Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Autumn 2016 Must-Read Book List

I am so excited to share this book list with all of you. Here is the Autumn 2016 must-read book list that I have compiled for you to read:

1) Doing Good is Simple by Chris Marlow

2) Present over Perfect by Shauna Niequist

3) The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy

4) Think Like a Champion by Donald J. Trump

5) Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

6) Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

7) How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie

8) The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson

9) You are a Badass by Jen Sincero

10) The Lost Girls by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett, & Amanda Pressner

All of the books named are great for business, financial, and personal growth. They have all inspired me one way or another to become a better person and do what I've always wanted to do, which was to   enjoy my journey to nowhere and everywhere in search of nothing and everything. Hope you all enjoy this list. Please leave a comment on how these books have changed your life!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Father's Day

I would like to wish a happy father's day to all the fathers out there as well as the mothers pulling double-duty. It's my husband's first fathers day and he deserves this day because he is the most amazing father to our daughter. He is kind, understanding, patient, playful and just an all-round great father who takes time to understand her. He is also a great example as a husband and shows her mother true love and respect.

Happy fathers day to my own dad who as always been there for me. I love you and appreciate everything you do for me, my husband and our daughter.

Happy Father's Day!

Early 2016 Fall Booklist

I've decided to read the Duck Commander family books and I wasn't disappointed. I am not a follower of the show, but their books surprised me and might surprise you as well. I've uploaded the Fall booklist early to get a head-start. I am probably going to find more amazing books to share with you all. I've included classics as well as new releases. I hope you all enjoy the early 2016 Fall booklist.


1- Happy, Happy, Happy by Phil Robertson

2- The Duck Commander Family by Willie & Korie Robertson

3- The Good, the Bad, and the Grace of God by Jep & Jessica Robertson

4- Good Call by Jase Robertson

5- The Sweet Life by Dulce Candy Ruiz

6- Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman

7- American Wife by Tara Kyle

8- War & Peace Volume 1 by Leo Tolstoy

9- War & Peace Volume 2 by Leo Tolstoy

10- War and Peace Volume 3 by Leo Tolstoy

Thursday, June 02, 2016

Birthday

As I turned 26 years old this year, I can't help but think about how far I've come in life. Ten years ago, I remember being up at the crack of dawn on my 16th birthday to go write my first test to get my entry level driver's licence. I was crazy happy the day had finally come. I would have never imagined in my wildest dream that 10 years later, I would have been married for 2 years and have a 6 month old baby and a beautiful home with the man of my dreams. It's insane how time flies and how much we change. 

I have just gone through probably the most confusing time of my life. I have written about the confusing 20's and it sure is all true. I found for myself anyways, that from 18-25 years old, you change so much. I found myself changing everyday and sometimes it was hard to keep up. Certain things obviously stay the same and we are sure about but others are always up in the air and our mind is in constant battle with our heart. As I've said before, we learn to live with the confusion and weed out what we want and don't want out of our relationships, finances, and life. 

I was so fortunate and blessed to have been able to travel so much in my short life. I have really found a piece of myself and loss a piece of myself everywhere I went. Thus began my journey in search of nothing and everything. Sometimes we have to "go with the flow" so to speak and learn to let go of what we can't control. I know for myself, it was hard to let go of control, but I became so much more at peace with myself. I became a new confident woman that accepted the chaos of life. 

I know enough to know that I don't know everything and I am entering in a new phase in life. Out with the old and in with the new. So many changes have come over the past four years that one can't help but accept all the blessings that have come my way. That is my friends, the story of life. 

Happy 26th birthday to me and all we can hope for in life is another tomorrow. 

Summer 2016 Book List #2

We all know that we read more in the summertime. Maybe because we have vacation or maybe it just feels nice to relax on a nice hot day with a cold drink and a great book in our hands. This season, I will add an additional 6 books that I recommend reading. Here they are:

1- Wild and Free by Jess Connolly & Hayley Morgan

2- The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

3- The Complete C.S. Lewis Signature Classics by C.S. Lewis

4- The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale

5- A Severe Mercy by Sheldon Vanauken

6- Strong and Kind by Korie Robertson

Being a Mom

This is my first mother's day after my baby has been born. Some have told me that while I was pregnant last year, mother's day counted so I guess it's my second mother's day. I haves much to say about being a first time mom. Things that have surprised me and things I underestimated. Let me tell you what being a mother means to me as I celebrate my first (or second) mother's day.

Since the day I found out I was pregnant, I fell in love with someone I didn't know and had never met. I always thought that I was going to love my unborn child, but never knew just to what extent. There are no words to even describe the love I felt really. All I knew is that it was my responsibility to protect this little human that depended on me.

It was important for me to make sacrifices while I was pregnant and that was completely fine with me seeing as I couldn't wait to be a mom. From the moment I found out, I instantly went into "mom mode" and became a total "mama bear." I never knew until that moment how far I would go to defend my baby.

