Tag Archives: News

Dusting myself off

It’s been a minute two months since I last posted.

Writing has been on my to do list for a month, at least: write two blog posts this week. I start with good intentions, and then, I fall flat and push it off until tomorrow.

I have had a lot on my mind and on my plate, and it’s easy to get caught up in the inane minutiae of adulthood. My career- or lack thereof- has been something I’ve been grappling with. I’m not teaching this year- partly by my own choice, partly by things that are beyond what I could control.

I’ve struggled with feeling like a weakling, like I couldn’t hack it back in the classroom so I’m here sitting on the sidelines. I come from a teaching sector that is very, very competitive and also pretty traditional.  A common mentality in this field is if you don’t go full speed all year, you’re a poor teacher.  I know, deep down, I’m not a failure- in fact,  in having the courage, maybe even the audacity, to chase what makes me truly fulfilled, despite what others may say about that choice, is the best way to carve out my path to success- it’s also difficult to face your former colleagues and tell them you’re “throwing in the towel.”

When I was five, I declared I didn’t want to live in Bakersfield when I grew up. When I was nine, I decided I was going to go to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. One of my  high school teachers commented he had never seen a student so determined to accomplish her goals. With this in mind, admitting I don’t know what I want to do with my life is difficult, and frankly, a little embarrassing. Glennon Doyle talks about this- the falling, the waiting, and the rising. I know I’ll figure it out, but in the meanwhile, I just have to sit and wait- not one of my strong suits. 

On top of my <not even close to> midlife crisis, I’ve had to put both of my children into child care programs. They’ve both been great and are flourishing (David cries when he has to LEAVE preschool, no lie!). However, I miss them! I loved being able to be home with these two incredible little kids who amaze me every single day. I realize part of motherhood is letting go, but that certainly doesn’t make it any easier.

Finally, Jensen and I have had our house renovation plans derailed by this ^&*($Y% stupid retaining wall. Jensen has been working SO hard on finishing it, but it’s an 80 foot long project, and the hill is nearly 5 feet tall at some points, so it’s been slow going.  We decided we’re going to finish a few small projects after we finish this &*$($)# wall so we feel like we can have actually accomplished something! 

I have to keep reminding myself that faltering is part of growing. Pursuing what makes me genuinely happy is worthwhile. This too, shall pass. If you’re in a place like I am, filled with uncertainty, all you can do is put one foot in front of the other- keep on dusting yourself up, and get back on that damn horse and ride, a piece of wisdome I learned from my years of horseback riding. Some days you’ll go forward, some days you’ll fall back, but ultimately, by deciding that what you want is more important than what others want for you, you will get to the place where you’re living an authentic life. And frankly, don’t you think you deserve that?

You do.




Just breathe

I reached out to a friend this past week. I had a feeling this person was just not feeling right, and my hunch turned out to be accurate. They shared that they are tired… they are tired of seeing so much bad news and so much sadness.

I can’t help but agree. It’s heart wrenching.  It kills me seeing images of babies separated from their families. It hurts watching environmental atrocities occur on a regular basis. It’s painful listening to my friends of color share experiences that are appalling and dehumanizing. It’s depressing reading Facebook interactions where name calling and character bashing are seen as normal.

I’m going to share with you the same thing I told my friend. It’s okay to check out for a few days and just breathe. Seriously. The world will keep on turning if you aren’t up to the minute on current events. We live in such a quick news cycle that it sometimes feels never ending- and I don’t say that negatively, it’s just our reality. You have to take care of your self- and if you’re feeling depleted by bad news, unplug.

It’s okay to stop reading the news at night- if I do, I find that my mind races and my heart pumps and I want to get up and do something. If this is you, as well- read the news in the morning. Let it fire you up and give you even more incentive to get the day started.

Follow people on social media who are fighting for what they believe in. They’ll inspire you and give you hope. YOU get to choose who you follow on social media- choose wisely. What you feed your mind is what your mind becomes.

