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If We Were Having Coffee

I saw a life coach I love, Ashley, do a post entitled If We Were Having Coffee and I decided to take her lead and do one myself in November 2013 because I loved it and sometimes I feel like we forget that there is a whole life behind the people that write and read blogs. I got such a great response to my initial post so I made it a  reoccurring thing for the past couple of years and do it when I feel so inclined!

 

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So, grab your coffee/beverage of your choice and meet me for a chat. I’ve got a hard root beer right now (AMAZINGNESS but dangerous because you forget it’s booze).

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I’m currently reading The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and just starting the second book in the Vampire Academy series.  I’d ask you what you are currently reading!

If we were having coffee.… I’d tell you that even though I’ve been doing a little bit of traveling/vacationing this summer I am in one of these moods where I’m so antsy because I want to be everywhere in the world right now. I just get frustrated by the fact that in order to travel you need money (which lol at my bank account right now) and in order to get money you need a job….oh and most jobs give you like NOT ENOUGH VACATION TIME. I just want to explore and go places and I follow too many travel blogs and people who are traveling right now and the wanderlust is so, so strong. It’s always strong but it’s like this unbearable sort of strong right now. I’m trying to plan my trip to Spain next year but I just can’t because I WANT TO GO NOW.  Is this normal human behavior? IDK BECAUSE WILL DOESN’T GET LIKE THIS. He wants to go places but he isn’t like physically pained and antsy like I am.

If we were having coffee.… I’d tell you that I’ve decided Will and I are going to start home brewing beer. On vacation my cousin and his girlfriend were talking about how they do it and brought us some (it was an amazing saison) and I’m like OMG WE ARE DOING THIS. 1) we love beer and 2) I decided we needed a hobby to do together. We have a ton of our hobbies that we do separately and then we have like THINGS we enjoy together and do together but nothing that’s a ~hobby~. I’d ask you, if you were OF AGE, what’s the last great beer you had/if you home brew or know anybody that does. I’d also ask, if you were married or dating, if you have a hobby that you do as a couple!

If we were having coffee…. Id tell you that I cleaned out my clothes in my closet this past week using the KonMari method (the cleaning book I was talking about further up) and MAN did I have a lot of clothes. I’m really bad about getting rid of clothes. More so than books (I’ve talked about my ruthlessness before). I really struggled with it. You are supposed to ask yourself if  the item “sparks joy” and only keep what does. Well, the problem is that I can’t tell if something sparks joy or if my clothes hoarding voice is CREATING a sense of joy when I think about it. UGH UGH UGH. It’s so hard. I would say I got rid of about 40% of my clothes and shoes. I know I could have done better but it’s good enough for me right now. I’m going to continue on with it for the rest of my items but oof that was hard. I’d ask you if you’ve done the KonMari method (ALL THE RAGE RIGHT NOW) and if you are also a clothing hoarder. Like seriously I had stuff in there from high school and early college years which was like circa 2002-2008. OOF.

If we were having coffee…. I’d tell you that I’ve been craving a really good non-fiction title. I don’t even really care what about. I want to learn about anything. I want to just read something interesting! I’d ask you for recs!!

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you about my efforts to try and create a nice, relaxing morning routine and how maybe it works like 30% of the time. I think I’m destined to have the kind of morning routine where I wake up miserably and late and rush around and eat my eggs in the car while trying to remember if I brushed my hair at all this morning only to realize no I didn’t and oh hey I don’t even have a hairband on my wrist when typically I have like 5 on each wrist somehow. In my head I envision these peaceful mornings with the sun shining in and I do some yoga (I don’t even do yoga) and I sip my tea and listen to Enya (is Enya still around?) and like create wonderful shit before 7am. HOW HARD IS THAT, SELF? I’d ask you what your morning routine is like!

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you how Will and I really need to make friends with other dating/married couples. All the couple friends were part of the group that we are no longer part of and the few others we had either a) broke up or b) moved away (our last couple friend who moved to Spain last week). HOW DO YOU FIND COUPLE FRIENDS? THERE SHOULD BE AN APP FOR THIS….an app to like “date” other couples to find a good match. I just miss having another couple to go out and do things with. It’s really hard to make friends in general at this age. It used to be so easy…WOAH COOL SPARKLY SHOES LET’S BE FRIENDS! INSTA BESTIES ON THE PLAYGROUND. Maybe this still works as an adult? IDK maybe I will try it.

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If we were having coffee….I’d you that I feel like I’m finding it harder to find new FAVORITE books and movies. I LIKE and even super LOVE a lot of things I consume but I’m having a hard time finding those life changing things that just stop you in your tracks and just speak to every cell in your entire body and you don’t know how you possibly lived life without having experienced it before. I don’t know if it’s just that I’m hard to impress BECAUSE I consume so many books and entertainment or what but UGH…I want that FEELING. Do you know that feeling? I’d ask you what the last thing that gave you that feeling was.

If we were having coffee…I’d tell you that I’ve been having a hard time with nostalgia lately. I don’t know why. I’m just suddenly MISSING things and people and moments from the past (really really missing my college years…I felt so free then). The way things were. I love the way things are SO MUCH and am so happy with who I am but I’m also yearning for different parts of who I was before. I don’t know if it’s that I’m turning 30 in a couple of months but the nostalgia is starting to weigh on me. When I was cleaning my closet out and I’d pull out these clothes all these memories just came flooding back — my trip to Europe, dates with Will when we were in college, moments with friends I’m no longer friends with. GAH. MAKE IT STOP. I have nostalgia feels every now and again but these are so strong lately. I’d ask you what the hell was wrong with me. But rhetorically speaking obviously. I mean, unless you are a psychologist and can tell me what’s literally wrong with me.

 

If we were having coffee…what would you tell me? Come on…lay it all out! It’s just you, me, the pleasant sounds of a cafe…and maybe some other eyes in the comment section but NBD right?? Our we can have coffee in my inbox if you don’t feel comfortable. I really want to know! What’s going on with you?

