Streaming at Its Best

This past Prime Day, I bought an Amazon Fire TV Stick. I’ve wanted to get one for a while, but just couldn’t bring myself to spend $40 on it. Luckily, it only cost me $10. A much better price.

It took me a month to get around to setting it up, but I did and it’s working great so far. I’m super happy to finally be able to watch Amazon Prime Video on my TV instead of a tablet.

I’ve got some great TV days ahead.

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Sunny Days

It’s just too beautiful outside today to stay inside.

So, I’m gonna head outside and enjoy this wonderful weather.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Blackberry Festival

It’s that time again. Time to celebrate the humble blackberry with a three-day festival at the Clarksburg City Park. You can find all sorts of yummy treats, such as pies, cobblers, and cupcakes. Plus, there is live entertainment, handmade crafts, and a pet parade. A good time to be had by all.

I got some scrumptious blackberry cobbler

and some delicious local wine.

Have a festive weekend, everyone!

What A Visit!

I had a wonderful time! We went out quite a bit, going to parks and restaurants. We all went to a painting class where each of us painted the moon phase of our birthday.

My sister and I drank some lovely local wine…

and went on the daytime paranormal tour at The Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum (we even met a couple of ghosts).

Plus, we three girls got matching shoes.

It was a marvelous visit and I can’t wait to do it all again next year!

Hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!

Storytime: Brownie

There have always been animals in my life. Cats, dogs, hamsters, birds, even a guinea pig. My dad is an animal lover; my mom is not. He would always bring home random animals and she would just roll her eyes and end up taking care of them.

One of my favorite pets was a brown and white cat. He had two names, Brownie and Glover. Brownie because he had brown patches and Glover because he looked like he was wearing gloves (he was a polydactyl). Not totally original, but accurate.

We had him for many years. Every night, he would sleep above my head, massaging my scalp with his claws. It was soothing and always put me to sleep quickly.

Sometimes, while playing with Brownie, I would start meowing like him. My father would yell for the cat to be quiet and I would just laugh. After a while, he caught on and started asking Is that Kellie or the cat?? Again, it made me laugh.

I don’t remember what happened to Brownie. He probably died. All I know, is one day he was gone. I’m sure I was sad, but we had such a revolving door of animals, that I wouldn’t have stayed sad for long.

It’s possible that being surrounded by animals my whole childhood is what led to me having so many animals as an adult. Either that, or the fact that my husband is a bigger animal lover than even my dad. And that is saying something.

It’s Almost Time!

Last May, my baby sister Mary came out to visit us and attend my college graduation. Well, she enjoyed herself so much, that she is coming back – in three days! And this time, she’s bringing an extra visitor with her. I’m super stoked and can’t wait to see them both!

Since my family lives on the other side of the country, it’s always wonderful when one of them visits. Even more so when it’s more than one.

I hope they enjoy themselves as immensely as I know I will!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Something Bigger Than Me

Religion is a sensitive subject for most people, regardless of what their beliefs are. Personally, I find it difficult to explain my beliefs because they’re so varied. I consider myself to be eclectic. Essentially, this means that I take bits and pieces of several different belief systems and weave them together to create my very own personal tapestry of beliefs. To some people, this act is absolutely abhorrent. How dare I have the gall to pick apart religious teachings and only go by the ones that I like? Isn’t religion about taking every part of one belief system and following it explicitly, whether we like it or not?

Perhaps for some people, that way of practicing religion works. But not for me. I don’t think that I should be stifled by any part of my beliefs. If something rubs me the wrong way, then it’s clearly not something I want as part of my life. I believe that life is too short to be compelled to adhere to rules that feel are wrong just because someone else says I should. I’ve learned about many different religions including: Christianity, Buddhism, Witchcraft, Judaism, Hinduism, Islam, and Taoism, to name a few. Each one has positives and negatives to it.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with anyone who fully embraces one faith system and follows all the rules and tenets assigned to that particular religion. To each his or her own, I say.

As for me, I’ll continue to go with the pieces (be they from Buddhism, Hinduism, Witchcraft, Christianity, or whatnot) that make my soul feel alive and joyful. Otherwise, what’s the point? There’s plenty of negativity in the world already and I don’t need any of that as part of my spiritual practices. I mean, who does, really?

Sending positive vibes and cheerful thoughts to everyone for a happy weekend!

Change is Good

I love being able to change my outward appearance. Dying or cutting my hair, wearing makeup, painting my nails, even dressing in particular styles. These are all activities that allow me to express my inner self in a physical way. And I love it.

