I’m Back + Life Update!

Wow, I have not blogged since June! It wasn’t a break I planned, but it was a break I needed. Lots has been going on and it was definitely okay for me to put my blog down for a little bit to allow myself one less thing to worry about. Now, onto the updates…

Work

Okay, work is definitely the update I have most to say about. I’ve been working at Sephora and absolutely loving it. Sure, sometimes it sucks a little bit – but when I have a good day or do some great consultations and help women feel hope for their skin concerns, or teach them something new, or help a mom and 13-year-old pick out her very first mascara and lip gloss (oh, the nostalgia!), or even help a bride feel confident that she will be able to do her makeup well and feel that much more beautiful on her wedding day, I’m over the moon. I’m also still writing over at My Subscription Addiction, too, and that’s always a blast.

However, there’s some interesting uncertainties coming around, too. Thanks to some connections, a big marketing company contacted me about an account management position they have. The main issue is that it’s an hour south of where we live now, but it is in the area where we want to end up and settle down in. Initially, I said I couldn’t do it, but a few minutes later, I just thought I don’t have any information at all about this job – what if it pays crazy well and what if I’d like it?  So, I called them back and got more details. Turns out the salary range starts just below what my husband’s making now. Now, my husband’s been looking for months for a better job for him down in that area, with no luck so far. We’ve been waiting for that to move down to the city we want to be in, but we never considered the possibility of moving down there because of a job for me. Long story short, we have no idea what would happen if I got it (we could move halfway and split the commute to both our jobs, or we could move all the way down there and I could support us until L finds a job there, too…), but we’ve decided that I should go ahead with the interview process. Hey, maybe I won’t even get it. But maybe I do and maybe I love it. Who knows? (BTW – both the President and VP are women! Yes!) So, we’ll see, I guess.

I’m scared about having to leave Sephora because I love it and I’ve only been there a couple months so far, and I’m also scared that, if I get it, I’ll be less happy there. Terrified of making the wrong choices. All the other jobs I’ve had that I hate I can just quit with very little consequence because they’re like, restaurants and such. But this would be a big-girl, salary position. And if we end up moving halfway so that L and I split the commute, life would be so different with our income essentially doubled, and we’re so anxious to move into a bigger apartment anyway.

Coping post-graduation

This is the first Fall in basically all of my life that I haven’t been going back to school. I didn’t think it’d be weird but it is WAY WEIRD. In a way, I miss having the places to go, the different topics every week, seeing classmates regularly, being in choir, etc. Another thing I had no idea I was going to miss was my wardrobe. I have so many clothes, but all I wear anymore is yoga pants to lounge around the house or my work uniform. I never wear my nice outfits anymore. Part of me wants to just get rid of it all, but I know I want to get to a place where I wear it all again. However, I could really use the usual closet clean-out of clothes I haven’t worn in years, as always.

Also, I feel like life has definitely confirmed my theory that, at least for me, you can work anywhere you can sell yourself to work. I haven’t needed to find a job directly related to my major yet, and I’m okay with that. I have so many passions and so many skills and so much I want to learn that as long as I enjoy the work and atmosphere, and the pay works for us, I’m happy. 

Post-Wedding

I never knew my to-do lists could be so long outside of school! Aside from general, personal/home to-dos, post-wedding things are still lingering to be done, like finding a place for the cards and presents, and finishing up the wedding video edits, and making a photo album. All things I look forward to doing, but all things that tend to fall further down on my priority list than things for my jobs or housekeeping tasks, since both of those effect other people (employers + husband). Not saying that my wedding photos and video don’t effect my family or that they’re not anxiously waiting for them, but, for sure, nothing is riding on whether or not I get those done ASAP.

Well, there it is! Most of what’s been going on in my life. Speaking of to-do lists and work, I really have to go crack down on some of those things, but I’m glad to be back and hope to be posting regularly again! 

xoxo

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Listed Tuesdays: 5 Ways I’ve Changed Because of My Wedding.

Hey, everyone! Today’s post is a link-up with the lovely Erica Jaquiline! Every Tuesday, she does a “Listed Tuesdays” link-up and I’d love to get into the habit of participating each week!

So, here’s my list: 5 Ways I’ve Changed Because of My Wedding!

