Stream of Consciousness

Recently, I read a friend’s blogpost that has stuck with me for weeks. She wrote about the things that she had learned and relearned about herself last year. She shared a side of herself that I really had never seen before, and it made me feel heard and seen. I used to use this place to let the feelings flow - but as more and more people started reading it (hi, dad), I stopped sharing more and more of myself. Well… not today. Letting the thoughts and feelings flow. Maybe you (whoever you are) will feel heard and seen. I’m titling this season or chapter of my life “Survival Mode”.

Where I’m At Currently:

Adulthood is a struggle. This is something that everyone knows, and I’m not at all under the impression that this is as hard as it will ever get. I’m well aware that I’m on the early side of adulthood and that there are many more mountains to summit. However, that doesn’t mean that this still can’t be really damn hard. Scratching the surface… My work doesn’t fulfill me anymore. I live farther away from my family than I would like, and phone calls are exhausting and triggering when my energy levels seem to live beneath rock bottom at the moment. The relationships that I have with family are the ones that I prize the most, and nurturing them is hard when you’re far away and “in your feelings” as the kids say these days.

There’s a pressure to be present on social media so that people “know who you are”. I don’t love this, and it just reminds me of Andy Warhol’s famous quote, “In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.” It turns out that he was right and that social media made that possible.

I need sunshine and warmth to be a pleasant person. I don’t know where my cold-loving, sweater maven self went - but she is gone and her hands are cold and she is sick of soup and longs to run and play and swing and watch birds and get her hands dirty. Maybe I need a sun lamp for lizards…but for myself.

Yacht Rock has been the sound of my soul for the last year, and I find that it can always bring me back to a solid place - even just temporarily. If you don’t know what Yacht Rock is, think Robbie Dupree, Ambrosia, Eagles, Toto, Hall & Oates, Little River Band.

Thinking back on that post that I mentioned previously and quoting it directly here because she said it better than I ever could: “…we must not sit in anger. Anger has to be moved through. It is never meant to be a permanent state, but a catalyst for some sort of change that works itself out and into a state of compassion, or resolve, or determination. If you are angry, do not stop there. That emotion is a signal of a recognized injustice of some kind: identify it, lean into it, and transform it.” Words to live by.

I’ve felt creatively stifled for quite some time. I have a studio space now, and it’s pretty much complete and ready for me to get to work. But, nothing. I haven’t sketched. My embroidery floss has dust on it. I feel choked and tamped down and stalled.

The thought of being unreachable sounds like a dream vacation.

I need to understand that not everyone wants their problems fixed - and even if they do, they may not want me to try to fix them. They may not want a solution. They may not want insight. They may just want a sounding board.

I’ve felt less and less like myself over the last year and I’m the only one that can fix this. I know the cause of it, but it’s scary to realize that it’s not just a funk or an off day… it’s real. Knowing the cause doesn’t make it easier to shake. It was a gradual shift in thinking that took place over a long span of time, making it to where negativity is always on my tongue, ready to be shared with anyone that will listen. It’s not going to be a quick and easy fix to undo. But, I’m working on it. It’s devastating to see a change happen in yourself for the worse.

One time, someone asked me how I can possibly be filled with so much joy and light and still have some extra to give away. This was maybe one of the nicest things that I had ever heard, and the skeptic in me wonders if they really meant it. I’d like to get back to that place.

Mood Board

Click through the pictures for links.

Feeling particularly ready for spring this year, and feeling inspired by all the home decor.

“Home is the nicest word there is.” - Laura Ingalls Wilder

5 Things.

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  1. It’s November and I haven't written in weeks. I’ve been checking things off of that autumn bucket list (three posts back), and I’ve almost knocked it out completely! Trey and I are leaving for vacation tomorrow, and I think that by the time we come back, it will be as complete as its going to be for the 2018 autumn season.

  2. We’ve had a pretty fantastic autumn so far, and while I’m ready to deck the halls for Christmas, I’m choosing to let autumn have its own moment away from the Halloween and Christmas decor. We’ve been exhausted and busy and we’ve accomplished far beyond what’s shown on the list. We saw my step sister get married, which was a fun and tasty weekend event. We went house-hunting and fell in love with one house - only to not end up getting it. Trey and Jon spent the day together while my mom and I went shopping around Birmingham. I planned an elaborate birthday party for my mom, and wow I feel like this list could go on and on. Upcoming events: our vacation (that I don’t want to come back from), My Favorite Murder in Atlanta with Abbey, and continuing on with our search for a house.

