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Jumbled.

A graffiti brick wall in Manhattan

Ok readers, are you sick of hearing my apologies for extreme hiatuses? I hope not, because here is another one. I APOLOGIZE!! I’ve been gone for two months and it’s been what I needed to clear my head and develop a new path for this blog. This post won’t have many pictures due to my needing to explain myself, only the beautiful jumbled wall I snapped a photo of while taking the trip I had been waiting on forever…to New York City. Since my last post I have been pouring myself into finding what makes me happy and how I am going to tackle this new chapter in my life. Have you ever read a book and one chapter was so compelling, so intuitive, so wonderful that you hoped the rest of the book would be as great only to find out that the next chapter is confusing and hard to understand. That’s how I have felt, like this new chapter is in a different language and I have to learn at a rapid pace.

The first thing I decided to do was to focus on my career. I don’t want to wake up at 40 and have a bunch of failed relationships and no true career. I took a small gig to occupy my time between working for the same company I worked for via the web. I also took a placement test to enroll back in school and scored a 99!! It felt good to know that 4 years out of college I was able to test that well. I also spent a great deal of time thinking about Ivey, I’m not going to lie. Although she made it clear that she didn’t want to work things out with me I found myself wondering if she had coffee that morning, if she was comfortable at night, if she was still participating in old habits, and if she was happy. Any attempt at communication whether it be text or voice was unsuccessful. We are at the point where we do not understand each other at all and I’ve had to accept that fact.

Also in this time, I have been searching for another full time job since the cost of living where I am now is about 3x that of Greensboro North Carolina. On top of all of that, I’ve met someone that I’ve been spending time with lately.

There is so much more to say…but since I am sipping a cup of hot tea and pumped with NyQuil I can’t seem to focus too much.. How have you all been doing?

Getting to Happy

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Family photo projects I have been working on.

I must say, I am speechless and completely humbled by all of the love and support you all have given since reading my last post about “The Split” also, for those that sent kind words and encouragement to me on Twitter, I thank you as well! After a breakup, loneliness seems to be the strongest emotion, and you all have helped with that. I also got encouragement to continue the blog on my own and I am finally ready to start writing again. 

Still, I can not give details on our split since the other party is still quite upset, so if the time comes, I will be glad to do so. This relationship has taught me a lot about myself and about life as a whole. I jumped into this love full force and honestly believed it would always work out, no matter the circumstances. After the split I now realize that nothing is promised for tomorrow, and if you are quickly in, you will probably be quickly out. Until recently, I haven’t had to spend time alone to focus on myself and what makes me happy. I’ve always had a significant other to think about as well. Although painful, this time alone may be what shapes the rest of my life….for the better.

Since I moved out of our apartment, I decided to move closer to my family for emotional support. I haven’t lived in this area in over 2 years, and after meeting Ivey, I decided to stay in the south to build our life together. I must say, being around my family has shown me what unconditional love is. No matter what I do or say, they are there for me. They love me, forgive me for my foolish ways, and look deeper to see the best in me. I’ve reconnected with cousins, old friends and even have gone out to gain a social life of my own. I start my new job in a couple of weeks so this time has genuinely been used to reflect and question. I’m not completely healed, but writing and exploring has always soothed my soul.

Here are some things I have been doing in my journey to happiness and comfort all by myself.

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Vetoing my car and riding the metro to get re-acquainted with my city.

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Making breakfast a must-have in the morning, along with a brief workout, wheat bagels with salmon and cream cheese is my new addiction!

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Visiting places that were not available in the south i.e. Dave and Busters

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Using healthy candies to keep my mouth occupied since I’m not smoking anymore..yay me!

The Split

yes, yes, yes.

Although I can’t give too much detail about what’s been happening between us, I an say only a few facts.

- Our relationship was tested by both of us showing traits we’ve never shown before.

- Things reached a boiling point.

- One of us shut down.

- Trust was thrown out the window.

- A friendship was lost.

- Feelings were hurt.

- One of us wants to work it out, the other does not.

- One of us moved out of the apartment.

- One of us is praying for reconciliation, that may never come.

 

Happy Birthday Ivey!

Happy Birthday to the best thing that could have ever happened to my heart.

Welcome to 30! We love you!

 

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Instagram.

At dinner Saturday night

So, since joining Instagram, I’ve been super excited. Not because I’m on the next iphone app there is, but because for someone like me that looooves sharing through pictures, it allows me to not only easily take amazing photos, but filter them with cool effects and blurs to make my photos tell a story. This is also going to be easier for me to blog because honestly, I love my camera so much I hate carrying it everywhere because I lose EVERYTHING! So since I haven’t contacted all our bridesmaids and groomsmen here are some photos I’ve insta-grammed.

Photo of me at my GORGEOUS second job.

My boo on the ride back home from visiting her sister 2.5 hours away…not sure why this image saved so huge.

Delicious fast food salad from Zaxbys..my new obsession

Romantic new bedding for our room.

What have you all been up to?

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Head In The Clouds

Ceiling of an amazing seafood restaurant we ate at recently.

