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I Do Not Have a White Picket Fence Family June 28, 2015

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Family, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Relationships.
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You know when you’re driving down the highway and you see a mini-van pass with those little family stick figures on the back window? Some have Mickey Mouse ears, others include pets, and then there are the cars that illustrate seven children and make you think “Ohjeez!”. I think it’s easy for us to believe what we see on TV, families who are large, and loving and perfect, or even families who are large and dysfunctional and imperfect. Whether it’s a happily married couple with five adopted children, or a recovering alcoholic single-mom and her son trying to make ends-meat, there is always an underlying lesson of “family is everything”. All these shows we watch, reality or scripted, they all end with the same theme, no matter what happens your family will be there for you, unconditionally and always.

However, I don’t have a family like that, and I know I’m not the only one. My father isn’t in jail, my brother isn’t on drugs, no one is verbally abusing me, or kicked me out of the house at sixteen, there is nothing over the top wrong with my family or it’s members, I just don’t have the kind of family you can always count on when times are tough. I didn’t grow up in a trailer park, or had a mom who had to work five jobs to keep food on the table, I had a very normal, great, middle class childhood. For many of us, not having this strong, dynamic, close-knit family is not a product of something that happened or didn’t happen, it’s just how our lives panned out. (more…)

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What is that Twenty-Somethings Really Want?! May 22, 2015

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Apartment Life, Dating, Family, Finances, Friendships, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Real World, Relationships, Traveling.
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This article really resonated with me, and everything I have felt at one point or another. Take a read, and remember that you’re not the only one out there who wants the simply things – like a couch that’s not from Ikea (that you probably failed to put together…twice). 

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Work has been crazy over in DLIH land! But I promise, new posts, insightful articles, and more randomness coming very, very soon!!!

Stop Thinking Like a 30-Something, Start Thinking For Yourself! May 4, 2015

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Apartment Life, children, Dating, Education, Family, Following Your Dreams, Friendships, Jobs and Work, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Relationships.
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If you have’t noticed yet, I re-post a lot of Elite Daily articles. It’s a site I really admire because they have a lot of great things to say, especially to twenty-somethings. Most recently, I found this article on how those in their 20’s need to stop thinking like those in their 30’s. While I was reading it, I found myself disagreeing with many of the points that were made. I like reading different people’s views or opinions on life, most of all, how their experiences have shaped them, and I do think that there are always beneficial moments to take from everything you read. However, when we are encouraging or supporting those who are coming up after us, I think it’s very important to reinforce positive information for all types of people and all sorts of girls. We come from different backgrounds, upbringings and cultures, so there cannot be an end all be all of how to live your life, or grown-up or shape your future. So, here is my own version of Why 20-Something Women Need To Stop Thinking Like 30-Something Women (but instead, think for themselves!) –

We have all totally been “that girl”. That girl who had two too many glasses of Pinot and starts off on her pity party about never falling in love, having a baby too late in life, never making it in her career, “I just don’t get what’s wrong with me! How is Lindsay Lohan, who’s a total mess, famous and buying houses and cars while I’m an educated, smart, caring girl and I can’t even get a full-time job, or a boyfriend, or a nice apartment?!” I know I’ve been that girl. (more…)

My Mom Told Me One Day I’d like Yoga April 15, 2015

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Family, Jobs and Work, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Real World.
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yoga“Yoga comes with age. You’ll understand when you’re older”, she told me. I find yoga exhausting, they expect you to put your body in upside down, backwards positions, while channeling your inner Gandhi and then tell you to “just breathe”. An instructor once asked me, “Do you feel how your core is spiraling upwards with every breath?”, I looked over at my mom, she looked like a sleeping kitten in her “corkscrew prayer”. I am sure the question was rhetorical, so naturally, I answered “All I feel is pain?”. At the time, everyone laughed, but in all honesty, does anything but wisdom actually come with age? Yes.

The list of things my mother told me, that actually came true:

“One day, you will understand how to just sit and be”
I recently returned from my third trip to London. The first words out of my mouth were “I understand tea now.” I spent the majority of my time alone, sitting, with a pot of tea, and a little cup and saucer, watching other people, thinking about my life. I did not read, I did not play with my phone, I did not search for something to do, and I didn’t hate it. Other people didn’t bother me, they just were; My silence didn’t bother me, I just was. I now own my own tea pot (courtesy of a lovely boyfriend), and I have tea time almost daily, with no one but myself, for no one but myself.
When you are younger, you are doing everything to get somewhere – physically and metaphorically. You are running from job to job, store to store, and when you’re not running, you’re trying to figure out how to get another job, another paycheck, another date. There is little stillness in your early twenties. A big step in my adulthood, that I had long looked forward to was buying my own car. I now know you can drive to drive, and not to get somewhere. That doesn’t mean you are aimlessly driving around the neighborhood, it means that while you are on your way to the grocery store, you just drive – there is no reason to get there earlier, there is no reason not to be late. You can’t control road traffic, or train malfunctions, or your alarm clock breaking, so you just accept what you can’t change, and drive, and eventually you will get were you are going.

“Stop crying!”
I cry a lot. I cry a lot in just about every area of life except work. Unless my mommy is there, then I cry all the time. So when I was a teenager she would often look at me and yell “Stop crying!”. I thought it was because the act was annoying, loud, obnoxious, a pathetic attempt at getting my way, or simply happened so often the sincerity of it was totally false. I’m sure it was all of those things, but on a deeper level, it was a piece of guidance. We are human, and it’s healthy to have emotions, but you can’t just let them pour out of you like an overflowing bathtub. There is a time and a place to do those things, and at work, on the street, in a store, out to dinner, when you have company over, when you are cooking, are not those times. Learn to keep it in, and learn to let it out. Today, there are many times I want to start crying, like when I am accused of saying something I never said, or when my flight at the airport has been delayed for the third time, I can come very close to it, but I don’t, because I know that I can’t let myself fall apart right then. (more…)

Adults Need Help Too! March 7, 2015

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Family, Friendships, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Relationships.
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Adult; a person who has attained the age of majority and is therefore regarded as independent, self-sufficient, and responsible.

Check. Check. and Check. So If I’m an adult, if I meet all the necessary job requirements, if I have all the appropriate skill sets, why do I feel so incomplete doing things alone?

Imagine you’re from a family of twelve (or maybe you are!), now imagine you’ve never had a waking moment to yourself. Everything was done with you, for your, or alongside you for as long as you could remember. Then you pop into the real world, you’re out of college and you’re living miles and miles away from your nearest sibling. Freedom, right? You can finally have your own space. While that may seem excellent for the first few weeks, soon you’ll feel like a part of you is missing, eating dinner in front of the TV by yourself just isn’t what you thought it would be. Now, imagine a scenario where you come from a great family of four, a mom, a dad, a sibling. Your parents both work, your brother is an all-star soccer star, so you’ve been left to your own devices for much of your childhood. Many would refer to you as mature, responsible, old for your age. You’ve been making stove-top mac and cheese since you were 9, and you’ve prefect it! So when you jump out into the world, you’re readily equipped to just up and do things, but maybe you’ve spent so much time being alone that you want something new, something different, something that comforts you.

If humans were meant to do things alone, we wouldn’t have each other. Some people like more space than others, but the reason we have friends and family is because we aren’t meant to do everything in our life alone. Learning how to be by oneself is a great lesson, because the reality is that sometimes you will have to do things alone – take a flight by yourself, rent an apartment alone, go to the doctor, deal with an insurance claim, all these things that are uncomfortable and not fun. Still, there is no shame in not wanting to.

Not wanting to battle life without a hand to hold does not make you weaker, it does not make you less of an adult, or incapable. Often times when we ask someone for help, people tell us we need to grow up, perhaps so many times that we just stop asking for help. Don’t, don’t do that. Never forget how to ask for someone to support you, even if all they do is stand there. As long as you’re willing to try new things, and open to being brave, even when you’re scared, then you’ve already won the battle. Having a friend to hold your hand is a hard thing to ask, so asking for help is just as hard and handling life alone. We may be adults, but adults need help too sometimes.

The Man Bouquet – Man Crates January 30, 2015

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Dating, Family, Holidays, Men, Review.
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Valentines Day, oh the glorified day of love, angels, cupid, chocolates, heart shaped everything and the corporate greed of candy companies! Whether you love it or hate it, don’t care about it or count down to the day, whether you’re alone or tied down, it’s a day of dressing to impress and giving gifts.

Women really get the short end of the stick when it comes to buying gifts. Men have jewelry and perfume to choose from, Godiva, puppies, flowers, flowers, flowers. It’s like a wack-a-mole of which present to buy first, when it comes to the ladies, besides a slinky piece of lingerie what do you get your man for Valentines Day?

ANSWER: Man Crates! Mancrates

DLIH discovered Man Crates this time last year for just this reason. Miss SK just got tired of the notion that Valentines Day was all about the girl, so after some digging and internet research Man Crates surfaced. They are pretty much perfect! Not just for V-Day but for any day; birthdays, anniversaries, congratulation presents, or even just because. There are different options, at different price points all themed around whatever your man likes best. Can’t decide? EVEN BETTER! He’ll probably love his first one so much you can get him another next year, or surprise him in a couple of years when he least expects it. They add new ones regularly so there’s no chance of him getting board.

Man Crates are what you think they are, a giant crates! What do guys love more than something they can tear into or break? It’s like a piñata of awesome goodies for your guy. They even have smaller crates that come in something other than – Ammo Can, Tactical Bag, or even just a regular shipping box full of jerky! To be honest, while the enter gift was unique, fun and a complete surprise, the thing DLIH man loved the best was the the Ammo Can, tries to use it for everything!

So, if you’re looking for a unique gift that isn’t simply a bacon scented bouquet of tools try Man Crates on for size. Fine print: order ahead for holidays, they get slammed and since they are a made in USofA business (support the locals!) they only use the best stuff, so give them a breather and don’t rush the creative process!

The Benefits of Being an Adult January 15, 2015

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Family, Finances, Jobs and Work, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Real World.
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They say that with great power comes great responsibility. Well, I supposed that’s true, but I’m guessing many of us, myself included, wouldn’t really consider themselves to have great power, right? Wrong. Power has been feed to us as this majestic, magnificent thing, but the truth is as an adult you have a lot of power. The power to make decisions, the power to speak your mind, the power to have things, buy things, the power to help others. So with all the privilege and freedom being an adult comes with, you have also responsibility.

Responsibility can mean many things to many people; it can be taking care of others – children, pets, loved ones; it can be making sure you take care of yourself – support yourself, pay your bills, find a nice place to live. It can mean being successful – buying your first car, getting married, getting that promotion you’ve been working for. No matter how you define responsibility for yourself, know that being an adult comes with certain expectations, understanding that the world is bigger than you.evasion of responsibility comic (more…)

The Pressure of Finding a Role Model August 18, 2014

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Education, Family, Following Your Dreams, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Real World.
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“I want you to write a one page essay on the person in your life who inspires you.” If you haven’t heard that at least five times, then you surely didn’t go to school in America. Ever since we were children, we were groomed to, essentially, find someone to look up to. We’ve constantly been asked about who we look up to, who lights the fire under us, who we want to be like. Then, there’s me.

When I was a toddler I had two things on my mind, what to do and how to do it. There was no bad influence from the TV, there were no crazy ideas that I developed after watching someone else, everything I did, I did of my own volition. You could say, I was a super determined kid, and really self motivating. It would also be safe to say I never wanted to do things like everyone else did them, I wanted to find my own, unique way to go about it. So, when my very first English teacher asked me to talk about someone who inspired me, I didn’t really know what to say.

Everyone has people they admire for certain parts of their personality. You could say you are inspired by a person’s strength, courage, kindness, outgoing personality, a person’s ability to be fearless, and so on. You can also be moved by someone’s story, or feel driven by their accomplishments. To say that there is a person I owe my entire lifestyle to, well, that person would be me.

IMG_0102.JPGI know that sounds selfish, but it doesn’t come from a selfish place. I don’t have just one person to thank for where I am, but an entire list; (more…)

Remember When – You Didn’t Worry About THESE Things? July 5, 2014

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in 21st Century/Technology, Beauty, Family, Humor, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Real World, Remember When.
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Remember when you didn’t think about these things…and now, they’re part of your conscious thought processes? Sorry, twenty-somethings, life is only going to get harder from here on in, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy it. First step to enjoyment? Laughter. Grab a glass of wine, and join our club of self-pity and “Oh my gosh! I do that!” moments.
Here are the “Remember When You Didn’t Worry About…”‘s

Remember when you didn’t worry about…
Who to invite? As you get older, you meet more people, some you like, some you don’t, some you used to like and now you don’t. Likewise, the older you get, the more events you encounter – job promotions, engagements, weddings, anniversaries. When you were seven, and it was your birthday, all your cousins and neighbors and classmates came, now, it’s a russian roulette of who you don’t invite. Stacey is a serious gossip and a backstabber, so you don’t want her to be part of your event, but then she’ll be the only person in your office you’re not inviting to your wedding. You haven’t seen Uncle John in nine years, and no one in your family likes him, but your cousin is the one who got you you’re new job, so, now you’re just going to spend the entire party worry about him not insulting one of your friends. Worst of all…the events that you get invited to. “Did they invite me because they want me to come, or because it was the right thing to do? Do I want to go? And if I don’t, is that rude? Should I feel bad? If I go, how much money will this cost me? Will I know anyone there?”…so many questions. What happened to the simplicity of Chuck E Cheese?

Your weight. AND stamina…AND skin…AND complexion…AND heartburn? So gross! When we were sixteen, and nineteen, and twenty-one, we could stay up all night doing shots, wake up the next morning at nine, pop a Gatorade and some doughnuts and be in class or at work, looking, more or less, normal. Now, two glasses of wine put you out for 24 hours, not eating a solid breakfast puts you at the top of the stairs out of breath, things like “skin care creams” and “anti-aging serums” are now things you are considering buying, and when you see commercials for Prilosec or Tums you wonder “eh, I should pick some up next time I’m buying nail polish remover”. What happened?! You’re only 28 and these are things you’re dealing with. Defeated by age, aren’t we still supposed to be considered young?!

Retirement. Not to say it feels any closer than it did five years ago, but not thinking about it is no longer an option. Your HR department hands you a 401K form, or your father insists you open your Roth IRA next time he’s in town, or your banker starts asking you questions about loans, mortgage plans, and how all these will affect your life after your career. You’re still figuring out how to pay off your student loans without having to live in a an apartment the size of a closet. Thinking about retirement is super depressing when you haven’t even gotten knee-deep in your career, or you’re still figuring out which direction you want to go in…but everyone wants to know what you plan to do for money when you’re 65. “How about, what am I planning to do for money next month?”

1349831763184_6087440….About how old child stars were? When we were kids, we loved seeing Jonathan Taylor Thomas as a strapping teenager, or the kids of Dawson’s Creek growing up, and making movies. Dakota Fanning is twenty. Yup, she is twenty. Have a big gulp of wine…if you didn’t feel old yet, you do now, right? Oh, by the way, JTT is 32. You’re welcome.

Which school district is good? Even though you’re still un-hitched, and you’re years away from having babies, the idea of purchasing a property seems possible in the near future, and makes you feel like you’re moving up in the food chain. So, while you’re checking out different suburbs (and wondering WHY the HELL you’re on Zillow & Google Earth looking at houses) you’re also skimming the net for the best school districts in the area. Sad, but true, even before you have bundles of joy in diapers, you’re thinking about where you’re going to send them to school. Children, taking over the world, one psychotic break at a time.

Taking care of your parents. No matter how young they are, or you are, you worry about what will happen when they need you. Can you afford an emergency plane ticket to go help them? When they move to a new neighborhood, or a new house, will they be lonely? Do they miss you being around? Who are their friends and what are their intentions? Does their boss respect them? Life was a lot easier when they embarrassed you at the mall in front of the “cool kids” and you pretended you didn’t know them. Now you care… a lot.

What time the live music at the bar will start? When you were twenty-one, you were at the front of the crowd, speakers blowing out your ear drums, holding your fourth, or fifth, drink of the night with your arms around total strangers singing songs you’ve never heard before together and secretly imaging the lead singer asking you out. Now, 9pm rolls around,you see the amps and you ask your waitress what time the band will go on so you can be sure to tab out before then. You’ve got a new episode of the Bachelorette waiting for you on your DVR and a group of girls wearing shirts as dresses just walked in. As you walk out, you don’t realize you still have the same shirt/dress in blue stuck at the back of your closet. Oops.

