happy

Slow Living + Minimalism

Lately I’ve been feeling a heaviness in my chest and a lightness in my head. It kind of feels like all my commitments are catching up with me while simultaneously it feels like I’m not doing enough.

I’ve been struggling a lot with feeling like I’m living in the moment. I spend so much time on social media and the internet, pretty much doing nothing, and I’ve really wanted to take a step back from that. I’ve always had a really addictive personality and I’m definitely addicted to social media. I deleted snap chat this past week because it was the app I felt added the least to my life. I like the idea of deleting everything but 1 app but it feels kind of impossible right now. I know I should be able to cut down without just deleting everything but sometimes it takes cutting something completely out to stop feeling like you need it.

Anyways, I’ve been trying to find ways to feel more connected with everything, with life. I started reading up on “slow living” and the idea really stuck to me. If anyone wants to read a summary of what it’s about, click here. I’ve been trying to get back into hobbies, get more involved in things at school or in the community. My biggest problem still lies in motivating myself to do more in ~the real world~ and spend less time in cyber space. I’m working on it.

On the topic of “working on it” – last week I did a massive purge of my closet and I’ve genuinely never felt better. Minimalism is something I’ve been working on for years and I don’t necessarily think I’ll ever feel like I truly accomplished it, but I definitely feel closer. I’ve spent the last couple years selling my “unnecessary” items on kijiji, which while wonderful I still never felt like it really made a difference and I still owned way too much junk. Moving into an apartment with roommates where I only had one room to myself definitely helped. I got rid of a lot of the non-necessities. This past week as I mentioned I feel like I took a big step and finally got rid of so much clothes I never wear. Getting dressed in the morning was becoming dreadful because I spent so much time picking stuff out and not even being happy with it. So I finally got rid of all the items that no longer fit, that are out of style, that I don’t feel happy wearing, etc. I 10/10 recommend this to anyone. Less is definitely more.

On top of this random emotional baggage I feel like I’ve been randomly really grappling with my past lately. I don’t know what it is, but things like “Facebook memories” just never let you move on from things. I’ve been trying to make amends with the parts of my past I’m unhappy with, or the things that are out of my control. It’s hard, but I’m trying. If anyone has any tips to just like – stop caring? – that would be wonderful.

Anyways, this is a lot of emotional word vomit. I hope that with the holidays coming up soon that everything will fall into place. Soon I’ll be submitting my application for Midwifery and that will be one less (very big) thing to worry about.

I’m just here trying to remember to ~breathe~.

Live List: Picnic + Pond

Hello Folks,

I have been a little more active on here the last couple days. I did a few updates that hopefully made navigating a bit easier, and will help you to find the type of posts you want to read less frustrating.

One of the changes I made to my blog was a “page” called The Live List, and it’s a bucket list of sorts that my boyfriend and I created together to make the most out of this life we were given together (cheesy I know) but it’s been loads of fun! The idea was inspired by Kelly Jensen, and you can read a bit more about it here.

We have so much fun adding new items and even more fun completing them. The other day we completed our “picnic” and “swimming in a pond” ones! Here are some (crappy iPhone) photos from those days!

Take out food from Green Door
 Ok so our picnic may have been on a bench but it had the best view!


My wonderful Benny


The view


The swimming pond


I look like a lump but it’s the only photo of me from the pond haha


Benny at the pond 

Love always,
Kate

Little Life Update: Diagnostics And Kijiji

Hello Folks,

A little old fashioned life update here. I’m feeling like myself again lately (aka. not a cranky miserable piece of soggy toast). This is possibly going to be the cheesiest thing I’ve ever written on my blog so brace yourselves, but I think I found my calling.

Ok, so maybe that’s a tad bit dramatic and way too soon to tell, but I’ve been reconsidering going back to school lately and have really been looking into the health field. I considered nursing, and although it was my best idea I had come up with in a while, it still didn’t quite feel right. I had discussed this idea with my friend Chloe who told me aside from being a mother, she always pictured me as a nurse. I was at her house the other day when mid conversation I rudely blurted out “Do you have to do nursing to become a midwife?”, to which me told me that she didn’t think so, but that the course is extremely competitive.