So, the past week of our lives couldn’t be more different. Ivey has been having an incredible week and mine has been…..not so incredible. I’ve noticed one huge difference between Ivey and I is the way we look at things. I tend to let issues in life stress me out, cause uncontrollable anxiety and put me in a pissy mood. Whenever I talk to Ivey or any of my friends and family about it, they always tell me the same thing. Change your outlook. Be happy, be positive, and move on. One thing I’m learning to do is think of life moments that were special to me, or that made me smile.

Like the time Ivey invited me to her niece’s birthday party. We weren’t technically dating then (since we were both in failing relationships) and Ivey’s sister pulls out a camera and snaps a picture of us at the table. Ivey moved closer to her mom to play it off, while I put on an awkward smile. The funny thing? It ended up on Facebook a few minutes later. Needless to say, we had tons of questions to answer but blossomed was an amazing partnership.

How do you all get out of a bad mood?

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I Do.

 

Wall art that I fell in love with but now have to design the rest of the room around..never got around to doing the rest..

Other than the obvious, I’ve been doing a great job at being more productive this year. I, (along with Ivey) cleaned our house from top to bottom, and have been working to keep it tidy. I’m trying a new method of constant tidy-ing instead of one big mess to clean up. Let’s see how long it lasts! Here are a few other things I vow to do this year.

Replace this phone..OMG so in my defense my company phone is way nicer, and I am this one still functions! Holding out for a cheaper upgrade..

Consider joining our friends when the do impromtu dancing..

making ivey “pose” for photos..

Last Holiday

Being on the market that is! I hope each and every one of you enjoyed your Christmas! (if you celebrate it of course) This Christmas was very special and this time around, I can say I really felt the spirit of love and giving. We spent last year’s Christmas with my family posted here so this year we spent time with Ivey’s family in Burlington NC, Graham NC and Farmville VA. Needless to say the holiday was full of great food, family and **drumroll** a diamond ring! After Ivey and I exchanged gifts on christmas morning (She received a pocket watch, I a pair of slippers and a wallet) She began telling me how much she loved me and our relationship. This kind of talk is not out of the ordinary for a lovebug like IVG, so I listened to her and considered myself very lucky to have someone that loves me so much! We had both agreed on one gift this year so I wasn’t expecting anything else.

Well there was something else. She pulled out a small velvet box and asked me to spend the rest of my life with her! We has already deemed ourselves *married* since this was the closet thing to marriage either of us have been, but the ring made it all the more real. I love the fact that I can think of her whenever I look down. I love the fact that I can flash my ring whenever I’m being accosted by onlookers, and most of all I love the fact that Ivey thought enough of us to buy me token of her love!

Seafood Bake

The key to anyones heart (that likes seafood). More effective than the “Bend and Snap”

One thing about my cooking is that it’s either really good, or really bad. The really good things are dishes that I have: A. Made and eaten forever B. Just snagged a recipe for or C. Don’t require much thought or measuring. The really bad dishes I have made are either: A. Desserts B. Healthy Options or C. Too complicated and I’m trying it for the first time. But one that is always a winner is my seafood bake. I am a lover of all things seafood and could eat it nonstop.  I must admit, I got the idea from seeing Joe’s Crab Shack commercials. They show them often enough in our area but there is no Joe’s here! So I took it upon myself to develop a steam pot of seafood goodness. This is my first time writing a recipe, and since I rarely measure it’s pretty tough but here goes.

Ingredients Needed:

4 cuts of your favorite fish (I like tilapia, or any other kind of whitefish)

1 bag of fresh or frozen shrimp (peeled, deveined and tails removed.) 

2 pounds of Mussels (I buy them frozen and ready to go)

1 pound of crab legs (optional, since they require more work.)

1/2 bottle of dry white wine

2 lemons

1/2 stick of butter

1/2 cup of olive oil

1 Shallot or 1/2 yellow onion

2 cloves of Garlic (chopped)

Salt

Old Bay Seasoning

Pepper

Parsley

Red Pepper Flakes

How to do the damn thing:

 Preheat your oven to 425 degrees

 Give your seafood a once over to ensure all is thawed and clean. (Sometimes I have to use steel wool to scrub mussel shells clean.)

 Season your fish with salt and pepper and place at the bottom of a large steampot or dutch oven.

Scatter the shrimp right on top of the fish then add a sprinkling of red pepper flakes

Add mussels to the pot next, over the shrimp

Place crab legs on the very top, and sprinkle lots of Old Bay Seasoning on top, then set steam pot aside.

Meanwhile, heat a large sautee’ pan on medium heat. Add 1/2 a stick of butter and 1/2 cup of olive oil until butter melts.

Chop 1 big shallot or 1/2 onon and add to the pan to cook for 4 minutes or until translucent.

Chop your two cloves of garlic and add to the onions.

Stir and add parsley.

When onion and garlic are cooked (not burned!) Add 2 cups of white wine to the onion mixture. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cut two slices of one lemon and set aside, then juice both of them into the onion/wine mixture.

Cook on low heat for 6 minutes or until flavors develop

Pour over seafood in the pot and top with the two lemon slices and parsley.

Bake for 30 – 45 minutes or until the mussels have opened, crablegs are hot, and shrimp are pink.

Serve with pot steamed potatoes or french bread crisps both are delicious! Don’t forget the salad on the side.

This recipe has Ivey drooling every time, and is an instant crowd pleaser!

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