Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Blips of Life - Springtime Edition

Springtime demands flowers, and I'm more than happy to give in!

These won't grow in your flowerbed - they're gorgeous daffodils crocheted by my talented mama! // Next to those, the real things can't compare // Mixed bouquet from my boy // Sunflowers, also from my boy

Last month we went to a Dali-inspired chalk art festival at a local art museum.

This portrait took my breath away // I've always been a fan of the melty clocks // I tried my hand at some art // as did my boy. (Can you tell us apart in those shots? Our hair was more similar than I realized…)

We've been making some changes around the house, like hanging some of my boy's paintings, getting new furniture, and going a little decal crazy…

Mugs decorating the coffee station // No kitchen is complete without coffee love // Pink blossoms brightening up the corner // Just in case we forget, we have this over the bed. (For a peek at the baby's room, check out Made Up Mamas.)

These need to go on your "To Read" list:

Angina Weekly? // As a matter of fact, I don't like it at all // A whole volume about the prostate gland… wow // Mmm, and I've been craving some chewy baby lately!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Three Months In

First off, I love that no one thought last week's post was an April Fool's joke! All of the comments, tweets, and emails I received were sincere congratulations, and that makes me so happy. It also helped me figure out how I'm going to address my personal life on the blog in the future, so win-win! On to my monthly goals:

I read 11 books last month, making 26 towards my goal of 100 - right on track!

I vowed to submit something every quarter, so I submitted my current favorite nonfiction piece to a new journal. I've previously submitted it twice and was obviously rejected by both, but those were my top tier journals, and now I'm submitting to my mid-tier list. I said I wanted to submit quarterly to have more time to write; I haven't been writing new fiction or nonfiction for myself, but maybe this submission will kick my butt back into gear.

I wrote 14 articles for Lifehack and had 14 published. I wrote 9 for Wall Street Insanity and had 9 published. Pretty funny how it worked out so evenly! I was also contacted to be a contributor to a new site, and had one article published (though technically in April). The freelance writing side of my life is going steady, and I'm eager to keep growing it.

I started a new blog project with a dear friend. It's called Made Up Mamas, but never fear - it's not your typical mommy blog! The title is short for "We Ain't Your Made Up Mamas" because, well, we're not perfect and we make mistakes and we have feelings that aren't all lovey-dovey and happy. And we're honest about it. So check it out!

[See One Month In // Two Months In]

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Life Changes

I've refrained from getting too personal on my blog lately because a lot has been going on, and I didn't know how much I wanted to share with the Internet world. I've never been overly personal here, always keeping a bit of distance and a sense of humor about things, but I also feel like it's gotten a bit boring with the focus being on book and movie reviews. I read others' blogs because I love getting glimpses into personal lives, so why not write what I enjoy reading?

It's hard to know where to start, because so much has changed, and I'm not really sure what was going on the last time I really talked about my personal life…

I recently left my job as the volunteer and activities coordinator at a nonprofit after a year. I loved my time there, and still am passionate about the organization, but the job got to be too much. Due to other things going on in my life, I started to feel like I wasn't doing as good a job as I should have been. And, due to the dedication that nonprofit work requires, if you feel like you're not doing a good job… you're probably not. I left on good terms and with the invitation to come back any time; since I spent two years volunteering there, I'll definitely return in some capacity!

I'm going to be working from home as a freelance designer, which I've done before, but also as a writer, which is exciting. I've been writing articles in my free time, but more and more doors keep opening, so I'm eager to explore the possibilities. I've always said that I want to take a year to work on writing for myself. I don't know if I'll attempt a novel, a short story collection, or develop a portfolio of creative nonfiction, but I want to really make time to write.

During the winter I applied to grad school for library science, was accepted, and start courses this summer! The degree is entirely online, which is nice, but a little scary since I've been out of school for four years now. I hope I still have the drive and discipline to be a student! I'm starting with just one class this summer to ease myself into it, but my goal is to take two classes a semester and finish in three years.

The best part of these changes is that I'm able to do it all from home, which is especially helpful since I have a baby on the way! I'm due at the beginning of June, but we're not finding out the gender ahead of time. I set up the crib all by myself, and already sit in the glider just to read. It's a major change, but I'm excited for it - and so glad that I can be at home with him/her (while still earning my keep and not getting bored!).