If We Were Having Coffee

I saw a life coach I love, Ashley, do a post entitled If We Were Having Coffee and I decided to take her lead and do one myself in November 2013 because I loved it and sometimes I feel like we forget that there is a whole life behind the people that write and read blogs. I got such a great response to my initial post so I made it a  reoccurring thing for the past couple of years and do it when I feel so inclined!

 

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So, grab your coffee/beverage of your choice and meet me for a chat. I’ve got a lemon shandy right now (it’s afternoon right now, okay!) and it’s divine.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I’m currently reading This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen and Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff. Also, I’m audiobooking The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen. I’d ask you what you are currently reading!

If we were having coffee... I’d tell you how much of a FUN summer Will and I are having already and we have so many other fun things planned I can barely contain my excitement. I’ve enjoyed beach days and pool days and nights out and good food and ice cream and concerts and new beer and just SO MUCH FUN. I’m really thankful it’s been a fun summer and it’s been really nice to feel so happy after a crappy winter! I’d ask what you have been up to thus far this summer!

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If we were having coffee.… I’d tell you that I opened up that THING…better known as a story…that I had told you about before. I had written like a paragraph or two last summer, bawled and then never opened the document again. It’s been sitting on my desktop untouched but all the while ideas have come to me for it. It’s a contemporary YA (I think..idk she just finished her first year of college) and it’s so personal and I am not even a good writer nor have I ever wanted to write a novel before. BUT WHAT THE HELL. I OPENED IT. I WROTE A SENTENCE OR TWO TO ADD TO WHAT I HAD. WE WILL SEE WHAT HAPPENS.  I’d ask if you are an aspiring writer. If so, do you have any tips??

If we were having coffee…. Id tell that recently I’ve been thinking a lot about fear and how I can recognize places in my life where it has held me back. I know that sometimes fear is there to protect us but also I’m starting to see how I use it as a crutch and it kind of makes me sad. I don’t want to let myself live so fearfully and I don’t know when I started REALLY letting fear get in my way.

If we were having coffee…. I’d tell you that I’ve really been wanting to get into podcasts. I’d ask you for recs!!

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you that I’ve really been having a weird relationship with social media. I’ve been so disillusioned by it recently? I don’t even know if that’s what I mean. I just…sometimes I’m so weary from it. I get overwhelmed by it. I think “WHY DO I PUT SO MUCH TIME AND ENERGY AND STOCK IN ALL THIS?” I have nothing to say sometimes. I’m over the over-documentation and wading through the picture perfect shininess to get to the realness. The constant barrage of voices and options and links and possibilities of people and things to follow and knowledge and opinions. BUT THEN OTHER DAYS I AM LIKE OMG I LOVE THE INTERNET. IT IS THE BEST. I’ve been a lot more MIA than I used to be (especially on Twitter) and I feel like the balance has really been helping me. I’d ask you how you deal with social media fatigue.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you how last time I was lamenting all my workout woes and how I couldn’t get back on the workout wagon and I’d like to inform you that I’ve been working out again and IT FEELS SO GOOD. I mean really. Sure, it’s nice to lose a little weight and look toned and wink at yourself in the mirror because you are like DAMN GIRL YOU LOOK GOOD. But most of it is about how I truly feel. I hate every moment while I muster up motivation and all the way through the workout until I think of how I feel after. How energized I am. Or how I think about how badass my body feels when I can hold a plank for longer or do more burpees than usual. It makes me feel like I can conquer anything…well not during my workout…mostly I’m a whiny baby…but AFTER. HEAR ME ROAR.

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If we were having coffee….I’d you that I’ve been having A REALLY spectacular reading year thus far in 2015. It’s been kind of magical — a great mix of 2015 releases and older books and things I missed last year that seemed to be beloved by others I trust. I don’t want to jinx myself but MAN OH MAN IT’S BEEN GOOD. I’d ask you how 2015 has been treating you reading wise!

If we were having coffee…I was thinking the other day while going through some of my old college papers while cleaning a box from my old room at my stepdad’s (and was talking with book club about it this morning) about how much I MISS school. And not even SCHOOL itself. But learning things. And I know I am learning things all the time and blah blah blah. But I miss learning a specific skill or subject. So I’ve decided I’m going to challenge myself to learn a new thing this summer. I’d ask you WHAT THE HELL I SHOULD LEARN! haha

 

If we were having coffee…what would you tell me? Come on…lay it all out! It’s just you, me, the pleasant sounds of a cafe…and maybe some other eyes in the comment section but NBD right?? Our we can have coffee in my inbox if you don’t feel comfortable. I really want to know! What’s going on with you?

If We Were Having Coffee

I saw a life coach I love, Ashley, do a post entitled If We Were Having Coffee and I decided to take her lead and do one myself in November 2013 because I loved it and sometimes I feel like we forget that there is a whole life behind the people that write and read blogs. I got such a great response to my initial post that I wanted to make it a reoccurring thing!

 

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So, grab your coffee/beverage of your choice and meet me for a chat. I’ve got water with lemon right now. Love that H2O.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I’m currently reading Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed. Still too early on to have an opinion but I love reading about different cultures from my own and arranged marriage is something I’m not familiar with on a personal level obviously. Before that I just finished Bone Gap by Laura Ruby which was sooo interesting. I am still trying to unpack that one. I’d ask you what you are reading and what you just finished before that…

If we were having coffee... I’d tell you I’m really excited for how my late spring/summer is shaping up — so many good book events, concerts, vacations, etc. that Will and I have planned! We started putting it all out on a calendar and I’m just GIDDY with excitement. I’d ask you what you are planning on doing this summer.

If we were having coffee.… I’d tell you that I’m failing on my 30 before 30 list that I had told you that I made. I haven’t crossed many off so now I have to kick it into high gear. 30 is coming up sooooon (in October). I’d ask you how you tackle your more random goals (ie things that are of importance to you but not like pressing matters). Because right now my list is just SITTING THERE.

If we were having coffee…. Id tell you that the last time we talked I was feeling super discouraged with blogging but I would LOVE to update you that I’m feeling really good about it right now. Nothing really has changed but somewhere along the line my mindset did because look, internally, I’m REALLY happy about what I do here and feel excited about everything I post. So what is there to care about otherwise? I think the nice Spring weather is boosting my mood but who knows. Also been brainstorming some things I’m really excited about. SO YAY.

