My Own Christmas Carol

My favorite gift ever was a Barbie house my dad gave to my sister and I when I was in 3rd grade. Living in a single parent household, money was a scarcity. My dad worked in a warehouse clocking overtime hours each week. So when my sister and I saw this gigantic house beside the Christmas tree the excitement was palpable.

This Barbie house wasn’t made from Mattel or even a Barbie knock off from Odd Lots. Instead it was homemade from cardboard boxes. My dad had taped the boxes together and had covered the inside of with contact sheets, construction paper and carpet samples. It was complete with Styrofoam sink and bathtub. He even reinforced the bottom to allow for a large carport for our pink Barbie convertible. Each room and detail was carefully planned and built from a man that had never had a Barbie in his whole life. It was the epitome of love in craft.

I have strived now as a mama to give my child a Barbie house moment. I’m beyond blessed with mine and my kid’s needs and wants so creating these moments have been tougher. However this spirit of my past carries me each Christmas to show even more love and be more thoughtful.

Last Monday was my sister’s birthday! We had planned to go out to eat and celebrate. It turned out to be an exhausting day for our families, so the energy to fight with dinner crowds and children was not going to happen. After SEVERAL detours and rerouting plans (that I won’t bore you with) we all ended up in Target. Me in a very relaxed outfit perfect for holding babies and getting shopping snuggles in. After holding little hands and picking our “perfect pajamas” we went to go check out.

Standing in line chatting with my niece, I hear my sister cheerfully say “Oh look it’s Jack!”

Then without even time to think or process I look up and there he is… Right in front of me. It was truly as if time had stopped. My jaw dropped and I had enough thought to raise my hand in a half hi motion. He was walking by very quickly and talking on the phone in his “lecture tone” he reserves for work or rarely a family member. I’ve heard it before.

He seemed just as shocked to see me as I was him. He looked at me, did half a smile and was gone. I stood there for a while and then looked at my sister and we laughed. I would love to say that I knew immediately I was over him or even still in love with him…I was just confused.

I am still processing everything that happened that night and how I was not supposed to be there at all. Yet there I was and there he was. Fate had stepped in and I was staring face to face at the ghost of my present.

I came across an article from titled “Have you Created your Magic List Yet?” It is about writing down 100 qualities and or attributes of your dream man. I have been really reflecting on my past relationships and what specific qualities I would choose. Of course you have the ones that are obvious (loyal, communication, family guy) but that may get you to 20.

I was at an after work happy hour talking with my coworkers / friends and after some lively conversation I wrote down the below on my Note:

I know this one seems simple and yet oddly specific. I thought of this during the conversation as we were specifically discussing Christmas shopping. I think if a man loves Christmas sweaters he may be a little over enthusiastic for me. But if he doesn’t love it but will go along with it because he wants to make me happy… That is the perfect dynamic!

This is the only one I’ve written down. However, my plan is to finish this list by the first of the year then continue to modify it throughout 2018. I don’t really believe this is a magic list. I do believe in the aligning and figuring out what I want and then making decisions to attract that person. By focusing on that goal I am helping to determine the spirit of my future…husband that is 😍


I’m back…

Okay so I officially went on my first date since Jack*. Yay! I’m so proud of myself for getting out there! I wish I could say things went off with a bang, but unfortunately, the BANG happened before I even arrived…

So in the weeks leading up to the date I have been casually swiping. Not a regular practice like before… more when I’m bored. However, lately, I’ve matched and messaged with a few really cute guys.

I had a date planned on Friday night with one of these guys. I actually talked to this guy briefly the few weeks before I started officially dating Jack. Back then, he asked me directly “Am I ready for a relationship?” (In general not with him as we had not met.) I told him all about Jack and that he was the one I wanted a relationship with, so this guy backed off. (Hey I knew what I wanted!)

This was one of the first guys to message me when I got back on the dating sites this round. Unfortunately, I had to cancel our date as my kid was sick on Thursday and most of Friday. We are supposed to reschedule. *fingers crossed*

I also had a date scheduled for Saturday night with another guy. This night my daughter was feeling much better so I was in.

This guy I matched on Bumble and his name is Dale*. He is a good looking single dad that lived close by. He was consistent at messaging and remembered things we texted from one day to another. Seems pretty easy but most guys don’t read the previous conversations or choose not to.

