Monday, December 14, 2015

What being adopted FEELS like....today


It's extremely challenging to really put into words what being adopted "feels" like.

I guess I should preface this by saying, this is what it feels like TO ME. I do not represent every adult adoptee in the world, and each of us have our own feelings that can often evolve and change as we grow and age. So, this is how it feels today, but not exactly how it felt 10 or 20 years ago.

Today, being adopted feels like a burden that nobody understands or has to bare but me.

Today, being adopted feels like this giant stigma that people make assumptions about.

Today, being adopted is exceptionally frustrating because as I find out some huge genetic news, it feels as though very few understand how and why this news is huge to me.

It feels as though an ENORMOUS piece of myself was stolen from me. It feels like I was literally robbed of an experience that NO current learning or knowledge could ever possibly make up for.

It feels when I look into the mirror that I don't often know who I am looking at.

I often feel like I am a part of something and yet still standing on the outside. I attribute that to my adoption. That's not to say that my family ever intentionally set out to make me feel like that (they didn't) but it's all internal. I have CONSTANTLY felt like I was physically in a group but still stood away from everyone else.

Being surrounded by people and yet being utterly alone.

Being adopted used to make me alternate between just wanting to blend in to wanting to intentionally shock...just to feel noticed.

Being adopted and hearing people talk about traits they get from their parents makes me sad.

When you're adopted, and you express a sense of frustration or strong feelings about anything related to your adoption, you are typically instantly pinged as being "bitter" or "angry".

Do you know what that feels like? To have this HUGE life narrative that people automatically write you off as "angry" for?

I'm not an angry person. I am an exceptionally passive person who is constantly talking about love and peace and goodness and yet the MOMENT I express that something about my adoption is frustrating, hurtful, or bad- I am AUTOMATICALLY called angry.

Honestly, if you want me to GET angry, call me angry. Ha.

I am dismissed constantly for "dwelling on the past". How do you explain to someone that it isn't the past that you are dwelling on but your very current life? How do you explain that things like genetics for example STILL make up a huge part of who I am NOW, and that they matter? How do you explain how a life event such as the continued rejection of my birth mother (in adulthood) shaped me as I am now and that when someone brushes it off as the "past", they invalidate me?

Some days, like when I work with teens in the foster care system, being adopted gives me something to relate to them with. It gives me something to bond with them. Those days, being adopted isn't bad, but rather something in my life that gives me drive to help another.

Some days, when an adoptive parent "gets" whatever I am trying to explain to them about how to relate to their children, being adopted feels like a good thing, because I know that I am potentially helping another child not have to deal with some of the same experiences I had.

Then there are days when people say things such as "Well, what? Would you have rather not been adopted?" I stare at them blankly and internally think "YES."

Please don't misunderstand that. It doesn't mean I wish I was with my birth mother. It means I will that adoption wasn't a part of my story. I wish that I had just been born into my family.

And then I feel guilty.

Guilt, sadness, anger, confusion, happiness, love, hate....those are just some of the feelings I feel about adoption. It's so unfair to expect me to feel just one when this is just a part of who I am.

And I'm not against adoption. Don't get it twisted. Am I against unethical adoption? Yes. But having the feelings I have about adoption doesn't mean I am against adoption.

See how complex that is? It's just not black and white. There's a WHOLE lot of grey.

So when people say "What does being adopted FEEL like?"

.....there's just not an easy answer to that question.

As always, leave me some comment love. <3


Tuesday, December 8, 2015

My Weight Loss: July of 2014 to December 2015


I have always been a "big girl". Always. Even when I was a kid, I wasn't quite fat, but I was definitely on the bigger side. Around age 11 I ballooned out and it's been an uphill battle ever since.

This is my journey. I am not done, this is just my progress up until now and how I've gotten where I am.

In July of 2014, I was nearly 280 pounds.

I officially started my "journey to health" in November of 2014 and was 267 pounds, a tight size 22, a 42ddd bra size, and I was sick all the time. I was tired because of my blood sugar raising and dropping (I was pre-diabetic), I was weak, I had headaches, I had stomach issues. I was just SICK.

Today, I am 206 pounds, a size 16 jeans/14 leggings, a 38dd bra, and I am no longer sick. I have energy, I sleep much better than I ever have, I don't have headaches like I used to, and I am no longer pre-diabetic.

