Monday, July 22, 2013

This

This. This is why we're moving.
Worth every bit the hassle. 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

So Long, 31!

As of  8:19 tomorrow morning, I will be 32 years old. I'm pleased with how 31 went. I don't recall saying that often at the end of my years.

This morning, I'm finding myself just a little emotional and wanting to reflect on the past 365 days.

My 30th year on this planet was maybe my most challenging year yet. I turned 30 just a few weeks before Jimmy's accident. Universe: "Uhmm, welcome to this new decade, Jaimie. Get your big girl underpants ready.  Don't worry, everyone will buy you more than enough Starbucks to help you stumble through it all on two feet."

31, though, meant growth. Acceptance. Adjustment. More and more slivers of happiness. Less tears. The week of August 8, 2011, I could never have imagined we'd be here: happyish (not just happy) in this new life. Our New Normal.

Birthday #SELFIE
I feel great. 31 is the year where I lost about 15-20lbs. I was able recently put on a pair of jeans that I hadn't worn since Jimmy and I started dating. That was in 2007.

31 was the year where we made the decision to move to a new place, a new community. Could this be where we plant roots? Time will tell.

31 was the year when I went back to being a blond. Light and airy. Maybe my bold brunette will return later this year. Or maybe not.

31 was the year I stopped being so scared. I'm starting to not let fear control our lives. We're trying more, experimenting more.

31 was the year I ran my first 10K.
31 was the year I went to my first book signing and met a hero.
31 was the year I put on my wedding dress for the first time since June 2011.
31 was the year Jimmy and I started learning to spend more time apart.
31 was the year I started playing tennis less and running more.
31 was the year I went home for Christmas for the first time since the accident.
31 was the year I took Jimmy home. The first time he'd been there since the accident.
31 was the year I got my first tattoo.

31 was the year I finally felt I was starting to see the world clearly.

31 was the year when Jimmy and I decided we have somewhat of a handle on this life.

31 was the year Jimmy and I decided it's time. We don't know if we can have a baby, but hey, why not give it a go? 

What will 32 bring? Either way: more change, more growth.

In a few weeks, Jimmy and I will celebrate his 2nd Life Day. The second anniversary of his wreck. All the memories of the accident day that will no doubt be hard to re-visit.

There will be some happiness on that day, though. Looking around and forcing myself breath in some fresh air, stand in the sunshine or watch as the raindrops land on my arms. 

Because, life now means not taking those things for granted. 

And, there will be cake.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Moving!

We're moving on up. Some place bigger, nicer and with lovely, curious neighbors. It's in the city of Decatur, which is completely so very adorable.  Blocks from a little, cute downtown.

Jimmy and I are so excited to get settled in. In 3 days. I gotta go pack...

More details later.

In the meantime, a sneak peek: our mantle. I brought our wedding photo over and my Nate Berkus pineapple.

Also, this ginormous patio is going to mean good things for our future. I see a lot of dining/drinking/reading/blogging happening out there.

Loves!


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Banana Ice Cream

We got an ice-cream maker for our wedding. Just a reminder, that was June 11, 2011. Two years ago.

I just opened it the day before yesterday. 

Whatever. We've been busy. 

What an amazing, fluffy world I've been missing out on.

I feel like I thought it would be hard. Ice cream salt. Churning for hours on end. I guess I was thinking about when my dad would make homemade ice-cream back in the day. 

But enter: the modern day ice cream maker. Who doesn't love a good time-saver? 

You freeze the drum overnight. You refrigerate the mixture 1-2 hours. You churn for 15-20 minutes. 

Our first batch we decided to keep it simple: banana. 

Two bananas. 2% milk, (instead of the whole milk it called for) half and half (instead of heavy cream) and a little bit of real maple syrup (instead of white sugar). Oh, and a pinch of sea salt. 

So simple and fresh. Banana ice-cream for breakfast? Mayyyyybe. 

Next flavors to try: double stuffed Oreo, peppermint, Mexican chocolate, almond... 

Any fun, flavor suggestions? 

