One Word (in two parts)

One Word (in two parts)

This was clearly intended for earlier in the year – oh well.

Part One -or- 2015

Embrace.

That was my word last year. I intended it to mean that I would embrace every opportunity that was presented to me in the course of the year. That made sense given the fact I was planning a cross country move – there would clearly be plenty of new things to embrace. And I feel like I embraced what life threw at me fairly well. I sat in the happiness and excitement and I sat in the sadness and loss that comes with moving 3000 miles away from your family and friends and almost everything you love. I feel like I lived my word in the best way that I could.

But there was something unexpected in that. While doing that I learned to embrace I am. I have always been too much of something and it something I have never liked about myself. I have always wanted to be that quite and soft spoken Good Christian Girl (TM). But that was never me. I often joke that my family never knew what to do with a daughter like me. But the truth is I didn’t know what to do with myself.

The last year was good and hard. Lonely and exciting. But in that transition something I never expected happened – I started to learn what to do with myself.

Part Two -or- 2016

I did something out of the ordinary  right before Thanksgiving last year. I wrote an email to a blogger who I’ve followed for years. I buy her books and occasionally will comment on a post or would like an Instagram picture but that is far as my engagement goes. But during a particularly hard time I decided to reach out in a new way to a person who had no clue I existed.

I was surprised by myself but even more surprised when less than two days later I had a response from her. Her words were much what I expected a response would be like, but I still felt heard and noticed and validated and comforted. Among all of the words I had hoped to hear there was one line that caught me off guard

And in the meantime, leave a bit of room in your story to be surprised – maybe not today, maybe not for years, but perhaps….

Room to be surprised.

It made so much sense given that I joke my life could be summed up in a simple phrase

I WAS DEFINITELY NOT EXPECTING THIS.

All the best and all the worst things that have happened in my short life have been followed by this sentiment in varying degrees of excitement, profanity, fear, anger or joy but always with utter bewilderment

As the we drew closer to the beginning of this year that word, surprise continued to be in the back of my mind and I knew it would be mine for 2016 and perhaps much longer.

As this year has continued I keep going back and in times when I don’t know what to do I have a particular friend who will remind me of my promise to myself to leave room to be surprised.

Allowing myself to not be so caught up in my plan and having things go me way has been one of the best things I could have ever done for myself and it continues to bring scary and wonderful results.

So here is to the rest of 2016 – may we all leave a little bit of room in our stories to be surprised.

 

 

PS This morning I even surprised myself by writing a thing

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Tracy’s Grand Adventure

Tracy’s Grand Adventure

Once upon there was a girl who wanted to move. Not too far away, close enough to go home for a weekend but far enough away for something new.

She went through life, grew up and then stayed and staying was hard. Staying was harder than leaving, but it’s what she did. She got a good job, had a wonderful apartment and fantastic friends.

Then – somewhat out of nowhere she decided to move after a conversation with her far-away best friend.

Seven months after that Skyped conversation with a packed car and tear-filled eyes and she finally moved – to Massachusetts; definitely not close enough to go home for a weekend but definitely somewhere new.


Now one day I will maybe blog about why I moved beyond the fact that was always my plan. I may talk about how moving without a job was never in the plan and nor was moving for the idea of something and not for a concrete plan. Maybe I’ll talk about the broken plans that led to me sitting in a Starbucks in the land of Dunkin’ Donuts and how I am living in a tiny apartment with my no long far-away best friend and how I am rather unemployed but trusting that won’t be the case for too long.

But for now – here is my cross-country move in pictures because I still refuse to get a Facebook.

More Fun Sized Blogs

More Fun Sized Blogs

It’s time for everyone’s favorite fun sized blogs again! (no one told me this was their favorite, but that’s okay… I know)

Here are a few of the things that have been on my mind and have been occupying my time….

School

Two weeks away until the end of summer quarter and I am oh so excited.
One book to read, one movie to watch, five journal entries and one paper and Intro to Novel is done.
One assignment, two discussions, one quiz and one final and Nutrition 101 is done.

I am all registered for fall quarter. 17 credits in all, however I may drop my 2 credit class, even though it sounds really interesting and it is only offered in the fall. Despite my occasional complaining (usually on one aspect of school) I really enjoy school. Or at least I really enjoy learning things. I even made the Dean’s list for spring quarter

I have come to find that I really enjoy online classes, I have a much better handle on my time management and am able to do better work when I can view the PowerPoints or watch the videos on my time. There is one aspect of online classes that I am not a fan of though….

