Um, whoops…

So I turned 30 and abandoned my blog.

Unintentionally, as usual.

I’ve done this a few times before. And I hate it every time. Every day that goes by that I don’t write, I feel guilty, but obviously not guilty enough to actually write something and post it – which I totally could have because, insomnia. This is one of those posts that you’ll skim through ’cause it’s something new but it’s not as substantial as most of the other stuff. It’s one of those that tells you that I’m alive, I didn’t forget about this place and I have lots to tell you.

At least this time I have more of an excuse. Since I turned 30, a lot has happened.

The abridged version – most of which will be expanded on in individual posts:
– Three weddings
– Three graduations
– Covered the Derby Red Carpet for work and a gala where I met someone super-famous
– Four or five (I lost count) graduation parties
– A bachelorette party and wedding shower
– My depression/anxiety got better..then got kinda crappy again..then got a little better
– I made it through the 8th week of Couch to 5K
– I went to Boston for the last time for a while and to Minnesota for the first time ever (and to Wisconsin where my dad tried to make me visit cheese places even though that would probably send me to the hospital on account of the lactose intolerance.)
– I planned/chaperoned and exhausted myself with a weeklong mission trip/staycation in Louisville that included 15 of our friends from Jamaica from last summer and all of my youth group babies.
– OH AND I BOUGHT A CONDO.

Yeah. Consider the fact that I just had to plan out over a month ahead of time when I want to have people over to paint one of the smallest rooms in the place and that tells you how much free time I’ve had lately. That and the fact that me and the bff haven’t seen each other in about 4 weeks and we just scheduled a time to hang out together on Aug. 1. With planners.

Excuses, excuses, I know. But it is painful to not have time to write and get out all that is going through my head every day and I’ve made a promise to myself to make sure to do that from now on. Regardless of if I post it, I will take about 30 minutes every day (which may be at 2 a.m. when I can’t sleep one night) to write something/anything, because it physically makes me feel better, not to mention helps the anxiety level go way down.

Plus, I’m all caught up on Game of Thrones now so I don’t have that distracting me.

So yeah, welcome me back and whatnot..I promise I won’t take 3 months off again – until I get my book deal anyway..

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Is it considered a sabbatical if you don’t go anywhere?

Guess what I haven’t done much of this month?

Yeah…if you came back after the limited amount of excitement provided after March’s blogapalooza, you must really love me. And I love you, too.

It wasn’t intentional, originally. Granted my brain had just about dried up when it came to new and exciting things to share with you, and even when I did think of something, I didn’t have hardly any time to write it.

You should see my calendar for May. The only days without stuff written on them until after Memorial Day are Wednesdays. And Wednesdays are only blank because I can’t make plans for those days. Wednesdays are our production nights at work and I don’t get home before the sun goes down — and lately, I’m nowhere near home before the hour is into the double digits.

This is not a post to complain, because I want to be doing every single thing that’s keeping me busy. However, I would also like to blog. But something had to go for a bit, and unfortunately it was this website right here.

It’s not permanent, and I didn’t mean to stay quiet for so long, but when you work the majority of your day on a computer, the last thing you want to do is come home and work on one, therefore for almost all of April my laptop has been regulated to wedding-related work and Netflix instant TV shows and movies only. Oh, and I finished a book or two in there somewhere.

Yeah, we’ve missed a bit, you and me. And for that I am sorry, especially if this is even such a thing that merits an apology.

But I have had people ask about why I wasn’t posting and encouraging me to get back on the horse and what a better time to do so then right around The Most Wonderful Time of The Year, the Kentucky Derby! (See what I did there?)

More substantial stuff will come later on – like photos from my family’s Derby party this weekend – where I get all stealthy and try to take amazing candid stuff in preparation for these weddings (yes, plural) I’ll be taking pictures at next month. Plus there’s the usual stuff you can look forward to – the texts that sound like my friends, insane amounts of Instagram pictures, the websites I wish I’d thought of and a ridiculous amount of songs because I spend entirely too much time in the iTunes Store.

But I want you to know, I’m not gonna be quiet for a whole month again, in case you’re worried. If you’re not, well, then, bully for you. You shouldn’t be.

