Bucket List Time! A New Decade, A New Chapter

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I’ve actually had a bucket list in my head for awhile but I have never written it down. Ever since I saw Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson in the movie The Bucket List I’ve wanted to make a list of my own. Though jumping out of a plane is definitely NOT on my bucket list, I do have a few things I want to do before it’s too late to do them.

But First, About my Birthday…

This past Friday I celebrated my 40th Birthday. I had originally wanted to celebrate with a few of my female friends at home with drinking and games and shootin’ the shit but the ladies thought it would be great to go out. I wasn’t all that sure as I am not big on the partying these days but I went out.  what the hell though right? It’s not like I do it very often and it was my birthday.

Before heading out though we all had a glass of wine and a few jello-o shots for the road. Then we picked up our 4th party goer at work where the girls surprised me with a piece of birthday cake. After the song was sung and the cake was eaten – I needed help eating it as it was very good but so rich – we headed to our destination.

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We went to a place called The Tunnel Bar and I fell in love with the Martini bar and the seating area was so comfy!You literally are walking through a small tunnel as you enter. The leather seats and coffee tables are on either side of you as you walk towards the Martini bar. I should have taken pictures because it was very cozy but of course I didn’t. I had my first Raspberry Truffle Martini. Well, two actually. They were so damn good! After our drinks the girls took me upstairs to the dance floor. They wanted to dance. I wasn’t feeling it but I followed them.

There was another bar upstairs where we all had a birthday cake shot. It wasn’t that good but it certainly had a bang and I was definitely feeling the liquor in my system by then. The dance floor was way too crowded with way too many 20-somethings around me and the music was unfamiliar. They only played two songs I actually knew. Yep! That made me feel a bit on the old side.

After dancing to one or two songs we went outside for some air. At that point I remember we were chatting up a very nice police officer then heading back to the car. When we got back to my place we chit chatted for awhile before passing out. The night was fun, even if it wasn’t what I had in mind. It was a good time and I was definitely hungover the next day.

So Now to my Bucket List….

bucketlist_rockinrandommomAll the next day I pretty much laid on the couch watching Ghost Brothers on my DVR. Occasionally Conner would come cuddle with me but I had time to think and reflect on many things that day. One of them being my bucket list. I’m still working on this list. I think I will be working on it for at least the next ten years because there will always be things I want to do.

 

 

 

Here is my list so far:

  1. Travel to the UK – I have wanted to see Ireland, England, Wales, and Scotland since I was a child. From books I’ve read to movies I’ve seen the landscape just looks so beautiful and amazing and the history! Oh the history! From Queen Elizabeth I -who is one of my historic feminine heroes- to visiting ancient Viking settlements, to actually seeing up close Stonehenge, I cannot wait to go there!
  2. Visiting the rest of Europe – I look forward to visiting France, Germany, Italy, Greece, and many other countries in Europe with so much history!
  3. Finally finish my first book – Maybe even get two published!
  4. Go on a three day hiking trip – I know this one seems small but I’ve been busy raising children and I haven’t had the time or the money so now it’s on my bucket list.
  5. Conquer some of my fears – Like my fear of tall heights and my fear of spiders. This one will be the hardest one on my list.

As I said, I’m still working on this list but these are my top 5 things I want to do within the next 20 years. Yes you read that right. 20 Years! I want to give myself some time to complete this list. Especially about the spiders. I am so not ready for that one!

Have you made a bucket list yet? What’s on it? Leave a comment below:)

Thanks so much for reading!

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I am linking with these fabulous linkies:

 

 

My Random Musings
Cuddle Fairy

40 and Single and Happy About it!

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I am 40 and single and yes! I am happy about it. Some people who read this might not understand why I’m happy about being single. We live in a society where being coupled up is normal and the notion of even wanting to be alone scares us. It’s not considered the norm to want to be alone. After all, we are social beings and wanting to be eternally loved by another person is only natural.

In my early twenties I looked at love and relationships much like most people. I wanted to find “the one”. For me, I wanted to find someone who would rescue me from my shitty life and I’d live happily ever after. Those are the dreams of a young woman who doesn’t know where she fits in this world.

