Another year is nearly gone

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Usually by this point, I’ve created my list of all the high lights and low lights of the year in order to recap them in some way – the songs that defined the year, the moments, the things I accomplished, and the things I hope to accomplish in the year ahead.

And instead, I’m a bit stuck.

In an exercise the other day, I recounted the things I didn’t mess up in 2014. The list was longer than I would have thought and perhaps that is why I don’t feel this huge rush to kick 2014 to the curb. Instead of relief, I’m more so looking forward to what’s ahead. I’m looking forward to continued progress towards… towards I don’t know what. Towards getting on my feet again, towards making plans again, towards letting go of some of the stress and blah and insecurity that still plagues me far more often than it should.

I was just thinking this morning about how much I’ve enjoyed watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix with The Princess and how grateful I am that they’ve never resorted to tacky flashback gimmicks and then the episode I’m watching as I type this is filled with flashbacks, of Lorelai’s pregnancy and Rory’s birth. Go figure. Anyway. I look forward to watching the rest of the series and finishing it up in 2015.

And then moving on to Friends because HEY FRIENDS IS COMING TO NETFLIX SOON!

Anyway, I have a few days left so I can wax poetic about 2014. And I probably will – I love New Years. I love the symbolism of a new start, a new calendar, turning the page. Somehow, I feel that shouldn’t pass without me having some thoughts about it.

For now, though, the closing credits are rolling and I’m ready to curl up in bed to read Amy Poehler’s “Yes Please” and think about how I might spend the day tomorrow. I took a few days off this short work week, and so I’ll be spending the last few days of 2014 spending massive amounts of time with my daughters and cleaning my house so that I’m ready for a fresh beginning on the first.


There’s something about realizing that twenty years ago right around now, I was just beginning my freshman year of college. I got a flash of memory lane over the past weekend when Chris and I made it to Ann Arbor for a Michigan football game (Go Blue!) – because twenty years ago, right about now, I was attending my first game at the Big House as a student there.

And I have a flash of that all being twenty years ago because my 20-year high school reunion is in two weeks and the invitation is sitting on the bookshelf in my bedroom and as of today I haven’t RSVP’d nor have I declined the invite.

They all have husbands and wives and children and houses and dogs, and, you know, they’ve all made themselves a part of something and they can talk about what they do. What am I gonna say? “I killed the president of Paraguay with a fork. How’ve you been?”

I’m pretty sure I’m not going. I mean, originally, I was all, “Oh yeah, I’ll be there!” but now, I don’t think I’m going and the reason I’m pretty sure I’m not going is that the RSVP deadline passed two weeks ago and I’ve also ignored a text asking if I was going and I am filled with this…weirdness about it all. A weirdness that I am not even really sure comes from any reasonable place that I know, but I’m choosing to listen to it and to not ignore it, because I do know myself.

And I know from knowing myself the way that I know myself – whether my sense seems to have any rhyme or reason (or not), it is what it is.

Everybody’s coming back to take stock of their lives. You know what I say? Leave your livestock alone.

I actually didn’t mind high school. I wasn’t a popular kid. I wasn’t bullied. I was a nice middle-of-the-road kid, good grades, nice to most. I’m guessing I didn’t register with enough people to be much disliked, though I guess I could be wrong. When I look back on those years, I am not filled with the dread or loathing that some have when they remember high school. It was…okay. I wasn’t tormented. I wasn’t miserable. I wasn’t angry. I wasn’t wishing the years away.

Oh but how I couldn’t wait to fly away when it was all over – couldn’t wait to find my wings – couldn’t wait for life to start. While I was there, while I was in it – I enjoyed myself.

I passed notes in class. I made legendary index note cards for chemistry exams. I played the flute badly in band. I wore a scratchy peach dress in our high school’s performance of “Oklahoma!” It was a fate worse than death to be home on a Friday night. I went places. We drove around town, yelling “Beer!” if we passed a car with a headlight out (I later learned that most people say “pediddle”? I have no idea. It was what they did so I did). High school dances. Slipping notes in locker vents. At lunch eating square pizza seated at round tables.

I just find it amusing that you came from somewhere.

In the age of Facebook, I know how most everyone is doing. I know what they do for a living. I know if they’re married or not. How many kids they have. What sports teams they root for. What side they prefer when they’re taking their facebook profile selfie shot. If they have pets or not. If they like pumpkin spice or not. I know what sports their kids play. I know their political affiliation. I know who has heard of Snopes and who hasn’t.

