( J U L Y ) O B S E S S I O N S

Here are some things I loved about my favorite summer month!

Disneyland

My brother/sister-in-law, my sister/brother-in-law and I took my six nephews to Disneyland for a weekend.  My parents even flew in for the day to surprise us and we had an amazing time!  I may be 28 but I am still obsessed with all things Disney.  I’ve been there so many times but it never gets old.  Plus the Disney empire just blows my mind.  They think of everything.

Color, Color, Color

I’m totally obsessed with the colored skinny jean situation going on lately.  I’m really not one to follow trends too much but I am really addicted to purple, green, turquoise, red, pink (and the list goes on and on) pants.  Oh, and shorts.  I seriously hope the love for colored pants endures for a while because my dresser drawers look like a rainbow right now!

 

Sit ‘n Floats

If you like lazy pool days, you need these.  That’s all you need to know.  Actually, no it’s not – you need to buy an air pump.  These are a bitch to blow up yourself.

 

Language Audiobooks

I had some family from France come in town last week to visit but I am so so self conscious of my accent that I still pretty much refuse to speak it in front of them.  So since I usually just read/write French but rarely have the opportunity to work on my accent, I downloaded a “Learning French” audiobook off iTunes to use in my car (or when I’m really bored at work).  It actually has been a good refresher and I think hope it is making me sound more like a French person, and less like a valley girl speaking French!

 

Girls Nights Out

So I’ve obviously always loved a good girls night out, but we hadn’t had one in a while and it just felt so good to have everyone together to catch up and have a fun night up where we can get a little fancy.  I’m very lucky to have these girls in my life.

Cornish Pasty Co.

I’m not sure how I have never tried this place out before, especially since I work right down the street, but this place is amazing!  They have a good beer slection and a ton of vegetarian options which is always a recipe for success in my world.  I had the Veggie Rosemary Chicken – highly recommended!

 

Guilty Wives

I am a James Patterson freak.  Have literally read every book he’s written.  Some have been disappointing me lately, but this one was one of his best in years (in my opinion) and one of the best books I’ve read in a while.  So if you need a good laying-out-by-the-pool book, pick this one up for sure!

 

Now on to August.  Bring it on!

[[ Song of the day :: "Roll With It" by Easton Corbin :: I heart Easton Corbin ]]

D E T O X

Yup – seriously.

This is phase 1 of my new project – a shopping detox.  No shopping for the entire month of August.  No clothes, no shoes, no accessories, no nail polish, no make-up, no hair products, no plane tickets – in other words, no fun. 

People have asked if I am still able to buy food or shampoo.  The answer is yes.  I am not boycotting being a consumer in general, I am just trying to control my inner shopaholic.  I don’t need a new outfit every time I go out or every time I go on vacation.  I don’t need 8 different shades of purple nail polish. 

To keep myself motivated, I am changing my computer’s internet homepage from Nordstrom.com, avoiding the malls, and focusing on some of my other favorite activities, such as reading.  In fact, I already have two books to add to my August reading list – “Throw Out Fifty Things” which is about how to learn to easily identify and rid yourself of excess clutter in your life, and “The 100 Thing Challenge” which is about a guy who decided to – yup, you guessed it – select and live with only 100 items.

This brings me to phase 2 – simplify.  I raid my closet every few months to get rid of all the stuff I don’t wear.  But since I have severe separation anxiety, I make excuses for a lot of items that should go, but that I just can’t seem to let go.  For example, I have kept a ton of clothes that I spent a lot of money on, thinking that I needed to keep them to get my money’s worth.  Why get rid of this $100 top?  I’ve worn it once.  But that’s like thinking to get your money’s worth from a meal, you need to clean your plate every single time and not waste any food.  That adds nothing positive and will just make me fat.

So this time, my spring-turned-summer-turned-almost-fall cleaning will be different.  Tough love style.  I’m not only going straight to the source and boycotting shopping for the month, but I plan on getting rid of a ton of stuff to clear out physical and mental space in my life.  After all, who needs 50+ dresses?!

Wish me luck!

 

[[ Song of the day :: "1979" by Smashing Pumpkins :: because it's always a good time for Smashing Pumpkins ]]

H | P

HP? 

Don’t worry – this is not about Harry Potter.  No, I just finished reading a book called “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin.

Gretchen Rubin had an epiphany one rainy afternoon in the unlikeliest of places: a city bus. “The days are long, but the years are short,” she realized. “Time is passing, and I’m not focusing enough on the things that really matter.” In that moment, she decided to dedicate a year to her happiness project.
In this lively and compelling account, Rubin chronicles her adventures during the twelve months she spent test-driving the wisdom of the ages, current scientific research, and lessons from popular culture about how to be happier. Among other things, she found that novelty and challenge are powerful sources of happiness; that money can help buy happiness, when spent wisely; that outer order contributes to inner calm; and that the very smallest of changes can make the biggest difference.


