Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The one with all the links



"Tomorrow is always fresh, with no mistakes in it." - Anne Shirley

Isn't New Year's Day like, the ULTIMATE fresh day?  I love it!  Yesterday my husband asked me if I wanted ice cream - I told him "Of course not! Today is, like, International Dieters Day, or something!" and then I caved and ate the ice cream. (Yum.)

I have been excited about Tracy & crew's Working Mom Resolution link-up over at her place since I heard about it, but then I developed a nasty case of resolution block. 

So I'm slightly late to the party.

I like to have a theme to my resolutions and this year it is:  RELATIONSHIPS

So, I kind of suck at relationships.  There are a number of factors that contribute to this:  an autoimmune disease with its unpleasant and sudden flare-ups, and all my acronyms:  OCD, SAD, GAD, & MDD (that's Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder & Major Depressive Disorder for the uninitiated) - and while I vasciliate between being comforted by and trying to rise above my numerous disorders - I have decided that this year I am going to find ways to nurture relationships despite being crazy myself.

I think all these things contribute to my undying love of social media.  Social Media is perfect for folks like me, who can't go into most social situations without a stiff drink (or 2 glasses of wine) first - it's all on my terms, I can do it in my PJ pants, and I can edit what I say to my heart's content!  Perf!  So, naturally, most of my resolutions are social media based.

Before I can tackle any of that, I have to look at what other factors are holding me back.  Work-wise, I need to work smarter.  I've got "work hard for long hours" down.  But in hindsight I see numerous times where I could have delegated, or formed a committee, or just plain asked for some help and the result would not have been compromised. (Yeah, I'm a control freak.  OCD, remember?)  So this year, I need to harness my RELATIONSHIPS at work to get the assistance I need.  Less hours and less stress might mean that I can actually focus on these other plans in a real way, and not continue my current pattern which is: work, zumba (sometimes), shower, pass out on couch.  And y'all?  I got a lot of favors I can call in.  A lot.

I also have to work on my RELATIONSHIP with myself.  I need to take better care of me, and in a fun way - I need to deep condition my hair.  I need to paint my nails and wear new earrings.  I need to spend 5 minutes with my mascara wand in the morning because longish lashes make me feel like a million bucks.  And I need to make better food choices.  My goal is to log in at myfitnesspal daily, and track according to my goals.  I also will be walking the Cap10K in April!

Working on my RELATIONSHIP with God is a given - I've joined the #shereadstruth movement and am LOVING their devotionals & the community that is out there! 

Ok - now onto the social stuff:

Here's a secret:  I don't love Facebook like I used to.  I was honored to participate in Darling Magazine's Beauty Revolution on 1/1/2013:  a bunch of us ladies made our profile picture one of us without makeup in an effort to quell the jealousy and comparision that happens so often on the facebook.  Here's mine:
  

So, I resolve to not be on facebook quite so much, and, when I am, to participate in communities more - Mama's Comfort Camp comes to mind... :)

I do, however, adore Twitter.  I want to increase my followers to 700, because that means that I am engaging more folks.  (I'm at 611 right now...hint...hint...if you are a real person, I follow back! @tiffanykummer)

I also want to increase my presence on G+ - I love it when I'm in there, but that is so rare!  Now that the blog and the profile are linked, I really hope that motivates me to get over there more.

And then there is the blog.  Ay, caramba.  This year I would love to develop an actual following.  Right now, 2 people subscribe to my blog, and I have a whopping 13 likes on facebook. That is sodapressing.  To fix the blog, I have joined BloggyMoms "1 year to a better blog" - which should make me a better blogger, I've set up reminders for Monday Listicles (my fave link-up) and will be reading and commenting on a heckuvalot more blogs in 2013.  Phew!

I also plan on cultivating some IRL RELATIONSHIPs too - I'd love to meet up with some local Austin tweeps, and I am joining a monthly bookclub!  Boo-yah!

So, that's that, and I'm both tired and energized just thinking about it all!  Cheers to 2013, y'all!  Make it GREAT!

TK

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Say What?




I started a reoccurring task on my calendar so that each Monday it pops up and tells me to go check out the topic for MONDAY LISTICLES that week...I love love love this link up so much, but, I get busy and excuse, complain, excuse and it's Thursday and I feel seriously late to the party. 

This week's topic is songs - and I decided a little twist was in order:  I'm writing the top 10 songs where I have misheard the lyrics!

1.) Lights by Ellie Goulding
I hear her say "...they shag me when I'm alone..." when she actually says "...you shine it when I'm alone..." - I am blaming the British accent, and my mom, who mentioned this and now I can't hear it any other way.

2.)  Waterfalls by TLC
As a 6th grader I heard them sing "Don't go Jason Waterfall, please stick to the rhythm and the love that you're used to".  They actually sing "Don't go chasing waterfalls, please stick to the rivers and the lakes that you're used to" which, yaknow, actually makes sense.  I blame youth, and the low sound quality of cassette tapes. 

