Wednesday, October 29, 2014

7 Ways I Lost My Mind

Come 2 p.m. yesterday I was ready to curl up in a ball on my nanny families couch and cry myself to sleep.  If only Roman could watch his 3 year old self without supervision...but then I would lose my job and since I already almost lost one job, I decided it wouldn't be wise to risk losing my favorite job.  

If almost losing one job wasn't bad enough, I have had everything that could go wrong go wrong over the course of the last two weeks or so.  I swear I am losing my mind.  If this month doesn't end soon then I think I really might curl up in a ball on my couch and wait till it does.  Actually how about we just skip right on to Christmas break?

How have I been losing my mind lately you ask?  What all has gone wrong?  If we are friends on Facebook you have already heard most of these.  But we all know nothing really happens unless I blog about it.  Because that seals the truth forever (say what??? see I am losing my mind)

1.  I placed an order online and gave the wrong credit car number.  Now for a girl who shops mostly online this is defeating.  At least the girl I bought from is a friend (Hi Haylie!) and totally understood.  And at least I got my package in the mail yesterday.  Nothing is better than new makeup and face cleaners!

2.  I place another order online a couple weeks back and did not give my full address.  I did not figure this out till 3 days after it has been shipped back to the sender.  I really wanted that cardigan...

3.  I place ANOTHER order online through Amazon for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.  Considering I just finished Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone I have been dying to get my hands on the book.  It was should have been delivered by yesterday.  Amazon said I got it a week ago.  I have yet to see it.

4.  I agreed to babysit for a Halloween party Friday night.  I thought it was for friends of my nanny family, so I told them I would see them there.  It was for a completely different family that they don't even know.  Maybe I should make sure to get names before I say anything...

5.  That job I mentioned I almost lost?  My substitute teaching job.  I missed subbing for one important day, which they told me was not that important and would not matter, and next thing I know they are telling me to resign.  I was not about to go down without a fight.  Fortunately, they heard me out and I get to keep making the big bucks!

6.  I forgot all about filing for financial aid and found out last week that I needed to pay my tuition.  Yeah I don't exactly have that kind of money just sitting around.  Fortunately they still let me file and only gain a couple late charges.  

7.  I had to put together a brochure for a support group I help run.  First off I HATE BROCHURES.  Second it took me two hours to complete.  I created 5 brochures till I finally liked one enough to send it to my supervisor.  That is after asking her what the initials for a group name stand for...

All I need to do is make it through this week and this month and this year.  Lots of prayers for some sanity would be greatly appreciated.  I will leave you with the wise words of a 5 year old "I think my brain fell out.  Do you think that could really happen?  I don't feel it in there anymore.  It definitely fell out."


Fall In A Cup

This time of year there is one fall/winter drink that calls my name.  The memories of the big pots on the stove, smells of cinnamon and cloves, and and when in North Carolina it warming you up from the inside out.  Both sides of my family have their own recipe, but I have to say I am pretty partial to my Mom's!

The combination of orange and lemon and cinnamon and cloves with a little sugar and tea creates my most favorite drink.  Russian Tea.  I am curious who has all heard of this?  Is this just something from my family or do you enjoy it as well?

After making it this past week, I just knew I had to share the recipe.  Mom calls it the cure all for everything.  Have a cold?  Russian Tea.  Tired?  Russian Tea.  Cold day outside?  Russian Tea.  You name it Russian Tea can fix it. It is the one smell and taste that will forever remind me of my childhood and family.

10 tea bags (I had family size on hand and used 7)
3-4 cinnamon sticks
4 teaspoons whole cloves
12 oz. lemon juice
12 oz frozen orange juice concentrate
2 3/4 cup sugar
6 quarts of water

In one pot combine 3 quarts of water, sugar, cinnamon sticks, and cloves.  Bring to a hard boil for 5 minutes.

In another large pot bring 3 quarts of water to a boil, turn off burner, steep tea bags for 5 minutes.

Combine both pots.  Add lemon juice and orange juice.  Stir.

