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Faith, Family, Finances, Funnies, and Flarps

My Strange Addictions

That was the best show TLC ever had.

Tell me you saw it? People with strange addictions. One lady out couch cushions. Like legit ate couch cushions. One guy pretended to be a baby like 18 hours out of the day. One lady ate rocks. I mean- you can’t make this stuff up!

Every time my husband and I watched that show we would begin talking about our own “strange” things that we do. While nothing we do would warrant a television crew following our every move for a week, we still have our own odd things. Feel free to share yours too!

My strange addictions: (and that is SUCH a strong word…)

Teen Mom OG and Teen Mom 2.

I never, I repeat NEVER miss an episode of either of those shows. I have been watching these girls for my entire adult life and I cannot get enough. Whew it makes for good tv. đŸ™‚ My husband laughs at me because I know so much about them. I know I know… i’m almost 33 years old. But I just CANNOT stop watching! I flipped out 2 weeks on a Monday (duh) night. I had class and was coming home to watch a THREE HOUR finale that included the first half of the checkup with Dr. Drew. I sat down and clicked Play and …. nothing. I kept getting this weird red dot in the corner of my screen as if my DVR was trying to tell me something. After spending an hour talking to Dish and trying everything they could think of the dude finally said “Your box is shot. We will be out in 2 days to replace it.” DID THAT STOP ME? Hecks no. I downloaded that MTV app as fast as I could and watched the whole dang thing… because THAT is how it’s done. My husband’s face when he realized it hadn’t recorded was priceless. He was treading lightly. I got an awful lot of “i’m so sorry babe. We can catch up I promise.” Seriously–don’t mess with my TM and TM2, dish.

Spoonfulls of Peanut Butter

It is a normal day for there to be like 6-10 spoons in our sink. I mean come on, I don’t double dip! I have a scoop of peanut butter entirely too many times a week to count but let’s just say if you have invested in Jiffy over the years– you’re welcome. Now it’s not only me but my daughter who does it too. And it gets worse… one of my best friends saw me grab a teaspoon full of PB a few weeks ago and yelled “THAT’S where he got it??!!!” Apparently her child has spent enough time at our house that he picked it up too. Is this where I appropriately say hashtag sorry not sorry?!?! đŸ™‚

Early Bedtimes

I have been like this my entire life. My name is Cara (pronounced Car<like the thing you drive> uh) and I am named after my Great grandmother who name was Carra (pronouned the same way but spelled better.) My parents thought that by taking out an “R” it would look more like how it is pronounced. Hashtag THAT DIDN’T HAPPEN!!! Anyway– Carra went by the loving name of Mama Cantrell to all of her grandbabies. Mama Cantrell had a reputation for wanting it dark and quiet when she went to bed and she had no problem telling people to keep it down or leave. I was very young the first time someone called me “Mama Cantrell.” I didn’t get it. As I got older I can remember people saying to my parents “Y’all sure did name her right.” Finally I got old enough to piece it together and ask my mom why people always said I was just like her. My mom told me about Mama Cantrell was and how she didn’t mind telling people to be quiet and how she’d go to bed even with a house full of company. I guess everyone was right–they DID name me well. If I invite you over for dinner and games and we’ve eaten and played 4 games…i’ve done my part… good night. That’s just how I roll. Nothing personal but I sure do love my sleep. Night night.

Dusting

This is the only chore I don’t hate. In fact, I look forward to it. I would dust my house every day if I had the time and energy. Something about the smell of pledge and the soft cloth and the way the furniture looks after it’s been dusted… awwww…. I found my happy place again! I absolutely love dusting. Because of this fact I have a hard time NOT noticing when other people don’t feel the same way. I don’t MEAN to notice just like people don’t MEAN to notice that they are a better cook than me… they just do. That’s me with dusting. It’s my thing. I can be ready to go to bed and have the lights off and i’ll literally get OUT of bed to dust my nightstand. Drives my husband crazy but at least our furniture is dusted…

Hot tea

Hot tea is my favorite. Mugs for my hot tea make me happy. A new flavor of tea makes me super happy. Having tea at home and then going out to our favorite coffee shop to get more tea makes me SUPER happy. I can’t get enough. I have an enormous collection of tea. Need something to give you a boost- got you covered. Need something to calm your stomach- got that too. Need to get your bowels working- I can hook you up. Need to feel festive- I got it all. TEA is my FAV!. End of story.