3.) Saturday Night's Alright (for Fighting) by Elton John
This is one I will NEVER correct.  He actually says "I may use a little muscle to get what I need/
I may sink a little drink and shout out "She's with me!"  How do I sing it?  "I may use a little muscle to get what I need I may sink a little drink and shout out "TIFFANY!"  Like a boss.

4.) Hotel California by The Eagles
Irony time! Don Henley sings "Her mind was Tiffany twisted" and I can't get it right.  Even when I know it is coming (hello, my name, in a song!) I still sing "Her mind was tipsy and twisted" usually followed by "oh damn!"

5.) Deck the Halls
So, this is how my son, 5, hears and sings this classic Christmas song "Deck the malls with mouse and holly" because he doesn't know what "boughs of holly" are.  Come to think of it, I'm not sure I do either. 

6.) Iko Iko by the Belle Stars
This one I actually get right nowadays because I looked it up.  I mean no freakin' way they really sing "Your fat boy and my fat boy, sitting by the fire..."  They don't.  But the flag boys? They sit together by the fire.

7.) We Didn't Start the Fire by Billy Joel
Oh there is so very much to mishear in this song.  I for one am not sure what a "Children of the Little Mind" is, but I do know what "Children of Thalidomide" are.  But I had to look it up to know I was singing it incorrectly, and I still mess it up.

8.) Forget You by Ce-Lo Green
I would sing "Yeah I'm sorry/I can't afford a Ferrari/But that don't mean I can't fix your hair"  I am pretty sure my logic was that he was like "I don't have a nice car, but, here - take this $$ and go get yo hair did."  My husband, who is the KING of misheard lyrics (like sometimes I wonder if he has ears) corrected me and let me know that Ce-Lo might not have a Ferrari but he can get me there.  In his hooptymobile. Sidenote:  why does he WHINE in that song?  "Whhhhyyy whyyyy?" Grow up!

9.) Dream On by Aerosmith
I about came out of my skin when Aerosmith did this song live in Austin.  It is my FAVE Aerosmith song EVER.  (Fun fact:  Husband sang this song IN CHURCH - for reals.)  So, imagine my surprise (no pun intended, Dude who looks like a Lady) when I found out they actually say "Every time when I look in the mirror/All these lines on my face getting clearer/The past is gone/It went by, like dusk to dawn" when all along I have been singing "Every time when I look in the mirror/All these lines on my face getting clearer
The past is gone/Midnight mile kjakljljlkj dusk to dawn..."  Yeah, I mumbled a bit in there.  But I was so sure of that Midnight mile part.  What the heck, Steven Tyler?

10.)  Prettiest Girls by Pharrell
So I lurve the movie "Despicable Me" and I also love this song - super catchy!  My version of the lyrics are far more pessimistic than his: "my life is so amazing/ain't it strange how it got that way/well if happiness was standing at your door/i mean tell me what would you say?" Ah yes - an amazing life.  That is odd.  He actually sees a teachable moment:  "my life is so amazing/let me explain how it got that way/well if happiness was standing at your door/i mean tell me what would you say?"

So there they are, my personal 10 most misheard song lyrics & my glorious return to Monday Listicles.  See you next week! :)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Worth It.

If I had a dollar for every time someone lamented about my pretty face, I could afford designer-brand make-up.  It's not a compliment, y'all.  Because "oh, but you have such a pretty face!" sounds like "tisk tisk, what a waste of that pretty face - it's on a  fat body."  (Come on big girls, you know you can relate...)

But you know what the real problem with the idea that a pretty face on a fat body is a waste?  It's that I BELIEVED that shit for so long.  Too long.  Most of my adult life long.  Decades long. Deciding that I was unworthy of feeling pretty because I'm fat has to be the ultimate in cutting off your nose to spite your face.

So, Fuck that.

At about this time last year I was writing new year's resolutions which might be my most favorite thing to do ever. (A list!  Of self-improvement! Exalted selfishness! Where do I sign up?!)  And my resolution last year was to "get ready" - seriously.   It was to put on makeup.  It was to stop going to the grocery store in not cute yoga pants and over sized sweatshirts.  It was to use smell-good lotion & perfume on regular-ass days, not just special occasions.  For serious, y'all - I was 29 years old and writing these things as goals. SMH.

Results:  well, 2/3 ain't bad.  What can I say; I love my yoga pants.

But something else happened. 

I started dressing for my body - the one I have, not the one I don't.  I started choosing colors that flatter my skin tone and coloring.  I started ignoring the number on the tags.  I started wearing smelly lotion & perfume, cute underwear, doing deep conditioning treatments on my hair and having my nails done & my eyebrows waxed (there should be 2 - who knew?!).  And you know what?

I'm pretty.  Not just my face.  All of me.  And I feel that.  And I carry myself differently as a result.

