I’ve had a great spring break – which started off with seeing an awesome Indians win Monday evening!
- This Massachusetts kitchen is GORGEOUS. Seriously, I had to put the adjective describing it in caps, it’s that beautiful.
- 10 health benefits of lemon.
- Love these nail art looks, and the mugs that inspired them (I actually have the owl mug in brown!)
- This story is heartbreaking but beautiful.
- I really need to break pretty much all these habits.
- 33 nonfiction books about America’s greatest pastime.
- I am intrigued by this idea of reading books of a certain theme/topic in a specific order. Have you ever done something like this? What books and in what order?
- Ways to brighten your – and others’ – day. Plus 20 more. And…15 more.
- These weddings are beautiful: 1, 2, 3.
- 10 awesome YouTube channels for working out.
- Recipes I’d like to try: roasted broccolini with lemon tahini, spring veggie and lemon Moroccan chicken skewers with minted goat cheese yogurt, banana cake with penuche frosting, twists on avocado toast, pineapple mint juleps, and ham and cheese waffles sandwiches.
Sunset in Columbus last weekend
With it being New Year’s Day, I, like a lot of society, am excited for a new year and fresh start. I’ve written New Year’s resolutions pretty much every year for as long as I can remember. Recently, in the years 2011, 2012, and 2013, I created and followed what I called the New Year’s All Year Challenge. It went okay for me in 2011, and pretty well for me in 2012, but I did not keep up with in 2013. A lot of changes occurred in my life this past year (like moving out of my parents’ house, getting married, a new job, etc.), and trying to stay focused on multiple goals every month on top of those changes started to feel very overwhelming for me. I eventually let go of them because I tend to be a perfectionist and my lack of progress on them (due to focusing on all the other big events and adjustments going on) was unnecessarily stressing me out. While my 2014 isn’t currently shaping up to have the type of life-changing events 2013, I have decided to forgo doing a 2014 New Year’s All Year Challenge for the similar reasons. I want to achieve my goals in life, but I want to make sure I am doing so in a balanced way that doesn’t put unneeded pressure on myself. I want to enjoy the journey and make sure I am having fun and spending time with those I love.
I am a longtime fan of Mackenzie Horan of Design Darling, and I recently realized her 101 Things in 1,001 Days project is perfect way for me to approach the next year. Well, really, the next 2.75 years. As she described it, it’s a “happy medium between writing a to do list and keeping a bucket list. It’s a way to dream big and make regular progress toward meeting those longer term goals.” So, I have crafted my own list and will begin my journey today! I look forward to sharing my progress and experiences with everyone. Happy New Year!!! : )
Start: January 1, 2014
- Compete in a masters swim meet.
- Complete a triathlon.
- Meet my goal weight.
- Do yoga every day for a month.
- Stop biting my nails.
- Complete a Bible study.
- Try every fitness class offered at my gym.
- Take a self-defense class.
- Give up swearing for Lent (and see if it lasts after that!).
- Complete a plank challenge.
- Floss every other day for a month (and see if I can finally maintain the habit).
- Go to the eye doctor.
- Eat as a vegetarian for a month.
- Complete a squat challenge.
- Try 20 different workouts from what I have saved from magazines over the years.
- Practice meditation/mindfulness every day for a month.
- Attend a musical I’ve never seen before.
- Revisit the major museums in Cleveland (4).
- Go to a Blue Jackets game.
- Go apple or berry picking.
- Attend a live comedy show.
- Ride the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad.
- Eat at five new-to-me restaurants in the Cleveland or Columbus area.
- Go on a tour of a brewery.
- Attend a professional orchestra concert.
- Visit the Cleveland Botanical Gardens.
- Go camping.
- Visit the Underground Railroad museum in Cincinnati.
- Obtain a passport and use it, even if only to travel to Canada (the only other country I have ever been in besides the U.S.).
- Visit the National Museum of the Air Force in Dayton.
- Take Madison to the dog beach.
- Visit Cooperstown and the Baseball Hall of Fame.
- Attend Dinner on the Diamond again.
- See a major league baseball game in a stadium I have never been to before.
- Go to a BGSU home football game.
- Send Christmas cards to all of our family and friends before the holiday.
- Host a book club meeting.
- Prepare a meal for my family using an outdoor grill.
- Do something extra special for each member of my family.
- Host a fancy brunch for my friends.
- Mail my closest friends and family cards for each birthday during these 1,001 days.
- Throw a party for my parents’ 35th wedding anniversary.
- Donate to PAWS in Madison’s name.
- Donate toys to kids in need.
- Donate to BGSU.
- Complete 25 random acts of kindness.
- Donate blankets or coats to those in need.
- “Pay it forward” at a coffee shop or at a tollbooth.
- Donate books to an organization that distributes them to those who need them or volunteer with a literacy organization.
- Complete 40 service hours.
- Sponsor an athlete at PSH or donate to scholarships offered through PCSD.
- Read 75 books I have never read before.
- Bake a pie from scratch.
- Make a pizza (dough and sauce) from scratch.
- Complete compiling and order a full wedding album.
- See a classic movie in a movie theater.
- Knit a scarf.
- Make 15 recipes out of Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
- Be inspired by Pinterest 10 times to either create/bake/cook something or utilize a cleaning/organization tip.
- Back up all my photos.
