Light green

Today’s post is later than usual. I’ve had quite a day. I spent most of my morning organizing and cleaning. My afternoon was spent catching up with the sister MariAntonia from my church. The evening was spent running errands. All to which I came home to my dog barking loud and with distraught. I approached her just to come and find a huge snake coiled up ready to attack her. My father came out, shovel in hand, and spiked the animal. Whew, close one.

What I wore today was this top from Maurices. In Dodge City, there is hardly anywhere decent to shop. You have Maurices and the Buckle. I alternate from time-to-time which of these stores I actually enter, as most of my shopping is done online. As of late Maurices has tickled my fancy and I’ve gone on a  bit of a shopping spree there. This top is one of my many great finds I’m excited to share with you all.

What I like the most about this piece is the gray and green tones. These are two of my favorite colors. It’s delicate and cool. It flows. It goes well with a lot of already favorite pieces. It’s perfect.

More on this look towards the bottom. As always.

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Off the shoulder

From time to time I enjoy following current trends. Other times I’m okay shopping the sales rack and falling behind fashion must haves for the simple pleasure of being comfortable. However when I saw this gingham top at TJMAXX I simply couldn’t walk away from it. It screams every fashion trend currently being followed. It’s off the shoulder, it’s the “it” pattern, and it’s flowy. Perfect for summer.

The black and white pattern was paired with my favorite pair of black jeans from Forever 21 and this lovely necklace was worn as a good stand out color. Of course it had to be red.

As I struggle to find motivation this summer, I’ve realized that instead of making all these plans (that aren’t going to be accomplished), I’m going to take each day as it comes. This weekend I spent the majority of the time shopping with my mom and helping my dad around the house. It wasn’t planned, but man did it feel good to actually do something with my life. I crave summer break every March, but then at the end of June I can’t wait for August and school to be in full swing. It’s that time my friends.

Until then and as always.

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Weekend Vibes

Although it’s the weekend, sadly I’m reporting that I’ll be Micahless until Monday. He’s off to visit his family in central Kansas. While he’s gone, I’d hope to accomplish a billion things, but nope. I’ve done absolutely nothing. It’s what I do best.

I have been beating the heat in these shorts and detailed top that was a gift from my mom. Some days are better than others in this heat. Today it’s been close to 100 degrees. Yesterday was still windy. Summer in Kansas is unpredictable as most weather conditions are here. As of right how it’s clear skies, sun, and dry heat.

While Micah is out fishing with his family, I’m inside enjoying the cool AC. I’ll see you back on Monday. I’m sending you weekend vibes. As always.

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With the wind

It’s not unusual for there to be wind gusting at 20 plus mph here in Dodge City. In fact, we quiet literally experience these frustrating times about four times a week. It’s become exhausting. In order to get me through these tiring times, I opt for wearing my hair in a high ponytail. It’s life saving.

Today, the hair was fully up giving me time to think and to cool off, two things I needed during the busy morning. These earrings helped bring my outfit together as they played sister to my heels. Now, the top although it may look fall inspired is actually a must have for warm weather. Forget the fall color. This top is super lightweight and cool. During the school year I often wear this top from H&M with a pair of slacks for a professional vibe. Today, as you can see, I’ve transformed it into everyday wear. *Pat on the back.

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  • Earrings@ Gift
  • Top@ H&M
  • Jeans@ Pacsun
  • Heels@ Mexico find

Summer training

I used to pride myself on my body and work ethic on maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle. Since I’ve grown older and the more responsibilities I’ve had to tackle on, I’ve realized that I’ve majorly neglected my body. This school year was a little rough for me because I found myself with a lot on my plate. It’s nice to keep active work wise, but once May hit me I realized that I had entered a mild state of depression.

Self-doubt and even self-worth slowly started to climb into my head. I tried my hardest to ignore this vague feeling by mounting another task or by simply taking a nap. I would look at myself in the mirror after a long day and I would just feel self-conscience about who was looking back at me. Needless to say I was depressed. Great! I didn’t have time to be depressed. What I didn’t realize was that me not giving myself a chance to fully acknowledge the fact of what I was feeling, was just making things worse.

As the school year came to a close I was determined to go back to my daily routine of at least running a couple of miles of running and so came today as the first day of “Aley getting her life on track because she cares about herself.” It felt nice to run a total of .5 miles. It felt nice to squat a total of 5 times. It felt good do a total of 20 Russian Twists. Yay!

And… with sweat coming down my face, I smiled to myself, and that ladies and gents felt good!

I know sometimes we get caught up with work and our daily lives consume us, that we forget what truly makes us who we are. I encourage you to take the time to breath, to enjoy yourself, to get back in the gym, get back to tending that garden, to reading that book, to those bubble bathes, to laughing, to pausing, gosh darn it you deserve it. Don’t ignore signs of fatigue, loneliness, guilt, worthlessness.

Listen to yourself. Please yourself. That’s the only person that truly matters.

I’m here for you, as always,

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  • Sports bra= Adidas
  • Leggings= Bally Brand found at Kohl’s
  • Running shoes= Nike
  • Jacket =Adidas

Life itself

It seems so selfish to go about my life as if I’m the only one who worries, is stressed out, is busy, or is conflicted. I feel as if every time I blog I have to boast about how busy I am or how complicated my life has been because of this or that.

Today upon opening my e-mails, our administrator informed the school about a recent death. He was a student. He was a son. He was a brother. He was a friend.

Suddenly everything that I’ve been dealing with lately seemed so small.

We were asked to talk to the students about anxiety, stress, and depression.