I had very little confidence in myself, though I hid it well. Being young, confused, and without rules set me up for much heart break. It also made me cold and bitter. With no solid boundaries I didn’t know what a healthy relationship looked like. When I was at my worst, I met my ex-husband. Looking back, I had gone into that relationship not knowing who I was or what I truly wanted.

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He is a good one but again, neither of us really knew what we wanted. Neither of us understood. We clashed. We had kids. I got diagnosed with PTSD. Our oldest has Autism. All of this was draining on two young people from broken homes and issues we didn’t know we had. Now that I’m 40 and single I am looking back on this and realizing an important life lesson.

That I need to find happiness within myself first before I can be with anyone else.

After my separation from my ex, I dated a little. I thought that I could just date around and figure things out. Turns out that’s not me. It never was. Casual dating doesn’t make me happy. I’m just not built that way. That was another thing that I learned about myself.

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So I took a few years to work on myself. Then last year I met someone and for a time, I was really happy. He met a longing in me that I didn’t know I had. We had a soul connection. It was profound and beautiful! As time went on and as I’m fast approaching 40, I started to really think about what I want from a romantic relationship.

My therapist says I want a male version of me. Haha! I sat down and made a short list the other day of the qualities I would look for and I am beginning to think she may be right. My top three qualities: self-sufficient, independent, and motivated. Then the list got longer as I was writing. Most of it is what I assume most people want. Great sense of humor, laid back, and intelligent. I love a deep thinker who I can have great conversation with. But I also love someone I can go on an adventure with who also loves to veg out on the couch. There is a lot more to it than that but you get the idea.

Then another Epiphany happened and I discovered yet another new thing about myself…

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I’m not sure when this happened but there it is. I’m afraid of commitment. It’s not just with relationships though. Apparently, this is why I haven’t finished any of my books. Nor why I can’t commit to a career path. Friendships, family, even my blog have suffered because of my commitment issues.

Then I had another epiphany. I’m happiest when I’m alone. Now most people tell me that this is only because I haven’t met the right person yet. Maybe that’s true. What I do know for sure is that I’m on my own path of self-discovery and I am constantly evolving my thinking and my perspective. If someone comes along that is on the same path as me – Great! If not, I’m okay with that too.

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I spent the bulk of my youth dating some real jerks. I let the wrong ones into my life. The deep seeded trust issues I already had didn’t help. I didn’t know myself. I wasn’t the self-assured and confidant woman I am today. Twenty years ago I settled because I was a “go with the flow” kind of person.

Today, I know what I want – and what I don’t want. I am 40 and single because I won’t settle for less than I deserve. When I was 20 I didn’t think I deserved a whole lot. Now that I’m 40 and single, I know better. My standards are higher and I’m not afraid to set boundaries or walk away from something that doesn’t make me happy.

Thanks so much for reading!

 

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My Random Musings
Cuddle Fairy

July Goals and Turning 40

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Yep! This is the month I turn the big 4-0! Turning 40 has been on my mind a lot lately. Actually, my 40th birthday has been on my mind since New Year’s, if I’m being completely honest here. It’s not something I have been looking forward to. In fact, I’ve been dreading it, though not for the reasons you might think.

I dread turning 40 because I don’t want to leave my thirties. And no, it’s not because thirties are younger. Truth be told it has nothing to do with age. I learned so much about myself in my thirties.  I struggled through mental illness most of my life. In my thirties, I fought back. I worked my ass off to overcome my past. Through this work, I learned to accept myself while still working to become a better version of me.

I learned to forgive those who have hurt me. I have also learned to forgive myself. Forgiveness was something I never thought I would know. But it was a goal I set in my thirties and I achieved it. Loving myself was another thing I never thought I would know or understand. Learning to love myself came with healing but I got there. I love myself now. So, turning 40 is bittersweet for me.

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You know how people say that when you close one chapter in your life you start a new one? That’s the exciting part. I’m starting a new decade and writing a new chapter in my book of life. Turning 40 is a good thing. At the same time, it’s incredibly sad for me because it feels like I’m leaving behind a friend.