Vaseline on my hands and feet

Vaseline on my feet followed by fuzzy socks makes me happy. Especially if I have just watched Teen Mom, dusted, drank some tea and had a big ol scoop of PB. It’s like the best way to end the day. Vaseline on my hands is awesome too BUT this can only truly be enjoyed if my husband is there to handle the remote situation. Every time I put Vaseline on my hands then turn the volume up on the tv someone *clears throat* gripes about how slick it is. My response “but I have soft skin so… you’r welcome.” Try it. It’s awesome.

So maybe to you I am a big ol’ weirdo. I’m cool with that. Maybe you do these same things and i’m just ordinary to you. That’s okay as well. Bottom line is this– we may not eat couch cushions or drink bleach in our coffee, but we ALL have some weird habit in our lives that other’s can get a kick out of.

Hoping I haven’t scared you off,

Cara Roxanne

Simply put…

I miss her. Terribly. 

I’m talking about HRC in case you weren’t following

Call me crazy, I don’t care! I truly miss her. 

For years (seemed like it anyway) it was nothing for every news story to contain her name. From the scandals to the delete buttons all the way over to the prediction of her winning- you couldn’t go a day without seeing her in the news. 

I spent part of my vacation last summer watching her accept the nomination at the DNC. I spent countless hours watching her slaughter “him” in the debates. And then literally- she vanished. 

Besides her being seen walking in the woods and shopping in a bookstore she really hadn’t surfaced much. 

AND I MISS HER! 

Thankfully– my sources (by that I mean google) tell me that is about to change. She is writing a new book {so so excited} and there are two different tv shows being made about her life. Y’all- I miss her but she is coming back! 


She won’t run for president again. She won’t be in politics, I bet. But she will always continue fighting for equality! She will never miss an opportunity to help our country grow and become more progressive. And y’all— I simply cannot wait! 

Watching the story of someone get back up time and time again thrills my soul. Especially when it’s someone I admire. 

Since I started this post 2 days there’s been an amazing video ciriculating from the Women in the World conference. Click below to read the article and watch the clip. 

Hillary speaks So eloquently in this clip. Why is it that women a woman is successful and accomplished her likability goes down? 
Just another Hillary loving gal,

Cara Roxanne 

I’m a Grazer

“MOOOOOO”

Yep- that’s me. I graze just like cows do.

About 5 years ago, pre Whole 30 days, I read an article that talked about eating throughout the day vs. eating 3 meals a day. Something clicked in me that day and I have pretty much done that ever since. I have many friends that laugh at me about always having food with me. It’s true! Now that I’m a grazer, I can’t undo it!

I pretty much eat every 1.5-2 hours without fail. When I was strictly a Grad student and wasn’t working {beyond the work of being a GRAD STUDENT} it was pretty easy. I mean there I was AT HOME and could just walk in the kitchen every few hours and grab something to eat. But being a working woman again has made it challenging. Therefore, planning ahead is ESSENTIAL for me.

If you saw how full my lunch box is on any given day you would probably laugh.

Today’s Whole 30 approved grazing is as follows:

1- strawberries

2- banana

3- apple (Fuji baby!!! love those)

4- raisins

5- 2 pieces of turkey breast lunch meat

6- Avacado. already peeled, cut in half and sprinkled with pepper

7- Larabar. (that’s for mid afternoon… save the best for last, right?)

8- Peaches. (store bought and prepackaged. Probably not the best option but I buy light syrup and I drain it. Sure i’m getting SOME sugar, but not a ton)

9- cashews

That should allow me to survive until I can get home and have a salad at 4:30. That salad will suffice til I can eat dinner!

I don’t eat after 7 pm. Unless I cut up an apple or eat a small of raisins.

So ya see- I’m a grazer. When I attempted this way of eating years ago I instantly dropped some pounds. I am currently not using this way of eating to lose weight, but it does help me to maintain. And frankly, at this point, I wouldn’t know how to do it any other way.

If I DO get a weird stomach cramp or pain I can narrow it down easily and figure out the culprit. Thankfully, when I eat clean like this that doesn’t happen very often!

Thanks for following the journey,

Cara Roxanne

Whole FLIPPIN’ 30

Ya’ll.

I’m doing it. again.

You read that right.

I did amazing the first time. I mean not really, but in hindsight that’s how I remember it. But the truth is it was horrible. I hated it. BUT…

For those 30 days I had NO stomach issues. Zilch. Nada. Not even with all those salads. I mean come on, between the salad and fruit you would assume I never left the bathroom, but I didn’t. I felt good. I slept good. I WAS good.

