One of my favorite books that does a great job of capturing the embodiment of womanhood talks about the two fears women face:

I am too much. 

I am not enough. 

For the longest time, I thought that I lived with both fears. I had too much personality. I was too loud. But I was also not smart enough. Or pretty enough. Or fit enough.

I’ve come to realize the lie of “not being enough” was my true enemy. Being too much was just a symptom of that.

I read a passage the other day that embodied these feelings from For Women Only:

Frank Maguire helped start Federal Express and earlier held an inside position in the Kennedy White House.

Every Friday as he left the FedEx office, Maguire called his goodbyes to FedEx founder, Fred Smith, and Fred would call back, “Thanks for going the extra mile this week.” Maguire always left with a bounce in his step.

Then came the Friday when his cheery goodbye was met with, “Frank, I want to see you first thing, Monday morning.”

“I had a lousy weekend,” Maguire said. “Not only me, but my wife, my kids, even Thor, the wonder dog. We all had a miserable weekend.”

On Monday, when he nervously asked Fred, “What did you want to talk to me about?” he was met with a puzzled look. “Oh, I forgot. It wasn’t important.”

You can guess why Frank Maguire had a miserable weekend— he was expecting to be fired. But why would he think that? He was a successful, valued executive at a fast-growing business. He had even been trusted by the president of the United States. So why did he assume a neutral comment was a portent of woe?

Because inside he felt like an impostor. And he was sure he had just been found out.

What would life look like if I lived in the confidence that I am just enough? Would I be more effective? Happier? Successful? Probably.

This lent season I am trying something new. Instead of just giving up something like sugar or soda, I am going to replace my fears with positivity.

In the moments of feeling like I am not enough I am going to stop. Literally stop what I am doing and go on a 5 minute walk. During those 5 minutes I’m going to pray for peace and comfort and go through an exercise of consideration that I am “just enough.”

I have a feeling I am not the only woman experiencing these fears. If you are looking to start new habits this lent season, I invite you to join with me. Perhaps we can even take a walk together in those moments.

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When I look back on 2014 I am in awe of the year that is coming to a close. I predict it will be a pivotal point to who I become as it was a year I took big leaps and risks across multiple areas of my life.

With all of the changes that took place, I predict 2015 to be a year of growth. A year to reap the leaps and risks.

But before I jump into 2015 or even put on my NYE party dress and saber the champagne – I want to celebrate the 10 things I learned in 2014…

1

It’s better to be alone than be with the wrong person

2

No one needs to know how busy you are

3

Always be the dorkiest dancer at the party

4

Chorizo makes everything taste better

5

Never take for granted your friends, you may not need them now but you could tomorrow

6

Always bring something to the party

7

Eat breakfast

8

TSA Pre Check is worth the $85 even if you only fly once a year

9

Be with someone who is delighted by you

10

Long walks with coffee are the closest thing to heaven on earth

 

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Canada by Foot

August 26, 2014

seawheeze half marathon

If I see a chance to knock two items off of my bucket list in one swoop… I will take it. (I am all about efficiency.) So when the opportunity arose to visit Canada AND run a half marathon I quickly jumped at the chance and roped my family to join.

Then I had 7 months of dreading it.

13.1 miles? What kind of masochist am I?

I don’t have a ton of pictures to share… the weekend went by in an absolute blur. But I can tell you that Vancouver is a great city and I finished the race. The rest is just filler.

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  1. Get a pixie haircut. – Completed Dec 12, 2012
  2. Go on a vacation alone.
  3. Karaoke.
  4. Camp.
  5. Learn to longboard skateboard. Or at least attempt it.
  6. Complete a catch on the flying trapeze. – Completed Sept 24, 2013
  7. Throw a fancy dinner party.
  8. Run a marathon. (But I will settle for a half)  – Completed Aug 23, 2014 with Lululemon Seawheeze Half
  9. Visit Canada. – Completed Aug 22, 2014
  10. Travel to a country I have never been before (not Canada). – Completed May 9, 2013 with Amsterdam
  11. Revisit my best friend in Florida.
  12. See a football game in the south. War Eagle.
  13. Learn to grill. – Completed April 2013
  14. Attempt snowboarding… again.
  15. Take a cooking class. – Completed Nov 11, 2012 at Pantry at Delancy – Pie Ninja
  16. Hold my future niece or nephew. – Completed October 15, 2013
  17. Treat my parents.
  18. Make a pie from scratch. – Completed November 21, 2012 – Apple Ginger Pie
  19. Find the perfect swimsuit.
  20. Decorate a christmas tree.
  21. Ride a motorcycle.
  22. Explore 5 states I have never visited before.
  23. Conquer my reoccuring NYE resolution of reading 50 books in one year. – Completed 2013
  24. Learn to french braid. – Completed Fall 2012
  25. Take a 2 week vacation: 2 consecutive weeks.
  26. Build something… that doesn’t come from Ikea.
  27. Do one cartwheel.
  28. Matchmake a couple, successfully.
  29. Wear my navy blue special occasion Florida dress.
  30. Be apart of something momentous, memorable, and national. Subjective… deal with it.

