Off The Radar

Hey, guys! Long time, no type!
Diamond Head Volcano
I took some time away from the blog for a few weeks. Part of it was, admittidley, a giant writer’s block. But I also have been spending a lot of time working out some big choices that had to be made in my life. School, work, and with Christmas right around the corner – I was running around like crazy! But all is now well! 🙂
I’ve been spending a lot of time with God and really listening. Too often do I take all my ‘problems’ upon myself instead of going directly to Him. He is, after all, the only qualified therapist in my life.
I’ve also been working on creating a website and perhaps some sort of charitable organization involving my younger brother’s artwork & the many amazing talents of those diagnosed with Autism. I am open to collaboration and I enjoy feedback from you guys! Please send me an email if you have any ideas. I’d love to hear them.
You’ll be hearing from me again soon!
-Jenni xx
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Clear Your Mind

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” 
John 14:27
 
Decisions that require a lot of thought are usually the decisions that have the potential to drastically change a lot in our life. Sometimes it helps to get away from your regular day-to-day routine for a couple hours and just think. And sometimes it’s better to do it alone.
Personally, I like to get a steamy mug of tea or coffee and watch the sunset at the beach. Or run a couple miles while listening to the sounds of nature rather than music. Or go up on the roof and look at the stars.
Whatever you enjoy doing for ‘me’ time away from all the technology of the world, spend your time wisely there. Use that time to clear your mind and makes those tough decisions.
Smarter decisions are made away from the internet, television, and video games.
– Jenni xx
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Direction

“Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days.”
Zig Ziglar
When life pulls you in a million different directions, it is often a challenge to choose what is the next step. The fork in the road is sometimes a scary place to be. Venturing through the unknown isn’t always comfortable. But if venturing through the unknown takes you where you want to be, then nothing should stop you.
Point your compass. Find your heading. Keep going until you reach your destination.
Because a direction in life can be the difference between living & merely surviving.
– Jenni xx

Cheerfulness & Teeth

Helllllo, again!

One, two, THREE days’ a charm! I’ve been a busy little bee but I’m happy to be back and writing/typing again!
I had a dentist appointment for a teeth cleaning yesterday afternoon and I’m going to be totally honest… I was anticipating hell on the way there. There was nothing I was looking forward to. All I could picture in my mind was mediocre music from the 90’s, dull-tasting fluoride, and an awkward open-mouthed discussion while blood seeped from my gums and they asked, “Have you been flossing?” – which in turn I would sheepishly gargle, “-ghhhmaybe,” back. Real positive attitude, right?
So I slunk my sorry-self through the front door, pity party in full-throttle, and began to sign myself in with a pen that was wrapped with a giant paper rose. The woman at the table raised her head from her computer and exclaimed in a way that startled me, “You must be Jennifer!” Her enthusiasm took me so off-guard that, can you believe it, I actually smiled.
The point of this is that her simple uplifting nature changed my own attitude almost instantly. It was contagious! I found myself making an effort to chit-chat (something I’m not entirely fond of) with all the assistants, even while they took x-rays of my head. I was making jokes, singing along with Oasis over the speakers, and I even forgot all the nervousness I was experiencing in the car minutes before. Everyone else in the office was having a great time too! Most notably, after my exam & cleaning (everything looked great!) the dentist began raising up my chair from the laying position. I immediately began humming the Darth Vader theme song from Star Wars, leaving him in a rather hilarious fit of giggles that was not something you’d expect out of a 50 year-old professional.
Because someone was able to put a smile on their face and change the tone of their voice, my whole outlook on the experience has changed. I rather enjoyed myself yesterday at the dentist! 
Cheerfulness can go a long way. 🙂
TTFN
Jenni xx

Card Sharks

It’s a late night, late post!


