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forgetting perfect


Hello there! My name is Crystal Varner Parker and I am a recovering perfectionist. I have a tendency to get stuck before a task even gets started, because I’m afraid of not doing something the “right way.” In the year 2023 I am not setting a new year’s resolution (you already know my feelings on that), but I am committing to forgetting perfect. 

What’s wrong with ‘perfection’?

Great question, I’d be happy to answer that for you. I do not have anything against a perfectly made baked good, the perfect gift someone chosen for someone else, or any well-executed task or project. What bothers me is the paralysis that ensues by those of us that suffer from perfectionism. I do have something against making a task harder than it has to be, because it must be perfect. I do have something against unrealistic expectations. 

How do we move forward?

I think it calls for giving ourselves and a LOT of grace. I routinely wear a necklace that has the phrase “Grace not perfection” engraved upon it, because I need that reminder. As I go about my day it reminds me that perfection is not the name of the game. Now, I’m not saying everyone needs to go and buy a necklace, but it’s nice to have something tangible that reminds us to forget being perfect. 

Can we shed our need for perfection?

Absolutely not! I am a deep believer in continued growth, learning new things, and striving to be a better me each day, week, month, and year. I also believe we learn a LOT from our mistakes. If we are always striving for perfection, we are never leaving room for those growth opportunities. 

Who’s with me?

Anyone else ready to hit pause on perfect? Ready to hit rewind on our need for control? Now, let’s try again by letting go of perfection. We need to do that best we know how and accept that sometimes that good is good enough. 

xoxo,

C

taking care

post-COVID pep talk

so much has fallen into place these last few months. part of me wants to celebrate, but a part of me is energized and inspired to accomplish more. it’s not an entirely new feeling, but one that hasn’t come up in a while.

i am moving away from survival mode and finally into a space where i can analyze, evaluate, and evolve. these past pandemic years uncovered determination and resilience in myself, the likes of which i’ve never seen. 

as i reflect, i feel proud to have endured the hardship and uncertainty. at the same time, i am keenly aware of how those years of being stuck in “fight or flight’ mode have affected me.  it’s exhausting to be worried about work, family, security, and health all at once all the time.

every human has to consider a few major focus areas in life:

basic needs // one’s ability to obtain food and shelter profoundly impacts the way they see the world. 

health // this does not just encompass physical well-being and mental health, but also personal safety. 

relationships // humans depend on social interaction, evolving and adapting in relationship to other beings.

during the pandemic, every human on the planet experienced a disruption to one, if not all three, of these things. this makes us feel off balance, preoccupied, irritable and unsettled. as a result, we did what humans do best which is to respond to stimuli. 

our nervous system is awe-inspiring AND remains largely unchanged from many thousands of years. when we feel stress in our bodies, they react the same way they did since the dawn of human existence. this means that the body’s natural response to being chased down in the bush by a prehistoric saber-toothed tiger is the same way we react to getting a snarky email from a coworker or encountering a traffic accident on our way to an appointment. our muscles tense, our heart rate increases, and our senses heighten. regardless of the stimulus, our sympathetic nervous system is blind to the details and can only hear one message: 

S T R E S S. 

so, when life hands us a rotten egg as it did in 2020, and the drama mounts because we experience job loss, exposure to infectious disease, and physical distance from the ones we love, we are no longer able to function as we did before.

we transition into survival mode: a sustained ‘fight or flight’ response that sends our stress hormones into overdrive.. as we soldier through the day with clenched teeth and fists, we make choice after critical choice in order to survive each moment. 

instant gratification really shines when we are in this state, bringing with it joy and pleasure that delights even if it is temporary. and why shouldn’t we enjoy a momentary respite from the constant survival struggle? we cannot pour from an empty cup after all. 

for me, it’s food. abundant and delicious food makes me happy and, when i’m extremely overprogrammed with stressful thoughts, it offers comfort from the chaos and a chance for me to enjoy myself. for others, it’s a glass of wine or online shopping or garbage television. whatever we use, the result is the same: a feeling of joy that soothes and reminds us everything is fine so we can continue the fight to survive.