The next day I spent hours researching the program, the prerequisites, the universities that offer the program, the application process, the acceptance rate, etc. I just wanted to know everything I could. Here is what I found: only three universities in Ontario offer the program, you can only apply to one per year or your application is disqualified, 75 people per university are called for interviews and of those only 30 are accepted for each university.

So it’s safe to say it will be a lot harder to get in than anything I’ve ever applied to before. And don’t worry – I’m prepared for this to be a long process which may take years to be accepted. Luckily all my university and college marks exceed their set minimum average, and I have (almost all) the high school requirements… except one. Stinking grade 12 biology… so guess who’s going back to high school?! This gal! Ok maybe that’s a slight over exaggeration. I am in the process of registering for grade 12 biology though! Luckily they have an online option, so I can do it from home and relatively at my own schedule.

I can genuinely say I have not been this excited about anything for a while. It just feels like a wonderful refreshing new start. On the topic of new starts, I’ve begun selling all my furniture on kijiji again. I swear I have an addiction. I sold my book shelf yesterday and am in the process of selling my dining room table. If only I could sell my hideous green leather couch and matching lazy boy… might take a lot more convincing from Ryan before I can finally kick those ugly 70’s pieces to the curb haha.

For now, this gal is feeling a lot better. My moods go up and down, but this last week has been the longest I’ve consecutively felt happy in a while. It may also have to do with this horrible nightmare I had at the end of last week where a ghost told me to stop wanting to die or someone else would take over my body? Yikes! I really would like my own personal dream analyst sometimes…

For now, I have my little kitty sleeping beside me with her precious squished face, I have Tim Hortons smiley face cookies I’m about to enjoy, and my lovely boyfriend got an unexpected long stay at home, so I’m beyond happy.

Love always,
Kate

Dear High School Kate: What I Know Now

Hello Kate,

Or I guess I should call you Katie, because that’s what you’re going by right now. This is you, at 20 years old. I wanted to share some “words of wisdom”, that I’ve gained in my 3 years since leaving home.

I know that you think New Liskeard sucks, but please try and appreciate the good that is under all that absolute crap. I know that your friends like to binge drink and flirt with your ex’s, I know that it will be hard to separate yourself from that, but once you do you’ll be left with two of the best friends that you have, and they’ll still be in your life today. But don’t forget to appreciate those other friends while you can. They’ve held you while you cried and made you laugh until you couldn’t breath. You have differences, but don’t forget to appreciate all your similarities while you can.

I know that sometimes it feels like you can’t relate to anyone in that town, but there are countless people who are in the exact same position as you. Waiting to get out to move to bigger cities and meet more open minded people. You’ll do it eventually. You’ll meet some of the most amazing people in your first year of Uni. They’ll be the type of friends you wanted all of high school. They play in a band, they try hard in school, they know how to have fun without puking at the end of the night. It’s a literal dream come true, hold out for that because you have so many good times coming.

Cherish the time you have with your family. You will never be a two minute walk from your grandma’s again, or a two second walk to your sisters bedroom. You won’t be able to sit down and eat with your family whenever you want, or lounge around with them watching tv. These daily activities you take for granted will be the things you miss the most when you’re off living on your own. I know you’re getting older, and sometimes you think your family doesn’t understand you, but I promise you they understand more than you give them credit for. You will go through so much shit in the next couple years, and they will be there for you more than anyone else. Laugh with your sister as much and as often as you can, because in your first year of Uni you’ll feel like something is missing inside, and it will take you a while, but it was laughter, the laughter you used to share with your sister every day when getting ready for school, or while hanging out together at night.

Don’t forget to take care of yourself. I cannot emphasize this enough. I know you’re sleeping on average 4-5 hours a night, going to school for 7 hours and working 4. Change this! Nothing is as important as sleep. Turn off your phone, shut your laptop, say good night to who ever you’re talking to, and GO TO SLEEP. School will not be as painful, work will go by quicker, your general attitude will be better. Please, just go to fucking sleep.

On the topic of help… there is NO shame in getting help. This is something you will struggle with to this day. Yes, you are most likely depressed, and that’s ok. Googling the symptoms of depression and trying to diagnose yourself isn’t enough. Crying every day isn’t normal. Your mum isn’t ignoring your crying, she just doesn’t know what to do. Talk to some one! Your school has a counsellor, there are help lines, your aunt is a mental health worker – just reach out. You are not crazy, you are not broken, you are not over reacting, you are not just emotional – you are perfectly normal, you’re just clinically sad and there are ways to feel better again. Time doesn’t have to be your only medicine.

