Monday, January 23, 2012

January Book Club-Aspire

For the past few months, I, along with a few of my co-workers have been holding a book club. Which has in turn really helped me with my resolution mentioned in the last post to "read more books". We've taken turns picking out books that we feel would be good reads and then holding a monthly meeting to discuss them. Last month we read the Hunger Games which I had read previously, but it was good to freshen up a bit on those (sidenote: Super excited for the movie to come out soon!!)

For January we selected the book "Aspire" by Kevin Hall. It was a book one of my co-workers had read in the past and said she enjoys reading it several times a year. I was a bit hesitant when I first heard about it thinking that it would be just another "self-help" book. However, I was pleasantly surprised. It's a great and really quick reaad and I would definitely recommend it.

You know how there are some specific times in your life when you think, "Wow, I really needed that today". Whether it be a phone call from a friend, or whatever the case may be. Well the other day for me it was this book. So while I will still really encourage anyone to read this book for themselves, I wanted to jot down a handful of my favorite quotes.

"Become a victor, not a victim."

"When the student is ready, the teacher will appear."

"Being a leader means finding a path, but before you can help someone else find their path, you must know yours."

"Genius is nothing more or less than being genuine."

"The words stress, overloaded, and breakdown were not originally meant to describe humans. They were meant to describe machines."

"Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life, everyone must carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfillment. Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated."

"Once I see it, I will be it and do it. And in due course, I will have it."

"To teach is to show. You can't teach what you don't know. You can't guide where you don't go. And you can't grow what you don't sow."

And my favorite quote from the entire book, "Life isn't practice, it's the real thing."

2012 Resolutions

Now that January is almost over I suppose it's about time I make some resolutions! I REALLY slacked off last year when it came to a lot of things. This blog last year was totally lame, I ate TONS of junk food, I really didn't take school last semester really seriously, I compared myself to other people in really unfair ways, and didn't strive to somehow better myself in hardly any aspects.

Don't get me wrong, 2011 was a really great year filled with tons of fun memories so I don't want to make it seem all bad. Because that really wasn't the case. But I just felt so stagnant in many areas of my life. It got incredibly easy to see other people doing all these great things, going all these cool places, and getting wonderful jobs or finishing college and it really didn't feel like I was doing any of that.

I was working at the same job I had been at since High School which really wasn't bad because I enjoyed the job and the people I worked with. However when I started really thinking about it, I realized it really wasn't getting me anywhere. I had zero chance of moving up in my job, getting more hours, or increasing my pay because the company wasn't expanding at all. In fact it was doing the complete opposite.

I've decided that this year I'm going to make some significant changes. Maybe if I write them down then I will be more likely to follow through.

1-Continue to foster and develop my relationship with Riley. Now is the time to take advantage of our time together sans kids and it's time we'll never get back.

2-Become a harder worker in both my school and work environments. Always contribute 100% and try my hardest in everything I do. My mom always used to tell me, "I know you're intelligent, YOU know you're intelligent, but how will the rest of the world know if you don't prove it to them?" No one cares about what I accomplished or who I was in high school if I can't prove to them I'm still a hard worker and I'm smart.

3-Cliche but I really do need to lose some weight. So.... there's that.

4-Take more pictures, read more books, stick to a better budget, save more money, go on more vacations, develop extracurricular talents, keep my house clean, etc etc etc.

Here's to making 2012 the best year yet!!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Christmas 2011

We had a wonderful Christmas this year. Christmas Eve was spent at Riley's parents house for their annual Christmas Eve dinner. The food was delicious and many ridiculous pictures came from that evening, including these gems.

Christmas Day we woke up bright and early (ha, who are we kidding, we slept in until like 9am) and opened the presents we got eachother. Riley got me a new battery for my laptop which was desperately needed, a new cell phone (I've joined the Evo 4G club), quite a few movies, and my very own juicer type thing. I bought him some new sunglasses, a few Jeep shirts, and an R/C airplane that he was absolutely tickled about.

We went up to my parents house after and opened presents with them and ate a big breakfast. We got a bunch of way sweet stuff, including our very own Clavinova!!

We had an interesting time trying to rearrange things in our second bedroom in order to fit it, but we managed. I'm so excited to have a piano that is small enough to fir in our apartment and I can just plug in headphones while I play so it won't bother our neighbors!

Here is a picture that I stole off my Aunt Wendy's Facebook page since I didn't manage to get a picture of their Christmas tree myself.

I didn't take any pictures of our Christmas tree this year...on purpose...because it was super pathetic. We bought a REAL tree as per Riley's tradition which was an adventure by itself. But then we neglected to decorate it until Christmsas Eve. Awesome.

We didn't get any snow through the holidays which made it feel a bit strange.
Taking everything into consideration though it was a great Christmas season. It gives us a time to reflect on everything and really be grateful for all that we have. We have truly been blessed with amazing families, good jobs that provide for us, a nice place to live, great friends that we adore, and most of all eachother.