29.

Four months. That’s how long its been since I have posted on my blog. Whoops.

Previously I was doing a challenge to get in touch with every girl from my graduating class and meet up… I managed to meet with 3 before our class reunion. All 3 were great experiences, all 3 were fun, enlightening, enjoyable. After my class reunion I didn’t continue with the meetings… not because I felt differently but because summer hit..traveling, family, birthdays, the usual excuses. That’s what it was I’ll be honest…excuses.

I turned 29 over the weekend. (Great transition there, huh? haha) 29. I thought it would feel like I was old. I thought I would get annoyed at jokes about being close to 30. I thought I would dread it. I didn’t. 29 feels great. 29 feels better  than 28. I think your age is just a number, don’t let it define you. I feel as wise as a 50 year old, (not saying I am) and as energetic as a 5 year old. We had our family pictures done and I felt as beautiful as I ever have taking photos. I feel happy, I feel certain, I feel confident, I feel excited.

I’m honestly not sure if I am going to continue with this blog or not. Its not a priority for me right now though I do miss writing some. I would love to journal. I should journal. I will journal. 29 has brought a new feeling upon me. One of NOW. Do things you want to do NOW. Accomplish what you want NOW. Not I would, I should, I could, but I AM. I AM putting together a list of things to do before I am 30 in fact.

If you were in my high school class and want to meet up, message me. Call me. Text me. I will. If you were dreading getting a Facebook message in fear you were my next victim, rest assured. And to  those 3 lovely ladies… I won’t forget your willingness and openness. It doesn’t go unnoticed.

So where do we go from here? Starting on that list, then crossing them off. What things do you want to do, hope to accomplish in the next year? Share them with me, in private, on a post, just share, please! Maybe I will add them to my list….

 

XO

 

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Classmate Date 3: Rose

As many of you know I started my blog originally to do some creative writing, touch on fitness and beauty, and to stretch myself to get more out of my comfort zone. I do different comfort zone “challenges” and have been doing a series of them in recent weeks. I have been meeting up with girls from my graduating class. Last night I met with a classmate we’ll call Rose.

When I added Rose to Facebook a few weeks ago, she accepted and messaged me asking me how I had been. I was a bit surprised just because we didn’t hang out at school nor were we in the same group of friends. We caught up a little bit and she was happy to get together with me. I knew I had some history with Rose but I couldn’t put my finger on it. I can’t believe I already forget things from just 10 years ago. I was thinking that maybe we rode the bus together or took art together.

Instead of going on a walk like I have with my last two classmate dates, we decided to do dinner downtown at Tellers. Face to face dinner with someone you haven’t talked to since graduation could be a bit nerve-wracking. But I wasn’t the least bit nervous on this date. It was probably because I knew this about Rose; she was fun, positive, hilarious and not afraid of what others think. I knew dinner was bound to be a good time.

I arrived at Tellers at 7pm and Rose was seated by the window. She stood up and we gave each other a big hug. She looked great; glowing.  Conversation was extremely easy and we laughed a ton. We reminisced quite a bit and laughed at many high school moments. She reminded me that we worked together for a short period of time at one of my many high school jobs. I quickly remembered. I asked her how I treated her and at first she hesitated. I told her she could be honest and she said that at first I was a little stuck up and she did an impression of me flipping my hair and saying things like, “I’m never getting married or having children.” “I plan to be an esthetician after school.” I was cracking up. And apparently I actually said those things. But she said after we got to know each other a little we had a pretty good time at work. I didn’t doubt that.

Dinner with Rose was a blast. She was herself. I was myself. It wasn’t awkward, it was honest, it was refreshing. We laughed a lot, we had some more serious moments, we shared about who we are today. We may be different in a lot of ways but we found several things that we completely agreed on and could have spent quite a bit of time talking about had we not needed to get home.

I always admired Rose. She is upbeat, open and confident. I feel like in school she didn’t care what other people thought and that is a rare quality. I struggled a lot with the opinions of others and it would keep me in a place of fear. Why would I let what someone thinks keep me from doing things I want to do or being the person I want to be? Even today this is something I am still working on.

