Relieve Your Stress

Relieve Your Stress

In today’s society, stress is a normal feeling most individuals deal with on a weekly or even daily basis. Our American culture is never satisfied with what we have an is always wanting more immediately. Being stressed can be in the form of worry. This feeling can emit negative effects on our lives over time.

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Reasons for Stress

Anxiety emerges within our lives from several different areas:

  • Jobs
  • Relationships
  • Health
  • Money
  • Socially
  • Housing

We also feel stressed out because of our behaviors. Admittedly, this is where most of my stress comes from. Let’s take a quick peek at the list:

  • Always busy and on the go
  • Overcommitting yourself to activities
  • Not having enough alone time
  • Overthinking your words or actions

Negative Effects of Stress

Stress brings emotional and mental distress to a person’s well being, which can cause negative effects such as worry. It can effect our physical bodies as well. When a person is stressed, there are hormones that are emitted into the body. One of these hormones is cortisol, which at high rate of release can lead to negative health effects on the body. (Please read this article from The Huffington Post on stress hormones.)

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 How to Deal with Stress

Today people are more stressed out and we need a way to reduce the amount of tension our body endures. This can be difficult depending on your life stage or personality type.

For me, I’ve found there are a few different ways that help me keep my tension levels low or know that I need to start one of these activities more regularly if I’m feeling stressed out.

  1. Exercise–especially yoga
  2. Eat a well balanced diet
  3. Sleep well
  4. Relax on your own
  5. Write down thoughts
  6. Talk with a friend
  7. Take a bath
  8. Reduce caffeine intake
  9. Think about the present moment
  10. Be thankful

In our culture today, we are busier than ever, which brings more tension into our lives. Trying to get to the next level in our career, buy a new house or accelerate a relationship will have it’s challenges, but will be easier to handle as you continue to relieve stress in your own way. Inadvertently, you may realize that by releasing stress a little bit every day will help you live a more healthy, happy life.

 

Detox for Beginners

Detox for Beginners

Feeling more sluggish after eating junk food and drinking in excess over this 4th of July weekend? Well, let’s start an easy 7 day detox! This detox will help you rid yourself of those nasty toxins in your body that you so willingly placed in there over the holiday weekend. With wedding and swim suit season in full swing, it’s time to shed those pounds and exude the confidence that’s already inside of you!

What is Detoxification?

Detoxification is a process of cleansing organs that process toxins for elimination;  such as the liver, kidneys, intestines, lymph and skin.

Detox Preparation

If you’ve detoxed before or not, it’s important to prepare your mind and body before a detox to be more successful in the end.

  • Start by decreasing the amount of coffee you consume for two days prior to your detox.
  • Buy food and beverages you can include in your detox one day prior to your detox.
  • Set an intention in your mind of what you want to accomplish during your detox.

Foods to Include

  • Fruits (fresh or frozen of any kind)
  • Vegetables (dark leafy greens, broccoli, carrots, onions)
  • Grains (quinoa, rice, oats)
  • Beans and Legumes (black beens, chickpeas, kidney beans, lima beans)
  • Nuts and Seeds (unsalted almonds, cashews, pecan, flax seeds)
  • Beverages (coconut water, lemon water, green tea, white tea, herbal tea)

Foods to Exclude

  • Dairy products (milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, ice cream)
  • Wheat and Gluten foods (pasta, breads, crackers)
  • Sugar and Sweeteners (refined sugar, brown sugar, artificial sweeteners)
  • Beverages (alcohol, coffee, energy drinks, soft drinks)

Daily Dos

  • Drink at least 10 glasses of water
  • Eat 5 times a day
  • Be mindful of your stress
  • Do light exercise (walking, running, yoga)

Length of Detoxes 

  • 3 Day
  • 7 Day
  • 10 Day
  • 14 Day

My Detox

I’ve chosen the 7 day detox for myself because I feel it’s a long enough time for me to experience a difference in the way my body feels. It also will end the day before I leave for Grand Forks for one of my best friend’s wedding! No one wants to be on a detox during a wedding, let’s just be honest here.

