The CHERISHED Life of Heather Leigh

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

My Five

In my favorites, I have SEVERAL scrapbooky blogs bookmarked, I'd say probably 40 ish (OK, more like 50). And then I have about 20 general (or "mommy") blogs bookmarked. That's not to mention the dozen or so friends/ScRap SiStaZ blogs that I have linked to my own blogs. And, I'm just not savvy enough to use the Google Reader function which tells you when updates have been made to each blog. And perusing through 80+ blogs every day is just way too time consuming.

So, recently, I've had to simplify. And I now have five blogs that I check almost every day.

Some are scrapbooky, others are not. Just thought I'd share "My Five", in no particular order.

1. - No one "famous" (although her scrapbook layouts have been published in some magazines!!) But, the way she writes just cracks me up. And the layouts that she shares are SPECTACULAR. She lives in Southeast Michigan, and I hope to bump into her one day because I just *know* we'd be instant friends.
2. - Cathy Zielske, Simple Scrapbook legend, scrapbook celebrity/royalty. Not only is she wicked talented, she's quirky and witty and just so much fun to keep up with.
3. - NOT a scrapbooker, but she does take and post some fun photos. Her name is Heather something and she's some sort of mommy blogging ex-Mormon media mogul. Or something like that. Imagine making a LIVING (a GOOD living) just from blogging!!
4. - Elizabeth Kartchner was a Creating Keepsakes Scrapbooker of the Year (I think in 2007). She is just so sweet and creative and absolutely amazing. It's almost nauseating how perfect her little life seems and I just love soaking in a small fraction of her zest for life through her blog.
5. - Matt Logelin lost his wife (and highschool sweetheart), Liz, almost two years ago, only 27 hours after she delivered their first baby via C-section (she never even held her daughter!). I've been reading his blog since the very beginning and his style of writing and his photography is just so engaging. I couldn't imagine that kind of tragedy and you can tell that his blog is definitely therapeutic for him. His daughter is adorable and the online community that has sprung up around him is amazing.

Of course, there are other celebrity scrap blogs that I visit frequently, Stacy Julian, Ali Edwards, Lisa Bearnson, and Becky Higgins. And many others that I visit regularly. Just not "every day" like I do with my top five.

Oh, and I couldn't leave you with out linking two of my other favorite mommy bloggers (good lord, I hate that term, but I don't know what else to call them), Classy Chaos (who loves fashion and her children almost equally) and the NieNie Dialogues (who was severely burned in a plane crash a year and some change ago - which gives appreciation for life and counting your blessings a whole new meaning).


Friday, October 23, 2009

Am I a Reject?

I've been going through a bit of my own drama lately. Drama that caused me to be borderline depressed for close to a month, and certifiably depressed for about a week.

Anyone that knows me (even remotely well) knows that I avoid drama like the plague. Some people (OK, many people) are drama magnets. Me? I'm the polar opposite. A drama repellent, of sorts.

So, when I experience my own drama, I tend to cocoon myself in it. Isolate myself. Alienate others. Basically, I don't want my drama bug to rub off on anyone else. Nor do I want anyone else to see that I'm (GASP!!) less than perfect.

And, that's kind of what I've done with this latest episode of drama.

Although, now that I've emerged from the drama, (well, the drama is still there but my acceptance of it has allowed me to move past it), but now that I've emerged from the raw emotions of the drama, I'm finding myself somewhat alone.

Did I alienate people too much? Am I a reject?

All of this introspection has made me realize that I want to work on being a better friend. So, that, maybe, when another episode of drama sets in (Heaven forbid), I won't find myself in this same lonely situation when the emotions of that new drama subside.

So, what better way to figure out how to be a better friend than to GOOGLE "how to be a better friend"??

There are numerous blogs and articles out there on this subject, which makes me feel slightly less like a reject knowing that so many other people ponder this topic.

One of the first things that hit me was that many of the articles stressed the importance of quality of relationships over quantity. I've battled this topic in the past. I used to think that I had to be friends with and get to know everyone and to invite everyone to everything and I would feel bad if I didn't get invited to something, even if the event was being hosted by someone I barely knew. So, a couple of years ago, I came to the conclusion that "I've got enough friends already." This attitude worked well for a while, but ultimately, I think this attitude has rotted my potential to develop new and meaningful, QUALITY, friendships. So, while I don't have to be best friends with everyone, I want to open myself up to the possibility of new relationships.

