Fantasy Bachelor: Week 4

27th January 2015

I’m late posting the recap this week – Henry decided last night that the notion of bedtime was both irritating and hurtful, so we weren’t able to watch live. I hope you can all forgive me.

Group Date #1 – Psycho Lake Party

Megan, Kaitlyn, Ashley S, Ashley I, Juelia, Samantha, Mackenzie, and Kelsey. The date card says “Let’s do what feels natural.” This is a hilarious concept on a show that seems to be, at all times, the absolute opposite of natural. Gonna be honest, Ashley I. and her crop top and already-unzipped jorts are grossing me out. Like all shy girls, she starts the party by taking off her bikini top in front of everyone. #shygirlprobs, am I right? Kelsey sums it up exactly as I would have – “I’m done. This is stupid.”

Back at the house – Double, double, toil and trouble

Carly adorably FLIPS OUT when Chris’s three sisters show up. She’s pretty starstruck, and I’m charmed. Jilian is mid-REM when the sisters arrive, so she and her black modesty box stumble sheepishly into the room behind everyone else. The sisters sit down for quality time with each girl.

Jade and Whitney get the spotlight during the sister interviews – both of them seemed to do just fine. Whitney seems like she is an ACE at meeting the family – this is probably something that always goes well for her.

On the Group Date, Kelsey is throwing MAJOR SHADE at the entire date – the water is muddy, the girls are dumb, the date is a “hell hole.” She wraps things up by saying “I wanna be where I wanna be, and I don’t wanna be here.” Mother Nature immediately retaliates by sending a bee to sting her in the groin. That’ll teach you to be a whiner!

Kaitlyn proves herself a master campsite-builder, only making her seem cooler to me. I WAS shocked that she didn’t make a crass tent-pitching joke, but the night is still young.

Jade gets the One on One Date! (+2) The other girls are crestfallen.

Back at the Group Date, the rose is in play! Kaitlyn asks Chris about his love language – he likes back rubs and “touchy feely” affection. Kaitlyn likes secrets and words. They kiss (+1). Kelsey is still just not feeling this date, although she turns on the sunshine with Chris. I think she’s trying to charm him into letting her go back to the house.

As the full moon rises, the girls shoot tequila and start the party. Ashley S. has the hiccups and starts teaching campfire songs. As a former camp counselor, I understand the need to sing in unison when a fire is going. Game recognize game. Mackenzie brings up aliens again. Chris jumps out with his best AXE MURDERER impression. Just a lot of wholesome campout fun all around.

Showing off his good instincts, Chris is mega-weirded out by Ashley S.. She gets her kisses in, so +1 for that. She drops an “I love you” in her ramble, which led to a major living room discussion on whether we count that as the official FIRST I LOVE YOU. After careful review, we count it and Ashley S. loses 5 points. He looks as uncomfortable as I feel. Kaitlyn drops a “right reasons” accusation (-3). Both of those girls on my team, so Josh says he’s mounting his comeback.

Ashley I, your makeout technique grosses me out (+1 for the kiss). I can’t help but think of this couple when I see her move in for the kiss:

Kaitlyn, my #1 favorite, gets the group date rose. Ashley I. and her creepy spider leg lashes vow to show Chris the real her – so she sneaks to his tent to tell him how “frickin’ innocent” she is. Chris is like I’ve kissed you, I know you don’t know what you’re doing. Ashley wraps up her ITM by saying “He can kind of probe at that area if he wants later on,” which is the least virginal way I’ve ever heard anyone talk about their virginity. EVER.

Back at the house

I like Jillian because it’s evident that when she’s not on a date, she’s napping. Smeared eyeliner, frizzy hair, comfy clothes…I get it, girl. She fills in the other girls on the details for the one on one, and the rest of the girls are obvi. mega-bummed.

“All I wanna do is go on a date and dress like a princess.” – WE KNOW, ASHLEY I. She says if asked, she would describe herself as a “hopeless romantic Disney princess.” I don’t think I could ever be friends with Ashley I. in real life.

crowJade’s fairy godmother team arrives, and I love them.

This date really does look like a blast. She gets whisked into a room full of dresses and jewelry, some of which she gets to keep! Ashley I. watches from the corners, skulking around like Maleficent’s pet crow. She cannot shut up about how mad she is to be missing this date. Honestly, just gross.