For me, this detox also is a result of de-cluttering and rearranging my apartment. I created a new energy within my living space and I want to bring that same sort of process and experience into my physical body. I’m in a season where I’m getting rid of the old, bad and ugly to be able to welcome in the new, good and beautiful.

 

Led by the Lamp

Led by the Lamp

There are times when I desire to leave Minneapolis and venture out to another part of the country to start fresh. I’m sure there are several people who feel the same way, but will actually act on it. For me, I try to leave Minneapolis, but am always pulled back by one thing or another.

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About a year ago, I was ready to leave Minneapolis and start a new chapter of my life in Los Angeles, CA. At that time, I was ready for a change in my life. A big change.

I was talking with my friend who had moved out there and she mentioned that I should come and visit. For me, it doesn’t take much convincing to go on a trip so I booked a flight within a day and was scheduled to visit in about two weeks.

Once I arrived, I felt like LA was instantly a place I could call home. Throughout the long weekend, my friend took me around the whole city and showed me what it would be like to live there. Needless to say, I fell in love with the city.

The night before I had to leave, I almost decided to stay in LA, quit my job and move there automatically. Because of my great flight rate for my round trip and  that it was close to Father’s Day and my dad’s birthday I decided to go back to Minneapolis.

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When I arrived back in Minneapolis, I decided that I would let one week go by and then decide if I would be going back to LA the following week with a one-way ticket. During that week, I searched for signs or epiphanies whether to move to LA or stay in Minneapolis.

Many friends told me that they supported my decision either way, but saw me living in Minneapolis rather than LA. Of course, I thought they were all insane and I knew that if I wasn’t getting any job offers in Minneapolis it was time for me to look elsewhere. Again, I was searching for change in my life and at that point I didn’t care where the change manifested I just needed something different in my life.

The Sunday of my “week” came and I still felt like I didn’t have my answer. I was standing in my apartment yell praying at God. I’m not sure if anyone has been frustrated at your situation enough to yell at God while you’re praying, but I swear sometimes that helps. I mean isn’t it better that we talk to him rather than turn from him in times of frustration? Anyway, my prayer was more of an ultimatum. I said to God that if he didn’t show me a clear as day sign that I was supposed to stay in Minneapolis the upcoming week, I would be taking the next one-way flight to LA at the end of the week. Boy, I’ve just got to say people, be prepared if you ever pray those types of prayers because He definitely will show up.

The next week I had 8 interviews with 6 different companies in Minneapolis. I was incredibly exhausted from working a full time job and interviewing that much, but I had a sense of awe. Awe that God showed up and gave me the answer I was so desperately needing at that time. From that interview week, I ended up accepting one of the positions and have been therefore almost a year now. In this job, I’ve had the opportunity to travel more than I ever thought possible with a position, be a leader on projects I found intimidating and progress my career in a way that I couldn’t have imagined.

Led By the Lamp

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It’s been a year since I almost moved to LA and I’m happy to say that Minneapolis is my home and I believe it will be my home for quite some time. I sat on the patio of Asters Cafe on Saint Anthony Main today with one of my friends, getting a little burned on my face, I realized that have come to fully love Minneapolis as my city. It’s a place where I’ve lived all of my life and I used to view that as a negative quality, but am now accepting it as a positive.

I also learned through this experience from needing change and not finding it, that sometimes it’s okay to yell out to God for guidance and ask for those “clear as day” answers. Sometimes he will answer you in a way you never would have expected.

Do I know the reason I’m still in Minneapolis? No I don’t, but I do believe there is some sort of reason that every time I’ve tried to move away something always keeps me right where I am. Sometimes we just need to learn to let go and accept that we won’t see the whole picture in this moment. That we need to be okay with being led by the turn by turn directions of life.

“Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path.” – Psalm 119: 105

Redecorate Your Home on a Budget

Redecorate Your Home on a Budget

Now that your place is fully clean and rearranged in a way that makes you feel better about your space, it’s time to redecorate! As I mentioned at the beginning of this series, I decided to stay in my current apartment and completely redo the layout and look rather than move to another apartment building. By making this decision, I was able to save money and buy new decorations to update my apartment.

