Thursday, September 18, 2014

Just a thought...

When we let down our guard by showing weakness and our vulnerability, and the person we show it to mocks us and uses it against it....
I think that's a large part of what is wrong with the world. 
Also, our relationships with significant others, or family. Friendships. Marriages. 

Don't let those people cause you to shut down.

Some can handle seeing you at your worst because they see the best in you too. They know you can be strong but they can handle your human side too. 

I genuinely hope you all can find people like those kind people, and that your life is better for it.

I'm here and I don't judge you for being vulnerable.

Authentic thought of the Day...

Love is not Love until Love is Vulnerable ~ Theodore Roosevelt 

30 Things: Day 19 of 30

If you could live anywhere, where would it be and why?

As boring as it sounds, I like where I am now. In rural Appalachia. I have lived in/traveled to many places, and yes they have lots of things that we don't have in the mountains...but it is so beautiful here. It's (usually) peaceful. The school my kids attend is small but has great resources and a good curriculum. Sure, I get bored and wish there were more things to do here, but the beauty of living the way we do is that we learn to be creative and resourceful. In a good way, not a 'cooking meth in the woods' way. Although we have those too...but as long as you stay positive and don't trek too far off the beaten path, you're good. Small towns can be your best friend or worst enemy. Make one mistake and everyone knows about it. Gossip fodder forever. It's really made me toe the line. Not that I try to be perfect, because I am who I am. I'm just saying, it helps you stay on the right path. I would love to travel all over the world, but keep where I am as my home base.

Ask me that again this winter when we're snowed in and I have two bored, crazy kids bouncing off the walls. I'll be like Olaf, dreaming of beaches and blue skies.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

30 Things: Day 18 of 30

What has been the most difficult thing you have had to forgive?

I have done many things, and many things have been done to me, that are difficult to forgive. Some I have moved on from, and some still linger and surface at unexpected times. Some wounds don't easily heal. However, for me to keep moving on in life I have to keep in mind that whatever I've been through has served to teach me a lesson. For example, I don't trust people as easily now. Some might say that's a bad thing, but I feel like it's a good thing. I treat others with the respect I'm told to show by God, but that doesn't mean I have to let just anyone in and make myself or my family vulnerable. I haven't always been the best judge of character and I just want to be extra careful, is all. It was something that I had to learn the hard way. It could have ended much worse, and it did end pretty bad, considering the outcome on more than one occasion, but I was able to remove myself from the situation. The consequences stay with me, and I can't forget what was sacrificed for my stupidity. I was young. I was stupid. It cost me, and it cost so much more than just me. I will never forget that. This is heavy, and I don't want to bring anyone down. But I want you to know that I am here and I understand that sometimes we do things that weigh heavily on our soul. That's why forgiveness isn't just for us, to make us feel happy and free. It does that, but it's also to teach us better and to help us move forward on the path we need to take. It's not easy, but you have to find the good and take that with you. I'm sorry. I hope I am forgiven. The Lord says I am. I want to forgive others. I am trying.

So basically, I have had to forgive myself for some pretty shitty things I've done. I can't control what others do, but I can control what I do. Some things haunt me still, but when I look back on my life, I want to see more than the bad things that are blocking my view from the bigger picture. I can't wallow in regret when I have so much more to accomplish on this Earth.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

30 Things: Day 17 of 30

What is the thing you most wish you were most great at?

Hmmm...I would love to be great at so many things. I wish I was better at Math. I wish being patient in especially tough times came easily to me. I wish I were better at being brave and fearless, especially when I need to stand my ground.
I also want to be amazing at art and music. I like being crafty, I love music. I wish I could decorate my home on a shoestring budget and make it look amazing. I'm trying that one now...

There are a lot of things I'd like to be great at. Some of them might never happen. I'd like to be able to sing, but I can barely carry a tune. That doesn't usually stop me from singing alone in the car though. Or the shower. Or when my jam comes on in the grocery store. I might be getting old, but I think some of the stores play great music these days.

Monday, September 15, 2014

30 Things: Day 16 of 30

What are your 5 greatest accomplishments?

1. Becoming a mother. My girls are my everything, without question. I know that they are their own little persons and they will accomplish things on their own, but being a mother to these two bright, unique, sweet girls is by far the greatest thing that ever happened to me.

2. Getting into shape. I have such a long way to go, but so far I am continuously impressed by what my body is capable of. I was crouched down in the bathroom putting my hair straightener away when I caught a glimpse of some sort of bulge on my thigh. I was alarmed until I felt it and realized....that's a quad muscle. I had never seen that on my own body before! I was amazed. I might be going slow, and I might not ever be able to do some of the things that others can do, but for right now I am pretty pleased with how things are going and hope I can see this fitness thing through. And stick with it.

3. Anytime I spread the word of God or get someone to come to church, I consider that an accomplishment. I don't mean that in a selfish way. I really don't take credit for God's work, of course I don't! I just mean it makes me happy if someone hears the Gospel and I helped them get there. Part of our purpose on Earth is to get people to hear The Good News.