I spent my Friday night with some dear old friends… the Knott’s Scary Farm monsters! My mom & I have made a habit in the past five years of attending this annual fright fest and there are a few devilish ghouls that we see every single time. Our personal favorite is the ‘Card Shark’. We pay a few extra bucks to dine with the monsters before the event opens, and the Card Shark usually sticks with our table whole time. I had a kick out of showing him the pictures we took with him last year… he may have been a little creeped out. Hey, we like good food & entertainment!
Here’s the thing about Mr. Card Shark: He’s a freaky-looking guy. Prothestics, make-up, intense contact lenses, and sometimes making snarling noises… but he is probably one of the coolest guys I’ve ever met. So this is a bit of a stretch because he is just a guy who has a fun job and needs to look and act scary on purpose, but who is to say this doesn’t apply in ‘real life’?
Outward attractiveness is, of course, all opinion. We all have different ‘prefrences’. So when see someone who doesn’t meet up to our own personally-set standard, do we judge? Do we automatically assume what they do with their free time? What they will say? What their voice will sound like?
The way a person appeals to the eye shouldn’t determine what kind of connection you will have with them. Therefore, not only should we be slow to judge – we should remember that of ourselves when we’re worrying about whether our hair looks perfect today or not.
Personality, a smile, a sense of humor, and a positive attitude trump physical ‘beauty’ on a negative person any day.
Goudacheese night!
Jenni xx

Being Direct

As Fat Albert would say, “Hey, hey, hey!”

Here’s the deal: if someone says something directly to me that I think is bologna, I let them know what I think. By meekly staying silent, I am only inferring that I am okay with whatever has been said. So, if I’m not okay with it… how does this look for me?
 I have gotten called out on trash-talking, self-inflicting garbage coming from my mouth in the past. We all have. And I can bet more than once. I have also been blessed to grow up in a household that didn’t take my dumb excuses. I wasn’t ‘feeling well’ enough to go to school? “You’ll make it through your math exam, don’t worry.” I was too sore to go to dance practice? “If you lie there in bed, it will only feel worse tomorrow.” My hair is a disaster today. “Put on a hat.” I have no friends! “Stop throwing a pity party.” I am thankful for this. I said a lot of dumb stuff, especially in high school… sound like anyone you know? 😉
But some of the knuckleheads on this planet that usually speak quicker than they actually think need a wake-up call, in my opinion. If they’re offended… well, being offended is a personal choice. I don’t want to be an enabler for something I don’t approve of, simply because I refuse to give myself a stance. Facial expressions & body language aren’t enough… speak what you’re thinking & feeling. Talk your issues out. Express your discomfort with an idea or a statement. Offer up a different viewpoint. Work it out together instead of letting something eat away at you while you brood over it. I am not recommending to mow over others with your mac truck of opinion and rudely shut them down. Friends show friends respect, even when they disagree. Be kind, but direct. 
The only one that can read your mind is you! And God of course 😉
Goudacheese night!
Jenni xx

A Car Doesn’t Always ‘Drive You’

Good evening, weary travelers.

Above, is a picture of one of the many montages I have placed strategically around my bedroom & bathroom. Whenever guests are over & use my bathroom, they often take a little longer than expected, claiming they were reading my list of ‘100 Dreams’ taped to the medicine cabinet or the different quotes of motivation I have penciled on the mirror with lipstick. Hey, it’s something that helps me. I’m in my bathroom first thing in the morning & it’s the last place I am before I get into my bed – so I have to stare at my list & quotes & pictures all of the time. Great reminders of what I am working for, and a picture keeps it in the forefront of my head. 

Without a dream, what are you working towards? True goals are spurred on by the passion of a dream. A dream is a significant, prominent, and necessary thing in any person’s life who has ever achieved anything ‘great’. We all dream when we are young, but unfortunately, the majority of the world has their dreams stomped out of them when they reach adulthood. 
Anyone ever heard the phrase, “Welcome to the real world,“?
I encourage everyone to find something that lights a fire & a passion in them and just run for it with all you got.  Remind yourself of it everyday. Dream about your dream. Until it’s so painful that you have to have it.
I once thought my dreams were of a gorgeous beach mansion on the coast of Hawaii, luxury clothes, and a beautiful new Maserati GranTorismo. But then I realized, that was just ‘the little bit extra’. The thought of a brand-spankin’-new Masterati was nice, but it didn’t drive me. I have a great car already! 
What I came to realize, is that a dream for me is more than just the material wealth. Of course, the car, the house, the vacation… those are HUGE parts. But I needed to find something bigger. Something that stirred a fire inside of me that I couldn’t put out. 
So, maybe the car is what ignites the firestorm for you! If so, run with it. If not, find something. Because without a passion, what is life? I’d rather be living, than simply surviving.
Tootles,
Jenni xx

