Find Happiness Right Now

How much time do you spend worrying about things you cannot control?  How often do you wish you could skip ahead to future moments in your life, like someday when you make more money, have lost weight, or are finally married?  What if it were possible to stop wondering and worrying and find happiness in the present?  

Today I came across an article on a friend’s wall titled “How to Get Flat Abs, Have Amazing Sex, and Rule the World in 8 Simple Steps”.  Um, yes please!  This is exactly my life goals; how did they know?!  Well, when I opened it, I found that I had been duped into realizing what a vain little first world girl I have truly become.  I have spent so much of my life working toward having the perfect body, the cutest fashions, financial stability, and becoming the best girlfriend anyone could ever wish for.  Why do I do this?  Because if I can do these things, I believe that I will find true happiness.  The funny thing is, none of these things can guarantee happiness.  Happiness is a state of mind that you can access at any time during the journey.  And with my mind overwhelmed with work and financial stresses, I really needed to remember this today.  

"When you make up your mind that no matter what life deals your way you're going to stay calm and in peace, all the forces of darkness cannot keep you from your destiny." 
-Joel Osteen

Kate Bartolotta hits the nail right on the head with her 8 tips, but I have to take a minute to focus on her tip #5: Stop with the crazy making.  You know, when you think of a possible problematic scenario in your head and it continues to spiral on and on and on until you are completely freaked out about something that may or may not ever happen?  If you don’t do this, you’re lucky.  It’s a behavior that I am guilty of engaging in daily and is surely robbing me of so many precious moments.  

Therefore, I am making myself a personal promise to stop driving myself crazy.  When I start to hear the wheels in my head turning in a negative direction, I will think about a positive situation instead.  After all, what am I gaining by worrying about something that hasn’t happened yet?  It may not happen at all.  And if it does happen, I’ll have to relive the worry twice.  I’m not saying that I’m going to stop setting goals or planning for the future to some extent, but I’m definitely going to make it a point to chill out and experience gratitude for the life I’m living right now.  

Honestly, if you have not read the article in it’s entirety, do it.  It will improve your outlook on life guaranteed. Because right now I am laying in a comfortable bed, with roof over my head, watching TV and accessing the internet simultaneously, life is good. Right now. 

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This? Or That?

Blog surfing.  This is what I do instead of reading before bed.  Whitney and Erin’s opinionated post took me on a trip down memory lane and had me clicking all over the web to see if anyone else would concur with my opinions.  Enjoy, and join in if you’re willing to add your two cents! 

Vacationing in Florida or vacationing in NYC: Florida.  I highly prefer warm to cold and bikini to layers.
Last trip to FL in 2011.  It's been too long!

iPhone or Droid: iPhone.  Anyone who uses Apple products will never go back and it’s for a reason.  The product is superior.

NSYNC or Backstreet Boys: NSync hands down.  Better harmonies and better dance moves.  Plus JT, obvi. 

Being forced to delete Facebook or being forced to delete Twitter: Delete Twitter.  I just set up my account, can’t find a single friend I know, and just don’t get the point of it overall.  I’ll keep trying.  

Fireball or Miller Lite: Fireball.  Specifically mixed with Rumchata.  Otherwise, I’m a Bud Light girl.
Cinnamon Toast Crunch shots!

Full House or Family Matters: Can I pick Step by Step?  

Dumbledore or Gandalf: I don’t even know what this is.

Dying Easter eggs or Carving pumpkins: Carving pumpkins because they can double as house decor and don’t smell like farts.

NFL or NCAAF: NFL.  I’ve always wanted to really get into a college team because it looks so fun, but so far nothing has stuck.  

A hangover forever or sobriety forever: Sobriety (says the girl who drinks more days than not).  But I don’t do hangovers.  I’m too much of a morning person. 

January or July: July!  Off work and I don’t have to bundle up! 

Hannah Montana or Miley Cyrus: Miley.  She’s a terrible dancer without any muscle tone, but she’s honest, so I respect that.  

Shark Week or Fashion Week: Shark Week because it always brings back good memories of people I have watched it with in the past.

Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or Saved by the Bell: Saved by the Bell.  Zack Morris was a stud.

Britney or Christina: Britney fanatic right here.  My entire bedroom used to be plastered in everything Britney and I have never missed a tour.  In fact, I’m pretty confident that if Britney had an emergency, I could take her place in her own show on any given night and know exactly what to do.  That is how much I study her choreography.  True crazy fact about me right there.  
In full Britney paraphernalia at her last tour.  Yea, I do that.

Burrito or Burrito Bowl: Neither.  Salad.

Reading blogs on your phone or reading blogs on your computer: Computer.  I swear my phone is already giving me carpal tunnel.  

Angelina or Jennifer: Angelina.  Even though I like both, I just find her so unbelievably sexy and mysterious.  A true Hollywood star. 

Doug Funny or The Rugrats: Doug.  Always hated Rugrats and don’t know why.

An open mouth chewer or a heavy breather: Heavy breather?  I dunno; I don’t think I’ve dealt much with either. 

