Sunday, May 22, 2016

Thoughts on a walk to work

When I'm going through something hard in my life, I always tend to obsess over the the outcome and everything is always colored in a negative light. Having trouble in my relationship? I'll spend days picturing what my life would be like if we divorced. How I would be without a car, without my dogs, without my best friend. I pretend I'm picturing a new, fun, and single life, but the fantasies always turn to the negative. Having trouble at work? I picture my big moment of quitting; telling off the boss, maybe a RHWONJ table flip thrown in there. But then I'm unemployed and hurt and embarrassed at the end of the fantasy.

These fantasies don't make me feel good. They make my anxiety worse. They make the situation worse. They take a small simmering pot of water sitting on the stove and turn it to a constant, never ending full boil.

I'm currently going through something in my personal life that is causing me a lot of hurt and anxiety. The other day, on my walk to work, I was thinking about it and starting to feel my thoughts turn up the heat from a simmer. And then, without deciding to do it, I turned the stove down. I started to picture something positive coming from it, a fantasy that was actually colored in a positive light. And I wanted to write it down.

---

I'm sitting on the bed in my son's room. He looks like Mike, all blond hair and cheekbones. He's sitting in his bed, bent over, crying because he's being bullied at school. I place my hands on his back and tell him this, "I know what these kids are doing has hurt you, honey, but they are wrong. You are a good kid, you are smart and funny and weird and amazing and we're all lucky to know you. Just because some people don't see that, it doesn't make it untrue. You're allowed to be upset now about what they said, but you can't let it color how you feel about yourself. You can't control those bullies. You can control yourself and how they make you feel. The next time someone says something hurtful to you, I want you to picture all the people that love you and all the things we love about you wrapped around you like a heavy blanket. When you're wearing that blanket, no one can hurt you. A small group of mean people and hurtful words, can't pierce that thick blanket of love and positivity. So, give yourself a little time to feel bad and cry about it and then get up and be happy, because you are lucky, you are healthy, and you are loved and other people's untruths about you don't matter. And maybe go eat a cupcake. Cupcakes make everything better."

And that's how I give my kid an eating disorder.

---

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Photo Dump!

These are in absolutely no particular order and most of them are pointless. You're welcome.

When Mike makes pancakes, he makes mini ones for the dogs. Obviously.

Tuffy loves when I work from home.

I am obsessed with Snapchat and this photo will now haunt your dreams.
Follow me at val22016

Walking to work after the blizzard was as fun as you think.

A perfect rainbow in our apartment gym.

Gizmo likes to wait outside the bathroom door when Mike is in there. Mike thinks he's very helpful and credits him with all his good bms.

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Obligatory sleeping pug photo.

When it's warm enough for these shoes, you document it. 

Mike was gone for a week and Tuffy would lay here by the garage door while I worked and he looks so sad.

No one takes the late train into work, it's glorious.

An early anniversary present from my love that he found from my Pinterest. He's a genius.
Found here.

Ice Cream Riot is amazing and yes, Mike's is an ice cream sandwich made with two pop tarts.

Board games at breweries are always a good idea.

THIS MOVIE.


I missed Mike something awful when he was gone, but he took some gorgeous photos in DC. All his other photos were of the food he ate. Love him.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Mighty Beer Run

Pitch meeting for the Mighty Beer Run:

"You know what everyone loves? BEER!"

"You know what is super trendy right now? Theme 5ks!"

"You know what could not at all possibly go wrong? Running a 5k to breweries and giving people free beer at each one?!"

Genius.

I wanted to vomit after brewery number two. But I didn't. Mike wouldn't let me walk like a lazy tub filled with beer and our friends were late so we ended up doing it once alone and once with them. It was a lot of running and a lot of beer. We probably shouldn't have gotten that sampler BEFORE the run started. But getting six empanadas and 3 tortas at the Argentinean place afterwards was the best idea ever.

I took no pictures, I suck.



Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Want It Wednesday

This Wednesday, I want...


! Love this angle. And it'd be just as cute with the tops of a couple heads poking up at the bottom, depending on the size of your family.:
{via}
A baby. We've been trying for about 10 months and it's been rough. Not the actual trying, but the mental torture of trying and failing and trying and failing. Keeping my chin up thanks to my awesome husband. Any excuse to see him shirtless, really.

