Buying My Future

A childhood friend’s parents recently put their home on the market. Now that I am making a decent living and my husband is too, we decided it was time to start to think about upgrading our own home. This house would be amazing.

Someday not too far away, we would like to start a family and I would like to have more bedrooms for our little kiddos. We have a lovely two bedroom home at the moment, but I think now is a better time to prepare and seize the market while it is the way it is. I wish that real estate wasn’t ever changing and that mortgage rates stayed the same. However, this is the real world and that just wouldn’t work.

The house is to die for. Seriously, I wanted it even before I heard about the rest of the goodies. It is a four bedroom in a great neighborhood with 2+ acres of land and 3 bathrooms. In other words, huge and in paradise as far as I’m concerned. We decided to see if we could get a showing and we fell in love. Not only was the house great, the current owners put a crapload of money into it with all sorts of great upgrades (central air and granite counter tops) and more practical things like a new roof and heating system. We wouldn’t have to touch a damn thing for the next 15 years!

We weren’t prepared to make an offer mentally. We have been saving money for when we need it, like now, but I don’t know how comfortable I am just almost sucking that dry. We didn’t think the process would be so quick but there are a few other potential buyers and we were basically told “buy now or forever regret you didn’t buy” pretty much.

Normally, I would hear someone tell me “you have to act now” and I would be like yeah, thanks but no thanks. But now? It is absolutely too good to pass up. A property this good just doesn’t exist in my town, besides this one. We can afford the house, but it would be a bit tighter than I like. I am super conservative with my finances, so it is just my feeling on it.

So, what do I do? Do we just go for this or do we wait out this market and continue to save our money? We have a lovely home now but this would be like heaven. I hate this growing up thing. I am just too afraid to make the wrong decision!

How do you make decisions so quickly that will ultimately impact the rest of your life?

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How Will You Be Remembered?

This morning, thanks to Facebook, I was told of the sad news of a woman I used to know passing. She was part of the Miss New Hampshire Program and many girls were posting about her death. Girls who had competed years ago to girls still in the program had nothing but nice things to say about this woman. I hadn’t seen her in quite some time but I remember the way she made me feel and I am truly grateful for knowing her.

Lisa was a very nice and genuine person who showed you that she really cared. I was a bag of nerves when I first started competing and though the girls weren’t unfriendly, I didn’t find comfort in them. Lisa always had a nice word to say, always made you feel comfortable, and after a little while of knowing her, made me feel more confident. If I went to a competition and she was there, it felt like a ton of bricks was taken off my shoulders and I could literally feel myself relax. She was just that kind of person.

Reading the comments has shown me that she was that person to everyone. She passed far before her time and the news truly saddens me. It also raises the question: How would you be remembered? Lisa lives on in all of our memories and I hope that she felt the love and  gratitude we all had for her. Lastly, I want to be remembered by that many people so warmly when I go. Just keep that question in your head as you go about your daily activities.

Sucks to be you, have a doughnut!

Dear Miss America,

Let me start off by saying that I love your organization. You help give young women a fantastic opportunity to earn scholarship money and grow into professionals by helping them shape the way they carry themselves and to help them to hone in on their interview skills. As a former Miss local titleholder myself, I benefited greatly from your program, owing a lot of my success to skills I learned from competing, and I thank you for the opportunity.

With that being said, What the hell were you thinking with the doughnut show Saturday during your Miss America 2013 pageant?! Seriously! What. The. Hell.

I was absolutely beyond appalled that you allowed that little stunt to be pulled. Sure, some might have thought it was “cute” or “funny”. I am so sorry to inform you that it was horribly tacky and screamed the wrong message to young girls and women throughout this country.

“Hey America! You can only look this way by starving yourself!”

“Hey Ladies! Too bad, so sad you didn’t win. Have a doughnut!”

Um. Gross. Those girls up there have worked their butts off (possibly quite literally) to look that way. They go to the gym, they eat healthy, they work at it. Sure, some of them might have really starved themselves and some of them might have had a disorder-who knows! But don’t bring that to light! A lot of them worked hard for their bodies and to show America that a. You need to deprive yourself of all carbs and sugar b. sucks to be you, have a doughnut…. Really, what kind of message are you sending? Donuts are not a part of a healthy diet but it doesn’t mean you can’t eat them. But hey, ladies, don’t worry. If you starve yourself but don’t win, you can have a doughnut.

As a long time supporter of your program, I am very disappointed in this.

I hope you choke on your own morning doughnut.

Very aggravated,

C.

P.S. Miss NY is a fabulous choice. But does she get to have a doughnut??

My Happy Place(s): Dealing with Life

Breathe in… Breathe out… Ahhhhh… Now go to your happy place. Everyone has a happy place. A memory or two or three they muster up to remind them of happier times, to give themselves hope, or to comfort themselves. Sometimes it is a fantasy-all unicorns and rainbows. It is a way to mentally escape while your being has to continue to trudge through some dreadful time. What is your happy place?

I have a few happy places. I use these exercises at different times for different reasons. I have a different destination for different situations. Stressed, overwhelmed, severely uncomfortable, shy, gloomy, and my favorite-trying to fall asleep.