This makes quite a bit so make sure to share with your family:) It is also safe to put in a container and save in the fridge to reheat over time (my favorite part)
Super simple recipe. Super amazing drink.  I am basically living off of it this week! Enjoy my friends!

Monday, October 27, 2014

We Are Made For Community

My favorite little community
One of the running jokes about Milligan is how much they say the word "community".  It is a common theme there that the school desired to instill in all of the students who walked through their doors.  While we may have made fun of all of the opportunities for community while there, I now realize just how right Milligan was.

Whether I come at this topic from a psychological point of view or a a Christian point of view, I come right back to the same thought: we were not made to be alone.  Raise your hand if you love being lonely? Anyone?  Didn't think so.  We are made for community.

As a counselor I believe we need people in order to make it through this life.  If we didn't, then I would not have a job.  People come to me for support and someone to lean on when times are tough.  We work together to solve problems and make a plan for their current journey.  For many we try to find someone(s) who can support them during a time of need.  Everything I do revolves around creating a community around you and being in community.

In Romans 12:4-5 it states, "For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others."

We all have come from one body, and while we do have many different functions, we all need to come back together and work as a whole.  I love that this is the way God has created us.  To me it shows how much He loves us.  He loves us so much that he gave us the support we would need to get through life.  We are meant to work together at life, lean on one another, and help those in need.  

Now that I am post graduation, living on my own, and having to find my own community, I am thankful for the lessons Milligan taught me.  I have been able to make/find my own little communities here.  My classmates, my work, my family, and my work friends.  But being that I am not in college I find that the loneliness does come.  All I have to do though is seek that community and I am filled again.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Big City Move?

I was born and raised in Lakeland, Florida.  Lived here for 18 years and then off to college I went, in Johnson City, Tennessee.  Neither of which are big cities by any means.  When I moved back to Lakeland in 2013, I believed this is where I would stay for a good long while.  Then I went to grad school and found out how little jobs there were here for me and how little money is made in my field here.

So this got me thinking, should I move to a bigger city?  Yes I know money is not everything, but I do have to make a living and I will have plenty of student loans to pay back soon.  So money is kinda of important to me.

While in Atlanta, I started asking myself if I could live there or not.  It is about the only BIG city I could see myself in and have always loved it there.  I would definitely have more job opportunities and there is a pay difference in the big cities (and out of Florida).  But could I really ever make the move?

I decided the only way I could really even begin to make a decision about this is to make a pro's and con's list.  Here is what I have so far:

More jobs
Higher pay
You can walk and take trains everywhere (which I love the idea of not driving all the time)
Always something going on in cities
There are actual seasons outside of Florida ( not just hot, hotter, and sweat your makeup off hot)
I love changing my surroundings
It would be an adventure

I would be away from my family (8 hours if in Atlanta)
Higher crime in bigger cities
Higher living expenses (comes with the higher pay)
I hate crowds and cities seem to always be crowded
I would not know hardly anyone

My family is probably reading this wondering where in the world it is coming from.  Little do they know this has been on my mind for quite some time.  Do I think it will actually happen?  I don't know.  Lots and lots of praying will have to be done to see if this is in the plans.  

Have you ever made a big move?  Do you live in a big city? Share your thoughts and help a girl out!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Weekend Recap: Atlanta Style

For the month of October I have either had somewhere to go, someone coming to me, or something big going on each weekend.  While it has been quite fun and exciting, I am very ready for a weekend home, curled up on my couch, with nothing to do.

This past weekend I headed up to Macon, Georgia with my friend, Brittany, to visit my sister and her boyfriend, and to also see Boyce Avenue in concert.  If you have not heard of them, go check them out right now.  I will wait...

Ok so now that you have seen how awesome they are, you now know why I traveled to go see them in person.  I will talk more about that in a bit...but let me just say they were AMAZING!

I drove up Friday with Brittany and it was so nice to have someone other than my sister's dog Boone to ride with.  Definitely made the drive less awful.  Except we hit major traffic the whole weekend and Brittany got to see my crazy road rage.  In her words "I have never heard you curse this much before" and she had known me for over 2 years.

