Happy Friday! 5/12/17

A lot has happened lately and I’m doing my best to get back into the swing of blogging by doing some simple linkup posts and some revamped ones from the old blog. I’ve been trying to concentrate on one task at a time and focus within each one so I get more done. If you have any tricks please let me know.
This linkup is one from one of my bloggy pals Krysten at WGAW and she has a couple lovely co hosts as well! I have been enjoying this linkup for years now and it always seems to brighten my spirits. It’s a good practice to have at the end of the week!

  1. Reno shows like Fixer Upper and Flip or Flop: Vegas both on HGTV, Nate and Jeremiah on TLC.
  2. Chores and to do lists
  3. My Mophie PowerStation XXL
  4. Ruth over for a visit to chat and watch TV
  5. Late night panda planning
  6. setting up my VA website and getting back to data entry
  7. Coffee and Pop tarts
  8. Hanging out at the vape shops
  9. Writing in Instant Happy Journal
  10. SUNSHINE and gardening!

I hope you all have a fantastic Mothers Day weekend! If you’d like to subscribe to my newsletter out soon for May click here

Getting to Know You: Recreation

This month was a doozy! I’m sorry I’ve been so MIA but here’s a post that I really enjoy. I didn’t make it in time for the linky but please read through and leave me a comment. Go leave love on someone else’s page! And tell Brita that I sent you and leave your link to your posts as well and I’ll be sure to check them out.
Getting to Know You | Belle Brita

As a kid, what was your favorite sport or physical activity? Why?

As a kid I enjoyed playing outside and biking with friends as a young child for many years. I also liked t ball in school gym and obstacle courses and climbing walls (not ropes). But as I grew up it became dance, gymnastics and creative movement. I did a lot of styles and I really enjoyed making every move perfect and feeling each one more and more. I don’t exactly know where and when I discovered dance but it was an immediate passion of mine. I kept it in my life until college when life became too busy and I was more concerned with a social life.

How do you relax after a stressful day or week?

I really enjoy having a hot shower or lush bath bomb after a stressful day or week. In addition to when my body is sore, I like the aromatherapy that comes with it. So I tend to buy a bunch at once and then use them over a longer amount of time. A nice mojito is the best thing after a long week at a nice dinner or a dark piece of chocolate. When it comes to sweets and candy  I usually have too much but I need to work on that. Watching TV is a great relaxing thing for me to do as well- this is why I have a DVR.

What hobbies or activities do you share with your loved ones (spouse, children, friends, etc.)?

He loves to game and I do too! We sometimes try to play together but watching movies at home and catching up on shows like Impractical Jokers and Cops is a pastime. We both love food! SO eating is naturally one of our quick choices. I have quite a few friends who love to shop OR blog- so I find good connections there.

How do you balance work and play?

I’m not the best at it and usually end up with too much of the latter. But I’m trying to schedule my time better and plan out my days more. So I quit having chunks of empty time that gets wasted and I then get frustrated with myself for not doing enough.
Getting to Know You is a monthly interview series that Brita created after the dissolution of Guys Behind the Blog. While Brita and her husband both answer the questions each month, feel free to use these questions to interview anyone in your life! Or just share your own responses. Link-up goes live on the last Tuesday of each month. 

Optional Rules:
  • Follow me, Brita! Twitter – Pinterest – Instagram – Bloglovin
  • In your linked-up post, link back to this page, please!
  • Make sure you link the relevant post, not your whole blog page.
  • Check out a few blogs while you’re here, and leave at least one comment.
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What is May’s theme for Getting to Know You? Wellness.
  • What does moderation mean to you?
  • How do you prioritize your overall well-being?
  • What small changes did you implement in the past that affect your health and wellness today?
  • How do you practice self-care?
Next month’s link-up will be May 30, the last Tuesday of the month.

Three Things Thursday

1. So this Saturday we are hosting our good friend Justin from Kansas again, to stay and hang out in Oregon for two weeks. It was a blast last year and we got to show him a lot of great sights and activities. He came to Oregon in June last year and they celebrated their birthdays together a day apart. Sean ‘met’ Justin while playing an online game for years and they started a kindred friendship. We really enjoy having him here with us and we like taking him to places he’s never seen before and exploring around Portland. So we went to the zoo, a famous fun drag show and went to a lot of fun entertaining neighborhoods and nice places to eat as well. He was only here for a week last time so we doubled it this year. We’re all excited to have him here to do all kinds of fun things and just be here as an escape from Kansas for awhile. I can’t wait!