1. I’ve become more flexible and level-headed.

I’m aware that, for the majority of my life, I’ve been the high-strung, inflexible girl who stresses out easily. However, throughout the wedding planning process (and especially the wedding day), I had to practice being calm and patient almost constantly. Being zen was a choice I had to make every moment during the wedding (particularly during the post-ceremony family shots? Ugh, those can be a nightmare, am I right?). Even during the honeymoon, with all the flights, confusing navigation, language barriers, and packing it would have been easy to lose my cool. To be honest, I think all that practice has really stuck with me since the wedding in my day-to-day life, and I try to consciously choose chill and calm as often as possible.

2. I’ve become more grateful.

My wedding was as wonderful as it was because I had so much help getting everything put together, planned, and set up. Sure, it was amazing just because it was my wedding day, but I feel so humbled by all the generous people (friends as well as family) who really went above and beyond just to do what they could to help. Whether it was absolutely stunning paintings done especially for me by my sister-in-law, Erin (see below!!) or getting the reception hall set up or contributing financially towards the wedding, I feel so blessed my the generosity and kindness of the people in my life.

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3. I love more.

Between cards and video messages and bridesmaids and new family and conversations and hugs, I’ve grown to know just how much more love I’m surrounded by than I thought. This, in turn, has made me feel more full of love than ever, and I feel like I try to speak and act on it more in my day to day life.

4. I spend less.

Uhhhh…. duh? Like, for real. I can’t jump at every impulse or promo code or flash sale anymore. Part of me misses this, most of me knows this is for the best (okay, all of me knows it’s for the best), especially since it’s been an issue for me in the past. That’s a whole other post for me to write. Maybe. Bottom line – it’s uncomfortable to have a joint account and share a budget, but it’s so good for you.

5. I more strongly advocate staying true to yourself.

Planning and envisioning a wedding involved a lot of soul-searching and pondering what’s really important to me and coming to understand what really isn’t so important to me. We wanted a first look. Many people thought that was crazy, but we knew it’d be important to us. I didn’t want to wear a blusher going down the aisle. I wanted dancing – no question (no way was I giving up my daddy-daughter dance opportunity!). All being said and done, I’m so happy with the way things turned out, but it took a lot of courage for me to be conscientious and self-aware enough to be able to discern what felt true to myself/ourselves and not get caught up in things “because they’re tradition” or because I felt it was expected of me. A handful of my friends are also planning weddings right now, and this has generally been my main piece of advice for them.

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Go check out Erica Jaquiline’s Listed Tuesdays and participate yourself! (I know I’m getting this post up late, so maybe ponder about a list for you to write about next week!)

Erica Jacquline

Currently…

Feel happy to be alive.

Loving… having fresh flowers on my table! I bought myself a pretty bouquet while grocery shopping and now I get to use the beautiful, etched-glass vase we had for our wedding as a floating candle votive for our unity candle. I bought it from Etsy and I love seeing it every day. I love having this keepsake.

Watching… Arrested Development. We finally caught up to the season that Netflix did! After this, I have no idea what else to watch. Suggestions?

Eating… Okios Greek Yogurt in their Cafe Latte flavor, loaded up with a ton of ground cinnamon. It tastes like tiramisu. And it’s healthy! Obsessed.

Learning… that not every opportunity I am able to take is one I should take. And, along those same lines, to really listen to my gut/inner compass.

Playing… Battlefield Hardline BETA. Well, technically, I haven’t played yet, but I got into the beta and now I’m waiting for L to finish playing around with something on his computer that “will only take 10 minutes” (he said, an hour ago).

Anticipating… more phone calls from more interviews. If you read this post, you know that I gave myself permission to go for jobs I’ll have fun at and enjoy right now instead of going after whatever un-fun jobs I am able to get that may make more money. And? I’m pretty excited. =]

Trying… to get on one of those regular cleaning schedules? You know, one of those Tuesday-is-laundry-day and Thursday-is-floors-day kind of things? I’m not sure I’m ready for that level of adulthood yet. Also sometimes you need to do laundry or counters before the dedicated day it’s supposed to be done on and then everything gets messed up. Whomp whomp.

Wanting… Too Faced’s a la Mode Eye Palette. Uhhhh I am dying over those colors. I recently got their Natural Eyes palette in a POPsugar Must Have box, and it’s my new go-to. Hopefully, my next job will be someplace where I can get a sweet discount on some lovely things like this! ;]

Loving… my inspiration board. Scrolling through all the colors, flowers, and summery things always cheers me up!

 

Why I Turned Down a Job Offer

All in the span of a couple weeks, I finished my undergrad classes! I graduated! I had my bridal shower! I got married! I flew to the Dominican Republic! Not gonna lie, life has been pretty awesome.

But… What’s next?

