The Night Circus.

The circus arrives without warning.

The opening lines coupled with the black, white and red cover of The Night Circus have held my interest for a while now. I remember picking it up and setting it down several times in the bookstores. Maybe it was because of the size of the book. I can read sizable texts when the font size is large and well spaced, or when the title has Harry Potter in it, but otherwise, I get turned off entirely. My interest was rekindled only recently after reading Caraval, a story that seemed to share tones of magic and mystery. Beyond that, I had no idea what to expect.

Ultimately, reading Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus was like reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. I can tell that the stage is being set for a lot of important things, but if I didn’t push myself past the first 100 pages, there would’ve been a chance I would have abandoned it altogether.

Character after character after character was introduced until it became unsettling. Prospero, the man in the grey suit, Marco, Celia, Isabel, Bailey, Poppet, Widget, Sukiko, Chandresh, Friedrich, and the list goes on. I wanted to invest myself in the storyline, but I wasn’t sure who to attach myself to because there were so many main players. These characters were not just circus players, in fact, the majority worked outside the circus. They were each great balls of potential waiting to make an impact, but it was maddening trying to figure out what that role may be.

To make matters even more difficult, the story had a varying timeline, moving between 1889, 1891, 1892 and back to 1891 without any concern for your emotional response to the moment you were previously in. I keep comparing it to Harry Potter not simply because it was magical, but because the thing that impressed me most about both Harry Potter and The Night Circus was their ability to lay out the pieces of a puzzle, and then bring them all together in a clear, cohesive picture. Unfortunately, while working through this puzzle, I grew frustrated and impatient.

What is the importance of this character? Why am I hearing about this? How long will this be a great secret? I asked myself these questions and more until I reached the middle of the book and started to ask myself, Is this a Shakespearean tragedy? If so, I was ready to drop the story like a hot potato. In fact, I was so reluctant to lumber through to a dark, dreary ending that I googled “The Night Circus tragedy” to determine if everything would fall apart. I didn’t see a great number of mentions so I read on.

I’m glad I did because the tale was ultimately lovely. It reminded me of a fable, but one that was translated before it could become watered by time. In fact, the entire tale is recalled in the present tense, as if you’re living in each moment. I think it would register even better on camera, where you could watch things unfold with the same immediacy. You could see each character’s face – even the ones that change. You could see the way Marco and Celia look at each other, and how their charge’s monitor them. You could see the manipulations in action, a faraway land here, a healing hand, a wishing tree and judge the competition for yourself. You could look in the circus and try to spot the red-haired girl you met so many years ago. And you could attempt to see all the things that are meant to be unseen. Transparent people, the moment one loses sanity, the ebb of time.

The book is inherently magical, but impressive, despite how long it drags on. I give it 4/5 stars.

 

Seattle, WA: Day Two.

Up until now my only reference point for Seattle, Washington was the Twilight movie series, where everything was forest and rain. Perfect for vampires who glitter in the sunlight. I knew a person or two who wanted to come here and I was like, “y tho?” and shrugged it off. Then my boss was like, “they’re interested in sending you there for work” and I weighed the pros and cons. Con: It’s not Arizona, California, or Hawaii. Pro: The flight is long enough that I can get a full day’s pay to read books, which is actually my dream job. I signed up hesitantly.

Boy, was I naive. Seattle is one of the most wonderful friggin places on Earth.

First of all, I love water like none other. Indianapolis was just meh until I found it had canals. Well, Seattle has water everywhere, pretty water. Not Lake Erie water, but the kind that glitters in the sunlight and looks like boats belong in it instead of dead fish. And when you look just beyond the water, what is that you see? Mountains. Actual mountains. There are a lot of big ass hills, still scenery that I’m not quite used to, but when I saw the snowcapped mountains in the distance my jaw dropped. I did the awkward thing, which is stop in the middle of the road to take photos while the car that was far away ended up right behind me.

To be fair, people keep reminding me that 70 degrees and sunny is not Seattle’s normal. They’re already thinking winter which for them means rain on rain on rain. They tell me that there are people who visited who never even saw the mountains thanks to the clouds. My first hotel put me on the 25th floor – I saw the mountain and then some.

In this day and age, good people are as great as good scenery and there’s no shortage of the former either. When I went to breakfast and decided to watch the news – I know, stupid, right? – a middle-aged woman sparked up conversation with me and it wasn’t the most positive – it was related to the news – but it gave me hope. She just seemed to get it. She understood history, hypocrisy, and histrionics. She didn’t say a word to offend me, and for me, that was refreshing. I was a little sad to say bye to her, but I had more places to go, more people to meet.

