Resolution revolution

Every year, I make resolutions & barely keep them past week two. I want to change that by not making any resolutions at all.

{I think I wrote a post on this a while ago, buuuuut I’m fairly sure it got lost in the transition last week and I’ve been too dang lazy to figure out how to find those posts again… so here we are.}

It seems odd to think about starting the new year without making specific “resolutions.” It’s a family tradition to get together on New Year’s Eve (or a few days later… or a few weeks later…) and go through a multi-page document that my dad puts together, where we write down our favorites & memories from the last year, and make resolutions and predictions for the year ahead. As we’ve all gotten older, the predictions for each family member have been more and more similar from year to year! It’s always fun to go back to see the previous year’s predictions and to see where we were wrong or right.

For me, though, it is so disappointing to look back on those resolutions, year after year, and not be able to check off any of them as completed or kept.

Even if the year has been full of love and laughter and emotions and growth and all of that good stuff, it still makes me feel strangely inadequate to know that I wasn’t able to stick to these lofty resolutions that would’ve apparently made my year so much better and worthwhile.

So I’m rethinking my need to make resolutions this year.

Continue reading “Resolution revolution”

Blogtober Day 9 & 10: Halloween and blogging thoughts

Another 2-in-1 Blogtober post, how lucky are you?

Day 9 prompt: Best or worst Halloween memory #tbt

I’ve gotta say, halloween definitely isn’t my favorite holiday. I enjoyed it a lot as a kid, but as I got into middle school, I had a harder time finding costumes I liked, and my friends and I stopped trick or treating. I’m not one of those people who particularly likes dressing up or wearing costumes. So I’m having a hard time thinking of my best or worst Halloween memory, since most of them are from my childhood and they all kinda blend together!

My favorite memory of Halloween isn’t just from one year, I think. I have lots of happy memories of going trick or treating all over my old neighborhood with my best friend, Marissa. Our parents usually “chaperoned” us even though we were in a safe neighborhood, but we went up to the houses by ourselves. I remember it was so exciting to pick your candy or see what they different houses are offering, what costumes the adults were in, and looking through our bounty at the end of the night. Organizing the candy, trading it around with the other neighborhood kids, and attempting to ration it out over the next month (probably less) was always awesome!

At our elementary school, we also always had a Halloween parade during school and parties in our classrooms. It was overwhelmingly exciting to see all of your friends in their costumes, and the teachers too. We paraded through the neighborhood streets around the school, grade by grade, led by the high school marching band and color guard, all in costume. Parents and younger siblings lined the streets, and the feeling of community made it one of my favorite Halloween traditions from year to year.

(I’m the pumpkin in this photo)

Day 10 prompt: I never thought blogging would…

I never thought blogging would be something I would be something that I would do. I’ve never really thought of myself as a writer, or as someone who would share their personal life online. Granted, most of the people who read my blog are people that I know in real life, but I’ve definitely shared things here that I didn’t think I would share with anyone other than my really close family and friends. It’s given me an outlet to be vocal about things that are important to me, to improve my writing, and to share my travel adventures with my family and friends. It’s pushed me to be more creative, to think more about myself, and to not be afraid to share those thoughts!

Helene in Between
Thanks for reading! Margaret

A letter to my future self – Blogtober Day 8

Today’s prompt: A letter to yourself in 10 years

Dear future self,

You’re 31. I’ve always thought of that age as a time when people automatically have all of their shit together – how’s that going for you? I’m so curious to see what career path you end up in. Did you decide to really become a teacher? Are you working in a non-profit? A bookstore? Are you a stay-at-home mom? Whatever you ended up doing, I hope you’re enjoying it.

How’s married life? As I’m writing this, I’m engaged to Ben, and we’ve been dating for a little over 3 and a half years. Give future Ben a kiss for me! I have no doubts in my mind that ten years from now, you’ll be happily married to him, and you’ll probably have kids. I know you’ve dreamed about that for a while, so I hope it’s everything you wished for, and more.

Of course, nothing ever goes perfectly to plan, and there are always going to be ups and downs along the way. I’m hoping that you didn’t get stuck in any of the pits for too long. I know that’s something I’ve struggled with in college, and I’m hoping that being away from the stress of school will have helped with that. I hope you’re smiling and enjoying all of the beautiful things in life, like your family, the nature around you, an interesting book, and good coffee.

I don’t really know what to say in a letter to my future self, other than to ask questions. I’m so curious to see what my life will hold for me, and am so excited to embrace every joy and challenge out there that may come my way. Keep me updated.

Age 21, sitting in my dorm room (Emerson 206!) post FAW meeting. I hope future Margaret is a kick ass feminist.

PS – How’s the blog going?

Helene in Between

Thanks for reading! Margaret

Let me insta that

Blogtober Day 4! Woohoo!

Today’s prompt: favorite photo you posted on Instagram

Now this is a great prompt.

I like Instagram a lot, even though I’m not an amazing iPhone photographer and I don’t post a ton of pictures. I like the filters and being able to share it on Instagram and across other social media platforms, especially Facebook! I think started Instagramming around April 2012. I used to be reluctant to post pictures because I wasn’t sure how they’d be received – again with my worry of how people perceive me based on my social media and internet writing! I used Instagram a lot this summer when I was in Ireland, as a way to share some of my favorite phone photos with people back home when I didn’t feel like posting hundreds of them to Facebook.

On that note, I think my favorite photo that I’ve posted on Instagram was from the day after Ben and I got engaged. We were feeling goofy and happy and silly at one of the castles we visited, and were taking selfies. We thought it would be funny to take some like I was “punching” him with the ring in full view. And this is what came out of it:


Continue reading “Let me insta that”

What can’t I live without?

Blogtober Day 3, here we come!

(Also, my phone autocorrects blogtober to vlogtober – I think I watch too much YouTube!!!)

Today’s prompt: one thing you can’t live without.

To me, this feels like one of those prompts that makes you want to show people what a good person you really are. “Oh, my family! Clean water! A good book! Not something vain like the internet or Netflix. Duh.”

So I don’t totally know where to go with this. I don’t want my answer to seem contrived or sound like I’m trying to hard. (I do think that worrying about things like that is something I should do less of, though.)

Aside from the basics like food, water, and shelter, I’d say the one thing that I truly can’t live without is some sort of challenge. Something that makes me think. It would be so easy to slip into the habits of watching mind-numbing tv all the time and to avoid stimulating conversations. But I’d find a life like that to be incredibly unfulfilling! I need to be challenged (nicely) and to have something to work towards. Don’t get me wrong, everyone can benefit from a little break to do something that doesn’t require much thought or effort, and I’ll admit that I love watching terrible shows like Pretty Little Liars, but I find that at the end of the day, I feel best about myself and about what I have accomplished when I spent a good portion of the day thinking.

I like watching documentaries that challenge my preconceived notions about something or some group of people. I like learning about current events and slowly formulating my thoughts on them. I like reading books about peoples lives and seeing what I can learn from their lived experiences. And I (most of the time) like conversations with people about potentially uncomfortable topics.

Having the chance to be challenged and to think and learn on a deeper level than I thought possible is probably what I value most from my time spent in college, and I know I’ll miss it when I graduate. I know that I will always aim to surround myself with people who want to think and discuss and learn, because those conversations can help build bonds and community. I hope that I can find a job that allows me to do all of this, too!

Helene in Between
Thanks for reading! Margaret