Stay young little girl. I know that right now you’re going through so much shit that you don’t deserve to be going through. But at 20 years old, you feel 35, and I know that at 16 you are feeling so much older than you are already. I know that you’re being forced to deal with issues far beyond your years but are not yet old enough or mature enough to know how to properly deal with them. Here is my best advice: there is no shame in cutting people out of your life that don’t deserve to be there. Even if they’re blood. Actually, especially if they’re blood. You know who I’m talking about. They aren’t in your life now, they haven’t been for months. I know that at 16 you think they’re just going through something and that it’s something you can fix, but it’s not. They’re a grown up and you’re a child and none of this is your fault or your problem to fix. Your biggest worries should be school and how you’re going to spend your weekend, that’s it.

Before I go, here are my last few pieces of advice: save some money, hug your family more often, consider college, smile whenever possible, listen to more music, drive more carefully, get an iPhone instead of a blackberry, start exercising now, don’t give up soccer, take science classes, you don’t need to lose weight, love yourself endlessly – being confident isn’t cocky, start writing down your thoughts, bottle up your laughter, take more photos, be proud of the things you’re good at, STOP OVER THINKING EVERYTHING.

I promise that everything will be ok even when it feels like things couldn’t possibly turn around. When you feel like you can’t possibly make it through the day, remember that your track record for getting through a bad day is 100%, and that’s pretty damn good.

Love always,
20-year-old Kate (Katie)

 

What I’ve Learnt From Working Out (So Far)

Hello Folks,

So this marks the close of week 3 of BBG 0.1. I’ve been working out close to every day for three weeks after pretty much never working out a day in my life. I’ve never really felt the need to exercise before as I’ve been naturally smaller my entire life (thank you metabolism), but after reading countless articles about how important exercise is, and how there’s no better time to start than in your 20’s I thought why not. I always love an excuse to improve myself.

Here are a few things I’ve learnt from working out so far:

  • I haven’t felt this confident since people started calling me ‘pretty’ instead of ‘cute’ when I was a transitioning teen.
  • The post-work out glow is real. I honestly find sweat really attractive now (is this super weird? probably haha).
  • I have not regretted one work out, but I feel immense regret when I push my work out back a day (not even skipping it, just rescheduling!). I think there’s just some sort of pride linked to knowing you completed your exercise for the day.
  • I finally feel like I deserve my body. I know I haven’t been at this very long, so maybe this one is a bit premature, but I never felt like I deserved to be as small as I am since I eat pretty poorly and I know that I maintained this size by having a good metabolism, which is ultimately out of my control, but since I started working out it finally feels like I am the reason my body is like this, not my metabolism.
  • I feel like I’ve gotten better at listening to my body. I know that some days I’ve pushed myself or even that I may have done an exercise incorrectly and I need to give myself a day break to let my body heal itself. I’ve just never been so self-aware of how my body is feeling and how I should be caring for it.
  • I feel stronger. Little tasks that used to leave me winded or sore are starting to become SO much easier. This excites me very much.
  • Along with a new found confidence, I feel such pride in myself. For finally starting something I’ve said I would for ages. For finally taking the first step in improving myself.

These are just a few things I’ve found so far. Nothing really health related, but just my experience. If anyone has started working out, or doing something else to improve themselves lately, I’d love to hear any things you’ve discovered!

Love always,
Kate


Some (rather unflattering) progress photos:

Making Life Decisions is Hard

Hello Folks,

I can’t express how good I’ve been feeling lately. I don’t know if it’s the weather, the exercise, my diet, or just my general will to feel better, but something is working.

What’s still in the back of my mind is, “what am I doing?”. Days pass quickly and before I know it, it’s Sunday evening and I’m mentally preparing myself for another work week. I don’t enjoy what I do. Not in the slightest. Time goes by quickly though and although my days at work are becoming painfully repetitive, it’s routine and I get paid to do it, so oh well. But. How much longer can I just stay in a routine before it becomes THE routine. The one that I just continue to do my whole life because I just never chose to break away from it.