Dealing with Stress: Work sucks, you don’t know where you’re going in life, you have too much on your plate… I go to my “daily life” happy place. When I was a kid, we had a semi-routine where Friday nights we could come home from school, not worry about homework, play with our friends, have pizza, and stay up to watch TV. It is not necessarily reverting to childhood for me as it is trying to conjure up that blissful relaxation. My inner eye sees a setting sun, I feel a peaceful and relaxed knowing that if all else fails, I still have friends and family to rely on. And I’m sure they would let me stay up to watch some Friday night TV. This just gives me the breather I need to regroup and take on whatever is challenging me.

Overwhelmed: I imagine myself skiing. I love skiing. I love skiing almost more than my husband. That’s a lot. If everything is just getting too crazy, I just picture the mountains around me, a good snow, and no one else. The hills are mine. The snow is mine. The sun is mine. The world is mine. I am also an amazing skier in my happy place. I am a great skier in real life, but my happy place skier doesn’t get tired or trip up on anything and has perfect form. This also gives me a break to relax and regroup to tackle my obstacles.

Severely uncomfortable: There have been a few instances in my life so far that I have really reverted to this. There have been a few times where I couldn’t get to where I wanted to go and it was completely out of my control. Being somewhat of a control freak, I have a hard time with this. I picture my grandparent’s house. My Nana passes away [almost] two years ago but her house was always so comfortable. She had comfy furniture and was always happy and always tried to feed you and make you comfortable and happy too. This is my favorite happy place. This gets me out of the moment so I can be a little more comfortable for the time being.

Shy: I always find myself in situations where I have to do some sort of public speaking, take on some sort of leadership role, or just be poised and professional. This happy place is easy. I just imagine the large number of woman who have come before me and grew a set and moved on. The women of the Suffrage Movement, the women of the Depression, Rosie the Riveter, Joan of Arc. Stuff like that. It’s more of a mental exercise to get my panties out of a bunch than an actual happy place but it works. This makes me stand up taller, lift my chin up, square my shoulders, and take on the world.

Gloomy: Sting. Sting and his Fields of Gold. First of all, let me tell you that I am absolutely in love with Sting. IN LOVE. So him singing this lovely story about fields of gold and all the prettiness, I can’t get enough. When I’m gloomy, I think of watching my future children frolic in golden fields of barley as the sun sets with my sweet mansion [Sting buys for me!] behind me. Oh yes, it’s lovely. This just makes me so. incredibly. happy.

Can’t Sleep: I try a number of different little scenes for this one. I love those Lunesta commercials. For some reason, seeing other people all cozy and sleeping makes me want to sleep. If those don’t work, I think of a beautiful tropical paradise where the water isn’t water but cool, silky chocolate milk. And there are pretty birds chirping and… zzzzzz…. Oh yes, this works great. The Lunesta commercials are FANTASTIC though.

So there you have it. My mental tricks to help me do something or to escape for that quick second so that I can get a mental “nap” in to refresh and regroup for whatever is needing to get done. Try it.

5 things I’ve learned from experience

Looking around WordPress I find the daily prompt. Sure, I can fill you in on how I voted, you voted, we all voted, Obama won, people are happy, people are sad… blah blah blah OR I can give you some real healthy advice. I have been prompted with “What have you done that you would advise your friends never to do?” Duuuude.

Rather than rehash my past failed relationships and poor fashion choices, I will give you some pretty handy advice I have learned first hand does NOT work and is NOT worth the energy to do it. Enjoy!

  1. Don’t date the locals: If you are in a vacationland or resort town… do not date the locals. There are many scenarios that could arise from doing so. You could get sucked into a freaky deaky cult. You could become someone’s fourth baby daddy. You could wake up somewhere naked with a kidney missing. Just not a good idea.
  2. Don’t pay to get judged: If you are an unsuspecting pretty young lady and are interested in doing pageants, don’t pay for them. Miss America is a scholarship pageant: they pay you (how cool is that??). Miss USA is a beauty pageant. You pay them. Lots of money. While the shiny pretty crown is nice looking, you are paying through the nose to be judged. Shit. Just go to the mall. You’re welcome.
  3. Don’t date the popular guys: If you value your sanity and your sanitary… Well, you know. I have a theory that everyone peaks at some point in their life. Some are luckier than others and their peak lasts more than a year or two and they are pretty awesome. Other not so lucky people peak in high school and its all down hill from there. Sucky. So date the geeks and the dorks and watch as they blossom into a beauuutiful butterfly… as their career skyrockets… and they make lots of money… and get rich and famous. Don’t be a has-been! Don’t date one, either.
  4. Don’t settle: If you have a dream, an idea, an interest. Go for it. Don’t settle on living your every day ho-hum. Move to that big city, take that offer, run like the wind, Bullseye. Do it. I dare you. You don’t want to regret something 1, 10, 30 years from now you can’t fix because you settled. This goes for relationships too. If someone just isn’t your everything, move along. There’s nothing to see here. If it’s not everything you’ve dreamed it would be, keep going until you found that dream you’ve dreamed. Otherwise, you won’t be happy and that’s just not fair to either of you.
  5. Don’t let people tell you that you can’t do something: This is a biggie. Just cause someone says you can’t do something, you most certainly can. I do not advise breaking the law… that is a bad day. But if someone says you’ll never amount to anything or you can’t become the person you want. Screw that. You can. Prove them wrong. It happens. (This is how I became a firefighter… and a lumberjack… and a scientist…)

I’m going to get off my soapbox now. So take some of the advice, run with it, or run from it, depending. Go.