Group Projects

Seriously the worst thing ever. (actually my Nutrition project went very well, I was super impressed and surprised) My Intro to Novel group did not grasp the idea of deadlines, and now one is trying to blame me for one of her things not being done, even though I did 5 of the 9 items in our newspaper, along with editing and formatting the whole thing. Super awesome. (although, I just saw that one girl in my group is defending my work to the mean one, so that makes me feel better and less whiny about the whole thing)

Professors, teachers, all educational professionals why do you do this to us? It does not teach us responsibility or to work together, it teaches us to trust no one. Also, if I ignored deadlines like some of these people did, I would have been fired after one week at my job.

Blogging

The Tumblr version of aDifferentBrandOfCrazy turned two on Sunday! I am truly shocked there is still no one who wants to pay me for my sporadic writing. Truly shocked.

In honor of this most auspicious occasion. I am going to attempt to set my blogging schedule (I tried this before, it lasted all of 2.5 weeks, dedication) Mondays, Thursdays, the occasional Saturday (if I’m feeling crazy) My next goal is to put less things in parenthesis (just kidding) also, use more puns and continue to refuse to follow AP style (watch me spell out whatever numbers I want, two thousand thirty seven.5!)

Vacation!

Guess where I am going (in like seven weeks)…..

New England. One week on the other side of the country, spending time with one of my dearest friends who I don’t see nearly enough. Living on opposite sides of the country may have something to do with that, hmm.

New Hampshire (my boss said he never saw a person so excited about New Hampshire)…. Boston…. Cape Cod…. I can barely contain my excitement. When I booked my plane ticket I told my friend that this is one of the moments that if I were a happy crier, I would be totally crying,

I actually tried to go on this trip in the spring, on my break between spring and summer quarter, it didn’t work out, but a second chance came I took it. Besides don’t all the songs talk about Boston in the fall (or is that just VeggieTales?)

What fun and exciting things are there to do in that part out the country?

Complaining

Lately I have noticed the amount I complain has gone up and I don’t like it. I don’t really know when this started, or got to this level, but I need to work on it. The question is how? I usually just have one or two people who I will vent to, but that seems to be a growing group.

I’m thinking of doing a daily thankful list everyday or adding something to my thankfulness board everyday for a while to try to refocus my mind on the good things rather than the little annoyances. (I also want to start doing Thankful Thursday again, don’t hold me to it)

What do you think good ways to stop complaining are?

random thoughts on random subjects or Fun Sized Blogs

random thoughts on random subjects or Fun Sized Blogs

I’ve had a lot of little thoughts lately.  Some of these warrant more thought which I hope to give you in the near future (don’t hold your breathe)
But for now I thought I would give you some little snippets of what’s been on my mind.
I present to you some random thoughts on random subjects or as I probably shouldn’t call them (but most likely will) “fun sized blogs.

Lent

As you are probably aware, it is Lent. Growing up Lent wasn’t a thing (well, it was a thing, just not a thing we did.)
The last two years I have helped with the youth group at my church and we discuss Lent and all that goes a long with it during this season. Last year I very unsuccessfully tried to give up desserts and candy, but considering my birthday is during Lent, that quickly went down hill.

This year, I decided to give up reading blogs. Well, I am still reading blogs of personal friends, and never in my life have I been more annoyed they don’t post more. I have my blog subscriptions automatically filed with they come into my inbox and that file is taunting me every time I check my e-mail. TAUNTING ME.

Since this is only the second year I’ve tried giving something up for Lent, I am still figuring out what Lent is and what it means to me. It’s an exciting thing.

Celebration

I’ve been thinking a lot our parties and celebrations. I feel that as a culture we don’t celebrate enough. Sure we have a lot of party type things. But how often do those actually really celebrate the person, event, whatever.
I am trying to live a life of celebration. Celebrating the big things, birthdays, weddings, graduations, new jobs, and the like. But also the little things, friendships that stretch across a country, my youth girls, a good hair day, new bookshelves.

Maybe being aware of these things is celebration enough. I don’t know?

Birthdays!

Speaking of celebrations…. my birthday is in exactly one week.

But more importantly, one of my dearest friends birthday is today! right now! Twenty three! Yay Kimmie! We have been friends since the 5th grade and she just gets more and more awesome each year.

Go hunt her down, tell her happy birthday, bring her a cupcake!

Happy birthday to my dear friend Kimberly! (insert fireworks)

School

I am starting school in like one month. I am crazy nervous and excited. I am just one big ball of conflicting emotions about it.
Will I be able to work full-time and maintain a full-time student status?! We’ll find out.

