#AMonthofFaves Best Buys of 2021

I’m linking up with Tanya and Kimberly to participate in A Month of Faves. Today’s Yesterday’s prompt is was These are a Few of Our Favorite Things, and I am focusing on my best buys of 2021.

So, um. I bought a lot of stuff this year. Partly–okay, mostly–because I moved. But also, I just saw a lot of stuff that I wanted. Full disclosure: I looked back through my Amazon purchase history and may have made this face: 😮. And then I looked back through my Etsy purchase history and made this face: 😅.

Anyway, I regret nothing.

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#AMonthofFaves Best Moments of 2021

Hi. It is time.

And just as a heads up, this post is very image heavy. Descriptions are below each picture. Also, these aren’t necessarily in date order because I grouped similar things together.

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#AMonthofFaves: 2017 Favorites

Imma just go ahead and copy and paste my opening from last year to this post: It’s time for A Month of Faves, one of my favorite blogging events! I don’t know about you, but I neeeeeeed some cheer and joy in my life right now. I’m so so happy that Tanya, Andi, and Tamara are hosting this again. SO MUCH YAY.

Month of Faves

As most readers of my blog know, I made a huge life change this year and moved from Florida to California. This was a year of big changes for many other reasons as well, one of which was my daughter’s high school graduation.

So here are my favorite things that happened this year (that I can remember; I’m sure I’ll think of more after I hit publish. Or wake up tomorrow):

1. I got a new job and moved to California where I have always wanted to live.

2. My daughter graduated from high school.

3. I am ibuprofen-free.

4. I scored AP exams.

5. I got to go to Jasmine’s for Thanksgiving, finally. (We had been trying to coordinate this for years!)

6. I learned to actually and truly ask for help.

Here are a few of my favorite things that I own/have that are new to me:

1. My new apartment is pretty baller. And it has a fireplace, which means I can actually hang stockings over a fireplace for the first time in my life.

2. My friend Maggie sent me a bike, and it is magnificent. The guys at the bike shop (where I took it to get put together) said that everybody who came in was eyeballing it and kept trying to buy it. Also, it’s a Schwinn, which means that every time I look at it, I think of the exchange from Girls Just Want to Have Fun between Drew and Natalie:

Drew: Nice car. I drive exotic wheels myself.
Natalie: What is it? A Schwinn ten-speed?

She’s being snotty, which is her way, but that was one of my favorite movies growing up so it’s nice to have the reminder.

As I mentioned earlier, I learned to ask for help this year, and I received it from so many people, and I am so so so thankful. I appreciate everyone who was so gracious and giving and kind. My move would not have been possible without them. I also got to connect with so many people in Gainesville before I moved, and that was wonderful.

Also, I have to give a shout-out to two women who really made my year so much better:  my friends Holly and Amber. I really just cannot express how much they both touched my life this past year.

While I am naming names, I also want to thank my girl TNT for texting me almost every day and keeping me connected, especially those days I felt super lonely because I didn’t really know anybody out here yet.

Which means I also have to say how grateful I am for the new friends I have made here or the online friends I finally got to connect with in person (yay internet friends who are now RL friends).

So a lot in the world is terrible right now but so much in my everyday life is not. And for that, I am truly grateful.

Thursday night melancholy

I found out today that a good friend is coming into town this weekend, and I probably will not be able to see her (“We’ll be two ships passing in the desert,” I joked). Last week (or the week before?), my godsisters made an unexpected trip out here, and I didn’t get a chance to see them.

so close

There are times when the fact that I am still settling into this new life here seem harder than others. Knowing that people I feel intensely comfortable with are thisclose but still out of reach is one of those times. It throws the loneliness into sharp relief.

It probably doesn’t help that I really don’t have anything planned on this three-day weekend. (And is it really a three-day weekend if every other weekend is a three-day weekend? Probably not. But people keep talking about it being a three-day weekend, which makes it feel like more than it is. Really, it’s just another weekend for me. But I digress.)

I haven’t lived in Maryland for over 13 years, but every time a three-day weekend comes where I don’t have plans, I always miss being there because I know I could be hanging out with some of my favorite people and feeling like I belong.

I am still trying to make friends and connections, which means that I am planning to go to a meet up (if I don’t win the Hamilton lottery–this has got to be my weekend, right? 🙏🏾🤞🏾🤞🏾🤞🏾🙏🏾). I have grown as a person and am fine being my authentic self who doesn’t feel like she’s putting on an act when trying to making connections now, but it is still exhausting being the new person at an event who doesn’t really know anybody.

So far, I have been super lucky in that I keep meeting really interesting people who I can have good conversations with (usually about books or TV, naturally). But there’s always that moment of uncertainty/of not knowing if I will just keep milling about, not having anyone to talk to or if the conversation will peter out. And that uncomfortable silence around strangers is way different than the comfortable silence around people I know.

(You are probably shocked to hear that I can be silent. IT HAPPENS, though probably about as infrequently as you can imagine. But, yes, usually around strangers. Hahaha. And even then…

As an anecdote, every time I went to my writing class this past month, if I got there early enough, I would not stop talking. And I didn’t apologize, but I would just be like, “Listen, I love to talk, and I live alone” and kept jabbering on. Of course, this was after about the third week when there was some rapport built up.)

(One day I will stop digressing. Then again, see previous parenthetical.)

I took a five-hour nap today (when does a nap stop being a nap?) so need to fill the next hour and twenty minutes or so until I inevitably crash again. Perhaps I shall catch up on Jane the Virgin or Kevin Probably? Or I could just go to bed right now. That could also work.

11 Random Things (July 2017 Wrap Up)

Well, it’s August 1. Current mood:

And also:

So you know. Yay. Anyway, a lot has happened this past July! Let’s dive in.

1. Yesterday, I officially moved out of my house. Yes, my first house. Yes, the house I just bought last year. It was definitely bittersweet. I am obviously excited about the next phase of my life (moving to California!) but also, you know, I’m going to miss this place and the people, etc. Standing in that empty living room just really solidified that it’s all happening RIGHT NOW.

2. I meant to post about this when it happened but I was too busy (a) prepping for my move, (b) procrastinating prepping for my move, and (c) convincing myself that procrastinating for my move was actually prepping for my move.

On July 4th, I went to a new beach. I did not love this beach. In fact, I would probably not go back to this beach. (In actual fact, if it were up to me, I would NEVER go back to this beach.)

For one thing, the beach is super rocky, which you can’t tell during high tide so I cut my foot on a rock and almost fell/twisted my ankle every time I went in the water. Once low tide happened, we were astounded to see just how rocky the actual beach was. I mean, it was bad. (Sorry, no pics. I didn’t think to take any.)

Second of all, I totally got jacked by seagulls.

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