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Getting Back to Exercise (Again)

After being fully invested in my personal fitness for most all of 2013 so far, I have a confession to make.  I have completely fallen off the wagon.  Since returning to school and work, I have officially been to the gym twice in the past 5 weeks, and both times were certainly not for my normal hour plus workout.  

At first, it was ok.  I felt like I deserved a little break, and then promptly fell ill within one week of being around children.  Once recovered, however, I still found myself making excuses and my inner voice saying “I’ll start next week”.  Honestly, it wouldn’t be that big of a deal if it weren’t for the toll this kind of self talk was taking on my self esteem.  I felt like I had let myself down.  I felt like I could see and feel my muscles dissipating and slowly Miley butt was setting in.  I needed to find energy to get into an after school workout routine, but as much as I wanted to and packed a gym bag every day, I found myself too exhausted to actually do it when the time came around.  This is the week I finally started to exercise again and it took a major adjustment in my thinking.

A while back, I told you what I do on days when I am lacking motivation.  It works really well when you’re having a bad day.  Swear.  When you’re in a long slump, however, it’s a little bit tougher to get started.  You may need to temporarily modulate the exercise plan.  

Cut yourself some slack.

I felt like I didn’t have the energy to make it to the gym in the afternoon, and maybe I don’t yet.  Perhaps my body needs time to readjust to waking up at 5 a.m.  My mind needs to readjust to not only satisfying work demands, but getting a weeks worth of cleaning and meal planning done on the weekends as well.  It’s only natural for a schedule change as such to cause flustered feelings.  If I have to cut out exercise temporarily to ensure I keep my other ducks in a row and sleep at night, so be it.  It won’t last forever.

Start small.

Even though I may not have enough energy for my normal hour long routine, I can probably do 30 minutes.  And after 5 weeks of non-exercise, I realize that 30 minutes is certainly better than no minutes.  Let me tell you, I’ve been sore after those 30 minutes too.  Yesterday I only lifted legs on a very light weight compared to what I was doing and today I settled for 25 minutes on the stair climber followed by stretching.  No, I didn’t even pick up a weight today.  Until I get my stamina back, I’m doing only what my body feels willing to do, and I’m not feeling guilty about it.  

Find a support buddy.

I’m usually NOT a social gym goer.  At all.  In fact, I hate working out with other people because talking gets me out of my zone.  However, desperate times call for desperate measures so I’m giving it a try.  I’m participating in a “Couch to 5K” running group at my school (Starts tomorrow!) and am looking forward to a switch in routine.  Sure I’ve run many 5Ks and even a 10K with no problem, but considering how sore I was from 30 minutes of light lifting, I’m certain I’ll be huffing and puffing and breaking a worthwhile sweat.  Want to do it with me?  Check out the link and follow along!

Do it for leisure.

If you look at exercise as a way to relax your brain and have some “me” time, it really makes it a lot more appealing at the end of a long day at work.  Again, push only as hard as you are willing.  After all, a little exercise is better than no exercise.

If I start back up by following these 4 principles, I am positive that I WILL wake up one morning with my fitness motivation back in earnest.  Until then, it’s not something I can force.  So here I am enjoying this little light to moderate exercise life..... at least for a week for two ;)  

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Indecisive Wedding Planners. The Worst.

Last weekend we went to a friend's wedding that was for lack of better words, phenomenal.  Absolute perfection.  It couldn’t have gone any better.  When we got back, people kept asking me, “so did you get a lot of ideas?!”  Ideas?  Heck no!  If anything I now have a whole other slew of items now on my brain that I hadn’t even thought about before!  And since my brain HAS to weigh every single idea on both sides of the scale, I am not making much progress.

Libras should not be allowed to plan a wedding.  Seriously, I am so up and down, in and out, unsure of what I really want to get into and am driving my fiance up the freaking wall.  I feel really bad, but I cannot stop my indecisive nature.  It’s been ingrained in me my whole life.  

One minute I want a traditional church ceremony followed by a reception, and the next I am gung ho about privately going the courthouse.  I’m not even sure what things are the most important to me.  Do I really want a dress?  Do I care if a priest marries us?  You’d think I’d at least know something at this point.  Especially being that girl who’s wanted to be married for the past ten years now.  

Yet I still find myself going back and forth on every single thing that I can possibly debate.  And at the end of the day, I’m unsure if I even want a wedding.  (Note: I said wedding. Not marriage! The marriage I am sure of!)  

The first thing that causes me to second guess every pang of excitement is probably a normal one: the budget.  Ours is basically zero.  We have no savings and nobody particularly donating to the cause, so it really comes down to what is possible in a years time and how much debt we are willing to accumulate.  There are two schools of thought going through my head.  One says this is possibly the most memorable day of my life and it will only happen once, so make it special.  The other says, it’s only a day!  It’s the marriage, the lifetime we will experience together, that I am most excited about and the wedding day itself will be over in a flash regardless of what is going on. Flip, flop... what to do?