It is a very well written book that shares a year of her life in a very honest and real way.  It’s an easy read but it will definitely challenge you and make you take stock of your own life because like her, I am a really happy person.  I have amazing family and friends, I’m happy with my job, I have a ton of wonderful memories and a ton more to make.  But am I as happy as I could be?  Sure we all take some things for granted, but there’s no way I could be taking things for granted any more than the average person.  I do focus on what really matters…right?

I couldn’t help but think of “Eat, Pray, Love” when I first picked up this book.  Gretchen even references it in the beginning.  I admit I was a little disappointed because I guess I was expecting something just as grand as the journey of EPL.  But instead, it was about a year of her every day life and how you didn’t need the grandiosity to learn how to shed a new light on what you already have.  That made me realize my 1st epiphany – that I need to slow down and really appreciate much of my life that I do take for granted.

And just as I started feeling guilty, I had my 2nd epiphany – that I’m not the only one.  She’s not the first person to realize that we are not self-entitled to all these great things in our life but need to appreciate and value them, and I’m not going to be the last.  So even though the book didn’t turn out exactly as I thought it would, it was definitely worth the read.  And it did inspire me to turn my second attempt at journaling into my own Happiness Project and track my happiest moment of each day, every day.  So I guess I got something out of the book after all.

So check it out next time you’re looking for a book to pick up.  She also has a blog about her Happiness Project which I haven’t had the time to look at, but maybe one day :) 

Well that’s one of my new projects. I always have a project projects going on.  I like staying busy, I like checking things off my to do lists, and I like the sense of accomplishment.  So what are my other ones right now?

Stay tuned :)

[[ Song of the day:: "Pontoon"by Little Big Town :: sooooo summmmmmery! ]]

S U P E R S T I T I O N S

Happy Friday the 13th!

I don’t consider myself to be a crazy superstitious person, but I definitely am not shocked if anything goes wrong on the unlucky Friday the 13th.  (Luckily, nothing has.  Yet.)

I started looking up “superstitions” and found all of the typical ones, like:

 
A rabbit’s foot or four leaf clover brings good luck

Breaking a mirror or opening an umbrella indoors brings bad luck

Don’t walk under ladders or step on cracks

 

But have you ever heard of these?

Wearing your clothes inside out brings good luck

(NOT trying this one)

It’s bad luck to sleep on a table

 (That explains it)

To give someone a purse or wallet without money in it will bring that person bad luck

(Mom and Dad, keep that in mind around Christmas)

 

There are a lot of superstitions and old wives’ tales floating around and there are also a lot of personal superstitions we develop throughout the years.  Here are some of mine:

Last year I started wearing gold underwear (sorry, TMI?) during Packers games and guess what?  They had an almost perfect season.  You can bet I’ll be continuing that on this season!

Like a lot of people, I make a wish and hold my breath when I drive through the I-10 tunnel in downtown Phoenix – but I don’t think my wish will come true unless I hold my breath until the next underpass, just for good measure.

I still make a wish every time I lose an eyelash and blow it off my finger.

I always say a silent prayer when an ambulance goes by otherwise I think I’ll get sick for not wishing them well.

If I have a good fortune, I always have to eat some of the fortune cookie it came in and keep the fortune otherwise I don’t think it will come true.

And I always hold my breath until I’ve passed a graveyard.

Phew…that was kind of hard to make that list.  Took me a while to separate what I do out of superstition from what I do out of OCD!  I kind of feel like an idiot saying all of those things out loud, but I figure there are worse things in life.

Have a safe weekend, everyone! 

(Oh, and don’t run over any black cats…that will really fuck up your luck.)

[[ Song of the day :: "Time to Pretend" by MGMT :: forgot how much I love this song! ]]

J O U R N A L S

I’ve never been one to keep a journal.  Sure, when I was little I had a girly diary with a lock and key – that I never wrote in because it was just too good to actually use.  Then when I was a teenager, I was too nervous to put down anything that I was up to in writing.  In college I never had time and relied on photos to document my memories for me.  Then last year I stumbled on this:

A journal to span five years and all you have to write is one line.  I fell in love with this concept – a line a day?  Of course I can do that.  There was no pressure or commitment to write long entries…and it’s Tiffany blue! 

I was so excited to get started and already imagined what it would be like to read and reflect on the entries from past years right above each day.  Well, as you can probably tell – I love the novelty of new projects then kind of fizzle off and hit a slump.  Like…how I didn’t have any new blog posts for a month or so.  I hit a wall with my Five Year Journal and just never followed through.  I did well for the better part of the year, and then completely dropped off.  I felt so guilty not keeping up, like if I didn’t log  my favorite memories in this book they would diminish in value.

