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monthly roundup

monthly roundup no. 10: february 2019

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It’s that time of the month again where I clear out my Pocket articles and share some of my favorite articles I collected this month. It seems like I’m tending more toward technical-type investigations lately, which makes sense as I continue through my Superhi course. This is the first bootcamp I’ve found that really works for my teaching style, so if you’re a highly visual or design-oriented learner, I can’t recommend them more.

Since that kind of reading isn’t for everyone, I’m sharing some of my favorite entertainment write ups from the month. Lizzo! Laura! Roller coasters! More crummy musician men! It’s all here for you today.

It’s Just a Matter of Time Until Everyone Loves Lizzo: If you aren’t listening to Lizzo yet, what on earth are you doing? Her music is super feel good, and she’s unapologetic from everything from her body to her self-love. She’s the baddest ass flautist I’ve ever seen, and I just hope to someday feel about my self the way Lizzo feels about Lizzo. And also the way I feel about Lizzo.

The Spectacular Failure of the World’s Only Hard Rock Theme Park: This hits on two of my biggest interests: abandoned things and theme parks. I had no idea that there had even ever been a Hard Rock theme park, let alone that it had been in South Carolina of all places, and this thorough tour through its history was fascinating.

After many many years, favorite blog The Billfold is closing. One of my 2018 highlights was to finally be published there, and I’m very sad to see it go. Despite the popularity of other money sites, none of them are as personal as writers and articles were here.

On Dermatillomania: Laura Stevenson is an amazing songwriter and singer, and her jams have been there for me through some of the ugliest of times. She penned this essay on self-harm for Talkhouse, and I’m glad that she was able to share her experience so it can potentially help so many others. (Big ol’ TW on that if you’re susceptible to self-harm.)

13 Reasons We Type in Lowercase: I type almost exclusively in lowercase. At work, I type lowercase in our Slack channel, but it’s hit or miss everywhere else – Basecamp and Github see varied cases, I guess depending on the day. I’ve always thought it was mostly for speed – not hitting the “shift” key does save a little bit of time, I suppose – and, probably, a little bit of laziness.

Ryan Adams and the Betrayal of Teenage Girls: At this point it’s little shock when a powerful man’s abuse comes to light, and while I don’t think that Ryan Adams was a surprise, reading the NYT article with the women he abused hit very close to home. Mandy Moore’s quote at the end of the piece is something I think I’ve said verbatim about my abuser in the past. This Buzzfeed piece is just one more illustration that this is not isolated – it happens everywhere, to almost every woman.

I think capping it off with something happier would be nice. A friend of a friend wrote Hymns for Druggie Party Kids awhile ago, and it was recently published. It’s a great piece on how music can find you when you need it most, and it of course features my favorite band, The Hold Steady.

Any articles you particularly loved this month? Share them below!

February 21, 2019
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monthly roundup no. 4: july 2017

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I refuse to accept that this is the last Friday in July. Summer is slipping through my fingers and I’m not here for it! It’s been so busy around here that I haven’t even made it to the beach once, which is a great tragedy. (Even more so considering that Dani and I stumbled upon a small beach in the middle of the park near our apartment.) As we start to lean in to the last month of summer, a lot of the articles I’ve tucked away for this month focus on relaxing, focusing on the moment, and enjoying the warmth of the sun!

I Can’t Hide What Stress Does to My Body: As another person who suffers from RBF (resting bitch face,) I feel her pain. Most of the time, there’s nothing wrong – it’s just how my face is. But beyond that, I’m grateful to hear someone else’s story of how their stress and anxiety takes a toll on their body. A fun new symptom that I’ve developed over the last year is that in times of high stress, I break out in hives all over my body. Most of the time, it’s not that noticeable, as long as I’m not giving in to the screaming itchiness. But a lot of people who don’t suffer from anxiety might argue that it’s all mental, and Meredith and I (and, apparently, Demi Moore) are here to tell you that that’s most certainly not the case.

6 Easy Things to Do On Sunday to Improve Your Week: I’m really trying to make Sundays a day of intention and preparation for the week ahead. Even things as small as looking ahead at my weekly calendar have been escaping me, which means deadlines and appointments are coming up more quickly than I’m used to. Making a list for Monday is also a great task – as an ISTJ, I thrive on checking things off a to-do, so this will help my morning feel more controlled.

