2014 has turned to 2015

2014-new-wallpaper

2014 has floated away from us.

In some ways this year has flown by me and in others, I know it has been a slow struggle. The most important thing is I ended it on a much better note than I started it on. A year ago I couldn’t have imagined the road ahead.

I am finished with the associates degree and have started looking for paralegal & legal assistant jobs. Honestly I was going to wait til after the 1st to start sending out resumes, but I saw a post for a position that sounded ideal so I applied. The following day I had an interview lined up & will have a decision soon. Wild! Talk about confidence boost! Even if I don’t get this position (don’t get me wrong, I would absolutely LOVE it!), it felt really great to get a response to the first resume sent out. To actually get to sit for an interview was huge to me. The interview felt comfortable and easy. My approach at this point is that what needs to happen will. If it is a good fit, then it will work. If not, there will always be new positions opening up that could be just what I want. Even if I end up in a situation that isn’t quite what I am hoping for, it will all give me experience & teach me something new. Win – win. Fingers crossed & head held high.

At the end of 2013, I found myself with someone moving in and thought it was going to be a long term thing. At the end of 2014, I found myself enjoying adventures with a guy who has been by my side through it all. I love him on so many levels which makes it all feel slightly surreal at times. I’ve thought of him as a friend for so long, sometimes it is hard to believe we are now a couple. No longer sharing stories of the dates, troubles or seeking advice or comfort when the latest goes bad. Now we work on us, which honestly hasn’t felt like work at all. There is a great comfort just living life without worrying about impressing someone or questioning their intentions. He knows me. The good, the bad, the history and yet his face lights up and he still smiles when we meet up. He gives me peace just being there. Who knows where the end of 2015 will lead, but the most important thing I have learned is to just enjoy the moments for what they are, make as many memories as you can while you can and lean on those you trust.

Physically 2014 was a doozy for sure. First few months, I didn’t know if I would even see 2015. The diagnoses that my blood sugars were a lot higher than they should be rocked my world. Scary as it was, I feel it saved my life. Now 50 lbs lighter (& still going!), I feel much healthier and like I want to be active. I crave the healthier foods and although I still slip now and then, I don’t beat myself up over it all.  Holidays were pure chaos, but I am happy to say I didn’t gain back a pound! Didn’t lose any & at times I was up, but at this point I start January at the same weight that I started November. That is a success in my book!

Have really gotten into working out for the feeling instead of the “need-to” & “have-to” motivation and it makes all the difference. At times I still have to push myself into it but once I am on a kick, I am in! Too much fun to be had. Long walks, climbing trees, playing on a playground, all fun!  I find myself just enjoying it all and doing what feels right. Have already signed up for a silks class & have my eyes on a couple of 5ks in 2015. Also I WON this! Which is great timing to give me a boost.

Simply put the lesson 2014 gave me was to just ENJOY LIFE in each moment. Don’t stress or count on the tomorrows, just savor the now. Forgive what has already happened and let it go or it will sink you deep to the bottom of the ocean. The real fun is drifting in the waves which come and go all too quickly.

So here’s to 2015, whatever it will bring.

10734049_10205584252588015_8759015228922160828_n

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

 

Relaxing #52Lists

Life can easily be overwhelming.

All too often life shows us how quickly it could take a turn when we least expect it.  Even more important to savor each moment and do the things that mean the most.

Spent the afternoon meditating by the ocean & for a little while last night sat and watched the waves roll in under the moonlight.

None of it makes any more since before, but I feel better.

Also delighted by a surprise in my mailbox.

2013-04-16_13-33-54_455

My Sseko sandals arrived!

Super happy about these.

Today’s topic for 52 Lists was perfectly timed – Things I Find Relaxing

relaxing

Should have added being snuggled up in comfy blankets and pillows with a snoring pug by my side.  Sure is relaxing right now.

Stargazing on the Shore

 Incredible weekend watching the stars, the waves and discovering new places.

All in all the experiences seem slightly unreal and if someone had bet me a million bucks a week and a half ago that I would be thinking & feeling the way I do right now, I would still be one broke chica.  Guess that is one of the great beauties in life, sometimes it gives you what you may need most & expect the least.  Revisiting past waters you never thought you would tread again and finding that this time around you just may find the drive to hold your head high and keep going to see how the story ends.  I may get sharked, may drown or perhaps even rescued.  Either way the sun’s reflection on the water is memerizing and all to be savored at the moment.

Found more sharks teeth, great conversations, captured several sights through the lens and made a few wishes.  No less than 3 shooting stars made their appearance, 2 by the Cape Fear River on Saturday night and then another last night as we stargazed over the Atlantic crashing into the sands shores.