the sympathetic nervous system is critical to human survival, but excessive activation comes at a price. i will stay out of the weeds and simply say that chronic stress does, in fact, take a great toll on our mental and physical health. 

for this reason, i have to share my gratitude for the blessings of this year. through a lot of hard work, a little luck, and boatloads of determination, i managed to pull off some sweeping lifestyle changes that are helping to balance my three main focus areas. i am starting to feel secure in my survival once again.

plentiful work at new companies and homeownership means that food, shelter, and utilities have once again become a certainty for my family. research has produced therapies and vaccines for COVID-19 that have stabilized the spread which helps assuage my health concerns and provided more opportunities for gathering with loved ones. 

simply put, i’m not wringing my hands with worry every day, or doom scrolling on my news feed. i have things to look forward to again. for the first time since january of 2020, i feel like i have room in my brain to level up. and now that i can look out a little further into the horizon, i want to optimize. i don’t just want to survive, i want to thrive. so, where to begin? 

let’s circle back to instant gratification. it is incredibly powerful because it can lift us from the lowest of places with a snap of a finger. we will go to great lengths for the dopamine rush, even if it yields an undesirable outcome. 

for myself, the action of eating comfort foods has become a ‘go-to’ solution in my survival toolkit for how to cope with uncomfortable feelings. it felt good in the moment, but i’m not sure it’s serving me anymore. of course, i want to lose the extra weight, but i recognize there is a bit more to the solution than that.

before i can change my survival habit for good, i have to understand where it’s coming from. i also need to forgive myself for “letting it happen” in the first place. 

as much as i wish life were a video game, and i could just select a different character or persona when it suits me, it is not this way. change and adaptation takes much more time, attention and intention than i had to give when was stuck in survivor mode. 

i am working to reframe the moment and choose self-kindness. my inclination is to be frustrated with myself for end up in a place i didn’t like, however the smarter, wiser me is proud of myself for surviving and eager to create better habits for the future. 

the journey to thriving will be long, but i am curiously optimistic about what i will learn along the way.  wanna join me?

xo,

e

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if 37 is prime, so am i

y’all…it has been a HOT minute since i did any blogging and for that i apologize sincerely. like so many of us, life got a little hectic, personal tragedies, yadda yadda. it’s not that i want to diminish the trauma we collectively and individually faced these past couple of years, it’s that i want to move forward. this post is not about THAT, it’s about what’s going on NOW.

in this, the last month of 2022, which is also the month of my birth, which is also the peak of Sagittarius season, i want to acknowledge some truths i have come to behold. the most potent among them is the idea that we are dynamic people. all humans are capable of learning and adapting and that is awesome.

on the final days of my 36th year, i can say that i am becoming a different person: a person who is more positive and kind. i see that encouragement and understanding and loads of curious optimism are the only real way to get things done. 

i journaled about a few goals at the beginning of this year. they were mostly terrifying and i thought i would fail, so i didn’t really broadcast them (i regret my choice, but that will be a whole different article). instead, i read, researched and strategized. even though i was out of my depth, i tried to stay positive and hopeful. it nearly killed me at some points, but it paid off.

early 2022 saw a variety of obstacles: the raleigh, nc housing market was wild and it was looking like time was running out for first-time buyers like ross and i. (ross is my partner and significant otter BTW.) COVID-19 was still looming large with variants popping up and making things dangerous. studio yoga classes were unpredictable, and i was eager to expand my outdoor yoga schedule and nurture my little corner of the yoga community. 

i was also feeling frustrated with my marketing career and curious if there might be something better out there for me. if i may–the great resignation is a silly name to call it. people are simply waking up to the simple fact that if they are going to spend so much TIME at work, they should get to enjoy some fulfillment from it. so, yeah, i realized it was time to make a change.

it wasn’t the first time i’d pondered these life change, but i arrived at a crossroads. what was holding me back? information? certainty? i mean we can always have more money and time, but realistically, my fear of failure was stopping me from starting.

