9.19.2014

TGIF



It's Friday, & I'm feeling pretty peaceful. The world around me is as crazy as ever, but I'm learning to balance it better. I've had a long week, filled with challenges, but I'm not letting any of them hold me back. This weekend I am so excited because we're finally going to the zoo! The zoo is one of my favorite places, I just love walking around all afternoon seeing all of the amazing animals! The inner 5 year old in me is like a kid doing a countdown to Christmas, yes, I am that excited.

I've been on a decluttering spree lately. Getting our home cleaned up, cleaned out, and streamlined. I know it's silly since we're still going to have to move within the next year, but hey, the less clutter we have to move to our future home, the better right? And the way I see it is, if something isn't working for us in the 3K square foot house we are currently renting, ain't no need cluttering up a hopefully 3x's smaller house!

Speaking of decluttering, I dropped off 7, yes, SEVEN, garbage bags full of clothes and a couple pairs of my shoes at the clothing donation bin this week of things that the boyfriend and I decided could go. Through doing that, I did come to a realization... or two... one is that I need to update my wardrobe to nicer pieces that I like and will wear. The other is that I am no longer going to allow myself to buy shirts from Ross. It's a sad day, over half of my shirts were from there, I kid you not, but I found  that I did keep 90% of the shirts that I've purchased from either TJ Maxx or Marshalls, so while sometimes it's nice to find a bargain, Ross shirts are out. That doesn't include jeans and shoes though, I'll still bargain hunt Ross before heading off to the mall any time I'm on the hunt for something new. TJ Maxx is my favorite for good brands at a discount. I gave up my well loved tall brown boots this year, because they just didn't quite fit me well in the calf area anymore and the style is one that I had just outgrown. I spotted these Steve Madden boots and KNEW I wasn't leaving the store without them. They are seriously so beautiful, & so flattering when they are on. I can't wait to pare them with some flannels or chunky sweaters and some scarves. I am so excited to add these to my collection and thanks to Steve Madden quality I'm sure I'm going to be loving these for many years to come.



All in all, the past month has been rather therapeutic. I'm enjoying life, working on some of my personal goals, eating healthier, exercising more, and rediscovering my passions and what brings me joy in life. I feel like I'm on a great path to happiness and I just wanted to pop in and share a little bit of my life with you all.

I hope you've been having a wonderful week, and are on your way to an awesome weekend of your own! I'll be back next week with more posts!

Much Love,
Heather Lee

9.15.2014

My Fall Candle Obsession


Yesterday afternoon the boyfriend and I decided to make a quick stop into our local mall so he could look at some tools at Sears... which of course led to me wandering into Bath & Body Works as we passed. The boyfriend started picking up the new fall scents and "oohing & ahhing" so I couldn't help myself when I noticed their awesome 2 for $22 sale was back in stores again!

I grabbed the ever so popular Leaves candle, which I've never actually purchased before and I must say, I do actually love it. I also grabbed a Marshmallow Fireside candle which has a nice warm, almost manly scent to it that I just love. Salted Caramel Corn was the boyfriends pick, and while it is a bit overwhelmingly sweet if you get your face to close, it honestly smells good enough to eat. My dogs think so too, so I'll be sure that one goes up somewhere high! Lastly, I couldn't decide what I wanted my 4th candle to be, so I went with my tried and true Mahogany Teakwood candle. I can't count the amount of these I've burned through in the last 2 years, but it's a lot!

Fall is without a doubt my favorite time of the year as far as smells & fashion go. I sort of wish I lived somewhere just a tad warmer so our falls weren't such a wet mess, but, Washington has some pretty awesome fall scenery when we manage to get a cool crisp day, so I won't complain too much about that.

Do you love fall as much as I do? What are your favorite fall scents that get you in the mood for the season?

Much Love,
Heather Lee


9.13.2014

Why I Stayed: My Personal Thoughts


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I've been hearing a lot of different opinions lately, on the trending #WHYISTAYED hashtag that's going viral all over the webiverse. I've heard from one end of the spectrum, to the other. I believe whole heartedly that one needs to leave when they are in a toxic environment of any sort, however I know that is not always the easiest choice for someone to make. I've also heard a few opinions to the effect of women staying is a choice they make from their own stupidity and they deserve no pity. That makes my blood... well... BOIL.



I am here to tell you first and foremost, ABUSE IS ABUSE. There will never be an excuse for it, & it is NEVER the victims fault.



If you haven't been a victim of emotional or physical abuse, you will never understand it. I have been a victim, and I do understand it. The kind of man who is an abuser, is the most captivating kind of man. He is a master manipulator. You fall hard and fast and he makes you feel better about yourself than you've ever felt before. He praises you, puts you on a pedestal, makes you laugh, and becomes your best friend. The need to control doesn't come from the very beginning, and it's a rather slow buildup to the point that you start realizing something unhealthy is going on.



