Present and Happy.

As I sit at my kitchen table with my chamomile tea, and I listen to Taylor Swift’s new album “Midnights” for the first time, I am feeling both nostalgic, yet very present in this moment. I can think back listening to her album “Speak Now” and how I felt when listening to certain songs. The crush when listening to “Enchanted,” the new crush fantasizing about acting out her song “Speak now,” but now looking at my life in this present moment and it being better than I could have dreamt.

I live with the love of my life in the beautiful townhome that we bought together, we both have jobs that allow us to pay our bills, save, and still enjoy our lives. I have been able to get the help I needed for my mental health, and I am enjoying the healing journey every day. Although I still have rough days (I did just recently), I am much more confident, and I see myself so differently than I did before. It honestly breaks my heart to look back and think about how much I hated myself and my brain. I would constantly fight back against the anxiety and take out my frustrations on the one I loved the most. I had so much anxiety around money and my control issues were overtaking me, and instead of letting that be my life, I recognized that I didn’t have to feel like that for the rest of my life.

I feel so blessed that I have the ability to afford going to therapy, and I am also glad I was able to try different medications that helped to calm down my brain enough to allow me to do the work. Now don’t get me wrong, I am still doing the work every single day. We are human beings with emotions and outside events that can impact our personal worlds, and it is completely normal to have bad days; what I find important is that we try to remember how we strong we truly are in those moments. We have gotten to this very moment, which means all of those times where we thought our world was ending, or we were never going to get through that rough time, we were wrong- we can truly make it through everything.

I still have times where I struggle with stressing over to-do lists, and I still get overwhelmed when I have more than one event/large task in a day. I still have to work on communicating my thoughts and accepting the fact that not everything I say will always be received well by everybody. I still have to constantly check-in with myself and see if I am in alignment with what I want to be, and if I am honest, I still do things that I know I don’t want to be doing! I still eat unhealthy food, and I don’t have a consistent writing or workout schedule, but I am still getting up every day and working toward a healthier future for myself, and I know that I will develop these habits with time. I am just proud that I have been able to learn how to give myself grace along the way, and I am slowly getting better at not beating myself up. I catch myself in negative self-talk, and I remind myself that I am human.

I am blessed to have a life partner who has been so patient and supportive along the way. I have a love I have always dreamed of, and I am so happy that our future children will grow up in a home where they can see true love and respect. Considering the home environment I grew up in, I feel even more lucky to have the relationship I have today. We have mutual respect for one another, we support one another’s goals and always try to see where the other person is coming from. I love how well we communicate, and how our love has only grown stronger over the last eleven years. We make sure that we are growing together and still focused on our future together, because we both want this forever.

I am grateful to have good friends in my life who are supportive and always cheering me on. I am very lucky to have a few close friends who I know will always listen to me and not judge me. I also am grateful for the fact that they all understand that I won’t always want to hang out, but that it is nothing personal, I just love my alone time and often feel like I need it. I feel like I have many good people in my life and I do my best to make sure they know I love them. Life is short, and it is important to tell the people you love that you love them.

Overall, I am thankful for the life that I have today at 27. I feel like I am finally living my life for myself, and not for those around me. I feel like I have broken away from my people-pleasing habit, although I know I still have to work on speaking my mind even if it may cause a disagreement, but I am accepting of the fact that my healing is life-long, and that I get to choose how I view my life. I can choose to see all of the negative and go back to self-destructive patterns, or I can continue to focus on my goals and give myself grace along the way to them. I am proud of the woman I am today, and I am happy to be here writing this tonight as I enjoy this new Taylor Swift album. I appreciate all who read this far, and I hope you too are giving yourself grace in your journey of life.

triple word score (in tea)

Grateful Sunday

I’d like to take this time to just write about a few things that I am grateful for in my life. I think that it’s important that we take time out to focus on what is going well in our lives. If we are constantly waiting for the next thing or thinking we won’t be happy until certain goals are reached, then we are delaying our own happiness. I prefer to be happy, and practicing gratitude helps me with this. If you can, take some time to write down at least three things you’re grateful for right now!

I’ll start:

• I am so very grateful for the relationship that I have with my boyfriend. I am blessed to be with a man who is respectful, intelligent, hard-working, and who makes me feel safe and loved. I have seen many unhealthy relationships in my life, and I feel so lucky to have such a happy, healthy relationship with him. We always make sure to appreciate one another and we have learned how to communicate well with one another over the past 11 years, and for that I am grateful.

