moving

so i just recently moved to la. and by recently i mean i got here last night. i hope i like it here because i never want to move again.

i’ve moved quite a bit in my life, both around the country and overseas, but i’ve always been able to stuff everything into a couple suitcases or into my car. i’m not sure how i accumulate so much stuff over the last 3 years that i’ve been in utah but there was barely room for harlow in the car on the drive out here.

last night, sleeping on the floor of my almost empty little house, i thought of some tips that will hopefully make moving a lot less painful for you.

1. start early. like the day you decide to move. packing and sorting and cleaning will take longer than you think.

2. ask for help. you might think, “well, i’m just one person living in a tiny house with a tiny dog and i don’t have that much stuff.” you have more than you think you do. you will need help or at the very least someone to keep you motivated.

3. accept offers for help. when people offer to help you move or clean LET THEM. see above.

4. stick to your plan. i flipped flopped from driving a uhaul, to renting a pod, to making multiple trips in my car (it’s a 10 hr drive one way. this was a stupid plan. also this was the option i chose.) but however you decide to move your stuff determines how you’ll need to pack so pick one and go with it.

5. bags over boxes. when trying to squish everything into one smallish car, trash bags are the way to go for soft things like bedding and clothing. sure, you won’t feel super fancy when you’re dragging garbage bags of your stuff into your new place but you’ll definitely be able to fit more into tight spots.
6. be crazy organized. i think this is more important based on how much you’re moving so make lists, label boxes, pack in some sort of logical order (whatever works for you.) there was a point last week (around 2 am) when i was tired, frazzled and had lost my sharpie and just started piling things in boxes. whatever fit went it. half of my boxes went into storage and i’m pretty sure thats where all of my socks are.

7. don’t get a storage unit. (unless you really, really need to) for me it was just to delay making decisions. and now i have a storage unit in another state that i will have to deal with at some point.

8. show your appreciation. say thank you! to everyone – the people that helped you move, clean, babysat your dog (or kids), let you crash at their place while you were bedless, loaded your car, brought you snacks for the drive… it all deserves a big, fat thank you.

basically i am the worst at moving but maybe you can learn from my mistakes?? do you have any moving tips? horror stories?

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harlow honey child

it will come as a surprise to absolutely none of you that i just love my little harlow dog. harlow’s mom passed away a few months ago and she’s only a few years older than harlow and it totally freaked me out. anyway harlow is happy and healthy and i plan to keep her that way. today she’s been particularly sweet.

maybe i’m biased but i think she has the sweetest/funniest personality. here’s why:
she won’t sit on a cold hard, floor. if we’re in the kitchen and i tell her to sit she does this funny little wiggle and backs up but she just can’t bring herself to put her little bum on the old floor. 
she can’t jump on my bed with something in her mouth. is this normal? i don’t know but it’s hilarious to me.
when she needs to go outside she goes and stands by the door and then sticks her head around the bookcase and stares at me and waits for me to notice/read her mind. 
she almost never ever barks and i love her for it.
before she sleeps she always fluffs her sleeping spot (whether it’s her bed, the floor, the couch) by pawing at it like crazy then flopping around on her back before settling down. 
she can hear a string cheese being opened from about a mile away. 
and lastly the other day i was sitting on my couch reading and she walked up, bit the end of my sock, pulled it off then proceeded to roll around with it. 
i love my little weirdo!
what are some funny things that your pet does?

trash is for tossers

i very recently came across a blog called trash is for tossers. i loved it so much i read her whole blog. in one day. the whole thing.

when i moved to salt lake at the end of 2012 my new year’s/new house’s resolution was to stop buying paper napkins and paper towels. i did buy these paper towel alternatives and loved them. i didn’t think twice about buying paper products. for 2015 my plan was to stop buying disposable plastic – specifically ziploc baggies. i have some plastic containers that i can wash and reuse and eventually replace with something like these stainless steel lunch containers.  researching more sustainable ways of living was how i came across trash is for tossers.

i read about lauren before i read her blog. i had sort of heard of the zero waste movement but not really. i’ll be honest my first thought when i heard “zero waste” was of an episode of extreme cheapskates i’d seen. i mean i had no idea what her blog was going to be – did she make her own reusable toilet paper and find salvageable food in dumpsters and share bathwater? i was a little nervous.

but as i started reading she just seemed like a fun, personable girl who is conscious of the way her lifestyle impacts our world and is trying to live what she believes. she buys groceries in bulk or at farmers markets with her own reusable jars and sacks, she recycles and composts, she plans ahead, she shops second hand and says “no thank you” to things she doesn’t need. she uses toilet paper.

i think what i admire most about her lifestyle is the thoughtfulness that it creates. i’ve been thinking a lot lately about how we live in such a disposable world (and i’m just as guilty as the next person.) when you can buy a pair of jeans at old navy or wherever for under $20 it’s easy to throw them out if they get a rip or a stain. i’ve been going through my closets as i’m getting ready to move (and still attempting a capsule wardrobe) and surprising how much i have. do i need 6 pair of the same jeans? or 5 of the same white tank top? no i don’t.