this made me LOL. when i walk it back, it doesn’t make sense. how can i be fearful of something that hasn’t EVEN happened yet? like for real. i did not have the answer to whether i could do these things or not, and yet, i was totally subscribed to my limiting beliefs. i allowed my fear of an uncertain future outcome to rule my present circumstance.

i decided to do an experiment; i had to at least try to manifest these changes. just like in yoga, i tried to think about the situation in a different way. Instead of how i would feel if i didn’t get what i wanted, i considered how home ownership, a new job, and more outdoor yoga classes would positively impact my life. the more i meditated on this, the more i was motivated to make it happen. the expression “nothing to lose and everything to gain” had never been more true. 

there were a few moments of affirmation along the way where i felt like i was on the right track. we got pre-approved for mortgage lending which felt great! even though it was still chilly outside, people were asking me about my outdoor classes, saying they’d seen my instagram stories and wanted to try it out. i also started getting excited as i perused marketing job postings on linkedin and indeed. 

it was a very slow burn though, and each of these goals took months of planning and scheming to actualize. then, when i finally “got in the game”,  i experienced several losses. we went to dozens of home showings and had offers get rejected. i had many zoom interviews with nary a word from the company. i was struggling to find a new yoga venue and the online classes were not getting traction. i was discouraged and it all had me wanting to give up. for some reason, (maybe it’s just my stubborn Sag energy?) i kept at it…

the possibility of change catalyzed that curious optimism again. i noticed how the pursuit of these big goals really fueled me. and, i decided that even if it failed, it felt good to at least be trying to change. i was doing things not because i had to, but because i wanted to and that also felt kinda nice.

of course the yoga teacher in me also considered this time to be a wonderful opportunity to practice managing stress, LOL. oh, and the stress was palpable. i cried a lot, yelled a lot. i went on runs and cried, i did yoga and cried, i talked to my mom and best friend and cried and yelled. as much as i wanted to give up, i was relying on myself.

among my three big goals, a theme emerged: finding solace in uncertainty. i had to sit with ‘not knowing’ a LOT this past year. when you put yourself out there, even in a quiet way like i did, you can get rejected. which i did. quite a bit. but every time you don’t immediately die after that rejection, you become wiser and more resilient. and less afraid of future rejections.

eventually, the little dream nuggets came to fruition. we became homeowners and moved into a cute place we love. this fall, i added a second weekly outdoor yoga class and met tons of new clients. i also started a new position with an amazing experiential marketing firm that does incredibly powerful work for communities i love.

i have to shout out Ross because the homebuying process could not have happened without him. we truly did it together in every aspect, and i am grateful for his support. we are planning to die here though because neither of us want to move again, ha!

so, as i head into year 37, i am full of curious optimism. i’ve learned that i am a person who enjoys a challenge and likes to work hard. i’ve also learned that, while i do NOT like it, i’m a person that can sit with a little uncertainty and not explode.

the number 37 is prime, and so am i. while i don’t advise plotting a course for three major life upheavals in a single year, shoot your shot! it might be fabulous.

xoxo,

e

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don’t tell me what to do

If only it were that simple. 
Guns aren’t the problem, 
it’s a mental health crisis. 
Guns don’t kill people, 
only those with mental health issues do. 
We have a right to bear arms,
except we forget it’s supposed to be a well-regulated militia

Don’t make me wear a mask, 
but please teach the children to hide. 
Life is sacred and we’re pro-life, 
except more children and teachers have died. 
We don’t want to be told what to do,
unless it’s your body and your choices. 

Nothing is simple, 
except protecting our children. 
Mental health matters,
except for traumatizing our children (again).
We have rights,
except for our children to attend school safely. 

Don’t tell me what to do,
but I’ll make the rules. 
You must care for all lives we deem worthy,
but we aren’t going to make it feasible. 
We all have rights,
but only those of some seem to matter. 

These are the words of a mother, a pastor, an educator, a wife, a daughter, and a friend who is full of rage and heartbreak. I have sat through multiple lockdown drills, have lamented the ones my daughter has endured, and mourn the innumerable hours educators have spent preparing for the eventual. School shootings, mass shootings, and gun violence of all its stripes and varieties are becoming mundane. You will offer your thoughts and prayers for a time, but soon you will forget. 