I dropped my daughter off, got all dolled up, and did a Facebook live. Most of my readers are my friends and family on Facebook and have been on this journey with me. I needed some support before I left so I reached out.

Rewatching my video I can’t help but laugh! I made good points but man you can tell I was BEYOND nervous! I actually said nervous 20 times. I quoted my favorite quote from my current favorite author as it has become my mantra..

I finished my video filled with love and support and leave for my date. Still nervous and digging through the butterflies for courage.

I leave early since the roads are really icy. I can feel my car sliding and my orange slip and slide light keeps coming on. Then I slowly approach a hill in my neighborhood.

A few seconds after cresting the hill my tires give out and my orange light is blaring in my face.

I start to pick up speed as I put my foot off and on my break.

I honk my horn repeatedly as there is a cross street and two cars heading my way. I slid through the street and pass the stopped cars.

My car hits a smallish ditch and a small wooden pole. It’s very loud and the neighbors run out of their houses.

I get out of the car and apologize repeatedly. I’m fighting the urge not to cry and can’t think clearly. Then a really good looking man comes out his truck and makes sure I’m okay. I tell him I am and then he begins jokingly teasing me about not wearing my coat. “It’s 28 degrees” he says.

I can tell he is actually concerned about me but my adrenaline is so high I can’t feel the cold. I also don’t remember I have my at winter coat on the passenger seat.

Then an older man from one of the houses helps me get out of the front yard. As he’s telling me directions the cute guy slowly walks away and gets into his truck and drives away. Ugh I am horrible at in person flirting! Plus I wasn’t feeling at my best… Obviously.

I slowly drive the way of the restaurant. Not because I want to still go on the date but it’s the only way to go home and not go up the dreaded hill. I had no idea what to do at that point. I’ve never had an accident where I had to handle the logistics. My brother in law and sister were busy and couldn’t be interrupted so I felt really alone and just a little adulting dumb.

I kept driving and called my date to cancel. I told him I had no idea what to do and that I would need to figure it out. We talked for a minute and I agreed to continue on with the date.My car that night..

I show up to the restaurant right on time. (I told you I left early) Dale is waiting at the hostess station and I can see his back. He turns around and smiles. He is really good looking and his pictures didn’t do him justice. I’m excited!

We then sit down and begin to talk. He’s friendly, can talk about the Browns (major points) and we have a lot in common. However, there were points in the conversation when I realized that he just isn’t the one for me.

A small example was when “No Scrubs” came on the radio in the restaurant. The waiter began to sing and I did too. I didn’t go full out karaoke style but was having fun with it inclusive of a little shoulder shake.

I said “look he knows the words too” at the waiter.

Dale said “yeah everyone does” Then makes this whatever face.

A little about me, I love to sing and dance and really don’t care if someone is watching. If it’s a fun atmosphere then I’ll have go for it. A funeral? Not so much. So it’s a major turnoff when someone legitimately makes a mean face. A small eye roll I enjoy and singing along? 😍😍😍

There were a few other things that came up where I was like yeah no thanks. He will be a great guy for someone else but not me. I paid for myself and we left. Since then, we have had a few texts and I wished him the best of luck!

So what do I do now? Answer: Search everywhere for a hottie in a blue truck… Just kidding!

I’m going to continue to get myself out there. While I did mention Jack a few times on the date it is getting easier and easier not to think about him.

I wanted to leave you with a text that my friend sent me after the accident… I literally laughed out loud when I read it. It sums up this round of dating perfectly!

I’m looking forward to sharing more adventures soon!

It’s not about being funny…

I was in a really confusing time where I needed to move on from Jack but was not ready to date. I chatted about how lost I was with my coworkers / friends. I hadn’t been single and not actively looking to date before. I went directly from divorce to farmersonly in one day.

Dating myself was weird.

I really loved yoga but was looking for something else to grow. My buddy recommend I take a class… At first he said a singing class …

I reminded him of my “Celine style” chops and he quickly course corrected by saying “What about Improv?”

(I think some of his speed in reply was in fear that I may break out into My Heart Will Go On with dance moves and hand motions – obviously.)

Within minutes I found the location of a local class, times and a plan to sign up when I got home. I am by far the funniest person I know (to myself not by other people’s laughter rates), I can think on my feet and while I sometimes get nervous I can push through talking in front of people. It was perfect!