I led presentations for two of my company’s customers and they were just nice, good people all around. During my first presentation I got a couple laughs, pity laughs, but they still made me feel warm and fuzzy. In the second, I was complimented on my upbeat presenting style. All of the things that could go wrong, stayed away. It was a good morning.

For lunch, I stopped into a random restaurant that I expected to be bougie as f*ck, but everybody was very friendly, from the greeter with the British accent to the charming waiter, to the chill busboy. I felt oddly comfortable sitting outside on a random street in the middle of somewhere across the country from home.

I would say that the fact my lunch break landed me in traffic was a downside, but even that had its silver living. It forced me to slow down. I listened to an audiobook. I started a second audiobook. I actually saw the trees. I had an odd, outerbody experience driving down a mountain. And I pooped my pants when I reached my next destination: Blaine, Washington. Where they built codos and resorts and bike trips on a strip of land in the midlde of a giant body of water. Where the water ripples to perfection and the sunset is endless. Where Canada is within a stone throw’s distance. And where you can see stars further away than you can even fathom.

There are a lot of things going wrong in the world. A lot of things that could make me live in fear, thinking the world was doomed to collapse in on itself. It turns out, not everything in the world is batshit crazy, though. Some things are just beautiful.

Why I love the Kingsman movies.

I’m amazed at the number of people who haven’t even heard about the Kingsman movies. The second movie came out September 22, 2017 and I’ve been eagerly awaiting it since about September 2016. In fact, I was so hype after I bought tickets that I found several unnecessary ways to insert the movie into conversation.

Co-worker at 5:00 Thursday: Have a great evening!

Me: Have you seen Kingsman?”

Bartender: My boyfriend likes that dish.

Me: Do you like Colin Firth movies?

I was hype! But I have to be honest with you, my criteria for judging movies is pretty basic. If the movie has at least one actor I would risk it all for, features dope-ass action scenes, and goes light on the misery, I’m all in.

Image result for gif kingsman galahad

When I first saw Kingsman, I had no idea what to expect, but I knew two things: there’s no such thing as a bad Samuel L. Jackson movie, and Colin Firth is the middle-aged love of my life (have you seen Pride and Prejudice, Love Actually, King’s Speech?!). It turns out Taron Egerton is the actual man I plan to marry and he was all up and through that movie. Don’t let me forget to mention the movie takes place in London, so every time I heard Taron’s voice, I wet my…throat..with some water.

Anyways, the movie starts off with some violent action, and dope ass villainy. Samuel L. Jackson is an amazing hero, but he’s an even better villain. In this movie, Sammy Jack’s IDGAfuckery is amplified by his character’s lisp and inability to stomach blood.

Image result for gif kingsman valentine

Meanwhile, Taron Egerton is training to be a secret agent, a Kingsman, and going shirtless by night and fully tailored by day. By the time they introduce puppies, I’m like, that wasn’t even necessary, but I’ll take it. The action scenes are off the charts and the stakes are high. People across the entire globe are going to die if the Kingsman don’t step in. I was invested from the beginning to the end.

I’m gonna be honest with you now, though. The things I love about Kingsman: The Secret Service are the things that made Kingsman 2: The Golden Circle almost too much to bear.

  • It was outrageous.
  • It got weird, really weird.
  • There were dozens of inventive deaths.
  • The villain was cool, but also totally fucked up.
  • There was another awkward sex scene.
  • Colin Firth acted his ass off.
  • Taron Egerton was incredibly loveable.

On top of that, the sequel added in Americans, politics, American politics, an actual famous musician, obnoxious southern accents, robots, true love, and a bunch of other shit that makes blowing someone’s head off seem like small potatoes.

The amount of processing I had to do after the sequel reminds me of how I felt after the big reveal at the end of The Prestige, but for completely different reasons. Kingsman is just a wild, no holds barred kinda movie and I think they made it that way on purpose. If Colin Firth, Taron Egerton, Mark Strong, Halle Berry, Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges, Julianne Moore and more can be here for it, I can too.

The spoiler for today is that there’s probably going to be a third movie, but why not? This series has practically invented a genre of its own. Some type of action, comedy, sex, charming, crime-fighting movie circus.

Image result for gif kingsman 2

You’ve just gotta see it for yourself.

9/22/17.