If we were having coffee…. I’d tell you that I’ve been having a really hard time with some changes going on in my life. SO, my stepdad is great. He’s like a second dad to me (I had both of them walk me down the aisle). I lived with him until I got married even after my mom passed in 2006 and he’s just really important to me. He’s been dating this woman for a while and they will be getting married in September. My personal feelings about her are complicated (long story short: she’s caused fractures between this relationship for both myself and my sister) but I WANT him to be happy. It’s hard. And then the fact that soon she will be moving into MY HOUSE? The house where my stepdad, mom, sister and I lived for all those years. I’m having to box up my stuff (I’ve kept stuff we can’t fit in the apartment there in my old room) and get it ALL out because her sons are moving in and will TAKE our rooms and it’s just all so weird. I know his life is moving on but it’s so weird that I’ll go there and the place where I see all MY memories will not be mine anymore. I won’t have a room. I won’t be able to just go in there as I please like I do now. I stop by, eat food and just hang out all the time. And all the touches that my mom put on that house? I know they are just going to be painted over and things will be taken down and changed. I would almost rather him sell the house rather than have to still visit MY house but it won’t really be mine anymore. I spent a lot of time this past week there by myself packing up my room and just crying. A LOT. I know it’s inevitable but it’s just so hard to watch yet another part of my mom just get erased in some ways. It was comforting to go there because that house was still so much my mom just reflected in everything that is in it and the decorating.

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you that I’m still struggling with what to do next with my life. I’m still nannying for the time being and haven’t really been sending out as many resumes. I needed a mental health break from it. I feel like it’s been so long since I’ve had a “real job” in marketing at this point that nobody is going to hire me. But like…it’s not by choice? I started nannying because I had to pay my bills somehow while I job searched. And here we are over a year later and I’m still nannying. I’d ask if you had any advice for me.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you how I’m having such a hard time working out these days. I was doing so good last year and this year I can’t stay consistent. I’d ask you if you have an exercise routine and, if so, what it is.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you about how I’m so thankful for many of my friendships but especially my one girlfriend who I get together with every Wednesday for wine night. I’ve been so awful about making an effort to get together with friends but having this standing date reminds me how much I love getting together with friends.

If we were having coffee…I’d tell you that I’m PRETTY SURE I’m going to BEA again this year. PRETTY SURE. Year #5 of BEA if so! I’d ask you, if you were a blogger/librarian/teacher/bookseller, etc., if you were going too.

 

If we were having coffee…what would you tell me? Come on…lay it all out! It’s just you, me, the pleasant sounds of a cafe…and maybe some other eyes in the comment section but NBD right?? Our we can have coffee in my inbox if you don’t feel comfortable. I really want to know! What’s going on with you?

If We Were Having Coffee

I saw a life coach I love, Ashley, do a post entitled If We Were Having Coffee and I decided to take her lead and do one myself in November 2013 because I loved it and sometimes I feel like we forget that there is a whole life behind the people that write and read blogs. I got such a great response to my initial post that I wanted to make it a reoccurring thing!

 

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So, grab your coffee/beverage of your choice and meet me for a chat. I’ve got a warm water with lemon, cayenne pepper and cinnamon.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I’m almost done with Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel which I’m really impressed with. I also just started Wildlife by Fiona Wood but I’m like two pages into it so I can’t say much. I’d ask you what you were reading.

If we were having coffee... I’d tell you that I haven’t been doing well lately. And that it’s a hard thing to admit. (because it’s embarrassing. Because I feel over-dramatic. Because I can’t tell you exactly why). When someone asks you how you are it’s easy to be like FINE and move on. But I’m not fine. Why should I pretend? Because of things and how I’ve been doing, I’ve been so disconnected from people and social media and this blog. I’d apologize for unanswered tweets, comments, etc. It’s just so difficult for me to interact when I feel so awful. I’d wonder if you’ve noticed my disconnect and flakiness lately because I feel really self conscious about it. That’s part of the reason I decided to write up one of these posts (it’s been a while) because I want to connect again.  I’d ask how you are doing and really WANT to know just beyond the typical response.

If we were having coffee.… I’d tell you how I’m FREAKING OUT over the fact that this month I will turn 29. It will officially be the last year of my 20’s and I don’t know what to do with it. I WANT TO STAY HERE. My face doesn’t match the age so aren’t I allowed to stay in my 20’s until it catches up?? I’d also tell you how most of the time I don’t ever feel like an adult. Like am I REALLY an adult? I don’t know. I do adult-y type things I guess but mostly I feel like the kid putting the grownup high heels and mom’s makeup stash all over my face. HOW DID ALL THESE YEARS JUST HAPPEN? HOW AM I ALMOST 29?? I kind of feel sick over it truthfully. How fast life truly does go. Days turn into weeks into months and suddenly you are older. In a flash. I’d ask if you ever feel this way.

If we were having coffee…. Id tell you how discouraged I’ve been feeling with my blog lately. It’s so unlike me to care or notice but traffic and general interaction has been down (says the girl who has been a shit blog reader). I never put my blog happiness and well-being into these things so why am I RIGHT THIS MOMENT? I think maybe it has to do with where I’m at right now so I’m just feeling really discouraged about LOTS of things. But also I get this nagging feeling that it’s me. That what I’m doing isn’t good enough. You all are bored of me. I don’t have anything to say anymore. I should quit. My inner monologue has been horrible. I have been focused too much on creation and consumption that I’m losing the beauty in it all. I’d ask, if you were a blogger, if you feel this way ever?

If we were having coffee…. I’d tell you how I’m not looking forward to the cold weather and winter but this year I’m trying REALLY hard to make the most of it. Find new activities. Really embrace the things I DO love in this season. I’d ask you what your favorite cold weather activities are/what you do when the winter chases you inside? If you lived in perpetual beautiful weather I’d give you the stink eye and ask you to house me for the winter months.

