life lately


Finally, tomorrow is the official first day of fall and I’ve been doing so much absorbing of media content lately that I just had to share with you. There are a lot of things that change in the autumn but entertainment, shows, and music are also included in that. I get so excited when the new TV series comes out to see what the networks have recently been working on and bringing back on with new seasons. In the realm of music, a lot of new album and EP releases happen in the fall and it’s an easy time to make new playlists and get addicted to new songs.

While I write or work online usually I’m listening to my curated Spotify playlist 9/20, crisp leaves and lattes by kalyn nicholson, discover weekly new playlists from Spotify where I have been pulling from all my new saved songs. I’m really loving Kelsey Ballerini’s new album too, hit after hit.

Late at night when my blog writing is done and roommates have gone to sleep or everything is winding down I put on episodes of cold case files season 2 new on Netflix (on right now, as I type this), watch MythBusters during the day with my husband, or Body of Proof which I just finished (cliff-hanging, dead-ending and never fully concluded).

I always feel somehow that the season of fall is a fresh start. So while I’m doing my autumn clean out and tidy (GYSTing all the way) I have enjoyed listening to new to me but actually older podcast series. Ones like crime junkie, hustle sanely, pretty basic, unsolicited advice, and more. I think I was just late to the podcast game. I honestly love true crime and talk shows so Crime Junkie and My Favorite Murder I just find so interesting to listen to. I follow a lot of YouTubers who do podcasts like Alisha Marie and Remi Cruz, AshleyNicholeXO, and Taryn Renee, Cambria Joy just came out with a podcast called The Joyful Life too which I need to check out.

My friend/roommate Stephanie and I have been getting into planning and meal prepping. We take Sundays as a day to grocery shop, meal plan, and prep. It’s been working out well for two or three weeks now so I think we will keep trying to do just that. Here’s a peek at what we’ve been making lately instead of ordering in: chicken pot pie in the crockpot with crescents, bread crumb BBQ chicken and potatoes, beef and broccoli, steak fajitas and peppers, mini street tacos, and meatloaf too. We’ve also been online shopping a lot, more me than her but I’m a bad influence. So we went to Target tonight and kinda did a sweater weather sweep!

I’ve been feeling honestly really anxious and overwhelmed lately with the sight of things and worries about the PNW fires, now it’s about starting my counseling up again. I’m elated and feel brave to do it and begin all over but it’s a scary slow process so I hope it does better than harm. It’s a tough thing to rehash stuff in your life from more than 10-15 yrs ago and readdress honestly how you’re doing with it all. I’m also just truly thankful and grateful that none of this really affected us much- we got ready but didn’t get close enough to leave our home, thank god.

I’ve been trying to keep myself busy and occupied by customizing my blog, writing two blog posts now every week, and making further improvements to a streamlined process, finding out what works for me and what doesn’t. I’m using the same Content SOS program that Pamela set me up with and I’m really enjoying using the Elementor editor that Allie installed for my back end of WP.

This year has been difficult and in addition to getting some extra mental health assistance- it’s hard to ignore how much I miss friends and how seeing them every weekend or even almost every day just isn’t a safe thing right now. We text and message often though with an occasional video chat which is usually hilarious! Of all the things I’ve been enjoying all the Happy Planner things, funny inside jokes, and fun blog power hour work nights while brainstorming. Also how our puppy being born this week (or already!). I cannot wait to get the announcement, then 5 more weeks until we go pick Eevee out of the liter. And 3 more weeks after until we pick her up- so about Thanksgiving time!

However, I’m struggling with how counseling is going to be like reopening a can of worms, missing our roommates already when they move in a month and how the holidays likely won’t look the same this year or next. This year has been super heavy and complicated for me to wrap my mind around, always waiting for the other shoe to drop (that’s an anxiety/trauma thing).

All I’m wanting lately is to be at peace and calm when things are super crazy in this world and I don’t know exactly how to feel better. It’s super normal at this point for everyone but I’m feeling it hard right now and I have to be patient and consistent with meds for it to improve. I’ve been doing lots of self-care, laughing with friends when I can, and doing things I enjoy for me, otherwise.