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Sit and Soak

Sometimes when the air feels so good I can't stand it and when life isn't too stressful, me and my husband sit quietly and just... soak.

Soak and refuel. 
Relax and reflect. 
Happy Sunday.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Wednesday Wisdom: Flowers

Monday, July 8, 2013

FOMO

I'm having a hard time with life lately.  I'm not sure why. Am I tired? Am I having a woe-is-me moment?  Are things slowing down to an excruciatingly dull pace after a super-busy June?

Since my therapist isn't available all the time, (contrary to what Meryl Streep showed me in It's Complicated) I'll have to self-diagnose.

I feel like Facebook is hard. It's hard to see the seemingly happy, "normal" lives right there on my iPhone which is practically sewn into my hand. I get nervous when that stupid little flat rectangle machine is in a different room than I. It's a sickness.

I read an article recently that introduced me to FOMO. Fear Of Missing Out. I think I knew about it already but I get so excited when someone else puts it in black and white when I can't. It's there and it's not just me.

Martha Beck, a regular columnist in Oprah's magazine wrote, "The social media world that named FOMO has also made it an epidemic. It's hard not to develop this 21st-century form of anxiety when one glance at your smartphone reveals a thousand awesome things your friends -- and enemies -- are doing."

In that same article, I also read how it's important to remember these are simply moments in life. Happy, exhilarating, wonderful moments in otherwise maybe hard, challenging lives.

"A powerful way to fight FOMO is to recognize that the fabulous life you think you're missing doesn't in fact exist. Our media, including social media, present an endless montage of momentary highs disguised as everyday activities. But evaluating other people's real experience by their carefully curated onscreen images is like trying to navigate with binoculars that show only mountain peaks."

Martha knows her shit. Mountain peaks.

Here's what I need to focus on: everyone has their hard thing. Ours is in the form of a spinal cord injury.

Someone else's may be an extremely difficult relationship with a relative, a miscarriage, a financial burden, addiction, divorce, unhappiness in the workplace, etc.

Mine is for me. I have to try and find a way to live with our new challenges while still being happy-ish.

I think Momastery's today blog landed in my timeline (of course I was on Facebook a bunch already today. Ick. Stop it, J.) in the nick of time.
My woe may have something to do with the stress of searching for a new place to live. Jimmy needs more room. We both do, I think. We could use an extra room for a guest or a future tot(!!).

(Striving for happiness)

But, more room = more money. Way more money in Atlanta, apparently.  Also, our apartment is conveniently (inconveniently) located on a street with giant, beautiful houses (lives). One of which I went in for an estate sale. Cruel. So hard not to imagine our lives playing out in a place like that and how wonderful it would be. Just cruel.

I make it a point to occasionally read mom blogs which talk about raising kids in NYC. Moms who are okay with turning a closet into a nursery.  Who needs the Pinterest nursery? Pssshhhh. (My hand slowly raising...)

It helps me realize that having the big house in the big city is a big dream and maybe not a reality. So, my dream of a guest suite and a massive nursery? Not having that RIGHT NOW? it's gonna be okay.

It's gonna be okay.

We live in a really good area. We are just blocks from The Shepherd Center (our safety net). We live even closer to a regular hospital (another safety net). We live so close to so much good food, good shops and really close to some really good friends.

We don't have it so bad and I have to remember we may not always live in such a good location.

(Embracing happy-ish)

Some of the people I know have it all figured out with their beautiful families and big homes, or at least appear to. But here's the catch: they still have daily problems and tears. Maybe even more tears than me.

Maybe I see their mountain peaks on Facebook and it's hard.

Maybe I just needed to write this blog to help myself realize that we still have a lot of good around us. We're very lucky.

It's not always easy to see that, but we are.

Real estate is a bitch. But, we can be fine wherever we are. I lived on the Shepherd campus and then in a hotel room after the accident. I was fine.

Correction: As long as I had a television, I was fine.

We'll be fine.

I'm going now. Going to enjoy my great location and my short drive to Starbucks, Publix and EVERYTHING.

