“We Can Do Better”

“Let’s all learn from our mistakes, and try to be a better person than we are today.”

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Hello, friends. I want to talk about something today that is very near to my heart. It may be triggering to some, and to others, you may not even care. Today, I want to talk about bullying. Specifically, cyber bullying. Recently, a very funny man named Wade, who I regularly watch on YouTube, and who I follow on social media, made a post to his Tumblr page that tugged at my heart. In his post, Wade spoke poignantly about how we, as a generation who spends much of our lives online, treat other people on social media, and shed some light on the ever growing issue of cyber bullying. Continue reading ““We Can Do Better””

5 Pictures, 5 Stories

Immediately, I volunteered Kyle and I to help him out. We got to work, lighting 300 tea lights, balancing them on the railings, around the benches, and spelling out “WILL YOU MARRY ME?” on the dock.

Hello, friends! I know I’ve been missing a bit lately, and haven’t been able to post my daily prompts and whatnot, but I have a good excuse, I swear. Well, kind of. To be honest, the last few daily prompts have been hard for me. I honestly haven’t been able to write anything on them. I couldn’t even think up a silly haiku in place of a blog post. I did manage to write out a couple of dream journal posts, but not much else. My son has also been going through a very clingy phase as of late, and I’ve barely been able to sit at my computer. I even spend most of his naps napping, because I’ve been exhausted lately. Ugh.

Anyway, I wanted to do something fun, and share a few random pictures with you guys, as well as some stories associated with them. I dug through my Facebook albums, and found some good ones to share, so here we go! 5 Pictures, 5 Stories!

1. The Ring
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On February 28, 2014, after a delicious dinner, Kyle and I went for a late-night walk around our favorite lake. It had been snowing for the last week, and there was thick, frozen snow on the ground, making it impossible to really walk. Kyle kept leading me towards this tiny fishing dock, where he and I would sometimes sit when the weather was warm. In the distance, we could see a young man already on the dock, lighting what appeared to be candles. Kyle and I walked over, and asked him what he was doing out on the lake, in the dark, wearing a suit, and lighting candles. He informed us that it was his girlfriend’s birthday, and that her mother was out driving her around, because he was planning to propose to her… but he needed to light 300 tea lights, and was having a hard time with the wind.

Immediately, I volunteered Kyle and I to help him out. We got to work, lighting 300 tea lights, balancing them on the railings, around the benches, and spelling out “WILL YOU MARRY ME?” on the dock. Kyle even had to make a run to the store to buy another lighter, once the one the guy had stopped working. The end result was beautiful (I took pictures), and we got to stick around to watch the proposal. After it was done, we talked a little bit, before parting ways. As soon as we got in the car, Kyle informed me that he had brought me there to propose to me, and that he was disappointed now, because it was ruined. I laughed, because I had already figured that out. Determined to still propose, we drove to another park in town, where he awkwardly dragged me to the gazebo, and attempted to propose. I couldn’t stop laughing. He gave up on the speech, and we kissed, and he put the ring on my finger. Sappy speeches are not his thing, and it was a perfect proposal anyway. That was two years ago today, and we are now friends with that other couple! Happy birthday, Kelsey! 😉

2. Boys and Girls Club
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One of my favorite things about working at Target was how often we had the change to volunteer. Over the course of just one year, I volunteered at a homeless shelter making meals, at a daycare center reading books, and my favorite, volunteering at the Boys and Girls Club of Peoria. This was an amazing experience. The Boys and Girls Club that we went to was one of two in the area, as the cities are divided by east and west, and was located in a low income neighborhood, across from a school. We brought in new games for their game room, cleaned out the old games, painted walls, weeded and cleaned up their garden, and did crafts with the children once they got out of school.

I really wanted to do this because we did not have a Boys and Girls Club in my hometown, but we did have an after school program called Kids Out, which was for lower income kids, or kids who didn’t have anywhere to go after school. I went to this program for 3 years, and the counselors and volunteers were great. I was thankful to be able to volunteer with the Boys and Girls Club, and was so proud to be a part of something great, even if just for one day.

