Thursday, June 21, 2018

28 Things in 28 Years.


28..
That's how old I turned this recent monday, June 18th. 
Since then I have been really slowing down the week and trying to make the most of this new-turned age. I am excited to see what lessons I learn in the next 365 days of my life and what adventures I'll go on..But before I do, I have written down 28 Lessons that I've learned in the last 28 years of my life. Of course I've learned oh so much more, but I figured these were twenty-eight things I wish I knew back then and are glad I know now..


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28. Have the Harry Potter Trilogy on DVD. When you're sick, on summer break, it's a rainy day, or when you need a nostalgic pick me up.

27. Drink More Water.  Water is hard to drink, I get it, But when I started drinking a gallon of water a day, I saw so many improvements  in my hair, skin, nails, bones, energy..Everything! and it flushes all the gunk out..what a win. 

26. Read More Books. I've always been a book lover, thanks grandma, and so I've tried to always keep a library of my favorite books. The more you read, the more you learn, the more you read the more self-care you contribute too. My Current Faves: "Own Your Glow" by Latham Thomas, This is Me by Chrissy Metz, and "Grace not Perfection" by Emily Ley

25.  Call Your Parents. I can't get through the day without talking to my parents, even if its for a few short minutes. And now that they moved out of state and 1500 miles away from me, I want to stay in touch with them even more so. Our phone calls are what I will always cherish. 

24. Dream Big and Go For it. It's easy to say you have a dream and then waiting on it. But go for it. There is no better time than now to shoot for your wildest dreams. Keep pushing on, switch up your form of attack, and make it happen. 

23. Study Hard. High School, College, etc. Open your textbook and read, even if you think you don't need to use the book for anything, the best thing you can do is expand your knowledge and study hard. 

22. Surround yourself with people who inspire you. There is absolutely no point to continue surrounding yourself with people who suck the energy and happiness out of you. Surround yourself with people that feel like a hot shower on a cold day, who inspire you to create and do, who make you feel like dancing in the rain. 

21. Accept your mental illness and ask for help. Anxiety, Depression, OCD, etc. They are so important and so relevant in our every day lives. It's okay to admit that you're struggling, we all are, but reaching out to a friend and a doctor was the best decision I ever made. You are not alone, You are loved, You are worthy, and are needed. 

20. Believe in yourself and your potential. I always tell people that I am my own hype-squad. and it's true, I had to learn to clap for myself and believe in all that I can do. The cliche is true: you can do anything you set your mind to.

19. Wake up Early and Enjoy the Morning Calm. I learned this at a young age from my dad, wake up with the sun, make a cup of coffee, and enjoy the calm and quiet before you begin your busy day. Me time is everything and allowing yourself to wake up and refresh before the day is so important. 

18. Always Keep Bagel Bites and Top Ramen in the House. Because sometimes all of your bills are due at the same time and you realize you forgot to go grocery shopping. Or sometimes you get home from work and you don't want to cook a big meal. 

17. Become Best Friends with your Siblings. The person/people who will always be there for you since day one are your siblings. Becoming friends with my big sister was such a great blessing because I know that she will always be there for me and always have a understanding for me without judgement. 

16. Find something you love. Find a passion, even if it's just a hobby. It is important to find something that we love to do so that we can have something to go to during hard times, or down time, and just to make our souls happy. Writing, Drawing, Dancing, Blogging, Exercise ..whatever. Just find something. 

15. Watch these classics: Pretty in Pink, The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller's Day off, Fast times at Ridgemont High, 16 Candles, Teen Witch, Footloose, A Walk to Remember, Drop Dead Fred, Harry and the Hendersons, Now and Then, The Craft, Fried  Green Tomatoes, Stand By Me, The Sandlot, American Graffiti, and Cry Baby. 

14. Love everyone and Be Kind to People. It's simple, it's what we learn as kids...Be Nice to People. It really isn't that hard to just be kind. and sometimes, yes, people are difficult but Love them anyways. It costs nothing and chances are, they need it more than you know. 