Pink Victorian house:
This house

Here & Now | A Nashville Style Blog: buggy:
This sweatshirt

bird print skirt:
This outfit for work tomorrow


Hey, I found this really awesome Etsy listing at https://www.etsy.com/listing/236215628/fox-planters-three-ceramic-fox-plant:
These planters for our new patio

Light and Tender Cream Scones - Once Upon a Chef:
These scones for breakfast every morning



Monday, April 11, 2016

Sunriiiiiise Sunset

If the title of this blog post didn't make you start singing Fiddler on the Roof, we probably aren't soul mates.

The other day, I texted Mike from the train to tell him to go outside because the sunrise was so gorgeous and that he should take photos of it. He kept note of the time and Saturday morning, he woke up early and snuck out of the house to a nearby park to take some photos of another gorgeous Colorado sunrise.

Here they are!








Sunday, April 10, 2016

Peanut Butter & Jelly Cookies



Mike made these cookies the other day and I was not super excited about them. Peanut butter and jelly cookies sound weird to me. But, holy mother of shit balls, they are good. I even kept the peanut butter filling and plan to dip a chocolate bar in it later. I'm not ashamed of how fat kid crazy that is, either.

Here is the recipe in case you want to partake in this goodness:

INGREDIENTS

COOKIE DOUGH
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup chopped honey-roasted peanuts
FILLING
  • 1/3 cup creamy natural peanut butter
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup seedless jam, such as Concord grape, raspberry or strawberry

HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE

  1. MAKE THE DOUGH Preheat the oven to 350°. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt. In another medium bowl, using a hand mixer, beat the butter with both sugars at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla, then beat in the dry ingredients in 3 batches, mixing well between additions. Fold in the peanut butter until fully incorporated.
  2. Scoop 24 one-inch balls of dough onto the baking sheets at least 2 inches apart. Press the balls down slightly; they should be about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Sprinkle the tops with the chopped peanuts. Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, until the edges are light golden brown and the tops are slightly cracked; rotate the baking sheets halfway through. Let the cookies cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to a rack to let cool completely.
  3. MEANWHILE, MAKE THE FILLING In a bowl, using a hand mixer, whip the peanut butter with the butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and salt at medium speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes. Refrigerate for about 45 minutes, until chilled.
  4. Spoon 1 1/2 tablespoons of the filling on the underside of 12 cookies. Spread 1 teaspoon of jam on the underside of the remaining cookies. Sandwich the halves together and serve.

MAKE AHEAD

The assembled cookies can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

New Digs

So, we moved! I haven't blogged in so long and also, it wasn't a very eventful move.

OH WAIT!

It kind of was!

We had an apartment picked out, were excited about it, and then a couple weeks before our move, they decided to let the current tenants who had given 60 days notice, stay. And told us basically to go fuck ourselves. We had about two weeks to find a new place and Mike was going to be gone on travel in DC for one of them. We were pissed and stressed and more pissed.

But we found a new place! And it's bigger and better and we moved in and we love it. We live pretty far out in Lakewood now, closer to the mountains than the city. We miss being able to walk everywhere like we did downtown, but it's quiet and peaceful and safer and the views are gorgeous. I can walk the dogs at night alone and not be nervous. And no more douchebags! Did I tell you guys how douchey are last place was? Oh man...

Here are some random photos of it that are mostly just shots of snow outside our patio, but what can you do?

It snowed the other day, by the way. Tenth worst blizzard in Denver history. It was not fun to commute in.

We bought this bright orange kitchen table, because we can't just buy normal furniture.

Our mantel is filled with friends and love and it makes me mushy.

I put together 4 kitchen chairs, 1 outdoor table, 1 kitchen table, 1 rolling cart, and this g-damn shelf bested me. Gizmo helped though.

More snow! This is the view from our patio. We are so overjoyed to have a patio, it's not even funny.

One of the best things about our new area is that the city is filled with parks, trails, and walking paths. Our favorite right now is pretty and peaceful and bits of it are chock full of ground hogs. I do NOT scream and run when they make loud noises. Nope. I'm at one with nature, guys.