August 2020 According to my iPhone

I always look forward to August. It feels like the perfect summer month. This August was pretty perfect. I’m trying really hard to set boundaries and enjoy life outside of work. This month I was able to take 3 days off to celebrate my anniversary with Brett with a little Michigan roadtrip. It was so nice!

How was your month? Do you have any fun plans for September?

Change Is Uncomfortable

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I’ve never been good with change. I get comfortable and then I want things to stay comfortable forever. I’ve learned that I grow the most in these periods of changes, in the uncomfortable moments when I’m forced to learn.

2020 has probably been uncomfortable for the vast majority of people. We’ve had to change where and how we are working and learning. We have had to adapt to the uncertainties that this pandemic has thrown at us. We have had to work together to stop the spread of a virus that we were learning more about every day.

To say that 2020 has just been “uncomfortable” would be an understatement.

All of these changes this year has given me whiplash. I’m tired, burnt-out, and wanting to quit most days. I’m sure many of you are in the same boat and it’s easy to forget that we are all feeling a level of anxiety that is probably higher than we are used to.

I don’t think that anyone can say for sure when this will be over. I’ve heard so many mixed messages from different sources and I’ve honestly just stopped listening to most of them.

If you are feeling uncomfortable, anxious, or burnt-out know that you aren’t alone. One day we will look back at this and be able to see how much change occurred in 2020.

How are you doing? Honestly.

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Photo by Priscilla Gyamfi on Unsplash

July 2020 According to my iPhone

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Another month flew by! July was a pretty great month, all things considered. We spent the 4th at my grandparent’s lake house, flew to New Hampshire, road-tripped from New Hampshire to Michigan with my sister, celebrated our Niece’s first birthdays, and I finally completed my class.

All in all, not a bad month!

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How was your month?

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Five on Friday #23

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We made it to Friday! I am so excited that this week is almost over. How was your week?

As always, here are five random things for Friday:

  1. Taylor Swift’s new album Folklore came out last Friday and it’s SO good! She is incredibly talented and I’m in awe of her once again. She created this surprise album during quarantine and it’s amazing! I highly recommend listening to is ASAP. Do you like Taylor Swift? How do you feel about Folklore?
  2. Today is the last day of my class! It’s been a long week and I will be super happy when this is behind me. This is a three year program so I still have two more years of class ahead of me. If you didn’t know, I’m working towards a finance certification.
  3. Now that my class is over I am really looking forward to August! On August 19th Brett and I will celebrate our third wedding anniversary and our ninth anniversary together. We are hoping to do a mini Michigan roadtrip to celebrate! We were actually planning a Europe trip this year but obviously that won’t be happening.
  4. I’ve wanted Air Pods for awhile but I’ve never been able to justify the price so they have just been sitting on my wishlist. The class that I’m taking sent a care package to all of the students since it had to be moved to virtual instead of in-person. The care package had a set of wireless earbuds in it and I’m obsessed with them! Do you have Air Pods? Should I invest in a pair?
  5. The Fall 2020 FabFitFun box spoilers have been released and I’m not that impressed. I have to decide if I want to re-new my membership after this box and I really do think that it’s a great value. Even though I’m not super impressed with the contents of the Fall box I’m pretty sure I will be renewing my membership as an early birthday gift to myself. I love having something to open every quarter! Do you subscribe to¬† FabFitFun?

Tomorrow I am taking the exam for my class. The exam shouldn’t be terrible since I’m only in my first year so I’m only being tested on the material from this class. Year three is when I’ll sit for the certification exam which will test on all three years worth of material. Wish me luck!

Do you have any plans for this weekend?

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Summer 2020 Bucket List

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Summer 2020 will go down as being the weirdest summer of our lives. A summer where graduation parties, weddings, and concerts were all cancelled. Life looks different right now but that doesn’t mean that we can’t still enjoy it!

Here are a few things that I will be doing during this weird summer.

  • Play badminton in our backyard
  • Walk local trails
  • Spend time at the lake with family while social distancing
  • Take a Michigan roadtrip with Brett for our anniversary
  • Make pasta sauce using veggies and herbs from our garden
  • Try a new restaurant for carry-out
  • Visit Lake Michigan
  • Host a social distancing cookout with a couple of friends
  • Take a day to do nothing
  • Do an outdoor house project
  • Send co-workers and friends cards in the mail
  • Have a picnic in the park

I’m actually really enjoying having a quiet summer for once! My husband is really involved in air shows so usually our summers consist of an airshow every weekend. It’s nice to be able to enjoy some time at home this summer!

What’s on your summer bucket list? Have you been able to make any plans?

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Long Distance Sisterhood

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My sister and I are only 20 months apart so I don’t remember a time before she was born. She’s always been my built-in best friend.

Growing up our bedrooms were right next to each other and we shared a bathroom with only one sink. We have our fights and disagreements but at the end of the day, she understands me better than pretty much anyone else.

I never really thought about her moving away. I guess I just thought that we would live in the same place together forever.

And then a couple of years ago she met this guy in the Navy who she would end up marrying. It changed our family and I thought that I’d be upset about it but I’m not. I love watching her be happy.

She has now lived in New York, Hawaii, and New Hampshire. I have had the opportunity to travel to new places to visit her on a few different occasions. It’s hard being apart and I always hate when she leaves after a visit but I know she’s happy and that makes the distance worth it.

When she first decided to move with him I was worried that I wouldn’t be there if she needed me. I wouldn’t be a 20 minute drive away if there was an emergency. It’s been hard to let her go but I know that her husband is taking care of her. I also know that she’s a strong, independent woman and she doesn’t need her big sis to bail her out.