3. Hiking With Friends
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In June 2014, my good friend Corey came to visit Kyle and I. It was my first time meeting him in person, but we had been friends via World of Warcraft, my podcast, Twitter, and Facebook, for a long time, and he was one of my closest friends (still is, don’t worry!). We decided to all go to Starved Rock State Park and go hiking, despite the fact that NONE of us were dressed for hiking, or for the heat. I was wearing jeans and sandals for crying out loud! It was an amazing experience, and I can’t wait to take my son there when it gets warmer. Corey took this amazing picture of me taking a picture of a mama deer. You can see one of her two babies off to the left. It was such a fun day! He also took a picture of Kyle and I by the waterfall, which is one of my favorite pictures of us. I was also pregnant with a tiny Liam during this time!

4. The Ginger Kittens
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In 2009, a little while after my ex and I started dating, I decided that I wanted to adopt a cat. I had had always had cats throughout my entire life, and it felt odd not having one now that I was an adult, living on my own. We went to an adoption event at a PetSmart, and fell in love with two, ginger kittens. I decided immediately that I wanted them both, if possible. We had enough to cover the fees for both kittens, and sat down with one of the employees, and began the paperwork process. We finished all of the paperwork, handed it over for them to look at, and went over to play with the little babies. A few minutes later, the woman came back, and informed us that we needed to be 21 or older to adopt. I was crushed. I had the female kitten in my arms, and had already fallen in love with her. As we put them back into the cage, and walked away, they climbed up their cage door and meowed loudly. I cried in the car on the way home.

A few months later, I bought my tuxedo baby girl, Jade, from a pet store (yes, this was before I knew better than to buy from a pet store). I had Jade until November 2014, when I was forced to re-home her with a friend, after struggling to find an apartment where we could all live. I cried for weeks, but I had no other choice. We have no animals now, as they are not allowed in our building, but I hope that we can bring another furbaby into our home in the future.

5. Out of the Darkness1383626_10200935288763954_1702612861_n

In October 2013, Kyle and I walked in the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Walk for Suicide Prevention. The previous year, a classmate of his had committed suicide, and we made Team Dallas t-shirts, and walked in his memory, as well as the memories of others in our lives who had been touched by the tragedies of suicide. Myself included. I’ve written a bit about it in the past here, but I’ve struggled with suicidal thoughts, as well as self-harm, since middle school. I tried to take my own life twice, and was, thankfully, unsuccessful both times. At the time this picture was taken, it had been 6 months and 2 days since the last time that I self-harmed, and I am proud to say that I never self-harmed again after that. It was an amazing experience, and I met so many wonderful people, who were all there to celebrate the lives of the loved ones that they had lost. I was unable to participate in 2014 or 2015, but I hope to participate again this year, with the people that I love, who have kept me grounded, and saved my life.

Thank you for reading, friends. I’ll post another one of these in the future if people enjoyed reading it.

Jan

Three Day Quote Challenge | Day Three

Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.”
― Oscar Wilde
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The Challenge

Hello, friends! Welcome to the final day of my ‘Three Day Quote Challenge’ posts. For my final quote, I chose one that sums of the very essence of my soul. This quote comes from the utterly fascinating, Mr. Oscar Wilde, who said a plethora of memorable, relatable things in his time on this earth, but this one in particular speaks to me. There is also a similar saying that I try to live by, which is, “Kill them with kindness.” Pretty self-explanatory, I feel. I spend a lot of my time online, and have for the majority of my teenage and adult life, and because of this, I’ve had my fair share of encounters with unsavory characters. I’ve always had a pretty level head, and I’ve learned not to feed the trolls, because it just isn’t worth it, and to be the bigger person. People can only bring you down, and get under your skin, if you allow them.

But, for some weird reason, these type of people also interpret kindness and genuine sincerity as attacks, and boy, it riles them up something fierce. So, whenever you have to deal with someone whose sole intent is to bring you down, or piss you off, follow the wise words of Oscar Wilde, and forgive them. Move on. Walk away. And eventually, after stroking their bruised egos for a little while, they will as well.

One last time, here is a recap of the rules of this challenge::

  1. Post in three consecutive days.
  2. You can pick one or three quotes per day.
  3. Challenge three different bloggers per day.