Rather than sulk though, I have decided that this month I’m going to write posts about my mixed feelings towards turning 40. I am going to write about what this means for me in many different aspects of my life. What does motherhood look like? How about career? Where does love play into it?

I have recently discovered several different blogs that talk about the importance of setting blogging goals. So I’m going to work on that. Until now, I’ve just been winging it. Now that I’m turning 40 I want to set new goals and make new rules for myself.

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Turning 40 is also surreal. It still doesn’t feel like I’m about to be “over the hill”. What does that even mean anyway? Maybe because we are living longer these days, 40 really doesn’t seem like that big a deal. It is a big deal though. It is because now I am a more confidant person. I’m definitely more confidant now than I ever was in my twenties.

Yes, this is what July brings to me. I am looking forward to sharing most of my thoughts with you as I get ready to start this new chapter!

#turning40

Thanks so much for reading!

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Remembering 9/11 What I Teach My Son

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Today, September 11, 2016, marks the 15 year anniversary of the most tragic day in American History during my lifetime. Remembering 9/11 means more to me than just another tragic day though. Just like our grandparents and great-grandparents, who remember exactly where they were and what they were doing on December 7, 1941 I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing September 11, 2001. Here is my account of that day.

Where I was…

I was living in my hometown of Baltimore, MD. Only 45 minutes away from D.C. About an hour from Pennsylvania. I was living with my ex and mother-in-law in a nice 2 bedroom apartment. I had a black cat name Sage and I was 7 months pregnant with my first child. Adam was still growing in my belly that day. In fact, the very next day, September 12th, marked my 7 month mark. That’s where I was that day, 15 years ago. This is me remembering 9/11.

What I was doing…

I was working in a daycare center during my pregnancy and I was helping out in the baby room that day. I was rocking a baby to sleep and looking out the window, enjoying the rays of the sun that were shining through. It was a beautiful morning and we teachers had decided that we would take the babies for a walk in the strollers. It was such a beautiful morning.

We were listening to a CD of baby music. I had to go to the bathroom so I put the baby in a bouncy chair. When I got back from the bathroom, I walked into a dark room with only a few lamps for light. The whole vibe in the room had completely changed. I heard a voice on the radio saying something about the towers but I thought I was listening to a movie preview. I honestly thought that. Looking back, when I play those moments in my head, they play out in slow motion. As if it was something that I should have known. As if it was something we all should have known. That’s how I am remembering 9/11.

Within the hour, most of the children in the daycare center had gone home. Most of the parents of these children worked in D.C. It’s not uncommon for residents of Baltimore to work in D.C. As these parents came to pick up their little ones, I saw them hug their babies tighter than I had ever seen. I saw the fear on their faces. The worry they had for their children.  Slowly it started to hit me but it didn’t really hit me until…

Watching it on TV made it real…

Most of us went home that day. We contacted our families and friends. My ex, my mother-in-law and myself sat in front of the TV and watched the footage. The three of us watched the planes hit each tower. We watched the towers fall. We watched as the people of New York ran from the buildings, covered in soot and trying to make their way through the debris.

remembering911_rockinrandommom I remember seeing a photo of a young woman my age who had died. She was also seven months pregnant with her first child. She was expecting a boy and had named him Connor. I remember feeling a sense of survivor’s guilt because I was alive. My baby was going to be born while hers didn’t even have a chance. I grieved for her and her baby. five years later when my Conner was born, I thought of her and her baby. Even though his dad and I settled on the name from a TV show, I thought of her.

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And what of my son?

I have seen a number of Facebook memes on the incoming freshman this year not being alive that fateful day in 2001 and how they will learn about it history class but will never really know how it felt to live through that day. They will never truly understand the fear, the heartbreak, and the anger we all felt that day and every day since. Our children will not understand how that day changed us as a nation. Do you know what they know? They know our anger. Young boys and girls know how divided we are. The youngest of the millennials don’t remember a time when we came together as a country. They don’t understand what United means when we say United States of America.

