If We Were Having Tea (7)

20638302_10210095186557818_268576923072112750_nI have seen this post many times over at Jamie’s page (The Perpetual Page Turner) and have always wanted to give it a shot. I think it’s fun, personable, and a great way to kind of get to know one another. So, I thought why not give it a shot? But there will be a bit of a difference…we won’t be having coffee. Instead, I will be having tea.


If we were having tea…

  • I would ask how the heck you are!? It’s been a CRAZY couple of months for me (and Arika too) and blogging has really sat on the back burner, meaning we haven’t had time to catch up with anyone. How’s your 2020 starting off? How did 2019 end for you? I just…I miss you guys and I hope all is well!
  • I would tell you that I’m FINALLY settling in at my new place. We had to move away from our old place due to work for my husband, which THANKFULLY had us moving closer to home and our family. We have been away for so long, so it’s weird to be back and wonderful to be back at the same time. Any big changes coming up for you?
  • I would tell you that I haven’t really hit my reading mojo yet this year. With the stress of moving I honestly didn’t finish a book ALL of January. But, since then I have finished 3 books (An Ember in the Ashes, Sorcery of Thorns, One of Us is Next) and am just starting Evvie Drake Starts Over on audio and Arika and I will be working through King of Scars. What have you been reading so far this year?
  • I would tell you that I’m working remotely! I am so excited that the company I was already working for is letting me working from home. I’m going a bit of what I was doing in the first place on top of a new position. It’s been hard, but a good hard. Work has been busy and I’ve been working on establishing routine because I know that’s what I’m going to need. Any of you work from home? What’s the best way to establish that routine?
  • I would tell you that routine is honestly just something I’m working on. Because of the stress of the move, as well as all other things in life from November until now, my routine has been thrown out the window. My work outs have been just about non-existent and I’ve gotten into the habit of eating out/eating garbage. It has been TOUGH. But, I’m trying to get back to it! This week is going to be tough, but I think it’s going to be good. Do you have any tips or tricks on getting back into routine?
  • I would tell you that I am late to the party, but I binged Cheer last week and am OBSESSED! I absolutely loved seeing the intensity of the sport, the backstory of so many of the characters (I want to hug them all), I just…I loved it. I laughed, I cried, I yelled at the TV. It was great to see that strength and athleticism shown in the series. Have you watched Cheer yet? 
  • I would tell you that while my week seems to be long (trip back to the office in the middle of the week…not that I’m not looking forward to it, just that it adds some drive time, etc to my week), I am getting pretty excited for next weekend. Husband and I have tickets to see Motion City Soundtrack! We would have LOVED to see them when we were in high school, but those were days of no money and not being trusted to drive to see them. High school Emily is FREAKING out. Do you have any fun plans for next weekend?
  • I would tell you that…I GOT MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE TICKETS. Words cannot describe how excited I was when all of that went through. I heard many people had issues with Ticketmaster (as per usual) and the prices weren’t great (general admission here was $200 (TO STAND), and I heard it was way more elsewhere)…but we got them! Again, High School Emily is FREAKING OUT. What band/group/singer that you loved in High School would you throw all your money at to see? 
  • I would tell you that winter has been weird. I mean, living in the upper midwest means that I am always at risk to spend days without sunshine (and I don’t know how anyone that lives even further north with full days of darkness does it), and lack of sunshine always means my moods are down. A trip to Vegas helped (all sunshine the whole time) but coming back to the cold and the snow…it’s just always tough. And this year we seem to be in such a weird pattern. One day it could be near 40 and then next day it could be near -40. It’s just constant extremes, which is giving me a whole different kind of season depression. I’ve been so busy lately that I haven’t really paid attention to it until now. Today was a tough one (with a lot of other things going on), but I’m doing my best to cope. Happy movies, taking time to relax, reading a book, blogging a little…all those things that have made me relax a bit and feel good. I’m hoping that it’s enough to really keep me in good spirits this winter, because February can be tough…and you never know what March will bring. What are your winter tips to try to help yourself stay in the best of spirits?


Life has been nuts, and there are so many things I’m not going in to because it’s all so personal and some of it still hurts in a weird way. But in the end, I miss you all. I miss doing this. I know that not many people read this, and that’s ok. I love being able to put my thoughts down, whether about a book or whatever, and the fact that some people check in and we discuss things…I love it. So I’m going to keep trying to be on here the best I can. Some weeks I may have tons of posts, other weeks it may be silent. Who knows. The point of Midwestern Book Nerd has always been that it’s low key, and we are going to keep being low key.

Ideas are being worked on, and we’ll be back to write again soon 🙂

But until then, catch up with me. What exciting things are happening or will be happening in your life? I’d love to cheer you on!