You wanna know just where I’m at, well let me tell ya bout it.

Today a friend of mine asked where my Friday blog post was and my short answer was “I’ve been busy.” The long answer is, I put it on the backburner because I got a lot of things going on and nobody is up at 6 am anxiously awaiting my latest blog post. But as a wise ass once said, you make time for what you want to make time for, and right now I feel like telling you about why I’m busy.

I’ve been living y’all. Over the past two weeks I’ve been on a ticket-buying binge and it’s been nothing short of awesome. I’ve been talking about seeing Wicked for maybe four years. I finally got tickets to the first November show in Cleveland and I guess it was like that first hit, ’cause I haven’t stopped since. I took that high and forced my friends to get tickets to see Thor: Ragnarok because it’s apparently not too early to start planning November activities. And then I remembered that Kingsman 2 was hitting theaters this September and I said, “Gotta get on that too” and cashed in. Then, I spied that my coworker was out here creatively living and performing one of my favorite Agatha Christie plots and I cashed in again. Oh, oh, and I guess I’m going to another Indians game in October now. I kinda saw that one coming, but I also didn’t. Maybe this is why God hasn’t blessed me with a real vacation this year. That and hurricanes and earthquakes.

This one dude keeps trying to hang out with me and I feel bad because he must really think I’m an asshole.

Him: I will literally buy you dinner.

Me: Sorry, I have plans to buy my own dinner and do a million other things besides hang with you.

Him: Okay.

He thinks I’m playing, but in past 48 hours I’ve worked 2 full work days, done 2 hour-long yoga classes, been to 2 fancy dinners and seen 2 two-hour productions. In the next 56 hours I’ve got to give a driving lesson, shoot and edit photos, process Kingsman 2, decide how many books I can fit in a suitcase, and catch a flight for work. Oh, and that’s not even counting trying to maintain my health goals. I’ve got to exercise and find things besides chocolate and pita chips to eat. I also need to book a flight to LA in the next week or two. This is getting out of hand.

It’s funny how your life can feel perfect and in shambles at the same time. I feel like I’m in a constant state of chaos, but I’m not sure if I should change anything. I like that I’m going to theater and sporting events. I like that I get to travel for work. I like that people want me to take photos and podcast with them and blog about nothing. Unfortunately, that means I can’t be everything to everyone at all times.

I would apologize, but that wouldn’t be sincere.

Talking and talking but not sayin’ nothin’.

The fact that I blog may lead you to think I enjoy talking about other people’s business. Blogs are commonly associated with sharing intimate details, whether that be about someone else’s life or your own. And while I definitely value opening up about topics that tend to be more difficult or closed off, I don’t like just talking about other people to be talking about them. That’s why a lot of conversations irritate me and make me clam up.

I know some people who will quiz you for information so they can log it and spread it. They’re like parasites who feed off of other peoples’ situations, looking to know how bad things are on the other side so they can judge and feel better about their own lives. You know who they are. The people who are always comparing themselves to you and saying “ooh, tell me more” when you have the slightest bit of misfortune. The ones you low-key mistrust because in their eagerness to get you talking they start spilling other people’s tea and then you think, hmm, maybe they’re doing the same thing with everything you tell them. Beware.

I’ve got a good lot of friends, though. We talk about sports, books, memes, goals, our personal lives, and very little of everybody else’s lives. It reminds me of a quote: “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” I can understand the inclination to discuss people, but I certainly thought twice about it after reading that.

Unfortunately, family members tend to be the worst offenders. That isn’t to say they’re all small minded – I actually think your moms, brothers, cousins, nieces and nephews just learned to relate to you based on the people related to you. I know you because of Jim, so I think of Jim when I think of you. Now, let’s talk about Jim. However, this logic is the bane of my existence.

The moment someone in my family starts talking about another family member, I sigh the heaviest of sighs. Occasionally, it’s just a brief fact exchange. “Did you know she’s having a baby?” Most often, it’s a dissertation of the follies of doing X, Y, Z. “Can you believe that heffa is getting married?” And then we’ve got to talk about it. I’ve had to endure hour long monologues about how someone hurt someone else twenty years ago, or how someone I loved pissed off someone else I loved and how I should be pissed, too. I’ve felt the light leave my eyes and the energy drain from my soul, at the very the mention of what Jack and Jill do over there on their hill. I don’t want to hear it.

