perception vs. reality

tonight i have a date with Vince {Camuto} and Calvin {Klein}. i suspect B will probably tag along too.

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tonight we are attending a semi-formal event to benefit the chosen charity of B’s med school class. glamorous, right?

welllllll…

that’s the funny thing about blogging. from this here keyboard, i can construct a post to get you to believe *almost* anything. i carefully curated my new dress and shoes for the photos above. it was silly. i moved it all around, shot from different angles, and then cropped/enhanced the photos.

afterwards, i put everything back where it belonged and didn’t think a thing about it. a few minutes later, i walked by and caught sight of this…

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not so glamorous, right? all i could do was laugh. laughter was the only appropriate response. because this, my friends, this is my life. a new shiny dress hanging next to my bathrobe. clean laundry hanging on the door that i just canNOT get motivated to put away. a stack of clothes on the floor (!) that i haven’t had time to take to the dry cleaners. the laundry basket behind the door is full. the floor needs swept, the rug needs vacuumed and…my name brand dress was on CLEARANCE! i timed it just right and caught the store trying to get rid of the leftover New Years Eve dresses in order to make room for the bright, cheery Easter dresses. honesty is much more refreshing, right? i hope so because honestly…

i. am. exhausted.

you know how you can bust your butt in the gym for 6 months, get in the best shape of your life, and then after just a couple of weeks of no exercise you find yourself horribly out of shape? (which i totally am right now.) i have decided that the same goes for work. i am out of work shape. i think i’m getting back into work shape, but not without some aches and pains and a lot of sweat. i am working long days, trying to get a handle on my new territory, and doing loads of training. one day i actually came home, took a bath, and was in my pajamas by 7:00pm. also- i can no longer make it through a television show. and we watch exciting shows! never fails, at about the 40 minute mark, B looks over and i am out cold. does anyone know how Blacklist, Elementary, or The Americans ended over the last 2 weeks? neither do i. while telling my sister about my predicament, she commiserated and said that she felt the same way after returning to work from maternity leave. that made me feel a little better…right up until i remembered that she was tired because she had just given birth to a tiny human! i just have a tiny fat kitty who is largely self sufficient. waaaaaah! i don’t even recognize this girl. but you know what? this girl is happy. this girl is employed. i am truly loving my job and ultimately feel very satisfied by this new super busy pace of life. even if it means i might have to spend all of Saturday catching up on laundry.

but today, today is Friday! so tonight, i will slip into my gold shiny dress and gorgeous new heels, i will apply my make up with a heavy hand (eyeliner covers all sorts of exhaustion), and i will go out with my man. because on Friday nights i get to be young(ish). i get to be fun(ish). i might even get to dance. not really though because i’m pretty (ish) at that too. but i will definitely have a cocktail. i have earned a cocktail.

but imma need a nap first.

dress: Vince Camuto (seriously, if you have a dress wearing occasion coming up…so cheap!)
shoes: Calvin Klein (DSW. sorry, no link. they weren’t on the website.)

UPDATED:
i made it til 1:00am! fun was had by all! the Rice Hotel is gorgeous and i’m kicking myself for not taking more photos. here’s a couple…

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happiness is…a night out.
Natalie

food is love

i plan to spend Valentine’s Day getting my car serviced! kidding. kind of. i will only spend *most* of Valentine’s Day getting my car serviced. she’s due for an oil change and i scheduled to get the windows tinted afterwards. since all of that will probably take a while, the dealership agreed to loan me a car. so really, i will probably drive myself to the mall and spend most of V Day shopping. no complaints about that!

then we plan to spend the evening cooking. B and i have a unique take on Valentine’s Day. we typically don’t do gifts or plan anything elaborate, but it’s fun to plan something special to eat. i think food is our love language. and we absolutely loooooove to eat out, we just don’t loooooove to eat out on Valentine’s Day. i don’t know…something about the crowds, the rushed service- it’s just too much pressure. it stresses us out. wow. the longer i type, the older and more crotchety we sound. ha! we are exciting people, i promise! so in lieu of dining out this year, we decided to cook a special meal at home. and no one does special meals better than Ina Garten. i received one of her cookbooks for Christmas, but haven’t had the time to try many of the recipes. actually, the only one i have tried was the chocolate cake with mocha frosting and omg. it was decadent. i baked it before a tough medical school week in which B had 4 (!) exams. because chocolate is the only way to cope during a week like that. see? told ya- food is our love language.

this pic was taken pre-baking as evidenced by the lack of flour on my clothes and chocolate on my face.

