Stress, Stress Go Away, Don’t Come Back Another Day

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Whatever you think separates the people of the world, there is one thing that we all have to deal with. A common enemy called stress. Everyone deals with stress from work deadlines, to heavy traffic to realizing….oh dear…there’s only a month until Christmas and you haven’t started shopping! Did you feel that? The rush of panic, the heart skipping a beat? Yep, that my friend is stress and you better believe it’s your biggest enemy, your arch nemesis.


Why do I say this? Well, when you’re in your thirties you start to think about a few things. Wrinkles, grey hair, sagging skin, gravity. Yes, they may not have shown their ugly faces just yet but give it time and guess what? Stress is the common culprit behind all of these little nuisances of ageing. Stress will age you faster than most and make you wonder whether if you search really hard on eBay, you might just find a picture for the attic. Dorian Grey references aside, there’s another issue with stress.


It damages your health, and some researchers even believe it can be linked as a cause to certain types of cancer. So, now that we’re in total agreement that it is indeed our shared nemesis, how on earth do we fight it?


Well to do that we need to look at what makes you feel stressed and then we’ll figure out why you can’t deal with these situations without getting all tense.


Red Alerts For Stress

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Waking up late has definitely got to be one of the main causes of stress. Let’s face it, if you wake up late, it can completely ruin a day before it has even begun. You will be in a mad rush to get ready which will always lead to you forgetting something be it the keys or the kid. You haven’t felt true stress until you get in the car to go to work and suddenly realise you haven’t got anyone in the backseat for the school drop off.


Work can also cause stress. Deadlines or worse yet, the fear that your job might be at risk. It’s understandable why fearing losing your job causes you stress. After all, redundancy is one of the major causes of debt in the USA. That, of course, leads to the fact that a lot of people stress about money. Money is certainly to be at least one of the issues where you feel stressed, going over the budget and finding you don’t have as much cash as you hoped.


Or how about relationships? When you feel the strain on your relationship, that can definitely cause stress. You’ve worked on your relationship together for years, and if one argument lasts too long, it can feel like a weight that you desperately want to break free from, thus causing you anxiety and yes stress.


So, these are just some of the issues that cause you stress, but interestingly enough they’re not the root of the problem. You see, if we’re honest situations like this don’t cause you stress. The real issue is that if you feel stress, you’re not handling the challenges these issues bring. That’s all these problems really are, a challenge that you have to conquer. Why is that?


I’m Just Not Good Under Pressure, Okay!

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This is usually the type of line you’ll hear from someone who is constantly stressed which is fair enough. But, that doesn’t mean we can’t change things. If we know the root of the issue, we can help you cope with stress far more effectively.


For instance, you might find that you’re not dealing with these situations well because you’re not getting enough sleep. There is a multitude of reasons why you might not be getting to sleep at night. Perhaps it’s because you are stressed in a chicken or the egg type scenario. Or maybe, the issue is simply how comfortable your bed is. If your bed isn’t comfortable at all, then there’s a good chance that you’re not going to get the level of sleep that you need. When we are sleep deprived our brain doesn’t reach the maximum potential. The electrons aren’t firing right, the neurons aren’t working well so how could we possibly be expected to deal with challenging situations.


The short answer is we can’t, and that’s why if an interviewee looks like a rabbit in headlights after one question it’s probably because they didn’t get enough sleep the night before. So, you could think about getting a new mattress for your bed. Read complaints here about some of the mattresses on sale right now and make your decision to find the right one for you. Remember, some people do sleep better with a firmer mattress because it provides better back support. Very rarely, you might need a brand new bed but typically speaking, the mattress is for comfort, the frame is generally just for the aesthetic.


Or perhaps it’s because you really are just someone who’s never really calm. If that’s the case, you should try meditation. This isn’t pseudoscience it really does work rather well. In fact, research has shown that Buddhist monks who have spent decades of their life meditating actually change the pathways in their brain. This might be why they seem so much calmer and content. Or, it could be because they have avoided all the issues in life that cause stress. Either way, meditation is worth a shot, and you don’t have to go overboard. A couple hours each week should give you enough of a refresh to allow you to notice a difference.


As you can see then, there are numerous issues that result in us feeling stressed but only a few root causes. Another example of a root cause would be your diet. You are what you eat may not be the throwaway comment that you think because eating junk and processed food has been shown to impact how you brain processes information. Eat healthier, and you might be able to deal with challenges in life far more calmly and rationally.


Goodluck beating the stress beast back in your life.

I Hope She Doesn’t Look Down


Winter Warmers: Indoor Hobbies To Try This Winter


With fall now in full flow, it feels like the whisper of winter is beginning to be felt on the wind. Before you know it, we’ll be plunged into a world of (what feels like) eternal darkness, not wanting to venture outside of the house for fear of chilling ourselves to the bone. While winter does have its upsides — Christmas is the main, glittering high point of the season — for the most part, it’s dark, miserable, and downright boring.


