We have the opportunity on the daily to make a positive impact on the world around us.
Whether one goes through their day searching for good deeds to be done,
or simply takes advantage of random opportunities to spread love,
every action (or inaction) has a resounding impact.
The question is: Is your impact today going to be positive, negative, or indifferent?
I have been told that one person can't make a difference.
I affectionately call these people "dummies"...
Those who actively try to hold the rest of us down,
those who would rather watch you drown than help you soar, those who can't grasp the power of positivity to create change.
Whether it's a great recipe found, or an uplifting story to share, you can be sure to find it here.
Let's start a Positivity Revolution, and drown out the dumb!

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Deep Thought Saturday

My therapist says that "Mindfulness" is the key to unlocking my past and moving forward. Yes, I go to therapy, and double yes, I freaking love it. There are some hidden gems I'd like to uncover, but mostly, it's just about staying on the path to being a better me. Therapy forces me to take a beat and listen to what I'm truly feeling, instead of just going through the motions. Like most of us, most of my days are go-go-go from the time my alarm rings until my head hits the pillow at night. There are never ever enough hours in the day, and it's so easy to put yourself at the veeeeery bottom of your "take care of" list. Oh! And I'm also crazy A.D.D., so although I might be high-energy, I also get distracted by shiny things. :)

Mindfulness is something I've been half-assed trying to get into for the past 8 months. The beginning of my Mindfulness Journey is to take time every single day to sit still (boo) for 15 minutes (an eternity) and clear my mind (nearly impossible). I just got done with my first sesh, and near the 12-minute mark, I started getting really antsy. But, I focused on four breaths in, eight out, and forced myself not to fidget until I heard the timer go off. And I feel good! I wanna run around like a 3-year old with my arms flailing about, but I feel good.

Another part of my self-care to-do's is one I made up myself (therapist approved). Everyone knows the saying that if you don't love yourself, you can't love someone else, or accept their love. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that my past failed relationships might support this theory. So, I'm starting 30 days of self-love...Not the dirty kind (haha), but taking one thing that I love about myself every day and posting it. I'm not sharing these things to brag about how great I think I am, but I need to share it to prove to myself that this is not shameful. You can check out my album on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.

So, there you go. Deep thoughts for a Saturday morning.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Peanut Butter Coconut Bark

I love coconut oil; I think it is the greatest thing on Earth. You can use it for cooking, health, and beauty...How does one magical substance make my life better in so many different ways?

Right now, I use coconut oil for "pulling", which is a method of swishing coconut oil in your mouth for 10 to 20 minutes every day. It is supposed to have many benefits like better hair, skin and nails. It can whiten your teeth, freshen your breath, and even boost your immune system! I buy coconut loyal for the cheap at Trader Joe's. A 16-ounce jar costs about five dollars. Plus, this gives me an excuse to go to Trader Joe's! I love their flowers, produce, and cheeses.

I met someone recently who lost 100 pounds over the past year. In addition to diet and exercise, he ate a teaspoon of coconut oil every day. I've read that this could have huge benefits in losing weight, especially in your tummy. Because of my aversion to sit ups, my tummy has always had a little extra to love. I don't mind this, except in the winter time when it turns into extra – extra. So, I thought I would give eating coconut oil a try!

If any of you have ever taken a teaspoon of coconut oil and put it in your mouth, it is not the most pleasant experience. It's oily, first of all. The coconut taste is not overwhelming, but it's more of a texture thing, and I have a hard time imagining swallowing it. Never mind that I can put a tablespoon of butter on a single piece of bread without an issue, ha! So I dug around on the Internets a little and found these adorable macaroon – looking coconut peanut butter bites. Being the bachelorette that I am, I did make a few tweaks to make it easier for anyone to follow this easy recipe, especially those who don't have fancy baking tools at their disposal. The blogger advised to use these for meal replacement, which is perfect because I have a bad habit of skipping breakfast. The coconut oil and peanut butter combination is supposed to keep you full, in addition to helping raise your metabolism and provide the health benefits of ingesting coconut oil. Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Coconut Bark

Use equal parts creamy peanut butter and organic virgin coconut oil. I had about 1/3 of a container of Skippy, so I cleaned that out and matched the same amount of coconut oil.

Sweeten your concoction with honey or maple syrup, preferably unfiltered and raw.
About 1 tablespoon should do ya.

Sprinkle some Himalayan pink sea salt, about 1/4 teaspoon or to your taste.
Of course, you can use regular salt. I use Himalayan sea salt because it has no additives.


If you're going to oil is fairly solid, pop it in the microwave for about 10 seconds. You want to be able to easily mix everything together to a smooth consistency.

Place wax paper onto a plate and pour your mixture onto parchment paper evenly.

Pop into your freezer for about one hour.

When you take this out of the freezer, you want it solid, but not frozen hard. Lift the parchment paper from your plate, and using a knife, cut into bite-size squares.