I debate this with myself every single year.

I don’t want to draw attention to myself or dig for any sort of sympathy, but it’s also just such a huge part of my life that I sure as heck can’t ignore.

It’s the anniversary of my dad’s passing this weekend (9/14), and try as I might I cannot shake the feelings this year. I don’t know if it’s because the days of the week line up to how they did 17 years ago or what, but it has been a very up and down week. Lot’s of flashbacks in my brain, pretty sure I’ve been dreaming about it, and basically my brain has just been making it difficult for me this year.

I’ve gotten to that point where I feel weird even talking about it. It’s been 17 years, and I feel like with that amount of time I should just kind of let it go. Life had to move on for everyone else, so it should for me too right? But honestly, I’ve realized just how traumatic that was for me as a 13-year-old, and then I think about how traumatic it was for my younger sister and brother. And then I think about how others have gone through so much worse and then I feel guilty for feeling bad about everything, it’s not a fun or healthy cycle.

So yea, I’ve been going back and forth about saying anything at all but then I thought about it…this is how I process the grief. This is how I handle those darker moments where I miss him a lot.

So…what’s left for me to say about my dad that hasn’t already been said.

He was a goofy guy, and I’m sure that at this point in my life I would be hip deep in dad jokes because I remember him being the king of those even the first 13 years of my life. He did the best Grover impression, Near and Far was his jam. Seriously. I can’t see anything Grover related without thinking of my dad. He used to start reading our Berenstain Bears books in funny voices, in which we would laugh and tell him to read it again in a “normal” voice, and of course he would read it again in a different funny voice. This would go on for about 2 more times before he decided to read like a human and not like a robot, etc.

He was super into music. He played in multiple bands as well as did music in the church. He (and my mom) are where our family gets our love for music from. And I would like to thank his (and her) genetics because not a single one of us is tone-deaf (go us!). He had many friends that he would have over for “jam sessions,” so we would then just have company and pizza and it was an all-around good time.

He forced me to watch Star Wars and Indiana Jones when I was sick, which may be why I don’t love these movies that much. Memories? Actually not liking them? I have no clue. He was a Pepsi drinker (sorry Dad, I drink Coke…), a Dots lover (ew), and a fan of plain Hershey’s chocolate (ok, but we used to try to trick the other into thinking the bar was unopened by perfectly wrapping it back up. You can do that with the new wrapping unfortunately).

He shared with me the love of baseball. He and my mom had me playing t-ball as soon as I was old enough and I continued on into traveling leagues in the summer and playing in school during 7th and 8th grade. I was a pretty solid hitter and I loved playing. He made it to every game, even when they were super far away. I would hear him cheering while I was up to bat and I think it helped me out a lot. Even when he was sick he tried his hardest to make it, and I so wish I could thank him for that. If there is anything in my life I would ever take back it was quitting softball after 8th grade. That was my first season of softball without him and it hurt. I cried in my room after almost every game, not really wanting anyone to know how hard it was. I quit after that year, even though I think it was a big season for me. I will forever feel guilty about that. Dad, I’m sorry. I know you and mom never wanted me to quit at anything…but this was too much for me. I try so hard to still carry on the love of the game, of the Twins (which oh hey guys can we get some wins so we can clinch the freaking division. kthnxbye!). I know it’s not the same, but I’m doing what I can.

He was so involved in all of our lives. He was home every day at the same time (my dog would wait for him at the door like clockwork), he was at every event he could be at, my first two years of public school he came to work with my class for Engineer day and I felt so cool because my dad was there and everyone loved him (obviously), he wanted to make sure he was there for us. And while that makes me so happy it also makes the moments he missed that much harder. I hate that my brother and sister didn’t experience him showing up to all their sporting events, I hate that they missed having him at Engineer day (because you better believe he would be there), I hate that they didn’t have the experience of being in plays with him. While I have missed out on so much, they have missed out on so much more…and I honestly feel really guilty about it.

I know he touched many lives. I remember so many old and new faces after he passed, paying their respects to him and telling us some of their memories of him. I love that he left an imprint somewhere in this world and that there are still so many people besides myself and my family that think about him, laugh at a memory, even miss him a little bit. I hope and pray he knew just how much people loved him.

I could honestly go on and on for a while, favorite memories and all of that. But instead, I’m going to share some pictures and other things that make me think of him. If you knew my dad feel free to share some memories. I know this is always a tough time of year for my family and I and those memories mean so much.

Dad, it’s crazy how long it’s been. I still can’t fully fathom it. I miss you a lot and I can’t wait to see you again someday. I hope that we’ve made you proud ❤



Setting August Goals

tumblr_n9lxpr2yan1qgxmqno1_500HAPPY AUGUST ALL!

