Daily Diary~ Realizing I am not the person I want to be

Ok, That was a hard sentence to write!

I may need a second to process that sentence……Realizing I am not the person I want to be

wow, that carries a lot of implications, thoughts, and so much more.

This week I am taking charge of a few things in my life that I have let go and not made the focus that I need them to be.

Starting with my health, my relationships and my personal part of the blog.

I spent the past 3 weeks deep cleaning the blog and my closet after reading the book The Happiness Project. This book has seriously opened my eyes to some things that I was ignoring and stuffing into the back of my closet both metaphorically and physically.

I realized that I have been holding onto things that I just don’t need in my life today and not giving time to things that I really do need in my life the attention they need.

I realized that I need to focus on my health and getting out of my desk chair. Don’t get me wrong I absolutely love blogging and getting to share our life with everyone but my butt has become permanently attached to my office chair.

There were times this winter that I did not leave the house for days. I mean seriously did not walk out the front door at all!

Get out and smell the roses

This has to change! I need to take time for me, my relationships and my health. I need to get out of my chair and see the sunshine, smell fresh air and soak up more of life!… 

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Have we lost the art of saying thank you?

Have we lost the art of saying thank you?

I am struggling with a few things this week and I am not sure how to handle them…..

I was raised to say thank you always! When I was a kid we did not get to play with our birthday/Christmas/any other time of the year gifts until we had written our thank you cards. This started from the point that we could take a crayon and draw a line across the card. They had to show some acknowledgement from us.

To this day I still hear my Mom’s voice in my head each time I receive a gift or do something that may need a thank you card. I have a stack of personalized thank you cards on my desk so I am always prepared.

Trust me there are times I am not as with it as I should be but I truly try to say thank you in some way, shape or form. In this day and age it is so easy to say thank you with Facebook, text message or a phone call…. 

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10 Tips for Getting a Better Nights Sleep

Do you struggle to get a great nights sleep?

Do you toss and turn and wake up in the morning grumpy that you only got a bit of sleep?

Two weeks ago I would have said a resounding YES to both of these questions. All this changed when I flew to P&G headquarters in Cincinnati for their Science of Sleep Event!

Ladies and Gentleman the 24 hours I spent in Cincinnati were life changing! I mean oh my goodness I am sleeping through the night and waking up rested life changing!

I honestly don’t know the last time I could say that I had a great nights sleep before this event. It was not uncommon for me to be up at 2am chatting with readers on our Facebook Page and replying to emails. *Total plug for our Facebook page, if you are not a fan come and join the fun!* OK now back to our regular programming :-)

I was barely sleeping 4-5 hours a night and was waking up grumpy, grouchy and not very pleasant some mornings. My poor Husband would quietly roll out of bed in hopes of not waking me up so I could get a bit more sleep.

When I was invited to the Science of Sleep event I wanted to cry in joy! This was the perfect event for me! I could not have asked to attend anything better. So with all of that being said you know I have to bring all of you the amazing information I learned from P&G.

I hope this helps you get a great night’s sleep!

PG Sweet Dreams Collection

This week P&G is rolling out it’s new Sweet Dreams Collection. The collection includes Tide plus A touch of Downy Sweet Dreams, Downy UNSTOPABLES Dreams, Downy Infusions Sweet Dreams and Bounce Sweet Dreams. Each of these products can help transform our bedtime fabrics so they help us relax and get a great night’s sleep…. 

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10 things they don’t tell you when you start blogging

I am about to reach my 5 year anniversary as a blogger. The past 5 years have been filled with a lot of ups and downs. I started thinking about 10 things they don’t tell you when you start blogging. No one wants to admit that blogging is not the fairy tale life that many portray it to be.

10 Things they don't tell you when you start blogging

These are my top 10 things I didn’t know when I started blogging…. 

