Profile photo of ramblinwoman

About ramblinwoman

I call a small, Minnesota town home. I'm a lover of life and all the simple things. Currently I spend my time enjoying my 20's and everything it has to offer, the good and the bad. I have a horse that acts much more like a dog. I have an undeniable love for "junque" and repurposing the old into something new and useful. Yes, I'm Norwegian, not full blooded by any means and I can't say I know the lost art of lefse making but I do enjoy Lutefisk...the good stuff....not the jelly you buy at the local grocery store. This is my first attempt at blogging, I'm a rookie and it will certainly show. However, I thoroughly enjoy putting my thoughts into words and spinning a regular, everyday incident into something a little more entertaining. I hope you enjoy the rambling!

The Study Struggle

How long has it been since you’ve spent time in a library? Due to technology, my guess is it’s been awhile for a majority of you. Prior to this year my only hours logged in a library were ones I was more or less forced into. Whether it be for AR Reading, misc research projects, quality reading time or computer use, the library was the hot spot. Of course you weren’t allowed to talk, shout, giggle, clap or take part in any other activity that had a volume level greater than one. I don’t know for what reason you would clap in a library, regardless, it wasn’t allowed.

My job requires me to pass several tests before deemed “legal.” This frightens me as my ability to absorb knowledge through reading vs. doing has declined substantially since joining the real world. I’m more of a real world type of person. I’m conscious of what goes on around me, what I’m doing and what results from such things. I find it difficult to lose myself in hundreds of pages of content I’m never going to apply in real life. This is where being “me” is a problem…

I’ve always thought it a curse for being too observant. Don’t get me wrong, my days are never boring! However, I often struggle with letting certain things go. So, how does this apply to a library you might ask?

Well, I decided the local library would be my venue of study. I did my homework before making a decision of where I’d spend all this quality time. I had to check if there was an adequate amount of plugins, cushy seats, (not too cushy so they’d induce coma) how many study rooms were available, friendliness of staff…all the basics to know my 10+ hours a week would be comfortable ones. For extra measure I brought my pin to drop on the tile floor to ensure optimal quietness. I was impressed, it surpassed my expectation.

Apparently my initial visit was at the exact time, on the exact day of prime desolation because almost every visit after has had a volume above 1. They’ve literally cranked it to 10. Every. Single. Time.

To highlight a few: I’ve witnessed a teenage girl strolling through the aisles chatting on her cell phone. No muted ringtone, no whispers, no “I’ll call you later this girl at a study table is staring at me for being obscenely rude”….just a casual after school catch up session with her BFF. I’ve heard the clumsy stampede of dozens of youngster’s in un-tied, slipped on snow boots, frolicking through the library. Running up and down the stairs because walking just isn’t as fun. I’ve spent unproductive time re-reading the same page multiple times because the voice in my head was singing along to the catchy tune being played on the computer next to me, without headphones. There’s a few days I’ll refrain from describing to the public in fear of judgment. But are you picking up what I’m putting down? The library is no longer the place I remember. Its loud, its hustling and bustling, it’s over crowded and honestly…I was so wrong, it doesn’t have enough plug-ins.

This past week I walk in with a little pep in my step. I’m really excited to sit and read my text-book. Possibly a little too excited. The further I venture into the library, the more stacks of book I pass, the more study rooms I see filled with people, I start to feel anxious. I knew I was an hour later than schedule and I was paying for it. There was one study table left by the coldest window in the whole place. I didn’t bring my coat, I didn’t want to freeze. I look up and I’m at the end of the road. All that’s left is the big intimidating stairway in front of me. I’d never been up there. The little kids sometimes ran up there but they also ran back down. Maybe it was scary up there. With no other choice, I had to take a chance. I make my way up, refraining from running or jumping one stair at a time. Because it’s waaay more fun than walking. But I didn’t, I kept my cool. I finally make my way to the landing. A little winded but that’s okay, nobody noticed…I don’t think.

I look around, lost but willing to find my way. To my left, two people. One at a table seated for six. The other on a couch big enough for only two. To my right an older gentleman and a younger girl seated across from each other. I wasn’t about to crash their party so I meander to the two-seater facing the wall. Perfect! I could get used to this. This place was classy. It had a fireplace, I felt so distinguished with all the newspapers and magazines surrounding me. I take my place and start setting up. Dang it! No plug-in. That’s okay, I have 50% battery, I’ll survive. Nothing can bring me down!

An hour or so passes. I wasn’t keeping time, I was studying, really, really, hard. I was focused and productive. My attention slipped for only a moment when I notice the party on the pleather couches was replaced with a white-haired man. I sit and imagine for a second what I’ll be like at that age. Feeling sentimental and thankful I’m still in my twenties I look back at my book and try to regain my train of thought.