I love how fearless little children are. They can be completely into different things…characters, sports, poems, magic tricks, etc and they haven’t started caring what people think about it yet. They don’t care about being politically correct, about what brand they’re wearing, status, what each other looks like. They’re accepting. I read this quote today and I loooovvve it.

“Can you remember who you were before the world told you who you should be?” 

 

Til the next “date,”

 

xo

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Classmate Date 2: Olivia

This week was my second “date” with a former classmate. I messaged her on Facebook to see if she would like to meet up and I saw she read the message. No immediate response so I began to think I was probably not going to hear back. However a little later she told me she would love to get together. We will call her Olivia.

Olivia and I were not friends in high school, we hung out in totally different groups of friends and I am not even sure of what classes we had together or if we ever interacted that much. To hear Olivia say that she would love to meet up was a pleasant surprise.

We decided to go for a walk for our “date” as I did with Lacey.  While waiting for Olivia to arrive I’ll be honest… I was maybe a tad nervous, knowing I was just winging it on what we were going to talk about. No script, interview, questions or anything playing in my head. Just a simple, “hey hows life been the last 10 years…or really ever?” (since we never have talked more than a possible “hello” or “can i borrow a pencil?”) It was a surprisingly easy conversation. I learned a lot about Olivia. How she felt in high school, what she did after. What life is like for the both of us now. It was so easy to talk to her that it was like we had hung out a dozen times before.

Olivia is energetic, genuine, brave, fun, and easygoing. Somebody that I could have been really good friends with in high school had we gotten to know each other. She was right there in my school, in my classes. I am reminded of a book I recently reread. Acres of Diamonds.

In the first few pages a story is told about a Persian man, named Ali who was told by a priest if he could just find one diamond he would be rich. The diamonds were found in shallow river banks between mountains in white sand. He sold his farm, left his family in hopes to return with a diamond on his search. On his quest he was swept under a tidal wave and passed away. Shortly after the man who had purchased Ali’s farm, found a shiny rock in the garden brook, placed it aside and forgot about it.  That same priest came to visit a few days later and saw the rock which he exclaimed was a diamond. Together the man and the priest dug through the garden which they then discovered, the farm was covered in “Acres of Diamonds.”

It was all right there, right under Ali’s nose. Sometimes, we are too blind to see things that are right in front of us. Whether that’s a friendship that could develop, a financial opportunity, or even just appreciating what we do already have. It’s crazy how opportunities are always there  – we just have to recognize them. Sometimes it will consist of putting yourself out there, doing something a little uncomfortable. Making yourself vulnerable, or having to think with a different mindset.

I hope in the future I am like Olivia, brave enough to try something new. She wasn’t skeptical of my intent to meet up even though we never had ever hung out. She’s someone who I could see wouldn’t be afraid of opportunity or getting a little uncomfortable. And, that, I respect.

“Your diamonds are not in far distant mountains, or yonder seas; they are in your own backyard if you but dig for them.” -Russell H. Conwell

Til the next “date.”

 

xo

 

 

 

 

Opportunities dont just come and go, they are there all the time  – we just have to see it.

 

 

 

 

 

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Classmate Date 1: Lacey

As many of you know I have took on a newer challenge in recent weeks. Attempting to meet with every girl from my graduating class. This past week was my first “date.” We will call her Lacey. Lacey and I weren’t close in high school. We were friends when we were little and through middle school but drifted apart the older we got.

As I waited for Lacey to arrive to meet me at Stephens Park to go on a walk, I was pretty relaxed. Lacey was kind, witty and pretty. In school she got along with most everyone that I’m aware of and she was totally willing to meet up with me, no questions asked. I wasn’t nervous that she didn’t want to be at the park with me or that the conversation may get awkward.

Once we started out on our walk we talked a little about the past, but much more about how we got to where we are now.  The more we talked the more connected I felt. We weren’t discussing the weather, the latest movie we saw, what we did over the weekend. We talked about our dreams, our fears, our beliefs, our kids. We shared a few things that were even a little personal. Why?… Why not? The realer you get with someone, the better it feels. Connecting with another in a very real and vulnerable way is something I hold dear to my heart.

I heard this pretty bold quote, “If you aren’t helping make someone’s life better, than you probably aren’t living yours right.”And most people won’t let you pour positivity into their life until they see that you are real and sincere, which sometimes means taking down the walls and being open yourself.

