Y’all Don’t Want to Follow Me Here

Well, this is it.  The last time I’ll be posting on my wordpress.com site. 

Forevermore you will find me on my wordpress.org site.  I’ve gotten a few additional followers here since moving to being self-hosted.  If you want to keep up, you’ll have to resubscribe at http://whattheefff.com it IS different than what you see here.

If you’ve started following me since September 1, 2013, come play with me at the new and improved What The Efff, you won’t hear from me if you don’t!  If you haven’t gotten any posts except these (one | two), then you aren’t subscribed correctly and your missing some good shiz like Where I Come From and My Golden Nugget.

If you click “follow” at the top of this page, you’re following this site, not the new one.

This is Jess M, signing off from whattheefff.wordpress.com – now only to be found at http://whattheefff.com.  overandout.

 

Reminder: WTFFF Has Moved

Hey ya’ll – I’ll be checking in periodically over the next couple weeks to remind you all that WTFFF has moved to be self-hosted!

Come find me here at http://whattheefff.com or on Bloglovin’.

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WTFFF is Self-Hosted! Join Me!

Hey everyone!  Part of my crazy weekend included moving my blog over to become self-hosted.  I have an email into Word Press to get all of my email subscribers over (you guys rock!), but who knows how long that could take to be done.  I’ve added my self-hosted blog to Bloglovin’ so be sure that you beging to follow that blog instead of this one!  Head on over to the new and improved What The Efff to re-subscribe in order to get your emails and to hear more about my crazy weekend!

New What The Efff

Chicken Rice Bake

Today, I’m spending some time with my MIL’s family.   Grandma and Grandpa on that side are celebrating their 63rd wedding anniversary!  Big congratulations to them!

So while we are off enjoying the nice weather and delicious food, I’m sharing an easy meal for you, too!  Craig was thrilled when he saw I was making rice instead of quinoa, but I have no doubt that you could easily sub that in.  It’s just that when you live with a man with a very simplistic palate, you can’t get too crazy.  Of course, I’m using the term “crazy” very loosely here.

The Le Creuset baking dish I used has some sentimental value.  As we celebrate a big milestone for Craig’s grandparents, I’m remembering my own Grandma Jeanne.  My Aunt Julie gave me this dish as a wedding gift with the sweetest note.  My grandma passed away when I was in middle school.  I definitely have some memories, but I also rely on my parents and Aunt Julie to fill some of the rest in.  Grandma J loved cooking/baking with Le Creuset dishes – a fact I learned of with my wedding gift.  Grandma was an outstanding chef.  You could always count on her for a kick ass cheese cake and daily waffle breakfasts when we were staying with her.

chicken bake 2

- 2 chicken breasts, cooked
– 4 c cooked brown rice
– 1 c frozen corn
– 15 oz can black beans, rinsed & drained
– 1 c sour cream
– 4 oz can green chilis
– 1/2 c salsa
– 1 c cheddar cheese
– 2 Tbs fresh cilantro

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine all ingredients, except cilantro.  Season with salt & pepper.  Transfer to an oven safe dish and bake for 20-25 min.  Garnish fresh, chopped cilantro.

chicken bake 1

This is also great reheated, Craig and I, both, enjoyed this for lunch a couple days later the week I made this.

To give credit, where credit is due, this recipe is original to HowSweetEats.  I opted to add more corn and to use sour cream instead of the Greek yogurt she suggests.  Remember, I live with a man that doesn’t like “weird” things, Greek yogurt wasn’t going to fly.

Sunday Social

I’m not loving this week’s Sunday Social.  I love Sunday Social, but I cannot believe that the summer is already over.  That means things pick up at work and I kick it into high-gear until February.  Don’t give me wrong, I’m not swaying from my “I love winter more than summer” mentality, but winter also means being busy, busy at work . Where can I find a caffeine drip?

1. What was your favorite trip/vacation/activity this summer?
We went to Colorado!  I got to see my mom, dad, aunt & family, along with Allie Rose, Lindsey, and attend the wedding of our good friends Taylor & Lindsey.  It was an action-packed few days and I LOVED it.

Rafting with the fam!

Rafting with the fam!

2. What was your favorite outfit look/clothing item of the summer?
Rompers.  Too bad most of them don’t look super cute on me.  Sigh.  I still tried to rock one a couple times, though I don’t know how successful I was!

