Wednesday, April 23, 2014

8 Ways To Be Happier Today

1. Set down social media for a period of time. If you’re like me, setting it down for an hour is a huge accomplishment. We’ve all heard the studies-social media makes us more sad and depressed after we stalk others than happier. So, set down the phone and focus on something else. That book you’re reading, your job, or that movie you’re watching. Enjoy your latte without documenting it, go for a run without checking in at the park, or print that adorable picture of you and your bestie and put it on your desk instead of Instagram.

2. Get outside and move. Or inside a gym if that’s your thing. Because endorphins make you happy, and happy people don’t kill their husbands.

3. Write a list of things that make you happy, and aim to do at least one of them per day. Maybe once a day is a stretch, but you should do something you love as much as possible. I love running, coffee, reading, being outside, and making lists, to name a few. When you are feeling especially down or in a funk, try to cross as many things off that happy list as possible.

4. Clean something. I know I can’t be the only one who feels like my world is a mess when my house/car/desk is a mess. By cleaning my room or taking care of those dishes that have been sitting in the sink, I feel like a weight is off my shoulders. With every room in my house that is organized, I feel a little more in control of my life. Even just making my bed in the mornings makes me feel like I can accomplish anything.

5. Take a nap, and then go to bed earlier tonight. Being sleep deprived does nothing for our crankiness. We all could use more sleep, so do whatever you can to turn in earlier. Squeeze in a nap if you can, and if you can’t, buy an extra shot in your coffee today, but then make a point to go to bed earlier tonight!

6. Tell someone you love that you love and appreciate them. It not only will make their day, but it will make you happier too. Call your mom, send your grandma a card, or e-mail your bestie at work and tell them you love them.

7. Tackle a to-do list. Make yourself a list of things you’d like to accomplish. Like, for instance sometimes my list is returning a phonecall or making a bank deposit. Simple things that you have been meaning to do and haven’t gotten to, but that are easy to do. This isn’t a list for a five year plan full of goals and steps, make a list that you can start crossing things off quickly, and get instant gratification for your superb productivity. I even heard once that instead of making a to-do list, at the end of the day, write down everything you’ve done and call it a Ta-Da List! Instantly, you can feel proud of your accomplishments, even if all that’s on the list is “Survived the day at work.” That’s something to be proud of, if you ask me.

8. If all else fails, get a spray tan. You have no idea the healing power of a good fake tan. It does wonders for my self-esteem, and makes me feel like a new woman. When I am too cheap to pay $20 bucks for a spray tan, I use Fake Bake self tanner and it is almost as great as a mystic tan. More work, but the same results.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Thoughts on Busyness

Life lately has been somewhat of a whirlwind for the Rasmussen house. Life suddenly picked up the pace and forced us to move, when I was still stuck in winter mode of cuddling up and turning in for the night at five PM. Spring brings new air, blooming flowers and new life, and it brings a season of busyness. For me, busyness brings exhaustion, both the good kind that allows sleep the second your head hits the pillow with a sense of accomplishment, but it also brings that defeating exhaustion. The kind that you feel in your bones, that is hovering over you as you look around at the laundry piling in the corner or the grass that needs mowed but no one has had a free minute to get to it. Busyness can also bring a sense of guilt, and for me, sometimes I just want to bury my head in the sand and avoid everything on that to do list and just hide, hoping it will go away.

But it doesn’t ever just go away does it? The bills must be paid, Monday always rolls around faster than I’d like, and the calendar fills up with events. And instead of stomp my feet and refuse to enjoy any full day because I’m too “busy” I’ve realized that I don’t have to wish away these days. That this season, though we may be stretched is also a time where we can grow. This week in particular I am going to try to take control of my schedule, instead of letting it control me. This means I hope to have better planned days, utilizing my free time better, and not wasting precious time in the black hole of social media.

I plan on tackling one or two chores after work, like washing the sheets and vacuuming and folding laundry, so it doesn’t all pile up all week and have me ripping my hair out by Thursday. I plan on cooking something nutrious and satisfying right after work (or talking Ronnie into cooking something nutritious...) so its out of the way and the temptation to order pizza when I am starving at 8 PM isn’t too strong to resist. I plan on being productive in the first few hours of my evenings so I can rest well for the rest of the nights, instead of scrambling at 9 PM to get a blog post written and lunch prepared for the next day.

I also am going to stick to my scheduled running schedule for the week-because if last week taught me anything, cutting out the one activity that fills me up and refreshes me is the worst thing possible to do when I am already feeling exhausted and burnt out. Even when busyness tries to get in the way of something you love, I hope you can find a way to move it to the top of your priority list. Because what we do with our time matters. And taking time to rest well, to recharge, to connect with a friend or loved one, to read a book or go for a run, whatever it is that your soul needs, it matters. Its important enough to make time for.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Weekend

I feel like Easter weekend started for us Thursday night, even though we both worked Good Friday. Thursday night, we attended a Staff Dinner at the church Ronnie works at, and got to experience the Good Friday service as a staff and family. We did this so we would be able to attend the service, but also serve on Friday night.  The service was incredible and so powerful. 

On Friday night, I served in our nursery and held babies while their parents attended the service. Ronnie and I were able to run out to grab some dinner real quick, but then he went back to work to get ready for Easter Sunday at church. These past few weeks we've both been SO busy at work, and our schedules have made it hard to spend time together. Tis the season, right?! 

