Letters to the Universe { June }

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I thought it was time for another Letters to the Universe post.

 

 

 

 

 

The universe has been very good to me lately. So I wanted to send out some letters and talk to it a bit.

 

Dear June, Thank you for the good and bad you brought me this month. June will always be the month papa passed away but it is also the month that papa came back as yellow butterflies surrounding us. (Seriously– they have been everywhere and I even found 2 beautiful yellow butterfly wings on the floor yesterday.) I find comfort knowing that not only is he breathing better than ever up there, but he is flying over us in protection and freedom. Mom had finished off papa’s garden that day and I think that was a sign that he knew we were honoring him.

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Sitting next to papa’s garden under his lights last night with a dear friend XOX

Dear July, How the hell did we get here? That means more than half our year is over already.  Is it true that the older you get the quicker the years pass by? Because I feel it already. Please slow down.

Dear timing,  I’m beginning to see why you do things in the order that you do. I feel like it is all lining up the way it is meant to and I thank you for being patient with me and teaching me that same patience.

Dear self, you are going through some big life changes right now and big opportunities (more on that later) This is something you have wished and worked hard for for a long time- work hard, but take care of yourself, and embrace every second of it. And it’s okay to have some fear- as long as you use it as motivation. I commend you for getting outside of your comfort zone over and over again even though it is really hard for you. You know you cannot grow in the same place.

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Dear mind, stop thinking so much. If just for a minute. Or enough for me to sleep well again!  As Frankie says, “worrying is like a rocking chair- it gives you something to do but won’t get you anywhere.”

Dear Advil PM, thank you for being there for nights when I absolutely cannot take another night of not sleeping. (Not usually- but lately)  I know that’s not what you are there for, but I’m so happy to have you.

Dear my bullet journal,  thank you for being there for me when I need to organize my days and months and years. And my thoughts. Thank you for allowing me to create more mindfulness in my life.

Dear Molly, please stop hoarding my underwear in your bed when I am away and you miss me. It’s getting really weird and awkward…. but thanks for being my little weirdo with your quirky quirks- I feel you are the dog version of me. (Besides the weird underwear thing)

Dear summer and your little moments, you really snuck up on me this year but I especially love your night sounds, twinkly outside lights, and light bugs. In addition I really adore your swaying nighttime breezes, your hot and heavy sunshine basking onto my face at the lake, and your ability to really bring people together.

 

Dear Universe, We have a lot going on right now. But with the ups come the downs and without both, we may not know the beauty of the other. This balance is sometimes tough, but so needed in order to really truly appreciate life and all it’s craziness.

 

XOXOX

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Things My Papa Taught Me

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This was one of the hardest few days of my life. My papa, Christopher McDonagh, passed away on Monday night after a hell of a fight of 10 years with multiple lung illnesses. I have cried all of my tears out for the rest of my life- I am pretty sure of that. I sit here crying again while writing this post.

Papa was one of my favorite people ever in this whole world full of billions of people. I just went searching in my email for more pictures and found emails from him I never answered- greeting cards he sent me for every holiday, even the little ones, like Valentines Day. Papa was that kind of guy- he just wanted to let you know he loved you and was thinking of you.

Everyone that met my papa described him as an amazing guy, the best gentlemen you will ever meet, and just a kind hearted soul. Those were all true and so much more. Papa was the kind of man who taught you so much along the way without even trying.

 

I thought I would write some life lessons that I learned from my papa who really knew how to live life like no one else. 

 

The Things My Papa Taught me

 

You can have endless dreams in life and re-invent yourself as many times as you want. 

 

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My papa served in the US Army, was a Good Humor man, UPS driver, Carpenter, Alaskan Pipeline worker, father, husband, grandfather, brother, Irish immigrant and U.S. citizen, and many other things I’m sure we never even knew. Everything he did he did it with pride and purpose.

 

“Slow down, you have more time than you think.”

 

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This is actually something he told my sister but when she told me it really stuck with me through him struggling and after his passing. When she asked for life advice he simply stated this. I can’t really think of better advice…

 

Family is by far the most important thing in life.

 

 

Papa left his family for 3 years to go work on the Alaskan Pipeline when times were tough and they really needed money. He always made sure to do things with us to keep us busy and having fun when we were little and would spend summers at nana and papa’s house. Papa would always lend a listening ear when you needed or a comforting word of advice.