In the dead of silence, a loud, rumbling, boisterous belch, echoes through the upstairs. I’m not the most proper lady but it made my face turn red. Before I can look over to be sure the guy didn’t puke, he does it again. And again. Annnnd again! At this point I’m in disbelief, shock and trying not to breathe in because God forbid I smell it. Hearing it made me slightly nauseous. Because one bodily noise wasn’t enough it was followed by another. This time I cracked up, I lost every ounce of maturity I had. I bury my face in my arms and book as this guy starts to hiccup. This isn’t your average hiccup. By the sound of his high-pitched squeal, I’m a convinced he’s hiding a baby pig in his retro jacket. The noises coming from him are unsettling. Yet, he hadn’t skipped a beat, he sat there paging through his magazine! Un-freaking-real!

I try my best to be compassionate and understanding. But really? After my giggling was under control I sat with a blank stare. I gathered my belongings, shoved in my chair, bunny hopped to the stairs, slid down the banister, whistled my way to the door and slammed it behind me. Next time and every time after that a study room will be mine!

Puppy Love

I’m surely not the only person who has a news feed blowing up with babies, puppies, engagments and all that sappy, warm fuzziness. One in particular that sticks out to me is the four legged, literally fuzzy, lovable pups. They make my little, Norwegian heart melt. Sigh….

I’ve had dogs in my day. The one I grew up with. His name was Bear, he was black and he was perfect. Then there was Digger, I taught that dog more jumps and tricks than a gold medal gymnast.

Of course I’ve had dogs through various relationships. You know those relationships where you’re like, “Ahhh, we should get a puppy!” It’s like a super secret way of saying, “Ahhhh, lets see if we can keep something alive together and test the waters of mutual responsibility and discipline.” I discuss this from an experienced point of view. Trust me when I say, get a plant first. Reason #1: There’s no canine custody battles. You won’t have to worry about supervised visits, pissy step-“parents” or a tugged heart string on top of other emotions. Reason #2: If you can’t agree on a plant feeding schedule or who is gonna keep it’s over growth under control, you really shouldn’t coincide. Simple as that.

As I’ve been fighting off this urge to have my canine companionship back it’s brought up some rather interesting points that my previously immature self would have overlooked. Taking a step back and having a good laugh over it has been the best cure thus far.

Here’s the scoop. Or the poop scoop. I want a Great Dane in the WORST way! Always have, always will. However, my oh so charming boyfriend kindly reminded me of how large of a “mess” I’d have to clean up. He also suggested a Newfoundland as a companion. Now that’s just bonkers! Do you know how big of a poop scoop we would need? More like a scoop shovel. Jeeesh. I think I’ll scratch the horse of a dog idea.

I’ve given it some logical thought and figured an older dog would be appropriate. So I set out to find the perfect fit. Rescues, pounds and Craigslist…you name it, I’ve looked. Luck would have it I find an older, male dog. It was eating me up inside so I had to pay a visit. To sum it up I’m glad I went. Is it going to be right for me? No. That I learned. Among other things but I won’t share that here.

*******

Have any of you had microfiber couches? I have. It’s like having an oversized magnet. One that attracts any fiber ever created! Their stain fighting abilities are poor; dark couches and light couches alike.

*******

Anyway, as I sit observing the dog, all the past instances I’ve had with a dog in my home came flashing back. The flalying, uncontrollable tail wagging, licking, fur flying, slobber throwing, red rocketeering……all. over. the. microfiber.

Call me materialistic. I don’t care. At this point in my life I’d prefer to not deal with red rockets in my house….on my furniture or a red rocket leaking on my hardwood floor. I don’t want to find my shoes eaten, table legs destroyed, clean up mounds of poo or find them with my bare feet in my yard. I do miss the greetings at the door, my partner in crime in the car, a cuddle on the couch and a motivation to go for a walk.

Sadly, right now a cactus would be best for me. Cute, yet aggressive in looks. Which is exactly what you can get with the right kind of dog. If that’s what your looking for. I wouldn’t dare cuddle with it and it’d be a little weird if I took it along in the car.

Yet, I’m not opposed to naming a cactus. In fact, I might buy a red cactus and call it Rocket. Best of both worlds!

“Ahhhh, we should get a cactus!”

I hear they’re really hard to kill.

Subconscious Problems

You’re so sleepy….you drag yourself to bed….assume the most comfortable position……close your eyes…..and bam! Eyes shut, Brain ON!

In my case I’m convinced I have a nocturnal, split personality stowed away in my brain. It only comes out when the lights are low and all the rest of my being wants to sleep. It suggests the most convincing concepts, life goals, wants and needs. It wins every argument I may have had that day or perhaps an argument I’ve never had. Its more inspiring than any motivational speaker. And even if I don’t suffer from A.D.D…..it does.

If you haven’t caught on by now my guess is you and I don’t have the same types of problems and you probably won’t be able to relate to this in any way. Nonetheless, read on if you wish.