Friday night was spent hanging out with my sister Mattie, her boyfriend, and many of her friends. Lots of fun if you ask me!

Saturday we woke up and after Brittany made us french toast for breakfast (which was amazingly delicious), we headed on a walk in a local park to wear Boone out for the day.  It was such a gorgeous walk and it totally made me wish I lived there and could run the trails!

We came home, made lunch, got ready and headed out for Atlanta for the concert.  Mattie had also gotten tickets for a soccer game for both her boyfriend and Brittany's.  So we needed to go see him so the guys could go to the game.

We got to the concert right as it was about to start which caused us to not be able to find seats.  Mattie being newly out of a cast on her right foot, could not stand the whole time.  So she pulled the cripple card and we got to sit right next to the stage in the ADA section.  This means no zoom was used on any pictures at all!

Mattie had seen Boyce Avenue in concert before, but this was me and Brittany's first time.  I was seriously blown away by them and would definitely go see them again!

Our seats were right near where they entered the stage.  This meant Mattie could peek under the curtain and see the guys before the came out.  She kept us filled in on what they were wearing, doing, and saying.

So you know how there is always that one couple that is too mushy?  We got lucky and had one right next to us.  Every time their favorite song (every other song) came on they would turn to each other, look deeply into each other's eyes, and sing.  And then the girl dry humped him the entire time.

After the concert was over we had made plans to meet the guys somewhere to watch the last part of the FSU game (per Mattie's request).  Well we were all smart and all but my phone died during the concert.  Mine was on 1% when we left.  So we had to each write out directions out on our hands so we could get there.  Only we would do that.

After finishing the game at the one place that was out of EVERYTHING, we headed back to Macon at 12:30 AM.  We had over an hour drive, I-75 closed down and we didn't get home till 2:30.  Thank goodness for Jamison who was willing to drive!

Sunday we slept in, grabbed brunch, and then Brittany and I headed back home.  It was totally worth the trips, but I really do look forward to being home in my apartment for the next couple of weekends!


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Random Life Happenings

Figuring out how to share my life on this blog has been fun, but sometimes difficult.  Little things happen that I want to share, yet they aren't exactly worthy of a full blog post.  So I came up with this post to share all those random life happenings!

If you follow me on any social media then you saw last week that I had my carpets cleaned (woohoo) and then thought I lost Brutus in the process.  While the guys were there cleaning the door had to be open and I thought I had done a good job of making sure he didn't get out.  But then they left and I could not find him ANYWHERE!  I freaked out and started sobbing ugly uncontrollable tears.  Then as I was leaving my closet from searching for him, I saw the glint of his eyes in the upper corner.  He was scared and hiding as far away as possible.

I have gradually been getting back into subbing this year.  So far I have been up at the middle school a lot.  Not exactly my favorite age group, but I gotta make the money.  Most of the kids are great, some remember me from last year, and others I have wanted to rip my hair out being around them.  #reasonswhyineverbecameateacher

I have been trying to cook a lot more lately.  I save money and it is way better for me to do.  I have loved being back in the kitchen, even if it is tough cooking for one.  So far I have made a broccoli and cheese casserole, chicken poppy seed casserole, and a taco casserole.  I think I have a thing for casseroles!  Any body have another good casserole for me to try?

For the last couple of months I had been using a different office at work when I had clients at the same time as my coworker.  Well the facility finally approved for me to call that office home and as of last week it got painted, I moved in all the toys, and I can now say I have an office!  Next steps: get an ID tag that doesn't say "volunteer" and a key to get in my office.  Working my way up in the world friends!

Well friends those are some of the fun things going on! Life is always busy and I am always on the go.  But things like a new office and cooking have been keeping me grounded.  Here is to a new week!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Online Dating: Am I Too Picky?