• I am thankful for books/podcasts. I recently got into podcasts this year, and also started reading more books about self-care and healing. I honestly have learned so much from these brilliant authors/podcasters and in a way I almost feel like they have helped me more than therapy has. I think just because I don’t get to see my therapy as often as I’d like, but during times when I feel like I need her, I can throw on Jay Shetty or Dr. Nicole LePara (aka The Holistic Psychologist) and feel like they’re talking right to me! Unfortunately, not many people have access to therapy, but most people have access to books and podcasts, and for that I am grateful.

• I am thankful for the act of writing/journaling. I always enjoyed writing as a kid, and after a recent zoom interview with some members of the writing community I am in, I think I realized why. The founder of the community said there are studies showing how writing/journaling can be as beneficial as therapy! I can honestly say when I take time to write, I always feel better afterwards. As a child, it was my way to release and escape from the chaos inside my house and myself, and now I am planning on writing a book. I love writing in my blog, as well as writing poetry, and I would love to write a self-love book one day. I am grateful for right to write and for the skills I have and will continue to develop.

Monday Mindset

It’s a new week and I didn’t snooze my alarm this morning, even though I really wanted to. I was super and ready to sleep for another 25 minutes and just skip any journaling or stretching, but then I remembered that last night I was so excited to be starting my week off right, and I didn’t want to take that away from myself.

I am going to do a little yoga after this post, and I wanted to take time on here to express some gratitude this morning. Feel free to comment what you are grateful for today, or even post your own blog about it and share it with everyone!


I am grateful for my boyfriend and our relationship. I am blessed to have a healthy relationship where we can easily communicate our differences and we always make each other feel loved and respected.

I am blessed to have a home that we love and has everything we could ever need. We have clean water, heat/AC, working appliances, and we are blessed enough to be able to afford our home and utilities.

I am lucky to have a job that I don’t hate, and that allows me to pay my bills, have insurance and still be able to live a life I want. I’m off on weekends and I enjoy my schedule during the week!

I am grateful for my friends. I feel blessed to have so many different, yet close, friendships. My friends are all very different, yet all very supportive and loving in their own ways, and I am lucky to have so many good people by my side.

I am thankful for my physical and mental health. I’m blessed that I can walk, talk, eat and use the bathroom without any need for assistance, and I’m lucky that my recent physical and labs went well! I am also so grateful for access to therapy as well as books and podcasts that are helping me improve my mental health.

There are so many other things I am grateful for, but those are just to name a few. For now, I am going stretch and get ready for the rest of my day! I hope everyone has a great Monday and great week ahead!

Dear Universe, Thank you.

Every day I feel so blessed with the life that I have. I have a happy, healthy relationship with the love of my life, we have our beautiful home together with our cats, and we both have jobs that we don’t hate that allow us to live the lives we do. If you asked me ten years ago what I wanted in life, I would have said “To still be living happily with my boyfriend and be financially stable;” seventeen-year-old me would be so proud!

As I grow older I am learning more and more about myself. I am working on prioritizing what makes me happy and focusing on what I want and need in my life. I am blessed to have genuine friendships and still have good relationships with family members, and I am also lucky to be developing this healthier relationship with myself. I have definitely come a long way from where I used to be, but sometimes I feel like I struggle with trusting myself and my intuition.

In my house growing up, there were many times where I felt as if I was being accused of things that I had never done, and I also was often told that I had no voice because I was the child. I had a lot of rage and confusion building inside me throughout my younger years, but I also feel like in a way I did always have some sense of clarity: I knew what I didn’t want in my future relationships, and I knew that I would raise my children differently.

I know my parents did the best they could with what they knew, but at the time I didn’t think of it that way. I just knew that I didn’t want to be like them. In a way, I guess maybe I have been able to trust myself and intuition, but I often cloud my own judgment with overthinking and anxiety. When I think about why I am that way, I assume it would be because I grew up in a chaotic, unpredictable environment, therefore I try to prepare for all worst-case scenarios (which actually just makes my anxiety worse)! In reality, what I need to do is let go of what I cannot control.