This summer is absolutely flying by. I honestly can’t believe we are approaching the last month of it, and I kind of feel like I have been doing a lot and not a lot at the same time. This summer I have been able to catch some live music, start up a new hobby (kinda), attend some festivals, and honestly just enjoy my time. I mean, I live in the Upper Midwest…you gotta live it up while the temps are above zero!

While I feel like the summer has been going well I do think I have slacked in some areas. I think I’ve been dealing with a lot of stuff mentally and it has kind of drug me down. Honestly, I’m really sick and tired of it and I know that if I want to change things I need to make a plan. So today I want to talk about my goals for the next month. I want to write them somewhere where I can see them, I want them to be seen by others, and I want to hold myself accountable. So basically, if you see me in person or around social media feel free to see how I’m doing with these. Politely shame me, please. I need to make some changes and to make those changes I gotta start today.

So…in August I will:

  1. Read more! Ok, kind of broad but hear me out…I’ve averaged MAYBE 1-2 books a month. THAT IS SO LOW FOR ME! I miss reading and am finally feeling like I’m getting back into it while I’m devouring Daisy Jones & The Six by Tayler Jenkins Reid. I am trying to knock out a few more books I own and plan to read these books in particular this month…
  2. Do the Blogilates Booty Challenge! I used to do workout challenges all the time. I found that they made me feel accomplished and that I was challenging an area of my body that I sometimes ignore. I tried her 100 abs challenge, but some days that took up more time than I had. Well, her booty challenge looks great and I am SO in! Starts on Sunday if you want to join!!
  3. Run 2-3x a week. I used to run 3 times a week. I ran a half marathon last year. After that race I just kind of lost my motivation and found lifting. Lately I have found the benefit of doing a short run (1.5-3 miles) after working just to kind of come down from the day. This addition means some days I’m getting two workouts a day, but that’s fine. I had an amazing run the other day. That runners high sure is nice and I am so excited to get back to it! Plan on running later today, which will make it 2 runs this week! giphy
  4. Research my next job step. Ok, anyone who reads this is going to be like “ok, she’s leaving her job she just got last year” AND THAT IS FALSE! I love where I work. Basically, I want to see what I see what else I can do, what more I can add to my job and what more I can do for the company. I can’t remember the last time I wanted to do more than just maintain a steady job and not move forward. This is weird and awesome.
  5. DO SOMETHING! Ok, another broad one. I just basically want to try. I want to try to go out, try a workout class, try a new hobby…I want to do something. Based on what’s written on my calendar I actually have some stuff planned which is great. Kinda leaning on finding that hobby now…hobby
  6. COOK. I cook, but not that often. I always find things I want to try but never do. Over the past month, while I’ve tried to be good about eating what makes my body feel good, I have also found myself eating some not so good things. Cooking from home makes everything better and saves money (seriously Emily make that stick in your noggin). I want to cook more, maybe try a new recipe a week or something like that. Still working on the details of this one.

I think these goals are very reasonable, and I hope that I can give you progress on them as I go (especially the books! I want to talk to you about the books!). This is seriously the best way for me to stay accountable, so please…hold me to these.

What are some of your goals for August?


Let’s talk How to Make Friends with the Dark by Kathleen Glasgow

Before starting this post off I just want to let you know that this could get a bit heavy. If you struggle with grief in any sort of way and don’t think you can handle this post then please stop reading. We all grieve differently and I don’t want to hurt anyone as they are working through things.

I am the type of person that yearns for books on grief. I am always drawn to them in an instant even though I know they will break my heart. How to Make Friends with the Dark by Kathleen Glasgow was no different.

40755416Here is what happens when your mother dies.

It’s the brightest day of summer and it’s dark outside. It’s dark in your house, dark in your room, and dark in your heart. You feel like the darkness is going to split you apart.

That’s how it feels for Tiger. It’s always been Tiger and her mother against the world. Then, on a day like any other, Tiger’s mother dies. And now it’s Tiger, alone.

Here is how you learn to make friends with the dark.

Add to your Goodreads | About the Author

Initial reactions upon finishing:


This book left me feeling all kinds of things. I felt that gut wrenching pain of loss, I felt the occasional smile, I felt the amount of love that is within the book…it was a bit of a roller coaster. And while I found myself sobbing quite a bit and my husband threatened to take it away because it was making me sad, I am so glad I read it.

