Where the hell is the carousel?

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I feel like the last 2 years of my life I have been on a roller coaster and I’m desperately seeking a carousel.

It’s funny that I’m trying to find some consistency in life to cling to, but the only constant is change.

I have had a ton of change with divorce, selling my house , the ups and downs of dating, changes at work and several other challenges. Life keeps hitting me with more twist and turns.

I know that I would quickly be bored on a carousel of consistency in all aspects of life, but there are some areas I feel I need it. I’m realizing the carousel I need is knowing myself and what I can expect from how I treat myself and how I allow others to treat me.

Life is a roller coaster there is no way to predict the ups, downs, twist and turns in life. All you can do is buckle up, hold on and follow the track.

XOXO,

Cecee

Changing Seasons 

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Just like the leaves of fall change can be beautiful, but it can also be messy. In the past month or so I have had a ton of change from expanded territory for work to selling my first house. My life has been a whirlwind!

During the process of trying to prepare my house for the market, all the showings, traveling for work then packing to move I quickly became overwhelmed. I am beyond grateful for my family and friends who stepped up to help me with tasks and listen to all my frustrations.

Now I am moving on from my beautiful home to the unknown. For the first time I don’t have a plan for my future. My house was packed up and split between my parents, a storage unit and my friend’s house. Thank goodness for my sweet friend for letting me move in.

I am working on embracing the beauty of the unknown even though it terrifies me. Closing chapters and saying goodbye to places, things and people is very hard and scary. Sometimes it takes closing one door for a better one to open. I am excited for the future and wherever it may lead.

Moving on to new adventures!

XOXO,

Cecee

Dating…it’s so silly

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Recently one of my sweet sorority sisters has been sharing the terrors of online dating via her IG story. While it is entertaining and her commentary is the best I can’t help thinking how online dating is such a joke. Yes, I know people find their true loves this way, but this takes a lot of time and energy to do so.

I know we laugh at the Bachelor franchise when the comments of he/she is not here for the right reasons, but most on the dating apps are in that same group.

Then when you do find someone online or anywhere for that matter, who seems like a normal person and could have potential you have to overcome baggage.

Baggage can come in many forms. Mine is the divorce and feeling like I failed at marriage/ relationship.

Getting back in the dating world I’ve been so reserved in showing who I truly am for fear that I will run others off. I have over analyzed every interaction hoping I didn’t come across a certain way.

My fear has created insecurities that I have not had before and ones I thought I had overcome. Sharing my thoughts and feelings has not come easy.

Some baggage is so heavy that the person is jaded. When you become jaded the likelihood that you are ready for a relationship is slim regardless of what you say. Mindset is key here as the person needs to let go of past anger and heartbreak to allow others in. Assuming everyone is going to hurt you is not fair and shows how emotionally unavailable you are.

In relationships you take on some of your significant other’s baggage. Taking on baggage does not mean you have to let it weigh you down. One can be supportive and understanding without taking on all the stress, it’s all about mindset and boundaries.

To my friends out there balancing the dating world and those in a relationship I have a few thoughts based on my experiences.

1. Accept the impact of past relationships, but do not dwell. Take the lessons and grow from the experience.

2. Know change is constant and you need self reflection. You need self reflection to be the best you can be for yourself and your partner.

3. Set your boundaries and communicate them. Setting expectations on how you can be supportive, areas that are challenging for you as well as several other aspects will help prevent frustration.

Good luck and keep discovering who you are. Find someone who pushes you to be the best you can be and will be there to catch you when you fall.

XOXO,

Cecee

Photo Credit: Rachel

What’s Past the Horizon…

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I have been missing from my blog for a while. I feel as I have dropped the ball on all aspects of life lately and very overwhelmed. I am usually a very optimistic person and often think about the future with great possibilities. Lately a lot of change is happening all at once and I am having a hard time staying positive and being happy in the moments.

Seeing past the horizon and seeing change as a positive is usually easy for me as I set a plan to prepare.Currently I feel like I have no plans and it creates extreme anxiety for me, which I have never experienced before.

Reasons I feel overwhelmed…

  • I have been going back and forth with selling my house and no clue where I will move to if I do.
  • My work territory has expanded. Positive is I will have more opportunity, which I am excited about. I am stressed due to timing with figuring out about selling and moving at the same time as expanding my territory .
  • Friends/Family that I usually see often are busy. I feel like this stage of life is weird with friends being at various stages of life and keeping in touch is hard.
  • Feeling like I am letting myself down as well as others. I am not good enough.