Walking into the door the butterflies in my stomach were mating and my hands are sweaty. It was not nearly as confident as I hoped.

I signed in with the owner (a guy from high school) and sat down front and center ready to bust out butterflies.

After only one class I took away the below lessons. Just note this is my blog, so these are definitely my interpretion of the lessons as I learned I don’t listen well… so feel free to sign up for some classes to learn your own lessonsπŸ˜‰

A key to improv is managing anxiety under pressure – Wow this was huge! I hadn’t even thought of this! I’m supposed to be focused on being funny and yet within minutes.. WHAM!

Anxiety is an issue I have documented here and struggle with a lot. Putting myself in a situation with lights aiming at me, on a stage with judging eyes and having to think quick on my feet… Yea hoping to be a skill I learn.

You have to REALLY listen to people– I’m sorry what did you say?! I am one of the worst listeners. I have literally walked away from someone as they were talking. If I have a to do list… I always forget to add thoughtful listening to it. I do care…I swear.

In improv I have to actively listen. It’s not an option to multi-think. I have no idea what the next person will say and don’t want to be the asshole that ruined a scene by thinking ahead. It will make everyone in the audience lose their vibe and be distracted..awkwardly.

Normally I live for that stuff…Thats where I laugh the hardest. A stand up comedian that bombs?!? πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

So yeah I know the judging faces…

I’m normally one of them.

Your goal is to make the other person look good- This is something I actually try to focus on in life. I try to purposely call out others accomplishments and work.

However in improv, If I become the person trying to outdo everyone its not a scene-its stand up, in a very weird setting, with props.

I learned this lesson loud and clear in my last class. Our assignment was on stage to come up with crazy laws as if one of us were the president. Then the other had to be the Sean Spicer and clean up what was said to make it make sense.

I was able to think pretty quickly as the clean up person. However, when it was my time to make the laws… Ugh..

In a panic I went to what I know… Dating.

“There should be a law where everyone that swipes right on every picture should lose a hand.”

Well the class is composed of a lot of different demographics, many of which I don’t know have online dated or more specifically “Tindered”…

It was now on my poor partner to save the law. On something I don’t think he knew about. As was promised I looked like the jerk.

My other laws? Just as lame and specific… I mean do you think the rest of the room knew who Yo Gotti is..


Improv pushes you to stay in the moment.. Actually in the moment. Not thinking about the past, what will happen in the future but what is happening now.

This is something I strive to achieve in yoga and yet get closer to accomplishing in improv.

This is my greatest struggle and lesson I need to learn right now in my life. I don’t know how many nights I’ve laid awake with what ifs. Early mornings I wake up with worries of what will be. My heart isn’t in board with this break from dating so I have to combat it at the most inconvenient times. Now I am learning a skill of focusing on now.

I had no idea when I signed up for this class it wouldn’t be about laughs, but an actual serious (while fun) skills based life lesson. It’s exactly what I need.

Only 6 more weeks to master that it really is not about being funny…. While being absolutely hilarious!

Thankful Always

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope your day was full of family, good food and a moment where you could reflect on what you’re thankful for.

I always celebrate Thanksgiving with my family. It is often the only time I see my aunts and uncles. My family is hilarious and I often leave with a belly full and energized for Black Friday shopping!

This year was no different. I got to see some of my favorite people and hug on the babies. As I was driving to Kroger this morning to pick up last minute cooking supplies I began to think about what am I most grateful for this year.

After several thoughts it came to one key theme LOVE…

Love for my Family πŸ’œ

This past year has been a series of ups and downs. Throughout the journey my sister has always been a phone call or Facetime away. Her and her family came over for a full work day in the summer, made me a thoughtful late night delivery when I was so sad I couldn’t even answer the door and heard me go on and on about the same things. Our relationship continues to grow and become stronger with each year. She is the true definition of family.

My beautiful daughter. I don’t talk much about her on here because I believe in a clear line between dating and my kid… but any gratitude post would be vastly incomplete without her. She is beyond exceptional! Perfect blend of smart and sassy. She’s my best friend, greatest road dj (Mama this one is a banger) and truly the Rory to my Lorelai.