One on One Date

Chris preps for the date by practicing his ballroom dancing and it is the most adorable thing he has done so far. He really is giving Jade the sweetest smile as she walks down the stairs, and she doesn’t trip, so she’s already doing better than I could! They seem to have a good conversation over dinner, and Chris presents her with the coveted Cinderella date rose.

They wrap things up with a VERY classy private concert (+5) and some kissing (+1) on top of a table in the ballroom. He seems to like her a lot.

Back at the House

In a totally normal and not at all psychotic move, Ashley I. puts on her OWN princess dress and grumps around eating corn on the cob and drinking champagne. Josh predicts “She’s gonna get wasted and do something stupid.” I think it’s a sound prediction – if not tonight, then soon.

Group Date #2 – Trash the dresses

Nikki, Jillian, Whitney, Carly, Britt, Becca – “Let’s get dirty.”

If Ashley I. was bummed to miss the princess dress date, you KNOW she was foaming at the mouth over the wedding dresses! Jillian seems like she would gladly trade places to get out of her dress. But once she spots the MuckFest course, she brightens – an obstacle course! She gets to use her muscles! Hooray!

Jillian won, crossing the finish line with arms raised in triumph as the theme from Chariots of FIre swelled behind her. THIS IS HER MOMENT. Who needs a rose? She’s got an obstacle course and mud!

Jillian and Chris shower up and head to the evening portion of the date. She’s VERY high energy and crass, and she seems a little manic – Chris doesn’t seem to be especially enamored. She’s definitely losing him to his visions of “unicorns and dancing fairies.” He opts not to give her the rose – a bold move from Prince Farming considering she could probably bench press him. She starts scrambling and loses two points for two “vulnerable” statements. I really feel bad for her – the whole thing is weird and uncomfortable, and I think she really was doing her best. But props to Chris for being upfront and not stringing her along.

Rose Ceremony Night

So many of these girls are weirdos. Megan and her blindfold fruit tray game. Ashley I. and her 1,000 ways to say she’s a virgin before actually saying it (-1 for crying).

During the Ashley I. I’M A VIRGIN LOOK AT ME show, Becca volunteers that she, too, is a virgin – but the difference is that Becca is totally classy and subtle and doesn’t feel the need to make a huge deal about her private choices. No actual points to Becca, but major Corley points to her for being the Gallant to Ashley I.’s Goofus.

goofus-gallant2005b

Britt is worrying about Chris’s moral standards for allowing girls to skinny dip on the lake date, and Chris is basically like Um, I’m a grown man and I do what I want, BYE MOM. She’s essentially talking trash about the other girls and shaming him for his choices, which is not a smart move.

Kisses at the cocktail party (+1 point each): Carly,  Kaitlyn

How to fall in love with anyone

22nd January 2015

I really enjoyed reading this fascinating article about an experiment in making two strangers fall in love. So when I saw Cassidy Lou‘s post answering the questions from the experiment, I decided to crib her idea and answer some of them on my blog, too!

If you’re extra-curious (or if you want to share your own answers), here’s the full list of questions. I’ve selected a few to answer here.

Set I

1. Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest? I would love to have the chance to sit down for a few hours with my Grandmother Daisy. She passed away when I was 14 months old, but I’ve always felt really connected to her.

3. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why?Heck yes I do! Usually I’m praying for voicemail. Why? Two reasons: I’m a control freak, and phone calls make me feel claustrophobic.

4. What would constitute a “perfect” day for you? Coffee and breakfast with my family. Playing and reading books about trucks with Henry until he’s tired. Reading or watching a good movie while Henry naps. Lunch on a patio somewhere followed by an afternoon in the park. Cooking a healthy dinner at home and then enjoying that dinner all sitting down together with music playing and the windows open. Drinking a cold beer in the backyard, petting the dogs and talking with Josh after Henry goes to bed.

5. When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else? To myself: an impassioned rendition “Take Me To Church” in the car this morning. To someone else: last night during our dress rehearsal for our school’s Faculty Follies variety show (tomorrow! ack!).

6. If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want? The mind.

9. For what in your life do you feel most grateful? For my family and our life together.

12. If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be? I’m lazy, so I would love to wake up with the ability to run five miles without stopping. I want to skip the hard part of getting there.