3. What is one thing you wish you’d gotten to do this summer?
Water park!  Or spent more time on a boat.  We went once with our friends Tom and Lindsey on their “boat.”  The sun disappeared and Lindsey ended up frozen at the front of the boat, drenched.  I enjoyed myself, but I was in the back, nice and dry!

4. What was your favorite song of the summer?
Roar by Katy Perry.  Ob-sessed.

5. What was your favorite movie/tv show of the summer?
I don’t really watch TV!  Like, ever.  The news is on in the morning, that’s about it.  Craig has the TV on all.the.time so it’s usually on in the background.  I probably know more about the male soap opera, a.k.a. ESPN than one would care to.

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Identity Crisis

Okay, not really.

But, this weekend, Kim and I are spending oodles of time together.  On our list of things to-do we are going to explore self-hosting our blogs.  As she pointed out, how type-A are we for making a list of things to do on a fun day together.  Anyway.  I’ve seriously been thinking trying to self-host, especially since I realize now I will continue to have plenty of time to put towards blogging since law school got the ka-bosh.

In the months since I’ve started (almost 6 months! holla!), I’ve given a lot of thought as to what I want this space to be about.  As we continue to get settled in I’d love to be able to share more recipes and DIY projects.  I’d also like to share more about my fitness journey, but I’m still trying to figure out the best way for me to do that.  I realize lately that it’s been more of a therapy space, but I promise you all won’t be inundated with my “first-world” problems on a regular basis.

So yeah, I can’t say that I really have a specific “thing” that I’m going to label myself as.  And I’m okay with that.  JESSI GET TO THE POINT.  My point is – I’m thinking about changing my blog’s name.  Don’t give me wrong, I’ve gotten good feedback, because I know it’s attention grabbing, BUT, I’m also afraid that it might turn people off from it.  It can certainly be found offensive, I know that and I knew it when I picked it.  But, now I’m having second thoughts.

What do you guys think?  I’d love your honest feedback!  Any stellar ideas for me?  Some of you have been reading for a couple months now – based on what you’ve seen me write about, do you have any clever ideas for me?

And while you’re at it – any wisdom on being self-hosted?  If I take the plunge, I think I’m going with Bluehost.  Any tips, tricks, advice?

Five on Friday

After the week I’ve had, I’m on autopilot today.  TGIF is a flippin’ understatement!

I’m linking up with something new today – Five on Friday!

ONE – I will be practicing this all weekend.  To “one up” this – if that cupcake has sprinkles you have to be smiling.

The simplest of truths...

TWO – Special delivery!  I absolutely love 99.9999% of my co workers.  Today, Mel brought me in some flowers for our new home!  I’m excited to get them planted this weekend.  Next week she said she is bringing me herbs!  She is too much!  In these bags are Columbine (will be purple flowers), Coreopsis (will be yellow) and a mystery European flower.  Mel’s elderly neighbor has a friend bring them for her from Europe ages and ages ago.  She hasn’t been able to figure out what they are.  Also, look at the pretty vine plant making its way up our pergola.  YAY flowers!

flowers collage

THREE – Do you know how much fun I have packed into the next three days!?  Dinner date with Kels tonight (last time I’ll see the rascal before she goes so Spain!), lunch date with Laura and the gang and a pit stop to see Grandma Faye tomorrow, Sunday, an ALL-DAY play date with Kim (eeeeeeeeeeek), wrapped up with a couple other friends joining us for a BBQ, and Monday, heading to celebrate Craig’s gma and gpa’s anniversary.  I’m so excited to recap it next week!

FOUR – I’m officially registered for my fourth half marathon!  Time to crack down and get serious about running.  I found my iPod touch (well actually, Craig did!) when we were moving, so I’m happy to have all of my “good” running music back.  But, it’s like 2nd generation, so I can’t use running apps on it.  Guess I’ll have to buy a GPS watch this weekend – good thing Kimmie will be here to show me the goods!

FIVE – I never thought today would come!  Ever!  (How is that for dramatic?)

THANK GOD.

THANK GOD.

Have a fun, fabulous, SAFE holiday weekend!

FiveonFriday
For picture sources, check out my Pinterest page!

The Fear of Disappointing Others

Dear Dean C,

I regret to inform you that I will be withdrawing from Marquette Law School.  After preparing for my first courses, I now realize that I have too many things on my plate and am unable to give them all the attention and effort they require and deserve.  I was honored and elated to be contacted last Thursday with an offer to join your community.  Given the short notice I quickly became caught up in the whirlwind of it all.  I sincerely appreciate the time you took to meet with me and to help arrange time for me to get up to speed with the remainder of the class.

