It has been too long

I unintentionally stepped away from my blog three and a half years ago...and I am not sure why.

I've missed it. My other half has started a blog and a You Tube channel for board game reviews, and I've enjoyed thinking of ways to grow his social media presence, but I hadn't really put much thought into my own.

So what has happened in the past three and a half years?

The highlights
1) We bought a house
2) We adopted a senior basset hound named Wallace
3) I was promoted to an Assistant Director level job
4) We hospice fostered a basset hound named Mo (cancer)
5) We had to put Mo down
6) We adopted  Basset hound named Lily
7) The step kids grew up: One is 13 an the other is 10
8) We had to put Wallace down (cancer)
9) Mark has been unemployed twice
10) We adopted a senior basset hound named Tank
11) Mark got way into boardgames
12) Mark developed an almost addictive relationship with Kickstarter (I joke..but seriously every time I turn around another game is being delivered).
13) As stated above, Mark got into the board gaming social media world
14)  I joined a leadership program at work (The Chair Academy)
15) I joined and really enjoy a gym
16) I'm attending grad school
17) I started attending weekly events called Creative Night Out where we make a new project each week

I'm probably forgetting a few things, but those are the highlights.

All in all things have been pretty good. That being said, about a year ago, I came to a realization. While things aren't bad, I still wasn't completely happy with things.  I felt stuck in my career. I didn't like how much weight I was gaining. I felt like I never really did anything for just me. Yes those things were bothering me, but I wasn't doing anything to change my situation.

I decided that I was going to make some changes. It wasn't going to be this big grand transformation that started with a bang, but that overwhelmed me to the point where I just gave up. I would take my time, and do things right. It wouldn't give me everything I wanted immediately, but I would get those things the right way.

First, I attended a Supervisor's Co-Hort training at work. Then I applied to and I was accepted to The Chair Academy. That started a year long training and professional development programs.

In June I attended my first Creative Night Out. I went alone, was under prepared, and completely out of my element. However, I had fun. Now I'm not that bad and I get some me time  each week,

In July, I started my Master's program at Capella. I will not graduate with my degree until 2019, but I will graduate with a Graduate Certificate in December 2017.

In September, I joined a gym and I started taking zumba and boot camp classes. I also started changing how we eat at home. By the end of November, I was meal prepping my whole week in advance.

In December, I was starting to see weight loss progress. In February, I fit into my first goal size jeans. In March, I bought a dress size down from what I usually buy, and could see that if I keep working, I could be going another size down soon.

It hasn't been all rainbows, butterflies and unicorns.

In that time:
1) Tank had a bad UTI and they found a mass in his ear. His medical bills totaled nearly $4000 after all was said and done.

2) Mark was unemployed for a stretch during this. I was supporting us (sometimes 2 of s sometimes 4 of us)  on one made things a bit intense at times.

3) Mark opted to get out of sales, so when he did find a job, he brought home less than he did at his previous jobs...continuing the financial struggle.

4) His new job has odd hours. His shift also changes every 3-4 months. It isn't the most ideal situation, but we are making it work.

5) Going back to school means I need more help around the house. I haven't been successful in communicating that need and getting that help.

6) The girls have been more activities. That in itself isn't bad. It is actually pretty awesome. We are just adjusting to it, and making our schedule work around their activities. Honestly, Mark's work schedule is a part of this struggle.

The good has certainly outweighed the bad. We are still standing despite some tough times, and really that is what matters.

Do I have my selfish moments where I resent some of the responsibilities on my plate? Yes, but I quickly get over it. That kind of thinking will always set you up for failure. This is my life. My choices led me here. I need to accept that.

Am I overwhelmed sometimes? Yes. There are weeks where I'm  not sure how I am going to make it all work. Bottom line: I always do. It may mean late nights, occasional all nighters, and early mornings. It means missing out on things I want to do (on occasion), and figuring out where my priorities fall.


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