Monday, August 20, 2012

Best Friends Forever–3 Tips for Lasting Friendships

Adorable eye chart art from Eyecharts by Gisele!

One of my dearest, best friends, Chris had his birthday this past week and while scheming away to make a visit with a small surprise, I realized we’d been friends for seventeen years. Seventeen! I’m 24 and I’ve known Chris for over half of my life. I’m extremely lucky to have one great best friend of seventeen years but what’s even more amazing is he isn’t the only one! I have a few best friends, and by a few I mean a lot. Best doesn’t mean there is only one! I have some very close friends from the MMA gym, from high school (I can’t count them on both hands!), my friend Tessa, and a few more. Husband, you are in a category on your own!

I’m  not attached to the hip to and call and text all the time like we did in high school because let’s be honest – adult life is busy! There’s careers, kids, significant others, some college etc! And while I still have many of the friends I had in high school, our friendships, like ourselves have grown and matured and changed. These are people I can truly rely on no matter what, people I trust with nearly everything. They’re unjudging but honest, supportive, fun, and no matter where life takes us – consistent and there.
We all have very different personalities, and different interests but we’re all always there for each other. Interests in my group of friends range from jiu-jitsu, athletics and lifting, political science, horror movie critic, mountain biking and snowboarding after working all day at the bank, farming, baking, working with youth groups, knitting, cat lady-ing and more!
Chris’s birthday provoked the idea of writing some tips on maintaining friendships especially as busy adults.

1. Social Networking – How to use and not use it.

With Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and so forth – seeing every little chosen detail of your friends’ lives are as easy as a glance at your phone. I don’t have to ask my gym friends how their day went when I see them – because I can see what they ate, what they’re thinking and what their dog did with a click! It’s a useful tool to know whats going on in people’s lives when you’re not able to keep in touch with them frequently or they live far away but it also reduces certain events to a 5 second scan over a page.


>>Use it to remember dates/birthdays

>>Share links, ideas!

>>Gather little facts! Use them!
Ex: My friend Shanley saw my pictures of my two grey kitties.
She later sent me a cute card from England with a grey cat on it and a handwritten note telling me about her adventures, and checked up to see how I was! See your friend post about a bad day? Swing by and visit them! That “Ugh I’m craving funnel cakes!” post? Find your closest fair and drop some off ;]! I did something similar for my friend Tessa with some local produce!
>>Plan events (we’ll get to this part in a bit!), share pictures from get togethers!


>> DON'T Let it make important events less important!
See that little letter up there? When I saw it was Chris’s birthday – I automatically went to go post a “HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!” on his page. But that’s where this all began – we’ve been friends for so long and I was going to type out a birthday wish on his facebook page?! Instead, I did a little DIY birthday card, stained and burned the edges of some bristol board paper, tried to make my prettiest Hogwarts “H” and melted wax on the envelope. I tied it to a single white balloon with a gift card, drew an owl on it and dropped my Hedwig and his “birthday owl” at his office!
This applies to all major life events – weddings, funerals, etc. Make a phone call, mail flowers, make a visit. DON’T make a quick facebook post. It’s not as meaningful, and they’ll appreciate being contacted in person!

>>DON'T Use it to converse via Facebook chat or tweets! Try a quick phone call, hearing someone’s voice is much nicer!

2. Embrace old memories – but create new ones!

I’ve run into instances where I’ve met up with an old friend I haven’t seen in awhile and all we talked about were old memories as kids which is awesome! It’s great reminiscing over them! Best friends can run into moments where you run out of things to talk about (remember – social networking and knowing every detail of someone’s day? This falls under here too!) 

Make new memories to talk about! Go somewhere, and do something! 

A few of us crammed into two cars and made a drive down to Florida. We had 13 people in our resort room! My two friends Chris and Anthony are notorious road trippers and will scoop a few of us up and sweep us away to wherever they end up – this has included a 3 hour drive for a hot dog in Toledo, a picture in front of the White House in D.C, or weekend camping on the lake. Be tourists in your own city, check out places you haven’t been to before etc! We’ve gone to an old general store and had a smorgasbord of novelty foods in the car ride back, four-wheeling for hours trying to find one silly old path, and so much more! But every person is unique and every relationship with their friends is unique so make NEW memories that are unique to your friends! Try something new! Try revisiting a place! It makes for great conversations and treasurable memories.

3. Plan Get Togethers

Back to being a busy adult. With families, careers, and college it can be hard to see each other as much as we’d like. I’m a terrible planner, I’m lucky I have Joni and Jeanette from the Dames Who Dish blog because the love planning! Whether its with one person or 20 – make a Facebook event, message or phone call when you are both in the same area to meet up!