But my son will. He has. Every year, from the time he was about 4 years old, I told him of that day. His brother knows too. My boys may not fully understand the emotions behind that day. Maybe they won’t understand the significance of that tragedy and how it changed our country but they know that I remember. They have seen my tears. They felt my sadness. Remembering 9/11 is a part of their lives because it is a part of mine.

Where were you that day?

I don’t often listen to country but this song by Alan Jackson is for this day and I’m dedicating to Remembering 9/11

 

Thanks so much for reading!

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I am linking this with these rockin’ linkies:

My Random Musings
Pink Pear Bear
DomesticatedMomster

 

 

Getting My Gamer Girl On!

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So the past two weeks have been kind of a lazy, yet productive time for me. I got a few personal things done that I needed to get squared away but during this time I really needed to zone out by getting my gamer girl on!

It started out as me thinking of my future YouTube channel and mulling over the different reviews I want to do. Of course one of my first reviews will be my take on Dragon Age: Inquisition. Yeah, I know, for all you gamer geeks out there, I am coming into this a bit late seeing as how the game is almost two years old already and won game of the year.

dragonagegameofyear_rockinrandommomAnywho, So what started out as my attempt to refresh some of my memory of the game so that I can portray an accurate assessment of my opinion, ended up with me geeking out and playing the game for days on end, completely ignoring other things. I know this flaw in myself so I always made sure the things that needed to get done, got done before I started my gaming binge, as I like to call it.

I am lucky, too, that my boys are old enough now that I have a bit more freedom to play but I always make sure my babies are taken care of and on the nights when their dad had them, oh it was on like Donkey Kong baby! I rocked out in my jammies, drinking lots of coffee so that I could stay up as late as my 39 year old body could stand, propped up on my couch with three comfy pillows, only getting up when I needed to use the little girl’s room. This, my friends, is me getting my gamer girl on!

I also had my notepad and pen next to me to write down notes for my review. See, it wasn’t all wasted, ha ha! However, this was more than just me needing to jot down notes and prepare for a review. I needed this time to zone out from the world. I barely got online, with the exception of the occasional ding I would get on my phone when someone sent me a tweet, or check an email or two. Mostly, though, I stayed away from the internet. I even stayed away from Cable TV.

Yes, I have missed the last two episodes of Game of Thrones and three episodes of Outlander, not to mention three or four episodes of Fear the Walking Dead… That’s what DVR is for! I have a lot of catching up to do so no spoilers please! That’s another reason I’ve stayed away from Facebook in particular. I don’t want any spoilers of my favorite TV shows!

As I said earlier though, the past two weeks weren’t all fun and gaming. I finally got my student loan stuff worked out and and still working on taking care of some stuff on my credit report so that I can get a new car. I am finally getting rid of my old car because it’s just too broken for me to fix it. Had to deal with some housing issues as well and finally got my resume looking pretty good, so that’s a plus! All of these things I worked on one at a time but as any of you know, even the small stressors in life can weigh a person down and it was this, proud as I am of myself for getting shit done, that I needed a breather.

Back to my game. So, yes I use gaming as a way to escape this world sometimes. It doesn’t happen that often anymore as I have found several other ways to zone out but this time I had a date with my characters in Dragon Age: Inquisition and they gave me the solace I needed that helps me hit that refresh button on my soul when the world just gets to be a little too much.

In Dragon Age: Inquisiton I can be one of four races – Dalish Elf, human Noble, Qunari Tal Vashoth, Dwarven Carta and in these races I can be a warrior, a mage, or a rogue either male or female. I have two of every single character, both male and female! This game allows me to step into a new world where I get to fight dragons, use magical armor and weapons, have a romance (or two), and save the world! Below is the video that I absolutely love and sums up the game perfectly in my opinion so check it out! The band who sings the song is called The Phantoms! If you like this song, be sure to check them out as well!

I am linking this with:

My Random Musings
Reflections From Me
Rhyming with Wine
The Secret Diary of Agent Spitback
Cuddle Fairy