Here are my final, three nominations for the ‘Three Day Quote Challenge’, and I sincerely hope that you all choose to take part:

  1. Amy
  2. John Jr.
  3. Supergirl

I want to thank Christina one last time for nominating me for this challenge; you guys should definitely check her out. I had a lot of fun doing this challenge, and I hope that all of the wonderful individuals that I have chosen have fun with it as well.

Thanks for reading, friends.

Jan

200 Followers

Hello, you beautiful people! I just wanted to take a second to thank you all so much for all of the comments, constructive criticism, personal stories, advice, and laughter that you have shared with me these last few months. Today, I hit 200 followers on this little blog, and I could honestly cry.

I’ve started, trashed, and restarted blog after blog after blog, never feeling like anything that I wrote mattered, or that I would ever get anywhere. 200 followers is just a small milestone in the grand scheme of things, but it is huge to me. Even if you are only here for my daily prompts, or my occasional baby toy reviews, or my rants about social media drama, you have helped me overcome so much when it comes to my writing, how I express myself, and things going on in my life, and I owe you so much for that.

So, thank you. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to each and every one of you who have ever glanced at the words that I’ve typed out. I’m just an average girl, living an average life, and the fact that anyone takes any interest in that is mind blowing to me.

You are all amazing, and I look forward to sharing more of my life and stories with you in the future.

Stay awesome, friends.

Jan

The Lovely Blog Award

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Hello, friends! I am super excited, and totally honored, to tell you that I’ve been nominated for the Lovely Blog Award! As some of you have seen, I was also recently nominated for the Liebster Award, which was so great! I had seen the Lovely Blog Award floating around, given to some very deserving individuals, and now I’ve made the cut! I was nominated by the fantastic Lady CAS, who I adore entirely. I am so excited and humbled. Thanks again, Lady!

The Rules For Award Acceptance:
1. Each nominee must thank the person who nominated them (including a link to their blog).
2. List the rules, and post the blog award badge in the post.
3. Add 7 facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the Lovely Blog Award, and notify them that they have been nominated.

The official rules dictate that I tell you seven facts about myself, and I had to think hard about this one, because I’ve already posted two other posts with 30 total facts about myself, haha. After taking some time to think of a few more, here we are, and here are my seven facts!

7 Facts About Me:
1. Up until the age of 17 or 18, I hated my name. I’m still not a fan, honestly. It is spelled “Janise“, but pronounced the same as “Janice“. You’d think that would be obvious, but every teacher that I’ve ever had, from kindergarten up to my senior year, called me “Jan-EE-se“. Repeatedly. It became a running joke, but I hated it so much. I usually just go by “Jan” now.
2. I went to college in Newfoundland, Canada for one year. I was studying Psychology, which is something I have always been passionate about, but had to drop out due to financial problems. I still owe the school money, nearly 7 years later, and I have fears that I will never get to go back to school, or have a career.
3. I love Harry Potter. I can honestly say that the Harry Potter series played a huge role in shaping me into the woman that I am today, for so many reasons. Not ashamed!
4. I played the clarinet from ages 9-16. I originally wanted to play the trumpet, but my mom wouldn’t let me. I ended up being really good at the clarinet, and was selected as first chair every year. I was even specially chosen to attend several district music festivals (two of which required an audition), and was selected as first chair in all 3 music festivals, beating out over a dozen other talented clarinetists. Playing the clarinet was one of the only things that gave me a sense of pride, yet I foolishly threw it away, quitting band at the age of 16 for petty, stupid reasons. I’ve regretted it ever since.
5. I have mild social anxiety. I no longer experience anxiety attacks when in public, and have come quite a long way, but I still don’t enjoy being around other people. Family, friends, or strangers. Unfortunately, nobody seems to understand this, and often mistake my anxiety for rudeness, which only makes it worse.
6. I don’t really care for coffee, and I don’t like bacon. I decided to put these two facts into one, because they are equally addictive, and I have gotten equal amounts of hate for both. Come at me, bro.
7. I played World of Warcraft for 9ish years, but had to take a 1.5 year break when I was without a computer and internet. I came back only for a few months, after my son was born, but quit when I realized that there was absolutely nothing left for me to come back to. I’ve been drifting through the internet, alone, ever since.

Whew, that was fun! To finish off this post, I’d like to nominate the following 15 individuals for the Lovely Blog Award. I wish I could nominate everyone that I follow… but I can’t. Sorry.

