Quitting and Contentment

Hi there!  Goodness, it has been a long time since I wrote anything on this little old blog (August 2017 to be exact!).  To say that I’ve been “up in the air” about many things is putting it mildly!  I’ve been asking myself do I switch to a new church (or not), switch career fields (or not), do I complete coursework to switch jobs within the field of education (or not), do I run a marathon (or not), etc., etc.

I hate to feel like I’m just bumping along without an goal.  I love to take action when I’ve identified a problem.  I also confess to wanting lots of human opinions either from loved ones or the infamous Google search.  These tendencies present a problem when I put ultimatums on myself and timelines and expectations.  Then, the fixing of one “problem” results in lots of internal problems for me.

I guess you could say that my motto for 2018 is just quit. We are only 18 days in, and I’ve already doing a pretty good job.

  1.  Registered for Yuengling Shamrock Marathon – I switched over to the 8K.
  2. Registered, Paid, and Began classes at Old Dominion and Tidewater Community College – I dropped those classes after the first week.  Sadly, this was after I put about 7 hours work into them.
  3. Tentatively planned two vacations – I abandoned both ideas as one was too far of a car ride for our car-challenged children and the other was not the Mr.’s idea of a vacation.  I do see his point as it was a trip to the beach, and we LIVE in Virginia Beach.  😉
  4. Heck, I was already ahead of myself and gave up on this blog back in August!

I think quitting can have such negativity associated with it.  However, I know as a teacher I go over with students when to abandon a book.  How often do we as adults take inventory of our lives (friends, family, profession, spirituality, hobbies) and decide what really needs to be abandoned?  Is there a friend who really isn’t a friend and has become a drain on your emotions?  Is there a family member who requires a little more distance from your everyday thoughts and your heat?  Perhaps, you need to change your job in some way or maybe an attitude/way you do thing adjustment is necessary.  Are you stagnant spiritually?  When’s the last time you truly felt your soul was evolving even in some small way?  Hobbies?  Do you have none or quite too many?  Are you really doing something that is special to you?

It’s no secret that I love to purge/organize/drop-off at the thrift store.  I love the feeling that you have after really clearing out some space in a home.  It feels like I can breathe easier and see with so much more clarity what remains.  I think it’s easier to identify where “clutter” is when it’s tangible and has a sort-of “in your face”-ness to it.

I believe that 2018 for me will be a year of changes but also (*hopefully*) a year of contentment.  I’m quite tired of striving.  There’s that saying – “There’s always room for improvement.”  I do love a good self-help book and the sense of accomplishment from meeting a goal.  I’ve done a lot of that.  I think really for me to grow as a person it might…just maybe…be more important for me to let contentment grow this year.

Can I just be content with my personality?  my skills?  my weaknesses?  my accomplishments?  my failures?  I feels like the quest for the Holy Grail!  I guess I’ll have to find my best Indiana Jones’ hat and try!

Do you set resolutions or goals only in January?  or maybe not at all?

Have a great day and year!  🙂

Blogging as it relates to life

I have a confession to make.  My name is Natalie, and I behave in a negligent manner towards a loved one.  I’m thoughtless and am unkind without remorse.  I demand that this person meet unattainable goals.  I wrongfully believe that this person can meet all the needs without requiring anything.  I tend to put this person down and tell her that she couldn’t possibly be successful at this, that or the other…

I am being mean to me.

Isn’t that just sad?!  Actually, it just makes me mad!  See the issue?  Who am I mad at?  Self-love is not my default…and I would even say self-like may be pushing the envelope.  How does this relate to blogging, this blog…you may ask?  Well, I just spent about thirty minutes rereading old blog posts and enjoying seeing what I’ve been up to since I started up this little project back in August 2012.  I love watching Holden (and us as parents) grow up over time.  I have felt a little sad that I discontinued it over the past few months.  I’ve also felt extremely overwhelmed and like I have no time for anything besides the basics.  Now, this feeling is partially just my personality, but I think I could make a pretty good list of why this feeling is valid (new baby, full-time work, busy family life, daycare craziness, average ups-and-downs of life, etc.).  I’ve pushed aside this outlet to make time and focus on other things.  Important things like feeding humans I love, talking to my extended family on the phone, paying attention to my curious and talkative 5 year old, carrying around a sweet baby who is very partial to her mama, and just general life stuff like tidying up tons of blocks and clean clothes that are piled on the sofa.

