Journal Entry 8

How long has it been now since my last post? Almost 7 months?
That’s despicable, if you ask me…
How can someone even begin to recall all the things that have happened to them over the course of 7 months? As I sit here, pondering what the heck I’ve been doing all this time, I can really only remember the big things. I don’t remember what I ate everyday – I don’t take time to snap a picture – I stuff my face. Y’all who take the time to document every ramen noodle, every starbucks coffee, every homemade meal, and every date night dinner really confuse me – but I digress. Sadly, I don’t remember all the shops I’ve visited, all the things I’ve bought, activities I’ve done, or even arguments I’ve had. I remember very little of the past 7 months – which gives me quite a bit of motivation to blog more often; maybe I’ll start to remember more.
I know my last journal entry was quite depressing; I was not in a good place, mentally. Which also helps explain why I’ve neglected my blog for so long. Either way, I’ve done some healing and I’m feeling better than I did when I made that post – that’s why I’m coming to you today! I wanted to share some of the things that have happened recently that I DO remember! Some of the good things!
Back in April, on the 29th, my husband and I bought our very first brand new car! It’s a white 2016 Toyota Corolla S+. It didn’t come with the windows tinted, so we had it added on. I’d say it looks pretty sharp!

We saw a deal that was too good to pass up and, honestly, everything just fell into place with the purchase; it really could not have gone any smoother. We are very happy with it and hope to have it until the wheels fall off. (And even then, we might just buy new tires and keep going! Hahaha.) Keep laughing though (really) because we didn’t even have it for 6 months, and rear-ended someone at a stoplight. Well, technically, the light was green. Everyone was moving, including the car in front of us, but they decided to hit their breaks and we just ran into their tow ball. No one was injured – their car didn’t have a scratch, but our grill and front bumper got pushed in, so we had to have it taken to the bodyshop for repairs. It took about 3 weeks before we got it back, but it looks good as new now! Luckily, our work helped us with a loaner vehicle, so we didn’t have to pay for a rental. (We are still SO thankful for this!)
In my last journal entry I also mentioned that I had gotten a promotion at work! So far, I’ve settled in the position very well and am now at ease with my work. I continue to take on new tasks and responsibilities, which help me feel fulfilled, and due to such promising work I’ve received a  pretty significant (to me, anyway) pay raise! I was able to sign up for and access health, vision, and dental insurance – which I haven’t had since I was in high school and on my parents’ insurance plan.  To add, my husband was promoted to a full time union position within his current department, so that was a huge blessing to us as well.
Aside from a new car, a promotion for both myself and my husband, and a pay raise, I also got to do a little shopping for new clothes. I only splurge on new clothes once or twice a year, so I’m always naturally excited to do so. When I’m not working or convincing my husband to let me spend our hard earned money, I’m crafting or watching movies. The craft that has caught most of my interest lately are called Artist Trading Cards, or ATC’s. (I’ll dive into what these are in a separate blog post.) As far as movies go, my husband and I only really go to the movie theater to see new showings maybe once or twice a year. We actually ended up going twice in the same month to see “The Dark Tower,” and “It.” I also recall seeing “Furious 8” when it came out mid April. I’m just excited that some good movies have come out recently and we have had the extra time and money to go see them. I know we are both looking forward to a few more titles that will be coming out soon, so I have a feeling we will be making an appearance at those showings as well. Having our schedules align so we both get weekends off has been fantastic. We’ve been able to go out for dinner dates to new places, and I’ve enjoyed having a reason to dress up and look cute. Normally, anything goes when it comes to my clothes – very rarely do I do myself up and look cute for my husband. Now that we have time and extra money to play with, we can start to do the things we would like to do, go new places, try new things, and enjoy more quality time together. Even if we just spend a weekend at home, we can take time together to work on household chores, or just lounge around and enjoy some TV shows and movies.
Other than that, I don’t really have much to report. I’m trying to leave the sad and angry out of this post and just focus on the fact that good things have happened recently. Not every post from me can be sad and angry (:
Until Next Time – XOXO!
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Journal Entry 7

Ill start this entry off with a WARNING – this is not a happy entry..

These are feelings I’ve experienced for awhile now. Please do not judge me or say hateful things. Please just accept that this who I am, and this is the way I feel.

It’s been about 5 months since my last post. I started out so passionate about blogging and then it quickly dwindled down when I realized that no one really gave a damn about anything I had to say. The last journal entry I posted was about my husband and I’s anniversary festivities and a new “life-changing” haircut, which I now find is no longer life-changing. I guess it’s safe to say that a lot of things have happened since October 2016. For example, Thanksgiving, Christmas, my Mothers passing, a new year, family birthdays, a job promotion, and all of life’s little struggles along the way. To be honest, I wish I had more motivation and will to post about my Mom and what happened. I wish I had to the want to share the good news about my job, but I just don’t right now.

Right now, my heart hurts. Not simply from losing my mother, but also feeling the absence of “Friends.” Feeling completely alone and buried in a hole that seems impossible to get out of. To constantly be unhappy, unsatisfied, jealous, angry, bitter, confused, and alone is probably killing me faster than all the cigarettes I started smoking. More days than not, I wish I wasn’t here at all. Lately, life itself seems so pointless. I feel so unimportant in the lives of others and my feelings are validated every weekend I spend alone; every day I go without a text, every time I reach out and am ignored. In short, I can’t remember the last time I felt needed, wanted or loved by a friend. I live jealously because I am constantly comparing my life to others’. I see vacations people go on every year, even multiple times a year, and am faced with the fact that I’ve never been on a real vacation. I see the money people blow on things they don’t need – only want, and realize that I work my ass off to pay the necessary bills and then never really have anything left over to do anything fun with. I see groups of friends going out for nights on the town, weekend trips, bar hops, and shopping, while I lay at home trying to sleep the time away until I have to go back to work. I see people having everything I wish I had, no matter how hard I work for it, and I just can’t get on the same level. I can’t enjoy my mobile home because I have friends moving into two and three story houses. I can’t be satisfied with my 17 year old car because everyone around me is buying something new. I can’t be happy in my marriage because I can’t give my husband children, while friends having one night stands are getting pregnant and considering abortions..

Once upon a time, I kind of considered myself better than others.. Okay, not kind of, I DID think I was better than others. I thought I was a bit more deserving of certain things. When my mother passed, I was humbled and I turned to God. I prayed to him just about everyday for anything I could imagine; trusting. Still, months later I am humbled again by realizing that God never owed me a thing; that praying and requesting things just isn’t how it works. I haven’t lost faith, but I have given up. The only thing I pray for now is guidance and strength to get through life, because it feels like any day I won’t be here anymore, and to be honest, it’s been that way since I was young.. I’ve struggled with depression, self harm, and suicidal thoughts since I was 12. Recently though, I quit asking for a chance to move. I quit asking for a break and an opportunity to go on a vacation (no matter how small or short.) I quit asking for that new car I’ve been working towards for about three years now. I quit asking about college. I quit asking for friends. I quit asking about having children. I quit asking for mercy at my job. I just quit asking. God doesn’t owe me anything and I know that I’m not deserving of anything I’ve asked him for anyway. At this point, I’m living just because I’m too much of a pussy to take my own life. I think about my dogs missing me and my husband having to find the money to bury me. Those two things are all that keep me here. I no longer dream or hope for the future because my whole life has been wasted with my head in the clouds. I’ve been ripped down, torn up, and left alone by everyone I ever thought I needed. At this point, the only thing I want in life, is not be a part of it anymore.