The portrayal of grief was huge for me. The author showed the nitty gritty, the stuff that everyone is scared to talk about. Tiger went through the phases of grief without them needing to be labeled, because honestly the phases of grief don’t move that way. Throughout the book Tiger constantly described the initial stages of it all sinking in as feeling like wet cement, and I don’t think there is a more accurate description. You just feel heavy; heavy, but still moving slowly…one step at a time. I honestly don’t remember a time in my life that I have felt so heavy as I have when I have been hip deep in the darkest moments of grieving. Grief truly is the Big Suck, and it is always with you. This book really was a solid glimpse for those that maybe don’t understand it as well because they don’t have that personal experience. If you are ever wondering what a friend or family member may be feeling after the death of a loved one, this book will give you a good description of what they may be feeling.

While I related so well to the grief, I still found it to be a different journey. I lost a parent, just like Tiger, but I still had my other parent. I still had a place to live and a family to call my own. Once Tiger loses her mother that’s it. She’s alone. She’s put in foster care and into the system that so many people get bounced around in. To see her not only navigate her grief, but to also navigate through foster care and feeling like she had no one…that was tough. I found it incredibly eye opening as well. I know very little about the foster care system, minus what I might see on TV or in books. I really felt like the author took this to heart, knew that so many don’t really know what goes on in those homes, and put us through this journey with Tiger. It was a journey of heartbreak. It was a journey of pain. It was a journey that really had Tiger finding herself, just not always in the best of ways. It really had me thinking about my life and what I can do for others that don’t necessarily have a place to call home or people to call family.

This book, to me, is so important. It shows the darkness of grief, of the foster care system, of what may happen to a vulnerable young woman after everything is taken from her in just one evening. There aren’t enough books that paint the ugly in grief, but this one did. Grief is an ugly thing guys. And I really get tired of people glamorizing it, of characters that seem to just get over it throughout the book…because that’s not how it happens. Tiger’s journey with grief was real to me. So real that I had to take breaks, because occasionally the hurt was too much (which is really sucky when you think of all the people in real life that don’t have the option to take a break from that heavy feeling.).

Now, if you know me pretty well you must be asking yourself why I do this to myself. Why do I read books about grief, books that bring back all those ugly emotions?

Well first, there is nothing like the feeling when an author can get your feelings going just by something they wrote. There is something about that and I just can’t seem to walk away from books that are going to have me ugly crying.

But honestly…the biggest reason is because sometimes I need to remember that I’m not alone. My dad has been dead for 17 years. I’m not over it. I’ll never be over it. Some days it’s just a little easier to put one foot in front of the other, and then there are days that even getting out of bed is tough. Grief is here to stay, and sometimes, as silly as it sounds, I feel like I’m the only one that has dealt with it. I am so wrong, and I know that. But when I was 13, right after my dad passed, I couldn’t find books like this. I couldn’t find a way to relate, a way to make sense, and a way to fully deal with it. These books help me continue to process, even years later. And it helps me to know that there are books for those youths who are just starting their journey with grief.

Grief is the longest journey I never wanted to be on. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. But here I am, feeling all those feels, and just working through the days that I feel like I can’t breathe. As the years have gone on it has gotten better. I don’t miss my dad any less, but I’m not constantly being punched in the gut by missing him. The constant hole is there, but it doesn’t hurt in the same way that it used to (most days).

Reading about grief has been a HUGE thing for me. It has helped me process so much and I think it has helped me get to the point I am at today. If you are ever looking for other books, books that I found helped me in some way or another as far as tacking the feelings of grief, then you should definitely check these out:

And if you are grieving, having a hard time, no matter how long it’s been or how fresh the wounds are…do not be afraid to reach out. I know it may seem like you are alone in this journey, but you are not. I may not be able to relate 100% to how you are feeling, but I am on this grief journey too…different stages, but I’m here. And I am an excellent listener.

This post has really gotten away from me, so if you’re still with me AWESOME! If you aren’t, I totally understand.

Basically…if you want a fairly accurate representation of grief, read How to Make Friends with the Dark. Just be sure you have some tissues nearby and take some breaks when it feels too heavy. And if you have read it, let me know. I would love to hear your thoughts!


The possible cause for the blogging slump

I think I have found the cause of my blogging slump.

Yes, it’s not a shock I’ve been in a slump for awhile. My posts have become more sporadic, and the ones that I have been posting aren’t always the discussion type that I really enjoy doing. I don’t do a ton of book chats or anything that really shows opinions, which isn’t bad…but it was something I once loved doing so much.

My biggest thing these days…I’m nervous to voice my opinions.

That sounds absolutely ridiculous when I type it out like that, but it’s true.

I feel like I’m a fairly considerate person. I am always trying to be aware of how others may read what I say and I do my best not to be hurtful to them. I don’t ever want to cause anyone anxiety, stress, or any sort of triggering moments. I want to have a safe space, and I want to give people a safe space. The fact that we can voice our opinions is great, but when it doesn’t promote honest discussion it just becomes harmful.

