Lately, I’ve been learning how to be content. Content with stillness. Content with a slower pace. Content with the season of life I’m in.
I made a radical change a few months ago. Sometimes job changes may not seem radical or may not be radical at times, but my entire way of life changed with this one. My days are now more consistent, my nights and weekends are more about me, and everything just feels different.
At first, I might have missed it. I might have missed the crazy, rollercoaster days and weeks I was so accustomed to. But then, I got off the rollercoaster and realized life was so much more than the thrilling, yet unpredictable highs and lows.
Contentment is hard though, isn’t it? Don’t we always seem to want something else, think the grass is always greener? Enjoying where you are and not pining for the next season of life is very hard. I’m not saying I have the secret to success, but it’s something God has been teaching me the last few months.
And I love it. I love the stillness. I love the laziness of just being home with husband, cooking meals together, arguing over why the washer isn’t working, contemplating why one plant isn’t growing, doing life together. ((Have we officially become a boring, old, married couple?!))
Yet, just the other day I asked husband if I was squandering away my summer Fridays by doing nothing. Doing nothing for me being, laying by the pool reading 100 pages at a time, then going inside to cool down and watch an episode or two of my current binge. Should I be using my time off wisely? Getting things done? Crossing things off my to-do list?
No. Just be. Enjoy the time. Enjoy those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer.
I’m thankful for this season of life we’re currently in. I know it won’t last, but hope to enjoy it while we can, and then learn to love the next season – whatever may come.
“Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.”
– Henry David Thoreau
[celebrating this || 7 years of marriage with my favorite guy <3]
[watching this || ocean’s 8 with my girl tribe!]
[loving this || wonderful deck-warming party with drinks, lawn games + the cutest cookies]
[eating this || a gorgeous and delicious meal at Preacher’s Son]
[stuffing ourselves at this || BITE NWA, two nights in a row, and it was oh so worth it]
Counterfeit Gods – Timothy Keller: This was definitely one of the best studies we’ve done with our Community Group in the last few years. It was convicting, challenging and created great dialogue among the group. One of the things Keller succeeds at doing in this book is weaving in Biblical stories and perspectives to tie in to modern day idols.
Women in Sunlight – Frances Mayes: From the author of Under the Tuscan Sun, this book did everything I wanted it to and more. The story follows four older women whose children want to put them in a retirement home, but instead become quick friends and decide to move to Tuscany. I laughed, I cried and I was transported back to Italy with every single page. The writing is terrific, changing with the character’s perspectives, and the story will give you passion to do something radical.
The Perfect Mother – Aimee Molloy: This book was a classic female-led thriller, which is my favorite mindless reading. Yet the ending was truly shocking. Though I’m not sure I loved that – it seemed maybe a little too out there, if that makes sense. That being said, it was an easy, enjoyable read AND Kerry Washington is starring in the movie, so obviously a win.
Still Lives – Maria Hummel: Set in a modern museum in LA focused on the mystery of a famous artist gone missing, I was intrigued by the set-up. While it had all the makings of a good book, something about it fell flat for me. The behind the scenes of a museum and their artist relationships surrounding the plot was the most fascinating piece, but the ending was rushed and too complex.
You can read all my book reviews here.
T H U R S D A Y
[First stop: Eataly then shopping!]
[The most AMAZING dinner at Girl and The Goat – oysters, goat empanadas + fall off the bone pork shank. Seriously a meal I’ll never forget.]
[We would highly recommend the architectural boat tour – even though we were freezing our booties off! Good thing there was plenty of coffee + baileys.]
[Cliché touristy things: pictures in front of the Bean, chicago dog + Art Institute]
[Cindy’s Rooftop was perfection – and boy do we have a story to share. Ha!]
[HAMILTON! finally! 100% lived up to (or possibly beyond) the hype]
[SNL exhibit at the Broadcast Museum was too cool – we could have easily spent all day in there!]
[Walk along the beach + a drink at The Drake – not exactly beach volleyball weather to us Southerners!]
[T.Swift in LA, 2010]
[T.Swift in Nashville, 2013 – 2ND ROW. Don’t even ask how we got those seats.]
[I swear I’m still on a high from this show. 2 hours of pure adrenaline, singing at the top of my lungs, dancing to my heart’s content. Best part was when she came to the second stage right next to us!!!]