There are children and loved ones being mourned today, tomorrow, and for always. But let’s remember your guns. They are what’s most important. You have the right to bear arms and form a militia, but you forget it should be well regulated. These rules don’t matter, because you’ll stop these shootings from happening with your guns. 

But here’s the thing…YOU HAVEN’T!
The guns keep landing in the hands of those who shouldn’t have them, and they are murdering Americans of all ages and races. 

When will there be enough blood on our hands? 
How high must the body count get before it matters?
When are we allowed to tell you what to do?

I’m telling you now:
This blood is on your hands. 
The body count is already too high. 
I have had enough of your thoughts and prayers.

i have a confession

Dear March 2020

Dear March 2020,

I started the month with high hopes and expectations. I had spent months preparing for a system conversion, worked crazy hours the first week and half of the month, and was preparing to get back to normal. Little did i know, that life was about to change dramatically. On March 13th I found out that my oldest daughter’s school system was closing for two weeks. I naively thought this would be short-lived. As we all know too well, what we thought would be a brief period at home, turned into a year. A year that has looked like nothing we’ve ever seen before.

The last year has not been the best. Days turned into weeks, which turned into months without seeing or touching the people we love. We have seen friends and family suffer, and in some cases, die from Covid-19. We have watched as loved ones get laid off and businesses close as our economy struggles under the weight of the pandemic. The list goes on about what has been terrible, bad, or not that great for the last year.

BUT I would argue that the last year has had some redeeming attributes. Please allow me to share the goodness I have found in the last year…

  1. I am grateful for a slower pace. We all know that we need to slow down or we’ll fall down, and I feel like 2020 made us all do that without apologies or regrets.

  2. Extra time with my children to observe firsthand their growth, learning, and experience with school. The window into their day(s) has been amazing. I’m in awe of how my oldest is as a student, and how my youngest is learning how to be a good peer among her classmates.

  3. Soft Pants – Working from home means that a work mullet (business on the top, soft pants or no pants on the bottom) is totally acceptable, as long as my appearance in view of the camera is professional. No one needs to know or see what’s below my desk, but my supervisor can rest assured there are always pants on.

  4. Getting outside (almost) every day has been so good for my soul. In 2019 I read the book There’s No Such Thing As Bad Weather by Linda Åkeson McGurk with the hopes of making it a way of life. It took a pandemic to make it happen, but I’m committed. Raining outside? Put on a raincoat, some wellies, and get to puddle jumping. Cold outside? Put on a thick coat, a hat, some gloves, and get to walking. Hot outside? Put on some shorts, a t-shirt, some sunscreen, some sunglasses, and stroll.

  5. A deeper appreciation of making choices for the greater good. Growing up as a Japanese American, there was the recurring phrase “a good Japanese daughter wouldn’t ____.” As an adolescent, this was an infuriating thing for my mom to say, but she wasn’t wrong. Sometimes you have to make choices that are for the good of others not just yourself. So I will wear my mask, get my vaccine (soon!), maintain 6’ of social distance, and (im)patiently wait until I can see all the people I have missed.

I will say it again…
The last year may not have been the best, BUT I would argue that the last year has had some redeeming attributes. While some may want to rush back to the way things were before, I’m going to lean into the good things I’ve loved this last year. What lessons have you learned in the last year?

xoxo,
C


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There’s No Better Time Than Now

So, I had an epiphany the other day. It was Christmas Eve morning and it was pouring rain. It was warmer than it had been the past few days, but it still wasn’t optimal at 52°. Regardless of the weather or my feelings about it, I had to go for my daily run.

I parked at the lake near my house and sat there for nearly 10 minutes, thinking about my options. I considered driving home and waiting for a better (less cold and rainy) time to run. 

After looking at Weather Underground for the 80th time that morning, it dawned on me. Neither the weather outside nor my motivation to run was going to improve anytime soon.

It was all there in front of me; the trail, my headphones, my water bottle. There was not going to be a better time than right now. So I did it. 

