Thursday, January 29, 2015


Physical resolutions to lose weight and work out more always seem so superficial. And yet, I'm doing them anyway and they don't seem superficial at all. I think that I have hinted about it on the blog before, but I haven't really talked about it. I have an interesting relationship with food and weight. There's really no other way to put it. I'm a female in America. I struggle with body image. While I wouldn't say that I have an eating disorder, I have dealt with (and still do sometimes deal with) disordered thinking about food.

Because of that, physical goals are sometimes difficult. I want the focus to be on fitness and be the healthiest me that I can be. Yes, I would love to lose weight and yes, I have an "ideal number" in mind, but in the back of my mind I still hear an ex-boyfriend reminding me that it's not about a number. (I knew he was good for something. Ha!)

#1. So with all that in mind, my first resolution is to work out 4 times a week. It's manageable. It provides chances to be lazy or mess up. But it still gets me active and moving.

#2. Run 300 miles. I know people run so much more than that, but I am not at the point where I would consider myself a runner. Maybe by this time next year...? I was definitely not running consistently last year. Way more sporadic than I intended, but I ended up getting about 200 miles in so this year I'm aiming for 300. Also, I rejoined MRTC so there's some additional motivation.

#3. Train for and run a half marathon. What better way to ensure that I get those 300 miles in than to train for another half? And I was in the best shape when I was consistently running and training. I knew there was an ultimate goal. And it forced me to eat better. I didn't want to waste all that running just to eat badly AND I could tell in my runs when I had been eating well. I felt better and ran harder. So- two birds, one stone! I still haven't decided which half to do yet. I looked at the Rock n Roll series and thought about a destination race... San Diego, Seattle, and Chicago are all looking nice. But we'll see...

This is from May 2011. I want those muscles back. (Ha! Get it. I love puns!) I'm working on it though. Slowly, but surely...

Monday, January 26, 2015

My (So-Called) Personal Life

Personal goals are the kind of the resolutions that don't fit neatly into another category. I didn't know where else to put them so they ended up here.

#1. I want to travel more. I know that this doesn't necessarily match my financial goals of saving money, but I'm (relatively) young with no attachments so why not? I think my goal is to take 2 trips this year. If I go somewhere cool for the conference and then stay a few extra days to explore, will that count as one of them?

Last year I went to the beach. By myself. And it was glorious! I was able to bike and run and read and eat and lie on the beach to my heart's content. So I'm excited about more trips. Alone or with friends.

#2. Be a better friend. First of all, let me say that I am a horrible friend. I recognize that. Things seem to start off okay and then I get busy or my introversion kicks up a notch and friendships kinda go to hell. Oops! That's one of the many reasons why I am so thankful for my friends. I know that I'm not a good friend, but the friends that are still around and still put up with me in spite of myself are truly gems. But this year, I really do want to focus on being a better friend. Focus on making time to hang out with friends and planning time with friends even when I have been around people all day and want to sink into my couch and not have to talk...

#3. Be selfish. This one sounds crazy. I know. It seems to totally contradict the last resolution, but it really doesn't. Maybe selfish isn't the right word. But I don't really know what the right word is. Or the best way to accomplish this resolution. I think that the ultimate goal of this resolution is to get healthy. To say no to things when I need to and to distance myself when it's the right thing to do. But also to work on being more open and vulnerable. I suck at that! About this time last year, I started going to see a counselor and a few months in... I was a therapy drop out. Because even to a licensed professional that I paid to listen to me and is supposed to listen without judgment, I didn't want to open up. Maybe this year I'll try again.

Where is your favorite place to travel? Where should I add to my list?

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Mental Fortitude

Alright well we have now reached the nerdy portion of the resolutions. You know, as if having a list of resolutions broken into categories wasn't nerdy enough.

#1. Read 20 books. It's pretty self explanatory. Last year my goal was to read 12 books- 1 a month. I read 18 (3 of them within the 4 days I was off for Christmas) so this year I'm stretching it a little more and am going to try to read 20. I currently use the goodreads app on my phone. Or you can check it out online. It lets me keep up with the books that I've read, remembers all the books that I want to read, and gives suggestions for books I might like based on how I have rated previous books. Right now I have 51 books on my "Want to Read" bookshelf so I have a good starting point for this year.

Goodreads: Meet your next favorite book

#2. Attend a conference. Sometimes I feel like I go through the motions at work and treat my patients, but don't get to stretch myself. Don't have the time that I would like to do all the things that I want to do. So this year, I want to attend a conference and expand my knowledge base. (Also, it doesn't hurt that I can earn some CEU credits too.)

#3. Choose a research topic. A few months ago, I told someone that I wished that I could take a 3 month sabbatical from work so that I could do research. Yeah, I warned you that this would be nerdy. Here's another nerdy confession: I miss school sometimes. I read articles that relate to my patients but haven't made the time to just sit down and do research. I'm planning this slowly. Very slowly. But I want to at least choose a topic and maybe start from preliminary research.

Have you read any good books lately that you think I should check out? Any particular topic of interest that I should research?

Monday, January 19, 2015

Financial Peace

Alright, let's start with the financial resolutions. My ultimate goal is to get out of debt. So guys... I think I'm joining the cult club. You know the Dave Ramsey, Financial Peace club.

Technically, my debt is "good debt." Mostly student loans. And my car payments. That's it. But I still hate seeing the number every month and I'm ready to invest in things- like a house. I don't want to add a house payment into the mix right now, so I'm trying to pay off all my student loans before I consider home ownership.

