Five Years Ago…

Last year at this time, I was visiting my hometown to watch my alma mater play a few volleyball games. (The team was coached by my sister in law, and ended up finishing their season 22-2!) Anyway, the other morning on my TimeHop, a few pictures from that trip showed up and I was reminded of the beauty of my hometown during their (very short) fall season. These pictures were taken at my town’s very own Prairie Arboretum, which also happens to be the backyard to the middle school & high school I attended.

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Seeing them made me reminisce.

I was reminded of high school and some pretty wonderful memories that took place at the arboretum. I ran a few cross country meets on this soil! My freshman year, I also remember having teacher/s who let us “study” outside on an almost daily basis. This “studying” meant the majority of the girls in my class finding a secluded area and laying out while jamming to some seriously cool tunes (if memory serves me right “Hips Don’t Lie”, by Shakira, was one of the most played songs). I remember going late night swimming in the lake, with those same girls I jammed to music with. I remember a teacher jumping into the lake in hopes of finding his glasses…

Specific memories continued to surface my mind. Then when I laid down for bed that night, I could not help but think of what my dreams were when I was in high school. Of course when I want to sleep, is when my mind goes on overload- anyone else ever have that problem?! Anyway, I specifically recalled my senior year and what my “five year plan” was at that time.

…I thought I would graduate college as either an athletic training or social worker. I thought I would look very seriously into coaching basketball or volleyball. I thought I might be living close to my hometown. I thought I would be married with a kid on the way…

Guess what? I went on to do absolutely none of those things. The thing is? I would not trade what I have, right now, for anything. So, laying there, I reminded myself of a few important lessons. First off, it is okay if your dreams/goals change. As life changes, so do we. Altering your dreams does NOT always mean you are giving up. Sometimes it just means you have found your niche/love somewhere you had not explored before! Secondly, if your plan is not going according to schedule and it is frustrating you- take a step back. Think about where you were five years ago. What were your plans then? How much have you accomplished since? Most importantly, keep going. Push through whatever obstacle is in your way; dig under it, walk around it, climb over it, swim through it… whatever it is. Don’t. Stop. Overcoming. You might find yourself on the other side, with it looking completely different than planned. But sometimes the most beautiful things are the unexpected.

Go Ahead

The other day, I reached the storage limit on my phone & deleted pictures for more space. I made my way through the entire camera roll, and saw the first picture on my phone:   
At the beginning of the calendar year, I found this on Pinterest and immediately set it as my lock screen on my phone. At that time, I was half way into my second year in Oklahoma City and nannying for two families. Between the two families I was working, at minimum, 80 hours a week. (It wasn’t uncommon for that number to be closer to 120 hours, though.) As much as I loved what I did, and the families I worked for, I knew it was not a schedule I could continue. Not only did it leave me absolutely exhausted, but it left me unable to have any life outside of work. 

I needed change. 

“Go ahead. You never know what could be on the other side” became my daily mantra. It was my motivation to not only evaluate where I wanted to be, but to actively pursue it. It was my encouragement to walk across the bridge, even though I couldn’t see the other side and predict exactly what would happen. 

I have come to realize that I am a creature of habit who likes having a routine. I like waking up and knowing my plan- not just for the day, but for the weeks & months ahead. For that reason, transition periods intimidate me. There is just so much uncertainty that can occur, and it is my automatic nature to be fearful of that. Since graduating from college, I have made a conscious effort to trust the journey, and even more importantly- not let fear hold me back. 

At one point in my life, I was good at going with the flow. Whatever happened, happened. But somewhere along the line, it became very important to know the path I was going to take and predicting, to the best of my knowledge, the outcome. 

Throughout life, there are so many decisions we make that lead us down different paths. The path isn’t always straight- there are twists and turns and hills and valleys. I’ve always tried to be content with whatever path I’m on. However, this past year I’ve met a special friend who’s taught me that if you’re not genuinely happy with your surroundings- you should make adjustments until you are. & adjustments, I made. In May of this past year I took a leap of faith and moved to Dallas. I can say, with all certainty, that I know I am where I am supposed to be. I know my journey lead me here for a specific purpose, and I am loving every day that I get to explore (not just this big city), but also myself. If anyone is reading this, I hope you “go ahead”. I hope you decide to take a risk and leap by faith, and even more than that- I hope you genuinely enjoy the journey! 

Did you know the only city/metro plex larger than DFW is NYC/Bronx? This picture was taken from Klyde Warren Park.

