Wednesday, December 25, 2013

#Reverb13: Merry Christmas

Instead of a Reverb prompt for today, I wanted to instead wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! Hope you all have a wonderful time with your families and Friends!

Merry Christmas from Hefinator and Caveman!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

#Reverb13: Vacation

Another prompt from the lovely Hope from besottment by paper relics.
What was your most memorable trip in 2013?
Who were you with? Where was it? Why was it memorable?
This year, the Caveman and I took a honeymoon vacation. When we got married in 2012, it was so quick that we didn't get to take a vacation. So this year, we planned a 5 day vacation in Vegas for our honeymoon and I planned it over the weekend of Caveman's birthday.

Caveman is a huge fan of the Blue Man Group and has always wanted to see them live, so when I booked the trip I managed to score 2 free tickets to any Vegas show - and of course I picked the Blue Man Group. We didn't go see them until the night of Caveman's birthday, but we stayed in the same hotel, the Monte Carlo, that they perform and got to watch the parade they have around the casino floor each night! Even better is that when we were walking in for the show, we got a major upgrade in our seats and were way closer than what we got. For free tickets, it was amazing!

What made the trip extra cool was that one of my best friends and her husband (who played DJ at our wedding) came for the first couple days of the trip to help celebrate! Shopping, drinks, and good times with some great friends! It was a much needed and amazingly eventful trip! And, with the same friends that went with us, we decided to do at least a weekend trip to Vegas each year for one of our birthdays! There is SOOO Much to see and do in Vegas and we've only just scratched the surface. Its a great way to escape for a couple days and just let loose!

Friday, December 13, 2013

#Reverb13: Gathering

Today's prompt comes from Hope over at besottment by paper relics.

What was the most memorable gathering you attended (or held) in 2013?
The most memorable gathering from this year was a party at my Auntie Ardie's before Josh and I moved to Idaho. It was one of the rare times where ALL my cousins were together. We were still missing some of our family, like my Grammy, my parents, brother, sister, and my aunt Kelley. but overall, it was a great event! All the kids of the kids were there, there was food and good time. We all shared memories of when we were kids and as we were growing up.

I don't always get to see my cousins, so having us all together is great. It reminds me of when we were all younger and would hang out at Grammy and Grandpas in the summer or get together for holidays. There was just so much love and so many memories in that one gathering that I hope one day we can do a big family reunion with everyone!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

#Reverb13: Habits

Taking it back to the olden days of #Reverb to a post from 2012 I want to revisit.

What is the single most important habit you intend to cultivate in 2014?
I set this one in 2013 and after reviewing it, I failed! I said I would develop a morning routine. Anyone who knows me, knows I am NOT a morning person. So, waking up at the butt-crack of dawn to get ready for work usually involves some hap-hazard dressing, brushing of teeth, quick brush of hair and maybe, not always, a bite to eat before I would head out on my way to work.

Now, while I look presentable and not smelly or dirty, its just not enough anymore. I need to be consistent on eating breakfast in the morning, because I know when I'm not that's when my snacking urges come throughout the day. I don't have a skincare routine, its usually just wash the face with soap and go - which I'm starting to see the negative effects of this. And the hap-hazard dressing? It just won't cut it anymore in my new role. I need to be up, alert, and presentable. Being in a lead role requires me to have a morning routine or I will just look like a hap-hazard goof!

So with that - 2014 will be the year of the morning routine! The goal is by the end of the first quarter, to finally have a morning routine that does the following:

  • Wakes me up
  • Makes me eat breakfast
  • Makes me coordinate my clothes
  • Have a skincare routine so my face is bright and pretty
  • Prepares me for the busy days I'm guaranteed to have!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

#Reverb13: Boldly Go

When I saw the title of today's prompt, I thought we would be talking about space - boy was I wrong! :)

What challenges lie ahead in 2014? How might you meet them boldly?
I thought 2014 would be an easy year. And already I'm finding that I was completely wrong! With a new role at work, and new responsibilities, I'm already seeing pockets of time where I am going to face struggles. Working through contracts, cultivating relationships with people on a different level than I'm used to, and finally putting all this business and drafting knowledge to its full test! Its new and exciting and I'm ready to take it all on and push through it! I know if I can get through it all, then I will be wiser and more prepared for each new challenge as the year progresses.