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Why I would #LuvSoFab14 to attend #SoFabCon14 with #CollectiveBias

 This blog post is my entry to Collective Bias #LuvSoFab14 contest for #SoFabCon14. If chosen I will win a trip to this amazing conference and get to meet some amazing bloggers in person! Wish me Luck!

Why I would #LuvSoFab14 to attend #SoFabCon14 with #CollectiveBias!

When I joined Social Fabric my blog was transitioning to a whole new look, feel, and content strategy.  I was diving into the deep end of a whole new pool hoping to keep my head above water.

Being a member of Social Fabric has helped me understand the importance of large photos, being myself, not being scared to show the true story or event that I am blogging about, how to tell a story around a product not just show a photo of a product and so much more!

Being a member of Social Fabric has truly helped me in so many ways!. The team behind Collective Bias is absolutely AH-mazing!

I have learned so much from the community managers, campaign leaders and the other bloggers involved in each of the projects I am a part of.

I REALLY want to attend #SoFabCon14 this year for so many reasons…..

I put together this video to showcase why I want to attend SoFabCon. I hope you enjoy it :-)

I hope you enjoyed my video and my Collective Bias Cake! I truly believe that Collective Bias does an amazing job bringing bloggers and brands together…. 

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Tips for preventing Identity Theft

Identity Theft sucks! There really is no nice way to put it. When you find out your identity has been stolen the world pretty much stops turning and you are faced with fear, worry, trauma and so much more it is hard to put into words.

I found out my identity had been stolen in the most inopportune way. There really is no good time to find out that someone is using your identity. Finding out with your brand new Husband when you are being added to his bank account = no fun at all.

John and I had just gotten married and were taking the big step of adding each other to our bank accounts. We are standing in the bank and the teller tells me she can’t add me to John’s account because my credit is horrible. I saw red, I mean serious fireworks shooting out of  my head anger instantly. I nicely asked what in the world she was talking about. Prior to walking into the bank I thought my credit was fantastic. I had never missed a payment, always paid more than I needed to and did not have very much debt.

Of course at this point I decide to look at my lovely Husband who has this look I can’t even describe on his face. He told me later he was instantly wondering what the heck was happening and if he had missed a conversation about my credit that we should have had. I reassured him that I had no idea what was happening but I would get it fixed!

Well it seems someone decided that my social security number would help them pay their cell phone and electric bills. I had collection charges for someone back east on my credit statement and they were not pretty. My credit score was ridiculous. I mean seriously give me some tissues I am going to sob for a while crazy low.

I ended up spending days working to get my credit repaired and fix the situation. Since this incident I try and do everything I possible can to prevent my credit being stolen again.

Here are my tips on preventing Identity Theft

1. Invest in a quality shredder

Fellowes Shredder

I was recently introduced Fellowes  73Ci shredder and it is amazing.  This shredder is crazy cool! I never thought I would have a touch screen shredder. Let alone one that senses when your hand gets close to the opening…. 

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Date Night at Waddells Restaurant Spokane with Restaurant.com

This weekend John and I had date night to celebrate his birthday at Waddells Restaurant Spokane with a Restaurant.com gift certificate! We are really excited to be part of the Restaurant.com Review Crew and share our adventures with everyone.
Waddells Spokane

I was really excited to find a Restaurant.com gift certificate for Waddells Restaurant Spokane. John loves Waddells so I knew he would be excited to go there for his birthday!… 

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Inside the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile

Have you ever wondered what the inside of the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile is like? I have to admit that this is something I have always wondered about. I was really excited when I found out the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile would be visiting Coeur d’Alene and Spokane! I have always wanted to see it up close and have my picture taken with it. A totally random bucket list moment that I was able to check off this weekend.

Oscar Mayer Wienermobile 7
I was really excited to get a picture with the Wienermobile. It is one of those iconic things that is just to fun to not have a picture with it. While we were visiting the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile we learned quite a bit about it… 

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Not letting financial setbacks detour you from your goals!

