scratching my feelings. new year same me edition.

turns out that not working hasn’t cured my anxiety. I didn’t think it would, I don’t have a paycheck right now and that’s stressful, I have a massive trade show to go to next week and THAT is stressful, I don’t have business cards, my company isn’t actually incorporated yet, I didn’t bring businessy clothes with me on this trip…

I napped for a solid 4 hours today but since I woke up my watch has told me to start concentrating on my breathing at least three times.

coloring for stress relief seems like a good idea until I sit down with my tin of sharpened pencils and my very elaborate coloring book patterns. then I remember that a giant part of my anxiety is DEFINITELY related to decision fatigue and having to choose colors, and a pattern, and making sure I don’t screw up the pattern or make sure that the colors that will eventually meet up aren’t going to clash or be too close or, or, or… does anyone want any coloring books? because I have a few I will NEVER use.

enter Facebook targeted advertising.

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magic fricking scratch-off art. it’s like color by number but by subtraction. and it is calming and therapeutic as heck. my oldest daughter and I took a road trip last week and I brought two of these sets and every night we worked on one for about an hour before bed and it was everything you want in a mindless activity without any potential frustration. losing puzzle pieces? no.  decided on burnt sienna only to realize that your mandala looks like a mustard spill? no. lost your scissors? realized you don’t know how to cross stitch? keep stabbing yourself with a needle? threw away the cord for your sewing machine? artistic collage ransom notes frowned upon? never learned how to make friendship bracelets?

get one of these sets. you’ll be so glad you did.   (that’s a link to get it on Amazon, it comes with the scratchy tool and a brush)

caveat – it does make a little bit of a black speckly mess but a clorox wipe and a paper towel and you’re good to go.

 

 

 

unrelated to the scratching art – but certainly related to the anxiety… I wrote SO MANY THINGS during my last week or two of work- (they threw me a taco party! I wore jeans every day!) but never posted any of them – it was a tough couple of weeks for me. I loved that job and those coworkers and that company. I had been prepared to make that job the rest of my working life and very quickly with little time to adjust, that entire plan was changed. so now I’m scratching my way to Plan B. literally, figuratively, emotionally… like the hot mess I am.  but for now I’m hiding out regrouping in my villains lair. -which is actually a great little townhouse in central Florida with my own tiny pool- I’ll tell you more about it next time.

in the meantime I’m going to question the life choices which led me to decide against buying a couple of bottles of wine while I was at Target earlier today.  their target has a straight up liquor store in it! never mind wine – I could be having a vodka tonic right now.

 

xoxo

holidaying my feelings – why is there so much crap in my house? edition

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we decorated EARLY this year and I’m not sorry.

It’s weird to get to a place where you don’t want anything. but I don’t. I don’t want a single thing. I have EVERYTHING I need. I have MORE THAN I NEED.  I am getting rid of things at a steady pace.

part of the particular nature/nurture strain of anxiety/depression that I inherited from my father leads to purging. I try to be very conscious of what I get rid of because I want to make sure I have art my kids made in kindergarten, or baby photos, or my husband’s letterman jacket. dad was a reckless purger so there are things from my childhood that I would have preferred to not end up in a dumpster while I was in college… like anything from my childhood. Ten points to the X-ers in charge of our entertainment, because I can at least have NEW things of whatever things I don’t have from my childhood. Jem? Good Luck Bear? A Vintage style My Little Pony? A fricking Zoom birthday record?! They exist again and I could have all of those things.

but I don’t want them.

hygge
tea, cake, making lists. some of my favorites.

so right, while the holidays approach, and Winter is Coming, and I really want to start getting my house renovated, and things are happening in my professional life that I can’t/haven’t told everyone about yet… I’m fucking stressed out. I’m also really fucking depressed. I said that out loud to myself in the car the other day. “I am really fucking depressed” and the moment of acknowledging my feelings for what they are… it helped. I mean, Wellbutrin helps more, but recognition is important.

and I need to get a dumpster which currently has me REALLY worried because I do want to get rid of every.fucking.thing. in my house.

I speak only for myself and my own experiences with depression but if I had to make a list of things I “want” or “need” for Christmas right now they would include: socks, a throw blanket or four, a magically clean kitchen and front hallway unaccompanied by the sounds of angry cleaning, new toss pillows for the couch, cake, dark curtains in my bedroom for naps, naps, for my house to smell like a Christmas tree, candles in every room, having the dining room table completely clear… chocolate. See’s or Phillip’s Candy House especially. The soft ones with fruity creme centers. Or a trip to Disney. But mostly I need Hygge.