I Skeptically Tried Practicing Gratitude and it Completely Changed My Life: Over the years, I’ve tried off and on to focus on gratitude to help with my mental health. Since starting to use the Best Self journal (which includes morning and evening reflections on gratitude), it’s even easier to add this to my daily routine. This article is interesting because I always love to hear the science and psychology behind why these seemingly “new-agey” philosophies pay off.

7 Ways to Relieve Stress That Every 20-Something Should Try: I mean, I’m going to ignore the elephant here and pretend I’m still the target for this post. Obviously, I’m always looking for ways to cut down on stress and anxiety, and there are some new strategies here I look forward to trying.

Summertime Hygge (How to Achieve a New Kind of Cozy): I love hygge, so any excuse to practice it year-round works for me. We started by picking up some flowers on our grocery shop the other day, and I constantly have candles flickering everywhere. Summer is also a great time to purge and clean out your closets – our poor office looks like it’s been hit by a hurricane since I’m categorizing and organizing in there.

30 Day Summer Self-Love Challenge: Haley has a lot of great tips to put yourself first here, which will even help you continue to make time to enjoy the summer. Turning your phone off 30 minutes (or more) before bed not only helps you sleep better but even helps create more time in your day for things like reading or journaling. If you need a suggestion, pulling from another of her challenges, the poetry book milk & honey was my favorite book of 2016.

How to Create a Personal Development Plan: This post from Natalie Bacon couldn’t have come at a better time. I’ve been feeling a bit lost, unfocused, and distracted lately. I’m booking out some time this weekend to work through this and use it to help work toward my 13-week goals in the Best Self journal.

July 28, 2017
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monthly roundup no. 2

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may link roundup

I can hardly believe how fast May went – it seems like just last week I was starting to collect my favorite links from around the web to share. Once again, I was bookmarking things in Pocket, and I’m doing a better job of going back through to read the articles and posts I save. This month, some more links to cheer you up and my favorite Twitter company to get tons of cool free stuff.

Fooji: A marketing company that partners with major brands, their philosophy is that fans should be rewarded for supporting companies. They deliver these rewards on behalf of the companies – and it’s not just free swag. I’ve gotten a super comfy Kris Bryant shirt from adidas, free pizza delivery, Baby Groot, bags of delicious popcorn, and most recently, a bag full of awesome adidas swag. I’ve also seen them deliver wine and desserts! Follow them on Twitter and get notified of their promotions – they even do weekly food giveaways every Friday, so you can participate even if you don’t live in a big city.

5 Days in Iceland Itinerary: Kathleen and I have been friends for almost ten years, and she is a travelling machine! She recently launched her travel blog, Wandering Kathleen, and this post on Iceland is a done-for-you itinerary to make the most of your trip there.

Don’t Focus on Your Situation, Focus on Your Trajectory: I’ve had a tough month. Personally, familially, for my friends – it’s been a rough one. I had vented to a friend about how I was beginning to feel very stuck in my life. That somehow I’m not doing enough, or that I’m not where I need to be. He sent this article over to me, and it made me feel a little better.

7 Ways Men Must Learn to do Emotional Labor in their Relationships: I learned about emotional labor from a friend a few months ago, and I think the men in my life wish I never had. Especially being at home, I’m realizing how much work the women in my life really do. Picking up prescriptions and coordinating medical care, coordinating entertainment and events in friend groups, making sure there are groceries in the house and cooking dinner, or even things as small as deciding when or how to get somewhere – it can all start to exhaust us. I think it’s important to be aware of and consider how men can pick up some of the slack.

Split Image: This is an older story, but it popped up on my Timehop this month, and I thought it was worth sharing again. I think it’s really important to take into account and realize that even if someone looks high functioning, they might not really have it all together.

Killing it with kindness: The tale of Jervis Cottonbelly: Last month, I came out as a wrestling fan. We basically just watch WWE (thank you Total Divas) but on Twitter, I follow a lot of people who tweet about “minor league” wrestling as well. Somehow I heard about this guy, Gentleman Jervis Cottonbelly, whose schtick is being a nice, happy, kind human. Rather than using aggression in his matches, he’ll even try to rock his opponents to sleep in order to win. Even if you think wrestling is ridiculous, Jervis might make you laugh! (It was an especially apt discovery as a few days prior, I found out about my grandmother’s terminal cancer.) It’s just nice to see someone whose whole gimmick is being nice, and it’s more infectious than I expected.