How’s that for a journal entry?

A Thought as Christmas Approaches…

Every year, I feel like people get more and more caught up in buying gifts; constantly asking “will they like this?,” “is it too cheap?,” and “should I get something better?” Parents frantically run from store to store trying to find that ONE thing that their child absolutely MUST have or the whole holiday will be ruined. Nevermind the countless other gifts, “filler” items, stocking stuffers, and last minute must haves. Lord knows, if they don’t get what they asked for you very well may be the “worst parent ever.” Now, not only are you standing in ridiculously long lines to check out, but the items you’re buying basically eat your whole paycheck (0r 2..) – even with that sale you thought was “so worth it.”
Now, you rush home with everything and, over time, get it wrapped and all ready to be placed under the tree, making sure to hide everything from prying eyes. Christmas morning comes and the excitement is undeniable. Your kids rush to the tree and see all the glorious goodies that await them; having no idea how much time or money it cost to get them. Of course, you’re probably saving the best gifts for last, so you start out with the clothes – which are usually tossed back in the box with a shrug and an unconvincing “thanks.” Maybe they get a few books or puzzles, you know, which every kid is just DYING to have… Perhaps they get a few smaller things they wanted and that’s when the smiles really start emerging. But then, you’ve finally come to the end and all that is left is that one BIG item. The maker or breaker! Well, Congratulations! You’ve done it. You’ve officially MADE Christmas! But wait… Now that they have what they really wanted – what they waited all that time for – do those smaller gifts really matter that much? Is that last minute $5 stocking stuffer really going to make a difference?
Well, I conducted a little test. For Christmas I bought my nieces and nephews one thing I knew they wanted and one thing that was just a last minute extra. The “extra” was opened first and you could tell by the looks on their faces that they truly couldn’t care less about what they just got; tossing it to the side and quickly picking up the next present. Eventually, they got to the thing they really wanted and once it was opened, nothing else mattered. They ran to their rooms with their presents, threw everything down, and started playing with that “one thing.” Extras that needed batteries still don’t have batteries. Clothes still have tags attached. Some things are still in originally packaging, and why? Because it’s not what they wanted. All those hours you worked to pay for those gifts are seemingly wasted on ungrateful children. You have to convince them to wear that “uncool” outfit because, well, at least it fits. But wait – they REALLY don’t want to wear it, so back to the store it goes to be exchanged for something they DO like, along with any other gifts they didn’t appreciate.
Well, here’s a thought. Instead of wasting countless dollars on filler items and crap your kids probably don’t want, why not teach them what Christmas is really about? You know.. NOT gifts! Things like family time, togetherness, giving, helping others, kindness…Stuff like that. Maybe take some time to teach them to be thankful for what they DO get for Christmas, because there are so many out there who aren’t getting a single thing. No books. No Clothes. Nothing. While your children are complaining about not getting the newest iPhone, not getting that specific thing they wanted, or complaining about clothes, there are children out there wishing they had a pair of socks or shoes. There is a little girl out there who is only getting some raggedy doll and some poor young boy somewhere who only got a small toy car. Why not spend that $5 on a toy to donate to a child in need instead of wasting it buying some last minute item your kid won’t even appreciate or  thank you for.
For those of you who have children that AREN’T assholes, please disregard this message. Purchase as many gifts as you’d like.

Journal Entry 6

Hey Y’all! It’s been a little over a month since my last journal entry and, as always, things have been changing! In my last journal entry, I mentioned how I was going to be trying some new flexi-curling rods for my hair before I decided to chop it off… Well, I never exactly used them, I just chopped my hair off anyway; about a foot in the back. It was a pretty drastic change but I’m enjoying my new hair. I’ve already saved a fortune in shampoo/conditioner and styling products! I mean, just look at how much LESS hair there is, lol.

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It was nice to finally do something different with my hair. I also decided to get my nails done that day and just have a fun time pampering myself. It was even nicer to get it all done for our anniversary on October 10th, which I also mentioned in my last post. I bet you’re all just DYING to know what we did, right? … Probably not but I’ll tell you anyway! We decided to wake up bright and early and head to one of our favorite little “kitchen’s.” It’s called Ginny’s Kitchen and Custards, and yes, It’s technically an ice cream shop, but it’s SO MUCH more than just ice cream. (Which is life-changing by the way.) They serve burgers, hot dogs, nachos, chicken, tacos, pretzels, and all your basic novelty foods. The prices are CHEAP and the food is AMAZING! We pretty much stuffed ourselves for under $20 and we ordered a BUNCH of different things – there were even leftovers. I could go on for days about this place, but you’d just have to check it out for yourself! You’d know when you arrived because of the huge ice cream cone outside the building.

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After we finished eating, we headed to Maeystown, Illinois for Oktoberfest.

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Sadly, the small town had a thing against photos so I didn’t capture anything from Oktoberfest but there was a lot going on! All the shops of the town were open to the pubic and we got to adventure through most of them. There were tables lining the streets full of food, drinks, antiques, and other things to purchase. We wandered around for a good 4 hours and of course we ended up buying a couple things. It was our first time ever attending an Oktoberfest. Even though it was fun, we did end up leaving about an hour before they shut the town down.

On our way back to Missouri, we spotted the most beautiful park and just had to stop in and explore it! For once, a park wasn’t centered around a kids playground. Most of this park was for adults with long walking/biking trails, a ramp to drop your boat in the water and fish, big hills to hike up and things of that nature. It was absolutely beautiful! Here are some pictures from the park.

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When we got back in Missouri, we went to my Mother-in-laws house to pick up some free furniture and household items. From there, we went to this small pavilion close to the river and we played Pokemon. Strange, I know, but it was fun. We sat, talked and reflected on our day before we decided to close out our night with dinner at the Olive Garden. It’s one of our traditions – we go there every year for our anniversary and this year was no different. We had such fun and really enjoyed our day together. We got to come home, shower, cuddle up on the couch and enjoy a movie. I couldn’t have asked for a better day or first wedding anniversary with the man of my dreams. The only thing I would change is I would have made sure I got a picture of US! (:

That’s all for now! Until next time!

Blogging: What’s on Deck?

