04 / 52

 “A portrait of my son, once a week, every week in 2015

DJ – 
You are my everything, my sweet, darling, loveable boy. I’ll swallow these moments whole.

Excerpts from my journal | 04

Twenty-fifteen. It’s hard to believe where we are. I have someone else’s words echoing in my head, having said it better than I ever could: “I felt like last year I never truly enjoyed the year… I never felt in it. Not being into each task and found myself always floating way to something else. STAY and remember you have time to do it all.”

Yes. Just, yes.

++

I’m going to write that today is a good day, because it is. It has been. And I will appreciate that no matter what the rest of the day brings.

++

This morning before I got out of bed, I was catching up on some blog reading on my phone, and I read something particularly moving“The only thing you need to do to be happy is: suspend judgment on yourself.”

++

I was scribbling a note in my Lena Dunham book when I saw DJ approaching me. When he sees a pen of any kind it’s as though he has tunnel vision, so I knew he was coming right for it. Without giving it much thought, I pushed the red Pentel pen trough my ponytail before he could notice.

It wasn’t until three hours later, after a quick trip to Mc Donalds to procure an iced coffee the size of my head and some serious one-on-one playtime that I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror in the bedroom. I still had the pen in my hair.

Seeing myself like that: wild, curly hair, donned in a hoodie and jeans with the tell tale pen tucked into my hair, I was transported back to my College days. It was me, years eighteen through twenty-two, back when I thought life was easy and that everything would work out as long as I 1) found a good job post graduation, 2) moved out of my parents house, and 3) never stopped writing.

++

In a little over two months from now I’ll be getting my breast implants, and despite my good intentions, I’m terrified of what people are going to think of me. I’m always too concerned with what people will think of me…

++

xo,
rdg

Project Life 2015 | Week 02

Week two! After this post, I’m most likely going to be sharing my spreads two weeks at a time every second Monday. Photographing, editing and composing the posts every week is becoming quite tedious, so this is more for my sanity than anything.

Full spread view.

Left side, design F.


Right side, design A.

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* Project Life is a product, system and a lifestyle created by Becky Higgins. In 2015, I’m creating a spread for each week of the year. Here are all of my pages from 2013, 2014 + 2015.

03 / 52

 “A portrait of my son, once a week, every week in 2015


DJ – 
You found these cowboy boots tucked deep in your closet. They were handed down to us and are much too big for you, but you don’t seem disturbed. You love slipping your feet into them and clomping around upstairs for minutes on end.

10 Pieces of writing you should all have read by now

For as far back as I can remember, there has always been a correlation between what I’m reading and what I’m writing, as in: the better reading I do, the better my writing. In the past two weeks I have read some truly amazing books, blogs and articles, and they have inspired me so much that I wanted to share them with all of you.
1. Just you wait – “When you calmly respond that “nope, not quite yet!” the person will shake their head, smile wisely and say slowly in the most terrifying voice, “Just you wait.” ” Elise has always had a way with words, but as a mother of a 22 month old, this particular post really hit home. 
2. Why all 20-somethings should journal – “Nowadays it’s easy to get caught up in all the things going on outside of ourselves,” says the author, and I couldn’t agree more. As someone who began journaling at the ripe age of seven, it is something that I cannot imagine ever stopping, and what has helped me through many troubling periods in my life.

3. 30 Life things I Try and Remember – I only recently discovered Emma Gannon, and my goodness, I didn’t know what I was missing. From “A good song in the morning can change your day” to “Don’t listen to everything your idol has to say” I found myself nodding along to everything on her list.


4. Why we all need a platonic soulmate – “It’s easy to get caught up in the fantasy of finding The One, and it’s even easier to get caught up in the reality of our culture’s obsession with coupling up. But it’s important to remember that it is completely okay to focus on your friends as the great loves of your life if that’s what makes you happy.” Need I really say more?

5. Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar, by Cheryl Strayed – If I owned the copy that I read instead of borrowing it from the library it would have been covered in underlines and highlighter marks. I was so blown away by her advice, but also by how she so thoroughly injected stories of her past into her responses.

6. Other women aren’t the competition – “Her success is not your failure, her destination isn’t your own,” Megs writes (and women around the world break into applause). I was so moved by this post, had so many moments where I nodded along and thought: yes, she is right.

7. The only thing you need to be happy is this –  Must. keep. this. in. mind (and save myself a loooottttttt of trouble)

8. Practical advice when kids have too much stuff – Stop buying it. Lead by example. Say “just one.” All so great, all so true. A good read for all the parents out there.

9. 20 Little things I’ve learned life is too short for – “Worrying about those five pounds. Nobody but you knows they exist.” AMEN. Just… AMEN.

10. I Bought a plant – You may think it’s a blog post about a plant, which it kind of is, but it’s really more about radical self-love. A must read by the always incredible Meg Fee.

