I’m Going Through Changes Now

Hello everyone!

Well, as the title and video would suggest, I am still going through a series of changes. First, obviously, I finally changed the blog header!

I’m about to leave Wilmington. My best friend and I discussed it a while ago, and I decided the best thing for me is to move back to Charlotte. She is literally saving my life by letting me rent a room in her beautiful house for next to nothing, in a city where I can grow professionally and personally.

I’m scared, but excited, and also sad. It’s been kind of a crazy ride these past few years…a lot has happened. Most of it is recorded here on this blog, so thank you for sticking with me! I may go dormant for a bit but I’ll try to update as much as possible, and once I get to Charlotte, I have so many plans and I’ll actually have the ability and means to carry them out, so stay tuned my friends!

xoxo,

Stephanie

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Well This is Different

I didn’t post for a while because I made a pretty quick, life changing decision.

I moved into my own place!

I’m unsure of what caused it…I just woke up one day two weeks ago and I needed a fresh start, a clean slate. Within two days, I had found a new place and orchestrated a move with the help of my super cool boss and a couple guys and a lady from work. My new place is…pretty great. It’s hidden away, surrounded by trees, and most importantly, it’s my own. I have been feeling happier than I have in a long time, and I know I made the best decision for me.

Not only did I want to tell y’all the reason why I went quiet for a moment, but I wanted to touch of something I’ve had trouble with in the past and have been focusing on lately.

Winston Churchill once said, “Fear is a reaction. Courage is a decision.” This is something I’ve come to realize is very, very true. I’ve lived most of my life in a bubble of fear, never taking chances and staying in my safe space. In the past couple of months I’ve been taking small steps out of the bubble, and the rewards have been, in a word, exquisite.

Take this move for example. It was terrifying. I’m in quite a bit of debt again. But I’m happy. I feel free, like I could sprout wings and fly. It was scary and asking for help was even scarier. But I did it because it was best for me, and that’s why it was so terrifying.

Last Wednesday I went out on my friend’s boat again. I’m terrified of deep water and drowning. But do you know what I did? I let him take me out to the open ocean. We went past the safe water buoy. It was dusk. And as we floated there, I realized that yes, there are scary things in the ocean, but boats are built to keep you afloat. Under the darkening sky I looked at the smooth, glassy water and the lights reflecting off of Wrightsville beach and never in my life have I ever been so happy to face my fears.

Sometimes, the decision to have courage is the hardest decision to make, but it’s also the most important. You may just find yourself blossoming in a way you never expected.

Now, I’m still getting set up but, but here are a few photos of my new place!

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I’ll have more soon, of course.

And what is a blog post from me without photos from the ocean?

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Gosh…I love Masonboro Island.

Well, I have my work cut out for me today. I need to actually work, because I’m a bit behind on my current deadline, and I have some more organizing to do and some prep for the week. Until next time!

Love and Peace,

Stephanie

And she’s back!

Hey everyone! Oh my gosh, I’ve missed blogging so much! And so much has happened…

Let me give y’all an update. This may be a long post, but it’s important to me. Let me get my Spotify going and I’ll jump in!

When I took my hiatus, there was a lot going on in my life. And a lot of it was, well, not good. I was spiraling back down a road I never wanted to revisit. I was feeling depressed, overwhelmed, worthless…and I don’t revel in feeling that way. I needed change.

Then my boyfriend and I broke up.

We had been dating just under four years. Lately things had just been kind of…I can’t think of a word for it. After we broke up, the negative feelings began disappearing. That sounds bad, because he is not a bad person at all. But I thought about it and I realized that I have not taken any time to focus on myself in four years. And I was beginning to lose who I am. I wasn’t loving myself, I was simply living in a body and going about the motions.

Last Thursday a friend of mine took me out in his boat to Masonboro Island. As I lay there in the sand, the sun warming me and the waves lulling me to sleep, I felt a sudden change in me. A want to be better, a need to improve myself. I want to love myself and be brave, be adventurous, be the best person I know I can be, and I want to share it with others.

I was going to wait to restart this blog until my now roommate moves out in late July, but I’m tired of waiting to change my life. I have a brand new set of goals. I shouldn’t have to wait to begin to achieve them.

So this blog will serve as my record for my weight loss, my healthy recipes, my (hopefully) DIY projects I want to do, my journey to overcome my anxieties and phobias, and my life as I continue this new chapter by the sea, by the sun, and by the light.

For now, the layout of the blog will stay the same. But soon I hope to revamp and buy an actual domain name, make this stuff legit! And soon I will also figure out a blogging schedule.

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Seriously…how can you not have life changing self realizations in a spot as beautiful as this?

So I’m glad to be back! I will update again soon, and once the dust settles, more often.

Keep the peace!

-Stephanie

This is difficult…

Hey everyone,

I’m here to announce that I am taking a hiatus. I don’t want to, but it seems like the best thing to do. How long? That’s the hardest part. I probably won’t touch this blog until July/August.