>>With one person or smaller groups: It’s easier to coordinate meeting up. Try anything from a quick lunch, a drink or a little day trip to catch up in person. 

>>Larger groups: With friends studying abroad or moving away the thing that’s worked the best is having said person that’s away let everyone know when they’re coming home, and if they’d like to do something. Give dates that are available and see who can make it! This has worked out extremely well, and we often have dinner meet ups once a month with a group of 10 people or more! Compromise on the location if needed – we’ll occasionally take a trip up to Cleveland to include our friends living there to save them a trip and give us a chance to try new places.

>>HOLIDAYS! Most people are home on the holidays so it’s an ideal time to see each other. Try having your own friend version of holidays! We just started a new tradition of having a friends-only Thanksgiving dinner. We’ve also done Christmas dinners and various picnics separate from the ones with our families. Who doesn’t like getting the chance to eat tons and have lots of laughs over a huge dinner?!

I hope some of these gave you some ideas! <3


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Things I Love Thursday

Patch of Queen Anne's lace in my backyard
After some very very busy weeks, shooting an event, setting up a shoot for a baby pageant and getting back into the swing of things after a not-long-enough trip to Florida it's great to sit down for a bit and pull together a TILT list. I haven't done one in far too long! 

♥Handpicked berries from my neighbors strawberry and blueberry farm. Nothing, and I mean NOTHING beats local produce or your own homegrown fruits and vegetables!
 ♥ The smell of sun ripened tomatoes in a garden! The lovely leafy, earthy smell is one of my favorites! Tomatoes in general are great too - I especially love them sliced and salted!
♥ Grilled food is some of the best in my opinion, so why not make baked goods on a these grilled smore brownies?!

Paperself eyelashes - I only own the Under The Sea ones and aside from vacation have yet to find a place to wear them but they're whimsical, and fun! They're paper eyelashes cut into shapes such as seahorses, peacock feathers, antlers with butterflies, zebras and more! It sounds kind of out there but check it out!  
 ♥Fractured Prune donuts - a local shop that makes fresh donuts right in front of you and lets you pick different flavored glazes and toppings like key lime - fresh cake donut with lime glaze, coconut and graham crackers on top! Some of my favorites are the strawberry shortcake, peppermint with chocolate chips, blueberry, and I believe black forest with cherry? Warm, fresh and local! 
♥Honing in on my culinary skills. I've been attempting cooking at least once a week - even if its a simple recipe or one I go to often. 
DIY anthropologie scarf  - perfect for my love for accesories made from t-shirts! 
♥ Free. Books. Oh wait, you want this to be awesomer? Try free classic AUDIO books!
I love listening to radio shows but I've been trying to find some good audio books to take with me on my long drives and here it is! 
♥Olympic parties with some of the crew from the No Math Allowed podcast ♥ Olympic themed swimming pool cake my husband decorated ♥ Military welcome home ceremonies ♥ Criminal Mind marathoning ♥ Planning future dream trips after my husband playing Uncharted (a PS3 game that follows the path of Sir Francis Drake, various historical myths, exploring lost cities in Nepal, etc).♥ Said trip planning leading to finding present day adventurers! ♥ Dark chocolate covered blueberries

What are you all loving this week? 


Friday, July 13, 2012

The Happiest 5k on the Planet!

I completed my first 5k with some friends this year in June! We ran in the Color Run!

Everyone starts off with white shirts, music blasting at the start line, countdowns and a view of little clouds of color rising above the finish line to the right. The run looped through Cleveland partially through a neighborhood with little checkpoints every 1k, in which we were doused with colors. People sat outside in their yards to watch, and receive colorful hugs and high fives! 
At the end an even bigger explosion of colors was thrown on the runners crossing the finish line by the waves of runners before us. They had a huge party afterwards, everyone received packets of the color to share with each other! People of all ages from babies to 70+ year old grandmothers and even a dog participated!
The photographer in me was ecstatic at the photographic opportunities, but since the color they launched at us was powdery, I had to baby my camera to keep it from getting little particles of rainbow-love inside. I still got some fun shots though!

5k runnin' woman! Go me!
I'm flexing those running muscles. Err..

Running buddies! Mindy&Mandie, aren't they adorable?!
Coming up on the Blue Zone


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Little Bee!

I've been unexpectedly, and fantastically busy this summer and this year in general! 
I had giant expectations and plans for Cup of Chelsea that had to be put on the back burner once more, and I had to learn how to balance them before tackling a blog. 

I always feel like blogging looks "easier" but really, it's quite a commitment (coming from someone that has 5 or so posts hah!)  But I'm extremely fortunate to be given the many opportunities that have been keeping me away from the blog. I made a new blog design to help motivate myself into trying to fit a blog into my schedule.

 Here's what's been keeping me away from exercising my writing!