Keeping the quality over quantity concept in mind, I want to figure out what relationships I currently have that need attention. Or rather, what relationships do I want to foster and see flourish? This will not be a long list, but it will include people other than 'friends'. The list will include Kevin, Jordyn, my parents, my sister, and of course a handful of 'friends', some of whom with which I already have a close relationship and others with which I would like to see our relationship grow.

Once I've developed my "short list", I'll begin to develop a plan for cultivating those friendships. However, friendships are like flowers, so the cultivation for each is different. The steps I'll take to enhance my friendship with person A will be different than the steps I take to enhance my friendship with person B, and person C, and so on. And that's OK.

I think by purposefully becoming a much better friend to a short list of people, it will enable me to be a better person to a larger circle of friends. And who knows, in becoming a better person, it might put me on someone else's "short list".

That is, if I can fully recover from the drama and prove myself to be not too much of a Reject.

Drama Drama, go away, Heather would like to come out and play.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Fall List - Progress

Back in September, the family put together a Fall Bucket List of sorts.

And, here we are, almost the end of October, and I'm happy to report that many of these items items have already been checked off the list. Such as:

Mom's List
* Oxford Football Game
* Go to the boys' soccer games
* Farmer's Market
Dad's List:
* Watch a Bucs game with out yelling
* Make Chili
Jordyn's List:
* Go pumpkin picking
* Go costume shopping
* Visit the Parsons' puppy
* Go to a corn maze
Liam's List:
* Score four goals in one soccer game
Owen's List:
* Make applesauce

There are a couple of things on the list that we are scheduled to do in the next couple of weeks:
* Go Ghosting (before Halloween)
* Costume party (Jordyn already went to one at a friend's house, and the boys will each have one at school)
* Go to a parade/Have a parade (not really sure what Owen was trying to say here, but they have a costume parade at school, so that counts in my book)
* Carve Pumpkins
* Burn Pumpkins (This was Owen's description for putting a candle in them as jack-o-lanterns)
* Go trick-or-treating (on Halloween)
* MSU Football Game(11/7 vs Western Michigan University, Family Tailgate)

A couple of things on the list that we WON'T be able to do:
* If the Tigers make it to the World Series, go to Detroit to walk around during one of the home games (Make it to the World Series??!!! How about make it to the PLAYOFFS??!!)
* Go to the Funky Fall Fest (not sure why I haven't seen anything on this yet, but it looks like the PTO has chopped this event this year, so sad)

And, a couple of things that I'm sure we'll get around to at some point before Fall 'leaves' us:
* Starbucks for Hot Chocolate / Hot Caramel Apple Cider
* Make Peanut Butter/Marshmallow toast
* Rent a scary movie around Halloween
* Make a Halloweeny dessert
* Make Halloween cookies
* Make Halloween decorations

As much as I'm excited about crossing more Fall Family Fun items off our list, I must say that I'm already looking forward to making our Winter Bucket List!! :)

It's more than just creating lists and checking things off, though. It's about creating lasting family memories and cultivating some traditions that will (hopefully) last for generations.

Monday, October 19, 2009

What... outside my window: The house across the street being re-bricked for no apparent reason.

...I am thinking: I could really use some chapstick right now. (But, that thought crosses my mind about 16 times a day)

...I am thankful for: A healthy, loving family. And the DVR.

...I'm making for dinner: I don't make dinner, Kevin does. Tonight he made a delicious pork roast, green beans, potato fries, and crescent rolls.

...I'm wearing: Jordyn's jeans that I borrowed, a black tank top underneath a red thermal hooded shirt (a hand-me-down from Jordyn!)

...I had for lunch: Nee Nee and I went to Victoria's to have their Tuscan Lunch - unlimited soup (Pumpkin Bisque & White Bean Chicken Chili) & salad (with Bleu Cheese dressing). The company and the food was great!

...I'm creating: As many fall family fun memories for my kids as possible.

...I'm reading: Teacher Man by Frank McCourt

...I'm hoping for: Kevin to land a job before April 12, 2010. The sooner, the better.

...I'm hearing: The Angels celebrating their ALCS game 3 victory over the Spankees, I mean the Yankees. happening around my house: The boys are getting ready for bed and Kevin is trying to fix the wireless internet connections on his and Jordyn's laptops. My connection is fine. one of my favorite things: Cute new high heeled boots.

...are my plans for the weekend: Dinner date with Kevin on Friday (to celebrate our anniversary), Soccer games Saturday morning, BW3 after Soccer for lunch, Parsons' Halloween (but not really) party Saturday evening, Relax (hopefully scrapbook) on Sunday