People ask me all the time- "What's the secret?" or "I don't have time to workout".

So, here's a step by step what I have done.

Disclaimer- I am not a doctor or a nutritionist and I can't guarantee that what worked for me will work exactly the same for you. I strongly recommend getting a professional opinion before embarking on a new lifestyle plan. :)

From November of 2014-January of 2015,  I did weight watchers. This gave me a good start on getting myself educated on portion control and eating anything in moderation.

From January of 2015-May of 2015, I basically just ate anything in moderation. I ate 3-4x a day, small meals, heavy on the fruits and veggies and ordered kids meals when I ate out. I still ate junk food regularly, just in tiny portions.

From June of 2015-September of 2015, I stopped drinking any kind of soda even diet. I stopped eating fast food completely EXCEPT for the occasional salad or wrap (and Chipotle doesn't count...haha). I started increasing the amount of water I was drinking and I cut out sweets except for dark chocolate, and that I only ate in moderation. I started only eating locally grown, mostly organic food. All of my meat, dairy, produce, etc. was purchased via the farmer's market and/or Ellwood Thompsons.

October of 2015-Present, I am a vegetarian that is mostly vegan. I occasionally will eat dairy and/or eggs (locally raised, organic) but in general I am MOSTLY eating vegan. I don't eat fast food, I only RARELY eat "junk food" and even then it's usually local, organic, and/or from scratch. I eat 4-6x per day in very very tiny portions. I drink nothing but water (usually 5-6 liters a day), hot tea (without sugar), and coffee. The only juice I drink is the orange juice I put in my green smoothies.

A typical day of food for me today would be something like this:

Early AM- Coffee

Late AM- Green smoothie (kale or spinach, strawberries, pineapple, banana, chia seeds, orange juice, and ice)

Early PM- A large salad (romaine, spinach, tomatoes, cabbage, carrots, cucumbers, peppers, and a LIGHT vinegar based dressing) with 2 pieces of toasted bread.

Late PM- A sandwich with either just veggies or chickpea "mock tuna" salad and veggies with some "just mayo" vegan mayo, and dijon. Usually a side of either kettle cooked chips (organic) or a light salad.

Early Evening- Simple pasta with marinara or rice and veggie stir fry.

Late Evening- My current snack obsession are these organic blue corn tortilla chips with homemade salsa but sometimes I will eat dark chocolate.

So, this is what I have been doing from a dieting standpoint. I don't think of it as a diet, but rather a lifestyle change. I do not plan to "stop" eating like this. I do, however, have to adjust periodically to prevent or get past a plateau. This is normal. For some people, cutting out one new thing can have a huge change. Dairy, white carbs, etc. You just have to be willing to adjust as you need to.

Now, as far as working out goes.

From April of 2015-August of 2015 I was going for at least one short walk a day.

Today? I do nothing short of my normal routine. I am going to be adding in a workout plan (very light, and mostly to tone) here soon, but the majority of my weight loss has had nothing to do with working out, and everything to do with changing what I eat. Walking for over a mile would burn off one cookie. It's easier to not eat the cookie.

So, as far as my "secret", it's just been changing my life. No more McDonalds, No more 2 liters of soda. No more binge eating.

I have very little patience when people say they "can't do it". You can. You are choosing to give up.

If *I* can do it, you can do it. Stop making excuses.

Yes, there could be medical issues at play. I get that. I was pre-diabetic and I still have PCOS. That has CERTAINLY made an impact on how much weight I lose. But I didn't let a dx (a dx I have BECAUSE of my weight) hold me back.

Thyroid? PCOS? Blood sugar issues? Chronic fatigue? Sleep apnea? Family history?

Yes, those are real. They will make it harder.

But it doesn't mean you can't do it.

Start today. Don't wait until tomorrow. You will have bad days (I do!). But when you have a bad day, you wake up the next day and say "I will do better today!" and you do. You don't give up. You just keep going. Eventually you will see the progress.

But it all starts with making a decision to do it.

And you can do it. <3

As always, leave me some comment love. :)


Thursday, November 26, 2015

Being Thankful


I don't normally post personal things here, short of my loud opinion. :)

But I just wanted to say that today was/is hard. Exceptionally hard.

I am not comfortable giving an update as to why that is just yet.