For now you’ll have to settle with an update on a lot of things, portioned in nice little bite-size morsels for you so we’re all caught up and it’s like I never left!

Ready? Go.

Gettin’ crafty up in this piece
One of the things you’ll see later this month is how, while I was “away,” I was real crafty. Like, so much so you won’t believe it was me that did it on account of I usually suck at crafts.

This is the way we ball
Sand Volleyball. Monday nights. The hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life. Well maybe not but damn is it hard to run in sand. And one night it was so cold my feet turned purple.
In other news I can’t serve in the sand, but am infinitely more willing to throw myself towards the ball. On account of it doesn’t hurt. Especially if you have one of those later games and you get a couple beers in beforehand. Note: The beers have nothing to do with my serving abilities, or lack thereof.

The 28th Amendment
Full disclosure – I had to Google how many amendments there were in the Constitution. Don’t judge me. You probably didn’t know it either – there are 27 – unless you are Baby Einstein.
This particular amendment has nothing to do with a historical document, because, well, I never wrote my Five down on paper.
After careful consideration and months of not having him on my TV, I have decided to make a change. I’m removing Michael C. Hall from the list, though I’d still like to have him tell me bedtime stories ’cause his voice is sexy. He’ll be replaced by Zac Efron. Again, don’t judge me. He grew up. And he grew up well.
That’s all I’ll say about that except for how I haven’t seen his new movie yet but I really really want to and the preview by itself is enough to make me need a cold shower.

The best show you aren’t watching
Justified. It’s about Kentucky. Eastern Kentucky. Timothy Olyphant just shoots people. ‘Cause he can. And Daniel Faraday from LOST is in it. As the opposite of Daniel Faraday from LOST. I’ve watched all three seasons in the past month. HOOKED. Thank you, Eth.

Weddings and babies and houses, oh my!
We are currently less than two months from Ashley and Matt’s wedding, less than three months from Rebeck and Jered’s and less than four months from Rachel and Swarles’!
Wedding season is in full swing – May is full of showers and parties and that reminds me, I have a dress to get altered.
After this weekend I’ll have taken three couples’ Engagement/Save-the-Date pictures and I was recently asked to shoot another wedding. WHAT?
Add to that the addition of our little half-pint, Emma, to the CKR fold and you guys, we have a baby. Who let us have a baby? And there’s another one coming in October!
Our second half-pint belongs to Katie and Hunter, who recently just made MY life considerably better by moving to the Lou. Now we just gotta get Sammi to Nashville and our plans for a CKR compound will be closer to fruition.

That One Time I Almost Rode In A Hot Air Balloon
With Derby season comes Derby Festival, which includes a ton of cool events that you get to participate in if you so choose, moreso if your job is in the media. Yours truly was ALMOST so lucky.
Scheduled to go up in a hot air balloon for the Great Balloon Race that was cancelled the morning of. And it was not rescheduled. Even though it is, EVERY. OTHER. YEAR.
We’re not talking about it anymore, but I have to share this gem:
When I was talking to my mom about getting to ride in the race, she said, “Do you get to go on it for the whole time?” to which I replied, “Nope, I’ll probably bail out in the middle of it. I think they’ll probably have a parachute for me.”

Running
What is, things I stopped doing completely? Yeah, about that. I’m getting my ass into gear this month because I’m signing up for a couple of runs later this year. And if I sign up and pay the money, then I have to do it. And that is some good motivation, because I don’t like to waste money (pay no attention to my ever-expanding DVD collection…).
So far, my friend Sammi has convinced me to do the Tap ‘N Run in Nashville (I am nowhere near ready and probably won’t be, for the one in Louisville) and the Color Run, which are a 4 and 5K, respectively. And the Tap ‘N Run includes beer. So there’s that.

Making a list and checkin’ it twice
A few weeks ago my good friend Matt (who, by the way is a beast of a runner and is gonna get famous for his blog, Lager Jogger, so you should check it out and say you were there at the beginning), Tweeted to me “I have so many things to do I need to make a list of all the lists I need to make.”
Never has something been more true. This is my life right now, which is fine, but WHOA a pause button like Zack Morris had on Saved By The Bell when the world paused but he didn’t have to would be real nice some days.
I have lists of lists to make, for real, and at some point, I’m gonna get to them all.
Eventually.
I’ll put it on my list.