Why?

Well, I have a lot going on. A lot. There are huge changes happening at my company and I’m going to be putting in a lot of late nights. I need to try and make time for my creative projects for my own sanity, and most importantly, my boyfriend has decided to move out in July.

We aren’t breaking up (he says) but apparently his hatred for Wilmington has overgrown everything else. So, maybe after he leaves, I’ll have more time to start this blog again.

So goodbye for now. Hopefully you will hear from me again in late summer. Thanks for sticking with me this far.

Holiday Deadlines and Time

It’s that time of year again. Holiday deadlines are in full swing at work, and it’s a lot harder to get any time to blog or honestly work on any other hobby.

So, I’m apologizing for my lack of posts and most likely my continued lack of posts until all the craziness is done!

There have been more implementations for living a more frugal, greener lifestyle. We have started making our own mayo! I’ll post the recipe soon, my boyfriend has it. We switched our lightbulbs to energy savers, and I am learning alternative ways to heat the apartment during the impending colder days.

I’ll also be using my sinus drink again, since once again my sinuses are threatening me.

I hope everyone is doing well!!

Joaquin

I was going to update my blog this weekend with a post about a new endeavor, but I feel this takes precedence.

We are all aware of hurricane Joaquin, and being on the coast is no joke right now. I am more inland, which is keeping me much safer than I would be a couple miles out. That being said, this is a legit disaster and five people have already died in Columbia, SC, where one of my closest friends lives. The pump station across from my complex has been issuing a siren for the past two hours, something I’ve never heard in the year and a half I’ve lived here.

Make sure you have adequate food and water, flashlights, batteries, and keep everything charged.

Stay safe please!!

Apartment Homesteading

Part of living more simply is self sufficiency – Growing and hunting your own food, composting, recycling, reusing, etc. When most people think of self sufficiency, glamorous images of farmhouses on acres and acres of land drift into their minds. The exact opposite of city living. But, most people don’t realize that there are steps one can take to start a more self sufficient lifestyle, even if they live somewhere as small as an apartment.

I have lived in Wilmington about a year now, and while it’s not my favorite place in the world, I have done more to increase my self sufficiency here than anywhere else I’ve lived. I live in a two bedroom, two bathroom apartment and have already started making the steps and learning skills I’m going to need when I finally do get my dream farmhouse on acres and acres of land!

So what can you do to start a more self sufficient lifestyle today? Here are six simple changes to make:

1. Porch or windowsill garden. I got lucky and my apartment came with a sizable porch. So I have cherokee purple tomatoes, cayenne peppers, strawberries, thyme, basil, rosemary, lavender, and dill growing a couple feet from my front door! Even if you don’t have a large porch, many plants can still grow wonderfully in pots. My neighbors are even garnering and small orange tree, right in a pot! If you only have a windowsill, herbs are so easy to grow, and will save you money. Fresh herbs from the grocery store can be very expensive! They’re almost $5 here at the local grocery store.

2. Composting. This one may be a bit tricky for an apartment, but it’s not impossible! In a well ventilated receptacle, begin composting eggshells, coffee grounds and filters, tea bags, and fruit and veggie scraps. This will help your garden, too.

3. Rain bucket. Summers in Wilmington mean brutal storms, so I have a bucket set up on the edge of my porch to collect rainwater. I use it to water my plants!

4. Canning. This is a skill I have not learned yet, but canning in your apartment is totally doable! Research the best way for your living situation, and start preserving your porch harvests!

5. Utilizing local farms and farmer’s markets. Even in cities, sometimes farmland is just a drive away, and farms sometimes sell their goods right from their land! And if not, most cities have a farmers market where you can get fresh, organic produce, eggs, dairy honey, and meat, and you’ll also be supporting local farmers! It’s a win win!

6. Recycling. In my apartment, bottled water is a no-no. But on a recent trip to a farther away beach, I forgot my water bottle and was dying, so I had to buy some at the one gas station during the long drive. While I initially felt bad, I realized I could continue using the bottle afterward. I poked multiple holes in the lid and now I use it as a watering can! Reuse and recycle constantly. I have three bins for plastic, aluminum, and glass that I regularly take to the recycling center.

Here are some shots from my porch:

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Rosemary, Lavender, Thyme, and Spearmint

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Strawberries!

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Basil, Goji Berry, Dill and Peppers

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Closeup of my peppers

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Cherokee Purple Tomatoes

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Eggshells are really good for tomato plants!

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This is my recycling area. It’s a bit cluttered right now but we have aluminum, plastic and glass.

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And my rain collector. It’s empty now, we have a heatwave going on and I’m keeping my plants hydrated, but a storm is probably on it’s way! They usually are.

I hope everyone is having a great weekend! If you’re in my neck of the woods, please stay hydrated and don’t stay out in the sun too long. Be safe!