anyway back to trash is for tossers. i’ve read other zero waste blogs that tell you how to redo your whole house and what you need to buy and not-so-subtle links to their own book but lauren’s blog (i say “lauren” like we’re friends but i secretly think we would be… haha.) is so genuine and relatable. she’s open and honest and admits it wasn’t an overnight process to change her way of life.

if you follow me on instagram you’ll know i recently attempted my own zero waste shopping trip and i’m happy to say i was successful. i took some cloth bags for bulk granola, french bread, and veggies and some glass jars for bulk olives and quinoa. when i got to the store (whole foods) they weighed my empty containers and i wrote on the bottom of them with a sharpie so i didn’t pay for the weight of the jars. it took a little planning but it was kind of fun. plus there’s no impulse buying when you are limiting yourself to buying bulk. there was no bulk chocolate and no bulk coke zero (ugh). so maybe this will be a good thing for my own health as well as the environment.

oh the other thing i loved about her lifestyle was that she lets her fridge go bare. i always hate cleaning out my fridge and seeing all the unused, spoiled food i toss out. since i bought very few perishable items i’m going to see if i can actually use everything up before i go shopping again. i’ll let you know if i’m successful.

i don’t know if i’ll be able to do this all the time but i think i’d like to try. i mean, it’s worth trying right? and i’m not going to go through my house and toss all plastic items and replace them with metal and glass – that’s hardly environmentally friendly but i can see myself making some changes.

one funny story from my shopping trip: i was checking out with all my jars and cloth bags and the guy was pretty cool about it even though it took a little extra time and so i was telling him about trash is for tossers and how amazing lauren is and i said “she hasn’t produced any waste in two years!” there was major awkward silence and he gave me a very strange look and said something like “what? is that healthy?” or something like that and then i was confused and after some more awkwardness i realized i think he thought i was saying she hadn’t pooped in two years… what? ugh. no. major awkward. sorry, lauren.

it’s okay!

i feel like a lot of what i see on facebook and twitter is pretty awful lately. maybe i’m being super sensitive but the final straw was the man being shamed for dancing. it was too much.

so here are some wonderful things that have happened:

 dave grohl stopped the show to fulfill a fan’s request.

i recently read that actor steve buscemi rejoined his old engine company to help search for survivors after 9/11.

maroon 5 lies down on the ground to help a 10 year old boy with downs syndrome.

an entire town secretly learned sign language to surprise a deaf neighbor (and yes this was for a samsung campaign but the effort and result were beautiful.)

this little piglet.

this exhibit allows blind people to touch the mona lisa.

a panda that needs a hug before he will get down from his tree.

and lastly, dancing man is being flown to la to dance his heart out.

thank you internet.

loving lately

i’m in the process of looking for a job and i the house i am renting is being sold. ugh. i don’t necessarily want to leave utah but i’m not set on staying either. california has been calling my name and also england. who knows. job first, though.

anyway here are some things i’ve been loving lately:

diptique’s vanille candle. it’s a warm vanilla scent and even when it’s not lit i can still smell it faintly.

my memory foam gel pillow… i don’t really know what it’s called but it’s wonderful.

making extra spicy vegetarian curry with roasted vegetables.

youtube makeup tutorials (i had no idea these existed??)

naps with harlow because sleeeep.

power watching friends on netflix of course.

re-reading the great divorce… one of my most loved c.s. lewis books.

what have you been loving lately?

unexpected gratitude

fe761-nothecritic

i’m sitting in my dad’s hospital room for the last few days.

the prognosis is not good. i’ve been sitting here listening to his labored breathing, machines beeping, nurses bustling around, the woman next door screaming for her damned phone…  and just waiting. waiting for him to open his eyes, waiting for another bit of information, waiting for another update. it sucks. he looks small and weak. his hands are swollen and his skin feels cold.

i know if i let myself think about it too much i’m going to lose it. when i got here this morning i was overwhelmed with emotion but i knew if i let myself cry there’d be no stopping me. i don’t know what is going to happen. the waiting and not knowing is hard.

but i’m choosing hope.

i am just dealing with each moment and each hour as they come. right now he’s alive and i’m grateful for that. i’m grateful for the machines, tubes and medicines that are keeping him here while he fights. i’m grateful for the nurses, doctors, attendants, janitors and everyone here.

for the last several years i’ve been the only one in my family who has had any contact with my dad. i won’t go into all of that drama but it’s hurt me and i know it’s hurt him to be shut out by the family he loves. this might sound dumb but it’s nice to have all of these doctors and nurses on his side. i’m not alone in my concern for him anymore. there are other people helping him and hoping for the best for him. and i’m so grateful for that.

that quote always makes me think of my dad and how hard he’s worked and how much he’s sacrificed for his family. he’s not perfect buy he tries and no matter what he’s never stopped trying. i love my dad so much. if you are so inclined please keep him in your thoughts and prayers.

i’ve also set up this page to help cover the cost of his treatment: http://www.gofund.me/_helpmydad