What I’m Currently Craving For This Blog

The Lord is merciful. As soon as I complained about kind of hot and humid weather

BUH BAM.

Absolutely perfect weather these past couple of days. I went on a walk Monday morning, and it was…chilly(!) in the shade.

These pretty flowers are artistic expressions of my emotions in this weather.

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open, vibrant, kinda scattered, but loving life

Other reasons why the stressful Monday mood turned right-side up:

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perfect batch of peach banana overnight oats (added some Greek yogurt as per the OG recipe!)

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soft and satisfying chocolate chip cookie a la physical therapist

PLUS, my coworker gave me half of her homemade beef and egg empanada after I got a whiff of it and commented on how amazing it smelled. PLUS-PLUS, one of the patients brought me a box of cookies since it’s my last week at work! 11

I can’t handle the generosity *squishes cheeks in between hands*!!!

All these and other little sweetnesses (literally and figuratively) during my day are keeping all the stressful and/or negative things at bay. Like cramming all my study abroad preparations, because I’m a procrastinator.

Moving on…

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As I snacked on this new-to-me Pure Organic bar yesterday, I started to organize my thoughts about this blog.

I’ve had phases of both strict and lax scheduling for my blog. This summer I’ve been posting approximately twice a week, which feels natural with my work schedule. That being said, it’s always: a weekend recap post + some special themed or deep-thought post.

Don’t get me wrong, those posts always flow from a genuine place, and I’ve enjoyed writing them. However, I feel like I have SO MANY things in my brain that I want to write down and share with you almost every day. Especially as I’m experiencing a multitude of new events, emotions, responsibilities, people, places, and things at this stage in my life, I’m craving for this space to be filled with big AND little insights.

In other words, I’m craving slightly more frequent but shorter posts with the same kind of thoughtfulness and meaning as my mega long posts. I don’t want to squeeze everything that’s happening in my life into a single monster post all the time. I can share less of what happens but more of what happens in my head and heart.

I want to ask you guys more life questions. Questions about things that no one talks about but everyone probably thinks about. Not just, “what did you eat last night?” (although I do still want to know that too).

Don’t worry— I’ll still be talking about “healthy living”-related things, and I’ll still have longer posts. Also, I definitely will NOT be posting every day for the sake of it; I will post when I feel like I have meaningful or entertaining content to put out.

As Julie from Peanut Butter Fingers so wisely said: post what you would want to read!

Part of me doesn’t want to post this, because I know my schedule is about to turn upside down and inside out with studying abroad, buuuuut these are my thoughts and we’ll see if I execute the way I see it in my head. If not, then…nothing changes!

You know it:

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So tell me:

What are some nice things about your week that are counteracting the stress?

Would you like to read short “thought/reflection of the day” or “story time” posts?

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On the Verge of Internet Addiction?

Thoughts are flooding my mind like:

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…but first, let’s do some happy small talk!

The temperature in the mornings has been just lovely. A little chilly to some, but I love me some light sweater weather.

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After breakfast, Mass, and a little morning nap (I start work at 12 on Mondays), I took my moves and grooves outside, naturally.

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banana bread baked oatmeal with cinnamon raisin peanut butter + glass o’ {Lactaid} milk

THIS WAS HARD:

  • 1 mile run
  • 100 burpees
  • 100 double unders
  • 1 mile run

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I couldn’t tell you which part was the hardest, but I can tell you that all I could think of on that last mile was, “Keep chugging away. Don’t stop.” Even though I probably could have walked faster than I was running at some points (thanks, hills).

Here’s me trying to smile at the end.

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But I’m proud of myself! I hardly ever run, and I went ahead and did two miles of it in a workout.

Today I might go for a walk or do my favorite 18 minute plank workout. Either way, my legs need a break.

So last night…

I was still feeling funky and down, but I knew that it wasn’t just because of the weekend’s events. I couldn’t really pinpoint why I was feeling so unsettled and just… off.

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part of yesterday’s lunch: salad with cherry tomatoes, dried cranberries, slivered almonds, and sliced smoked duck breast (from the farmers’ market)

Granted, I was pretty wiped out, and fatigue always brings me down. But Pop noticed at the dinner table that something was up.

“I’m fine.” ← Fortunately, Pop knows the true meaning of those words.

I don’t usually have qualms about telling my parents how I feel, but truthfully, I myself didn’t really know what was going on. However, when Pop entered my room (as I wiped a single tear from my eye), I just talked it out, discovering what exactly was bothering me.

The main thing is the internet. I just felt exhausted and more stressed with the internet lately— social media and even blogging. It’s not that I don’t enjoy keeping up with people and blogging (hello, here I am right now), but I feel a little bit enslaved to it at times.

I gotta check Instagram. *scrolls mindlessly and finds an account to “stalk”*

I need to do one thing on Facebook. *scrolls mindlessly and watches at least five of those Tasty videos*

I’ll take this time to read a couple blogs. *goes through the hundreds of unread blog posts*

I’ll check this person’s Snapchat story. *goes through everyone’s story* ← Okay, Snapchat made the stories continuous with one another, which is like a black hole.

I’ve been talking about social media’s toxicity in several different blog posts recently, but I still have not made too much of a change. I clicked on this article called “10 Things You May Not Know About Anxiety Disorder” via Arman’s Coffee Talk post yesterday (another thing: clicking on links), and one thing is that  “People who suffer from gambling or internet addictions are more likely to also have anxiety disorder.”

Do I think I have a legit internet addiction? No. However, I think I could be heading towards one at this rate. Internet doesn’t interfere with my daily work life or anything, but once I don’t have responsibilities, I feel like I can’t get away from it. There’s always something to do/see/like/comment/post on my phone or laptop.

Pop offered some good advice about practical ways to combat this sub-internet-addiction. I also added some strategies myself:

  • Unfollow people on Facebook and Instagram. I don’t need to be following every friend and every fitness junkie/foodie out there. Clean up the feed.
  • Limit yourself to just “liking” things, without feeling like you need to comment.
  • Read a select few blogs.
  • Read actual books more (shoutout to school teachers).
  • Before touching any piece of technology, make a list of what you intend to do when you’re on the internet. Stick to that list. Go in with intention.

This week is all about humility and self-reflection, ain’t it?

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I just finished the best overnight oats I’ve had in a while 

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It’s not fun knowing that I have a disorder-prone mind. It’s not easy to share weakness. But acknowledging my weakness is one way that God helps me knock down my pride and build me up in a way that is more beautiful than before. And vulnerability is the best way to connect to others!

#BeMoreHuman ← that’s a Reebok hashtag, but it works here.

(p.s. Yesterday, I said that I would talk about body image stuff today, but that’s not on my heart right now, so I changed the topic. In short, just know that you are so much more than your outward beauty!!! LIFE is so much more than outward beauty.)

Go get ’em, friends.

Comment or don’t comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts, but you can also just shut down your computer/phone and go on with your day 🙂

Sometimes I Can’t Stand Humans, But They’re Awesome

I forget that the end of daylight savings time means everything is darker sooner, which makes me a little sad.

But on some bright notes! It was a fun Halloween weekend (“Halloweekend”, whatever), the weather has been beautiful, I’ve {nearly} cried of joy several times this weekend, and God is super good.

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clouds doing cool cloud things on Friday

I didn’t even do anything on Halloween, but I did dance my butt off at a Halloween party hosted by the Catholic Center on Friday! I danced pretty much non-stop all night. I had been craving a dance party since the wedding I attended this summer, and dance parties always remind me why I named this blog daily moves and grooves.

Plus, I dressed up as my favorite thing ever…

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peanut butter!

…along with my best friend, Jelly (aka Rachel). Rachel was the one who suggested this duo costume, and it seemed perfect for several reasons. I probably emit the smell of peanut butter on a daily basis already, so I was halfway there from the get-go.

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Several cookies fueled my dancing for the night, but I didn’t even have any candy this weekend! I wasn’t avoiding it by any means; I just never encountered any candy that I wanted. Cookies, cake, dining hall desserts sounded better. #snobby

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On Saturday morning some of my friends and I from the Boston University Students for Life club participated in the Out of the Darkness Suicide Awareness and Prevention Walk. Suicide awareness is something near and dear to many of us in one way or another, so it was a blessing to walk with so many other people (especially college students) in solidarity and support.

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I look really tall in this picture, but that’s an optical illusion

Also, they had free Stonyfield “Oh My Yog!” yogurt at the walk. We all ate it and agreed that it was some next level yogurt. This was the gingered pear flavor. Ooo la la!

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trilayer? whole milk? CREAM TOP!?!?

Saturday night was wild and crazy with lots of studying with Rachel (or at least, a lot of attempting to study on my part). I can let myself get very distracted with social media, and I very much dislike myself every time it happens. But it was Halloween, so I made myself think I was justified.

{As I just come back from 20 minutes on my Instagram feed. HELP.}

Anyway, the other nooks and crannies of this weekend were filled with Mass, choir, eating, some exercise, and best of all, truly awesome people.
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Let me tell you something. I have three types of days when it comes to interacting with people:

  1. Normal day: Happy to see my friends, interact with strangers politely.
  2. Especially negative day: Yo, people are the worst. I want Jesus to be my only friend ever.
  3. Especially positive day: PEOPLE ARE AMAZING. HELLOOOOO, BEAUTIFUL STRANGER, YOU’RE GREAT!

If my especially positive days occurred all the time, I’d probably end up losing friends because of my insanity.

In all seriousness though, more of the negative, mundane, or irking interactions with that I can have with some people (strangers or not) have lately been transformed into meaningful and fruitful interactions. For example, I can learn about virtue, reflect on my faith life, or be urged to evaluate my actions. In addition, regular interactions with friends have been deepened.

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What is the “secret” to this transforming and deepening? I think it’s something I learned yesterday: shared life. 

In other words: sharing your experiences with others and being genuinely interested and excited about others’ experiences, and then learning and growing with one another as a result!

Grab a meal with someone. Ask someone what his idea of a perfect day is. Ask your gal friend how her heart is doing (figuratively, not the actual organ…but you could ask that too). Tell him about your dream job. Describe to her what made you happy or sad this weekend.

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Some people may not care about what you have to say, but that doesn’t mean you can’t care for another person. Humans are awesome, and sometimes they’re just waiting for someone to be interested in them (personally, not romantically…but that could be true too).

By no means is it easy for me to “share life” with others. I think I will always have those especially negative days/moments when I feel like I need to be in a bubble, please and thank you. Nevertheless, in general, by sharing more about myself and by being more interested in other people, I have learned a lot about myself and about other amazing human beings. It’s really cool.

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my girl Fiona shared this with me last night

P.S. That’s what makes blogging really cool!!!

So tell me:

Did you dress up or do anything in particular for Halloween?

Did you eat any sweet treats this weekend?

What made you happy or sad or angry or anxious this weekend?

2015 Summer Bucket List Review

Time passes these days like:

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I was never even a Harry Potter fan (sorry), but somehow this gif makes me feel like I should be emotional.

Speaking of emotions, I have a whole cocktail of those happening inside me right now.

  • Disappointment that summer is over
  • Contentment with how much I’ve learned this summer
  • Excitement for going back to my beloved Boston
  • Nervousness for how things will unfold this school year
  • Sadness that I’ll have to say goodbye to my family (…and the kitchen)
  • Gratitude for everything

I made a summer bucket list back in May, and it is now time for tasting and judgement to see how well I did! Before I take a look, I’m going to say that I think I got at least 50% of the items done. Fingers crossed.

1) Go to the beach (with Colby hopefully!)

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not with Colby unfortunately, but with friends at BU!

2) Get a decent spot at a Tori Kelly concert

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almost got stuck behind a 6’5″ dude, but Tori was incredible

3) Go on an easy hike with friends

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I’m counting the one in Portland…with family

4) Watch a movie in the theater

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5) Watch The Parent Trap ➔ {sadly, I never found the opportunity to find and watch this classic}

6) Meet up with Arman in New York City

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wish I had time to meet up with him again!

7) Improve my handstand and other yoga arm balances

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still working on it! trying to get proper alignment first and foremost

8) Come up with at least three new recipes ➔ {got at least four!…even though I almost never measured the recipe exactly}

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energy balls

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mango banana chia seed pudding

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best roasted sweet potatoes ever

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strawberries ‘n’ cream smoothie

9) Get my full splits back (semi-comfortably) ➔ {you’ll just have to believe me on this one}

10) Re-read The Story of a Soul ➔ {nope…but I did start Unbroken!}

11) Eat a Dairy Queen Blizzard

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12) Learn most of the muscles in the body (there is a diagram on the wall at my PT internship, and I’ve been studying it every day when I have free time) ➔ {wrote them down but didn’t LEARN them}

13) Go to a farmers’ market ➔ {I feel like I did, but I don’t think I actually did…}

14) Find an occasion to which I could wear a maxi dress, and wear a maxi dress for said occasion ➔  {wore a maxi skirt to the wedding rehearsal dinner in Seattle, which is good enough}

15) Watch the sunrise ➔ {I’m counting my watching the sunrise while driving to Toronto}

16) Hold an L-sit for 10-15 seconds ➔ {I think I may have underestimated myself, because I think accomplished this the day after I posted my bucket list}

17) Do another vlog with Daliza

Questions Nobody Asks

18) Have a picnic with a friend ➔ {I wish!}

19) Gain weight (for real) ➔ {update on that whole shebang coming soon}

20) FaceTime with bloggers ➔ {FaceTimed Julia from Lord Still Loves Me!}

I completed 15/20!! I’ll take 75%.

I can’t forget about the food bucket list either! I completed…six. I made peach blueberry cobbler a la mode, chili, peanut butter cookies and fish cakes, and I ate Bareburger (twice) and a meatball sub at Festa Italiana. But I also cooked up a lot of new things this summer that were not on the list, so I’m happy!

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Liv’s sweet potato lentil chili!

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I also accomplished a lot this summer that I did not originally set out to accomplish!

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Needless to say, it’s been a fun and blessed summer. Now it’s time to move ahead into the school year for more adventures!

So tell me:

Two things you accomplished this summer that you wanted to accomplish.

Two amazing things you ate/cooked this summer.

Two things you accomplished this summer that you weren’t planning on doing.

Letting Go

I’m starting to sneeze more often. You know what that means…

Spring!!! Or a cold, but I’m hoping it’s just spring allergies.

Besides a freak blizzard on Saturday here in Boston, the sun has been shining and the temperatures have been creeping up ever so slightly in the past week. It was nice enough for me to want to run, so that’s saying something. I even did homework al fresco last Wednesday, holla!

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The shadows on my face are freaky

I’m not even going to tell you that much about school, because it’s just busy. I must admit that there were some waterworks over an essay draft this weekend because the frustration of not being able to sort my thoughts was gettin’ real. The mantra that has been running through my head the whole weekend is this:

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Wise words of Elsa, am I right? I needed to tell myself over and over to let go of my pride, perfectionism, and stress. It’s okay to ask for help, take a break, say no to people, and to cry and sing songs with yourself while folding laundry. You let it go and move forward.

End rant.

God is always good, and He still put a smile on my face through some small yet beautiful things this weekend. One of those things was an a cappella concert featuring my amazing friend, Adrienne (girl on the left).

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Even though I gave up listening to music for Lent, I decided that the concert didn’t count because I was supporting a friend 😀 Although, I nearly cried/jumped out of my seat to dance because all the groups sounded incredible.

P.S. I miss dancing so much.

This breakfast has been making me smile as well. I’ve been adding frozen blueberries to my oatmeal from the pancake toppings bar in the dining hall, and I am diggin’ it. Adds some tartness, antioxidants, and color!

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I also tried Larabars for the first time last week! There were some Larabar representatives on campus last week, and they were giving out free samples. It was my lucky day, because guess what flavors they were giving out. Peanut butter chocolate chip and peanut butter cookie. I KNOW, it’s like they knew I would be there to take them!

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I took four of their mini samples (they said take as many as you want, but I decided to be a good girl and not take the whole jar), and I have one left now. *sniff*

A Sunday morning workout helped me to escape some of my homework blues. I snapped this (#nofilter) on my way back from the gym:

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 What a fabulous start to Holy Week, eh?

Lastly, blogging makes me happy! Typing these words right now is like therapy. YOU make me happy and don’t forget it.

I said no to a lot of activities this weekend, and I definitely could have said no to more, but that would have driven me up the wall even more. Sometimes I just have to let go of the fact that I can’t figure out my chemistry question. Let go of the fact that I can’t bang out an essay in two hours. Let go of the fact that I’m not “on schedule” (a schedule that I made for myself on Saturday). I need to walk away, do something that makes me smile, and come back. Sometimes I still don’t know what to do, but more often than not, I have a fresh mind that can tackle the work.

Happy Monday 🙂

So tell me:

One thing that made you smile this weekend!

What do you need to “let go” of in your life?

What is your favorite Larabar flavor? I want to try some more if I ever find them (or attempt to make them myself at home)!