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you how a conversation with my dad was what I needed to reframe my whole job/career situation outlook. I’m going to be pursuing some new ideas with the job search and be more thankful for the flexibility nannying gives me. (I MEAN ALL SUMMER I GOT TO BE OUTSIDE). I’d ask who your go-to person is who always helps you reframe a problem.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that we should go out for Thai food because I’m really craving it. LIKE REALLY REALLY BADLY.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I am often frustrated because I don’t have anything that I’m really good at. I wish I was artistic or could sing or like running. I always thought I’d find my THING at this point in my life but ALAS no talents here except expert procrastination and eating ice cream like nobody’s business. I’d ask you about what you are talented at.

If we were having coffee…I’d tell you how I was reading a post from a blogger (not a book blogger) who experienced a devastating apartment fire and I’ve been thinking a lot about THINGS. How much value we place in them. How they can be gone in an instant. I started thinking about what things I would be sad about losing in a fire. (Answer: pretty much everything haha). My time of being unemployed and us being really scarily tight with money taught me a lot about what I buy and what I use and I’ve become a lot more of a minimalist in ways and have tried not to get attached to THINGS. It’s hard. I’d ask you what would be the one thing you’d miss the most if this happened to you.

 

If we were having coffee…what would you tell me? Come on…lay it all out! It’s just you, me, the pleasant sounds of a cafe…and maybe some other eyes in the comment section but NBD right?? Our we can have coffee in my inbox if you don’t feel comfortable. I really want to know! What’s going on with you?

If We Were Having Coffee #2

I saw a blogger/life coach I love, Ashley, do a post entitled If We Were Having Coffee and I decided to take her lead and do one myself because I loved it and sometimes I feel like we forget that there is a whole life behind the people that write and read blogs. I got such a great response to my initial that I wanted to make it a reoccurring thing!

 

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So, grab your coffee/beverage of your choice and meet me for a chat. I’ve got water right now because it’s far too late for coffee for me.  I actually wish I was having a jack & ginger right now because it’s been that kind of a week but alas I am not. What are you having?

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I’m in the middle of Half Bad by Sally Green which I started out loving but have hit a wall with. I don’t know if it’s the crazy of this week or what but it’s kind of causing me to be in a slump. I’m also in the middle of The Sea of Tranquility which is going a bit better. I’d ask you what you were reading.

If we were having coffee... I’d tell you that this week drained me. There was a bit of a family crisis that involved my sister and her two babies (Genevieve and Adela) staying here with Will and I in our one bedroom (things are fine now) and then I found out on Wednesday that I didn’t get the job I interviewed for and was really excited about. I was at my nannying gig when I found out and it took everything not to just break down and cry. I started crying the minute I got in my car. I’m just so frustrated. I KNOW I would have been amazing at that job and I just don’t know why I can’t get a job in my field (marketing/social media). And I feel so stressed because of this long term unemployment. I’ve done everything in my power to find a job and I can’t and I KNOW that jobs just penalize you even more when you are out of work. And all I want to scream is I DID NOT ASK TO BE LAID OFF FROM MY PREVIOUS JOB!!!

If we were having coffee.… I’d tell you that I need a vacation. I need to go somewhere where I don’t speak the language and explore and eat new foods. My soul needs it…to recharge. To feel even more alive.  I’d ask you about the last trip you went on.

If we were having coffee…. I would tell you how I seriously cannot stop mourning the fact that Breaking Bad is over. Will and I binge watched it in December and I can’t stop thinking it. I feel like no other shows compare for me at this point. I’d ask you if you’ve watched it and if you said no then I’d (lovingly) bully you into it.

If we were having coffee…. I’d tell you how this winter is going to be my undoing. I’m NOT a winter girl at all. I hate it. If it weren’t for family I’d be on the first flight out of here to live somewhere warm. This winter has been BRUTAL. In fact, the news keeps telling me it’s the THIRD snowiest winter we’ve ever had. DIE, MOTHER NATURE, DIE. And the fun part? WINTER IS NOT EVEN OVER. Between getting stuck in traffic for 4 hours (should have only been 25 minutes), having below zero temps, my car door being so frozen multiple mornings that I can’t shut it, having to dig out my car, falling on ice and having to drive in shitty conditions…I’M JUST OVER IT.

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you how I went to a party for my former bff’s 1 year old kid (to support HER because we’ve been working on things) and I had to see my old group for the first time in over a year. There were only a couple of people who actually acknowledged us/talked to us and the rest of the people literally ignored us. It’s so sad to see friends I’ve had since middle school and high school just act like I’m not there. I had my reasons for leaving that group but this showed me it was the right decision when I thought about how none of them have even tried to reach out/basically showed me how shallow those friendships always were. I was just so disappointed that there wasn’t even hellos or “it’s been so long! How have you been?” from any of them. It give me the major sads. I would also tell you how Will and I went out for burritos and margaritas afterwards and I no longer gave a shit about what transpired.

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you that I slacked off on working out in 2014 so far. I was really dedicated last year and then I started the year off sick and I just have not regained my mojo. SOMEONE PLEASE KICK ME INTO GEAR.

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I really want to go to BEA again this year and would be really sad to miss it after having gone every year since I’ve been blogging. It’s more about being able to hang out with people than it is about the books but I really look forward to it. Everything is so up in the air because I don’t know what I’ll be doing job-wise by then and who knows if I’ll be able to get off the time. FINGERS CROSSED IT WILL WORK OUT. I’d ask you if YOU were going and if you didn’t know what it is, because maybe you don’t blog or you are new, I would tell you ALL about it..how it is a bookish heaven.

If we were having coffee…I’d tell you that I’m really behind in replying to comments on my blog and visiting other blogs. It’s embarrassing honestly. And I feel bad. I don’t know what’s up with me lately HOWEVER..I’m working on it.

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you that I’m honestly having the hardest time keeping my spirits up these days with this whole looking for a job thing. I keep having to look for bright spots in my day — your comments and tweets being one of them — and it’s just really, really hard just not to give up. I’ve never felt so demoralized in my life and I feel like I’m doing the best I can and asking for helping and doing All The Things You Are Supposed To Do and it’s not getting me anywhere. Something’s gotta give eventually, right? Everyone tells me to “keep on going” and I KNOW that’s what I’m supposed to do but I feel like I’m just a hamster on a wheel at this point.