οΏΌ Love for my FriendsπŸ’›

This year I have tried to focus on being a good friend. Yet it doesn’t matter how good I am to my friends they always out do me. They send me the best text messages, tell the funniest stories and know the exact moment to make sure I’m okay. These past few months, especially, I have been beyond grateful for the words of encouragement, stories of heartbreak (to remind me I’m not alone), and the listening ear over drinks or yoga. It has been much needed and something I can never repay.

Love & Romance ❀️

This was the tough one and the joy moment I had today. It is so easy for me to think about the last few months and the heartbreak that has accompanied it.

I had a realization, most of this year was spent being head over heels for a great guy. I had a year of heart jumps at every single text message, calls to listen and laugh, and a partner to get through life. While it may not have worked out; the joy, exciting fear and feeling of having found my life love was one that I can’t take away.

I am so grateful for allowing myself to fall for a risk. Yes, it was a little embarrassing writing a blog declaring that this is the man I will marry and then the next how he broke up with me. However, I jumped in full force and fought like hell to get him back. It was worth it because now I know I can and I will for the next guy. Love cannot be planned, has no timeline and is always worth it. I have learned many lessons through this process that will bring me closer to my true love.

Love for Myself

I have said it before but now is the time for me. I’m taking classes, making time for friends and family and enjoying peaceful moments where I can reflect and be grateful!

This year has not always been easy but with the abundance of love from my family, friends, a joyful romance, and my strength I have so much to be thankful for! Truly thankful 😍

I’m confident-I’ve got this

Every yoga class the teacher offers the option of setting an intention for my yoga practice. In my previous blog I wrote my intention of peace and the power it brought to me that evening. The mood in the room that night was serious, the light was dim and the music was calm ohms with beat.

The next yoga class after that, I was having a rough day and determined my intention that night was happy. I needed to have fun and just get my mind off of things. I started with setting up my mat. It was pin quiet in the room and yet my new mat was really squeaky, my water bottle extra slurpy, and I dropped my bag really loudly. I felt like a toddler in church without snacks or a leash.

The teacher joined the room that night and was clearly new and really bubbly. She stumbled through the poses and often mid pose we would all start laughing. There was one minute when she was demoing the crow pose. She looked at the guy in the room and said “This isn’t for you because you have a bad elbow”.

The guy laughed and confirmed. The lady next to him said “Yeah I have a bad wrist so I’m out.”

I ended with “I have zero balance and like my face so…Yeah.”

The yoga teacher laughed and we all moved to downward dog.

At the end of the class I was so grateful and was smiling as I was packing up. The guy next to me leaned over and asked if I wanted his mat spray. (No innuendo in his tone) He said “It will clean your mat and make it smell good!”

I took it and sprayed down my mat. He was telling the truth…it smelled like lilacs. Mmmmm… When I was handing it back I said “do you have anything for my pits?” (What can I say I was in a fun mood?! My intention worked!)

He laughed and started looking through his bag and said he thought he did. I packed my bags with a big smile and walked out with my friend.

So let’s fast forward to tonight and my class. I came in class with no pre-intention. I walked in and the normally spacious room was busy and crowded. There was a space next to my friend but the length of my mat would hit the top of the other mats in front of us. I placed my mat at the very end of the mats and rightnext to a lamp… Liability already.

So just as it’s about to start the teacher says “We are going to give it a few minutes for two more to join.” I lay down, breathe and determine my intention. CONFIDENCE.

I was going to remain confident and try my best. It was going to be my night! I’m not going to hit the lamp or miss and hit the wall. I’ve got this!

The two new members come in a little late. They are legit a great looking power couple. Gorgeous and young. Beyond physically fit and yoga experts.

They survey the room for the best lighting for their beautiful frames and place their mats right in between my friend and I. The great looking guy is so close I realize any big stretches I’ll make contact…

The supermodels get settled in and we began actually setting our intention. I close my eyes and did my official breathing exercises. Breathe in my nose and out my mouth. I put my hands on my chest feeling my breath. Focusing on my energy and my thoughts:

“I am confident – I’ve got this”

I start to hear someone else breathing… This time on my other side away from the hottie! I peak out of the side of my eye and see a woman with a large neon puffer coat sitting in a metal chair about 3 feet from me. This woman I instantly identify.