Please know this was a difficult decision to make, but am confident it is the best decision for myself, my family, and my classmates.

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That left my inbox last night around 10pm.

A few of the thoughts that lead to this decision -

I love my husband. Being married is hard work.  Add to it the stress of 3 moves in 8 months, 2 new jobs, and the stress of health complications and it makes for a tough first year.  Really tough.  I want my priorities to lie within my relationship with my husband.

I work a (new) full time job.  A job I genuinely love.  A job that would have surely been neglected had I committed to law school.  I could not have performed all the duties expected of me.  Of those I could perform, I could not have performed them to the best of my ability.  There became far too many conflicts with events I am planning/attending.  My opportunity to go to school was because of my job – I certainly was not going to neglect the gravy train.

When looking at the Holmes and Rahe stress scale I can pin point at least 7 items that I’ve dealt with in the last 2 months.

That’s a lot of stress.

Have I mentioned I don’t handle stress well?

When I sat down and really thought it through, I realized that my main fear was disappointing everyone else.  I had told my family I was going to law school!  I shared it with my friends.  I had incredible support from my co workers.  How could I let all of these people down?  These people believe in me.  Turns out they believed in me more than I believed in myself.

My confidence was definitely lacking Tuesday night, I will admit that.  Could I have pushed through the semester?  Probably.  The content didn’t seem overly difficult, but honestly, the exams scared the crap out of me.  I didn’t love that they professors could only grant a certain number of A’s, B’s, etc.  I know that is typical in law school, but it doesn’t necessarily align with my own beliefs in education.  So, while I could’ve powered through the next 4 months, why should I? Just because?  That’s just dumb.

Some of the wisest words I got via chat yesterday afternoon:

Kimberly: I don’t want to be a debbie downer and i support whatever you do so i hope you take this openly, but if you arent willing to pay for it in money, why are you willing to pay for it in time?

It became crystal clear in the matter of 24 hours that I could not and would not take my time and attention away from all of the good things in my life.  The past 8 months have been full of change and adjustment – all for the better.  I want to take some time to thoroughly enjoy where I’m at right now.  I’ve spent too much time thinking about where I want to go, rather than enjoying the journey I’m on right now.

Will I give it another go someday?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  But, I know that for me, right now, right this very moment: this is what is right for me.

Wow.  Thanks for sticking with me on the crazy journey of the last 5 days.  It’s been insane.  I’ve been all over the flippin’ place.  I sincerely appreciate all of the positive words and encouragement you all gave me.  Really.  It means a lot that people I’ve never shook hands with, hugged – it means a lot that you took the time to offer your encouragement.  And, of course, it means a lot that my family has stuck by my side and supported me.

Love you guys.

What Goes Up…

…must come down.  Crashing down.  See: Jessi’s emotional state.

Last week I couldn’t get over how happy I was.  How “perfectly” everything was falling into place.  Now don’t give me wrong, I’m no stranger to the ups and downs.  I don’t live in a bubble where nothing bad ever happens.  But in the span of 5 days, my emotional state has been INSANE.

The lack of sleep, exhaustion, and general feelings of being overwhelmed got the best of me yesterday.  Thank goodness, I had the foresight to ask for an additional vacation day.

I didn’t even really sleep in.  I was up at 8.  Messed with the dogs and found myself walking in circles trying to find a good place to study here at home.

Look at Rudy - just like a little kid waiting for the neighbor kids to come out and play!

Look at Rudy – just like a little kid waiting for the neighbor kids to come out and play!

Remember that we have no living room furniture, dining room table, and boxes are everywhere.  (We will have living room and dining room furniture today.)  As I was laying on the bed, trying to read, take notes and comprehend my assignments, I called Craig at work and cried.  I can’t even explain how overwhelmed I was feeling.  What did I get myself into!?  He calmed me down a bit and I realized that I needed to get out of the house in order to be productive.

I showered and headed to the public library.  ahhhh, much better.  Back on track.

Room to spread out and get organized!

Room to spread out and get organized!

And then the reading assignments that weren’t really that many pages took me over 3 hours.  Another harsh reality check.  I am going to be giving up copious amounts of time with my family and friends to make this happen.  Now, I knew law school would be a serious commitment, but it’s a bit shocking to my routine.

I came home, took a quick cat nap and headed in for my first night at law school.