I have seen my improvement throughout the years, and I am so proud of how far I’ve come. I find it easier to recognize when I’m worried about something beyond my control, and I remind myself of what I can control… my mindset! Worrying never helps the situation, it truly only worsens it, so why would I continue to do that? Instead I can recognize it and remind myself that everything happens for a reason, and I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

It’s easy to go into the horrific “what-ifs” about failure and chaos, but how about we switch that and ask “what if it all works out?” Instead of limiting ourselves with the belief that everything will be scary and horrible, what if we think about how we can learn and grow from any difficult situation? I know that there are so many things beyond my control, so what if I decided to just let it all go? I was so tired of stressing over everything in my life and feeling like the weight of the world was on top of me, so I decided to put it down!

I’m not going to lie, I still have rough days (I mean, I am human), but I find it easier to let go of my anxiety. I will be working on that re-wiring in my brain forever, and in addition to that I am currently working on listening to my gut instincts and learning to trust myself fully. I think my first big step in this journey was starting to say “no” to things that I didn’t want to do. I try to make it a habit to give myself time before I commit to any events, such as saying “Let me get back to you,” rather than blurting out “yes” as the seasoned people-pleaser I was. I’d say “yes” in an attempt to make others happy/not disappoint others, but sometimes it was at my own expense.

After realizing that the stress from those situations was hurting my physical health, I decided that my time is my time, and I knew I had to set that boundary. I want to spend my life doing the things that I love and that I feel aligned with. Your life isn’t truly yours if you are living it for everyone else. I think it’s important to check in with ourselves and reflect on what it is we truly need in life to be happy. I don’t think there are many (if any) people who would say they didn’t want to live a happy life, and I truly believe we all deserve happiness!

Friday Gratitude Check

I am grateful for so many things in my life, and I do my best to remind myself of how blessed I am. One of the ways I do this is by thinking about ten things I am grateful for every morning, and think of why I am grateful for each of those things. Of course I don’t always remember to do it, and also sometimes I’ll do less than ten as I’m usually doing this out loud in my car and I often get distracted by music.

The important thing is that I always come back to this and I still make sure I am turning to gratitude during stressful times. This morning I’ll list a few blessings here, and then finish speaking them aloud on my way to work- I encourage anyone who reads to also take a moment to think of something you’re grateful for right now in your life! Life gets hard and it can be easy to forget how good we really have it, when we’re constantly focusing on the negative.

Blessing #1: My boyfriend. I am so blessed to have a life partner who loves me for me, who respects me, and who is always supportive of me. I am lucky to have someone with similar life goals and values, as we can both push each other to reach those goals. I am so thankful for this man every day, and make sure to appreciate him as well. Thank you.

Blessing #2: Therapy. I am so blessed to be able to afford therapy and to have found a good therapist. She has been able to help me work through so much of my childhood traumas to help me understand why I am the way I am, and has helped me to learn to love and understand myself. Thank you.

Blessing #3: My job. I am blessed to have a job in which I can pay my bills, have insurance, vacation time, and still have some fun money left over. I am grateful that I have a good schedule, I don’t work weekends, and I like the people I work with. I don’t dread going to work, and I love getting off early on Fridays! Thank you.

There are so many things in life that we overlook or take for granted, when really we should be focusing on the present blessings we have! I hope everyone has a great weekend ahead, and I hope you find time to look at how blessed you truly are. ✨

Self Care Sunday

Today felt like a very productive day, which always makes me feel very happy and accomplished. I love having days like this, and I know I only have many more to come if I keep working hard on focusing on the positives in every situation.

Grocery shopping is normally something I complain about, but I knew it was a task I had to complete today. I reminded myself that it is important to look at the situation with gratitude; I am thankful that I can afford to grocery shop for my home, and I am thankful that there are so many different food options to choose from! I felt a lot better getting ready to go to the grocery store than I normally would have, and I truly believe that is because I took that time to acknowledge the fact that grocery shopping is a blessing, and a privilege that I am lucky to have.

Something else that was a blessing today was I randomly got a notification on my phone that my aunt from out of town sent me money on venmo! The memo said: “Gas, groceries, meal out, whatever you want. :)” I was honestly taken aback, but immediately was so grateful and I sent her a message thanking her for this sweet gift. I put it right in our account to go towards groceries, and I’m currently making steaks in the air fryer for us! It’s truly incredible how it seems that when you pay attention to your blessings, that more seem to show up!

