Thing #33 – Keeping Going

I was shopping for a notebook recently. I’m very particular about notebooks and journals, and it can take weeks before I commit. Plus, now there are all these notebooks with cutesy slogans on the cover about “slaying” things or following your dreams or similarly empowering crap. I avoid notebooks with words on the cover. 

However, I stumbled upon one that made me reconsider my distaste for cover slogans. The statement is simple. It’s one I’ve always loved, but often forget about – “Remember why you started.”

It’s the kick in the pants I need to keep going. “Keeping going” is not one of my strong suits. I’ve taken enough strength assessments to know my sweet spot is dreaming ideas and imagining all the directions they can go. I love learning the best path forward and putting plans into action. But when the shine wears off, I’m eager to start the next thing. 

Is it a coincidence that I’m writing about this as I’ve passed the deadline on “My 39 Things,” and am several posts away … Read the rest

Thing #32 – I Turned 40

Remember when your parents turned 40? Didn’t that seem old? I remember being in middle school when my dad had a surprise party for his fortieth. I recall black decorations featuring the grim reaper and “over the hill” balloons.

Forty was adult. Forty-year-olds had their shit together. They had tax accountants and garages full of power tools. Also, my dad had a middle-school-aged daughter when he turned forty. I have a Meyer Lemon tree that might be dying and a dog that barfed unidentifiable blue pieces of plastic this morning. 

Regardless of whether you’re responsible for a fruit tree or a human, turning forty is an achievement. A good portion of my 30s was spent dreading the fact I was aging. And now I’m just thrilled to be here. To be healthy and strong. To have a smile lines. To turn a year older.

You only turn forty once and I wanted to be flashy, flossy and over the top. This is not my style. I’m more of a “save your pennies” kind of girl. … Read the rest

Thing #31 – Three of Wands

It had been weeks since I touched my tarot cards. They sit on my bedside table, along with hippy-dippy accoutrements and books I flip through before I fall asleep – ones about yoga, tarot, chakras, angels and the like. Things that are generally met with a polite, cynical smile from my huzzbot on the other side of the bed. 

I know it isn’t for everyone. But I’ve long been a believer that the universe gives us signs. There are times when the universe whispers. I catch it on the breeze and let it flutter away. But after ignoring its whispers for long enough, the universe sits on my shoulder and screams in my ear. 

When I hear the screams, feel transitional shifts in my life, or notice an unusually high number of coincidences around me, I make a point to get a tarot reading. Tarot helps me align the cues spinning around me with something more tangible. It validates the signs and gives them structure.

A few years ago when I decided to commit … Read the rest

Thing #30 – Decade in Review

Around New Year’s Eve, I perform a “Year in Review” with myself. It involves me going on a wine or coffee date with my journal and evaluating various buckets of my life. Work, love, travel, creativity, health, home, learning, etc…I reflect on highs, lows, surprises and lessons in each bucket. 

While it’s nice to recap the past 12 months, it’s also an illuminating way to reveal what I want to do more or less of in the new year. Through this process, I get clarity on the person I want to be in the year ahead and how to prioritize my time. It’s not so much about setting resolutions as it is creating a pie chart for how I want to spend my time.

As I closed out my 20s and peered into my 30s, I constructed a vision for how I wished to move through my new decade. Fresh from my trip to Europe and eager to conquer the next phase in my adulthood, I created a platform. I reviewed my 20s, sifted away … Read the rest

Thing # 29 – Blue Journal

Blue Journal

If I told you one of my best friends is a journal from 2009, you might think I’m a sad, lonely hermit. I have countless journals that live in a box in the basement, but this one – my blue journal – stays in my bedside drawer. 

While I’ve intermittently kept a journal my whole life, it wasn’t until 15 years ago that I made it a consistent practice. My journal serves different purposes at different times. Sometimes it keeps secrets or helps breed new ideas, but usually it’s a safe space to store the chaos that gunks up my head. Most importantly, my journal is my companion. I’m rarely without it. It keeps me company like an old friend, and when I ask questions, it responds in its own way. 

Ten years ago, I wanted to commemorate my 30th birthday with something bold and memorable, so I traveled to Europe for a couple weeks. I went alone but never felt alone. Between the daily cast of characters that came into my life and the … Read the rest

Thing #28 – Blood on the Tracks

When I was in high school, I started playing guitar and writing songs. The typical folksy, three-chord masterpieces you’d expect from a teenage girl. In those early years, I was endlessly inspired by Bob Dylan.

I’d listen to Blood on the Tracks and dream of an adulthood rich with travel, intrigue, love and adventure. I was plagued by the restless longing of waiting for life to start and was desperate for a rambling, wandering, Dylan-esque world where I turned every drop of life into poetry. 

In college, I’d write songs about nights as they unfolded. Impromptu tales of shenanigans, complete with singalong choruses designed to make my friends laugh. 

Not long after, I recorded a couple albums of girl-power jams in my apartment, experimenting with layers of sound as I melted into new depths of love, sadness and longing. It was the best way I could process the cliche emotions of my mid-20s. I still love each of those songs like they were children.

Although that songwriting life slowly fell away from me, we parted … Read the rest