Set II

14. Is there something that you’ve dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven’t you done it? I want to write a book. I haven’t done it because I’m tired when I get home from my day job, and I’m not dogged enough to put in the tremendous hours of work!

15. What is the greatest accomplishment of your life? Giving birth to this little dude: IMG_0104

16. What do you value most in a friendship? Honesty. Tell me when I have food in my teeth. Tell me when I look weird in an outfit. Tell me when I’m being unfair or unreasonable. Give it to me straight.

17. What is your most treasured memory? Late one night in September, Henry and I were wide awake together. We were in the bed, and he was swaddled up, resting on my knees facing me. He had just finished nursing and I was talking to him when he looked right into my eyes and gave me his first little smile. I hope that memory never ever fades.

23. How close and warm is your family? Do you feel your childhood was happier than most other people’s? We’re Brady-level close. I think my childhood was just about as happy as a childhood can be.

24. How do you feel about your relationship with your mother? She’s my BFF.

Set III

26. Complete this sentence: “I wish I had someone with whom I could share … “ Coffee, books, music, fun stuff outside the house. I wish I had a local BFF or tribe to hang out with.

30. When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself? In front of another person, the last time I can remember is at my Grandaddy’s funeral in September. By myself, I cried in the Harris Teeter parking lot recently because a woman was going the wrong way down a one-way traffic lane and made a really mean face at me when I tried to go the right way down the lane. I’m sensitive.

34. Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you have time to safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why? I would want to save Henry’s stuffed Badger, Babeau. It was one of the first stuffed animals he named, and I want to keep it forever and ever.

That’s it. Now we’re supposed to maintain eye contact for four straight minutes – then we’ll be in love. Do you feel it? Is there something in the air?

If you decide to answer these questions, please leave me a link in the comments! It’s like the surveys we all used to put in our AIM profiles, but way more philosophical.

 

Fantasy Bachelor: Week 3

19th January 2015

Screen-Shot-2015-01-19-at-7.57.51-PMJosh and I play in a family Fantasy Football league. It’s always fun, but I’m going to be honest: I have never been as invested in that league as I am in our current 1 on 1 Fantasy Bachelor standoff. Here are the teams.

We drafted our teams just minutes before the premiere. Weeks 1 and 2 were kind of a blur of cocktail dresses and smeared lipstick (as they always are), and because I very WISELY chose Britt, I started Week 3 in the lead, 52 – 17.

So, here’s how things went during Week 3:

Chris reacted pretty much exactly I as I would have if I woke up to Jimmy Kimmel all up in my face. WTF indeed, Prince Farming. At least he brought coffee. 1 point to Kimmel.

Per Jimmy’s new rule, Josh and I decide to deduct a point for every “Amazing” this episode.

Kaitlyn gets the 1 on 1! She’s on my team and she’s one of my favorites. I think she’s hilarious and definitely too cool to be on this show. Their car pulls up at Costco – an “exclusive club,” get it?

“This is the kind of thing real couples do together,” says the note from Jimmy. This is hilarious. I am 100% in on this Costco commercial. This date looks more fun than any private concert or group tractor race. As Chris said, “Who the hell needs helicopters when you have Costco?” I especially loved the random kids pushing them down the paper goods aisle.

Back at the ranch, Chris and Kaitlyn talk about how this normal date was super fun and unique in its normalcy. I like how casual they seem together, but Josh says that the fact that they’re kissing to fill the lulls in their conversation is not a good sign. He’s just jealous that I drafted all the frontrunners. I think Chris and Kaitlyn are adorable, and I love that she’s a total spitfire.

At dinner, things get a little awkward. Katilyn implies that Chris isn’t a “legit” farmer because he doesn’t milk cows. Jimmy wants to talk about the Fantasy Suite, which Kaitlyn handles well. This is the most meta episode of The Bachelor I have ever seen. Jimmy proposes a threesome. I’m going to say it again: I love this date.

Group Date Card: still too many girls for me to keep track of, although my girl Britt and the enigmatic Ashley S are both going, as is our sweet little songbird Carly. Jillian loses 1 point for “Amazing.”

Wrapping up the 1 on 1: Kaitlyn gets a point for her kissing on this date and 3 more for the hot tub at the end. Chris gets a point for calling Jimmy an a-hole. Josh says he wishes Jimmy Kimmel was on every episode.