 

If we were having coffee…what would you tell me? Come on…lay it all out! It’s just you, me, the pleasant sounds of a cafe…and maybe some other eyes in the comment section but NBD right?? Our we can have coffee in my inbox if you don’t feel comfortable. I really want to know! What’s going on with you?

If We Were Having Coffee…

One of my favorite bloggers, Ashley at Your Super Awesome Life/aka the life coach I told you all about, did a post like this the other day and I decided I wanted to do the same because 1) I loved it and 2) sometimes I feel like we forget that there is a whole life behind the people that write and read blogs. She sat down and typed out what she’d talk to her readers about if she was meeting them for coffee. So let’s try it?

 

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So, grab your coffee/beverage of your choice and meet me for a chat. I’ve got tea right now but if we met earlier it would be a gingerbread latte. What are you having?

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you about how I’ve been in an epic slump for the past week. I’d tell you how I wasn’t sure if it was ME or the book (The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert). I’ve been really preoccupied/stressed so I know that could be my problem. I’d tell you that I decided to try something paced a little differently and ended up reading Ashes to Ashes by Melissa Walker and finished it in a day. Now I’m going back to The Signature of All Things but reading Picture Me Gone by Meg Rosoff at the same time to balance it out. I’d also ask you what you were reading.

If we were having coffee... I’d tell you about how I’m really having a hard time finding those books that just WOW me to the fullest degree. I’m talking those books that make you remember why you love reading. The ones that just knock you off your feet. I want to curl up and sob like a little baby because of how it wrecked me or because of how beautiful and amazing it was. I want to almost convince myself I never want to read again so this book could be the LAST BOOK I’D EVER READ if I died. End on an amazing note. I’d ask you what book last did that for you.

If we were having coffee.… I’d tell you how I’m really kind of nervous about this whole not having a job thing. I don’t know what I can do anymore honestly. I send out resume after resume and rarely hear ANYTHING. I’ve had people look at my resume. I’d tell you that my unemployment is up in December and I don’t know what were are going to do. I’m rather scared. I’m going to see what is hiring around the holidays and just go from there. Also, I’d tell you how demoralizing this all has been. And stressful. And all consuming. Probably contributing to my slump.

If we were having coffee…. I would tell you about how I’m really loving this auntie thing even MORE as Genevieve grows up. She is almost two and such a little person with a BIG personality. I love watching her grow and learn and I just get so much joy from being around her. I would tell you how she likes to say to my sister, “MOVE MAMA!” so she can be the closest to her baby sister Adela.

If we were having coffee…. I’d show you the bruise on my leg because I’m a klutz and ran into the side of the bed today and how it hurts so bad. I’d also ask you if my roots were showing really bad because I’m WAY overdue for getting my hurrr did.

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you how I’m really, really happy that I’ve been reconnecting with my high school/college bff again. We have been on rocky ground for the past couple years but it’s been really nice working on our friendship and both admitting where we messed up.

If we were having coffeeI’d ask you if you always knew what you wanted to be when you grew up and if you are happy doing what you are doing. I’d tell you how I’m so passionate about social media and marketing but I doubt whether I could do the corporate thing long term because my last job sucked the life out of me. I would tell you how I hate the notion that you have to pick what you want to be as an 18 year old kid, before you even really KNOW who you are, and pursue that as a degree for the next four years. 18 year old Jamie who chose to be a business major is a lot different than 28 year old Jamie and had different motives and priorities in life than me now. I’d tell you that it scares me that I still can’t answer the question of, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Can’t I just date a few careers first?

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you how I’m loving doing Blogilates and it’s the first workout I’ve stuck with ever in my life. I can feel myself getting stronger and stronger and more flexible since I started doing it in July. I’d also tell you how I’m a dummy and I signed up for a 5K on Thanksgiving and trained for one week a month ago. OOPS.

If we were having coffee…I’d tell you how excited I am about something that I’m working on. I’d also tell you that that something isn’t the NaNo project I promised myself secretly that I’d do this month without telling anyone. Not one word has been written.

If we were having coffee… I’d tell you how thankful I am for you. For reading what I write. For talking to me about books and other things. For encouraging me. For commenting. For letting me be myself.

 

If we were having coffee…what would you tell me? Come on…lay it all out! It’s just you, me, the pleasant sounds of a cafe…and maybe some other eyes in the comment section but NBD right?? Our we can have coffee in my inbox if you don’t feel comfortable. I really want to know! What’s going on with you?

Gift Guide: Gifts For Book Lovers That AREN’T Books

 

 

gift ideas for book lovers

 

Many years ago I used to do gift guides on this blog and I THINKKKK I remember why I stopped doing them…they are fun to do but OMG I have been working on this post 5ever (no REALLY I stopped doing them because I started doing my Handmade Holidays series instead and couldn’t juggle both). But really I thought MAYBE this would be ready for next Christmas especially with having a new baby that makes my blogging time limited! BUT I abandoned some sleep and household chores (eek!) to get this done.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE gift giving and I love when I find the ~PERFECT~ gift for somebody. I try to be thoughtful and really think about the person I’m giving to! I love someone knowing I really put thought into a gift rather than them being impressed with a price tag (although $$$ presents TOTALLY can be thoughtful FOR SURE). But you know what I mean….I’m trying to really make them know how much they mean to me and that I really KNOW THEM.

SO today’s gift guide is all about those book lover’s in your life…aka basically my wishlist because *waves* hello book lover here in case you didn’t know!!

(P.S. I also stand by everything I talked about in this post in 2014 and some of it still is available on Etsy!)

[Keep Reading]

Beyond the Pages: Musings On Internet Life

Beyond the Pages is my way of sharing the things books make me think about and interact with and want to talk about shared experiences with people. Some of my best conversations have happened because of something that came up in a book. I’m pretty personal in my reviews but I’d like a way to not bog down my review with a huge paragraph of personal experience so this is my way to be able to share it. Some times it will be serious and sometimes just random and fun but I hope we can connect! PAST Beyond the Pages here!