Well, I started this blog about 6 months ago and, at the time, I had big plans for it. I wanted to share my stories with everyone and capture the interest of friends, family, and fellow bloggers. But, to be honest, I don’t think I’ve done the best job.. I started out with the thought that, eventually, my stories would be heard and I’d end up developing a decent-sized fan base. As I posted, I noticed that not even my family was taking interest in what I had to say and I noticed that friends didn’t really care either. I ended up getting so discouraged that I didn’t bother making many posts because I knew no one would read it anyway. I mean, I had so many meaningful posts that I was afraid to publish because I knew they would be overlooked. Even now, I have ideas but they’re not worth much if they go unread..

 

In an effort to get myself back into blogging regularly, I thought I’d start with this post and list my upcoming ideas. They aren’t in any special order. As a matter of fact, I’m hoping for a little feedback! I’d actually like your opinions on what you’d like to see from me. If you’d like to see more poetry, comment and let me know! If you want to read more rants, say something! If one of these topics below sound interesting, then take a minute to mention it! If you have other ideas that aren’t listed below, then feel free to share them with me! I love writing and it’s always more rewarding when my readers are interested!

 

So, without further babbling, here is the list of what’s on deck:

 

1.  Product Reviews (Wreck This Journal, Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 Polaroid Camera, Etc.)
2. Relationship Advice.
3. Young Marriage.
4. Letters to Family/Friends.
5. Wedding Day and Reception.
6. First Year Wedding Anniversary.
7. Motivation/Inspiration.
8. Bucket List/Dreams/Goals.
9. Advice that Stuck with Me.
10. People who Shaped my Life and How.
11. How we Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
12. What is in my Memory Boxes?
13. My Craft Room.
14. Texting and Driving.
15. Personal Failures and Successes.
16. If I won the Lottery, what would I do?
17. Useless Facts.
18. My Arts and Crafts.
19. Funny Conversation Logs between Friends and Family
20. Share my Collections (Crystals, Seashells, Scarves, Outfits, Jewelry, Postage Stamps, Old Coins, Etc.)
21. Share my Fears.
22. Favorite Childhood Memories.
23. All About my Pets (Dogs, Rabbit, Fish, Bearded Dragons.)
24. Pet Peeves.
25. Defining life Moments and How they Changed Me.
26. Signs I’m getting Older.
27. The Phone Call that Changed Everything.
28. Describe what I would like Heaven to be like.
29. Why I Want to be a Mother.
30. My Biggest Fears as a Parent.
31. How I met my Husband.
32. My Scariest Moment.
33. Childhood Cartoons.
34. In High School I was…
35. What I want to be Remembered for.
36. Something I Never get Credit for.
37. I was a bad Friend when…
38. One Hour to Myself, How is it Spent?
39. Kindest Thing Someone has Done for Me.
40. Kindest Thing I’ve done for Someone Else.
41. What drives/motivates Me?
42. The House I Grew up In.
43. My Friends Let me Down (St.John’s)
44. Infertility and How I Handle it.
45. Letter to my Future Children.
46. Do you choose Love or does it just “Happen.”
47. What would I go back and Say to my Teen Self? (Or any teenager?)
48. What my Husband and I do to stay Connected.
49.  I’m given $1 Million and Can’t Spend any of it – what do I do?
50. Favorite Teachers and Why.
51. First Car.
52. What I got made fun of for.
53. If there was a House fire, what Items do you miss the most?
54. How being the “baby” of the Family affected Me.
55. What were our Wedding Vows?
56. What Turning 18 Meant to Me.
57. What Turning 21 Meant to Me.
58. If I could Re-plan the Wedding, what would I Change?
59. Personal Paranormal Encounters.
60. Tattoos 1, 2 and 3, Explained.
61. Why I took my Husband’s Last Name in Marriage.
62. Mountains or Beach, Why?
63. Considered throwing in the towel on your Marriage? Why or Why Not?
64. If Money and Jobs weren’t a Factor, what would I do?
65. Do I Love Myself? What would I Change and Why?
66. 365 Days of Music (A Song per Day.)
67. Reading List.
68. Book Reviews.
69. A Trip Through my Typical Day.
70. A Video of Some Kind…(Open to Suggestion.)

 

For now, those are my ideas! If I think of more, I might come back in and add them to this list, but I think this is MORE than enough  🙂

 

So please, let me know what ideas you like, which ones you dislike, and feel free to add in any other ideas you might have. If anyone is interested in being a guest on my blog, or having me as a guest on theirs, I would be very grateful and excited to do so!

 

I look forward to reading your opinions and ideas!

How to Help Pull Yourself Out of Depression: Find Relief

Most of us have been there; that dark lonely place of our mind where comfort and happiness cease to exist. Some of us stay longer than others, but that doesn’t mean that the depths of sadness don’t run just as deep in all of us. I know I’ve been there more times than I can count, and just when I think I’ve found my way out, I fall even further than I did before. Personally, I have suffered from anxiety and depression for over 12 years now. There were times when I turned to harmful substances and self-harm. No amount of medication ever helped me, though I have seen it work wonders in the lives of many close to me. But for those like me who have tried medication and had it fail, what do we do to lift our spirits? What can we do to find contentment and happiness? That is what this article is for. I will share some of things I do when I find myself in an unhealthy or depressive state.

 

Before I share those things with you, let me just say, there will be times where you don’t feel like doing anything. You won’t care. You’ll feel numb and indifferent and you’ll basically have to force yourself to get up and do something about it. There were times when I chose not to do anything about the way I felt. I mean, what’s the point when I’ll just feel the same way again soon? All that did was result in a constant unhappy version of myself. Well, that was my first problem. Just because you might be sad again doesn’t mean you can’t let yourself be happy for a little while. Sometimes, those little moments you let yourself have can be the moments you look back on and are thankful for, because they were a reprieve from all the bullshit that is life. So, my first tip to you is to force yourself to do things even if you don’t want to. Let yourself seek happiness. Let yourself feel it when it comes. It’s better to smile a little and have a bit of fun rather than have none at all. Once I realized that a few moments of relief were better than bouts of constant sadness, I finally started doing more so I could have more of those “little” happy moments. So, now, you might be wondering what kinds of things I do to get some relief or help make myself happy. Well, here we go!