And I have to check myself sometimes, too. I have my days where I have to release some angst about some insecure piss-head trying to bring me down. When it happens, it tends to be because of something very personal, a situation where I was directly impacted. If the conversation veers into a review of all the other person’s faults, I tend to feel uncomfortable, like the immature part of me is taking the reins. I’m better off when I mind my own business.

I think this came about when I started meditating on the things that make me unhappy – the things I want to avoid. I don’t like inviting negativity in my life, and too much of that negativity comes from talking about other people. Humans are generally judgmental as hell – in the most literal sense. The very thing our spiritual minds tell us not to do is the thing we do with ease, without even a strain on our body. I wish more people challenged themselves to share the good things.

Tell me less about class suspensions. Tell me about the excellent behavior weeks. Tell me less about bad bosses. Tell me about that raise you got anyways. Tell me less about the reasons relationships, careers, travel plans won’t work and more about how awesome it would be if things pull through. What’s small minded is entertaining yourself by bringing people down. What’s great is the idea that we all have something to learn and appreciate in one another.

This blog is like a box of chocolates.

Sometimes we all need a little extra push in life to accomplish the things we know we ought to. For me, my greatest motivator is food. I’ll climb the highest mountains, I’ll swim the furthest seas, I’ll deliver the blood sacrifice if there’s a filet at the end of the tunnel. Lately, I’ve been testing how many things I can apply that to, to see how far I can get.

I’m a compulsive eater. You’d think I’ve journeyed into the land of diabetes, but I discovered exercise in time to temper the effects. Now that I have my own car and my own money, I use them primarily to get food. Not like, damn, I need groceries. More like, damn, it’s 8 am, I need a croissant or, damn, it’s 12 pm, sushi would be great right now, or, damn, it’s happy hour, I should take advantage of that deal on clam chowder. Meanwhile, my planned meals sit off to the side, neglected.

I’ve also noticed that I have this thing with chocolate that reminds me of when the Golden Girls discovered that Rose was addicted to pain meds she started taking 30 years ago. If I can’t find chocolate (ideally a Hershey’s Nugget or Snickers) within 5 minutes of my craving, I’m liable to cuss you out over something that’s not even your fault. I almost lost two friends because they were holding my candy to keep me from eating it all, but they weren’t available when I decided I was eating it anyway. I don’t need a lot, just a Reese’s cup or two for the 3 o’clock hour when I’m tired of doing work, but have to stick it out until the end.

The Power of Habit made me aware that my chocolate cravings are within my control and I need to change how I respond to my triggers (stress/work/boredom/all of the above). Instead, I decided I would just keep my cravings and use them to reward (and power) my accomplishments, like washing my face before bed (it’s so necessary, but annoying).

The other night I was stuck on the coach at bedtime so I decided I would reward myself with a cup of Sorbet if I raised myself from the dead. I tell you, it worked like a charm.

So, that’s why I’m here now, writing. In exchange for these 5 minutes of writing, I’m getting a large fry at McDonald’s. If I keep this up, writing will be more exciting than ever…and I’ll need a personal fitness coach to keep my body goals on track.

Caraval.

Allow me to list all the compliments that come to mind when I think of Stephanie Garber’s Caraval.

  • When the review said “spellbinding” they weren’t lying. That book was magical.
  • I haven’t felt this way about a book since Red Queen.
  • Why do all of the good books need sequels? It’s like fantastic and intricate plots require installments and months of agony.
  • Will I ever be able to write a novel like this?!

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way let’s discuss. In recent times I’ve tried and failed to get swept away by many a fantasy novel. The characters were too young or too stupid or too annoying. They have magical powers but instead of doing cool shit they spend time doubting themselves. Or their authors spend too much time talking about rolling waves and innuendos and none of what motivates the characters to do anything. Or there’s no handsome character.

Caraval Cdid all these things right. When I first opened it, I stepped into the Conquered Isles at exactly where I felt I needed to be. In two chapters I became invested the two main characters, Scarlett and Donatella, I understood their greatest motivations, and I felt what was at stake. As a writer, I was impressed, as a reader, I was spellbound. The hate I felt for their ignorant, abusive father propelled me to read on in hopes of experiencing his downfall – there was no redemption for this character. But this story was so much more than that.

It was a story about magic, adventure, and romance. For once, I’m hesitant to spoil the story. It was so beautifully woven with so many twists and turns that I feel like you need to read it yourself to enjoy. My coworkers told me I’d love it, and I’m grateful they told me nothing more. So I’ll only tell you this.

