Jana Says

Living life from cover to cover

Tag Archive: random

Break time is now over

A couple of months ago, I decided to take a break from blogging (you can read about that here). I thought that by taking a break, I’d be able to get my bearings, reset, and continue with this little space of mine. You know what’s happened, though?

The exact opposite. 

The more time I spend away from blogging, the more I realize the true source of my break was the simple fact that I just don’t know what to talk about anymore. I’m not that interesting. I don’t have any sage advice on life or careers or food or fashion or weight loss or whatever it is the kids these days are writing about. I don’t have any passion projects that require discussion. I won’t write a mommy blog because my daughter’s stories are not mine to tell. I don’t even think I’m that great of a parent (not even kidding, we did a science experiment last week and I convinced her to test the ph of whiskey. Who does that?) so a parenting blog is out. I’ve stopped trying to offer any sort of coaching or freelance writing so there’s no self-promotion to fill up some posts. My life is boring as hell (need evidence? Check out my Instagram) and not at all fodder for content. Sure, I have opinions on books and politics and TV shows and current events but does anyone really give a fuck? 

Most likely not. So I keep them to myself. It also does not help that the more I ruminate on this, the more I realize I’m a pretty fucking private person. I’m not one to share my goals and plans. I mean, I’ve done it and we can talk about all the reasons I’ve failed which might actually be something semi-decent to write about, but it’s not in my nature to have a whole series devoted to my weight loss or how I’m working on being more productive. I generally keep that bottled up because while I love hearing about that from others, in my head, I feel like I’m burdening or annoying people with my words on that stuff. 

There’s also this. I have had some rather unpleasant things happen to me over the last 5 years. I’ve talked about them (you can check out the mental health archive for all of those posts) both for catharsis and for the sake of others going through them so that they know they’re not alone. But I simply cannot define myself by the bad shit. I cannot immerse myself, day in and day out, with those events. For some people it is healing; for me it is not. When I was a PO, I told my clients that what they’ve done is not necessarily a reflection of who they are. I feel the same way for me. And I can’t run a depression blog or an infertility blog without compromising my quality of life. So I’m not going to do that. 

The result is a blog that’s a mess that lacks focus and purpose. The lack of focus makes it difficult for me to come up with topics and content that are even a basic version of entertaining, never mind engaging or helpful. But I love writing. It makes me feel alive and creative and turns on my brain in ways that is generally lacking in my life. It makes me feel put together on days I can’t even put my underwear on the right way (which actually happened. Making it worse? The fact that I didn’t notice until that evening, at a minor league baseball game, in a public bathroom stall). So not writing is not an option anymore. 

But where to go from here? I want this to be a space that’s entertaining but also helpful. Because, at my core, in the places only awkward people like me talk about at parties, is an innate desire to be useful and helpful. I need and want to feel like I’m writing with a purpose. 

I just don’t know what that purpose is yet. 

So I guess this is my long-winded way of saying my blog is having a mid-life crisis. And I’d love it if you guys would stick around like a patient spouse while I get it all sorted out. It’s probably going to be a wild and twisted ride until we get there but we’ll get there. 

 

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Six word biographies

 

Since Lisa borrowed my idea for a post, I’m borrowing hers. All’s fair in love and writer’s block. 

Except I’m doing mine without pictures because I’m an incredibly lazy blogger and also I hate making images. don't like doing it

Life is messy. So am I.

Organizing my house is wasted effort. Because dogs and child and husband. 

Without lists, I would be lost.

Speaking of lost, directions are hard. So is finding all the lists. 

Sleep is great. Books are better. 

Music soothes me when beer’s inappropriate. 

WHY IS THERE SO MUCH LAUNDRY?

Nail polish, eye shadow, lip gloss. 

Bad things happened. I’m still standing.

Parenting is mostly cooking, swearing, and signing papers.

(That was more than six words.) Sometimes I break rules for fun.

I openly steal other people’s words. Because sometimes they sum it up.

Some like beautiful, perfect and prettyI see the good in the bad and the ugly

What are some of your six word bios? 

 

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P.S. Happy birthday, Mackenzie!! Hope you have an awesome day! I’m so glad I know you!

Half-baked Tuesday

I have many thoughts swirling around in my head but none complete enough to make a whole post so let’s just throw all of them together and see what comes out.

