I'm sitting in my bed, crying as I write this.  I'm crying because it hurts so much.  I'm always surprised by how much I can still miss you after all of this time.  Sometimes it's the moon that makes me tear up.  Other times, like tonight, a million small things have happened that have led to this moment.  I don't remember what any of those small things were.  One minute I was writing a paper, and the next I was searching your obituary.  And then your page on the funeral parlor's website.  And then your grave.  Did you know you can do that?  Look up a gravestone?  No one has taken a picture of yours, but the first four numbers to find it are 1211.  My birthday is 12-11.  I won't forget that.

Then I'm googling the driving distance because I almost wish I could pack up the dog and drive to see you tonight.  Like seeing your gravestone will settle some of this unease.  But you're five hours away and I work in the morning.  And there's always something that comes up.  Always something that takes priority.  That's the hard thing about living.  No matter how heavy our ghosts are, we have to keep moving.

29 Before 30 March Update

Miraculously, it hasn't been two years since my last post...only two months!  Progress!  I figured I'd pop back on the blog today with a very simple goals update.  No pressure on me for coming up with anything marvelous and earth-shattering.

  1. Read 200 books- As of today, I have read 33 books which, according to my Goodreads, is 3 behind schedule.  Still.  33 books is almost half of what I read last year!  This year I'm listening to audiobooks like crazy and counting all the read alouds I do for library.  Plus, when I buy new picture books for friends or the library, I'm counting those as well (if I read them). 
  2. Visit a new state- Nothing yet.  Nothing planned.
  3. Lose some weight, specifically weigh less than 160 at some point this year- I was doing really well with Whole30 in January, but I need to get focused on healthier eating and moving more.
  4. Blog at least twice monthly- Obviously this hasn't happened.
  5. Write a new short story- Nope
  6. Get my passport- Maybe this summer?
  7. Learn to crochet- Nope
  8. Take an exercise class- Tried to sign up for one with a friend back in February, but the class filled up.  This one is coming.
  9. Put up trim in dining room
  10. Paint bedroom-I know the paint color....
  11. Paint stairs- Nope
  12. Clean garage out enough so one car can park in it- This feels like a spring/summer job.  There is too much snow to do this now.
  13. Visit a winery- Again, hopefully in summer.
  14. Read four religious books- I downloaded one...haven't started it.
  15. Read four education books (not including grad school books)- I'm reading, and loving, one right now.  I'll share more when I finish.
  16. Visit Sara and Merrick (and Rob)- THIS IS HAPPENING NEXT WEEK!  Mike and I are going on my two days off from school.
  17. Visit Shannon and Jared- Hopefully this summer.  Mike hasn't ever been out to their lake place, and I think they'll be fine with us coming since they'll officially be a family of 4!
  18. Go to a concert-Nothing planned.  I'd love to road trip this summer for one.
  19. Go to church 24 times- Man...I am at 6?  So I think that means I'm on track.
  20. Do a no spend week- Nothing planned
  21. Go to a financial person and figure out savings/retirement- Nope
  22. Invest in the stock market- We opened an eTrader account....
  23. Go to a Twins game- Season hasn't started yet
  24. Go to a play- Nothing yet
  25. Playmate for Crookston- Not for want of trying
  26. Have an epic garage sale at parents- Summer
  27. Try something new to Mike and me- Man...I think that we probably have, but I'm not sure
  28. Build products for TPT (list 5 new items)- I've worked on things, but have lost steam
  29. Do 30 days of something- Nothing done or planned

29 before 30

Back in the day when I used to blog more regularly, I tried to create a list of things I wanted to complete before my next birthday.  Since it's the beginning of 2018, and my birthday was just a month ago, I decided to revisit this tradition.  The way it works is I try to accomplish one thing for every year I have been alive.

  1. Read 200 books
  2. Visit a new state
  3. Lose some weight, specifically weigh less than 160 at some point this year
  4. Blog at least twice monthly
  5. Write a new short story
  6. Get my passport
  7. Learn to crochet
  8. Take an exercise class
  9. Put up trim in dining room
  10. Paint bedroom
  11. Paint stairs
  12. Clean garage out enough so one car can park in it
  13. Visit a winery
  14. Read four religious books
  15. Read four education books (not including grad school books)
  16. Visit Sara and Merrick (and Rob)
  17. Visit Shannon and Jared
  18. Go to a concert
  19. Go to church 24 times
  20. Do a no spend week
  21. Go to a financial person and figure out savings/retirement
  22. Invest in the stock market
  23. Go to a Twins game
  24. Go to a play
  25. Playmate for Crookston
  26. Have an epic garage sale at parents
  27. Try something new to Mike and me
  28. Build products for TPT (list 5 new items)
  29. Do 30 days of something

8 Month Update

It's funny how priorities shift yearly, monthly, daily.  This blog was something I created first to chronicle random things in my life.  Then I used it to track and catalog the random outfit.  Then, I dreamed it would be my brand...full of vintage and DIYs.