Back at the house, the girls get ready for their date. Jillian is pumping iron while the other girls stretch their hamstrings in the background. The group date is a “hoedown throwdown” on a farm. The girls have to shuck corn, find an egg in a chicken pen and crack it in a frying pan, milk a goat (as LEGIT farmers do, CHRIS) and drink the milk, shovel manure, and then WRESTLE A GREASED PIG. Whoever catches and pens the pig wins. It’s a metaphor for life.

Chris basically says that drinking goat milk from the teat isn’t a dealbreaker for him, but shucking corn IS. I like that he’s clear about his priorities.

Mackenzie is DQ’ed for breaking her yolk. Jillian is way too happy about the goat milking, and Carly is right there with her making inappropriate hand motions. Carly chugs the milk like a BOSS and heads for the wheelbarrows. Kelsey drinks her milk, but just barely. Jillian takes it like a shot of tequila. All three graduate to the pigpen.

Jillian goes totally aggro and jumps the fence to wrestle the pig, but Carly is the first to capture her pig and win her very first blue ribbon. NONE of this looks especially fun for the pigs, by the way. As part of her prize, they recreate the notoriously fun, joyful and romantic painting “American Gothic.” Chris waxes poetic about how you can admire a woman who wrestles a pig to the ground for the momentary affection of a stranger. He’s totally right.

And now, for the evening portion. Carly jumps right in and “steals” Chris from the group. Her blue ribbon for pig-wrestling is totally going to her head. She sings a verse of “You are woman, I am man” and gets 1 point for a kiss. Amber asks him for a slow dance and says “just pretend it’s our wedding,” which is totally a normal and not at all awkward thing to do. She gets a kiss, and Jillian does too (+1). Chris reminds us that kissing is “the point of this whole thing,” which Mackenzie somehow doesn’t understand. She and Britt both wish that they were the only ones racking up kiss points. Such is life on The Bachelor, ladies.

Becca gets some hand-holding on the rooftop as she shares her abbreviated life story. They’re making me nervous standing so close to the edge. She gets a hug and actually DECLINES a kiss (nervy!), and she gets docked for an “Amazing.”

Back at the house, the girls are bumming around waiting for the date card. It’s for Whitney!  She loses a point (for Josh) when she cries over getting the card.

Wrapping up the group date: the rose goes to…Becca! Way to go, you coy lady, you! Carly is mega-bummed.

1 on 1 number 2: Whitney is “SO EXCITED” to be with Chris today. They clink glasses over a vineyard and dive right in to the life talk. Chris is looking for a smart, beautiful, funny girl who can “roll the cow (cob? What did he say?) and shoot the sh*t.” Typical. Totally randomly and not at all with the careful planning of the production team, Whit and Chris decide to go full #YOLO and crash a wedding going on just down the hill. Y’all crazy! Their plan is to pretend to be engaged and just “wing it” if anyone asks them who they are.

They “sneak” into the reception and are promptly invited to sit with the bride’s sisters and maid of honor. Chris blows it immediately by asking members of the wedding party who they are. Whitney covers for him and steers the conversation toward their fake engagement (another example of how she can roll the cab? tab? cob? WHAT IS HE SAYING?). She’s an excellent liar, which is I guess a great character trait for your future wife?

Chris is great at all of your favorite terrible wedding dances, including my fave, the fish on a hook. Whitney is honestly delightful – she’s moving in to frontrunner territory tonight. +1 point for a kiss on the dance floor (we count one kiss per date), -2 for two more “Amazing” offenses. Chris runs across a field to get her a rose (aww), and they end their date in a beautiful field with another smooch. They’re cute together, for sure.

Rose Ceremony day: Zoom in on Chris doing pilates crunches on his porch and then showering, also on his porch, and alongside Jimmy Kimmel. Up at the house, Whitney is tight-lipped with the girls about her “AMAZING” date, which is good. Take note, Mackenzie.

Jimmy delivers the news that they’re skipping the cocktail party in lieu of a POOL PARTY!!! Bring on the bikinis and full faces of makeup, always a practical pool party choice. Chris is pumped about the pool, but Ashley I. is NOT. A man after my own heart, Chris kicks things off with a cannonball.