Long distance sisterhood has been hard. It’s taught me that I need to have more friends than just my sister. It’s also taught me that it’s okay to set boundaries with family.

We didn’t have the hardest childhood but we had our challenges that we got through them together. Adulthood presents another set of challenges and even though we aren’t together geographically anymore I know that we will still get through it together.

Do you have any siblings? How do you handle growing apart as you get older?

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Re-Evaluating My Priorities

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Confession: I’m a workaholic. If I’m not working I’m thinking about work and if I’m thinking about work I’m feeling anxious.

My company is really big on work-life balance but it’s SO hard. They want us to feel like we can take vacation time, have flexible schedules, and come and go as needed and I really appreciate that.

At the same time, my department is always changing and growing which makes it hard to have coverage when I need it. My work has to get done on time so it can’t just wait until I get back.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m only 26 but have been working a paid job consistently for almost 10 years. That 10 years has been split between 2 companies, 6 years at one and nearly 4 years at the other. I am a hard worker and I like to stay at a job for as long as I can given that there are opportunities to advance.

My dedication to work has caused a big issue in my life though. Work quickly became my #1 priority and I’m having a hard time shaking that mentality.

My current dilemma is that I am senior in my department and potentially up for a promotion or two. As amazing as that is, I honestly don’t know what I want to do with my life and the thought of a promotion makes me question everything. Can I handle this new set of responsibilities?

All I know right now is that it’s time for me to re-evaluate my priorities. I don’t want to look back in 10 more years and only be able to say that I worked really hard. I want to remember times with Brett and our future family. I’d really like to find a balance before having kids.

How do you manage work-life balance?

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Photo by Adeolu Eletu on Unsplash

Five on Friday #22

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Happy Friday, friends!

This week was a bit of a cluster for me but I’m trying to just enjoy everything right now. I am so glad that Tax season is over though. How was your week?

  1. My sister is in town for a few more days visiting from New Hampshire. I am so happy to have her here even if it’s just for a short visit. We don’t get to see each other all that often anymore so I really value all of the time I get with her.
  2. I have been loving the TULA Acne Clearing + Tone Correcting Gel lately! I bought it in a FabFitFun sale because I had heard good reviews and I was looking for an alternative for the Murad Acne Clarifying Solution. I love the Murad product but I ran out and was ready to try something new. This is my first TULA product and I’m actually really impressed! Have you tried any new skincare products recently?
  3. I’m taking a certification class the last week of July. It’s a three year program and this is my first year so I’m still super nervous. My class supplies arrived yesterday so I’m going to start to get everything organized and ready. I feel like I’m back in college again!
  4. I used to have an Instagram for my blog but when I quit blogging I switched to just having a personal Instagram. I’m thinking about starting to use my blog Instagram again. Do you have both a blog and a personal Instagram?
  5. Speaking of my sister, we recently discovered Beanitos Hint of Lime tortilla chips and they are so good! We both love the regular lime tortilla chips but these are way more flavorful. Super random but delicious!

My dad’s birthday is on Sunday so we will be celebrating with him. I don’t really have any other weekend plans though. I really want to get some sleep because I’ve been super tired this week.

What are your plans for this weekend?

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Photo by Sincerely Media on Unsplash

June 2020 According to my iPhone

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It’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these monthly picture posts. I usually write a little description of what picture is but I think this time I’ll just leave you with the pictures.

June was another month of working from home but we finally got to spend some time with family! I started a little container garden on our back deck, studied hard for my exam in July, and spent so much time outside. It was a good month!

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How was your month?

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Does Hard Work Really Payoff?

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I have almost a decade of work experience under my belt which feels impressive since I’m only 26. I feel like I’ve been working hard for so long, always trying to be the best at what I do and trying to lead others to success too.

I started working my junior year of high school and it seemed like most of my classmates didn’t have jobs yet. I got my job because I had been invited to go to Europe that summer with other high school musicians and I needed to be able to help pay for the trip. It was hard working nights and weekends when my friends were hanging out but it was all worth it because I was saving for something I really wanted.

I ended up loving that job and working there for nearly 6 years. I was hired as a high school junior and left as a college graduate ready to move onto my first post-grad job. My first job taught me time management and leadership skills that are incredibly valuable. I also already had 6 years of work experience which set me apart from my peers.

My current job has been a roller-coaster since day one (in the best way possible). At first, I was so miserable and I was just trying to make it a year. I loved my co-workers but I hated the job. Then my boss moved me to a different role and I loved it! I was making a difference and was passionate about it. My team is amazing and even if the work is tedious I still get so much joy out of being part of this team.

All of that to say that I feel like I have been working so hard and sometimes I wonder why. When I first got a job I was working to save for a big trip. Now I feel like I go the extra mile everyday and I am working hard to keep moving up just for personal satisfaction. Yes, I have to have a job to pay my bills but work doesn’t have to be my whole life.

Some part of me always has to be the best at whatever I’m doing. I had to take flute lessons so I could have first part. I had to be a manager at my last job because I wanted to master all of the jobs. In my current role I keep cross-training so I can be as helpful as possible and keep moving up. My current role never seems to be good enough because I know that I can always improve.

Does hard work really payoff? I’d say it does.

These days I’m grateful that I’m able to have an emergency fund for the things in life that I just can’t plan for. I’m grateful that I can afford the beautiful house that we fell in love with. I’m grateful that I can save for trips I want to take in the future. Most of all, I have a sense of pride in my work and I’m grateful for that.

In a world that makes it seem like we need to work 24/7 to be successful, I’m here to remind you that success comes in all shapes and sizes. Don’t compare where you are at to where somewhere else is.

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Photo by Kevin Bhagat on Unsplash