13. Play in the Sprinklers. The summer after SR and I got married we had sprinklers going in the front yard to water the grass on a hot humid day. I decided, lets go run through the sprinklers. It was the best decision. We remembered to be kids, have fun, and we were able to cool off in the hot summer. Enjoy the Little things. 

12. Turn off the Technology. Disconnect with the world for atleast an hour a day. TV's, Phones, Computers..etc, it takes up so much space in our lives and it makes the world a little more fuzzy. It's so beneficial to your health to disconnect and go outside, or work/meditate in silence. Be without technology and recharge your mind. 

11. Buy Yourself Flowers. I am obsessed with having flowers and greenery in the house. And I love buying flowers for myself because its just a little gift that brightens my soul and my house. 

10. Be okay with Setting Boundaries. Set boundaries for yourself and the people in your life. They are needed. Learn to Say No, Learn to walk away, and learn to be okay with it. Boundaries are crucial to our overall health and happiness. 

9. Accept that Nobody is Perfect. We all have flaws, and when we learn to accept that nobody is perfect, even if their Instagram says otherwise, we are able to find better understanding and love towards each other. I am not perfect, I will lay all my cards out on the table and accept all my imperfections. 

8. Pray Hard and Pray Often. I think a lot of people have forgotten the art of praying and what a good few minutes in prayer can do for our lives. So learn to pray, learn to have a relationship with God, and never stop.

7. Accept the Apology You never Received. This is by far one of my most favorite pieces of advice that I ever received.  Sad matter of the fact, most people will not admit when they were wrong and they won't apologize for what they've done. So don't hold on to that pain and that weight. Accept the apology you never received and make peace with it. 

6.  Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent. The Goddess, Eleanor Roosevelt, said this and it has stuck with me since my teen years. People will treat you the way you let them treat you (boundaries), and their words and actions will only affect you if you let them. But guess what, their opinions have nothing to do with who you are, truly are, so don't give them the power to upset you.

5. Stop Apologizing and Explaining yourself. The moment I stopped apologizing for things, even when they weren't anything to be sorry for, I felt free. I constantly felt the need to explain to people why I do certain things, why I have certain feelings towards things, etc..But I learned that it's none of their concern, I live my life the way I do because it makes me feel happy and warm...So, stop explaining that and just do you, boo!

4. Step out of your comfort zone. Live fearlessly and do something you are unsure of. For example: Go into the ocean even though you are pretty sure you will (a) get attacked by a shark or (b) get sucked under by a wrecked ship. These are real fears of mine..

3. Learn the art of Balance. Lay on the couch and watch movies all day and then workout the next day. Eat your favorite hamburger or mexican food and then eat a salad. Drink a Beer, Drink a water. Party on Friday, Rest on Saturday. It's all about balance..and it works wonders. 

2. Don't feel like you need to keep drinking since everyone is. If you don't want to drink, Don't Drink. If you don't want to do another shot of crappy vodka because you feel like you've met your limit, Don't take the shot. You know your body, you know your limit (hopefully) and you don't need to always do what others are doing. 

1. Love Yourself. Above anything else, accept yourself, love yourself, trust yourself..Be Yourself. 




Here We Go 28, Let's Do This!

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Thursday, June 7, 2018

Perspective.



"If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change." - Wayne Dyer

What if you've been looking at something from the wrong direction? What if you've been taking your situation for granted? And what if all you needed to do was take a step back to get a closer look? If you are nodding your head and thinking, "Girl, Yes" - Don't worry, I've been there and I've got you covered...

*****

Lately it seems like there have been things thrown in my path which have forced me to take a step back and take a closer look at the bigger picture; Look beyond myself to really see myself. My Grandma passing on mine and speedracers wedding anniversary, my childhood home being sold, my parents moving out of state, Learning to Let Go etc. All of these big changes that I've mentioned several times before but only referring to them as storms. And it's true - I've been drowning here - and this last weekend took a lot out of me. Mentally, Physically, and Emotionally. June has started off bumpy; and that's okay. 