5 Reasons to Love Stationary RV Life: When I was young, my grandparents did a lot of traveling by camper, and I got to tag along often. My favorite trip was when, between fourth and fifth grades, they took me on a trip throughout the western states and then we came back to Michigan through Canada. (I point to that trip as the source of my love for Canada!) Ever since then, I’ve loved living small, even before tiny living became so popular. I’m really interested in full-time RVing, but the idea of new cities week after week doesn’t appeal so much to me – this post outlines so many of the reason I think I’d love this lifestyle.

Elyse Fox Opens Up About Sad Girls Club: There’s something empowering about connecting with other people who are struggling on social media, so I was excited to learn about Sad Girls Club from this article. It’s important work. (And she has the same name and spelling as my niece, go Elyses!)

May 26, 2017
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monthly roundup no. 1

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link roundup

IT’S ALMOST SUMMER! We’ve had a few summery days here in Chicago, and the early sunrises are helping with my mood and my energy levels. Thank goodness. I really needed this drive to come back and get me motivated to get things back on track – I’m always squirreling away resources to help get organized, work on personal development, or whatever else. I’m a big fan of Pocket to do that, an app that lets you tuck away articles to read for later. Even though I’m a super fan, I don’t always excel at going back and revisiting things I’ve packed away. At the end of the month I’m going through my Pocket to empty it out, and I’m sharing the highlights with you in this new series (along with other useful things I find around the web!)

27 Ways To Stress Less: This is another roundup post, so it’s a bit of a cheat. But it pulls out the best quotes from different posts about managing stress and anxiety, which makes it perfect for those times you really need to chiiiiilllllll.

I’m Not Good With Money Anymore and I’m OK With That: I’ve long loved The Billfold – I used to spend hours in my Virginia office poring over each post. The relatable and cool tone of the website resonated with me a lot more than any personal finance blog ever did, and I’ve continued to read it over the years. When this post popped up a few days ago, it was almost like a relief. For a long time, I was Very Careful with my money. I was smart about how I spent it, how I saved it, and even helped friends make smart budgets and debt payoff plans. Over the last year, I’ve been much less smart about my own finances. It has really worn me down, but this post makes me feel like that will be okay.

How to Realistically Cut Back on Technology: Since I not only blog but also have a fully online job, I constantly feel like I’m staring at a screen. I’m trying a couple different techniques to combat that, like deleting time-sucking apps and making weekly trips to the library.

What to Tell Yourself When You Feel Behind in Life: There seems to be a trend in my favorite articles this month – most of them revolve around reducing stress or relaxing! I think I’m hitting that sort of midlife crisis. Being surrounded by people getting married, buying houses and having babies (even if those aren’t things I thought I’d want) is getting to me a bit – or maybe it’s the incessant HGTV I’ve been watching. Either way, I’ve been feeling “behind,” so sometimes I need the reminder that I’m really doing alright.

27 Stylish Bathing Suits You Can Get on Amazon: Good ol’ Buzzfeed. This post got me. I’m a sucker for bathing suits (I really hate clothes, I guess) and I’ve been working to reduce the number of suits I have around… but I ended up buying this bad boy. All banana leaf everything. (I’m tempted by the one-pieces too. JUST PUT ME ON A BEACH!)

Natalya on Making Their Way to the Ring with Lillian Garcia: So I’m kind of a closet WWE fan. I watched when I was little, then during a pretty severe depressive episode last year I would put it on for some background noise. That evolved into a Total Divas binge when I felt better and now here I am, a year later, with a few live events under my belt and more knowledge of wrestling than I ever intended to have. Podcasts as background noise is one of my favorite work soundtracks, and Nattie is one of my favorite wrestlers. This is a great interview, and she talks about her eating disorder and how working out helped her overcome it.

Ways to Avoid Blogger Burnout + Tips for Self-Care: Carmen has become one of my favorite bloggers, and this post was super timely. I love her focus on helping bloggers be successful, but after a few months of working really hard on two blogs – burnout hit me. During my scheduled blogging time, I was finding it really tough to hammer out even one sentence I was proud of.

Hope you have a great weekend planned! I’ll be soaking up the Chicago sun and working on some special mailing list opt-ins (think actionable worksheets and eBooks!), so be sure to sign up to get them as soon as they go live. Follow me on Instagram and Twitter too – I’d love to check out your weekends!

April 28, 2017
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