In our conversation we talked about perception. I had never really seen this side of Lacey, because I had never taken the time to get to know her as an adult. I had maybe even been guilty of seeing her as the 17 year old Lacey still. It was awesome to get to know she is so real and passionate, funny and authentic. Sincere and adventurous. Courageous enough to just be herself and totally open with someone she’s barely talked to in 15 years.

Nowadays it seems that our perspectives have been pushed towards the negative, even in situations they shouldn’t be. “Too good to be true” is a commonly used phrase. I’ve heard girls complain that the guy they are dating is “too nice.”  …What?

Having the right perspective and state of mind is so important. How do you perceive things when life throws you a curve ball? In a book I am reading it talks a lot about perspecitve and uses the story of David and Goliath. The armies of Israel saw Goliath as a reckless giant, undefeated, too big to kill. David saw Goliath and yes, he was big, he was mean and Goliath didn’t change. But David saw him a different way…he saw that he was too big to miss.

I’m learning that how you perceive things often has a lot more to do with YOU than you realize. This quote says a lot: “Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.”

 

Til the next “date,”

xo

 

 

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50 Dates With High School Classmates

Its been a long time since I have posted and truth is I just haven’t had something I wanted to post. I considered writing about so many things about life in general, different topics…I even did a vlog on confrontation and how to handle it. But it just didn’t feel right. Plus anything I have wanted to write didn’t go with the “theme” of getting out of your comfort zone, which is what this blog is all about. They say if you are struggling to write it…it probably won’t be that great of a read.

Back to business. This blog has been a great way to express myself, connect with others, and hopefully inspire a few a long the way. The past few weeks I have been tossing around this idea. Sounds a smidgen crazy, but sometimes crazy is good. Right?

FullSizeRenderSo…I was chatting (on Facebook) with a girl I went to high school with about going to my 10 year high school reunion. This girl and I weren’t friends in school; we were in middle school, but went our separate ways once we reached freshman year. In fact, I only talk to 3ish? lovely ladies in my grade still. I didn’t go to my 5 year reunion… I heard it was at the Beer Garden at Anchor Fest. Fun for some, but not exactly up my alley. And truly I didn’t think I would consider going to my 10. Not because I am anti-hometown or anything. I just don’t really hang out there and only talk to 3/50-70? girls in my class. But after chatting with this girl, we realized we have both changed a ton and decided we should catch up if she comes to town. We joked about how we may have even been really close in school had we just been the women we are today.

I started thinking…. I have changed. I am sure a lot of people have.  I went from being into what I was doing Saturday night, gossip, the top 100 and popularity to following my purpose, caring for my family, reading books to grow and change, and getting to know people for their heart.

My mind wandered….’What if…whoa that’d be kind of out there… nahhh that’s dumb…but it would be interesting…what if I did try…well so many people would probably think I was nuts or had a hidden agenda…but shoot it sure would be uncomfortable, different, fun, and totally out there’…. So what am I talking about?! What if I asked every single girl, one-on-one, in my grade to have coffee, lunch, dinner, Facetime, something with me? Is that crazy? Yes. Will this take forever? Yeah. Will there be people who respond? Or just crickets….. Will I be completely rejected? Possibly. Will a few people meet me and maybe let me get to know the woman they are today? I hope.  So here’s to new adventures and a goal of 50 Dates with High School Classmates……to be continued.

 

 

Picture is a throwback to Senior Year. 🙂

 

XO

 

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The Small Things.

If you are just catching up with lashes-to-lunges, you will find that each week (most weeks anyway) I do a different challenge to get out of my comfort zone. From taking a belly dance class to going to the movies alone. I have learned a lot along the way and have grown a lot as well.

This week, I took on a Pilates class. I had never taken it, never really wanted to, honestly, I just never knew what it was. I do enjoy a hot yoga class from time to time but this pilates thing didn’t sound quite up my alley.

I met the instructor while waiting outside the class. I asked her if she “has taken this class before?” And she informed me that, “yes I am actually the one teaching it.” Well alrighty then. She was super friendly and made me feel comfortable, she also knew what she was doing by the looks of things. (She was ripped.)

