things i love thursday! (june 16, 2011)

Phew! What a week it’s been! Lots of good fun and craziness ensued, accompanied by not enough sleep. I need a stiff drink and a nap, but all in due time. For now, today is Thursday, and our focus is love. So here we go!

THINGS THAT MADE ME SMILE THIS WEEK:

  • My friend Heather posting the above picture from the late 90’s on my Facebook. OMG. So much is going on in this picture that I don’t feel comfortable broadcasting to the Internet. But. Just know that we’d just experienced something very special that had to do with the band Hanson. (Also, stalking isn’t bad when you’re just a teenage girl, right?)
  • CAN WE TALK ABOUT HOW AWESOME MY SHIRT IS?! (I’m on the left, btw.)
  • Hamlet the kitten and Romeo the cat are besties now! (And by “besties” I mean they wrestle a lot.)
  • My cats are named after Shakespeare characters. Calling out to Hamlet always makes me smile.
  • Zack’s birthday shenanigans!
  • Orange Blossom Pilsner 2.
  • Cornhole. Even though I’m terrible at it.
  • Libby’s sobering comments at dinner. I don’t even remember what it was this time, but it was along the same lines as, “Helen Keller was a real person, you guys.”
  • E3Kids pool party!
  • Donuts and watermelon.
  • Water slide.
  • Taking a 4 hour nap.
  • Dinner at Gordo’s with the hubs.
  • Bowling! And granny shots!
  • Beer. Always.
  • The lead pastor at our church came up to me and told me his daughter gets excited when I teach junior high. That’s a pretty big deal.
  • Lunch at Olive Garden with Dan and Christie. Too. Much. Food. We will miss her while she’s away, but she’s doing awesome things in Guatemala!
  • Randomly driving to Monticello, the city where we spent our wedding night, and seeing the creepy/sketchy/weird Chinese restaurant from which Dan got us surprisingly tasty take-out for our first married dinner together.
  • Driving with him.
  • Conversations at Chili’s about McDonalds porn. “You know the rule, right?”
  • Romeo, Hamlet, Dan, and I all sleeping in the same bed. It’s hilariously cute. I also accidentally drop bows on poor little Ham because he likes to sleep right between Dan and I near the pillows.
  • DANCE CLASS! I was so sore afterward, but it was awesome!
  • Having my husband cook for me!
  • Falling asleep at Barnes & Noble. Really. Who does that?
  • Iced sugar free soy caramel lattes.
  • Getting our first WIN for the summer ultimate league! Wooo Buddhalicious!
  • Chocolate cupcakes.
  • Making changes in life.
  • Bible study and the hilarious banter afterward.
  • Levi talking to me about Harry Potter.
  • Experience Joy on my lunch break!
  • RYAN CABRERA and my best friend!
  • My husband admiring me while I get ready in the morning. He’s so adorable.
  • Praying for my friends.

Alrighty! That about does it. Lots to smile about this week. What do you love this week? Let me know! ❤

Pool Party ePiphany.

See what I did there with the title? PPP? Clever, no?

Okay. Am I the only one who is absolutely blown away by the fact that it is already the middle of June in the year 2011? Seriously?! Where has the time gone! Anna Nalick knew what she was talking about when she said, “Life’s like an hour glass glued to the table.” Slow down, life! There is so much of you I want to enjoy before I assume room temperature!

Many of you know I am married to a children’s pastor. If you didn’t, well, I am. Don’t let that scare you off, though! I promise I’m still cool. Watching Veggie Tales and Bridesmaids in the same weekend is totally in bounds for me.

Anyway. It’s mid-June. And June means summer. And summer means pool parties. And pool parties mean bathing suits. Oy vey.

This past Saturday, the hubs threw a pool party for the church that was sponsored by the kids program. Being the good pastor’s wife I am, I woke up supercrazyearly to accompany him to the local pool to help set up. Even though I was tired and cranky, I didn’t mind because I love to support my man. (And there was gonna be free food. Let’s not forget the free food.)

