I don’t ask for much

I don’t ask for much. Just 15 minutes alone with a sandwich at a house by a lake.

When Donnie moved us out of our first home to downsize, I told him, “I’m never moving again, unless…. it’s to a house on a lake (half-joking) and we hire movers (totally serious).”

So when he switched jobs again and almost simultaneously found a house on a lake, I wasn’t sure how to react. Too good to be true. All I needed was 15 minutes and a sandwich and all my dreams would come true.

So put in an offer, it was accepted and all we had to do is sell our house, in two weeks before we left for our family vacation. That’s totally, completely, and in no way stressful at all (looks into xanax). 

We’ve been in this house for about a week and a half now and it still feels like a really long vacation. It wasn’t until I folded laundry this afternoon that it finally started feeling like home. We’ll probably be living out of boxes for the next five months or so but… at least we’ll be doing it while looking out at a beautiful lake. 

Now, to get me that sandwich.

35 on vacation

Today, I’m 35. 

Not too long ago, 35 seemed old. In the not too distant future, 35 will seem young. Today, it’s just where I’m at.

I used to celebrate my birthday all week. Now it’s not even a day. Is this a sign of things to come? Ignoring birthdays. Not wanting any sort of attention and denying they’re even happening?

As I sit here wondering what I should do with myself today, I’m watching my boys swim. I’m worn out from a week of vacationing. No sleep in the 2 double bed room we’ve been sharing with our boys.

“Can we go to the pool?” 

“As long as I can just sit there.”

“Can we go to the Waterpark?”

“Can I just sit there and relax?”

Hell, I don’t even want to relax. I’m bored. I have no energy, no motivation, all the time in the world and no desire to do anything. Is this 35? 

Over the week, we’ve done Gatorland. We’ve done beaches. All the seafood I can stand.

The 25 people I’m sharing a vacation with are gone at the volleyball tournament. And now it’s just me and the kids again. 

The humidity is fogging up my glasses. Is that I sign I should put my contacts in and just get into the pool??

Alright, I’ll get my suit on. Vacationing is hard.

Relax don’t do it

I have time on my hands. 

I’m a busybody. I can’t sit still. Our first day of vacation, after I ate my breakfast, I sat out by the pool… for like 5 min. Then I launched into a few sets of pushups, squats and lunges around the pool. What else am I gonna do? Relax? Pssshhh.

After I was bored with that, I snagged Riley out of the water and we headed to the resort Waterpark. Three hours there, then back to the house. Then… cleaning. Yeah. I’ll clean the kitchen. The kitchen that was destroyed by 20 people that morning, in a rush to down breakfast and head off to a volleyball tournament. 

Cleaning. Cleaning. Cleaning. Hmm… It’s pretty clean. Now what?

I’ll take a shower. Yeah. I need a shower. 

Shower=check!

As soon as everyone gets back I head off to the store for supplies. I get back and most are 3 deep in Bud Light. It’s 4 pm. Vacation drinking. I get it. But… I’m bored. 

Workout? Someone wants to check out the fitness center. Let’s go! I put 2 moms through a workout. 

Then back to the house for dinner. More sitting around. More drinking. More chilling. Do I relax? Ok. I’ll relax. 10 minutes later… Walk? Someone wants to walk around the resort. I’m in! Let’s walk. 

Back at the resort. More sitting. More chilling. Ok, I guess. I’ll sit here for a bit. 

10 minutes later… Time for a book and the soft leather couch. Now. Now, I’m relaxed. 

Good night.

No, we’re not going to Disney 

“You’re driving to Florida? Oh. Um. Have… fun?” is the reaction I got from nearly every single soul when I told them we were driving the family (3 kids) to Orlando, Florida from Wichita, Kansas. I’ll admit, I too was a little leery about 22 hours on the road with my kids who get bored driving to the park.

We’re going to Florida for a national volleyball tournament. And no, we’re not going to Disney. I have zero desire to see Disney. The people, the lines, the empty wallet. There are so many reasons I don’t want to go there. I know it’s an unpopular decision and it seems insane to go to the Disney capital of the world and not go to Disney… but… that’s kind of how we do things in the Wallace family.

At one point, I thought the kids would miss out and for a fleeting moment, I thought they would miss out. I even priced out tickets. Donnie reminded me that we’d be spending nearly a grand on standing in line and dealing with other people who were also standing in line. So the verdict was, no Disney.

Instead, we’re thinking… gator park?

The day before we left, Donnie and I realized we had no real plan for our trip. That’s probably something that should probably be settled more than 24 hours before you hit the road. Unless it’s a brocation, in which you just get in the car with the clothes on your back, or just a pair of good swim trunks. This, however, was a full-fledged, week long family vacation and we hadn’t even booked a hotel yet.

Ten minutes on the interwebs and that problem was quickly resolved. Thanks Priceline, hotel right on the beach in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Beautiful.