I’ve thought about trying to write down my sporadic thoughts while counting sheep but its occurred to me that its an entirely different part of my brain at work. The subconscious. I really shouldn’t be surprised by its behavior given my daily conscious thoughts.

I’m not kidding when I say I have an irrational fear that there may be people among us that can read our minds. I pray I never unknowingly find myself in the presence of one. Bad for me….worse for them.

Anyway, I will admit this isn’t a nightly occurrence but it does happen often. Often enough for me to want to write about it. Well, who am I kidding, I’d write about anything. This however has won the top spot for this week.

I’m unsure of what causes the subconscious to be so loud. Perhaps an overload of conscious stimulation. A busy day, too much problem solving, dealing with people you’d rather not deal with, basic things that demand your logical train of thought. I’ve narrowed it down to the fact that my brain has had no time to play. It has had zero fun and it is pissed.

You see, its most common to have an over active voice in my head on days I’ve felt the most productive. Days I’ve crossed all the To Do’s off and gotten ahead of the game. Nights I’m certain I will be soaking in all that beauty sleep all these women talk about. That being said I assure you my subconscious isn’t all that attractive.

We can’t win them all.

I’ll keep this short and sweet but I think it would be in this posts best interest to give an example of how my subconscious sounds on the evenings it feels most active. My main goal here is to let it out to play, if only for the hour I have on my lunch break. Then, and only then will I have a fighting chance to shut. it. up.

…….

Ahhh these pillows, I need new pillows. Or maybe another pillow. Yeeaaaahh another pillow. I could have so many pillows…I’d be like the Princess and The Pea. Wait that was matresses. And a pea….why did she have the pea again? Like, don’t pea (pee) the bed? Was that a potty training book? How long ago did I pee? Gosh I hope I don’t have to wake up in the middle of the night to pee. Did I drink enough water today? Next time I’m at Walmart I should get a new water bottle. Something fun, that makes me WANT to drink more water. I should exercise more. I should buy fun workout clothes that make me WANT to exercise. Then I’d have to eat better. Geez, I ate a lot of junk today. I’m gonna wake up early, eat yogurt, exercise and drink water. Lots of water. Wow, I’m really gonna do it this time. I feel so motivated. I am so excited to wake up tomorrow. Eww, I have to pay bills tomorrow. I should save more money. I’m gonna start a savings account tomorrow. Wow, by the end of the year, Christmas, I’m gonna have so much money. I love Christmas! Jeepers, what should I get Tom for Christmas. I wonder what Tom is doing right now. PROBABLY SLEEPING. Why can’t I fall asleep? Crap, did I turn the furnace down? How “cool” would it be if I could turn down the thermostat from my bed? Ha, wow I’m so punny! I bet no one else is this punny this late at night. What time is it? Uhhh I’ve been laying here for 10 minutes. What else takes 10 minutes? Taking a shower, drying my hair, washing my car. Gross. My car is filthy. I’m getting a carwash on my lunch tomorrow. What am I gonna have for lunch? Dairy Queen…..NO a salad. I’m gonna have a salad, get my car washed, buy a lottery ticket….because I bet this is the time I win. I could buy so many water bottles if I won the lottery. I could buy a new car. Maybe I won’t wash my car  At the car wash, Workin’ at the car wash yeah, Yeah yeah yeah yeah. I wish my radio was on. Its too quite in here. (Crack) Oh my gosh what was that? Ugh, what if my house got broken into right now. I have on the weirdest pajamas. And its cold. Its too cold for a robber. I love those little masks that robbers wear in cartoons, its so sneaky. Sneaky but cute. Puppies are cute too, awe I want a puppy. But a big puppy. A HUGE puppy. One that grows up and is the size of a camel. Not a horse, a camel. HUMP DAY…no tomorrow is Thursday. Today was hump day. Garbage day. Did I bring the garbage can in? What if someone hit it? Did I check the mail? I love getting mail. I’m such a loser, 24 and I like getting mail. Whoa, I’m almost 25. I need to do a lot of stuff in 25 years. When I’m 50, it will be year 2040. Weird…..

…….

The song Highway, by Holly Williams, will blast at 6:30 a.m. reminding me its Thursday morning when I’m suppose to get up exercise and drink more water.

My conscious self will win with the push of the snooze button. 3 times.

 

 

A Valentine’s Day for the Books

Let me start by saying there isn’t a specific Valentine’s Day that sticks out to me. Having been through many with a significant other, still, nothing jumps at me as memorable. I think I’ve gotten flowers, maybe a card, I think one year a candy bar, jewelry etc….its been done, it just hasn’t been over the top. I’m okay with that. I don’t think I have an over the top personality or personal expectation. I do just fine with mediocre.

Valentine’s Day has passed once again but this time with a story to tell. I don’t want to get your hopes up so I’m going to warn you it wasn’t all lovey dovey, roses, champagne and chocolate. There wasn’t teddy bears, a sparkling necklace or a vase tied with a bow. The mood was not set for romance and the candlelight was nowhere to be found.