Here is where my pieces really fall apart.

Let me preface this by saying that I wasn’t able to make orientation (I was presenting at orientation for a different part of the university).  I met with the Dean the following day to get the basics.  I think she took for granted the fact I work on campus and really glossed over everything.  Apparently, at orientation, they learned how to prepare a case.  I had no idea.

So, wouldn’t you know that on the very first night of the very first class, I have a professor who requires you to stand when he calls on you, no, no, no, when he calls on you involuntarily.  And wouldn’t you know that of two people that are called upon to stand a present a case, I would be one of those lucky people.

Now, for the sake of not throwing myself as big of a pity party as I want, I’ll say it didn’t go so hot for the other girl either.  BUT, it was humiliating.  It was awful.  I felt so unprepared, because I was unprepared, despite the fact I spent about 4 hours reading and taking notes on mayyybe 30 pages of content.  Oh yeah, I was also moving my life into our first home.  That happened, too.

Personality-wise, I like the first professor better, even though he embarrassed the shit out of me.  The second professor talked too much like a lawyer.  I’m sorry, but it just isn’t necessary to use big words when a “regular” one will do.  I know you’re smart, sir, you are a law school professor, after all.

So, of course, on the way home, I blubbered to my kid sister about how I don’t think I’m smart enough.  I don’t think it’s a good fit for my personality.  It’s going to be a huge-er (yes, huge-er) commitment than I could’ve imagined, given the fact I have a husband, 2 furbabies, and a love for spending time with those I care so much about.  My first bout of graduate school I wasn’t married, lived by myself, and only had one furbaby (I did complete that go-round, you can call me “Master Jessi”). ;)   Have I also mentioned that I am extremely attached to my 9:30/10pm bed time?  Y’all, I flat-out ugly cried the whole 25 minute drive home.

And, of course, she told me that I can’t quit after the first night.  And demanded I send some emails to find someone to get me on the right path.  So, I might not quit after the first night – maybe after the second, though.

Thanks to those who stuck through this post to listen to my whole “poor me” story.  I promise to get my shit together soon enough and find a seat on the happy train.

Back At It

First night of class tonight. Cue: self-doubt and meltdown.

Another reason I have the greatest employer ever:  being able to call on a Monday that I’m off to ask last minute for Tuesday off.  For the sole reason that I’m scared shitless to step foot back into the classroom.  A law classroom at that.  Hasn’t anyone seen Legally Blonde?!  I have to be PREPARED.  They could just call on me – even if I don’t raise my hand.  *gasp*

Haha, but really.  It’s intimidating for me.  When I was in grad school, I could get by without having to read every.single.word assigned.  But, they also didn’t just randomly call people out in class.  I refuse to be that girl that has no idea what is going on.  Again, haven’t you seen Legally Blonde?  I have the blonde part taken care of, I don’t want to get the the air-headed part.  SN: Thankfully, Elle was quite successful.  ;)

So, yesterday I read about 1/4 of the reading I need to have done for tonight.  I’m doing the rest today.  Yesterday ended up being a jam-packed, funnn day with my kid sister.  We grabbed lunch and went furniture shopping!

Thanks, Kels for posing on various couches.  She insisted on acting like she was “entertaining” people.  So glad she did, it was so helpful!  tehehe

furniture 60s

I love, love, loved this couch.  It was real leather.  So soft.  A unique color, but I totally think we could’ve rocked it.  Craig refused.  It was “too 80’s.”  Dear Craig, it’s actually more like 60’s, but that’s okay.  He put his foot down.  It’s still living at the store.  I’m a little sad.

furniture black

I also loved this.  It was black/white patterned (herringbone, maybe?), which helped make it look more gray.  Ultimately, we decided that the dogs could potentially leave too much of a mess on a fabric couch.  They shed quite a bit.

furniture leather

This was the winner.  You can’t beat that it was in the clearance section and it was really nice!  The leather was tough, so I doubt the dogs’ claws will do damage.  And leather will be easier to wipe clean should something be spilled or muddy paws find their way onto it.  Because it’s dark, the living room paint most certainly needs to be lightened up.

Thanks again, Kels, for you wonderful modeling skills!

Time to get serious, folks.  I’ll be spending the remainder of my day doin’ my readin’, writin’, and ‘rithmatic.  Because after the little show I put on this morning (crying to my husband on the phone while he is at work, yes, literally crying), I know I have a lot of work to do to get started on the right foot.