This past week we were hit with two pretty major financial hits. We found out that the renters in our rental house are moving out a month ahead of schedule and the hot water heater broke to the tune of $600. I have to say this was a hard hit to find out. We are working so hard on our financial goals. We are trying to not letting financial setbacks detour us from our goals!

I am so thankful that we have been having twice a month financial meetings together. We were able to sit down and really look at our finances. We were able to figure out exactly how much we have going forward without rent coming in. We have been trying to add additional payments to our car payment and get it paid off this year. I am still hoping we will be able to do this going forward.

I keep reminding myself that saving money is a marathon not a sprint. That there will be bumps in the road but we have to stay focused on our goals and not let the bumps become the new route. I spent this weekend reading Dave Ramsey’s Complete Guide to Money: The Handbook of Financial Peace University. I am taking what I read to heart and reminding myself that this is a long term journey. I am making saving a priority and not letting my wants win out over my needs.

One of the quote I love from this book is

Close-up of human hand inserting two euro coin into piggy bank

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Mystery Date to Cat Tales Spokane

A few months ago John and I started having mystery dates. Each month we have to plan a date that the other person does not know anything about. The only “rules” are that we have to visit someplace we have never been together. This month I decided to take John on a Mystery Date to Cat Tales Spokane. I was pretty sure he had never been there and they have a really cool feeding program that I thought would be a great surprise.

John and I hopped in the car and I told him to head north. He was a bit confused and asked if we were headed to Mount Spokane or Sandpoint. I just smiled and said keep driving until we reached Cat Tales. When we pulled in he smiled and said that he had never visited Cat Tales before. I told him he was in for a great surprise! We had so much fun walking around Cat Tales. We were greeted by a 2nd quarter student from their training center.  The student was able to tell us so much wonderful information about the cats and their history. It is so sad/crazy/odd to me that people honestly think they can keep a lion or a tiger as a domesticated house cat. I have a hard enough time keeping Melebelly happy. I can not imagine trying to keep a 750 pound tiger happy and not have it destroy the furniture or well me.

Cat Tales Spokane

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January recap with Instagram Photos

January recap with Instagram Photos!  Here is a look at the some of my favorite Instagram Photos we shared

You can follow us on Instragram to see all of our photos! We love sharing our day to day life with Instagram Photos.

Smurf Just Muscles

We surprised a good friend of ours with this super cute Smurf shirt we found in the Yukon Territory on our Alaska Cruise

Spicy John During our date night John told me he was spicy and I was cheesy.
I am going to take this as a compliment since he could have called me a lot worse than cheesy!

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I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.

I have a sign in my kitchen with a portion of Robert Frosts poem The Road Not Taken.  Everyday I look at the sign and it reminds me that it is OK to take the one less traveled by and it is OK to be you and only you.  This year I made a decision and it has been scary/nerve wracking/nail biting yet I feel like I took the right road and I am on the right path. I made the choice to change the blog and make it what I wanted it to be versus what I thought was going to work. Over the past month I have felt so much better about the blog, the choices I am making and the path I am walking on.

Head Shot from Lands End 2

I ended 2012 stressed/worried/freaked out/not sleeping/ and feeling like my life was in a constant wind tunnel. I was so worried that I was going to miss a deal or a hot coupon. I was so worried that readers would not like me the true me not the business me. I really felt like I needed to be online 18 hours a day to not miss anything. This started to take a toll on my life. John was stressed and worried that I was not sleeping and was always feeling tired. We were not doing the things that we loved as much because I was always on the computer. When we traveled I was constantly worried about being online and making sure I didn’t miss a hot deal. I seriously got on the computer in the Caribbean and Panama Canal twice a day just to make sure I did not miss anything. Well that has got to change and I am making the change. I know the road is going to be bumpy/scary/frightful and every other scary word I can think of but I know deep in my heart that it is the road I am supposed to be on.

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