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coffee makes me crazy

Y’all….and I don’t even like to say y’all, even though I’m from Georgia…but I just can’t get on board…anyway Y’ALL.

Coffee makes me crazy.

I mean, I love it, don’t get me wrong, but it literally makes me so jumpy and high strung feeing that I know it’s probably not the best idea. It even makes me feel agitated sometimes. Or it makes me feel like I need to bedoingeverythingallatonceatthesametimerightnow.

So, as much as I love it, I don’t love it. 

I have also learned that if I get so dependent on it that if I stop, it results in a migraine. Also no bueno.

When I totally stopped drinking coffee, I realized that I actually felt more awake in the morning without my brain thinking it needed the caffeine. A shower was enough and I was bright eyed and bushy tailed.

But…I love coffee. Inset sadface slash perplexed face slash I don’t know what to do face because COFFEE.

I started drinking it again recently…but now that I have, I am remembering why I stopped.

Hello jitters.

It doesn’t even matter if I do the mocha thing where the cocoa is supposed to counteract the crazy. 

It doesn’t work.

I am super sensitive to caffeine and hormones and alcohol and all things addictive.

So, I am learning as I get older (and maybe sometimes wiser), that I don’t need to partake in those things often because they lead to crazy. I mean, there is nothing I can really do about the hormones. Those are coming every month, like it or not, watch out Tim.

I am also learning that I get anxious easily, so I am trying to find ways to calm that. I read this thing about high functioning anxiety and I was just like, wow. I may not have an actual anxiety disorder but I certainly have anxiety revolving around the desire to control my environment and if I don’t learn to calm it, it could become one, I suppose.

I guess I am trying to be more introspective to learn my triggers and understand what makes me react or get upset or whatnot so I can try to stop the foot in mouth disease that I have. 

And if I do have a negative reaction that was uncalled for, I am trying to go and apologize for it and say I handled it wrong and I was just frustrated/upset….label whatever the feeling was…both for me and for the other person. I know I cannot take back my words or my reaction, but I can at least own it and show that I see it and admit I could have handled it better. Hopefully I will be able to stop the reaction first the more I work on it…but I figure I have to start somewhere.

I hope this shows a healthy way to handle these types of things. I want to be a good example and teach the right way to deal with emotions. I am not perfect at it but I am at the point I want to try and to change and to be better, seeing that it’s not everybody else, it’s me. I’m in control.

Ugh coffee. Making me jittery and introspective all at the same time. You are so delicious….yet confusing!

buzzy bees

It has taken me 34 years to realize the reason why I have zero filter and just SAY what things are without any forethought…without thinking about how my words might affect someone…is because I didn’t grow up in a sharing all the things household. Maybe it was partly my personality, but we just weren’t as open about everything all the time.

When I first met Tim and was introduced to his family, it was like massive culture shock. I mean it didn’t matter what it was, everybody knew about it. I mean, hello my first Christmas there and my panties get eaten by the dog

Mortifying.

Especially to Thee Who Never Talked About Things.

It took me a while to drop the curtain (nice post panty placement, no?). But once I did?

LET’S SHARE ALL THE THINGS!!!!

And then however long ago, my mom asked my to stop writing about my dad. I have no idea why. I probably should have just not told her about my blog and then I wouldn’t have been censored, but in the spirit of SHARING ALL THE THINGS, I wasn’t going to also hide what I was writing.

And then the atomic bomb that was spring 2015 happened and I censored myself.

And now here I am, totally bottled up.

Bottled up and wanting to SHARE ALL THE THINGS!!!!

(My phone keeps correcting bottled to bottles and I think it’s probably trying to tell me something about partaking in alcohol)

(Because why not?)

So, what can we share?…What can….oh! I know.

Let’s talk about moving.

Because that lovely activity is on the horizon and I am really just…moving is hard. Moving takes so much time and energy and it disrupts everything.

And regardless of where we end up this next time, it’s not the last time Tim will be asked to move. We just want to BE SOMEWHERE we don’t have to move anymore. 

We buy houses based on how they will resell. We find houses that don’t neee much, if any, work, because we don’t want to invest in a house we know we will leave. We want to invest in a house and do all the things we want to do, but we want to do that to a house where we will stay.