I’m working on redesigning my site. It’s old and it needs a makeover. Badly. Like, it’s WAY overdue. But I’m lacking in the funds department so it’s a DIY situation which is fine. I’m using the color palette from my old site, probably sticking with the same font or finding a similar retro one, and I want a simple, easy theme because that’s where my skills stop. I have the main topics we’ll be focusing on but I’m stuck on a tagline. Any suggestions? P.S. This is why I’m not a copywriter. 

Speaking of career options, you know my author coaching business that I started? Two thoughts: 1) I definitely need my Jerry Maguire moment when I get that one client who believes in me and wants to pay me and all that; 2) self-promotion is not my strong suit. I suffer HARD from imposter syndrome which does not lend itself to starting and growing a business. I’m definitely rethinking the coaching as a viable choice. help-me-help-you

The University of Washington posted an infographic to “help” the girls trying out for the school’s cheer team. I read it. It’s horrible. It’s WHY cheerleaders have the reputation that they do and while the team has since removed the infographic, damage has been done. If people want cheerleading to be taken seriously as a sport–which is it and it should–then teams need to stop doing shit like this. Just because a girl might not curl her hair or have a six pack or wear red lipstick does not mean she can’t tear up the mat. Also, body dos? A “toned physique”? Fuck you, University of Washington. Not only is that a vague and completely subjective statement, what are you doing to these girls? Way to promote completely unhealthy habits and rule out what I’m sure are some damn good athletes because they don’t look the way you want them to. So you can take your infographic and shove it up your perfectly toned asses. Cheerleading is about so much more than appearance and if you can’t recognize that, then maybe you should go fuck yourself. Because I’ll be damned if my 9 year old cheerleader catches wind of its existence. be wrong

On Friday night, the husband and I went to see Pearl Jam. It was surprisingly good, especially for me, a nonfan, and I do not regret going one bit. Glad we spent the money on the experience and congrats to the band on 10 sold out Philadelphia shows. They even have a banner in the rafters commemorating it. They only other artists with banners are Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen so they’re in good company. Which is cool. You know what’s not cool, though? Floors that are so damn sticky I actually lose a shoe to the stick. Like, my shoe stayed in place while I kept going. I’m seriously too old for that shit. Also, I’m too old to inhale secondhand weed smoke during a concert but maybe that’s another post.too old

So, one of the things I love about blogging is that bloggers love to help each other out. Which is why my friend Brynne from Femme Frugality and I have teamed up to help a blogger get to FinCon16. If you or someone you know wants to go but maybe needs a little help getting there, we’re giving away a free ticket. There’s an application process, though, so it’s not a lottery. You have to kind of work for it, and you can see all the details and access the contest page by visiting here. P.S. This is not an unfinished idea but rather a shameless plug for something I’m doing. #sorrynotsorry

What unfinished ideas are swirling around in your head?

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Unsent letters

Someone I know used to do posts like this and she doesn’t blog anymore so I can’t link to her blog and her hilarious posts but it’s still a great idea and I like letters so let’s send some, shall we?

Dear FitBit,

While I appreciate your encouragement, if I haven’t hit my steps goal by 10PM, please stop sending me notifications that I “only have 1029 more steps to go”. It seems like a waste of everyone’s time and also, we both know I’m not getting in the rest of those steps. Let’s stop pretending.

Love,

Jana

Dear laundry,

Go fuck yourself.

Love,

Jana

Dear people who send group texts but really only want to talk to one person,

Seriously?! Why do you do that? Is it that hard to take all the other names off or start a new, separate and private message? Because one of these days, you’re absolutely going to send something you don’t mean to. And while I’ll laugh and laugh then, for now, you’re making me hate my phone. I don’t want to hate my phone.

Love,

Jana

Dear drivers who pull out in front of me when absolutely no one is behind me and then drive painfully slow,

I hate you yet I feel compelled to understand your thought process. What makes you think “hey, no one is driving behind that lady in the filthy black car but I’m totally going to cut her off at the last minute instead”? I’m not even kidding that I want to know so then maybe we can come to an understanding and I won’t feel compelled to shout more obscenities than usual. 

Love,

Jana

Dear kids’ toys packagers,

Do you hate parents? I’m thinking you must as there is no other explanation as to why you make toys so damn difficult to open. So if you could, I don’t know, maybe make it possible to open a toy without the use of scissors and the brute strength of a professional football player, we’d appreciate it.

Love, 

Jana

Dear Facebook, 

Why is it that you show me all the memories I truly don’t give a fuck about but that one time I was really funny and want to use that status in a blog post instead of using a new thought because words are hard is impossible? If you could fix that so I could recycle my creativity, I’d appreciate it. 