BONUS: Be awesome every day.

50 books in 52 weeks

January 10, 2014

30before30_read

 

For the past 3 years I have been trying to read 50 books in a single year. At first I was no where close and the next year almost there… and 2013? I made it.

2011: 23 books

2012: 43 books

2013: 51 books. 18,527 pages.

There is no point in being modest, I am really proud of this accomplishments. For those that spend any sort of time with me in real life, you know I have at least one book in my purse at all time. I often arrive early to coffee or dinner or events, just so I can read. And my “perfect guy” will be one that doesn’t mind me curling up on the couch to read all night. (You’d be surprised how I have yet to date a guy that can just “hang” like that)

Reading isn’t difficult but it is time sensitive, thankfully I really enjoy it. But reading 51 books in year? Never again. The month of December was stressful as I had gotten behind but finished my 51st book just a few hours before my NYE plans.

Also, in case you didn’t know? Girls who read are sexy.

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  1. Get a pixie haircut. – Completed Dec 12, 2012
  2. Go on a vacation alone.
  3. Karaoke.
  4. Camp.
  5. Learn to longboard skateboard. Or at least attempt it.
  6. Complete a catch on the flying trapeze. – Completed Sept 24, 2013
  7. Throw a fancy dinner party.
  8. Run a marathon. (But I will settle for a half)
  9. Visit Canada.
  10. Travel to a country I have never been before (not Canada). – Completed May 9, 2013 with Amsterdam
  11. Revisit my best friend in Florida.
  12. See a football game in the south. War Eagle.
  13. Learn to grill. – Completed April 2013
  14. Attempt snowboarding… again.
  15. Take a cooking class. – Completed Nov 11, 2012 at Pantry at Delancy – Pie Ninja
  16. Hold my future niece or nephew. – Completed October 15, 2013
  17. Treat my parents.
  18. Make a pie from scratch. – Completed November 21, 2012 – Apple Ginger Pie
  19. Find the perfect swimsuit.
  20. Decorate a christmas tree.
  21. Ride a motorcycle.
  22. Explore 5 states I have never visited before.
  23. Conquer my reoccuring NYE resolution of reading 50 books in one year. – Completed 2013
  24. Learn to french braid. – Completed Fall 2012
  25. Take a 2 week vacation: 2 consecutive weeks.
  26. Build something… that doesn’t come from Ikea.
  27. Do one cartwheel.
  28. Matchmake a couple, successfully.
  29. Wear my navy blue special occasion Florida dress.
  30. Be apart of something momentous, memorable, and national. Subjective… deal with it.

BONUS: Be awesome every day.

Seeing a movie is one of my favorite things to do. It is up there with reading a good book and discovering a new restaurant. Seeing a movie with my mom? That may just push it above the rest.

This past weekend we had a rare moment of quality time. I say rare because over the past month, our time together has been at my sister’s house spent with a cooing baby. As much as Noah has won over my heart, it was really nice to have some time just mom and daughter.

On this day, we took in an afternoon movie downtown and watched About Time.

A little over 2 hours long, this movie explores the idea of choosing joy and appreciating the moments while you are in them. The movie is slow at times but once it is finished you can’t remember a single instance they should cut. Instead, it felt real, the ideas explored attainable, and an extraordinary ordinary life could easily be yours.

Yesterday, a girl just two years older than me lost her husband in an accident that happened at work. Although I have known her for nearly 15 years, we were not close but my parents have gotten close with her and her husband over the past years. As my parents called to tell me the news and share the heartache, I couldn’t help to think back to this movie. How many times do we talk about treating each moment as our last but never take action upon it?

A life is measured by births, weddings, and funerals. But it is the moments in between that count and made more meaningful by the people we choose to share them with.