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so here’s my Ina Garten inspired menu that my sweet Valentine and i have planned:

Rosemary Rack of Lamb

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i have never in my life made rack of lamb. Ina makes it look pretty easy though. we will see. *fingers crossed*

Easy Tzatziki

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i didn’t even know what tzatziki was until we moved to Houston and ate Greek food at Niko Niko’s. safe to say, i’m a fan.

we are still trying to decide on sides. there will definitely be restaurant style mashed potatoes…coarsely mashed, lots of garlic. yummy. but i still need a vegetable. leaning towards asparagus, brussel sprouts (that one does NOT thrill B), or maybe a greek-style salad with strawberries and feta.

for dessert i’m thinking chocolate covered strawberries or just to keep it really simple, maybe even picking up a mini bundt cake from Nothin’ Bundt Cakes. have you tried that place? oh my goshhhhhh. beyond delicious. and i know myself well enough to know that a nice dinner and a homemade dessert is just too much pressure.

hope we can pull it all off. i’ll report back…

to continue with the food theme, i thought it might be fun to do a foodie inspired photo card for B. because you know i’m not spending $4 on a real card. here’s what i got so far:

B, i love you more than a fat kid loves…

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you and i will be together…

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and i’m glad that Lola is living proof that you will still love me when i get big and…

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that’s all i got so far. whatcha think? romantic, eh?

whatever love language you happen to speak- gifts, flowers, dinner out, dinner in, cuddling on the sofa, hanging with friends, skydiving (i met a girl this week who is going skydiving with her boyfriend! seriously! so rad.)- however YOU like to celebrate Valentines Day, i hope it’s super sweet.

happiness is…a full heart AND a full tummy.
Natalie

song of the day- Monday edition

this is me- well, the cyberspace version of me- stomping into your bedroom, flicking on the light switch, and saying in my best singsongy voice, “it’s time for…

“SONG OF THE DAAAAAAAY!”

(for the backstory on song of the day, click here.)

this is my JAM y’all. my happy song if you will. hope it makes you happy too. and maybe even makes you dance a little.

WAKE UP! WAKE UP! WAKE UUUUUUP!

if you’re still all sleepyface after that one, watch this adorable viral vid. i dare you not to feel enthusiastic about your work day/school day afterwards. how fun is this teacher?

and just for giggles- Uptown Funk even causes Ellen to sing and dance…on the treadmill. this is totally going to be me this evening. watch out rec center. i’m coming for ya.

feeling good? we got this, y’all. Monday ain’t got nothin’ on us.

i’m taking my cues from Bruno today cuz i’m…

stylin’ while in, livin’ it up in the city.

don’t believe me just watch.

happiness is…Monday morning. (whaaaat? oh yeah, i said it.)
Natalie

How I Wore It- Part 3 & $100 Pink Blush Giveaway

today is the third and final post of…

How I Wore It

a style series collaboration with Pink Blush and 4 fashionable blogger friends- Samantha, Deidre, Medge, and Lauryn

(if you missed part 1 and 2, click here and here.)

♦♦♦

if i had it my way, this is how i would dress every. single. day. of my life. forever and ever amen. remember my requirements for ‘play‘ clothes? comfortable + fun + edgy. this colorblock dress is flowy and oh-so-comfortable. i love the muted tones and modern look of it. and the faux leather jacket? come on! adds sooooo much edge. throw in a stack of bracelets, killer heels, bright red lips, and boom! ready for a fun night out. as a a matter of fact, when B takes me to the Bush concert in March (SHHHH…he doesn’t know this yet!) i am going to slip back into this exact same outfit. rock on!