In short? I know more about these people now than I ever did.

And many of us didn’t go far – I don’t mean that in the metaphorical “What have you done with your life?” way, but geographically? Most of us are STILL. FREAKING. HERE.

I went to my kids’ open houses – and ran into a good portion of my graduating class. And I’m not saying that like it’s a bad thing – but it seems to me that it used to be that reunions were to bring people together that lost touch and now? You can’t lose touch. Social media has you so extensively IN TOUCH that good luck trying to cut yourself off from the world.

Not that I mind. Because I like knowing what they’re up to and what they’re doing. I do.

But. Sigh.

Hey Jenny Slater. Hey Jenny Slater. Hey Jenny Slater.

And you would think, “You know these people. You went to school with them. You’re connected with them on Facebook! This should be fun!” But.

I’m still an introvert. I’m still socially awkward. I’m still me.

I am the me that – while I cannot imagine that there is anyone who harbors any lingering hatred towards me – also cannot fathom that there is anyone who would cross a room to speak to me. I have this vision of sitting at a table eating my overpriced plate of rubber chicken and not talking to anyone. And – that’s somewhat humiliating to admit. I’m not the type to cross a room to start conversations.

And say someone did approach me – how do I want to explain the years since I saw them last at our ten year reunion? Stabbing the President of Paraguay with a fork would be infinitely more amusing than the reality which is that life has happened since I saw them last – life with its ups and downs and divorce and job hunts and finding my way and finding a job and finally finding a little peace again and that’s awfully deep for a conversation over rubber chicken and it’s not a conversation I want to have with anyone. And I don’t want to talk about the weather.

Some people say forgive and forget. Nah, I don’t know. I say forget about forgiving and just accept. And… get the hell out of town.

I wish them all well. I do.

And maybe I’d feel differently if I hadn’t just seen over half of the expected attendees three weeks ago. Maybe I’d feel differently if I had a big personality and was less of a wallflower. Maybe I’d feel differently if I truly believed my glory days ended twenty years ago.

And so it goes.

I’m making other plans, plans that don’t involve rubber chicken and a cash bar. Plans that don’t involve sucking in my gut and forcing myself to stand up straighter for hours on end.

Maybe in ten more years I’ll feel up to it. Right now, I’ll just plan to get the hell out of town.

Happy Birthday. I Miss You.

352 | 365

Dear Grandpa,

I have had a lot of thoughts in my head over the past few weeks – well, over the past year even, if I’m really being honest – and as today drew closer, I found myself overwhelmed with an odd mix of extreme sadness and determination that I would not let today get the best of me. It’s early yet, and time will tell, but I will do my best today to honor you in a way that would have made you proud. Perhaps, I’ll duct tape something.

It seems unfair to have to endure both your birthday and the anniversary of your death within a 48 hour span, but perhaps that’s just a way to rip off the bandaid and get all the truly hard hurting done at once, and then find a way to put one foot in front of the other until the next hurdles – holidays.

Which is not to say that it’s only difficult on those big days – but those are the days it’s worse.

Most of the time, though, when I think of you it’s with love and I am able to put away the sadness of a year ago at this time. The sadness of saying goodbye.

Most of the time I think of things like potato pancakes and duct tape, of you shoveling the driveway even though everyone offered to have it plowed for you, how you always had Lifesavers in church, and how you pronounced my youngest daughter’s name funny. How you were so proud of them. How you were so proud of me. How you sent me postcards when I was a kid living in California and when we’d talk on the phone we’d race to say “Gotcha!” to each other. How you taught me to start my car with a clothes pin. How you were such an awful driver (you were. Grandma said one day, as we sat by your side during those last weeks, that she always figured you’d perish in the car – those were her words: Perish in the car. She followed that with, “Not that he was a bad driver” but yes, yes you were). The sound of your voice singing. When you called grandma “babe” when you were planning to renew your vows on your 60th anniversary.

You were and are so very loved – and I miss having you around. I hate that you’re not here. I wish you could see my daughters. I wish you could see that my life is coming back together. I’m glad you got to meet Chris and he got to meet you and these are all things I probably said last year right around this time but if I say them twice I must really mean them, right?

You were the glue that held us all together and since you’ve been gone there have been so few occasions where everyone’s been in the same place.

