Five on Friday #13

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Welcome to Friday, friends! ūüôā

This week was okay. I had Monday off to go to South Haven with Brett so I only had to work four days. A four day work week seems so much more enjoyable than five days. How was your week?

  1. Our local balloon festival is this weekend so Brett will be busy with that. I will be joining him for most of it but I’m also hoping to squeeze in some time to get chores done and spend time with family.
  2. Brett and I went to dinner on Tuesday night with my grandparents and parents. My parents are celebrating 27 years of marriage this month! I cherish all the time I can get with my grandma and grandpa.
  3. I’ve been in a reading rut lately. I’ve started a couple of books but nothing has stuck which is super disappointing. Have you read any good books lately?
  4. I’m starting to get sad that summer is almost over. I’m happiest when the sun is shining and I can spend all the time I want outside. I love fall but it’s too close to winter. I am pretty excited to switch up my home decor and drink some hot apple cider though! Are you ready for fall?
  5. I was doing really good with my health and wellness journey but I’ve fallen off the wagon a bit these last couple of weeks. I’m determined to re-group this upcoming week and get back on track! I’m planning on doing some serious meal prep on Sunday to get me ready for the week.

What are your plans for this weekend?

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Photo by Matthew T Rader on Unsplash

Learning How to Say “No”

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I’m a people pleaser and that’s not always a good thing. I hate disappointing people and nothing brings me more joy than helping someone in need. This people pleasing quality gets me in trouble a lot of the time because I make other people happy but don’t have time to chase my own happiness.

I’ve been struggling lately with this because sometimes people take advantage of how caring I am. I get myself in situations where I’m so busy taking care of other people that I don’t take care of myself. I end up exhausted, crying, and swearing that I’ll make a change and start saying “no”.

This weekend we had a family member ask me to do something for her and her family that went way too far. I want to help them but helping them would hurt my mental health in a way that would take too long to recover from. I don’t want to go into details but I had to have a serious conversation with Brett and luckily we both agreed that I had to say no.

Saying no is hard, especially when you love the person and want to help them. But sometimes you have to say no in order to protect yourself from damage. It feels selfish and wrong but it’s needed. I hate disappointing people and I know that this decision will hurt my relationship with the person. But this time I have to put myself first. I have to save myself from something that will damage me.

Taking care of yourself is more than just “self-care Sunday”. Taking care of yourself means protecting your mental health, your energy, and your well-being. It means learning to say “no” to things that will hurt you. Put yourself first, you’re worth it!

Do you have a hard time saying no to people? Any advice on getting over being a people pleaser?

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Photo by¬†Dawid ZawiŇāa¬†on¬†Unsplash

Our Wedding Day: The Details

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In honor of our two year wedding anniversary on August 19th I thought I would share a few posts about our wedding day! First up are all of the little details that made our wedding special.

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I spent two years planning our wedding and I love how everything turned out! I had time to consider every detail and put thought and energy into each and every aspect. Things did not turn out exactly the way I planned them but that’s alright! I’m so happy with the end result!

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First up is my dress which I bought at a cute shop called The White Dress in Brighton, MI. It’s a Stella York¬†dress with amazing lace detail on the shoulder straps and back. We added the sparkly belt to add a bit of bling. I loved my dress!

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My ceremony shoes were from Nordstrom but I can’t find them online anymore. I wore Toms for the reception which was smart because my feet hurt so bad from standing in heels for hours. My cross necklace was a gift from my Grandparents for my confirmation in 2007. I always knew that I wanted to wear it for my wedding! My earrings were a last minute purchase from TJ Maxx.

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Our wedding theme was English Garden because we got engaged in London. We spent our two year engagement going to flea markets, antique shops, and estate sales looking for antique tea cups to use for our centerpieces. The lanterns were from IKEA and my dad made the wood slices and table numbers.

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We had our guests sign a photo mat and had it framed to hang in our house. I love walking past it and reading everyone’s notes. The Bailey sign was made by a family friend for my Bridal shower. Another friend made us the shadow box. My dad wood burned the B and H logs.

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Our head table consisted of fairy lights and our bouquets from the ceremony. My favorite part were these two vintage Bailey’s teacups. My mom found the female cup at an antique store and bought it for me as a gift because Brett’s last name is Bailey. We ended up finding the male cup and completing the set before the wedding! We also have the cream and sugar to go with them.

