Archive of the categories: Inspiration

Kitchen Table Sanding & Refinishing Project – Dewalt Sander and Minwax Stain

This afternoon Zach and I  refinished our kitchen table using a Dewalt Random Orbital Sander and Minwax PolyShades Espresso Satin 1-Step Stain and Polyurethane applied with foam brushes – all purchased at Home Depot. This took about 3 hours total, and was a fun Sunday afternoon project.


Here are some photos from the project.

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Taylor Swift Quote – “There are two ways you can go with pain”

taylor-swift-there-are-two-ways-pain I am a longtime Taylor Swift fan. I admire her confidence, talent and wisdom. This quote about pain is one of my favorite quotes from her. I am not sure when she said it, but it is widely attributed to her. It is a reminder to all of us that when bad things happen, there is always a choice.

2015 Will be Filled with Music

whateversgoodforIt’s the last day of the year! I have never been so excited to stay home and do nothing but hang out with Caroline and Ava, watch movies, eat pizza, and drink wine. And since I am the only one the crew that is of legal drinking age, all the wine will be mine (not sure if that’s a good thing). I’ve already thought about my goals for next year, mainly to get my private pilot’s license. I know I can do it, and I’m so excited to do it! I will be more proud of that than any test I’ve passed, or degree, license or certificate I’ve ever earned. I also plan to streamline my life by eliminating every-other-day trips to the grocery store / Target, and being better about tackling mail, laundry and dishes immediately. But there’s one more resolution for next year, and it is to listen to music, lots of music, every day. 

I have always known that I love music. But it wasn’t until last week I realized how much music makes me happy. The day I got back from Virginia last week I picked up a couple of Sonos speakers, a little present to myself. Sonos works with your iphone or android phone, and lets you control what’s playing in which room. Everything goes through your wifi, and it is so easy to set up. In the last week, I have listened to a lot more music than I normally do. Everything from George Strait and Jerrod Niemann to Blink 182 and Ariana Grande. And of course Taylor Swift! Along with my Sirius XM, and playlists on my phone, I have a Pandora One membership, which is a great way to discover new music. Music is on while making breakfast, cleaning the house, working, studying for my flight lessons at night, and packing for my move next month. And I’ve realized that music, makes me happy. The Sonos speakers are awesome, but it’s not the speakers that make me happy, it’s the sound of the beat of the music and the way it makes me feel.

On New Year’s Eve, and the day before my birthday, I always reflect on the year before, and the year ahead. My birthday is at the beginning of June, so this type of reflection happens twice a year. A lot of good things have happened in the past 12 months, and some not-so-good things. I am definitely not the same person I was last year. I am a lot stronger, less anxious, more confident, and a better communicator. And, thanks to my flying lessons, I am learning to stay calm in stressful situations, and not let one distraction be enough to throw me off the flight plan (or life). I know the feeling of pointing an airplane straight towards the sun in the middle of the day and being blinded by it. I’ve experienced the falling feeling and that split-second panic, followed by a smooth recovery, that only happened because I stayed the course and did what I had to do. There are stressful times, but if you stay calm, you can recover!

Cheers to a happy and prosperous 2015!!

Thinking About 2015 Resolutions and Goals

2013practiceDuring December every year, I think about the goals I want to make for the following year. I am always optimistic that the new year will be the best year yet! I am not someone to write down a few resolutions on New Year’s Eve and then half-heartedly try to achieve them. For me, a resolution starts with a simple acknowledgement that I want some part of my life to be better and is brought to life with a plan that includes daily, weekly, and monthly goals. Along with that acknowledgement and plan, is an understanding of why I need to make a change. This understanding is critical when I am feeling lazy or procrastinating

lifequote2For lots of people, resolutions are forgotten and abandoned by mid-January. I think this is because most people don’t have a specific plan for achieving their goals. There is a saying “Failing to plan is planning to fail” – and it’s really true. If you want to lose weight, but don’t know how you are going to do it, it’s not going to magically happen. A weight loss plan will be much more successful with a specific diet and exercise plan, broken down to daily workouts and calorie intake. Rather than resolutions, I like to focus on big goals that I can achieve, and improvements to fine-tune things I am already working on.

My big goal for 2015 is to get my private pilot license, and hopefully instrument rating. This I am working on daily, and will continue to do so until I pass that FAA Checkride. Other than that, my 2015 goals are continued improvements on 2014 efforts. I want to be more effective in keeping my house organized. Specifically, I will be better at going through mail right away, keeping the kitchen counters clutter free at all time. And laundry and dirty dishes will be addressed daily, so that they’re never waiting for me for too long. Another one of my goals for 2015 is to make the most of the valuable period of time in the morning before Ava gets up. Before I had a baby, I never realized how precious that little time is. I would lie in bed and hit the snooze button 5 or 8 times. And sometimes, I still like to do that. But now when I hear the alarm on my cell phone, I know that the cell phone alarm is a precursor to an impending baby alarm, which really can’t be ignored. If I can get up 30-45 minutes before Ava, I can have breakfast, shower, and be dressed before she gets up, which makes for a much less stressful morning.

Believe you can achieve what you set your heart to achieve, and you will do it. It might not be easy, but it will be worth it.