We got on the road late and Siri navigated us through our first full day of driving, 14 hours.

Sometimes I imagine how Donnie and I would even survive pre-digital age.

I, like most people, would just like to get there so the vacation can begin. But… there’s so much we miss when we fly over states. For example, I’d never have known how disgusting Mississippi was, or how its probably home to the most Dollar Generals per square mile than any other state. I’d also have never known how AMAZING the Alabama coast is. Before this trip, I had no desire to visit Alabama. None.

The area that I picked on a whim the day before we left, turned out to be so great: white sandy beaches, family-friendly night life, and a tourist area that wasn’t overly packed with tourists. We decided to stay 2 nights there in Orange Beach.

Now, as we drive on to Orlando, I’ve got a belly full of fish tacos and a new memory of the boardwalk in Destin, Florida. A Yelp suggestion. Thanks again digital age.

Five more hours until we reach our final destination. Guess I better get on Priceline and figure out a hotel.

Rain: falling, yet uplifting

I woke up this morning with my eyes already rolled. 

Rain. Again. All day rain. 

I hate being inside. I hate the humidity. I hate that allergy sore throat, headache, body aching I get when it rains. Meh.

I came downstairs. Ate breakfast while trying to remember everything I’m thankful for so as not to launch into a completely negative Sunday. It didn’t work. It was still raining and my shirt is still sticking to me.

I got up. Went outside and looked at my amazing flower bed. Hours and hours of work went into this flower bed and it looks so great. I’m swole with pride. I sit on my stoop, coffee in hand and breathe.

The rain smells so… rainy. For someone who hates rainy days, I sure so love the smell of rain. I love it so much, in fact, that I used rain-scented body wash as a teen. (It didn’t come close but it worked).

Suddenly, I felt that negative mood lift. Suddenly, I have energy (the energy the coffee was supposed to provide). Suddenly, I’m taking pics of my flowers and Riley (4) tending the garden and feeling truly thankful. My aches and pains are still here (hitting up the ibuprofen in a minute), but it’s amazing what a little outside time will do to me. 

My beauties below. 

Sit on a wall, eat more bacon and other healthy advice.

Did you know there’s a “Carry a briefcase” exercise? No literally. It’s called that. You lift a weight and walk around carrying it like a briefcase. This blows my mind. Here I am trying to lighten my purse load because it’s bad for my back and you’re telling me to carrying a weight around like, well, like a purse.
It’s like how sitting will kill you but instead do this “wall sit.” So, sit in a chair… dead. Sit on the wall… picture of health.

No wonder people are so confused about how to be fit and healthy!

Case in point: My mother in law is trying to lower her cholesterol. So she thinks “I’ll eat less fatty foods.” But people tell her, oh no, eat the healthy fats. Eat the “good” fats like bacon. Bacon? Really? Yes. Bacon. What’s a lady to do with all this mixed information?! No, really. She asks me, “What the hell am I supposed to eat?”

This is why people hire trainers and nutritionists. Or, ask their daughters-in-law what the hell to eat and how to do that one carry the briefcase exercise they’d been hearing so much about.

To all the confused minds, I say this, “MODERATION.”

You know it. I know it. Everyone knows it. And yet, we try to create and follow a set of very strict rules for the quickest, best, most dramatic results. WE WANT RESULTS! But, people, I’m telling you. This won’t last. It’s unreasonable to ask yourself to change that much that quickly.

Cut out fried food. Cut out soda. Go for a 30 minute walk everyday. Let’s start there.

Good luck and good cholesterol!

Fear thoughts

I am an anxious person.

I go through cycles of being not anxious and anxious. Some days are ruled by fear thoughts and others I’m walking on air. 

One thing that helps me get perspective on my fear thoughts is writing. Not googling. Googling is the opposite of helpful. Yet… I still Google everything. Ev-er-y-thing. When really, I should be writing. Googling only makes the anxious sharks in my head swim more voraciously with more gusto (if sharks could have gusto.) I like to think my anxiety sharks enjoy tormenting me and that would make them have gusto in their voracity. Annnnyway…

I read somewhere that anxious people look inward instead of outward, too distracted by our own minds and bodies to notice what’s going on around us. To me, writing turns that around. I’m taking what’s inward, a dark and stormy night or a field of rainbows and grilled cheese sandwiches and I’m putting that out there. Then I’m out of my head. I’m the on the screen. I’m on the paper. I’m in the world. 

I haven’t blogged in a long time.

For me, blogging is like my kids taking a bath. They fight and claw as I drag them the up the stairs (just painted over some claw marks the other day, in fact). But… now, as I type, I can hear the squeals of laughter and the splashing water that’s probably going to eventually damage the wood work, and I smile. They love that bath. And I love this blog. 

Blogging therapy over. A water fight drew blood.  There are tears everywhere but my fear thoughts are gone.