My problem is that while we all view things differently, so many people use those views to bring others down instead of having an actual conversation. I have seen it happen on Twitter so many times. Someone says something, innocently or not, and it becomes a HUGE thing that negatively impacts the person that said it. There are times where people are rude to be rude, ignorant, or just tearing others down for fun. My thoughts would never be used in those ways, but I fear that people will jump on the negative and go after me for it. Taking the time to discuss with me and inform me on where I might be coming up short in my thoughts in a more polite way is so much more beneficial than yelling at me and telling me I am wrong.

I guess my fear is that I will make one silly mistake and become just that person that everyone goes after. I’m not saying that I feel like what I say is on the front page of everything, but it’s the internet…things get out. One silly mistake, one time that I have an opinion that comes out wrong, one time I say something that shows I may not be as informed as I should be…that could be it. I don’t want that. I want to discuss. I want to see where my shortcomings may be and what I can do to improve my thoughts and opinions. I want to see that maybe I’m not alone in my thoughts and opinions.

Basically, to sum it all up…I fear that I am not able to have honest discussions. I want to have open and honest discussions, but there are too many people who tear you down for just ONE mistake, one mistype, one wording issue…I don’t want that.

I want to have honest discussions, and I want to be able to talk openly about things and have people help me see if I’m in the wrong. I just don’t know if I can do that here anymore.

I’m not quitting blogging. There are times that this is the one thing that helps me relax. I am, however, rethinking things and my approach to blogging.

So tell me…do you ever feel like this, and what advice would you give me here?


If We Were Having Tea (6)

20638302_10210095186557818_268576923072112750_nI have seen this post many times over at Jamie’s page (The Perpetual Page Turner) and have always wanted to give it a shot. I think it’s fun, personable, and a great way to kind of get to know one another. So, I thought why not give it a shot? But there will be a bit of a difference…we won’t be having coffee. Instead, I will be having tea.

If We Were Having Tea…


  • I would tell you that I’m between books. WEIRD RIGHT!? I just haven’t really had the time or motivation to pick up anything. I’ve read less than normal this month, and I think I have finally made peace with that. However, TOTALLY ready to get back into something. What are you reading right now?
  • I would tell you that part of my reading woes is that I’m struggling to pick something to read because I just can’t settle. I just finished The City of Veils by S Usher Evans and LOVED it. I am thinking I need some more fantasy in my life. What are some of your go-to fantasy recommendations?
  • I would tell you that after having some rough months due to winter and my seasonal depression I am finally having good days. I can’t even accurately describe what is happening, but something has clicked in me and I am happy. I am motivated. I am not sitting here drowning in my lack of self-confidence. It’s a beautiful thing and I am doing all that I can to keep it up. How are you doing now that winter is finally nearing the end?
  • I would tell you that husband has gotten me into a lot of new shows. We have gotten back into watching shows together, and have successfully finished Venture Bros, The Passage, and have just started The Runaways. Maybe that’s why I haven’t been getting much reading done… Have you gotten into any good shows lately?
  • I would tell you that I think I have given up running. Ok, not entirely given up on it, but I’m taking a pause. I have found that if I don’t enjoy a workout then I do it less, lose motivation, and end up frustrated. I don’t enjoy running. I enjoy a 5k every now and then, but running just feels like work. I want working out to be fun, and I have found the love for lifting. So it’s time to switch gears and work out how I want to. Do you have any particular workouts that you enjoy doing?
  • I would tell you that I am super excited about my weekend away to Chicago! I leave tomorrow evening and will be spending my birthday weekend with my husband. I have needed a weekend away for SO LONG. I definitely have felt stuck up here, so to even just get out of this area is a blessing. I mean, I would have loved a tropical vacation, but this will have to do. Do you have any fun weekend plans?
  • I would tell you that I turn 30 this weekend! The big 3-0. I know that people freak out about this age. They are either terrified of it or excited for it. Honestly, I feel pretty meh about it. I mean, I’m getting older. It is what it is. I have experienced so many ups and downs throughout my life that make turning 30 to be a bit bittersweet. But it’s my golden birthday and I want to celebrate. I remember as a kid I would complain that I wouldn’t hit my golden birthday until 30 because it just seemed like forever away. I see you 12 year old me. We made it. Did you or do you have any extreme feelings about turning 30?
  • I would tell you that I’ve been experiencing drama, and it has weighed heavily on me. I don’t even know if it’s drama, but it’s definitely some changes in life that I wasn’t totally ready for that kind of hit me in the face. And, despite that, I think I’m actually doing ok. It’s weird. I strongly believe that people are put into our lives for reasons, good or bad. I think that all the relationships that I have had a purpose in my life and have built me to be who I am. People change, people grow, things happen. I think lately I have really come to terms of past relationships that have ended while also dealing with changes in my life currently. Some of it has hurt, but it has all caused me to really evaluate where I am in life and where I want to go. I’m honestly feeling so good, and so happy. I feel confident in so much and maybe that’s why? I’m not too sure. Do you think that all relationships have some sort of purpose in your life, whether they are good or bad?
  • I would tell you that I AM SO EXCITED FOR BASEBALL SEASON! Baseball is huge in my life. I watched it with my dad, I played softball for a long time, and it holds such a special place in my heart. I am so excited for it to start up again. I’ve missed it so much. Are you into any sports?