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Our ceremony and reception were at the same venue. However, there was a short walk from the reception hall to the outdoor chapel where the ceremony was. My dad built this sign for us and my sister painted the letters.

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I wanted a welcome sign for when guests first arrived. I bought the chalkboard at IKEA and had my family friend write the words for us. We still have the chalkboard in our house and it’s really cute!

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My Grandpa has a tradition where he makes the card box for each of his grandchildren’s wedding days. Mine was special because he was the landscape artist who designed our wedding venue so he knew exactly what flowers would match. This is one of my favorite pieces from our wedding day and it sits on our dresser in our bedroom so I can look at it everyday.

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Our flowers were one of my favorite parts of the wedding decor. We got married under Wisteria near a field of wildflowers. I wanted our flowers to look very whimsical and wild. My sister’s bouquet is pictured on the left. I asked that our florist put a sunflower in her bouquet because those are her favorite flower.

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Our cake was made by a local bakery and each layer was a different flavor. I wanted our cake to look simple and then have our florist add the finishing touches. I loved how it turned out and it was delicious! Of course, when it came time to cut the cake I made sure to smash it in Brett’s face. He returned the favor and I laughed so hard my eyes were watering!

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Our wedding venue was beautiful! We got married under an arch of wisteria in the middle of the woods. The venue itself is a summer camp that I attended every summer for over 10 years with my sister and cousin. It’s one of my favorite places in the world and so special to our family!

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Our bridesmaid dresses were from David’s Bridal in the color Wisteria. I don’t believe that this current dress is still available. I liked using David’s Bridal because not all of my bridesmaids lived in our area so they could go to their own local store to buy the dress. It was super convenient!

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This picture of the groomsmen plus Brett is one of my all time favorite wedding photos! They are all so stinking handsome! The tuxedos were from Men’s Warehouse and were easy to order and pickup.

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Our wedding day was just so us. It was simple, colorful, and elegant. We were in one of my favorite places, surrounded by people that we love. I loved all of the little details and cherish the time I put into planning everything.

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I hope this brings you some inspiration if you are planning your own wedding! If you are, remember that your wedding day is only one day of your life while your marriage is everyday for the rest of your life. Your wedding day does not have to be perfect in order for your marriage to be perfect. Don’t stress about the little things and try to enjoy your day!

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The Truth About Closure

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When I was 13 I read the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants book series. Tibby was my favorite character, I even named our cat after her. In the books Tibby wants to be a film director and carries her camera with her everywhere capturing everything she experiences. I was inspired so I asked for a video camera for my 14th birthday.

On my 14th birthday in October 2007 my parents bought me my own video camera. I took the camera pretty much everywhere with me for a year. My goal was to create a video about a year in my life. I filmed sleepovers with friends, after school activities, family events, and every holiday.

I forgot about this video camera until I cleaned out my parent’s basement earlier this year. I brought it home and stored it in our spare bedroom in a box until last week when I got the inspiration to start going through the boxes. I found the camera again and tried to turn it on but it needed a new battery. Amazon delivered the new battery the next day and my 12 year old video camera was back in action!

Going through the videos that I so carefully filmed was extremely hard. Life has changed drastically in the last 12 years and I’m no longer friends with any of the same people. I saw the girl I considered a sister give me a hug, I listened to 14 year old Hayley talk about love like she knew how it felt, I got to see baby videos of my two favorite kids.

At 14 I thought that I had it all figured out. I had the best group of friends who I thought would be with me throughout the rest of my life. I had my dorky little sister, my parents, and my amazing grandparents. I had a future career as a film director and I was going to marry my best friend’s older brother. Everything was going to be okay because I was surrounded with people who loved me more than anything.

I obviously never made the video about a year in my life. The summer before I turned 15 was when everything started to change. One of my best friends was a guy and I think we both always cared about each other a little differently than we cared about our other friends. We started dating that summer that I stopped filming and were together for the next 2ish years.

Seeing this boy that I used to care about in these videos hurt my heart a little bit. Not because I have any feelings left for him but because before watching I couldn’t ever remember being friends with him. Our breakup during our junior year was messy, mostly because I was immature and decided that there was no way we could ever be friends again. I cut him out of my life completely and lost most of my other friends along the way too.

Watching my life from my 14 year old self’s perspective was eye opening. Being brought back to a time before braces fixed my teeth, my acne was not quite under control, and I only wore band t-shirts and converse made me realize that I never quite got closure from this time in my life. This group of friends meant everything to me and I lost them.