Love,

Jana

Dear Amazon,

Before we start, let me just say how much I love you and your 2 day shipping and all that jazz, including the storage locker pick up option. But I think maybe we need to have a conversation about geography. A storage locker 20 miles from my house is not “nearby”. You know what’s nearby? The fucking fulfillment center on the other side of town. The one that takes 10 minutes to get to. Also, why are lockers not there? It’d make a shit ton of sense if they were. We should discuss logistics. Call me. 

Love, 

Jana

Dear that one piece of hair that makes me feel a spider is crawling on me,

Fine, you want to fuck with me. I get it. Maybe I don’t wash or brush you as much as you’d like but trust when I say it’s for your own good and has nothing at all to do with my laziness. BUT. Why you gotta do it when I’m driving? Don’t you realize I’m on the lookout for shitheads who cut me off, animals crossing the road, and fighting off sneezes? I don’t have time for your games when I’m operating a car. And there’s also this–I’m not that great of a driver to begin with. Why make it worse?

Love,

Jana

Dear flies,

Get the fuck out of my house. 

Love, 

Jana

What unsent letters are you sending today?

Jana’s Bad Day Recovery Plan

Do you guys know the Limp Bizkit song “Break Stuff”? Yes? No? Think you do but you forgot? Pretending not to because it’s a Limp Bizkit song?

Totally understand that last one.

Regardless of how you answer the question, though, here’s the first verse:

It’s just one of those days
When you don’t wanna wake up
Everything is fucked
Everybody sucks
You don’t really know why
But you want justify
Rippin’ someone’s head off
No human contact
And if you interact
Your life is on contract
Your best bet is to stay away motherfucker
It’s just one of those days

That was my day yesterday. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong including an unexpected trip to get my daughter’s finger examined (middle finger, of course, because she’s my child. Except mine would get hurt from overuse instead of tumbling). Fortunately the finger isn’t broken (thank G-d for small miracles) but all the other things sucked a fat one. 

Days like yesterday throw me for many days to come because I am a creature of routine and habit and to-do lists. I need organization and structure in my day, at least during working hours since the rest of my day is subject to chaos and when my working hours are destroyed, it’s hard to get myself back together. 

I mean, I do eventually get my shit in check, mostly thanks to my foolproof 12 step plan:

Step 1: Overuse the word “motherfucker”. Scream many other expletives. Mostly at people who can’t hear me because the last thing I want is a rumble. I don’t need that Sharks vs. Jets shit in my day.

Step 2: Call the husband. Talk nonsensically and bother him at work for about 30 minutes. 

Step 3: Avoid problems by scrolling through all the social media.

Step 4: Declare I hate my life and sketch out a plan to run away and live in a tiny house in the mountains away from everyone except my dogs and cat. 

Step 5: Call the husband again. Repeat Step 2

Step 6: Eat dozens of Cheez Its or chips or something else bad for me. Seriously contemplate getting drunk in the middle of the day. 

Step 7: Realize getting drunk in the middle of the day is, in fact, a terrible choice. Praise myself for making one good choice. Use it as a gateway to calm the fuck down and start refocusing. 

Step 8: Put on a good playlist and sit for a song or two to center and get in a good place. 

Step 9: Examine my initial to-do list. Prioritize and determine what needs finishing or attention immediately. Decide to work on that in the short time I have left during the day. Make a new to-do list, realizing that nothing I do is actually urgent and if it has to wait a day or two, the world will survive.

Step 10: Berate myself for overreacting. Berate myself for berating myself. Take a detour from work to eat more Cheez Its. Berate myself for that but tell myself that Cheez Its eaten while in the midst of a terrible day don’t count. Fill up a huge glass of water to cancel out the Cheez Its. Bring it upstairs because real work gets done in the office, not the living room. 

Step 11: Sit down at the laptop. Remind myself that everyone has bad days, has unproductive days, and anyone who says they don’t is a big fat fucking liar. 

Step 12: Accept all that happened, get over it, and move on.  

Bonus step: Complete one task, no matter how small. Call it a good day. 

The best part is, if you guys need it, my plan is totally free for you to use! It’s not foolproof and doesn’t always work but it’s mostly useful. Especially if you throw a nap or a few solid of hours of Netflix into the mix. 

How do you guys get on track after a bad day?

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P.S. There’s no podcast episode in the post today BUT you can listen via your favorite podcasting app! iTunes approved us!