Wednesday, May 18, 2016

MYERS BRIGGS & KNOWING YOUR PERSONALITY

I've been fascinated by the ideas of the Myer Briggs test for a few years now. It's a psychological theory that there are 16 personalities, which through a series of questions, you can gage yours and then better understand how you see and work in the world. Your personality is determined by four sets of preferences:

Favorite world: Do you prefer to focus on the outer world or on your own inner world? This is called Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I).
Information: Do you prefer to focus on the basic information you take in or do you prefer to interpret and add meaning? This is called Sensing (S) or Intuition (N).
Decisions: When making decisions, do you prefer to first look at logic and consistency or first look at the people and special circumstances? This is called Thinking (T) or Feeling (F).
Structure: In dealing with the outside world, do you prefer to get things decided or do you prefer to stay open to new information and options? This is called Judging (J) or Perceiving (P).



Answering honestly in the key to this test-you need to answer how you truly, honestly react in the situations provided verses how you wish/think you should act. I've taken the test and, when answering completely honestly, I'm a ISFJ (Introversion, Sensing, Feeling, Judging). Some highlights that are so very me:





Reading the descriptions to your personality can be shockingly accurate. You can see yourself in the descriptions provided and it can be a bit unnerving. But ultimately, it's fascinating, and can be a true helper in better understanding yourself and those around you. It should be noted that all the personalities are equal; there isn't a goal to be a different personality or a "better" one. Myers Briggs is simply a tool to help you better understand yourself and how you see the world.

You can take your own (free, do-not-have-to-sign-up-for-anything) test HERE.

Let me know in the comments below what your Myers Briggs personality is, and what you think of the test!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

READING LIST: WHAT I'M READING IN MAY


Inspired by my B+ Goals, I went to the library on Saturday and picked out some books for the month. It's a random assortment. I usually try to mix up non-fiction/fiction to balance my month, and May is no exception.

Here's what I'm reading:

Lilac Girls, Martha Hall Kelly. I read a lot of World War II fiction and non-fiction. I find the stories to be fascinating, and am especially drawn to Resistance accounts. Lilac Girls tells the story of the war from three different perspectives that eventually all overlap. I'm currently reading this one and I can't put it down. Well researched, well written, good character development.

Lincoln at Gettysburg, Garry Wills. We've headed to Gettysburg later this month, so I wanted to read this before we went. (I'm an overachiever and I like to do my homework and know all the things.)

The Silkworm, Robert Galbraith. Number 2 in the Cormoran Strike mystery series! I loved number one last month so I snatched this right up when I saw it on my library's shelf.

Habitat: The Field Guide to Decorating, Lauren Liess. I love home decorating books. I especially love them this time of year when I'm spring cleaning and adding things here and there. We move a lot, which has helped me to really only have things in our house that we love. This is then reflected into our (okay, let's be real, my) decorating style and I love having extra inspiration.


Bookmark by Ava.

What are you reading this month?

Monday, May 9, 2016

SCENES FROM A MOTHER'S DAY

She loved the sea.

She liked the sharp
salty smell of the air,
and the vastness
of the horizons
bounded only by a vault
of azure sky above.

It made her feel small,
but free as well.

-George R. R. Martin













(At the Barnegat Lighthouse)

Thursday, May 5, 2016

WHOLE 30 Compliant MEATBALLS



Ignore this not beautiful photo. These meatball are delicious, easy to make, family friendly, AND Whole30. Win/win/win/WIN. You will make these. You will eat them. Your family will eat them and not complain. If you double it, you can eat them for the lunch the next day because they reheat wonderfully.


Simple ingredients: ground beef (or turkey or chicken or bison, whatever your meat choice is!), eggs, onion, garlic, almond flour, parsley, spices.


 We mix.

 We roll.

 We brown.

We bake.

I made these during my meal prep this week. We ate them for dinner on Tuesday and had them for lunch on Wednesday. Tuesdays we have baseball practice for 98720 hours, so I always like to have a quick meal ready to go when we get home. Not to mention that everyone, especially my son who has been the one practicing for those 98738689 hours and is growing like a weed, is starving by the time we get home. By doing my meal plans and meal prep on Sundays, I'm sure to have a nice meal planned for these crazy busy evenings.