It wasn’t the best run of my life, but it wasn’t bad. I only passed one other person along the two-mile loop, so I scream sang the lyrics of Lizzo, Meg the Stallion, Sweetie, and Tame Impala as I ran in the rain. I was soaked by the time I finished but it was done.

The moral of the story is that sometimes now is the best we can do. It can be tough to motivate ourselves to complete a difficult task, but before we bail we must ask ourselves this…

Will I want to do this MORE later? If the answer is no, you better get to it NOW. 

In the 10 minutes I sat there trying to figure out an alternate plan, I could have been done with the damn mile. And life is funny like that. So often the hardest commitments to keep are the ones we make to ourselves. 

Running everyday goes the same way. It’s a cool endeavor, but it isn’t always glamorous. Sometimes the daily mile feels like a mountain to climb, and like anything, starting is usually the hardest part.

When you have a daunting task, think not of the drudgery of doing it, but the satisfaction of getting it done. It will probably suck a little bit, but before you talk yourself out of it, remember that there’s no better time than now

taking care

Running the Road to Nowhere

Like so many people this year, I’ve been combatting my cabin fever with exercise at home and outdoors. Fitness today is not the same as it was pre-pandemic, you know when we had races to train for and studio classes with our favorite good vibe tribes. BUT at-home workouts have been a marvelous way to manage stress during this crazy time, and I am thankful to have remained healthy through the last several months. 

I feel proud of myself for “not skipping a beat” and maintaining an active lifestyle despite all the closures and quarantines and disruptions to life, but I have noticed something I can’t ignore: I am completely burned out. I have not raced since late winter and haven’t really strived for much beyond my average weekly mileage for months now. Yet somehow, I feel as though I’m running the road to nowhere.

Sometimes we ignore the signs

This is not an all-of-a-sudden feeling either. If I’m totally honest, I’ve been low on motivation for many weeks now. At first I thought it was just hot, then I thought I just needed to double down on my routine, or push through it. Before long, the self-doubt started creeping in; maybe I am out of shape or no longer passionate about fitness.

Why and how can this be? It feels like I’m not doing really anything, so how can I be tired of it… Does this feeling of shapeless fatigue sound familiar to you? 

As I stop and think a moment, it occurs to me that what I’m feeling is a combination of guilt and fatigue. I feel spent yet I don’t feel I’ve done enough to warrant a break. 

Rest does not have to be earned.

We talk a lot, especially on The91Rewind, about the importance of rest and integrating it into our self-care routine. And the truth is this: rest is not something we deserve only after a monumental effort. It’s not something that we must earn. Rest is a vital part of keeping our engines running and our living our best life. 

While I haven’t been out there killing trail races every weekend, or getting promoted at work, or teaching sold out handstand workshops, I have still been doing my gosh darn best. And that – particularly in today’s current and colorful climate, takes a great deal of effort and energy. Living necessitates rest. Not living well or maximally, or heroically or any other superlative…just living and surviving the day to day entitles us to a break now and then. 

So I’m going to press  P A U S E …

Just like our cell phones, without regularly and intentional recharging, we will eventually run out of batteries.  Don’t wait until you think you’ve earned it (you already have) or worse, until it becomes your only option. Let’s be proactive and practice rest just like we practice anything else.

Have a great month, friends! And give yourself a little break now and then!

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Going to the Polls

November 3rd is rapidly approaching. We officially have Republican and Democrat nominees for President and Vice President, but do you know who else is on your ballot? In addition to voting for president, there are usually a variety of other elections for other offices you can vote for in your local area on election day. If you’re not sure who’s running for which office, it’s time you learn who they are, what they believe, and if you support them before going to the polls. 

Voting is IMPORTANT 

As a citizen of the United States of America, voting is one of the most important things you can do. In many ways, the right to vote has been a longstanding uphill battle in our country. The founding fathers outlined a pretty good system, but it has taken decades of work to ensure that we all, yes that’s right EVERYONE, may exercise their right to vote. The best way to appreciate it is to participate in the voting process at all levels of government. We should not take this privilege for granted. If you’re a person who is dissatisfied with certain aspects of your community, you especially want to participate in local elections. While presidential elections often seem like the most important ones, and y’all, Decision 2020 is a whopper for sure! It’s really the local elections that can have the biggest impact on your day to day life. The pothole on your street that popped your tire? Funding for greenways in your city? What time you can order a mimosa on Sunday at brunch? These are all decisions made by your local elected officials. We might not all have our candidate of choice win, and we do not have to agree with everything our elected officials do, but we do need to hold them accountable. 