I’ve been thinking about moving again, and finding friends and all that. We didn’t do much of it where we are now, because I didn’t want moving to be any more upsetting than it already will be for Kellan. He doesn’t want to leave our house. He says he will miss it. I know moving will be tough for him. I also know that this next time, we will have to start school. 

We decided to home school him, partly to minimize the impact on future moves. But, I know we will need to get connected with a homeschool group wherever we go, which will force us to get involved and make friends and become more of a part of the community.

I think that will be a very good thing, though I also think it will also be a very difficult thing when we have to move again.

So, my thoughts really around this whole thing are not the logistics of it all. It is more trying to make the whole experience positive and not stressful. Like, I will need to chill out. Tim will need to chill out. Lots of things are not going to go as planned. There will be lots of messes and clutter and things to do and people to call and instead of getting all worked up and stressed and haired, we will just need to CHILL.

That is going to be hard.

Being chill is hard for me and for Tim and for Kellan. 

None of us are very good at keeping our chill.

We are the opposite.

We are ZOMG THERE IS SO MUCH TO DO I STILL HAVE TO CALL THE ELECTRICIAN AND CANCEL THIS BILL AND WHERE IS THE LIST OF STUFF TO DO WHY IS THE HOUSE A MESS WE HAVE TO KEEP IT STAGED HOW ARE WE GOING TO FIND A RENTAL HOME WILL IT HAVE A WASHER AND DRYER WAIT ARE WE KEEPING OURS? OH THEY’RE NEGOTIABLE…OUR HOUSE NEEDS TO SELL FAST WHY HASN’T THE AGENT CALLED ME WHERE EVEN IS MY PHONE?

I mean that’s not even exaggerating. All caps are required here because my brain goes to all caps and lots of exclamation points when it is stressed.

Really it’s just this on repeat:
 !!!!!!!!?!!!&$!!!!!!@&$$!!?!!!!!!!!!?!!!??!!!!

There are no words. Just lots of noise. 

Buzzy bees as I like to call it. 

Somehow I have to silence those damn bees.

So, that’s my plan. 

I have no idea how I’m going to do it. I am just going to have to be mindful of what’s coming out of my mouth and how I’m feeling and try to just….yup. 

YOOOOOOOU GUESSED IT.

CHILL

little things about moi

It’s been so long….I’ll bet you don’t even know who I am anymore! So, I’ll tell you…kind of. In a stream of consciousness kind of way….

I recently chopped off all my hair. Well, not all...it’s basically right above my shoulders now. It’s always been super long…well, not always. I have cut it short a few times before…but it’s been a long while. When I first got it cut Tim was like ehhhhhhhhiiiiiiii???…. that’s….. different? But after a day or so he said he liked it…then kept saying he liked it over and over…so I guess he was trying to let me know he was over the shock.

I really like Green & Black milk chocolate and ghiradellli 60% cocoa chocolate chips. Those are the two I’ve found where I like the flavor the best. I’m sure there is better chocolate…but that’s what I’ve discovered thus far.

My love for sleep is…no. It’s more of a need. I need sleep. I am grumpy when I don’t get my sleep. And news flash to myself: mom’s don’t ever get enough sleep. It’s a constant battle.

The lock screen on my phone is this.  It helps me remember not to be grumpy. I found it on Pinterest.

I have found I really enjoy being a mom and I don’t really enjoy reading all the sarcastic and negative things moms and dads say about parenting. I get they are trying to be funny usually…and I’m even guilty of it…but since I now fully understand what a blessing it is to have healthy children, I do not take any moment, even the frustrating ones, for granted. I try really hard to step back and bite my tongue and change my mindset and tone if I hear myself getting upset about trivial things.

I wish I had more friends? I have some, but they live far away. And I have one here where we live now, but it would be nice to have a village. I hope that we can stop having to move all over the place and get some stability and build a village. I grew up in a village and I still have friends from that village and I think it’s nice.

Speaking of friends, I am friends with a lot of people from all phases of my life on Facebook…and when I see what some of their interests are, it makes me wish I had gotten to know them better. I think we probably would have had a lot in common and made some fun memories and keep in touch even now, versus only through Facebook.

