I edit things…

I had a great vision of making a cool banner for my site. I wanted something that I felt encompassed who I am. Possibly, I put to much pressure on this project and my editing skills leave something to be desired. With all things, I will get better at tinkering with pictures the more often I do it. I am very proud of the attempts below, I realize they are not so great, but I made them! I will be getting better and then I will blow everyone away with my fabulous banners.

New Banner


The Pursuit of Happiness

I just read Maggie Mason’s recent blogpost, “20 Things I wish I’d known at 20” and it reminded me of all the key points and goals I’d made for myself when I read  The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. This book took me some time to read, I read a chapter or so and made notes. I had to think on her thoughts and how they applied to my life. While reading other books, I would feel like it was time for a dose from The Happiness Project.

From the start, I was struck by her words, “What you do everyday matters more than what you do once in awhile.” Somehow, I have come to be 25 years old and my life (like most) is a collection of memories of family vacations, parties, and milestones. This may be that a camera is only present at important events and thus their is only photos for reflection of milestones. So what do I do everyday? Well of course I have to read Twitter updates, check Facebook to see what all the people I’m not actually friends with are doing, and waste a good deal of time. I feel successful in my career change, and I do go to work everyday. Hanging out with kids everyday is far superior, for me, than sitting in front of a computer.

Some other gems from The Happiness Project:

  • Most decisions don’t require research
  • If your not failing, you’re not trying hard enough
  • No deposit. No return.

These lines bring up different feelings and memories. I have often been guilty of running things by my friends and relatives before making a decision. While their help is appreciated, what am I doing? Where is this fretting getting me? I could be taking action. Why aren’t I? Albeit that some decisions are major and require others input, but there are many simple things that I would be far better off going with the first thing that comes to mind.  On the flip side of that, everything that I am truly proud of in my life has taken a great time investment, hard work, and sticking to who I am. NO DEPOSIT. NO RETURN. I may need to write this large somewhere. Deposit: working through the summer, Return: having the funds to buy a car.

Maggie Mason’s post struck a few chords on things I want to work on in pursuit of my own happiness. #4. “When in doubt, shut up.” Ummm… I do the opposite. I know that I shouldn’t, but I just keep talking. I am guilty of telling people more than they should know or want to know. Her #5 ties right into that, “Don’t Complain” in her explanation she says, “Maybe venting makes you feel better, but letting off steam can also lull you into maintaining the status quo.”  And then, “If you’re frustrated, turn that energy toward fixing your problems, not bitching about them.” ACTION. I think Maggie Mason wants me to get into action. It easier to just spill out my problems. Do people perceive me as a complainer? If so, how can that be good for me or for my relationships? Her list is great. Maggie makes other points about how good I look and how I shouldn’t be intimidated. It is a good reflection tool. Please, read this list and read this book (I will loan it to you if you promise to give it back).

Happiness is my goal. It can be easy to find or it can be difficult. Maybe I need to make some signs at home as reminders or write these things on my arms. It’s funny how thinking of ways to make myself happier, is satisfying (thanks Gretchen Rubin!). These are goals I can reach. I can be proud of what I do everyday, what I do everyday makes me who I am.

I am what I eat.

Last summer, JMO and I went to see Food, Inc. It was thought provoking and a conversation starter. We stopped eating meat for a few months (JMO lasted longer than I did) and we started eating a lot more fruits and vegetables. I think about what I put in my grocery cart more than I did before and I read the ingredients more. I can choose the option with half as many ingredients and I just feel better about it. For me, it is a psychological fix, I feel like I’m doing something to better myself and protect my body.

Lately, I have started to slack again. Working and and teaching a night class has made packing lunch and waiting to eat dinner at home difficult. The movie Food Matters came up on my Wowbrary list and I wanted to see if they had a different take. This film was geared a lot more toward the health aspect, it was about how vitamins can heal and we truly are what we eat.

I would highly recommend either or both of these movies. They make you think about what you put in your mouth. I struggle with eating right. I like cheeseburgers and pizza and giant burritos. I also like fruit and vegetables and the more I eat, the more I like. I don’t get that same feeling with cheeseburgers/pizza/burritos- the more I consume, the less I like.

Watching Food Matters has reminded me of my excitement to eat well when I first saw Food Inc. Please wish my luck on my journey to choose the right foods to put in my body!

JMO and His Branding – jmoswalt

JMO recently decided to move therealjmo.com to jmoswalt.com. Now he can officially say he is jmoswalt across the board (Twitter, email, Facebook, and website). He has put a lot of time and energy into the new blog pulling in all the lessons he’s learned from making his previous blogs, the CARPOOL website, this blog, and the skills he has picked up in his new career path at Schipul. I have learned more than I knew could be known about the blogging world from JMO and a lot about putting yourself out there and not being afraid to fail.

Anyway, check out JMO’s site. Look how his posts are now one per page. Look at the bottom of each post there are related posts suggestions. Look how you can click any link in the old blog and it will bring you to the new blog. Look how you can choose text or video or choose the title of any previous post from a master index. Look how my boyfriend rocks, what can yours do?

Side note: The picture above is a perfect example on how I’m continuing to fail so I can learn to be good. Picture editing interests me. But alas, I know how to do very little with the software. I have been frustrated with pictures not turning out as I hoped. Look above for me, please be witness my attempt, I promise to produce better soon.

P.S. It is impossible to speak of JMO without including 348239040234 links -the number may be an exaggeration