“Life is relative, made up of your own perceptions of reality. If I can remember that it could always be worse and that truly I’ve got it pretty damn good” ~ Jamie
Tonight as I type this it’s my 38th birthday. On Friday I shared a post on Jamie from Chosen Chaos’ blog that was a letter to my 18 year old self. 2 days later. what I think that post actually turned out to be was a giant dose of perspective and letting go. Since typing the letter and sending it off with hugs and kisses to my younger me and Jamie, I have felt peaceful. I have looked at the sunlight differently, captured the warmth of the minis kisses and the glance of KSP in a different way. In the way that the past had somehow, almost over night, become a silent visitor rather than the chatty neighbor in my head. It has been lovely.
With gratitude I get to welcome Miss Jamie today to “Mynewfavoriteweek’ly Inspiration” series. I had many fun and kind things to say about Jamie on Friday but today I feel like we would sit down as who we are today and have much to discuss. I decided to use a quote from Jamie’s interview today as the lead in because she pretty much sums up how I feel, not everyday, but most days and she is someone I would love to crack open a bottle of vino with and talk about those perceptions and just a day in general.
Now, today, I get the great privilege of sharing her very talented self with you. I hope you will enjoy her as much as I do and appreciate her wisdom as well as her relatable take on life.
Meet Jamie from Chosen Chaos.
1.) Shannon: Why and when did you start blogging?
Jamie: At the encouragement of a dear friend who was always asking things like “how do you do it?” and “what does your day look like?” She told me that other people would want to know too. I wasn’t sure I believed her. But then she started her own blog and I couldn’t resist giving it a try! That was June of last year. I still can’t resist it!
2.) Shannon: Where would we find you now on your blogging journey from where you started?
Jamie: You can find me at a comfortable place. I’m trying new things with design, complete with all the frustrations! I’m planning ahead for future posts and ideas. I’m trying not to get caught up in what I think the expectations are of my readers and cohorts. I never had visions of a dollar tree growing from this place and my Babe is very good at reminding me to chill out when I need to. I like where I am. I like what may lie ahead and I like not knowing what exactly that may be.
3.) Shannon: You have such a heartwarming story. Marrying your high school sweetheart, having 4 minis 2 of which are twins! A former teacher and now home with your minis which you seem to share with such happiness and optimism. It’s also hard work! With all the things going on in your life and all your changes, how have you and Babe managed to keep everything working in the right direction?
Jamie: When I was pregnant with our first a good friend of ours was living with us for a couple of months. Someone asked her what it was like to live with us and she said something along the lines of it’s fine, they eat cookies and laugh a lot. Every time I think of this it makes me smile. It sounds so simple and yet at the end of the day that is who we are. We agreed early on that what was most important for our children was that we love and respect each other. Our children are not our world, they are a part of our world. A big part, yes – but not the only part. We do a lot of things as a couple and with our friends that don’t involve our children. We’re blessed to have the support around us to be able to do that. And when all else fails, we eat cookies and laugh.
4.) Shannon: You are quite a good and clever cook. Where do you get your recipes and time to cook those delicious and yummy meals?
Jamie: Ha! That is something I’m sure my Grandmother never expected anyone to say about me! Most of my recipes come from books and magazines that have the word “easy” or “quick” in the title. I like cooking but I don’t like cooking things that require a lot of time or energy. Real Simple magazine, Pampered Chef 29 minutes to dinner, and now Pinterest provide most of my meals. As for the time involved I plan ahead and go to the grocery early in the week. I get what I need for each meal and make it on the day I scheduled. I’m kind of a control freak like that. I really don’t like the “what in the world am I going to make for dinner tonight?” feeling! Within that schedule I make sure to include a Panera for lunch and Pizza for dinner!
5.) Shannon: Who or what do you find inspiring?
Jamie: Right now I would say that my girls inspire me the most. They are with me pretty much all the time and I realize (sometimes too late) how closely they are watching me. I feel a lot of pressure to be the best me when they are around. This includes not yelling as much or talking in a grumpy tone to their older brothers. Showing patience and not temper. Being confident and polite. Taking care of myself. Giving love to my loved ones. They inspire me to be the best version of me I know and even try to make me a little better.
6.) Shannon: If you had one whole day to yourself, where your minis were perfectly well taken care of, what would you do?
Jamie: First I would splurge for someone to clean my house, really good so that while I was enjoying the day to myself I wouldn’t feel like I should be doing it. Second I would get a workout in early so, again, when I was enjoying my time I wouldn’t feel like that was something I should be doing. When all of that was taken care of and assuming Babe had to work I would be lost in social media. I’d catch up on my Reader, maybe write a post or two in advance, work on upcoming ideas. Have lunch with a good friend. Maybe some retail therapy thrown in there too!
7.) Shannon: If you were stuck on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring (your kids and Babe are with you:))
Jamie: I’d bring my phone. As much as I’d like to say I wouldn’t I know I would.
My own pillow. I don’t like pillows from other places.
Enough Animal Crackers to keep everyone happy.
8.) Shannon: What is one thing about you people might be surprised to know/learn about you (Funny or serious)?
Jamie: Serious… my father was an alcoholic and died suddenly on Thanksgiving two years ago. I’ve only written about him once. We were not close. I do not miss him. But having “Dad” luggage is a part of me I deal with every day in one way or another.
Funny… I texted a dear friend of mine to see what she thought would be good to use for this. Exact words: You have a signature dance move that would make Gloria Estefan proud. So there you go!
9.) Shannon: What pearl(s) of wisdom can you leave us with that you suggest to make each say ‘anewfavoriteday?’
Jamie: When we brought Biggest Baby boy home from the hospital and I would start to freak out about something (this happened a lot) Babe would always remind me that there were women in the world that lived in trees and raised babies – and that WE would be just fine. His example though extreme (this is typical) got the point across to me. Life is relative, made up of your own perceptions of reality. If I can remember that it could always be worse and that truly I’ve got it pretty damn good – it helps me breathe a little easier. It makes the current disaster seem less big deal and more no big deal. And when that doesn’t work? Pour a glass of wine and tune them all out. I’m sure I/you deserve it.
I hope you enjoyed meeting Jamie as much as I enjoyed introducing her to you y’all. I mean seriously, she had me completely at the pillow comment, I LOVE my own pillow! If you want to find her you can meet up with her in the following places!
(Featured image shared from: http://blog.karmona.com