Thursday, July 25, 2013

My life in list form...

I feel like it would be a very positive thing for me to just sit down and make some lists of the following:

1. Things I am looking forward to
2. Things I am thankful for
3. Reason why I enjoy being a mother
4. 5 Things I am thankful for today
5. 5 reasons why I enjoy being me

Okay, so I've decided to limit my lists to only five. Within each list I am limiting it to only 10 things except for List #4 and #5. I know, I had to find a way to make this complicated.


  1. Brittany moves here in..uhh...53 days?
  2. Starting school!/ Getting my Associates Degree in Octover!
  3. Electric Run with Emily, Kristie, and Shawn!
  4. Going to see Justin Timberlake in concert!
  5. Making crafts/decorating our apartment/ baking/holiday madness with Britt! 
  6. Sesame Christmas with Alex and Sebastian! Sesame! Yeeeeiiii!
  7. Turning 25!
  8. Going ice skating at Rockefeller Center! 
  9. Allen and Mason's birthdays! 
  10. Shopping for fall clothes!
  1. The amazing friends and family I have.
  2. AC units
  3. heirlooms 
  4. facebook/instagram/email/internet/cell phone...all these things keep me connected to the people I love.
  5. food/water/shelter--being able to live in the apartment I live in.
  6. My car. I really couldn't imagine life without it.
  7. The opportunity to go back to school.
  8. Teachers--Allen has made so much progress in his speech, and I am really thankful to both of Allen and Mason's teachers this past year for all they did for my sweet boys. 
  9. My glasses/contacts. I wouldn't be able to see without them! I guess I am also thankful for my healthcare plan. That falls under healthcare...
  10. Books. They give me another world to escape to.
  1. I enjoy taking pictures of all the special moments I share with my boys.
  2. I love listening to them laugh.
  3. I love getting hugs and kisses from them.
  4. I love teaching Allen and Mason new things.
  5. I like celebrating holidays with them. They are so magical.
  6. I enjoy taking them to places like Sesame Place, New York Hall of Science, Kaleidoscope, Aquariums the movies, to get ice cream,  etc.--It is fun to see them experience things and to experience things with them.
  7. I enjoy the funny faces Mason makes.
  8.  I love the funny things Allen says.
  9. I love trying to decide who looks more like who. Does Allen look more like me? Or does Mason look more like me? It is fun seeing the little personality traits of myself and Daniel in Allen and Mason...well, eh...sometimes. :)
  10. These are my babies. All mine. No one has another two like them. That makes me lucky.
  1. Well, I am alive.
  2. I was able to laugh this morning. 
  3. I woke up rested this morning!
  4. Pinterest.
  5. The is only supposed to be 71! I might just go to the Zoo today!
  1. I am Allen and Mason's mom.
  2. I get to live in New York.
  3. Only my life experiences are unique to me. No one else has lived my life.
  4. I enjoy having the friends I have.
  5. No one looks like me. I always thought it would be cool to have an identical twin, but I like being the only person that looks like me. Think about that--there is no one else that is you

Okay, I just needed to take a moment and really focus on the positive things in my life. I would encourage everyone to either go make the same lists, or at least go through and make mental lists of these. Some of these I had to stop and think about. It made me realize how negative I was being in certain areas. Sometimes it is important to stop and put things in perspective. 

On American Eagle's facebook page, they are looking for their next Project Live Your Life winner. Eh, I decided it would be fun to enter. I am working on this whole confidence thing, and I am a little shy about I figured I would be safe posting it on my blog. After all, I am not sure how many people actually read it. After I get over the initial anxiety of it being on my blog, then I MIGHT post it on my facebook page. No promises though.
Here is the link . I encourage you to check it out. I also have no problem encouraging YOU to go and sign up! :)

Here was last year's winner!

Friday, July 19, 2013

New York Lovin'

I really think I’ve found the place where I belong. It has been almost a year since we set out on the road to come to New York. I remember how nervous I was of the unknown. Many people reassured me that I would be okay, that I would find my place here, and I would make new friends. Yeah, yeah, yeah…I knew all of that. New York just seemed so BIG.  

New York is not for everyone. It is a lot to take in. There is always something new to see, and always so many people. I’ve never felt so small in my entire life. When I say small, I mean in terms of significance. It is like am just another person crowding the sidewalk and breathing air.
Since we are half way through July, I thought it would only be appropriate to check in on my yearly goals. Can you believe that 2013 is almost over? Okay, so, here is my list of resolutions I made for 2013. Ha, I made 13 goals…