Just know, today had the potential to be pure and total hell for me.

My plan today included tissues, dark chocolate, home movies, and lots of crying.

Yet somehow, in a moment where I was really grasping for straws and losing hope, somebody took the time to care and reach out.

Something that would probably be a small act of kindness to many changed my entire outlook on today.

So, today, I am grateful.

I am grateful that I'm alive.

I am grateful that I am healthy.

I am grateful that I have a roof over my head.

I am grateful that I have food to eat.

I am grateful that I am in the career of my dreams.

I am grateful for every positive moment in my life.

I am also grateful for every negative, because it made me who I am now.

I am not okay. I probably won't be "okay" for a long time.

But today, I am grateful.

As always, leave me some comment love. 



Monday, November 23, 2015

My thoughts on the recent Islamaphobia



Muslims are not bad people. MOST Muslims are not terrorists, anymore than MOST Christians are.

I have seen TOO MANY friends posting about how Christianity is great and Islam is violent. They seem to believe that there are not violent groups of modern Christians. (And there were several of you, this isn't to any one of you specifically.)

So here goes....

MODERN "Christianity" supporting violence:

-The KKK (Shouldn't need to cite sources for these whackos, but I happily will)





This is not saying let's just go party with ISIS. That's not what I'm saying. What I'm saying is that ISIS is a teeny tiny percentage of Islam, just like ^^^those assholes are a teeny tiny percentage of Christianity.
What I'm saying is that if you don't believe the teachings of Islam, then don't be Muslim. But this country is not just for white Christians. This country is for people of ALL beliefs and faiths to be tolerated and accepted.

This blatant Islamaphobia and racism against Arabs is a reaction to fear for a teeny tiny group. You are the same people who preached ‪#‎AllLivesMatter‬....but they only matter if they are Christians? So if a black person hated all white people and feared all white people because of the KKK or a LGBT person feared all Christians because of the extremists like Westboro...would that make sense?

My point in this whole thing was just to say that if you don't like the faith, don't be the faith. But don't you dare discriminate against an entire group of people because of what a teeny tiny number of their extremists choose to do.


I support the Syrian refugees. 100%. 


This is the very FOUNDATION of our country.
"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

And in MY faith (which yes, would take a whole other post to explain, but we'll just go with this), part of MY foundation is this:

‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

I hope for each of you who are living in constant worry and fear that you find peace in your hearts. For my Arab, South Asian, and Muslim friends- I love you. I will be your ally. <3

As always, leave me some comment love! <3


Thursday, November 12, 2015

My thoughts on "The Purge" and a Modern Comparison of Systematic Oppression


I know, I know. I'm late to this party. 

Very late.

Whatever.

I finally watched The Purge: Anarchy this last weekend. 

I just wanted to give some thoughts on it because both movies were pretty brutalized on review sites.

I don't see either of these movies as great horror movies or classics that are going to keep you watching over and over again.

I am, however, fascinated by the Dystopian message in both of them.

It sounds crazy that we would ever have a future where the government is sanctioning a night where anything goes, including murder, right?

Well, not really. 

We are living in this reality much more than you may already realize.

I'm going to touch on a few points in the movies, and then follow them up with our current reality.

1. Rich people are able to keep safe, because they have the money and resources to do so.

The wealthy in this country don't face the same level of terror that the working class does. The wealthy don't face police brutality, emergency services rush to help them when/if there is a problem, they generally don't live in high-crime areas because they can afford not to, and they have the money to live in gates communities with private security. 


2. The wealthy and the government don't care about poor people dying, in fact, they encourage it. 

I'm going to get really specific here- WHITE PEOPLE don't care about poor people and minorities dying. The #BlackLivesMatter movement shows this. Only when a minority group stands up for themselves do white people feel like it's okay to shout from the rooftops about how much THEY matter. (#AllLivesMatter shows this) Bad cops who MURDER people of color are given off without regard for the innocent lives that they destroyed, further encouraging other bad cops to do the same thing. When the media reports the issues, the media is targeted as "race baiting", which is totally wrong.  When little white kids go missing, it is covered on every news station around the clock, but when black or minority kids go missing, it's hardly mentioned. We hide behind this guise of racism and white supremacy not being real, when it is in the very fabric of our lives. Everywhere we go, everything we do, it's all stemming from a system of white supremacy. We don't talk about it because it's not "polite", it's not "appropriate". That's all part of the socialization we've been taught to remain in appearance with what's "good". Protests, standing up for marginalized groups, and speaking directly to the problem goes against the very grain of white supremacy that we have been taught to believe as appropriate behavior. Our privilege has become so normalized that we don't even notice it.