I hope this enlightened you into my days lately and I’ll be coming to you again later in the week with a much more vulnerable post, about my dad and thoughts around the 18 years since he’s been gone, longer than I knew him living.
I pray that you’re safe and sound, you were not affected by fire season and that you are feeling loved and secure and if not know that I love you and I’m here for you always, no matter what, forever. Until next time friends.

What have you been up to lately? What is hard? What has been your favorite or most fun moment? Tell me all of the things!

Wedding Anniversary

Our 11 year wedding anniversary

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.”

1 Corinthians 13 1

Our beginning was a humble whirlwind, it all started with a chance meeting and swept right into fate. I was not expecting it and yet I began hoping, that I’d find someone worthy of my time and attention. And that I did on February 10th, I met my best friend and other half. We talked an immense amount those first few days and made a connection unlike any I had before. We had so many people against us in the start but that wasn’t gonna stop us at all. Making plans wasn’t in the cards and we were just taking each day at a time, living free with no ties to hold us down. Valentines Day we spent together and it was the most pure love I’ve ever felt in my life, I was on cloud nine. It was as if I couldn’t be close enough to him.

The engagement and wedding came and went in about 9 months. I planned it as best we could at the time, low budget with help from many, but we didn’t care- we just wanted the permanency and titles to say it’s official. I was no longer interested in anyone else. Our families attended, most of them with some reservations and hesitation, but it was going down either way. I had my dress, he had his tux and the preacher, whom we liked, and the wedding was on. September 19th of 2009, we was named Mr & Mrs. Sean and Nora Spaulding, music to my ears! Tomorrow we will be celebrating that union 11 years ago by being with each other in this unpredictable world these days and eating some really good Mexican food for dinner from La Costita which is my rediscovered old favorite.

We’ve had our shares of ups and downs, not anything that others would see or know about since most of it was private or financially based which is no one’s business anyway. I have to say looking back over the last 11 yrs (wow it’s crazy to see that), the biggest positive memories I have are the small moments, the inside jokes and the teasing and poking fun at each other that goes on daily. Our life may not look like everyone else’s but I wouldn’t want it that way and I’m happy to say I know how blessed we truly are on a daily basis. The sacrifices made by others and changes that came didn’t always make me feel the best but it propelled us forward into what will be a very happy and stable life for us. I’m always thankful to have him by my side as my support.

There are things that we don’t allow into our marriage because it may negatively impact our relationship. In our experience, we’ve seen how they can cultivate arguments or bring up issues within a marriage from outside influence. I wanted to share a handful of them with you.

1. We listen to advice but take it with a grain of salt

It’s great to listen to others marriages and their struggles as well as their triumphs. A lot may overlap but just remember every marriage is different and therefore should be treated as independent.

2. Don’t talk with others about private things like exact finances and voting status

I’d like to think that adults can manage to talk about anything but truth is, a lot of times they can’t. Feelings get heated and opinions rise to be very defensive. It’s best to just avoid these topics such as others like religion, private issues between partners and sometimes even family conflicts.

3. The one thing we try to agree on; is never go to bed angry. Marriage is “50/50 or the equalizer”

Some people say it’s okay to put feelings aside and cool off so you can peacefully assemble things later on. I just find this stirs the emotions and tension, maybe animosity even which isn’t healthy for getting to that place. I discussed this with a friend of mine and after further thought I know that this may not work for some couples, it may be necessary to put things down and go to bed, returning in the morning when thoughts are clearer.

4. Be Intentional With Each Other

We are very lucky in the sense that we really are able to spend 100% of our time together. But I know this is not the case for most. Intentionality can span across many areas in your life like: yourself, your partner, your marriage, your time/effort. Each of those things in being intentional look different in every situation. You have to decide to be intentional with each other based on what your lives look like. If one of you is working an opposite shift from the other, you both have to think about what times you’ll be able to dedicate to being together and how often. Any relationship is work, especially a legally binding marriage that you are in for the long haul. Though putting the work, time and attention in can be a good thing to build the marriage up, strengthen it and make each of you dig deeper.

