You don’t appreciate what you have…..until it’s gone

I didn't begin to appreciate the consistent intensity of Jack Bauer until nearly 3 years after '24' left the air.

I didn’t begin to appreciate the consistent intensity of Jack Bauer until nearly 3 years after ’24’ left the air.

*proceeds to blow dust from this blog*

It has been seven months and exactly one day since I’ve shared on this blog….and true to the title of this post, you really don’t appreciate what you have until it’s gone*.  By that I mean this blog had become a cathartic release for me – a place where my creative juices, overactive imagination, and flights of randomness could coexist in harmony and without judgment.  But time demands, career changes, and just plain-ole’ trying to figure out life has led me away from posting on a regular basis.  In the time that I’ve been away, so much has happened (including my turning the big 3-0 *gasp*) and I truly regret not documenting my experiences in real time……at minimum so that I can look back at this point in time in my life in the future and chuckle at the person that I’ve allowed myself to be 😉  At any rate, I have immensely missed regularly writing, and rather than continue the ’24’ marathon that I have currently paused on ‘Netflix’** – I’ve decided to wipe away the cobwebs and begin anew with posting.  So here I am on this day after “Mass Genocide Appreciation Day” (i.e. Columbus Day), seven months wiser and motivated to write again as I continue my pursuit of normalcy within my differentially defined bounds.  Stay tuned!

* This statement continued to ring true as I remembered that, earlier today while filling my gas tank, I threw away a baggie containing yogurts that I packed as snack the day before along with the spoon that I packed with the yogurts.  That spoon will be missed,the yogurts…..not so much.

**I greatly admire that the show captures commercial breaks in their clock countdowns.  Guessing the amount of time that has transpired during commercials has become a fun guessing game for my friends and I while watching the show.

Blessed

mason jar

 

So we’re almost 2 weeks into the new year, and for some, the “new car smell” of 2013 may be starting to fade.  I’m honestly still pretty hyped (….but I’m that way in general about a lot of things), yet I still have been challenged to maintain my normally positive attitude when faced with negativity & opposition.  Grrrrr!!!  So when I came across the idea of starting a gratitude jar, I jumped at it!  A gratitude jar is an idea that has been circulating around the interwebs (largely thanks to Pinterest) that basically involves writing down at least one thing that you’re grateful for everyday on a strip of paper and placing that paper slip in a jar.  At the end of the year, you dump out the jar and revisit all of the things that you were grateful for.  How cool is that?!  This challenge doesn’t have to be limited to the entire year, for some it might be better as a monthly activity.  I like the idea of doing it for the entire year (but reading periodically when I need a reminder) – provided I can find a jar that’s pretty and big enough to hold 365 slips of paper 😉  Let me know if you’re already a gratitude jar veteran and how practicing this exercise has impacted your life.  I’m hoping that the constant reminder of the blessings that are in my life will completely obliterate any negative thing that may try to get my attention.  Also, if you’re feeling the cutey-patooty jar pictured above – visit this Etsy shop.  Have a fabu hump day!

 

Merry Christmas: Love to Love Ya!

love you

Merry Christmas!!!  I had an entirely different topic that I was prepared to write about today, but now…..I’m not feeling it.  Instead, I’m going to keep it short & sweet 🙂  In celebration of this day to commemorate the birth of Christ, the ultimate exemplar of Love – I just want you to know that you are loved.  I love you, and more importantly, God loves you…..and there’s nothing you can do about it 🙂  Now that’s a gift that requires no gift wrapping.  Enjoy one of my fav songs by ‘The Commodores’ & have a fabu Christmas Day!

Today’s my 20th!

high five gif

Nope – not my birthday, that ship has sailed almost a decade ago.  Today marks the 20th post that I’ve made to this blog *launch the confetti canon*!  While this might not seem significant to some, to me this is a momentous occasion because I wasn’t sure how consistent I would be with this newest creative endeavor.  In the past I’ve started some things and haven’t always seen them through.  Some for legit reasons (lack of time or resources), but for others….I simply lost interest.  I might be a little bit of a flake, or, to take a page from Emilie of Puttylike.com, I’m a ‘Multipotentialite’ who naturally moves from one project to another…honestly, depending on the day, it could be a combination of the two, but I digress.  However I choose to psychoanalyze the motives behind my actions (or lack thereof), I’m excited not only about my consistency with this project, but at how much fun I’ve been having doing it.  Seriously, just letting my brain have at it on an almost daily basis has been quite liberating and enjoyable, and I find myself cracking up at the things that come out of my….fingers.  This also signifies that this project might be worth continuing to invest into, and who knows where things could lead.  And I definitely appreciate all of you who’ve taken the time to read my random tales, motivational excerpts, or just daily thoughts, and would love to hear from you!  What do you think, any ideas, suggestions, things you’d like to know or see?  Let me know by leaving a comment or emailing me at differentnorm@gmail.com.  I’m def planning on getting some pics and videos up soon – so be on the lookout for the new hotness in the ’13 (…..wow, that sounded wack…I  feel for the high school seniors who are graduating in such an “un-cool” sounding year, makes me appreciate my 2000 graduation a little bit more).  So yeah, much thanks to you, and I hope to be connecting with all of you a bit better in the future.  In honor of this celebratory day, and the fact that I graduated during a non-wack year, here’s one of my fav songs from 2000.  This week must be the week of the boy band for me, but I loved N*Sync & Backstreet Boys back in the day…..I knew the choreography and everything….  Enjoy & have a fabu Hump Day!