 

 

The book that inspired this conversation:

The Status Of All Things

The Status Of All Things by Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke
(Goodreads // Amazon)

What It Is About:

What would you do if you could literally rewrite your fate—on Facebook? This heartwarming and hilarious new novel from the authors of Your Perfect Life follows a woman who discovers she can change her life through online status updates.

Kate is a thirty-five-year-old woman who is obsessed with social media. So when her fiancé, Max, breaks things off at their rehearsal dinner—to be with Kate’s close friend and coworker, no less—she goes straight to Facebook to share it with the world. But something’s changed. Suddenly, Kate’s real life starts to mirror whatever she writes in her Facebook status. With all the power at her fingertips, and heartbroken and confused over why Max left her, Kate goes back in time to rewrite their history.

Kate’s two best friends, Jules and Liam, are the only ones who know the truth. In order to convince them she’s really time traveled, Kate offers to use her Facebook status to help improve their lives. But her attempts to help them don’t go exactly as planned, and every effort to get Max back seems to only backfire, causing Kate to wonder if it’s really possible to change her fate.

What It Got Me Thinking About:

social media and how it is so embedded in my life..everyone’s life really, how social media isn’t always an accurate representation of who a person is

Image1fdsfI’ve been feeling very on again off again with social media lately. Reading this book reminded me how much social media affects my life and how it has permeated into my daily routine in such a huge way without me even realizing it. I grew up before the internet. I grew up before social media. I know how to live life without it all….but why does it feel like sometimes I don’t?

I’m going to preface this with: I LOVE SOCIAL MEDIA. I LOVE THE INTERNET. It is glorious. I have met some of my very best friends. I’ve grown as a person. Have found an amazing outlet. Learned a lot. I love how it has allowed me to have PEOPLE to connect with who I wouldn’t otherwise.

Here’s 2 things it made me think about:

 

If you don’t post it on social media, did it really happen?

In the book, immediately when Kate finds out that her fiance was breaking up with her, her first thought is basically, “what will social media think of this? How will I break the news on Facebook?” At first I thought, “how silly” but then I was thinking about how I’ve struggled with this so much. I go to social media immediately to announce life things.  I can’t go a day without thinking about how I can photograph it perfectly for Instagram. How immediately when I do something fun I need to post it. What will my followers think if I get too personal about my bad day? Will people like this? Will people think it’s lame? Social media is the first thing I do when I wake up and a lot of the time the last thing I do before I close my eyes.

I’ve been better with it lately because I’ve just felt so TIRED of sharing and curating my whole life. I try to be authentic and open as possible when I do share but lately I just want to keep things to myself. I don’t want to live my whole life out on social media. I’m tired of putting so much of myself on display and caring too much about what social media thinks. And I’ve been finding life a bit more fulfilling by enjoying those moments without sharing them. Sure, some of them were super share-worthy (like how beautiful the sun and the leaves look from my reading spot here at the park) but it’s kind of nice to not immediately reach for my phone and be like, “I need to tweet/snap/instagram/ that.”  Sometimes it’s kind of just nice to admire it and feel the sun on my face and appreciate the moment. I’m still a work in process but I’m finding that life is more fun without over-documenting it.

[Keep Reading]

April 2015 Recap: My Life in Photos, Music, Books & MORE!

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bookstagram photo

Follow me on Instagram to see more images from my month

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1. I got sunburned: I’m not particularly excited about THAT but I’m excited about the fact we had a beautiful 80 degree day in which Will and I went to our favorite brew pub, sat out on the deck and the walked around that part of the city. And I got the most amazing cookie ice cream sandwich EXCEPT  for the fact that moment was tainted by a guy who came INTO the store with a very big snake wrapped around his neck and I had a panic attack. COULD NOT GET OUT OF THERE FAST ENOUGH. But yay cute outfit weather?? Unleashing my pasty legs on the world!!!

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2. I had a walk down memory lane that was kind of hard — So, my stepdad is getting remarried (my mom passed away in 2006 for those of you who don’t know that). My sister and I are still very close to my stepdad and we both still have stuff there at his house in our rooms. BUT the new wife and her kids are moving in soon and so we had to go clean out our stuff and also go through some of my mom’s stuff. It was really, really hard to clean out my mom’s stuff and watch all the things that still made me think of my mom in the house basically be taken down. It feels like another part of the grieving process. Another piece I’m losing of her and it was hard. Going through my stuff made me all nostalgic but I found some childhood books and stuff. It’s a weird feeling to realize you won’t have a room in your childhood home anymore. I will go there and basically be a visitor.

3. I have been consistently working out this month: I had gotten out of habit this year but April was definitely the month of getting back on the wagon and I feel GREAT. It takes a lot for me to motivate myself to do it but once I’m doing it and after I feel great (even if I’m dying and sore).

4. I got to see my dad TWICE in one month– My dad lives 4 hours away and Will & I went up and visited him for Easter but then he and my stepmom just came down this past week for my niece’s 18th birthday party.

5. I officially decided I’m going to BEA: I wasn’t sure if it was going to happen this year — money-wise and just if I WANTED to go but over Easter weekend I officially decided that I would especially since next year is in Chicago and that will be way harder for me to go if I’m still blogging and interested in going.

 

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I put all my Monthly Rewinds in a Spotify playlist so you can listen to them here !

 

1. Let Me Down Easy — Max Frost


2. Bros — Wolf Alice

3. Still Want You — Brandon Flowers


4. Carried Away — Dionysia

5. What’s Real — Waters

6. Painted — MS MR

 HONORABLE MENTIONS:

Until We Can’t (Let’s Go) by Passion Pit, Shame by Young Fathers, Wild Eyes by Matthew Mayfield, 1999 by Active Child, Change Is Everything by Son Lux

 

Check out the rest of my April playlist

 

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I read 11 books this month (2 of them being via audiobooks)

 

99 Days by Katie Cotugno: I LOVED Katie’s debut How To Love and I seriously enjoyed this one as well as HARD it is to read. The character is uber flawed and makes mistakes and does shitty things and I loved it. Katie is the queen of writing uber messy and complicated stuff. Especially in this case to make me like a character who does things I am so not down with. Post to come on this one!