3. The wealthy run the country.

YES! This is literally not even an arguable point anymore. The top 1% of this country controls the wealth in America. This group pays for lobbyists and gets tax breaks, loopholes, and just continues to get richer while the poor continues to get poorer. Look at our politicians and their super-pacs! We are literally ALLOWING our government officials to be bought!  Do you think those politicians will make decisions that are truly in the best interest of the majority of working Americans when they are in office because of these super pacs? I think not.


4. The wealthy/government want to keep the poor poor and keep them in one area.

Low income areas, especially in project housing units, are basically set up to keep the poor people poor. This is all part of white supremacy and systematic racism. Welfare systems are set up under the guise of "helping people" when in reality they keep people from being able to break barriers to get employment (the day you are employed, your benefits will frequently stop). By keeping low income groups (especially minority groups) into one area, the schools are poorer (because our schools are funded by property taxes) therefore the opportunities are lessened and as a result we have generation after generation being forced to live through the exact same cycle because there aren't systems in place to truly HELP THEM. We love to say things like how they need to just "rise above" yet we all seem to forget that America was built on the backs of the oppressed. 


Schools and colleges show a huge bias against people of color, and yet people act like being a POC will get you into college. Without a degree, a chance of any quality job (and to break out of poverty) is non-existent. This is ALL part of systematic racism and oppression and a way to keep the rich white men in power and control.






5. The government sends people in to round up and kill the poor.

Again, gotta bring this back to race. Yes, the government has a clear and terrifying bias against people of color. 1 in 3 black men will be incarcerated in their lifetime. Before you tell me that they shouldn't be committing crimes, let me ask you, would you feel the same if this was a statistic on WHITE men or would you be demanding reform in the system to prevent this from happening? 





So, are they sending out teams to shoot down poor minority groups? Maybe not so directly, but indirectly- absolutely.


These are just a few comparisons, but I just wanted to point that the "social commentary" is pretty much right on. In Anarchy, when I watched the wealthy white people laughing and talking about the poor and people of color standing on the stage like their life was nothing, it gave my heart a pull. 

Because this is what happens everyday. 

People laugh and point when black lives (and lives of other people of color) are taken needlessly, they justify their deaths, they stomp on their tears and scream "Fuck you!" when they ask for justice. 

This is our world. 

We have to do better. 


As always, leave me some comment love.




Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Dear World {From an Adoptee}

My sister and I with our beloved Grandpa Charlie. 


Dear World,

I am an adult adoptee. What does this mean? It means I was adopted as a child, and now I'm an adult.

Before I start getting into the guts of this letter, I'm going to tell you a few things. My parents (adoptive parents) are just my parents. I have never called them my adoptive parents. They are my "real" parents. This letter in NO way is an attack on them, but I will follow up on that at the end.

This is my story and my experience, and I urge you to hear me. I am (for the first time here) sharing very publicly my pain. I am doing this to teach, so someone can learn from my experiences, not for sympathy or to play the victim card. I am not a victim. I am many many things, but victim I am not. There are certain details I am opting to omit at this point, but may come out with them at a later time.

I was born April 12th 1987. This was at the end of the era of totally closed adoptions. So what does that mean? Well, I was born at a maternity home where my birth mother signed away all of her parental rights and knew nothing past that point. She didn't know where I went nor did she have any rights to visit or call or see photos or updates. My parents brought me home April 23rd. They had no information on my birth family, short of a tiny questionnaire which laid out some very basic information about family background, but without names or identifying information.

According to all legal documents I was "Baby girl Doe". My parents named me "Claire" after a relative and because my mom liked that name.

I remained legally Baby Girl Doe until the adoption was finalized in October of 1987.

I don't remember being told about adoption. It is just a fact of my life and my parents did an excellent job of just making it part of normal conversation, just as a mother would tell her child of being brought home from the hospital, I was brought home from Gladney.