Giving birth is like an out-of-body experience. The experience is all a blur but through it all, I knew I needed to be strong for my daughter. Labour is intense and painful. It's really indescribable. The moment i saw her little face and tiny little body with mini fingers and toes, I was so in love even though she was somewhat a stranger. Over the next few hours, days, weeks, and months I have gotten to know her. What she likes and dislikes. I got to see her personality flourish and mature. It was the first time in my life that I would make decisions for someone and their future lied in my hands completely.

Being a mother has been the biggest blessing of my life and I am sure my husband feels the same way. Being a mother is giving everything even if you have nothing left to give inside you. Being a mother is loving someone so deep and so hard infinitely. Being a mother has changed me. The things that used to matter don't and the things that didn't matter now do. It turned my world upside-down.

This is to all the hard working mothers out there. Mothers who work 24/7 with no pay, benefits, or vacation. We do it all for love, kisses and hugs. You all deserve so much more than a day!

Open Letter to You

This is probably my most personal blog I've ever written. It's an open letter to someone who has helped me grow as the woman that I've become today. It's not always easy to admit our faults or write about them publicly. It's even harder admitting those faults and apologizing to the people we've hurt. Sometimes we justify hurting others because they've done us wrong. This letter is to say that it's not okay to hurt anyone with words or actions. It's been six years now since I've forgiven someone in my mind and heart, but have never expressed this to that person. They deserve to know, no matter how long it's been. Something about saying those words frees you forevermore.

Forgiving someone from your past doesn't mean you still love them like you did, but rather that you respect and love them enough as a friend to want to see them happy and successful. Sometimes we can get over things and sometimes it's better to move on. Either way, it's never too late to tell someone how you feel. 


******

I don't know if you will read this but maybe you will. I've really been debating whether to write this letter to you because I don't know if it all still matters. It's been five years now and we have really left things up in the air. We have both moved on, found love, married, yet things still aren't sitting right because I feel like I need to apologize to you and forgive you. Something is urging me to do so and it's weighing on my shoulders.

I do think about you from time to time, not because I'm not happy, but rather because I am so happy and content with my life that I want the same for you. I want you to be happy and loved because everyone deserves that much. I am sure you are also happy and content. I hope most of all that you have changed for the better. I can easily say that I have changed and grown so much. There is so much I need to say to you in order to get all of this off my chest and let bygones be bygones. So here it goes.

We met a nine years ago already, which still feels like yesterday. I remember the first time we started talking and the first time we met in person. It's still crystal clear in my mind. I remember going to the arena and seeing you come over the small hill from the back. I remember the way you looked, what you wore and that smile you got on your face when you first seen me. I remember talking all game because you were out due to a broken shoulder. I remember you asking me out on our first date and I remember saying "yes" with delight and excitement. I knew the first time you told me you loved me, you meant it from the bottom of your heart. I felt the same and I know that we probably both wanted to say it sooner, but i'm glad you did it first because that meant so much to me. I remember all our trips and dates, which were filled with laughter from both of us. I remember you taking me out on the rock cuts overlooking the lake as the moon reflected on the water. I told you that it reminded me of home and you gave me that feeling at that moment. I remember all of our chats and going to church. It really made us grow closer. I remember all the memories we made on the holidays with our families. I could really go on about all I remember because for the most part, it was a pleasure to be around you and for you to call me yours, your girlfriend.

Had I known then, everything we were about to go through, know that I wouldn't change a single thing because it wouldn't have brought us to where we are today. I'm okay with that because you single-handedly played such an integral part of my future that I have you to thank for that.

We had so many good times and so many laughs together and maybe that's why the bad times felt like they stung more. We were such good friends aside from our relationship, which I think helped us evolve and be ourselves around one another. I cried so many days and nights thinking about what it really meant to let go of our relationship, all that we have built. I knew in my heart of hearts that it was best for both of our futures to move on and let fate bring us back together if that was our destiny. At that moment, I had to be strong for both of us in a way, and it broke me even more. Some days, I failed at being strong and was weak, maybe even at my weakest I'd ever been.

Not long after we met, I know there was a huge event that was life-changing for both of us. I know you know what that event is. What I failed to do in my anger and resentment is say THANK YOU SO MUCH for being there for me through it all. You were my saving grace, my angel from heaven helping me and guiding me through the way and keeping me safe. I can easily say that it was one of the hardest times of my life and I didn't know how to react to it all and I took it out on you. You were the only one there for me and unfortunately you got the most of my anger and resentment. I know that those events marked the rest of our future. It changed everything and we couldn't have seen it coming. Maybe had that not happened, we would be at very different places today. But I guess the "unknown" or the "what if" is part of life and our job is to accept what we do not know.