2. We got a NEW used SUV! If you don’t follow me on Snapchat (@noraspaulding) or twitter (@nora_spaulding_). Sean has been searching and browse shopping around for a Subaru and we got lucky while we saw three available Foresters and got a deal on the price. Speaking of new things as well; honorable mention to my LuLaRoe-LLR collection that is growing by a Carly, a classic tee and another pair of leggings and …. maybe another Irma! If you haven’t checked them out and are curious this gal is my unicorn and i love her. I love these comfortable clothes, I’m happy I know them! I got a new computer as well- it’s a 23.9 inch screen so it’s nice to have a big field of view again. It’s another HP all in one and I would HIGHLY recommend them- great machines! I feel so much more productive that I can double task.

3. A few other bits and pieces I’m going to tell you about is: my favorite new Netflix TV shows I’m watching is Life in Pieces, Jo Koy Live in Seattle, (still loving) Hawaii Five O, and now 13 reasons why is coming out so I’m stoked! We got a new HD Smart TV and I’m glad to have a tv back in the living room. I’ve been watching a lot more TV than I have been but I had a bunch of DVR shows saved up so of those I’m watching: Teen Mom 2, My Big Fat Fabulous Life, Greys Anatomy, Long Island Medium, Long Lost Family and can’t wait to see Real Life Live on TLC April 23rd at 9pm? It looks like a really cool show.

I hope you all have a great weekend and tell me what exciting things you are up to. We just switched cable companies so I’ll be watching and recording lots of TV series and movies!

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Getting To Know You: Religion

I was raised in an age of naivety when parents (usually) didn’t talk to their kids about sex, drugs, politics or religion. At least it’s what I know of my family, my spouse’s0 family  and my friends around me. We were let to figure it out on our own. Which is somehow a blessing and a curse. I was in tune with making my own decisions but when the hard questions came- they weren’t discussed. It was all hush hush. God (or what have you) is a hard thing to discuss, somehow not tangible, lengthy and complicated. However I do remember having a children’s bible and I did flip through it once and awhile although mostly for the great illustrations. To be fair, I never had too many questions about God and it seems I just somehow learned innately ‘who he was’ and why people die.


Religion in my family was sort of the same- it had faded and fizzled out before I was a thought. My older siblings had it and my parents themselves were coerced to have it dumped upon them in their youth. But I, never had the experience- and I honestly don’t know what I think of that. I know we would occasionally go for easter mass at a local lutheran church with my maternal grandparents who lived next door to, also where I went to preschool. Maybe that’s where and how I learned some of it without even knowing or realizing. However I do know that it was mostly naps, singing songs and playtime so I don’t know what I could have gotten from it.


I really didn’t even get too curious about God, religion or faith (or lack thereof) until I had something to feel loss about. My maternal grandmother I was very close to had just died pretty suddenly and I wasn’t prepared. The thought of death was lost on me until losing her. So when I really knew she wouldn’t ‘come back’ it hit me, and it hit me hard. I begged God why and to bring her back to me (even if just in a dream or vision). Well both of those things happened and it peaked my curiousity. Mom didn’t think I was crazy for having ‘seen her’ but she hoped and wished she’d have the same experience. She encouraged me to keep talking to her at night and feel comforted by the fact that I had ten years with her and she was still watching over me.


Well getting back to religion, I always wondered why I was of few families I knew who didn’t do a Sunday church. Instead our family (mandatory) Sunday dinners with my upscale, paternal side of the family. There was a grace prayer said but didn’t feel like anything to me- similar to a thanks, nothing more nothing less. I wasn’t confused by religion so much but it didn’t have a huge part to play either. My paternal grandparents also went to church in some form or another (can’t remember which denomination, presbyterian?) but it wasn’t really talked about that much. On that side of my family, I got humanitarianism and culture shoved down my throat. Some was nice but mostly, I was just trying to be a normal kid.