- Make a T-shirt quilt.
- Watch 10 Best Picture winning films I haven’t see before.
- Back up all my music.
- Create Snapfish or Shutterfly albums for each year since high school.
- Bake 12 different recipes of cookies and cut each recipe into an unique shape using our Year Of Cookies cookie cutters we were gifted for our wedding.
- Spend at least two months blogging consistently (five days a week).
- Watch Gone With the Wind again.
- Organize all my workout and recipe clippings from magazines into navigable binders/digital files.
- Start a history podcast and publish at least three episodes.
- Organize all my previously written swim practices and planning into navigable binders/digital files.
- Obtain a full-time classroom position and/or begin earning my masters degree.
- Learn all of the world’s capital cities and the names and locations of major rivers, mountains, etc.
- Develop my Honors Project (from college) into a full book.
- Organize all my lesson plans and resources into navigable binders/digital files.
- Find a way to combine my loves of social media and the field of education into something that serves a resource and/or community for either teachers or students.
- Truly study (not just skim/index through) all the swimming books I own and organize my notes on them into navigable binders/digital files.
Things That Scare Me
- Sing karaoke
- Buy a bikini and wear it in public.
- Get another tattoo.
- Pay off the Honda Civic Dan and I purchased in March 2013 ahead of schedule.
- Save at least $5,000.
- Create a solid budget and begin cultivating spending/saving tracking habits by following it successfully for at least two months.
- Finish changing name on all accounts/relevant records.
- Write a will and a living will.
- Buy big plastic bins and use them to organize the storage space/seasonal decorations.
- Set up a home office.
- Create and implement a rotating cleaning schedule and follow it for at least two months straight.
- Do an intake of my belongings, donate or toss what I don’t need, and organize what I am keeping.
- Find a more effective system for receiving mail, disposing of it/filing it, and responding to it.
- Style our bedroom.
- Style our living room.
- Buy an actual address book and use it.
- Clean my car and keep it tidy for at least two months.
- Find a skincare regimen that works for me and follow it for at least 30 days.
- Buy a grown up watch, and wear it regularly.
- Learn 5 new ways to style my hair.
- Get a pedicure.
- Find the perfect little black dress.
- Get grown-up luggage and use it (instead of using my backpack from high school!).
- Find my “signature scent.”
- Purchase a monogrammed bracelet or necklace.
End date: September 27, 2016
Photo above: sunset over the Target parking lot. Beauty in the simplest of places!
Hello, all! I hope everyone’s March is off to a fantastic start : )
I recently discovered this 31 Day Blog Challenge via my friend Danielle’s Instagram. I was instantly drawn in. What a great way to jump start my posting after a busy season and time away!
Luckily I discovered this only a couple days into March, so there’s not too much to catch up on. Here’s Day 1: Self-Portait and 5 Random Facts!
- I am double-jointed in both of my pinky fingers.
- My favorite colors are green and purple.
- I didn’t learn how to tie my shoes until second grade.
- My dog means the world to me.
- I have a tattoo of Ohio.
Polishes I’m loving lately:
L’Oreal Colour Riche in Jet Set to Paris: I’ve been interested in trying this line of nail polish for little while now. Coincidentally, I’ve been looking for a royal blue shade – so it all worked out! This polish was a reasonable price and easy to apply. It did chip a little easily, but I didn’t put any top coat on it and was working in a pool a lot, so take that as you will.
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Right Said Red underneath OPI’s Minnie Mouse collection in Nothin’ Mousie ‘Bout It: I have blogged about my love for Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure before, so we won’t get into that. Instead let’s discuss my love of OPI’s special nail polish collections, such as the Nicki Minaj collection or this summer’s Minnie Mouse inspired group. I think OPI has some of the most fun polish names in the business, and I’m always happy with the results I get when I use the brand. I was super excited for Nothin’ Mousie ‘Bout It. I’ve been really drawn to glitter polishes and top coats lately, and not only is Nothin’ Mousie ‘Bout It have a very faint pink glitter gel, but it has adorable pink hearts in it! The application of the polish was a bit involved, at least in order to achieve the look I wanted. I first only got the pink glitter gel on the brush and smoothed that on my nail. Next, while it was still wet, I dabbed individual hearts where I wanted them. I waited for that all to dry, and then I smoothed just the pink glitter gel on again over it all. It lasted well and made me so happy every time I looked at my nails!
Essie Sand Tropez underneath Essie Luxe Effects As Gold As it Gets: I’ve had Sand Tropez since last summer, but haven’t used it since. It just feels like a summer appropriate shade, both in looks and name. I have gotten pretty tan this summer from working at the pool so much, and the soft beige looked great in contrast. I added As Gold As it Gets over it, and the combo is my absolute new favorite for summer. I can’t get enough!
What polishes have you been enjoying lately?
…feel like summer has been moving way too fast?
…feel strange with unpainted fingernails?
…have trouble sleeping without their dog (or cat) cuddled up next to them?
…wish the summer Olympics happened more frequently than every four years?
…love kicking back with a bowl of popcorn and a funny movie after a long week?
…think it’s just as fun to go through the drive-thru as an adult as it was as a kid?
…enjoy starting the day with a big cup of coffee and morning news and talk shows?
…feel like they could eat Mediterranean cuisine for every meal for the rest of eternity?