Thursday, June 22, 2017

Letting Go of the Lifeline, Time to Time


amarillo pool

  I've lived in this apartment for over two years. For the first time yesterday, I finally went to the pool. It was the second time I'd actually been in water since I was 10 years old. The first time was at the Blue Hole, in New Mexico. (I think I did a post...). I stayed near the stairs, because I had no freaking idea how to swim. I had been in kiddie pools as a kid, and I actually had taken a few lessons when I was 9. So, the "swimming form" I have right now is rather amusing. I can't freaking swim. I can dog paddle a little bit.

  I'm teaching myself anyway. I want to swim. I stepped down the little ladder into the water yesterday, looked at the gray sky (it was about to rain) and I let myself enjoy the water. I was still holding onto the ladder. And while it was smart, considering I didn't realize that half the pool was shallow and I just automatically went to the ladder at the deepest end (go figure) I wanted to just embrace the water and swim. I felt like I could, in my gut, but my swimming form was telling me otherwise. I took in a lot of water yesterday.

  I still let go of the ladder. I'd go back to it, as I was testing myself. I'd stay to the rim. I so wanted to feel like a natural swimmer. You know that feeling you get when you look up at the sky, and somewhere in your gut says that you went meant to fly up there? Swooping like a bird, free, buoyant. I was not very buoyant in the water. I tried to float. I did a little bit...I got better at it. It'd help if I didn't have an ass that felt like a freaking anchor at times. I'm not the stick of a kid that could swim the pool like a fish. I'm a short curvy woman with abundant proportions that can feel hard to control in the water.

  I don't regret anything though. I had a great time. It was so relaxing, (regardless of what my sinking body said at times) and it started to rain. It looked like dark little spikes rising from the pool, and the sky was shades of pearl gray. I was so glad I took the leap, and tried to teach myself to swim. It was nice watching some kids have a blast, as natural in the water. I so wanted to just let go, and find that I could swim.

  I'm finding that a lot of important things, or even small things, get done by biting the bullet. Circumstances will never be perfect. If I didn't take the leap, I wouldn't have had such a rewarding experience. And that goes for a lot of areas in my life.

  That just goes back to recognizing your victories. Celebrate the journey! I know that I keep finding more in myself to be proud of. And that the Lord, because I'm sick of oppressing myself with focusing on setbacks.


  ~ Nikki


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Monday, June 19, 2017

The Power of Clarity ~ Turning It All Around

  I have good news! I got to change to my favorite department! I start today. Super excited. It only took me little over an extra year to get what I originally wanted--which was a full time position in Garden. So super happy! Back among the flowers and plants, helping people with their garden ideas--needless to say, garden lover here! As if my service Nikki's Garden doesn't say that by itself. :D Now if I get the manager job at the other place, that will definitely effect things--but one step at a time!

  One thing that I've been reflecting on is just how much better things turn around when you actually recognize your victories. I went from focusing on how much I was falling short, to looking at everything I was doing right--and just the positive energy has enabled me to do more. I still don't have everything smoothed out, not everything is planned and set with how I want everything to work, but I'm definitely getting there. And with such a lighter heart! What a world of difference! I definitely feel like I'm working towards my goals, making progress, and my end game is a tangible reality. What a turn around. And for the first time ever, I'm actually getting consistently high pageviews! One of the things on my goal list! Thank the Lord. Happy dance. Part of the reward of writing is knowing people are seeing it--that perhaps it's helping somebody.

  My father also told me of a position at his work that would pay phenomenally--if I got it I'd reach my goals months sooner than originally planned. I jumped on the opportunity, stopping everything else I was doing and getting that application ready, updating my resume, etc. Testing my wpm. (Excellent, I'm happy to brag). But the point it that I never got so many opportunities until I started looking at what I had already accomplished, and had the guts to pursue different opportunities. I can't worry about putting noses out. It might lead me to a different job, might make things a bit complicated for a little while until things get organized again--but the advantages outweigh all that in the end. I'm so glad that I finally have the courage to jump at something, once I realize the value.