 

This is a (not as popular) view of downtown. I took it from my favorite farmers market!

 
 

Yes, it’s a big city, but if you know where to look you can still find quiet places. I took this at the Dallas Arboretum.

  

This is taken from my favorite running trail (around White Rock Lake). You can see downtown Dallas in the distance.

 

Liebster Award

Liebster Award

liebster-award

This past week I was nominated by my good friend, Lori Rensink, for the Liebster Award. I am new to the blogging world, and was absolutely thrilled to be nominated.

Here are my answers to the questions I received from Lori:

1. What is your weirdest quirk? 

I frequently get made fun of when I pull at my MPG journal. Whenever I fill my car with gas, I document where I am filling, how much the gas costs, how much I’ve put in my tank, and then I calculate the miles per gallon. I also have two different colored pens- one I use on highway/interstate driving, and the other I use for city driving.

2. What is the most embarrassing thing you did as a child? 

I want to preface this by saying that I do not get easily embarrassed. There are three times in my life I can remember feeling the same color as a tomato. I will tell you guys the most recent. In high school, it was common for some of the girls in my class to hit on another’s bottoms as a form of encouragement. (Like one might do if they play on a sports team). Junior year, my classmates and I were playing Pin Guard during health class, and one of the jocks in my class got out. As he walked past me to “go to jail”, I gave him a hard hit on the bottom. Before I could take back my horrendous mistake, I turned the other direction and vowed to act as if it never happened. Writing this now, I still turn a shade of red, but I can also (finally) chuckle, too.

3. What is your favorite type of weather? 

Partly sunny and a light breeze, with temperature in the upper 60’s to lower 70’s. That being said, I also love the occasional thunderstorm. It’s a great excuse to stay snuggled in with tea and my journal/book.

4. What is your favorite summer activity? 

Water. Water, water, water! I have always loved water. Being around water? Being in water? Yes. Just, yes.

5. Who is someone that you have known that really influenced your life?

This list is endless. All of the members of my family, have and continue to influence me. All of my closest friends, have and continue to influence me. Strangers who I have seen perform random acts of kindness, influence me. However, today I will tell you about Sue. Sue was the lead teacher in the classroom that I student taught in, my senior year of college. She taught me a lifetime of lessons in a semesters worth of time. Not just about teaching, but about life. Her spirit, her character, her energy, and her spunk continue to encourage me.

6. What are the top five things on your bucket list?

I am a dreamer and I have a long list of shenanigans I plan on accomplishing in my life. Top of the list? I have a (completely healthy!?) obsession with orcas, dolphins, and elephants. It is my dream to see them in their natural habitat. Though I am afraid of heights, I dream of riding in a hot air balloon. I dream of becoming a certified yoga teacher. I recently purchased my passport, and now I dream of traveling places where I have to use it. I also dream of visiting all 50 states.

7. Where is the coolest place you have traveled to?

I find that traveling has a lot to do with the people you’re with and the people you encounter. That being said, Florida with the girls basketball team in college or the west coast choir tour in college are the coolest places I’ve been. Florida, because I was able to visit Disney World for the first time, and the west coast because everyone we met along the way was so kind.

8. Where is a place you would love to travel to?

Cape Town, South Africa

9. If you had to pick a different time period to live in which would you pick?

This is not a questions I have ever pondered… but whatever time frame the fictional Game of Thrones takes place.

10. Why did you decide to start your blog?

I started my blog after a trip home as a way of better informing people of where I am at and what I am doing. I have also always enjoyed writing. After being nominated by Lori for this award, I have put in a lot of thought on what I want my blog to be. So, thank you, Lori! You have influenced me far more than you probably intended. Anyway, I write almost daily, yet I stop myself from posting almost all of the entries. My new hope is to have this blog be a safe place where I can share adventures and lessons I have learned with you all.

The rules of the award are pretty simple:

One- Thank the nominator
Two- Display award in post
Three- Nominate 10 other bloggers
Four- Answer the 10 questionsI

I won’t be winning any awards, because I am new enough to this blogging world, that I do not know ten other bloggers. However, I am going to post ten questions, and if you’re brave and willing- I would love for someone reading this to respond with their answers, as a way to get to know them (and then have a blog to follow!)