Next, bridal party or no?  I honestly never thought I’d have one, mainly because I don’t want to torture anybody and just want them to be able to enjoy the event on their own terms.  But somewhere inside I’m second guessing myself.  Am I going to regret not having bridesmaids?  Would I be missing out on some grand experience of getting ready with a bunch of other girls and sipping mimosas in matching loungewear?  Will I say to myself “man, I really wish I had a picture of my dress on the hanger and my shoes on the floor”?  It seems so silly, but I just don’t know. Flip, flop, flip, flop.... here we go again.

Last, I have age phobia.  I sometimes feel like I’m too old to be having a big wedding.  I even question if I should really be wearing a white dress.  Certainly this plays into the bridal party questions of should grown women outside of high school spirit days be caught dead in matching outfits?  I know that these thoughts are irrational. I logically know this, but I can’t stop thinking it.  Flip, flop.... my brain may just explode.  

So, I need to know from former brides, did you have a big wedding or a small one?  If you did it again, what would you change?  Did you wake up the next day with buyers remorse?  Or were you basking in the best day of your life and know that it was worth every penny? 

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"Who Wouldn't Wanna Be Me?"

Since everyone seems to be talking pumpkins and scarves and pushing summer out the door already, here is my fall post!  I may not be looking forward to the chilly weather, but do you know what that means?! FOOTBALL SEASON!!! Kicking it off Keith Urban style with one of my favorite girls! Here we go!

Baltimore scenery.
Here we are!

Getting closer to the stage.

Lil John Harbaugh pep talk.

Keith Urban!

Rocking out! 

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The Little Milestones

It’s the little milestones that are making me smile these days.  Ever since the engagement, I feel like everything is a first all over again.  First days back to work as an engaged woman, first time referring to him as my fiance, first time looking at wedding boards on Pinterest and realizing I can actually have one of those now.  The list goes on.

This Labor Day weekend, we had our first lazy weekend together as an engaged couple.  Since the weather was absolutely gorg, we spent a lot of time poolside.  I’m not sure whether to call this a first or a last since it will probably one of the last pool weekends until next summer, but hopefully we’ll be able to squeeze in one more before closing it.  

Our praying mantis friend Carl, finally reading my June Cosmo I never even opened, and what our cluttered table actually looks like on a pool day.  

We also went out on our first real date since I got the ring.  I was especially excited to go this time since I ruined his original plan and I let him spend the money on me without argument.  We went to our favorite spot, the Catonsville Gourmet, of course.  Sadly, my go-to meal was no longer on the menu (apparently they switched owners or something), but I got something similar that was equally delicious. 

My fiance (hehe), rosemary scallops, seared tuna nachos.  

Most importantly, we celebrated ONE FULL YEAR OF HOME OWNERSHIP together!  That’s right!  One full year of successful mortgage payments down!  (Just 29 to go! Ha!) I honestly could not be more proud to say we made it the whole year without a late payment, without any major arguments, and with us both still really looking forward to the rest of our lives together.  It’s a rare thing and I could not be more grateful.  

Cheers to another year of milestones both big and small!   

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The Best Box! And More Wine.

This week, I’m linking up with Kelly at Petite Ramblings for her monthly wine review!  I came across her blog a few weeks ago and and became in instant follower.  It’s strange, but being a mere five footer myself, I’ve always felt a sort of instant attraction to other minis who are also looking up at the world.  And an avid wine drinker too?  You mean you’re asking me to drink more wine?  Well twist my arm.... I suppose I may participate.  

Honestly, I’m a huge wine drinker anyway so this shouldn’t be hard.  I went through a lot of it over the summer and probably have a glass on most nights during the school week as well.  I don’t know much about it (a $10 bottle tastes the same as a $50 bottle to me), but I enjoy it all the same.

My favorite?  Black Box Cabernet Sauvignon.  Forgive me if boxed wine was not what you had in mind for this link up, but I’m serious.  This stuff is no Franzia.  It’s a delicious, smooth, dry but not too dry concoction that goes down way too easily.  When I sit down with a glass of this stuff, it usually turns into 2 or 3 glasses.  Be warned.  

In fact, when the fiance and I were building our dry bar earlier this year,  we had special spaces made for our black boxes since that is honestly what we drink most of the time.  He sticks to the red.  I keep a box of white too because I like both.  (Pinot Grigio is currently stocked.  Also delicious.)

Also this month we popped what I thought was a fantastic bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon.  Root: 1.  I can’t put my finger on what it was, but it definitely made me stop and say “Wow!  That is really good!”.  Great description, I know.  I’m not even sure how much it cost since he bought it, but I can assure you it was no more than $20.  

Finally, Zardetto Prosecco.  My girlfriends and I drank this one the first time I saw them after I got engaged.  It was a celebration.  This one had a "Z" on the bottle (for my fiances first name) and that is why I picked it.  I thought it was great, but then again, I rarely ever drink champagne so I probably wouldn't know.  The worker at the counter said it was really good though! 

What are your favorite wines?  Check out the link for more!

Petite Ramblings - Wine Reviews

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