We didn’t get together on Father’s Day but we were all heart broken.

The thing is, you were so amazing. You were so strong for us. You were funny. You made us smile. You – just by being you – captured a permanent place in each of us and without you, it’s very clear that something’s absent.

And I don’t want to fill that void – but I don’t want to be sad either.

Sad feels ungrateful.

Some people are never as lucky as we were. Never as lucky as I was to have had someone like you in my life for so long (I’ve forgotten, grandpa, how old I am – isn’t that the funniest thing?).

We were blessed.

We were loved.

We miss you.

I miss you.

Forever grateful to have had you in my life.

i still love you.


It’s No Joke*: Today I Have Health Insurance Again. Finally.

When I had my yearly physical in January, I paid with money I had been saving for two months – money I had set aside solely for the purpose of going to the doc, putting my feet in the stirrups, getting all checked out like a responsible adult does. I was given a ten percent discount for paying in cash and when my doctor prescribed antibiotics for a lung infection for me at that same visit, she took care to prescribe generics that would be likely to be available free or at a reduced cost from most pharmacies.

And later, when I had my eye appointment so I could get new contact lenses (because the poster they have in their office of the eye infections you can get by not changing your lenses FREAKED ME OUT), I purchased my new (totally clean and hygienic) lenses with money I had saved from selling old jewelry, money that I’d wanted to use to buy my kids better gifts at Christmas, but instead used…for my eyes. And that was after my amazing eye doc gave me a free eye exam and reduced the cost of my lens fitting because he is awesome and I? I was broke.

After my divorce was finally officially final last May, I immediately went on my employer’s health insurance plan. Great! Exciting! No lapse in coverage! Whoohoo!

Until my job got cut to part time in July.

Since July 1, I have had no health insurance. Today, my employer’s health insurance coverage kicks in and once again, I can breathe a sigh of relief.

I can’t explain how it feels to not be covered by health insurance other than to say that if you think too closely about how you can be bankrupted by one illness or injury, you will want to wrap yourself in a bubble and spray everything down with disinfectant constantly. Things you might go to the doctor for when you have insurance, you think twice about when you don’t.

That lung infection I had in January? Yeah, I totally wouldn’t have seen a doc for that if I hadn’t already had an appointment I had saved for. Even though I was miserable. Even though I needed it.

There were things I did to somewhat ease my mind – I upped my car insurance a bit so that if I had gotten injured in a car accident, those medical expenses would be covered by insurance. I started taking Vitamin C. I stopped playing in traffic. Just seeing if you’re paying attention.

Anyway. There’s only so much you can do.

Anything can happen to anyone and there’s pretty much not a damn thing you can do about it – and when you don’t have health insurance, it’s terrifying.

In the midst of all that, I saw someone post on Facebook complaining of the effects of the Affordable Care Act on her copays (Note: I don’t care if the Obama administration themselves have taken to referring to it as “Obamacare” – I just don’t). What I wanted to say, and never had the guts to (because I’m not a pot-stirrer) is this: The ACA wasn’t made to help the people who are taking their family of seven on multiple trips to Florida every year. Yes, you’re awesome. You work hard, you earned your money, and you can do with it whatever you want. But… it wasn’t made to help you.

It was made to help people who are in the boat I have been in. People, for whom purchasing their own insurance was out of reach. Before ACA, buying your own insurance was pretty cost prohibitive. Yeah. It’s still expensive. I mean, hell, clearly I couldn’t afford it because I didn’t have it… but it was far less expensive than it had been previously.

Am I defending ACA? No. It’s far from perfect. I think the idea of it is a good one – people shouldn’t have to sacrifice good health and preventative care because their circumstances aren’t ideal for affording medical care or insurance.

But, it wasn’t made to help the people who could afford it. And I budgeted to get a pap smear, so my heart doesn’t break too much for those who may end up reconsidering whether or not they can afford that fourth trip to Disney this year.

(I may have been made a bit bitter by my situation. I own it. It’s been a hard year.)

A few months ago, a woman I know posted something to Facebook about people who mooch (not my words) from government programs. Drug tests for everybody!

And I was appalled and insulted.

If you’ll remember, I had spent FIVE HOURS waiting in line at an unemployment office waiting for a meager sum of money that ended up making a huge difference while my work situation was what it was. Did I not have a full time because I was a druggie? No. Did I not have a full time job because I was lazy? Did I expect to just hold my hand out and have someone fill it? No. I worked hard for years, and when times got tough I needed help.