Juelia decides the pool party is an appropriate time to tell Chris her (admittedly tragic) life story, just to make sure she gets the chance to tell him. Of course I can’t snark on her for her story – but I don’t love her timing. Chris is very sweet and supportive. -1 point to her for crying (sorry).

Down at the pool, Ashley I. is reminding us that she’s bummed out over the pool party. She’s worried about Britt, who is busy massaging Chris’s forearms and skipping that pesky conversation to get straight to the kissing (+1).

Jade says she wants to get in there, too (ha), so she grabs Chris’s hand and they sneak down to his house. Jillian stalks them down there to wait for Chris in his hot tub. Inside, Jade is low-key trying to snark about the outgoing girls (side-eye, Jillian). They move on to jumping on the bed (+1 for kissing, no points for the heavy petting) while Jillian soaks her tootsies outside in the hot tub in bikini bottoms and her tank top. Weird.

More girls (led by Ashley I.) are on the way down to find Chris when they spot Jillian and Chris. Jillian promptly tells the girls to scram, which I like.  The girls disappear for approximately 45 seconds before they all come back to join the mini-party. +3 points each for Jillian, Ashley I., Megan, and Mackenzie for hot tub time with Chris.

Ashley I. is doing her darnedest to micro-manage the hot tub party process. She’s making it weird, she’s being desperate, AND she’s down one point for crying. Get it together, Ashley I. She throws her plastic wine glass down the driveway in a final act of protest, then stumbles through the gate and back up to the terrible, horrible, no-good very-bad pool party.

Mackenzie stumbles back in to the gaggle of girls to tell the tale of the hot tub. The girls agree that they are nervous and they want to talk to Chris – who shows up on cue to talk with Ashley I.! Finally! She just wants a kiss, a natural conversation surrounded by cameras and producers, and a confident feeling about sharing a boyfriend with 45 other girls! She is definitely too drunk to be having this conversation. She is also crying again (-1 more point). Chris is kind of weirded out, so he kisses her (+1 point). She’s really confident about their chemistry, dry mouth and all.

And now, it’s time for the rose ceremony! Kaitlyn, Becca, and Whitney already have roses. Ashley I. doesn’t have a rose yet, but she’s “like, at a 9″ in confidence and super-smirky, so she’s not worried.

Additional roses go to Jade, Samantha, Juelia, Mackenzie, Kelsey, Britt, Megan, Carly, Ashley S. (thanks, producers), Nikki, Jillian, and Ashley I (who was decidedly less confident by the last rose of the night).

We said goodbye to Amber, Trina, and Tracy. Looks like next week may be the controversial campout cry-palooza date, which should be interesting!

FINAL SCORE: 28 (Josh) to 91 (Corley) 

I’m kicking butt and rolling the cob. Cow. Cab. Whatever.

 

Class Pass: I Work Out Now

18th January 2015

On December 28, I saw a post on Facebook that said ClassPass had come to Charlotte. I’ve been interested in the service since I first heard about it, so I signed up as a late Christmas gift to myself. I’m very easily intimidated when it comes to trying new gyms and workouts, and I figured that this buffet-style option would make it easy for me to try new things in my neighborhood.

Since signing up, I’ve been to 10 classes with ClassPass. At $79 a month, that shakes out to around $8 per class – better than the drop-in rate for most studios in town. My plan is to find two studios I really want to stick with, and then transition to the (hopefully) more economical option of just buying packages at those studios. So far, I’ve found a couple of classes that really work for me, and one that really REALLY doesn’t.

One class I loved immediately was Chillax Flow Yoga at Okra Yoga in Plaza Midwood. I knew as soon as class started that I would be back, and I have been – every Saturday for the same class, as a matter of fact. The studio is exactly what I hope for in a studio – not too shiny, not too grungy. People of all shapes and sizes are in the class each weekend. My flexibility and joint strength are about on par with the average grandmother’s, so I’m often self-conscious in class – but I haven’t felt that way at all in my practice at Okra. I can feel my body getting stronger each time I visit, and I feel at home enough to really relax and benefit from the actual yoga when I’m there.

With ClassPass, you can only visit the same studio three times in one month. I’ve already used up my three Okra visits, but I love the atmosphere there so much that I’m already signed up and pre-paid for another class there this month.