  3. I mentioned in past posts that I’d been going to a ceramics class with Abbey on Tuesday nights last month, and I can’t stress enough what this did for my mental state. It was life-giving to HAVE TO spend two hours doing something with my hands at the end of a hectic day. It became something that I looked forward to for the rest of the week, and I’m grateful that she and I got to have this. A MASSIVE THANK YOU to her husband who gifted such a thoughtful gift for two, and a massive thank you to Abbey for taking me.

  4. I haven’t had time to finalize my Christmas playlists this year, but that’s my number one project for my time off. I’ve noticed that more and more people are starting their Christmas decorating earlier than normal this year - and I’m so glad about it.

  5. My mom came to Birmingham for the day so that she and I could go to Christmas Village, and we had so much fun. We bought some small wooden toy cars and trains for future (way way future) bebe, and we just got to catch up on everything. We’ve always loved the movie Chocolat, so I made sure to take her to the new chocolatier in town called Chocolata. We picked out some luxurious looking pieces and sat, shared, and savored them.

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Papa Day

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Today was the first annual Papa Day, a holiday that I created for everyone in my family to devote the day to the memory of my grandfather. What better day to have it than on my grandfather’s birthday, October 10th. 10/10? And that’s such a fitting date for him to be born, because he truly was a 10 out of 10.

The ideal Papa Day: wake up bright and early to have a cup of coffee and have a slow start to the morning. Then, make an elaborate breakfast spread that isn’t complete without Papa’s biscuits. At some point in the day, spend time outside. Any work you do, work harder and give it your all. Spend time with family, and for dinner, have field food (black eyed peas, collard greens, cornbread etc).

This year, Trey and I woke up and with the help of my mom over FaceTime, made my very first attempt at my Papa’s biscuits. Somehow, pretty much only two people in the world know how to make these (and there’s no recipe since he would never measure anything and just go by the feel of it). It turns out that I am just like everyone else and my biscuits were pretty disastrous. Though they were supposed to be fluffy, light, and pillowy…my biscuits were dry, angry, flat and crackly. But, Trey and I listened to Christmas music and had fun nonetheless. Then, we just spent time together. We watched a movie, ventured outside for a bit, and since we were both off work today, we came home and rested some more.

Having an annual Papa Day isn’t going to help any of us miss him any less. I miss his hugs, the smell of his pipe tobacco, and the sound of the tobacco pouch crinkling in his shirt pocket when I hugged him. I miss the sound of his voice and his rich laughter. I miss watching him watch someone as they spoke - really listening to what they were saying. I miss the comfort of just knowing that he was around. I miss him calling me his “Sadie”, I was never “Sarah” to him. I miss the way he combed his hair. I miss every.single.thing. I miss it all. But…very recently I noticed that my mom has his eyes. The shape. The color. I also noticed that my older brother hugs just like him, and I like to watch him while he watches someone speak - because he really listens, too.

I feel that having this day set aside every year is going to be healing for my family. I feel that it will give all of us the opportunity to take a minute to stop and just relish the memory of him. We’ll be able to acknowledge and appreciate all of the ways that we are like him, and we can move forward into the rest of the year, feeling just a little bit lighter.

So, Papa Day was a success. I know that somewhere in AL, my family members are having field food right now. I’m going to go cuddle my husband, have another cup of coffee, and look for a house to buy. Hug tighter, listen harder, and nestle yourself way down deep into the moments that you have with the people around you. XO.

Love, Sadie

5 Things.

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  1. The movie section of my fall bucket list is the only section that’s gotten any action lately, but the rest will come in time. I’ve been wearing sweaters for weeks in hopes that the weather would catch up with me and so far…nil. BUT. I’m not letting the Heat Miser get me down. This weekend, I am going to check things off of this list left and right, and one of those things is…Christmas playlists. I’m going to get to work on them so that they’ll be ready to HO-HO-GO in November.

