Au Revoir Oregon!

Well, the time has finally come… California I’m comin’ for ya!

Although our plan was to move towards the end of the year, for personal reasons we moved it up, and I am heading out the door this week!!!

Totally feeling all the feelings right now.

I have lived in Oregon for a little bit over a year. As I have stated before, it started out good but time foretold that it was turning out not to be the best decision for our family.

And that is okay. It is totally okay. We are humans and humans make decisions and they don’t always turn out to be the best. We sometimes make mistakes.

And again, that is okay.

Oregon is a wonderful and beautiful state. And it let me take pictures like this:


But it never felt like home and California opened her arms and beckoned us back. And so we are going.

Thus begins our road trip this week and honestly it feels good. So good to be going home, to our real home, and I might squeal with joy when I cross the state border when we make it in to California.

But Oregon, you were an interesting detour in my life and I will never forget you. Till we meet again…

Next stop, the golden state!!

She Jumps In Puddles

She jumps in puddles, pigtails flying, knees bent, smile a mile wide.

“Mommy, jump with me!”, she says. And I oblige. I jump along with her, conscious that I may look silly seeing as I am a grown adult for whom puddle-jumping does not tend to hold the same excitement that it does for the younger set.

But I do it, and throw self-consciousness to the wind.


We hold hands and make a run for the next puddle. Splash! The rain can’t stop my girl from giggling oh so sweetly. “Mommy that was a big puddle!”

I watch her and marvel.

She is her own superhero, her own persona, with her initial emblazoned in an imaginary fashion on her chest. She is sugar and spice with a healthy dose of recklessness thrown in for good measure.

“Mommy, look! More puddles!”

We jump and our boots bear the brunt of our energy.

I do not want this time to end, this precious time with my beautiful girl. Because someday, she won’t want to jump in puddles. Someday she will be a teenager looking disdainfully at my retelling of our puddle-jumping days. “Mommy” will become “Mom”, and she will bypass the puddles for fear of getting wet.

I know that someday she will look fondly back at our times of splashes and giggles. And she will smile.

But now… now we will find more puddles to jump in.

Because right now, we have all the time in the world.


I didn’t mean to get involved, I really didn’t…

When I was vulnerable and weak, the stores beckoned me. They called my name and whispered sweet nothings into my untrained ear. I came. I hithered. I gave myself up to the drumbeat of the sound of the credit card being beautifully swiped.

I became an emotional shopper.

But what was that really? What did that really mean?

Sure balancing a full-time college course load and all the studying that accompanied it was trying, but weren’t we all making our way towards a degree? I wasn’t alone and trudged along just like everyone else.

And sure working full-time along with college, well I wasn’t alone in that either, right? I mean everyone who was anyone was working and going to school. No big deal, right? In fact, the people who were going to school and didn’t have a job were the weirdos. “Why aren’t you working?”, we would all silently judge.

So college, check. Full-time job, check. Emotionally abusive relationship, check…wait, what?

Being young and in love and with everything else going in my life did not bode well for my wallet. Got into an argument. Get yelled at. Go directly to the mall. Got into another argument. More yelling. Cry. Go to the mall. Got into another argument but this time they said they were sorry. Okay, well you said you were sorry, but I am still crying. And I’m still going to go to the mall.

My emotional state of mind bridged my way to being an emotional shopper, way before that term was even in the day-to-day lexicon.

And that is a bridge I’d like to burn.

Because I wish I could go back in time. I wish I could go talk to that young girl that I was, and hug her and tell her that it is going to get better. I would tell her that all the cheap shoes and t-shirts that she buys won’t erase the hollow feeling in her heart. That the latest trendy nonsense being sold in the stores won’t cover the pit in the bottom of her stomach.

I want to hold her tight and tell her to leave this relationship that she is in that is making her fragile and leaving her broken. I want to caress her hair and tell her that relationships are not supposed to be like that, and that one day you will meet and marry a man who loves you more than anything in this world and knows how to treat a lady.

But since I can’t do that, I want to burn the bridge. I want to tear it down and I don’t want anyone else to walk across it.

No one should have to walk across that bridge.

Because It’s Bold

We made a plan to live in the land of green and couldn’t wait to try our fresh philosophy. The plan was thought up, the plan was in place, and it was critically important that the plan was followed through. Because the plan was magical, it was for the taking. Because it was imaginative, it was ours for the asking.

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The open road stretched before us and we set out on our path. We took a leap of faith and found courage where there was none to be found. The tires rolled and the vehicle was in motion. Don’t look back.

Don’t look back…now that it’s done…

The days passed and at first, bliss was found in ignorance. The land of green stretched out and we reclined in its arms. I don’t suppose the days blurred and sleep came readily.

But the endless grey days began to mount. Feeling out-of-body and out of mind began to number in their intensity. These moments are beginning to hover over the hours, like a dark cloud perpetually raining down its fury.

The days were revolving, and there was not a day that passed without some sort of quiet regret. Convoluted thinking, melancholy dreaming, an imminent saddening.

We wept out our strength and made another plan.

Terribly practical and no knots in the stomach this time. A strong plan, you see.

The open road is going in the other direction this time.

We walked these streets in the land of green but it never felt like home. Never felt right. We miss the land of our daughter’s birth. We miss the way the sun sets on the ocean. We miss the air.

So we held hands, we grasped prayers, we held onto faith.

And we are jumping.

Because it’s bold.

A Meaningful Life

So, I don’t know if you guys have heard of The Minimalists, but they are these two guys that had these 6-figure-a-year jobs and one day, just completely walked away from the rat race and now advocate a minimalist lifestyle. Now before you hit delete or want to skip this post and cuddle and hold close all of your prized possessions, hold on a second. I am not here to talk about minimalism. I repeat, I am not here to talk about minimalism. I am not jumping on that bandwagon. Whew…

What I do want to talk about is this amazing sentence that they tweeted out that I absolutely love and how I am applying it differently than what they probably meant.