Perspective. 

I really began focusing on seeing things from a different perspective after a service at Church a few weeks back. The service was about reading the bible from a different perspective and how to stop searching for things that will tell us about ourselves. There is a reason why so many find the bible confusing and hard to read, and that is because when we read it, we are reading it in hopes of finding something that helps us reveal what WE should DO. and in hopes of learning something NEW about OURSELVES. But we have it all wrong. We should read the bible from the perspective of God. And we should allow his words and his actions to reveal more of HIMSELF to US. Perspective. 


The last night we spent in my parents house, a week ago, we slept in my old bedroom on a air mattress. I told Speedracer, "This sucks. I'm sleeping on an air mattress in my own room. I don't want to go to sleep because I don't want it to be tomorrow. I don't want to say goodbye." -- and he reminded me of something that's important, really important, Gratitude. To have gratitude for the home we share together, and for the home my family spent 22 years in. He reminded me by saying, "We can still drive by this house and see it whenever we want. Think about the people who lost their homes in fires, hurricanes, and other disasters. All of their things are gone and they can't drive past their homes because they aren't there." -- Perspective. Sometimes I forget how smart of a man I married. and it truly had me thinking. Wow, I am being ungrateful right now. and wow, I can still drive past this home whenever I want; some people don't have that luxury. 

Four days later, we got back from sacramento after being at the airport since 4:30am where we headed straight to SR's baseball game in which took us forever to get into because of a marathon happening in downtown, and I was exhausted. We got home and I didn't want to do a dang thing. Monday morning I woke up excited that I could spend the whole day vegging on the couch watching netflix. and I did just that. I needed a full day to recharge and relax my body and my mind. I could have complained that I was exhausted from traveling, packing up my childhood home, driving 11 hours to Sacramento, getting no sleep, had 2 days worth of funeral services for my Grandma, and spent sunday morning traveling...But, I didn't. I just sat with being exhausted and I let myself just BE how I was at that moment in time. I was healthy, I got to spend the weekend with my family, I got to play card games and laugh with my cousins who I don't see very often, I got to laugh, cry, and talk with my mom for 11 hours on a car ride, I'm blessed to have a supportive husband, and I was reminded of where I came from. Perspective.

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So here is the truth: It's easy to complain, to blame, to be ungrateful. It's easy to fall into negative patterns when it seems like everything around you is on a time bomb blowing up in your face. And we can easily decide to blame all of our circumstances on others and bad luck. Or, we can take a step back and gain a little bit of perspective. Self-awareness is key when it comes to looking at something from a different perspective. When I find myself in the same patterns I have to ask myself: Why do I feel this way, What makes this so bad, How can I change my circumstance? What am I not seeing? -- We are conditioned to see things in one way, we believe that there is only one side to every story, one side to each problem, and it's one way or no way. This is where we are wrong and where I believe we fall into negative, repetitive patterns. 

Perspective. Is one of the biggest key players in my recent self-care, self-growth and reevaluation on my life. I'm allowed to reinvent myself; but in doing so I needed to take a step back and gain a new perspective. I looked at myself from all angles, and it's true, I may not understand some parts of me and I may be clueless when it comes to why people have certain feelings towards me. But opinions are just opinions, they aren't a definition of who I am. Perspective. My Grandma didn't pass, My Parents didn't move, all to spite me. It's life, and change is going to occur. Circumstances change, just as we do - and we can complain or we can fall in line and figure out how to continue on. There is growth in Perspective. There is gratitude in the perspective. Great things start to happen the moment you decide to change your perspective...If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change....Remember that! 




Thursday, May 31, 2018

Once an Abalar Girl...


"You don't have a place to live? A House?" - My Sister asked me.
"I do. but this, this place, this isn't my home." - I answered.