This is my extraordinary ordinary life and I need to be a lot better about sharing it.

 

Guy Cute vs. Girl Cute

October 28, 2013

 

A common conversation my family and I have is the theory of “Guy Cute” and “Girl Cute.” The idea is that most often girls dress for the approval of other girls, and often wear something that men do not find attractive.

Dressing to be cute in a guy’s eyes could be the last worry you may have, but…, as a single girl, this is my family’s first touch point as to why I am single. In their eyes, I am the worst offender.

My dress style is best described as quirky lady-like with lots of layers. (trademark pending 😉 ) I typically take something that would be very pretty and then add pieces on top of pieces. I can walk down the street and have a handful of girls stop to compliment me (true story), but it does nothing to attract the opposite sex.

In fact, one of my coworkers told me I am the very definition of the “Man Repeller” manifesto. But perhaps my brother-in-law said it best, “You are like Zoey Deschanel. Every guy thinks she is ‘cute’ but she isn’t ‘hot.'” I happen to take both as a compliment… 1. The Man Repeller is fabulous 2. Zoey Deschanel is exactly what I am going for.

But in case you are like me… being told by family and friends that you dress cute but terribly weird… this is my sure fire advice for dressing “guy cute”.

1. Simplify

Yep, that’s it. Guys aren’t complicated. Less is more (and no I am not talking about showing more skin). Wearing the bells and whistles will put you on the path of “girl cute”. Instead wear simple pieces that that fit you well and won’t detract from your awesome personality.

Because let’s be honest… what you wear will only get you a second glance. Who you are, well that’s a whole other blog post.

30 Before 30: Meet Noah

October 23, 2013

For my 27th birthday, I sat down my sister and brother in law and told them that for my 28th birthday the only thing I wanted was a niece or a nephew. Let’s be honest, I am a girl who knows what she wants and people do not like disappointing me.

Exactly 12 days after I turned 28 years old, my nephew came into this world.

Noah James
7lbs 12oz. 20 inches long.
Perfect.

He…
is a world class cuddler
as curious and attentive as his auntie Dani
has his daddy’s nose and mommy’s lips and chin
cannot wait to meet his grandpa Noah but loves hanging out in the kitchen with this grandma Noah
spends most of his time cuddling with his puppy, Rudy
makes oinking sounds all day long
loves to have his hair washed
is the cutest baby ever.

It is amazing that he is only a week old and has already changed my life for the better. I cannot get enough time with him and have taken to cooking dinner and folding laundry just for a chance to be near him.

His parents did one heck of a job creating this little monkey and giving me the best birthday present ever.

Just not sure how they will top it next year! 😉

 

  1. Get a pixie haircut. – Completed Dec 12, 2012
  2. Go on a vacation alone.
  3. Karaoke.
  4. Camp.
  5. Learn to longboard skateboard. Or at least attempt it.
  6. Complete a catch on the flying trapeze. – Completed Sept 24, 2013
  7. Throw a fancy dinner party.
  8. Run a marathon. (But I will settle for a half)
  9. Visit Canada.
  10. Travel to a country I have never been before (not Canada). – Completed May 9, 2013 with Amsterdam
  11. Revisit my best friend in Florida.
  12. See a football game in the south. War Eagle.
  13. Learn to grill. – Completed April 2013
  14. Attempt snowboarding… again.
  15. Take a cooking class. – Completed Nov 11, 2012 at Pantry at Delancy – Pie Ninja
  16. Hold my future niece or nephew. – Completed October 15, 2013
  17. Treat my parents.
  18. Make a pie from scratch.
  19. Find the perfect swimsuit.
  20. Decorate a christmas tree.
  21. Ride a motorcycle.
  22. Explore 5 states I have never visited before.
  23. Conquer my reoccuring NYE resolution of reading 50 books in one year.
  24. Learn to french braid. – Completed Fall 2012
  25. Take a 2 week vacation: 2 consecutive weeks.
  26. Build something… that doesn’t come from Ikea.
  27. Do one cartwheel.
  28. Matchmake a couple, successfully.
  29. Wear my navy blue special occasion Florida dress.
  30. Be apart of something momentous, memorable, and national. Subjective… deal with it.

BONUS: Be awesome every day.

Sara Bareilles & The Relationship Lifecycle

October 1, 2013

Months ago my brother in law surprised my sister and I with tickets to see Sara Bareilles (& One Republic) at Chateau Ste. Michelle. He also took into consideration that my sister would be 8 months pregnant by then and paid extra for seats. Talk about big brother of the year, right?