My dream job would be working as apart of the event staff for Comic Con, probably Toronto’s as it’s the largest in Canada, and if I was some how able to obtain an American visa and depending how the recent U.S. election goes, I’d love to move to the U.S. to work as apart of one of their many Comic Con’s as they’re much larger and more successful. I would also love to work as a personal assistant for a celebrity or major politician. These are all pretty far out, but none the less achievable.

Where do you start? How do you know if it will ever be achievable or if once you achieve it, that it was the right choice? If no, do you just start over? I know the answers to all these questions, but I don’t like it. I don’t like the idea of wasting more time to figure out what I already know: that I don’t know anything. Nothing can be predicted and only through trial and error will you discover what you should be – or what you think you should be – doing.

I don’t like those odds.

I know that I’m an over thinker. I have been since I was a little girl and it’s riddled my life with anxieties that have been out of my control. It’s hard to turn off something that works even when you’re sleeping. From the time you’re little you have a path that is beyond your control. You must finish elementary school, middle school and than high school. If you grew up in North America like me, you’re likely persuaded to pursue post-secondary education. Then you finish and you no longer have a path. No one’s telling you what to do, no school is telling you where you need to live. It’s all open and that terrifies me. Movies and television romanticize the idea of freedom and endless possibilities, but why does no one talk about how over whelming and stressful it is? How with every wrong decision you lose precious time and hard earned money just to get knocked back to square one?

I know that most wrongs can easily be made right. You move somewhere you don’t like? Move again. What about harder decisions though? What about quitting jobs that won’t take you back, choosing a life partner, moving somewhere that may end up deteriorating relationships with friends and family? Some decisions require analysis and risk management but you still can never know for sure until you try. And so I wait. And days and then weeks pass and I’m still here. Not taking risks because I can’t calculate their chance of failure.

My life is stable and comfortable but at the same time is riddled with endless anxiety that I’m missing out on something bigger. That isn’t the only thing I worry about though, no, I’m also constantly worrying that I’m taking what I’ve already accomplished for granted and that this is the something bigger.

I know I started this by saying that I’ve been feeling better and now it might now sound like it, but I promise that I am. It’s just that making life decisions is hard.

Love always,
Kate

 

 

Much Needed Motivation

Hello Folks,

Recently I’ve felt an over whelming desire to improve myself, but didn’t quite know where to start. Things like: “get in shape, eat better, sleep more, stop biting your nails, be happier, think more positive thoughts, plan less, get a better job” had been playing through my head on a constant loop.

I had been doing sporadic at-home workouts the last couple weeks and attempted to start a meal plan, but quickly lost motivation due to lack of real commitment to either. Today I was talking to my boyfriend about starting this new work out program I saw online and hummed and hawed about it before I thought to myself “if not now, when?”.

So today marks day 1 of BBG, which if you haven’t heard of it, is an at home work out program designed by Kayla Itsines. You can learn more about the program here. She constantly shares amazing results of other women on her Facebook page and since I was only really interested in a workout program I could do from home, I thought why not!

My meal plan, although I haven’t followed it to a T (as I realized I don’t eat lunch 99% of the time due to my work hours) has been going quite well. It’s allowed me to watch what I’m putting in my body, eat healthier snacks (as that’s what I now have laying around) and to eat a fuller and balanced breakfast and dinner.

Not on a fitness front, my finances have been doing better as well. I’ve cut my visa bill down to almost 1/4 of what it was in a matter of a couple weeks (thank you tax return haha). I can’t even explain how much of a stress reliever this was. Once my visa bill is paid off I plan on lowering my minimum. Credit cards = bad! haha.

I know fitness and finances aren’t all encompassing but they are two things I’ve really wanted to work on, so it feels  nice to make some progress, even if it’s small.

I may just be in a positive mood today, but I’m going to run with it because it’s been a while since I’ve felt like this. As any regular people reading my blog know, I’ve been in a “funk” the last 11 months and it hasn’t always been easy to muster up the energy to keep myself motivated with anything. I’ve struggled with finding reasons to stay positive, to continue to improve myself and to work towards things in general. I wanted to share a few quotes I like to look at when I’m down to psych myself up again.

I know this post isn’t much of anything, but I kind of just wanted to say that some days are going to suck and you’re going to buy the wrong cat food and have a melt down about being a bad cat-mum, but some days are going to be really, really good. And you just need to hold off until those days because eventually you may see more of them.

Love always,
Kate