The class was fairly small and everyone was welcoming. We started out with some breathing, followed by a few series of things that involved small movements. Twisting side to side with your legs and shoulders off the floor, holding a “ring” up in the air while slowly lowering your extended legs to the ground. My abs were not ready for this and a lot of times my middle area was shaking from trying to hold the pose. We ended with some downwward dog, bent knee planks and my personal favorite yoga pose; pigeon.

All in all the class was simple, I didn’t even work up a sweat. The small movements is what got me. The things like holding your arms up for so long, the bridges that seemed normal but then add “knees together and toes up” and it got a lot harder.

Personally I like a workout that involves things like squats, box jumps, burpees or just lifting weights. But I know tomorrow I will be sore from these small things.

Funny how the small things can make such a big difference. With health for example…..after discussing chinese food with a coworker the other day, it was on my mind and I did indulge. Once. But if I make that decision everyday-365….I probably wouldn’t be too happy with the outcome. Sometimes the small things get overlooked.

What about finances? What small things could you cut out or invest in? Investing in yourself – reading, giving yourself an extra 10 min alone in the morning. How about kids? What small things could you do that may seem small, but to them could mean so much? Read a book before bed, give them undivided attention for an extra 15 min doing whatever they want that doesn’t involve a screen, pray for your children. What about your spouse? Send a nice text, start their car, pack their lunch.

Little things may seem insignificant but ultimately what your daily habits are; do matter. The things that can be easy to do but just as easy not to do. I am picking 3 things to change that are small but to stay consistent with. VanGogh said “Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.’

 

 

XO

 

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The Pull.

There I  was… after work, crawling into my bed, squeezing in a quick nap before Johnny got home from a long day out in the cold. Knowing that we would be up late tonight. Ignoring the laundry piled up on the floor, the dinner uncooked, the book unopened on my nightstand. The treadmill beckoning my name downstairs, the phonecalls that need to be made, the taxes that should be started on.

What is that nagging feeling, the pull, that won’t let me just take a 20 minute nap? Ohhh thats it…guilt.

imageIts mid- January and I imagine that people are already starting to feel the same nagging feeling. The resolution of eating healthier tossed out the window after an “off weekend,” the organization goal that began with getting down the Christmas tree, yet there it still stands. The goal of working out every morning but the cold weather makes your bed that much more cozy instead. Well good news…that guilty feeling is telling you something – change it! And it’s not too late! It’s NEVER too late. Who cares that you messed up your goal halfway thru the first month? Today’s a new day! Start fresh now! I always say you will regret the risks that you don’t take, 100 times more than the risks that you do take.

After a 3-5 minute debate with myself, I hopped out of my bed, grabbed an XS and tossed a load of laundry in the washer, did a 20 minute workout in my living room, read a chapter from The Pursuit, went for a walk outside regardless of the cold and made a few calls. Turned on a motivating audio, wrote down some things in my planner, put some pork chops in the oven. Funny how quickly our mindsets can change….an hour an half later and I am ahead of schedule.

Now don’t get me wrong, there are, in my opinion, two kinds of guilt. Guilt that is conviction, (when you know you need to do something but aren’t) and guilt that comes from the enemy, trying to hold us hostage in our own shame. I am talking about the first kind.

There are areas of my life that I have been slacking in, because I let FEAR control my actions. It is time to be BRAVE. Being brave isn’t the abscence of fear, being brave is stinking being fearful and doing it anyway! What are you afraid to do but feel the pull? I know that God has given me a purpose in life…and it may be scary at times but who am I to not pursue His vision for me?  This blog is not my purpose, but it is a tool God has given me to be more open and honest with myself. I have always, always, always, loved words. Ask any good friend of mine and they will tell you I can write a rap, a poem, a rebuttal to a debate, a quote on the spot.

Where do you need to be brave? What area are you hearing a little voice to tell you to move towards? Its not too late! Listen to the pull you’re feeling. Do it! You will only regret it, if you never try.

And on a side note: This week Pilates is my challenge. Thursday. Never been, never wanted to but doing things we don’t want to always makes us grow. Message me for details if you’d like to join.

 

Have a great night!

XOXO

 

 

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