Let’s Save Money

By choosing to stay in my current apartment, I was able to save money. How you may ask? Well, as most people know moving is not only a hassle, but also is very costly. If you choose to stay in your current apartment, you can save money on funds that would have gone toward a UHaul, safety deposit and  application fee. Not to mention, there seems to be hidden fees when signing a new lease that you never see before you decide that will be your new home.

I’ve also noticed that no matter how many items you bring with you from place to place, there always seems to be more furniture or artwork that you need to buy for the new place. Therefore, by staying in your current living space you will save money and that money you save can be reallocated to new decorations that reflect more of who you are as a person and the newly arranged apartment that you’ve created for yourself.

Not only will you save money from not having to spend it on moving expenses, but sometimes you end up finding money where you least expect it. In my experience during this project, I found that by de-cluttering my living space I ended up finding money that I wasn’t aware of in my apartment. Most people may find upwards of $50.00 laying around their place, but somehow I hit the jackpot and found over $1,000.00! I have to admit, that made me more aware that I need to actually go through my mail more thoroughly that I have in the past; but that’s beside the point.

Since now you are saving money on moving expenses and may even find more money than what you expected in your apartment, it’s time to go shopping!

Home Decor Guidelines

Since you spent all of this time deciding that you would be saving money by not moving to a new home, my suggestion is not to blow your budget on home decor items you don’t really need. Remember, you just de-cluttered your entire place. It’s not the time to get more “stuff” to clutter it back up. Here are a few guidelines that I used when redecorating my place.

  1. Rearrange decorations in different spaces for a new look.
  2. Spend less than half of your projected moving costs.
  3. Always, always, always use 3M hooks for wall decor.

Rearrange decorations in different spaces for a new look

You’ve already taken inventory of all of your decorations and items within your living space because of the de-cluttering process. More than likely, you’ve been able to find hidden gems that you forgot you once bought. These are great decorations you can put on display throughout your home to bring a new, brighter feel to the space.

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When you redecorate your furniture with existing pieces or even just candles in new places, the vibe of the space already becomes more positive. For example, in my bedroom I decided to put the tall green grass vase I had behind my white nightstand and put a vanilla coffee candle on the nightstand. 

Spend less than half of your projected moving costs

Since you decided to save money by not moving to another apartment, make sure to spend less than half of your money on new decorations. How to do that? Well, set a budget. Determine what it would have cost you to move and then set a limit on how much you can spend.

Once you have your budget, I would suggest visiting places that are relatively cost effective. I decided to shop Goodwill, TJ Maxx, Bed Bath and Beyond and Target for my decor. Goodwill was convenient because I was dropping off donations so to quickly run through the store was easy to do. Unfortunately, I didn’t find anything that I was looking for, but it was good to check it out anyway.

Bonus tip: Do not buy things just to buy them. You must visualize a place for it in your home and know it would be a value add to your living space.

Before shopping, have a plan of what look you are going for in your home. For example, I had felt that my apartment had darker tones than what I had wanted and realized that I wanted to reflect a lighter or brighter home than what I currently had. I had an idea to spray paint my entertainment center white, but instead of taking the time to do that project, I found small pieces that I could place inside of the cubbies to brighten it up.

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Another decision I had already made was that I wanted more of a beach tone within my space. I already had some the travel and adventure photos hung up in my apartment, but I wanted to bring in more turquoise as it’s my favorite color. A great way to bring in that color are lighter beach house decorations. That way I can also feel like I’m on a vacation wherever I turn within my apartment. One section, I look like I’m in Cabo and in another section I’m in France or Italy.

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Beach decor

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One are of my apartment that I lacked in decor for three years was wall decor. I’ll admit, even now I think I need to add a few pieces of artwork or photos. That said, my main purchases were chic wall decor to bring more life into my apartment.