All the Rage by Courtney Summers: SUCH AN IMPORTANT BOOK. I vote it should be required reading for all teenagers (and adults obviously).

Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby: What a sweet and heartfelt book this was! Post to come on this one!

 

 

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Something real by heather demetrios

I really enjoyed my second Heather Demetrios book, Something Real, (I was backwards and read her debut after I read I’ll Meet You There). Such a good discussion starter!!

 

 

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“The great thing about this life of ours is that you can be someone different to everybody.” — All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

I was really thinking about this one. It’s SO true.

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1. If We Were Having CoffeeI love this chats with you all. Thanks for letting me talk and thanks for sharing stuff with me!

2. Whatcha In The Mood For: I’m so excited for my new series on this blog and I’m glad you loved it too!

3. I Need A Recommendation: Audiobooks: You guys are CLUTCH! Thank you for all your suggestions. STILL going through them all weeks later!!!

4. 10 Inspiring Quotes From Books: LOVE THESE QUOTES SO MUCH.

5. My 3 Part Series Trying to Explain Where My Head Has Been At Lately With Reading: I’m glad I broke this into 3 parts rather than the mess of a post it was before. Post 1, Post 2, Post 3!

 

mr12ANY of my book talks! I keep trying to figure out if it’s that people don’t care about things that resemble reviews (my book talks) in general or if it’s me.

 

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Oh HEY I posted a video this month:

April Book Haul

 

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1.  Notes On Authenticity: This blogger has been one of my favorite travel blogs for years because she always writes such thought-provoking posts.

2. Because I Don’t Want To: I really loved this post. So many times I feel like I need to come up with good reasons not to do something and, you know what, sometimes the fact that I just don’t want to is a good enough reason. Also, the idea of doing things just because you HAVE been really resonated with me. “Just because you’ve been doing something a certain way for a month or a year or 10 years doesn’t mean you have to keep doing it that way. If you want to stop, you can stop. If you want to change, you can change.”   Especially in relation to my blog. It’s given me motivation to take a step back and look at the things I’ve been doing “just because it’s the way I’ve done things for 5 years” rather than because I actually still desire to.

3. 9 Life Lessons From Kimmy Schmidt: I just bingewatched and LOVED The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt so I loved this post!

4. Always One More Time: I needed this little reminder!

5. Remove One Word From Your Vocab & It Will Change Your Life: Oh my gosh I say this ALL the time. I’m trying to experiment with banning this from my vocab.

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1. Ginger Pear tea from Trader Joe’sI feel like my picks are always new teas but I LOVE MY TEA, OKAY? This one was new in the store and UM YEAH I had to have it.
2. My Crafted Van bookmark collection – I was NOT a bookmark user before these really. I would dogear or use makeshift bookmarks. But I LOVE THESE. Except RIP I lost my unicorn bookmark already.
Crafted Van bookmarks
 3. Audiobooks: I used to be obsessed with audiobooks but really stopped listening to them. This was the month I FINALLY got back into them and I listen to them A LOT — while I’m driving, on the treadmill, while I’m cleaning, while I’m getting ready and Will isn’t here.

 

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1. ALL THE LOCAL BOOK EVENTS: Sarah J. Maas release party for ACOTAR (in which I am moderating), Sabaa Tahir, Sarah Dessen, Tiffany Schmidt’s release party and the Openly YA tour. If you are in the Philly area and want info about these events let me know!!
2. Our first Block Party concert: I’ve talked about how our local alt/indie station puts on free concerts in the summer (you have to just be fast enough to get the free tickets that are released). Will and I got tickets and will be seeing Banks, The Airborne Toxic Event, Catfish and the Bottlemen and Bad Suns.
3. BOOK EXPO OF AMERICA: EEEEE so excited. This is year #5 for me and I can’t wait to see friends and do ALL THE FUN THINGS. I’m planning to do a meetup again like I did last year (we crossed Momufuku and Macbar off my bucket list) so stay tuned if you are going to BEA and want in. Gotta figure my schedule out but then will decide.

 

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I ‘ve got two questions this month because one is definitely more blogger specific:

Are you going to BEA this year???

 

Who is one author you wish you could meet?

 

 

 

 

lets-talk

Pick a category (or 5… or all of them) and tell me what went on in YOUR life this month!! What sort of things were noteworthy for you this month? New obsessions? Any new song recs?? Best books you read this month? Great posts I missed on your blog? Answer to my question of the month?

HEY YA JAMIE! We Need To Talk!

You guys all met YA Jamie (still cringing that I put these pictures on the internet) and you learned some things about her with my little survey but after reading this post I was thinking a lot about what I would tell my YA self I could sit down and talk to her and tell her what I’ve learned in all these years since being a teen. I doubt she would have listened because she thought she knew it all (Will would still say this is true of me now but WHATEVER) but reading so much YA I think SO much about my teenage years. So here it goes…

*stares at YA Jamie* *hands coffee* Don’t give me that face. You learn to like coffee one day or at least like it out of necessity in college. Also, your boobs don’t get bigger. HATE TO BREAK IT TO YOU. Everyone who said you were a late bloomer LIED. You just bloom in other ways. So start saving those pennies and cozy up to Victoria’s Secret. So for real…let’s talk.