The concert happened on Labor Day and after a weekend in Portland, we barely made it to the concert in time. But soon enough I had a bottle of wine in hand and Sara B was front and center performing.

I first discovered Sara Bareilles nearly 10 years ago. I was going to college in Southern California and she was a regular at Hotel Cafe which was a local music spot for indie artists. It was love at first sight.

Over the past 8 or 9 years, she has become my musical best friend; her songs are my constant companion through life’s relationships. She is a singer that can get you through the highs and lows just like a best girl friend.
These are just a few of my favorite songs…

When your story involves Mr. Wrong:

For when you are heartbroken….

For when you are ticked off…


For when you are ready to move on….


When it’s Right:

For when it is still nerves and sideways glances


For when you realize it’s for keeps…


 

30 Before 30: Flying Trapeze

September 26, 2013

trapeze1

When I lived in San Francisco, I happened upon an aerial arts school that taught flying trapeze but I never had the chance to go. I kept this wish in the back of my mind after I moved from SF and continued to look for similar schools with each city I moved to. Seattle did not disappoint.

I finally took the leap… no pun intended… on Tuesday with Emily and Amy. Amy had been a few times before and was on to more challenging tricks. She was gracefully from get go. Emily, who was just as green as I was, picked up the tricks without a second thought.

Me? Well, I was a bit awkward… but we knew that would happen before I even started. It’s my brand. And yet – I jumped off, did a trick, and made a catch.

When I first made my 30 before 30 list, people were encouraging but they also thought it was a little silly. What is does a catch on a flying trapeze accomplish? This, and the other 30 before 30 items, put me out of my comfort zone. They force me to try something new and risk failing.

I am not going to lie… I have watched the videos from last night over and over again. I am not ashamed to say I am so proud of myself. I was really scared and I didn’t think I could do it. But I still tried, risked failing, and was rewarded with a catch.

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    1. Get a pixie haircut.

Completed Dec 12, 2012

    1. Go on a vacation alone.

 

  • Karaoke.

 

 

  • Camp.

 

 

  • Learn to longboard. Or at least attempt it.

 

 

  • Complete a catch on the flying trapeze.

 

Completed Sept 24, 2013

 

  • Throw a fancy dinner party.

 

 

  • Run a marathon. (But I will settle for a half)

 

 

  • Visit Canada.

 

 

  • Travel to a country I have never been before (not Canada).

 

Completed May 9, 2013 with Amsterdam

  • Revisit my best friend in Florida.

 

 

  • See a football game in the south. War Eagle.

 

 

  • Learn to grill.

 

Completed April 2013

 

  • Attempt snowboarding… again.

 

 

  • Take a cooking class. 

 

    Completed Nov 11, 2012 at Pantry at Delancy
    Pie Ninja

 

 

  • Hold my future niece or nephew.

 

 

  • Treat my parents.

 

 

  • Make a pie from scratch.

 

Completed Nov 21, 2012 with a Ginger Apple Streusel “Pie”

 

  • Find the perfect swimsuit.

 

 

  • Decorate a christmas tree.

 

 

  • Ride a motorcycle.

 

 

  • Explore 5 states I have never visited before.

 

 

  • Conquer my reoccuring NYE resolution of reading 50 books in one year.

 

 

  • Learn to french braid.

 

 

  • Take a 2 week vacation: 2 consecutive weeks.

 

 

  • Build something… that doesn’t come from Ikea.

 

 

  • Do one cartwheel.

 

 

  • Matchmake a couple, successfully.

 

 

  • Wear my navy blue special occasion Florida dress.

 

 

  • Be apart of something momentous, memorable, and national. Subjective… deal with it.

 

BONUS: Be awesome every day.

Real Simple

September 12, 2013

Do you read Real Simple?

It is my favorite magazine and the only one I read cover to cover. A few months ago I was picked to be Real Simple’s Reader of the Month for October and I am so excited that the magazine is now out on the stands.

It may not be the book I keep saying I will write but it does delight me.

Side note:
I worked with an editor at Real Simple months ago and forgot what I had written to them so when I saw that my secret talent is “matchmaking” I fell to the floor laughing. It was just a few days ago that my friends told me I was the worst matchmaker ever. Apparently my matchmaking skills are only a talent in my mind!

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