Take Me Home – Road Trip 2016

This year as already been a whirlwind, and I’m both thrilled and terrified that we’re already welcoming July this week (say what?!). In the past week, I finished my OT Fieldwork and grad school, drove back across the country from NC to CO, graduated (woot woot!), and have been settling in back at home. Lots of stuff going on, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m so happy to be back in Colorado, with my family and pets, and looking forward to the next chapter of my life. I don’t really know how to be an adult human that isn’t in school, so it’ll be an interesting transition to the “real world” for sure.

I’ve already got lots of blog posts to share with you all, but for now I want to share some pictures from the road trip my dad and I took (driving me back to CO). It could’ve been a super boring drive, but we broke up the hours and made a couple of stops along the way. All of these pictures are from Nashville, TN. Hope you have a great week!

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

HORRIBLE quality photo, but I had to share this delicious hot chicken and waffles. When in Nashville…

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

View from the pedestrian bridge

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

taking the typical tourist picture outside the Johnny Cash Museum (which was SO GOOD, by the way. If you’re ever in Nashville, definitely check this out!). These are from the museum, as well:

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

Nashville 4

Johnny Cash was an amazing performer. So cool to learn more about him.

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

My dad met Elvis (lol) on Broadway! We liked Nashville, but as people who really don’t enjoy country music it wasn’t necessarily our scene. But I’m so glad we had the chance to visit!

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

Road Trip via Imperfect Cheron

The Parthenon (exact replica) was amazing. You can see me in the last photo as a size comparison. It was the perfect park to have a picnic lunch and hang out for a while before hitting the road again.

xo

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NC Mountain Getaway

It’s no secret that my time here in NC has been a bit stressful. New city, a challenging FW rotation, spending every free moment studying…it all builds up over the course of 12 weeks. Luckily, I have some amazing cousins close by that I’ve spent a lot of time with and have grown really close to this year (you guys, I’m going to cry so hard when I leave soon!). My amazing cousins took me up to the NC mountains for Memorial Day weekend to get some much needed R&R in the fresh mountain air. I want to share some of the photos from our little weekend getaway near the Blue Ridge Parkway.

NC Mountain Trip via Imperfect Chevron

Now, I’m a Colorado girl raised loving the Rocky Mountains, so let me start by saying that these mountains were very different than what I’m used to. But the lush trees and gorgeous views won me over. North Carolina, you are something special, and I’m so glad I got to live here for a little while.

NC Mountain Trip via Imperfect Chevron

The back porch; I’m a sucker for an A-frame

NC Mountain Trip via Imperfect Chevron

My favorite seat in the house

NC Mountain Trip via Imperfect Chevron

NC Mountain Trip via Imperfect Chevron

NC Mountain Trip via Imperfect Chevron

From the top of Mt. Craig. The highest peak east of the Mississippi is Mt. Mitchell (right next to Mt. Craig) and is 6683′

NC Mountain Trip via Imperfect Chevron

I mean, how can you not fall in love with that view? Major heart-eyes. The weekend was so relaxing and fun. We walked to the summit at Mt. Mitchell, and then took a short hike to Mt. Craig and Mt. Tom. We spent lots of time in the Eno hammocks (have you seen these? I had never heard of them but I am in love with them now! I’m going to have to get me one of these for sure) and just watching the clouds roll by on the back deck. It was such a wonderful weekend with my cousins, they mean so much to me and I’m so thankful to have them. This little weekend getaway is one I certainly won’t forget.

xo

Breaking Bad (Habits)

This post is a bit of a personal one, and I debated back and forth a lot before I finally decided to write it. Let me start by saying that I think that each and every one of us has one or two (or several!) bad habits that we’d like to break, and while they might be a source of shame or guilt, I think sharing your goals of breaking the habit can be really empowering. Once you tell people you’re going to do something, I think you’re way more likely to stick with it. Right? Ok, so here we go.

I am a nail biter. Have been for a long time, and I think it developed as a nervous energy/anxiety habit, because every time I’m stressed or overwhelmed I notice I start to gnaw my nails to shreds. You guys, I think it’s a super gross habit and I’m really embarrassed with how junky my nails look. As someone who plans to build a career as a hand therapist, in which a lot of the job requires using your hands to manipulate and heal, this bad habit is not ideal. So I’ve decided it’s time to break the cycle.

Because my habit is fueled by anxiety and stress, I don’t think that sheer willpower alone will get me through it. In looking for solutions, someone suggested I pay for weekly manicures. I liked the idea of having a consequence to motivate me, but I’ve never had a manicure in my life (nail salons kind of creep me out, I know I’m weird) and I’m a broke grad student who can’t really afford the luxury right now. So I decided to try out some at-home gel nail polish, and create a daily log to track my success.

The Polish

Breaking Bad Habits via Imperfect Chevron

I chose this Sally Hansen Miracle Gel and topcoat because it doesn’t require an LED light to dry, it’s budget-friendly, and it had good reviews online. It was a little more expensive than nail polish I typically buy, and I realized that if my nails don’t chip right away I’d be more motivated to keep them looking good. So each week, I’m going to spend an hour on my nails. I chose a nude color polish so that my nails look clean and classic, and I didn’t want an outrageous color bringing attention to the little nubs at the end of my fingers.

I’ve also been using the app, Way of Life, to keep track of my progress. Each day, you simply open the app and log if you followed the rule for that day. It takes less than 30 seconds to log, and I like that you can look at the overall 6-week trend (when I make it to that point, it will be amazing!) as well as your weekly progress. I think it’s also helpful in that you don’t have to look at it being this huge goal, you can just take it one day at a time. It’s like, I know I can make it through one day without biting my nails. And then I just start over the next day! Sometimes you kind of have to trick your brain into it, you know?

I think I’m off to a pretty good start, I’ve made it a whole week without biting my nails! If you have any other tips or ideas, please share!

xo

Hitting Refresh: A Weekend Without My Phone

I spent Memorial Day weekend in the beautiful NC mountains with my cousins (I’ll share some photos from our trip soon, I promise!). I didn’t have ANY phone service up there, and I made a spur-of-the-moment decision to forgo wifi for the weekend, as well.

Tech Free Weekend via Imperfect Chevron

That’s right. I spent over 72 hours without texting, facebook, instagram, snapchat, emails, etc. You guys, it was so liberating. Being unreachable and unplugged was very relaxing, it felt good for my soul. Unfortunately, the first thing I do in the morning is reach for my phone. It’s one of those habits that I would love to break, but can’t seem to succeed in. I felt like spending some time away from social media and email, and it was so refreshing not to be connected for a few days. The only thing I actually used my phone for was taking pictures.

I had lots of down time up in the mountains, which I certainly would have wasted away scrolling through Facebook or checking all of my email accounts (I have 5, you guys, and it’s total madness). Instead, I used free moments to sit on the deck looking out at the mountains and just enjoying the view. I did some unstructured meditation, where I just shut my brain down for a while. I let random thoughts roll through my head. And I gave myself permission to relax, to take deep breaths and just be for a little while.

Don’t worry, I’m not giving up social media or answering emails or texting anytime soon. But it felt like stepping away from being constantly connected and constantly reachable was a good way to wipe my slate clean and start over. One of my new goals for this year is to spend some time away from screens. Even if it’s for just one hour, once a week. I want to be able to enjoy the company of the wonderful people I surround myself with, and to take it all in without being bogged down by work/school every second of the day. Am I completely crazy?

xo