Seven Ways Volunteering Actually Gives Back To You!

Being thankful and having gratitude for what you have in your life has a MAJOR positive impact. It can cure depression, make you overall happier, healthier and wealthier as it can boost your career and it can even help you live longer! So you can see why a holiday around giving thanks can be such a great thing to celebrate.

Thanksgiving is also a wonderful time to give to others as others have given to us. No matter how little or much you have in your life, people have positively touched you in ways that have helped you and volunteering is a great way to recognize that and give back. In this post, I would like to share with you what I personally have learned from volunteering, why I’ve incorporated it as part of my Thanksgiving traditions, and how you can start this lovely tradition in your own home.

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What I Think Everyone Needs to Know About College

NOT going to college was NOT an option for me in my home. I remember that my sisters and I were not allowed to pick the “Skip College and Go to Career” option when playing The Game of Life.

I think it’s absolutely wrong that most 18-year-olds are pressured with picking something they want to major in and do for the rest of their lives. Most people would not force their 18-year-old to marry in America. We’d tell them they’re too young, but when it comes to picking a career choice somehow it’s completely acceptable to think that a child understands enough about themselves to pick a career they’re going to want to wake up to every day.

Growing up I was really sheltered, REALLY REALLY SHELTERED. I was homeschooled, I didn’t have really any neighborhood friends (because I started getting picked on as to why I wasn’t allowed to go to a public school), and my only other form of social interaction with the outside world was my church….which isn’t the best example of what real life is like *thank God*. Being the oldest in my family, I didn’t have many years of play and was given a lot of responsibility. I helped my mother with her home daycare, I often was expected to teach myself in home school, I was asked to help my sisters, I was expected to do chores beyond what was normal because chores often tied in with the daycare. It was a lot for a kid. I didn’t have time to play really. I knew I liked art and writing, but beyond that, there wasn’t much exploration of my life unless it could be done in the confines of my home.

As graduation approached the pressure to chose a career was heavy and it caused me a lot of stress. I wanted to take a year off to just get my bearings, but my parents weren’t going to have anything of it. I was able to get into a University (with a scholarship), but I still had no idea what I wanted to major in *because I hadn’t gotten to understand what I even wanted in life*. My mother wanted me to be a doctor, but the truth is, I know for a fact that wouldn’t have made me happy. The pressure I felt between the desire to find something I loved and could live with as my major coupled with my parents pressuring me to be a doctor lead to some severe depression. I stopped going to class and eventually dropped out with the promise that I would eventually go back….12 years later that hasn’t happened.

I recently thought of going back to get a degree in psychology, only to find myself crying in my therapists office saying things like “This isn’t coming from a place of ‘I want a degree for me’ but rather to insulate myself from all the negative life things that may or may not happen in my life if I DON’T get a degree!”.

So what is my first piece of advice:

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What it’s Really Like to be a Blogger

Being a blogger is hard but very rewarding work! It’s a far cry from the movie Julie and Julia or Sex in the City where people just type happily away on their laptops. Blogging is like running a one-man magazine. Pictures have to be taken and edited properly. If I’m making a video that is also going to take a LOT of time. I’m busy from the time I get up, to the time I go to bed making sure my blog represents me well.

So before you start up your blog here are some snippets from my own life and what it’s been like so far as a professional blogger.

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Six Month Goals Check-In

So it’s been six months since I consistently started going after my goals and blogging regularly. I feel like this is a good time to reflect on my activities and I have to say, for the most part, I’m doing pretty good. I mean the truth is, for six months I could have not been doing anything, and that hasn’t been the case. So I’m pretty happy about that. This quarter has been particularly difficult, but with any goal, there are going to be good and bad times. So here’s my check in on weight loss, my blog, and home.

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How I Survive New England Winters

8 years ago my husband and I (with our two cats) all jammed into our car and made the long drive from Tampa Florida to Boston Massachusetts to start a new life. We arrived a week before Christmas and our Christmas tree was one of the first things we unpacked. Several days later we experienced our first Blizzard (the first of four that came by in a row). We were not very well prepared. I can remember shoveling our car in jeans and sneakers. I had grown up in Florida from the age of two and anything under 50 degrees seemed unbearably cold, so that first winter really put the fear of winter in me.

So, how am I doing 8 years later? Better. Much better. Here is what I do to Survive the New England Winters.

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How I Planned for Resolution Success!

I LOVE the New Year. It’s actually my favorite holiday. There’s something cleansing about a date on which you can focus a new start on. There’s a lot of discussion on whether New Year’s resolutions are worth having. A lot of them don’t last very long, and honestly, I can admit to a lot of BIG DREAMS That fizzled out a week later. I personally think how the resolutions make you feel has a lot to do with whether or not you should have them. I also think that sometimes people start off with great ideas of what they want to do more of, like “being happier in the New Year” but they don’t actually know what that looks like. This is why I really enjoy the concept of making S.M.A.R.T. goals. If you don’t know what those are I highly suggest that you read up on it HERE.

I’m going to share a few of my resolutions for 2019.

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To Parents with Nerdy Kids: Four Things You Need to Know

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Dear Parents of Nerdy Kids,

What I’m about to write to you, is what I wish I had been able to write to my family as a kid. This is not a letter to bash, or be mean, but hopefully to shed some light on how I felt, and possibly how your kid might feel being considered a nerd. I’m writing this with the perspective that you as parents want the best for your child as I think my mother wanted for me, but perhaps you may not “get” or understand them all the time, and they may not even know how to explain to you how or why they are nerdy. Hopefully, this letter will give you some relief in understanding the awesome kid you have. Read more