Always, always, always use 3M hooks for wall decor

Okay, so once you buy the wall decor, you obviously have to hang it. Yes, as a woman in my mid-20’s I should own a hammer and nails, but of course I don’t. Therefore, one Saturday morning I went to Ace Hardware to pick up my supplies. A young guy, it was probably his first job in high school, came up to help me. As we were looking and the nail wall he was asking what I was going to hang. Well, unfortunately for this young guy I don’t think he had much experience in hanging wall decor because he sells me a 10 pt 2 3/4″ set of nails.

I come home and decide to hang my cheap Target mirror in my bedroom first, you know, as practice. I start hammering the nail straight into the wall to hang my mirror from the top. Everything looked great, but the mirror started to jet out a bit from the wall on the bottom, so I decided to nail in the bottom part of the mirror to the wall to make it stay.

Feeling pretty good about myself, I decided to walk into my living room for a second. That’s when I saw it. A massive chunk of wall on the floor and a hole where my top nail was on the other side of the wall! I had completely not taken into account that my apartment walls are plaster and that would make a difference. Not to mention, the 2 3/4″ nails the guy sold me at Ace Hardware were too long for my wall.

Hole

From that moment, I decided I would hang the rest of my wall decor by 3M hooks. No mess, no fuss. Thankfully 3M carries an array of hook options for all your wall decor needs and therefore I was able to finish hanging all of my photos I had purchased, with the exception of a large mirror I bought, but that will need to be professionally hung. I do not want to take that project on myself.

Lessons Learned

 My apartment is finally done with the renovations. I have de-cluttered, rearranged and redecorated my apartment to make it feel new without having to move to a new home. This journey has taught me a few practical lessons:

  • Live like a minimalist
  • Check your mail–you may have $1,000.00 waiting for you
  • Use 3M stripes for wall decor
Rearranging Your Space

Rearranging Your Space

Once the decluttering is complete and all the piled bags are either thrown away or donated, it’s time to roll up your sleeves to move furniture. In the clean space, your living area is a blank canvas for your mind to think differently about your furniture layout. This is when I thought again about the definition of feng shui.

Feng Shui: a Chinese system for positioning a building and the objects within a building in a way that is thought to agree with spiritual forces and to bring health and happiness.

The entire project, for me, was to recreate a living space that felt new and reflected more of who I am as a person without having to move into a new apartment. Therefore, I started working in confined areas like I had learned in the decluttering process.

Bedroom

I started with my bedroom. In the bedroom, the most important piece of furniture is the bed. That’s not difficult to figure out, so I decided to move my bed to it’s new place first and then the other pieces would naturally fit. All of my life I’ve had my bed positioned very similarly, so I thought this is the time to change it. Yes, I moved my queen-sized bed all by myself. As long as you have motivation for something, I believe you can make it a reality. 

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The night stand and lamps were simple to determine where they would be placed along with the other decorations. The difficult part of my room was the half closest to the door because I couldn’t determine how I wanted to fill the space. Later, I decided to put one of the grey chairs that once lived in my living room into my bedroom to make a little reading nook.

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This change made the bedroom space appear larger than before by rounding out the room with a grouping a small furniture grouping. Please note that If you’re going to put furniture in front of closet doors, ensure you can easily open them. If not, it will make getting ready in the morning extremely difficult.

My next challenge was to determine a jewelry solution so I didn’t have so many bracelets, necklaces and earrings cluttered on top of my tiny dresser. To fix the issue, I went to TJ Maxx and Target to purchase a few cute jewelry organizers that look chic enough to be on a dresser and display your jewelry as decoration.

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The white panel with clear crystal knobs is actually a 3M strip holder. Whenever possible, use 3M hooks or other products to hang photos or wall art when in apartments because it will leave less of a mess to worry about when you move out.

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When rearranging your space think about your functionality within the space. For example, in my bedroom I can now accessorize in one spot then turn around and be able to see myself in the mirror to determine if I want to wear the piece of jewelry or scarf.

Once I climbed into my newly arranged bed that night, my body ached from all of the heavily lifting, but I already was starting to feel that my space was taking on a new energy.