Hygge-2

I want Hygge for Christmas.

xoxo

 

(so much rambling about a suitcase)

my dad loves convenience stores, his dad did too. They’re open on holidays, some are open 24 hours, they all have news papers and Life Savers and their milk and bread are usually delivered more frequently than they are to the grocery store. Our milk ALWAYS came from the convenience store. I also love them, because I love fountain soda – and other than McDonalds, 7-11 usually has the BEST fountain soda. also I love snacks.

when I was a kid he’d tell me I could have candy if I could decide *right now* so sometimes I didn’t get candy because I’M THE WORST AT DECISIONS. Also, I love him, but patience isn’t a thing he’s known for. I get that from him too. I go from zero to WHAT THE FORK?!!!  in 6 seconds or less.  My lack of decisiveness isn’t Chidi level bad but I’m constantly second guessing myself. Anyways. I want an Away Suitcase (I love shit that gets hyped on instagram, and so far have not been led astray) Annnnnyways (again) They have these collaborations that sell out SO FAST and I want one of those but the next day they’re gone. So I have to decide that I 245 dollars love something split second and that is hard for me. I don’t think I 245 dollars love anything at first sight. But their genius marketing requires that kind of decision making which works in direct opposition to my anxiety.

I have spent HOURS researching what people say about them, does the Bigger Carry-on fit in a JetBlue overhead bin? (seems to) Does the battery actually charge 5x? (seems to) Do they actually fit all that much? (seem to) Am I going to be one of those people dragging a suitcase with a broken wheel? (seems not)

and during that time collaborations have come and gone. The one I’m saddest about I didn’t even KNOW about before it had already sold out. Endor (the green one) was MADE FOR ME. #returnofthejedi4lyfe

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fricking Star Wars Collab – ugh.

they have nine solid every day colors, but… eh? They did a collaboration with Dwayne Wade that included a WINE SUITCASE. Do I need that? no, I wouldn’t have bought it, but I DID like the Bigger Carryon in two tones of blue with a cool liner.

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sold out in a day. I put it in a shopping cart and everything (not this exact one, this is the wine suitcase) but I was in an airport so I figured I’d wait until I got home by which time… gonzo.

they even did a Minions collaboration! Would I have bought a 245 dollar thing to troll my children with? Probably not. But maybe… but probably not.

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hilarious

Rashida Jones did a collaboration. Her colors were good. That one happened before I realized that I wanted one…

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I dig the salmon color and the purple.

Which leads me to Violet. Violet released yesterday and is still available today! So now, like a jackass, I’m going to “zen of shopping” it and say… if it’s still available tomorrow I’ll get it. Which I probably won’t, because 245 seems like A LOT to spend…

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I think I love it, but do I love it because it is new and limited and purple reminds me of my grandmother? those actually seem like perfectly good reasons to love it.

and around.

and around.

and around.

xoxo

 

Pretending to Shop.

boxes
Not my front door. (but a reasonable facsimile)

We moved our oldest into her dorm yesterday. And on Thursday our youngest starts her senior year of high school. I should never shop again with the tuition payments I have to look forward to but I pretty much bought the internet last week – so this week I’m not buying anything.

But if I were, here’s what I’d get:

boots

I have these boots in black suede from last year and I think I wore them 3 days a week. From my maternal grandmother I inherited the calves of a professional soccer player, she loved her giant calves, I struggle with feelings about my own but I’m trying- they work hard and let me walk super fast. But they make it hard to find boots, I’d rather shop for a bathing suit than a pair of boots. I get sweaty and cranky. So I usually wear ankle boots. But the Calypso boot changed all that.  Look at that stretchy back panel – I love these so much! And this year they’re in leather! I need them.

Just not today. (I did put them into a shopping cart on Friday though, and have gotten a couple of emails from Sole Society with coupons to get me to pull the trigger. We are at 15% right now, it gets to 20% I might not be able to control myself…)

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Having a fight or flight reaction that leads to lots of shopping AND the mass ingestion of Haribo Berries – is not doing my wallet or my blood sugar any favors.

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But speaking of eating my feelings, I would also have bought myself a couple of boxes of See’s Vanilla Chocolate Chip chocolates. “but Erin, they’re only 5.99”  you’re adorable, I’d get at least 2, and while I was there I’d probably put together a custom 2 pound box. and did you know that you can buy bags of baking chocolate chips? because you can. And just like that…

justlikethat

…I’ve spent 115$ on chocolates.

The end of summer is an inevitability. Boots and cute jackets make the 45 minutes that is the Fall season much easier to accept. HOW CUTE IS THIS JACKET from Torrid?! I love it. And on sale. And faux leather, so when fall gets rainy (like it does) or snowy (because New England) you can wear it without worrying that you’re going to turn into your very own Seinfeld episode.