Even before I decided to try online dating I knew I was pretty picky about who I would date.  If you have been around these parts for a long long time then you know I have only been on one date and that was when I was 20 years old.  Usually what has happened is I like a guy one day and then the next I am over it.  Or maybe I am just too picky...

I told myself when I first signed up for Online Dating that I was going to be as picky as I wanted to be.  I am not desperately seeking a husband or needing to have kids by tomorrow.  So I would wait until the right person comes along, whether online or in person.

But I have been asking myself lately if maybe I am too picky and have too high of expectations.  I have definitely seen some guys online that I would want to get to know more.  And there has definitely been some guys who have wanted to get to know me more.  At one point though, I had looks at over 300 profiles and only liked 20 of them...

One of two things usually happens when I look at someone's profile.  One I am attracted to them but their job/education/ activities do not match what I am really looking for.  Or two their job/education/activities match what  am looking for but I am not attracted to them.  Granted for the second one I am going off pictures and I have quickly learned that guys have no idea what pictures look good and what pictures look awful.

So do I give someone that falls into one of those two categories a chance?  Or do I stay picky and wait?  To be perfectly honest the only ones I have second guessed are the ones who I am not immediately attracted to.  I tend to wonder if in person they are more attractive than their pictures.  But then I talk myself out of things a move on for the time being.

So as usual, I am seeking yall's advice on this one.  Do I stay picky or do I open up my standards a little bit?  You guys always have the best advice, so help a girl out!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Harry Potter World With My Blog Bestie!

Last week I told you all about how Rissa was coming to visit and how much fun we were going to have!  And that post did not do our weekend justice in mentioning how much fun we would have!  I swear I have met match when it comes to Rissa!

Since we had been video chatting all year and blog friends for quite longer than that, I knew I was going to love having Rissa here.  We have always cracked each other up and I just loved our little chats.  So two plane rides (on her part) and a couple hours later we were united for the first time!

The best part about having her visit?  Not once was there this ever "oh this is awkward...I don't even know this person".  It's like we were always meant to be friends and hang out and go to Harry Potter World.  So onto that topic... BEST TWO DAYS EVER!!!!

Just to give you all a fair warning... this may be a long and super picture filled post.  So if you don't care about seeing how amazingly awesome Harry Potter World is (then your lame) go on ahead and wait for my next post tomorrow:)

Above is right inside the entrance to Diagon Alley.  I seriously got chill bumps on my arms when we first stepped inside because I was so excited.  It literally felt right out of the book and movies.  So many details that amazed both Rissa and I.  

The first day we got there right as the park opened and headed straight for Diagon Alley.  We had two day Park2Park tickets and figured since Diagon Alley was the newest attraction we would go there first so we wouldn't have super long lines to wait in.  We spent quite a bit of the first hour just walking around and exploring everything.

Next up came the ride at Gringotts Bank.  Maybe because it was first thing in the morning or we were just so excited, but our hour wait seemed like 5 minutes.  One of the best things about these parks is how well they make you want to wait in line.  There is so much to see in do while you wait.  And the ride?  Other than when we got stuck on it the second day, it was pretty awesome.  Definitely my favorite one!

There were goblins and chandeliers and newspapers that pictures really moved.  We saw the Weasley's and a dragon and Bellatrix.  It was just amazing.  I could walk through there many more times just to keep finding new fun details.

Next up we had to try some Butterbeer.  We had been warned by my brothers girl friend that is was super sweet and we should probs share.  But of course we forgot that piece of advice, got our own, and only drank half of each.  Definitely worth the try for the experience, but I wasn't exactly a fan.

We did much more of exploring Diagon Alley,  We went in Olivander's and had a wand experience.  Rissa even purchased her own wand.  We went inside the many different stores, peeked in the Leaky Cauldron, and went down Knockturn Alley.  And took some selfies along the way.

After exploring till our hearts were content in Diagon Alley, we took a ride on the Hogwarts Express and headed over to Hogsmeade.  Riding the train was an experience in itself.  There are videos and people to be seen while you take the ride.  So worth it.