Saturday my friend Molly and I ran EIGHT MILES people. Eight whole miles. By the end I was exhausted and could feel the blisters forming with each step, but it was still the highlight of my day. As tired as I was after, I felt like a million bucks! When I got home, Ronnie was still at the church working, so I gave myself a free pass on all the housework and sat on my porch with a diet coke and read a good book.

Sunday my mom attended church with us, and then we spent the afternoon BBQ-ing at my brothers house. It was a real treat to have the whole family together, and I got to play a bunch with my precious niece so I was thrilled. Our first married Easter was a success. Although, I am kind of sad that we don't have many major "first married" holidays between now and our one year anniversary! Wah!

I hope you got to spend the day reflecting on what Jesus did for us on the cross, and what the resurrection means in our every day lives. Because Jesus overcame the grave, He has given us new life in Him, the power to overcome sin, hurt, pain, failure and fear. Today, I am feeling refreshed and renewed which is a nice change from my normal miserable state on Monday mornings. Have a wonderful day, friends!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Every Blogger Needs This Coffee Mug

Today, I am keeping it short and sweet because its 9:30 PM and this week has wiped me out! I had a recruiting event today at work and worked ten hours, and went straight to church for a dinner and little service for the staff members + family.  I have been drooling over this "Eat Blog Love" Coffee Cup for months now, and when I was thinking of things I'd like to win in a giveaway, I realized I am easily pleased and this coffee mug was one thing. So, instead of gifting myself with it, my lovely sponsors and I want to give it, and a $20 gift card to Starbucks away to one of you lovely readers.

Enter away, and say hello to the gorgeous girls who teamed up to give it away. They're all gems, and I was friends with all of them before they decided to sponsor my blog which makes this whole thing REAL easy for me. I am confident you'll love them as well!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Being A Newlywed: What People Don't Tell You

Hello friends---today, one of my very favorite gals is taking over. Rachel's blog was one of the first blogs I ever read-her blog was inspiring, funny, and I felt like I was her instant BFF. Rachel is a gorgeous, charming southern belle who recently got married and has post full of wisdom and truth about what being a newlywed is actually like. ENJOY! 

Hi y'all! I'm Rachel and I blog over at Rachel Rewritten. 

To say I'm thrilled to be posting here on Brittany's blog is an understatement. I love her and I love everything her blog stands for, so I jumped at the chance to be a part of it! I'm a newlywed who loves Jesus and my husband, so Brittany and I have that in common! I'm here today with a little post about the newlywed life and the things no one tells you.

So, first you get engaged. And then it's all fun and games while you're surrounded by parties, showers, planning, and a big white dress. But what happens after the honeymoon ends? When all the hoopla dies down? Now you're just a wife, living the newlywed life. Here's the dish on what people don't tell you. 

{one} The advice starts pouring in. Everyone around you thinks they're an expert at marriage. Anyone from your hairdresser to your cousin's best friend's dog walker will provide you with unsolicited advice on how to make sure your marriage is successful. Take all these tips with a grain of salt people, because, let's face it, your marriage is YOUR marriage, not theirs. Even in our short 3 months of marriage, I've learned that I have to do what's best for us, regardless of the advice that's been given.

{two} People have no shame in asking about your sex life. You'll get the, "So how was the honeymoon?" question, along with a wink wink. Sorry people, what happens in the bedroom stays in the bedroom. This isn't the Real Housewives, I don't kiss and tell.

{three} The baby questions start before the reception is over. "So are y'all going to have kids soon? You should wait a while and enjoy yourself!" Oh, thank you, random stranger, who asks it as if they just asked something as simple as what I ate for lunch. It's the age old story---when you're dating, they want to know when you're getting engaged. Then engaged to married. And now married to having kids. Sure, we want kids. Just not yet. I want to enjoy this stage of life and the freedom that comes with it. But when it happens, we'll be the happiest couple around.

{four} Balancing friends and husband is more difficult than you'd think. As the days go by, I realize how important it is to spend time with my husband. Not just sitting next to each other on the couch, but real, intentional, involved time with each other. And at the same time, I miss my movie dates and girls nights with my friends. The balance is a very fine line and I'm learning day to day that it's not easy. In the end, I know my husband comes first and everything else, second. Your real friends know that and understand. Even if the girls nights go from once a week to once a month, it makes those nights a little more special! 

{five} Time flies when you're a newlywed. I feel as if our wedding was just yesterday, and yet, almost 3 months have gone by. Cherish each day with your husband. Make time for each other and don't let the days slip away. Before I know it, it's going to be our year anniversary, so I want to make sure we make the most of this year! 

{six} Take time for you. Although spending time with your partner is so important, you've gotta have "you" time, too. Find something that you like to do on your own. Create a quiet space in your house for you to enjoy. Trust me, your husband will thank you when you're refreshed and energized. And he needs to do the same! Your marriage will thank you--when you ARE together, that time will be so much sweeter.

{seven} Despite everyone telling you the first year is the hardest, it'll be the best time yet. Learning to live with someone and figuring out all of their quirks and habits is tough, but I wouldn't trade this time for anything. We've been together for 3+ years, but these first few months of marriage have been special--I feel like we're back in the early stages of dating when everything is new and exciting again. I wait impatiently for him to get home from work. I look at him and get butterflies, because this man is my husband, and I get to be his wife. It's a crazy wonderful feeling.

Well, even after all of that, I'm clearly no marriage expert (hello--3 months in!) but every day I'm growing and learning, and every day I'm growing to love my husband more. I think I like this newlywed stage, y'all. Thanks for having me, Brittany!