I am not writing this for sympathy or empathy it is more for an apology to my friends and family who I know are going through some struggles and I am sorry I don’t have the energy to be there for you like I want to. I apologize for causing stress and anxiety for others while I have been trying to battle my own.

I know everyone is faced with their own battles and we don’t always see or know what they are. Be kind to everyone you interact with as you don’t know the impact you are making on that person.

Sending prayers, warm wishes and love!

XOXO,

Cecee

Let’s Celebrate the 4th!

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Are you considering hosting either a brunch or BBQ for the 4ht of July?  Are you looking for a healthier menu? If you are, I have you covered!

I love brunch and luckily there are so many ways to lighten up your menu!

Brunch Menu

  • Sausage and Egg Muffin– 12 servings (1 muffin/ serving)
    • 1 Cup, Shredded Potato
    • 3 egg, Egg Whites
    • 3 large, Egg
    • 0.25 cup, 2% Milk
    • 0.25 cup, Shredded Mexican Cheese
    • 3.00 links, Johnsonville Turkey Sausage
    • 0.50 oz, Red Bell Pepper
    • 0.25 cup, Mushrooms
    • Bake the shredded potato in a muffin pan at 425 Degrees for 15 mins or till crisp edge, the add all the veggies and diced sausage on top. Then add the mix of eggs, egg whites, milk, cheese, salt and pepper to taste. I also added some fresh basil. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 mins of until egg is done.
    • Macros: 76 cal/ 3g F/ 4g C/ 5g P
  • Chicken and Protein Waffles (birch benders protein pancake mix, per instructions on package) – For a quick cheat on the chicken I purchased Chic-Fil-A chicken strips and use 2 chicken strips.  I top it with 1/4 cup of sugar free syrup.
    • Macros: 415 cal/ 10g F/ 45g C/ 30g P

And/Or

  • Red, White and Blue Protein Waffles with Turkey Sausage- I follow the instructions on Birch Benders Protein pancake mix for waffles and toss and few blueberries into the mix. Serve with strawberries on top, sugar free syrup and Johnsonville Turkey Sausage, 3 links.
    • Macros: 341 cal/ 9g F/ 42g C/ 28 g P
  • Red, White and Blue Yogurt- 1/4 c blueberries
    • 1/4 c strawberries
    • 1/2 c fat free greek yogurt
    • 1 tsp cinnamon
    • Macros: 192 cal/ 1 g F/ 40g C/ 13g P 
  • Pasta Salad: 11 servings (1 cup per serving)
    • 1 Bell Pepper, Green Bell Pepper
    • 2 Tbs, Onion Green Whole
    • 1 tbsp, Basil, fresh
    • 1 g, Pepper
    • 1 Tablespoons, Salt
    • 1 bunch, Broccoli, steamed
    • 0.25 container (60 tomatoes ea.), One Single Cherry Tomato
    • 1 container (32 tbsp ea.), Free Zesty Italian (Fat Free Dressing)
    • 1 container (5 3/10 cup dries ea.), Whole Grain Pasta Rotini
    • Boil pasta per box instructions and let noodles cool. Then mix all the above in a large bowl and chill for at least an hour before serving.
    • Macros: 180cal/ 1g F/ 35g C/ 6g P
  • Caprese Bites: 2 servings (4 each)
    • 8 cherry tomatoes
    • 1 low fat mozzarella stick
    • 8 fresh basil leaves
    • 1tbsp olive oil and balsamic vinegar mix (I use a dipping oil mix with spices)
    • Macros: 86 cal/ 11g F/6g C/ 4g P
  •  Fresh Fruit- Watermelon is always a good choice and I added sprigs of mint leaves for presentation . 1 cup of watermelon
    • Macros: 86 cal/ 0g F/ 22g C/ 2g P

BBQ/Cookout Menu

Planning a BBQ ?! I have the best burger recipe for you! There is a key special ingredient, Home Grind that perhaps myself or Kevin can introduce you! Home Grind is an amazing blend of peppers to add a little heat to your burger.

