A day in the sun

After our night out in the city over the weekend, someone suggested spending Sunday afternoon at the Russian River, a river that winds its way through Healdsburg (wine country) to the ocean.

We gathered a group of people together and headed out to the river around 1 p.m. The drive to the river winds through wine country, and we all commented on how lucky we are to live in an area that has easy access to the beach, river, wineries, San Francisco, great hiking, great food and more. Every day I feel blessed by my surroundings!

After parking we hiked down to the river and set up camp on the beach, underneath a few trees for shade.  We packed food and drinks, so everyone lounged, ate and chatted for awhile before getting in the water. The sun was out and the water was the perfect temperature.

It was the first time since summer began that I’ve really been able to spend a good amount of time outside, soaking up the sun. I loved every minute. We spent a few hours of lounging, swimming and throwing the frisbee for Jaime’s dog, Cooper.

I arrived home exhausted, but feeling like it had been a weekend well spent.

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You know it’s ladies night…

Over the weekend, I traveled with a group of girlfriends to stay overnight in San Francisco for a much needed girls night out.

Though throughout the week I was feeling drained from my new job, I was so happy I agreed to girls night because it was exactly what I needed.

My girlfriends picked me up from Novato around noon and we drove to San Francisco to stay at The Sir Francis Drake hotel. The room was a bit on the pricey side, but it felt nice to stay somewhere fancy for the night. Plus, the hotel was in walking distance of the shopping district (Union Square), great restaurants, and clubs. After getting settled into our room, we headed out for an afternoon of shopping. We shopped at two stores, but the stores were so large and packed with people, that we headed back to the hotel after a few hours.

After spending a few hours at the hotel room getting ready, we headed up to the top of the Sir Francis Drake to the Starlight Room for a cocktail, where I had the best lemon drop of my life.

When it was late enough to go out, we headed out to a few clubs nearby and danced till the midmorning. We had a great time dancing together, and even made a few new friends.

We collapsed into bed in the early morning, but woke up early the next morning to go to brunch at a cute, 50s style diner right across the street from our hotel.

Even though the city is only a mere half hour from my house, spending the night in a fancy hotel in the city truly felt like a vacation. It was such a great weekend with great friends, good food, and fun. By the time I returned home on Sunday afternoon, I felt rejuvenated.

Let It Go

Recently, I began dating again for the first time in nearly two years. To say this is a scary prospect is to put it mildly. As a divorced 26-year-old, I’m in an odd place in the dating world. I am by no means ready to enter into a very committed relationship, but I’m also unwilling to waste my time dating people who don’t really matter.

Basically, there’s a whole lot of this happening:

This has presented an interesting problem. I’ve met guys I think are wonderful but who I don’t quite feel are right for me in this stage of my life. I don’t want to lead them on by continuing a dating relationship, but I also fear “losing” their newly acquired friendship since I enjoy having many friendships with a wide variety of people.

I was stressing out about a situation like this earlier this week and venting to my friend, Alyssa. I asked Alyssa if I should try to explain my situation to a particular person so that I can maintain our friendship, and her answer was somewhat surprising to me, but rang true.

She told me I need to work on letting things go.

I have always considered myself a laid back person. But her comment led me to a realization: I’ve been getting hung up on maintaining trivial relationships. I’m so interested in people, and developing my own relationships with each of them, that I sometimes get lost in the process and can’t recognize that in the grand scheme of my life, that relationship isn’t that important. It’s surface level.

Sometimes relationships just don’t work out. And that’s okay.

I thought about many of the relationships I have in my life, and the type of relationships I value. I value having a few meaningful relationships based on common interests, goals and ideas rather than many shallow relationships with “close acquaintances.” Alyssa gave me the reminder I needed to spend my time fostering the relationships with people who I care about most rather than wasting time on inconsequential ones.

I’m incredibly grateful for her insight and honesty.

These are 27 things…

The other day, I was reading one of the daily blogs I read, Eat Live Run, by Jenna Weber. For her 27th birthday she posted a list of 27 things she would have liked her former self to know. Though my 27th birthday is months away, I liked the idea enough to create my own list of lessons I’ve learned in my mid/late twenties that I wish my early twenty-something self would have known.

Here it is:

1. Life is too short to settle in work, friendship, and love.

2. The old adage “time heals all wounds” is true.

3. Spend time with your girlfriends. They make life worthwhile. 

4. Try to approach a problem from the other person’s point of view.

5. Be picky. It’s a good thing.

6. Those cute heels you want? Buy them.

7. On that note…start a savings account and save a portion of each paycheck. You never know when it will come in handy.

8. Don’t take anything personally.

9. Work your way through college. You won’t regret having fewer student loans.

10. If a guy wants to be with you, he will make it happen.

11. Be patient with your parents. They love you, even if they don’t show it in the same way you do.

12. If you want unconditional love, get a dog.

13. Relationships can last…if you’re willing to put in a lot of hard work.

14. With that said, make sure you choose a good partner to put in the hard work with.

15. Learn how to stand on your own two feet. Don’t depend on others for happiness.

16. The only way to learn how to depend on yourself is to truly spend some time alone.

17. Your life’s happiness is in your hands. It’s up to you to change the course of your life.

18. Happiness isn’t a constant state of elation. If you chase that, you will forever be dissappointed.

20. Read, it’s important.

21. Tough times don’t last but tough people do

22. Keep an open mind. Be accepting of others and their viewpoints.

23. Never stop learning and changing

24. Be intentional, you’ll like the outcome more

25. Be spontaneous. You’ll be surprised at the experiences you find.

26. Be loyal. Others will notice and return the favor.

27. You are beautiful just the way you are.