I blog because I feel a strong desire to open up to the great community of my readers and fellow bloggers, and I’ve gotta be super vulnerable with you guys right now. I knew this was coming, but I didn’t think about strategically planning for it: I’m coasting. I don’t have a full-time job; I finished school; I finished putting my new home together post-wedding. What now?

A month before the wedding, I made the big decision to quit a job I hated. I was waitressing, but it wore on me far too much to let the dread of my next shift weigh me down in the midst of so much joy and love and community in my life right before my wedding. It was a great decision and I definitely don’t regret it. And, to be honest, not having to worry about coming right back home to a job after the honeymoon allowed me to get everything unpacked and put away in our home, and easily readjust. L and I have known that the plan is for me to find work soon after getting settled – both for the monetary reasons and for the fact that I’m getting so bored sitting around the house all day! So when I found a great want ad for a marketing management opportunity, I was stoked.

I wrote a kick-butt cover letter, updated my resume, read their entire website, and psyched myself up for the idea of a new job (Yay! Something to do! Money to make! People to meet! Goals to reach!). I nailed the first interview, which was over the phone. Apparently this job was a bigger deal than I realized – from 140-200 interviewees, I was chosen as part of the top 10 to have a second, in-person interview. But that’s where the great stuff ends. Don’t get me wrong, I rocked the second interview, but seeing the job up close and getting the nitty-gritty details (L called this “talking turkey,” which makes me giggle) made me realize that this job isn’t something I wanted to wake up and do everyday. However, I was already on the spot, and uncertain, so I proceeded to nail the follow-up persuasion email, too. It was at this point where they may or may not call me to offer a third, phone interview to in order to finalize bringing me onto their team.

All weekend I knew there was a big chance this call was coming my way. But my intuition wasn’t happy about it. I even found myself telling my mom and my best friend that I hoped I wouldn’t get the third interview so I wouldn’t have to worry about making the call about whether or not this was something I wanted. At about 12:30 today, they did call me, and asked if it was a good time for the third interview or if they should call me back. I requested that they call back at 3 and then reached out to my husband.

I hadn’t been 100% open with him about how conflicted I was feeling. I had been so excited and pumped up over the opportunity that I wanted to be sure it was something I wasn’t excited about anymore before talking to him. I’ve been bored out of my mind and it’d be a huge help for me to contribute a full-time income to our funds, so I felt a lot of pressure to just go for it even if the pay wasn’t awesome and the job itself didn’t sound fun. My internal compass just wasn’t happy and I didn’t know what to do about it. He hugged me and reassured me that we’re not anywhere near a situation where we are “settled down” yet, and we’re hoping for him to get a different job in a town we like better by the fall anyway. He said that, for now, he thinks I should focus on finding something I enjoy. This encouragement meant the world to me, and between that and visualizing not having this job in my future, I felt relieved (not a feeling you should experience when visualizing not getting a job opportunity you’re meant to go for). I knew at this point I could stay true to myself with the most important person to me also being on my team (hey, it’s what he’s here for, too, isn’t it?).

When they called back at 3pm, I politely thanked them and declined. I’ve learned that not all opportunities I am able to take are opportunities I should take. I made a tough call to stay true to and honest with myself and to do what’s good for me. I feel like I’ve taken another step towards growing up. Although I’m left still kind of wondering what on Earth there is for me to do next, I’m happy knowing that I have given myself permission to make sure it’s something I enjoy and learn from instead of jumping for another job that feels like it drains my soul and energy.

Have you ever had to make a hard call to stay true to yourself? What did you do?

sometimes it ends up different #quotes #words #inspiration

Wednesday Things/Currently…

Image(From our honeymoon in the Dominican Republic – it was paradise!)

Hello again! In my last blog update before I got married, I mentioned that I was going to start doing “Currently” posts instead of my usual “Wednesday Things.” Just thought I’d add that little reminder since I’m back to posting regularly on the blog!

Currently…

Loving… My wedding highlight reel. Yes, still. I’ve watched it just about every day since my videographer gave me the link!

Reading… nothing at the moment. I just finished Night Circus by Eric Morgenstern for Bonnie’s Book Club (one of my favorite bloggers – go fall in love with her, too!). It. Was. BRILLIANT. I got it as an audiobook, which was read by Jim Dale (who read the audio books for the Harry Potter series and is absolutely amazing). For months now, I’ve been raving about audio books, but now that I’m not driving to school everyday or an hour just to see my man anymore, I’m definitely not driving nearly as much as I had been. I guess it’s time for me to sit and read one of my hard copy books!

