All posts by escapedmelody11

The Inner Critic

Credit: @pro321

I’m no stranger to criticism in general. I get it from everybody–partners, my dad, a manager. Criticism is inevitable. And while it hurts to get feedback on your hard work as being not up to snuff, it’s easy to do a better job next time.

But the most harmful criticism is from ourselves. The inner critic. It makes us lack confidence and feel like we can’t do anything right, and the inner critic can magnify others’ criticism about us, making us feel like we deserve to be talked down to, or get that terrible mark on a project at work.

For me, my inner critic likes to get at me for everything, from cooking to job performance. Take last night when I cooked spaghetti and turkey meatballs for my boyfriend’s mom and brother. When my boyfriend asked how the food was (in particular, the spaghetti), his brother replied with, “It’s okay.” (He used to be a cook, which I was informed of only last night!! Imagine how anxious I felt lol.)

However, I agreed with his two word evaluation.

It was simple spaghetti with marinara sauce, which everyone should be able to make no problem. But I felt like it wasn’t the best.

Now the turkey meatballs. While the mom and brother liked them, I thought that they were only making me feel good. I could’ve made those better too.

Luckily, I’ve been keeping a recipe notebook, which I use to write out what I make, my rating of the food on a 5 scale, why I rated it the number I did (with positives about the dish), and notes for what to do next time. You can bet that I wrote about the turkey meatballs!!

I know that I shouldn’t be hard on myself, since it was my first time making the meatballs and making food for people outside of my family and boyfriend. (I’ve made it a weekly ritual to bake a snack for my boyfriend’s friends and us when we go over for games on Saturday nights.)

I also think that my baking goods don’t go over well with his friends, but they eat them. But, I must say that the brownies I made this past Saturday were really good!! (See, being positive here).

I’m trying to be more kind to myself. Telling myself that I’m doing a good job, or that I only need to practice more. However, it’s a long road and it’s easy to get the inner critic going though. But it’s a process to feel more confident.

What do you do to silence your inner critic and be more gentle with yourself? Let me know in the comments!

BTS Appreciation Post

Courtesy of Billboard

I’ve never been into foreign language music, except for Spanish because it was a nice language and I liked Shakira. 🙂

But, BTS has been my favorite lately. I’m not a die hard fan, but right now I’m curious and excited for “Butter.”

I was perplexed by them after seeing a performance on the Ellen DeGeneres show a few years ago. Why are the girls in the audience screaming? What are the guys singing? THIS is the “biggest boy band in the world”??? I changed the channel and didn’t give them a second thought.

But then “Dynamite” came out last year.

And I loved it.

So much.

I watched the music video, I watched BTS’ various performances of the song, and I even watched this series called K POP IN PUBLIC, where various dance groups from around the world dance to popular K pop songs in, you guessed it, public. And the ones for “Dynamite” were really good!!

I thought, if BTS can make THIS, I wonder what else they have. I’ll give them a second listen.

Fast forward to 2021 and I have a whole playlist of their songs. “On.” “Run.” “Life Goes On.” “Telepathy.” “DNA.” To name a few. I even bought the Japanese versions of some of their songs, because once I found out that they released not only Japanese versions of their songs, but Japanese exclusive songs (“Film Out” is beautiful), I was excited to learn Japanese in another medium.

After watching a lot of YouTube videos of them (and an episode of their outdoorsy show “In the SOOP” on Weverse), I realized that they’re funny, and that they’re a different kind of boy band. John Cena (who, surprisingly, is a big fan of BTS), said during an interview on Jimmy Fallon, (I’m paraphrasing here) that their music is inspiring and talks about issues that their fans are going through such as bullying. That’s how they’ve become the most popular band in the world–they connect with their fans and understand what they’re going through. Plus, their philanthropic efforts are admirable as well.

Are you a BTS fan? What’s your favorite song? Let me know in the comments!

Mother’s Day 2021

Credit: @itsrandyrooi

This will mark the second year that my mother has been gone. She passed away in the summer of 2019 from complications after brain surgery to remove a small, noncancerous tumor in her pituitary gland.

Although I’ve long accepted that she’s not coming home from a long vacation, and have gone through all the stages of grief (I highly recommend On Grieve and Grieving by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and David Kessler, to help you get through the aftermath of a loss), I can’t help but be envious of those who do have their mom’s. Yesterday my therapist was telling me about how her mom drove her crazy, and I wished that I could experience that again. (Doesn’t everyone’s mom drive them crazy sometimes? haha).

The saying, “You never know what you have until it’s gone” rings especially true when it comes to death. But, it really hits home when there are big occasions like this.