Things You Need To Know:

 

advice1It’s all part of adolescence so go with it but whenever you are feeling particularly overwhelmed about something remember that it is transient and think of the bigger picture. That party your mom wouldn’t let you go to? It really did NOT ruin your life. See…I’m here. Do I look ruined?? Worry about these dumb things because it’s your now but put more stock in the important things that will be there in 5 years. Perspective is really key in getting over these things.

advice2
Here’s the thing, if you don’t you are going to end up sitting in your bed at night running through all of the “should haves” and “what ifs.” TRUST ME. Sometimes the chances you took don’t pan out the way you think they will but I assure you at some point you will realize that even that failed attempt changed you and you won’t wonder “what if” down the road. Take chances, say yes even when you are scared and be bold. It’s empowering. Some opportunities you won’t get back. They won’t wait for you to finally get the courage 5 years later. TRUST ME. I have a whole list I could share with you.

advice3I know you feel like you get along better with guys and I know your friendships really ARE awesome with them and you DO really fit in. But there is going to be a point when you realize you have no girl friends and you need them. And then when you TRY to make them? You are going to be really bad at it. All the things other girls learned about friendship? You are years behind and don’t quite understand how it all works. It sucks but luckily a few girls come into your life that make it real easy. Sadly, geography is not in your favor but they are important nonetheless. Also, read this and find those kinds of friendships!

advice4They are by no means perfect but you won’t have them around forever as you will soon learn. Appreciate them. A lot. Try to peel back the layers and bridge the gaps. You are going to feel the absence of not having a mom but you still have a dad and sisters and stepmom and stepdad. Cherish that. You and Angela will stop hating each other and actually she will be your best friend. Want to know how? She’s going to tell you she’s pregnant and that will change your life and make you inseparable. Be gentle with her as you work out your differences through high school and college. You are going to realize that these people will be here for you when others hurt you, fail you and they will love you unconditionally despite your flaws and will be the ones you call crying when bad things happen.

advice5Let go of things that don’t work. Let go of people who do not add anything positive to your life. Let go of anger. Let go of the past. Let go and forgive. You’ll feel a million pounds lighter. It’s going to be hard and you are going to struggle a lot. It seems counter-intuitive because you’ll feel like you can fix those friendships and situations but you’ll really just feel prisoner to them. And ignore the slogan, “Quitters never win” because it’s OKAY to not want to do something anymore if you don’t want. You are free to try new things. Just be honest with yourself about why you want to quit it.

advice6You are going to feel like you are always at different stages than your friends and peers a lot. In high school and college you are going to grow up fast because of what happens with your mom. Your friends aren’t going to understand it really and you are going to feel alone. But I promise you that you will have a step ahead of them when it comes to seeing the world differently and having perspective. Relish in that when you feel alone but don’t hold it against them. And then they are all going to be in serious relationships and you’ll be single. It’s okay. When you get a relationship, they all get married. It’s okay. You learn from their mistakes. When you finally get married (yes it’s before your are 30) and get your first apartment, they will be having babies and buying houses. IT’S OKAY. Don’t compare yourself because your journey is different.

advice7
This is the biggest lesson you could ever learn. Look, I’m only meeting with you right now because I got laid off and have TIME. I didn’t order food to go with that coffee because I’m broke. But I’ll tell you what…you and your husband laugh a lot. At your situation. In spite of it. You are going to go through things that you can’t control and sometimes you will feel like everything has gone wrong (seriously..2013 you will have a HUGE bad streak) BUT you can choose to put a smile on your face, be kind, laugh, be the best person you can be and that will help you get through it. You can’t control the chaos but you can do something about how you see it.

advice8Seriously, you are going to fight it SO MUCH. STOP IT. You will save so much time, money and painful burns in your quest to straighten it every day. Give into the lazy, girl. Rock what you have!

advice9Seriously, you have lots of dance parties. Just the other day you had one and your husband walked in from work and immediately started dancing with you. He’s a keeper. Plus as much as he shakes his head at your white girl moves and your failed twerking attempts..he still thinks you are awesome. Also, he’s a better dancer than you. Deal with it.

advice10
People will show you who they really are. They will. You are going to come across a lot of people who treat you like crap, make underhanded comments, talk behind your back and just genuinely don’t have your best interest at heart. Don’t let those bad eggs make you become jaded…just cut your losses. That person who talks about EVERYONE else (even her “bffs”)…don’t be stupid to think she isn’t also talking about you. That person who loves gossip? You will struggle with wanting to get in on it but it’s TOXIC. That friend who isn’t every pleased with anything that anybody does? You have flaws but don’t need to try to aim for what she thinks is acceptable. Stop trying to please her. Focus on your handful of AMAZING friends. You will be blessed with friends who send you empowering mixtapes when you need them, that friend who you can text at 3am about a fight with your husband, friends who GET you and don’t judge you even when you tell them something ridiculously stupid and petty and friends that understand your quirks and flaws and love you but aren’t afraid to tell you like it is when you are being a jackass.

advice11Even though you should be wary of certain people, you should be gracious with everyone else. Remember you could be seeing someone on their worst day. Don’t assume things. Don’t think the worst of people’s intentions right away. Talk about things when you feel slighted and don’t hold it in. Be honest. Don’t be stingy with second chances and “I’m sorry’s”. Meet people where they are at. See other people’s perspectives and consider them. Don’t judge harshly when someone is human and makes mistakes or does something douchy. Understand that sometimes in friendships you give and take at different intervals — it’s never the same for every friend but I can assure you that it will never be equal at all times. Sometimes people need more from you than they can give at certain times and vice versa. Don’t keep a tally. You’ll know when it’s right.

Things you will still struggle with at 28 (but I assure you, YA Jamie, I’m WORKING ON IT FOR US)

+ making omlettes
+ painting your nails
+ Not stabbing yourself in the eye with your mascara
+ Saying I’m sorry first
+ Feeling accepted/left out
+ Letting things consume you that shouldn’t
+ Trying to seek approval
+ dealing with the loss of your mom
+ Making friends
+ Knowing what you want to do with your life
+ Letting people walk all over you
+ Making decisions
+ Feeling like you are your age (trust me, girl, you still look 16 too)
+ letting one person ruin your mood
+ being the one to make plans/pick up the phone (also, you SUCK at answering texts)
+ feeling overwhelmed to the point of just shutting down
+ loving exercise (though right now you started Blogilates and you kind of maybe love it)
+ reading into things
+ feeling worthy and believing in yourself
+ finding pants that don’t show your crack when you bend down

You aren’t perfect but you’ll do alright, kid. You don’t even comprehend your strength but you’ve gotten through some of the worst things life could throw you with grace. You are still here. You are growing. Learning. Loving. Playing. Every day. And that’s what is important…at 16 or 28 or 58.

Love, ME

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