Living Room

The next day, I decided to work on rearranging my living room since I had already felt like by the layout change in my bedroom had such an impact on the space, I couldn’t wait to see what it would be like once I rearranged my living room.

Living rooms have more versatility on furniture layout arrangements, which can make projects like these exciting. That said, I have a large piece of artwork on one of my walls that I need to work around, which gave me less to work with although I knew I could still make my apartment feel new by rearranging most of the items. Let’s take a look.

First I decided to move my desk across to the other side of the room near my grouping of Italy photos from a few years ago. I’ve always wondered what it would be like to have my desk on the other side of the apartment, so I decided that now is the time to make the change.

Before

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After

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After rearranging my desk area, I played around with a few different couch and chair layouts, but found that my favorite placement for my couch and one accent chair was my original layout. Sometimes when you are changing your living space, you find that part of the original layout can stay the same. Remember, you do not need to rearrange everything to get the Feng Shui feel.

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Now, the only area of the living room that needed work was a small space where my desk once lived. I needed a solution to put my scarves I knit into a place where kitty hair won’t get to them, but also looks cute. At TJ Maxx, I found a bamboo storage container for an affordable price. The best part is by putting the container in my living room, I’m able to pull in the bamboo from my bamboo tree and wicker baskets within the entertainment center.

I then remembered that I had two large white cubes I’ve not been able to get rid of since freshman year of college because of their versatility. Some pieces you’ve had for years and can continue to be utilized within your living space, but in new ways. 

I decided to put the pieces together with a few new decorations to brighten up the small nook to fill out the space. This may be one of my favorite little places within my apartment now because of how much brightness it brings into my place. Later I will hang a mirror I bought to fill out the section and bring more depth to the apartment.

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Once all the furniture was arranged the way I felt brought a new energy into the room. I plopped myself on my couch to enjoy my work product. Turning to the clock, I realized it was past 12:00 a.m. and had been working for about 6 hours. Again, my body ached from the physical activity, but I could feel the newness in my apartment from the layout change and I felt extremely happy for what I accomplished in the past 72 hours.

 

 

 

Declutter Your Living Space

Declutter Your Living Space

Now motivated to make my apartment truly a new space and reflect more of who I am as person, my first job was to declutter the entire place. Before going home, I stopped at the gas station across the street to buy a box of the kitchen trash bags since I had a feeling I would need more than a few grocery and recycled Target bags for my project ahead of me. Decluttering a 750 square foot apartment may not seem like a big job, but after living somewhere for three years, it turns out even the neatest of people can become pack rats.

As embarrassing as it is, below are a few photos of my apartment before I dove into any of the project. As you can see it doesn’t look too cluttered compared to other homes or home-makeover TV shows, but for someone with limited space in an urban area, it was bad. Somehow I hid most of my junk in “organized piles” throughout my apartment so the typical house guest may not notice. That said, after taking these photos, I’m not sure how more people didn’t comment on the messiness of my home! Let’s take a look, shall we?

Bedroom

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The mess doesn’t stop there, but instead somehow gets worse when I opened my closets. The piles of junk and stuff accumulated over time went to the ceiling and because my closets have doors, I hardly noticed because I would just shut out the clutter.

Closets

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After surveying all of the work ahead of me, I decided to come up with a few principles for myself.

  1. Set manageable goals
  2. Think like a minimalist
  3. Organize all kept items

Set Manageable Goals

If you think of a project such as renewing your space by decluttering and redecorating, it can be overwhelming to think of the whole picture. For me, when I think of the whole project I tend to not accomplish anything because I can tend to get lost in where to start.

When you set manageable goals for yourself that you can accomplish, it’s easier to see how the full picture of the project can come together. For example, my first night of decluttering was a lofty goal, but I knew I was motivated enough to accomplish it. The goal was to go through the box by bed, both closets in my bedroom and declutter then reorganize the things I had decided to keep. My goal the following night was to declutter my linen closet and coat closet near my entry way. The third goal for my decluttering process was to organize my living room cabinets that housed incredibly old papers from college classes and other types of junk.

