August Sunnies.

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Summer is fading people. It’s kinda freaking me out. I’m gonna miss the green, long days and my flip-flop tan lines. And my summer style shades most of all. This year I only had one pair, but I went through a few of them 😎. Thank God they were cheap. 

In honor of my own Modern version of the classic ray-ban wayfarer’s. I’m sharing few of other favorite pretty peeper shade covers for the last dog days of summer. *And I kept them at a reasonable price point for the “You might lose them” factor. enjoy:

  📷: oui fresh

 📷: oui fresh

I see these Oui Fresh Original Daisy Sunnies $32 (Black Magic) all over Instagram and they are so damn cute. They also come in Toddler sizes and  many charming colors. 

 📷: madewell

📷: madewell

I love the curved frames with the dark lens. It Couldn’t be more timeless summer if they tried.  Madewell Halliday in Milky Tungsten Glow $65.

  📷: h&m

 📷: h&m

A more delicate version of my own favorite shades from H&M $9.99 this summer. 

  📷: madewell via j.crew. 

 📷: madewell via j.crew. 

J.Crew Boardwalk in Black Tort, $65. Never can go wrong with this style. Classic, but streamlined for 2018.

  📷: zara

 📷: zara

Zara Cat eye sunglasses in Black, $25.90 Bold yet Lady-Like and the price you can’t beat to have stash laying around. 

Now it’s your turn... what’s your fave summer shades and are you panicking about the impending season change?  

Happy Friyay. Love, C.  

Finding Your Groove.

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Hey! Hey! Right now I’m really intentionally finding my groove again with some goals of mine. As you probably know it seems like perpetual process. But, if you have been following me over at Instagram. You know I have been taliking a lot about the In-Between of Goals and how they truly are the sweet spot of lasting growth. Yes, end goals do totally matter. They motivate and get us excited:)  But, being in the Now and finding  our groove on what works or doesn’t gets us even closer. That’s where I am at right now and I wanna share with you how it’s going:) 

Health

I’m actually at a really good place with my health right now. Seriously the best I have been in years. A Goal met I guess:) After this last year of recovering from my Open Heart Surgery, which  in itself has been transforming experience to say the least. To go from daily struggling with breathing and no energy to not even having asthma:) and having so much energy I barely know what to do with it! Has given me a new hope I never imagined. I became so accustomed to feeling like crap all the time. I had no idea what feeling good was anymore and hating exercise though I still made myself do it! 

Now Every-time I go for a walk or hike... I love to push myself even further. Feeling that air in my lungs is amazing. And when it comes to my weight loss goals it’s even better too. It wasn’t always until recently...

Right after my surgery and over the winter even though I had been super active. The weight would not come off and even creeped back on too. It was beyond frustrating until I was introduced to the concept of cortisol by my Dr. and how stress plays a gigantic part in our health and even weight loss. 

Back in November I was then hospitalized for exhaustion, depression and PTSD. Finally realizing, I had not dealt with the trauma of my life threatening condition. My physician then explained to me how Cortisol (fear and flight hormone effects us including holding onto weight to protect us). It was such eye-opening concept to say the least. Now with new medications and counseling. The weight is coming off again. But, more importantly I’m finding my way with Authentic self-care again. 

Self-Care 

The concept of self-care has definitely changed for me in the last year too. It’s more than a relaxing bath (actually baths gross me out;) or doing my daily morning pages. It’s now about being my own advocate and taking care of myself and knowing if I don’t no one will:)  

Over the past year I have learned this lesson ten-folds. Learning to follow through with my to-do’s and don’ts. Embracing my own Miss Independent. Don’t get me wrong there is still room for improvement. Like with budgeting;) But, I’m going with the learning curve and giving my past Sick self some slack as well in the guilt dept. I physically and mentally did not have the energy. Now I Do and it makes a world of difference:) 

How do you practice your own version of self-care?  

Creativity

When I was laying in that Hospital bed with my Chest sewed up. My creative goals were on my new fixed heart big time. Since I lived through it, I knew I could get back to the joy of creating in whole new joie de vie. So, now still holding myself to that goal. I redesigned my blog and have been on this wild journey of finding my new vision of creativity since. And making room for it with my work life.  

Work

We all gotta do it and as I learned from one of my favorite books this last year, Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic. DON’T QUIT YOUR DAY JOB. It’s what allows me to enjoy this blogging thing and actually the job I hold in real-time can be fun.  

Yes, with all the events and goals I have at work. It can be stressful and the dynamics of the customer personalities I work with too. But, once I decided to stop wishing I could just do my creativity full-time. I still haven’t gave up on that dream, but I have found a different approach to looking at it now via this amazing podcast from Brooke Castillo of The Life Coach School, Being a Good Employee (Episode 207). 

It’s been a game changer for me. Realizing I’m where I need to be right now. My company and the people I work with deserve the best me there and the  unique value I bring. Yes, I might not get the cheers to me everyday. But, I’m learning to do that for myself and not look for outside validation. It’s such empowering feeling! 

Now your turn: How are you finding your groove on goals currently?

Happy Thursday! Love, C.  

Insta Stories//Yay or Nay?

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I’m totally on the YAY Team! I Love myself some good Instagram Stories and the Super Duper Value they bring to our social media Storytelling. And I’m totally stoked to share my fave inspirations right now. ⠀⠀

But, first I’m dying to know how you are feeling about Insta Stories? Yay or Nay? Do you currently use them or do you just don’t pay any attention at all? Or maybe have little to no interest what so ever in creating one yourself. Or like me this last week... Where I attempted one for the first time that had major amateur fail status 😂 and brought me to the possible conclusion that this just might not be my insta jam🤣⠀

But, I was so so wrong after doing a little research! I came to the eye opening conclusion that with getting the basics of IG stories down. Doing some intentional planning and sharing some real stories of me. It could quite possibly boost my connections with others ten-folds! and I have two fabulous folks to thank for for that new found confidence😊 in possibly being able to pull off a good insta story. ⠀

Here they are... Online Marketing Maven @amyporterfield and Target 🎯 loving Instagram Marketing Stratagist @tylerjmccall Seriously they both are the marketing bomb! *Follow them! Ah recently it was social media magic listening to them chat on Amy’s Podcast Online Marketing Made Easy #219- How to use Instagram Stories to Grow your Email List. It was soooo good and so much more than the title.... they really broke down Instagram Stories and there immeasurable merit to connecting with your friend followers. ⠀

Now I need you to go listen for yourself and download the bonus podcast freebie too! The Story Arc Method is beyond helpful for breaking down insta stories and even writing your IG Feed posts like this one I’m doing now;) Wink. Wink. ⠀

I so would Loooove to hear what you think now! Send me a Email or leave a comment below so we can keep talking about the va-va value of Instagram Stories. And I will be catching you here later this week with some more Instagram inspiration that I’m super excited to share with you!  And even a few Insta-Stories! Eek! And Yay! ⠀

Happy Sunday Eve! Love, C.

Moving.

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Moving. I know you can’t go back to a place and expect it to be the same. I think of this last photo (2013) I took of my old apartment that I had shared with my ex-husband. Everything was packed except this vintage stool and my then current bag. I loved both of these things. The stool was headed to the dumpster that last day and the bag since then has bit the dust as well. *Wasn’t it cool? BTW. But,I remember in that moment as if it was yesterday... Standing in that apartment alone with all my memories of my marriage and the hopes for what was to come on my own again. Now five years later I am in a similar place minus the ex-husband😂. A place where change is beckoning me and mingling with gratitude for the blessings these last two years in the twin cities has given me. But, I am so ready for a new chapter in Austin again. Experiencing it with a whole new joie de vie that I couldn’t of before. Yes, Austin isn’t the same as when I left nor am I. But, I’m open wholly to 2nd Chances😊.

Do you have any 2nd Chances you are embarking on right now? 

Love, C.

Aging is Welcome Here.

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It totally is! Because I don't know what your current age is right now, but the fact of the matter is your aging if you like it or not:) Recently as I was "travelling through Instagram land, I came across the notice of the passing of Cindy Joseph. A former make-up artist turned model at 49, who Continued always to embrace and encourage the Pro-Age Revolution via her own skincare and makeup line -Boom. The more I discover about Cindy. I am inspired to continue that legacy of pro-age in my own little way. I hope you join me as well. 

It Sure as Hell Beats the Alternative.

This is something my Dad always says when talking about aging and Death. I know it's a pretty blunt statement. But, with everyday that goes by or when we are in it. I will take the discolored skin, wrinkles forming over a casket any moment. Life is short and fleeting my friends. It seriously goes by quick and focusing on preventing the inevitable is not serving our time wisely at all. So, Let's strive as a global community of women to be the best version that we can be at whatever the number of years we have been and are here. 

Stop the Age Shaming/Comparison Game.

It goes for any age. I hear it all the time at work from clients, "Oh you could not pay me enough to go back to my 25. Yeah, they have nice skin..."

All ages of our life journey is relevant and sacred. We shouldn't shame/compare others or ourselves to where they are or were in the moment.   

And yes currently I am far more in love who I am now then when I was 25. I don't hate the 25 year old Cindy by any stretch. She was cool as shit by the way, but pretty naive and not comfortable in her own skin. Tough my own aging has definitely afforded me so many remarkable messes and opportunities to grow that I so cherish. I truly now love the old, younger Me for allowing myself to grow into who I am NOW.  And so should you. 

So, let's make a pinky promise to stop shaming women at any age and loving our own seasons. Using our unique wisdom to lift up and teach each other at any age to love ourselves instead. 

Selfies are Here to Stay.

So, I have been thinking a lot about Selfies and Social Media lately. Ok, I do usually I know weird. But, I love myself some behind the scenes tips, tricks and observations to improve my interaction with others. But, One thing that has recently got me thinking even more is Filters. 

I am not a hater of filters, I actually love them. I adore the creative quality they can convey and iPhone photography is my jam. I love losing myself in creating my own unique recipe for nostalgia on my photo's. But, the one thing I do shy away from is modifying me. Yes, I might lighten and brighten and slap on a vintage feel. But, I stay the same. I personally don't want to erase my imperfections or create something I am not. I don’t feel like I need too.

*Hey, yes I have pretty good skin for my age. I do take care of it and also come from a pretty kick-ass skin gene pool despite some of my lifestyle choices:) But, I do have some wrinkles and controlled Rosacea (thanks Dad:) And I'm so OK with it. And so should you!

I see so many friends my age filter the shit out of their photo's. Erasing any age on their faces. The filters don't bother me, but the possible idea behind it does.

Yes, Selfies are here to stay and It's pretty cool to document ourselves (it's actually not a new thing, it used to be called Self-Portraits and artists have been doing it for ages) and tell our stories. No Judgement here on that part (God knows I partake), but I’m concerned for all the modifying to the point of no recognition. It’s not worth it..

Because You are Beautiful Now. You are Unique Now. Your Imperfections are Badges of Courage. And Why would you erase what makes YOU remarkable? 

Stop it now and remember: 

 Cindy Joseph via Boom

Cindy Joseph via Boom

“Your face tells a wonderful story. Why hide it?” -Cindy Joseph

Thank you for swinging by and so love to hear your heart thoughts on the Pro-Any Age Movement.  

Love, C.  

Moment Souvenirs.

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Yesterday My friend Nicole asked if I had arrived home safe from my trip and why I hadn’t posted much while I was down there. Was the trip OK?

Actually It was more than OK... I was having so much in the moment that I forgot about my little phone screen.  Savoring every inch of vacation ...

Being greeted at the airport by the most friendliest of faces and a gigantic Champagne of beers.

Waking up in my old bedroom and hearing the morning doves cry.

Having coffee with my favorite palm trees as my view.

Feeling my creative juices again like they once were.

Visiting Favorite Watering holes, bartenders, drinking my signature cocktails and chatting with strangers.

Oh Being back in the lovely Land of misfits, where everyone truly belongs:)

Spending the early morning with my best friend laughing like we were 12 again, but with very adult hangovers:)

Going back to my old work and trying to keep it together with how much those people mean to me.

The best pool party I could of ever asked for surrounded by the most gracious of souls.

Getting a fancy pedicure and busting the place up after only one mimosa;)

Hearing ‘Roomie’ say “who is it?” on repeat.

Late night chats with my girlfriends in the garage.

New songs and old memories. 

Eating enough Tex Mex to catch up on all that I missed over a year.

Realizing that things haven’t changed much. 

Getting to drive around on familiar streets and still getting lost.

Hearing those charming Texas accents. 

Lasts, but not leasts... we as humans are not meant to be alone. We need others and God knows I do. 

I am so glad it was not Good-bye, but see you soon.  

Love, C.  

 

 

Storyteller.

 via Frances Valentine @fvalentineny

via Frances Valentine @fvalentineny

Kate Valentine Spade was much more of then a Handbag Designer to me... She was awesome Storyteller. Her stories that she whimsically created through her designs and creative musings were far more impactful in my own creative life than I ever realized until her recent passing this week. She truly helped rescue my nearly forgotten childhood love of color, design and advertising via her reminder. Now many years later, I am beyond grateful that she was that style kind of Peter Pan inspiration to me. To not grow up and out of our childlike sense of creative wonder and to keep searching for pretty stories everyday.

I know now she was also more than that. And this even endures me more to her. That behind every story there is something far, far more human that we carry. 

"Never say Goodbye because goodbye means going away and going away means forgetting."

-J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan. 

Thank you Kate and you won't be forgotten. 

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 “Visiting Tennessee” ad campaign circa fall 2002. Photos: Larry Sultan via Kate Spade NYC. 

I am Enough.

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And so are You. 

This isn’t some IG #mondaymotivation hashtag Bullshit. It’s the truth. I know our inner critic, ego/fear or whatever you like to call it likes to sing a different negative tune in our ear... I know you know what I am talking about:) "Oh your so flawed, Who do you think you are? Worthy? Enough? Um Nada and Nope. 

But, It's just not true. That negative Nancy (poor Nancy, whoever first got that nickname) of a inner voice which straight up lies to us in the guise of keeping us "safe" from growth, change and present acceptance. Is actually full of fear. And fear is not reasonable and that is why we should just look it straight in the face, shrug our shoulders politely and walk away to the "I am Enough." corner of the fighting ring. And repeat after me...

I am enough right where I am. I am enough for the world. I am enough in my present circumstances. I am enough in my struggles. I am enough in my hurt or rejection. I am enough in love. I am enough to believe all possibilities. I am enough in my mess. I am enough in my insecurities. I am enough to still be confident. I am enough to be bold even if I am scared as hell.  

So, say it a 100 times today with me or it least until you begin to Believe it:) Even when fear steps forward again for another fight. Keep saying it. I promise you will eventually knock the shit out of it. Happy Tuesday. 

Love, C. 

Mexican Martini.

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Since my Tequila tolerance is at all-time low before a visit to ATX. I decided it was time time to take matters into my own hands and do a little solo daytime drinking. Hey no flipping shame in that:) and also sharing my favorite drink of choice.

 The Mexican Martini. It’s Austin original and if you ask for it anymore where else... most folks have no idea what your talking about. I know I have stumped all Minneapolis Bartenders with it:) But, it’s pretty simple and here is the recipe I have been graced with via my Dear friend Tari another ATX original. 

Abundantly Serves 1.

3 ounces of Tequila. (I prefer gold)  

1 1/2 ounces of Cointreau or Triple Sec

1 1/2 ounces of fresh lime Juice.  

1/2 ounces of green-olive brine from the jar.  

A big splash of orange juice.  

Olives 2-3 or 5 if you are me.  

Shake it all up in a  iced filled shaker and the  strain into a traditional Martini glass rimmed with Salt. Then garnish with a repurposed cool cocktail  stick of olives from a local bar. I used one from @psychosuzis and make sure your off of work😂 Enjoy!

Love, C. 

 

Big Magic.

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It’s what wakes me up in the morning. A surge of creative energy that beckons me to my writing table. Sometimes it’s stolen moments when I should be getting ready for work, but on my mornings like these when I am off. The pen to paper is my work. A Exhilarating passionate kind of work that more resembles a hot and bothered tryst with creativity;) Love, Love, Love it even if my writing is less than perfect. Which it usually is:) But, while recently re-devouring the unique yet very bold book by @elizabeth_gilbert_writer on Creativity. I am reminded that this is my life thing. Ever since I could write and received my first diary. And now many moons later I still do it with that same wonderment and magic. Yes, creative fear still creeps in (thanks Miss Freeberg, my 5th grade teacher for that). But, I still write. And This little, big book made it easier. It’s just that flipping good ~ The kind of good that makes you say “fear let’s be friends so I can tell you to simmer down so I can create without you nagging me all the time.” It’s so worth a read yourself. I am just blown away at Liz’s graciousness to share the wonders, joys and shit sandwiches of everyday creativity. #shereads #shetellsstories #storyboardc

She has Curves.

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It’s ok to have curves. It’s ok to be thin as well. There is room for us all in this big beautiful world. Today at work I learned this while helping this lovely lady with her darling 5 year old daughter. In times like this I think of my own Mother and ourown times shopping. It was a sweet reminder of her. As I was applying makeup to her Momma. The little girl exclaimed, “You are so pretty but Fat.” It caught me off guard, breaking my heart a little.” The look on her mother’s face was horror and after she quickly said her Brother had been calling her fat lately. She’s five and not fat! “ I soon explained to her that pretty comes in all shapes and sizes. There was no apologies, but her Momma looked at me with amazement that I could conjure up that response while putting on my best face until I could be done with the consultation. 

Thankfully my co-workers stepped up to the plate as I shared my hurt and comforted me during my mini meltdown. And Reminding me Recently of another friend of mine at work who had shared his own insecurities. His very different then mine. But, a reminder we all have them. Mine is my weight. A lifelong self-esteem curse and blessing as well

The curse of always being the fat girl, but you could be so pretty social mentality. Creating a bubble of insecurity around me despite actually being very confident 95% of the time. Often going from feeling invisible  to not good enough. Especially when it comes to relationships. I often say when someone’s interested me, “oh he’s too cute for me.” I know bullshit. But, I do feel that way. 

The blessing though I have found is compassion and looking beyond flaws or even perfections with others. Seeing them for there true heart appearance.

I am not sharing this story for sympathy or compliments. But, to be heard. A little girl unintentionally hurt me today. Opened up my insecurities like package you want to hide forever. I cried, went home early because of it. I Couldn’t contain the sadness I hide so often. Yes, I could lose weight and have. But, that fat little girl inside of me will never go away. But, tonight instead of hating her. I loved her for once. So, maybe it was all worth it.

Love, C. 

Hope.

 Brother David Steindl-Rast

Brother David Steindl-Rast

I collect quotes like books, scribble them down in random notebooks and even have a pinterest board dedicated to them. So, Millennial I know, even though I'm Gen X. But, despite the "I could give two shits about age related labels", I love quotes and they love finding me. Especially the perplexing ones surrounding Hope.

Hope for me for many years has been a pretty fickle friend. You can't help loving the concept of it... like Having Hope when everything is going wrong or even when things are going blissfully right. Using Hope via our imaginations to create that perfect brand of Hopefulness for a new job, a love interest or even in our most desperate of times. Where Hope seems to be the only thing navigating us down those crap streams of uncertainty.

But, this is where hope gets really frustrating often misleading. Our Ideas/Imagination of hope take over and Leaves real Hope in the corner waiting for us to show back up. After the job turns out to be much more challenging then you ever imagined. The Love interest turns into a real douche or you end up really falling in love despite all the things you never hoped for... Once we come back to real hope and really listen to what it's offering us.

Something really beautifully weird Happens: Surprise. And this is why I LOVE this quote by Brother David Steindl-Rast above. This 92-year old Benedictine Monk (Below I will have links to his Ted Talk and Super Soul Sunday conversation with Oprah), who defies age with his amazing spiritual Grateful wisdom. Finally opening my own eyes to a whole new approach to Hope. It's not fickle anymore nor misleading. It's now heart blowing. Where my imagination takes no more hopeful interpretations of something I actually can not create or control. My only obligation is to sit back and see what hope does. Yes, I still imagine scenarios of things I desire wholeheartedly in my life and take mindful steps towards them. But, I don't take them that seriously. I just open my heart to the opportunity and let the Surprise story unfold. It actually takes a lot of pressure of me to know I can only do so much and God's plan will always override mine for better or learning in the end. 

I really hope this all makes a little sense to you:) if not listen to Brother David for yourself. It has been such a blessing to me and I HOPE it is for you as well. *Pun totally intended. 

Love, C. 

 

 

Yes, Dad I wear Color.

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Enjoying my coffee this morning while doing my Morning pages and I thought of something my Dad said to me the other night while on the phone. "Why do You never wear color anymore? You did more when you had lost weight? Actually it pissed me off a little bit. Not because he said it, but it's true.

So, in the last year after gaining these last 20 extra pounds back after my surgery. The black comes out more. It's safe and easy. Yes, all my clothes still fit. But, they're snug. It bothers the shit out of me actually. I don't like the feeling of invisibility that creeps back with the weight either. I miss feeling good and actually I don't right now sometimes. And it breaks my heart a bit. 

So, Today I said fuck it and wore my favorite shirt around the house and plan on wearing my jeans tomorrow. They fit fine just tried them on. And big ol' reminder that our minds can be our worst friends sometimes. 

Love, C. 

Week in the Life-Sunday.

 My Mother’s Teenage Album. 1964-1967. 

My Mother’s Teenage Album. 1964-1967. 

Sunday I took only two pictures. And I went back to color. Whoa did I miss it. 

Yes, I drank my coffee. Took my shower and ate some food. But, the Story of Sunday was much bigger than that. 

It was about Mother's Day and also all about digesting all the photos I took, the words I wrote and even the moment's I chose Not to document throughout this Week in the Life project.

Then I sat down and wrote this Letter to the Week.  

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Dear Week of May 7th-13th of 2018, 

First I gotta say is Thank you. I have been wanting to do this project for many years, but always settled into Observation mode. Enjoying the fruits of everyone's documenting labors especially WITL's founder Ali Edwards finished project. But, this Week I did it. Throwing my fears of being boring and mundane out the window. Actually after each day... I experienced the opposite. I was interesting even if it was just to myself:)

I then challenged myself on a whim to document the days in Black and White only. And whoa that was a lens opener for me. Seeing my daily story in a whole new way. Working with texture and light instead of color. I found myself really loving photography again. That alone makes this week worth it. 

Then it also brought me to such a humbling detailed view on who I am NOW. The challenges I have overcome. The Changes I have made and the ones I still need too. Also the deep Joy I find in the connections around me and relearning to practice my creativity daily again. 

The most surprising take a way from this week. Is Not telling certain stories. I loved holding them in between the words I wrote and the pictures I took. Tucking them in the folds of my heart and head to savor and enjoy myself. 

Now today this adventure ends on Mothers Day. Always a bittersweet time for me. In honor of her memory and I took out her own photo albums. And looked at them with a whole new perspective. Remembering how she taught me the joy of telling stories and collecting memories. Even if it's just for our eyes. Those albums today hold so much more than photos and words.

A life Well-Lived. So, excited to continue that Legacy myself. 

Love, C. 

Week in the Life/Saturday.

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Hi and Cheers to Saturday. 

Cheers to the Sun rising with a sense of urgency this morning and waking me up way before I was ready. But, I guess it wanted me to show up early today.  

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Cheers that Maybe, I need to accept that my morning table isn’t as organized as I have thought all along. Laptop open, Last nights water glasses and my Grocery store flowers days beyond expiration. 

Cheers to AM Coffee, Writing, Showering and heading out the door for work.

Cheers to feeling so much better this morning. Just in time to enjoy my morning walk to the bus stop. 

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Cheers to The first photo I took this week that I would rather have seen in color. Everything is blooming big time.

Cheers to how Spring never ceases to amaze me each year and how the fresh air freely works in my lungs.  

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Cheers to the sidewalk sights I see everyday and still find lovely. 

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Cheers to living in Downtown Minneapolis.

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Cheers to Saturday Transit. And today's detour through the heart of the city. It was awesome to see the Giant Farmers Market in full swing and now it's a must do on my summer bucket list. 

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Cheers to the guy in front of me wearing the 70's pleather jacket enjoying his tunes and the blonde girl in the messy bun in front of us using her essential oils on the bus while also still looking cool with a big coffee stain on her white jeans. 

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Cheers to Love always winning. 

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Cheers to your Favorite Freelance Make-up Artist Friend being at work today. Beautiful, Kind Soul with the best hair ever! 

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Cheers to making it nearly 5 hours in my new shoes.

Cheers to accepting my curves and imperfections. 

Cheers to the Secret stories I didn't tell today. Some things you just want to enjoy and ponder in your head. 

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Cheers to ending the night with Crap cute beer.

Cheers to being really awkwardly bold today:)

Cheers to a Phone date with my Daddy and then my Best Friend Kristen in Georgia.

Cheers to staying up way too late reminiscing and finishing off a six pack:)

Love, C. 

Week in the Life/Friday.

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Today was the best day yet. So, much connections. And appreciation for the current story of my life. It all began with wind rattling my blinds and finding no coffee creamer. I threw on my writing sweater and headed to the corner store.

The weather outside was more like a brilliant fall day instead of early Spring. I also left my camera in a rush to find the store 'Be Back in 5 sign' up. But, within a few moments Robert pounced to the door. He has a walk like a the former dancer he is. And after a few moments Charles came in and Robert let me use his phone camera capture him. 

Charles is charm and joy at it's finest. 71 years young, he has lived in our neighborhood for 46 years. Charles who originally is from Indiana transplanted here in 1970's. We always talk about History and If you need to know something, he knows it with a spark of storytelling like no other. He also gives the best compliments, like what he said to me today, "your 29 and looking fine" always with his trademark wink and high five. A true reminder that our stories are far richer with the individuals that cross our daily paths.  

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Back in my apartment with my coffee creamer in hand. I noticed a little history of my own in the corner. A Old Photograph from my Grandparents collection that I have inherited of a family friend who was a colonel in Gettysburg. And a chair that came all the way from Germany when my Great-Great Grandparents landed at Ellis Island in NYC. Our stories hold so much history and I love these daily reminders.

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Then Writing over coffee about how important our connections with others truly color our lives even when you are documenting in black and white;)

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Getting ready for work and giggling at my growing shoe collection and being reminded of how I make living in a small urban space work well with this beauty cart to pull up to my tiny pink bathroom. And yes I use those giant scissors for perpetual bang trims.

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Serious tight lining action shot;)

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Waiting for my Lyft ride to work (still feeling a little under the weather for the bus ride) while sometimes pretending I live in NYC or Paris with that cool metal awning outside my old apartment building. 

My Lfyt driver Muhammad was awesome. We talked about how living in Downtown Minneapolis is the best and how we wouldn't want to be anywhere else. yes for sure. 

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Back at work. Break time after everyone loved that I was wearing heels instead of my usual checkered vans. My coffee is always made with love.

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Wanting Someday to have my kitchen resemble my works coffee Ebar. These lights rock. 

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Enjoying my signature Cynthia warm weather (even though it was brisk out) drink outside. Iced Americano with one pump of caramel and a heaping dose of creamer for good measure. 

Back at work it was busy and joyful. I also got news of a Vintage Volvo for sale. This is my car of choice for the last 16 years of my life. Keep your fingers crossed that it will be mine. I miss the open road so much. 

Supper was the best clam chowder and good conversation. It was so yum that I forgot to take a photo:) After supper called my Daddy and found out he was in the hospital and didn't tell me. He is OK. But, I reminded him that he is all I have and he needs to take of himself. He is my heart.

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Loving working in such a pretty place and this chair is my all-time fave.

And 'sneaking' out with co-worker to find some new fancy shoes:) They will debut tomorrow.

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Closing time. I love these people. 

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And now Home. Blissfully tired and will sleep very well with the gratitude for the people, places and things that created my little story today.

And I have a feeling tomorrow will even be better. Night. Night. 

Love, C. 

Week in the Life/Thursday.

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7:34 am. Woke up anxious today. I have so much to do and planned to do on my day off. But, this cold is really getting the best of me. Yet the sunlight is beautiful this morning and the perfect spring chill is in the air. I decided to slip on my writing sweater and head into the kitchen. 

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Saw the aftermath of yesterday’s laundry fiasco. I was so tired last night that I just left the laundry bags strewn on the floor. 

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Last night’s dishes in the drying rack still. They’ll probably stay there all day. 

Brewed my coffee and ready for some morning pages and checking emails, Facebook and Instagram. BTW thank you for all the kind words about this Week in the Life. It has been so much fun, but yet challenging. Trying to not get focused too much on the things I need to change.  

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My kitchen table view. Thinking of my Mother so much lately. Especially with Mothers Day approaching. It’s always a bittersweet time not having her around. This little brass picture frame was from my childhood bedroom desk  now has a place again. To remind me of the gratitude for moments and people in my life that are no longer with me. And why documenting matters. 

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Finishing up yesterday’s week in the life post and doing some extra proof reading. I type so fast sometimes that grammar takes a back seat:) also loving the sound of the fan, the birds chirping and fully bloomed trees. Spring is truly here in Minneapolis. 

12 Noon. Laying in bed. My cold is finally letting up a bit. Enjoying a little MarieTV videos. She is worth a check out if you have never heard of her.  

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And playing around also around with A Color Story-Photo Editing App. This is what I exclusively use now for all my photos. One stop shop for filters and adjusting. 

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What’s your favorite photo editing apps and online inspiration? 

Afternoon. You guys I really had no energy to do anything and actually felt frustrated that this would be today's story. I had such high hopes to tell a better one. The reason being in the past year for the first time in many years illness has finally taken a back seat. I wanted to celebrate all the things I can do now with ease that I had struggled with before my heart was fixed. 

But, Right Now had other plans. And I finally decided to go with it today. Feel the Feels and find the gratitude. It's only a cold. Not like last year this time sitting in bed recovering from open heart surgery. Yes, anytime I feel under the weather now it causes anxiety. Rightfully so... just a huge heaping dose reminder of self-care and the need to slow down. 

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So, I gave myself permission to stay in Bed. Taking turns between napping and finishing up my homework for A Beautiful Mess's on-line course, Up your Instagram Game. 

Creativity and on-line learning is something that has carried over with me from my Modern Memory Keeping days. And doing this Week In The Life is so reminding of how much I enjoyed this hobby. Now Dreaming and scheming for new ideas:) 

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6:23 pm. Yes, a salad (spinach, tomato’s, shredded carrot, sprinkles of cheese, olives and bacon) was eaten. Hopefully it will boost my immunity somehow. 

PM. Worked on Back Taxes after my divorce. Wrote this post and being OK with not having a on day of documenting. Night. Night. See You back here for Friday. Love, C.

Week in the Life Thoughts: As Ali Edwards says about this project, "It's not a Sprint, but a Marathon. Learning to pace myself and go with the curves that everyday life brings. I'm gonna lose steam and it's OK to slow down. But, not give up if the stories are not remarkable or challenging. Remembering what another Social Media Darling Awesome with Alison says, Done is Fun and it will be. 

  • Planning how I am going to tell this story in a Album. I am excited to cut, paste and write/type everything out. It's been a long time since I played with paper and printed photos out. 
  • So loving the community of individuals in the closed Facebook group. Your Stories are awesome and inspiring. 
  • FYI Also can't believe I haven't thrown in the towel. If your on the fence. Let's keep going:)

Week in the Life/Wednesday.

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8:34 am. Sleeping in for me. Day off and still under the weather. Fighting it big-time, but also reminding myself you can't plan out everything including sickness. 

Also realized while laying in bed, its my half birthday. Does anyone else celebrate quietly this little half milestone? My Momma always did and I celebrate in honor of her:)   

So, today I am 43.5 and also don’t feel my age at all. I never imagined myself at 43. That’s for my parents and whoa it does seems wildly different from  them:)

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8:52 am. I don’t waste time getting my coffee ready. And always ‘cheat the pot’ as my friend John says:) *When you pour before the coffee is finished brewing. 

Not feeling like the lady of the hour as my favorite coffee mugs says:) this Spring cold kind of sucks.  

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9:02 am. Morning prayer pages begin. * 3 longhand ledger pad anything goes free for all writing exercise. It's been in my daily routine for over 20 years. Always beginning with Good Morning Jesus. A way to center myself. And yes I still drink my coffee with grinds floating in it;)  

AM spent it also catching up on all your stories for WITL. So, inspired and love what we are learning about each other.  

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11:20 am. Laundry day equals messy bed. And does anyone else use a toilet paper roll for Kleenex as easy access when sick?  

12 Noon. Caught up with my old friend Christian on the phone. Love talking with him. Never dull and Making plans to hang out tonight. Though I know I should stay home and rest. 

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1:34 pm. Procrastinating and Facebook was in my diversion from doing laundry. Needing something from the store. So, I Paused to take a picture of the window by my apartment door. Love the light. Radiator and these mid-century curtains.  

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I really adore my corner studio apartment and the timelessness of the history of my building. Even the original 1920’s wool carpet that is lumpy to walk on. Because back in the day they used horse hair to insulate. Who knew? Gross kind of:) But, I still like it. 

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The corner store. Love this place for quick things and they do such awesome job of stocking organics and Minnesota local items. It’s located in the basement of the apartment building next to me. It’s been owned by the same family since it opened and It’s one of the only ones left in downtown Minneapolis. Bygone era still kicking it.

And I love how the little chalkboard sign plays tribute to our famous local legend- Prince. The Purple Rain lyrics are perfect for this drizzly day. 

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2:44 pm. Back home and enjoying Poor food choices;) But, cold pizza is yummy when your not feeling the greatest. Right?

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2:58 pm. Finally getting to laundry. 

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3:14 pm. And IKEA bags are where it’s at in transporting laundry;) And BTW Tide Pur detergent in Honey Lavender is the best. You don’t even need to use dryer sheets and the smell lingers for days.

Laundry fiasco. I was a little zealous with shoving too much in and with way too much soap. It was like a scene from my childhood favorite re-runs of The Brady Bunch. Soap everywhere and ridiculous drying time. Again a reminder that I need to slow down today and stop doing too much.

4pm ish. Chris texted me to cancel. I was a little relieved. I don't want to be getting others sick. 

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5:16 pm. In between perpetual Laundry drying. Swung down to see Robert at the Store. He is such a fascinating character in my little life story. Love our random conversations about creativity and everything under the sun. Today's topics were me sharing this project. Photography. Morning Pages via The Artist Way. He is currently reading the book and I am so excited to know someone else doing them. He also shared his plans for his annual neighborhood Farmer's Market on Franklin/LaSalle beginning again in July. I can't wait to get Local fresh flowers and produce. 

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Yes, you can get anything under the sun here. And as Robert said, "the store looks cool in Black and White." I think anything does:) 

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7pm ish. The laundry is finally flipping done and my bed with freshly clean sheets is calling me big time. 

PM Spent the night making myself eat something. Breakfast bagel and guzzled water. Watched a little Netflix and worked on writing this. 

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8:31 pm. 

Cheers to 43.5 with a shot of NyQuil Severe. Wednesday your done. Night. Night. 

Week in the Life Thoughts: I definitely got more in the groove today. I did forget my phone for certain things. But, I'm OK with it. I felt overall I told the stories I wanted to today. This project is so reminding of how much I miss Memory keeping. It's such a catalyst to mindfulness and being present in the moment. It also is reminding me how important our connections with others are. Even On-Line. Other Take-a-ways:

  • Like our unique lives. We all tell our stories differently. 
  • That my current life is far richer than I imagined. 
  • It's OK to tell the boring stories.
  • And things don't always go as planned. 

See you Thursday.

Love, C. 

Week in the Life/Tuesday.

    7:19 am. Still feeling under the weather. And a little vulnerable. Sickness brings about so many emotions for me. Even a little cold. But, I strangely find comfort in it too. It could be like last year and by the grace of God it’s not. A new Gratitude for everyday illness.    My daily ritual of picking out a coffee mug. Each carries a story. And also makes me realize it’s time for some new ones-new stories:)  

 

7:19 am. Still feeling under the weather. And a little vulnerable. Sickness brings about so many emotions for me. Even a little cold. But, I strangely find comfort in it too. It could be like last year and by the grace of God it’s not. A new Gratitude for everyday illness.  

My daily ritual of picking out a coffee mug. Each carries a story. And also makes me realize it’s time for some new ones-new stories:)  

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10 am. Setting up meds for work today. I take a lot.  One for diabetes. One for slowing my heart down to keep my sweet pig valve pumping:) One for hereditary High chloresteral. Two for mental health. Speaking of Mental Health. It’s awareness month. A reminder it’s ok to ask for help and struggle. No stigma here:) I am all about being grateful for all these pills. It helps me pursue the best version of myself.  

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10:45 am.  Shower time. I love showers! It’s actually one of the most favorite times of my day. Love the ritual of it.

Putting down my little bath mat as I turn the water on. Jumping in and the quick rush of the cold water hitting me before the hot hits. Washing my face first with Kate Somerville’s Exfolikate daily cleanser that smells like pumpkin, papaya and pineapple. Then using exfolikate gentle Exfoliating treatment next.  It’s all about the glow:) Then Shampoo, Condition. Body wash and jump out. I was running late so my other routines were on over drive. 

What’s your showering routines?  

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11:21 am. Heading out the door. Pausing in the stairwell of my Downtown 1920’s apartment building. Love the wear and tear of cement floor. I often think of the people that lived there and walked once the same places I did.  

11:23 am. Stopped next door at the old corner store to see if my friend Robert was working. Nope not until 12 Noon. That visit will have to wait until tomorrow.  

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My City. My Life. I live in Loring Park neighborhood of Minneapolis. It’s old and charming. And a predominantly Gay neighborhood and love being a straight girl in such a rich, colorful neighborhood. Adore the sense of community and how welcoming it is. The perfect place for me right now. 

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On my daily walks to the bus stop (I could do a transfer, but I adore my 15 minute jaunts)  I see so many things and this poor bike is one of them everyday. It has sat here through the seasons and today I decided I wanted to take a photo of it’s twisted tire. I also pushed through my anxiety of photo taking when others were around. Do you have that?!? It’s so odd:) Actually most people don’t care. Especially the homeless guy that was rummaging through the trash as I did.  

    11:43 am. The bus came right on time today. It’s usually a few minutes late or early. I really love my commutes to the suburb. And enjoy the eclectic group of people the city offers and the bus is no different. Where every walk of life still hang out together in a world where most don’t. I truly feel everyone should take public transit once in their life. 

 

11:43 am. The bus came right on time today. It’s usually a few minutes late or early. I really love my commutes to the suburb. And enjoy the eclectic group of people the city offers and the bus is no different. Where every walk of life still hang out together in a world where most don’t. I truly feel everyone should take public transit once in their life. 

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11:50 am. I usually listen to podcasts on my commute or read a book. But, today listening to rainy music. Peter Gabriel’s Hero. Goyte’s Hearts a mess. Amber Run’s Hide and Seek. And my favorite now, Unraveling by Violents and Monica Martin. 

 Rain, Rain you can stay. It’s perfect for Spring. And especially when I bring my umbrella.  

Rain, Rain you can stay. It’s perfect for Spring. And especially when I bring my umbrella.  

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12:21 pm. Arrived at work. Heading down the escalator to hustle to the employees entrance.  

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12:23 pm. This is what greets me everyday. A reminder to leave my outside work shit at the door:) and be on:) I am a business manager for Estée Lauder. I get paid very well to make others feel better and take care of themselves. Yes, it’s much more than mascara. 

    12:30 pm. Clocked in. The Store is quiet and I tell my amazing co-workers about my Week in the Life  project. One of my favorite girls (actually they all our my favorites). Angelica steps up to the plate for some portrait mode shots.   I call her Jel Jel. We’re kindred spirits despite her being 19 and me 43. We have so much fun together. And actually our parents our the same age:) she is a old soul. Amazing girl I am blessed to have in my life:)  

 

12:30 pm. Clocked in. The Store is quiet and I tell my amazing co-workers about my Week in the Life  project. One of my favorite girls (actually they all our my favorites). Angelica steps up to the plate for some portrait mode shots. 

I call her Jel Jel. We’re kindred spirits despite her being 19 and me 43. We have so much fun together. And actually our parents our the same age:) she is a old soul. Amazing girl I am blessed to have in my life:)  

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1:00 pm. Self-portrait. Jel Jel took many and I decided on this one. Yes, we’re all critical. I know I can be. But, I am who I am right now. Puffy eyes and needing a dye/cut badly. But, so grateful to be here now:) 

3:46 pm. Headed home from work early. Not feeling good. 

4:o1 pm. Bus arrived. Packed to the brim with commuters. 

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4:44 pm. Got off on 12th and Hennepin St. Stopped at Lund’s & Byerly’s for cold medicine, pizza (comfort food) and my breakfast bagel of choice. Reminder I need to work on my food choices. Totally have been slacking. Eating very little, but crap. 

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5 pm. Walked home despite feeling cruddy. Drizzling a little. Last picture of the day. 

PM: Spent the night in bed. Talked to my Boys. My best friend Jeff. His cousin Philip. Dear John from ATX. and my Daddy in Alabama. Ate some pizza. Got a awful coughing jag and took some NyQuil and dozed off by 9:30 pm. 

Week in the Life Thoughts:  

Today I got more in the groove of Documenting. Yes, there was some miss opportunities.

  • I hope I become more bolder with taking photos while others around and not caring.   
  • Being ok with setting the camera down.  
  • I really loved how the words came out today. Telling more of the story of my life right now.  
  • Being more vulnerable.  
  • I really loved telling the stories of the people that our apart of my life. Want definitely do more of that tomorrow.  
  • Wondering how when I am finished how to put it all together. Any ideas.  

Love, C.  

Week in the Life/Monday.

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7:18 am. Climbed out of bed with a raging sinus/headache. But, still documenting. Slipped on my flip-flops and headed to the kitchen. 

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Morning Table View. Which I didn't straighten up from the night before. I'm actually pretty good (OCD) about it normally. Everyday Things I want to remember... Anatomy of a table: Left to Right. Home manicure stuff. Nail Strengthener (Butter of London), Nail Lacquer (Dior, Pandore 754) and Apricot Cuticle Oil (Essie). New iPhone 8 plus Box. Empty coffee cup from the morning before. Nearly empty cranberry juice from the night before. Grocery store flowers in their last days of pretty in My Great Grandmother Dova's Flower vase. My Beloved Olivetti underwood Studio 45 typewriter. New iPhone ear buds. Cheap, yet awesome H&M Spring Shades. My Journal that I am trying to finish out from 2014. 

Now what's on your own Morning Table?

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Half-Caff. 3 scoops of each one (my current favorite coffee bean blends, Caribou's French Roast and their signature medium roast decaf. Whole bean always and I am sure my neighbors hate the sound of my grinder so early too:) 

What's your morning coffee routine?

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8:06 am. Morning Pages. My Sinus Meds are kicking in a bit and Called out to work. But, still attempting my daily Morning Pages ritual though a cold wash cloth is calling out to me big time.

8:33 am. Paid Internet Bill. Exciting stuff I tell ya. 

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9:44 am. Morning Hair and Don’t Care.  Teeth brushing and face washing done. Wearing my favorite t-shirt. Another reminder that I need new clothes. I love style, but I hate clothes shopping. Would much rather buy books. Now for that Cold wash Cloth. 

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As cold as I can get it. And I love the stories that my 1920's sink tells in it's porcelain cracks. 

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10:01 am. Wash Cloth relief. 

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12:00 pm. Noon time view of Spring in full swing out my window. Yes, I need a bookshelf. 

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2:30 pm. A Screenshot of The time I woke up from my 2 1/2 Hour Nap. Ridiculous. But, my head must of needed it. 

2:36 pm. Made myself eat something. The only thing sounded good was my favorite bagel from St. Paul Bagelry. No Cream Cheese, just buttered to the edge.

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3:16 pm. Chatted with Tari K in ATX.  45 min. 

 6:48 pm. Waking up from another nap. Enjoying the Spring evening light and the perfect temperature. Also slowly feeling my head decompress and rest. Time for more decongestant.   7:36 pm. Supper. Cheese Burrito and apple. Watching Netflix Documentary, Bobby Kennedy for President.  Episode 1. 

6:48 pm. Waking up from another nap. Enjoying the Spring evening light and the perfect temperature. Also slowly feeling my head decompress and rest. Time for more decongestant. 

7:36 pm. Supper. Cheese Burrito and apple. Watching Netflix Documentary, Bobby Kennedy for President.  Episode 1. 

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9:46 pm. Back to bed. Phone charging lights out.  Reflecting on how much today I enjoyed the process of documenting through photos again. I currently focus so much on writing in this little life of mine that I forget how passionate I have been about photography. Such a cool rediscovery in the creative life that I really want to get better at again.

So, now can’t wait to see what Tuesday Week in the Life brings. See you tomorrow:) Love, C. 

Week In The Life Details:

Camera: iPhone 8 Plus. 

Black and White: I decided to challenge myself this time around with Doing all Black and White Photo's. Inspired by my childhood fascination with Old Life Magazines and the street photography of Vivian Maier. 

Editing App: A Color Story. I love their B&W Filters. So, Rich with Depth. My Favorite go-to's are Laura, Audrey and Coffee. I'm also really digging the new Texture Packet and I decided to exclusively use the Power filter for a little bit of Golden.