And work isn't the only challenge. I set a goal to Graduate this year. Until May 15th, I fear my free time will be wrapped up with completing the last 6 classes I have to finish. Its going to be rough, as these final classes are intense! But they will wrap up my Bachelor's in Business Management and put me on the path I know is right for me. A path that has taken me a lot of searching to get to, but one I know provides the most fulfillment for my life. I know it will be a difficult road to get to the end, but I know I have the support I need to push through and accomplish my goal!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

#Reverb13: Autopilot

Reading today's prompt really struck hard. So much of life is repeatable that sometimes you don't even notice it!

Living life on auto-pilot can feel disorienting and dull. How did you cultivate a life worth loving during 2013?
How can you turn off your auto-pilot button in 2014?
So much of this year has been wash-rinse-repeat. For the first part of the year it was wake up at 5am, get ready for work, go to the bus station, spend an hour and a half on the bus (usually standing room only), get to work, work 9-10 hours, get back on a bus home (again, standing room only) and get home roughly 6:30pm - from there I would attempt to make dinner, or order in, sit with my laptop and do some studying, and then go to bed. It was the same, every day. On the weekends, I might get out for a little bit with the Caveman, but chances are I was working on the house cleaning and laundry that didn't get done during the week and then studying more. The disadvantage of accelerating through my program is that my homework load is more than I've ever had before. 20-30 hours of studying a week, on top of a full time job, I just didn't have time for anything else this year. Even after we moved and I worked from home, I still had a similar schedule. And I found that because I didn't have a commute anymore, I worked more hours trying to get things done. My previous 40-50 hour work weeks were turning into 50-60 hour work weeks. And then, because of Caveman's work schedule, I didn't have a car to go do anything when I finished work or the weekends.

I missed out on a lot in 2013 by being on auto-pilot. There was no cultivating of anything. I let a stale routine dictate my life. I let other forces control what I did on a daily basis. It wasn't fair to me or for the people around me. With all the positive that came in 2013, overall it was a very dull year.

In 2014, I will still have a routine. I need some sort of routine to get things done - but I'm going to be open for the spontaneous events. I'm going to end my 'Day' when I leave the office and see what happens for the evening. I'm going to force myself out of my house on the weekends, even if just to take the dogs for a walk.

Monday, December 9, 2013

#Reverb13: Inspiration

Today I decided to only do half of the prompt. But regardless, its still a great response!

Who inspired you in 2013? And why?
This year, a close friend suffered an event that most people wouldn't recover from. My husbands dear friend Luis, the man who married us, who I consider my friend as well, suffered a stroke earlier this year. For a man who is far more active than the average human being, it was a hard thing to understand for some of us.

Being a man of pure joy and excitement, it was hard to learn of this event. But then, he started posting on Facebook. iPad in hand and a determination to keep forging ahead, he posted updates daily about his progress! this is a man who was not going to let a little thing like a stroke bring him down. It was awe-inspiring how he handled the situation and didn't let it bring him down (at least he didn't let it show).

This is a man who less than 3 months after having a stroke, he ventured for the road trip and ensuing camping event to attend Burning Man! BURNING MAN!!! I'm a perfectly able person and even I haven't made that adventure!

Luis is an amazing person. His courage, strength, patience, and humor are extremely motivating! I can only hope that one day I can be as proud of my life as he is with is!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

#Reverb13: Popchix Community!

I thought today I would do another throwback prompt from the early #Reverb days. This prompt comes from Cali Harris from the first #Reverb back in 2010.
Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with next year?
While I've been a member of the Popchix for a couple years now - none have been more involved than this year! Popchix is a social group for woman who play video games and all the things that interest us. And we come from all over the world, with varying ages, skills, lives. Its a hodge podge of awesome all mixed together!

For over a year now, there has been a huge refresh of the community page and the people involved. And this year, I've become more involved by participating in more posts, writing articles, connecting more with the ladies involved, and really developing some super awesome friendships! Its a community where I finally feel like I belong. It took me a while to find my comfort zone with them, but now I couldn't imagine not having this group in my life! I only hope that next year brings more awesome things for all of us!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

#Reverb13: Reveal your selfie

This one took me a while, as there were a LOT of pictures taken this year. Even better is while normally I don't like my own picture taken, this year I actually started warming up to the camera more. I think I found a picture that truly is the best from 2013!

Please post your favourite picture of yourself from 2013, self-portrait or otherwise!
So - I couldn't pic just one! I actually have 2 favorite pictures of just me from this year, for 2 very good reason. There is the 'peaceful' me and then there is the 'wild' me. And these two pictures capture each side! (*note: I'm not very 'wild' - but get me in any form of arcade and I'm a wild winner!!*)

A summer evening walk around Lake Union - totally my element: Sunshine, Water, and Peace!
Happy Birthday to me! Take me to an arcade and I'll be a ticket winner ALL NIGHT!