Think Like a Minimalist

A lot of people tend to collect things, whether you realize it or not. Before long, you’ve collected clothes, bags, shoes, mail, etc. The key to thinking like a minimalist is to realize that your things do not define who you are and that you can live just as happily on less. This mindset also allows for less “piles of stuff” hidden around your apartment. Let’s be honest here, that in urban living you need to maximize the amount of space you’re given and useless junk cannot be taking up precious square footage.

The minimalist mindset leads to being able to throw away several bags of garbage and donate gently used items to charity. During my three days of decluttering I threw away 10 bags of trash and donated 12 bags to Goodwill. Since the donate section was so large, I needed to take two trips to the local Goodwill. I also took a large box that once held my old Xcel Energy, Comcast, and utilities bills to Half Price Books filled with unwanted books and college textbooks.

Organize All Kept Items

As your pile of clutter lays in front of you on the floor, it can sometimes be difficult to decide what to throw, donate or keep. For me I decided that any paper products such as mail, notebooks or books should be either donated or thrown away if it was older or not used for more than 6 months. That allowed for my mini bookshelf to reduce to 1/3 the size. In terms of hand bags or shoes, or bedding I decided that if it was one of the items that I continue to carry around from place to place, but never use I was going to either throw or donate it this round of cleaning. I truly dug through every inch of my apartment to find any place where I could throw or donate something to truly say “out with the old and in with the new.”

Now that I got rid of the majority of junk within my apartment, I know exactly where everything is in my apartment and tried to put it all in a place that made sense for it to go, or at least in my own head. It’s easier to keep track of my things now because there is actual space around what is organized and therefore is easier to know where everything is placed within my apartment.

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I didn’t realize that decluttering a 750 square apartment would be so much work and would actually tire you out physically. Each night I my head hit the pillow and my feet were raised my body screamed at me, but my mind was at ease with the accomplishments of truly taking ahold of my space and making it my own again. Yes, this was the beginning of my feng shui, renew my living space project and it felt amazing.

I would challenge anyone to use the three principles I followed to create their own safe haven within their existing space. Message me with your thoughts!

Renew Your Living Space

Renew Your Living Space

Feng Shui: a Chinese system for positioning a building and the objects within a building in a way that is thought to agree with spiritual forces and to bring health and happiness.

This Memorial Day weekend, while most of my friends are out of town at their lake cabins or going home, I am going to stay in Minneapolis to de-clutter, rearrange and feng shui my apartment. The need for something new and different in my life has bubbled up in my spirit to the point where I cannot deny it anymore. Therefore, I am going to tackle the art of de-cluttering, rearranging and decorating my place to better reflect who I am as a person.

Lease Renewal

This project was birthed from a lease renewal notice from my apartment a couple weeks ago. I’ve lived in this same apartment for three years, which is the longest place I’ve lived; with the exception of growing up at my parent’s place. Once I received the lease renewal form, I realized that I have been yearning for something new for awhile. Therefore, I started looking around the city to determine if my need for something new meant a new apartment.

I found several places that were identical to my current apartment at a higher cost and one apartment with a lot of character, but didn’t fit two of my main requirements. As I realized that my current apartment is the best value for what I get, I decided to stay in the apartment. That said, my need for a new space didn’t escape me. So my new project is to rip apart my apartment to minimize my possessions and to rearrange my space in a way that brings me happiness and reflects the change I’ve had internally over the past three years.

Renew Your Living Space

As a single woman living in Minneapolis who has an active lifestyle and love for traveling, my ideal living arrangement is to be in an apartment. Apartment living is low maintenance, highly flexible and great for urban areas. If you’re anything like me, you’ve lived in apartments for a few years and may be looking for a change.

There are a few options you can take:

  • Move to another apartment
  • Buy a house, townhouse or condo
  • Renew your current living space

In my situation, I decided to stay in my place and figure out a way to make my three year old apartment layout into something updated. There is hope for the person who doesn’t want the hassle of moving, yet wants an updated living space! Another great perk of staying in your place if you were going to move is to use the money you would have spent on a U-Haul, security deposit, application fee, etc. on updated home decor.