I may not have gone to the gym today or cleaned out my closet, but I did other productive things and I am happy for myself! I read some of my book (The Power is Within You- Louise Hay) out on my balcony, I listened to a Phil in the Blanks podcast, and I treated myself to an iced coffee! I keep reading posts and listening to podcasts about focusing on one thing at a time, and truly looking at life day by day instead of stressing about the “end goals,” and it’s truly has changed my perspective. For example, if I have the thought that I should go to the gym, but I truly don’t feel like going, I will at least take a few minutes to stretch or do a small workout with some dumbbells at home.

My past, perfectionist self wouldn’t have even done that because if I’m not going all in it’s not worth it, but that’s not true! If I would have done what I’m doing now each time that I didn’t go, I’d likely be a lot stronger/more toned now than I am! Instead of getting down on myself about that, I’m just making more conscious efforts and decisions moving forward; taking it day by day makes life feel a lot easier.

What did you do for yourself today? If nothing yet, please take some time for yourself! It doesn’t have to be something major, simply washing your face, reading a chapter of a book, or lighting your favorite candle can be an act of self care! You deserve time for yourself; remember, you cannot pour from an empty cup!

Rainy Monday

Today is supposed to be my productive day, and it did not start out how I planned. I had a few things on my to-do list, and this morning I was starting my day at UPS to ship off one of the orders I got over the weekend. It was raining when I left the house, and by the time I got to UPS (which was only six minutes away) it was down-pouring!

I got soaked getting out of my car and when I got in to find out shipping prices I was in shock! $45 to package and ship a couple of mugs to Miami! The girl at the counter was even shocked by the fee and said that Florida rates are high right now. Luckily the girl who ordered from me was understanding and paid for the shipping, but I was shook! Now I had to tell the other two people who made orders how much their shipping costs are and I’m waiting on their responses.

I got very lucky over the weekend and one of my cricut creations was recognized by the Official Cricut Instagram account and they shared my post to their 1.4 million followers and tagged me! I gained some followers on my crafting instagram, my etsy shop got favorited a couple of times, and I had three people place orders with me! So even though this shipping thing is annoying, I’m so grateful that this happened, and am happy to be learning the best ways to ship as a small business!

Now that they shared my work, I have been more confident and motivated and I now want to make/post at least one project weekly! I have been following more pages and hashtags to get inspiration, and I want to start making some fall items! I know it’s still summer for now, but kids are going back to school and fall is right around the corner! I’m also thinking about having a Halloween party again this year and going all out with crafting/decor!

I am going to start planning out projects and times to do certain things as I find it easier to stick to a schedule. My boyfriend and I are also making a list of updates we want to do on the house over the next couple years so we can plan for those. We are still without AC right now but it should be fixed this week- I really hope it’s soon because it’s going to be in the 90s for the next three days!

Overall I’ve had a lot of stress coming up, but also a lot of excitement! I am trying hard to focus on the positive things and be grateful, rather than let the stress bring me down. We will always have stress and not-so-great things that happen to us, but as long as we remember to practice gratitude and be aware of what we have, I feel that can only benefit us in the end.

I’m attaching the photo from instagram that was shared! If you have instagram, go ahead and check out some out the items I’ve made (@jenamadeitems)!

Stressed, but blessed

On Thursday night I hit a patch of icy snow in my car which caused it to veer out of control and my tire went off the road and the control arm snapped. Luckily no airbags deployed and I was the only one involved and I am not injured. My car, however, has over $7000 of damage (thank goodness for insurance).

Today my cat woke my boyfriend and I up and he was acting weird, and he had thrown up twice. I ended up taking him into the vet because last time I thought something was wrong it escalated fast and he had high kidney counts and a urinary blockage. This time around his PH levels in his urine are high, but kidney levels are normal. He does have a urinary blockage again, but he’s doing better and we will just have him on a prescription diet the rest of his life. We will be able to bring him home tomorrow if all goes as planned.

So far this year has taken an interesting turn, but I am truly blessed that everyone is okay. Of course my pockets are hurting a bit (the vet bill is over $1000), but money is just money, and there are more important things to stress about. Luckily, I will be starting my new job soon and will be making more money so I can pay off my credit card again ASAP.

I’m trying to keep positive spirits with everything being thrown my way, but I do have my moments where it’s all a bit overwhelming. I just remind myself that we’re all human, I am allowed to feel that way.