 As if I needed a sign that yes this is ok to make the wish on.

Just feeling incredibly lucky at this moment to be in the right place at the right time with open eyes to see the open hand.

Tides Rolling In

Life is so funny.

One moment you are in your life & see it as all that it is.  You believe you know the path you are on & where you will go.  Then you get a spark. The choice to take the risk or stay where you are defines the rest of the way.

I am proud to say, I took the leap of faith and am LOVING IT!

Classes started yesterday – Family Law followed by Administrative Law today.

Spent a few days in with the family & the jokes were made about going back to school.  I was given spiral notebooks (which may have been  leftover from high school!), new pens, index cards & even taken to get a couple of new clothes.  We had fun teasing about my “FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL”.  Felt great being supported & feeling like I was making my parents proud.

When it came down to the time to go to class last night, my nerves were on edge.  Would I be able to keep up?  Was I thinking it was going to be one thing and really would be totally different & then I would hate it?  Would I be the oldest one there?  Would I be able to stay in a room with no windows and not really able to leave for a few hours without having a panic attack?  So many ideas raced through my head.  Thankfully with support of friends I was distracted & made it to the room.  Klonapin also may have gotten me there.  Took my seat.  Watched others enter…. including the attorney who looked around my age teaching the course!  Then it began.

Within minutes I was swept up in discussions and ideas raced through my head that were what ifs, but less self-centered and more hypothetical consequences and circumstances.  Before I knew it, it was over.  I wanted more… but we got out 45 minutes earlier than expected instead of staying all 3 hours.  Still with assignments to do, I was charged up.  LOVE IT!

On the way home I texted friends, family & called the parents overjoyed with it all.  Giddy might be a good word for this bliss.  …until I ran slap into a BAT!  Head on.  I saw it just before & as it rammed into the glass directly in front of my face.  Talk about buzz kill.  I felt (still do feel) awful.  But what could I have done?  Not sure how an animal with radar even hits a very slow moving car!  But it did and it shook me up.

Between the emotional highs & low, sleep was not going to come easy.

Thankfully I didn’t force myself.  A fellow insomniac & I explored a beach that I am ashamed to say I hadn’t ever gone over to even thought I think I had been to most everywhere around it.  So we set out in the dark, armed with a flashlight & loads of stories to tell.  HAD to talk to someone about how excited & was & all the new crazy laws & potential implications I had learned.

Kure Beach / Fort Fisher

Even in the pitch dark, under a sky so cloudy the moon looked like it took the night off, it was breath-taking!

Listening to the waves crash.  Watching the lightning just off shore.  Seeing all the nightlife in the sand and rocks.  Just so peaceful.  Such a step away from the chaos of the mall, highway & rush I had been in just hours before.

Even taking cover for a while in a lifeguard stand as the storm came on shore seemed surreal.  No stress just wait it out and watch.  Got a bit wet but saved the phones and didn’t get soaked.  Afterwards being damp already made the waves more inviting to play around in.  I didn’t go swimming but it was tempting.

Well mostly peaceful.  Discovered a new creature that isn’t exactly on my wish I saw more of list….. the sand flea  AKA sea cicada AKA mole crab AKA reason I popped my shoes back on….

Not really clear why they grossed me out, but they did.  It was dark & they seemed to be EVERYWHERE!  I just imagined accidentally stepping on one & it trying to burrow away confused by my skin not giving way like the sand.  yuck.  To me they seem like the cockroaches of the beach.  Still as a guest in their house, I had to deal.

Besides there was so much else it was hard to focus too much on the nasty things just under foot.  Mixed all into the chunks of shells were dainty tiny pastel clams who were exposed and just like a lady quickly hid herself away.  There were small crabs guarding there pools between the rocks from unknown light beams (from the flashlight) & so much history in the rocks from the pieces of shells from life long gone to the blackened sharks teeth no longer a threat to the flesh.  I was lucky enough to be with an experienced tooth locater who showed me the ropes.  Even found a great white one on my own!

Maybe this isn’t where I thought I would be.  Perhaps I am not getting rich or finding myself on magazine covers for success, but life should be about achieving bliss as individual as we are.  This for now works for me.  So for the time being I will savor it as if it were my last breath.

Oh what will tomorrow bring?

Sandy Butts Everywhere

Busy day today wrapping up a few things in getting ready for my return to classes.  Still feels funny to say that & makes me slightly giddy!  I know I’m a bit of a geek & will be kicking myself for doing this later when I am struggling to study or complete homework, but for now I’m just happy!  The closer it gets to the first class the more I realize needs to be done.

