October 6, 2015

Change Is Good

Life has the strangest tendency to happen in the moments when you're not looking. You blink, you turn around, you pour a cup of tea...and suddenly, Life with a capital L sweeps onto the scene and shakes your world like a snowstorm in a snow globe.
I love the unpredictability of life. You can plan for a hundred years and the execution of your plans will never go as imagined. You can dream, work hard, shoot for goals...and life can still surprise you with ups and downs, new faces, new phases, and new adventures.
In the past five months I have stood on a strange precipice of life, a period of anticipation, boldness, and unknown journeys. A mixture of knowing where I'm headed and having no idea where I am going. It's a weird realm to live in, let me tell you.
In April/May, I came to the 100% positive conclusion that it was time to move on from my social media job and search for greener pastures. I am so thankful for where that role led me, but I was bored and unchallenged, holding onto my position simply because I wasn't ready to let go. It was my first "big kid" job, and I felt as though I "should" have been content, but I wasn't. I specifically remember the moment when I decided that enough was enough. It was a quiet night in the house, with a cup of green tea beside me, and I wrote down on a piece of scrap paper, "If I stay, I stay because I'm afraid and I'm comfortable. If I leave, I'm scared of not being good enough or getting into something worse than where I'm at. If I stay, I'm unhappy. If I leave, I'm unknown." I remember looking at those scribbled journal words and thinking, "Fear is not going to be the foundation of my life's decisions."
Fast forward to June and I was accepting a new role at a new company and turning in my two weeks. I stepped out of in-house social media and stepped into a digital marketing agency as a content marketing specialist. In the midst of so many changes, I have such joy and such assurance that this was absolutely the right time and the right decision to make. Also, I'm writing and creating content for a living, so that's really awesome.
As these decisions were being made, I was vary aware of the fact that August would bring a round of new  changes, some that felt even bigger than a job transition. After a year of planning, testing, and paperwork...I stepped back into the role of student and began my venture into b-school. It was (is) a brutal transition, as I learn how to balance an intense workload as well as thrive and do well in my new career. While these first few months have been long and exhausting, I know in two years time when I have another little piece of paper to stick on my wall and a few new skills to apply to my career, it will all be worth it.
And so life goes, in quiet calm periods followed by sweeping rushes of newness and unknown. My heart is settled in the peace of knowing I am where I am supposed to be in so many different ways, my head is tired and still doesn't really understand the hypergeometric probability distribution, and my hands are anxious to get to work and do they best job they can possibly do.
It is in the insanity of busyness that I watch life spin around me and I want to laugh and cry all in the same moment. We are just flecks of star dust in the span of the universe, but these moments, the quiet ones and the crazy ones, are everything. Our terminal bodies are meant for so much more than a short-sighted future. We are kingdom builders, world shakers, lovers of humans and all their messiness, their potential, their heartaches and heart joys. As life spins faster and faster, I am reminded over and over again that these steps I walk are for a purpose. These friends I make are so much more than temporary. This world we live in is not our home.
My words on this blog might come fewer and farther between in the upcoming months. I won't apologize, because I always feel sorry for the bloggers who think they need to apologize when they are absent. This space of internet has been my home away from home for almost 5 years now, sometimes I visit it daily and sometimes it stays absent for weeks on end. Life is happening in the moments we step away from the screen. I love the readers sitting behind their screens right now (hi mom), and I know your lives are filled with adventures and big moments and small moments and a hundred other wonderful and sometimes messy things to steal your attention away. So thank you, for allowing my words to be a part of your moments, and thank you for your graciousness in knowing that when I write, I write with heartfelt sincerity...and I refuse to force that process along in lieu of quality content.
Life is happening in the blinks of an eye, in fast forward motion and slowed down to the speed of a first dance. I have blinked and my world has shifted, the snow globe has been shaken and the landscape appears so differently than it did just a few short months ago. It is new, strange, beautiful, and frightening...but after all, this is Life with a capital L...and I expect nothing but the unexpected from it. Thank you for being a part of my story.

June 28, 2015

3 Lessons Learned from a Capsule Wardrobe

Simplicity is the ultimate goal in so many areas of my life. Finances, food, possessions... my organized heart skips a beat when everything is clean and simple. With this thought in mind, the idea of a capsule wardrobe captured my attention from the beginning. I stumbled across the blog Unfancy and determined myself to begin a journey of minimalism.