  Well that's it for my Monday catch-up. What have you guys been pursuing? What are your goals?


  ~Nikki



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Thursday, June 1, 2017

The Challenge to See Clearly ~ Keep Watching, and Celebrate Your Victories

The trick to change is not always the mad run to what you think you want. Sometimes it's the everyday, putting one foot in front of the other, sometimes going the extra mile. (Even when your feet are killing you). You keep your eyes open, talk to the right people (or at least figure out which people ARE the right people). And possibilities start rearing their heads. They don't fall in your lap, but you can see them on the horizon. You still have to work for them.


winning quotes



  I was just thinking about this because over the last few weeks (and in some cases months) I've been looking for a change. My #1 fact, I don't have enough time to spend on all my projects. Yet the truth is all of them are important to me. I want time for my blog, for my creative writing, and other endeavors. Working fulltime, getting enough sleep (sleep is huge--if you don't sleep enough, the quality of your energy put to everything else is effected. Nope, I need my brain running a smoothly as possible), spending time with loved ones, there just isn't enough time for it all. The reality is, I'm going to HAVE to make more time at home. So I'm keeping my eyes open for that chance, when it comes. I'm ready to pounce.

 Which brings me to the possibilities--there is a possibility for a landscape manger position at a local country club coming up. I'll find out mid-June. It'd be roughly 6 hrs a day, but with the pay I expect to get it would be more than enough to sustain my lifestyle, and ALSO pay off debt. The major win here--I'd be doing something I LOVED.

  Another possibility: getting a supervisor position at my current job. It would likely mean more hours, but higher pay, and I'd be able to pay off debt faster. Within the next 1-2 years. I'm big on paying off debt, so I actually put a lot of money towards it. I want to get it out of the way so I can start mass saving for goals over the next 3-4 years.

  And yet another possiblity: changing departments at my job. I've learned so much from being in Receiving, I want to go back to Garden (which is a department that I love, since *ahem* I LOVE to garden, and help others with theirs). I want to see how much I've improved as an associate, see if I can take it head on this time. I was great with customers and garden knowledge before, but I wasn't performing as well in managing department needs. Granted that goes back to the fact I always felt like I was being PUT with the customers, but that's another story I won't get into.


  At first I was stressed about being courteous to expectations. What if I pursue the supervisor position, they're interested, then I get the landscape job? So many what-ifs, and wondering who's nose would be put out. But one big lesson I've learned, and I'm happy that I have, is that it's a business world. This is to be expected. You have to play the field, or you won't make it. You have to take the chances as they come, and if someone gets disappointed and pissed, well, they need to grow up. Trying to please everyone is liking walking in a maze that doubles back on itself. You'll just find yourself in the same area in life, and not where you want to be. Unless you get lucky and someone plucks you right out of the maze. But that is a fairytale. (And often enough they don't end well anyway).

  Regardless of the stress that I've felt over the last few weeks, months, year--it has all been good to me in the end. At least good FOR me. I see possibilities, blessings that in one way or another will help me reach a goal, and when that is done, I can change course and strive for the next. It's going to be hard work. I'm going to be tired and sore. But if it gets me to getting out of debt, building up an awesome resume, and getting to the point where I can lessen my hours so I can focus on goals at home, then the battle is worth it. Onward charge! Victory is nigh, through the toil and the blood.

  Which leads me to my last thing--investing in yourself. I've recently made the jump to invest in a personal coach. I'm so excited about it, and frankly it's a relief to be getting some help. To just talk about my issues and goals, and get some real, no-nonsense support. Just the orientation made me more self-aware. Made me realize more clearly the things I'm doing right, and the things that I can improve. Note that I said "doing right"--it is so easy to think we're still failing, even when we've already won half the battle. We all need the guts to see clearly.