I started seriously working on this transformation when I hit 30.  And over the past 6 months or so, the nature of compliments I receive has changed.  I haven't heard the dreaded "pretty face" comment since.  I haven't had anyone ask me if I've "lost weight because something is different about you." (another doozy).  But people I know from all over the place, in all different parts of my life, have all simultaneously began using the same word to describe me - all of me - they've said:

"You look beautiful." 

I hear that all the time now - from friends and family members and coworkers, and my heart swells and my eyes tear every time.  I'm getting there, y'all.  I really am.

Now it's your turn:  do you ever feel like you are undeserving of something, anything(!), because of something else about you?         

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Monday Listicles: 10 ways I am the same or different than my younger self

It's that time again...time for me to get around to the Monday Listicles...on Wednesday.  Today's topic?  10 ways I am the same or different than my younger self.

1.) I still procrastinate.  There is no fuel for getting things done than last minute panic.
2.) I am still a perfectionist.
3.) I am still reliable to a fault.
4.) I have more of a backbone than my younger self
5.) But I am still kind of a pushover.
6.) I am still funny.
7.) I am still sarcastic, but more self-deprecating than cutting.
8.) I am more tired than my younger self.
9.) I have more of a sense of purpose than my younger self.
10.) I am less serious than my younger self.

What about you?  What makes you the same or different than a younger you?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Jealousy

Jealousy is really ugly. Especially when it's coupled with shame. And anxiety. I'm just so tired. And stressed. I'm reading a Brene Brown book right now. She says, essentially, "Guilt says I did something wrong. Shame says I am something wrong." I get the idea that my level of joy in life is not dictated by my circumstances. But I've had issue with the idea that perhaps my level of dislike toward myself can be separate from the things I do. That just because I feel something doesn't make me that something. Just because I hate my reaction to something doesn't mean I have to hate myself. I can be separate from that reaction. Responsible, but separate. The inside of my head is a rough place to be lately.

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Verge...

I made an appointment with my GP for next week (her first available) because I can FEEL it.

The insatiable fatigue.

The headache just behind my eye, that wraps around the back of my head.

The extreme hunger, followed by the too full feeling, followed by the strong desire to vomit - all without having eaten anything.

The brain fog, never alleviated by either sleep or caffeine.  The losing my train of thought mid-sentence.  The constant closing of my eyes to try to center myself and recall what I was trying to say.

The sighing and the yawning - constantly - thereby giving off the impression that I am either completely exasperated or totally bored.

The pressure in my chest that makes me feel like I can't take a deep breath. 

My body is gearing up for an anxiety attack.  This has been going on since last Sunday.  The longest I have ever "geared up" before now is 3 days.  I am totally freaked out because I don't know when or where it will happen or how long it will last.  

Don't tell me that being anxious about being anxious doesn't help me be less anxious.  I know that.

So I breathe, as deeply as I can.

I sleep (I'm averaging 11 hours per night this week).

I am trying to maintain my routine even though I feel like I am teetering right on the verge...

...of completing losing control.   

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Mission: Display the Beautiful Things

A couple of weeks ago, I went on vacation.  Well, sort of.  My three-part plans became two-parts modified when my mom and I needed to stay in our first destination to care for my grandmother, who broke her hip.

My grandma is one spry lady - she is going to be 87 in about a month, and she still lives on her own.  She refuses much help from anyone (hey! I come by it naturally!) and so while she was unable to do anything about it recuperating my mom and I took it upon ourselves to do some household chores that she would be unable to get to due to her broken "pubic bone" (she referred to her pelvis this way once, and while accurate, we warned her that if she went to the doctor for a follow up and told them this she may get an entirely different exam than the one she was expecting! HA!)

In the process, I discovered that she has some really beautiful things.  And most of them are in a closet.

I thought about my own things at home - things that I would say are beautiful or meaningful to me or my family.  I have plenty of them, and where were they?  In a box.  In my closet.  The irony was not lost on me.

I had a blank wall over my TV crying out for something - and I decided it was time for that wall to house the meaningful things.
Exhibit A:  The blank wall.
We started by sorting through all the items we had pulled from the closet - and decided which ones we wanted to use the most.  We had some ideas for items we didn't have off hand - for example, a copy of part of Mozart's Mass in B Minor or a specific hymn that is Hubby's favorite.  We marked some frames for those.

Then I started creating paper templates of all of the items so that I could arrange them on the wall before we made a bunch of holes in the walls.  One incarnation of the template wall looked like this:

Yo Gabba Gabba ensures that Mommy gets to work on the wall!
Once it was arranged (and arranged again, and again, and yet again) Dan started putting up the items using the marks for nail holes I made when I was building the templates.  Immediately we could tell we had something special.  The finished product is a wall of my meaningful, beautiful things...and now I have a lot more closet space, to boot!

Each item has a story!

 The addition of the gallery wall has made our home so much cozier, and just in time for fall and cooler weather.  I love having all my meaningful things at a glance - this project took a whole day, but it was well-inspired and totally worth it!