Actually, I don’t even post on Facebook anymore because there is a HUGE…well, multiple HUGE parts of my life that I either do not or cannot share, due to family drama issues. I mean, part of me is kind of at the point where I’m just like…who even cares or needs to know about our daily life? We are pretty boring people, really. Once I stopped posting things, I also stopped having the mindset of, “we need to capture this so I can post it!” Now, we capture memories for us and not to put on display. I didn’t even realize I had become that way until I stopped, so I think that’s a healthier way to live, honestly.

I would really like to have a big garden and also honey bees…and chickens for eggs. I am not very good with plants, so a garden will be a big challenge for me, but I am determined to turn my thumb green!

If I could go back to school, I would study the weather. Get an atmospheric science degree. Weather absolutely fascinates me. I would love to be able to forecast and predict severe weather and all of that. Tim informed me it required a lot of math, and I don’t get along well with math, and so I looked it up and everything I read basically said, “TAKE AS MUCH MATH AND PHYSICS AS POSSIBLE!” And so that dream died a little…but I would still like to learn. It may stretch my brain in ways it didn’t know could be stretched, but that’s okay. It’s all part of growing…right?

I have gotten pretty okay at cooking. Baking is not really my forté because I don’t really measure ingredients, but I can make dinner…and I can come up with mixes of seasonings and spices that work well. I can open the fridge and see what we have and come up with a meal. It didn’t used to be that way. Before I had to have a recipe and all of the ingredients or it wasn’t happening. Now I can have a recipe or not or all of the ingredients or not and still make a meal.

I like being tall. I’m 5’10. I’ll take it.

I wish someone would teach me how to put on makeup. I mostly taught myself and I can manage not looking like a clown but I would love for someone to show me how to make your eye makeup look so pretty where your eyes pop. I’ve watched tutorials and all but I guess I need hands on learning.

I like having counters clear of clutter. This is also a thing that doesn’t exist when you are a mom to small children. It’s like they see a clear counter and think, “A perfect space for all my stuff!!!!” And so the counter is clutter free for maybe five minutes.

I would like to see the Great Wall of China. The Aurora Borealis. The cherry blossoms in Japan. Rome. Easter Island. Greece. The Alps. New Zealand……all of the US national parks……The list goes on but my timer is up.

So, that’s me. Part of me? Things about me?

Welcome to the randomness of my brain.

when you hitch your horse

Remember the other…week? Month? Whenever it was when I said I was just a punk kid, writing a blog, who knew nothing?

I’m learning the same goes for marriage.

Waaay long time ago I didn’t really…how do I say this? I mean grammar is purposely bad here so let’s not mess this part up….the whole vows thing. Words. They were just words that everyone says during a wedding. It was like a rite of passage. I mean who really sits themselves down to go through every vow and think it through to its inevitable completion?

No one. 

Because you can’t.

And I don’t even like to say can’t and we try to live the message that “can’t” isn’t a word we understand in our house, because there is always a solution to every problem…but for this particular thing, I’m going to say can’t.

Because you cannot possibly know what is going to happen over the years and down the path that will challenge and stretch and pull and tear those vows to their breaking point. There will be things that occur and words spoken and moments where you just want to throw in the towel because you. are. over. it. all.

Tim and I have had our share of all of those things. Big things and small things and repetitive things that aren’t even a big deal until they keep happening over and over and over again to the point they are the most exasperating thing in the history of ever OMG CAN YOU PLEASE JUST NOT WITH THE LEAVING THE THING ON THE COUNTER YOU DON’T WANT TO PUT AWAY BECAUSE YOU DON’T KNOW WHERE TO PUT IT SO IT JUST SITS FOR ETERNITY COLLECTING DUST AND MOCKING ME UNTIL I MOVE IT…to a place we can no longer find it when we need it again three months later because where I stored it makes no sense because I don’t know where to f-ing put it either.

Those things. They’ll make you crazy if you don’t learn how to see the humor and laugh about it.

We have finally, mostly, made it to that point. Unless someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed and obvious jokes aren’t even funny, can you just stop it right now, can’t you see it’s not even funny, until the grouch decides to make a joke out of the clear blue sky and all of a sudden think they’re funny. Except now, by that point, the person who was initially making jokes is in a pissy mood because the grouch went and rained on their sunny picnic….

