Monday, September 22, 2014

A Little [big] Life Tip

Oh hello, Monday. I was hoping for a smooth week to catch up and rest a bit…buuuuuut Brookie has her first cold of the season so things are not quite back to "normal" around these parts.  It's ok, and we're all hanging in there after the seizure dog drama, but man…I look forward to a healthy happy family some day soon please!!

I was looking at the prompts I've missed and this one jumped out to me...

One piece of advice I could give to a large group of people…

I have a lot to say, clearly, I nearly document my thoughts on a daily basis.  While I don't claim to know it all, I certainly have learned a thing or two over the past 33 years.  I think the best advice is to never stop learning/working on yourself.

I'll say it again, never stop learning or working on yourself. And with that, don't ever try to be "perfect" just always focus on progress.

Sounds easy enough, but I mean in every and all aspects of life.  Don't ever think for a second you can't change; everything about you can be re-created, re-directed, lifted, shifted, massaged, and the amount of growth one can have spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically is just mind-blowing.

What do I exactly mean about never stop learning? Well, there's the obvious. Take up a new class you've never tried before.  I suggest maybe finding one of your less than stellar aspects and push yourself out of your comfort zone. Maybe it's a workout class you're nervous to try. Perhaps you're "not a good cook," which I feel is an excuse for, you just haven't done it very much so you're not too great at it.  I wasn't nearly as good of a cook as I am today.  Through many okay dishes, delicious dinners and even some "the dog won't even eat it meals," I have worked up quite the recipe repertoire.

If you're unhappy about something in life, go back to you.  Look inside yourself. The easiest thing to do is go to the library, grab some Audio-books (CD) or if you don't mind spending the $$ grab some mp3s on iTunes or Audible.  I suggest getting your own copies because just one listen won't do it. Just like you can't go on one run and expect to stay in shape.  You can't eat one healthy meal and all of a sudden, "be healthy." It's a work in progress.   Just work on you.

Notice I didn't say grab an actual book.  You totally can, but I know that requires a little more commitment.  That requires an extra action step for you to sit down and carve out 10-15 minutes of your day, and I get that it's hard.  So for a no excuse method, grab an audio. Or Youtube--FREE! While you're folding laundry or putting on your makeup, putting away the dishes or even cooking dinner.  Start listening to some good leadership or self-help books, whatever you want to call them.

You will be amazed after a few listens, you will start to think, feel and act differently.

Some favorites:

The Slight Edge: by Jeff Olson

100 Ways to Motivate Yourself

Happy For No Reason

Change Your Thoughts Change your Life

Easier Than You Think

I would tell people to not care what others thought about them, but I know for a fact that only comes when you work on yourself.  We are brought up to appease others and not ruffle feathers.  Once you've broken the chain on that, you have freed yourself, life becomes limitless.  I'm not saying be rude or go out of your way to upset people, but once you find yourself and learn to live life on your terms, it all starts getting better.   Note that I didn't say easier.  Life is never easy.  It's just how you go about and deal with your day to day, that makes all the difference in the world.

Bottom line, just know that you are never too old to grow and learn.  We are always able to change, it's just taking those small action steps to lead us there.

And for heaven's sake, everyone else is so wrapped up in his or her own life, don't worry about what other people think!  Chances are, they're too worried about what others think of them too. Just put an end to that and focus on YOU.

Here's to a happy Monday!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Dream Board: Baby Boy's Nursery

TGIF!! It has been a very long, stressful, exhausting and expensive week, but our doggie is home and seems to be doing well!! I was running around all day and finally had some time to decompress tonight.  I saw that I missed a really cool prompt the other day for #blogtember and goodness knows, I need all the inspiration I can get right now for baby boy's nursery!!

We have the walls painted with "Manitou Blue" and when I google that color, this image popped up and inspired me:

It's a bit eclectic, but I really loved the contrast of the bright orange and blue.

We have a few crib options we really liked at Buy Buy Baby, but nothing has been purchased!! I am not very "theme" oriented when it comes to a room---I like it to express feelings/moods: happiness, love, peace, fun, lively…

So I think something similar to this "dream board" would be perfect for our little man!!

Baby Boy Nursery

Baby Boy Nursery by jennifer-delle-fave featuring a round lamp

Daddy is an avid hunter, so I wanted to incorporate wild life of some sort--a deer picture or pillow.  He also loves football, so I would love to find something that fits in.

I love the bright pop of orange to accent with; certainly wouldn't do too much, but I think maybe a sheet, a throw pillow, and a stuffed animal would work! 

I think I'll keep the curtain neutral.

We'll need a standing lamp, as there is no overhead light.  I also love baskets to organize with; they really help reign in all the baby stuff you need!  

Swaddle blankets are a must as well; the muslin ones are perfect for so many things.  

The Rock and Play sleeper is on my 'wish list' and I really think he'll get a ton of use from it.

I want to find him a special little stuffed animal too, before he is born. I bought Brooke an adorable ballerina bear, and my heart just melts when she plays with it.

Anything I should add? 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Make a Vlog!

I may be a few days behind this challenge, but I made a video!! WOO HOO. 
It's more of a 'life update' and what's been going on…craziness. 
There are other videos on my YouTube channel from the past, feel free to check them out!

Thanks for watching!!

**oops today is the 17th!! haha

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Where my Blog Began

Day 14:  When and why did I start blogging?