Well– over the past month my stomach issues have started creeping back up. I mean I had some really good take aways from the Whole 30  and I have applied those, but overall I am back to eating how I normally eat. Which is pretty good. And pretty healthy. And pretty full of GLUTEN.

I think that’s the culprit. So let me clarify. I am doing the WHOLE 30 BC (I do a lot of things BC… that means “By Cara”) This Whole 30 I will allow myself a probiotic yogurt every other day. I honestly believe that helps my stomach and I don’t know of any adverse affects I have had from it. So I am keeping that.

Also I am allowing myself a FEW (still undecided on what exactly) gluten free products. That’s so NOT the way to Whole 30 it by the book, but again this is BC. So….

No cheese.

No sugar. (other than a very VERY rare case like being somewhere and all that’s offered is cookies and i’m starving. And even then it is ONE.)

No milk no icecream= no problem. I don’t like either.

No GLUTEN! (no bread no grains no oats)

No corn (that kills my stomach… that means no movies. I can’t see a movie without popcorn)

NO COMPLAINING! HAHAHAHAHAHA! Just kidding.

Maybe this will help me decide once and for all if it’s gluten. Sigh.

Here we flippin’ go again!

whole30

I have no clue why you would want to follow this journey but thank you,

Cara Roxanne

P.S. The only reason there is a HEART around the word WHOLE 30 is because I couldn’t find one with the NO sign on it.

Where do we even begin?

“Where do we even begin?”

These were the words I mumble often. *SIGH*

I always feel like I don’t know where to start. I get these wild hairs {either from being on Pinterest too much, or visiting a friend, or just being tired of what I am looking at} to do a project but then I become so overwhelmed that I don’t ever do it.

*FACE PALM*

For years I have been into the idea of Minimalism. But I like to call it “Minimalism BC”. BC stands for “BY CARA”. This means I have taken the whole concept, read all the books, read all the blogs, researched, what the documentary on Netflix, and then come up with my very won version of Minimalism. The problem is…

IT IS LIKE A DIET!

If you don’t stick with it, plan thoroughly and pay CLOSE attention to what you are doing you will quickly find yourself off track. You will be lost somewhere stuffing a burger in your face, or in my case, hoarding with pride my 56 bottles of shampoo. {I love shampoo, y’all. It’s like my thing. Isn’t that strange?}

YOU MUST STAY FOCUSED

So where do you start? That’s a good question. As a therapist I know that I can’t tell someone to start but I can rephrase the question: Where DO you want to start? Or to spice it up…Where do YOU want to start? [See what I did there? Best part of being a therapist is answering questions with a question. It’s my fav.]

I WANT TO START OVER

I did good for so long and then I got busy. Legit busy. I went back to school, went back to work, had more income and therefore wasn’t as careful, and I got lazy. It became easier to just go buy a bag of socks than it would have been to dump out my drawer and look for it’s mate. {Again- face palm.}

So that’s just it– i’m starting over. I had on my list of errands to run the other day “buy socks” for my child. On my way to the store I literally said out loud “WHAT AM I DOING??” If she has more than one pair of socks I do NOT need to buy more. Truth is she probably has 57 pair of socks I just haven’t taken the time to look through all of them and pair them up or toss them out. It’s not the price of the socks that I need to be concerned about here. Dropping $8 on a bag of socks isn’t going to kill me, but it would just have been MORE in an already cram packed chest of drawers.

I NEED A REFRESHER

Maybe you are new to the idea of living on less. {And I don’t mean money– i mean STUFF!} Maybe you are like me and have done really good for a long time but just got busy. Or lazy. Or both. We can DO THIS! This isn’t the first time that I have needed a refresher so for what it’s worth… here’s my refresher.

Side note… Read “The 100 Thing Challenge”. It is amazing! And a great place to start. This guy chose 100 things to keep, I choose 46,000 but the bottom line is- it had an impact on what I kept.