Monday Night=Game Night

I don’t remember how this Monday night game night started, but it’s fun! My boyfriend, his friend and his wife, and I get together at my boyfriend’s place to play a board game. I’m the one who gets to choose the game and for a while it was Marvel Champions, but we’ve switched it up by playing Wingspan and (lately) Mansions of Madness. If we can’t get together, we’ll jump on Steam & Discord and play Pandemic or Horrified.

Some of the heroes you can play Marvel Champions. Not shown is my favorite, Captain America 🙂
Credit: www.dicebreaker.com

The night starts at 7 P.M., and the friend and his wife bring their dinner over and the four of us eat. We play a game until 11 P.M., sometimes 12 A.M., depending on what it is. Since my boyfriend and his friend work from home and the ladies don’t work at all, ending late isn’t a problem.

In a time when social interactions are more important, it’s nice to do this every week. Note: my boyfriend has gotten his first COVID shot (getting the second today), and his friend and wife have been extra careful to not get sick. They mostly stay home. Same goes with me.

If you haven’t tried any of the games mentioned above, do so!! I especially like Marvel and Mansions of Madness. The latter being that there’s a companion app that features a story, which I like.

What are you favorite board games? Let me know in the comments!!

Why I Stressed About Valentine’s Day

Remember when I mentioned that my boyfriend deserved to be pampered on Valentine’s Day because of what he did on Saturday?

Well, here’s the story behind that…

On Saturday, January 30th, I had a uterine polyp removed. It was the first surgery I’ve had as an adult, and I was happy that I could have one person stay with me prior to the procedure. A few days before I told my boyfriend that I wasn’t going to sleep over Friday because I had to be at the hospital at 6:30 A.M. Saturday.

He said that he’d take me…and wait with me!!

He waited with me until my surgery time, 8:30 A.M.

He even let me take one of his Eeyore plushies to keep me company during surgery (which, unfortunately, had to be left outside of the OR so he wouldn’t be accidentally thrown out when my bed sheets were collected and taken to laundry). If Eeyore had gone missing my boyfriend wouldn’t been sad.

Even though I was nervous, having him (my boyfriend, and to an extent, Eeyore) with me made me feel a little better. It would’ve been terrible having to wait in the surgery center alone.

But that’s why I was fretting about Valentine’s Day (which went well!!) He’s just a nice guy.

And in case you were wondering, the polyp was benign. However, I’m still having some pelvic pain three weeks later…going to get that checked next week.

Valentine’s, Men, and Gifts

I’m not the type to get hyped up about Valentine’s Day. Having spent majority of my life single, February 14 always made me feel sad and, if I’m being honest, a little irritated. Sad, because seeing girls in high school carrying roses and/or balloons around campus made me realize how single I was; and irritated because I didn’t understand why there needed to be a DAY dedicated to showing your love.

I knew that Valentine’s Day wasn’t only about romantic love (my dad always gave me a box of chocolates and a card), but boy, it sure felt like it. Whenever the Valentine’s Day commercials started, I groaned and switched stations. I avoided social media because I didn’t want to see everyone’s posts to their SO’s and make me feel even MORE alone.

Even when my first Valentine’s Day with my ex was approaching, I wasn’t too excited about it because it was ingrained in me that the day of love was just another day. I didn’t even buy him anything…

However, this year is different.

I’m actually stressing a little over what to get my new boyfriend, who, after this past Saturday (I’ll type up a post about that later this week), deserves to be pampered. Or, at least be given a gift.

BUT WHAT DO I GET HIM???

I went to Target today and browsed their Valentine’s Day aisles. I thought he’d like candy, so I bought him the limited edition Lindt’s LINDOR Strawberries and Cream truffles (he can’t eat chocolate, and he loves strawberries).

But that’s not enough…

What else do guys want on Valentine’s Day?? As gifts?? Do guys even WANT to be given chocolate??

Help!

Exercise Routine

Everyday Health

Since the coronavirus pandemic last March (!!) I’ve been exercising more. And since I had to stay home (and am still at home), I had no excuse not to turn on YouTube and get moving. I feel healthier after I finish a session and mentally my mind is calmer.

So, what is my routine? Here it is.

Monday
-Cardio

Tuesday
-Strength training
-Cardio (a walk outside)

Wednesday
-Cardio

Thursday
-Strength training
-Cardio (a walk outside)

Friday
-Cardio

Saturday and Sunday
-Rest

It took me a while to get a good routine going, but there you have it. It works for me now, but I’ll need to modify this when I begin working.

And in case you were wondering what YouTube channels I use…

Bowflex, which is great for short, targeted exercise like three-minute standing abs workout.
POPSUGAR Fitness, for 30 minute cardio and strength routines.
Walk at Home, for easy cardio, by just walking and other exercises thrown in.
Yoga with Adriene, this is reserved for night time.