The idea of a capsule wardrobe is simple. Limit the number of pieces you own, plan them well, make sure they're fairly complementary, and don't buy anything else. At this point in my journey of simplicity, I have deleted a lot of excess from my life and I haven't replaced much. After a few months of no shopping and much cleaning, I now know the pieces I need to purchase to complete my closet.  Part of minimalism, as it refers to a capsule wardrobe, is owning fewer pieces of higher quality. Defining your style and sticking with it to avoid impulse shopping and causalities of a "good deal".

While I am nowhere near the end of this process, I am far enough along into my journey to want to share three of the biggest takeaways this process of simplification has brought to me. And maybe somehow, if you're looking for a way to bring simplicity to your life, this idea will strike a cord and resonate with your heart and you too will begin to take a good hard look at what you own, what you need, and what really makes you happy.

1. An emptier closet is easier to navigate.

   Less clothing means less clutter. Less clothing means fewer distractions. Less clothing means more of what you love and more room to find what you need. When the only pieces in your closet are pieces you love, finding something to wear is a happier experience.

2. Creativity thrives in a minimalistic atmosphere.

    If you want to really figure out how to become creative with your clothing, take away everything you don't like and just work with what you have. Suddenly, you find new combinations to wear and new ways to style your tried-and-true favorites. Like so many other areas of life, when you take away all the clutter, you can think clearer.

3. You need so much less then what you think you need.

Raising my hand in shame, openly admitting that I am guilty. Guilty of thinking that I need to stay on top of the latest trends. Guilty of thinking that I think I "need" something new. Guilty of feeling dissatisfied with material possessions. My journey into a minimalistic closest has begun to erase these ideas and replace them with the slap over the head knowledge that I need so very little to be content. My worth isn't in the latest trends, the clothes I wear, or the brands on the label on my back.


My step into the conscience process of "less" is becoming a beautiful journey into "more". More time to drink a cup of tea in the mornings. More energy to put into making breakfast or sweeping the kitchen floor. More confidence in how I carry myself on a daily basis. More room to grow and evolve in so many other areas of life. If I had known that donating three-quarters of the shirts off my back would feel so liberating, I think I would have done it a long time ago. 

June 19, 2015

Two Years One Month

Two years and one month of late night giggles, dodging lipstick kisses, and eating ice cream while watching airplanes pull weary passengers home.

We're airplane watchers. Since those timid first dates a few years back, we have escaped to the airport to watch airplanes when we have needed to hash out life and all its glorious struggle. We watch the west bound planes take off and we dream about where they're going. We watch the eastbound planes take off and I reminisce about a coastal life I haven't lived in 4 years. We watch planes come in for landing and wonder if this beautiful, windy state will ever feel like home to us. We dream, we laugh, we cry...we live. 

Two years and one month of heated arguments and humble apologies. Two years and one month of wedding vows being acted out every day, every minute, every moment. Two years and one month of growth, travel, accomplishments, decisions, and love. 

I used to think that I wanted to be alone for life. I wanted to fly solo, see the world without any baggage, and never settle down. I used to think that falling in love was a path for other people to take and that no one could match my restless ambitions. I used to think that running away from love kept me young and wild, free from commitment and free to live out all my dreams. 

And then at the worst possible timing, in the blink of an eye, my world shifted. Suddenly I was learning and growing and being challenged by a man who loves the coast almost as much as me. A man who embraces imperfection but still strives for the best possible outcome he can reach. A man who embodies steadfast love, forgiveness, and second chances. 

My world-weary old soul met a man who can only ever be described as young at heart. And in just a few blinks of an eye I knew that I didn't have to run anymore. 

Oh how glorious it is to have been wrong about so many things.

We watch airplanes and wonder what contrails we'll leave through the sky. We wonder what dust our shoes will carry and what countries will become engraved on our hearts. We wonder who we will become after twenty more years of questions, refining moments, and unknown adventures. We wonder who we are in this fantastically weird moment of life called the "right now".

Two years and one month of pure joy, Dr. Pepper shaming and shameless Dr. Pepper drinking, furniture painting, windows down singing, mismatched joking... and we are still watching airplanes and always counting the blessing of knowing that we don't know what comes next.

Cheers to two years and one month, my love.