Things like a lazy susan. I bet when you were searching for your first place your list was pretty minimal – working heat, space for a full size bed, a bathroom that doesn’t attract rats, and a kitchen that could pass for something bigger than a hotel room hot plate. Your latest apartment search included something more along the lines of – central air, washer and dryer in unit, storage closet, a kitchen with a window above the sink, a mud room or something that could be used for one, and a lazy susan cabinet. And somehow, these were all non-negotiable. Mr. & Mrs. Picky Pants…or, are we just old and refusing to live in the same building as a frat. Hm, the later.

d383cf36.jpg.505x650_q85Looking, sounding and having opinions just like your parents. The first time you say or do something and realize that is exactly how your mom sounded, or your dad acted and you’re paralyzed by sheer horror at the event. It’s not that it’s actually so awful, it’s more like when you walk into a room where someone in naked, you’re more shocked and confused then you are sure of what just happened.

We used to think that getting older, feeling older, or worrying about being older was something bad, but, to be honest, when you look at twenty-two year olds now, aren’t you relieved you aren’t THAT anymore? Someone once said,”Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.” When you think of it in those terms, all those things listed above are an amazing and comical thing that we are all lucky to have as part of our lives. Getting older is like good wine, the olda’ the betta’!

The Sides of Needing Space June 23, 2014

Posted by doinglaundryinheels in Apartment Life, Dating, Family, GoodGuys File, Health and Fitness, Life Lessons/Growing Up, Men, Real World, Relationships, Women.
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The GoodGuys File

There are two types of people out there, those who need space and those who do not. Most people like to think they’re one kind, but are probably the other. So, what happens when you’re in a relationship and spending the majority, if not almost all, your time with the same person? What happens you ask? Fights, tension, lashing out or snapping for no good reason. Human beings weren’t meant to be alone, but they weren’t meant to be together 24/7 either. Finding the balance in a relationship is a fine line, but it isn’t an invisible one.

There are two sides to “I need space” and the only way to make it work, is to understand where the other person is coming from. For people who really do need space, it’s about feeling suffocated. People don’t necessarily want to be without you, they also don’t necessarily want to be alone, they just want some air. Like when you’re stuck in a crowded subway car, or a stuffy office building, you just want to get outside – it’s not that you don’t like where you are, or who you’re with, you just need some air. Space allows people to refocus on their relationship, or other things. For many people, they love their significant other so much, it can difficult to really get other things done while they’re together. They make excuses or procrastinate doing things because it’s easy to just hang out or go out when you’re with the person you like. Alone time lets them work on the other elements on their life like work, career, finances, family and friendships. Sometimes, space doesn’t even mean being alone, it means being apart. Visiting family for a week, going out with friends, or even going to work or out after work can be space. It’s a new setting, a new set of people, and if anything, it generally makes them miss being with you more.

Some people simply don’t need as much space as others, probably because they aren’t used to it. Maybe they are an only child, or have felt a lot of separation in their life. To them, needing space is a synonym for all sorts of things – it means not wanting to be with the other person, it means leaving, it brings up the anxiety of being alone, which for many people can be difficult. For people who aren’t used to being alone, or don’t have a need for it, hearing “I need space” is instantaneously negative. It makes them feel like they’ve done something wrong and they’re being punished, it creates a sense of insecurity and even fear. However, some people, they just don’t need space. They are people persons, they like being social, they like chatting and telling stories and laughing and being around people. Not to say that people who need space aren’t like this, but for some people, life is just boring without others.

So, what’s the right way to go about making it work? First rule of thumb; don’t deny people who need space. Telling someone you don’t want them to have time alone is the fastest way to start the beginning of the end. People don’t like being denied something that’s rightful theres, people also don’t like being bossed around. There are going to be moments, maybe fights, where space is the last thing you want but you’re going to have to let them have it because they need it, and your relationship needs it. Second rule of thumb; understanding people who don’t need space. Whether they have an emotional reaction to the word “space”, not like being alone, or simply want you to stop leaving every single time you need to take a breath, listen to them. See where they’re coming from and work to control how often you might need space. Walking away isn’t always the answer, sometimes things need to be handled together.
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