Housekeeping

This might be the most boring post I ever write. Except for maybe the first one I ever wrote on here three years ago. But please don’t stop reading yet.

Posting will be light nonexistent until our regularly scheduled Friday fun, because, well, I’ve got shit to do. And these naps don’t take themselves.

I’ll so make up for it though, because in case you were unaware, a certain blog I know of is celebrating three years of existence next week… and for you, my friends, that means content galore!

Just a tease of what you’ll have to look forward to March 25-31:
– Live-blog of Hoarders returns
– I tell you what I was like at age 3 (with photos! possibly)
– The latest installment of texts that sound like my friends
Smiley things round 2
– I tell you about that time I didn’t eat for 30 hours
– Live-blog/stream-of-consciousness as I watch Scarface in its entirety (no, I’ve never seen it all the way through before, I’ll pause while you react like I did when I found out several people in my life had not seen Shawshank until recently).

And loads more awesome stuff! So much so that I need to take this week off to prepare. I’ve gotta have time for the magic to work, people…

See you soon!

Untitled

You see, I would have given this post a clever title if I could have thought of one. But I’m too mentally spent to worry about it right now. Besides, “Untitled” is all mysterious and whatnot so it should drive some hits from the curious/nosy. And you know I’m all about the blog hits.

But that’s not what this is about. This is about me. As usual. And before you say anything, here’s something to think about while you read – this is how I feel better..writing it out. Some people put it in a journal/diary no one can see. Some people bottle it up. Some people tell a friend or a family member or a therapist – which reminds me, I need to get on finding a new one of those because I haven’t seen mine in a year.

That said, continue on at your own risk. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.

I’m in one of those weird moods I can’t explain. It’s not sad, it’s not mad, it’s….I don’t know. It’s anxiety at its finest and most annoying. Because it ain’t depression, no way.

For those of you perhaps confused at the moment, know that right now, I am just about the happiest I’ve ever been. There are a lot of good things going on. There are a lot of good things to look forward to in the coming days, weeks, months, year. I have family, friends, a job, my health (knock on wood) and relatively nothing to complain about.

But you know I’m going to complain a little bit.

90 percent of my anxiety/depression comes from a place where I never feel like I’m good enough. At anything. Even though I know it’s not true. I know I’m good at stuff. I know I wouldn’t be where I am today if I wasn’t.

And I’ll be good. For a while. A long while. But then one little thing happens. Trivial, usually, and it makes me question myself and my talents and automatically assume the worst will happen.

I’m keeping it vague because I have a personal rule about this blog. If you want to know it, I’ll tell you, outside of the Internet. But suffice it to say that for as much as I put out there for you all to read, there’s specifics I keep to myself.

In re-reading what I’ve wrote so far, it seems confusing. So sorry if I’m making it hard to follow.

The Reader’s Digest Version isn’t much shorter, but here goes.

In three months my prescription is up for the medicine I take to keep me firing on all cylinders. In three months I have to either have found a new therapist who will keep prescribing it to me or talk to my doctor about slowly weaning myself off of it. And thinking about that makes me anxious. Which to me clearly means “stay on the meds a little longer” and “get a therapist that returns phone calls.”

When I started seeing a counselor almost 2 years ago, it was largely situational. I knew exactly what to blame it on (my job at the time) and what to do about it. But then we found out about the underlying stuff that I have no idea where it comes from because I didn’t have anything out of the ordinary ever happen to me to make me feel like that.

But sometimes – and those times are getting fewer and farther between – I feel not good enough. And please don’t tell me not to feel that way. Because I’ve said the same thing to myself. And I’m trying. God, am I trying.

And it’s funny, because recently I’ve been told by several people that I’m confident. So, there’s that. At least I can feel better knowing that for all the self-doubt I’ve got, I’m really good at not projecting it to others. At least not all the time.