 

1. Watch Your Favorite Show or Movie – Usually once I make it past the first 10-15 minutes, I’m so into what I’m watching, I don’t even give a second thought to my problems.
2. Take a Bubble Bath or Use a Bath Bomb – Bring a book with you, your tablet, your phone, or just relax and enjoy the warm water. The whole point is to forget what’s bothering you.
3. Take a Nap – Sounds cliche and unhelpful, but you don’t over-analyze things when you’re asleep. Sometimes, a nap is the best thing to help end your thought process or reset your mind.
4. Go for a Walk – Pay attention to the breeze, feel it. Listen to the birds and bugs. Take a moment to view flowers, collect leaves, stare at trees and clouds. Really take a moment to enjoy nature.
5. Play with Your Pet – Give them a bath, rub their belly, give kisses, cuddle, and truly appreciate that you have them so close to you. My most comforting moments are with my dogs.
6. Do a Craft – I love arts and crafts, so it is naturally easy for me to lose myself in my most loved hobby.
7. Clean your House – I put music on and before I know it, I’m dancing around dusting and singing while I wash dishes. Once everything is clean, I feel accomplished and proud of myself.
8. Play a Video Game – For me, these actually make me mad. Most of my games actually cause stress to play, but they are a relief for my husband. If gaming works for you – by all means!
9. Listen to Music – No, I don’t mean sad songs that keep you in a slump. I’m talking upbeat, makes you want to move around, happy music. For me, an upbeat song can change my mood.
10. Hang out with a Friend – Don’t just sit around and do nothing, go out, have fun, and force yourself to laugh. I lose myself with friends and my mood is never higher than when I’m with them.
11. Make a Snack or Bake a Dessert – I mean, how can you not be happy with a snack! Comfort foods for the win!
12. Blog or Keep a Diary – How juvenile, right? WRONG! I pour my thoughts and feelings into writing and sometimes, by the time I’m done, I’m emotionally drained and I feel more at ease inside.
13. Go Shopping – All it takes is a little something new to brighten my mood for the day. It could be a shirt, craft supplies, my favorite snacks, or something else. Either way, it’s fun!
14. Go Through Your Things For Donations – Sometimes I find it relaxing just to look at everything I own and go through it. Donating old items can make you feel better about helping someone.
15. Do a Favor – Sure, we all feel used sometimes. But then again, it does feel good to do something nice for someone else. Doing a good deed can feel just as good for you as it does the recipient.
16. Volunteer – Maybe at a Church, maybe at a Shelter or Animal Rescue, either way, “the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” -Gandhi
17. Cut Pictures out of Magazines – Weird, I know, but there is something satisfying about finding naturesque pictures and cutting them out. Put them in a binder and visit it when you’re sad. It’s the closest to a vacation you can get sometimes.
18. Grab a Coloring Book – Those adult, stress-relieving, coloring books are serious business. It takes me hours to color one picture. It’s relaxing and it’s pretty to look at once it’s done.
19. Call Someone on the Phone – How oldschool, right? Well you won’t think so when you’re telling jokes and laughing about embarrassing moments. You have to purposely discuss the funny stuff.
20. Make Lists – Probably the strangest thing on this list, but it works. I make lists of everything. Make a grocery list. Make a list of places you’d like to visit. Make a list of Christmas or Birthday gifts you’d like to get. Make a list of things you enjoy to do so that when you’re bored, you can pull out that list and start crossing things off of it. Make any kind of list! Start writing down all the songs on your Ipod, Make a list of all your favorites – you get the point!

 

These are just some of the things I do when I feel down and out. Do remember, though, that most of these things I have to force myself to do.. Sometimes I’m so down that I couldn’t care less about getting out of bed, showering, or starting my day. But..I do know that once my mind is on something else, I feel better. So, I force myself to get up. I force myself to do something, and within a short amount of time, I catch myself smiling again. Sure, our minds may eventually drift back to the dark side, but I’ll always take as much light as I can get. After all, it’s the light that helps get us all through the dark.

 

Hopefully some of the things on this list will be helpful to you, but remember, you do have to get up and try  ❤ At least try, that’s all I ask   🙂
Should you ever need a listening ear, you can contact me anytime through this blog. Some of you can reach me on Facebook or by phone. Mainly, I want you all to know that you never have to feel like you are suffering silently or alone. I will be here for you and if I can help you in any way, I’ll always try my best   🙂
Stay strong lovelies  ❤

Journal Entry 5

Hey y’all! It’s been awhile! I think my last post was sometime in Mid-August and I don’t even remember what I wrote about; go figure. I guess I should go back and read my last post so I can update you on what’s new in my life. If you’d like to read it with me, you can check it out here.

 

*Brief pause while I travel into the past.*

 

Okay, I’m back and I can actually say quite a lot has changed! First of all, my leaky roof got patched. We are waiting on the full fix, but at least it has stopped leaking! I can also happily report that my air conditioner is working perfectly now. Those hot humid days made my house absolutely nasty inside, so I’m glad that’s the end of that! My husband and I haven’t yet fully fixed my car, but it did get a new battery and terminal. There is another part that needs replaced but we plan to tackle that tomorrow.

 

In my previous post, I mentioned how I had picked up my crafting again and started swapping pocket letters. Well… I have since stopped creating them and moved on to other things. I now spend my craft time “planning” in my MAMBI Happy Planner, which I have reviewed a bit here. I’ve also been making cards, working in my new “Wreck this Journal,” which I plan to review for you all soon, and doing whatever other crafts my little heart desires.

 

Since my last post in August, my Husband has gotten a new job. He now works with me as a porter and we can conveniently carpool to work. Talk about saving money in gas! We’re actually starting to save up money for a new car from the dealership we work at. It’s exciting to think about and work towards because neither one of us have ever had a brand-spanking-new car. We’re hoping to make it happen within the next year or so. Wish us luck! With all the repairs we’ve had to make to both our cars, we could use a new one with (hopefully) a lot less issues, Hahaha.

 

Another new development is that I’m finally tired of my straight hair. I mean… I’ve only straightened it every single day since I was in the 8th grade. I suck so much at being a girl that I don’t even know how to do a good ponytail, a messy bun, braids, or anything. Because of all the heat damage, my hair is split, fried, dull, and just gross to me. I know I need to get some of this dead hair cut off, but in a last effort to save my hair, I ordered some heatless, flexi, curling rods from Amazon. (I got a set of 42 rods, in 7 different sizes (plus shipping) for $6.54.) For that price, what could it hurt to try? I’ve never used anything like them in my life, so this should be both fun and interesting! I may or may not review the product. If you’d like me to, let me know in the comments!

 

Other than that, life is pretty much the same; full of work! We are hoping to take a day to relax soon and just enjoy each others company. As a matter of fact, our 1st year Wedding Anniversary is coming up in October and we are currently trying to decide how to spend the day. Don’t worry, I’m sure I’ll let you know what we come up with!

 

That’s all for now!
Is there anything specific you’d like to read about? I’m always looking for new ideas to keep you readers interested! (:
Until Next Time – XOXO!

Journal Entry 4

Hey everyone! Long time, no post!

 

Life has been absolutely crazy lately. Instead of beating around the bush, I’ll just jump in and start explaining!