  ~Nikki



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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

When You Just Want to Sleep, You Keep Going

  Last time I posted (too long ago) I was writing about it being too easy to forget our little victories. Even our big ones. Just the last few weeks since I've posted has been stressful. I have certain goals that I want to meet, by the end of this year, and over the course of the next four years. There is so much to do every day, it's so easy to get overwhelmed. Especially on the days when you're so freaking sore and worn out from the hellish work day before. Where's energy when you need it? And why can't heaven just smile down and make everyday an energetic day? Gah!!

  Honestly I want to call this post "I Just Want to Sleep". I can barely think I'm still so tired. And I have to go to work in a few minutes. Thank the Lord it's supposed to be an easy day at work.

  I can only keep believing that the little steps we take will get us to our goals in the end. They get us to the weekend, surely they can get us to our goals. Just takes a bit of determination--and lots of coffee.

  Maybe in my next post I'll be more coherent.


  ~Nikki


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Monday, April 24, 2017

The Everyday Go-Getter That We Forget

 This Monday I have no madness to report, and no Modern Go-Getter that I want to share today. Actually just in a moment's thought, just a few minutes ago, I knew what I wanted to write about. It struck me how quickly I forget what I've accomplished just in the few hours previous. As I've said before, I'm the type that measures the value of my day by what I've accomplished. Except for those few times I really need a break and I set aside a day to by lazy, and genuinely rest. (Not often, I get bored easily, and I love the feeling of a to-do list accomplished).

  What happened just a little while ago was that I looked at my clock, and realized how much time I had left before I had to go to work. And I thought, "I really should get back to getting some things done." (Currently watching 13 Reasons Why, I heard so much hype about it that decided I needed to watch it. Well worth it). Because I felt like I'd feel guilty if I didn't before I had to leave for work. Then I remembered how much I had already gotten done. Tidied, folded laundry, ran errands, made calls, took care of my man's lunch, fed the pets. It's been a good day so far. There's no reason to feel guilty. It's been a productive morning, and early afternoon. Sure I'd be even happier if I got more done. I'm a glutton for accomplishment. I love feeling like Wonder Woman.

  When I was reminding myself how much I'd already gotten done, I realized how I always do that. Always forget exactly what I've accomplished already. I tend to feel like I'm not giving my best, because things aren't flying forward. Time passes so quickly, and I feel like I have to keep running just to keep up, so it won't leave me behind. I have a goal in sight, and I want to see it through. But the tendency to feel like I'm underachieving all the time doesn't help. I need to remember what I've accomplished already in life. Keep my eyes on the goal, but don't forget my victories, along with my losses. It's too easy to focus on our shortcomings. Too easy to forget how far we've come, even in the past few hours. The goal looks so far away still, that where we've been looks small. We keep running so fast that we leave them behind without a thought at times. We forget to leave markers, beacons to remind us that we actually continue to kick butt, even though we fall on our ass a lot of the time too.

  So I just wanted to share that. Share the everyday go-getter that we forget. Ourselves.


  ~Nikki


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Monday, April 17, 2017

Monday Morning Madness

  Mondays. We can spend the weekend thinking Monday will be terrific, it's the beginning of the week, we'll start off at an awesome pace. Or we know that it will be a MONDAY and be so jam packed with to-dos (because the weekend was inevitably spent catching up with family and other things) that it starts off with us turning off the alarm, staring out the window at the brightening light, and feeling like someone hit us over the head. And we haven't even gotten out of bed yet.

monday quotes
  Yep, Mondays...gotta love them, right? I had a hectic weekend, but I am hopeful for this week--yet I was also stressed about it. Because I got my first commission for my garden care business (Nikki's Garden, more on that later), and I was so excited to start Monday--then I remembered later that I had JURY DUTY first thing in the morning! Good grief! And I couldn't get ahold of my client, because we didn't have time for her to give me her number. Ants were crawling all over our feet. (No joke).  But she had all my info from the flyer, so I could hope for the best. Ends up that she won't answer the door so I left a note. Hopefully she'll give me a call. On a good note, all jurors were released today. Just had to give them an hour of my time and heck of a drive. At least I saw an area I'd never seen before. I'm convinced that I must have crossed into a neighboring town. It did not look like Amarillo. Going to have to investigate later because now I'm curious. Amarillo does always end up being bigger than I expect and I've lived here for over 20 years. Go figure.