  2. Other things: my friend Eden ( Hi Eden!) got me the most beautiful fall candle as a “Happy Fall!” present and it’s such a gift to feel understood by friends new and old. She and her husband Ben have merged their creative talents and will be launching an incredible business soon. We are about to embark on a fun journey together! Stay tuuuuned for more on that! AND. It literally, in this moment, just occurred to me that I get to send them Christmas cards this year and GOSH that’s fun.

  3. Other other things: my friend Abbey just invited me to take a ceramics class with her this month and once again, it’s such a gift to be thought of for the exciting, messy, creative moments opportunities in life.

  4. My brain is buzzing with all sorts of things that I hope to accomplish this season that aren’t even on my list. There are people to love on, parties to throw, costumes to make, weddings to attend, pieces to craft, and so much more. I intend to schedule it all out so that nothing falls through the cracks because each and every one of these things are worth doing, and they are all for the greater good.

  5. I’ve missed my chance to visit an apple orchard this year. Apple picking season has ended for the most part, and all of the You-Pick days have come and gone and never ended up aligning with time that I had away from work. But one day, I’ll visit an orchard and I’ll come home with a basket of apples so big that I’ll have to spend the next few days baking caramel apple pies, making caramel apples, brewing fresh apple cider, etc.

Show and Tell

  1. I want to bake THESE and THESE chocolate chip cookies asap. They're all the rage right now and I want to give some baked goodies away. 
  2. Trey and I are still struggling to figure out a routine that balances work, our commute, and everything else that we want to do daily. Right now, the only sure thing is that when we get in bed, we will read Harry Potter. We're rereading the series right now, and we're starting The Order of the Phoenix tonight and I can't wait. He's reading the new, anniversary editions that came out this year. I'm reading editions illustrated by Kazu Kibuishi and each book is soooo preeeeetty. It's a comfort to know that at the end of the longest day, I'll end it with my mind drifting in and out of Hogsmeade and the halls of Hogwarts. 
  3. Speaking of Harry Potter, happy September 1st!! Below is one of my favorite Harry Potter themed prints (by artist Kendra Miller) that I think would look pretty lovely framed in a nursery or a little one's bedroom. ;) 
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Here are some links to two other Potter themed prints that I'm particularly fond of: this alphabet, and this one (that we own). Oh, and this t-shirt by MouseketeersandButterbeers is one of the few graphic tees that I really just LOVE and want in my closet. Plus, it's customizable which is always a win. 

4. If you're wondering what Madewell's current gems are... I have them right here for you and they're all on my wishlist. These mules are crazy comfortable. The Elinor Loafer is a staple, but they upped the cushion so it's actually even more fun to wear them now. Lookin' at you, Trey. Hint hint buy me these hint hint. This bag! I'm not sure which color that I love the most, but the snap clasp sounds just like your grandmother's pocketbook that she'd pull out at yard sales..it's just missing that bottom-of-the-purse/winter fresh gum smell. This blazer is delicious. Then, there's this bag, and the only thing that I'd want to put in it is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich because I imagine that it would be a perfect fit. 

5. I'm planning to visit Mercier Orchards this fall and I'm very excited because I've never been to an apple orchard before! 

6. My blog friend Haley is pregnant! She and I don't know each other in real life, but we follow each other's lives via the internet and she and her husband have been wanting a baby for so, so long! Congratulations, Haley!! P.S. I voted that it was a girl and... I was right.

7. I've been talking a lot about babies lately... I mean, read back a few lines and I was talking about nursery decor. I don't have baby fever...but it sure seems like I do? It's a topic that finds its way into conversation more often than I'd expect, but now is not the time. BUT. I found out that there is a very, very strong possibility that mine and Trey's babes might have red hair. THIS IS FUN FOR ME. We might have a couple of little ginger babies with freckles and GOSH YES PLEASE. But any way, I don't have baby fever. But look at these baby things that I would buy if I DID: these bird blocks, this beanie, this swaddle

8. I've been feeling inspired to start creating, but I haven't been able to kick off and get the wheels turning. What do you do to get yourself moving?

9. Fall is here, and I expect that my next post will be some sort of a love letter to autumn. Stay tuned.