 

First, my roof has been leaking.. In my brand new home.. The master bathroom to be specific. The sound of rain pouring in will actually wake you out of a dead sleep. Luckily, we have a temporary fix until someone comes out and fully repairs it. All I can hope is that we don’t have to wait too much longer. Second, our air conditioning unit wasn’t working. On hot, humid, days, the house was getting up in the high 80s – low 90s, even when the thermostat was set at 68. Repairmen have had to come out 3 or 4 times and I’m hoping this last time was it. I won’t be a happy camper if I have to call them a 5th time for the same problem.

 

Let’s see, what else has happened? Oh, someone pried my husbands hood open on his car, cut his wires, and stole his battery after we had just bought a new one. Needless to say, his car wasn’t running for awhile. Thankfully, my parents were able to help us get another battery for his car. However, then the bad luck shifted to my car.. My ignition lock cylinder went out, which means my key won’t turn in the ignition. Key won’t turn = Car no work. LOL. In order to even drive my car, we had to break something in the steering column – I have no idea what… All I know is that we broke something and then it worked… Sort of. LOL. We have to fiddle with the key a lot, and sometimes break out the pliers, but hey, I can drive it! But wait, there’s more! Then I ran over a screw! Time to repair the tire! Son of a…

 

GLAD ALL THAT IS OVER!

 

I thought everything was getting better and going back to normal! I figured I could start picking up my swaps again. Did I mention I started doing craft swaps? Like pocket letters, stickers, paper crafts, and things of that nature? Well, I had been doing swaps but the constant hiccups from life were keeping me from being able to swap. Now that things were back to normal, I thought I could start again. Well, this chick decided to be spiteful and message me saying that she never get her end of the previous swap. (I have pictures to prove it was shipped at the specified time.) She started demanding that I send her all these extra things or she would leave me negative feedback – preventing me from being able to participate in any further swaps until she re-rated me at the highest possible rating. I did all I could to communicate with her but all she wanted to do was call me names and make unreasonable demands. I started getting messages from all these admins on the site asking about why I hadn’t held up my end of the swap. I provided our messages, my pictures, and everything I had to show to that I did, in fact, send her package and that she was scamming me out of more. This went back and forth for days until I finally decided that it wasn’t worth it. Even if all I had to do was send her something else to get my ratings back to normal, she didn’t deserve it. She cursed me out, called me names, threatened me, made all kinds of demands that are technically against the site rules, and even the admins were of no help. I decided that deleting my account and creating a new one wouldn’t be that difficult. I’d rather create a new account and start over, or find a whole new site to swap on altogether! If you’re rude to me, what makes you think I’ll want to send you more craft items from my stash? She’s not worth my items and postage.  So, I’ll be looking for other sites to swap on. I love my pocket letters and that wench is not going to prevent me from making and swapping them with others, hahaha.

 

Sadly, that’s pretty much it! Not much good to report since my last journal entry. In fact, I think this whole post was full of shitty stories and experiences, hahaha. Let’s hope some good things happen!

 

Until Next Time! Xoxo!

Through the Eyes of a Rape Victim: My Story

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There’s no easy way to start off a blog like this, so I’ll start by warning you that this will be both long and graphic. All the details depicted in this post are real and 100% accurate, to the best of my memory! This posting is not meant for children or the light of heart. I encourage you to read with caution, as this post may be triggering for some people.

Now, allow me to take you back into my childhood.

Growing up, the only family I had living around me was my immediate family and my Aunt and Uncle on my father’s side who lived right across the street from us. My Aunt on my mother’s side lived in Georgia and would only come up to visit once a year; usually around Christmas time. Every time my Aunt came to visit, her boyfriend came as well. Though we were of no relation, I grew up referring to him as my Uncle. Finally, one summer I was invited to fly down to Georgia and stay with them for a whole month! I had never traveled by plane before and I was stoked to be able to go somewhere I had never been. Before I knew it, I was packing my bags and jumping on a flight to Georgia. While there, I had the most amazing time! I got to go to the Aquarium, see movies, try new restaurants, go shopping, play lots of games, and basically got to do anything my little heart desired. I felt so close with my Aunt and Uncle that once it was time to go home, I asked to stay an extra 2 weeks. The fun continued but then, eventually, it was time to go back home. We drove the 10 (ish) hours from Georgia to Missouri and every mile that brought me closer to home made me sad. I wasn’t ready to go back home. I wasn’t ready to go back to school. I wasn’t ready to go back to my boring, lonely, life. However, my Aunt reminded me that this would not be the last visit and that I would get an opportunity to spend the summer with them again. I absolutely couldn’t wait!

2 years passed and I was 15 now. My Aunt and Uncle had just moved to Missouri. Surprisingly, they were less than 4 hours away and staying with them was finally possible again! As a matter of fact, they had already talked to my mother about it. Now, my father had a feeling; a bad one. One we should have all listened to, but I was so blinded by the possibility of fun that I didn’t care about the negative feelings he had towards my trip. My mother overlooked his feelings as well because she knew how excited and happy I was to be going. I continued packing my bags and sat waiting to be picked up. I remembered all the fun we had had in Georgia and all the places we had went; I was excited to finally have some more summer fun. Before I knew it, my Aunt pulled up in her new truck. I ran outside with my bags and started throwing them in the bed of the truck; I was ready to go! I ran back inside to kiss my Mom goodbye and then bolted back out the door!

When we pulled into her drive way, she told me that my Uncle would be home from work soon and that they were going to take me shopping for new clothes. Of course I was excited! I had just gotten there and we already had plans! I grabbed my bags from the bed of her truck and carried them inside. She showed me the guest bedroom and told me that this was where I would be sleeping. This was an upgrade because when I stayed with them in Georgia, I slept on the couch. Now I had a bed to sleep in! By the time I had put some of my things away, my Uncle was home and we were ready to go shopping. We all jumped in the truck and headed to the store. They said they had to pick up some groceries, so I could do my own shopping while they picked up food. They told me that I was supposed to be purchasing back-to-school clothes and undergarments, and then told me how much I was allowed to spend.  Then they gave me their phone numbers in case we needed to find each other; I text them both so they had my number and I went on my way. I ended up finding some really cute things and then we met up at the register. My Uncle started to comment on the clothes and undergarments that I had chose. He said that “boyshorts and thongs were his favorite.” Then he commented on the bras I chose, and how the design was “really classy.” I didn’t think much of it.. We went home.

My uncle was grilling dinner so I was outside with him. We were talking about how things had changed over the past couple of years and then he started asking about my personal life. Did I have a boyfriend/girlfriend? Was I sexually active? He said, “judging by the panties you bought, you must want someone to see them.” I simply said that I liked the designs and that my parents would never allow me to buy things like that , so I was happy they let me buy what I wanted. I walked inside and waited for dinner to be done. The three of us ate together, we watched a movie and then I went to bed.