So here’s my chance to be uplifting, inspirational, caring, kind. And…. I blew it. I read talking points. The students just stared at me like deer caught in taillights.

The truth is, it’s hard to talk about suicide. It’s hard to know what the right thing to say is during a time of confusion. Pain like this is tough. I feel for my students because they are young and life is giving them difficult challenges. Some of them are having to grow up too fast. Some of them are oblivious to hardships. Some of them are independent. Some of them don’t feel they have a voice. What’s harder is that as a teacher, an adult, a mentor, I can’t always relate to them. This is where I’m conflicted because I’m at a loss as to what to say, how far can I invade their personal bubble, how long do I stay present?

It seems that during a death like this there are a million and one questions everyone asks, like why, just for starters. And me? I don’t have all the answers to the way the universe moves.

I sat back down after my award-winning speech on “I’ll be there for you,” and contemplated my struggles, my fears, my moment of depression. For one second, I realized that when depression kept turning off the lights in my life, I wanted to drown myself in sorrow. I wanted so desperately to feel. When that intoxicating desire to feel something took over I was a goner. Next thing I knew I was in the shower shaving my legs and the razor “accidentally” cut my ankle. I didn’t flinch. Instead, I watched as a tiny river of red ran down my leg and into the drain. After that I was addicted to that feeling. Why? Because I could feel something. I wasn’t numb anymore.

So it was back to the shower, time and time again. I never cut too deep, just enough to feel. I was playing with my life. It wasn’t until one evening my mom came home from work and hugged me. She said, let’s go get ice cream. Beyond my endless eye rolls, we went. We had a conversation about nothing. She talked while she savored her chocolate ice cream cone about how growing up she always wanted to explore the African jungle. I asked her why? And she said just because it’s something I know I’ll never get to see. I was puzzled. Why on Earth did my mother have a dream that wasn’t worth achieving. Intrigued, I asked her to explain?

She went on to say that sometimes we have a dream so big and unreachable that it gives us hope. It makes us get up every morning and work hard. It makes us cling to ourselves and to make peace with knowing that God’s will is what we should want.

God’s will. God? Oh yea? (smirk) Then the light switch got turned back on.

I suppose the point of all of this is that sometimes we feel like nothing will matter, like nothing makes sense, like nothing we do can help save a life. Who knew a hug, ice cream, and a unreachable dream would save my life. Give it meaning.

Maybe I should have talked to my students about my struggles to find hope. On the other hand maybe the talking points were enough. Everyone is different. Everyone loves, thinks, acts, feels, and moves differently. That makes us who we are. For me during a time of struggle, like this one, it’s not to necessarily try to understand, but to be there. To help by lending a listening ear. To be present. To be a smile. To be in this life.

On Sunday during church sermon it was said that we always hear the famous words of Mother Teresa, “God wouldn’t give you anything you can’t handle,” and it’s true in a sense. But in reality we should consider God not giving us anything He can’t handle. So we should give Him our troubles. He’s ready. He’s able. He’s for us. Give it to him. Or give it to me and I’ll pass it on to Him.

As always,

12 reasons

Micah came to hug me before school today. In hand he held beautiful lavender tulips. All to my liking. Like most days, when I see him, my heart flutters. But this morning was different as we’ve hit a milestone. One Year. Twelve Months. It’s been such an amazing journey with him. We both agree that it hasn’t always been easy and sometimes we’ve questioned if we like each other. But, through it all our love remains constant, caring, forgiving, and everlasting.

Today, we share what we’ve learned from each other during these 12 months.

12 Things I’ve learned about love and Aley:

Things I’ve learned about love…

  1. Love means putting someone else first, but still being yourself. You do not need to try to be the person you think they want. If they love you they want you as is.
  2. Love can be something as simple as watching soccer on TV instead of hoops.
  3. Love is knowing that you still want them to be yours even when you are fighting or upset.
  4. Love makes you see people differently. When you like someone you look for what is wrong with them, when you love someone you look for what is right with them.
  5. Love can be silly.
  6. Love is holding someone accountable to the person they should be.

Things I’ve learned about Aley…

  1. Aley is beautiful. Even though she does this blog she doesn’t believe it all the time. When I first met her I knew she was pretty. Now that I know her I understand her beauty.
  2. She says yes too much. She feels bad telling people no. I’m guessing that’s the only reason she went out with me.
  3. Sometimes she’s crazy.
  4. She cares so much about family. Not just her parents and brothers, but extended family as well.
  5. Watching her swim is comical. She treads water as well as a brick.
  6. She is everything I want.

12 Things I’ve learned about love and Micah:

Things I’ve learned about love…

  1. Love is the cure of all fears, doubts, and insecurities. Letting someone into your heart is scary, but the right person will know exactly how to be your safe haven.
  2. Loving someone’s flaws draws you closer to them. We are all flawed.
  3. Love tells you it’s okay to be crazy
  4. Love is universal it knows not of age, culture, or language
  5. Love is accepting
  6. Love is complicated yet so simple. Sometimes following your heart leads you to find a passion filled so much reward and promise.

Things I’ve learned about Micah…

  1. Micah’s devotion to Jesus is admirable.
  2. Micah is passionate. He will always give you a 100%.
  3. Whether he admits it or not, he owns way to many shoes, even more than I do.
  4. Micah likes to eat, even when it’s my no good cooking.
  5. When I first met Micah, I didn’t think he was human. He’s handsome beyond measure and he’s organized. That intimidated me. Now that he’s let loose, I appreciate his perfect imperfections.
  6. He’s everything I need and more.