Holding your elected officials accountable 

How do we do this?

  1. Vote! Each election is a reminder to our elected officials that their job is on the line. If we are not satisfied with how they have represented us, we will vote for their opponent on the ballot.

  2. Between elections, contact your representatives. They do not know if we like what they’re doing, are dissatisfied, or see areas for growth unless we tell them. Sitting back and complaining does nothing to solve problems, but speaking up can. Contact your representatives and let them know what you think of the job they’ve done. It’s tempting to only reach out with negative feedback, but it’s okay to let your elected officials know when they get it right too.

  3. Get involved. There are volunteer positions aplenty in our community. Helping on a candidate’s campaign so they get elected or re-elected can make a difference. Serving on an education or citizen advisory board, even helping to organize elections in your area are ways to actively participate in your local political community. There’s something for everyone. 

The big takeaway is that we have to pay attention. Sometimes politics can be boring and esoteric. Trust me, I know. I’ve personally endured hours of school board,  board of supervisors, and federal committee meetings. There’s a lot of information covered and not all of it is relevant. It is an opportunity to hear about important things that can affect me and my family’s life. Budget allocation isn’t sexy, but where the money goes affects major outcomes. Will your local school division receive new social studies books for the first time in a decade? That might depend on the school board requesting it of the board of supervisors, and having that request granted. Glamorous? Nope. Vital to an informed population? Damn, right it is!

When we take the time to participate in politics at our local and state levels, we can cultivate community leadership that reflects the values that are most important to us as individuals. We positively influence our community by making known what we want and need to thrive. As we’ve seen recently, when we don’t pay attention we can get stuck with something that’s less than fabulous. And then it can be years before we have another chance to choose better.

Time is running out.

November 3rd is rapidly approaching, so you have two important steps to take. Get informed about your ballot. Really learn who’s running, not just their party affiliation. Not all Democrats are bad, nor are all Republicans good, and vice versa. Almost every critical issue that you care about is addressed in one way or another at the school board, board of supervisors, and state level of representation. Do you care about how the coronavirus is being handled?  Do you care about racial reconciliation?  Do you care about the economy? Of course, you do! The ballot that will determine the future of national politics also determines the immediate present for the individuals, children, and families in our homes, neighborhoods, and communities.

Also if you know or have met a local official in or around your district… thank them! These are some of the hardest working folks in our communities and rarely will they get the recognition and gratitude they deserve. Did you know that most of these folks serve in their role part-time while working other jobs and caring for their families? Having lots to do and not enough time to do it is a situation to which many of us can relate. 

So, go vote! Vote early, vote by mail, just make sure you do the damn thing…
VOTE, get involved and make a difference where you are. 

C

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we’re baaaaack!

Have you ever had a period of time where it felt like you’re always stuck in second gear? You know, when it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month, or even your year? (If you just sang that to the tune of the Friend’s theme, I’m proud of you.) We have definitely felt that way at many points from November 2019 through April 2020. Both Erica and I had large projects at work, side jobs and volunteer work, not to mention making time for our significant others, family, and friends. Just when we were coming up to catch our breath and get back to blogging again, then a global pandemic hit. Now that we’ve caught our breath AGAIN, we’re baaaaack!

We thought it was time to introduce ourselves again…

We are two best friends (Crystal and Erica) that have known each other since the summer of 1991 (might notice 91 in the name), that hope to encourage you to press pause, hit REWIND, and try again. Pausing, rewinding, and trying again can look different depending on the day, the week, month, or maybe even year (sorryish, I couldn’t resist). We like to talk about self-care, our local communities (Raleigh, North Carolina, and Richmond, Virginia), things happening in our world that speak to our hearts, and living green. 