I hope you are all having a wonderful last week of March. Anything exciting happening in your life? I miss talking to you all and I am so ready to fully dive back into blogging. Expect to see more from me soon.


I’ve Gotta Say Something…

Hey all! Long time no talk.

Yep, I know. I’ve been pretty silent on here. And honestly, that’s why I’m about to issue an apology to each and every one of you, but probably to myself as well.

I’m sorry this blog hasn’t been as active as I had wanted it to be. I have gone down a spiral of craziness in the past couple of months. I’ve had some personal stuff going on that I don’t really want to go into for all the world to read, but with all of that my motivation to do this just lessened. I’ve been in a not so good place this year. The year that I had wanted it to be, the year that I try new things and let go a lot easier…yea, hasn’t been happening. I’ve let myself get buried under my own emotions, stress, and feelings of general helplessness and have found that I haven’t really enjoyed anything. I can’t say I’ve tried to enjoy anything either, so that’s very much on me.

The truth is, this blog has always been an outlet for me. I avoided it because I didn’t want to drag it down with my own personal issues, so instead I have been letting it sit because I “haven’t had time.” I’m sorry, but that’s been bullshit. I’ve been in my own pity party for months and I am so sick of it. I’m so tired of feeling this whole “woe is me” thing. I definitely suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, and this never-ending winter we seem to have going on here doesn’t seem to be helping (just spent the last 3 days digging myself out post blizzard and I bet I will have to pick up the shovel again tomorrow at some point). I have been the worst at letting it get to me and I am so tired of it.

But the thing is, I’m not sure what to do to stop it. I’ve let myself get so into this downward spiral that I can’t seem to pull myself out. So, little by little I am trying. Here’s what I have done so far…

  • I continue to workout 3-5 times a week. Endorphins are good right?
  • I signed up for a half marathon in August. I may be trudging through it the way winter seems to be going, but I did it. Training will keep me moving and it’s a goal to meet. And you best believe I am going to meet it.
  • I applied for a job that terrified me. Well, the application terrified me. I worked my butt off and put myself out there to get references and honestly, it was terrifying. Unfortunately I got that fabulous rejection I was expecting, but I’m trying not to let that get me down and to help me move forward.
  • I’m making plans with my husband. Not just saying that we should do something, but actually making plans. A lot of our plans have fallen through due to money, timing, etc…but these should hold up. I hope. Because I definitely need this.
  • I’m working on getting myself on here more. This apology is just one step. I’m hoping that I can come at you with more on this blog. I have things I want to blog about, I just haven’t sat myself down to actually do it. That’s gotta change.
  • I’m journaling. This terrifies me because I feel like there’s a right and wrong way to journal, but the more I looked into it (because that’s how I am) I realized how stupid that was. A journal is so personal to you and there’s no template. It’s for you. For your growth. So I found some prompts to help me get my wheels turning, and it’s been so helpful. I found one that is supposed to help with stress relief and oh my gosh, each day the prompts have made me laugh (like the one day I felt like my entire life was falling apart and the prompt was to write what was going well in your life. Hilarious. I cried while laughing).

I am taking this one step at a time, one day at a time. But I know I can be better. I know I can do better. And I’m sorry I’ve been so silent on here. Please know I take this apology oh so seriously, and really do plan to kick it into gear. I miss this. I really really do.

So now, I have to know….what do you do to get yourself out of a slump like this? Activites? Mantras? Helpful books? In the land where winter doesn’t seem to want to end and the sun refuses to shine I find I am definitely in need of some tips.

Thanks for bearing with me through this all. I promise I’ll be coming back. I will.


Adios 28!

Guess what guys….IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!!


I was asked at work if I was turning 29 for the 3rd time and I gave them that awkward look and said…uhm no this is the 1st time. So yes, I am 29 today and have been thinking about where the past year of my life went and where the next year might take me.