If any of you out there had a day that included some or all of the above mentioned….high five yourself because I’m about to one up you.

Well, kinda.

Okay, its one of those….”the eye of the beholder” things. And its possible my definition of one upping is very different from yours.

Any-who, I hope your day was enjoyable and that you were able to express your love in which ever way you’re capable of and that love was expressed to you.

………

A few months ago I distinctively remember having a discussion about planning a trip to Florida. You know, where its warm, because its freaking cold here! Much like any other trip I’ve ever tried to plan, it just never worked out. Conflicting schedules, expensive flights, lack of follow through…whatever it might be it just never comes together like my venturing imagination would like it to.

I also remember this really great conversation I had with my boyfriend about going somewhere tropical….but the conversation table quickly turned.

“Ahhh yeah we should really take your dad’s fish house for a weekend too…like Devil’s Lake or somewhere.”

Being the good Minnesota girl that I am, I agreed…. because hell, who doesn’t like a good fishing trip?!?! As February approached and the hopes of sunshine faded it was decided that Devil’s Lake was the ticket. A date was set, the fish house lined up and our wheels were ready to turn. Sleep was missed and excitement was in the air!

It should have been a teaser to our weekend when miscommunication of keys and hooking up tow lights was a greater task than anticipated. But hey, there’s always road bumps, how were we to know the trend would continue.

Friday comes. I’m getting excited to get out of work. The guys are taking off a little early to ensure everything is set up. Sounds perfect. My ideal adventure.

Then I get the texts….

“…make sure to grab the generator n those blocks in the back of my truck…no joke.” “Gimme a call when you get a chance.”

No generator = no heat. My female alarm sounded…this ain’t good.

A couple hours pass and the girls are Devil’s Lake bound. Generator (Check), Tow Rope (Check), Food (Check), Tip-ups (Check), Beer (Check)……ahhh that reminds me…beer.

Side Note: Yet another foreshadow to our weekend went unnoticed. I thought I’d pick up beer for the weekend. Perfect, didn’t even get carded…sweet. I walk out sporting a 24 rack and open my backseat to buckle it up.

Weird, who put boxes in my backseat and why do I suddenly have an e-brake in my center counsel? Magic?

Nooooo….. wrong car Einstein. (Insert red-face emoticon)

Okay, back to the story…..EHHEMMM

Well on the way to our destination we receive a rather frustrated phone call. The guys are still not set up and still not on the lake, it was clear frustrations were on the rise. Thank god we had another 80+ miles to let them cool down and find their way.

80+ miles pass….we roll into town and see a very familiar truck and fish house in a parking lot. We stop to investigate. Turns out they hadn’t already caught the big one and called it a night.

They had yet to drop a line or even drill a hole.

Good thing we have beer.

Since its now after dark we decide its best to find our hotel. Wait, did I say hotel? I’m sorry, I meant motel. Contrary to what GPS suggests we pull into our bungalow. In the parking lot we find few cars. But one car in particular looks as though its been there awhile….perhaps all winter. Usually not a great marketing tactic for a place of business. But clearly we found the place.

We first inspect the rooms before safely bringing in our belongings. I even told the beer to stay buckled. Once inside, we find that only half the lights work due to lack of light bulbs and/or electrical failure. The T.V. looked promising but one step in the door had me Google searching reviews that may claim bed bugs were their number one guest.

This place was bad. I mean, the opening plot for a scary movie bad. After further inspection and other signs of life pulling into the parking lot, we figured it’d be okay to unload the car.

I dropped my bag and simultaneously cracked a Coors. Much needed. After assembling a game plan for morning we turned in for the night but not without the exchange of hilarious pictures and video of our out of this world heating systems and free amenities. One heater resembled the sound of a Mack truck and the other wouldn’t even purr.

It was a cold and icky night but we were hopeful for the next day because it surely couldn’t get worse.

Six thirty comes much too soon. We set out for Catfish Hunter! However, mistakes were already made. The auger and generator were left in the arctic temps and the beer was left behind.

Soon after throwing it in park on the lake it was apparent the hole driller and the heat maker were going to need a little warming up. We let them soak up the warm air in the truck. The quarters were tight but for a good cause.

Since it was near 30 below and the guys were much more motivated to catch a prize fish, we sat in the pickup and assessed the situation over a cup of gourmet, gas station coffee. Sounds enchanting right?

It was a breathe of fresh air to see a smile on the guy’s faces when they broke water while drilling the first hole. There was a lot of ice and nearly not enough auger. We really got lucky on this one! Woooooo.

As they run around like spring chickens setting the tip-ups, we prep the house. It seems as though the stars are aligning and the fish gods are about to send us a real wall hanger. Everyone is content….