1.            Continue to update this regularly. I think I need to work on this one…
2.            Grow out my hair. Yeah, I know. Silly. You don't understand how obsessed I am with cutting my hair though. It is ridiculous. I miss my long hair. And…FAIL.
3.            Start school this year. I keep going back and forth on if I want to start online classes in spring, or if I want to wait and enroll in classes this fall. Along with this goal, I want to make my final decision on what I want to major in. So far, I have managed to not change my mind for about six months, but I have two majors that I'm equally interested in. I got accepted into Saint Johns! My life plan in this area has been consistent! I really want to thank Alex for being such an inspiration and someone who has motivated to never give up on what I need to accomplish for myself. She reminded me the sky is the limit, and where there is a will there is a way. I also want to thank Brittany for the endless times I came to her with the “can you edit this?”, and she would happily do so without hesitation. Thanks, ladies.
4.            Keep up my healthy eating and exercising. I've lost twenty pounds. Only ten more to go until I am at my target weight! This has been important to me, because of the pre-diabetes concern. I could be better on the healthy eating aspect of this goal. I could also probably be more active. Okay, fine...I need to work on this. But, I have met my goals. My weight was really impacting my self-image. The past six months my self-confidence has grown in ways I cannot even describe. This doesn’t just have to do with my weight. I don’t want people to think that in order for people to have self-confidence they need to be skinny. I feel like I took on a lot this this year in terms of personal goals (which isn’t surprising I normally do that). I’ve not only been working on a lot of things that emotionally impact my self-confidence, but physically it is important to be able to look in the mirror and be able to love the person that looks back you. Someone reminded me that self-confidence is a tricky thing. If you don’t have it; you should still fake it. People will believe in you more the more self-confidence you have. True. It also goes the same in relationships. You can’t fully love others before you love yourself.
5.            Continue to set boundaries and communicate what I want with others. I work on this every day. Each day it gets easier being more straight-forward and making decisions. Sometimes I feel like I am being very blunt. Honesty is the best way to go though, right? Take it or leave it; if you don’t like what I have to say then walk away. If you walk out of my life that is fine. My life will continue. I don’t want people to think I am being blinkered y the concerns of others. I will always listen to others and talk through a concern.
6.            Read 50 books this year. Feel free to send me suggestions. Uh…working on it…
7.            Write a letter to three different family members and three different friends every month. Yeah, FAIL. I do well if I can remember to call people back. Did I mention I have struggled with short-term memory issues? Yeah. Don’t it personally.
8.            Find an organization to volunteer for within the community. I forgot about this one. I do try to do random acts of kindness whenever I can though.
9.            Go on a date with my husband once a month. Even if that means we sit at home and watch a movie. We’ve been out a couple times. We do try to spend more time together.
10.          Take the boys to do something new in the city (go to museum, central park, Lego Land, etc.) once a month. Yes! I can say I’ve taken them to do something new every month.
11.          Start writing a novel. Ha, maybe this is a waste of time, but I feel like I have so many wonderful experiences I could share. Oh, yes. I’ve been working on this. I got half way through, and then decided it needed to take a different direction. The new one I am working on is so much better. Scandalous. Mysterious. Lustful. Flirtatious. Filled with pain, self-discovery, and the thrill of the unknown. I love it. Do I have your attention? Bet you want to read it.
12.          Laugh more and have fewer expectations of how I think everything should be. I guess, work on accepting situations, forgiving, and learning from experiences. I am getting better at this.
13.          Patience. I could use a lot of that! Yeah, still working on this, but I think patience isn’t such a challenge for me. I actually think should be replaced with impulsivity. Wow, can I be impulsive. Is it something a twenty-something year old just naturally executes in every situation? The need to be impulsive. Yeah, I have to constantly keep myself in check on this one. Well, I guess patience comes in to play in this mix.

So where has New York played into helping me reach these goals? Well, it amazes me that I feel like we are placed in places where we need to be whether we want to be there or not. When I first moved to NC, I couldn’t imagine staying there. However, it was a good taste of being away from home, establishing independence of myself, and learning that I am capable of taking care of things by myself. It was exactly what I needed in my life. It was a place that wasn’t overwhelming. I felt safe. I was able to really start to question what type of friends I wanted in life and what type of person I wanted to be.

When we moved back to Missouri, I felt lost. I felt like my identity had been taken away from me. I was no longer a Marine wife, I no longer had my group of friends, I no longer had my house, and the way of life in Kansas City was just different in Missouri. Life was faster. I had gotten used to things being much slower pace. Obviously when it was confirmed we were moving to New York I was excited for a change, but so shocked. I was going from a little tiny town(Havelock), to Kansas City which was a good size,  to a city with tons of people. Everything I mentioned on my list of things I want to change,  New York has been to influence me in some way. While I might not have been able to grow out my hair, I was able to have the confidence to try something new and not only cut it, but color it blonde! I personally think it is very New York chic!  I wouldn’t have met some amazing people to have inspired me to reach my goals. I also wouldn’t have unlocked this amazing opportunity to attend Saint John’s University. I can’t believe in January I will have two years until completing my degree in Biology. Is this real? Someone pinch me! New York inspires me to want to read more, learn more, and be more informed of the world around me. Especially because of the different cultures of people that I come in to contact on a daily basis. New York has opened my eyes to how important it is to be humble about the life you have. I have seen so many different types of people. I have also met so many different people that have many different life stories. It makes me respect their life challenges, and it makes me appreciate people more. You don’t know what someone else is going through. Therefore it is important to smile more, speak kindly to others, and sometimes just do a random act of kindness. It can be something very small. You never know how much a person might need that smile, those kind words, or that little extra something to lift them up. New York has taught me that the sky is my limit. Wow. So many positive, talented, and confident people. If I want to write a book, why not? New York has taught me to laugh. You never know what to expect here. Oh, and patience…traffic. Enough said.