* * *


It was 1996. 
We moved from Sacramento to a little country town in the heart of San Diego County. The name of this little, quaint town: Ramona. Population: Everyone knows Everyone. 

I was days from turning 6, my big sister a month from 9. The new house had a big drive way where it sat up on a hillside that had a big tree outside the front window  planted in a bed of ice-plant that hugged the side of the house. There was a back porch that led out to a backyard, with a fence on a small hill that led into a even bigger part of the yard. I couldn't tell you how long that fence lasted, I think my parents took it down rather quickly. and the backyard eventually had a pool added, a bbq, and a trampoline. The back porch eventually became a sunroom, and the big tree out front eventually got replaced by a large deck. Many barefoot prints and glass coke bottle caps swarm the outside corners of these walls. And here we are - 22 years later - and the deck, the sunroom, and the pool will now become distant memories. And yet, that's just the outside of the house... 

The kitchen was filled with home cooked meals created by the hands of my mother; a woman who taught us about different cultures and delicacies through recipes from all over the world. Mac n Cheese and morning french toast made by Dad on the days he was home from the fire station. Cakes, Pastas, Lunches, Dinners; Poptarts for Dad, Salt and Vinegar Chips for Sissy, and Graham Crackers for Me. All the Cabinets full of memories, even the blender that fell from the top shelf which resulted in mom's broken nose. 


The Dining room filled with nightly conversations, advice from dad, jokes from mom, and crazy stories about cheer camp from sissy. Wood floors that was once carpet and if you peel up the wooden floors you'll see outlines of our bodies that we drew on the concrete before the wooden floors were put in. We made our forever mark on the house; even our dogs paw prints made an appearance. Lyndsay and Ashlee "Livd and Died Here" (even though we are still very much alive.) Our Dogs not knowing how to walk on slippery wood flooring, only to slide across the room and running into every table post as we tried to eat dinner. The neighborhood  kids coming up to the front window asking if we could play while watching us eat dinner at the table. "After Dinner if it's not too dark" mom always said. 



The living room that hosted many forts built for movie nights - filled with my sisters friends so they could have "scary movie nights," in which gave me nightmares for as long as I could remember. My friends sprawled out on the floor and couches so we could stay up late watching movies and eating popcorn that mom would spend months finding in her couches. Dad always eating leftovers with one of moms good towels as his place mat. Mom sitting by the fireplace to warm her back during cold months. Many holidays waking up at 4am to Open presents as a family so that Dad could be involved before having to go to the Fire Station for a 3 day shift. The living room, a stage for Sissy and I to showcase our dance skills that we spent hours choreographing - always ending in the big finale of me carrying my big sister on my shoulders. A showcase for "I just can't wait to be king, in which Sister was always Simba - my sister singing the National Anthem over and over, Where we practiced our cheer moves for every competition, and where I spent hours practices lines and dance moves for every musical I was in. The couches that were filled with conversations over coffee with Dad and stained with  7 layered bean dip mom made for football sundays. 




The 1st bedroom - Mine - I've had 3 different beds in that room - different TV stands, dressers, everything. I watched out that front window for 11 years. I brought home my very first puppy bought specifically for me, into that room. Madison Noel, my Beagle. I made my closet my own little hide away, where I drew pictures and wrote words on the backside of the sliding closet doors. I learned how to curl my hair and do my makeup in that room - while sitting on the floor for hours on in looking into my closet mirrors. Forts that I made under my bed, brushes that were sang into while dancing to my favorite songs, my first diary hidden behind my TV stand. The room where I got inspired to start my Blog when I was 14 years old. Fights with friends, Sleepovers with Friends, that window screen was popped in and out over a dozen times during my teen years - Sorry Mom and Dad. Many secrets and pinky promises made in that front little room. Lots of dreams, desires, and future plans written among the 4 cheetah print walls. 