Be jealous of my mountain peak.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Beep Beep


The other morning I walked in Jimmy's room to wake him up.  He slowly came out of his sleep coma to say "beep beep... beep beep." 

I said, "What? Why are you beeping?"

He said, "Zit alert." 

He gave the mountain on my chin it's own stinger. 

This is what a recovering newsie looks like. 

Friday, July 5, 2013

The Roadrace

My first Peachtree Road Race: what can I say about this legendary event in Atlanta?

Logistics are tricky. Weather was questionable. 60,000 friggin' people.

I left my house at 6am. Because of road closures, I had to walk 3+ miles (in the rain) to get on a train to get me to the starting line. Time to put on my big girl underpants.

Cops had almost every block covered already that early. I felt less scared of the Atlanta sketchiness I imagined I would have to face. 

I took the not exactly correct train to the not exactly correct location -- but! -- I saw other runners. I wasn't making this mistake alone.

There were hundreds being kept underground at this train stop until authorities figured out what to do with us all. I guess we weren't supposed to be there? When the train announcer told us to get back on a train to get on another train that was more accurate folks became grumpy. Oh god. Was I going to be on the news?

Finally, after about 30 minutes they let us out. They let us out of the underground hole in which we were being kept. Air. Sweet air.

My wave was K. My wave was to start at 8:14am. I had to peeeeeeee so very badly, though. It was 8:06am. I knew I wouldn't be comfortable running six miles if I had to pee. Damn it. I waited in the line.

I missed my wave. It's okay. I jumped in with the N wave around 8:28ish.

I was off.
The rain made way for some cooler weather. Like 20+ degrees cooler compared to last year's race. The slick roads were an easy compromise, I'm sure, for those who dread the Hotlanta oven on race day.
 
The first three miles were golden. Flat roads. Soaking it all in. All running.
 
But. Then I started to get tired. I know my early morning hike couldn't have helped. I kept going but had to start incorporating some water and walking.
 
Then came the hills. It's kind of sucky the ladder part of the race is the hardest.
 
We finally rounded the last leg when I saw a big white scaffolding of photographers with a bunch of signs that read "SMILE!"  I did. And I even ran with my arms in the air like I had won. (That picture should be ubercheesy.)
 
PSSssshh.
 
How deceiving! That was NOT the finish line. There was like... a half mile more to go. One of those signs should have read "SMILE! (But keep running...)"
 
I stopped. I literally thought I was done. But why were others still going? Dang it. I picked it back up and then finally in the distance saw a big sign that said: FINISH.
 
Oh.
 
When we crossed we were funneled into a large mud pit that used to be Piedmont Park. I got a bottle of water and claimed my shirt: the highly coveted Peachtree Road Race shirt.
 
Oh god. Now. Now, I had to walk home. Kill me. I can't.   
 
I started the trek back and was kicking myself because I didn't grab more water. 
 
I was amazed at the sheer number of runners still headed to the finish line as I walked home in the opposite direction. If I had the energy, I could cheerlead. I'm sure the folks not running with the beer were doing just fine.
 
I finally reached the top of my street and HELLO MELLOW MUSHROOM. I ordered to-go.
 
I sat on the bench outside of Mellow after I picked up my food and ate my once slice of hot, cheese pizza like I was just kicked off the island.  America the beautiful, indeed.
 
A lady in a trendy tan trench coat and heels walked past me on her way in the restaurant, turned, smiled and said, "you deserve it."
 
Trench coat lady: you have never been more right.  


 
I mustered up enough strength to walk the rest of the way home carrying my sweaty/soaking self, my race goody bag and the rest of our food home.
 
I took a shower AND a bath, ate lots more food and slept hard.  
 
What can I say about the Peachtree Road Race? It's a character builder and a helluva good time.
 
I took today off but can't wait to get back at it tomorrow. After I wash my stank shoes, of course.

I'm glad I got to do this race with so many inspirational, wonderful people. It made me proud to be an Atlanta resident. 

I'm glad I got to run by The Shepherd Center while "my people" cheered me on and kept me honest. 

And, I'm glad I could hang my dingy race number on Jimmy's wall when I was done.