What I’ve gained from 11 years is this: he is my trust, my safety and my one true love. I have always recited that from the very beginning and I will keep it in the forefront of our lives as well. We are best friends even on the hard days, in the bad moments and when we dislike each other. It never lasts long and we tend to resolve things pretty quickly. Most of our disagreements are about small, petty things that don’t matter and usually we agree on the big stuff. The years have passed by so quickly and with this year being so difficult and really throwing us off our “plans”, we have to reset our sails and have more patience. This year has still somehow been one of the best, spending all our time together and for now, with our friends, we managed to do a lot of things we had wanted to from home. Long talks, home projects, and a new dog…we are in for an exciting, interesting 2021!

If you had advice for some newlyweds, what would you tell them?

Are you married and for how long? If not, do you want to get married?

What is your biggest struggle or greatest triumph in your marriage? If you are comfortable, share below.

september goals

September Goals

It’s already the month of September and as much as I can’t believe it, even more, I can’t believe that in about a week it’s our 11th year wedding anniversary. I know we really can’t celebrate much because of COVID-19 and also because of Oregon Fires happening currently… It’s really a heart-breaking situation here right now to be honest. My prayers and thoughts are always with the people and communities affected, ones that were evacuated and homes and towns lost. The smoke is really bad here where I am in the PDX metro area, I’m hoping after the rains come it will clear out and not come back.
On a lighter note, I have been back into a good head space regarding this blog and getting ahead on my goals. I have a lot of things to aim for and I want to make some progress through my days and weeks. Keep reading to find out what I’m going to achieve.

1. Publish two posts a week
2. Regularly posting to Instagram, FB page and Twitter (daily/weekly), build a theme and story more often
3. Finish a book by the end of the month (HeLa/Everybody, Always)
4. Organize online spaces, photos and desktop before MacBook Pro comes
5. Finish 2 blog related projects: redesign 10-20 images with new branding, IG plan/marketing OR Email Newsletter Strategy

6. GYST one day a week and DO IT ALL! *Get Your Shit Together: home, work, body, spirit, mind, random to do’s etc*

Overall, I feel like I’m kicking the slump of the 2020 clouds that have made this year so difficult. Being productive in small ways and feeling accomplished is very motivating to getting all the little things done that need to be.

This is very short and sweet but these are things I feel really strong about and proud of. I got everything planned out this weekend-in my planner with an excess of stickers. We did exactly what we planned on which was mainly meal prep and planning, shopping and cooking dinners all week. I caught up on laundry and I have a few more things I’d like to do before I lay my head down on the pillow. So I’m going to go get those done now (it’s 2:30AM- positive side to COVID; no bedtime) and let me know down below if you have some September Goals, maybe you’ve already accomplished or maybe you haven’t started but swear to get them done by 11:59pm on September 30th. Drop a comment and let’s chat!

August Reflection

This past month has been a whirlwind, while it still felt like March, I was ready for August to come and go…A light and breezy post to start us off in September by looking back so we can step ahead in growth. I have lots of plans to start chasing in September, so I want to get a layout set for each step of the way.

Things I loved:

crime junkie podcast
still shopping small boutiques
finishing some shows up that I’ve been watching- Caroline, the guardian
spending time with hubby- out of the house
going to inspection of friend (potential) house

Things I bought: Fall clothes
Coats and Jackets for cooler weather
Norwex cleaning products-review to come

Things I did:Hanging at the mall
Going for errands with Stephanie
Hot Tubbin’
Dinner at La Costita Mexican restaurant (no survivors- oh nooo)
got hair touched up/brazillian blowout straightening treatment

Proud of:

New blog design
Consistency for the last two- three months in blog posts
More Instagram engagement
keeping a clean home
Being social even when its hard

I encourage you to join me in this short little monthly reflection. I’d love to hear what you enjoyed from the last month or so that really made you enjoy life and not be so stressed out or all the things you accomplished. 

Be sure to repin and share if you enjoyed!

august reflection


Hi! I'm Nora

I’m a stay-at-home wife & dog-mom. I began this blog ten years ago,  I couldn’t ignore that I felt a calling to help people find comfort, a sense of belonging or a place of community whenever they really needed it. » Read more about me here on my About page!

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