When I was 10 or 11 I started going to a few community churches with friends and their families as I asked more and more about it at home. It was a safe way for me to explore; I guess and not be forced or misguided. It was interesting, they were all so vastly different. And I went to a couple that I was NOT interested in. The experience was the fun part and choosing where I wanted to fall back or dive in. I found the upbeat, modern musical churches- some larger churches, were an okay comfortable space for me. So I went a lot with my friend Kaysee to her community church and I enjoyed listening to their church band so much that I bought the CD. Later on as I became more social that was where I felt more comfortable in a youth group setting. I was meeting new people, sharing faith and speaking out in safe circles of friends. That was fun really until I moved away and I never found a youth group like that again.

When we got married there was a pastor named Pete, he was so great! Truly uplifting, happy all the time and wise as heck! I trusted him and believed in his messages every Sunday. I was getting invested. We had to have a marriage counseling session(s) so we went and really it was A) over my spiritual head and B) I wasn’t buying a lot of it. It raised a conflict and I didn’t wanna continue. We got married there but stopped going shortly after. I do really still know that Pete is a great person and am amazing guide.


I guess to this day I never really learned what role religion plays in my life. I don’t feel like it’s something I’m missing but that changes day to day. I’m not super altered by it although sometimes I wish I had a practice to believe in and go to. I’m not atheist or agnostic but I’m a God beginner and I think I will always be stuck there in the starting gate. I don’t think being a _________ is going to church. I don’t think you have to be “part” of some organized religion to call yourself something. I think being a good person triumphs over all. I do have FAITH and I always will. But I also wish it’s a part of me that I’d just figure out or put my attention on.

These days I’m super uncomfortable in churches- I’ve been to way too many funerals by now and it’s not a happy place anymore. It’s daunting, scary and makes my nerves crawl. Do I believe that God brings people to heaven? Yes. Do I believe in Hell? To a certain degree, no. I do believe all my loved ones despite their actions and choices are all in heaven and awaiting the day I can see and be with them again. I also believe that God won’t hand me anything I can’t handle. I got mad when it first happened but with all the trials and lessons he’s put me through- how can I not believe that? I’ve had a hard life and made some bad choices but haven’t we all?! And I know that no matter what- God has my back, in the light and especially in the dark.

Getting to Know You is a monthly interview series that Brita created after the dissolution of Guys Behind the Blog. While Brita and her husband both answer the questions each month, feel free to use these questions to interview anyone in your life! Or just share your own responses. Link-up goes live on the last Tuesday of each month. 

Link up with Belle Brita:

Getting to Know You | Belle Brita


Currently March

currently drinking//
I’ve been on a continuous kick of english breakfast tea and coconut mocha k cup with vanilla creamer! I haven’t been good at drinking water regularly except at night.

currently eating//
I’ve been eating some of these Velveeta mac n cheese and Hershey’s chocolate eggs to be quite honest.

currently reading//
miracle morning is still being read on some nights when I can’t sleep or focus. I’m excited for a list of books I have on my bookshelf up next too. If you’re not too busy- you should come read more on my blog or come link up with us on Bloggy Brunch on sundays.

currently obsessed on//
The Voice. Man, I wish I could sing like some of these people and amazing- young kids! It’s mind blowing and if you’re not watching this season you should be…

currently looking forward to//
april. new month, new objective, fresh start. I’m really looking forward to buying a new used car, a larger more efficient one.

currently inspired by//
I’m also paying a lot of attention to brush lettering and calligraphy- lots of talented people I follow.

Happy Friday

Hello everyone! I hope your week was well and that as February comes to a close you are feeling happy and fulfilled.
I love this linkup and I often participate in it to share happiness with others. I also co-admin for the group that Krysten and I are a part of: #AuthenticBloggers if you want to join just request and someone will add you (as long as you are not SPAM). It’s a great way to make new friends and see what is happening in everyone’s life.

1. Watching Netflix crime documentary series

2. Listening to new podcasts
3. Getting magazines in the mail
4. working on virtual assistant page
5. journaling more and more
6. playing Township
7. Crossing Jordan
8. Velveeta Mac N Cheese
9. cuddling with the puppies
10. beautiful crystals

You can link up with:
Lindsay @ The Flynnigans, Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird and Charlotte @ My Pixie Blog

  • Be kind and visit some other blogs in the link up and leave them a meaningful comment.
  • The link up will open on Friday @ 6 am EST and will close the following Tuesday at Midnight

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