The next morning, I woke up and there were no covers on me. To add, my shirt was pulled up over my chest. I knew something was wrong because I turn myself into a burrito while sleeping – I HATE being cold. How did I wake up with my chest exposed? How did I wake up with no covers? They weren’t even on the bed.. I got dressed and went into my Aunts office. She wished me a goodmorning, told me that my Uncle was already at work, and that she had some work she needed to finish before we did anything else. I ignored the bad feeling I felt and just assumed that maybe I got hot in the middle of the night and threw everything off… I mean, he was already at work..

I was maybe awake for an hour when I received a goodmorning text from my Uncle. He told me that I looked comfortable while I slept and that he couldn’t wait to come home. He said that he was upset he had to go to work. At this point, I wasn’t sure what to think. I felt uneasy, but he was my Uncle. I just kept telling myself that it was nothing; that everything was okay.

That night, my Aunt went to bed early. She told me not disturb her. I was in my bedroom listening to music when my phone vibrated and I had a text. It was from my Uncle, telling me to come into the living-room; that he had some things he wanted to show me. I thought he was watching TV, so I figured it had to do with that. I walked out of my bedroom and into the living-room, only to find him sitting on the couch naked.. He told me not to make a noise; to come sit down next to him. The panic that I felt inside was surreal. I literally stood there frozen. At this point I couldn’t comprehend anything.. I went and sat on the edge of the couch. He told me I was such an attractive young girl; that he liked me more than his other nieces.. He told me that he knew how I felt inside. He said that he was a teen before and he knew how horny teenagers were. He pulled out his phone and started showing me pictures of myself that he had taken. He showed me a picture he took the night before, when I woke up completely exposed. There was my rear end on his phone; my breasts, everything, while I was sleeping. He told me that he had looked at them all day at work and that he couldn’t wait to come home to me. Then he grabbed my hand and placed it on his manhood. Tears began streaming down my face and he looked at me smiling.. He moved my hand up and down, telling me how soft my skin was. He asked me if I thought he was “big.” He told me to say yes, so I did…still crying. Then he asked if I ever tasted a man before.. I shook my head “No.” and then he grabbed me by my hair. He slammed my mouth down around him and thrusted so hard that I couldn’t breathe. I was literally gagging. I was Flailing my arms, kicking my legs, and crying uncontrollably. It seemed like 15 or 20 minutes passed before I felt a warm liquid fill my mouth and I began to puke. He slapped me and told me to “take it like a woman.” He held himself inside me and held my nose shut until I had no option but to swallow. He picked my head up off him and wiped my mouth. I did all I could to back away from him but he grabbed my wrists and pinned them down against the couch. He jammed his hand in my pants and started rubbing. He told me that, soon, it would feel good and I would be thankful for what he had done. All I could feel was fingers painfully jabbing me. Then I heard him say, “You’re a little hard down here. That means you like it.” And he began to go faster. I looked over at the TV and watched. Trying to mentally take myself out of the situation. Finally, he stopped. He said he was tired and wanted to go to bed. He told me to go clean myself up and go to bed. He told me to never mention anything, because no one would believe me anyway.

I went into the bathroom, brushed my teeth, and jumped in the shower. I fell asleep with the water running, sitting in the fetal position, in the bottom of the bathtub. I woke up when all the hot water was gone and was now so cold all I could do was shiver. I walked to my bedroom and went to sleep. The next morning, I woke up to him straddling me with my wrists pinned against the bed. He told me that my Aunt had some errands to run this morning and that we were home alone. He put more pressure on my wrists as he started dry humping me. I could feel him getting hard through his shorts. He just kept rubbing himself against me, no matter how hard I tried to move or get away. He was straddling me, laughing in my face as I started to cry again. He leaned down and told me he could still smell his cum on my breath. Then, by the grace of God, the door handle jiggled and in came my Aunt. He jumped off me and greeted her at the door. I finally had enough and I ran out and told her I needed to talk NOW. I told my Aunt that he had taken nude photos of me while I slept. I told her that he had made me perform oral sex on him and that he had done other things to me. I told her every detail while he stood by listening and smiling. I could see how proud he was, but I didn’t expect what happened next. My Aunt looked at me and blamed ME for the photos on his phone. That is was MY fault for leaving myself exposed. She told me that it was MY fault because of the undergarments I purchased; that I was “sending the wrong message to men.” My Aunt told me, a 15 year old, to keep my assault to myself because it would “tear the family apart.” She said that she would deny everything and that no one would believe me anyway. She told me that I was disgusting for trying to steal her man and that she didn’t want me there anymore. I told her to take me home immediately or I would call my parents and tell them everything. My Aunt yelled at me and told me I would never do such a thing. She agreed to take me home though, so I quickly packed my things.

As we drove back to my home, I was stuck in the front seat of the truck between the two people who had literally just ruined my life. My Aunt just kept telling me how lonely my mother would be if I told, because they were each others only living relatives. She kept telling me how many bad things would happen if I told. All the while, my Uncle was sitting next to me, still caressing my arm and leg. That 4 hour drive home seemed like a lifetime, but once we pulled in the driveway, I jumped out and grabbed my things. I told them not to follow me inside or I would tell. I wanted them to leave so they did. When I walked inside, my mother could tell I was upset but I told her I was just tired from the long drive. I didn’t come out of my room the rest of the night. I tossed up all the things my Aunt had told me. I thought about every possible outcome of telling what happened. There seemed to be no positive outcome.. I knew that I had to keep this to myself. I knew she was right; it would ruin my family..

Years went by. 2 years to be exact. I was 17 and in my senior year of high school. I had kept everything a secret for this long. Finally, I had a best friend that I could trust. I had been having a terrible week and I decided to confide in her about what happened. At some point during that day, she told my guidance counselor. During the last period of the day, I was called out. I was told to bring all of my things to the guidance office and that I was dismissed for the remainder of the day. I truly didn’t know why I was being called there, but I grabbed my stuff and left. When I opened the door to my guidance office, there were 4 counselors, all 4 principals, 2 officers, and a DFS (Department of Family Services) agent. My counselor told me that she got an anonymous tip about something that had happened to me and now I needed to tell them what happened; every detail. In a room of 11 strangers, I was supposed to sit and tell every dirty detail of what happened to me. I shook and cried the whole time. Not one of those 11 people offered any comfort. When I asked if they were going to tell my parents, they informed me that a DFS agent was already speaking with them about it. I cried even harder because I knew, at that very moment, some stranger was telling my parents what happened to me. I knew that by the time I got home, my whole world would be flipped upside down. The counselors and officers told me that they had the information they needed, and they would be keeping in touch. I could go home now.

I walked as slowly as I could to my car, crying the whole way. I didn’t want to go home. Still, where else was I supposed to go? I drove home and walked inside. There were my parents sitting on the couch and the first thing they said was, “we need to talk.” After everything I had gone through, the last thing I wanted to do was sit and talk more. The last thing I wanted to do was tell my story again. I lived it. I told my Aunt, who thought it was a joke. I kept it a secret for two years. I told my best friend. Then I had to tell the counselors and officers, and now I was sitting there having to tell the whole story over again. I literally wanted to die.. My parents sat there blaming themselves; asking me why I ever told them. I could respond to none of it.. I told them I didn’t want to talk about it anymore and I walked to my room. I slept the rest of the night. The next day my parents told me I had to go to the police station to file the report. Now I had to tell the story a fifth time.

We got there and an officer greeted me in the waiting area. He introduced himself and told my parents that he would be taking me to a small room in the back where he would ask me questions. All I had to do was answer them honestly. I followed him back in the room and I could feel my heart pounding. This was a police officer, someone who could actually save me, and I was terrified of being in a room alone with him. At that moment, I knew that my Uncle had really ruined me. I couldn’t even trust a male officer. We got in the room and he pulled out my chair. My first thought was to move it across the room where I was as far from him as possible. He didn’t appear to mind; not after all I had been through. He started asking about what happened. “Where did this take place?” “What did he do?” “Where did he touch you.” “What did you do when he did this?” All kinds of questions. He made me describe everything using the scientific terms – penis, vagina, ejaculate, etc. Do you know how awkward it is for a 17 year old girl to sit an tell an officer that your Uncle forced his penis inside you and ejaculated? It was humiliating. I didn’t even feel like a human anymore. I felt like a piece of property. Every question he asked made me cry a little harder, and all he could do was throw me a box of tissues because I didn’t want him to walk near me. This went on for almost 2 hours and then I was finally told that I could go home. I was told that we would be hearing from some lawyers soon and we would be kept in the loop about what happened. If I was lucky, I wouldn’t have to go to court.

A few days went by before the officer called us back and said that my Uncle had officially been served with papers and picked up. This was the first time in over 2 years that I had felt any relief. Then the officer said something that took that relief away.. He said that part of the story was published on the St.Louis Post-Dispatch / STL Today website and that citizens were commenting on it and some of these comments would be very hurtful if I read them. Of course, I had to see the article and I had to read the comments. Here are screenshots of the published article and a few comments. Names have been removed. (Keep in mind this was published well before the outcome of the case.)

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As you can see, the comments were not very uplifting; the officer was right, they were hurtful.. But I didn’t let this get in the way of the good news that I had just received. I mean, he was finally in jail. How could I not be happy about that!? Screw what other people thought. They just read a condensed version of what happened. In some way, we are all guilty for taking sides on social media and this was no different. Let them take sides. All I need to know is what really happened and what is being done about it.

Much time passed for I had to appear in court. By this time, he had changed his tune and admitted to what he did. He no longer told the lie that he “woke up to me performing oral sex on him and allowed me to continue.” He admitted to everything that I have described in this post. This was going to be the last scary day, finally! My parents and I headed to the courthouse and walked in. In front of me stood my Aunt and cousin. My Aunt had sided with the man who raped me and then fed false information to my cousins, just so they would take his side also. It had worked. They glared at me as if a look alone could set me on fire. I was strong, though, and never once even turned my head to look in their direction. For the first time, I stood tall. For the first time, I wasn’t ashamed. I walked into the courtroom and took my seat. They sat directly across from me. I watched my Uncle walk into the courtroom in an orange jumpsuit. His hands and feet were bound by chains. I wish, so much, that I could have taken a picture of that sight, because it was beautiful. I sat there crying happy tears and smiling because the man who raped me was finally getting what he deserved. I almost wish I would have looked over and saw my Aunts face at that moment; the moment she saw him walk out in chains and realize that he was screwed.

I had hoped, so much, that he would be sentenced that day. I wanted to see the look on his face when the court passed judgment on him. Sadly, the judge needed more time to look things over and we were dismissed to leave. It wasn’t until a few weeks later that we received a statement in the mail. The judge had reached a verdict; he was guilty and finally sentenced. This was the letter that we received.

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At first, I was happy to see this outcome, but then I realized that this punishment wasn’t that severe. 15 years of SES means that he has 15 years to break those rules. If he does, he automatically lands in jail. If he doesn’t break those rules, then nothing happens. 5 years of probation means nothing when all he has to do is show up and answer a few questions. 30 days of shock therapy, in my opinion, is the severest of these punishments. Having to pay court fines and fees? He should.. 200 hours of community service? Great, he gets to pick up some garbage when it’s nice outside..  No contact with children under 17? Good! Sex offender evaluation? Skip the evaluation and put him of the list. He admitted to what he did. He plead guilty. He IS a sex offender. No pornography? That’s just a joke. And no contact with me? Well DUH! The more I thought about this, the more I realized that the whole thing was a joke. Sure, he is getting punished.. But not nearly as bad as he should be. In my opinion, as soon as he plead guilty and admitted what he did, he should have been imprisoned for at LEAST 8-10 years. Instead, he gets to visit a probation officer, do some community service, and he can’t watch porn. Wow… what a terrible punishment for raping a 15 year old girl. Thank you justice system for all your help… BUT, now I think about how hard it will be for him to move; to have to openly announce that he is a sex offender to not only his neighbors, but to his employers as well. The looks people will give him and the things they will say will start to eat at him. A man with his needs can’t possibly stay away from children or porn. For the rest of his life, he will have difficulties because of what he did. So, the punishment may not have been what I would have liked it to be, but at least he didn’t get off free. At least I still told my story and got the information out there. Had I not said anything, he would be free to roam and do as he pleases. At least I got him off the streets. At least, because of me, other people will know to stay away from him. People will think twice before allowing their children near such a man. Because of me, my nieces are safe from harm. Because of me, my cousins kids are free from harm, and because of me, everyone out there is a little bit safer.. At least that’s what I like to tell myself.

Now, you’d think after an outcome like this, my Aunt and Uncle would stay away. He hasn’t reached out at all, but my Aunt? She has called my mother numerous times and cursed her out over the phone. She called my mother a “dumb bitch” because she took my side with all of this. My Aunt has called me a bitch, a whore, and every other name in the book. She is furious that I opened my mouth when she told me not to. She is furious that she got caught. She is furious that her life has flipped upside down and she isn’t where she thought she’d be. Well I’m glad. I’m glad that getting raped could ruin YOUR life in the process. I have to admit, for the first few years, I thought my life was ruined too, but it’s not. You, nor him, ruined my life. You only upset it. I no longer let you hold any power over me. Call all you want, because that’s just a little reminder that I did something right. That’s just a little reminder that I really did ruin your life by telling the truth. That’s a little reminder that, for once, the victim came out on top.

It all started 6 years ago. That was the post I made yesterday on Facebook. A condensed version of this long story. Because of the kindness of others, the encouraging words, and the overall interest in my experience, I decided to share the full story. For those interested, this is what I posted yesterday that captured so much interest. And because of those interested, I finally had the courage to post my full experience.