How fitting as I am approaching my 3rd blog-anniversary soon!  I started on September 28 and wrote my first post here.  I found myself in a whole new situation--I had taught English for 8 years and through much discussion, my husband and I decided it would be best for me to stay home.   There are many reasons for that happening, the main thing was the lack of time we spent together…I was up at 4:30/5am and out the door by 6:30 and he would get home at 9pm some nights.  While that may be "the way it is" for some people, we decided that financially he could support the two of us and my job, though not earning any income, was better fitted to stay home.  Because it was a personal choice, I have never once felt like a slave or that I made a bad choice. Sure, there are moments when I wish I had to wear some fancy clothes and sometimes I miss the idea of teaching--a classroom full of kids…but I also know it's not all sunshine and roses and that my role as a wife and mother are far more greater to me at this point than any dollar amount earned in a job.  {Well, unless you could the amazing part time gig I have with AdvoCare!}

So because my life drastically changed, I started reflecting on what made me happy; writing has always been therapeutic for me and I just love reading and writing.  I started connecting with other bloggers; young fashionistas, other housewives and just some amazing women overall!  There was an entire community at my fingertips and I just dove right in.  I loved being a part of swaps, sharing recipes, cleaning/recipe ideas…my blog was super cheesy looking back on it!! I talked a lot about clothes and coffee... That of course only lasted a short while, in April of 2012 I became pregnant with our first and my blog certainly has shifted ever since!!

I have met some of the best people through blog-land.  I went to NJ last year and met Nikki and Danielle, who have helped me earn my SAHM income over the last year [$500-$1000 per month!]  I hope to meet more of my own team, like my rockstar mama Rachel out in Cali.  I'm helping her earn extra while staying home with her baby girl; and she's helping other mommas who want to earn enough to spend more time at home. I love how I can be at home, but still connect and build friendships and co-workers. It's awesome to be able to help others.  It definitely fills that "teacher" void of wanting to help people succeed.

I think in some regards the blog-o-sphere has kind of changed…a lot.   Maybe it's because we all keep having kids and less time to write paragraphs upon paragraphs, and with instant social media like Facebook or Instagram, it kind of replaces that intimate connection of the blog.  I still keep up with mine, mostly for me to look back on and for my mom and grandma down in South Carolina.  Sometimes I think about making my blog private and only letting certain people in on our life, but then a bigger part of me thinks maybe, just maybe I'm helping just one person out with something that I say. I know that I find reading other real life blogs helpful, so I feel like I have something that may benefit others.  Who knows… maybe I'm just cray.

I just never would have thought that by starting a silly little blog, it'd lead me where I am today.  I have no clue who I would be, it's really weird to stop and think about all of the relationships that have been built through a blog.

Regardless, thank you for reading---whomever you are!! Whether you're a long time no commenter reader, or someone whom I correspond with on the daily.   Or maybe you're just my mom or mother in law and want to see Brooke pics haha.  {Yeah, yeah, I'll get back to them, don't worry!}

Have a great day!

Day 13: Relationship

Thirteen!! Holy moly.

A few things have come up lately and blogging {like it tends to} took a backseat.  I'll catch-up!!

 Today's prompt is very important to me, as it is "share your relationship." I've been married just a little over 4 years and have been with Joe since January 2008.

I always wonder what my blog would've looked like during my single and dating days.  So many frogs I had to get through before I met my prince!! I had never been engaged or married before I met Joe, so when he popped the question October 23, 2009---I was MORE than ready to say yes!!

Our story is simple and you can actually read more about it here.   I love the way we met and looking back on our first few dates, they always put a smile on my face.  That said, we had our share of differences, and quite a few fights early on.  There were moments when we wondered if we were truly meant to be, or if we were too different to make us work.  Through a lot of communication, compromising and love, I consider us a power couple and stronger than I'd ever imagine my marriage to be.

We dated, engaged, had a dream wedding, an even more amazing honeymoon, one daughter and a son on the way.  I would say we are living our dream life.  Every day we wake up grateful and happy.  We sure have our share of tough times, like currently with our dog, but I know we can get through anything together.  Life just keeps getting busier and we seem to be adding more to our plates than subtracting; we've started our own business, owning rental properties.  While it's not terribly time consuming, it's certainly in the infantile stages and requires lots of thinking, researching, and is one more thing to juggle in the scheme of life.  However, we believe that handwork and dedication will pay off.  We may not be relaxing on a lake or chilling out every weekend at BBQs, but in time I know we will be living very comfortably.  We sacrifice the down time now for what we want most later in life.

I know that I was meant to be a wife and a mother; it makes my heart full and I just love raising our daughter--a product of the love of my life and me.  I know that our little boy will capture our heart, just as Brooke has done.  I cannot put into words how crazy amazing it is to look into your daughter's eyes and see the man you love.  It's pretty awesome.

But there are moments when I miss "Joe and Jenn" because first and foremost, I love my husband.  That is why we took a trip, well tried to take a trip, just the two of us last Spring.  Little did we know we'd be going with baby boy on the way!  Without that solid foundation of a trusting, loving, caring, friendship and romantic marriage, I don't think we would be providing the very best that we could for our children.  He's my best friend and there is honestly no one else I'd rather spend a little more time with, than my husband Joe.  We believe in date nights and alone time, as that is so important for our children to see how much their parents are in love.  To put "us" first sometimes only makes the family better as a whole.

It's really amazing to look back and in almost 7 years, see how much two people can grow, accomplish and become.  I think we're doing more than alright and I can't wait to see what the next 50 years bring! I can guarantee it will be a wild ride.