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Yesterday I got an email from Universal Standard (yep, that’s a referral link) to tell me they’d launched a few new dresses that have my damn name ALL OVER THEM. I really really want this dress.  

carrea

Because HELLO perfect perfect dress. Which at $80 is 1/3 the price of similar Eileen Fisher dresses.

There were more things, I put at least three other things in shopping carts across the internet today, but I don’t remember any of them, so I’m glad I didn’t actually get them!

stilllivesTwo things I DID buy though – I got a copy of Still Lives by Maria Hummel which I am very excited to read. I’m usually anti book-club-books because of the Cult of Oprah and her books all being ‘tragic stories of the triumph of the human spirit’. NO. get away from me with that. But the books that Reece Witherspoon has been scooping up to turn into movies and shows have been awesome. So I’m giving this one a shot. I’ve been ALL ABOUT books written by women, and thrillers. So you should read it with me and we can talk about it later. But not like a book-club because my brain will turn the read into homework.

And I also bought a digital copy of Oceans 8. Because of Cate Blanchett’s wardrobe. And Awkwafina. and my deep abiding love for Sandra Bullock movies. And the whole cast is flawless. I enjoyed it very much. It got shit reviews and yeah, I’m going to say that a great deal of that is just bullshit sexism.  So watch it, it’ll be fun.

oceans8

What have you been eyeing but not buying?

xoxo

 

 

Happy Mother’s Day. Get dressed up. (if you want)

a gorgeous bowl full of inedible beauty. might make a good face mask.

My goal is not to be my children’s best friend, but to raise them to be the kind of humans I would WANT to be friends with. Then other people will want to be friends with them, and they won’t traumatize my grandchildren by making them dress like extras from Little House on the Prairie. (Strangely specific right? I wish I had photos. But also I’m glad I don’t have photos.) Also I hope never to cause my children to need anti anxiety medication before they visit me. Some days that feels like a lofty goal, I can be a lot.

I made brunch reservations for today. We went to our favorite steak place in the city. The service was terrible but the meal DEFINITELY tasted better than having to clean the kitchen after Breakfast in Bed. It’s the little things.

Mother’s Day is a weird day for me, two weeks beforehand the memes about how amazing and perfect your mother is start going around, this year there was one about how your mother’s voice works on your brain the same way anti anxiety medication does. *blink*blink* A mother wrote that shit FOR SURE and her children probably feel the same way I do about it. This is my second blog post so I’m not going into my relationship with my mother yet.

elizajdress
Eliza J Floral Bell Sleeve Dress

Brunch means I get to dress up! I got a pretty great dress in one of my Trunk Club trunks. (I’ve got another trunk coming this week, when it gets here I’ll go into it a bit more.)  It isn’t black- and it looks killer on. (this is not a photo of me, this is the photo from the Nordstrom website.)  My shopper is Courtney, and Courtney chooses things for me that I would almost never choose for myself and I love that.

Annnnnnyway. Regardless of your relationship with motherhood I hope you are able to enjoy today for what it is, a day where you should be able to watch Thor Ragnarok for the 26th time without getting any crap about it from anyone in your house.

 

I make lists, I love brunch, I obsess about things beyond my control.

I am Erin. 41 for 10 more days. Mother of two, wife for 18 years and counting. Survivor of two cults, teller of anticlimactic stories.

I make lists as a coping mechanism. I shop when I am scared or stressed, or depressed. Lately I am all of those things a lot of the time. Shopping carts across the internet are filled with things I will never buy- not all shopping translates into buying.

notebooks, Ancient Egypt and Pilot G-2 pens, a few of my favorite things.

A few years ago I would have wanted a blog to record my weight loss journey, to see how happy and fulfilled I would be as I bought a cute wardrobe of size 8 clothes. I still struggle with feelings about my body but my understanding of what causes happiness has changed in a real, fundamental way. I am a comfortable with my size 14 self who has given thousands of unfulfilled dollars to Weight Watchers, Curves, Planet Fitness, juice cleanses, lemonade cayenne diets, medical weight loss centers, etc. I’m going to keep that money now, thankyouverymuch, and I’m going to spend it on baseball tickets. Go Sox!

Sometimes booking a Disney trip brings happiness. Sometimes it is the rare, perfect application of eyeliner. I’m not always very deep. I avoid stories about the triumph of the human spirit like the plague. I love mystery novels, Ancient Egypt, soft serve ice cream, Wellbutrin and Xanax, tacos, Austin Texas. Everything is my favorite. I am moody and get cranky easily. I have a lot of opinions about things and this seems like a good place to put them, while also showing you the cool things I bought or the great sale going on, or the shoes I want.

So hi.