[and then it started pouring, but we were okay with it because, Taylor, duh]
[and then we had to walk 3 miles home, in the pouring rain, couldn’t get an uber, and I was so over it… BUT THE CONCERT WAS AMAZING]
S U N D A Y
[Ended the weekend on a perfect note – brunch at The Hampton Social. Pictured: Frosé, lobster bisque + crab and avocado – all delish!]
What a perfect mother-daughter weekend. I couldn’t have asked for anything more!
I made a commitment to myself.
I made a commitment to myself to ride the Peloton 10 days in a row.
Here’s why I decided to do it, and how I stuck with it.
I’ve already blogged my praise of the book, Girl Wash Your Face. But there’s one chapter that has really stuck with me the last month – “I’ll Start Tomorrow.”
Can we take a moment and be real with ourselves … how many times have we said that?! I’ll start tomorrow!! I seriously can’t even count.
As Rachel Hollis says in her book, “We talk about the things we’d like to do, be, try and accomplish, but once we get to the moment of actually doing it, we fold faster than a card table after bunco night.”
I try so hard to keep my word and my commitments to other people, but I easily cancel on myself without even a second thought. I’ll skip my workout when I told myself I was going to do it after work. I’ll eat another piece of cake when I said I wouldn’t. I’ll listen to music on my way to work when I told myself I was going to use that time to pray.
I know I have the self-discipline, but I’m choosing not to use it. Why? I decided to try harder to stop breaking promises to myself.
So I started with something small. We have a constant supply of peanut butter M&Ms downstairs in our office, and it’s a huge issue. (Did I mention they are PEANUT BUTTER M&Ms?!) Grab a handful here and a handful there. No harm in that right? Uggggh. Well, I told myself I wouldn’t grab any handfuls all week, and guess what – I did it!
Okay, next commitment – ride 10 days in a row on the Peloton, culminating in a mother-daughter trip to Chicago to see Taylor Swift.
Y’all – I’m 9 days in, and I’m so proud of myself! I would be lying if I said it wasn’t hard, because there were several days I was so close to quitting. Like that day over Memorial Day weekend when we’d been out in the sun all day and I was drained and it was 5pm and I still hadn’t ridden. I almost broke down. I almost canceled on myself, but I didn’t.
The other thing I’ve been teaching myself through this is – this commitment is for me. No one else. You might be reading this thinking, “10 days? That’s nothing.” And maybe for you, it’s not, but for me it is a challenge. Husband rode 30 days in a row and has already done a 60 min ride. I’ve done 9 days in a row and just did my first 45 min. But guess what, that’s okay! And not only is it okay, but I should be happy for his accomplishments and he should be happy for mine even though they’re completely different.
“Comparison is the thief of joy.” – Theodore Roosevelt
My current favorite quote, and one we should all remind ourselves of daily.
So, I’ve got 1 more ride before my early flight to Chicago tomorrow, and I’m not canceling on myself now.
And then, it’s time for a mimosa.
[celebrating this || our beautiful mommas for mother’s day <3]
[decorating this || our “spring themed” cake at our team cake decorating competition!]
[laughing at this || a weird + funny “sub-par” night, that actually wasn’t sub-par at all]
[LOVING THIS || our new deck + updated landscaping is finally complete!]
If there’s one thing I seem to enjoy more the older I get, it’s traditions. Annual events. Something to look forward to same time, every year.
The best example of this is Fayetteville Foamfest – a beer festival. (When I first heard about it, I thought it was a literal FOAM fest, because I did go to one of those in PCB ….) We first attended in 2013 and have gone every year since. We hype it up. We talk about it all year. “The most wonderful time of the year,” they say. We regale previous year stories. We get more people excited to attend. And it is always so.much.freakin.fun.
As our 6th year in a row attending, I wanted to compile pictures from all of the years. If you love beer, and you feel left out after this post, we’d love for you to join us next year!!
Also, shoutout to Josh for being the only one who has been to all 6 years outside of myself and Husband. It wouldn’t be the same without ya, Josh!
[2013: the year we almost froze to death (yes, in MAY) + didn’t yet know how to get our money’s worth of beer]
[2014: the year Josh broke up with the Egyptian’s girlfriend]
[2015: the year we left Stephen in Fayetteville –
if you’ve been around our group at all, you’ve undoubtedly heard this story … multiple times … and from multiple perspectives ((I’ll tell you the true version!!))]
[2016: the year of the hats + the invention of “power hour”]
[2017: the year we danced our hearts out + ate all the pizza ((except Alex))]
[2018: the year we made it to Dickson + dipped, a lot]
Whatever happens, we’ll always have Foamfest.