Updating your living space doesn’t just apply to people in apartments, but to all people. Sometimes it’s jut a good idea to switch around the furniture and update the throw pillows to give your home a new feel. This can make a world of difference in your mood and feelings toward your home. I know it’s changing my outlook on my home.

Over the next few posts, I’ll be walking through my experiences of renovating my apartment and the little tips and tricks I find along the way. I’m very excited about this project and cannot wait to see how my apartment transforms!

Dating: Bad Date Stories

Dating: Bad Date Stories

We’ve all had some interesting dates in our lifetime; some good, some bad. Since the online dating post, “Online Dating Terrible First Dates” more people have been open about their stories. Naturally, I asked if I could share their unfortunate events on this blog and thankfully they agreed.

Let’s check them out, shall we?

 

April’s Story: Sleeping Beauty

I’ve gone out with this guy a couple of times and he’s a nice guy, but I’m still just trying to figure it out. On a Saturday, I was out with some of my girlfriends and he started texting me to come see him at a place in Uptown. My friends and I didn’t have plans so we decided to go meet him and his friends.

When we got there it was completely fine and was a good time getting to know his friends. My friend was ready to head back to our apartment, but I was still fine with staying out with him and his friends for awhile. Well, this guy wanted us to go back to my place. Well that wasn’t going to happen, but I said we could go grab a drink at Cowboy Jack’s near my place.

Once we got to Cowboy Jack’s, I was starting to look forward to getting to talk with him and actually get to know him more. Then I could see if I wanted to move this forward or not. So as we sit at the table with a drink and a late dinner, I start asking him basic questions. Turns out he doesn’t really listen to music, he’s more of a talk radio kind of guy, but will listen to metal when he works out to get pumped up. Nothing wrong with that at all, but we have very different music taste. As I kept trying to hold a normal conversation, he just kept trying to kiss me or divert the conversation to something else.

After awhile of trying to hold a conversation and having it fall flat every time, I excused myself to go to the bathroom. Once I came back to the table, I find him face down sleeping on top of the table! WTH?! I leave for five minutes and I come back and he’s snoozin’. Before waking him up, I took a quick pic to document this moment in time. The date where the guy fell asleep.

I smack him on the shoulder to wake him up. He startles awake, looks at me and I told him that he fell asleep in an annoyed voice. Then how does he respond? He says, ” Well I needed a little nap.” To make matters worse, a security guard at the bar comes up to us and tells us we have to go because they caught him sleeping. Well, I’ve got to say this experience on a date was a first.

Jessie’s Story: Better as Friends

I had been away from the dating scene for awhile after my long term relationship ended, but started to feel like I wanted to see what else was out there so I downloaded Bumble. I ended up meeting this guy and we decided to meet up for the first time. Although it took quite a bit of rescheduling to actually make a date work. Finally, we met up at the Lowery.

First of all, he knows how to work the angles of a camera because he didn’t quite look the same in person as he did on his profile. More importantly, he was a little socially awkward and had me lead the whole conversation. I’m fine with leading a conversation, but come on try to ask me at least one question. I was trying to be social and just get him to talk a bit, but instead he just kind of sat there and answered me with one word answers.

Then out of nowhere…probably because I was the one just rambling on, but I say, “I just don’t think dating is my thing.” In a way that comment made him more comfortable, or something, because then the conversation moved to how we would be friends. He even said, “Yeah we can just have this be a one and done.” We had a lovely dinner and it felt very freeing to be honest with each other about our feelings.

We went back to my place after dinner so he could drop me off and we hugged good night. I even gave him one of those pats on the back you do to your cousin or maybe a neighbor. Once I got inside my door I got a text from him saying that he had such a great time and couldn’t wait to see me again. Staring at the phone with a twisted face of confusion, “I thought this was a one and done?”

Mandy’s Story:  Staring Contest

A couple of years ago, my best friend wanted to set me up with this guy. She told me that she thought I’d like him because he’s cute and we had a lot in common. So of course, I agreed to meet up with him.

