My 39th year

Hello hello! We are at the END of September. Can you believe that?! I certainly can’t. I keep saying it over and over, but I can’t really believe how fast it feels this year is flying by. Before I know it we will be celebrating Christmas and then the arrival of 2020. C-R-A-Z-Y.

I’m sitting here doing a little bit of prep work for the coming week; it’s going to be pretty busy one for me. On top of the normal month end / quarter end / reporting that comes with an old month and a new month, I’ll be busy prepping for an even busier week following this one. So as I’m sitting here sketching out some plans to make it all happen, I’ve somewhat drifted to the personal side of things. This week I will celebrate my 39th trip around the sun. C-R-A-Z-Y.

Birthdays aren’t really a big thing to me anymore. It’s really just another day. (It’s a day I can have a cupcake with literally no shame.). They do, however, make you take stock of where you’ve been and where you’re headed. For the first time in many years and months, I really like the direction I’m going. Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t remotely how I thought my life was going to be. It isn’t what you plan when you’re fresh out of high school or college. But I believe there is a purpose for all of it. The best is definitely yet to come.

So I’m making some goals for the month of October, month #1 of year 39. Some of them are ambitious and will challenge me. Some of them are “minimums” just to get me in the habit of doing some new things. All of them will make me a better Sarah for whatever my future holds.

I challenge you to set a few goals for this coming month. Strive and stretch and grow and reach. What else can we accomplish by the end of this year?

TODAY I LOVE: kettle corn from the fall festival
SONG OF THE DAY: “A Safe Place to Land” by Sara Bareilles

random friday stuff: vol 7

Hello, my friends! Is everyone putting on their favorite music and having a mini dance party? No? Just me? Give it a try. I guarantee you’ll smile: if not out of happiness then at your pure silliness.

Here are some random things I’m stewing on this week:

  • I cannot stop listening to all things Foy Vance. If you like folk/blues/rock you’d love him. Go ahead and check him out!
  • My birthday is next week and I’m already thinking about some kind of treat I will allow myself. If you can’t break the elimination diet for cake on your birthday THEN WHAT CAN YOU BREAK IT FOR?! It will probably make me feel miserable, but I will suffer for the cause.
  • I haven’t run much at all this week due to falling in a hole while on a run Monday morning. I was oh so graceful. I rolled my ankle and then hit the ground. It’s been bruised most of the week but it’s going down now. All that to say, I’ve missed it! I’m looking forward to getting back out there and setting some goals for October. I’d like to be able to go more than 3 miles without sounding like a dying cow. 🙂
  • All my reading friends don’t throw things at me, but I’m FINALLY getting around to reading “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah. I know, I know, I’m very late to the party.
  • Jeans that are too big are just as awful as jeans that are too tight. Right now I’m in the middle of every size of jean I own. I’ve also learned that high-waisted skinny jeans are likely what it felt like to be wearing a full-body corset.
  • I’m still thinking about the Downton Abbey movie. I want to go see it again. Yes, it’s pure fluff. But unlike so many movies and tv shows you see these days, you leave it light-hearted and smiling. I’ll take some more of that please.

Ok, that’s enough for today. I hope everyone has a splendid weekend!

TODAY I LOVE: the tiny pink pineapple lamp I have in my kitchen
SONG OF THE DAY: “Unlike Any Other” by Foy Vance

goals, direction, and starting to see light.

Seeing the light arriving

Greetings, my friends! And Happy Sunday!

I hope everyone is having a great and relaxing weekend. It has been raining off and on yesterday and today and honestly it’s been nice to chill for a hot minute. I did quite a bit of socializing this week and was oh-so-ready for a day to be a hermit and recharge.

I do apologize that my writing has been so sporadic lately. I certainly didn’t intend for this to blog to only be used when I’m feeling down in the dumps. Now that I’ve made great strides crawling out of the dark place, I guess I’m trying to decide which direction to take this thing now.

First things first, some updates. This week will be Week 6 of my elimination diet. As I said in my last post, I’ve been adding things in and taking them out for a few weeks now. Even though I do believe now that most of my health issues are being caused by something other than food, it has been very enlightening to find out what foods do cause a reaction of any kind in my body. I *think* I’ve found out this week that dairy actually increases my heartburn. This makes me very sad, as cheese is practically one of my love languages. Anyway, the experiment continues. After that first week I’ve managed to maintain my calories at my normal level. Cravings are gone. I sleep well (for the most part). I don’t have a headache everyday. All that to say, I’m going to keep this experiment going for a while.