I know what you’re thinking – is she really that lazy to not write one freaking sentence a day?  I had originally thought my problem was pressure on writing a lot.  Then I realized I also felt pressure on what to write.  Reviewing the entries I have completed in this journal, a lot are random blurbs keeping track of my weight, what I ordered at restaurants, what clothes I bought, or what my to-do list for that day had been.  BORING.  But some are actually fun to look back on, like these:

January 11, 2011

I was supposed to start this on January 1st and forgot.  Of course.  I put away the Christmas tree because everyone made fun of me last year for keeping it up until March.  I hate my handwriting.

February 7, 2011

Was still drunk when I went into work.  Next year don’t be a dumb ass – take the day after Superbowl off. 

March 2, 2011

Packing for Mardi Gras is insane.  What the hell am I supposed to pack when everyone tells me strangers will puke on me 24/7?  Fuck, I might puke on myself.  I’m not bringing that shit to the dry cleaners. So awkward. 

April 29, 2011

Fast Five midnight premiere.  SO GOOD!  Drove so fast out of the parking lot after, I really showed those bitches.  LOVE F&F!

May 7, 2011

TEQUILA

June 30, 2011

I just screamed like a 13 year old girl at the NKOTBSB concert.  Nick Carter = <3. (Yes, I drew a heart)

July 2, 2011

Beer bongs for breakfast.  Rooftop patio.  Lots and lots of beer.  Never going in the ocean that drunk again.  How do I always end up at strip clubs? 

August 14, 2011

We saw a girl in her underwear hiding behind a post in the Dos parking garage.  So of course we backed up to get a better look.  Had to make sure it wasn’t someone we knew.  Skaaaaank.

September 3, 2011

Second day in Flagstaff helping the girls with Rush – lots of glitter and glue guns so we’re fully in our element.  Went out to the bars and picked up a million nachos at Primo’s on the way home.  Love Flag life.

October 20, 2011

Today I bought my first beer bong.  They didn’t have purple.  Damn.  I drank a shit ton of water and four Gatorades today in prep for Tequila Sunrise tomorrow, and I know that’s not enough :(

November 25, 2011

SHOPPED ALL NIGHT.  I JUST MADE BLACK FRIDAY MY BITCH.

December 18, 2011

What a crock!  The Pack lost to Kansas City, my Fantasy team is out, and I lost my first parlay bet ever.  PS I baked really good cookies today.

That’s when I just sort of…stopped.  But I saw this one today at Barnes & Noble which got me thinking about journal attempt #2!

Where it just asks you a question that you answer on the same day each year for five years…

I guess you could say in a way this blog is a chronicle of who I am as the years pass, but I can’t help but think these journals will capture a different part of me that I am not able to convey on here.  Plus I have a lot of purple pens I love to write with that I feel are such a waste if I use them at work.

So I’m going to think about if I will actually follow through on this one and give it a go.  But aren’t these really the coolest things ever?  I’ve given them as gifts on many occasions so far (and hope the recipients are having better success than I have).  And since I’ll probably buy one this weekend since I am an instant gratification freak…wish me luck! :)

[[Song of the day :: "When You Were Young" by The Killers :: it's such a summer song for me for some reason!]]

T H A N K F U L

Just a quick blog to share a great quote! 

One of my friends Lauren posted this yesterday on Facebook:

What if you woke up today with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?

(P.S. I am not a religious person by any means.  I am much more of a spiritual person.  When I “thank God” for something, I guess I’m really just calling out to any deity who hears my bitching and wants to do something about it to make it stop.)

So what was I thankful for yesterday? 

That the Nordstrom Anniversary pre-sale started today…

That raspberries were on sale at Fry’s for 88 cents…

And that I had washed my hair the night before so I could sleep until 8:00…

So if I woke up today with only what I thanked God for yesterday – well, I guess I’m screwed.

Then I got to thinking about all that I truly was thankful for – and the list became super long, super fast.   Of course.  But what am I most thankful for that I had to wake up with tomorrow for sure?  That’s how I made the list real short, real quick. 

Family | Friends | Health | Job | Orlando Bloom

It really made me realize that sometimes it is just that easy to simplify and bypass the small stuff.  Why get myself into a tizzy over all of this petty crap when I have so many valuable people and things in my life that deserve my attention and energy instead?  I don’t want to be super old and look back and realize that even though I appreciated all the great things in my life, I just didn’t appreciate them enough.  So keep this in mind the rest of the week to help keep you sane and grounded until the weekend :)

Also – this ties in really well with the book I am reading right now which I will be sharing with you all in the near future once I’m finished…so stay tuned!

[[ Song of the day :: "Satellite" by Rise Against :: just in an angry music mood! ]]