Currently: July

How is it the end of July already? I feel like I blinked and poof! Half the summer is already over. But July was a pretty awesome month! Highlights included…

  • ...our day trip to San Luis Obispo! Including dinner at Sylvester’s and OMG FRY SAUCE.
  • …the paddle out for Jack O’Neill! What a surreal experience. So, so glad I chose to go.
  • …our trip to Idaho! It was so good to catch up with everybody. I miss home already.
  • …one yet to come, which is James’ play tomorrow! He’s been at drama camp all week, and I can’t wait to see them put on The Great Mouse Detective tomorrow night! Going into hardcore mom mode right now.

Those things alone could have been enough to keep me happy this month. But other things inspiring me these days are…

  • ...outdoor exercise. Whether it’s doing my couch-to-5K jogging intervals or just going for a walk, I’m finding that a little activity out in the fresh air helps keep my mind more clear. And makes me feel less guilty about all the delicious things I want to eat all the time, lol.
  • …spending less time staring at my phone. I have been making more of a conscious effort to be more present, and to spend less time scrolling social media. I’ve actually taken to deleting Facebook and Twitter off my phone at the beginning of my work day, and leaving my phone in my room once I get home. The result has been a better feeling of focus and less anxiety. For real. Maybe you want to try it too? Trying looking around you instead. Notice those clouds, the leaves on that tree, the way the light reflects off your wine glass. Breathe. Aaaaaah.

I’ve been watching…

…a lot less TV this month, lol.

I’ve just been too busy! But things I couldn’t resist included…

  • Game of Thrones! I am so excited that it’s finally back. Although staying up until 10 on Sunday nights is really killing my Monday morning energy. (Man, I am so old.) Even though I can definitely notice a change in the writing style and the plot seems to be moving at lightning speed compared to the rest of the series so far, it’s still been totally awesome. No spoilers here… just trust me, you’ll want to see it.
  • Wonder Woman! Finally! Some friends were nice enough to watch Jack so we could go, and it was 100% worth seeing in theaters. Now I just need to take James, so he can see firsthand just how badass women can be, too.

And reading…

…a lot more!

I bought a neat little reading lamp to incentivize me to read at bedtime instead of scrolling through social media until I pass out. No more using the excuse that I’ll wake up Jack with the light! So hopefully it won’t take me 3 months to finish one book again, lol.

  • The Heart Goes Last (Audible): I’ve been spending more time listening to my audiobook this month instead of podcasts, because, honestly, I just kind of need a break from all the media noise. And after listening to The Handmaid’s Tale a couple months ago, I’ve been on a bit of a Margaret Atwood kick. She writes dystopia so well! The Heart Goes Last was a little hard to get into in the beginning, but now I’m over halfway through it and I find myself trying to find opportunities to listen to find out what happens next. I definitely recommend this one.
  • Alias Grace: Another Margaret Atwood! This was honestly the first book of hers I tried to find on Audible after The Handmaid’s Tale, but all they had was the abridged version. So I checked it out from my library instead, because I had heard from other Atwood fans that this was another great novel by her. I’m not very far yet, but so far it’s good!
  • The Sound of Gravel: I had heard multiple rave reviews about this book on various podcasts and blogs, so I was excited to check it out. However, maybe I wasn’t paying enough attention, but I didn’t realize just how dark it would be. There are a lot of serious familial issues addressed in this book, and the fact that it was a true story just tugged at my heart too much for me to finish it right now. I put it away after finding that it really haunted me, and actually left me feeling depressed after reading it. Maybe I’ll pick it up again at a better time.

And I’ve been listening to…

  • …more country! Especially after our visit to Idaho, I’ve been on a bit of a country kick. I’m obsessing just a little bit over Little Big Town – especially “Better Man,” which is so well-written even if it doesn’t apply to me – and Lady Antebellum.
  • The Offspring: The upbeat angst has just felt really good this month. Throw in some Blink 182, too, for good measure.
  • Revisionist History: Like I said, I’ve mostly been taking a break from my usual podcasts for my own sanity. However, Revisionist History is one of the few I have actually been listening to. Season 2 just recently started up, and the episodes so far have been surprisingly enlightening. It’s been fun to hear a different spin on topics I thought I already knew about, and fun to think about them a different way. Which is the point of RH, I think. We could all use some more of this kind of nuance in our lives.

I’ve been thinking about…

  • …my tattoo! After much thinking and research, and more thinking and more research… I’m finally moving forward on my idea! I actually have a consultation appointment this afternoon, eek! I am simultaneously pee-my-pants excited and shaking-in-my-boots nervous. But I think I’ve found the best guy in town to do what I want, and I can’t wait to see what magic he can work for me.
  • …planning a beach day. I’ve been talking about it all summer and haven’t made it happen yet! And I’ve already bought the stuff, so what am I waiting for? And we live 10 minutes from the freaking beach, for crying out loud… we need to make this happen.
  • …a psychic/tarot reading. I know, I know… bear with me. My mother took me to a tarot reading on my first visit home after moving to California 3 years ago, and it has stuck with me just how spot on the reader was and how much it seemed to help me work through the emotional mess I was in at the time. And even though I’m feeling pretty good now, I also feel like I am in a completely different place than I was 3 years ago. And gosh darn it, I’m curious to see what a reading would tell me now.
  • …growing our family. With Jack well over the 6-month mark, the idea of whether or not to have another baby has been weighing heavily on me lately. It’s not a decision we need to make right away, so I’m not sure why I’m giving it so much thought right now, but it’s been on my mind a lot. I might do a full post about this soon, just to process what’s going through my head. Just… so many thoughts.

My favorite hobbies: eating & drinking…

  • …homemade ice cream! I made two kinds this month, my favorite standby vanilla with chocolate chips and an epic chocolate-brownie. I need to stop, because it is so not helping my fitness goals, but it’s just so good! And life is all about balance, right?
  • …Dutch Bros Coffee! Man, I was so excited to order my favorite Cocomo again when we went to Idaho. I know I’ve said this before, but can we please have a Dutch Bros in Santa Cruz?
  • …fresh summer fruit: With the recent purchase of my handy-dandy pineapple corer, I have been eating a ton of fresh pineapple because it is so juicy right now and it’s so easy to carve up at home! I have also been guilty of eating an entire large container of raspberries in one day. And the peaches are finally starting to get good… mmm… summer produce must be God’s way of making up for the blistering heat.
  • …grilled everything.Β Steaks, corn, pizza, peaches… summer time just begs for grill marks and a little smoke. And I have come to the conclusion that if you grill it, it will taste good. It is known.

And finally, I am looking forward to…

  • …camping! We have a campsite reserved at Lake Tahoe next month, and I am so excited! We’re going with some friends and their kids, and I think it’s going to be a blast. Plus, Lake Tahoe! OMG!

July was so good to us… I can’t wait to see what August has in store!

What inspired you this month?Β 

Lots of love…

…Jess

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