I get to Barrio in Edina, sit down for dinner and realize fairly quickly that we do NOT have anything in common. Sure, my friend was right about him being cute, but was so incredibly wrong about our compatibility. Anyway, that’s not even the worst of it. The most odd part of the date was how he never stopped staring at me! Not in the cute way either. The kind of staring where he never broke eye contact; even as he took a bite of his food. I didn’t really know what to do with myself as he kept staring. These situations make me want to make a quick get away, but I couldn’t because he would see it!

Finally, the date was coming to a close and he asked me what I was doing for the rest of the night. I panicked and responded, “I’m watching a movie with my mom.” Just as I heard the words come out of my mouth, I thought to myself “WHAT?! That’s what you came up with?” Well, I was not going to watch a movie with my mom, but didn’t know what else to say to make him realize that I was busy. Maybe I should have said something to make him think I was more cool, but that sure didn’t happen. I’ve never been too great at thinking quickly on my feet. Either way, between the non-compatibility, awkward staring and my lame excuses we didn’t plan a second date.

Your Turn!

Do you have a bad date story? If so, submit it in the Contact Me box to get featured!

 

May Day: Ding Dong Ditch

May Day: Ding Dong Ditch

When was the last time you rang a stranger’s doorbell?

A. All of the time

B. Every other month

C. Not since I went trick or treating as a kid

If your answer was A, please stay far, far away from me. Also, why are you ringing people’s doorbells all of the time? If your answer was B, again what is the point of going door to door anymore? We can get anything and everything online. If your answer was C, we will be great friends.

Yesterday marked May 1st, also known as May Day. This day is when you can ding dong ditch someone’s house and leave a May Day basket, or in our case Trader Joes flowers.

As my friend and I were at the Twins game, we randomly decided to revert back to our childhood ways and run around St. Louis Park leaving bouquets of flowers at people’s doorsteps. Who knew that would end up being such a blast?!

Here is a photo and video gallery of our adventure:

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Our bouquets all laid out and ready to leave at doorsteps!

 

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We gave a bouquet to a couple gardening in the sun. It sure made the wife’s day.

 

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About to run up to another house with a super cute red door.

Now this is where the real fun begins; when we actually go ding dong ditch this little St. Louis Park neighborhood on a Sunday.

 

Make sure to click on these other links below for more videos!

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American Obsession with Beauty

American Obsession with Beauty

Let’s face it, American’s are obsessed with their image. Anywhere we turn there is yet another photo of a tall, thin, beautiful woman to compare yourself to. Do we mean to do this? No. Although it can be extremely difficult to shut off the chatterbox of negativity in your own mind. These swirling thoughts may sound like:

  • “You need to lose 20 pounds to be attractive.”
  • “I better go look online for yet another make up tutorial to make my face look photoshopped.”
  • She’s so much prettier than me, I’m definitely not good enough.”
  • If only I looked like her I would have a boyfriend or more friends.”

There are several other comments that flood our minds, assaulting you without even realizing it. This self talk is only detrimental to your self esteem and wellbeing. Unfortunately, it’s hard to turn off the chatterbox.

If we are able to quite our minds for one second, I think we can learn to realize that, yes, beauty can be painted on in forms of make up or bodies can be photoshopped with professional cameras. Although, we need to remember who the girl who is beneath the layers of make up and designer clothes. The person who is bare, naked and vulnerable.

This world longs for authenticity. Even while wearing mascara and lipstick, don’t cover up who you are but instead be authentically you.

Today’s world is filled with too much fake and not enough real. As plastic surgery is at an all time high,”The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) today released its annual plastic surgery procedural statistics, reporting that 15.6 million cosmetic procedures, including both minimally-invasive and surgical, were performed in the United States in 2014, an increase of 3 percent since 2013. In addition, 5.8 million reconstructive surgery procedures were performed last year, up 1 percent.”

Being authentically you, even while staying fashionably relevant, can give more credibility to the person rather than succumbing to societies influences. True beauty comes from the soul, rather than the face.

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