Archives For On a Personal Note…

Happy Monday, my friends! I hope you had an awesome weekend! We took Jack to the New Orleans Aquarium with my parents, celebrated Nick’s Grandpa Sam’s birthday with his family, and watched Nick’s youngest brother play in one of his last ever high school basketball games. It was wonderful to spend so much time with family. Being that our parents live just over an hour away we spent the night down there and weren’t able to work on any house projects until Sunday afternoon (at which point we really just wanted to veg out). I did make some progress on my kitchen shelves, though, and hope to have them finished later this week! In the meantime, here are some links that caught my eye recently in case you’re looking for a little reading to brighten your Monday:

  • The internet can be a hostile place for young people, but reading about “nerdfighters” was heartwarming
  • I know both personally and professionally that listening to relaxing music has a profound effect. In fact, a guided imagery track I downloaded on iTunes was the only thing that relieved the chronic back/rib pain I experienced for six months of my pregnancy with Jack. I didn’t know it then but scientists say this is the most relaxing song ever. I’ll have to give it a listen next time I’m having trouble falling asleep (or play it when Jack is having a meltdown!).
  • A friend of mine from grad school recently lost her husband, a veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, to PTSD. She asked that folks donate in his memory to Paws and Stripes, a nonprofit that provides service dogs for military veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.​​
  • I’ve got 20 pounds of chicken breasts in my freezer. This list should help me come up with a few new ways to cook it.
  • Are your New Year’s resolutions falling by the wayside? Try watching one of these 22 TED Talks to get inspired and motivated all over again.
  • I’ll never forgive NBC for cancelling Law & Order, but these SVU valentines are almost as awesome.

And I’ll leave you with this thought:

The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.

I’ve had better months. Listing all the little things that have gone awry would be an exercise in first world problems so I’ll spare you the details, but I think it’s important for folks to be honest about this sort of thing on social media instead of being so OMGperfect all the time. And in the spirit of honesty I felt compelled to show you these photos of my home in disarray. You know, to remind you that I’m not perfect. Please don’t judge me for what you’re about to see. It’s not THAT bad, but it’s a far cry from what most people put on the internet.

Let’s start with the office. This is where Jack and I spent most of our time during the day.

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In the evenings we migrate into the living room. Jack is really into opening and exploring the drawer in the side table (which still contains some items dating back to when my grandparents had it in their house more than a decade ago).

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I broke one of the glass panes on our front door when I was carrying a bunch of our things out to the car on Christmas Eve. The folding table I was bringing to help seat everybody for dinner at my mom’s house swung right into it somehow. Fixing it is on the to do list but for now it’s covered in cardboard.

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The far end of the dining table is always a magnet for clutter.

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This area in the laundry room has become a staging area for all the tools and supplies we need for the projects we’re working on in the kitchen.

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The guest room. It’s where we put all our crap.

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It’s normal for kids’ rooms to be messy, right?

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What’s not so normal? A bedroom shared by two adults that looks like this. It’s hard motivating myself to keep it clean when we really only use it for sleeping and dressing.

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So I think that 30% of you are probably rolling your eyes because you don’t think it’s that messy at all, 15% of you are horrified that I’m such a slob, and the rest of you are somewhere in the middle. Where do you fall on the spectrum of home tidiness? This is messy for me now but you should’ve seen my college apartment. I’ve come a long way!

Ps you can see some prettier photos on our House Tour page.

This is kind of a big deal.

I posted a few weeks ago about our concerns that Jack wasn’t yet walking. It’s been weighing heavily on my mind for months. He was actually supposed to begin physical therapy on Friday, but the appointment was cancelled and he chose that very morning to take his first unassisted steps. He took his sweet time getting here but it’s so fun to see him experimenting with this new method of getting around.

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The appointment was cancelled because of another extraordinary event: a rare day of wintry weather in South Louisiana. My instagram was aflutter with the excitement.

I thought this was snow on our deck but it was ice.

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Louisiana “snow day”.

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The Great Ice Storm of 2014. Never Forget.

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This kind of weather is so rare down here that it makes more sense to shut everything down once every five years than for municipalities to invest in snowplows and ice trucks. Unfortunately Nick still had to go into work (even though the interstate was closed!). Yesterday it was back up in the 60′s but Tuesday we could be seeing snow again. Isn’t that crazy?!?! I love this quote about snow in the South. It explains our collective obsession so perfectly!

Snow in the South is wonderful.

I hope you had a wonderful weekend, my lovelies. Stay warm!

There's only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self.

I’ve written honestly in the past about some of the things I struggle with. I’m overweight. I battle depression. I’m far from perfect. These things have been on my mind more lately as my weight loss efforts stalled over the holidays and my depression seems to have returned with a vengeance. After a very embarrassing crying-in-public incident recently I saw my doctor and got back on an antidepressant that’s worked well for me in the past. These things take a few weeks to start working but just taking action is helpful. I’m also, deep breath here, thinking about seeing a therapist. This is tough because I AM a therapist. What could anyone possibly tell me that I don’t already know? But the idea that someday Jack will be a grown man who could be sitting in a therapist’s chair discussing the ways in which his mother’s issues affected him is motivation enough to swallow my pride. Anybody local have an awesome therapist to recommend? No way am I going to anybody I already know!

I gained a few pounds over the holidays but am back on track now and a half pound lighter than I was at Thanksgiving. I’ve said it before and I want to be clear: this weight loss thing is about my health and well-being, not body image. I need to get healthy and strong for many reasons, but the greatest is that eventually Nick and I would love to have another child. My pregnancy with Jack was very difficult. It gave me so much respect for people who deal with chronic pain. I saw a new OB recently who gave me some great advice on preparing for my next pregnancy, including getting healthy and doing PT to fix whatever’s wrong with my back that caused me so much pain last time. So let me add “finding a babysitter so I can go to PT” to my to-do list.

So that’s what’s going on with me. Forgive me for just putting it all out there like that. This blog is my creative outlet and I actually started it as part of my effort to pull myself out of a previous bout with depression. I feel such a sense of community with the folks who read, whether you comment or not, and I love you dearly. Whatever you’re struggling with please know you’re not alone.