This woman is the owner of the studio… Beautiful… Yoga ready… also my ex-husband’s ex-girlfriend…

I’m breathing in and out and start to laugh. I have the giggles and can barely keep it in. I know she hears me because she’s so close she could hear me shift my non yoga body on my new squeaky mat. She seems annoyed. I know she doesn’t know who I am.

Throughout the yoga I keep my confidence in my mind. Hottie on the right and yoga teacher on the left. Through my heavy breathing, trembling legs, wavering tree, and sucked in stomach…

“I am confident- I got this!”

After the class I realize something. That was the perfect lesson for me in confidence. That’s exactly what I needed. I’m not sure if the universe is looking out for me or if I’m viewing the universe in my lessons but I pretty much love it!

Here I am at home after yoga class… I’m confident – I’ve got this πŸ˜πŸ’œ

Just have to stop…Β 

So I’ve talked a big game about trying to move on… But the truth is I never fully stopped texting Jack. We had already agreed that he wouldn’t reply back (because I asked him not to) so except for one text he kept his word.  My reasoning again for this is I thought it would make moving on easier. Instead it made it more gray. 

A few days ago, I sent him a podcast I thought would be good for him. At the end I said “if this is getting annoying feel free to block me.” I always had this fear that Jack was rolling his eyes each time I texted him or even worse yet laughing about his “Crazy ex.” Please note…I would much rather prefer a block. 

This time instead of the planned silence that I had received for over a month… He replied. My heart jumped! It was sweet and thoughtful and said he enjoyed my texts and read/listened to the things I was sending him. He wouldn’t be blocking me and I can feel free to send things his way. Instantly half of the moving on I had been faking rushed back. 

Over the next couple of days I continued to send him messages. He replies every couple of times and it makes me want to talk to him more and more. The heart pieces come back and at first I’m excited.

I was telling my work peeps about the messages and they could tell I was happy. I could tell they were curious, at best. Then one of my friends asked me “Jill, how would you feel if an ex was texting Jack like you are when you guys were dating?”

I paused and thought for a second. It was a very valid question and one I hadn’t thought of. Then I replied saying something like “Jack really doesn’t give much choice about who he texts. He’s pretty independent and any woman should recognize what they are getting into when they date him.”

I didn’t think much about my answer until  3 am the next morning. I woke up in a straight panic and my mind was going 100 mph. 

I had always thought when I was sending him things it was to encourage him. I know him well and love him a lot. It was the best of intentions because I really do want him to be happy. 

Then at 3 am yesterday morning shit got real. I came to grips with my real motives. They weren’t as pure as what I had been saying. 

I was texting Jack so he wouldn’t forget about me. I wanted him to remember how much I care and how funny I was. I had hoped it would help him realize that he made a mistake and sees a future with me. 

My next train of thought was in regard to my friend’s question. If a woman was texting Jack with those intentions… I would feel so insecure.  So it wasn’t okay that I was. I had to stop. Not limit texts but actually stop. 

Going cold turkey is hard for anything. Not texting to save my heart doesn’t work, I text anyway. I think I can handle it. I know he’s actually a great guy just doesn’t want to date me.  But because it’s the right thing to do it makes it black and white. 

I have a slight obsession with trying to do the “right” things in life. I’ve had a lot of bad things happen in my life and I almost bank on the idea of karma. It makes me feel like I can control something that will send good things my way. It’s also why I try so hard to be self  reflective. What can I control to ward off difficult things? 

So recently  I’m trying to handle the heartbreak differently. I’m taking  some of the emotion out of the situation and focus on my symptoms. I’m trying to get out of my head. 

1. My anxiety has been through the roof. So I’ve been taking St. Johns Wort, singing a lot, and trying to avoid things that remind me of him. Sometimes when I’m laying down its really bad. So I put a heating pad on my stomach. The warmth makes the giant butterflies settle down. 

2. My heart is once again hurting. I read an article that said taking Tylenol will sometimes help. So I’ve been trying that. It makes the intense pressure in my chest relax a bit. 

3.  Each time I miss Jack I remember that just because I’m still thinking about him doesn’t mean he’s the one for me. It means I miss him and thats normal for how much I love him. It’s okay, I may always love him and I’ll get through this better. 

Link to what helped me realize this:


4. I have diverted my extra attention to myself.  I am going to more yoga classes, listened to inspirational podcasts,  got my haircut and even a facial. One of my work peeps even recommended that I sign up for an improv class. I did! It starts in a few weeks. 

