22 Ellen Court

For anyone who was truly part of my family growing up, you know we had a beautiful home that my father built in the Poconos.. You probably also know, that it tragically burnt down, nearly 20 years ago. There are no words to explain how special it was to grow up there.. and make memories with all who had the privilege of visiting it. I recently connected with our neighbor, who had purchased our land.. and while skiing in the poconos with my friends – I stopped in, to take a walk around. The closure it brought me, will never be able to be explained.

Here’s to a new one..

When two recently single women, and a recent California transplant move in to a house together.. things are bound to get interesting.  To kick this off – we decided to have a little (huge) housewarming party, and celebrate with some fireball (& just about any other liquor you can imagine).  Here’s the result.

Hey 2014, seeeeee ya !

As I watch my Facebook feed flood with “it’s been a great year” montages, I’m not sure I can relate.

This year my dad had two heart attacks, and I had my heart, broken.

While I can say, that this year has shown me a few things..

I experienced adventure and went places I don’t know that I’d otherwise have visited. I learned the spontaneity of jumping on a flight for a weekend, is freeing, invigorating, and keeps life interesting.

I did have the best summer of my life, and I met people that I’m really glad I met (even if they didn’t have staying power- I wish them well on all of their journeys).

This year has also revealed to me that I love hard – something I wouldn’t change even if I had a choice. It’s who I am. It’s my superpower. Unfortunately, the love isn’t always deserving.. And sometimes it’s that very person who hurts you in ways you couldn’t have imagined. But, that’s the gamble we take. I admire my heart for never giving up hope.

On that same token, I’ve been shown that I need to stand up for myself a whole lot more than I did. Be sure to always say what you need to say. Listen to your intuition. There are certain things that I allowed to go on for far too long, out of fear of losing something.. I know better now.

And as far as my fathers health – You’ll never see me turn down a chance to spend time with my family. I’ve been conditioned to always say ‘I love you’, and take one last look before leaving my loved ones. Tomorrow is never promised.

So, I can’t say this has been a ‘great year’ – and you won’t be seeing my montage on your Facebook wall. But, I will be taking these lessons into the new year with me.

2015 is looking really promising. I am about to embark on the biggest journey yet: I’m moving out.. (cue Billy Joel, please!) My freelance business is thriving (errrryday I’m hustlin’) I’ve made a ton of new friends already, and booked a ton of trips (Nashville, I’m comin’ back for you!). Not to mention my family is getting ready to welcome a new baby girl, and all around, we all have our health.

After a troubled year, the tides are turning for all.

I am so amazed and proud of where I am today, in December – and how very far I’ve come since October. The space in between has felt like an eternity – but, I am better for it. We are braver than we know – stronger than we believe. From ashes, we rise.

I feel like for the first time, in a long time, I’m living for no one but myself – and the universe is answering in big ways. What a beautiful feeling. How very happy I am. 2015 will be a year of stepping out of my comfort zone, and in to a life I’ve always wanted.

So as always, I wish you all well. Close your chapters, tie your loose ends, and start this year with a clean slate. Forgive, forget, let go – find peace.. then find adventure.. have the very best 2015 you can.

See you on the other side.

I’m ready.

Happy New Year ;)

Linda, Linda – you’re not listening to me!

Or maybe, I just haven’t written in a little bit. Oh. Oops.

In the wake of my return – can I discuss something with you? Great. Thanks.

My 29th birthday is approaching. Ya know what that means? It means my 8 year old self, would think I was ancient. It means I have one last year in my twenties. It means I thought I’d have a lot more things figured out by now. But here I am, entering my birthday week (yes, week.) and I’m settling into a certain mindset.. And I believe it to be a good one.

Here’s how I plan on entering my very own personal New Year.

