This is the time where my spirits are just bursting through the seams of this little body of mine. Although this is my favorite slice of the year, it’s always the busiest (which is why I’m finally getting around to this post a week later). I hustle around trying to find more hours in the day to prepare myself for the holiday madness that quickly approaches. I’m constantly scribbling down all the ridiculous lists of things I need to buy, make, cook, etc. I carry a notebook in my purse at all times, jotting down gift ideas I see for the children or sentences I want to incorporate into one of my future writings. If anyone were to read my notes, they’d surely think I was insane, but it’s the only way to keep track of all the thoughts that are constantly weaving in and out of my head.
So, what’s changed with my life in the past month? Pretty much nothing. Still crazy. Still drowning at school. Still trying to make enough time for the people in my life, yet somehow always coming up short. Still trying to make enough money to go out to eat more than twice a month if I pleased, DEFINITELY coming up short on that one. Dammit. Still letting way too much of my produce go bad before being able to eat it all. Still having a hard time getting out of the bed each morning for work, asking myself if it’s really worth it every time I look at my buzzing phone that reads 4:00 AM. That should be illegal, by the way. Four in the morning is a disgusting hour of the day. One that should most definitely be slept through. Still dealing with a wild, rambunctious new dog that seeks highs in which can only be attained through chewing up our clothes. But on the flip side, everything is still bright and shiny and full of laughter. I enjoy each day more than the last.
Friendsgiving is right around the corner. This being the first I’ve ever hosted, my nerves are on level 100. I actually had a dream the other night that I didn’t fully cook the turkey and everyone got sick. Awesome! It’s basically the only thing I’ve been thinking about ever since I realized I needed to make the turkey. I don’t like cooking meat for this exact reason. Scary stuff. Please pray for my guests.
Christmas is only a handful of weeks away and I still haven’t thought of a single gift idea for anyone. I’m mostly concerned with what we’re going to get our nieces. Last year, Alex and I made them so incredibly happy with our gifts (one of these teepees for our four y/o and this scooter for our 10 y/o) that I feel like the expectation bar has been set too high. If you have any recommendations for girls ages 5 & 11, send them my way. My imagination is running dry.
COSTA-FREAKING-RICA is 116 days away and my bank account can’t wait until it’s all behind us, but I’m still squealing every day it gets closer. Trying my absolute hardest to be more frugal than normal to make sure this vacation doesn’t actually kill me, but then again, not trying hard enough considering I just spent $1000 on a new camera.
OH, YEAH! I got a new camera! The day has come! After seven years, I’ve finally retired my baby to sit on her throne with the forever title of My First Love. As badly as I had been crying for wanting an upgrade, it actually wasn’t that easy for me to decide on. Only took three years of bouncing around the pros and cons to end up going into Best Buy early in the morning last week, picking out the new model I want to play with, getting all the way to the checkout, and then telling the woman “I’m sorry, I’ve changed my mind.” The entire ride back home, regret filled my head. “You should’ve gotten it, Ashley. What’s the big deal, anyway?” At 8:50 PM (ten minutes before the store closed), I went back in. I grabbed the camera, went to the front and signed my stability away. Right after purchasing, I was filled with the same regret. “You can’t afford this, Ashley. You don’t even need this camera.” By then, the store was already closed and I was the unsure owner of my newly adopted child. And boy, can I say, she is a beaut! I’ve been having too much fun trying to figure out the ins and outs.
A couple new breweries have opened up here in our city and while I still haven’t gone to the one closest to home, we checked out one downtown last night that was nothing short of amazing! You can’t beat three dollar beers, a good atmosphere and a waterfront view! (Also, the staff is the bomb diggity.) Bull Island is the bees knees, y’all. Go check ’em out!
Finally, because this is the time of year that screams LOVE to me, if any of my local readers need updated family portraits, kid photos, dog photos, whatever, let me know. I have a terrible habit of hiding from cameras because of the stupid belief that I’m not photogenic enough. After losing a couple people in my life that were so dear to me, I have vowed to stop giving a shit about something so superficial and unimportant. A small lesson that grief has taught me over the years. With that being said, I will do ten sessions free of charge because your family is important and photos are really all we’ve got to hold onto forever. In the comment section of this blog post, leave your name and your ideas and I’ll shoot you an email.(There’s a spot that says “email” and as long as that’s where you type yours and NOT IN THE COMMENT SECTION, nobody except me will be able to see it.) Happy holidays to everyone. I hope they are good to you!