We might not be experts, but we have heart…

We are by no means experts on the previously mentioned topics, but they are things that mean a lot to us. We both have a tendency to go hard, overschedule ourselves, and forget to slow down for self-care. We both know and firmly believe that it’s a crucial thing for our lives and mental health. We hope to share content that encourages you to make yourself a priority, while we continually work to do the same. When we’re not writing about wellness and self-care, you’ll catch us worrying, texting each other, and fretting about the world around us. The two of us feel things deeply when our world is hurting, and sometimes sharing what’s on our hearts helps to spur us to action or get others thinking about it. We might not write about every problem in the world, but on occasion, we hope you’ll pause and think deeper about how we can make the world a better place together. Sometimes it’s as simple as bringing your own grocery bag, water bottle, or cup, and sometimes it means writing letters, serving on a committee, or speaking out. 

Keeping it local

Why write about Richmond, Virginia and Raleigh, North Carolina? We have a special spot for Richmond, Virginia because that is where we met. It was on its suburban streets where we rode our bikes, played pretend, and shared our dreams with each other. Then it was on its urban streets that we ate and drank our way around to our gastronomic delight. We also both love where we currently live (Crystal in Richmond, Erica in Raleigh), and hope you will too. Whether you live in these cities or pass through, we hope you’ll pause in them to enjoy some of the goodness we love.

It’s never too late to try again…

In thinking about the things that matter to us, we want you to know that it’s never too late to start over. We all start off with the best of intentions, but sometimes things just don’t go as planned. In those moments, we encourage you to press pause (especially on the negative self-talk), hit rewind (to reflect on moving forward), and try again. 

As we move forward in 2020 (and beyond), let’s be kind, and push one another onward and upward.

Xoxo,

C

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the magic is already in you

I’m sure I am not the only person has noticed the MANY articles, blog posts, and witty memes about the end of the decade. Frankly, I’m so glad that the year is almost over so I can stop seeing them. Here’s why: these posts habitually focus on the need to finish accomplishing the things that remain on our to do/goal list or setting a new list for the new year or perhaps the upcoming decade. These reminders of the end of the 20-teens ending seem to have a primary focus on playing catch-up, because you’ve somehow dropped the ball on the ending year/decade. Rather than focus on what you haven’t done and/or need still to do, I have something different I want us to focus on… 

As you’re preparing for the beginning of a new decade, remember the magic in already in you. 

There’s nothing magical about the new year 

Just writing the words above makes me feel like I’ve committed a blogging sin, but I firmly believe it’s the truth. There’s nothing magical about new decade, or even year, unless you want it to be. If it gives you a renewed purpose, great. BUT if the focus on a magical new month, year, or decade causes you stress, let’s put it to rest. You are a great human being today, just as you are. Do we each have things we can do to make us better humans? Absolutely! However, you don’t need a new year or decade to start making a change. You can decide to make that change whenever you decide the moment is right. 


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I gave up New Years resolutions 

Many years ago, I would come up with the requisite list of New Year’s resolutions. Soon after, I would fall off the New-Year-Wagon and fail to complete my list of resolutions. I would feel frustrated that I couldn’t stick accomplishing these goals, because I wasn’t like this in other parts of my life. Over time, I would try setting different New Year goals, until I finally realized this was causing me undue stress. I decided my new year could start whenever I wanted, because the New Year isn’t the boss of me anyway. 

An important reminder for us all as we begin the new decade. 

Recently, Erica and I were talking about our hopes and dreams for ourselves and our blog, and this got me thinking about some little reminders for all of us. 

  1. A new decade is definitely an exciting, new opportunity for setting long-term goals. We don’t have to limit ourselves to accomplishing our dreams in a year. Ten years is a more reasonable timeframe for big things. 

  2. We have a new decade of living into who we want to be. 

  3. It’s time to embrace who and where we are right now.

As we embrace the magic that is already in us, we can give up lamenting what we are not and what we perceive others expect of us. It’s time for us to love who and what we are now. Loving and supporting the self we are today, will carry us into a vibrant new decade. 

xoxo,

c