My parents would have said I experienced no loss. How could I? I had no conscious memories of separation, I never KNEW my birth mother, and they always made sure to paint her in the most positive light they could. The most common?

"She loved you enough to give you a better life. She couldn't take care of you because she was too young, but she loved you."

What they were unaware of, was just how much that "positive light" set into motion the abandonment issues that would haunt me for years to come.

I had this vague notion even at a very young age that love was obviously not enough. If "love" caused my birth mother to walk away no questions asked, then wouldn't my parents inevitably leave me too?

I was the PERFECT small child; my parents will tell you this.

On the outside I was calm, respectful, obedient, charming, and any other positive attribute you could think of to describe a perfectly well behaved child.

On the inside I was desperate to maintain this status of being "good" because if I was just good enough, they wouldn't leave me or send me back.

Any changes in stability caused me to internally freak out.

We moved from our childhood home when I was 10. Moving is pretty normal, right?

Well it set off all these internal alarms that change meant they may not want me anymore.

Please know that my parents were exceptionally loving, I had a stay at home mom, and they never once EVER implied that they would ever send me back or leave me. This was all something I had come to the conclusion of in my mind.

Around the time I turned 11, my mom went to work part time. That's when my behaviors started to set in.

I began to develop this theory that if they were going to send me away, then it needed to be on my terms, so I was just going to act as bad as I could until they eventually did it. All while internally I was so desperate for the constant reassurance that they would not. It was a CONSTANT push and pull going on.

See how complex that is?

This went on for years and I did everything from smoking cigarettes to doing drugs to participating in promiscuous behavior to eventually running away.

When I was 14 I was sent to a private group home; giving me exactly what my behavior dictated would happen.

I don't blame my parents at all for sending me to a group home. I was absolutely out of control.

In private adoption, especially back then, parents were not really given training on how to deal with these things as their children aged. Everything was painted as very sunshine and unicorns and perfect. They brought in model adoptees and birth parents who would perpetuate this.

I found my birth mother when I was 18. Today, I'm not getting into that story, but I will share that another day. Finding my birth mother, however, ending up causing significantly more heartache and trauma than I care to think about.

Even today, talking to my parents about adoption is very complicated. My mom regularly says "Let's just leave the past in the past, Claire." because it's uncomfortable. It's not an enjoyable thing to talk about.

As I stated, this is not an attack on my parents in any way shape or form. My parents were not well trained, they had no resources or support to navigate these things when they came up, and my sister (who is also adopted) didn't have near the difficulty coping as I did. Adoption loss affects every person differently.

Going through life and not really knowing where you come from or feeling unwanted and abandoned, it changes you. It makes you question who YOU are. There's a primal need just to KNOW.

There's this mindset in the public that any adoptee who speaks up about pain is bitter and angry. This is problematic.

If an adult spoke up about the pain of being a child of divorce, nobody would paint that person as "messed up", but they would absolutely think about how divorce can negatively impact the life of a child.

Adoption is painted as this beautiful, wonderful, easy thing.

It's just not.

It's complicated, messy, painful. An adoptee's life begins with trauma and loss, even if adopted at birth.

There are studies that prove that attachment begins in utero, and that separation even at BIRTH can cause significant lifelong issues.

Adoptees are 4x more likely than their peers to commit suicide. 

Long term, adoptees are more likely to have issues developing meaningful relationships, more likely to suffer from mental health issues, and more likely to be unable to maintain stability.

These aren't the things you hear about when you hear about adoption through agencies and the media. You hear about the wonderful-ness of giving a poor orphaned child a family.

Please don't misunderstand me, I am NOT against adoption. We are a licensed foster and adoptive home. Adoption can ABSOLUTELY be a beautiful answer to a tragedy.

But it's not all sunshine and roses.

And this notion that anytime an adoptee stands up and says "Hey- these are some big issues. Let's talk about them!" they are angry, or surely came from an abusive adoptive home, that they are bitter- it's just WRONG.

We aren't sharing our painful truth and putting ourselves out there to project bitterness. We do it because we care VERY DEEPLY about the millions of children all over the world being adopted.

We want to save them some of the pain.

We want to save their very lives.

Don't look at me and hear my story and think that I am angry- I am not.

Don't look at me and hear my story and think that I am bitter- I am not.

Don't look at me and hear my story and think that I am against adoption- I am not.