It never ends people. Marriage is the same for all of us. Why do you think the comedian’s bits are so funny?
Because we’ve alllllllll been there. We are allllll there, every single day. We all have had the same conversations and the same arguments and the same ridiculous fights over the pettiest things. Over and over again.

The difference, I am slowly learning, is not not let all of the small things eat you up and build up and to deal with the things bothering you, even if you think it’s easier to just keep your mouth shut.

It isn’t.

You may think that’s the best way, but it’s really the worst way. You’ll fill up with resentment and lash out at seemingly unrelated things because the other person has no freaking clue that they are making you crazy (I don’t know how they don’t know, but trust me, they don’t know unless you actually tell them in plain English).

It means not walking out on a heated conversation even though you have zero desire to participate. 

It means you actually laugh – finally – when the other person makes a valid point during an argument in a funny way. You both laugh and you both are done. You kiss and make up and no one holds onto anything after it’s done, because it’s done.

We will be married ten years this year. And it has taken me that long to figure out some of this stuff. To let go. To understand what all of those vows really mean when they are put into practice.

If you’re going to decide to hitch your horses to the same wagon, then it’s for the whole ride. No one gets to cut loose and go around the river or rocky trail and leave the other to maneuver through the difficult part on their own. You go through it together. Side by side. Leaving all your shit behind you. You pull your wagon and you grumble at each other but you keep moving forward at the same pace.

That’s when the magic happens, because that’s when you learn the most about yourself, about your partner, and about how to get through the rough spots together in order to come out on the other side stronger and closer to each other. You trust each other more. You learn each other’s strengths and weak spots. You learn how to keep the other person going when they don’t think they can take another step.

So, if you aren’t married, small tidbit of advice: you better decide now if you enjoy spending all of your time with your horse – especially during the bad and boring parts – and you really better like your wagon, because it’s coming with you every step of the way.

random vent

Why are people so mean? What is the point, really? Are we all feeling so incredibly sad on the inside that we need to tear everyone else down?

Cut it out.

Go do the right thing…the hard thing…and fix it. Don’t blame someone else or make others feel bad because of the internal issues you need to work on. 

We are all guilty of this. No one gets a pass.

Kellan says a person who would cause him trouble would be a bully…and he doesn’t even know any bullies. 

But he knows they’re out there. 

I feel like the internet and social media are a huge reason mean people – or just people being mean – seem to be so much worse and so much more prevalent. 

We can alllllllll hide behind a screen whilst casting stones. 

Honestly. 

Stop.

I tell Tim all the time that I wouldn’t be sad at all if the Internet just disappeared one day. Poof. Gone.

Yes, there would still be bullies. But they’d be localized. Their reach wouldn’t extend across literal continents. 

We all need a break from the negativity. From the comparisons. From all the people you don’t even know doing all the things you wish you could do.

It’s not a competition, here.

It’s life. 

We all have one.

Go live it. Enjoy it. Experience it.

Away from the screen.

it’s not what i thought it was

Tim and I went back and read through a bunch of my old blogs….man I was a know nothing punk kid! Legit what in the world? No words…I mean I guess it’s all a process but I really thought I was something, huh?

I know better now. I have no idea what I’m doing and I have no problem admitting that. 

Kids will do that to you. Bring you to your breaking point and then a second later make you laugh. You realize that nothing is really as big of a deal as you thought. Life really isn’t that serious and those things I thought were super important? Like OMG I need to match and I have to have makeup on always and if I’m going to send out a letter you better be damn well sure that stamp is 100% straight (sorry Mase…all those wedding RSVP envelopes you spent hours on…now that I think about it, as hell bent as I was on making sure you made sure the stamps were perfect becauussse…..they were coming right back to me? I mean really, self. Did I even care about the placement of the stamps? No. No I did not.)

All those things…are they really soooooooooooooooo serious??

No.

They’re not.

And when I read back through some of the things that mortified me?

Hysterical.

All the things I thought I was going to be and do after having Kellan??

Bwahahahahahhahahaha

None of it happened. Not a one.

Also? Having kids means F makeup and cute outfits. Did I shower? Are my clothes clean? Double check? 

Then we are having ourselves an excellent day.

