Whatcha readin’?

 

Behold, my Kindle cover. I’m trucking through ASOIAF: A Dance with Dragons. Spoiler alert: I’m a nerd.

 

Pangs

 

I’ve never been the type of girl who’s obsessed with having babies. I’ve always known that I wanted children at some point, but I’ve never been in a hurry. I always just figured that someday, I’d begin to feel some maternal longings and then Daniel and I would work on making some babies.
I was right about the maternal feelings kicking in. Twenty-five is apparently the magic age for me, because they started right after my birthday in April. Daniel and I had our first really serious talk about starting a family, and for about a week we were excited because we thought we might start trying this fall. Then we came to our senses and realized that it wasn’t the best plan, since we’d be living in separate places.
Suddenly, it feels like I’m surrounded by babies or babies-in-progress. I’ve been involved in conversations about giving birth, breastfeeding, and changing diapers. Now, I might just be extra-sensitive because I have babies on the brain, and maybe conversations like this have always taken place around me and I’ve never noticed, but sometimes I get these weird little pangs in my heart. It’s such a foreign feeling.
I’ve been bringing this before God consistently, and He has soothed these longings to the point where I can enjoy feeling maternal, instead of being sad because the timing is off for us. Daniel and I are trying to joyfully look forward to the time when we can start our family. In the meantime, there’s still plenty of life to be lived.


 

 

Learning lessons

If you’d asked me five years ago, or even just one year ago, to predict where I’d be and what I’d be doing in the fall of 2011, I guarantee that my prediction wouldn’t have included living apart from my husband, staying with my aunt and uncle, or being the only one in our marriage earning an income. Now that the dust from moving has settled, I’m looking around in wonder at my new life.
 The strange thing is how happy I am, despite how unorthodox everything is. I love my job. I love my room, which is filled with my favorite objects, the things that comfort me and make me feel at home. Daniel and I talk on Skype every night, which feels like the early days of our relationship, when we were dating long-distance. Obviously, it’s not ideal for us to live apart, but we’ve been together every weekend so far, and the intervening weeks pass quickly. Daniel loves law school and actually seems excited to put in long hours reading cases. Besides a few lonely evenings, things are good.
I don’t fully understand the way God works in our lives, but I do see His hand in our current situation. A year ago, Daniel and I were both plugging along in jobs that weren’t right for us, thankful to be working but stressed to the point of exasperation. We felt like there were really no other options for us. Then, in January, we found out that Daniel was most likely losing his job (through no fault of his own) come June, and it forced us to reexamine everything. After much prayer and discussion, we made the decision to go different directions, and we have found so many blessings along the way: the willingness of our friends and family to supply our needs, the joy of filling our days with things we enjoy, the excitement of being together on a weekend after five days spent apart. I like to think that the sacrifices we’re making now will pay off in a few years, when Daniel is through school and we can live together again and start a family.
I am learning patience. It’s good for me.

New Beginnings

Since my last post, I’ve switched jobs and moved to a new town. For a while I didn’t have time to blog, but once I was settled, I put it off. I started thinking about what I want this place to be, and tonight it hit me that I want it to be more authentic. I want it to reflect my life as it is, not some polished version I present to the world. Trying to mold myself into a style blogger usually just makes me feel inadequate next to the other lovely ladies whose blogs I read. I am imperfect. There’s a lot of new stuff going on with me right now. If you want to come along with me, I’ll tell you about it.

And sometimes I’ll probably still post outfit photos. We’ll see.

Things I have done in the past 72 hours…

I work in public education, so I still get a summer break. Lucky me! We’ve been pretty busy visiting family and friends, but for the past few days, we’ve stayed home, and I’ve kept pretty busy. No, not with housework. Don’t be silly. (Well, maybe just a little housework.) Mostly, though, I’ve done things that are way more fun:

  • I sewed a new dress and finished some other sewing UFOs.
  • I colored my hair. Don’t worry, I’m not going back on what I said about my hair a few posts ago. I’m still trying to embrace my natural color, and I needed to just slightly darken and even out my color.
  • I CUT MY OWN HAIR. Oh yes I did. Not just my bangs, either. I was in desperate need of a trim, and after watching a few YouTube tutorials, I decided I was ready. I really just shaped up the cut I have. I think I did a fine job. It feels about a million times better than it did.
  • I gave myself a pinup girl makeover while trying out this hair tutorial which I first saw here. I think it looks pretty cute while you’re waiting for your curls to set! Here’s a look at how it turned out this morning, when I took it down:Pretty!
  • I applied mehndi. I’ve had this kit for almost a year, waiting for a good time to try it. Once I started, I kind of got carried away and just kept doodling on my arm. I really love how it turned out, actually!
  • I worked out pretty hard yesterday. My arms and legs are sore and noodly today.  Woo!

It’s been an experimental few days. I’m blessed to have the time to goof around like this. It’s time to get serious now, though. I’m off to do laundry and pack for our anniversary weekend trip to Cleveland!

God has blessed me with time to relax.

Happy Independence Day!

Just a quick note before I head off to celebrate.  Hope you have a lovely independence day!

Dress Your Best #3

Yesterday, I dressed to highlight the part of me I’m probably most familiar with: my face. The color and neckline of my blouse frame it nicely, I think. I pulled all of my hair back, which is something I almost never do because, somewhere along the way, I got the idea that it makes my face look huge. Well, it doesn’t. I should pull it back more often.

I read once that the more you look at a part of yourself in the mirror, the more comfortable you become with it. Years of applying makeup and fixing my hair mean that I’ve looked at my face in the mirror a lot. I know its peaks and valleys intimately.

My face does have some quirks. I have a scar right in the middle of my forehead that I got from jumping into a TV stand when I was about eight. (I was aiming for my cousin.) And yet, though it’s clearly visible in many of my photos, it’s not something I’m very conscious of anymore. I have to remind myself that it’s there. One thing that I do notice in my photos, but not as much in the mirror, is the slight asymmetry of my eyes and eyebrows. I cannot purposely cock an eyebrow to save my life, yet I often look as if I’m raising my right one. I’m not judging you, I promise!

I’ve battled with breakouts for years now, and I’ve recently stepped up my skincare regimen. I’ve been trying to wash my makeup off every night, no matter how tired I am. Being vigilant about cleansing and applying benzoyl peroxide and moisturizer is slowly but surely improving the quality of my skin.

I used to want blue eyes more than anything, but now I love my distinct brand of hazel. (The person I know whose eye color is most like mine is not a family member, but my very best friend. Isn’t that odd? I think it’s a sign that we’re soul mates.) I love the shape of my eyebrows.  I love my cheeks – they’re exactly like my beautiful grandmother’s. I love my smile. And as a makeup junkie, I love that I can use my face as a canvas for a rainbow of colors.

My face has character. What’s the saying about getting the face you deserve when you’re old? I hope when I’m an old woman, my face is the face of a gracious, kind woman who has laughed and loved with all her heart.

God has blessed me by having compassion on me.