 

Love Never Fails……Period

I had a rough day recently.

I unexpectedly became the recipient of some pretty harsh criticism from someone whom I would have expected the complete opposite response from….seeing as I had worked hard to help them when they needed it.  Their comments caught me off-guard, and my first response was one of :

angry gif

Like seriously?  I just put forth effort to assist you in your time of need, and you’re going to express anger towards me for something that had absolutely NOTHING to do with me?!

But after my initial angry response dissipated (I’ve never been one to hold a grudge), I was left feeling hurt, unappreciated and devalued……and unfortunately, these emotions lingered for a bit longer as I reflected on past similar occasions.  Alas, it is often those who are trusted who are in the position to hurt you the most.  And I tend to have a big heart, which can make me an easy target.  But the incident in question, felt like the breaking point – and I honestly just wanted to say “F it, no more being nice, or giving, or kind to people who don’t appreciate you & probably wouldn’t think twice to reciprocate!”, followed by some act to display my new “I’ma Do Me!” mentality:

panda

But then I happened to look down at my wrist and the tattoo that I’d gotten a few months ago precisely for situations like this one, of 3:16 (for John 3:16) and an infinity symbol as a reminder of God’s never ending love.  That visual cue, along with a chat with my Moms, reinforced what my response should always be when I’m mistreated, misjudged, or misunderstood.  Quite simply, I’m to demonstrate love…..no matter what.  And not the temporal “I’ll love you if you love me back” type of love, but the relentless “there’s nothing you can do to stop me from loving you” kind of love……that love is hard to maintain, because it requires stepping outside of our feelings and what we feel we deserve, and instead putting the other person (even in their wrongness) first.  And that kind of love has to be rooted in God.

So yeah, earlier I was supremely pissed off & hurt.  But now, I’m like:

happy-troy

And with no apology necessary!  Now, this isn’t to say that I won’t be challenged in this area ever again.  But for this round, the scoreboard is looking like Walking-in-Love Angie:1, Wanting-to-Curse-You-Out Angie: 0!  My love walk will continue to be a “work in progress”, but I’m trusting that God’s got my back every step of the way.  If you’re feeling challenged in this area at all, suppress that desire to go all Mortal Kombat on someone (even if they deserve it) and instead be encouraged by this amazing song.  Have a great Hump Day!

Anti-Gravity

Today I’m not feeling overly inspired to write, and I’m not one to force something just for kicks & giggles.  Instead – I’m going to keep it short & sweet and share one of my favorite songs: ‘Gravity’ by John Mayer.  I have loved this song ever since the Acoustic version popped up on my Pandora station one day.  The dreamer in me can relate to feeling the weight of gravity (e.g., societal expectations & norms), as it’s not in my nature to be “practical” or “realistic” – not when my perspective offers so much more.  Bottom line, I’m anti-gravity and instead committed to pursuing my passions.  I have and probably will continue to make mistakes along the way – but I refuse to allow fear to cause me to give up on the journey.  As the song goes, “just keep me where the light is”.  That light, for me, is my relationship with God – and with Him, there’s nothing that I can not do.  Have a fabu Hump-Day!

Isn’t it ironic…..don’t you think?

I’m in a ‘Jagged Little Pill’ kind of mood tonight.  It just seems like a lot is happening right now, and the upcoming holidays aren’t exactly helping my continual attempts to maintain balance in my life.  As much as I love spending time with my family (they are a pretty cool bunch, I must say), I would equally-as-much love to just have a peaceful quiet solo Thanksgiving – spent in bed with Chipotle & Netflix *insert fist pump*.  Ironic to some maybe…..but not so much to me.  I value my solo time like a prized possession.  Alas, my presence is expected elsewhere and my attempts at trying to provide some semblance of an alternate explanation for my desired whereabouts are being sorely misunderstood…..because people want to see me and I’m supposed to help cook…….& I don’t even particularly like to cook……  Le sigh.  And so I will be making the trek to fulfill my familial duties for the day & my solo vacay will have to be put on ‘pause’ for another occasion.  In the meantime, having Alanis to sing/scream along with in the car will certainly help make the car trip that much more enjoyable 🙂

And so it begins….

I guess a ‘Hi’ is in order *insert wave*.  I’m Angie and I’ve started this blog for two reasons: 1) I like writing, and 2) I wanted a creative outlet.  I’ve kinda dug writing since childhood, and even remember the first short story I wrote in the third grade entitled “Pollution needs a Solution”….wow, I was on my way to solving environmental crises at the the tender age of 8, lol!  As time passed, I fell out of “like” with writing as grown-up responsibilities took her place.  But now writing and I are trying to get that old thing back 🙂  This blog is one of those avenues through which I hope to rekindle our relationship, and to get some other things out.  I started another blog a few months ago that was a fun project for awhile (it allowed my random side to run free…wheeeeee!), but felt creatively limited content-wise.  Until one day, a different norm was born.  The name itself was so fitting for me.  I’ve been considered a little weird throughout my life and have even identified with that label….but ultimately realized that I was just being myself.  So now, as I stare 30 down in the face, I’ve come to terms with being me.  Authentically, slightly weird at times, clumsy, nerdy, analytical, goofy, creative me.  And this is my blog….welcome!