My Senior Year, 2008, I was able to move into my sisters old bedroom. She had already been out of the house for well over a year. I somehow convinced my parents to let me paint the room red - this room became my sanctuary. More brushes sang into, I fell in love with drawing, black paint, and begun a mini library of my favorite books in this room. I rehearsed lines for plays in this room. I poured my heart into my blog in this room, I cried, laughed, loved, sang, danced, and grew into an adult in this room. Every dance, Every Friday Night football game was talked about in this room. I got ready for my high school graduation in this room. I fell in love with Speedracer and wrote about it in this room. These red walls were the start of many hopes and dreams; and to this day they've kept my secrets and listened to my prayers. 



***

Our Home sold in less than 15 hours of being placed on the market. My parents have had a little over 30 days to pack up their stuff for their move which is 1,500 miles away from here. A 21 hour drive. I will no longer be 40 minutes from my parents. Not in the same town, county, or state. and I officially don't know what to do. I'm lost. I'm angry. I'm devastated. I'm confused. When my parents told us the house sold, I immediately  text my sister and told her, "Well, I don't have a home." 

"You don't have a place to live? a House? - My sister asked me.
" I do. but this, this place, this isn't my home." I answered.

I haven't lived at home in over 7 years. And the home I've built with Speedracer is one that I cherish so deeply. But nothing compares to your childhood home, your first love, where your parents are..

My Home. My home is where I spent 22 years learning, loving, growing. It's where my greatest memories are. It's a front door that when it opens you can see my parents sitting on the couch enjoying the food network. It's where you can see me and dad running down the hallway towards each other with toilet paper rolls to see if we'd bounce backwards. It's where you can see mom in the kitchen cooking dinner while Sissy is sitting on the bathroom counter doing her makeup. It's where you can see us sleeping on the trampoline during the summer and running inside at 4am when the morning dew soaks the blankets. It's where I see our pups: Holly, Candy, Sunny, Shasta and Madison. And the other dogs we've had there along the way: Capone, Piston, Apollo, Josie, Wednesday, and Modi. It's where I see my sister rocking my nephew to sleep. It's where I see speedracer showing up for the first time to give me flowers when I was sick. It's where I see the first time I met my Brother-in-Law as he walked up the driveway wearing a Patriots Jersey we made fun of him for wearing. It's where I see football sundays during the fall and Nascar Sundays during the spring. It's where I see family board games and watching mom cry from laughing so hard during a game of Redneck Life. It's where I see Dad and I having head banging wars while singing every word to Bohemian Rhapsody. It's my family. It's where I feel complete. It's where I feel safe. 

My heart aches the most unimaginable pain. I physically can't do it. How can I say goodbye? Where do I go on the weekends and holidays? I can't bare the fact that I can't ever go home again. My memories, My parents, my home. It's over. Where do we go from here? What comes next? 


...So for now, I guess I say, Thank You Abalar, for being the place that shaped me into who I am. That gave me place to go to for 22 years when I needed to remember where I come from. A place where I am loved. A place where I feel comfort and safety. A place that gave me so much. I don't know the family that is about to move in nor do I know that families that will live there in the future. But I do hope that if there ever comes along a little girl who will call you her home...that she grows to love you as much as I do and that her memories will be ones that she holds onto for a lifetime. Once an Abalar Girl, always an Abalar Girl. 





Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Shaping our Lives through Consistency.



When it comes to the growing process and learning about self-love, other people, life, etc. - I believe that consistency is the most important thing next to honesty. What if we all tried to live our lives in a consistent manner? How do you think we'd all react to each other? If we were consistently loving, forgiving, accepting, and open? Consistent living is something I could only wish upon others. As for me, I have been in a season of living my life in a way that shapes me by what I am consistently doing. Manifesting those goals, Meditating on who I am and who I am becoming. Staying consistent and dedicated to never-ending change. Consistency is developed by past patterns and current patterns. Learned behavior VS self-taught behavior. What are specific patterns you have followed or not followed? How often have you changed up those behaviors? These are some questions that have been brought to my attention when thinking of consistency. and with learning a  few things along the way, Okay, I've learned a lot of things along the way - but here is a short 5 lessons on consistency:

One.  Remember your Why.
This was HUGE for me when I was going through Cosmetology School. I've told the story of my mindset going into cosmetology school - and I also told the story of how wrong I was in that way of thinking. Along the way, I had been told to remember my why; why I started, why I was doing things the way I was, what I wanted to accomplish etc. And it became a game changer for me. With anything, I think it's important to know your why. Keep your eye on the why. Focus. And when you do that - it's going to ensure consistency in your life. 