Oh, New York, I love you.

Your Newest New Yorker with Kansas City blood pumping through her veins (well, is it official? Or do I have to wait for the year mark? Whatever, I am claiming you. Oh, and that Kansas City blood makes for a little extra sassiness and spice. After all, you never forget where you come from),


p.s--Decided to add some pictures to the post.  My transformation in pictures (below)...It is really weird to look at pictures of myself. Wow. I don't even look like the same person. Not long ago (and literally, I mean like six weeks ago) I was telling one of my close friends that I felt like I didn't look different at all. I guess when you are going through a change you don't notice it, because it is gradual? Okay, maybe I do look a little different. 

When we first moved here..



When we first moved here...

Wedges? What?!

Words for Thought...

Monday, June 10, 2013

Are YOU Making An Effort?

As I type this I am doing laundry. Blah. What a fun thing to do on a Sunday. (not really) I don't enjoy doing laundry anytime during the week here. I would much rather have my own washer and dryer in my own space. Oh well, I should at least be thankful that I can wash my laundry, so I need to stop complaining. The complaining shall stop now. 

Anyways, last night I watched He's Just Not That In To You. How many of you have seen it? I don't care if you are happily married, in a relationship, single, whatever...every female needs to watch this movie. After watching this movie it  opened my eyes to a lot of things.

 1)I need to stop leading others on in terms of how I might feel about them. I'm not just talking about my feelings with guys here. I am talking about my feelings with my friendships in general. I am way too nice. I am always too concerned about hurting people's feelings. Why should I go out of my way to make sure the other person doesn't get their feelings hurt? Because in the end, the person that suffers the most is myself. 

 2) When someone no longer wants to be my friend or they put a distance between Why should it matter so much to me? Am I being a good friend by seeking them out by making sure they are doing okay? Or am I being a pain in the ass by bugging them? Probably the second one. Plus, they are the one being the bad friend. I should deserve a friend that wouldn't think to leave my side in the first place, right?

 3) I realized that a lot of my past friendships and relationships have evolved because I was the one that sought out the other person. When this happened I've been miserable, unhappy, and each time the relationship/friendship has failed. Do I have bad judgment? Eh, it is just what I am seeking is not necessarily healthy. However, the people that seek me out, those relationships have flourished. They are beautiful, and they are exactly what I've needed in my life. Now, readers, I know some of you are probably sitting here trying to determine which one of these friendship/relationships you are. Please, don't.  If you really are that concerned about where our friendship stands,  you can message me. ;) 

I found this quote from the movie:

This is my favorite quote because of the last line " never gave up hope". Each of us refuses to give up the hope to find happiness. I am learning that that happiness can not come from anyone else but myself. No one can provide me that happiness. Happiness is able to found. We are just looking in the wrong place. We have to love ourselves before anyone can love us. Moving here my life has changed tremendously. I feel like the last six months has been such a pivotal turning point in my life, because as mentioned in my last post I have really questioned who I want to be and what direction I want my life to take. I feel as if a lot of people don't realize that they have so much power in making these changes in their life. I also feel like disconnecting myself from everyone as much as I can has really helped me make healthy determinations for myself in terms of what I really want. I haven't known how to not take everyone's opinions and comments so seriously. I've really needed to decide what Ashley wants in life. Sometimes I felt so overwhelmed by what others would think, that I couldn't even purchase my own clothes I wanted to wear without consulting with others first. hat is just one little example. Let me tell you how much of a relief I feel now that I have my own sense of self to feel like I can freely make my own choices. I know. Crazy, huh? Some of you might not have had any idea I battled with this. But guess what? I did. Confidence is a beautiful thing. Don't ever let your confidence lose its "sparkle".

Basically, my self revelation is...going forward I am not going out of my way to make an extra effort to go about and beyond to be super spectacular. It sounds harsh. I need a break.  Whenever any of my girlfriends come to me for words of wisdom when it comes to guys, I will direct them to the movie I just watched. Really...go watch it! Same when they complain to me about their friends...why put in the effort? If someone really wants to be your  friend they will be your friend. The end. Right? If someone really cares for you they will contact you, right? 

Basically, what I am trying to say in all relationships/friendships some good advice to think about: