Ahh a fancy creation thanks to an awesome sunset and my iPhone.

It is so very difficult to do any personal blogging lately. Mainly because there’s so much I want to talk about but it’s stuff I really don’t feel like sharing with a handful of other people that turned out to be toxic and that I have zero contact with but apparently are still REALLY interested in my life. Whew. Run on sentence there.

Also, I feel guilty posting about my latest beauty purchases. I know normal people probably don’t buy that much or experiment that much with their cosmetics but… I like it. However, I’m not strictly a beauty blog either and I don’t want to have JUST those types of posts. Not gonna lie, I have six beauty posts just waiting to be published.

I also have been avoiding writing about blogging because I feel like I come across a bit judgy and condescending. Not my intention but my brain is a bit straight forward when it comes to such things.

I don’t want to just do a ton of password protected posts… so I just don’t post. I also don’t want a new secret blog either. So. Meh.

Anyway, not sure if anyone remembers that my health has been all sorts of fucked up since last November? I’ve seen so many doctors and specialists and at the core of it, it’s my genetics and unresolved stress. Yep! I’m “healthy”. I’m not pre-diabetic, I don’t have high cholesterol. I’m ever so slightly anemic but not enough to need an iron supplement.

One of the specialists said there’s not much I can do about it. He said I can basically eat no more than 1200 calories and no carb for the foreseeable future, or go a surgical route. Because it’s not me over eating or binge eating (hard to do on 1500-1700 calories a day anyway) but my body flat out refuses to accept change. 95% of my beverage intake is water, the remaining 5% are Pumpkin Spice Americano’s, loose leaf green tea, loose leaf white tea, and very VERY rarely a Coke Zero (no more than twice a month if even that much).

Neither of those options are right for me so I will just stick with counting calories and hoping something changes.

Also, nothing like each and every doctor asking if I have any specific stressors in my life and all I can do is laugh. Uh… yeah?

I’m still dealing with the aftermath of my oldest son being tortured and bullied at his elementary school. I’m dealing with my estranged twin sister saying hurtful lies about me (to what end, I have no idea, I AVOID that hot mess). Dealing with my health problems, migraines, and sudden weight gain (while counting calories no less). Not to mention my typical anxiety issue that popped up after I had my youngest son and insomnia.

At the very least the kids and my husband are healthy and doing well.

We’re also starting our homeschooling year with both boys. Tristan turns four next month and he wants to do everything Danny does, so I figure just… teach them both!

Hmm what else… I’ve finally gotten back to cooking dinner every night and menu planning. For most of this year just the thought of DINNER was overwhelming, now that it’s September and getting closer to Autumn (my SEASON YO!!!) I’m feeling a bit more like myself.

I’m also wanting to re-connect with my spirituality. I’ve really put it on the back burner for the past few years and I miss feeling connected.

Lastly, just a “shout out” if you will to my super ultimate best friend forever, Mary. I don’t know what I’d do without her.

So what have y’all been up to lately?

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Angie
posted on September 5th 2013 at 7:35PM CST

So glad to see this update! I welcome those beauty posts! You’re so lovely and I like reading your posts. So glad you’re homeschooling both boys this year. We are too. Hope your health improves. XO

posted on September 5th 2013 at 7:58PM CST

Thank you so much!

I’m excited, my husband found out that our town, surprisingly, has a large homeschooling community, who knew! Plus our library has a lot of resources. The only struggle is that my oldest son was in public school for a total of four years and learned not a damn thing. I have to start from scratch. He picked up math at home VERY quickly (his school kept him doing single digit addition well into 5th grade!) and does multiplication and such.

Reading is the main struggle, although since being out of school he IS reading, a far cry from when he was in school. He doesn’t have any knowledge for history, science, etc.

However in a way, this might be a good thing because then we can teach him everything he NEEDS to know and everything he WANTS to know without having it white-washed from the school.

I don’t even know what to do at this point with my health. I feel proud that I kicked my pop habit and drink water now. It’s frustrating to not only eat lower calorie but to eat all my veggies (LOVE VEGGIES), lean meats, and low-fat dairy and to not have any improvement or loss.

I did try going Vegan last year and that was an epic fail. I might try carb cycling again but not sure yet.

Angie
posted on September 5th 2013 at 8:28PM CST

My sons were in public school and I worked there from PreK- the middle of 4th and 5th, so I feel your pain! We deschooled for a year an a half before they even trusted any sort of learning! Now the youngest who HATED reading and writing has really taken control of his own education and is plowing through a workbook he picked out. The oldest is really into history, and learns a lot via books and googling. Both have learned to type. All this without me! I’m glad they are finally opening up and trusting that learning is a good thing. :) I am SO GLAD you’ve found other local homeschoolers! I know our group keeps me afloat!

My husband is similar in that he cannot find the answers to his health issues. He is now seeing my integrative doctor, who is running a myriad of labs, just like she did with me. He bikes miles a day, eats primal, and is always stuck around 300lbs. It’s frustrating when you are doing all you can and still no progress. I am keeping the faith for you that something will click soon. Hang in there. Also, YAY FALL!!!! \o/

posted on September 6th 2013 at 6:10PM CST

Oh totally! My son associates “learning” with “getting hit” at this point. Or it’s “I can’t do it”, “that’s above my level”. It upsets me and drives me crazy.

I haven’t gotten any specific details about the group, YET, however just knowing we have a community in my town? Makes me feel SOOOO much better. Once I can get us off a nocturnal schedule I can actually go in the morning to the library and see how we can get involved.

YES YES YES about your husband! I would LOVEEEE to find out how his testing goes. My husband walks over 10,000 steps a day just at his job alone, the moment he sort of, kind of, sometimes counts calories? Drops weight so quick. Where I’m super strict about weighing and measuring and limiting and… I either gain or simply don’t lose. It messes with my mind.

One of these days I need a Pumpkin Spice tattoo lol!

posted on September 5th 2013 at 7:43PM CST

Beautiful photography as always. I get where you are coming from on the wanting to blog but not necessarily wanting people to read certain posts. And I wouldn’t presume to ask for the password when you protect a post. But if you ever need a shoulder, I am here. My anxiety and other mental health crap has been getting in the way of my life too. {{{hugging you}}}

posted on September 5th 2013 at 8:02PM CST

Thank you! I really need to get a smaller camera to keep in my purse because I feel like I miss out on SOOO many shots that my iPhone isn’t able to do but my DLSR is just too big to drag around everywhere.

Oh geez, it sucks doesn’t it? I faintly recall not having these thought processes but to a degree, there’s really not much I can do about it.

Gina
posted on September 5th 2013 at 8:12PM CST

Did you use an app to make that graphic? I love it. I use my phone/apps to make images for posts all the time but I know there are probably a million more photo editing apps that I should be checking out.

Sorry to hear about your health stuff. Stress can kill. I think stress has eaten a hole in my stomach and in my soul this year.

posted on September 5th 2013 at 8:16PM CST

Yes. I took the sunset photo and just used the app Studio Design to add the quote circle on top of it and just bumped up the contrast a ton.

Oh I NEVER knew how stress could affect a body. I thought stress just sort of stayed in your head, I didn’t think it could cause someone to actually be ill.

Keeshia
posted on September 5th 2013 at 8:46PM CST

Stress is definitely horrible. It’s rarely ever just in your mind, it causes you to release chemicals and whatnot – afterall, your brain does control the rest of your body. <3

I say you shouldn't be holding back anything. We're happy to read all kinds of things you post, if you have beauty posts, post em. And write whatever you want to, it's your blog and your ideas. If someone doesn't like your opinion they can GTFO. -__- But that's just my two cents.

I hope you start to feel better soon. Till then (and beyond), lots of love!

posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:11AM CST

I’ll just hire you to be my bloggy bodyguard LOL!

posted on September 5th 2013 at 8:54PM CST

STRESS. It really should be a 4-letter word. It can absolutely rob you of everything. Figuring out ways to unplug from any stress that you don’t necessarily have to be involved in and finding ways to cope with the stress you can’t avoid is key. I used to really take on other people’s problems like they were my own; I’d be in the shower practicing speeches in my mind for what so and so should say to so and so. I was constantly trying to help people and, in turn, not helping myself very much. There are so many things in life that you really can unplug from if you start putting yourself higher on the priorities list. The unplug analogy really helps – if you think of everyone you’re involved with as an outlet you can either plug into or out of, and the energy, stress, and time each “outlet” takes away from you, it really makes it easier to hone in on who deserves your time and energy versus those outlets that are sucking your soul dry. Being a people lover/pleaser, it was hard for me to unplug at first, but after I saw what a difference it made to remove certain stressors from my life that weren’t adding anything positive, it got easier. Plus, there’s more of your focus and concern for those you do want to stay plugged in to. As far as ways to de-stress, everyone’s got to find their own megamix o’ magic. For me, doing yoga (REALLY need to do it more) always brings me a peaceful feeling, reading blogs, catching up on TV shows that make me laugh (Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis is coming to mind), reading quietly, singing along to my favorite music in the car alone, even little treats like Pumpkin Spice Starbucks and beauty goodies – anything that makes you feel happy and calm and puts you in a positive mood. I really hope things start happening with your body because you have every right to feel upset and angry that you’ve made so many positive changes and are still awaiting visible results. It’s one of the hardest things! And I’m so sorry for the pain your older child has gone through being bullied. I was bullied and it’s such a horrible feeling to be isolated and picked on every day for doing absolutely nothing wrong. I am so happy you’re able to homeschool and that you have a large homeschooling community there. That’s FANTASTIC! Your son will be fine. If anything, being bullied when I was young gave me a greater empathy for others and capacity to care about people deeply. I wish you all the best, chicky boom!

posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:11AM CST

YES YES YES!! I feel like if I have the knowledge and ability to help someone, even if it robs me of MY time, money, and energy… I should do it.

I’ve gotten better about saying no… however it’s a daily struggle.

When it comes to homeschooling, I figure I can’t be WORSE than the school, at least I don’t hit or threaten! I also TEACH! My son has ZERO knowledge on even the basics (like nouns, verbs, etc) and he was in school for FOUR YEARS! It blows my mind.

posted on September 5th 2013 at 10:19PM CST

Well I hope everything starts to smooth out over on your end. I know the whole family drama crap way to well. Wouldn’t be amazing if we could delete people in real life? lol! We were recently married on the 10th of August and luckily drama was kept to a minimum before the wedding. After is another story. The s**t hit then fan to say the lease!

Lots of love
Kala

posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:08AM CST

Thank you. OMG I wish! It’s just so toxic.

posted on September 5th 2013 at 10:35PM CST

Wow. I hope things calm down for you soon, especially for the sake of your health! How can you take care of all those things when you’re not well yourself?

That is terrible about your son. :( I’m sorry he’s had to deal with that, but I hope the home schooling works out for all of you. I bet he’s much happier about the new arrangement. I hope so, anyway.

And you definitely need a safe place to vent. Your blog should be that. I hope people are giving you your space so you can have that space. I want you to get better! *hugs*

posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:07AM CST

With homeschooling, and we’ve BARELY just started, his reading has improved. It started improving as soon as he was out of school actually. They were (and I still can’t get over this) SOOOO angry that I was permitting him to read books, specifically Harry Potter books, because they felt it was “above his level”. So instead of encouraging him to even TRY, it was “you can’t, so don’t bother”.

It’s really offline people, my estranged family and such that I’m struggling with when it comes to blogging. As it is I’m already accused of talking non stop about specific individuals here on my blog, Facebook, and twitter (which… I’m obviously not doing) that I worry about ACTUALLY blogging about my feelings will just cause more drama.

Crystal
posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:02AM CST

You know what one thing has unexpectedly helped me the most lately? A mala. You wouldn’t believe how much stress that little thing has helped me alleviate!

Also, I’m with Keeshia ^ regarding what you should or shouldn’t post here. If you need someone to run interference for you on your comments, I’d volunteer. <3

posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:04AM CST

What is a mala?

It’s funny, you’d think it would be online people I’d be concerned about but no, it’s my family. Sad isn’t it?

Crystal
posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:10AM CST

Essentially, prayer beads. I bought mine on Amazon from this guy: http://www.handsoftibet.com — Super slow site there, but fantastic products!

Ah, family. I just don’t get why they can’t leave you in peace. *hugs*

posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:14AM CST

How do you use them?

Dude. No. Idea.

I find out about this stuff and what am I supposed to do? I’ve never been given a reason on why I’m so “horrendous”, “disgusting”, and “bad”. Just that I AM those things apparently. I don’t know what the core of it is.

No one seems to have that answer and I’ve gotten WAYYYY better on letting it go. It’s only in my mind now because it seems like in the past week a lot of people have been sort of… condemned for having a relationship or even talking to me (by certain members of my family).

Crystal
posted on September 6th 2013 at 1:23AM CST

You use it to count repetitions of a mantra or prayer or chant. I got a wrist mala just to try it out — just 27 beads, and you can turn around and repeat as necessary. Even just having mine around my wrist when I’m not using it makes me feel better. Proof, I’m wearing it right now. About to de-stress from a fairly horrible customer at work.

I’m really glad to hear that you’ve gotten better with the letting it go part. I wish there was something I could do to help.

posted on September 6th 2013 at 6:11PM CST

I’ll have to get one!

I wish I knew how to solve all of the problems so that I could ask for help. I have no idea what to do about my sibling / that side of the family over all (instead of my current core unit of husband and kids).

Plus my health, educating the kids, and everything else I haven’t brought up? I’m at a loss sometimes.

posted on September 6th 2013 at 6:02PM CST

Oh, Sarah, I feel for you about the health issues and not getting answers. I was actually wondering recently if you’d learned anything useful. I’ve been in health hell myself for a month or so. My doctor wants to throw more antidepressants at the problem but I feel certain that it’s a nutritional lapse that set me off… although I was feeling a ton of stress so I guess that played into it too. It’s frustrating — like you, I want there to be a definitive answer besides just “this is how your body is.” :-(

Anyway… sorry, didn’t mean to go off on my own problems. But you aren’t alone in your feelings, and it is hard to talk about, both in person and online. I wrote a couple of posts about the whole depression mess that I never published because I just felt like people wouldn’t understand.

I saw that someone else recommended yoga. I got a DVD called Candlelight Yoga and I haven’t felt brave enough to do the exercises yet, but I’ve done a little of the breathing routine and I do find it relaxing just to watch and listen to the music. I also read an article that said just a few minutes of mindful breath work each day can really make a difference in reducing stress. (Here’s the article if you’re interested — I bookmarked it to remind myself to keep trying! http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2012/10/happier-increase-attention-span-courageous/)

Hang in there and do anything you can think of that makes you feel happy. ::::hug::::

posted on September 6th 2013 at 6:28PM CST

It’s just frustrating and confusing, isn’t it! To be told by doctors “YOU HAVE THIS! We’re doing blood work to confirm” then switch to “well you’re totally fine and healthy!” while still having all the symptoms? Kills me.

I used to do a mild yoga years ago, when Daniel was a toddler lol! I should do it again, it’s low impact and I know my breathing can get a bit rapid when I get stressed out which probably isn’t good.

Checking out that article now!

posted on September 7th 2013 at 12:53PM CST

I’m having some healthy problems too. Life always has a crazy way of getting crazy.

posted on September 9th 2013 at 6:26PM CST

I’m sorry to hear that. Seriously, once I hit 30 everything went downhill health wise heh!

posted on September 10th 2013 at 12:11PM CST

I’m only 29 lol

posted on September 8th 2013 at 10:13AM CST

Hey Sarah, I’m so sorry to hear about all the problems, but also glad that things have improved somehow. I’d be so heartbroken to have my child (when I have one, that is) bullied at school, and I hope Danny will be happier being home-schooled! You know, one day at a time!

posted on September 9th 2013 at 6:31PM CST

I still firmly believe that so much of the bullying could have been avoided if the school had done ANYTHING about it.

At the very least, he is actually learning now, where he wasn’t in public school and I feel like he’s learning more life skills too which they just don’t teach anymore.

posted on September 10th 2013 at 4:51AM CST

It’s actually not a bad idea at all to spend more time with them! At some point you’ll probably want to put them back to school, and they’ll grow up so fast you’ll most probably miss this period of time :)

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