  • classes paid for: check
  • parking pass: check
  • ID & libray card: check
  • books: check (& saved around $70 getting them online since the store is closed til Monday, even WITH shipping)
  • get new insurance: working on that one.  I HATE figuring out which medical insurance plan to go with.
  • all the other crap “needed” to attend school:  ……yeah…. working on getting all that stuff.  So much could be helpful, but thinking old school – pens, paper.. with a dash of new school – memory stick.  Who knows.

Already I am feeling like the nontraditional student.  The faces on campus today certainly looked younger than me.  Learned that you can now rent textbooks instead of buying them and they now make erasable highlighters!  Guess things have changed a little since I was carrying around the books.

Part of me just wants to start already but another side says cherish these free moments.  Soon I will be nose deep in books and working again on the side.  Make memories while I can and live each second.

Which is why I am spending as much time as possible with this view

is there anything better than can be done in life alone that makes you feel better than relaxing on the sand with the sound of waves rushing on to the shore?  Thankfully most of the time its still not crowded and the sound of the waves is all I hear other than the occasional engine of the lifeguard’s truck or today the sound of a couple of Ospreys passing by on route back to base.  (I think those guys intentionally take the coastal path to scope the beach & who could blame them!)

I honestly think without the ocean, I would be insane.  It has a therapeutic magic that is unlike anything else.  At least for me.

With today being the 10th I thought it fitting to give some love back to the beach.  To protect the piece of peace in my world.  Plus I’m inspired by someone who is locally doing great things!

Amazes me at how many cigarette butts are left behind.  Even when I did smoke, we never left the butts in the sand.  You picked it up & took it with you.  Obviously not everyone acts the same.

Thankfully there are people who are working hard to keep our beaches & ocean from being polluted with the trash left behind.  Read a tweet today that at Wrightsville Beach, It Starts With Me blogger picked up NINE butts in about a second!  Completely unacceptable.  Currently there is a push to ban smoking on our local beaches.  I understand that many would be upset by this, but when you aren’t respecting the beaches, I’m not sure you deserve to be smoking there.

Unfortunately this isn’t just a problem here.  People are trashing our beaches everywhere.  Check out a west coast view of the issue at The Daily Ocean blog.

Clearly if you see what they can do in just a few moments a day, you have to feel inspired to clean up after yourself when you visit!

There is only one type of butt that should be on our beach! – mine relaxing without seeing a piece of trash or smelling anything but salt water.

Hoping through the efforts she & her family are committed to, others gain a better understanding of the impact of such a seemingly small thing.   May her actions inspire others to join in the process.  I know it has me thinking more about what is in the sand.  Perhaps next time I go out, I will take my own bag to collect trash and those pesky cigarette butts.

Maybe even take it a step further and join the local chapter of Surfrider Foundation.  Certainly feeling like giving some love to the waters that make me feel so alive and ground me into feeling that in the middle of all that stresses me, I am there in that moment and I am as I should be.

Certain sounds just soothe.  My grandmothers giggles & yes she could get them often.  She would get tickled over the most random things and then everything would be silly.  It over took her and she would be helpless to the laughter.  Deep laughing to the point where the tears come to your eyes and you can barely speak.  Skip that days ab work out because you are going to be feeling them.  How anyone could possibly not join it was beyond me.  You wouldn’t have a clue what started it, but it felt right to join in.

The ocean is similar.  It mellows.  Takes me to a place inside that still believes in happy endings, love and connections stronger than death.  Comforts me in a way that feel esoteric.   Heavenly.  As if you have found the place where you venture into the outskirts of the after.  You feel peace and forget worries since only your soul will live on.  As long as you have a pure soul and can deal with your choices, you can find peace for a while.  As if laying on that warm sand, feeling the sun’s rays, the body just slips slightly out of line with the spirit.  Like the many kites flown on the beach, our spirits seem to feel safe enough to float & expand beyond our limits.  How many great ideas have been discovered on those sands?  How many troubles have been reevaluated only to see they really weren’t such a big deal to begin with once you remove the passion of the moment.  Its just a magic that is beyond comprehension.  Primal tie to our soul.

Even typing about it has slowed me down and made me think its time to sleep.  Baxter has been snoring away by my side for a while and the birds have long gone “night night”.  We will have to see who is going to be waking who tomorrow.  For a change it may actually end up being one of them!

One night I will sleep on the beach.

I can only imagine the peaceful night that would be.