During all this turmoil, you lied, you cheated, and you hurt me like no one had before. It hurt coming from you because I felt like you were all I had left, and you betrayed me. It literally broke me into a million pieces and I have never felt lonely like that then, now, or since. I can safely say that you doing all those things to me was the ultimate betrayal and I haven't been the same since. My innocence and naiveness left my being, my soul, and I became a new stronger person. I had to because it was the first time in my life that I only had myself to truly rely on. For the first time in my life, I felt selfish and I felt it was okay being that way because I somewhat deserved to be since you did things so effortlessly to hurt me and didn't seem to care. You were selfish all those years, with everything you said and did that I felt it was my turn. But, I was wrong. I was so angry and disappointed at you that I resented you so much and felt like you needed to pay. I couldn't have been more wrong and I see it now and I owe you a giant apology. I know that if you could apologize, you would because I know you're a great person and I know you're hurt by how it all went down as well.

When we broke up in late 2010, I was devastated and tried not to let it show. I knew you were sad and hurt and I knew that if I seen you, or if I talked to you that I knew you could have easily convinced me to get back together and I couldn't let that happen because I knew you needed tough love to really change back to the person I knew and fell in love with. It was so hard for me seeing you as you were, at your weakest, most vulnerable self. It broke my heart even more not being fully present for you during this time and I need you to know how hard it was for me. It's like I didn't want that to happen but I felt as though it needed to happen. I know I grew so much from that experience and it made me see how much I wanted you to change for a better future with or without me. That was the hardest time of my life.

When I left for my travels, I knew that I needed to take care of myself, my broken heart and that's exactly what I did. I literally thought about you everyday. I called you often and we talked often. I enjoyed writing to you and I enjoyed coming back home and having lunch with you and hanging out as friends. I guess once you go through everything we've been through, it can never be the same again. Too much had happened and I guess it wasn't meant to be. People had interest in dating me and honestly I lied to myself everyday and to them. I have probably made up a million excuses as to why I couldn't date them. I knew I wasn't ready. I even had a hard time opening my mind and heart for another friendship, let alone another relationship. It took me a good two years to open up and find the love of my life.

I want you to know a few things and this is the most important part of all this letter. I really did love you so much, I thank you infinitely for everything you've done for me and I know that you did so much more than you ever had to. I'm sorry for being difficult with you through it all and being unpleasant while you were trying. I know now it didn't help in the big scheme of things. I guess we didn't try at the same time and maybe that was our downfall. We were young, crazy, and in love. I need you to know how happy you made me and how blessed I was to have known you and have you apart of my life. I need you to know how much you hurt me, which is harder to admit than you think. I need to you to know also that writing this letter has really set me free. Free from the burden of carrying all this hurt, anger, and resentment. It has set me free by apologizing to you because you deserve that much. I have said some pretty hurtful things and you sure didn't deserve that. I also need you to know that despite the deceit, I did still loved you then and that hurt to admit to myself at the time because it left room for further pain. I need you to know that you made me so happy more times than I can count. I appreciate you for that. Despite the bad times, the good times far out-weighed the bad ones. It's also important for me to tell you that despite everything, I forgive you whole-heartedly.

I'm so happy you found love and what seems like a great girl and also that you're changed. I'm glad that she doesn't have to live through what I did. You and I both weren't our best selves. I'm glad you're married and happy. I also want you to know that I have found the greatest man and he is so amazing to me and makes me so happy. He treats me like gold and I couldn't be any more happy. He has been so good to my heart and soul and has also made me his wife and a mother. I know you would be happy for me. I know you would love and approve of him. He has such a good heart.

I am glad to see how far we've come and how great we both turned out. I was glad that I always had you to depend on and I want you to know that I'll always be here for support as well. That smile and your heart is what I fell in love with and I hope you have found both again and go on to do great things. I am so sorry for my hurtful words and actions and I thank you for everything you have done for me because I wouldn't be where I am today. You have gone above and beyond for me and I sure am thankful to have had you play such an integral and important part of my life. You're too important for time to have passed without me saying those things to you. Without you, I wouldn't have travelled and met so many amazing people. I wouldn't have all those experiences and memories, not only without you but also with you.

They say that everyone comes into your life to teach you something. Sometimes they stay forever and sometimes they come and go. They teach us all sorts of life lessons and the biggest reward is taking everything with grace despite and embrace the good and the bad. We sometimes let our egos get in the way, which sometimes makes situations worst. This letter to you is to tell you that I know I have made mistakes also and it's not all your fault. We both chose our actions and words and now we must face our consequences. It was hard to admit my part because I felt as though this would diminish your  hurtful actions and words. I realize now that I'm older and wiser that is not the case. We are each held accountable for our own actions and reactions.

I want to conclude my open letter to you by saying that I wish you all the best in life. I'm sure one day our paths will cross and I need you to know that no matter what I'll always be your friend. Take care of your family and cherish them everyday. I'll always be there for you my friend!