Although hopeful, a better part of an hour passes without even a nibble.

Soon to follow was the first perch of the day and later a couple walleyes pop through the hole.

When I say “the hole,” I mean the only hole of ALL the holes drilled that day that had a fish come out of it.

After ten and a half hours on the lake, without catching a buzz or catfish hunter, it was time for a nice supper. We all deserved that at the very least.

Silly us showed up at the tail end of a supposed nice Valentine’s Day special. We were still able to order drinks, food and dessert but of course not without complication.

The bar blender was broken, they ran out of mashed potatoes and their vegetable medley, although tasty….were very sad looking. Yes, vegetables can be sad. Sad like they were definitely the last ones out of the pot and had endured a rather long day.

We could relate….we were basically sad vegetables.

I would also like to add that the tray of Pina Coladas that passed our table after we were informed the blender was broken told us one thing and one thing only. The bar must have a blender mechanic on call on holidays. Impressive.

The dessert was great. We could see that before we even ordered it. Given our current luck we didn’t want to miss out. I tried to pre-order the dessert directly after we got our food. I expressed to the waitress my concern that they may run out or perhaps the dessert might break before we could order. Okay, that statement isn’t entirely true but she did assure us we’d be able to indulge in the cheesecake.

The next day offered the same quality of fishing but this time a little more action on the tip-ups. We didn’t stay nearly as long as the thought of home was much too tempting.

You have one more year Catfish Hunter. One more year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Amenity and Necessity

I ran, I tried to hide and it found me. Technology caught up with me and there is no turning back. Since I moved into my humble abode I’ve tried to keep it old school. Old school is easy. With old comes appreciation….it creates for me the ability to love my simple life and sit back and watch how easy we all have it. I’m not implying I force myself to struggle. There is no struggle here, in most cases I’ve just cut out the fluff and kept the necessity.

I’ve come to realize if I plan on living in today’s world. I’m going to need certain amenities of today. As the years pass I see that compromise is one of life’s most important tools. Even though my preferences may withstand, my capability to bend becomes easier and for the right reasons. There is always more than one way to accomplish and more than one way to aspire.

I’ve preached time and time again that individuality is a must. In my mind it’s a necessity. A life necessity. I have no desire to be anyone or anything else other than myself. I find it taboo when people strive to be like someone else or be a certain way to appease others. This is one thing I may never bend on. To me its a moral and without reason, I refuse to bend my morals.

I think that’s why this topic and the amenities of today go hand and hand. Amenities are often confused with necessity. Today’s world makes us believe we have to act or think a certain way in order to succeed or even be considered the norm. This isn’t true. I see both aspects every day. The struggle of those to keep their head above water to ensure they’re keeping up with the Kardashians. On the flip side, I see those that walk without fear of rejection…there should be more of those people.

In the days passed I’ve been called stubborn and I’ve had people question my personality. I think both are okay. In some instances I may be offended but nonetheless its all very understandable. Not everyone makes sense to me either. I think its normal to pass judgment on the unfamiliar….that might be why we’re called humans. In the same breath I think its important to try to understand each other. That’s what makes for smooth sailing. Whether it be at work, home or within friendships…most all is well when there’s understanding.

In my mind understanding and compromise are interchangeable. As I said before, I am now more willing to compromise for the right reasons. If I’ve met in the middle because I’ve traveled the distance on my own and understand how I got there; I’m more willing to make the trip the next time around. Its all give and take but make sure you’ve given and taken for a good purpose. Otherwise, its all extremely exhausting.

I understand that getting cable and internet in my home shouldn’t create a ground breaking revolution but…..this isn’t a normal home. I will continue to reach a middle ground on the trivial, non-life altering matters. The more important stuff I may be a tad hard headed about.

I may crinkle my nose every time I look up and see that astronomically, constructed dish on the side of my house but the worst that will happen is a wrinkle or two and another bill to pay. To interject a positive, I won’t need a night light anymore since I have an entire wall lit with blue and green flashing lights. Its like Christmas festivity all year.

Yes, I have (had) a night light.

 

 

 

Nothing In Particular…

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve been able to put my pen to paper or fingers to key. I have multiple drafts waiting for me to hit the publish button that promise a good read. Yet I can’t seem to finish them. For the past few weeks my brain has been overloaded with new information and I’ve been focusing on how to retain it all. However I continue to have my usual sporadic thoughts….all of which I wish I could share with you.

Tonight it occured to me. How ’bout I stay true to my rambling fashion and compile a blog with everything that has gone through my mind in the prior weeks. Some have nothing to do with the other and others have everything to do with the next. If that makes sense. Most likely it doesn’t so without complicating it any further I’ll get started.

Negativity makes me angry. I won’t even be PC. It pisses me off! Is your life so bad that you must exert negative energy wherever you go? Doubtful. Shut up, chin up and get up. DO something other than whine about what is so wrong in your world. There is someone out there that would one up you with their hardships all while wearing a smile because they’re still here to tell you how wrong you are.