Beginning September I started running again. I’ve also added in yoga (in addition to strength training.) I’m really, really enjoying it. I’m not sure what finally made the switch flip in my brain, but I’m looking forward to workouts again rather than seeing them as a chore. I’m also looking forward to setting some goals for each of those areas for October. I haven’t set any kind of athletic goal in AGES! This is great mental progress for me.

So, where do I go from here? Someone told me this morning, “Every time I see you you’re always smiling! It makes me smile.” I guarantee the gal who said it had no idea how much it effected me, and probably not even for the reason that you’d imagine. I think maybe after all these months I’m finally figuring out that it really is all up to me on my perspective of things. I’m not in control of anything and I need to stop trying to grapple for it like a lifeline. I can’t control what people think of me, I can rarely control what happens to me. The one thing I can control? My perspective. If I can do that then the lows won’t be so low. The highs are even higher. And every thing isn’t nearly so dark. Life is quite a lot sweeter when you let it happen.

I’m looking forward to this week. I’m going home this weekend for our fall festival. I haven’t been back to it in probably 15+ years. This would normally probably cause me anxiety…but it’s going to be ok. I’m going to choose to look at is as an opportunity to enjoy some folks I haven’t seen in quite some time. Plus the parade! Band nerds unite! What are you looking forward to this week?

TODAY I LOVE: dry shampoo (seriously gals, am I right?!)
SONG OF THE DAY: “Alice from Dallas” by Foy Vance

sing with me

I love concerts.

I’m sitting here at home doing some work that I couldn’t get finished during the day. It was a very, very busy day. Lots of meetings that were important and required work and engagement on my part. So anyway, I’m working here at home and I’m singing. Because that is what I do. I thought for fun I’d jot down a few of my favorite sing-a-long songs that I happened to sing this evening. Maybe you’ll find one you like.

Here you go…

  • “Rich Girl” by Lake Street Dive (perfect warm up tune)
  • “Push” by Matchbox Twenty (come on high school friends…old skool)
  • “No” by Meghan Trainor (this requires dancing and hand gestures)
  • “Teenage Dirtbag” by Walk Off the Earth
  • “Baby’s Got Her Blue Jeans On” by Mel McDaniels (come on, I am a country girl.)
  • “Take Me Home, Country Roads” The Mountainman (fantastic harmonies. Show your stuff on this one.)
  • “The Joke” by Brandi Carlile (you REALLY have to sing loud on this one.)
  • “99 Problems” by Hugo (this is a great thumping Jay-Z cover)
  • “Shake” by Nathaniel Ratliff and the Night Sweats (this is for your dance break…give those vocal chords a rest.)
  • “Better Man” by Leon Bridges (the captain of smooth…this will get you back to singing and swaying)
  • “Found / Tonight” by Ben Platt and Lin-Manuel Miranda (because HARMONY PARTS and HAMILTON and DEAR EVAN HANSEN)
  • “What If This is All the Love You Ever Get” by Snow Patrol (this song is so stripped-down that you can sing so passionately and LOUD)
  • “Girl” by Maren Morris (everyone needs a girl anthem)
  • “Like a Girl” by Lizzo (dance break!)
  • “Tomorrow Will Be Kinder” by The Secret Sisters (Ok, this is a hard shift from Lizzo, but this is putting the day behind you and moving on. Sing sweetly and find the harmony.)
  • “Goodbye Road” by Johnnyswim and Drew Holcomb & the Neighbors (this one is a tearjerker. A great encore for your performance.)

Gah! I almost hate giving music lists because I love SO. MUCH. MUSIC. If anyone actually saw my music library I’m sure they would think I was a nutcase. (Maybe I am. And that’s ok too.)

Have a great evening everyone! Sing a song for me.

TODAY I LOVE: when reports all tie together
SONG OF THE DAY: “Tomorrow Will Be Kinder” by The Secret Sisters

random friday stuff: vol 6

Hi friends! It’s another sweltering day in the Ozarks! I hope everyone is wearing their sweat-resistant sunscreen.

Here are the fun random things that have consumed me this week:

  • SO MUCH NEW MUSIC!!! I’ve been crazy random on my music tastes and I’m loving it. Do yourself a favor and check out these new tunes:
  • I completely binge watched the entire season of The Spanish Princess and now I’m totally obsessed with The War of the Roses, the Plantagenets, the Tudors, etc. So I’ve picked up all my Philippa Gregory books and have started from the beginning. Last week I read “The Lady of the Rivers” and “The White Queen.” I’m ready to start the next in the series…”The Red Queen.” So good!
  • Drip Drop. For some reason I tend to get dehydrated very easily, no matter how much water I drink (and I usually drink 2-4L a day.) My beloved Nuun hasn’t been cutting it in this heat and my next favorite, Re:Immune, has been out of stock. I did some research and found this product. So far so good. I’d recommend it.
  • The Soundtrack Show. I love listening to the scores to movies. Most of them are quite gorgeous. The other day I stumbled upon this podcast that takes popular movie scores and takes them apart. For a big ole music nerd like myself, it is like Christmas morning.
  • I think I’m going to pick up crocheting again. My twitter friends are inspiring me. Besides, it’s something I can do while I watch the 1,000 shows I’m behind on. Why are there so many new seasons/shows during the summer?!