  1. Don’t buy anything!!! Do not buy ONE single thing {except food, duh!} until you have gone through the process. Pay your bills, put gas in your car and food in your bellies and that’s it. Maybe that will motivate you to work through this process faster. It took me 3 months the first time.
  2. Start one room at a time, closet at a time and drawer at a time. Go through everything you own!!! Get rid of what you don’t want, keep what you do. And if you keep it make sure you will either use it or has some type of sentimental value. As for what you don’t keep- sell it, donate it or give it away. Get it out of your house.
  3. I had a hard time getting rid of a whole bunch of t-shirts. My thought here was that even though I didn’t wear them all, but I knew over time I would. So I kept 7 t-shirts out and put the rest in my attic. So when these wear out I have a whole (semi) brand-new stash to pull out. This means I won’t have to go BUY anything else but they will feel new to me. Use this to apply to anything! Don’t wanna throw dish towels out but don’t need 14 in your drawer? Put the rest away. When you need them, you have them but your drawers are less cluttered and not stuffed to the brim.
  4. If it stays in your closet, WEAR IT! If it stays in the cabinet-cook with it. If you realize at the end of this project that you haven’t used something  you kept, get ready to say goodbye!
  5. Don’t be crazy. This is my last refresher step for now. Last year I decided to take a bunch of DVD’s to the game store my daughter trades in games at. I was so pumped about clearing off a shelf and getting a little extra dough to spend towards a DS game for the kiddo. Well… they wanted to give me 1 cent for each. Now some would say “TAKE THE PENNY AND RUN”. I said no thanks. It wasn’t worth it to me. Don’t sell something you know you will regret getting rid of. And dang sure don’t sell it for a dollar. This is meant to be methodical and planned out to make YOUR life is easier. Not cost more later on.

Make sense? What are your tips for living a more simple life? I’d love to hear them!!! roxyrambles02@gmail.com is the quickest way to catch me or comment below.

I am getting started TODAY on my appropriately named “Spring Fling”. I’ll post an update soon.

Thanks for reading,

Cara Roxanne

How to be a fake friend

I have spent a lot of time over the past few weeks in prayer for my friends. I am so thankful and fortunate to have such a good, strong, group of friends that I do life with. We celebrate the ups and downs, encourage each other, celebrate milestones and laugh… a lot! I couldn’t be more thankful for the friendships I have made over the past few years.

But… that being said, I have spent a substantial amount of time grieving the loss of friendships that faded away. Some faded away because they NEEDED to. Some faded away because life took us in different directions. Some disintegrated before my very eyes without knowing why. The “death” of a Friendship is never easy. There will always be the photos, the memories, and those dang “TimeHop” memories that pop up. They hurt. Grieving the loss of a friendship is so painful yet sometimes it needs to happen.

I am fervently praying over my life these days. (More about that later) I am praying not only over my family but also over my friends lives. I have friends who are in a dark pit right now and those who are walking a scary road. I have friends who are on a mountain top right now and I am praying that they can soak in every ounce of Joy from our Savior during this time.

In spending time in prayer I have prayed that I could be a better friend. Sometimes I feel like I got this. Sometimes my eyes are open to the needs of my friends. During moments like these my mind is open and aware of even small things I could do or buy for a friend. I am so thankful for times like these! But let’s face it- there are times when I am so selfish. I have my own “stuff” going on and I forget to be a good friend to those who need it because I am busy living inside my own little world. Oh Father- forgive me for when I do that!!

There are a million and one ways to be a terrific friend, but sadly there are just as many ways to be a terrible or “fake” friend. Because I feel like most of us are aware of how to be “good”, i’m listing the top 7 ways to be a fake friend. {I’m guilty of all of those…not proud, but it’s a fact}

  1. Forget to keep in touch. I understand that when you have a lot going on it’s easy to forget–but don’t! Make yourself a note. Send a group text. Post a funny pic on their FB wall. Something! Anything to let your friends know you haven’t forgotten about them.
  2. Avoid compliments. If you are in your own world it’s easy to forget things like “good job” “cute shirt” “love those shoes”. Saying things like that will more than likely help YOU feel better but think about what that could mean to the other person?
  3. Only call them when you need something. Nothing hurts worse than seeing your phone ring and it being a really good friend of yours only when you answer it’s all business… “I need help with this” “What would you do about this” “Can you help me…” Not a hello? Not a how you doing? Not an “I miss you” Come on…
  4. Act offended when they hang out with other people. Well of COURSE your friend is hanging out with someone else? What did you think was going to happen while you were being weird, distant, rude, evasive, and MIA?
  5. Downplay the good stuff they got going. If you want to ensure that you are a sucky friend you should most definitely leave the cheerleading outfit at home. Don’t cheer them on! Don’t acknowledge the excitement in their life. After all, YOU are the most important…right?
  6. Don’t pray for them. So life sucks for you right now, huh? Then you should most definitely wallow in self pity and forget to ask our Heavenly Father to bless our friends!
  7. Keep it to yourself. Life is tough right now and you just want to be alone and you don’t want to encourage anyone…then for sure don’t fill your friends in on what is going on with you. It would be a shame to have support, encouragement and prayers now wouldn’t it?