Hogsmeade blew us away as well. The castle was definitely the biggest thing we wanted to see. So after looking around we headed back there for the ride and to look in the castle. Again waiting in line is not bad at all because there is so much to see.  The ride was not my favorite, but completely worth it.  That day we had lunch in the Three Broomsticks and on Saturday we grabbed a drink in the Hog's Head.

We wore ourselves out on day one and headed home around 4 to get some rest.  It was so great knowing we had a whole other day to come back and explore some more.  We did a lot of the same on Saturday and even explored other parts of the parks some.  I even got Rissa to ride a roller coaster!

This post does not do our time in Harry Potter World or our time together justice even a little bit.  It was such and amazing weekend and I was so happy to be sharing it with a great friend.  Many laughs and good times later, Rissa had to head home.  Next plans: Mosby heads to Arizona!!!

Monday, October 6, 2014

The Hardin's Grand Cayman Holiday

Today I am excited to be linking up for the first time with The Daily Tay and Helene In Between for Blogtober.  I tend to really like vacays and us Hardin's have taken some pretty awesome ones over the years.  So I figured this was a must to link up with!

In 2010, it came to our families attention that we had not all 6 been on the same vacation in quite some time.  So of course us kids begged the parentals for a trip that we would all love.  That same summer my dad, sister, and brothers got scuba diving certified and so a trip that was great for that was ideal.  A little research later and we settled upon Grand Cayman Island.

They got to dive just about every day, I got to lay out on the beach everyday and read, and we had the best time with just the 6 of us!

Our all time favorite memory from that trip happened the very first night we were there.  After flying in, getting settled in our condo, and a good dinner we all had some energy to burn off.  The moon was bright and the water was gorgeous.  So we all put on our swim suits and raced to the water.

And I mean race.  We ran straight to the water and swam for a good little time.  The water was crystal clear even with it being dark outside.  It was that carefree, wild, let go of it all kind of fun.  

There were sting rays, pirate ships, and diving.  It definitely will go down as the best vacay I have ever been on.  The only thing I think could ever top it?  Another trip with all 6 of us somewhere just a great!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Online Dating: What/Who I Have Seen So Far

Just to clarify I have not been on a date with anyone yet, nor have I even started really talking to anyone.  But I have seen some quite interesting guys on Christian Mingle.  There is a wide range of people on there.  Some are "matches" to me, yet I would NEVER in ten years give them the time of day (just being honest).

The One With The Best Pick Up Line
The other day I got an email from a guy with the line "Hey girl...I think I am going to need your professional help...if you don't answer this message"  This may have gotten him somewhere, except he was like 40 which is totally not in my range.  It gave me a good laugh and story though!

The One With Hundreds of Lives
I swear to yall I could not make this one up if I tried! I was browsing the other day and came across this guy who told his lengthy story of having lived hundreds of lives.  He once use to be evil in the world and had a lover who he did evil with.  But eventually God found him and brought him over to the good side.  Over his lives he found his "soul mate" and God bound their hearts together.  For hundreds of lives they have sometimes been reunited, sometimes changed genders, and he God has revealed to him that they will be reunited during this lifetime.  They are here to save the world for God.  If you do not know what he is talking about, then don't worry you are not his soul mate.

The Unemployed Ones
This may just be a me thing, but do guys really expect to find someone if they don't have a job?  I have come across several who are saying "unemployed" next to occupation.  For me I need someone who for one has a job and two someone who is not trying to bum off me.

The Very Persistent Ones
Some of the guys who have tried to contact me have been rather persistent I would say.  One has emailed me at least twice.  And another has sent me more smiles than I could count.  I know your all wondering why I would ever complain about this.  Well the problem is...while they both seem to be very nice guys, I have absolutely no interest in them.  There is either no attraction based on their pictures or they just seem completely different from anything and everything I have ever liked in a person.  Someone help a girl out and tell me what I do here?!

I am sure there is going to be many many more guys that I come across and wonder what in the world they are doing.  But my wish is just to come across that one guy who just might be someone special.
For more on my adventures in online dating look here and here.