May Day, May Day

What a day.

Life is good when you can start your day with this view…

There was NO ONE on the beach! I loved it. Felt like my own private island get away.  Originally I paid for an hour.  Once I planted my butt in the sand, I didn’t want to leave.  Tried to get more time on the parking meter – not that anyone was waiting on an open space – but I couldn’t get the process to work without knowing my plate number on my car.  So I took it as a sign that my alabaster skin probably didn’t need to get any more sun for the day.  While I will take a tan, a burn is not anything I need.  Although there is NOTHING like the way your skin feels after a lay in the sand.

Especially since I had pole practice tonight.  Last one in a while.  Need to figure out my schedule & finances before I can commit to anymore.  I am REALLY going to miss it.  My arms, legs, abs & entire body feel so much stronger.  Lifting myself up is so emplowering.  Amazing what your body can do once you try!   Plus I completely had to giggle at the modern version of the Beltane May Pole!  May not be braiding ropes or ribbons, but I certainly circled it around enough times & twisted my body up to where it felt knotted!  I will skip the other jokes about celebrating fertility!

So now I’m exhausted & bruised, but thankfully not burned.  Ending the day with a big fat smile on my face & hope in my heart.

No word on classes or a job yet, but soon.  Enjoying the moments as I wait.  One of the best realizations I have ever had is that some emotions, although valid, are useless.  Stressing out & worrying without action is just wasted energy.   So for now I wait & trust that it will work out as it should.  No reason not to enjoy the ride & keep my eyes open for the lessons to learn.

As for the latest challenge:

  • Work out at least 4 times a week 30 minutes – so far I have knocked out 2 hour long classes that worked me out! Tonight more so than last night, but I can feel my body getting stronger.  I am already hating that I won’t be going back to pole class next week.
  • Keep waking up by 9:00 am for at least 5 days per week – no alarm needed but I have been getting up before 9 am each day!  Yesterday I only beat it by about 10 minutes, but still counts.
  • STUDY!  No sense waiting for classes to begin learning.  Time is now.  Learn vocabulary, concepts, forms etc. – biggest thing I haved learned is that there is so much to learn & I want to know it all! Reading in a couple of books & working on some vocab (yes, I’m a geek!)
  • Improve typing speed – now that I am back on a laptop YES MY NEW ONE ARRIVED!!! I am better able to get to practicing.
  • Live on $100 a week – hard, but being home has helped. Also working the catering job helps. Great food to nosh on still this is going to take some work.  The temptations are there, the emails with the “savings” make me really want to go get shorts, a bathing suit, etc. to go from cold to hot weather.  Still I remind myself that if I spend $50 more than I planned but save $100, its still spending an extra $50 over budget!  They are only savings if it is a purchase that is needed.  So holding on the bathing suit & shorts… for now at least.

So thankful for all the great things I am able to experience right now.  Being able to workout in a way that pushes my  body beyond where it has been lately, walking on the beach at sunset and spending mornings laying in the sand, time with the parrots, snuggling with Baxter, new laptops (thank you financing plans) and all the potential that awaits in the future.  So many blessings in my world right now.  Simply ripe for the next phase to begin, but until then I am enjoying being right where I am.  Making memories worth remembering.

Enjoying MY life.

Draft Dreams

Tonight I watch as lives change.  The NFL Draft is on right now & I love this night each year.  Dreams coming true. The excitement and hope. New careers start.

Which is extremely timely in my life.

I haven’t exactly been happy lately.  Just not able to get my heart & mind into my work – well, I guess I should say FORMER work.  yes my time as a recruiter is over. No drama, no hard feelings, just time to end and allow fresh energy to do the work.

So tomorrow I will be enjoying a bit of me time.  Relaxation & stopping to smell a few roses so to speak.

But come Monday.. its ON AGAIN!  another challenge to begin.  Some of my most popular post have been those where I was out of work & looking for a new job while sticking to a budget.  Of course I am going to do it again!  With a bit of a twist.  I have in mind something that came to me & like a light bulb went off, it just made sense.  One of those why didn’t I think of that before moments.  I am going to follow my heart again.  But that is a story to come.

For now I watch as others dreams come true.  The excitement to see who is picked & their smiles as big as can be.  I can’t help but be thrilled for each & every player who goes up & accepts that new jersey.  This fall I most likely will boo them as they battle my beloved Panthers on the field, but tonight we share an emotion – pure elation.  The joy of knowing the best is yet to come.  Awareness that its going to be work, but its worth every single moment.

So congratulations to all the new NFL players & their families.

Can not wait for all the things to come!