Whole 30 Compliant Meatballs

Ingredients:
2lbs. ground beef (or chicken or turkey or bison or a combination)
1 yellow onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup Italian parsley, roughly chopped 
1/4 almond flour (optional)
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/4-1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
2 tablespoons cooking fat ( I used ghee)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.
Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Mix until evenly combined, but do not over mix.
Roll mixture into 2 inch balls. (Or larger! Or smaller! Your meatballs, your choice.)
Melt the cooking fat in a heavy bottom pan over medium high heat. Brown the meatballs on all sides, in batches so they are not touching. Remove meatballs to prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until cooked through.


Monday, May 2, 2016

B+ GOALS: MAY

Remember how I was all excited that almost spring is here? How it's been above 70 more than once? Remember how hopeful I was? I am such an East Coast amateur.

Because I 100% had to wear a wool sweater to a Little League game on Saturday because it was THAT cold.


May, I have high hopes for you and I have goals. Hooray for B+ Goals! 
At the beginning of every month, I post my "B+ Goals" for the month. These are goals that I try to achieve with grace, and with the mentality of better done than perfect. You can check out the lovely ladies behind this, Sarah R Bagley and E at Teaching Sam and Scout, and link up with other B+'ers!

So first, let's review April's Goals:

1. Stay on top of our daily schedule AND make a solid work plan for the Etsy shop. We did really well with our daily schedule, but at the cost of me being exceptionally slightly cross many evenings. It's baseball season, and if you have a child/children in Little League, you know exactly what I mean. If you don't, know that baseball, while the greatest of the sports, consumes your entire family's life from about March-June (and potentially longer) and tries to eat your soul. So many practices! So many games! I love it, but, real talk, it's overwhelming.
As for the Etsy shop. It's currently in Vacation Mode and will be for the next few weeks. I'm looking at some really big changes for it, and I'll provide more info as I move forward with them.
Grade: B+

2. Keep working on my community project.  I've started working in earnest on this! Hopefully over the summer all of the plans will be solid. (What I'm doing is putting together backpacks filled with basic essentials-pajamas, toothbrushes, shampoos, etc.- for foster kids in our area for when they enter a new placement.)
Grade: B

3. Exercise two time a week. Yes! Did it!
Grade: A

4. Eat Whole30 Monday-Thursday. I did this....about 50% of the time. So not a total fail?
Grade: D

5. Plan out my garden. Yes! And I also started actually planting it. I plan on finishing it up over the next few weeks since I think that worry of frost should be over (Please dear Lord and dear Universe, no more freezes, thank you. Sincerely, Michelle)
Grade: A

6. Participate in the #RockYourHandwriting challenge on Instagram. Did it! You can see all my challenge prompts on Instagram (@junenovember).
Grade: A

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Alright! Let's check out what I got planned for this month! I'm feeling a bit ambitious :)

1. Do the Tone It Up Bikini Series Challenge. I started this last Monday! It's an 8 week Challenge and I'm loving it. I did one of their Challenges in the fall and fell in love with the TIU workouts and community. This new, get ready for summer Challenge is just what I need to really start focusing again on healthy choices. And speaking of healthy choices....

2. Finish another Whole 30. I did my first Whole 30 last August and have done a couple half ones since, but I'm wanting to do a full 30 day one again. For real. No cheat days, no quitting because there's a party, NO EXCUSES. I started last Tuesday and finish up on May 26.

You can follow me on Instagram to see updates throughout the month about both of these goals. (@junenovember)

3. Organize our game closet. It's a disaster area and needs to be overhauled.

4. Have a yard sale or donate all the stuff I've put aside. My friend wants to have a yard sale together and we've been waiting for nice weather to have one. But, if it doesn't happen by May 15, all this stuff that's been piling up is headed to donations. #KonMari

5. Use my "real" camera more. I have a really nice camera that I used to use all the time, but these days I default to my IPhone 99.9% of the time. I want to get back in the habit of taking nice photos with my nice camera.

6. Get to the library. We were in a really good habit of going to the libray once a week last summer and fall, but fell out of it. Instead of buying all our books, I need to be using our local library! Havin' fun ain't hard when you got a library card. (Isn't that little saying adorable? Except for the cringe worthy grammar?! Just say no to Ain't.)

Hooray for May!

Friday, April 29, 2016

FAVORITE THINGS: APRIL 2016

Guys, I JUST KNOW that spring, real spring is almost here. The trees are getting leaves, flowers are popping up, we've had a few (very few) days get into the 70s. Winter is behind us, thank the Lord and the Universe, because I cannot deal with even a hint of any more snow or ice. No more, I say. NO MORE.

Here's a round up of things I'm loving for this (beginning) of s-p-r-i-n-g.