Because I don’t feel like that all the time. Most of the time I feel fine. But every so often, it hits me. Every so often, because I’m stressed at work, usually, or because I’ve forgotten to just stop and BREATHE, out pops the anxiety cloud. And it’s suffocating.

I wish it was as easy as quitting that way of thinking. I wish I could do what my dad suggested tonight and take it “one day at a time” instead of looking big picture and thinking “this is what I have to do tomorrow and next week and in two weeks” and so on. I’m working on it, I swear, and I’m much better than I used to be, believe it or not.

In fact, I feel like in a lot of ways, in the past couple of years, I’ve become less stressed overall. I have adopted a Hakuna Matata way of thinking on a lot of fronts, and that’s served me well. I’ve been happier. But that doesn’t mean the anxiety stops completely. I think if it did that would make me a robot. Or a cheerleader. Po-tay-to, po-tah-to.

All of this is to say I’ve had a couple stressful weeks. Two, really. I’ve been home long enough to sleep and do little else and even the sleep is getting interrupted by the thoughts of all I have to do the next day. And the next.

I’m on my way out of the craziness, thank God, but then I go thinking of the future again, namely, have I learned enough about myself and how I can cope to begin the process of not being dependent on medication to be evened out? And if I’m not ready to let go of that chemical assistance, is that a bad thing?

In no way do I think it was a bad idea to ever go to a counselor, to ever start taking an anti-depressant. It is, without a doubt, the best decision I have ever made in my life. I guess it’s just now that I’m having to revisit it, to re-address it, I’m wondering – am I doing better than I was two years ago? Yes.

Am I in a better place? I think so.

Am I ever going to stop doubting myself, medicine or no medicine? Probably not.

Am I strong enough to do this on my own? I don’t know.

Note: I just re-read through all of this and it sounds like a rambling mess. So really, it’s a peek inside my mind during the past couple weeks. You’re welcome.

But getting it out feels better. I’m not gritting my teeth like I was when I started writing. I’m not thinking about anything I need to do past tomorrow.

Don’t think that I forgot that I had that public (at least on the Internet) New Year’s resolution to give myself a break this year – take it easier on myself.

I am not perfect. No one is. And no one expects me to be. So I should stop expecting it of myself. I do the best i can and everyone seems to be OK with that. Except me. But please know that I am working on it. I swear.

So please be patient with me. I’m a work in progress.

That girl who used to blog a lot

I knew it was too much…blogging every single day for a month straight. I spoiled y’all with that 30-Day Song Challenge and now I haven’t written in a couple weeks.

Before you judge though, I’ve since been entrenched in Baby Einstein’s end-of-school-year stuff. Like graduation and parties and such, which are finished as of yesterday.

Another thing happened yesterday, when I was accosted by two of my regular readers at one of the aforementioned graduation parties and asked where the H I have been with this blogging stuff lately.

So, as has happened before when I went MIA, I have come back. And I promise I’ll have plenty for you from now on, to make up for these past couple weeks. And don’t get mad ’cause you know I always deliver.

If you are mad, though, maybe you can use one of the threats in this video I watched a few days ago.

Warning though: F-bombs aplenty, so keep the kids away.

Two-week hiatus

This is me addressing the fact that I wrote NOTHING for you fine people to read for two – count ’em, two – whole weeks. I’m sure you were losing your minds with wonder and worry as to what could be keeping me from entertaining you.

You weren’t? OK then. Good. I don’t feel so bad.

But I’ll still tell you what I was doing. Because that’s what blogs are for.

During my accidental self-imposed hiatus from blogging I:
• Went to Bowling Green and spent the second weekend in as many months with all my college bfs. Good times, as per usual.
• Didn’t dress up for Halloween. I know, I know, how dare I, right? But in my defense I was/am poor and uncreative when it comes to that, not to mention I’m pretty sure all costume ideas were blocked until Nov. 1, because I’ve thought of about 40 things I could have dressed up as since.
• Interviewed. More on that some other day.
• Cleaned my room.
• Played charades.
• Watched a lot of movies.
• Seriously caught up on sleep.
• Got bronchitis.

And honestly, I didn’t have much to write about. But never fear, because I’m back.