Another class I have really enjoyed is the Barre Class at Xtend BarreI was really nervous about trying barre for the first time – not only am I inflexible, but I’m uncoordinated and just generally not in awesome shape. My first class at Xtend definitely kicked my butt – but in the very best way. I’ve used all three of my visits at this studio, too – and I can definitely tell that I’m getting stronger each week. I had to stop so many times during my first class – and while I definitely still can’t do everything the instructor does, my endurance has come leaps and bounds from my first attempt. I’m still uncoordinated – but Xtend is another studio where I feel challenged without any judgement – free to mess up and catch up as often as I need to.

I mentioned I found one class that was definitely not a fit – and that was AIR Foundation atAIR Aerial Fitness. Like Okra and Xtend, the atmosphere at this studio was fantastic. I walked in to Beyonce blasting over the sound system and was greeted by a super friendly instructor who got me set up with my hammock and showed me the basic moves I would need to know to keep up. I remember thinking “This is going to be great!” just like the sweet, naive child of spring that I was. Ten minutes into class, my feet were slung up into my hammock three feet off the ground. I was facing myself in the mirror, red-faced and chubby with a dozen lithe, strong classmates in view behind me. My arms were shaking. My legs were swinging back and forth. As I struggled for balance, sweat dripping from my hairline onto my mat, I was thinking “This is it. This is how I’m going to die.” as the instructor called out “OK, we should all be warmed up now – let’s get to work!”

Yes. That was the WARM UP. Ha.

At the end of class, we were supposed to “relax” into an inverted lotus pose, hanging from our hammocks like windchimes in a gentle breeze. Here is what we were supposed to look like:

image via The Cap Times

I managed to get into the pose with a little coaxing. But once I was down there, I felt a little panic when I realized I was going to have to get back UP.  That involved heaving my hips back and forth in a manner that was probably JUST as graceful as you’re imagining until I had enough momentum to pull myself up with a little help from my pelvis and God.

Picture Elaine dancing in Seinfeld. Now picture a fish flopping around and gasping for breath on a wooden dock. Now combine those two images into a person, and put her in a fabric hammock, hanging upside down in a small fitness studio in Meyers Park.

I’m never, ever going back.

Flourish

16th January 2015

My office did an exercise at our retreat this summer that I’ve seen a lot of bloggers mention lately – we defined our One Word for the year. Each of us read One Word that will Change Your Life and then picked our own word – mine was Build.

I really enjoyed the exercise, the conversation that stemmed from it, and the effects of my word on my work habits. My word made a lot of sense at the time – I was literally building our new website, I was focused on building a network of friends and colleagues on campus, and I wanted to build an office space for myself that I could be both comfortable and productive in. Our “work year” isn’t over yet, and I’m not abandoning my word – but I like the idea of giving my personal life its own word for 2015.

words for 2015

I think there’s a Bible verse about the woman who has all of these qualities…

So I started writing down words that I liked the sound of – mostly adjectives, mostly aspirational, mostly kind of fluffy-nebulous-loosey-goosey-not-exactly-actionable words. I really liked Elise’s idea of a “hold-able” word.

And then this week, as I was tinkering around with this website, digging and shaping in what is likely the closest to a garden my hands will ever get, a word came to me. Well,the word came to me.

My word for 2015 is FLOURISH.

verb – to grow or develop in a healthy or vigorous way, especially as the result of a particularly favorable environment

I’m going to give myself room to flourish in real life. Go to those barre classes, even if I do flop around to my own beat, uncoordinated and out of sync. Show up for yoga, even if I can’t touch my toes or flatten my back or completely relax my face. Go to bed when I’m tired, take a bath when I’m sore, read a book without worrying who else is reading it or what the rest of the world thought. Keep buying myself flowers, because they make me happy and that’s all the reason I need.

I’m going to nourish my relationships so that they flourish, too. Be as silly as I can be when I’m reading to Henry. Be gentle and soft, and love him enough to teach him the rules. Really give the dreaded bedtime routine the effort it needs (and deserves). Ask my husband out on dates so that he knows that I know what a catch he really is.

And I want to flourish professionally, too. Go to those networking events that terrify me so. Connect with the amazing community of Charlotteans who are out there talking about our city and our industry and the amazing things we can do together. Don’t get in my own way when it comes to building my tribe and really putting down roots in this city.

Water, sunshine, oxygen, love, challenge – these are the things I need to FLOURISH. Let’s get started.