Yes, boring– admittedly not a word you have likely associated with winter before, but it’s true. Winter is dull. If you’re bored in summer, you can head outside, walk among nature, go shopping; you have the entire world spread out before you in terms of options. However, with winter, the desire to curl up in the warm is so intense that you feel you’re stuck in the house for weeks on end– so yes, winter can be incredibly boring.


If you want to try and ensure that you enjoy this winter as much as possible, here are five hobbies you can do take up; don’t worry, you won’t have to step outside for any of them!


1) Paper Crafting


Crafting is a great hobby for the colder seasons of fall and winter, because it literally demands that you stay indoors, where it’s warm, so you can focus on what you’re doing. Why not try making Christmas cards for your friends and family this year? Or perhaps even make your own Christmas ornaments; you can give them a personal touch that means there’s an extra smile on your season of goodwill this year.

2) Making Clothes


People making their own clothes is a hobby that has largely fallen out of popularity in recent years, as access to clothing — and the affordability of it — has become more common. Nevertheless, there is nothing quite like wearing an item of clothing that you have made for yourself. It can be tailored exactly to your measurements and shape, guaranteeing a good fit, and you can pick the materials and patterns that you want to use. If you’re a complete newbie to using a sewing machine, don’t worry; there’s a handy guide to finding a good sewing machine for beginners here, and there’s plenty of YouTube videos that can teach you how to use it.


3) Candle Making



Candles are a staple if you want to create that cozy feeling of being indoors in winter, but why not make this year a little different by making the candles for yourself? This is easier than it sounds, and it won’t cost you a fortune either. There are plenty of guides online that can help to get you started, from simple beeswax candles to more elaborate fragranced candles made from paraffin. It’s a great hobby to share with your kids too, and you never know, you might even discover a special skill and be able to sell your wares outside of the home!


Winter doesn’t have to be a dark and miserable experience. Make the most of the time you’ll spend indoors by introducing a brand new hobby that you will love right through to spring.

Why I Love Destination Weddings (And You Should, Too!)

Match and I had a pretty traditional wedding. It was beautiful and I loved every moment of it. But more and more often I see people traveling abroad for destination weddings and can’t help but think how incredible it sounds. Considering we didn’t get to have a honeymoon and we haven’t done much traveling, sometimes I wish we had opted for something non-traditional like a destination wedding dress. My sister-in-law had a destination wedding, and she said they couldn’t have been happier with their choice. With destination weddings taking off, I decided to look into the best reasons why you should consider one.


They can save you money

A lot of the time, destination weddings can end up costing less than you think they will. In fact, I had a friend who slashed her wedding budget in half simply by moving it abroad. Things like food, drink and venue hire can be less pricey than your hometown. (Depending on where you are from and where you are going, of course.) Many destination wedding locations organize all-inclusive prices. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about all the little extras which can sting your bank account.


You can choose a beautiful location

When choosing a destination wedding, the world is your oyster. You can pick anywhere that appeals to you. Perhaps that is a sunny beach in the Caribbean or a snowy mountain in the Alps. Whatever your preferences, you can make sure your wedding is in a gorgeous location.  Think of the photographs. You, your partner and a stunning backdrop will create memories that last a lifetime.


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Easy to organize

Many people assume that destination weddings are difficult to organize, but they needn’t be. Many destination weddings offer great packages so they take care of a lot of it for you. Or if you want to plan something extra special, you can find destination wedding planners who will take care of everything for you. They will make sure your wedding is exactly to your specifications by chatting with local businesses and venues. This is even better if you are getting married in a location where the language is different to your first language. There won’t be any language barriers and nothing will get lost in translation.


Ready-made excuse to cut back on guests

If you can already see your guest list spiraling out of control, hosting a destination wedding is a great way to cut back. You have the perfect excuse for keeping it small. You can justify your choice by saying that you don’t want too many people to have to go to a great expense to travel just for your wedding. Just make sure you don’t guilt trip people who cannot afford to attend. After all, it’s YOUR choice to have a destination wedding, and you have to understand that not everyone can afford to travel.


It will be the most memorable wedding for your guests

Most people remember very little from weddings they go to. Sure, they think back and remember that they had fun and it was a nice day, but how much detail do they really retain? With a destination wedding you will find that guests will remember every detail. Like how gorgeous you looked in this stunning location. How beautiful the hotel they stayed in. And how much fun they had!


Liebster Award


Well this award could not have come at a better time. It’s been a long time since I wrote anything about myself that didn’t involve my baby or my family, so this is refreshing. Thanks for the award Charlotte!

Here are the questions she asked me:

1) If you could lay down your roots anywhere, where would you go and why? That is a tough one, as I haven’t traveled enough places to have a solid opinion. Of places I’ve never been, Ireland sure seems appealing! 😉 I love our home, but I think California is way too crowded, and I wouldn’t mind living somewhere with more nature. Of the places I’ve been, I think I’d be happiest back home in Oregon. Probably not in my small hometown, but maybe in the Portland area. I want to live somewhere with seasons. Our summers here are way too hot. I would also love to be closer to my family, and closer to the ocean. Match is also his most relaxed and happiest when we visit Oregon, which makes me relaxed and happy.  