Friday, December 6, 2013

#Reverb13: Memories

This year, there were tons of memories. I spent a lot of time with friends and family. I had a number of accomplishments and good times. I had a lot of rough times that are memorable because of the learning experiences. But nothing compares to some memories from this year.

Which memories from this year do you wish to keep with you always?
Here is my cheesy moment of the year. While there are a lot of memories that I will keep from this year, the memories I am enjoying the most are the ones with my niece and nephew, Reyna and Ken. I love those 2 kids so much! my best friend and her hubby made 2 amazing children that I love to spoil like crazy! This year in particular, I have been able to spend way more time with them than previous years. And the best part is that they are old enough now to remember spending time with me!

I get so excited when I get to visit them, because even if its just a short visit, its still time with them that I get! I get to see them tomorrow when I go down and visit for my best friends birthday and I can't wait! This month is a rare occasion where I get to see them 2 weekends in a row! Next weekend I get to go down and celebrate early Christmas with them, since I won't be in town for this year. My best friend and her husband work so hard to take care of their family, so for me it is such a joy to be able to buy some things the kids want and/or need that maybe mom and dad can't get them. They never know the difference, but I know their parents appreciate it and it warms my heart to be able to help such amazing people in my life!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

#Reverb13: Risk

I was so excited when I saw today's prompt! Boy is it relevant to this year! I could write about it all day, but instead I'll keep it short and sweet!

What was the greatest risk you took in 2013? What was the outcome?
Most people who know me know that my family (mom, step-dad, brother, and sister) all moved to Idaho when I was 20. So for the last 9-ish years, I haven't lived near them. I've talked about moving to Idaho but never have ripped the band-aid off and just done it.

In February of this year, Caveman and I were in Idaho for our regular trip. We've talked about possibly moving to Idaho one day, but never really seriously talked about it. After the first day of our week long vacation in Idaho, he comes up to me and asks when we were moving - in all seriousness!! Before we left that week, we had a plan to save money and move when our lease was up in June, a plan to talk to my company about letting me work remotely, had started house hunting, and Caveman was already applying for jobs!

I don't want to get into all the details, cuz I could be here all day, but there were 1000 things that could have gone wrong with us moving. Thankfully not all of them happened, but it also wasn't all sunshine and roses with our move. Its been a huge learning experience for us. The whole move was a giant culture shock. We are city kids who live in a technology world (heck, i WORK as a technology consultant!) and suddenly we were living in the mountains on a dirt road with dial-up speed internet. Yes, we were closer to my family, but that didn't take away that the daily routine, the area we were used to, and the way of living we had lived for so long were all turned upside down!

After just 6 short months, we are moving back to Washington. However, the move back was prompted by a once-in-a-lifetime promotion and significant raise from my company. Something I did not want to miss my chance to take and advance my career. Its sad that we only were in Idaho for 6 months, but the opportunities this new endeavor provides means that I can visit my family far more frequently than what I was able to previously!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

#Reverb13: Letter from My Heart

Today's #Reverb prompt from Kat McNally is about listening to your heart. I listened and here is what it had to say.

What does your heart have to tell you?
Hey, you - yeah, YOU! Are you listening to me? Good. Boy do we need to have a talk. I know we haven't always been on the best terms, but I have some things I need to get off my chest. We've had some fun! We enjoyed the company of others and I introduced you to a whole group of wild and fun people. I even brought in people who you still hold dear and talk to with daily! But that's not what I want to talk about. 
I know, I know - I led you down some rough paths in the past. I apologize. I know that I let some people in who tried to destroy us. But if you think it hurt you, think about how much it hurt ME? I'm the one who was left crumbling to pieces when people left, when damaging words were sent our way, when horrible acts came our way. When you thought your world was dark, it was because I was hiding and crying in a dark corner. I feel like I let you down and I felt horrible about it. I'm sorry. I hope you know that. I never meant for us to get hurt. I never meant for people to harm us. I never meant for either of us to be sad. And when those things happened, I took the brunt of it.  
But YOU weren't any better. You kept me in the dark and closed the door. You locked me away and prevented me from healing. You blamed ME for all the pain and wouldn't let me come out anymore. I had to peek through the keyhole to see what was going on in your life, in OUR life. That's not the way our relationship is. Its not how it should work. I understand I let a lot of pain come our way, but you didn't have to punish me in the process. 
But even after all the pain, I have to thank you for finally letting me out. I learned a lot while I was hiding in the dark. I learned that I hurt you and needed to start thinking about US, instead of ME. I learned that I need to rely on other parts to make a decision. I realized that I needed to listen more and talk less. I think I've made up for the past. I've kept the good people in our lives and purged the bad ones out. I hope you don't mind - I felt it was for the best.  
And the best part, I brought someone into our life who was able to fix me! I feel like a brand new me! He sure is an awesome fellow. And I know that you like him too, because you let him join me in here - now its like a party all the time. Me and him are like 2 peas in a pod - having fun and enjoying every adventure that life throws at us.
I'm sorry for the pain in the past. I'm sorry for letting those other people in. But I'm happy that we learned from those situations and are able to be whole again! 
I love you. 
Your Heart