  • Venison Burger: 7 servings- 1 burger per serving: Video for prep below
    • 1 lb(s), Venison (sub lean ground beef/turkey burger-macros are for venison)
    • 1 large, Egg
    • 0.50 cup, Oats
    • 6 g, Pepper
    • 1 tbsp(s), Garlic, raw
    • 1.50 tsp, Original Flavor Salt Free Seasoning Blend
    • 1 tsp(s), Spices, garlic powder
    • 2 Tsp, Seasoning Chupacabra
    • 1 pinch of Home Grind
    • Macros: 114 cal/ 5g F/ 5g C/ 13g P

Utilize the brunch menu and serve with the pasta salad, caprese bites and watermelon. Sun tea is always a good choice to add!

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For dessert I recommend Red, White and Blue angle food cake.

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  • Red, White and Blue Angel Food Cake: 1 serving
    • 1 Slice, Angel Food Cake
    • 0.25 cup, halves, Strawberries, raw
    • 0.25 cup, Blueberries
    • 2 TBSP , Fat-free Whipped Cream –
    • Macros: 181 cal/ 0g F/ 41g C/ 3g P

I hope you enjoy celebrating the holiday with these lighter menu items! Have a safe and Happy 4th of July!

XOXO,

Cecee

Fireworks and Festive Wear

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Summer is in full swing and it is hard to believe the Fourth of July is upon us! With 4th falling on a Wednesday the big question is “when do we celebrate and what should I wear?”

I have done some research with the help of Indy Star and will break the list down by free firework displays around Indianapolis and the days to see them. I have also mentioned a few other areas of Indiana. If you are interested in festivals to attend please see the Indy Star link. Also there are more options on the Indy Star site for places to see fireworks, but they had an admission fee associated. The below listing is for free admission.

June 30th Fireworks

  • Spark Fishers at the Fishers Freedom Festival- Viewing at Holland Park or Nickel Plate District  begins at 10pm
  • Greenwood- Craig Park begins at 10:15pm
  • Mallow Run Winery begins at 9 pm
  • Madison Township 4th of July Blazin’ Celebration in Camby begins at dusk
  • Thunder over Patoka at Patoka Lake begins at 9pm

July 4th Fireworks

  • IPL Freedom Fest at Indiana War Memorial begins 10pm -fireworks set off from Regions Tower downtown Indianapolis
  • Fourth Fest in Lawrence Community Park begins 10pm
  • Lebanon’s Memorial Park begins at 10pm
  • Carmel Fest downtown Carmel begins at 9:45
  • Morse Lake begins at 10pm
  • Blast on the Bridge at Geist begins at dusk
  •  Noblesville HS begins at 10pm
  • Westfield at Grand Parks begins at dusk
  • Moorseville at Pioneer Park begins at Dusk
  • Plainfield at Hummel Park begins at 9:55pm
  • Greenfield JR High begins at dusk
  • Pittsboro at Scamahorn Park begins at 10pm
  • Terre Haute at Fairbanks park begins at 10pm
  • Fort Wayne downtown begins at 10pm
  • French Lick Resort begins at dusk

July 7th Fireworks

  • Racoon Lake Independence Day Fireworks and Beach Bash begins at 9:30pm

Below you will find patriotic outfit ideas for casual BBQs, brunches, festivals or a fun night out. Also if you are planning a brunch or BBQ for the 4th, stay tuned as follow up blog post will be coming with menu ideas. All of my outfits except for the dress in the pool came from TJ Maxx!

4th dresses

Dressing up the 4th

4th shorts

Keeping it casual

 

 

Stranger Danger 

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At what point are you no longer strangers? In talking to several friends who are either in the online dating world or have met their significant other online it is always interesting to hear how they have handled initial interactions with people.

Some have shared they have a rule of thumb of chatting for 2 weeks via apps, text, phone calls or FaceTime before meeting the person and based on the interaction will allow to their home.

I am a person who has watched entirely too many episodes of Criminal Minds and Law and Order SVU. Trusting a stranger to pick me up at my house, specifically just knowing where I lived was not ok with me. Anytime I would go on a first date I would only meet at a public space.

In addition to meeting at a public space I was overly cautious and sending certain friends a photo of the guy I was meeting, facts I knew about him and sharing my location on my iPhone with them. I would let them know when I would arrive and give them a time to check in on me if they haven’t heard from me. I know to some this may seem over the top cautious, but I would much rather be safe.

I would only trust a person to my home if I had multiple interactions and felt safe or if I had mutual friends with the person. Sadly some interactions in public were creepy.  I was even  worried for them to see my car. I may have been over the top about dating safety, but too many people are not cautious enough.

Dating can be a lot of fun, but remember to be mindful of safety and trust your gut!

XOXO,

Cecee