These split into delicious candy-looking bark.
You can store these in a plastic bag or Tupperware in your fridge.
Eat these little goodies once per day in place of the meal, and share with me your results below!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

I hate being a girlfriend.

Don't get me wrong, I loooove all the things that being a girlfriend is supposed to be: I love the snuggles and texts and date nights. I love knowing that someone has chosen me to be theirs, that this one person thinks I'm better than all the rest. I love having the same person in my bed every night, and smooching the same lips every day. I love all the little habits that form, all the normal items of the everyday that become more special because you get to do them with someone you adore.

And then there's the things I hate. I am a great girlfriend, although I don't currently have a model relationship to prove it...I am the one who always compromises, whether it's dinner or where we vacation. I am the one who adopts their family as my own, and I continually make sacrifices for the one I'm with. I think constantly about how to make my partner happy, with little thought as to what I may require in return. I know this is why my relationships have failed in the past...But all I want to do is treat the other person how I would like to be treated. The truth is, it is rarely reciprocated.

It would be fantastic if that honeymoon phase could last forever: when the person I'm with can't wait to call or text or just be around me. It usually fades around the 6th month; they fall into their comfort zone, and I realize they won't love me the way I need them to. I can give and give and give, but it won't be enough to a) keep their affection, and b) make me happy.

So I leave. I start over, again and again, hoping that the next time might be different. We jokingly say I have a Black Heart that crushes others, but the truth is I will never stop trying; and I definitely won't settle. I believe in loving fully, and never losing hope that someday I might find someone to share that love with. And if that doesn't happen, I have an amazing, wonderful life. My friends and family show me what true love is every day, and they make me happier than a man ever could.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Caving at Christmas

So...I totally caved at the Christmas party. The Broadmoor is the most gorgeous hotel in Colorado, and I had the opportunity to be my bestie's Plus One for her company's holiday shindig. There was amazing food at every turn, most of which included meat. So I caved. The vino may have helped me forget the reasons I wanted to become vegetarian, and it definitely helped to choke down really delicious meat without thinking about the animals. And since I did it one night, I decided to do it the next, when our very good friends took us out for an incredible Italian feast. I can't be the girl who eats only salad when we go out!

I won't beat myself up about the two (or three) mishaps over the past few weeks, but I have to say, I woke up feeling gross this morning. It wasn't even a "bloated" feeling, it was like a rock was sitting in my tummy. So I think it's fair to say that my body simply responds better to a veggie lifestyle. And the best part is I eat so much more bread now. I eat all kinds of sandwiches and pastas, and I actually feel lighter and better than I did before. It's insane, and wonderful.

I attempted for the second time in my life to make tofu tonight, and I'm trying to convince myself it's like chicken (it's not). But, the fact that I don't have to wonder if the tofu had a good life, and I know I'm going to wake up tomorrow feeling great, is good enough to deal with some minor changes. I figure, even if I were to cut out meat 90% of the time, I can drastically reduce my impact on both animal cruelty and the environmental impact of agribusiness. But being crazy strict? Not my style.

Purple teeth ladies!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Powering Through

When I'm not napping on a plane, I like to ponder and write. This is the result of my in-flight thoughts this morning...

I am a feminist, which means I believe that the path to success for a man or woman should be basically the same. My definition of success personally is doing anything I want, within reason, without thinking as to the cost. I don't want fancy yachts or servants, I just want to live comfortably, travel often, eat at gorgeous restaurants and drink expensive wine. The thing is, the roadmap to becoming successful for a man and the roadmap to becoming successful as a woman are totally different. There are subtle, yet powerful obstacles in my way.

Even if I have the same views and goals as a man, the fact that I have breasts means that any after-hours business meeting teeters between a date and an actual meeting. If I have too much wine, I'm unprofessional (not so for a man). Conversations quickly meander from professional to relationship-based. I get questioned about past relationships, current relationships, and the reason why I may or may not be in love with someone. Totally inappropriate and uncomfortable, FYI.

Looks is important in business, as it is everywhere else in our backwards society...If I am good looking, men are more likely to do business with me, especially one-on-one, but it does not mean that they respect me. If I am not traditionally good looking, I won't get the attention that someone else may get, even though my skills may be far beyond their reach. If I eat too much, or eat too little, or am overly agreeable, or too argumentative, I am judged. Whereas a man would be commended for sticking to his guns no matter the circumstance, women are scrutinized at every opportunity.

Take the fact that I'm not married. When it dawns on me that my business meeting may be construed as something more, I play the boyfriend card. I do have a boyfriend, but I should never feel the need to divulge something personal about myself in order to keep a meeting professional. In these circumstances, it become immediately apparent that although it was clear in my mind that nothing about this was a date, that they were hoping for something more. More often than not, I leave my one-on-ones feeling dejected, devalued, and uninspired. I never know if someone is dealing with me for my business sense or for my looks.