 

Love is not always easy but it is so worth it.

 

 

 

Life is the most precious thing to us and it is damn worth fighting for.

 

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Papa’s fight was 10 years long and he fought so hard in the most admirable way.

We love you so much papa and thank you for giving us so much wisdom. Please watch over us and continue to teach us even up there.

 

XOXOX

 

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How to get yourself unstuck

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Do you ever just have “blah” days where you just feel like you are doing the same routine most days and need a change?

What I thought was a bad case of the Mondays, turned into a bad case of Tuesday and Wednesday too. I was feeling this ehh feeling- kind of related to our ongoing house hunting, (we found another home I loved but Frankie did not) still having an uncertainty around what I want to do career wise, and looking up jobs repeatedly in our area revealing the same type of positions that I either don’t want to apply for because they don’t interest me at all  or am under qualified for.

A lot of this had me feeling in a “stuck” mood these past few days- which I know we all go through at times.

Upon this feeling, I did what anyone would do. Consult google- of course! GTS. (Google that sh**)

I came across this extremely helpful article- here.

 

Upon reading the article I realized that a lot of these phases where I feel this way are related to my inability at that current time to be mindful and in the present. Did I forget that I just wrote about this?!

I really loved this part of the article….

Every year, I have periods where I feel “stuck.”

Yet when I look closer, I see that “being stuck” is a label I give to a natural part of life.

It’s a time when not much happens. The anxiety comes when I think it should be otherwise. I start to force myself to work, to come up with ideas, and to make things happen.

And when I don’t get anywhere, I call it being stuck.

So, what is being stuck except the way I perceive life?

As I write this, I’ve been in a stuck period for the last few months. The difference is that I struggle less, because I’m beginning to let it be.

 

As I sit here and write this, I have our Young Living Essential Oils Diffuser going and am listening to the peepers outside and just pouring my heart into writing. That brings me to my first tip for what I have found helpful in these “stuck” phases.

 

How to get unstuck

 

Get back to the things you enjoy. Even if it’s in a new way.

 

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There is something comforting and necessary for us about going back to what makes us feel good. Like for me- being outside in this beautiful weather was something that lifted my spirits this week when I was in my stuck mindset. I had work appointments out and I decided to try to see a new lake and reservoir I had not been to, only ever driven by. I got back to the things I enjoy- but discovered new places to go.

I would advise you to try to think of something you love but may not have been making enough time for lately and get back to that. But try it in a new way if you can!

 

Notice the little things & be mindful of your present.

 

So maybe we are feeling stuck in a job we have been at for 5 years but don’t absolutely adore or feel called to do anymore. We started obsessing over the future and “should-ing” on ourselves. Should we leave said job to pursue a new one- to feel better? It’s good to try new things- but maybe that new job ends up to be worse and we are left wishing for our old one back. This obsession causes us to forget to be present in those beautiful little everyday things that make life worthwhile! In the end it is not about what career we had that will make us happiest. It is looking back and seeing that the little things really were the big things- so don’t let them slip by you.

 

Pictures from this weekend….

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Stop Comparing Yourself.

 

I think we tend to get stuck because we compare our journey with others as well. This person is the same age as me- and they are doing “better.” What is better anyway? Everyone is fighting their own battles. Maybe that person appears to be doing really well on social media- but they are struggling equally as much as you. Your journey can’t be compared to anyone else because it is yours and there are no instructions or map to your life.

 

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Realize that the confusion and uncertainty are part of the journey.

 

 

Most people I meet do not know what they want to do with their lives. It is actually the norm. I think we focus too much on careers and having them as our identities and not enough on the other things we can enjoy in life…learn to enjoy the process. Everyone is going through it.

 

How do you get yourself unstuck?

Bullet Journal Diary: Part 2- Focusing on the present

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I have been using my bullet journal more than ever lately. What I have realized from the time I have had with it so far is that it has been helping me focus on the present more.

 

First post here- Bullet Journal Diary: Part 1

 

I think we could all use a little help being able to focus on the present more.

To breathe. To be mindful.