I think you get the point. We have all been there when it was hard to be kind, encouraging, supportive, and prayerful towards our friends. But I can tell you this– it’s worth it! I’ve learned a tough lesson over the years about friendship. I’ve learned that some people cannot be pleased. You can be an amazing friend and it won’t be enough. You can be a fair weather friend and maintain a long friendship full of surface conversations and that can be enough. You can be the type of friend that goes above and beyond and it’s never noticed. I’ve been on the giving and receiving end of all of those types of friendships.

WE WEREN’T MEANT TO DO LIFE ALONE!!!!!! Don’t be the reason that YOU are doing life alone. Look at this list… like I said earlier, I am guilty of ALL of these at times. No one is perfect. But as a general rule, how many of these do you find yourself on a regular basis? Is it hard to congratulate

But I ask you this… at the end of it all do you want to be remembered for being THAT friend?

Another Ramble,

Cara Roxanne

Discouragement.

The opposite of encouraged.

That is how I feel.

I’m still trusting in God’s plan for us. That hasn’t changed…but I am discouraged.

I told you everything I know. We got the letter telling us we were approved for classes and would be notified “soon” of our dates for our required classes.

I haven’t heard a word since then.

It’s not the end of the world, but it is so disheartening to have things move quickly and then just stop. I wasn’t prepared for a speedy process (though my heart wanted one) but with the way things started it just felt like we were on a roll.

I believe that God uses many aspects and situations to teach us lessons. I’m afraid this is my “you are not in control” lesson. {Why God, why? I’m SO good at being in control!!!} Lord knows [literally] that I struggle with control issues. I have a LARGE problem <is it ACTUALLY a problem?> with needing to be in control. When I am in control of, let’s say, my family finances, we have more money put aside than when my husband is in control of the finances. (This is NOT a newsflash… he knows this). Organizing <sans a label maker like my sister carries around> and keeping order is one of my strong suits. I have a “knack” for things like that. This is why I feel so strongly that God may be teaching me to give control to Him.

So that’s what I am going {trying} to do. God’s got this. He hasn’t forgotten about us or the child we will bring into our family. He just has lessons for us to learn along the way.

psalm

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

Thank you for being a part of this journey,

Cara Roxanne

Provision

This verse is what I am praying this week. 

Provision. What does this mean to you? 

There are times in my life it meant being protected from an illness. At times it meant being able to pay all of the bills. There were moments it meant it has meant takin a leap of faith and trusting God was going to catch me. 

Through this process it means trust. Sure provision actually means that God will provide for us… but to me that starts with trust. 

I just spent some time with my girlfriends and they are sharing in the excitement of this journey. I must admit that it IS fun to be able to talk about this process in an “exciting” way instead of the “I can’t get my hopes up” kind of way. But the reality is– I have no answers to anyone’s questions. I’m excited and equally terrified at the thought of an infant. Same goes for toddler, tween, or teen. Excited and terrified. 

But this I know for the Bible tells me so… God will provide. He’s never failed me yet. He’s provided everything we could ever need and more. He has given me a child without the help of my own body. He will do it again. And to all the questions that flood my head and heart (and I assure you there are plenty), I come back to trust… and provision. 

“Where God guides, he WILL provide.” Isaiah 58:11

Thank you for being a part of this journey,

Cara Roxanne 

In the mail…

Here’s what I know now…

One of my best friends called me last week laughing hysterically. She had checked her mailbox and a particular letter made her heart sink. She had a letter from DHS and said out loud “what has my child said??” Turns out her child hadn’t said anything that sparked some investigation into her parenting abilities lol!! It was a letter asking her to fill out some info on Us! She was one of my references. 

Those have been sent!! Praise the Lord. 

Yesterday WE had a surprise in the mailbox. It was a letter informing us that we have been cleared and approved to take the required classes. The letter stated we would get our dates soon. 
One small step– but a step none the less. 

For now I’m waiting patiently and peacefully. Sure I want things to hurry up. <DUH!> We have been talking about summer plans while knowing those could change. I’ve wondered if we will be buying 4 tickets to hop on a plane. What if it’s a baby? Can they fly? What if our child is 13 and has never been on a trip. What IF this our first family trip as a foursome? Or what if we are meant to wait? 

So many questions. So much anxiety. And oh so much HOPE. 


Psalm 40:1 “I waited patiently for the Lord; He turned to me and heard my cry.”

Thanks for being a part of this journey,

Cara Roxanne 

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