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pink blush dress

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colorblock dress: Pink Blush
faux leather jacket: Pink Blush
tights: Express
shoes: Gianni Bini
bracelets: Alex & Ani, Lily & Laura
lipstick: MAC, Russian Red

this week has been FUN! thanks for all the love, dear readers! also- how gorgeous is Houston? gosh i love this city. these photos were taken in the Sculpture Garden at the Museum of Fine Arts. all photo cred goes to my dear hubby B, who in the midst of a crazy week (4 exams! #medschoolproblems) was willing to walk around with his bride and snap silly pics. he must love me or something. ;)

i can’t wait to see how my blogger girls styled this one up! click below to take a look…

Samantha Elizabeth
Deidre Emme
Medge
Lauryn

annnnnnd this is your LAST CHANCE to register for the $100 Pink Blush giveaway! don’t miss out! winner will be announced on Friday.

ENTER ⇓

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Natalie

How I Wore It- Part 2 & $100 Pink Blush Giveaway!

welcome to the second installment of…

How I Wore It

a style series collaboration with Pink Blush and 4 fashionable blogger friends- Samantha, Deidre, Medge, and Lauryn

(if you missed part 1, click here.)

♦♦♦

for this one, i recruited the help of my baby sister. welllll, less recruited and more bossed. and then bribed. but hey- i am the big sister, she is the baby sister. those of you with siblings (especially sisters!) know exactly how this goes. the middle sister and i got pretty good over the years at getting the baby to do whatever we wanted. our favorite line is, “Abbie will do it!” hehe. however it came to be, i am so happy that she came to visit and was willing to play dress-up for my blog. it was like having a life size Barbie doll. soooo fun! you wanna know what really makes me mad though? when we lived under the same roof, we never wore the same size! (there’s 10 years between us.) but now that we live several hundred miles apart? same. darn. size. sometimes life just ain’t fair, y’all. but i showed her a really good time in an effort to entice her to move to Houston. we could instantly double our wardrobes and i just so happen to have big matchmaking plans for her and JJ Watt. ;)

my Sis’s style is a mixture of vintage, bohemian, and just all around Texas gal. (you outta see her boot collection! drool worthy!) we had fun styling up Pink Blush’s dusty pink knit sweater a couple of different ways. it’s perfection with her skin tone and blonde hair! of course, it doesn’t hurt that the girl is a total knockout.

thanks again for your help, Barbie! er uhhhh, i mean Abbie. ;)

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sweater: Pink Blush
leopard dress: H&M
tights: Express
shoes: Toms
earrings: Kendra Scott
necklace: White Plum

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pink blush abbie scarf

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sweater: Pink Blush
scarf: Pink Blush
jeans: American Eagle
boots: Gianni Bini
bracelets: Alex & Ani

and just for fun, here are a few photos from our joint photo sessions over the weekend. sisters are the best, y’all!

before…

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after…

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i love Pink Blush, my sister now loves Pink Blush, and i know you will love Pink Blush too!

make sure to check out how my blogger gal pals styled up the dusty pink sweater too. seriously, these gals are fantastic and have such class and style.

Samantha Elizabeth
Deidre Emme
Medge
Lauryn

and DO NOT FORGET to register to win the $100 giveaway! cha-ching!

ENTER ⇓

a Rafflecopter giveaway

happiness is…playing dress-up.
Natalie

How I Wore It Style Series & $100 Pink Blush Giveaway!

i am absolutely thrilled to kick off a super fun collaboration with Pink Blush and 4 other lovely bloggers today! welcome to the first post of a three-part series entitled…

How I Wore It 

♦♦♦

at this point in my life, defining my sense of style shouldn’t be all that complicated. i’ve had a few years to get to know myself after all. but honestly, if asked to sum up my personal style in just a few words, my response would be…it depends. vague, i know. my closet is literally split down the middle. on the right- work clothes. on the left- play clothes. i have a suit-wearing kind of job which typically requires structured, polished, and classic pieces. which i love. but on the weekends i loosen up a little (or a lot) and i want to wear clothes that are comfortable, fun, and even a little bit edgy. which i also love. safe to say, i just love clothes. period.

but every now and then, on one of those rare, glorious shopping days, i find clothes perfect for either side of the closet. take a look below to see how i styled a couple of adorable items from Pink Blush to create looks for both work and play.

for work:


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pink blush work

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blue blouse: Pink Blush
black/gold cardigan: Pink Blush
pencil skirt: Express
tights: Express
belt: Target
booties: Gianni Bini
earrings: Kendra Scott
bracelets: Lily & Laura, Alex & Ani

PS. i recently wore this cardigan to a work meeting layered over an olive green silk blouse with a gold zipper detail and skinny leg dress slacks. it looked so pretty! it would look fab with skinny jeans and black pumps too!

 for play:


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pink blush play 3

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blue blouse: Pink Blush
vest: Express
skinny jeans: Express
boots: MIA
earrings: Kendra Scott
bracelets:Lily & Laura, Alex & Ani

the real issue now is…i think i need to add a third rack to my closet! hmmm, i wonder if B is up for a little project? ;)

make sure to check out how these 4 beautiful, fashionable blogger friends styled the same pieces!

Samantha Elizabeth
Deidre Emme
Medge
Lauryn

and whatever you do, DO NOT leave this happy little blog without entering to win a $100 gift card to Pink Blush. then you too can buy multi-functional tops and jackets which in turn cause you to obsess over the sudden lack of organization in your closet. a problem we should all be so lucky to encounter. besides the fact that new clothes, you know, make you look hot. right? come back Wednesday and Thursday to see outfits #2 and #3. winner will be announced on Friday! okay, bye now.

ENTER ⇓

a Rafflecopter giveaway

happiness is…new clothes.
Natalie

song of the day

i have an assignment for you.

but first, a little background story…

i am a nightmare to wake up in the morning. like seriously, you could spend an 8 hour sleep cycle trapped in a post-apocalyptic world being chased by a herd of zombies with only one bullet left in the chamber and still…having to deal with me upon waking is worse. a couple of people can confirm this for you. the first being my Dad, the second is B. but today, i want to tell you about my Dad’s method and the origination of a little thing i came to know of as ‘Song of the Day.’ growing up, Dad generally gave me at least one courtesy wake-up call in the morning. you know, he’d kindly stick his head into my room and say, “Nat, time to get up.” but i never got up. 10 or so minutes later, he’d flick on the lights and say again, “seriously Nat, time to get up.” by the third wake-up call, it was time to pull out the big guns. he would stomp in all happy (no one wakes up happier than my Dad) and exclaim in a sing-songy voice, “it’s time for Song of the Day.” he would select a CD from his own personal collection (always classic rock), load it in to the stereo alllll the way across the room, crank up the volume, and then leave. just walk out. mean, right? i could only lay there and moan with my pillow over my head for so long before finally deciding to stumble out of bed to silence the stereo. or at least turn it down. seriously, it would shake the room. but you know what? once i was over the shock of jolting awake to electric guitars and drum solos, i found that waking up to rock and roll is actually kind of awesome. it became a game around our house. what song would he choose next? to this day, i can’t hear Cheap Trick’s “I Want You to Want Me” (it’s in the Song of the Day hall of fame) without smiling, singing along, and dancing like a crazy person. that song makes me ridiculously happy.

so since it’s Monday and Mondays always call for a Song of the Day, i have one just for you. i realize this would have been way more appropriate to share with you first thing this morning, but since i am writing this with wet hair, no makeup on, and while sipping on coffee, i figured early afternoon would suffice. ;)

i give to you my new favorite jam- “Fear” by Blue October. fear can be an overriding emotion. it’s paralyzing and can sometimes keep me from doing things that i want to do. this song is an anthem of sorts. it reminds me to be brave. Mondays require bravery. amiright?

and in honor of my Dad, who loves me in spite of the fact that i was a butthead teenager who made him late to work all the time, who taught me to believe in myself, who still listens to rock and roll every day, and who has given me what i think is impeccable taste in music ;), i give you- “I Want You to Want Me” by Cheap Trick. i dare you not to smile. it’s impossible.

happiness is…music in the morning.
Natalie

resolute…or not

first selfie session of 2015:

attempt #1: look! smile! eh? whaaaaat?

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attempt #2: much better! though i must confess, #1 is probably more ‘us’ anyway. caught unaware and kind of silly.