The thing is…I’m not sure what to do about it.  I keep telling myself that this is just a season of life!  I’ll have more time for me (hobbies, interests, friends, etc.)when <insert milestone life event here>.  Will I really though?  Will I have a good, long life to explore all the possibilities?  Am I being selfish?  unreasonable?

Things I do know:

  1. I love my children.
  2. I desperately want to follow God’s plan for my life {even though I must be too dense to get the picture sometimes!}.
  3. I am not bionic despite my sister’s ideas.

To conclude this rambling blog post, I’m unsure if I will continue to write in this Internet space.  And I guess it should be enough reason for me to keep doing it if I ENJOY IT (not considering how many “likes” or “hits” it gets.  HOWEVER, I just can’t bear to completely shut it down.  So Happy Friday!  Good grief, that was some heavy thinking!

Natalie

This or That?

Run/Work Out in the Freezing Cold or Heat and Humidity?

I definitely prefer to run/work out in the heat.  I know a lot of people complain about it being just too hot, but for me I just do better in the heat.  Today is a perfect example.  The temps dropped a bit.  Everyone’s enjoying the fallish weather, and I’m wheezing way more than normal on my run.  Something about the moisture in the air is just so much more relaxing for my airways.  I was diagnosed with exercise-induced asthma in high school  I had pills.  Decided not to take them purely for the fact that I dislike pills.  I try to think very consciously about my breathing when I work out and breathing out my nose only….blah blah blah.  It does the trick most the time.  

Washboard Abs or Flat Abs?

Washboard abs!  I love the definition.  Still a work in progress for sure.  I’m quite sure that ice cream did not just help…

Cardio or Strength?

Strength training.  For sure!  I love seeing muscles develop where they weren’t before.

Craving Sweet or Salty?

Usually sweet.  I have dessert almost every night.  It’s usually something small (ramekin of ice cream, greek yogurt with smidge of almond butter, rice cake with almond butter and chocolate morsels sprinkled on top -> deliciousness x10!).

Gym or Home?

I love a gym work out, but sometimes it just isn’t in the cards.  

Frozen Yogurt or Ice Cream?

I prefer frozen yogurt with lots of toppings.  I do get Haagen Dazs to have at home.  I like the richness and quality ingredients.  It’s a small container, but we’re only eating a tad right???

Dessert or Drink?

Some people prefer their treat to be a mixed drink, beer, or glass of wine.  Although I do drink on occasion, I do not see that as an everyday or even once a week treat.  I will definitely choose dessert every time!  

Yoga or Pilates?

Yoga!  I love the peacefulness of it.  My flexibility has definitely increased in the past year as I’ve tried to be more committed to doing just 15 minutes 2 to 3 times per week.

Running:  Treadmill or Outdoors?

Outdoors!

Exercise Classes or Videos?

Videos!  I need quick and easy.  I’m not much of a class girl.  I’m always in a hurry (or so it seems) especially keeping up with Holdie.

Steamed or Roasted Veggies?

Love roasted veggies!  I’m really looking forward to roasting up some fall/winter veggies soon.  We just did broccoli the past couple nights.

Peanut or Almond Butter?

I love both, but I did start to eat more almond butter while pregnant.  It’s better for you and (I read this somewhere no idea where!) better to eat if you’re pregnant especially.  

Morning or Afternoon Work Outs?

Morning ones are best, but I rarely can do those during the week.  I got in a morning run this past Saturday, and it was awesome!  I think the empty stomach is key for me.

Solo or Group Work Outs?

Solo!  I’m moving so fast in the gym to get home to Holdie.  Classes require too much time for me right now.

Weight Machines or Free Weights?

Mostly weight machines.  I feel like I can accomplish what I need to do faster with these (considering the set up of my gym).  However, I do use free weights at home and enjoy the flexibility to create your own work-out.

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Working it out at home…

Protein Shakes or Food with Protein in It?

Food!  I’m definitely not a shake girl.  I like to chew my food!  🙂

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Stir Fry Veggies topped with a Fried Egg