  So this is how my morning went: got up at 7:20am, got ready with my boyfriend (me for jury duty him for work), and then discovered that his car still wasn't working so I hurried up and dropped him off at work, came back home and finished getting ready, and zoomed off to answer for jury duty in time. I was four minutes late. I hate being late. Turned out it was no problem. Sat there for an hour anyway, and got a text from my boyfriend asking if I could return his card. I'd forgotten I still had it from when I had to go get gas and jumper cables the day before. So thank the Lord all jurors were released. I hurried home, got together all the stuff I needed (packages to be sent out--selling videogames and movies on ebay for the fam right now) and got Lupitas burritos and JiggleBerry smoothies for lunch. My man was happy. Then I tried to talk to my client, but she still wouldn't answer the door, so I left a note and went and mailed all my packages. Ate lunch with lovely boyfriend, commented on how tired we were. Came back home and tried to get things done, before I have to go to work after all. What I wouldn't give for a guilt-free nap.

  I'm repeating certain things, so I'm obviously tired. I'm not used to going to bed "early" anymore. I gt off at midnight and usually fall asleep by 2. So yep. Heck of a morning. Perhaps tomorrow will be easier, and more things will be accomplished. For me, being the "accomplishment-junkie", I never truly seem to sleep. I happen to fall asleep thinking about what all needs to be done the next day. Especially Mondays.

  What about yours?

  More on my new garden service soon. Haven't been so excited in awhile. ;)

~Nikki


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Saturday, April 1, 2017

Palo Duro Canyon ~ Part 2

  Well! What an adventure. Even though I'd been still getting over being sick, last week I decided to go on a little hike with Jaciel and my friend. Heaven help me my body was not ready for it--and it turned into a NOT little hike. Should have expected that. I think we spent 4-5 hours out there? Nope. My body was not happy with me. All the resting I had done to make myself feel better went out the window. Within an hour I was done. But--one step in front of another. There were still pretty sights to be seen. There was at least that. The little trail we chose was to see a little cave, which was awesome--but we kinda got turned around and couldn't find the right entrance back. So Jaciel and I ended up going in the wrong one. Stupidest thing I've ever done. I didn't like it one bit, it was such a tiny crawlspace--and by time I came out on the other side (thank the Lord!!) I was one pissed off woman. I was just thanking God that we were back on the trail (we found the right cave after that) and would get back to the truck before it got really dark.

  We are not going in another cave like that again without a ranger. I'm just saying. And I had a word with said wonderful boyfriend the day after. STUPIDEST THING EVER DONE.

  But back to my first hike! Still plenty of pictures from that trip. This current trip my phone was too full to take a lot, and my other camera still is damaged from my first hike. Lens jammed. Go figure.

  But anyway. Here's the rest of the pictures from my first trip to Palo Duro Canyon. What a heck of a hike! And the best part was this dune-like area that was so gravelly we were able to slide down the side! Sure you got dusty pants and tiny rocks in certain places but oh well. Wonderful ride! We found out later that there was actually a name for it--the Devil's Slide. Certainly isn't the safest thing, if you make a wrong tumble that would be very unfortunate. But our time is definitely a fun memory! 

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon


palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon


palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon
The Devil's Slide! Definitely put your phone in your backpack for this one.

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon

palo duro canyon
About to go home. This will always be one of my favorite memories. Meaning the hike--not necessarily the going home. Although I was certainly tired!
  I didn't realize it took me so long to show the rest of the photos. I'm trying to post 2-3 times a week but I've been researching new projects that really can't be put off, and I just lost track of time. The plan is to post some pics of my Lake Meredith trip--I couldn't believe it had taken me 20 years of living here to finally go and see it. Hope you enjoyed these pictures!

  ~Nikki


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