However. I’m not going to lie to you. I had a minor panic attack about being seen in a swimsuit in public. Well, no. I take that back. “Public” isn’t the correct word. “A giant group of non-anonymous people that I have interaction with weekly” sums it up better. I honestly wouldn’t have panicked if I was just going to be seen in “public” because what do I care what the public thinks of me? Ha! I couldn’t care less! If you are some random person on the beach staring at me in my bathing suit judging me and my body, frankly, you should get a life. Or a snow cone. I’m sure you could find a snow cone stand somewhere near said beach. (okaymaybeIcarealittlebitshutup.)

But I care bunches about what people who know me actually think.

You see, when I’m wearing normal clothes, I can get by on merely my wit and candor. It’s quite easy for me to dazzle people with my personality while I’m rocking my usual t-shirt and jeans combo. But something about being almost naked and wet around people I’m familiar with always brings on a whole new feeling of awkward shame. Over the years I think I’ve developed some sort of Pavlovian response to bathing suits that goes a little something like this:

Bathing suit -> people I know see me and find out how awful my body is -> these people decide I am not worthy of love -> super body shame -> discomfort -> sadness.

So as I was getting ready for the pool party on Saturday morning, I was mentally preparing myself for the impending pain. I put on my swimsuit, glanced begrudgingly in the mirror and…

Nothing bad happened.

As a matter of fact, something remarkable  happened. The automatic response I was so used to experiencing was replaced by something a little like this:

Bathing suit -> admiration -> comfort in my own skin -> body pride and acceptance -> confidence -> fun.

Ahh! No way! Is that possible? I mean, I’m not a size 0! How can I possibly be okay with my body in a swim suit? Well. Somehow it happened. I even let Dan take a picture of me!

So then. What changed? Well. Probably a number of things. Here’s a list of things that I think contributed to my shameless pool party epiphany:

1. Eating right and working out.
Okay. This is kind of duh. But I know that I make pretty good decisions when I eat and I know that I stay active. So, ergo, I just feel better. I feel healthy. I feel good. And, if I’m doing all the right things to take care of my body, then why be ashamed? That’s what healthy looks like. That’s what happy looks like. And if anyone wants to hate on it, that’s too bad.

2. Even the most judgmental people aren’t as judgmental as you think they are.
The only time my “body” was scrutinized was when Emily pulled me out of the water to show her friend my deformed, bony, misshapen dancer feet. And we can all laugh about that because if you’ve seen my feet, you know they are a hot mess.

3. Life’s too short (and fun) to worry about it.
Saturday morning I realized that there is so much more to life than looking perfect in a swimsuit. Like water slides, for example. You can’t simultaneously have fun on a water slide and look good. No one can do it. Just have fun. It’s possible. I promise!

Exhibit A: Myself on the water slide.

4. A bangin’ swimsuit. (Thanks, Target!)
The swimsuit I wore was the first one I purchased based on how it looked on me and not what the size label said. Ugh. I actually don’t even know what size it is. And that’s such a relief. Take it from me, people. Don’t purchase bathing suits that are a smidge too small because, “Well it says MEDIUM and I wear a MEDIUM so it fits!” I can understand the fear of labels but the truth is that your “size” label does not matter. Buy and wear a suit that makes sense for your body type.

5. I’ve been doing this a while.
I’ve been on a journey of self-love for a while, and only now am I starting to really notice the changes. If your next beach trip does not result in epiphany, that’s okay. Remember that this is a journey, and not a destination, and you have important milestones throughout the way. You may even have some wrong turns in the process. Will I be as confident on my next beach trip? Maybe, but maybe not. It depends on the day. But the important thing is to keep. moving. forward.

Why do I write this? Because I know I’m not alone. It’s summer, and I know that some of you reading this may experience the swimsuit anxiety attack soon (if you haven’t already.)

It’s summer. It’s dang hot out. And you’re beautiful just the way you are. Don’t be afraid to be comfortable in your own skin.

diet coke 12-pack: week of june 6, 2011

Legitimate bloggers do this thing at the end of the week where they give their readers links to other cool stuff on the Internet. Because I want to be a legit blogger when I grow up, I’m gonna start doing that. Each Friday I’ll put out a list of the cool things I found while trolling the interwubz that week  and, because I’m oh-so-clever, call it my DIET COKE 12-PACK.

(I’ll give you a moment or two for your applause for my genius to die down. Done now? Cool. Let’s move on.)

THE LINKS!

That’s all, friends! Have a great weekend. Oh I almost forgot! I’m giving you a homework assignment:

Hug someone who needs it.

things i love thursday! (june 9, 2011)

Despite the temperatures hitting right at and above 100 degrees, I’ve had quite the incredible week! It’s been a bit emotional, but amazing none the less. Here are all the things I love this week!

THINGS THAT MADE ME SMILE THIS WEEK:

  • An encouraging lunch with this guy, and a lovely email from him a few days later.
  • Saying “no” and being okay with it.
  • Choosing to spend the evening with my husband only.
  • Hanging out with Andrea at Poor Paul’s, even though it was to say goodbye.
  • Running in the park.
  • Putting my husband before prior commitments.
  • Lunch with Chrissie, Katie (MOH extraordinaire!), Chelsea, Angie, and (for a hot second) Zander!
  • Evan and Suzanne’s wedding shower. I love those two and can’t wait for their wedding next month!

  • Hearing/watching Evan lead worship. I’m so proud to call him my friend.
  • Evan’s new job! (Yay for Evan being all up in this post!)
  • Dinner with my faves after church.
  • Putting off Monday as long as possible.
  • Spending a night at home just reading.
  • A sweet coworker taking me out to lunch!
  • VEGETARIAN CHILI (nommmm.)
  • Food in general.
  • Buddhalicious Ultimate Frisbee Team. WHAT.
  • Coming home to a house that has been cleaned, dishes that have been washed, laundry that has been washed and put away, and dinner being made. Best. Husband. Ever.
  • Husband. And the fact that he puts up with me.
  • Truly feeling better after a good run. Even though I kind of hate running with every fiber of my being right now.
  • Being 7 lbs away from what I weighed my freshman year of college. (Almost 7 years ago, what?! That can’t possibly be right…)
  • Chicago.
  • Deciding to keep the kitten we found; we named him Hamlet! (My other cat’s name is Romeo, so…)

  • Hearing Hamlet purr himself to sleep on my lap. Several times.
  • Deep conversations on my front porch with Felicite.
  • White wine.
  • Vodka sauce.
  • Thunderstorms.
  • Romeo. Still my first (kitty) love.
  • Jersey Mike’s with Randy.
  • My awesome FBDC readers, particularly the ones who correct me on my errors. No seriously. I’m glad the people who read FBDC aren’t drones who never question things posted on the Internet.
  • Setting out to run a couple miles but then deciding to only run one mile and then hula hoop afterward for 30 minutes.
  • Hearing a creepy old man say, “Swing it, baby…” while I was hula hooping. Well. It made me smile and then made me run away.
  • Random wall posts from old friends.
  • Buying Starbucks for friends and doodling on the cups.
  • Finishing The Hunger Games series. Great books!

Alright lovely people, it’s your turn. Open a new post on your blog, whip out your journal, or find a scrap piece of paper and jot down all the wonderful things in your life. I promise you. There is beauty in this world.

the importance of receiving compliments.

After Molly’s incredible piece on the importance of unusual compliments, I’ve been thinking about what compliments look like in my daily life. I try to say something nice to everyone I encounter in a day, and I don’t mean in a “I need to check off my compliment quota for the day” way, but in a “I genuinely like X about Y person” way. You know, I don’t mean to brag, but I’m pretty good at giving unique compliments. I really do love people and I love that they’re different from me and I love to point out all the things I love about those people. Words of affirmation is my love language so I really get life out of expressing in words the things I appreciate about others.

However, there’s one small problem with this. I can give compliments all day, but I am absolutely dreadful at receiving compliments.

Is it just me? Or are you like this, too?

Friend: Oh, Lindsay, I love that shirt on you!
Me: Ew, really? I’ve had it for like, five years. There’s a giant stain on it. Gross.

Friend: Lindsay I love your hair today!
Me: Ugh, I slept all weird on it so I’ve been fighting with it all day.

Friend: Lindsay, you’re so fun to be around!
Me: Psh, you wouldn’t say that if you lived with me.

Somewhere along the line of my life I mistakenly began to assume that shooting down compliments was a way for me to appear humble and that gracefully accepting compliments was a way for me to look conceited and selfish.

But let’s break this down for a second. How would you feel if you were the friend in that scenario? Would you feel like I was being humble and sweet, or would you feel as though I was being completely self-absorbed by dismissing you and your opinion of me?

Source: Magh

A year or so ago I was in a women’s bible study small group and one of the ladies brought this up. She told a story about someone who always shot down compliments from her and it made her feel so insignificant. Naturally, she got angry, and stopped complimenting this person. Before she shared her story, I had never considered what other people thought when I’d refuse compliments. In my mind, I was being humble and right, so I didn’t really need to give the subject much thought. Upon hearing this woman’s story, I stopped and thought about how I would feel if someone did the same thing to me. I realized I would feel insulted. Wronged. Ignored. I would feel as though whomever I’d complimented assumed that I had no wits about me and that my words of affirmation meant nothing to them.

Ouch.

She summed up her testimony and really drove the point home when she said, “Ladies are polite; ladies say thank you.”

Be polite. Say thank you.

Source: Daniel Slaughter

As a woman of faith, I believe God does things in our lives each and every day to teach us and make us better. The woman in my bible study was definitely an example of that for me. But, of course, God doesn’t stop there. This morning, when I sat down to start writing this post about the importance of receiving compliments, my little Gmail tab lit up indicating a new message. It was one from my pastor. He said this:

I wanted to tell you how proud I was of you…

My skin began to crawl as I read the rest of his kind words. At the end of the email, I started to reply with something along the lines of, “Well, I’m still a big old mess and-” [backspacebackspacebackspace] “I’m nowhere near where I need to be-” [backspacebackspacebackspace] “That’s really nice of you but I’m-” [backspacebackspacebackspace]…

Then I remembered the blog post draft I had open in another Firefox tab.

The importance of receiving compliments.

Be polite.

My eyes filled with tears as I sheepishly, and truly humbly, typed a small and desperate, “Thank you.

things i love thursday! (june 2, 2011)

I can’t tell you how much I look forward to Thursdays now. I love reliving my week and jotting down all the things that made me happy. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: even during the crappy weeks, you can always find things that are positive, even if it’s difficult. (But you’d be surprised how easy it can be.)

And so, without further ado, here are some awesome things from the past week!

THINGS THAT MADE ME SMILE THIS WEEK:

  • The above photo. Jessica is AMAZING. How can that face be real?! It makes me laugh every time!
  • White wine, good chats, and watching the sunset on the porch with Felicite.
  • Spinach and tomato tortellini! Soooo good.
  • Giant marshmallows!
  • Good friends, beer, and a campfire.
  • Making eclairs by the fire! Best. Idea. Ever.
  • Roasting GIANT marshmallows and trying to make s’mores with them.

  • Chelsea and Keith coming to visit!
  • Swimming in the springs.
  • Sonic Colors. Again.
  • Bonding over wine, beer, and Daniel Tosh.
  • Specials at Fun Station.
  • The pizza at Fun Station. Seriously. I could eat it by the pie.
  • Multiple uses for Nalgene bottles.
  • Reading Catching Fire in bed.
  • Sushi. Always.
  • The pretty and sweet girl at the counter at Mr. Roboto Sushi.
  • Grilling out with a handful of my favorite boys.
  • Kyle’s barbecue sauce on my meatless burgers. SO GOOD.
  • Dan and I becoming foster parents for a stray mother cat and her baby kitten. By chance.

  • Kitten squeaks.
  • Ultimate Frisbee! (My body’s too Buddhalicious for ya!)
  • Good dinner and SNOWBALLS with Jessica and Crystal. (Tiger’s Blood. Rawr.)
  • Nina’s birthday prank (even though I wasn’t there for it. Still good!)
  • Emily’s red teeth.

What about you? What made you smile this week? Let me know!