Even though this is a resolution, I know that it won't happen this year. I have more debt than I even make in a year, so this is definitely a long(er) term goal, but I'm ready to get started serious about it.

I am not following Dave's advice 100% though, because I'm keeping my credit card. Sorry, Dave. I think I am pretty good about spending and I mostly pay it off every month so it stays!

I have already knocked out Step 1. Now I am working on Step 2. Slowly and steadily chipping away at the mountain of debt. But then when it's all paid off, I will celebrate! And then buy a house and start the debt thing all over again. Ha!

To break down my current resolutions, #1 was to put a certain amount of money into savings. According to Step 3, I already have about a month worth of expenses in savings. My goal this year is to put another month's worth in. I know that Dave says to do the steps in order, but I've already decided I'm doing my own modified version so why not break the rules on this part too?

Financial resolution #2 is to pay off a certain amount of my loans this year. It is not a ridiculous amount. It is definitely doable, but it also isn't easy. It will definitely requiring saving and sacrifice. I think that is the sweet spot for resolutions- attainable, but a stretch. 

In order to make numbers 1 and 2 happen, #3 has to be there too. A budget. I have tried different methods of budgeting throughout the years and this year I'm going to try something a little different. The credit card stays for gas and groceries, but everything else will be on a cash budget. I'll take out a certain amount of cash each week and it will be used for anything fun I want to do or anything I need to buy that week. Once it's gone, it's gone.

We'll see how it goes, but the ultimate goal of getting out of debt and then buying a house is a motivating one!

What are some of your financial goals? Are you saving up for one big purchase? How do you budget?

Thursday, January 15, 2015


I talked about how Hope is my word for the year. And I showed you my new ink. So let's tie it all together.

An anchor is the symbol of hope. Hope for the future. Hope for the eternal.

This hope we have as an anchor for the soul, is both strong and steadfast.
Hebrews 6:19

Reason #2 for the anchor: if anyone knows has spent any amount of time with has ever met me knows that I am kind of a control freak. By "kind of" I mean that I am a total control freak. But that's not always a good thing. First of all, I'm not in control. And my life would be a whole lot easier if I would realize that more often. Because of that, my most recent life verse has been Exodus 14:14.

The Lord will fight for you. You only need to be still.
Exodus 14:14

Be still. Such a great reminder. I don't have to do anything. Minor problem... I'm not very good at not doing anything. At least on my own. The anchor is a reminder to be still. To stop working so hard and let God fight!

Does anyone else choose a word of the year? If so, what is it and why did you pick it?

Monday, January 12, 2015


Of the New Year variety.

I talked about how much I love New Year's. A new start. A new list. Yes please!

My word of the year for 2015 is...

I will talk about that more later. And go into more detail about all of the resolutions in future posts. But until then, here they are:

1. Put $x in savings.
2. Pay off $y of loans.
3. $z monthly cash budget.

1. Read 20 books.
2. Attend a conference.
3. Choose a research topic.

1. Travel.
2. Be a better friend.
3. Be selfish.

1. Work out 4 times a week.
2. Run 300 miles.
3. Train for and run a half marathon.

1. Create a prayer board.
2. Memorize scripture.
3. Find a church home.

There you have it. My 2015 New Year's resolutions all listed out. So you can basically just stop reading until December when you come back to see how I've done. Or you can keep reading (which will be way more entertaining) and I will go into more detail about all the resolutions in later posts and keep you up to date on the happenings in my life...

What are your New Year's resolutions and goals for 2015?

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Ghosts of New Year's Past

New Year's is usually always a disappointment. Everyone makes it out to be such a great year and then, it's just another night. It never lives up to expectations. Let's take a look at a few New Year's pasts...


I have pictures from 2008 and 2009 but for the life of me, I can't remember what I did in 2010. Oh well. New Year's kisses have also been few and far between. 2012 and 2013 may have been the only ones in the past decade or so. Oh well!

This year, I wanted to keep it super low key. My original plan was to take a nap after work (you know, because I'm old) and then go out to a small party. Then I got home from work later than I had planned and I didn't think a nap was going to happen. Then I got trapped in my own head and started overanalyzing everything and curling up in sweats on the couch started looking better and better. So that's kinda what I did... I had a normal night. Watched a movie, curled up in bed at a decent time and read a little book until I fell asleep. Until I got a text from my roommate asking if I was coming out. So I somewhat reluctantly decided to go. I crawled out of bed and threw on some clothes to try to look presentable. I got there after 10 and was home and in bed by 12:15. Ha!

How did you ring in 2015?

Monday, January 5, 2015

New Year, New Look

For the blog, that is.

Can we all just ignore the fact that I haven't written in like a year? Although technically that is not true. I have been blogging all year. Pretty consistently actually. Just not here.

But with a new year, I thought it was time to make a grand return. Time to streamline the look of the blog. We're growing up!

And speaking of growing up, I got a new look too. I thought about it for a while and went back and forth on what to do. I even thought about purple ombre at one point. (Which is still in the back of my mind for later, maybe.) But instead I went with a cut.

Here are the before and afters:

Oh yeah, I also got inked!

More on that later...

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year

If you've been around here for a while, you know how much I love New Year's. It's a time to start fresh and make lists. And I love lists!

So happy new year! Hope you had a great night, popped a nice bottle of champagne, and had a rocking new year's kiss. I'll be back next week to talk about my new year's celebration and some resolutions. Until then, I'm going back to bed.