I think that 14 year old Hayley would be really proud of me. I know that I’m proud of her.

Getting closure isn’t always about having a conversation or making amends. Sometimes it’s just knowing that it’s okay to leave the past in the past. It’s okay to be sad about what you’ve lost while still appreciating all that you have gained.

I’m thankful that I captured all of these little moments of my life. I wouldn’t have remembered the time my sister and I had a funeral for our goldfish, the way my dog Scooter snored, rocking baby Riley to sleep, or what we talked about at sleepovers.

I’m not quite sure yet what I will do with the 36 hours of videos that I have from 2007-2008 but I’m really glad that I have it.

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Photo by sarandy westfall on Unsplash

 

July According to my iPhone

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July was another crazy busy month! I’m trying to enjoy every minute of summer but it’s going by way too quick. In July I got to celebrate the birth of my twin nieces, lots of birthdays, family time, and unfortunately, the death of Brett’s grandpa.

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My husband, Brett, works for an airline but he also works as a Media Director for a local airshow and balloon festival. The airshow takes place the week of the fourth so leading up to that I got to watch all of his news interviews on TV. He does such a great job!

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I don’t really care for airplanes but I do love seeing the hot air balloons! This picture was taken at one of the night balloon illumes. I especially love the American flag balloon!

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Next we celebrated the birth of my sister in law’s twins! Her and her husband had been trying for kids for at least 5 years before these little miracles were born. Ava and Elizabeth were born July 12th at 35 weeks. Their mom had been hospitalized since 31 weeks. Mom and babies are doing great! The girls got released from the NICU a few days ago and are home with their parents.

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Oscar got to come to work with me for the afternoon! He loved meeting my co-workers, getting lots of cuddles, and sitting on my lap while I worked. He’s such a good boy!

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Brett’s grandpa passed away on July 15th at 97 years old. Grandpa Ed was in the Army Air Force in WWII. We went down to Florida last week for his service and to clean out the house. He was buried with full military honors. Grandma Emma who passed away in 2017 was buried alongside him.

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We also had to say goodbye to Emma and Ed’s house in Florida. We spent four days cleaning everything out, organizing, and dividing all the belongings. I had a hard time leaving because I have so many great memories from our many trips to visit.

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These two were my favorite! Just look how sweet they were! I have so much love for both Ed and Emma and know that they loved me just as much. One of my favorite things about this trip was looking through the millions of pictures they had collected. Ed scrapbooked before scapbooking was cool! His scrapbook from WWII was one of the coolest things I have ever seen.

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Brett’s Aunt from Tennessee is visiting this week. They had a family reunion on Sunday so she’s been staying at our house since. It’s kind of fun having our first real house guest!

July had many highs and lows. It was hard to lose Grandpa Ed but we gained two new lives at nearly the same time. We had prayed for Ava and Elizabeth for years and I can’t wait to pass on the stories of their amazing great-grandparents to them.

How was your July?

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May According to my iPhone

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May was a super busy month for me! It wasn’t very memorable and slightly boring though. Mostly work, family time, dog walks, and time at the lake. Here’s a quick recap of what my life looked like in May.

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Let’s start with the world’s happiest dog, Oscar! We celebrated his first gotcha day in May. This means that one year ago we adopted Oscar from the animal shelter and brought his home to join our family. You can read his full adoption story here. It was really important to both Brett and I that we rescue a dog and give them a good life after a not so great start. I think we have succeeded so far!

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May was dreary and rainy for the most part but we still had some good times at the lake! I’m ready for summer!

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May was the last week of my work’s walking challenge. Brett, Oscar, and I walked pretty much every day around are neighborhood. My boys are so cute! ‚̧

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It was beautiful a beautiful spring in Michigan (when it wasn’t raining)! I love seeing everything come to life after a long winter.

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Oscar isn’t a fan of swimming but he loves sitting on the dock! We enjoyed our first real lake day on Memorial Day!

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My grandparent’s got a new boat this year and we took it on it’s maiden voyage on Memorial Day! Such a fun day with family!

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Here’s a quick look at our upstairs guest bedroom. I never fully decorated it when we moved in so I’m finally getting around to making it feel like a welcoming part of our home. Here’s a before and hopefully I’ll have an after soon! It’s a huge space because it’s a converted attic so it’s the length of our house. The old owners used it as their master bedroom.

Did you do anything fun in May? What are you looking forward to in June?