4. Learning to drive a stick shift, change a tire, check the oil. That might sound silly for an accomplishment, but those lessons were earned and I think it is important for men and women both to know how to do these things. The more you know, the less likely you are to be taken advantage of. You should at least know how to operate a lawn mower, cook simple meals, take basic care of a vehicle, etc. I promise you it will come in handy.

5. Learning to step outside my comfort zone. There are so many things I have missed out on because I was afraid to do anything too unfamiliar. I still struggle with this one, but I try to do something that scares me whenever a big opportunity arises. The older I get, the more I realize that amazing opportunities are limited. I can't stand in my own way all the time. One of my biggest fears is to make a fool out of myself, especially in front of others. I still don't enjoy public embarrassment (like many people, I'm sure) but I have started to learn that I will miss out some pretty amazing things if I don't take a risk and put myself out there sometimes. I still struggle with this one, I tend to be overcautious, which isn't always a bad thing, but sometimes you just have to say "the heck with it" and go for something. I have fallen flat on my face and been humiliated, but I have also had fun and been glad I stood up to be counted. Overall, I have to say participating and being present for life's opportunities is worth it. If there is something you want to do, think about what's holding you back. Is it legitimately dangerous? If something is really in the best interest for you or others, it's always good to think twice. Are you just afraid of what others might think? Are you afraid to fail? When I am afraid to fail, I always think "safety net". Like something I have to fall back on, in case this opportunity doesn't work out. As for worrying about other people and what they think, well...Tigers don't lose sleep over the opinions of Sheep.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

30 Things: Day 15 of 30

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

Well, my first choice would most likely be a mama bear. I am protective of my cubs.
I would like to be a fox, because they are quick, sleek, and wild.
Perhaps a treasured family dog. That sounds like the life...I wouldn't even bark at every little noise. I would just chill and eat treats and always be happy to see you.


Saturday, September 13, 2014

30 Things: Day 14 of 30

Describe 5 strengths you have:

1. I can be content with very little.
I really don't need much to be happy. Which is lucky because we don't have much, money-wise. I have friends who think they can't live without the best of everything, from vehicles to electronics. They say they refuse to settle for less. Which is a good mentality to have...if you're talking about the important things. While electronics are nice and I would be sad without mine, I don't have the very best and I seem to be living just fine. Really, I am content with my family, a few good friends, a few good books, and my faith which sees me through more than any other worldly thing could. Yes, I do wish from time to time that I could go on shopping sprees and expensive vacations. I would like a nice, big new home to own. But looking at the bigger picture, I am blessed with what I do have that keeps me safe and happy. There is more to life than just 'things' and I am a teensy-bit glad that I am not spoiled with nice things. Otherwise, I would always be looking for and wanting more, and that's a game that I don't want to play.
That being said, if you want to invite me on your next big trip or a cruise, I wouldn't say no. I can be a lot of fun and I can pack light. Just saying.

2. I am tenacious and don't give up easily.
If I think that trying something one more time will give me the result I want in any given situation, I will not give up. I always think, this is the time it could work. Sometimes I apply this to the wrong things: bad relationships comes to mind, but I don't like to give up on myself or others without a fight. I should just probably stay away from gambling.

3. I try to find the good in people and situations.
Sometimes, I am around a person that drives me insane. Maybe they never stop talking. Or they have a crappy, negative attitude. Maybe they are snobby and uppity, maybe they are two-faced and vindictive. Sometimes they are just annoying without meaning to be. Whatever it is, I try to make the best of it. Sometimes you have to learn to listen (or make it look like you are). Sometimes you have to be the Pollyanna to another person's Scrooge. Sometimes you have to kill people with kindness, sometimes you have to take deep breaths and be patient. Think of it as a learning experience. A test of wills. A Game of Thrones, even (It helps if you play the theme music in your head).
Although you might feel like you won't make it out of certain situations alive, you will one day look back and realize that you did. Just keep going, even if all you can do is put one foot in front of the other. Take a good attitude with you, even if everyone else doesn't have one, because that and faith are your best tools.  Learn from your experiences. Take lessons with you. This is what I try to do.

4. I have a sense of humor.
I love to laugh and it doesn't take much to make me laugh. Even if I am feeling like a grumpy jerk, I like to watch or think of something funny to get the happy flowing again. Sometimes I just think the only thing to do in a situation is laugh. If I am fighting with my husband, all he has to do is make me laugh and the fight is over. That's one of the qualities I find most attractive in a person, a good sense of humor.

5. I have learned some valuable life lessons but recognize that I am never going to be done learning.
All that I have done and learned isn't everything that there is to know. I don't understand people who think they have the world and life figured out and insist on proving to you that they are more intelligent than anyone. I think the mark of a truly intelligent person is that they know that they have learned much, but still have much to learn. A humble person is a wise person.

Okay, enough tooting my own horn. Perhaps some visuals to round this one out? Visuals are fun.