How are women supposed to become truly successful in business when the men we do business with can't grasp or respect boundaries? Why should I have to monitor my every action in the hopes that I am continually perceived as professional? Anyone in the sales business knows that networking is huge, and I won't stop. But I've got to come to terms with the fact that no matter how I act, there will always be those who don't show respect. All we can do is push on.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Easing into a Vegan

Sounds kinda dirty, doesn't it? I can't help myself.

I'm about four days into my newfound interest into vegetarianism, and every time I open my fridge or look at delicious cheese or think about eating a succulent steak, all I can see in my mind is animals being tortured. It's the worst, mostly because I really enjoy eating animals, especially bacon and cheese.

We went to Happy Hour tonight, and I tried to plead my case without being obnoxious or high-and-mighty. I think that's the thing I hate most about this: I could totally give up all the meat I love for the love of animals and the planet, but I feel like I look like a jackass. Every time we go out, are my friends going to look at me and wonder what I'll eat, what I'll pass up, and if I'll make others uncomfortable by talking about my newfound beliefs? I worry about Christmas, when my sister will be preparing an amazing rare prime rib for dinner, and all I can think about is a cow suffering. What about when my boyfriend comes back and finds that our favorite pastime (ahem, eating) has to now be carefully planned? Will I hold to my beliefs, along with holding their interest? And furthermore, why should I even care? It's not like I'm trying to convert anyone, but I feel like I have to have an explanation. I have been devouring bacon like it's going out of style, and I've not had much regard for where food comes from since I was 9 years old. I take pride in eating everything, especially being able to eat more than dudes. Who am I without these pieces that I have allowed to define me? Will I still be interesting, sexy, and fun while standing up for what I believe in?

This experience is frankly, terrifying so far. I've had to start over from scratch a few times in my life, but this is altogether a different experience. There's such a negative, uptight stigma surrounding vegans and vegetarians. I don't want to be one of those people that my friends roll their eyes when we go out to eat. But I also can't eat irresponsibly anymore. Here's to trusting it will get better...

Saturday, December 5, 2015

What they don't tell you

I am so deeply proud of my military man.

When we decided to be "boyfriend/girlfriend", I knew it would mean staying together through his eight-month deployment. We made the most of the time we had together here, and crammed fun activities into every moment until he left. I had no idea what dating someone who deployed would be like, but I got my first taste on the drive home from the airport. I cried the entire way back to my house to crawl into bed, all the while trying to get it through my head that this was not forever. The emotional side of me always wins.

After my tears dried up, I took action and researched, mostly because I'm a giant nerd and partly because I refuse to be a Mopey-McGoo for eight months. I read a bunch of articles from military wives and girlfriends, pieces about what to send in care packages, and how to generally cope with a deployment. What I learned was that the process goes something like this:
1) Take up a hobby. Done, I am a workaholic and obsessed with crafts.
2) Start a daily schedule, and stick with it. I'm terrible at this, because I'm super ADD. This is still not getting done.
3) Find others to hang out with and provide support. I have the most amazing, supportive family and friends, who never tell me I'm annoying them with all my "miss my boyfriend" talk. Done.
4) Be overwhelmingly positive when talking to your partner, they are under a ton of stress. Not great at this one, but I'm trying to be better.
5) Send care packages, write letters, Skype. Done and Done. The best part of my day is when we get to text or video chat. And I love sending packages! The post office ladies have been incredibly kind and patient with my ignorance about shipping overseas.

These are all helpful bits of knowledge, and I am so thankful for the Googles. I couldn't help but wonder if the articles purposely leave this out; but no one talks about the loneliness and worry and guilt that is the daily life of the SO. I am in no way complaining about my relationship; I am counting down till he gets back home, and I think we're doing an awesome job making the best out of this deployment. But all the articles in the world could not have prepared me for the emotions that I've experienced over the past few months. Having the strictest schedule every day wouldn't make me worry any less; having friends and family doesn't make me less lonely at night, when I just want to know that he's home and safe. And then there's the guilt... I have a wonderful life; I get to do whatever I want, eat whatever I want, go anywhere at anytime; and he is stuck. I tell him everything, but there's always that guilt in the back of my mind, like I'm rubbing it in. In reality, I'm making mental lists of all the things we get to do together next year.

In conclusion, I would give this advice to anyone facing a long deployment, especially for a first-timer like me:
1) You WILL get lonely. Don't stray. If you find yourself doing something that you wouldn't do with your SO around, stop.
2) You might cry some days more than others, or not at all. Don't let your emotions interrupt your life here.
3) Send care packages often. They're so fun to put together, and only cost about $12 to ship to an APO.
4) Keep busy. Men can be wonderfully time-sucking, and a deployment provides a perfect opportunity to be a little selfish and do something only for yourself.
5) Tell your SO everything. Communication is the only thing you have to keep your bond strong over the months and miles.

Thank you to all who serve our great country, and to their families who also must sacrifice.