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either way, Happy New Year! i know, i know, we are already 9 days in. hey, i never claimed to be prompt.

everything is certainly NEW around here this week. i started my new job (woohoo!), B started a new semester of medical school (yay!), and of course it was the first full week of the new year (yippee!). i loooooove new beginnings! it all feels so fresh and exciting and the anticipation of what *could* happen gives me butterflies.

as promised in last week’s Friday Fun post (read it here…it includes excerpts from my personal journal *gasp*), i have spent a considerable amount of time thinking about my New Year’s resolutions for 2015. but the more i thought about resolutions, the less resolute i became. about everything. i could not think of one thing that felt inspiring, motivating, or even relevant to my life. well, other than the usual suspects which are so incredibly boring that i can say them in 4 or less words…eat less bad food. eat more good food. go to gym. write more. read more. do more. be more. ugh! snoozefest, right? i just couldn’t get excited. and really, am i ever going to stick to anything that i can’t get excited about in the first place? big fat nope. in my quest for motivation, i even went back and reviewed last years resolutions…

eat organically- sounds all healthy and well-intentioned until you’re unemployed. yep, out the window.

get fit- this one waxes and wanes for me. always has, always will. did i gain weight? no. am i ‘fit’? no.

play more- hurrah! we actually did this! we played so much that fun actually become a part of our lifestyle. as it should have been all along, i suppose.

write more- i didn’t crank out near as many blogs as i would have liked to, but i feel proud of the content that i did write.

overall, my resolutions weren’t an utter failure. but still, did i even remember them a year later? big fat nope. i guess i am at an impasse. it almost feels defeatist not to claim resolutions or goals over this new year, but i am not a defeatist. nuh-uh, not this girl. but it also feels insincere to make a bunch of resolutions that i don’t feel all that invested in. what to do?

well, i went to church. (i promise i won’t get all preachy on you, okay? nobody likes a Bible beater.) but it was there, during the first prayer and worship gathering of the year that i realized how little control i had over 2014. i made goals and plans and resolutions. i put it on my blog for all the world to see. then i missed the mark. but my prayers? my deepest, longing prayers were answered in 2014. every. single. one. i don’t say that to boast about my perfect life because it is anything but. in fact, the couple of years leading up to 2014 were haaaaaard. like, give you a stomach ulcer kind of hard. but 2014, it was chock full of all the good things. still hard at times and crazy for sure, but full of goodness.

i can’t anticipate what 2015 will bring. after days and days of thought (well, 9 of them to be exact) ;), i ultimately decided not to make any resolutions this year. i can only hope that this year is full of all the same goodness as last year…but in a less insane, change-everything-about-your-life kind of way. know what i mean? i would like to settle for a while. to plant roots in this city i have already come to love. to deepen relationships. to be a better wife, daughter, sister, friend. to continue to support my B in the best way i know how. to find my place at work. to display kindness. to be a bright spot in the days of others. and to love on those around me. i guess if i had to sum up one thing that i definitely want to do in 2015, it would be that simple phrase…love more.

i also plan to say lots and lots of prayers. and that my friends, is going to be more than enough.

P.S. sorry to go so deep on you this early in the year. ha! what can i say? new beginnings make me introspective.

happiness is…everything new.
Natalie

dear diary, 2014

i guess a blog is somewhat akin to a diary but with the very BIG distinction of privacy. once a post is sent out into the blogosphere, anyone and everyone has access to it. when i actually stop and think about that, i get a tad nauseous. the idea that i am probably being judged for my thoughts, opinions, or general nonsense that flows from my mind to your screen is a little intimidating. but hey, i chose to do this. i enjoy it. it has been nothing but a positive experience for me (hopefully for you too!). and honestly, most of the time i just feel like i’m chatting with friends when i write. i envision us sitting at a coffeeshop, steaming cups of coffee between us and laughing gaily over my latest cat photo. that’s how this works right? riiiiiight? *just nod*

anyways, yesterday B and i traveled home from our last family gathering, tired and at least 5 pounds heavier (thanks fam). to pass time in the car, i suggested we come up with some kind of vision statement for 2015. cheesy, i know. but i feel strongly about putting things on paper in the hope that it will help us be more intentional with our time and energy this year. instead, i ended up going over the last 12 months of journal entries and reminiscing. as you well know, it was a wild and crazy year for us. literally not one thing is the same in December of 2014 as it was in January of 2014. most of the entries made me laugh. some of them made me anxious just by reliving them even for a quick moment. some were embarrassing. but overall, i mostly felt grateful for the gift 2014.

this is the part in which i share a few of these moments with you as a 2014 recap of sorts. be prepared for scribbles and randomness. oh, and some of it is blacked out…can’t give away all my secrets!

in 2014 i…

had some great conversations.