This is what I experienced. During one of the messiest, roughest times in my life, I met the man who seemed to be mister wonderful. Mister let me take all the pain and doubt you're going through away. It took me years after leaving that relationship to put all of the lies and signs together of what I really experienced. One rather large game of mental manipulation and a slow break down of my self worth. It went from extremely good times, to rough times, to really good times, to rougher times, and it felt like a constant roller coaster of emotions. What you don't understand about someone who stays in an emotionally or physically abusive relationship, is that for all the bad times you experience, usually, you experience 2-3 times more good times. It's not a choice to be with a bad person. It's a choice to be with someone you think you love, whom you think you can help. The problem with loving a master manipulator, is that they are highly intelligent people with all the potential to do great things in the world, except they usually don't. They find their fulfillment in dominating another human being.



It takes a lot of strength to leave someone like this, however, it can be done. When I left, I had absolutely nothing to my name. I slept on my parents couch, my sisters couch, eventually I slept in a leaky, squishy travel trailer in my parents back yard, and I stayed out there through a Washington winter, but I felt FREE. I rebuilt my life from absolutely nothing... & I still am. I'm still rebuilding my credit. I'm still reacquiring possessions I left behind. It's not easy, but when you're doing it on your own versus being tied to someone who does nothing but hurt you, it feels like you're living the best life you've ever known. It is utterly empowering.

Don't ever let anyone dull your sparkle. Don't ever doubt your self worth. And don't you dare let anyone tell you it's your own fault for staying. It doesn't matter why you stayed, it doesn't matter why you're staying now, all that matters is that you recognize your worth and you take the steps, whatever they may be, that you need to take to be happy and healthy.



So if you're struggling or you have struggled, I love you, and I understand. I believe in you and I know you can put this behind you, and hopefully, eventually, help someone else who is going through a similar situation.

I'm sorry if this post was a bit, all over the map, but it's not an easy topic to comfortable write about for the entire world to read. This is something that took me a very long time to be able to admit, much less talk about openly. I just hope, through it all, that you understand your worth. Each and every one of you.



So Much Love,
Heather Lee

9.11.2014

So long, summer-time... updates time.

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While we might be experiencing the last few days of sunshine here in Washington, the air definitely has a fall scent starting to linger in the air longer and longer from the morning into the afternoon. This summer was a pivotal one for my life. I've really struggled with depression over the past year or so, and learning to recognize it and deal with it appropriately has been life changing. For me, it's been as simple as eating healthier and some exercise here and there. It doesn't fix it every single day, but for now, it's a natural way to counteract the feeling like nothing at all is right or ok in your life.

I have started getting some more DIY projects done as well. It's hard because we're renters at the moment, and we plan on hopefully purchasing sometime in the next year. We rent a rather large house, because we rent from a friend of the boyfriends, so we get a lot of space for what people pay for much less money. We plan to buy much, much smaller when we get to go looking for our first home, so I'm trying to keep that in mind and not buy furniture or pick up awesome things at my favorite antique store up the road. The idea is practical (for us) minimalism, so we'll see how well we can do that.


So far, I've finalized painting my parents old dining table, painted the little hutch I've been holding onto... though I actually plan to repaint it eventually... and I've added caster wheels to my Ikea Kallax shelf that I picked up at Home Depot.

My blogging and videos have suffered greatly lately, & when it comes down to it I have nobody to blame but myself. I know that people say the key to blogging is a schedule, posting regularly, and sometimes it just doesn't work out that way. I'm not a paid blogger, this isn't my job, I'm not even a stay at home wife. I work 40+ hours  a week, live 30 minutes from my job, and have 3 dogs to take care of and 3500 square feet of house to try to keep clean. It's all felt a bit over the top lately, but I've been working out a schedule to help get me back on track and I've been focusing on home first, getting a good routine there, so that I can slowly bring myself back into the hobby that I love, writing. Because I miss this, and I miss the few of you that read my weird ramblings online.

It's been, a journey. But I can honestly say that I plan to be back more often than not lately. I hope you've all been doing well and really enjoying your summer. It's been a beautiful one up here in Washington, and yet, I couldn't be more excited for fall.

Much Love,
Heather Lee

7.16.2014

When the going gets tough...

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Hello loves,

If you follow my blog, or instagram, you know I've been on a blogging/vlogging break for the past 2 months due to having my house taken over by a crazy litter of pitbull puppies.

During that time, I've had so many other things in my life happen as well. Emotionally, financially, physically. I've had days where I just couldn't quite bring myself to shower, or even brush my hair. I just wanted to drop in and say, life is never perfect or smooth, but it's times like this that the best thing you can do for yourself is dig down deep inside yourself and find your passion in life. Figure out what your dreams and aspirations are and focus all of your energy on them. There is nothing in life, no amount of stress or setbacks that you can't come back from. Cut out the people that discourage you or make you feel inferior in any way shape or form, & surround yourself with people who inspire you and who encourage you to be whomever it is you want to be!

I'm here to say, anything is possible. Whoever you are, I'm sending love your way, I believe in you. So don't be afraid to believe in yourself, and LOVE yourself. It's the absolute best thing you could ever do for yourself!

While I'm here, I'll mention, the puppies will be going home next weekend so I'll be getting back into writing, filming, testing products, maybe even starting to do some daily vlogs, so I'm very excited to get my free time back! :)

MUCH LOVE,
Heather Lee
xox