Cooking. I’ve kinda gotten into this cooking thing. I kinda like it. Apparently I’m not too terrible at it either. My sister calls it domestication. I personally think domestication is a dirty word. Right up there with moist. Yep I said it, moist. Ewwww. For the record I never intended on writing a blog about cooking or the word moist. But I did recently share recipes for the first time in my life. That was weird….I’d even classify it as taboo in my book. Not my normal behavior by any means.

I now know where to locate my main water shut off and what every breaker in my house does. I failed at flushing a hot water heater but I hope I never have to try again. I’m getting to be a pro at starting fires and I acquired my first axe at 24. My life skills are really starting to blossom. Even if blossoming means into a backwoods living, tiny house dwelling Jack of all trades. I’ve got this life thing nailed down. Kind of. Well, just a little bit.

To date, the only animal that has worked out for me is my horse. Apparently I have some bad luck with pets. Roofus the no-tailed, wonder cat was fun for awhile. But he shared my hatred of a litter box and refused to use it. He tried for a little while and it just wasn’t doing if for him. Maybe we had too much in common? Needless to say my parents farm has this huge over-sized litter box that he doesn’t even know he’s using. It’s called a yard.

Home improvement projects have always been a favorite of mine. I love the transition from old to new. But I’ve had passed instances were others have made these projects far from enjoyable. In fact, I have this nasty habit of constantly assuming the worst because of the help I’ve previously enlisted. Fortunately for me this handy man I have hanging around is pretty good at what he does. One bathroom remodel is almost in the books and the F bombs that have been dropped weren’t at each other! Winning!

I’ve come a long way in a year or so. I think about the person I was not all that long ago and I seriously consider reaching back and throat punching myself. If only that were possible! If I had one piece of advice I’d tell time and time again it would be to never settle. Ever. I don’t want to sound like a broken Sugarland record but there is always a choice besides settling. Okay, I lied on the one piece of advice bit. Also, never take any b.s….sure you can entertain the idea of b.s. when people first present said “b.s.” but seriously….NEVER tolerate it. You’re better than that.

Did you know DirecTv not only offers television but appears to be channeling life in outer space? I, Kelsey, admittedly now have a disgusting, enormous, gray dish attached to my roof….gross. I also have a genie…which I think is a cute name for a DVR….but DVR is not like a VCR….. I don’t think? The genie hasn’t done anything magical yet though….yet! I tried rubbing it the other day but no little blue man appeared…yet! But if he does I’m gonna wish for my rock back. You know the one I used to live under. Yeah, that one.

When did everyone become so entitled? Where did all this selfishness come from? I think the world would be a better place with more compassion and understanding of life beyond yourself. The earth is in orbit…that’s a fact. However, it is not revolving around your supposed scent-free arse. Get over yourself people….

People, I love people. The people that show passion and meaning. Those that show and accept love. I don’t care what you do as long as you’re happy. I love happy people. There isn’t a catch here. Everyone has the ability to be happy, it just takes some longer to realize it.

Support. Support is so important. We all need to feel like we belong. Like we matter and that we are cared about. I believe everyone accepts and expects support differently. It’s especially important to take the time to communicate how you need support if you aren’t receiving it. It’s not too much to ask for.

………

I can confidently say I’ve now wasted a good portion of your time. That’s what you were after though right?!? Nobody comes to a blog called Ramblings of a Norwegian Woman if they didn’t have a little time to burn.

You are welcome. I promise my next one will be a little more “together.”

A Piece of Reason

Nothing keeps me going like a little bit of reason. Every once and awhile there will be a defining moment that gives you the confidence to tell yourself, you know what, I am doing something right. That’s reason. Whether you use it as a verb or a noun reason boasts good sense, cause, and action; it offers support, conclusion and resolution.

Reason in most cases is an answer. For me its more commonly a partial answer. Its that push I need to keep trekking on and confirmation that taking risks is always a good thing. If you don’t come out exactly where you intended you still learned something. There is a lot to be said about not repeating the same mistakes twice and we must give ourselves credit when we dodge that second bullet. On the flip side if you arrive at your destination as planned it should light your fire to see what else you can accomplish and how much further you can travel.

……….<End Ramble>…………..

After creating a rather vivid comparison-contrast chart for a career change, I came to a conclusion. After reasoning with the good, bad, inevitable and the unknown; I made my decision. There are so many things I’ll miss about my old job. I absolutely love being able to share my knowledge of credit reports….the ins, the outs and the in-betweens. If you even mention credit report to me I morph into a nerdy school kid….big glasses, short, Urkel waisted pants…suspenders and all. Its just my thing I like to educate people on. That and budgets…ahhhh don’t even get me started on budgets! Weird, right?