Don't look at me and hear my story and think that I am still just an adopted child and not an adult- I am not.

Don't look at me and hear my story and think that I am resentful of my family- I am not.

Hear my story and say "What can I do to help end adoptee suicide? What can I do to make sure that adoptive parents are better trained in attachment and abandonment? What can I do to cause reform among agencies that puts the sole focus on the CHILD instead of the adoptive family?"

When you hear me- think those things.

As always, leave me some comment love. 





Monday, October 26, 2015

Writing Classes in November



Thursday, October 22, 2015

Review of Landslide by NJ Cole #CoffeeWithClaire {Link-Up}


Collaborated review with Sandi from Naughty Book Girl

Landslide is the story of a wealthy senator named Maxwell and his affair with 19 year old Kenzie. 

So, I'm just going to jump straight to the point- I am normally uncomfortable reading age play (not because there's anything wrong with it, because typically the writing style around it bothers me greatly). For whatever reason, though, NJ Cole wrote it in such a way that once I got over the initial discomfort- I was totally into it!

If you want erotic romance heavy on the erotic, this one is it. Her erotic scenes are out of this world amazing. Any book that has me blowing out air and fanning myself gets bonus points just on that factor alone. 

As with many stories, what began as a no-strings-attached affair slowly began to develop into more. I will say that the story progresses very well (until the end, but I'm getting there) and I was definitely (in a horrified way) rooting for Kenzie and Maxwell. 

Any time a story takes an alpha male and domesticates him, that's right up my alley. 
(Ahem, not like I wrote a book like that or anything.)

My issues came toward the end. 

>>>>Stop reading now if you don't want spoilers.<<<<
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Okay, once Tiffany threatened to "out" them and he was so quick to drop Kenzie and agree to Tiffany's demands, I got pissed. I *hate* forced angst with a passion and I hate hate hate any couple willing to just throw in the towel the second that shit gets hard. 

As expected, he ended up making the right decision in the end, but it happened rather abruptly. I'm a sucker for a good HEA, especially an HEA where you see what happens AFTER the HEA. 

Overall, despite making me seriously question my opinions on limits and having a not as stellar as it could have been ending, I really enjoyed this one. 

Overall rating: 3.5 stars

Filth Factor: 5 stars

Re-read factor: 3 stars

HEA: 2.5 stars

What are all of you bookish fans getting into? Link up your bookish posts below! :)




Monday, October 5, 2015

Hashtags for Authors


I'm posting this to serve as helpful for my author friends. :)

These are the hashtags I use when I post to Instagram.

I usually just pick one or two for regular posts, but for teasers and book promos I use most of them.

#AuthorsLife
#WritersLife
#iAuthor
#IndieAuthor
#iWrite
#IndieBooksBeSeen
#RomanceWriter
#Fiction
#Bibliophile
#Bookworm
#BookNerd
#Bookish
#AuthorsofIG
#AuthorsofInstagram
#WritersofIG
#WritersofInstagram
#WriteorDie
#WriteGirlProblems
#SupportIndie
#WordPorn

Here are a few specific ones I have also used:

#Teaser
#SneakPeak
#ReviewersWanted
#BookReview

You should also ALWAYS hashtag the type/genre of book you're promoting. For example:

#AlphaMale
#BDSM
#Paranormal
#Historical
#RomanticComedy
#NewAdult
#YoungAdult
#Erotica
#Mystery
#College
#Vampires
#Shifters
#SingleMom
#LGBT

etc. etc. etc.

When you start following other authors and reviewers, just pay attention to the hashtags they use, and then add those to your own list. :)

Hope this helps!!! <3 <3 <3




Where have I been?!


I have been INSANELY busy between the kids, writing, and travel. 

BUT- I'm back, and I'll be posting and catching up this week! :)

<3 <3 <3



Sunday, August 23, 2015

Weekly Roundup {8/16-8/22}



Excuse the holy hot mess that is my hair. :)

This week was pretty slow and typical until Saturday when I got my new studio! 

(See my day of the dead wall back there? Yeah...LOVE!)



I've gotten a pretty decent amount of headway as far as furniture so now I'm focused on getting some color and decor in there. I will post a big reveal post when it's all done. :)


Here's what I've been up to this week:

Writing-  I wrote the four chapters of Kenna's Musing. I also jotted down some really good plot line for Fade. 

