making “me” time

And just like that, it’s the first day of Spring!

Growing up I learned that Spring was all about rebirth; plants and animals coming out of hibernation as the frost melted away into sunshine and warmer weather.

blooms at Lake Elsinore

And while warmer weather might not be there for everyone (just come visit Southern California to get your dose!) there are hints of Springtime popping up everywhere:

ps loving the portrait feature on the iPhone 7!

…Like poppies! Popping up (can’t help myself!) throughout the parks in California. Known as a “super bloom”, the wildflowers are extra happy and vibrant this year because of all the rain we got during winter–see we really did have seasons this year!

..We also “sprung forward” so the days are feeling longer and the nighttime slump comes later.

…There are lots of “spring cleaning” ads. Having been in my new space for a little over a month, I’m taking the time to clear the clutter and get rid of excess stuff I haven’t touched in months.

…It’s March Madness! My Dad is in his, damn I can’t even remember how long he’s run it, but he’s the ring leader (call him the “commish”) of a big NCAA basketball tournament pool. His emails bring me joy everyday. It also helps that my alma mater, UNC, is still in the running and Villanova (last year’s champs who beat us) are already out. YES!

…Pastel colors are everywhere! Stores are gearing up for Easter (hello Reese’s and Cadbury chocolate eggs!) and flowers are blooming.

wildflower cluster

So back to flowers and “me time”. Over the weekend, I decided to drive out solo to Lake Elsinore and see the colorful blooms. Man, did I feel like I was in Oz (not just how colorful, but lotssss of other people had the same idea).

cactus meet flowers

Wanting some time with little human interaction to reflect, soak up the sun and take some pics, I took a slightly steeper path, made it to the top and spread out my things.

alllll by myself (and loving it!)

I CAN’T TELL YOU HOW IMPORTANT THIS IS. For everyone!!!! Making time for yourself-even if it’s just 15 minutes and at your kitchen table- it is so vital to staying grounded. For re-centering, rebirth (hey, hey, Spring connection) and refocusing on you. What brings you happiness and what you need to let go. I’ll write more on this later in the week and the steps I take, so look out.

sunny selfies

In the mean time, on the first day of Spring. I dare you to take some time for yourself. JUST FOR YOU. Because at the end of the day- even with girlfriends, boyfriends, moms, dads, spouses, family, coworkers, etc. If you aren’t making yourself whole and happy it’s going to make it damn challenging for the rest of your circle to bring you that fullness. Find it in yourself. I promise it’s there.

You can start small and:

…buy yourself flowers

…get whipped cream on your coffee

…read the comics AND the sports section from a real newspaper

…sit an extra 5 minutes in your car to listen to your favorite song (again)

…take a walk around your block during your lunch break, or when you’re home from work

…smile

…stay longer post workout to stretch a little deeper or dip into the sauna if that’s available.

Whatever you choose do it for you!

Wishing everyone a great start to their week. Let me know how you take your “me time” in the comments.

xo N

road tripping into the new year

How is January more than half way over???

As the brilliant Steve Miller Band put it, “time keeps on slippin’ slippin’ slippin’ slippin’ into the future” (also what’s up Space Jam!! I need to revisit that movie soon)

I digress…

This year has been off to a wonderful start filled with lots of NEW: friends, places traveled, surprises, food consumed, agents, age. I absolutely loved ringing in the year in a new location. We drove from Santa Fe to our adorable A-Frame in Flagstaff, AZ. Albeit we were a weeee bit hungover, (thanks to too many tequila shots at high elevation) there was something very grounding and humbling about gazing out at the Wild West, appreciating every moment because, damn! So. Much. Natural. Beauty. Andddd we saw a DOUBLE rainbow on January 1st. If that’s not a beacon of good luck I don’t know what is!

On to the fun stuff, pictures! Mostly taken by Sophie who I met through the craziest of circumstances last year. You can read HERE if you don’t know the story. Without getting too “woo-woo” one of the major lessons I learned in 2016 is to always share your love/true thoughts with another–you never know what lovely gift(s) you’ll receive in return.

one must always take a silly photo amongst the serious…they usually turn out better

5 ROAD TRIP ESSENTIALS

  1. Jamming playlist
  2. H20 (LaCroix encouraged)
  3. Polaroid camera
  4. Room for random stops (isn’t that what these are all about?!)
  5. Comfy clothes
  6. IN-N-OUT (fact 2/3 road trips we ALL wanted burgers but were never hungry enough to stop, leaving me on trip 3/3 solo eating an animal style double double and loving every minute)

ROAD TRIP #1: Santa Fe to Los Angeles

new mexico

STOPS: Tent Rocks, Aspen Vistas, 10,000 Waves, La Choza, El Farol

Dustin, Christine, Me and Sophie weaving through Tent Rocks
capturing C and S
making faces is always encouraged
views are worth the climb!
New Year’s Eve hike in the Aspens

Arizona

STOPS: Flagtaff (A-Frame House), White Dove, Coffee Grand Canyon

pulled over New Year’s Day to capture this moment
little Cabin in the woods-perfect for cards games, wine and grilled cheese
pit stop at white dove coffee (great breakfast burritos) before heading to the Grand Canyon
and MAN was it GRAND. none of us had seen the GC before, so it was pretty magical to have the “ahhhhh” moment together
a snow covered gorgeous view of the South Rim
Echo (Sophie and Dustin’s pup) was a KEY player along the trip, although clearly unamused by the photo session
Soph doing what she does best, check out her insta @sophkuller
these ladies, both new friends and not wanting to let go

NEVADA

STOPS: LAS VEGAS…what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas…but be sure to check out the Chandelier Room at the Cosmopolitan Hotel (there’s also a newly opened EggSlut and Momofuku Milk Bar so I was in HEAVEN!)

Tune in Monday for road trips 2 and 3!