#1 Drama-free, is the way to be!
I don’t have time to waste listening to your drama – furthermore I do not have time to get wrapped up or involved in it. If you think for one second I’m paying attention to it – please know you are mistaken.. on the inside, I’m rolling my eyes at you more times than I can count. If you’d like to order yourself flowers and pretend they’re from another dude, just to make your kind-of-on-again-off-again boyfriend jealous – go for it.. But No, I won’t write the card for you. And also, you should probably cut that shit out – bc life is really really good and really really easy, once you do. I’ve had one too many ‘friends’ like this – and when I was younger, totally admit to getting wrapped up in this crap. Stop drunk texting your ex. Stop hanging out with people, just to talk behind their back. Get it out of your life, you’ll be better for it. Grow up. Talk it out. Move on. Find a guy that will actually send you flowers himself (they exist).

#2 Get in, with a good crowd.
Surrounding yourself with people who you have common interests in, is huge. It allows you to experience things you want to do, with people who enjoy it as well.. That will consequently make your over all life.. happy! And if this group abides by rule #1, and remains drama free – then double word score ! I have had a brand new cast of characters pretty much fall into my lap recently, and I’ve never felt so lucky. So, go make some friends and do what you love. You’re nearing 30, and there’s a lot of shit you want to do.

#3 The world is much bigger than your mundane routine.
Go see it. Take a day trip. Use your damn vacation days. Splurge. You can always make the money back, and you’ll never regret the memories you made. I’ve taken more trips this summer, than in my whole life – and I’m better for it! Life is short, we don’t know how long we’ve got.. and (depending on what you believe in) you’ve only got one shot at it.. So you better go see some cool stuff.

#4 Downgrade one part of your life, to upgrade another part.
I have never been more determined to save the most amount I can save.. Which means that fancy car you had to have at 25, well maybe it’s time to get a low monthly payment sedan, so that someday in the near future you can have money for a down payment on a house.( #grownupshit ) Downgrade on things that may be unnecessary, so that you can free up your finances for a better life for yourself – whether it’s a bigger house, gym membership, travel or a retirement fund. Get your priorities in order. While you’re at it – sell some stuff on eBay, freelance, – find a way to have a second income.. big or small!

#5 Caution: curves ahead!
I’m currently in the midst of embracing the 29 year old curves, that my 21 year old, 98 lb body did not have. This is a tough one! But, comparing yourself to girls half your age, who do not have your genes, who are half naked on Instagram – well that’s probably going to make you want to grab the fro yo and give up. Let’s give it a positive spin: join the gym and do what you can. Don’t be hard on yourself. Know that you’re in the driver seat.. And while you might never get that old body back, you’re keeping things in check – and taking the steps to become the most strong, confident – and most importantly: healthy – person you can be.. And that is beautiful! Go get yourself some cute sneakers and hit the tred! Sweat is sexy ;) (oh but p.s – know that eating that pasta and ice cream once in awhile is NOT going to kill you – so just shut up and enjoy it)

#6 Stop looking back.
The past is the past for a reason. Whether it’s a friendship, an ex or life circumstance – it’s over. Let it go. Revisiting a relationship of any kind is never usually a good idea.. there’s a reason it didn’t work in the first place. And, that life circumstance that you replay over and over again – that’s not doing you any good either. Stop holding grudges, and stop dwelling over things that no longer matter today. Take a deep breathe, and exhale the bullshit. Free up all that energy. Now go get what it is that the universe actually wants for you.

#7 Your journey is yours, and yours alone.
Stop comparing your life to someone else your age.. Stop comparing your life to what you thought it would look like by your current age.. Stop looking at the babies and rings on your Facebook feed. Your journey is yours. You will get these things when and if you’re supposed to – and while you should always remain open to the possibility of anything your heart desires – do not look for these things to happen. You can not and do not want to force them into existence. Enjoy your life.. It’s happening right now.. While you’re busy worrying about all that other shit, you’re missing the good parts. (And while you’re at it, stop caring what other people thinkkk your journey should be – or what they think at all, about anything !)

Above all, live a life of gratitude.. Feel blessed for everything and everyone you have. Do not settle for anything less than happy. If you’re not feeling fulfilled with your job or your relationship, or any other part of your life, get out! Will it be easy? Nope. Worth it? Yup!

I’m finishing out a strong 28, and I can honestly say I feel like 29 is about to be my best year yet.

I hope the same for you.