Watching… Parks and Rec. How did I ever fall behind on this show? We’ve also been catching up on Arrow but sometimes we just need better acting/happier content/shorter episodes. What are you watching?

Anticipating… getting another job. I’m still writing for My Subscription Addiction (and loving it – seriously, what a dream job!) but I’d love to get an hourly job that 1) isn’t waitressing, 2) lets me work during the same hours as Luke so we still have our evenings together, 3) is something I don’t hate, which requires that it’s also 4) not waitressing (oh, did I mention that already?). Also, I’d like to avoid the retail industry. I’ve been sick for the last two weeks, which has given me an out from pressuring myself to go apply anywhere, but now that I’m feeling better I’m definitely antsy to get out there and talk to people.

Eating… chocolate. Seriously, I got to review Treatsie‘s new Chocolate Bar Subscription box and the gourmet chocolates have been amaaaazinnnng. Also, because I’ve been sick – like I said – I made a super yummy “Chicken Noodle Soup Casserole” thing. And I got to use my new bakeware!

Planning… A date night. Between post-wedding catching up and Memorial Day plans, the only times Luke and I have spent away from the house together has been for family get-togethers, but I really need a date night. Did you know that Frankenmuth has an adventure park with rope courses and zip lines and everything? I’ve been dying to go there since I found out about it last fall. It was too cold then, but now that it’s summer I definitely want to get all over that.

Needing… to get back to exercising. I’m in a new town, so I need to explore good running routes. Like I said though, I’ve been sick and haven’t wanted to push myself to go running when my lungs were making me have cough attacks every 10 minutes. Now that I’m better there’s no excuse!

What are you up to? What did you do for Memorial Day weekend? =]

 

Wedding Reflections (and photos!)

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     I’ve officially been married to the man of my dreams for 17 days now! It’s crazy to me to think that now my wedding day is a thing of the past and I’ve loved unfollowing every pinterest wedding board I’ve ever followed (except for my best friend’s, who got engaged the day after my wedding!). From the moment I walked into the rehearsal to see almost all of my extended family waiting in the church foyer for me and giving each one of them big hugs, I felt so much love and felt so very blessed all weekend. There’s been so much celebration and joy and anticipation in my life for months, and now it’s calm and quiet and peaceful (and oh so happy). 

     My wedding day was absolute perfection. There were like, maybe 2-3 bumps in the day but they’re so not even a big deal. Whenever people would ask me if I was going for any kind of theme, I’d simply say that my goal was for it to be one big celebration. And it was! I feel pure joy when I think about it (and when I re-watch my wedding’s highlight reel for the 1094235094094th time). Additionally, however, I just feel so incredibly grateful and humbled by the love and support which surrounds me. To see so many people come to my wedding to support our marriage and celebrate with us was so touching. Every moment was something sweet and every person was some one I was happy to have there. 

     It’s funny how everything works out. If you’ve been following my blog for some time at all, you probably know that there were a whole lot of obstacles on the way to planning everything. From my dad losing his job (and starting a new one), to me quitting a job I hated, to changing venues about 2 or 3 times… there were so many things that happened along the way that led us to have all of the details fall into place better than I could have imagined it. But everything worked out – a lot because it actually did, and a lot because I learned to let go of things and relax my controlling behavior. 

     I know, I know — pictures! Here comes the fun part! (I don’t have all of my photos in from my hired photogs, but I have some, and then also some great ones from family!)

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My bridesmaids! My best gals!

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Me, my parents, and my sister. We always look like this.

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The whole wedding party. This was right after I shouted “Everyone, pretend you’re a spy!”

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This is quite possibly my favorite picture from the whole day. It totally captures exactly how I felt the whole time.

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Us, pretending we knew what we were doing while cutting the cake (why are there no rehearsals of that??).

ImageAt the end of my first dance with my Daddy!

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Dancing with my Momma!

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This was at the very end of the night. Luke and I had changed into our getaway clothes, and ran onto the dance floor for onelast song (Journey, of course), where everyone just surrounded us dancing. Right after this, everyone went outside to the front of the church for our sparkler send-off! 

My Wedding’s Highlight Reel

There’s so much I need to be getting done now that the wedding and honeymoon are over. The wedding was perfect, the honeymoon was amazing, and my life is so full of joy and peace and I’m the happiest I’ve been in a very long time. I want to write so much about everything, but for now, I can really just share this video for you – my own stories and details to come soon!