It happens.

It sucks and it happens.

It has been a long hard road of feeling like I would never find my footing again and today, today I have health insurance again and I hope to not take that for granted, just how amazing it is that I will be able to take care of my health and well being without months of planning and budgeting and penny pinching.I look forward to not having to weigh which of the recommended routine physical tests I will do because I can’t afford them all. I’m looking forward to finally rescheduling the dental appointment I cancelled last month because I had no insurance.

So, yeah, I’m excited. More excited than I should be perhaps (“Whoohoo! I can get my cholesterol tested without pinching pennies before hand!”) but excited because if the past year has taught me anything, it’s that there’s a lot that I had been taking for granted, a lot I didn’t appreciate as I should, and now, after everything, I am so grateful, SO. VERY. GRATEFUL. to have peace of mind.




*I hate April Fool’s Day. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it.

Forward Motion

181 | 365

One week down.

I had forgotten, kind of, the transition involved with going from a job where you know all of the inner workings and quirks to one where you have a blank slate and have everything to learn. That feeling of going from the one that people go to when they have questions to being the one who is asking the questions. It’s not a feeling I like, this cluelessness, but I do know that it should pass.

All of that aside, for the first time in a long time, I feel on track for getting my feet back on the ground.

I really hope this means the tide is turning.

I’m sure you do, as well. After all, I’m sure this hasn’t been a very fun place to read for the past year or so.

But I’m hoping for good things in my future.

And hope feels good. I haven’t felt hope in awhile…and I kind of like it.

Hey Mother Nature, We’re Getting Sick Of Your Shizz.

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I haven’t had a commute over the past several days that has taken less than an hour. That means I’m spending at least two hours a day in the car commuting to a job with an expiration date.

Chew on that.

It’s a bit of insult meeting injury, but I’m doing it.

(I’m a trooper. A whiny trooper, but I’m a trooper.)

The news is filled with reports of highways closed, jackknifed semi-trucks, cars in ditches. The roads are icy and the blowing snow are making these already poor driving conditions even worse.

It’s been almost a week since my kids have been to school. I’m pretty sure they’re still able to remember how to write their own names and find their classrooms…but I can’t really be sure. Does school amnesia set in after awhile?

No matter, really, because despite my long standing lack of love for snow days, I have to admit… This winter has been pretty gruesome. There hasn’t been a single day over the past month where I’ve thought to myself, “They shouldn’t have closed.” Every closing has felt justifiable to me.

With brutal arctic temperatures and craptastic driving conditions, I’d really rather my kids were safe at home. Does it make things tricky schedule-wise? Well, YES. And I’m grateful that I have family that helps me out and makes my life easy when schedules are anything but. I don’t want my daughters waiting for a bus in -25 windchill. I don’t want them them on the road in a seatbelt-less bus when the conditions are such that there’s no guarantee that the vehicle will stop when you want it to. It’s ugly outside.

This is not a change of heart from my earlier anti-snow-day stance. I’ve come to see this winter that that stance was born of frivolous closings that weren’t justified. A school closing for a morning snow fall that was cleared by 9 a.m.? Pffft. You’ve wreaked havoc on my day FOR NOTHING!

This winter?

Okay. They’re doing right by me, right by my kids. They’re doing right in terms of safety.

Reading accounts of the folks in Atlanta stuck on the freeway for hours on end due to yesterday’s snow and ice in the south is terrifying. I spent ten minutes at a complete stop on the freeway on my drive home Monday afternoon, and it was a claustrophobic ten minutes. I cannot imagine sitting like that for hours, I can’t.

This winter has been no joke.

And I’m so very over it.

I want the snow to stop and the ice to go away. I want the temperatures to rise and I want the kids to go back to school. I want my commute to be less white-knuckled. I’m SO ready for spring.

are you watching the sky too

And We’re All Turning Into Little People-sicles

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The sky was darkening and I was eager to get into the house, shake off the day and get dinner started for the girls. Instead, as I turned into my driveway I got stuck in that huge pile of sludge the snow plow leaves as it clears the street. Thick heavy snow surrounded my tires and they spun and spun as I tried to move forward, back to get out of this mess.