Get excited. I dare you.

I’m still here

Oh hey, remember when I had a blog? I do…I promise. And I would have been writing in it all this time, but, see, I’m a writer.

Doesn’t make any sense? OK. Well. Because I am a writer, that’s how I get my feelings out the best. And considering my feelings as of late, writing about them wouldn’t have been the best idea. I’ve been stressed and needed some time to breathe, really.

Why, you ask? Oh I don’t know. BUSY. In addition to my full-time, 40-hour a week job, I also have two freelance gigs – one of which just got a whole lot heavier but there’s more money involved so why not – I volunteer Wednesday mornings to babysit at church. I’m on the nursery schedule at church and a nominating committee and I’m still helping out Sunday nights as a youth leader for our youth group. Oh and it’s wedding season and there’s all that Forensic Files I need to watch.

But seriously. A lot’s going on and I’m not complaining, promise. I wouldn’t be doing a bit of any of it if I didn’t want to. It’s just a lot. And I’m all about organizing and planning and time managing. That’s what planners are for.

I’ve dealt with the being stressed and stuff. In the way you’re ‘sposed to, ya know? I watched a lot of Jersey Shore, which helps. And so does pretending to be Rachel Berry when I sing the Glee version of “Somebody to Love” as loud as possible in my car.

But it’s calmed down. And this is me letting you know I’m back. And I remembered I have a blog. And it’s gonna be full of exciting and fun stuff for you to read from now on – just like before, remember?

Like later this week when I post the third installment of the Texts from Last Night that sound like my friends – read the first two here and here – and I promise that unlike the third in the series of Pirates of the Caribbean, Star Wars and Back to the Future, it’ll be just as good as the first two.

Oh and also later this week – a belated birthday note to my momma and some other cool stuff. So keep checking back. It’ll be worth it.

A bit of a time-out, if you will

In the interest of keeping SOME things private – but not too much, I mean, I’ve told you some weird stuff – I’ve been kind of quiet here on the ol’ blog for the past couple weeks.

I’ve posted stuff, of course, but it’s been things I’d already written a while ago, or for something else, or pictures, or seriously, watch that Harry Potter preview and just TRY not to get chills.

Long story short(ish). Stress and emotions have been at a bit of an elevated level the past couple of weeks. If we had to give it a color, like the threat levels they used to show on CNN, it’d probably be in the yellow/orange range. Emphasis on ORANGE. A DEFCON 3, perhaps.

And I’d totally tell you kids all about it but I’d kind of rather not, at least not at the moment. I just felt like I needed to explain myself. Kind of. Vaguely. Don’t take it personally. And don’t worry, no one’s hurt or sick or moving or being mean to me. I’ve just got a lot on my mind about a lot of different things and it’s distracting.

But it’s also getting better. Or at least it should soon. And, FYI, if anyone else is awake at, um, 2 or 3 a.m. most nights and wants somebody to talk to, there’s a 90-percent chance I’m awake too. Insomnia’s a bitch – one I thought I’d effectively punched in the face and told to back up off me and not come around again, but apparently not. I guess I was never that good at being a bully.

Have no fear though, children. After a short hiatus (you may not even notice it) for one of those holiday weekends the kids are always talking about – I’ll be back. With new and exciting stories and rants and amazing photography for you to check out. I know what the people want.

I’m headed out of town for the next few days to celebrate America with some of my BFFs. And you know that means I’ll come back with some stories. Case in point – I’m going tubing, which is on that big to-do list I keep telling you about.

Tubing is something I have never done and so far the only advice I’ve gotten about what to do is “Make sure your bathing suit bottoms stay on.” AWESOME.

Oh. And last time I visited these friends and we were on a boat in a body of water, a moth flew up my nose. Ew. I just threw up in my mouth a little bit thinking about that.

So keep checking back. It’ll be worth it, I promise.

I wouldn’t exactly call it a break…

Hey remember when I used to write this blog? Yeah…about that. I haven’t written in a week, but I have good reasons, so don’t hate.

I’ve had a bunch of ideas for posts in the past week, but no time to write them. On account of my job. And my life. And sleep deprivation.