Despite how many times you are told to trust nothing at the mysterious game where Scarlett and Donatella escape, you don’t realize how much the truth can get usurped until the very last page of the book. And then you’re left wanting more. I did tell you one spoiler, this book absolutely requires a sequel. Fortunately, there are no major cliffs to hang off of. There’s plenty to enjoy in this book alone.

Please read and tell me what you think.

 

9/15/17.

What better time than Friday to dump all the crap that’s been cluttering your brain. All week I shower, and drive, and join meetings while unrelated thoughts play through my mind. Never when I have spare time or a notebook in front of me, just when I’m inconvenienced by life. If I’m lucky, I remember to write down a fragment of the idea so I can write about it later. By the end of the week, though, I have a backlog of thoughts just waiting to be shared. I thought about waiting and writing out something more formal, but then I thought of the randomness that is Jenny Lawson’s Furiously Happy and said, “fuck it.” Let’s go.

Why are all the good guys already married?

I’m guessing it’s part of their nature. These guys are so great, they recognize a good thing when they’ve got it, they lock it down, and commit to it. All the good guys must have met their sweethearts young because I keep bumping into these wonderful, good natured guys. But they’ve got whole wives, a kid or two, and a happy, infuriating way of bragging about their married life while you silently curse it. I love love and all, but why couldn’t one of you wait for me?

The reheat feature on the microwave is life-changing.

Did you guys know about this? I asked a sixty-something year old guy if he knew and he exclaimed that he did not. It took me more than twenty-five years to notice this beautiful button, but hot damn – this is a game changer. I used to think the microwave was already made for reheating food – surely, it can’t be for cooking it. As I’ve grown older and wiser, my appreciation for the stove and oven has grown, and I’ve only seen microwaves as mediocre vessels for reheating what I am too impatient to cook properly. But one day I tried out that reheat button…my food tasted completely different. It tasted like day one food, not day five food. It tasted fresh and moist and real. Unless my food is labeled for microwave cooking, I’m using the reheat button. Bonus lesson: even if the plastic container you’ve bought is microwave safe, it’s not meant to be. Plastic makes things taste disgusting.

Y’all need to stop putting “proficient in Microsoft Office” on your resume.

Unless you define proficient as being able to type sentences and bullets in different colors. If you define it as “skilled,” then please explain to me how to create a pivot table in Excel. I barely know how to use the formulas feature in Excel. As for Word and Powerpoint? I learn something new and amazing every other day! I took a Lynda.com course on Powerpoint design last week and I learned how to customize layouts, arrange objects, and enter specific color values. Oh, and I figured out that there’s a button that adds those fancy-ass borders to Word docs. Who knew? Did you?

I can’t watch the Indians win, so they can win.

I’m not usually superstitious, but the last Cleveland Indians game I saw they lost. Now that I’m not watching it they’re breaking team records, AL records, possibly MLB records, and I’m just like, I’m gonna have to take one for the CITY. On game 21 of their win streak, I sensed that a test was coming. That day, the win streak and the afternoon game prompted my job to play the game in the office for all team members to see. I was like “What? What?” and then “damn.” I couldn’t watch. Then, my friend is like, “Let’s go watch the game during lunch!” The universe is cruel, but I persevered. It’s enough to know that history is being made thanks to my sacrifice. You’re welcome.

Is it possible allow men to be gallant while also maintaining your independence as a female?

The other day, a male friend of my mom’s took us both to dinner and he commented that I wouldn’t let him get the door for me. I honestly hadn’t thought of it. I lead the way when I walk so it’s just more convenient for me to open the door when it’s in front of me. But you know what I did? Started stopping before I got to the door. It was both inconvenient and awesome. I wasn’t used to that type of treatment, but I kinda liked it. It was old school and made me feel like a lady. My only fear was that it was too old school. Like reminiscent of the days when women cooked all the dinners and cleaned the house and other bull. Can I have the best of both worlds?

Scroll down and leave a reply. Tell me if I changed your life (because microwaves!) or if you have answers to any of life’s mysteries.

I Am Not A Cat Lady: The End.

After about six months away, my sister returned home, found some wonderful roommates who don’t mind cohabitating with cats, and finally made plans to move Henry and Albie into their new abode. In the days leading up to her return, I became more and more excited about restarting my cat-free existence.

Oh, and about seeing my sister again. Obviously.

I wasn’t alone in my excitement, either—I could tell that the cats were just as ready to get rid of me. Henry, for example, had taken to regularly meowing at my apartment door. It was as if he convinced himself that I was keeping the bigger, better part of my apartment from him. (Sorry, dude—this is as good as it gets.)