OMG. soooo many ‘B-isms.’ i have decided that i need to start writing a novel and fill in the dialogue with things he actually says. being married to this man is a writer’s dream.

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FYI- the boy has been warned. since we have been married, he has earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree. MD will be the last one. ya hear that B?

in 2014 i…

took a risk on my blog.

i wrote this post: 3 Things Not to Say to a Childless Woman. i feared backlash…that people’s perception of me might change or that i might end up isolated or even be seen as defensive or unkind. instead, i found an army of women who feel or have felt the exact same way i do. it was therapeutic and refreshing. i learned that sometimes it pays to stick your neck out. it was also my most read and most shared post of 2014. thanks for the love, y’all!

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in 2014 i…

looked for an apartment and a job.

seventeen (yes, SEVENTEEN!) pages were dedicated to our Kansas City apartment search. you remember how all that played out…spent daaaaays searching, found a dreamy loft, and then found out we were going to Houston instead. the Houston apartment search? a measly five pages. picked out something online and moved sight unseen. in retrospect that seems a little nuts and i feel so blessed that we love our place.

whew. and then there was the Great Job Hunt. after months of uncertainty, i get to go back to the same fabulous company. again, feeling very blessed.

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in 2014 i…

had an existential crisis. 

or maybe even what i like to call a ‘quarter life’ crisis. whatever it was, it was weird. i think the aforementioned Great Job Hunt might have had something to do with it. i found myself unemployed in a huge city and my husband was like really, really busy. #medschoolproblems

where did this leave me, you ask? i’ll tell you where. writing a script for a Survivor audition tape. and *maybe* even insinuating that i would wear a bikini. (come on, you know that’s how they pick the contestants.) i never filmed it, just in case you’re wondering. lost my nerve. and my thighs are squishy.

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oh, and i also considered starting my own You Tube channel and becoming a spoken word poet. what a weirdo.

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in 2014 i…

evaluated my faith.

i pray that my response to those around me this year will be to love more. it’s that simple. two words. love more.

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in 2014 i…

found encouragement.

tucked between the pages of my own thoughts, i found this…

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i have to say, that last one was my favorite.

so here we are, it’s January 2nd and i really haven’t even gotten around to planning for 2015. maybe i will work on that for the next Friday Fun post. i just wouldn’t be me if i started out the new year on time. ;)

wishing blessings and happiness to you in 2015!

happiness is…a good year in the books journal.
Natalie

desperate housewife

i am approximately 140 days into my role of housewife and i want out. i am officially giving my two weeks notice. then B and i can spend a lovely Christmas together and come January, i am back to work. though housewife-ing is serious work too, i can assure you. it has certainly been eye opening. i have learned a lot about myself, starting with the fact that i *might* not be a very good housewife after all. allow me to elaborate…

i have become an even crazIER cat lady.

i now spend my mornings making pillow forts…for my cat. the proof is in the picture…

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and the tweet…

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this doesn’t make me a bad housewife per say, but it does make me a desperate housewife. desperate to get back to the workforce, that is. but i get the feeling that i might take the time every now and then to make a pillow fort even when i go back to work. i mean, come on! look at that face…she’s so happy!