5. I am on a few dating sites still. I won’t message anyone that I’m not completely interested in. If I’m interested I’ll stop when I’m not. So far only I’ve only messaged two guys back. They each only lasted a few messages. 

One thing  that I learned from dating Jack is real relationships are worth waiting for. I was excited for his replies from the VERY beginning and through the very last message.  It felt very different from anyone else and I’m not going to settle for anything less now. There were other things as well and the more I am healing the more I learn.  I’m realizing there were things I need to work on to be a better partner. 

So there will be blogs in the future that are more Jill’s Adventures in Life versus dating.. I promise you that’s just as exciting πŸ’›

I’m too clumsy for this…Β 

How am I doing? Well if you’re passing by me… Good! And you?

Believe it or not I was feeling much better about a week ago. I felt like I was FINALLY getting a grasp on life and a positive perspective. 

Then last week that all changed. I saw the one thing that no one wants to see when you recently break up with someone. Jack posted a pic of him and his new girlfriend with 😍😍 as the caption. Yep. I know. let that settle in…

I could hear my recently healed heart shatter into a million pieces. 

Why? Not because I was surprised that he was dating or who he was dating. Men move on quickly. 

My heart break was that he posted a picture on his social media of her. We dated for 9 months and had a great friendship before and he NEVER would post a pic of us. He always gave his reasons and they made sense at the time. But this was always a point of insecurity for me. I knew I didn’t look like the other women he had dated and I didn’t really understand.

I know what this looks like, so I want to give my strong opinion on this. I’m pretty confident that there was nothing shady going on while I was dating him. We always went out to public places, I always got to choose them and we would  hold hands etc in public. I did text him this question as well and for the first time in a month (since we officially stopped trying to work it out) he replied. It was a definitive no and I believe him. 

So in my quest to heal I started some new habits. One of these is starting a yoga class with my friend. Just to give you some images, I am not at all flexible or graceful but I needed a challenge. Normally in class I go through the motions, clumsily, and attempt to not injure myself. My friend and I laugh at the end and have a blast! We both need the distraction.

But last night was different. I came in from a tough day in general, emotions high and was holding on to everything to avoid an emotional moment. We had a new yoga teacher and I was unsure that she’d understand my “method” of yoga. Do what I can and do my own thing when its too tough. 

The class began and the music started playing. It was one of those chanting songs. I got nervous because this level of seriousness normally throws me into the giggles. To give you an idea of how weird this kind of stuff makes me… Let me tell you about my lamaze class. 

In these lamaze classes they teach you various tricks to help work through the pain of childbirth. Breathing techniques, massaging, exercise movements, etc. Well the lamaze teacher then wanted us to walk through a visualization exercise. She put on soft babbling brook music and began sing songy  talking about deer in creeks etc. It was too much for me. I got the giggles at first, then the reaction to the giggles got me laughing harder and finally I had to step out. It wasn’t my finest moment. All in all not my thing.

So back to yoga class. The new teacher started playing the chant music and immediately I got uncomfortable. I thought “Oh no! This shit is going to be serious.” 

But then she had us lay down and breathe. No one was watching, there were no clumsy moves and I had confidence that I knew how to breathe. She then quietly talked about intention. For this class what was our intention? What did we want to come out feeling? I thought for a second and the word PEACE hit me hard.

All I want is peace. Peace in my emotions, peace in my thoughts and peace in my life. I have been trying so many things to just get my mind and heart to stop. 

My prayers have tripled since this break up. I never pray that Jack and I will get back together. If we are not meant to be that’s too painful. I pray that I’ll have patience and trust in the process. That I’ll be guided to do the right things and that my future husband will be guided as well. I’m open up to whoever that may be…including Jack. That’s what I pray for. I’m not the most religious person at all (there are jokes that I’m sure I’ll be going to hell for) but I do pray. That never left me.

So I’m in the class contorting my body in all types of poses and I keep breathing peace.  Peace with every move and with every pose. At the end when we have our savasana (quiet time).  I tear up. It was the most grounded I had felt since the break up. I really needed that. I realized sometimes I have to get myself truly quiet to feel an answer. I’m going to be upping my yoga frequency for sure. πŸ’œ