As I began to try to free my tires of snow, shoveling away some of the sludge, a stranger in a minivan got out of his car and pulled a shovel from the back. He walked around my van, helping me shovel around my tires. Finally he said, “Try now.” I got into my car and reversed as he pushed on the hood of my car to help free me from my snowy jail.

Loosened from the snow, I backed all the way out of my drive and then once he cleared my path, hit the gas and just pushed through the snow to get through the muck. It worked.

I thanked my helper and he was gone before I could offer cookies or a slice of lemon pound cake The Princess had baked.

And then I caved and hired someone to plow my driveway.


This morning, I awoke early – hoping to find a message saying our office was closed. No go, so I was up at 5:30 piling layer upon layer on to go shovel the driveway so I could get out to go to work and so my stepfather could get in to watch the kids. The windchill was -9.

For twenty minutes I shoveled before escaping to a hot shower and preparing for my day.

This morning’s commute was a tense white-knuckled drive with blowing snow and at times, white out conditions. I turned on to the highway and immediately a gush of snow rendered my whole field of vision a sea of white. I couldn’t see a place to pull over, stop driving. I wanted to cry. A car went by me with its hazards on, then another with its hazards. It was helpful – following the flashing reds, and so I put mine on too, not knowing if it was the right thing to do or not, only figuring it couldn’t hurt to signal other drivers that a) HI! I’m HERE! and b) I’m moving slowly because OMG I AM A LITTLE NERVOUS.

I made it to work, only a few minutes late and eventually my heart stopped its annoying racey-panicky thing and settled into a normal rhythm.

I’ve worked hard this winter and last to handle the shoveling on my own. I actually have grown to like shoveling snow – it’s instant gratification because immediately I can see the results of my hard work. Also? Major calorie burn. Pass the cookies. In the past, we had a service that plowed the driveway whenever we received over a certain amount of snowfall.

Well, those days (and that disposable income) are gone and so I have come to a certain acceptance about shoveling. I spent over an hour and 400 calories shoveling yesterday.

Tonight, with windchills well below zero? I don’t even want to try.

It’s cold. I’m getting a cough. That sludge is freaking heavy and I don’t want to be out there long enough to make it disappear.

And so I paid someone to do it.

I know it’s not a failure – I mean I’ve been busting my ass week after week and keeping up with the snow. I’ve been shoveling my drive before the neighbors with the snowblowers are out.

But it’s just too cold. I can’t do it.

I caved.

And I feel like a bit of a chump about it, like I took the easy way out (well, my wallet didn’t find it to be that easy), instead of braving the cold and just doing it.

But my driveway is clear.

Tomorrow morning, I can sit inside with a cup of coffee instead of shivering and shoveling. And maybe, just maybe, I won’t get stuck again.

I’m stubborn. I don’t like asking for help. I loathe asking for help.

But apparently I’ll pay for it.

Saying Goodbye to 2013

Eye will be happy to see this year go

This year kicked my ass.

I knew at the start of the year that it wouldn’t be easy – I knew that my grandpa was struggling following his stroke in November 2012. I was waiting for my divorce to be finalized and getting the hang of the whole single parent thang (and single paycheck thing). And of course, the new year starts in the midst of my least favorite season, so I was slogging through winter blahs anyway.

I didn’t anticipate my job getting cut to part time.

Getting by on half a paycheck.

My grandfather dying.

The struggles related to trying to find full time work.

My basement flooding.

Hundreds of dollars of furnace repair.

My stepfather’s valve replacement surgery.

My brother’s two broken legs.

It seems like every time I turned around, it was something else.

It seemed like despite the fact that there was still good in 2013, it was clouded over by the things that weighed me down.

I am no stranger to struggle but this year? I felt so tested by this year.

And even today as I sat on my couch crying about something, I felt like it was 2013 trying to get one final dig in.

And that’s just ridiculous.

In my heart of heart I know that it’s not the year’s fault. Bad things happen sometime. We lose people we love. We are forced to find our strength when times get tough. That all of this happened in the span of 365 days is probably all just a fluke.

Doesn’t make me hate the year any less, though.

But feeling that way about it, well, it makes me sad. Because a lot was right in 2013: my kids, Chris, my sister’s surprise pregnancy (when she was told she’d NEVER be able to conceive naturally – SURPRISE! My nephew is due any minute!), amazing friends and friendships, a lot of good times, and a lot of joy.