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now i feel totally embarrassed about confessing this and also fairly certain that i will lose all my readers because you can’t be the person who reads the blog of a girl who is known to build pillow forts for her cat. amiright?

 i take 2 day projects and turn them into 10 day projects.

exhibit 1: i decided to re-color and re-seal the grout in the bathroom. it wasn’t a quick process by any means, but it should have taken 2 days tops. but it was hard. and tedious. and i felt like a contortionist wriggling around every corner and angle of our tiny bathroom. and i soon became very, very bored with it. so each day, i worked on it for a couple of hours or until either a) my knees hurt or b) i got bored. then i came back to it the next day. or not. maybe the day after. just whenever i felt like it. aaaaaaand in the meantime, i managed to render our bathroom unusable for 10+ days. the + because i actually kinda lost count. but doesn’t it look pretty?! here’s a mid-project pic so you can fully appreciate the transformation…

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exhibit 2: the master bath looked so great that i decided to do the guest bath too. why not?! i already had the materials and i definitely had the time. besides, that bathroom is soooo much smaller that it couldn’t possibly take more than a couple of days! so yeah, started it sometime last week, just finished it this morning. oooops.

exhibit 3: at this point, 3 examples seems excessive so i will make this one quick. it started with me re-caulking the bathtubs. it ended with me running out of the house squealing and panting for fresh air because the caulk smelled so horrid that i swore i was going to pass out. B stepped in and saved the day…and my project.

and now for the icing on the cake…

i am too ADD to finish the laundry.

a few days ago, i stripped the sheets off the bed first thing in the morning. i tossed them onto the bedroom floor along with some other sorted piles of clothes that needed to be washed. throughout the day, i lackadaisically worked on said laundry, moving clothes from the washer to the dryer between other tasks…basically just whenever i happened to remember. (never fails- i get preoccupied and eventually think “ah, yes! i was doing the laundry. i better check on it! hope it didn’t mildew in the wash. *sniff test* eh, smells good. into the dryer.”) you go through that whole laundry routine too, right? riiiight? anyways, day turned into night…a late night. (remember all that “we’re on a schedule! our life has structure!” stuff i told you about? yeah, that pretty much goes out the window during finals.) midnight rolls around and we finally decide to go to bed. B walks into the bedroom and says, “what happened to the sheets?” you know what happened to the sheets, don’t you? yep, still on the floor. the dirty floor, mind you! ugh. housewife fail. by then it would have taken another hour and a half to wash and dry so we did what any other exhausted med student and exasperated med student wife would do…we put them back on the bed. (please don’t judge me. my own personal sense of shame is judgment enough.)

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as we laid in bed that night in the already dirty sheets that were now even dirtier from laying on the floor all day, i dejectedly told B that i didn’t think i was housewife material. i moaned and groaned about everything that i either couldn’t get done at all, or things that i just couldn’t do to my standards. it was a midnight pity party and he was invited. B, of course, refused to participate and argued that i was a great housewife! he told me that he’s been so grateful to have me around…he went on and on about my cooking (i will admit, we have eaten pretty well)…i do so many things that make his life easier, etc. nice stuff, y’all. but when he finally realized he wan’t getting anywhere, he pulled out the big guns…

“look at it this way, Nat, your inner feminist should revel in the fact that you aren’t a good housewife.”

hmmmm, my ‘inner feminist should revel?’… i loved that statement so much that i just kept mulling it over. i repeated it in my head at least 20 times so that i would remember his exact phrasing in the morning. and i was too lazy at the time to crawl outta bed in search of my journal. but as i continued to think about B’s words, it led me to consider a couple of things. first off, maybe B should pursue psychiatry. ha! with one simple phrase he was able to not only connect in a way that made sense to me, but also help me feel empowered by something that i had already deemed a shortcoming. kudos, B! second, why am i so hard on myself? i don’t know. we all are, i suppose. and chasing perfection is like chasing after the wind. (aside: our church has been doing an awesome sermon series on Ecclesiastes and that has been my favorite line…i am paraphrasing like 12 chapters here, but basically chasing after the things of this world is like ‘chasing after the wind…’) and i don’t want to chase something i will never catch. sounds exhausting.

so for now, my inner feminist and i are going to revel in the fact that although my home will never be perfect, it is always happy. the people (and kitty) in it are so loved. and in January i will be back at work, kicking butt and taking names. then my housework will really suffer. ;) but i also feel to the need to add…you do NOT have to work to be a feminist. maybe your inner feminist revels in the fact that you are an incredible housewife, stay at home mom, working mom, friend, student, confidant. i think that as women, the most important thing is not what we do, but how we do it. we must learn to revel.

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happiness is…revelling.
Natalie
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