Two.  Start with one and work your way up.
I often feel when we want a change in our life, we try to go for a dramatic turn around and change everything all at once. This is where we spread ourselves to thin and get worn down to quickly. I think it's important to pick a target area and focus on that before moving onto the next thing. For me, I like to pick a general area of what I would like to focus on - whether it's physical health or mental health, my living room vs the kitchen, saving money. etc. And as I get comfortable and start seeing changes in these smaller details, I can slowly incorporate the next things into it all while staying consistent in my focus. When it doubt, 21/90 rule. It takes 21 days to form a habit, 90 days to make it a lifestyle. 

Three.  Schedule it.
I'm a huge planner. I have a huge calendar that I triple check on a daily and at the beginning of each month I write down everything that we need to do or are doing that month. I have a happy planner that I keep on my like I do my cellphone. I refer to it more than I check my social media accounts - it has everything - my work schedule, clients appointments, formulas, phone numbers, birthdays, anniversaries, weekly goals, daily goals, monthly goals, meal plans, workout and rest days -- okay you get it. It has everything! and I found writing everything down and crossing things off as I go has really helped me be consistent. Time Management my friends - it's a game changer. 

Four.  Ignore the Voices.
Your alarm goes off, you slowly open your eyes, hit snooze, roll back over and let out a big *sigh* - Time to get up, feed the dog, make the kids...*ahem* husbands lunch, and go go go. But wait, you told yourself you'd go to the gym today. You have that grocery list that's been sitting on the counter for 3 days, that pile of laundry has been sitting on your couch for a week waiting to be folded, you need to turn the tv off and read a book. so many things you need to do and yet you've been listening to all the negative voices in your head that's been telling you "Just rest, finish this episode, do it tomorrow" and the people around you are telling you things like "you won't do that, you can't do that, why are you doing that?" -- So many voices that are so loud you can't even think. Repeat after me, ZONE THEM OUT. Turn down the volume. Ignore the voices and start making affirmations of positive thinking. 

EX) " My Day is full of new opportunities and positive outcomes. I am strong enough to get through it all." 

Five.  Tighten those boot straps and jump back on the horse.
There is this repetitive notion that once we fall of the horse, we won't get back on. Fallen off the wagon if you will. But I like to say horse because we have much more control of the direction we want the horse to go in. Miss a day of the gym? No Biggie - hit it hard the next day. Forgot to throw a load of laundry in before bed? Do 2 loads in the morning while making your breakfast. Had a "cheat meal" that turned into "cheat weekend?" It happens. Jump back on it head strong come monday. As long as you keep that horse in sight once you've fallen off..You will always be able to get back on. Stay motivated. Stay focused on staying consistent even through the set backs. We've all been there, we've all fallen off - and when you're struggling to get back on..Remember Your Why. and start back at 1. *enter brian mcknight song here* 




Learning to be consistent and have self-disciple is achievable but we have to be willing to put in the work. And here's the thing, being consistent can mean many different things to many different people. So maybe as you were reading this you were thinking of something specific or maybe you were reading it as a general understanding of being consistent. Healthy lifestyle, personal growth, friendships, relationships, career goals, home chores, etc. These are all great point of interests to focus on and reevaluate. We can learn how to be consistent in all of these aspects and through being consistent with these things, we can shape our lives for the better. 

What are somethings you with to become more consistent with? What needs more focus and better discipline in your life? COMMENT DOWN BELOW. 


Love without expecting, Love without fear...Love, Love, Love!


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