Friday, November 16, 2012

Dear Teen Me Book Review

I have never written an official book review, but my love of books and my teenage years compelled me to take a dive.  I'm not quite sure what my expectations were when I signed up to join the blog tour.  It was something new and exciting for sure.  I tend to like reading about people reflecting upon their pasts and knowing that whatever their journey that it was all worthwhile.  They say hindsight is 20/20.

Dear Teen Me reminded me that we all have interesting stories to tell.  We have all experienced ups and downs and many uncertainties.  We have all lost and loved at early stages in life. Reading these stories took me back to my own teen years and allowed me to realize that all the thoughts I had and trials I went through were normal.  As teens we tend to hide in a shell and imagine that we are the only ones going through puberty, fights with friends, difficult parents and tough decisions about the future.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Robin Benway's letter.  And true to her word, high school does stop mattering as soon as its over.  Sounds so simple right?  All those people you tried to impress, you won't see them until you sign up for Facebook or about 12 years later.  Similarly my ideal life is to live somewhere sunny and be able to write whenever I feel.  Yep, just waiting to hit the lotto :) I too chose some amazing friends that I have had for a lifetime, that make me laugh until my stomach hurts.

Even the Q & A was fun to read.  I think everyone has either accidentally lost a piece of clothing or fallen.  My most embarrassing moment was in 6th grade.  My very playful former classmate from elementary hit me and I chose to chase her in the rain.  Our classes were outside and I ran across the grass without a second thought and slid in the mud.  Oh my God, my face was warm with embarrassment.  And to make matters worse I had to walk to the nurses' office through the school and call my mom to pick me up.  In my mind I was leaving for the day, but my mom instead bought me a change of jeans and I had to stay at school.  Low and behold I go change bottoms and the jeans are "highwaters" (too short).  I literally cried.  I seriously won't ever forget that day.  Even though I laugh about it now, I still cringe when I think about it.

I read several letters about abusive parents and how these teens were left to fend for themselves at an already confusing time.  The stories are a true testimony that tough times don't last forever.  Most teens don't realize this at the time.  It's important to hold on and have a strong support system of friends or teachers when there are issues at home.

Teens deal with so many issues, it sometimes amazes me that productive adults are the end result in most cases.  Peer pressure, pressure to use drugs, pressure to have sex, pressure to be popular, pressure to be smart..and the list goes on.

I am so proud of Jessica Burkhart for leaving.  It was a blessing that Kate came into her life when she did.  It took a strong person to leave and start a life without their family and it also takes a strong person to be a friend and give someone the strength they need to leave at such a young age.  I hope her younger brother is doing okay. Wishing her much success on her new life!

This collection of letters is a great read.  It's witty, heart-wrenching, honest and refreshing.  It isn't all bubblegum and popcorn, it reflects stories of real teens with real issues.  I would recommend that parents read this book to remind them of how difficult the adolescent years can be.  And I would definitely recommend the book to teenagers to help them realize that whatever they are going through will not last.  And that everything they are going to go through someone else already has.  I will also be sharing this book with my own teen son.

Stay tuned for my own Dear Teen Me letter (which I hadn't planned on writing)!! My teen years are such a big part of the woman I am today.

To order a copy of this book:
For more info about the Blog Tour:
For Dear Teen Me events:

A special thanks to Zestbooks for allowing me to take part in this blog tour.
For more info:

And to the editors E. Kristin Anderson and Miranda Kenneally thanks for coming up with such a great idea!
You rock!!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Tickle my Fancy

As of late the internet is all a buzz with the latest fashion trends for nails.

I wouldn't say that I am the most girliest of them all..but I love all things cute, glittery, pink, sexy, yada yada know what I mean.

The stiletto nail trend: Cute, but not for me.  However, the details are awesome.  The colors are invigorating and the shine is perfection!

I'm kinda classy when it comes to nails. I just want a feminine, fun punch of color with square nails that are rounded at the corners. And maybe something sparkly every once in a while.  And nothing pleases me more than a nice shine!

Gelish/Shellac/Vegan polish trend:  I love them all.
I like the Gelish polish line, because it allows us do-it-yourselfers to play at our own convenience.  And if done looks just as good as a nail tech would do.  Check out Sally Beauty Supply for the Gelish line

I haven't tried the Shellac line, but I definitely will.  
They do have a great variety of I won't hold out for too long

I have purchased a few polishes by Zoya.  I liked them okay.  Love the colors I see on their website, but never can seem to choose a color that complements my skin color when it arrives at the door.  I am hoping to find a local salon that has a vast collection to choose from.

Nail Strips:
I've tried the line by Sally Hansen.  Very creative designs.  They are fairly easy to put on, but they don't last very long.

Tips/Natural nails/Manicure:  

I haven't done tips since the early 2000's.  The process of getting tips makes my nail beds very sensitive, my nails are extra thin and I don't like the electric filing tools used to file and buff your nails.  

I love my natural nails.  They don't get quite as long as they used to but, I can work on that.  
Natural nails should be kept clean and trimmed evenly.  
Still haven't found the perfect top coat nor a clear nail hardener for my no polish days.  

I do love all the nail creativity out in the world.  I currently check Instagram and Pinterest for nail inspiration.  


Tuesday, August 7, 2012


I feel like my life is in overdrive right about now..there's work..Full-time and sometimes over-time.  Then there's school and last but definitely not least there's being a mother.  There is always something to do, clean, buy, organize, bake, fix and whatever else you can think of to add to my list.  Sometimes I just wanna sit down and do absolutely nothing.  But then, where would that lead me?

I placed my baking on the back burner to focus on school for the summer while I had a little more me time than usual.  And I shortly realized after starting classes again that I really should have finished in my 20's.  My memory and studying skills aren't quite what they used to be.  But then I have to think that maybe it isn't that.  Maybe I am just preoccupied with all of my other responsibilities. 

I look at other mom's and dad's who go to their jobs, and maintain their household with more than one child and remind myself that I CAN DO THIS.

It is difficult and very stressful at times.  But my vision keeps me going.  As long as I have breath in my body, I will keep going.  

I'm in a head space, where I want to build my dream instead of helping someone else build theirs! And of course I will stop to enjoy life's little treasures along the way.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Living life with no limits

I have started and ended a few ventures in my short life and I will continue to do so until I find exactly what it is that fulfills me.  There's absolutely nothing wrong with wearing multiple hats.  Really, who wants to live a life with limits?

I feel each day brings me closer to clarity and peace with my life decisions and career choices.  I will continue to set goals and aspirations for myself and my son.  And one day, I will see all my hard work and sacrifice paid off.  

Here in the land of opportunities giving up should not be an option.  We all want instant gratification..but that's unrealistic to say the least.  If you fail..get back up..dust yourself off and try again.  Its just that simple.  If you have to, give yourself pep talks.  Create vision boards.  Read inspiration articles.  Do some research for that dream career.  Make friends in places where you want to be.

Moral of the story is: Don't Give Up!

If you believe!

As I am preparing graduation cakes for my sister and her roommate..I think about my own accomplishments.  It seems like it was just yesterday that I was going to college for the very first time.  I was a teenage mother, with a dream of becoming a nurse practitioner.  Funny how life just comes at you and your path somehow changes.  With the responsibility of a baby and the bills that came with it, my major quickly changed to undecided.  My focus then turned to my job as a teller more than on being a full time college student.  This was by choice.  My mother and my then boyfriend wanted to help me fulfill my dream of graduating from college..but my role as a mother meant so much more.  I got more involved in my job and being a good mom and my "dream" became less and less important.

I knew one day that I would finish college..but when I decided to bring a baby into this world instinct told me that a mom was what I was born to be.  Of course its not all that I am or will ever be..but its the most important role that I will ever play.  Throughout school I enjoyed reading and writing.  As I got older, I realized that I loved the creativity of penning my thoughts and sharing them with the world. I was enamored by writers and the characters that they create.  The story lines that they came up with made me envision the impossible.  All of the books, magazines, and newspaper articles that I read made me realize that I wanted to become an author/journalist.

Soon my son will enter high school and embark on a journey of his own.  And that frees me up to continue to work on my dream.  I believe that if you have a passion for something, no matter how long you put it off..It is still within reach.  I know that I am so close.  I will continue to believe that I will see the rainbow.

Reflection is a natural process in the book of life.  As I reflect, I smile.  I smile because I am proud.  Proud of myself as a mother.  So proud of my sister, to have overcome so many obstacles in her life. Proud to see her walk across that field as a college graduate.  Proud of my son for being a good kid.  Spoiled..but GOOD kid.  All will be well as long as I believe.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Ships..mend or rot?

Ships...In my experience, they're sometimes easy to build and even more difficult to keep up.

Friendships, relationships each require work and compromise to benefit all involved.
Some of them develop and are maintained effortlessly.  But other relationships are like flowers, in order for them to grow we need to water them.  We are so happy when things are great..but what about when things aren't so great and all hell breaks loose?  Are you gonna let that ship sink like the Titanic?  Or will you put in some effort to patch it back up and sail?

Friendships and relationships aren't always equal..There always seems to be a person who is always supportive to the other and never gets that support back in return.  Its sad when all parties are not considerate of each others feelings and make necessary adjustments to meet someone on their level.

Some people really aren't equipped with those qualities needed for lasting and great friendships or relationships.  Some lack compassion, empathy, sympathy, and tact amongst other things.  It always makes me wonder how other people's relationships have worked and what obstacles they've overcome.

It can be cumbersome to always be that reliable person.  It can be draining and very unrewarding if you are the one who is expected to be the "better" or more mature person.

As we get older, our priorities change.  But you must never forget those who were there to comfort you, cheer for you, cry with you.  Sometimes you can make a person feel so unappreciated that one day you realize that they're over you.

Friends come few and far in between.  Relationships, a great relationship comes once in a lifetime.

Be mindful of the relationships and friendships you value and want to maintain.

What will you do to keep that special person in your life?  Will you offer them respect, consideration, love and appreciation? Or will you let your selfishness, carelessness or flakiness allow that ship to rot away?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Afraid to show it..

A conversation with a guy sparked this blog post.  He told me that he was scared to show a woman his nice side due to being hurt in a previous relationship. It's no shocker to me, but I have come in contact with a few males who were afraid to properly court a woman because of something that happened in their past.

Usually its the woman who is accused of, or is known to bring past hurt into a new relationship.  So should the advice for a man be any different than the advice that has been given to women for years?  I secretly knew that he was feeling this way from having several conversations with him..but he actually admitted it.  

Here I was thinking that chivalry was dead...albeit in some cases, the whole idea of dating and courting has been thrown out the window..but for some men, they're just scared of being hurt again.  I just simply had to explain to him that all women don't "run game".  And asked him how would he  ever meet that special one if he's only showing his bad side, basically being selfish and a d!ck.  My point to him was: you only get one chance to make a first impression.  Why make that impression if that isn't really who you are?? 

Sometimes you just gotta put yourself out there.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

When does it get old?

I have to ask this question..when does IT get old?

IT meaning drama..
IT meaning unhappiness..
IT meaning tired of being tired..

Really, when does IT get old?

For me, IT got old several years ago.  I was in a place, where I was drained and unhappy and didn't feel the best about ME.  I let someone else and something become more important than ME.  One day, I woke up with a different focus and a realization that things had to change for the better.  I had been talking about making this change for a long time, but was too scared of what it would mean when I actually did it.  I decided then that I would no longer set aside my happiness just for the sake of being with someone.  I would no longer accept anything less than what I deserved and what I felt I needed in my life deep down.  

Since that day, I set some specific goals for myself.  I set some rules for my dating/personal life as well as any other relationship with friends (male or female) and family.  If it does not enhance my life, assist in my growth, or make me smile..I don't want any parts of it.  It may sound a little selfish, but I honestly feel that way.  I know each and every day won't be sunshine and rainbows..but that won't stop me from striving for it.  

Throughout speaking with associates, friends, and social networking I read so often of the craziness that people have going in their lives..why is this a constant in your life?  Why do people wait until things are at their worst to try and resolve a situation?  Why do we continue to repeat what we know won't work and hasn't worked for us thus far? I can't even fathom experiencing some of the things that people put up with and deal with on a daily basis.  Drama has become the norm for some..seems crazy to me..but its true.  Not everyone may understand me..but a whole lot of you know exactly what I'm talking about!

Each and every day we are reminded that life is so short and why are we not taking advantage of it?