Life Changes & Taking Risks

Exactly one year ago today, I took a risk and made a big life change. At the time, I was beyond terrified about it and overanalyzed every possible scenario it might have on my future.

March 12, 2013, marks my last day at a prior job. I know leaving a job in general isn’t that big of a deal, but for me, in that job, at that time, it was huge. I was at that job for a little over four years. It was my first full-time, post-college professional job in the field I wanted to be in. I loved the work I was doing and was incredibly fulfilled and proud of what I did there. In fact, I had hoped it could have been my career for many many years to come.

But at some point, I knew it was time to go. Out of professional courtesy, I shouldn’t go into any details, and those are beside the point anyway. I had very mixed feelings about it, and a part of me was really sad to be leaving; another part was excited about new opportunities. I bit the bullet and put in my notice though, with a new job on the horizon. It. was. terrifying. It was risky. It may not have worked out! What if I regretted it?! But I made it through, and here I am now!

Hindsight is usually 20/20, and now looking back, I know I did the right thing. I’m very happy with what I’m doing now and think it’s where I was meant to be. It’s so interesting to look back at your life choices and see how everything was weaved together and all your experiences lead to what you are now. I’m thankful for every good and bad choice I’ve made.

Some say that without risk there is no reward. I think I mostly agree with that. We take chances everyday, some big and some small. I truly do believe that everything happens for a reason. Sometimes you just need to take a deep breath, close your eyes and jump feet first into life.

What risks have you taken in life?

 

Ten favorite things about the holidays

Welcome to December, eh?! Here in Fargo, we have a storm on the way. The HIGH in a couple days is 8 below. Sigh. The less than ideal weather here aside, the holidays are pretty awesome. So, here’s my 10 favie things about the holidays. Part of Brianna from Endlessly Beloved‘s linkup!

Endlessly BeLoved

1-The food. Always. Specifically, my pumpkin cheesecake recipe, courtesy of Miss. Paula Deen.

2-The lights. Come on, Christmas lights just make you so happy.

3-Decorations. I love making my home look festive, from stockings on the wall till we have a proper mantel, and cute little figurines. One of these days I hope to get a nice Nativity set to display. For now, my cute little glittery snowman from Pier 1 will do.

4-Spending more time with family and friends!

5-Presents. I actually love the list making process every year, writing down everyone I need and want to buy gifts for, and what I plan to get them, then, going out and finding something for everyone. It makes me feel so fulfilled.

6-Receiving some prezzies too. Unwrapping a mystery is so fun!

7-Costumes for the pets. Captain has a reindeer antler hat, and Little Girl has a Santa beard. Better bring those out soon and take some pics, eh?

8-Holidays parties and treat sharing at work!

9-Doing all of the above things now as a wife! Wheee!

10-Sharing all my holiday related experiences on my new bloggy!

Ten Things I’m Thankful For

This may be only my second post ever, but I’m gonna give this link up deal a shot. Dive right into to the blog world, I say!

So, one of my top few fave blogs I’ve been looking to for inspiration is Endlessly Beloved. Her link up is about listing 10 things you’re thankful for. What a wonderful idea! Sure, I’m grateful for stuff, but I don’t think I’ve ever actually thought about and defined them! Yeah, maybe one thing as we go around the table on Thanksgiving, but surely I have more than one thing I’m thankful for, right? Well, here goes.

1) My marriage. I may not be one of those women who has always dreamed of being a mother, but I HAVE always dreamed of being a wife, and it feels so darn good to finally be one. In jr. high, I remember thinking about what my future husband would be like, and I think the one I got is pretty darn awesome.

My new sister-in-law!

My new sister-in-law!

2) My (growing) family. I come from a very small family. I only have two cousins, one aunt, and no siblings. I wondered what it would be like to have a sister, and now that I have TWO sisters-in-law, it’s pretty awesome. All of a sudden now, I’m also an aunt! And I have two more honorary parents! And I like ’em all! Phew:)

3) My friends. Sure, I have a large extended circle of kind of friends and acquaintances throughout the years, but I’ve never had many really CLOSE friends. So the ones I did and do have mean the world to me.