  1. Who is someone you want to meet- dead or alive?
  2. What is the best pick up line someone has used on you?
  3. Where is your favorite place to spend free time?
  4. When did you last laugh until you cried?
  5. Which of the four seasons is your favorite?
  6. What is your beverage of choice after a long week at work?
  7. Best pet you’ve ever owned?
  8. If you could be anywhere right now, where would you choose to be?
  9. If you could relive any day of your life, what would it be?
  10. If you could give advice to fourteen year old you, what would it be?

One of my Favorite Things

In my first post I mentioned something about how no one wanted to hear about my yoga shenanigans. But this is one thing that I keep coming back to!…

Practicing yoga has become one of my favorite things. For the last two years, I’ve been going to classes as often as possible. Sometimes that means six times a week, and other times it means only one or two. In high school, I remember thinking it was a joke. Yoga? As a workout? It’s just glorified stretching, and I did NOT have the time or patience for that! I much preferred my free time in the weight room or on the court. Then in college I took a yoga class because I needed another physical education course, and I assumed it was going to be an easy A. It was. But it was also dreadful, and I told myself I would never do it again. See, despite cheerleading in high school, I had little to no flexibility. (Eeeeek! To my recent friends– I was not a typical cheerleader. I also played basketball, and used cheerleading as a great excuse to get a front row seat and free admission into every single game). Anyway, being the perfectionist I am, I couldn’t stand not being able to perform the poses. Instead of finding joy or peace in my practice, I felt annoyed and frustrated with myself. Not only that, but I found it near impossible to let go and focus on just the task at hand. It was basically just 45 minutes to worry about everything I had to finish on my to-do list. 

It took me about three years after that class, to decide to try it again. And oh what a beautiful journey it has been! 
I’ve learned that yoga is not about being flexible. Yoga is understanding that everyday at my mat is going to be different. Poses that are easy some days, are going to be my hardest on other days. It’s about accepting that and being kind to myself. Yoga is not about comparing myself to the expert yogi teacher in front of me. Yoga is about taking time for myself and meditating. It is all about my mindset. I cannot count the amount of times, at the beginning of my practice, that I said certain poses were simply unattainable. My body? Do that? No, ma’am. Not happening! But through my practice I’ve learned that the thoughts I put forth, is most likely the reality that will ensue. It constantly reminds me that the strongest and/or weakest part of my being, is my mind, and usually the only thing stopping me from achieving my goal, is fear. 

This past month, I’ve made big steps into my move at the end of May. I have frequently found myself anxious and ready for this new chapter to start. In the midst of everything going on, yoga grounds me and reminds me to stay in the present. Never did I ever think I would be such an advocate of it. Back in high school, I was one of the loudest girl on the court. I guarantee that everyone in the gym knew my voice. Now, I prefer a little corner in the back of a dark room.

It is really incredible how much one thing can change your life. But it can only do so, if you let go of the fear and give it a fair chance. I challenge anyone reading this to be open to a new journey. It doesn’t have to be yoga! It might not be workout related at all, but challenge yourself to say “yes” to something that you once thought was impossible and see where the roads lead you! 
Happy Journeying, my friends! 
 

This is my favorite spot to spend a Saturday morning

  

This is “pre hot (vinyasa) yoga” selfi. These classes can be extremely physically challenging!

  

I was sent this picture from a dear friend. (I think she found it on pinterest?) I often look at it before class as a gentle reminder

Introduction 

I am FINALLY doing it!
This year, I decided that instead of creating a New Years resolution that I inevitably break, I was going to come up with a list of goals to accomplish. This list includes dreams such as becoming a yogi, purchasing a passport (it’s currently in the mail!), and going to my first ever NFL game and live concert. Blog writing was not on this long list, but it is something that I have strongly considered starting, on many separate occasions. Somehow, though, I always end up chickening out. I convince myself that no one wants to hear about my nanny shenanigans or my weekends full of yoga, Netflix, and hot tea. However, after recently taking up journaling after a long hiatus away from it, I have been reminded of how much I love to write. Along with that, after taking a trip home last week, I realize I am not as good as I thought at keeping friends and family from afar, up to date. 
So, I am going to give this a shot! I am unsure as to how often I will use this. Or, if I will ever have the courage to post another entry. (Because, YES, it is intimidating to share your words with others; especially when you consider yourself a fairly private person.) But, here goes nothing! I hope you- whoever YOU may be- enjoy your little glimpse into Lindsay’s life. 
I’ve heard it said: “if you want to see what’s important to someone, watch what they photograph.” So, below are some of my favorite pictures from this past month. Eventually I will figure out how to scale them and make an awesome background. But for now, with my limited phone and rush to get back to work, this is what you get! (: