Taryn got her groove back

Hello!

 

It’s been over 4 weeks since my last entry. A lot has happened… like me witnessing an old lady taking a sh*t in the forest.

 

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I’m not kidding!! I saw EVERYTHING!!! EVERYTHING!!!!!! I am now in desperate need of therapy or that Men in Black tool that makes you forget, lol.

 

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I fulfilled my final bridesmaid obligation at my friend’s wedding! AND, it didn’t end up with me blackout drunk accosting a groomsman… (one day I will find the words to tell that story… one day)

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I finished up my time in Big Bear. Made my way to Glen Ellen (near Napa), and now am chilling in a hipster coffee shop in Eugene.

 

Sunset in Big Bear
Glen Ellen A.K.A wine country
The Wandering Goat in Eugene Oregon

 

 

Ready to set the world on fire

 

Somewhere in between watching an old lady poop in public and when a police officer illegally towed my car and stole my legally purchased car tags (more on that later…), a lot of my old characteristics began to resurface, with memories and ideas I had long ago.

 

Long story short, it’s been nice to resurrect parts of me. I suppose I spent so much time in survival mode, I shut down to just get through it. Now that I’m out of crisis mode, I’m back in full effect! That and I realized that my vacation from my appearance needs to DIE. I’ve been putting the HOME in homely for some time now. I’m 29, not 92, though you wouldn’t know it based on my oversized knit sweaters and old lady garb.

I’ll be perusing Eugene today and a little bit tomorrow, then it’s on to Seattle for a month! I’ll be updating photos and all that jazz regularly, promise! Anywho, here are some farewell photos of Big Bear Lake. On to the next adventure!

 

Taryn and the Bear

So I’ve been slacking. This is in part due to work, preparing to head out for the last wedding, and having to cope without Abbey (Only for a few days due to the wedding). So I’m going to do a little housekeeping:

 

I’m 29!

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I turned 29 last Wednesday. Celebrating my birthday isn’t something I put much effort and energy into. This year was a little bittersweet because I normally spend the day with my rents, but they’re on different continents living their best life at the moment. They’re the ones who spearhead the shenanigans, otherwise, I probably wouldn’t bother, ha! I’m not a huge birthday person and haven’t been since I was 11. But since I didn’t want to be a complete abstainer, I did get a small cake and a mimosa for good measure. See mom, I did something! I did have fun though. Abbey and I went on a trail, hung out by the water, and just relaxed (and worked a bunch).

 

Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!

My nightly routine usually involves chilling in the jacuzzi and listening to some tunes. The townhouse that I’m renting has the perfect blend of “cabin-feels” without the cabin maintenance– I love it!

 

Anyway, I was outside and I had happened to take out my contacts because they were irritating me. As I was adjusting the temperature of the jacuzzi, I looked up and like eight feet in front of the gate, I saw a dark blob on the grass next to the fruit tree that generally isn’t there. I thought to myself, “huh, that blob isn’t usually there,”. I squinted to get a better look and the blob moved! It grabbed a piece of fruit, and that’s when I realized, it was a FREAKING BEAR!!!!

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My reaction, obvi.

 

You’d think that would run back inside and wait for it to pass on by but noooo… like the village idiot that dies in dinosaur/crazy animal films, I went inside to grab my camera and take photos of it. Fortunately, when I came back outside, it was further away, so my idiot self felt even more confident. As I was snapping away (with my flash on, like a genius), I guess the flash annoyed it as it made a fake charge motion towards me. Needless to say, I was pretty scared, but I was literally a step away from my door, so I squealed and ran back inside.

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What I thought was going to happen

 

There’s nothing like a little bear lunge to get the adrenaline running. As I said, it wasn’t super close, but close enough for me to rethink my bravery level. So, my takeaway is, if I can snap photos of a hungry bear, I can handle anything. That, and I’m likely the first person to die during an “animal on the loose” type of situation. 😉

 

I told my brother and my parents and they all said “So that’s why Big Bear is named that”, ha! Leave it to my family to be more excited to see the bear than disturbed by the fact that I was dumb enough to stick around for a photo shoot. Perhaps that’s why they’re my family, haha! Enjoy some shoddy quality bear photos!

 

Taryn Sets Boundaries

Ok, so I know I still need to write about my birthday. However, I left my camera and I wanted to upload a photo for the post, so it’ll happen sometime soon! Anywho, I’ve recently made the unsettling discovery that I’m not always the best advocate for myself when it comes to respecting my time/boundaries. In fact, I can be a bit of a doormat both professionally and personally.

 

Fairy Godmother syndrome

I don’t know exactly when, but at some point, I made the choice to help other people with their goals, problems, dreams, etc. If you needed help with something, I was your girl! Bibbidi-bobbidi-boo, I’d turn on my neurotic superpowers to make sure whatever you needed appeared as if all I had to do was wave a magic wand. Sure, that sounds like a nice character trait, however, I went way overboard, leaving very little in the tank when it came to taking care of myself.

 

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The first step is admission

Maybe focusing on other people’s stuff was easier than admitting that I was avoiding my own stuff, but, fortunately for me, I had a painful experience during a recent wedding where I had to be a maid of honor, forcing me to take a good hard look at how I prioritized myself and others in my life (One day, I’ll sit down and fully explain, but I’m letting some time go by for processing purposes). To summarize quickly, I had overlooked my own personal needs to uphold someone else’s unrealistic expectations. Like a hand backslapping you on a cold winter’s day, I was confronted with an unsettling truth: I turned myself into a doormat and I have myself to blame.

 

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Out with the old, in with the boundaries

I’ve learned how to assert the word “no” and it’s been glorious! At work, I’m refusing projects that are either too low in compensation or when the project is too demanding. I’m no longer answering emails that are outside of my working hours or arrangements I’ve made with clients. Long story short, I’m doubling down on my worth. I have noticed that it makes me less agreeable (something that I used to covet), but it has weeded out the emotional soul-sucking aspects of my professional life. Setting boundaries also helped me to discover that when I was dreading or avoiding something, it was actually my subconscious trying to let me know that my boundaries were being disrespected. Now, when my gut is telling me to abandon ship, I listen.

 

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Taryn’s got a brand new bag

I have to admit, asserting boundaries have been so helpful in my crazy little world. I’m learning to put myself first, hence my traipsing across the US. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that initially, this process felt very alien to me, but with a little practice, I’m improving over time! It is a work in progress, like a muscle I’m exercising to build endurance. Creatively, this opens me up to really hunker down and work on my projects. With that being said, I am enjoying the changes I’m making and am looking forward to the process, uncomfortable or not!

Taryn tries Keto

So yesterday was my birthday. I turned 29. I was going to write about it (and will, probably tomorrow) but I feel like a total POS because I spent the last few days off of Keto and I’m miserable!!!!!

It started with a trainer

A few months back, I decided to not only get a gym membership but to also get a personal trainer. After all, I was staring down being in two weddings six weeks of each other, a girl’s gotta look good. Anyway, my trainer (who I absolutely adore and miss terribly) made me switch my dietary habits and told me to try Keto. I’m not going to get into the specifics of Keto, but it’s basically a low carb, moderate protein, and high-fat diet. I was skeptical and annoyed about how expensive and mindful my shopping had become, but I’d be lying if I didn’t see how much of a difference it did for me mentally.

 

My brain with superpowers

The biggest change (well one of them) for me was my brain processing/mental state– whatever you want to call it. My ability to focus, power through mundane tasks, and just my overall emotional resilience went THROUGH THE ROOF! At my pique performance, I was going to the gym 5-6 times a week, eating a Keto diet, and just loving life. Like seriously, I HATE administrative/repetitive tasks, but I found myself not only being more productive, I didn’t mind as much. I could go on and on about how my diet also improved my gym recovery, etc, but for the sake of this post, I’ll stick with my brain. Anywho, fast forward to this past week. I decided to “treat” myself and ate all kinds of tasty and horrible food.

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Hello darkness, my old friend

When I ditch my Keto diet and eat crappy food, I AM SO MISERABLE AND DEPRESSED, it’s not even funny!!! You’re probably thinking, “Taryn, c’mon, it’s not the food.” Oh, but it is! When I eat poorly, I’m sluggish, foggy, cranky, and just downright depressed. Fortunately, I’m very cognizant of my mood and the causes of my changes in behavior. I am glad that I’ll be fine in a day or two, but man it is gnarly how food can really alter your mindset.

 

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You are what you eat

I’m not advocating that everyone go on Keto– it depends on a few factors. That said, the difference of cutting out sugar, bad carbs, and processed foods is astounding! Do I miss bread? Sure. BUT, I LOVE how I feel when I eat healthily and exercise on a regular basis. It’s worth cutting out the crappy stuff, hands down. Anyway, that’s the end of my dietary rant. I will be back to normal in a day or two.

Taryn Lightens Up

As much as I hate to admit it, I am a recovering sympathy addict. As I’ve mentioned, the last year was certainly not an easy one and everyone I knew was quick to sympathize and validate how crappy my situation was. Somewhere along the way, not only did I agree with them, I started to view myself in a victimized sort of fashion. I HATE admitting that. But, in order for me to move on and grow from this learning experience, I suppose honesty is the best policy.

It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to

I’ve been in Big Bear Lake nearing three weeks and as much fun as it’s been, I spent the first two weeks licking my wounds and throwing the ultimate of pity parties.

 

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Seriously, I’m embarrassed to admit that I was high on my “I’ve gone through traumatic experiences” vibes, that I was failing to see all of the awesome blessings and opportunities that had fallen on my lap.

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Life sucks, poor me. Lol

 

Just because you’re right, doesn’t mean you’re right

Sometime last week, a voice that I hadn’t heard in a while popped into my head and asked me when I was going to be done feeling sorry for myself. For the first time in a while, I started to realize how my frame of view was biting me in the behind. In short, I was pouring salt in shallow wounds, not allowing myself to heal. Basically, I was fighting myself for no apparent reason.

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I can look at this in one of two ways. I can either:

A: Be upset at people and situations that were really messed up, putting a damper on my worldview. Or…

B: Accept what happened, forgive people, and enjoy life as God intended rain or shine.

 

Lighten up and move on

So, I’ve chosen the latter, and my my my, what a difference a shift in perspective makes! I am acutely aware of how blessed I am. I have my health, my family, a career that I enjoy, and the opportunity to try new things and visit random places. I don’t want to waste my time wallowing in self-pity or ruminating on the negative stuff. Nope, I want to live life with the glass half-full.

I’m not denying my trials and tribulations. I’m choosing to accept that they happened and quick frankly, I may be a better person for it! I would be remiss if I didn’t credit God and my time reading the Bible for helping me in the healing process. I’m no saint, and I’ve realized that if I’m forgiven for my shortcomings, it’s high time that I did the same for others.

Anyway, I’m off to finish up some work and then I’m off to my knitting class! I’m learning how to make a scarf, so far, I’m learning rather quickly and I am having fun sitting in with the local crafters up here. Happy Tuesday!

 

Feelings are…

Lame! Seriously, my emotions are all over the spectrum this week.

I’ve been in Vegas for about 3-ish weeks, and while I’m happy to be back, it’s not been without its challenges.

 

I’m experiencing a few major life changes all at once. And while there’s more good than bad, my hormones are all over the place this week, which doesn’t help one iota. Fortunately, I’m aware that I’m chemically imbalanced this week, so I’m not taking myself and my feelings too seriously (hence this rant). I will admit that my dad leaving for Germany to join my mom for the next few years was more difficult than I anticipated.

My parents are cooler than me

So last year, my mom decided to take a job that would place her in Germany for at least 3 years. My dad stayed back to take care of their stateside affairs. That in of itself was tough, as I’m close to my mom, but I had my dad. But today as was  I driving him to the airport, I felt like I was 5 again trying to cling to my mother’s dress instead of running to join the other kids to play.

I know I’m being dramatic, but my parents are really two of my favorite people on this planet, so to have them both in Europe (though I’m extremely happy/proud) it’s going to take some adjusting on my part. It doesn’t help that I’m 27 going on 60, which often places me out of my peer group.

 

It’s not all bad

Even though my bio parents are enjoying their European lives, I do in fact have a Vegas mom. Long story short, I met my buddy Mandy at a MeetUp a few years ago, and we’ve been friends ever since. She’s so kindly allowed me to steal her mom, Pam, who I admittedly hangout with more than Mandy (she moved to Utah last year). Pam is this is quirky, blunt Chicagoan who is a total riot. We share similar humor, so we get along famously. Every time I stop by, I’m spoiled– as is Abbey. Funnily enough, she’s been trying to get me back here since last year.

In hindsight, I’m glad I didn’t move to Chicago (another story for another day) as I think being in a new city by myself wouldn’t have been that great. I’m sure I would’ve adapted, but being near family and friends is proving to be comforting.

Ok, feelings don’t suck that much

I’ll admit, I feel better after writing this. I still think that feelings are obstructions in the sense of accomplishing things, but whatevs, such is life. Anywho, I’ll try to blog more frequently, now that things seem to be settling down. I hope everyone is having a great Wednesday!

My dog is a jerk, but I love it

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Morning Walk

Abbey and I have been buddies since March, 2013. I was sitting in a Starbucks one day thinking I needed a dog. Looking back, I was so ill-prepared, but I persevered, managing to keep us both alive and relatively sane for the past 4 years. I love my dog. She’s the best. But if I had to be completely honest, her level of obedience is about 75% at best. This secretly makes me proud.

 

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Without a care in the world

A mind of her own

I’ll admit, I’m a stubborn son of a gun, questioning everyone and everything, if it suits me. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that my dog behaves the same way. When we’re in the house, she’s pretty good about following directions. But if I’m away, she’ll get into food that’s within her reach, or she’ll sit on the couch. I’ve straight up come home and she’ll be on the floor. However, I’ll touch the couch and it feels warm (not too slick there, Abbey). Or, if we’re outside and she’s off the leash, she will not listen to me, unless I’ve called her a dozen times and I sound angry. In these moments, I’ll grumble, muttering to myself that my dog is an a**, but I’ll have a slight smile of pride on my face. This might sound crazy, but I couldn’t deal with a dog who has 100% allegiance to my command. Heck, I don’t even obey myself 100% of the time.  Blind obedience means you aren’t thinking for yourself, so when she deviates from desired behavior, I’d like to think it’s because she’s doing her own thing. Part of me can never be too mad about that, lol.

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Love this crazy mutt

As that crazy mutt is approaching 6 this year, I’m so thankful for her and all of the fun/zany adventures that we’ve encountered. It’s funny, she’s not a big barker, but when I saw her at the shelter 4 years ago, she made sure to get my attention, and I’m so glad she did. 🙂

Taryn and the journey back to Satan’s Buttcrack

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Yep, you’ve read that correctly. I, Taryn, am moving back to Vegas! Early readers of this blog,  know that I loathed living in Las Vegas. I was always constantly dreaming and scheming of ways to move back to Cali. Last year, I did that! I even lived a 5 minute’s walk from the beach. It wasn’t a bad setup, really. So why, on earth would I want move to the place I complained oh so much about? Well…

Vegas wasn’t my enemy…

…rather my mindset was. If there’s anything I’ve learned in the last year, it’s that chasing ghosts will literally get you nowhere. I also had to come to terms with that, even though unpleasant things happen (crappy job, new environment, etc.) it’s not necessarily the place that’s to blame. Recently, I had an epiphany that made me reevaluate how I looked at Vegas. I thought to myself “If I didn’t experience unpleasant circumstances, would I actually hate Las Vegas?” That answer was a resounding “no”.

Friends and Family

Last year, my mom took a job within that relocated her to Germany (more on this later). I was super stoked for her, but that meant that my parents would no longer be in California. My dad stayed back for a year to help with the transition. But as of a few weeks, all of my immediate family will either be in Germany or in Vegas. Since I’m big on family, and I have 7 niece and nephews ( I’ll explain more later), it’s high time I got back. In addition, I made some awesome friendships in Vegas, that I didn’t realize that I’d miss dearly until I left. It’s funny, sometimes what you’re looking for happens to be right smack in front of you, you just didn’t realize it.

I like Vegas

This is probably one of the harder things to admit. I took so many perks and luxuries for granted. I didn’t realize this until I move away, but man, Vegas has some neat advantages:

  • For starters, it’s wayyyyyy more affordable compared to literally anywhere in California.
  • 24 hours Starbucks (Need I say more?)
  • Mccarran Airport: it’s super easy and cheaper to fly anywhere out of Vegas
  • I also loved going to Red Rock and Mt. Charleston.
  • Live music and entertainment (Sooooo convenient)
  • No fleas!!! (Abbey was struggling in Long Beach with those pesky things)
  • I love the desert (that took me by surprise, haha)

On to the next grand adventure

So in the next few weeks, I’ll be leaving Monterey to move back to Satan’s Buttcrack! I’ll admit, the summers will be hot, but what I’m getting in return, outweighs that significantly. I’m so stoked for the move and can’t wait to see what’s in store. 🙂

The conscious uncoupling of my socks

Breaking up is hard to do. Especially if it’s with your socks. And they’re the ones doing the dumping. Socks have minds of their own and they’re plotting against us. Continue reading “The conscious uncoupling of my socks”

Waves of Change

I hate change– in all forms. Think about it, pennies and nickels are a nuisance. If I counted all of the change that is hiding around my room, I’d probably make a dent in my student loans. On that note, I must sign off to scour my apartment for loose change. Just kidding… 😉 Continue reading “Waves of Change”