I recently decided that it was time for a change. This time, it was the color of my hair. About six months ago, I got it dyed a chestnut brown.

Since that time, it has faded to a mousy medium brown.

It lacked vibrancy, something which seemed to reflect the depression issues I’ve been dealing with for a while. But, that washed out color was no longer reflecting my inner-self. I’m starting to feel renewed and I wanted that change to be more on display.

Which is why I went with a bold new color.

Red.

I’ve gone red before in the past. In fact, the first time I ever colored my hair I went red. It was just before the start of my sophomore year of high school. We had just moved from Okinawa, Japan to Preppyville, California. It was also the first time I was going to a civilian school rather than a DoD school. I needed a change and a little extra courage, so my mum helped me dye my dishwater blonde hair to a light, natural red color. I’ve pretty much been hooked ever since.

The ability to make such bold, visible changes is empowering, to say the least. Sometimes, having just a modicum of control over one’s own environment is enough to shake out the cobwebs. To imbue life back where it belongs. And I’m all for making your own statement, whether anyone else likes it or not.

I feel good about myself and that’s all that really matters.

I hope everyone enjoys their weekend as much as I am!

Why?

I’ve been thinking lately about accomplishments. I have all these things in my life that I would like to accomplish, but for one reason or another, I never do. Whether it’s because I forget, I’m too lazy, or just can’t seem to get motivated, the end result is the same. Nothing changes.

For example, I feel like I need to lose about 10-15 lbs. The thing is that I haven’t altered my diet or exercise habits in any way, yet I’m still disappointed when nothing changes. It’s completely illogical. And I don’t know how to fix it.

I know it’s mostly a mental thing – I have some kind of block or something that seems to be holding me back. I realize that this sounds like a lame excuse, but mentality is incredibly important when it comes to trying to adjust behaviors.

So, the question remains: how do I overcome my own mentality and convince myself to start creating positive changes in my life?

I have no idea. That’s the problem. There are hundreds, if not thousands of books, blogs, podcasts, and vlogs that aim to educate us on how to ‘become more productive’ or ‘overcome mental hurdles’ or ‘find more time in the day’ but each one seems to fall short for me.

Why?

Clearly the answer is me. I’m unable (or unwilling) to take the advice given and use it to my own advantage. I am holding myself back. I am standing in my own way. I am the hurdle I need to overcome.

That is some terribly depressing information to realize about myself. Which makes me even less willing or able to convince myself to be more proactive with adopting changes.

It’s a never-ending loop of self-destruction. I don’t try because I’m getting in my way and I’m getting in my way because I don’t try. A total catch-22. I’m stuck in a roundabout and can’t seem to find the exit sign or off ramp.

What to do?

For starters, admitting that I have a problem is a pretty good first step. But, it’s only useful if I manage to move past this first step and onto another. I need to find my ‘why.’ My ultimate reason that what I want to change is worthwhile. That elusive motive that gives me enough purpose to actually follow through on something, anything.

Better health isn’t a good enough reason, apparently. Nor is fitting into a smaller dress size. It makes me wonder how other people manage to find their raison d’être.

Does it come in a flash of insight, an epiphany that hits them like a stack of bricks? Is it more like a slow realization that unfolds over time? Either way, mine has been evading me for a long time and doesn’t show signs of being found any time soon.

Perhaps it’s all for the best. After all, without this internal struggle going on, I might not have had anything to write about today. I just hope that I find my ‘why’ eventually. Sooner rather than later would be nice.

I hope everyone has an enlightening weekend!

Happy Father’s Day!

As a woman who has dealt with infertility issues, I know how hard it is to make it through a parental holiday, namely Mother’s Day. What I forget sometimes is that it’s also hard on my husband. He wants to be a father just as much as I want to be a mother. So, Father’s Day is difficult for him.

I don’t usually write about issues that aren’t my own, but I feel like the topic of infertility is almost always directed at women and, perhaps unintentionally, men get left out of the conversation. Their feelings are just as valid and need to be recognized. I know it can be hard to talk about these things, believe me, I get it. But it should be noted that it’s ok for men to be part of the infertility topic. In fact, it’s vital. They are half of the equation after all.

So, to all the men who long to be fathers, but haven’t quite gotten there yet, I feel your pain and want you to know that your feelings have merit. Today may be challenging, but you will get through it. You may have to hide away from social media and people in general, I know I do, but you are not alone. There is support out there if you need it.

I hope everyone’s weekend is better than expected!