yes I have iPhone injuries.

I will share that I have an inflamed thumb joint on my right hand. My husband is convinced it is from using my phone too much. I disagree, because being on my phone isn’t anything new. It flared up right after moving and I was doing projects all day. While I will gladly admit I am on my phone constantly, it is not from that. (I do have tendonitis in my left elbow from the weight of my iPhone X.) But the point is that it hurts to journal. And i journal quite regularly. Every time I sit down to write now it hurts, so I am just going to journal on here for a few weeks while my thumb heals and see if I can develop a habit.

I also realize I should update you on some of my prior posts. If you haven’t read them, I am referring to ‘I have a problem’ and ‘demons in my head’. I have very much tightened down on my random spending. Rusty and I sat down, came up with a new plan and are sticking very closely to budget, which is kind of amazing. We have a brand new house and all I see is opportunity! But the last thing we want is to get into debt again, so we are learning to pace ourselves. And it feels GOOD! It also makes me realize how ridiculous my spending was on things I can easily live without.

As far as my demons go, I am not talking ugly to myself nearly as much. I have started walking with my neighbor girls and we are up to 3-4 miles, twice a week. Then with the running around I do on the weekends (especially in the summer), I am getting in 50,000 steps or more in in a week! That helps for body image. I am also drinking KetoCoffee from It Works (my daughter sells it. if you are interested, click here and leave her a comment.) every morning. I love it and it gives me great energy.

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That’s all it takes, one step at a time.

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new

So for the last 4 years I have chosen to follow this idea of One Little Word by Ali Edwards. It’s an idea where you let a word come to you and that is your word for the year. She can explain it better than I in this video, so watch this if you have three minutes:

https://www.facebook.com/aliedwardsdesign/videos/10159462905505018/

I’m sure my word this year seemed obvious as my OLW (One Little Word) for 2018 is new. Makes sense as I have a new house, in a new city, with a new life. But my past OLW have revealed things to me that are beyond the obvious. And we have had a tragedy in our lives. One of my son’s very best friends, who was more like a part of our family, passed away on Dec 23. We are not sure how he died but he had a drug problem so the speculation is that is what took him. Because of this and my deep sadness, I think I also have a new view on life.

It will be interesting to see what this word reveals to me as the year goes on. My word for 2017 was write. Which I originally thought I was supposed to journal more and then I started this blog. After the second post I realized that this process was also part of my OLW of 2017. It’s all so interesting how life unfolds.

The crazy thing is that I spent 10 years in a fog of depression, fearing these two letters that defined my life: MS. And now that time has passed, I am very healthy and feeling great and yet, I am new. I am 45 years old, how is anything new?

How about the way I see life? Every second is a blessing. The ability to write you this, on my MacBook computer, from my new house in my new craft room, is a blessing. I am wearing clothing I bought at a store and wash in a machine. I have food and water whenever I need it, and I even through some away when it goes bad. What a concept. I spent years wanting more and never felt full and now I embrace so much as a blessing and am always full.

Can I share a secret with you? But you can’t tell. I am sick of shopping. I have never been sick of shopping. I have been so diligent with the process of decorating this new house and staying right on budget. We allotted a set amount and that is what I spent. Talk about NEW!!! That is the new me right there. I have cleaned out and gotten rid of things that were perfectly good items because I didn’t have room for them!! What? Again, can you hear the sarcasm? I have never been this way. never. I am still verging on hoarding in my craft room, but that is a work in progress.

I will get there.

And I am happy to be back to writing. Sitting here, in my new space writing.

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I have a problem.

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My name is Lou. And I am a shopaholic. Seriously. I don’t take this lightly when I post about this problem. I have gotten in a terrible place of ordering something from Amazon Prime everyday. I get a rush off the Order Placed page, tracking the package everyday, and I get another rush when it arrives. It doesn’t last long enough, once it arrives, so I do it again. And again. I am buying things I can justify, but still spending money that I don’t need to spend. For me, it is a true addiction.

If you have ever seen my craft room you know I have this problem. My sister walked in one time and said something like, “You know they have a show for this. It’s called Hoarders.” Ha, ha I said and we laughed but I knew it was true. It hit way too close to home and god bless a sister for putting those words out there. I have bought thousands of dollars in craft supplies that I have only touched when I was placing them in their location and again when they were moved.

This has come to light recently because we packed up our house of 17 years this last spring. We gave things away, threw them away or put them in two storage units. We moved to an 800 ft2 apartment while we are building a new house. The cleaning out process took months. Like 5 months. My children have left home and I had baby clothes and baby furniture in my attic! As we were cleaning out my husband said, “Do you realize we have paid for some of this stuff three times: once when we bought it, twice to store it all these years and finally, we are paying for a roll off dumpster (3 in total!) to throw it away. Have I mentioned I have a problem?

Thank God I am not addicted to something worse, something that will kill me. But this is not good. I get bored so easily and I shop online. I wander the stores day after day looking at material items I don’t need. I love to get on Amazon and look at gadgets. Or technology. Or books. Or craft supplies. I made myself stop buying yarn a few years ago because I wasn’t even KNITTING anymore. It’s really ridiculous and trivial. I love a deal and feel justified when I find one.

And all this it bothers me. That’s why I am sharing it. I don’t want to be THAT. I don’t want to buy things I don’t need. I don’t want to waste money. I see all the consumerism in the world and it bothers me. I see other people waste money and think of all the good we could be doing in the world with that money. All the people we could be helping. But don’t they say if something bothers you repeatedly it’s because it’s usually your own issue you are looking at? Or one of my favorite scriptures about remove the log from your own eye before you comment on the splinter in theirs? I am struggling.

I saw a quote recently on Pinterest that hit home for me:

He who buys what he does not need steals from himself. 

I need to have that tattooed to my arm. Seriously. Somewhere that I can’t get away from. Somewhere that will stare me in the face so that I don’t spend my days shopping. It doesn’t help either that I am not working right now and I’m bored. I sit in this little apartment, that I mentioned above, and count day the minutes until our new house is done being built. But then I will have to shop. For new things. New furniture. New bedding. New towels. New organization. And that scares me.

It scares me because I will have to jump into the world of consumerism. And although some of you may think I am saying all of this sarcastically, or tongue in cheek, please know I am very serious here. If I wasn’t married to a finance guy I would be in real trouble. And isn’t that part of our society today? On the new Netflix hit, Ozark, Jason Bateman states, ‘Half of all American adults have more credit card debts than savings. 25% of us have no savings at all.’ I looked it up. It’s true. So I’m not alone in this ballgame. And thank god for Rusty.

I am going to focus my energy on reading and crafting and STAYING OFF of Amazon. And West Elm. and Restoration Hardware. And if I can get my heart and mind in the right place and meditate on my new mantra from above then I can make a change. And I will. And I want you all to hold me accountable. I need it.

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