend (last week). Two of my best friends came back to our hometown (where I still live) and brought their significant others with them. The girls had fun winery/brewery hopping and then we met the guys for dinner and margs. The plan was to have a fire at my house afterward, but it rained so we sat in the living room and played What Do You Meme and watch the Rocket vs. Warriors game. I love having my friends home to hangout and relax with me πŸ™‚ It doesn’t happen very often- usually I jet off to see them.

(And yes, I’m v pissed that the stupid Warriors are in the finals again. UGH.)

If we were having coffee I’d confess that there’s a deeper psychological reason for my summertime hatred. In the winter it is 100% ok to go home every night, snuggle under a blanket, and hibernate with a book and tea. In the summer there’s this grand expectation to do things. Whether it’s vacation or exercise or swimming or gardening or going to the beach or camping or whatever… it’s there. People discuss their weekends at the lake or on the road and then look at you expectantly. I feel like it’s a lot of pressure to be active and have fun. I don’t have a boat or a pool or a real garden or any athletic skill. Most of my friends live far-ish away (& I’m an introvert). I am SWAMPED with work in the summer. Honestly? My summer weekends look a lot like my winter weekends. It just feels kind of daunting, you know?

But if we were having coffee I’d genuinely want to know about your summer plans! Tell me the vacations you have planned and the weekend activities you’re looking forward to! Maybe it’ll give me some ideas to get out and about.

If we were having coffee, before we stood up and said our goodbyes, I’d ask if you read/heard any of the commencement speeches from this year’s graduation season. Steph shared Abby Wambach’s speech from Barnard College. I love it and I’d definitely share it with you.

And then I’d check the time and realize I’m late for work (because vacation days aren’t an option for me in the summer) and we’d hug and make plans to meet again soon. And I’d probably order another drink for the road.

IMUO vol. 2

Waaay back in September 2016 I wrote a post about my unpopular opinions. I stand by everything I wrote except I now occasionally use “live your best life” jokingly and I watch basketball (the Cavs) with my husband. Anyway, I’m back again with more.

I don’t like The Avengers.
It’s not that I don’t like them as much as I just don’t have time to watch it all. I love Guardians of the Galaxy and X-Men, but I’ve only seen Iron Man and Captain America as far as “avengers” go. After this last movie am I going to be totally lost when the next X-Men or GotG movie comes out?! Why do we have to combine them all?? It just seems like a lot to keep on top of…

I hate the term “Girl Boss.”
I’m totally ok with making things more feminine if that’s your style (pink jerseys, lace on tool belts, etc.). It’s not my style, but all kinds of kinds, right? However, if you’re a female in a management role or a female business owner then you’re just a BOSS. It’s not a man’s phrase because it’s not a man’s world. It’s your world and you’re running it. Be a BOSS.
(Turns out Nadine mentioned hating this phrase in the comments of my last IMUO post!)

I don’t understand the Cardi B craze.
This might not be unpopular. She may not be a hit with people over the age of 25. I don’t know. Either way, I can’t get into her. I’m not a big rap fan anyway so I think this is pretty normal for me. She just seems like the next big thing and I’m a little clueless and uninterested.

I love Instagram Stories.
Man… I waste SO much time with IG stories. I love seeing pictures or watching people talk about their day or an experience. I don’t mind boomerangs or food pics or videos. Two things I don’t like: videos of concerts and videos of super loud noises. Other than that, I’m entertained for hours by these clips.

I live for rainy days.
You know how some people wait and wait for the sun to come out and make comments like, “What’s that thing?” whenever it finally does? That’s how I feel about rain and overcast days. There’s just something extra cozy about a dreary day. In the same breath…

I STILL hate summer.
I know we’ve been waiting 17 years for the snow to stop and the sun to show herself, but I’m over it now. I opened my windows for a hot second and I shed my coat for a few days. I’m ready for the leaves to change & the temperature to drop. Sorry not sorry, guys. I just looove fall & winter.

I’ll relent just a bit. There are parts of warm weather that I enjoy- evening walks with the dogs, driving with the windows down, ice cream shops being open… but after about a month of all that I’m ready for fall πŸ˜‰

What are some of your unpopular opinions? I won’t judge you πŸ˜‰