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My Sister Moved to Hawaii

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Today is the day I have been dreading for awhile. Today my sister moved to Hawaii with her boyfriend, Daniel who is stationed at Pearl Harbor for the next few months. His orders originally had him stationed there for three years but now they will only be there for a few months before they move to New Hampshire.

It’s hard to explain my relationship with my sister to people who haven’t met us in person. Our personalities are completely opposite yet we share similar mannerisms. Dani is more outgoing and personable while I am introverted and awkward. Yet somehow we make it work and are the best of friends.

This move is hard for me because I hate being apart from Dani. I worry that something will happen and I won’t be able to get to her. But my sister is the strongest person I have met and she deserves to be happy. I want her to have the best time in Hawaii while she is there. She has always talked about visiting Hawaii and now is her chance!

Dani has started a blog for her adventures in Hawaii and beyond. Her life is about to be way more exciting than mine so feel free to follow along!

Have you ever been to Hawaii? Brett and I are hoping to be able to visit soon! In fact, when she texted today to let me know she boarded her plane I was already looking at airplane tickets.

I miss you already, D! I am so proud of you and can’t wait to hear about all of your adventures. You know where to find me if you ever need me.

Lifestyle Blog, Life of Hayley

Meet Oscar – The Story of Our Rescue Dog

Dog Rescue, Adopt Don't Shop, Our Rescue Dog Story
Hey friends!

The most exciting thing happened a couple of weeks ago. If you follow me on Instagram you would have already seen but….

Brett and I finally adopted our first dog together! We have been considering taking this step for a while and we finally¬†pulled the trigger. His name is Oscar and he is a 5ish month old Dachshund puppy. He may be a Dachshund mix but we aren’t completely¬†sure at this point in time.

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It seems like Oscar has had a bit of a rough life. We¬†found him at an Animal Shelter¬†about 30 minutes from our house. My sister and I went to meet him one day after work. Brett didn’t want to go¬†because he thought¬†that he might get too attached.

One of the first things I noticed about Oscar was how tiny he seemed in the small meeting room that the Shelter used. His ribs were very noticeable and the lady we were talking to said that he was malnourished and under weight. I couldn’t believe how sweet and cuddly he was even though he was just meeting us.

It was love at first sight. I knew in my heart that I wanted to adopt this little puppy and make sure that he had the best life ever! Brett and I knew that we wanted a rescue dog, we wanted to save a life. If you’ve read my post about my parent’s dog, Megan, then you would already know just how important rescue animals are to me. We changed Megan’s life and she certainly changed ours too!

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We visited Oscar on Wednesday and Thursday afternoon the Shelter called to tell us that they had reviewed our application and were allowing us to adopt Oscar! I was at work at the time so after I hung up I went running over to my co-workers and shouted the good news! I was, and still am, so excited!

On Friday May 25th Oscar was neutered. That afternoon, Brett, Dani, and I picked him up from the Shelter. I couldn’t wait to bring him home and give him all the love that he deserves. During the car ride home Oscar rested his head on my shoulder and gave us all so many kisses. I could tell that he was happy to be going home with us.

So far Oscar has been the sweetest puppy and is the perfect addition to our little family. He is doing really well with his potty training and loves sleeping in his crate. The night we brought him home we set up his crate with a bed, blanket, and his soft toys. He went right in at bedtime and fell asleep!

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I was most worried about how Oscar would behave around our cat Lucy. So far, so good though! Lucy mostly ignores him and Oscar tends to chase her from time to time. But mostly they will both snuggle up with me on the couch at night. Lucy has adjusted to him fine and I know that with time they may even become friends.

Our little family has grown to four members and we couldn’t be happier! Stay tuned for more puppy adventures!

Lifestyle Blog, Life of Hayley

 

Things That Make Me Happy

Things That Make Me Happy
Hellllloooo!

Life of Hayley has been a little depressing as of late. I was talking to my husband, Brett, the other night and he said I should make a list of the things that make me happy so when I’m down I can read the list. So here goes nothing!

By the way, this list is not in any kind of order.