Alright, folks. Go forth and stay cool.

In honor of this post being mostly about music AND me being a total nerd, here’s walk down memory lane. Sarah, the high school band geek. Go Tigers!

TODAY I LOVE: cheese. All cheese. Gimme cheese.
SONG OF THE DAY: “Stockholm” by Penny & Sparrow

green grapes and gray water

This *might* end up being the most random post I’ve ever written. Then again, I write a lot of random stuff all the time so who knows. Hang on for the ride.

On Wednesday of last week I flew to California to visit my fella. First off, it was so, so great to see him. Even though I just saw him in April, it felt like forever. We spent the fourth of July in Napa, and OHMYGOSH. It is like heaven. The hills were green, the grapes were green and growing, and the wine was very red. There were flowers EVERYWHERE. Everything was bright and vibrant. We also went to Monterey so that I could see the sea otters at Monterey Bay Aquarium. We took a behind the scenes tour of the otter stuff and I just giggled like a five-year-old the whole time. It was pathetic but I was in love. I should have tried to stuff that baby otter into my bag. I KNOW George would love a friend. The rest of the time there we just hung out in each other’s company. And I might have loved that just as much.

The downside of last week was that I was/felt sick pretty much the entire time. And I’m still sick. Something is going on with my insides and I don’t know what it is. Gallbladder? Ucler? Hernia? Pretty much any time I eat, I’m crazy nauseous for forever. My diet change hasn’t really fixed it. So off to the doctor I go.

Sooooo right now I’m eating a lot of carbs. It seems to be the only thing that upsets me the least. And let me tell ya, when you already have body image issues and THEN you eat a lot of carbs…it’s not good. Just call me Sarah McBloaty. Sarah McBloaty likes to eat bread, pretzels, and crackers. She really hates skinny jeans and swimsuits. She’s a barrel of fun (when she doesn’t want to vomit.)

Back to real life. With no wineries and no sea otters and no boyfriend. But I still want to puke. So…I guess I didn’t leave everything in California. So far 2019 is The Year of Nausea. I started the year with the flu and it’s still goin..

TODAY I LOVE: peppermint
SONG OF THE DAY: “Hold You Now” by Vampire Weekend

random friday stuff: vol 5

Sometimes you just have to make your photos super exaggerated and over saturated. 🙂

I haven’t done this in ages! Here are all the things I’m a bit obsessed with on this super hot and humid Friday:

  • Oversized t-shirt dresses. They are certainly not the most flattering of dress choices, but they win for the most comfortable in this gross humidity.
  • Blackberry Bubly. That stuff is just good. It beats La Croix with no contest.
  • I’ve become the retired old man when it comes to yard maintenance. STOP. RAINING. STOP. GROWING. Yes, Fridays are my mowing/weeding days. The bushes/trees in my backyard are straight from Satan. I tangle with them and curse on repeat. Also the heat might kill me. Send Bubly.
  • Hozier. I’m fairly certain I’ve listened to his “Wasteland Baby” album at least 20x this week. It’s that good. His music is just…sexy? In a dark, cloudy kind of way.
  • Outlander. I read the series years and years ago but am only just now watching the Starz adaptation of it. Wowza. I might have my own crush on Jamie now. It also makes me DESPERATELY want to visit Scotland and see all that beauty in person. #bucketlist
  • I love getting all glammed up, but lately I’ve been trying to see just how little makeup I can wear without someone asking me if I’m tired or sick. I *think* I’ve found the perfect balance. That makes me so happy.
  • Filmm app on my phone. I’ve never been big on taking videos but this app has certainly made me do it more. You can add all kinds of different filters and flares to your video.
  • Flowers. I love flowers you guys. I think I’m always obsessed with them. While all the rain won’t make my yard stop growing, it’s majorly helping the flowers. It makes my heart happy.

I think that’s enough for today. What are you loving this random Friday?

TODAY I LOVE: genuine smiles
SONG OF THE DAY: “Freak Show” by Ingrid Michaelson