4) Food. I just love food so much. Especially junk food, like doughnuts and popcorn and chips and ice cream, but some healthy things too like salad and lentils and hummus. I’m kind of an odd duck when it comes to food, but that’s OK.

5) Life. Sometimes I can be pessimistic (especially when in the masses of the general public like at the grocery store or on the road), but those moments in life that make you feel so darn special or a part of something larger, are awesome. Hearing stories of men who rescued kittens from awful situations and the like just warms my heart. On a kind of similar note, experiencing life is just awesome in itself. I think there are a TON of things I do not yet know, and maybe never will, but I’m trying to take in more experiences and open my mind more than I once would have.

My pets--Captain and Little Girl, and Brick.

My pets–Captain and Little Girl, and Brick.

6) Animals. I’ll admit, sometimes I like animals more than people. It likely stems from the fact that I’m an only child and came from a small family that was spread out over the country, so I just had far more interactions with animals than I did with people, and a lot of my childhood memories involve animals. I seriously considered my cats my sisters growing up, and I’d put them in dresses and play house with them. I’ve just always had an affinity for animals, and one of the best feelings is coming home to my cats and snuggling them at the end of the day. Animals are absolutely incredible.

7) Cat videos. Can you tell I’m a crazy cat lady yet? Yes, cat videos make many of my days. If I feel sad or unmotivated, a good cat video will quickly turn my frown upside down. On a similar note, of my favorite discoveries in the last year or so was Disco the Parakeet videos. It annoys my husband, but I just feel so darn good and happy watching those things. It’s the little things sometimes. Go ahead, google Disco the Parakeet if you haven’t seen him yet. Also Surprise Kitten.

8) My car. I really don’t mean this in a braggy way, and it sounds kind of silly to be listing a materialistic item as something for which I’m thankful, but I really truly am. For years I drove a jalopy I called Connie the Contour, and she was AWFUL. She would go from 0-60 in about half an hour, and often completely shut down for no apparent reason. She was in the shop for something every couple of months, and the mechanics sure got to knew her and I well. The timing for buying my new car (a white 2010 Subaru Legacy I named Leslie) was impeccable. I was driving Connie to go pick up and officially purchase Leslie when she started dying just a couple blocks from the dealer lot. Like, she wouldn’t accelerate, breaking was unreliable, the wheel locked up, and she was making very awkward and alarming noises. I somehow managed to get her into the lot, and she died right then and there. Thankfully I drove away in Leslie, and Leslie is incredible. She accelerates and brakes when I ask her to, she doesn’t make bizarre noises, and she’s just so pretty. I love my Leslie, and having a reliable car is incredible after years of suffering through Connie.

9) Religion. For reasons I’ll expand upon in future posts, I have some issues with some religious ideas, but I am incredibly thankful that I have some sort of solid base of a religious upbringing. I liked growing up in church, and we had a great community at mine. Whatever your religion is, I think it’s important for everyone to think about things that are beyond what they see, know and understand right now. Even just being spiritual is important, I think.

10) My dermatologist. This last one was the hardest to list, but it was the first thing that popped into my head. We all have insecurities about ourselves, and getting over them is a great feeling. I struggled with acne from age 12 on. Not just a couple pimples here and there like many of my classmates, but full-on breakouts at times. It was so embarrassing, and I just could never seem to get it under control. Finally, sometime in my later college years, I decided to tackle it head on and I went to a dermatologist. I tried countless things, but finally, we found the right recipe, and I’ve mostly gotten rid of it. Sure, I will get a pimple or two here and there now (which is most likely the result of my laziness and not wanting to wash my face before bed sometimes), but I have never had a breakout as bad I used to. The last one I can remember was senior year of college, so I’ve been mostly acne-free for about six years now, and it is awesome. I still have some scarring that may never go away, but I’ve accepted those. I don’t have to be perfect –no one is–but I feel much better about myself having a face that I’m not embarrassed of.

11) My new blog! Duh!

What are some of the things YOU are thankful for?