I don’t know what’s ahead in 2014, only that I hope that the year is kinder to me and the people I love. I know that struggle presents us with opportunity for growth – but, you know, I don’t want to grow right now. I’m okay where I am. No growing necessary. Not for now. None for me, thanks.

There’s no guarantee that 2014 will be any better. The clock could strike midnight and the coming year could bring more of the same. Who knows.

But I always view a near year as a new start and so with my new start, I’ll pick myself up, brush myself off, and keep on putting one foot in front of the other. It’s all any of us can do, anyway.

Happy new year, y’all. Love and be loved,


A Grownup’s Letter to Santa

Dear Santa,

I know this letter is late but I figured that perhaps you or your elves might still be checking Google Alerts for your name and so I’m hoping that you might see this in time for Christmas.

I’m writing to you because it beats mumbling under my breath to the universe, it beats slamming doors, and since I’m already frustrated, I figured that you can be my last resort — who knows, maybe all these years of staying off the Naughty List will finally do me some good.

This has been one of the hardest years of my life, Santa, and I’ve been hanging in there pretty well. I’ve managed to do all of the things I’m supposed to be doing, despite a ton of obstacles being thrown at me. I guess the first thing I’m asking for, O Bearded One, is for less obstacles. I know, I know, that which doesn’t kill me makes me stronger, but I also know that I’m getting a little old to care so much about being strong. I want not strength, these days, but endurance so that I can keep moving forward long after I would rather be resting.

I want patience – because the things I’m working for won’t always come easy.

I want persistence so I can pick myself up when I’ve been knocked down. As many times as it takes.

I want the insight and analytical mind required to figure out why things happen as they do and to learn from them.

Sometimes I find myself so frustrated when it seems things come easily for someone else or that they’re not running into the same challenges. I want the heart and the grace so that I can find joy for their joy, so that I don’t begrudge their happiness, and that I remember that I only know just a fraction of their story, just as they only know a piece of mine.

I’m tired of worry and I’m tired of fear and I would love to be a step closer to certainty.

I lost one of the most special people in the world when my grandpa died this year.

I have also been blessed to find love.

I want to be able to counter life’s hurts with life’s joys with an open heart that remembers that both the happiness and the sorrows come from loving without reserve and I want to keep being that person who treasures the love of those special people in my life.

I can’t imagine your elves are going to have an easy time making these things that I want, that I need. I’m not sure there’s a store in the world where these things could be purchased, Santa. I realize I’d have a greater likelihood of getting what I’ve asked for if I told you I needed a new hoodie or a travel coffee mug.

But I don’t need things.

I probably am supposed to be able to do all of these things on my own, Belly Full O’ Jelly, but I’ve struggled this year, so I’m asking you to maybe leave some magic under my tree.

I’d hate to think I’ve been so good for all these years for nothin’. And besides, you know I leave you the best cookies.


Member of the Nice List since 1976

Day 30: Well. I survived. You survived.

Oops. I did it again.

I blogged every day for thirty days and frankly, I can’t even remember what the hell I wrote about except that I knew when I started that November would be  a tough month and I wasn’t wrong so then to make up for having all of those stupid emotions I taught you how to make gougere.

We’re less than a month away from Christmas and we’re already eyeball deep in Elf on the Shelf posts on Facebook and my Christmas tree is up and there are presents underneath and you know, it’s finally hitting me that I’m in the home stretch of making it through 2013. I’m going to do it. I’ll get through.

I was trying to just get through November – to get through writing each day and trying not to get too many emotions on all of you and trying to not have a heart attack from stress and just get through it.

And now tomorrow is December.

Will I write daily in December?


(You’re welcome.)


What IS on tap for December?

Well, the holidays. DUH.

Also, I’ll be taking part in Lucrecer’s CELEBRATE photo challenge – I’ll post challenge pics here.

The annual cookie decorating party. Pumpkin’s holiday Christmas concert. The Princess’s second gymnastics meet of the season. Monkey bread. Lots of coffee. Treating myself to a bottle of Philosophy’s Gingerbread Man bubble bath and then rationing it out over the year. Attempting to get my work outs back on track and feel a little bit better about myself. Countless hours of HGTV background noise. Time spent with the people I love – both celebrating the holidays and just being absolutely. lazy.

It’s amazing to think another month is nearly over. Another year is nearly over.

I just keep looking forward to what’s ahead.