“6 years ago today, I was picked up by a family member and driven hours away to the new home they just moved into. I went with the expectation of having fun before I went back to school and starting my junior year of high school. I was 15 and I hadn’t done anything all summer. I was so excited to get away from the things that were stressing me out and finally have a good time. Little did I know that the next day would be one of the worst days of my life… 6 years ago, tomorrow, will mark 6 years of survival. 6 years of living with memories of the sexual abuse that I had encountered while visiting there. 6 years of flashbacks. 6 years of family and friends telling me it was MY fault even though the accused man plead guilty and admitted what he did. (Which I have papers to prove!) 6 years of family pushing me and my parents away and blaming me for a grown man’s actions. 6 years of being told how disgusting I was. 6 years of anonymous phone calls from the family members who did this to me, just so they could curse out my parents, call me names, and and bring up the horror that I had gone through. 6 fucking years of non-stop finger pointing, name calling, and reliving this nightmare. 6 years of standing tall regardless of how many people said it was MY fault. 6 years of re-telling my story so that I could encourage others to speak out about their abuse, because no one should be made to feel like they have to keep it a secret. 6 years of staring back in the faces of those who accused me and pushed my family out of the picture. 6 years of being strong when I didn’t think I could make it a single day. 6 years. I’ve made it 6 years… And I’ll make it some more too. I’ll keep telling my story. I’ll keep staring back in the faces of family members who think I lied. But when a convicted sex offender is not allowed around your baby girls, you’ll be thankful that he never has the opportunity to assault them like he did me. I saved countless children from his clutches. I regret NOTHING. So, keep accusing me and keep defending him; it fuels my fire to keep going. Keep calling anonymously. Keep calling me names. Keep telling me how I ruined HIS life. Because it only tells me how much opening my mouth really did hurt. It’s a little reminder that I did something right. It’s a little reminder that he only upset my life; he didn’t ruin it. I didn’t let him. But your phone calls? Those let me know that I ruined his life. That I ruined YOUR life. Those phone calls let me know that I got the upper hand here, and that, for once, the victim came out on top. You, nor him, bother me anymore. I don’t let you have that kind of power over me. So keep telling our cousins falsities, and I’ll keep reminding everyone that you willingly married the man who raped me. You are no better than him. You were the one who knew first. You were the adult who told a 15 year old to keep being raped to herself because “it would tear the family apart.” You’re the one who told me to my face that if I ever told anyone about what happened, you would deny it. You told me to my face that you loved him and that he mattered more.. The family may be torn… But it’s torn right where it’s meant to be. Those who side with a rapist aren’t family to me, and you can keep them on your side. If anyone believes your version of what happened, then they’re just as twisted as you two are. I’ve got court papers to prove what he admitted to. I have the posting from STL Today that was the first bit of news coverage on my story. And I also have the outcome of the case – what he was charged with and what he was sentenced to. If anyone still sides with you after ALL that, then I don’t want or need them in my life! I’ve proudly made it 6 years.

6 years.

And I’ll keep going.

If you, or someone you know has been the victim of sexual abuse or assault, please get help. Please tell someone. You are only hurting yourself by keeping it a secret. I thought telling would be the worst thing in the world, and while it was scary to go through, I’m so glad I did it. I stood up to my rapist and you should too. Do not let them get away with what they did. Do not let them rob you of your life or happiness. No one deserves this and no one should have to deal with it silently. Talk to a parent, a friend, a teacher, a police officer, or anyone you trust. You can even talk to me. I will listen, I will give advice, I will do whatever you need me to do, but DO seek help. I promise that things get better and, eventually, it does get easier to live with. Give yourself time, talk to people, do things that bring you happiness, and don’t ever beat yourself up or put yourself down. You are so much better than that. You are a beautiful person who deserves peace and justice. Do not be your own barrier. Be the wrecking-ball that brings your rapist down. I promise, no matter the outcome, you’ll feel better.

Reviewing My MAMBI Happy Planner with Link to FREE Printables!

I want to start by saying that I haven’t been this obsessed with something in a long time! It’s funny, really, because I had not even heard about the Happy Planners until last week. A Facebook friend of mine uploaded a picture of her planner and I was instantly drawn to it. I asked her where she got it and how much it was because, at this point, I NEEDED it! She told me that they could be found at Michael’s Craft Stores, which had a 50% off coupon, and Hobby Lobby. Naturally, I planned to go to Michael’s and take advantage of that 50% off! When the planners are originally $30, saving 50% can make a big difference! Plus, the money you save can be spent on some the extras that are available for the planners – such as the 6 month expansion pack, expansion rings, decorative dividers, stickers, and even packs of pre-punched quotes!
I had convinced myself!
The next day, which was July 1st, I made my trip to Michael’s where I found this beauty!
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Ironically, the planner starts on July 1st! Perfect timing! Now, there are various planners to choose from, but this one just called to me! It has some lovely scenic dividers!

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Believe me when I say that my pictures do NOT do it justice. These pages are beautiful!
But now that I had picked out my planner, with 50% off, I HAD to pick out some extras!
  • The 6 Month Expansion (Totally customizable)
  • Extra Gold Foil Dividers
  • Pack of 6 Pre-Punched Double-Sided Folder Dividers
  • Pack of Pre-Punched Quotes
  • Set of Expansion Rings (Necessary, if you plan to add ANYTHING to your planner)
  • Set of 8 Washi Tape (Which you can also find in Target’s $1 section, and the Dollar Tree)
  • (Then I ran to the Dollar Tree to buy $22 worth of stickers and note pads to decorate! How can you beat supplies for $1?)
Little did I know that there are a TON of FREE printables online designed specifically for the Happy Planner! I printed out a bunch from www.cutedaisy.com. They have every holiday theme, season themes, beach themes, rustic themes, fashion themes, dang near every theme you can think of, quotes, tabs, and a plethora of other free printables for your Happy Planner!
Here are my first few layouts. I printed EVERYTHING for FREE from cutedaisy.com

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Keep in mind this is my first planner that I’ve ever decorated. I don’t think it’s too bad for a first timer, right!?
I’ve had such fun decorating my Happy Planner with all the free printables that I haven’t even dug into the stickers I bought. If you’re on a budget, printing free materials is the way to go. As an added tip, you can also clip quotes and pictures from magazines and old books to paste into your planner. (I recommend the Elmer’s Extreme Glue Stick. It’s $1.99 at Target and is more adhesive than other glue sticks I’ve tried. And for those worried that pasting things in will make your pages bend or wrinkle, I can promise that DOESN’T happen! It was a worry of mine when I first started out, but none of my pages have weird bends or anything!)
If you’re interested in keeping up with me and my planner, or you’d like some additional ideas/resources for your own planner, then make sure you follow my blog and leave me a comment below to let me know that you’re interested. I’d be happy to share my tips and ideas with you! I’d also really like to see some of the things you come up with for your own planner! If you ever happen across a cool website with more free printables, don’t hesitate to share it with me!
Happy Planning!

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