In my 28th year of life I…

  • Read a lot. Seriously. Even with reading slumps I was able to crush it. My reading tastes have been changing, which has been both fun and frustrating. Learning to roll with it and take it as it comes.
  • Saw the Pacific Ocean! I went to visit my sister out in California for her grad school graduation. While there I tried lots of different foods, wandered around, saw Pawnee City Hall, soaked up some rays at the beach (before the clouds came and it actually got a little cool), hiked the Hollywood sign, and was just a tourist in general. It was so much fun.
  • I ran! I never thought that I would run. Ever. My shin splints have been terrible in the past and I had a doctor legitimately tell me to not run because they were near stress fractures. I was getting frustrated, not necessarily because I wanted to run long distances but because I didn’t like that I wasn’t able to. That and my husband and friend were doing so much running and I just felt useless. With the right shoes and the right training I have been able to run some 5ks, and have done way better than I had anticipated.
  • I have taken in local sports. No, not the Packers. Forget that. Never happening. But I did get to go to some more local baseball games and hockey games. It’s been a lot of fun exploring this area more and seeing what it has to offer.
  • I went to Northern Minnesota for Thanksgiving. And when I say Northern Minnesota I basically mean Canada. We spent some time up there with my husband’s family. Was a pretty good time.
  • I went further into my Christmas spirit and made my own gingerbread houses for fun. The night itself was a little interesting, but it was fun and I do have some good memories from that evening.
  • I went to my first ever show! Last weekend I was able to see Les Miserables and it was gorgeous and I cried. So wonderful, despite the woman sitting next to me that seemed to try everything she could to ruin it.
  • I found time to dedicate to my health. Once I made the switch I honestly have been shocked at how much better my life has been. I have more energy. I’m happier (mostly). I love being active. Who woulda thunk it?
  • I had many adventures with my husband and close friend. Camping, sporting events, trying new restaurants, movie nights…we’ve had many a good time this past year. So so fortunate to have them in my life.
  • I had the best sandwich in the world. Seriously. It was delicious. And I figured it would be much appreciated if I listed it as one of the highlights of my 28th year of life.


So, what’s to come before I turn 30!? (eep! I turn 30! I’ve been waiting my whole life for my golden birthday!):

  • READ! Obviously I am going to try my best to read all the things I can get my hands on. And try to get on here more. I am a slacker, and that’s gotta change.
  • Bucket list concert. I AM GOING TO SEE JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE IN SEPTEMBER! I am incredibly excited!
  • Half Marathon. Yes, you read that correctly. I signed up for my first ever half marathon. I am terrified. I am excited. I am all over the place with this one, but I think it’ll be good. My goal? Finish the race.
  • Chicago weekend. My husband and I will be taking a mini-vacation in the Chicago area since we really don’t live that far away. I’m getting pretty excited. I honestly can’t remember the last time it’s been a getaway for just the two of us.
  • More shows! The Lion King will be performed her beginning of next year and I am ready to sell a kidney for tickets. In general I really did enjoy watching a show live (no shocker there, I just never had the chance) so I am really hoping that I can make this one work.
  • Travel. I want to travel. I honestly find I have the travel bug. I went to California last year, so I am hoping to find somewhere to go this year. I am also hopeful that my husband can come with me. It just seems to never work out that way.

Obviously that’s not all that I want to do over the next year. Some are more personal goals. Some are things I don’t want to talk about until they actually happen. But I am really wanting to make this next year awesome. I have ideas. I have plans. And I am going to make it happen.

So here it is. Let’s do this 29!




If We Were Having Tea (3)


I have seen this post many times over at Jamie’s page (The Perpetual Page Turner) and have always wanted to give it a shot. I think it’s fun, personable, and a great way to kind of get to know one another. So, with it being a new year I thought why not give it a shot? But there will be a bit of a difference…we won’t be having coffee. Instead I will be having tea.