Time Value

 

Today was the kind of day that I had 100% booked with a million things to do… and then plans changed unexpectedly all across the board. Thank goodness for frequently educating myself the art of flexibility within my day-to-day schedule! Or I could’ve been a right piece of work & no one would’ve wanted to deal with a nasty bad attitude… oh, how I’ve progressed in the past few months! 🙂

Here is something my mom told me this afternoon as I relayed to her that I felt I was being ‘flaked-on’ and ‘not taken seriously’ and ‘working around the schedule of everyone but myself’ : “Well, you can’t live anyone else’s life but Jen-Jen’s.” Yes, Jen-Jen is one of the many nicknames my parents have for me. But these words hold a lot of truth.

It is true that when you have plans with another person, you need to work together to find a set time & date that works well for both parties. But if someone continually calls you last minute to cancel or regularly ‘forgets’ and doesn’t show up at all… it may be time to move on. This applies to friends, love interests, business clients, etc. For a long time, I’d often bow down to the time of others & let my day mold around everything anyone else needed to take care of – even if it meant multiple changes of plans & constant excuses. I felt like an awkward fish flopping on a deck when they didn’t show up or called to cancel! Here’s an example:

 Me: “Hello?
Other Person: “Hey… Jenni…
Me: “Oh, Hi! What’s up? Where are you?”
Other Person:Yeah… about that. You see, I have this problem…”
Me: “Are you okay?
Other Person: “Yeah… you see I can’t find my sunglasses so I can’t drive anywhere. Sorry.”
Me: “Huh?”
Other Person: “I need my sunglasses to drive. How about I text you tomorrow and we’ll reschedule?”
Me: (cheery voice) “Oh, sure!!! I completely understand! I hope you find them! Talk to you tomorrow!”
That is an actual conversation I have had on the phone in the past. Don’t be a spineless jellyfish like I was, ha! Often times, a conversation like that leads to multiple. But let me clarify further: It is very smart to acknowledge & understand that there will be emergencies when people will have to cancel – I recently had an emergency come up & had to cancel a babysitting job. (Luckily, they were able to move their date night to the next night, so it worked out anyway!) I had to cancel on a coffee date with a good friend recently as well! It doesn’t feel good to ‘flake’ and we all do it sometimes.
However, do value your time. Make time for your friends, family, love interests, and business associates. But don’t let someone else’s schedule dictate your life. You are your own person and you have a life too.

Ciao!
Jenni xx

An ‘Elementary’ Concept

My little sister is a complete gem! Sometimes, as is anyone, she can make frustrating decisions & I chose to become exasperated… but I do love her so! She is a new 4th grader (I know, huge age gap!) and a blonde, blue-eyed beauty.
Today, I went with mom to go watch her receive her award for ranking Advanced on her test scores last year. Afterwards, we volunteered in her classroom for a salt dough project. It’s always nice to see her at school and in a different environment than home. She is so eloquent in her words and is truly helpful to her peers. She respects their opinions and offers up creativity I wish I had at her age.
It got me thinking about how we all act when we aren’t at home. Do we show grace to others around us? Do we smile and share happy stories? Do we offer our help to someone in need of it and truly expect nothing in return?
Small, consistent, and deliberate actions. That’s what makes all the difference.
My best,
Jenni

Newsflash, newsflash!

It’s not the government’s fault. It’s not your parents’ fault. It’s not your genetics’ fault or your high school teacher’s fault. We alone determine our own actions. We need to take individual responsibility for the good and the bad in our life rather than milking a victim mentality or entitlement to something we haven’t earned. God places blessings and opportunities in our life, but it’s up to us to do anything about it.
¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Sometimes, you just have to be blunt about it.
I’m heading downtown tonight to beautiful Bonita (lol) ‘country’. Great friends & discussing business 0 doesn’t get any better than that!
xoxo