Category Archives: Bio

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

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.

Sunday Social

Good morning! I’m waking up to my first official morning in our first home! What, whaaaaat. I will be a busy, busy bee unpacking. We’re also headed to my grandma’s to relieve her of the oodles and oodles of items I’ve kept in “storage” in her basement for the past few years. Bonus is that we’re also headed home with some other goodies for the house!

Until I can get around to showing you the booty, let’s get to Sunday Social!

1. What do you miss most about being a kid?
Not having to worry about a thang. Mom and dad took good care of us kids. We always had good food in our bellies, clothes on our back, we traveled a lot, and of course, our home was always filled with love. It still is, for sure, but man, I’d love to go back and just have mom and dad fund my lifestyle. Maybe they’ll think about it? Whatdoyasay, mama? Papa? ….no? Oh, okay.

Proof-1002

Love ’em.

2. Did you have a nickname growing up? What was it?
I did, I did. Whether it was was “Big J” (Kelsey was Little K), “Flounder” (I loved to swim!), “Pookie” (hayyyy, Kels!), I had a number of them. But, I gained one in high school and it’s stuck the longest: Ducky. All thanks to my dad. But, honestly, it’s endearing, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t like it.

ducky

3. What was your favorite thing to do at recess?
4-square, hanging on the monkey bars. The usual.

4. What did you want to be when you grew up?
Who didn’t want to be a doctor, veterinarian or teacher? While I never wanted to be a doctor, I spent time contemplating the other two.

5. Did you participate in any school activities?
Yeah, yeah. Basketball, soccer, poms. The only one I did for four years was poms, I love me some dancin’. I even danced into my junior year of college. I miss it like crazy, but I had the opportunity to give it another go this year and was reminded that I’m not a “spring chick” anymore. Oof. My body hated me.

Dance Collage

Huge reality check seeing 2003 and 2013 – A SPAN OF 10 YEARS – on this collage.

6. What is the funniest thing you did as a kid that your parents still remind you about?
Nothing came to my mind immediately. The two stories I think of most often revolve around my sister. She was a little hellion, that one. And they both took place at Disney World, separate trips. I’ll just share one.
1. Waiting in line to see Bernstein Bears and Kelsey pitched a fit. They told her if she didn’t stop, we were leaving. …she didn’t stop. So, we left the world of children’s dreams. Kels had to stay in the hotel room, while mom and I went to the pool to play. We could hear the screaming and crying from the pool – dramatic little girl, you could say. It’s no surprise she ended up enjoying (and being very good at!) theatre. Love you, Little K.

kiddo pic

Mom/Dad, If you can think of a goodie about me, comment. For the life of me, I can’t come up with anything. I guess I was just that perfect. 😉

The Great Outdoors

Huge news in my family!  Thursday was cray-zy.

1. I was flippin’ accepted to law school, guys.  I had sort of “let that dream go” and had started working on an alternative plan.  Wouldn’t you know that the moment I’ve moved on, the best kind of reality comes crashing back in.  I start Tuesday.
2. I presented to my largest group ever last night.  We’re talking 200-plus people.  And I didn’t fall over or make a complete fool out of myself.  Even though I was on a crazy emotional high from receiving my law school news literally 15 minutes before going on.  Win.
3. We were in our house last night! AH! We dropped off a few totes to empty rather than buy more.  So crazy.  It’s so pretty.  I’m so excited.
4. My kid sister is headed to Spain!  Yes, she is brilliant; yes, she is bilingual.  And now she gets to head overseas and make us all envious of her European lifestyle.  I’m so excited for her.  It was hell trying to get her Visa straightened out, but she persevered and has all of her documents in for processing.  Way to go, kid.
To say I’m on an emotional high of sorts today would be an understatement.  Whew.  Good thing I have the weekend to recover.  Oh, wait, that’s right.  I don’t.  We are moving!  Wahoo!

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Well, yesterdays post left Craig with some very strong feelings.  We are able to chat online while we are at work, and the arrival of my post to his inbox prompted the following – And I quote:

Craig: garage is my territory. get back in your territory
…and a little bit later on:
Craig: you stay out of the garage and basement
It made me laugh quite a bit.  Well, I suppose if that is what he wants, he better get used to the idea of me just doing whatever I please in the other spaces that he has since deemed “my territory.”  Mwahahaha.
Finally, we’re moving outside!  Thanks for sticking with me this week and offering so many great tips, tricks, and ideas!  I’m beyond excited to load up tonight to move tomorrow!  Our home will be a clean slate for us to do with what we please.

You’re going to recognize these first two inspirations from yesterday.  Jen, from IHeartOrganizing, and Cassie, from Hi Sugarplum! are just beyond talented.  Look at these outdoor spaces!  Wowza.

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I love the out door rug!  Though, our deck is a very dark brown color, so I don’t foresee me being able to go too color crazy until the day we decide to lighten it up.  But, the mixture of patterns, the chairs, and table are so nice.  Very classy!  Another fabulous project completed by Jen!

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Hello color and happiness!  I’m digging the mixture of patterns and the furniture.  It’s so cheerful!  And that table in the lower right corner?  Yeah, that was a DIY project of Cassie’s.  No biggie.  It’s only awesome.  I love this space.  Like, love, love, it.  This combined with her garage space I shared yesterday, she just may be too talented for her own good.

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Our deck is massive.  Craig and I are trying to decide how we want to furnish it.  Do we want a table and chairs to eat at?  More comfy chairs like what Cassie has above?  Someday I’m sure we can do both, but money doesn’t grow on trees, so right now we are going to have to make the choice.  We are leaning towards the comfort part.  Craig and I aren’t huge on eating outdoors anyway.  The weather has to be perfect for that to happen.  It can’t be windy.  And their can’t be bugs.  So, basically, we do it once a year. ha. In the meantime, we can sit in our dining room and open all the windows.  Sounds good.  But, in the meantime I will just admire this picture of a combination patio/deck.  Purrrrdy.

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The colors! The rug! The tent/awning/thingie.  So great!

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It’s those light colors again, guys!  This is so pretty!  I don’t think it’s feasible with two dogs that will undoubtedly be running around with muddy paws.  But, a girl can dream.

Thanks for humoring me this week!  I had a lot fun going through to find some of my dream spaces.  Thanks again for all of the thoughts that you’ve offered up this week.  Maybe some point down the road I’ll do another mini-series for bathrooms, laundry, dining room, etc.  Until then – wish me luck!  We loadin’ up and headin’ out!

Outdoor space: what do you all think?  Any tips for making outdoor furniture multi-functional?  Anything you’ve learned while doing your own space?  Let me hear it!