Ready? Here it is:

We can live a meaningful life by taking tiny little actions each day that have a significant long-term impact on our lives.


I believe this to be a powerful little sentence folks, especially when you think about it in the context of your health. I have mentioned here and on Instagram, that I am trying to be more healthy and make smarter decisions with what I eat. Last year, I became aware that I had a gluten sensitivity and at first I was like, okay I can do this, no problem. But after awhile, I rebelled. Screw you gluten! I am going to eat a bagel and I don’t care what havoc you wreak on my body. Soooo, guess how long that lasted? Yeah, that was not a good idea. My childish behavior made me sick until I just finally came to terms that I simply cannot have gluten. I am at peace with that, but let me tell you, it took a long time.

My point in laying out my bellyache woes to you is that I had to actually choose my health and make that a priority. I had to take those “tiny little actions” to make my life gluten-free, because that impacts my life long-term. I want a long, and definitely meaningful, life. I want to live life to the fullest. I want to thrive. And I couldn’t do that when I wasn’t taking the proper steps to do just that.

If you are trying to get healthy because you’ve got your own health issues, I am here to tell you that getting overwhelmed won’t help your situation. You don’t have to be overwhelmed. You don’t have to take giant steps.

Take tiny little actions.

Maybe one day, you add just one vegetable to each meal that day. Maybe you decide to incorporate more vegetarian meals into your meal planning. Maybe you decide to read some food blogs by people who know what they are talking about and you make some of their recipes. Whatever you decide to do, you don’t have to do it all at once. Maybe you try something new once a day. Maybe for you, once a week is the most you can try and alter the way you eat.

All of that is okay. Remember it’s the tiny little actions that steer you towards a meaningful life and impact your life in the best way possible.

If you have been wanting to change some aspect of your life and don’t know how to do it, maybe this post is for you. Maybe your health isn’t the issue but being stuck in a dead-end job is. What tiny little actions can you take to get you on the path towards a more meaningful life? Can you work on your resume today? Can you call a friend and have them help do a “mock interview” with you so you can brush up on your interview skills? Maybe browse some courses at the local community college to see if there are some classes you can take to make yourself more marketable?

We can live a meaningful life by taking tiny little actions each day that have a significant long-term impact on our lives.

Write this sentence down. Put it on a post-it note. Put it where you can see it.

What needs working on in your life? What are your “tiny little actions”?

I’ve mentioned here and there that I have this penchant for ripping recipes out of magazines and storing them in a folder to make at some undisclosed date. Well, here is one of those recipes! And it cooks in a slow-cooker! And it has cheese! And I love exclamation marks! ;)

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Cheesy Italian-Style Stuffed Peppers


  • ¼ cup instant brown rice
  • ½ pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 4 red bell peppers, tops removed, cored and seeded
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  1. Cook rice according to package directions.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine rice, turkey, Italian seasoning, onion, Parmesan cheese, ¼ cup tomatoes and 1 cup mozzarella cheese. Fill peppers with rice mixture.
  3. Coat the inside of a slow cooker with cooking spray and place filled peppers upright in cooker. Spoon remaining tomatoes over and between peppers; top each pepper with ¼ cup mozzarella cheese. Cook on low for 8 hours.

**Recipe adapted from Fitness Magazine

Lol, remember when remixes were all the rage for songs? :) Ha, I thought that was funny.

Anyways, I wrote a post about things I don’t miss about the 80’s previously, and I thought now would be a good time to add another one, cause they are fun, and totally rad ;)

VCR’s. Yes, I know people still have them and some people pat themselves on the back that they still have a working VCR after all these years, but I mean they really were the worst. Raise your hand if you lost a precious videotape to your VCR deciding now would be a good time to eat it? Yup, we’ve all been there :( And then all the times the videotape would just stop playing for some unfathomable reason. And the constant rewinding of the videotape just sucked. I personally think whoever invented the DVD player was an absolute genius :)

My Little Pony. Oh, wait… those darn things are still here. Having a second revival… Ugh, can’t we just leave these annoying ponies back in the 80’s?

This one is my daughter's. I have no idea what her "pony name" is.

This one is my daughter’s. I have no idea what her “pony name” is.

Bad Sitcoms Who Always Had a “Lesson Learned” At The End. I am looking at you Growing Pains, Family Matters, Charles in Charge and Who’s The Boss. If you did something wrong, it’s okay as long as you learned “a valuable lesson” in less than 30 minutes. Gag me with a spoon. Seriously…

Kenny G. Apologies to those that heart his music, but it makes my ears bleed and want to hide his saxophone where he could never, ever find it.

Lee Press On Nails. Why was this a thing? No really, why? Plastic nails that used some sort of sticky waxy substance that sort of but not really, attached the fakest looking things you’ve ever seen in your life, to your nail. You hoped that it wouldn’t fall off, but it always did. It always did…

Jelly Shoes. For those not in the know, jelly shoes were some cheap concoction of plastic webbing that was super inexpensive to buy, and came in all sorts of colors including fluorescent pink (my color of choice at the time). They were these slip-on shoes that caused your feet to sweat immediately after putting them on, and because they were cheap plastic without any sort of proper sole, your feet would literally burn on the pavement the minute you stepped out into the sun. Wearing those shoes was like walking on hot coals when it was summertime. And yet, everyone continued to wear them. With sky-high bangs and permed hair probably.

What don’t you miss about the 80’s? Do you still have a VCR? :)


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