My 30th Year in Review

Today is my 30th birthday. For years, I feared this day. I’m not sure where that fear came from (Chris thinks I’m crazy for this) but it has long felt like this birthday would signal the end of my youth. 

The past couple months, I’ve really started to embrace this birthday. It might be the end of my youth, that might be true. But even if it is, it’s been a great (though often bumpy) ride. If I look back on this year I have a lot to be proud of, and I am happy with the direction I’m moving in. 

This past year…

  • I moved in for the first time with a boy(!)
  • I showed Chris New York
  • Chris met my parents and many of my closest friends
  • We got engaged on the Brooklyn Bridge
  • I learned to like eggs
  • I committed to long term health and fitness
  • I started an independent business as a Beachbody coach to help other people reach their goals and end the trend of obesity
  • I ran my first half marathon (2:23)
  • I started this blog
  • I re-learned to crochet and finished a scarf
  • I took an online photography course to learn to use my DSLR
  • I married the man of my dreams, the love of my life, my whole world in front of our loved ones
  • Chris and I honeymooned in Cabo (and left just one day before a hurricane hit)
  • I spent countless hours with a tiny white dog sleeping on me
  • Chris and I started looking for a house
  • I made a huge career decision (can’t talk about it quite yet) that I’m so excited about
  • I watched WAY too many hours of Netflix
  • I learned not to give a fuck what other people think (ok, started learning)

That last one is pretty important to me. For so long I lived putting thoughts about me in other peoples’ heads. I imagined what they were thinking or what they said about me. And then I realized…they probably don’t care what I do, or wear, or what I look like. Which is a very freeing thought. 

Anyway – here’s to another monumental year. Can’t wait to see what my 30s have to offer. 

Wedding Thoughts

We’re now 5 weeks out from the wedding, and it seems like it was a year ago. Is that a good thing?

Something I learned about myself during this process was that I am absolutely not a wedding person. While I was super excited to marry Chris, I realized I actually had no desire to plan and throw a wedding. Don’t get me wrong, it was a beautiful day that I will remember forever. The ceremony was an emotional high like I’ve never felt before. My dress was gorgeous and I would wear it again if I could. The cabin where we held our reception was decorated exactly the way I saw it in my head, it was like a dram. I loved the cake, the details, the music, the food, everything. I loved it all.

But when the wedding was over I was relieved. And anxious to get on our honeymoon and then back to normal life. I felt trapped by the wedding (NOT by the marriage) and it was a constant source of guilt in the months leading up to the big day. Every night after work there were tasks to be done, and when I wasn’t working on the wedding I felt like I should be. It was hard to carve out personal time and not feel like I should be productive.

I also dealt with feelings of inadequacy as a bride. Why wasn’t I more excited? Why didn’t I care more about what my wedding would look like? Why wasn’t I crafting hand lettered invitations and spending thousands on flowers? Would I regret everything about the wedding?

Many tears were shed. 

My point in writing this is to provide what I think is likely an under-represented opinion on weddings. When we got to our honeymoon destination and I could take a few deep breaths I realized that everything I had felt was OK. Your wedding does not have to be the end all be all best day of your life perfection every second. It is enough to have a beautiful ceremony surrounded by the people you love. 

Now that we’re one month out I feel as though I’ve recovered from the wedding. And I can highly recommend marriage 🙂

Fall Recipes to Try

Since one of my goals is to try a new recipe every week, and another goal is to bake every weekend, I went on a little online recipe hunt. Some of these are recipes I pinned ages ago, and others I just discovered.

Caramelized Apple & Onion Soup from Skinnytaste

Stuffed Pork and Sage Baked Apples from PaleOMG

Roasted Acorn Squash and Apples with Quinoa, Kale, and Tahini Maple Dressing from edible perspective

Chicken Marbella from Simply Recipes

Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal from Five Heart Home

Apple Hand Pies with Cheddar Crust from Alexandra Cooks

Any favorite recipes I should try? 

Hello, October!

Bittersweet October. The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking perfect pause between the opposing miseries of summer and winter.

— Carol Bishop Hipps

It’s fall! OK so it’s actually been fall for over a little while, but to me October has always signaled the start of a new season. This has a lot to do with the weather, but it’s also because my birthday is in October and birthdays and new years always feel like beginnings to me. 

And I love beginnings. 

Since this year’s birthday is sort of a big one (30!) I thought I would set some goals for the last month of my 20s. 

October goals:

1. Re-learn to crochet and finish a scarf

2. Set up a more aggressive savings plan

3. Start looking for a house (eek!)

4. Bake something every weekend

5. Blog once a week

6. Finish my online photography course and go outside to actually take some pictures

7. Try a new recipe once a week

There are plenty of other things I’d like to do this month, but these are the goals I’d like to reach by Halloween. Everything else will be icing on the cake!

 

I found this in an old journal, it’s all the things I love about fall as written in October 2006. Still all true. 

Crunchy leaves. Chilly wind. Pumpkins in any form. Apple cider. Red, orange, yellow, brown. Scarves. Tall boots. Stockings and socks. Puffy vests. Pecan pie. Blue skies. Bundling up. Long walks. Thanksgiving. Sweaters. Hot cocoa. Soup. Cold cheeks. Layering. Packed bookstores. Wasting a day in a coffee shop. Oatmeal. Football. Dark nail polish. Bittersweet chocolate. Fires with real wood. Pancakes with syrup and confectioners sugar. Muffins. Baked goods. Hot Grape Nuts with banana. Blankets. Smores. Pine cones. Roast chicken with potatoes and rosemary. Apples and caramel. Halloween. Orchards. Corn field mazes. Wagon rides. Warm bread, crusty on the outside, soft on the inside. Grilled cheese. Graham crackers. Fudge. Cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla. Rushing into a store while the leaves follow you in. Coats, collars, corduroy.