Project life 2014 | Volume Two – Video Overview

Happy Wednesday!

As a follow up to showing you volume one of my 2014 Project Life album, here’s a look at volume two. I love watching this and looking back at all the different page designs, embellishments and papers I used. As you can tell, I really enjoy experimenting.

 

* Project Life is a product, system and a lifestyle created by Becky Higgins. In 2015, I’m creating a spread for each week of the year. Here are all of my pages from 2013, 2014 + 2015.

Winter lists on a Monday morning.

We’ve had it easy so far this winter here in Las Vegas. There was a week of bone-chilling cold, and then things warmed up again. Christmas has gone, New Years is a memory, and January is in full effect.
This morning I’m thinking about the here and now.

things currently on the table.
laptop in need of charging
half-burnt candle
a discarded banana peel

things that haunt me.
disposing of my college journals.
all the stories I haven’t written.
the self-depricating voices in the back of my head.

things I want to do but won’t.
learn to surf.
go jeans shopping.
stop being envious of others.

the type of woman I want to be.
forgiving
ambitious
patient

what I’m working on.
myself
my marriage
writing. always writing.

things I’ve loved lately.
tiny beautiful things
red lipstick
ending every day reading
a new year

p.s. spring + summer lists.

02 / 52

“A portrait of my son, once a week, every week in 2015

DJ –
I am in constant awe of your personality that is shaping right in front of our eyes. Already, I see so much of your daddy and I in you, both good and bad traits. You make me so proud.

Why the season premiere of GIRLS made me sad

I love the show, GIRLS, I do. From the moment I finished the pilot episode I knew I was hooked, and I watched all three available seasons in quick succession. But something happened this time around that made my heart ache.
It started when Marnie stopped by at 6am to see Hannah off. As they struggle to get her suitcase zipped up, Hannah pulls her friend into a long, heartfelt hug… and the aching in my chest exploded.
I can empathize with Hannah. I know what it’s like to leave the security of your home, and everything and everyone you know, and move on to a new chapter in your life, hoping that you’re heading towards something amazing, something that will define you and shape you into the person you so desperately want to be.
January 22nd will mark four years since I left my friends, family and everything behind to move to Las Vegas. There has and always will be a hole in my chest for all that remains back in Canada, and witnessing that desperate hug among two best friends really hit hard. Not a day goes by that I don’t miss my life back home.

And so, as Hannah and Marnie hugged, I cried. I cried for all that I am missing – all the coffee dates and parties and milestones – and what my friends and family are in turn missing in regards to my life. Distance is isolating, lonely and deafening, and I often wonder if and when it will ever get any easier. Yet as the episode ended with Hannah in the back seat of her parents car on the way to the airport, I wiped my tears with the sleeve of my shirt and took a deep breath.

I am stronger than Hannah Horvath, this I know.

I’ll be okay.

An Open Letter to my Son: Just be Yourself

Since before my son DJ was born in March 2013, I have been writing to him in the form of a book made up mostly of words of guidance that I hope he will hold dear to him as he grows older.


In this day and age, where we are inundated with “perfect” images of everyones’ “perfect” lives across social media, I found this particular letter to be of utter importance.


Son,

If you take away only one thing from this book, DJ, please let it be this: just be yourself.

You are good enough. Most people are afraid to do things because they are afraid they’re not good enough, afraid they’ll fail. But you are good enough — learn that and you won’t be afraid of new things, won’t be afraid to fail, won’t need the approval of others. You’ll be pre-approved — by yourself.

There will be people that cross your path that will try to tell you that you aren’t good enough – not smart enough, not pretty enough, or athletic enough. I’m here to tell you that whoever you are, the kind of person that you grow up to be, will always be enough. You will always be enough.

You will find out that there are people in life who feel poorly about themselves, and think that the only way they can build themself up and feel better about themself is by tearing others down. These people, DJ, are more insecure and confused about themselves than you could ever possibly be. Do not let them get you down.

Don’t be afraid of who you are. Don’t be afraid to be yourself, whoever that may be. DJ I promise you that there won’t be anything you can do to make your father and I stop loving you. Be proud of who you are and where you came from. You are the product of two parents who love you so fiercely and wholly. You were created in me, grown in me. You are a part of me, and my body. Nothing you can do would or could ever change that.

This next one can be tough, DJ. I know from personal experience that so much of growing up is discovering where you fit in, and so sometimes that means you try on a lot of different hats. Still, don’t try to be someone else, whomever you think you should be, meaning: don’t dumb yourself down for someone, or pretend to be into basketball, or ballet, or boxing, when you really aren’t. There is such a thing as compromise, yes, but it is different than claiming to like something when you don’t. Don’t pretend that you’re in to reading if you’re not. Don’t take an art class just to impress a girl, take it because it is something new and different and it will challenge you.

Just be yourself. You’re already amazing.