  • Our cat, Lucy
  • Summer nights by the bonfire
  • Hanging out with Brett
  • Being at the Lake surrounded by family
  • My parent’s dog, Megan
  • Shopping with my mom and sister
  • British candy
  • Road trips
  • A clean car
  • Freshly baked cookies
  • A completed to-do list
  • Sunday afternoon naps
  • Getting a good deal (on anything)
  • Summer in Michigan
  • My grandma’s banana bread and zucchini cake
  • Traveling (especially around Europe)
  • A good ol’ cup of tea
  • Reading before bed
  • Helping someone when they need it
  • Writing (this blog, a book, who knows?)
  • Boat rides
  • Walking the dog
  • Toddlers
  • Nice people
  • An unexpected “Thank You”
  • Weddings
  • A clean house
  • Fresh sheets
  • Weekends
  • New skin care
  • A full tank of gas
  • Clothes that I feel comfortable in
  • An empty e-mail inbox
  • Coke Slushies
  • FroYo
  • Putting my pajamas on after work
  • Christmas Eve
  • Fireworks
  • Summer car rides with music blaring
  • Home
  • Ikea
  • Reading book reviews
  • Brunch
  • Fresh flowers
  • London, England
  • Our wedding video
  • Collecting vintage tea cups
  • Harry Potter!
  • Art Shows
  • People watching
  • Puppies
  • Trader Joe’s
  • 90’s music
  • Sunflowers
  • Sour candy
  • Friends
  • Going to the beach
  • Camping

That was easier than I thought it would be! I could go on and on but I won’t bore you with the details. Making a list of my favorite things actually did make me feel so much better! Next time I’m feeling down I will come back and read through this to remember my happiness.

And as the saying goes – “It’s a bad day, not a bad life”

Thanks for reading! What are your favorite things?

 
Lifestyle Blog, Life of Hayley

 

Photo by Aleksandr Eremin on Unsplash

2018: Second Quarter Goals

2018 Second Quarter Goals
Hello there!

I didn’t think this post was going to happen but here we are. What’s new with you? Are you crushing your 2018 goals?

I am back with another quarterly goal list and I just wanted to mention how first quarter went for me.

The first three months of 2018 went by so quickly. January was a blur of excitement, anxiety, and many, many tears. February featured the birth of my co-worker’s baby which means three months of maternity leave for her. In other words, I am swamped at work but thriving. I am learning every day and my team is simply amazing. March feels like it didn’t even happen. March meant long hours, lots of meals at my desk, and an overflowing calendar. In other words, tax season. It’s been a rough three months but I am grateful every day for the opportunities that have been thrown my way.

We are almost one month down for the first quarter. I still can’t believe how fast this year is going! Can time just please slow down a bit?!

So, here are a few of the things I am hoping to accomplish during what is left of the second quarter.

  1. Create healthy habits. What does a healthy lifestyle look like for me? I am still trying to figure this out but I will not stop until I have the answers that I am looking for. I don’t like what I see in the mirror and I am going to change that. Baby steps are needed but little by little I will get to where I want to be.
  2. Family First. My grandparents are back from Arizona which means that summer is right around the corner. I want to spend as much time as I can with my family. I want to go camping, spend days at the lake, and just enjoy as much time as I can with the people that I love most.
  3. Make our house a home.¬†If you didn’t read my last post, Brett and I bought a house and moved in last month! We are so excited to decorate and really turn this house into our own home. We have dreamed of this for so long and still can’t believe that this is our reality. This is the beginning of another chapter in our story.
  4. Me Time. I find myself putting other people first a lot of the time. I often forget to take care of myself. I want to find time to do things that help myself like get a haircut and buy some clothes that will flatter my new, curvier figure. I have spent so much time the last couple of months being really negative about my body so I need to spend some time on making myself better from the inside out.
  5. Blogging.¬†Is this still a thing? Does Life of Hayley even exist or matter? It’s time to figure it out. Maybe I will never be full time writer or have the most pin worthy posts but sharing pieces of my story impacts my life is a positive way. I need to figure out a way to make this blog work. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! ūüôā
  6. Get my head in the game.¬†A huge thing that is holding me back is my health. I mentioned in a recent post that my headaches and migraines have been getting worse. It’s miserable. I have an appointment with my neurologist in mid May. I am hoping to discuss some next steps with him that could improve my quality of life. Right now I feel like I am just trying to make it through each day in one piece.

Wow, I had a lot to say. I sometimes forget how much I love having an outlet for all of these thoughts that usually just bounce around in my head.

I would love to hear from you so please comment below with questions, words of encouragement, or just a simple “hello”. I love to hear from you.

As always, thank you so much for reading. Hopefully I will be back soon with more. ūüôā

 

Lifestyle Blog, Life of Hayley