Free

I haven’t given you an update on my one word for two-thousand thirteen. Mostly because I don’t know. I don’t know how well I am embracing my word. I like to think I am. I am trying to be intentional about trusting people and I feel like that is coming from a place of freedom. So hmm, I’m excited to see what will come with that.

Well, that’s all I have for you right now. what’s been on your mind as of late?

Thankful Thursday (thirteen)

Thankful Thursday (thirteen)

Today I am thankful for my job.

I have said many times that I really like my job, but it’s nothing that I am passionate about. This remains true.

So here are some reasons why my job is fantastic!

First the people. I work in a small office with only three people. Myself, the office manager and the executive director. Both are great to work with. I love that we get to go our for birthday lunches and Christmas dinners and all those things. They are both really supportive. I am blessed to have such great coworkers.

And secondly, my job allows me to do things that I love. I have been able to take vacations and I have been able to help with youth including taking kids to camp. My job allows me to be independent, I have my own apartment and pay all of my own bills and can stay out of debt. Since working here I have been able to take a vacation to Montana to visit a friend and another to California to watch my best friend graduate from college. And now I am, fingers crossed, going to New Hampshire in March to visit my best friend again.

I have been working here almost two years and while the work isn’t something I love, I truly love working here.
I am so blessed to work here.

Two thousand twelve

Two thousand twelve

And here we are again. The end of another year. Kissing two thousand twelve goodbye. Praying two thousand thirteen will be kind.
I said ( on multiple occasions ) the world can’t end 12-21-12 because the world needs to end on a high note and this is not the year for it. Two thousand twelve, my year of heartbreak and tears, my year of joy and belly laughs, my year of family and friends, my year of change, my year of cliché filled blogs.

So here, in not particular order, is my list of two thousand twelve and some of the joys that it brought.

  • California
  • Road trippin’
  • Last kisses
  • Apartment living
  • New neighbors
  • Full bookshelves
  • Red hair
  • Vegetarian
  • Two part-time jobs
  • One full-time job
  • Mustard colored tights
  • 5th act
  • Movies alone
  • Volunteering
  • Various and assorted old friends
  • Grocery shopping
  • Books, books, books!
  • Glitter
  • Youth group
  • Moving
  • Thrifting
  • Birthdays
  • Various and assorted new friends
  • Mason jars
  • New Car
  • Massages
  • Girls nights
  • Camps
  • Baking
  • New bookshelves
  • Twenty-two
  • Crockpot
  • Good food
  • Babies
  • Best friend’s graduation
  • Cheap wine
  • FroYo
  • Yard sales
  • Cardigans
  • Plays
  • Cheesy pictures
  • Grandparents
  • Stolen new car returned!
  • Doctor Who
  • Restoring benches
  • Real date!
  • The family
  • Bread baking
  • Laughing until crying

Here’s looking forward to two thousand thirteen, what a year it will be.

Looking Forward

Looking Forward

I’m always looking forward to something.

In high school when I would get stressed I would just think about something that was coming up and that I was looking forward to. Sometimes it was a small thing like the weekend or plans I had with a friend. Other times it was something bigger like a vacation or the end of the school year. And having that thing to look forward to always made what happening easier to get through.

I still do this now. I spent the last month and a half looking forward to going full-time at my first job and being able to quit the second job. Before that I was looking forward to moving into my own apartment. And before that, it was vacation. And before that it was something, anything so I could ignore life. the more unhappy or stressed I am the more I look for things to look forward to.

My heart is hurt, I look forward to finding a man. My job is stressful, I look forward to the weekend. I’m broke, I look forward to payday. I don’t know how to deal with life, I look forward to vacation where I don’t have to
You get the point.

When I started doing this, it was a good thing, it got me excited about things and took my mind off of things that were bad but now it’s gotten out hand.
Okay, more than out of hand… it’s unhealthy.

Sometimes it is to the point that I almost stop caring about what else is going on. I am so stressed, burnt out, hurt, whatever, that I no longer look for the good around me but I look forward to something that can no longer live up to the expectations in my head.
A few years ago I started making a point to look for beauty in everyday like and find God in the everyday. Now instead of looking for God I look for something to look forward to so I don’t have to really deal with what is weighing me down.

I’m going to attempt to stop looking forward and start finding joy in daily life. Stop thinking of something that is coming and start enjoying the things that are happening now. I’m going to stop ignoring life and start living it.

(ending blogs in a border-line cliche is the best!)