(In addition to my routine above, I’m doing the 30-Day Squat Challenge from Shape Magazine because, I want to. I’m on Day 18!)

Have you been exercising during the pandemic? I’d like to hear what your routine is!

Introduce Yourself (Example Post)

This is an example post, originally published as part of Blogging University. Enroll in one of our ten programs, and start your blog right.

You’re going to publish a post today. Don’t worry about how your blog looks. Don’t worry if you haven’t given it a name yet, or you’re feeling overwhelmed. Just click the “New Post” button, and tell us why you’re here.

Why do this?

  • Because it gives new readers context. What are you about? Why should they read your blog?
  • Because it will help you focus your own ideas about your blog and what you’d like to do with it.

The post can be short or long, a personal intro to your life or a bloggy mission statement, a manifesto for the future or a simple outline of your the types of things you hope to publish.

To help you get started, here are a few questions:

  • Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?
  • What topics do you think you’ll write about?
  • Who would you love to connect with via your blog?
  • If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you hope to have accomplished?

You’re not locked into any of this; one of the wonderful things about blogs is how they constantly evolve as we learn, grow, and interact with one another — but it’s good to know where and why you started, and articulating your goals may just give you a few other post ideas.

Can’t think how to get started? Just write the first thing that pops into your head. Anne Lamott, author of a book on writing we love, says that you need to give yourself permission to write a “crappy first draft”. Anne makes a great point — just start writing, and worry about editing it later.

When you’re ready to publish, give your post three to five tags that describe your blog’s focus — writing, photography, fiction, parenting, food, cars, movies, sports, whatever. These tags will help others who care about your topics find you in the Reader. Make sure one of the tags is “zerotohero,” so other new bloggers can find you, too.

Introduce Yourself (Example Post)

This is an example post, originally published as part of Blogging University. Enroll in one of our ten programs, and start your blog right.

You’re going to publish a post today. Don’t worry about how your blog looks. Don’t worry if you haven’t given it a name yet, or you’re feeling overwhelmed. Just click the “New Post” button, and tell us why you’re here.

Why do this?

  • Because it gives new readers context. What are you about? Why should they read your blog?
  • Because it will help you focus your own ideas about your blog and what you’d like to do with it.

The post can be short or long, a personal intro to your life or a bloggy mission statement, a manifesto for the future or a simple outline of your the types of things you hope to publish.

To help you get started, here are a few questions:

  • Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?
  • What topics do you think you’ll write about?
  • Who would you love to connect with via your blog?
  • If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you hope to have accomplished?

You’re not locked into any of this; one of the wonderful things about blogs is how they constantly evolve as we learn, grow, and interact with one another — but it’s good to know where and why you started, and articulating your goals may just give you a few other post ideas.

Can’t think how to get started? Just write the first thing that pops into your head. Anne Lamott, author of a book on writing we love, says that you need to give yourself permission to write a “crappy first draft”. Anne makes a great point — just start writing, and worry about editing it later.

When you’re ready to publish, give your post three to five tags that describe your blog’s focus — writing, photography, fiction, parenting, food, cars, movies, sports, whatever. These tags will help others who care about your topics find you in the Reader. Make sure one of the tags is “zerotohero,” so other new bloggers can find you, too.

Introduce Yourself (Example Post)

This is an example post, originally published as part of Blogging University. Enroll in one of our ten programs, and start your blog right.

You’re going to publish a post today. Don’t worry about how your blog looks. Don’t worry if you haven’t given it a name yet, or you’re feeling overwhelmed. Just click the “New Post” button, and tell us why you’re here.

Why do this?

  • Because it gives new readers context. What are you about? Why should they read your blog?
  • Because it will help you focus your own ideas about your blog and what you’d like to do with it.

The post can be short or long, a personal intro to your life or a bloggy mission statement, a manifesto for the future or a simple outline of your the types of things you hope to publish.

To help you get started, here are a few questions:

  • Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?
  • What topics do you think you’ll write about?
  • Who would you love to connect with via your blog?
  • If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you hope to have accomplished?

You’re not locked into any of this; one of the wonderful things about blogs is how they constantly evolve as we learn, grow, and interact with one another — but it’s good to know where and why you started, and articulating your goals may just give you a few other post ideas.

Can’t think how to get started? Just write the first thing that pops into your head. Anne Lamott, author of a book on writing we love, says that you need to give yourself permission to write a “crappy first draft”. Anne makes a great point — just start writing, and worry about editing it later.

When you’re ready to publish, give your post three to five tags that describe your blog’s focus — writing, photography, fiction, parenting, food, cars, movies, sports, whatever. These tags will help others who care about your topics find you in the Reader. Make sure one of the tags is “zerotohero,” so other new bloggers can find you, too.