My life, however, is constantly shifting.  I recently accepted a job in the small town of Edmore, ND where I will be THE English teacher.  Lately life has consisted of acquiring books for my classroom library, so there have been a lot of garage sales and friends clearing out their own stashes and donating to me and my future students.  My garage has gotten an overhaul as one half is dedicated to my vintage goods and the other half is dedicated to my future life.

My plan is to have at least two more vintage sales between now and August so that Mike has more access to the garage.  I'm also trying, not as hard as I should, not to buy any new-to-me vintage pieces.  It's hard because vintage has been a huge part of my life these past four years, but I realize that I will need to take a bit of  a hiatus this next year.

So for me, this is the plan for summer.
1. Downsize vintage so it takes up 1/4 of the garage (or less).
2. Downsize personal items.
3. Work at Buckle and The Bun until July.
4. Craft a little more (if only to downsize current crafting stash).
5. Finish spare room.
6. Throw and/or donate at least a box a week.
7. Label all of my books!
8. Read as many professional development books as possible.
9. Spend as much time with Mike as possible.
10. Have a garage sale!

Life Update

I've taken off nearly two months from blogging.  At first, it wasn't intentional, in fact...blogging had slipped my mind entirely.  For the last two weeks or so, I've heard the nagging voice in the back of my head reminding me of the blog I so horribly abandoned.

So what has happened in my life these past two months?  A lot.

  • I had a vintage/antique sale
  • Mike and I bought a house!
  • I started what could be my last semester at UND before student teaching
  • I started a new job
If I complained of stress and being busy earlier in the history of this blog.  Let me apologize now.  I did what know what stress was; I did not understand being busy.  Some days, I wake up at 6a and do not get home until 2:30/3a.  Oh yeah, that new job is just an additional one serving at a bar, not one that replaces my current job.  The hard part is my schedule can be work 8-12, class 12:30-1:45, work 2-5:30, 2nd job 6-2a.  There is no free time in that day.  There is no time for homework.  There is no time.

So I'm trying to get better at planning and doing a bunch of homework before due dates so that if I fall asleep in class, at least I have a completed assignment to save a little face!

Theoretically, I'll be posting pictures of my vintage/antique sale before the end of September as well as pictures of the new, empty house (we close on the 17th).  I need to finish planning the big-life things before turning my attention back to this poor, neglected blog.  Soon.  I hope.

Photography Attempt V.3

A few weeks ago, Mike and I ventured to Peoria, Illinois for an Avett Brothers concert.  While out an about, aka walking to and from the car, I snapped a few pictures.

 I think the thing that I'm learning from taking photos on a semi-regular basis is that taking pictures, at least for me, isn't really about the shot so much as the story behind it.  For example, what do you see when you see this picture of Mike?  Not the same thing as me.  I see the clothes he's wearing and remember telling him they were fine when he picked them out at the store.  I see him putting the shirt and shorts together and wondering if it went together.  I see a hot day and a short walk to a short drive that would end in maybe the best sushi I'd ever have and a stop at a clothing store, where Mike sits comfortably and uncomplaining while I spend too much time browsing racks.

This photo is obviously the most out of place, but it's my favorite of the bunch because it's my favorite story.  After the show, Mike and I decided to find a gas station to grab some late-night treats and we managed to get ourselves lost.  While being lost, I noticed a casino...on a boat!  I'm not a gambler, by any means, but it was on a boat!  Mike and I made a deal to spend no more than $20.  I was frugal and used my dollars in several penny slots where Mike blew all of his in the first ten minutes on one machine.  Since I still had parts of my pre-approved cash available, Mike decided to spend another $20.  And then he won $500 on a penny slot machine.  It was a pretty fun thing to experience, if only because we were in such disbelief.

Animal Instinct

This summer has been one of the most difficult and rewarding of my life.  Working fulltime, taking two online classes, and trying to grow my brand "The Tattooed Moon" has really taken a toll on me.  Next week Mike and I are going on vacation, camping for a few days, and I am more than ready to take a few unplugged days.

Luckily, I've been able to sneak in some fun things between all of the work.  I've been fortunate enough to spend the last three weekends at the lake with my family, reading for enjoyment, going on pontoon and ranger rides, as well as hitting up some amazing garage sales.

This week finds me: working my last full week before vacation, finishing Chapter 11 of Spanish and taking the test, taking a midterm for my walking class, cleaning out my parents garage and shed to bring the best of the best for the flea market on Saturday, pricing like crazy for the Saturday flea market, cheating on my diet by going out to eat with my man friend on Friday, and doing my second flea market.  So there is a lot of craziness going on, but a lot of fun towards the end of the week once work is over and homework is completed.