As far as feeling like you can’t do enough, ponder this: if you consider yourself a candle, remember your light won’t be dimmed by lighting other candles. So keep on doing whatever thing you’re doing, big or small. Donate to causes you believe in. Talk to and engage with people and have intelligent conversation, and don’t stoop to name calling. Go to protests if that’s your style. Call your elected representatives. Be neighborly and kind to strangers, even the ones you don’t agree with. In every little thing you do, you’re spreading your light in some small way, and a bunch of candles together can brighten up the darkest room.

So let that light of yours shine, and breathe. Just breathe.



“Can you ever just be whelmed?”

“I think you can in Europe.”
If you haven’t watched 10 Things I Hate About You, this quote won’t be very funny. However, if you have, it’s one of the dozens of one liners that stick with you long after the movie is over.
It kind of sums up the last few weeks of my life. I’m not overwhelmed- the house is mostly unpacked (!!!) and both of my kids are starting to settle into a rhythm. We go to the aquarium once a week, and library story time every week. We go to the park on occasion, play outside, and go to Target, too. (David loves going to Target!)
I’m not underwhelmed, either- I love living here. I love the weather- there’s a 30 degree temperature range, and it hasn’t gotten over 85F. I’m close to the beach and there’s otters in the estuary… and I love otters. Like, l.o.v.e.
I’m just whelmed. We can’t afford for me to stay home forever, and the future I had planned- being a teacher- just isn’t panning out the way I had wanted. I had anticipated more job openings in my credential area, based on my research and inquiries, and those aren’t happening. That leaves me looking for jobs in industry, but being a teacher hasn’t given me those specialized, technical skills employers are looking for. Lacking a second language is definitely stymying my confidence in applying for many jobs, as well. Our list of home improvements is long, and Jensen has been working so much, it feels like we’ll never make progress- I’ve been trying to hang art on the walls for the last two and a half weeks, and something always pops up that makes it not happen!
Remember my post a few weeks back about what is happening behind the scenes of those pretty Instagram pictures? This is behind the scenes- this is my real life. It’s not easy to share our fears, but there’s value in being transparent… we’re all struggling with something.
Part of my process of getting out of this funk is that I need to acknowledge these feelings, and then work on a solution. So, today, I created a LinkedIn profile. Tomorrow, I’m going to get out a hammer and start hanging some damn pictures. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and the only way to eat an entire elephant is to take one bite at a time.
Hugs, friends. Create that to-do list, outline how you’re going to get to your goals, and it’ll happen, if you keep on trying.

Our Hilltop Home Tour- Living Areas

This is part two of the new home tour; if you want to see the bedrooms, click here. The living space in our new home is enormous- we’re gaining almost a thousand square feet- the lot itself is nearly two acres. We wanted our children to grow up raising livestock through 4H, and I also wanted to own horses again. I’ve missed that part of my life so much.

So… anyway, welcome to our new home!

The front door is on our list of things to update, but currently it’s low on our list of priorities. We had originally intended to replace this dated glass window, but learned, upon closer inspection, that it’s actually a false window! We’ll have to have it covered with siding so that it matches. It’s just going to have to wait until we redo the siding in the next few years. We will be repainting the door- color TBD.

The entry way leads into the kitchen <<not pictured, as it was covered with our packing mess as I was trying to get out of town to make it to Easter lunch on time!>>. The lighting fixture will be updated ASAP.

The formal living area is directly off the entry way, and has a fireplace (one of two). We will be updating the fireplace and the mantle in due time. The vertical blinds will be coming down quickly- as mentioned previously, David is very enthralled with them.


The family dining room leads directly off the formal living room and is right next to the kitchen. The ceiling fan will be updated soon.

This room is lovely- so much light! There are skylights and high windows in the ceiling. We are going to use this as our primary gathering space, so anticipate lots of seating and  soft textures.

The dining area is an unexpected bonus- I never expected to have one in a new home, but it will be wonderful to have. I inherited my grandparent’s formal dining set, so it will be a nice addition to our new home to carry on her memory. (The door across the family room leads into the guest suite, just for reference.)  And yes, the chandelier is going to go, ASAP! I already found the replacement on Ikea!

Finally, the pantry. I love LOVE LOVE that the laundry is inside, and I love how much storage is available. We’re going to replace this white wire racks with stainless steel bakers racks.  I think this space can wait for updating, but I have some ideas that will make it really beautiful!

I can’t wait to share the next steps with you!