So, back to whatever I was saying….oh! …I’m realizing now that wisdom is really learning to be comfortable with your “plans” never working out. Wisdom is letting go. Not allowing silly, trivial things to ruin a day. Being okay with  being present in the moment instead of trying to plan the next one. Saying what you think instead of being worried about what someone might think of what you have to say.

Wisdom.

It’s not what I thought it meant when I was a punk kid. It is not knowing everything.

It’s realizing that you know nothing.

I mean of course we all know stuff. That isn’t the point of wisdom. It’s more than that. A wise person…they understand. I don’t think I’m far enough in my wiseness to properly explain…

Anyhow. What I have realized is important are family and friends. We are sorely lacking in that department.

Sorely lacking.

So much family drama has left that circle really small. I keep having dreams of reconciliation – probably because I know how much everyone is missing.

I purposely have no spoken to or allowed my dad into my life for….probably a little over 7 years? We didn’t even give him our address when we moved. There are a myriad of reasons…but it boils down to how I was treated growing up and his life choices and me not wanting that kind of influence on any children Tim and I had. Not during the formative years.

…so he got my address over Christmas because I had to send one of my brother’s Christmas gifts there and I didn’t really think about our address being on the box.

Guess I should have known better.

One that it would be there and two that’d he’d find it.

He sent me a birthday card. 

First one in years.

I was just like….welp. Here we go again.

Part of me feels like I should respond? But the other part of me doesn’t want to open any doors or windows or cracks of any kind.

Then the wisdom comes in my brain. Not that it’s telling me I should be 100% on board with reconciling, but it does say that I should clear the air. Say what I mean and be honest. Whether or not he agrees or cares or does anything about it has nothing to do with me. I can’t change anyone, nor should I try. I should just be honest and then let things fall where they may.

I feel like that is what Tim and I both need to do with our respective family issues.

Clear the air.

Be honest.

And then whatever happens…happens. I really do not think we will be any better or worse off than we are now. 

It will just be as it should. Whatever that means.

Wisdom tells me that 

Let go. 

Say what you mean.

Be present with the ones you love.

I’m totally rambling and need to just stop because where was I even going with this?

I have no idea. I’m wise enough to admit that.

(See how I kind of went full circle? Maybe 3/4 circle?)

(I crack myself up sometimes)

ode to arkansas 

I’m not even going to lie. When we first moved here from Denver (I KNOW), I hated it. I couldn’t wait to leave. I counted the days until Tim’s company would move us starting the day we got to this godforsaken place. It was ridiculously hot and there was nothing here and the grocery store sucked eggs and had moldy produce and I HATED IT ALL.

The days kept going by and the new position for Tim never came after the promised year….year and a half….here we are at two and a half years and still. nothing. Oh, there have been interviews. Even final ones. Yet not a single one has panned out. Not a one.

We were both over it. The emotional letdown from having one rejection after another after another was too much. Those opportunities weren’t meant to be but WHY???????

Sometime last summer, we were in the neighborhood walking and talking with Kellan and I brought up something a friend from Colorado said to me as I was lamenting over our situation. She said, “maybe you haven’t moved because you have to find what’s good about it all first.”She was right. We had been saying how much we loved our neighborhood. It’s the best neighborhood we have ever lived in. We don’t really have any friends in it, but everyone is nice, it’s an older neighborhood with big lots, every single house is different, and it has great running roads. They just added a park at one end and our house is amazing. Built like a tank. Huge backyard and has gorgeous windows that let in so much light. The sunsets from the backyard in the winter are incredible. I still despise summer…so we won’t go there…but we realized there are a lot of good things about where we physically live.

Then, Kellan and I spent two months in LA in August and September. It was a huge culture shock, especially for Kellan. Everyone is too busy, in too much of a hurry, and too important to give anyone else – especially a four year old – the time of day.

Kellan was almost in tears one morning when he kept trying to talk to our server at a restaurant and she never spoke a single word to us. Zero. Not one. When I finally was able to tell her that Kellan wanted to say something, she mumbled something as she walked away about being short staffed and busy and was gone. Kellan just looked at me like…why is she being like this??

I didn’t have a good answer other than that is the way people are there because that’s how the culture is…and that’s what people are used to and expect. It’s normal to them.