2) What’s your favorite book of all time? Ack, I can’t pick a favorite book. I love books so much (I have another blog dedicated to my bookwormness for crying out loud), and each one is so different from the next. I would say that the Hunger Games series ranks pretty high on the list, along with Harry Potter and the Twilight series. Then there are the classics, like The Giver, and Pride and Prejudice. I just can’t choose. Know that I’m a total bookworm, who loves curling up with a good story.


3) What is your happiest childhood memory? I can’t really pinpoint one single happiest moment as a child, but rather lots of moments smashed together. I think I was happiest playing on our quasi farm with our many different animals. We raised a lamb at one point, as well as chickens, turkeys, rabbits, pigs, dogs, cats, and pygmy goats. I was in 4-H with my goats, and made all kinds of friends through that program. I loved having that opportunity and living in the country. It’s an experience I would love to be able to give Piglet someday.  PS I realize this picture is of a slightly bored looking teenage me, but my family was absolute crap at taking pictures when I was younger, and this one best represents the farm, minus the bored look. 😉 Oh, and how cute are my goats? I mean, really!

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4) Tell me about a tradition that’s been passed down to you, or one you’d like to have with your family one day? I wish my family was one of traditions. We have never been that type of family, and coming from a divorced home, where each year holidays were spent at different places, it’s hard to have a tradition that we’d do every holiday. We did have a family tradition of sitting around the table for meals, and that’s something I have started with our family. There is something so nice about the family meal, and having a chance to check in at the end of a busy day. With Match’s schedule, that meal may not always be dinner, but even breakfast or lunch can be the sit down meal of the day. Another tradition we’ve started as a couple and now family has been to go to the Christmas tree farm every year. I hope to continue that as long as we can!

5) You’re on a deserted island with a boombox, an infinite supply of batteries, and three CDs. Which ones do you choose? Oy. My taste in music changes as much as my taste in books. I’m going to have a weak sauce answer here and say that at least one CD would be a mix. 😉 I love classical music, so I’d have all the greats, Mozart, Bach, Beethovan. Then I’d have one of oldies, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and the Brat Pack. I’d throw in one with pop music, though I’d probably regret it later!

6) What’s your beauty secret? No makeup. Seriously, every time I put on makeup, I feel like I look ridiculous, because I have no idea how to wear it. Plus, I always break out. If I don’t wear it, my skin usually looks a whole lot better. Though I wish there was a way to hide the bags under my eyes without it!

7) Do you have an achievement you are most proud of, and why? Does having my baby count? Ha! I feel like he is my greatest achievement, after so much struggling to bring him into this world. Outside of that, I’m going to say the fact that I can do 25 pushups, and I can do a pull up from a dead hang. I’m proud of this because it wasn’t so long ago that my body wouldn’t do anything that I wanted it to, and I’m proud to have my strength back. I’ve worked really hard to get to this place.


8) Who is your hero? My mom. She has overcome so much in her life, has struggled with mental health issues, and survived an abusive childhood.  She is absolutely the strongest person I know. She dealt with my dad’s drug and alcohol addiction, subsequent divorce, and was a single parent before she met my Pops. She is crazy strong, brave, loving, and raised me to be a strong, independent woman. I am grateful for her every day. We may not always get along, but I love and respect the heck out of that woman. She really is amazing! CIMG3025

9) What is your favorite vacation destination? Again, I haven’t traveled enough to have an opinion on this one. I guess I would say Oregon, and visiting my family. But hopefully one day I can say something a little more exotic. I have my eye on New Zealand. 😉 

10) Tell me your worst date story! Oh there are so many! Just look through my archives, ha! I’d have to say it was the French Guy I went on a date with. In a single night, he managed to insult me, my education, and my country, all before dessert. What a winner! 

11) What inspired you to start blogging? See answer to #10. Ha! My crazy dating stories were what inspired this whole blog, hence the title. It has grown so far away from what it once was. I love looking back at old posts, because it reminds me just how far I have come. It has been 6 years since I started this blog, wow! 6 years! I am so happy I’ve stuck with it, and have made such amazing friends along the way. I love you, sweet readers. Thanks for sticking by me! 

I’m supposed to tag people, and ask questions, but I’m being incredibly lazy and not doing that. If you want to answer Charlotte’s questions, I’d love to read your answers!

Personalized Shirts as Christmas Gifts

I just ordered a personalized shirt from and I’m loving it! I’ve ordered make your own shirts before in the past, but was always disappointed in the quality. I love the lettering on this shirt, and the material is very soft. It definitely feels high quality, and more like a shirt you would buy in a store.


If you don’t know what Zitchdog is, I suggest you watch How I Met Your Mother. Go. Go now and don’t come back til you get the reference. Then thank me for a highly entertaining road trip game. I beat Match on our last road trip!

I’m hoping to order a few more shirts as stocking stuffers for Christmas. I think I’ll make one for Geeky from Hunger Games. Maybe a shirt that says Team Peeta. We can wear them to the next Hunger Games movie!

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* I was contacted to review an Allied Shirt, and was given a free shirt for doing the review. The opinions are 100% my own. I love my shirt and I will happily order from them in the future!