Snap Snap!
That's right! I have a website, business cards in the mail and a small but beyond supportive network 
helping me with my photography business! It's not the niche I thought I'd find myself in, but I'm doing combat sports photography - boxing, cage fighting, grappling, events and fighter portraits. I'm still doing tons of creative work, portraits and weddings but I'm working with a local Mixed Martial Arts website photographing events. On top of that, I have a creative shoot in the works that I'm extremely excited about. Here's a tiny hint Wegmanesque and carnivals.

Me and the the husband finally took a vacation after 4 years and it was great to get away,
but I'm saving that for another post with lots of pictures!

Feng-Shui, inside and out
The house has been painted for the first time in over 5 years and we're working on rearranging, replacing and bettering our living space. Upkeep of the yard has been the hardest - trying to make changes and maintain whats already there when you have a former farm takes up a lot of time! 

I joined a Crossfit gym on top of my grappling and muy thai kickboxing training and the three 3+ hour nights training a week, and one hour before work at Crossfit takes up a large chunk of my time. 
I ran my first 5k, competed in a higher level tournament and got a 2nd place after being bumped up a division at the last minute and I'm reaching lots of fitness goals. If I had time to keep up, I'd love to start a jiu-jitsu and fitness blog. 

Hows everyone's summer going?! Hopefully just as wonderful and busy!


Friday, April 20, 2012

Orange you glad...

 I'm blogging again!
I'm blogging again! 
After a million and one excuses, I am really going to do this. 
I'd been too busy to keep up with a blog, but I have a game plan now.

Orange, carrot, champagne mango and banana smoothie.

Started my morning off with the usual - a handful of reachable fruits and vegetables tossed in the blender. I've been out of spinach for my morning smoothies, so I've been adding carrots and cucumbers. The vivid orange it turned out made me decide to wear my sole piece of orange clothing. 
I will perfect outfit posts when I'm not rushing to edit photos from an event.

Dress - Forever21
Shoes - Target

Make-up (not visible this time :[ )
Eyes - Sugarpill Goldilux
MAC Swimming
Almay - Black Pearl 
Lips - L'oreal Volcanic

 Wearing L'oreal Volanic lipstick too (best orange lipstick &hearts;!) but
I'm still figuring out taking good make-up pictures with a 50mm 1.4 lens.
I promise better outfit pictures in the future.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Terje Sorgjerd on Thursday

Starry Night, originally uploaded by James Neeley.
1:40 AM. It's Thursday.


Have a beautiful video :].

Terjes Sorgjerd's - The Mountain

It's a time lapse video of the milky way mixed with a video of the El Teide mountain in Spain, with beautiful music.
It wouldn't let me embed, but go check it out!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Things I Love Thursday!

Wonderful Thursday over here in my quiet little corner. Being sick (again?!) for a week was rough, I kind of hid from my blog and burrowed under blankets, tea, honey and sleep!

This is the first day I'm finally motivated and feeling better, lets go Thursday!

Everyone needs one, you can't be unhappy if you have one. Small, cute, convenient and personable!
I recently started tackling the Ghostbusters theme song yesterday, it's been a bit of a struggle but it's fun!

"If everyone played the ukulele, the world would be a better place"
 -Jake Shimabukuro

Small spaces, little homes, one room houses, redesigned  garages into gorgeous spaces?
This one is one of my favorites. It's an old garage turned into a living space with architectural pillows, cozy fireplace and check out the bathroom! It makes me realize exactly how much you can do with the space you have!

Cleaning cleaning cleaning!
Throwing things away. I am contemplating trying out narrowing things down to 100 things. I may or may not do it.. for now my main focus is cleaning things out. I am in a constant state of cleaning and pitching things but I'm going for really cleaning out my house, and preparing for eventually looking for a house of our own or an apartment for me and the man.

I have a pile of charms and pieces I'm making to make some nautical themed jewelry and look at this etsy treasury! Ropes, blues, sand and seashells!

Explaining the Doctor
I have a picture of David Tennant as my phone background, and often have to explain who is he. I was trying to explain what Doctor Who was all about last night, and came out sounding like the sci-fi geek I am, gushing all over my favorite doctor.
Starting my list!
I'm not doing a 24 before 24, but rather a list of things I'd just like to accomplish this year, or maybe even within a shorter time frame. It's not complete, but making the list is fun. Anyone have any suggestions?

♥ Teavana tea ♥ New corn taco shells at Chipotle ♥ rich gold orange lipsticks ♥ Making a self proclaimed Ghostbusters day ♥ Don't Steal My Lunch: Hilarious Fridge Notes
New Week Nudibranch! Marine snails with no shells and a huge variety of amazing colors, you have to see it! ♥

Have a lovely Thursday!