If we were having tea…

  • I would tell you I am still rocking that chapter of War and Peace each day. I have been SLOWLY reading The Autobiography of Malcolm X, which is very good but definitely something I am taking my time with. Other than that I am not really reading a lot, which is too bad. What are you reading?
  • I would tell you I ran my first race of the year. It went pretty well, even though it was a low key race. I ran the fastest I ever have and I had a really great time. The weather was awesome too, so that helps. Do you have any races or events coming up?giphy
  • I would tell you that I just signed up for my first ever half marathon! AHHHHHHH! I am both excited and terrified because I never in a million years thought I would run even a 5k and now I’m signed up to run an extra 10 miles after that. It’s one of my goals for this year and I have plenty of time to train for it. How are your 2018 goals coming?
  • I would tell you that I am struggling with a co-worker at work. In general, this person is kind of creepy and is lacking a lot of social cues. I am trying SO SO hard to be polite and kind, but it’s becoming work. I honestly can’t handle it. Should be noted his creepiness is probably not intentional, and I am trying SO hard to not cause any more drama in a department that has had a rough year. What do you do when you are struggling with a coworker?tenor
  • I would tell you that I am STILL struggling with this whole blogging thing. Life has been stressful and I am definitely letting it get in the way. But I am trying. I have a list of ideas, I just need to sit and actually crank some stuff out (besides this post…but honestly…I love this post). How do you get back into routines?
  • I would tell you how excited I am for the weather to FINALLY be warming up. It hasn’t been a snowy winter here, but it seems that after it melts and warms up we get dumped on all over again. I am really tired of scraping off my car and am in need of more outdoor activities! Are you looking forward to the weather warming up?giphy1
  • I would tell you that I am counting down the days til spring break. My big plans…LIBRARY BOOKS! I plan on spending my days reading because I can’t really afford to go anywhere. I am pretty excited. Do you have any breaks coming up with big plans?
  • I would tell you that I’m off to the theater this weekend! I am so excited to take in my first ever show, and the fact that it’s Les Miserables is even better. Have you been to a show (and which ones if you have)?92ea265ce3eefd3719b31fdf73be921f

That’s all I have for today. Until next tea time all!


Words I Needed to Hear (8)

This is something I have started doing randomly on my blog, finding quotes that kind of hit me and sharing because I think someone else may need it it. More information and past posts can be found here.

Today’s particular post comes from a very personal place, but a place that I think needs to be shared more now than ever. This came from late night ramblings and a sudden wave of grief that I did not see coming. Please, read…even if you aren’t dealing with this struggle. Get to know what others might be struggling with and see what you can do to help them this Holiday Season.

The Holiday Season is about joyfulness. It’s about being with your loved ones and celebrating the feelings of the season. It is always rooted in tradition and in memories of years past. But what happens when those traditions come to a halt? What happens when one earth-shattering day changes everything?

It’s been 14 years since my first earth-shattering day, and there have been a few that have followed it years later. Days that have changed how I celebrate this season, how I feel about this time of year and that fill me with bittersweet emotions of the passing time. On one hand, I love this time of year. I love decorating for Christmas and spoiling family members and friends, giving them just a small glimpse of how much I care. I love the baking, the gatherings, and the meaning of the season. On the other hand, I see the empty chairs. I feel the voids of those that are no longer with us. I can SEE how this emptiness changes how we interact and it leaves me aching. Loss never leaves.

So I am writing this for those that are experiencing their first year of the holiday season without their loved ones. I am writing to those that are feeling like they are drowning in the pools of grief and unable to enjoy the season because of it. The people who are spending time plastering a smile on their face and pretending it’s all good as I have done many many times. Know that it’s perfectly fine to not be ok. It’s fine to look at other people’s joy and not feel it. They don’t know what’s going through your head. They don’t know your process. They don’t know this part of you, the part that you keep hidden so well. They were sad for your loss, but you LIVE it. You live it every single day. This doesn’t mean that they don’t feel the void. It doesn’t mean that they don’t notice the empty chair and long for it to be filled again. They were touched by your loss, but it’s your everyday reality. They are at a total different area of grief than you are, and that’s ok.

For those of you that are in that space right now, the space of not feeling the joy of the season, this post is for you.

I know that it’s not going to be easy this Holiday Season. It’s honestly never going to be easy because the loss is constantly present. It’s always there; no matter where you go it will follow you. I have tried many times to escape it, but it always finds it’s way back to me. This ever-present feeling never truly 100% goes away.

Even though the loss is always there it eventually doesn’t crush you in every way possible. As someone once told me after my dad passed (one of the few things that really stuck through the waves of “I’m so sorry” and other well wishes that honestly felt meaningless even though they came from a good place), “Loss never leaves you, but one day you will wake up and not have to remind yourself to breathe.” If there is anything that I have found to be true it is that. One day I woke up and didn’t have to remind myself to breathe. The pain is there, the hurt is there, but I don’t have to remind myself to put one foot in front of the other and put on a brave face. You will get to this day, I promise.


Until that day, hold on to those you love. Find something to do this Holiday Season that helps you think of the loved one you lost. Do something that helps you feel a little bit better, even momentarily. If you can’t do what is expected of you then don’t. Only you know what you can handle today; tomorrow maybe you can handle more. All you can do is take it one day at a time.

To those that are struggling this Holiday Season, please know that I am truly sorry for every post you see for this time of year. Social media doesn’t know how you are feeling, and other people are honestly and truthfully excited. Remember that none of it is to make you feel bad in any way. I am sorry that you are feeling this way, but know that there are always people there to talk to (even if it doesn’t feel like it).

I wish you all strength this Holiday Season.