Favorite Things I Read: For The Love, Jen Hatmaker This book resonated with me hugely. It spoke right to me and I absorbed it all right into my heart. (Good Lord, that sounds mushy. But it's true!) If you're looking for a book that really speaks to you about having grace and that makes you laugh, this is it.
Buddha in the Attic, Julie Otsuka This book was lyrical, sad, and completely beautifully written. It is written in a plural voice ("Some of us..."), which I found to be a complaint of some readers, but which I found to be even more intriguing. It tells the story of a group of Japanese woman from the 1920's through the 1940's, who come from Japan and live their ordinary, yet tragic/beautiful lives. I loved it.

Favorite Household Things: Mrs. Myer's Handsoap in Peony. The smell is ah-mazing. And this "Sun Kissed" scented soy candle from Target is also fantastic.

Favorite Things For a Healthy Life: I started the Tone It Up Bikini Series 8 Week Challenge. I love the Tone It Up workouts and community, if you're interested look them up on Instagram @toneitup!

Favorite Things For the Garden: I started planting my garden this month. Lettuces and peas are in, and a few flowers, including these Morning Glories. I'll be planting more this weekend!

Favorite Things For an Organized Life: Pilot G-2 07 multicolor gel pens These are awesome for my bullet journal because they are bold but don't bleed through pages.

Favorite Beauty Things: While I still love my Urban Decay Smoke Eye palate, it was feeling a little dark for (almost) spring. I picked up a Maybelline The Blushed Nudes palate. While the quality of the shadows isn't as high end as the Urban Decay ones (nor was I expecting them to be) they're still really nice and good quality. And I love the colors; they're perfect shadows for (almost) spring at a great price.


Have a great weekend guys, and check back on Monday for a B+ Goals post!



Thursday, April 14, 2016

ESSENTIALS FOR A RELUCTANT RUNNER


I started running again this week. It felt awful. My lungs burned, my eyes and nose watered, my throat was dry. I felt slooooooow and tired after running just half the distance I was usually doing.

Okay, it felt great. It felt really, really good to get out and run in the morning, all by myself. I didn't push myself-at all-and I managed to run at a decent pace (it wasn't as slow as it felt). I felt great all day. It's ridiculous. Things that require you to get up at 5:00am and exert yourself should not make you feel this good. What the hell, endorphins?! I hate you. But I love you.

Suffices to say, I am a reluctant runner. I run purely for exercise- I have no dreams of marathons or the desire to go and run 10 miles on a Saturday for fun (um, no. NEVER.). But the fact is I DO run and I do (grudgingly) enjoy it. It makes me feel good, and it's good for me.

Are you done rolling your eyes at me yet? Good. Let's talk about some essentials for a reluctant runner:

1. Good Sports Bra and Running Legging. Last year, Victoria's Secret came out with a workout line, and to promote it they had a "buy a sports bra, get a pair of pants for free" and, on a whim, I did just that. Considering that I am not a hard core runner, I am not going to spend hundreds of dollars on workout clothes. These are decently prices and, in my opinion, pretty amazing. The pants do not fall down, which I find to be the curse of athletic leggings, and the sports bra fits great (and does what it's suppose to do. ahem.) The zipper front on this particular sports bra can be a little tricky, but once it's all zipped up it's worth the struggle.

2. Earbuds, Phone Armband, Great Podcast, & Nike+ Running App. An armband for your phone and a pair of earbuds is a must if you like to listen to anything while you run. I personally like to listen to podcasts while I run (current favorites: 25% Friends, the habits series, and What Should I Read Next? with Anne Bogel). I also use the Nike+ Running App during runs. It can be used on both a treadmill and outdoors, and counts your mileage and time.  As you run, it tell you how far you've gone and your time per mile, and charts your course (if you're outdoors), which I really like. It also keeps a chart of all your runs in one place for easy reference. You can also set running goals with it and it gives you a detailed weekly/monthly plan. I haven't used this part of the app, but my husband does and he really likes this feature.

3. A good pair of running shoes. I'm currently running in my second pair of Nike Zoom Pegasus 31's and I continue to really like them.  Again, I'm not spending a million dollars on running things. If you shop around, you can find these decently priced.

4. Headbands and hair ties.

5. Light weight long sleeve shirt. I get up early to run and it's usually still cold and dark. I like that this long sleeve pullover is both lightweight and reflective. I picked it up at Target.

Are you a runner? A reluctant one? Maybe we should start a series, Tales of Reluctant Runners...

Happy Friday Eve, all!