Reading- Finished Fourth Debt, Tyrant, and Souls Unfractured. I'm currently reading "Set in Flames" by Sam Destiny. Reviews for all of those books can be found on my Goodreads profile here

Weight Loss-  Stagnant. If I'm still stagnant next week I'm going to be switching something up. 

Gaming- I didn't play anything this week.(Feel free to add me on Xbox!)

Music-  Stuck with my "checked" songs list and the Discovery Weekly playlist. Song of the week is "Poison and Wine" by The Civil Wars. (Check me out on Spotify to see my playlists!)

News/Causes- Josh Duggar is a disgusting human being. 

What I'm Wearing-  I did wear a lot of cute jewelry. I wore jeans every day but one paired with cute cotton tops and tunics.

Beauty- I am actually making a doctor's appointment to talk about these break outs. It's a symptom to me of a hormone imbalance (which isn't uncommon with PCOS) but we're going on almost a month of straight up acne. This is from the girl who never had a pimple in high school. So, something's gotta give. I wore an orange essential oil spritz all week for scent and used Jason brand grapefruit body wash. :)

What I'm watching- We watched a few episodes of Masters of Sex, South Park every night, and watched Accepted for like the 500th time (but I still love it.)

Mommyhood- Lesson learned. Never place the groceries in the back within reach of the tiny humans. And if you do make the same mistake as I, one would hope that you do not have to spend hours cleaning EGG out of your backseat. Bleh bleh bleh.

Self Awareness- This week I worked on focusing on the positive, and trying to enjoy the small things. 

That's it for this week, folks!

As always, leave me some comment love!



Saturday, August 22, 2015

Saturdays in RVA: Market & Jewelry Haul, Bellytimber Tavern, & MY NEW STUDIO!!


Started our day at SOTJ Market (as usual) and picked up a bunch of fun stuff! :)  


I got this really cool necklace from Red Lintu! Isn't the little diver precious? 



I picked up this cool tank, necklace, and earrings from New Normal, which is a brand that is locally owned and made. I'm going to go to their brick and mortar shop and get some better pictures and an interview, so I won't give too much details today. Definitely check them out online though! :)


I found her! She was hiding but I found my jewelry girl! (Aka Ma's Madhouse of Adornment) Jeremy got the OM necklace, I got the robot necklace and leaf earrings, and the 3 smaller earrings we got for being good and regular customers. :) 
(There may or may not be a giveaway coming up with those darling Saturn earrings!) 


We got this fantastic GMO free, natural, and humanely raised pork and lamb sausage and frankfurters. Seriously, delish. Check out this brand- Sausage Craft. :)


We picked up this delicious parmesan oregano bread to go with our dinner this evening. :)


We picked up these spice blends from Village Garden that are made to be blended with olive oil for dipping bread. :) 


This is the produce haul from today. Tomatoes, gala apples, and peaches. 


Jeremy picked up this kombucha. Not gonna lie- it's not my thing. But more power to him! :)



After we went to the market, we headed to Bellytimber for lunch. It's on the corner of Main and Plum in the Fan and is AMAZING!





The decor is rustic and quirky and fun. 






The tiny humans were not with us today, it was just me and the husband. :)


We started with side salads. Homemade croutons? Yes please! 


Now this bad boy right here is worth the drive. Introducing the Duck Pie. A wood fired pizza with a hoisin base, duck confit, and red onions. It also came with cilantro but I said no thank you to that. You guys, I felt like I was in pizza heaven. The photo makes it look large but it's only a 12 inch pizza. It took literally every ounce of willpower that I have to stop at two pieces. EVERY OUNCE!


Jeremy got a beefalo burger. Basically, half beef, half buffalo. Yeah- it was awesome. If you are in the Fan and want some place local and delicious, be sure to check out Bellytimber. :)


My next stop today is what made this the best day ever! This is artworks. Also known as the location to my brand new studio! My own private paradise where I can go and write in peace without the distraction of the tiny humans or just the general chaos of our lovely home. :)





It's totally plain Jane right now but I can paint and make changes and do whatever I want! Let the pinning commence! :)



I am beyond thrilled to have a space to go and write surrounded by all of this positive creative energy. So beyond thrilled. :)

That's all for today, folks. 

As always, leave me some comment love! :)


 

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