Monday, December 2, 2013

#Reverb13: One Word

For today's #Reverb I wanted to go back to where it all began, to the first prompt that started it all: One Word.

Encapsulate the year in one word. Explain why you’re choosing that word. Now, imagine it’s one year from today, what would you like the word to be that captures next year for you?
I've chosen a lot of words over the last 3 years: Growth, Obstacles, Adventurous. But the one word that really captures 2013 is Change.

For me its not just the little changes, its the big changes too. This year, I picked up my whole life and moved it to another state and by the end of this year, I will have picked up everything and moved back to where I started. In between all that came serious changes at work. Lots of ups and downs, worry, contemplation, but culminating in a promotion of unimaginable awesomeness that all I see is more learning and growing in the future. All the while change came in my relationships, in my friendships, and in my marriage. Thankfully they have all mostly been positive changes, but its proof that change is everywhere and change can be good.

One year from today, when I sit down in December of 2014 and really look back at my year, I would like to have to say that my year was Claryifying. I feel there is so much that I need to sift through to really be able to feel comfortable in my own body and mind. Next year I will be 30, and there are many things I want in my life that I haven't yet accomplished because I've been working through the muck and procrastinating. I'd love to be able to finally organize and prioritize my time and efforts. I'm hoping 2014 will be the year where internal change happens to receive the clarity I need!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

#Reverb13: Its the first day!

It's December, which means its time for #Reverb - a time to reflect on the year gone by and to set your mind, body, and soul at ease, ready to take on the coming year. This is my 4th year participating in #Reverb  and for the most part, I will be following the prompts provided by the lovely Kat Mcnally, who I followed last year as well. This year, I am really eager for #Reverb - I always feel so much clarity after a month of reflection and I really need that clarity in my life right now! So, without further ado - Day 1!

How do you feel, on this first day, in your mind? In your body? In your heart? In your soul?
In my Mind: My mind feels cluttered. There are so many thoughts, ideas, worries running rampant that I just feel cluttered. Its hard for me to pull the pieces apart and really examine what I need to lately. I am going through a major life transition right now, with a major move again and a huge work promotion, that everything else seems to be lost in the muddled mes of finding a home, learning new work tasks, and trying to stay caught up in school.

In my Body: Dear Body - please forgive me for treating you like such utter crap over the last year. I've fallen off the proverbial weight loss wagon, I've fed you miserable foods, I've not gotten enough sleep and over all I've neglected you. I am doing my best to find my footing again, to get you back to right again - just please bare with me. I promise that in the coming weeks, we will have our routing back, our healthy meals back, and plenty of exercise to keep you running smoothly.

In my Heart: There is no way to express the love in my heart. The rest of my being could be falling apart and an utter mess, but my heart is so full of love its unreal. My husband fills my heart with so much love and joy to keep me satisfied forever. but more than my husband, the love of my family and friends and the love I have for all of them. I'm truly blessed with the people I've chosen to have in my life, the people I keep in my life and those I spend time with. Its a wonderful feeling lately to have so much love in my life, when I think about the times where there was such darkness in my heart.

In my Soul: My soul needs some repair. To my, my Soul is a reflection of my Mind and Body - and as you've seen, they are in bad shape lately. I feel full, but incomplete. I feel over joyed, but lost. My soul is searching for a sense of meaning in between so many things going on in my life. Its been a roller coaster year and as a result, so many parts of me are in desperate need of attention. I need to start doing things for me. Paying attention to ME. Taking care of ME! Hopefully, at the end of this month, I will have better footing to start 2014 and to begin healing parts of me that need attention.