Then there was Albie, who apparently grew bored of waking me up by petting my head in the early morning hours. Instead, he started trying to one-up himself with new wake up calls, like dousing his head in water (from his water bowl or my leaky faucet, I assume…that better not have been toilet water) and then headbutting me, or literally sitting on my face. All that nonsense actually made me miss the head-petting.

The actual move-out day was a bit of a production. My sister came to the apartment one evening, armed with a pair of cardboard pet carriers. She greeted the boys, lovingly pet them for the first time in ages, scolded me for not brushing them enough, and finally set to work on moving them into the carriers. Albie was easy; we threw some treats into his carrier, and that was enough for the genius to allow himself to be placed inside without even the slightest resistance. Henry, however, was a little more intelligent and a lot more difficult. We tried lifting him into his treat-filled container, but as soon as he got close to being placed inside, he dug his claws into the cardboard panels on the top to stop us from lowering him any further. We then turned it into a two-person job: I opened the top panels as widely as possible, and my sister lifted Henry. However, Henry kept fighting, and I kept chickening out and abandoning my post as his claws got closer to my flesh. My sister and I tried switching roles, but even after six months, my cat-holding skills were awkward, at best; as a result, Henry kept jumping out of my arms before I even got him within three feet of the carrier’s opening.

After lots of yelling, stressing, and somewhat-successfully avoiding scratches, we gave up on the carrier. Instead, my sister strapped on Henry’s leash and walked (carried) him down to her car. It wasn’t exactly a smooth operation, but the fact that Henry and Albie were off to their new home with their cat lady mother made for a happy ending to the day.

And me? I was thrilled. My apartment was back to being MY apartment, and I could sleep soundly without fear of roommates creeping in the night. A cat-owning friend of mine was stunned to hear about my lack of emotional reaction to the cats’ departure, as well as my non-interest in getting some furballs of my own; her exact words were, “I can’t believe you haven’t fallen in love with them!!!”

I will say this, though: the first time I visited my sister’s new house, I noticed Henry slowly approaching from another room. Despite our last interaction being the struggle of moving him into a pet carrier, I stuck out my hand to greet him. After several seconds of cautious sniffing, I think he remembered me. He then rested his hand in my outstretched hand and let me pet him for a minute. And my heart melted a little.

I guess you could say that—in addition to lessons about playing in the sink, avoiding duct tape, not being dead, and exactly how high-strung I can be—Henry and Albie taught me that cats are alright…as long as I’m just a cat aunt with visitation privileges.

NOT a cat lady.

An exercise in happiness.

Have you ever written a list of things that would make you happy? Go ahead. Do it. I’ll wait.

I wouldn’t ask you to do anything that I haven’t done, so here’s a sneak peek at my list.

  • I want a beautiful house with a big yard for Cleo.
  • I want to see beautiful places, but not constantly because traveling is physically exhausting.
  • I want to fall in love with somebody who loves me.
  • I never want to lose myself in love. I want to keep ‘dating my friends’:  lunch, brunch, movies, plays, festivals, you name it. Let’s go!
  • I want a job that gives me a relative amount of freedom. I’m not quite jazzed at the idea of working for myself, so I wouldn’t mind a career that gives me time to do and be where I want.
  • I want to live creatively. I want to write, paint, take photos. To just create and leave it all out in the world.
  • I want to help people who need help surviving but also thriving.
  • I want to retire closer to 40 than 60.

I’m curious. Am I the only one that feels like I have the things I want, or that they’re at least on the way? Even as I kept writing this list, I started to feel like I was writing a list of things I’m doing, not just what I want. According to mindfulness teacher Cory Muscara, the hedonic treadmill will make you grow accustomed to the things that make you happy. It will have you thinking you don’t have enough even after you’ve achieved the very thing you’ve been working hardest for.

So what should you do to be happy? Live in the moment. There’s often a lot of bombassery waiting right there for you.

If you’re not blessed to say that you’re already finding happiness in the life you’re living, I suggest two things:

  1. Remember that faith is required. You’ve gotta believe that good things will come from the work you put in today.
  2. Change the things you don’t like. If you know for a fact that what you’re doing isn’t bringing you happiness, then stop doing it. And when you start to doubt yourself, ask yourself what matters most to you? Being comfortable right now or getting uncomfortable to get something better?

Let me know what’s on your list below!