Thursday, March 12, 2020



THINKING ABOUT: Congratulations Daylight Saving Time! You win. AGAIN. Maybe by admitting this, I will feel compelled to get up with my alarm and work out in the morning? I feel like such a slug, but I'm so stinking tired when I wake up. Spinning would obviously help improve my overall energy level, but morning Ashley disagrees big time. My goal is to give myself some grace, but get back at it next Monday. Anyone else share a front-row seat on the struggle bus?

FEELING: If you're ever feeling zapped (creatively, emotionally, etc.), hop on over to Uprise Art or Artfully Walls. These online resources, which feature the works of countless artists, will be an instant upper. I promise! This past week was a tough one and when I sat down at my computer on Tuesday with a blank stare on my face feeling uninspired and lacking motivation, I hopped on to both sites and discovered a few new-to-me artists whose works left me smiling and giddy to check out more from their portfolios. It's also pretty fun to pretend which pieces I'd buy if I could!

THANKFUL FOR: Unless baby Poppy decides to surprise us sooner, my sister will be induced on St. Patrick's Day evening. Eek! With everything that's been going on, I can't tell you how elated it makes us feel to have something so wonderful to look forward to. One moment Flyboy expresses his excitement about becoming an uncle, then Max rattles on about taking his cousin fishing (along with the importance of keeping her away from the sharp hooks). It's just really sweet to think about how our family will change for the better and the genuine joy that comes with adding a baby to our brood. Squee! In just ONE week, I'll get to add the title of "aunt" to my resume. I am verklempt.            

WATCHING: Over the past few weeks, the Internet has been abuzz about Netflix's series Love is Blind. Have you watched? Already committed to a handful of Bravo shows and The Outsider on HBO, I didn't have a chance to tune into the reality TV series as soon as I wanted to. Curious to see what it was all about, I sent out a few feelers to my parents and sister in the event they were watching but didn't receive much feedback. Ha Ha! Then, this past weekend, while visiting with my dad, he began discussing the series and I couldn't help but crack up. Along with the Real Housewives of Atlanta, the man loves an unlikely relationship reality show—it's just one of the many qualities I adore about him. His critique of the show has piqued my interest and I'm more motivated than ever to keep watching and get caught up with him. Sure, the premise sounds pretty ridiculous, but it's really hard to look away once you get invested!

READING: Flyboy submitted his request to separate from the Air Force this week. I could tell he was a bit anxious about his decision, especially with all the ways the Coronavirus has impacted the airline industry, so I encouraged him to read a piece I printed out recently—one I plan to revisit whenever life feels uncertain and my default is to worry:
"There are so many ways anxiety manifests in our lives. But when it’s a product of the mind, it’s important we realize its desire to 'protect' us by falsely giving us a sense of control. The many 'what if' scenarios play over and over again to convince our body we are in danger, putting us straight into fight or flight mode. Because if we can predict, we can prevent or prepare. And that sense of control is what the anxious mind craves.⁣ 
But let’s get real here, most of what we worry about never happens. The track record is thankfully lousy, and anxiety pulls us from our intuition, feeling grounded, and mindful. It steals moments with our family and friends, sucks away sleep, and creates road blocks to doing the things we want to do. So our relationship with our anxiety is imperative. 
How do we feed it?⁣ We engage in the stories it tells us. We Google. ⁣We shame ourselves. ⁣We try not to have it.⁣ We believe the stories. ⁣We catastrophize. ⁣We let it make our decisions for us. We avoid because of it. ⁣We don’t identify the emotional experiences under it. 
How do we manage it? ⁣We create space for it.⁣ We treat it like a tantruming child, where we let it ramble but we don’t engage. ⁣We set boundaries around it, and work hard to train our minds to be present. ⁣We talk back and self-soothe. ⁣We calm our bodies down with deep breathing, exercise, and nature. ⁣We learn how to form a stronger bond with our own internal trust system. ⁣We don’t let it make decisions for us. We remind ourselves that these stories aren’t true. ⁣We identify the emotional experiences underneath, and feel those instead. ⁣
Because like anything else, we have to work with it in order to create real shift. And think of it this way: anxiety burns so much energy you either let it do its thing or use that energy to form a new relationship with it. Either way, it’s hard work, but make the hard work serve you." — Tory Eletto (@nytherapist
EATING: I accidentally bought a bag of dried tangerines from Trader Joe's. When I tossed them in my shopping cart, I thought it was the usual dried mango and continued making my way around the store. It was only when the cashier commented on how the dried fruit tastes like candy that I realized my happy accident. Y'all, these tasty devils are GOOD! I might actually prefer them over the mango. I can't wait until we return to TJ's next so I can stock up.

LISTENING: The sound of a deep belly laugh is the best! The sound of that genuine cackle coming from your child? Priceless. The next time you visit the library, be sure to check out Who Wet My Pants? by Bob Shea. Max was rolling the first time I read this clever children's book to him and he's asked me to reread it countless times since then.  

LOVING: I don't typically like to wear sneakers unless the situation calls for a pair, but these Tretorn Rawlins have changed me. They are so stinking comfortable and cute to boot! I opted for the pink-and-yellow combo because I'm not one to steer away from color. Surprisingly they go with everything and up the snazzy factor to any outfit!              

How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!! 

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