(Granted, we did run into people here and there who would stop and talk with Kellan, so it’s not everyone in LA…but the vast majority…they all need to just take a second and breathe)

Well, what’s normal to Kellan is the complete opposite. What’s normal is anyone and everyone stopping in the middle of what they’re doing to notice and talk with Kellan. A few days before Christmas, we were in a packed Bath & Body Works to pick up a gift. Kellan had just visited with santa and was SO EXCITED about it. He wanted to tell everyone. As we were waiting in line, a woman was rushing out and I had to tell Kellan to move so she could get by…I mean when there’s only one mall in the entire city, packed means basically walk to wall people and everyone has to squeeze around everyone else.

Anyway, so as this woman is inching her way around Kellan as fast as she can, he looks at her and says, “I just saw santa!”

Now, had we been in LA…his comment would have fallen on deaf ears. She could have pretended she didn’t hear him over the ambient noise and Christmas music.

But not here.

Not here.

That woman, who was obviously in a hurry and had no time for anyone…that woman stopped dead in her tracks, turned around, and responded. Not only did she respond, she inquired. She had a conversation. She took time out of her day to make a child feel special.

She didn’t stop because she felt obligated or because she thought she’d get the mean mom, “I can’t believe you’re so rude to a kid” eyes.

She did it because she genuinely wanted to.

And that’s how a majority of people are here. They stop. They are never too busy. They understand that a child’s question deserves just as much attention as an adult’s.

The checkout person – Jo Ann – at our grocery store? She knows Kellan by name. She calls him the “movie star” and asks where he is if he’s not with me. Same with a handful of Target employees. I have had them ask me if it’s okay to give Kellan a special treat. They ask himhow he is and give him high fives.

The entire staff at a restaurant know us and will come talk with Kellan at our table when we are there. It’s probably because Kellan walked around the whole restaurant one day, introducing himself to everyone from the hosts to the manager to the people working behind the bar. But…they remembered him. They didn’t just see him as “some kid.”

Kellan has an entire cheering squad at swimming lessons. Every single one is probably over 70, save one guy who does therapy in the same pool he has lessons in…but they all help him when he’s struggling or scared. They tell him he did a great job or how he’s improving so much (and wow has he…but that post is for another time). 

Just the other day, Kellan was having a reeeaaallllly tough day. Tears and the whole nine yards. He didn’t want to “dive” in (kneeling at the edge and kind of falling in like a dive) and swim to his instructor. He can and he usually has no issue, but he’s four and sometimes things are hard even when he’s done them before.

Well, the therapy guy starts talking with him – because he’s seen Kellan swim and knows he can do it – and then out of nowhere says he will race him to the middle of the pool. His therapy person swam out to where Kellan’s instructor was and the therapy guy and Kellan swam next to each other all the way to the middle of the pool while they were cheered on by the instructors.

And therapy guy turned Kellan’s entire lesson around with that small gesture. He even made sure he told him goodbye before we left.

I have example after example of people in this town going out of their way to make a kid feel special.

I have never lived anywhere like this. The way everyone stops and is never too busy…it is truly heartwarming. It isn’t easy to find a place like this. It’s a wonderful way for Kellan to learn how to interact with people. Without phones in faces and half distracted conversations. It’s fully engaging and 100% genuine.

Had we come here and left right away…or had we not decided to try and find the good in this place…I am not sure if we would have ever opened our eyes to the people here. They are wonderful. They have taught us all how we should pause. Life is lived in little moments every day. And we are blessed with those moments here every single day.

Never in a million years would I have given Arkansas credit for anything other than being a dumb old hick town.

But I was wrong.

Very wrong.

And not one person here has rubbed that in my face. 

Instead, they taught me with their kindness and genuiness and desire to treat people, young and old, with love and respect.

I’m humbled by the people here. And I’m so glad Kellan has learned such important life lessons…how to be human. To never be too busy to stop and talk with someone, even if we ARE busy. 

Because you should never be too busy to be kind. To have a conversation. To brighten someone’s day.

We stop.

We talk.

We smile and say goodbye while we are still facing each other and bid them a nice day.

We live the little moments that are the formative moments in the lives of little children.

Arkansas gets that.

And now…we do too.


this is where you ask those burning questions

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