 

Except dogs- they have that pretty down pat. They just run and they don’t think about it. They chase the ball- not knowing if they will get it or make it in time.

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Just go for it.

 

I can’t believe it’s May already. I feel like this year is definitely going by faster than last year already.

Please excuse the pictures below as Molly stepped across my journal with her muddy feet. =P

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Washi tape is still my best friend when I make mistakes.

 

Another thing I love about bullet journaling is the ability to look back and see what you have done, how you have improved and made progress (especially using these habit trackers), and remembering your memories. It feels pretty good to fill in boxes for good things like exercising, meditation, no alcohol, etc.

 

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I have been tracking my self care, moods, and habits. I find it easier to be consistent with the journal compared to planning because once you do one of these for the month, you just fill them in day to day.

 

I got this tea cup mood tracker idea from Pinterest but really love how it came out.

How cute is this?!

 

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The Bullet Journal has been wonderful for my mental health as well. Good habits on the tracker boost your self esteem and hold yourself accountable and looking back at your mood tracker helps you to realize even more that we are all human! That means- the good days and the bad. 

The Horrors of House Hunting

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Where have I been?

House hunting. It has been taking over my life. Ohhhhh….house hunting. If you have been there you know. The struggle is damn real.

 

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We have really been enjoying the process but it can be fun, heartbreaking, hilarious, exciting, and sad all at the same time.

We previously had an accepted offer on an adorable Cape Cod style home but after inspection it just had too many things that needed to be done that the sellers were not willing to budge on…and there happened our very first house hunting heartbreak as we had to walk away. It’s true what they say- if it’s meant to be it will be.

Of course there have been plenty of odd things we have come across while looking around….that I just had to share.

 

The Horrors of House Hunting

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There was the house with the wrestling rink in the garage….

Those are cemented into the floor.

 

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There was the house where I was really close to

getting attacked by a turkey…

 

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The one that was listed as a 3 bedroom “2 bath,”

with this being the 2nd bath in the basement.

 

Guests won’t mind, right?

…….Where do I put my offer in?

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The one with the Macaroni duct tape on the screen.

 

This will work….

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The house where Mr. Knight was your neighbor….

 

Having a constant protector could be good, right?

 

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The house where Jesus and germs were…..everywhere.

 

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I hope you guys enjoyed! There might be a part 2 of this is we see even more houses with funny and ridiculous things- which is quite possible.

 

Do you have any house hunting horrors?

 

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Bullet Journal Diary: Part 1

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Guys- the peepers are back getting ready for warm weather! Have you heard them? They are still the most relaxing sound ever to me…Also I thought this sound was perfect for this post since bullet journaling is therapeutic for me and relaxing and I wanted you to also feel that as you read.

 

If you guys read my last post, you may have seen that we put in an offer on a house. Well, we found out we got the house this Saturday!! YAY!

With good and exciting things in life comes a lot to do and a lot of planning. The last 2 weeks have been extremely stressful and there is even more involved with buying a house than I ever thought.

So, right now, my life needs more planning than ever.

 

 

I have always been interested in Bullet Journaling but always thought that you had to know how to draw to be good at it.  With my Happy Planner, I found it really hard to keep up with because if I missed a week of planning (which was a lot of the time, let’s be real) I just felt guilty and like I lost motivation to keep going at it.

With bullet journaling I find it so much easier because one you make a layout, a lot of it is just updating it as you go. You can come and go as you please and feel like journaling.

Of course I had our Young Living Essential Oils Diffuser going while I was bullet journaling- if you missed the post where I talked about it, check that out here .

If you are interested in getting your own, make sure you read that post and use my mom’s code!

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A lot of bullet journaling is creating “collections” and here I have created a habit tracker and a weekly to do list.

 

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I love the idea of keeping track of my moods, habits, and memories and have found it really helpful so far.

 

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Hoping bullet journaling with help me be more organized with my blog…will report back…

 

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I created a category for my Poshmark closet to keep track of what I thrift, for how much, and how much I flip it for to make a profit on Poshmark.

 

You can find a ton of beautiful Bullet Journal inspiration online- especially Pinterest.

 

Here are some beautiful Bullet Journal Inspirations and examples of pages I want to create…

 

 

 

 

Have you Bullet Journaled? Share your tips with me!