Let me explain. I work at a newspaper, ya know? And on Election Day, we do the exact opposite of pretty much everyone else. Instead of a nice relaxing middle-of-the-week day off work where the only thing that needs to get done is vote, we reporters/editors/photographers/etc. only have one thing to do too – make a frigging newspaper.

Oh, and we can’t finish it until we know all the totals from all the polls – which makes for a late, late, late night, coupled with the fact that, um, LOST is on Tuesday nights, and you know I can’t wait a day to watch it, TiVo or not.

In addition to election craziness, I also had something every single night last week. Seriously. EVERY ONE OF THEM. Not that I’m complaining – because Thursday involved seeing “Wicked” which is my new favorite musical EVER (more on that later this week). And Saturday I slept, for all the hours I didn’t sleep the week before. Oh, and there was that Grey’s Anatomy finale that needed watching too – and may have caused me to need extensive therapy to recover, it was that intense. Don’t judge my TV habits. It’s all I have. Not really, but I appreciate the arts, in all its forms – books, movies, TV, theater, Demolition Derbies…you know. And as much as I love this blog and I love to write and I want to share all these stories with you guys, when you type and stare at a computer all day, lying in bed watching Forensic Files and buying out the Dollar Store for the LOST party seems a lot more relaxing, believe it or not.

Also. I have this freelance gig – the first of hopefully many – that took up a considerable amount of my time, which is fine because, hey, I like money.

So basically, I’m sorry I’ve given you nothing new to read this past week – even though by the looks of my stats I at least get one visit a day from whoever searches for “Festivus.” True story – most hits of any post. And it doesn’t even say that much.

But here are some things for you to look forward to. Come back later this week and read about things like the awesome party we had for the LOST series finale, why I hate Twilight, my pitch for a new Food Network show starring my family and the career I started thinking about thanks to “Wicked,” as well as why I can’t stop listening to the same four songs on my iPod on repeat.

Good stuff, I promise you. And I’ll be back on schedule from now on, scout’s honor. Keep reading, please?

The sun’ll come out, tomorrow…

Actually, maybe it won’t. I don’t really remember what the sun looks like these days because every time I look outside, OH THERE’S SNOW. What? The snow melted completely? WELL HERE’S SOME MORE. Seriously, it seems like it has never been warm outside and it never will be again.

Also, a lady sang this song last night at the American Idol-ish contest I was a judge for. Wasn’t great. I may not do this professionally, but I do know this – song choice is everything. And it’s really safe to pick a song like that that you basically just kind of shout, which the woman did, all the while sticking her arms up in the air and staring only at the ceiling.

So besides hating the weather and wondering when I’ll ever be able to feel my toes or fingers again, I’ve been busy. I’m currently in the middle of about six different projects/plans at the moment in addition to my regular 45-hour-a-week job. One of those projects, as you already know, is buying a car, which I wish I could just hurry up and get over with already so my eye would stop twitching – or maybe that’s from the Starbucks Cafe Mochas that I’ve been using to keep me awake because I’ve been SO FREAKING TIRED LATELY. I blame the weather. DID I MENTION I HATE THE WEATHER?

Anyways. There’s a lot going on these days and I feel like I need a clone sometimes, or at the very least, a personal assistant. The assistant isn’t for keeping me organized – I’m good at that, just look at my planner – but for driving me places so I can nap for a few minutes on the way. Or for doing my laundry, because that’s one more thing I need to do because I get my stuff out of the dryer and don’t get to putting it away for a couple days because there are more important things to do – and did I mention there are Olympics I need to watch?

So tonight, in the few minutes break from the craziness of this week, and last week, and next week and OH CRAP I NEED TO MOVE MY LAUNDRY TO THE DRYER, I started looking through my pictures. And luckily, I found some from my trip to Myrtle Beach last summer.

Myrtle Beach is one of my favorite places in the world, second only to Jamaica, and I was lucky enough to visit both last summer over a two-week span. I got some great pictures and as I sat here remembering that I need to go put some socks on because it’s cold in this apartment, I also remembered that it was warm once and eventually, it’ll be warm again.

I think.