As the last couple weeks have drug on due to a substantial amount of uneasiness, I stumbled upon a rather bittersweet moment. After scheduling an appointment for what I thought would be a rather (dare I say boring) routine visit with a customer, the very opposite happened. It wasn’t boring at all! Right before me was unfolding the exact scenario I wished would happen to me everyday! A first car purchase…by an extremely responsible young, adult….with questions….that I had answers to. Bliss. The person walked out with more knowledge than they walked in with and an ego the size of Texas with how much I praised them for their work ethic and future conscious mind set. I was seriously staring back at myself. The same age, the same aspirations, the same hopes…but a different car.

I’m sure all of you don’t share my level of excitement but believe me, this was the cheese to my macaroni, the moon to my stars and the hammer to my nail. I tell you what if it was a guarantee that I could do that for the rest of my life I may not have chosen to leave. Yet as reason suggests logical thinking….there is never a guarantee and we never get what we want 100% of the time.

I am so thankful to have had one last hoorah. Not only did it make me smile on the outside, it left a smirk on the inside. This is what I needed. Some may think this would make me feel remorseful about my decision but it is the complete, polar opposite. I hadn’t spent this much time in this field to not get that warm, fuzzy feeling inside. This was my warm and fuzzy….now it’s time to move on. A very nice closing if I do say so myself.

Sometimes the answers aren’t easy to find. However, they are most always there, right in front of you but we fail to see them until that ah-ha moment occurs. I like to think of it as a puzzle…you have all the pieces. The box came with every single piece you need. It might be 100 pieces or 1,000 but they all fit together. In fact the box promises it with that picture you set right in front of you. It’s our job to take the time, put forth the effort and the logic to make it all come together.

Unless you bought a really ugly puzzle I’m assuming it’s going to be a really beautiful picture….start putting it together!

Happy, Never Satisfied

It’s inevitable that year after year we find ourselves wanting more. If not more, then better. If not better, then something more meaningful and fulfilling. We set out to take one more step of the climb and make greater accomplishments than the the year prior. It’s the ongoing race of life. Even if you aren’t a runner like myself, you’re still partaking in the marathon.

We run here, there and quite possibly everywhere. Sometimes looking for that next best thing, other times completely missing those things, the people and the moments. At times our focus blurred by the unimportant and skewed by the unattainable. We all, at one point or another, lose sight of our goals, priorities and faith.

I’ll be the first to admit I’ve never been faith oriented. Goals have been my driving factor. If I wanted something, I worked for it. If I had an idea, I found a way to make it happen. Priorities have faded in and out for me. Fun will often take precedence and I admit to wearing my rose colored glasses for long periods of time. However I think it’s important to find the happy medium. The equal balance of it all.

Think about all the things you need to be content. Whether it be physical, emotional or both. What is it that you need in your life to be happy? Wholly happy. Not measured by possessions. But perhaps by quality and the company you keep.

On the flip side of the coin I think Bruce Lee said it best. “Be happy, but never satisfied.” First and foremost we need to be appreciative, realize what great things we have right in front of us. The things we would hate to lose and the things that make our lives worth living. Then we move on to what feeds our hunger. What makes us feel accomplished, worth while and a contributing member of society. When put in that order its proven to make a successful individual.

I don’t mean Forbes successful but I do mean you will have successfully done life correctly. Or at least in my opinion anyway….

In the last few weeks I’ve made a rather large decision. One that quite frankly scares the H, E double hockey sticks out of me (LL.) After five and a half short years in banking I’ve decided to switch career paths. Everything I know and all my accomplishments wiped clean. A new building block and a new stepping stone. I’ve had some awesome opportunities and had the pleasure of working with some even more awesome people. Because of that I am exceptionally grateful.

This isn’t to gloat but rather serve as a reminder to take my own advice. To keep pushing my comfort zone for improvement. To reach goals based on priorities, faith and hunger. I have yet to conquer the whole successful thing but its mandatory I keep trying. I’ve got the happy thing figured out so why not feed my satisfaction?

I hope all of you that come back often to read my ramblings are pushing yourselves. That you are pushing yourself further with each new experience and commitment. Taking something from each day, month and year that you hadn’t before. I expect nothing less than you to be running this great race at a pace that’s right for you.

I want you to find yourself happy, but never satisfied.

 

Bell Ringer

Today was my first time as a bell ringer. As I stand in the entry way of the local grocery store I am amazed by the afternoon hustle and bustle. Everyone busy tying up loose ends before the holidays arrive. I had it easy standing in the heated entry way, feeling a little guilty since I am fully aware many bell ringers stand in the freezing cold. Hats off to you, you are the real troopers.

With the swish of the automatic doors appears a new face. Some familiar, others it will be the first and last time I see them. Its interesting to watch each ones body language. Some inviting, others very reserved. Those that make eye contact before you do and some that avoid you completely. Both are okay. Some people like interaction and some don’t. No judgment here, just a friendly observation. My favorite part was wishing a Merry Christmas to those that were unsuspecting. Shaking them out of their shell and nearly forcing them to give me something back. A smile, a nod or a greeting in return.

Every customer coming or going out added to the experience. There are so many awesome people in this town. It got me thinking…as everything does!

What if we approached complete strangers in the same gumption every day as we do during the holidays? What if more often than not there was a smile, a nod and wishes for a great day? What if we chose to shake those out of their shells that have convinced themselves that is where they belong, when they certainly do not. We are people, we are social beings and we are meant to interact.

With Christmas upon us in just a couple days I am feeling spirited and more lively than usual. Some find this time of year exhausting. I find it inspiring. Inspiring enough to re-iterate to all of you how cheerful we all should be. Not just now, not just on holidays but every day. I find there is so much negativity….on the news, our social medias, draining personalities and drama. Drama, drama, drama. Yuck! Out with the old, in with the new. I wish only for a world where people can coincide without the need for a down side. Where you compliment my positive affirmation with another, and another….and another. A place where good travels further than bad and a place where joy isn’t reserved for specific times of the year.

The ringing of a bell serves as a reminder. A sound to make you known and asking for something in return. Not just for money in a kettle but perhaps asking you to put a smile on your face. Every day we are asked a lot, there are expectations and heavy work loads. Personal, professional and extra curricular commitments. Emotional, physical and financial burdens. This might be the cheesiest line EVER but I’m going to say it anyway. Smiles are free! Friendly acknowledgments are free…so is joy, cheer and happiness. Its all FREE. No asterisk, no fine print and no stipulations! I don’t know about you but I love free stuff!

I work 40 hours a week for money but I exist for things that cost nothing.

 

 

Not As It Used To Be

Following my last post….As promised I sat and wrapped presents. After an hour or so crunched over on my hardwood floors it hit me that uncrunching myself was a bit of a task. I realize that if my blog had an eye roll counter it would reach its high on this one. No, I’m not claiming to be “old” because even with my less than average math skills I could tell you it just wouldn’t add up. But there are a few things I’ve come to realize will most definitely not get easier in the coming years.

I’ll start with the most obvious. Sleeping on floors. No, lets make this more general. Sleeping in any position or surface that isn’t “your” bed. Let’s rewind to the glory days….say 6-8 years old. There was no wrong angle, blanket or area to lay your sleepy head. I was a contortionist as far as I was concerned. Half on the couch, half off, snuggled up with a rug using my Barbie kaboodle as a pillow. Best sleep I’ve ever had. Today….get me the highest thread count sheets, temperature controlled room, down pillow and a plush pillow top matress and maybe I’ll get some shut eye. Maybe. Okay both of those were lies but you get the idea.

Cute shoes. You know the ones I’m talking about. Black, stilleto heels with just the right height to make you wanna…..die. I realize I may have just described a stripper shoe but if you’ve seen a high heel today, it’s basically the same thing. I have this internal debate every time I set foot into a shoe store. Resonable Kelsey says, “let’s be smart, let’s get some ugly as sin loafers that ride like a Cadillac.” Irrational Kelsey is like a young, Golden Retriever in a ball pit. Drool and all. A week of trying to break in the new shoes and I’m broken. Physically uncapable of maintaining a normal, professional gate. But. They’re. So. Cute.

Shots. Fruity drinks. All the slippery, bomb shooting, Chuck Norris, Scooby Snack grossness will never become easier to drink. As you transition from party animal to civilization you know your drink preference and you’ll be sorry if you don’t stick to it. As hangovers creep from a one day duration to the dreaded two day hangover you’ll shift your gears sooner rather than later.

Dancing. By all means if you’ve got moves don’t be afraid to show it. I like seeing a couple float around the dance floor to a good two step. The kind of dancing I’m talking about is the one where you need to keep up with the times. In high school it was just the beginning of all the inappropriate dancing. Shaking our tail feathers, dropping it low to the window and to the wall was all the craze. We were the “cool” kids. Put me in a big city bar with all these “with it” people….I’m completely without it. I’ve lost “it,” I can’t find it and I have a feeling it’s not coming back…ever.

Slang. Oh the horrid slang. I’m a pretty big fan of using complete words. Maybe they’re teaching an evolved acronym or initialism class in school I’m not aware of? With all the “dis,” “dat,” and “doe” it’s hard to deny our entire population is starting to sound like a bad Norwegian accent. HA, when I put it that way maybe I like all those silly words! At the point kids start saying turdy instead of thirty, then, and only then will I be truly entertained.

I could go on and on but for your sake I won’t. With every passing year something surfaces I have yet to notice about age. Thankfully I have many more years of education ahead of me and I’m okay with that. In fact, I’m a little excited about it.

Just because it’s not as it used to be doesn’t mean its a bad thing.