My 15 Nominees For the Lovely Blog Award:
1. Jleigh
2. Supergirl2000
3. Amy
4. John Jr.
5. Gloria
6. The NYC Mom
7. Heather
8. The Flip of the Switch
9. Tessa
10. Matt
11. Accidental Hipster Mum
12. Life Beyond Mommy
13. Annette
14. Everythings Rosie and George
15. Paintbox Mum

Man, I need to follow more blogs. I apologize if this is the second or third time that any of you have been nominated, feel free not to participate if you don’t want to, I won’t be offended! I just wanted to recognize and share some fantastic blogs with you lovely folks.

I do hope that the rest of you guys accept and share! It is so nice that these awards exist, and I am so honored to have been recognized and nominated for two separate ones. They are also so fun to participate in, especially when I’ve got a little bit of writer’s block going on! Be sure to check out my fellow writer friends, and make a connection! Let’s all support each other. Thanks again, Lady CAS, for the nomination.

Thanks for reading, friends.

Jan

Random Prompt | Onion Garlic Chewing Gum

“Write a thank you note to a friend who gave you onion and garlic-flavored chewing gum.”

My dearest Becky,
Thank you so much, from the bottom of my heart, for the savory treat of mastication that you have bestowed upon me. Never in my twenty-five years on this planet did I think that I would enjoy the process of befouling my breath with the taste of onion and garlic, without filling my stomach with unnecessary calories and gorging. No longer will I be subjected to the struggle of finding manners in which to politely conclude conversations brought on by unpalatable individuals, as my fetid breathe should suffice as a deterrent for both unwanted conversation, as well as potential suitors! Your pungent gift will serve a great purpose, and I thank you for your thoughtfulness.

Yours truly, with little sarcasm,
Jan

Blogception

Delicious food things, fluffy animals, nature things, sad quotes, and a whole lot of Dan and Phil from YouTube. Yep. That’s basically what my Tumblr is. I’ve been obsessed with Dan and Phil lately. Oh my god. Just so fantastic.

I’m having some crazy deja vu right now. Weird.

Sorry that I haven’t been blogging much, things have been not so great in my life lately. We’ve been having even more car troubles (it never ends), and now we no longer have a car. Kyle is also in the processing of getting a new job, which will be amazing for us. A lot more money, a lot less hours, and much closer to home. We’re keeping our fingers crossed. More details on that to come later on!

I created a GoFundMe page to help us with our car situation, as we are currently relying on Kyle’s mom, as well a few of his coworkers, for rides. It is not fun. I know a lot of people are against these types of things, so I want to say thank you to everyone who has been supporting us and helping us try to raise funds, whether they donated personally, or shared my posts on Twitter and Facebook. Thank you all so much.

In other news, I finally have a personal Tumblr! Some of you may remember my porn Tumblr, which I recently sort of got back into posting on (not pictures of me, btw, just lots of other fabulous NSFW things), but this Tumblr is all for me, and the stuff I’ve been into lately.

Delicious food things, fluffy animals, nature things, sad quotes, and a whole lot of Dan and Phil from YouTube. Yep. That’s basically what my Tumblr is. I’ve been obsessed with Dan and Phil lately. Oh my god. Just so fantastic. You should check them out!

In other, other news, I’ve been playing with the idea of going vegan for 30 days, or more if I like it. I’ve been looking up a lot of cheap, easy recipes (as I only get to buy groceries once a month, and also can’t cook), and have found some really great ideas. It is something I have been wanting to try for a very long time, but it just never seemed like something I could do. I already hardly eat meat, and love vegetables and such, so it honestly wouldn’t be that big of a change, I think. Giving up cheese will be hardest for me, but I’d be willing to do it if it means improving my health and clearing my skin up a bit.

I’m also going to start running again at night, like I did before I got pregnant, since Kyle will be around a lot more at night to watch the baby. I’ve been missing it.

So, there’s a quick update, for anyone who was wondering what I’ve been up to. I hope to see some more of you over on Tumblr, where I seem to be spending most of my time these days. Time to watch some more Criminal Minds, which we just started over on Netflix.

Thanks for reading!

Jan