June 27, 2014

Mid-Year Update!

Can you believe we’re at the end of June already? I certainly can’t! To me, it’s kind of scary to think that half the year is through! I know that there’s plenty more time before 2014 ends, but still, it’s crazy how fast time is flying by! Since we’re around the mid-year mark, I thought I’d do a mini-update post.

  • I returned to my previous job in February, after having been away in the Philippines for half a year last year. It’s almost like I never left, as I was able to easily assimilate back into the tasks that I used to do. We moved to a new office in April, and I’m loving the larger desk space, better lighting and building location a whole ton. Plus, one of my closest friends and I share a work area, and it’s awesome!
  • Macky & I are still waiting on the final verdict for his visa situation. If all goes as well as expected, he should be able to join me in the US by our wedding anniversary in September! I’m really hoping for that (especially since we’re plotting an Orlando trip to celebrate). So, keep us in your prayers and send lots of positive vibes our way please!
  • I feel like I’ve finally managed to come to a point where I’m content with who I am, and the friends I’ve chosen to surround myself with (real life, church, blogger or otherwise). It’s pretty great, because I’m almost never in awkward situations, and really know how to stand my ground and not get talked into doing things that I wouldn’t want to in the first place.
  • My sister and I have been roommates again since October, and it’s pretty great. While Mel is decidedly messier than I am, it doesn’t wind up causing any problems! Though we’re very different people (and at different stages in our lives), it’s just fun to have family to come home to, share experiences with and talk to. (She also got a job, by the way, so please think plenty of good thoughts that she gets hired after her probation period!)
  • I’m feeling a bit restless life-wise. I’m still pinpointing if it’s something that can be fixed with a vacation, or if it’s something that requires a bigger life change in general. While it helps to do fun things like blog and play tourist in NYC, the ache hasn’t quite eased.
  • I’m learning how to exercise, eat right and just generally take better care of myself. Listening to my body and respecting its wishes was never something I used to do; instead, I would push, push, push myself to the breaking point. It’s a slow journey, but I know that it will be worthwhile in the end.

  • In terms of consistency, I’ve been doing very well! I’ve been able to post 5-7 days a week, as well as regularly vlog (so you can hear me babble like a silly person) too. It pleases me that I can be so regular, and it definitely helps that I can often schedule posts in advance.
  • I’ve been doing quite a few blog collaborations with friends! It’s really fun to work with other bloggers, and I’m always open to opportunities to do so. I’ll be touching more on this during August for Friendship Month!
  • I got to attend BEA + publisher events + signings! There were a lot of fun times to be had, as I always consider it quite a privilege to meet authors and publishing contacts that I love. Plus, BEA was prime time to hang out with blogger friends I rarely get to see in person!
  • Because I read during my commutes and in most of my spare time, I’ve successfully gotten halfway past my reading goal for the year and have managed to sort of stay on top of my review pile too. It’s my goal to read more books I own in the second half of the year!
  • I’ve been getting lots of ideas & concepts for this story that’s been tickling at my mind since early March. I might just have to gather all my notes, then finally sit down at my computer and make myself continue it!

Click to see the full list!
  • PRAY – I’ve been working on integrating reading the Bible into my daily life, and I do it either before I go to sleep or when I wake up in the morning. While I haven’t been journaling as much as I like yet, I’m hoping to learn how to integrate that in as well.
  • REFLECT – I’m pretty good at updating my weekly planner with all the things I’ve gotten up to! However, I’m not quite journaling as much as I’d like. It’s a shame too because my journal is nearly finished and I can get a new one… if I would write in it more.
  • SHARE – I’m giving myself an A+ in this particular item, because I’ve been doing all the things I’ve said I would and more! It’s become important to me to nurture HEALTHY relationships, and it is happening.
  • TRAVEL – I’ll be going to Philly next week, so that counts? I also have plans to go up to Boston for a day sometime this summer! (Hi Andi & Sarah!) I also think I want to venture to Florida at some point, and visit Niagara Falls.
  • SAVE – I’m giving myself an F on this because overall, I’m not managing money well. I’m fixing to remedy that in the latter half of the year. Plus, since Mel is a fan of spreadsheets, she’s made this awesome expense report format that I am totally copying.
  • WRITE – Blog posts are being written (which is a lot of words indeed), but stories are not. I did mention this in the previous section though!
  • READ – Obviously, this is working out very well indeed if you’ve seen my Goodreads goal status. I read a lot.
  • COOK – Yeah, not happening, except for things I already know how to make (like breakfast foods). But I do have a few recipes stacked up to try! And we just got some new cookware in our apartment, so I’m more inclined to try.
  • SING – I practice a lot, and have playlists dedicated to songs I want to learn to sing. However, I’ve never recorded my songs yet. It may or may not happen. (Should I?)
  • BLOG/VLOG – I’m doing pretty good at this, I think, as based on my thoughts in the previous section. Especially the vlogging bit.

Click to see the full bingo bucket board!
  • I’ve been able to achieve 7 out of the 24 squares, which is roughly about a third or so. I already have a few more squares I’ll be able to cross off come July, and will make plans to systematically knock out as many as I can before the year ends.
  • Here are the ones I’ve accomplished:
    • Meet a celebrity.
    • Watch a sporting event. (Half point because it wasn’t live)
    • Get 100 likes on a Facebook or Instagram post.
    • Meet an author.
    • Visit another state.
    • Sing a karaoke song solo.
    • Take a class.
Whew! There you have it, the current state of things in my world! I’ve definitely managed to accomplish a lot more than I thought I did, but there’s totally room for me to do much more before 2014 ends. I’m crossing my fingers that my year-end report will have more things crossed off my lists!

YOUR TURN – If you set New Year’s goals/resolutions, how are you doing in accomplishing them? If not, were there any things you were hoping to do/hoping to happen this year? Have any suggestions for how I can complete goals (especially on the bingo board)?


  1. I am deeply impressed that you manage to do so much - how do you manage to do all that?! I am terrible at exercise and eating right - that's something I'm working on again, I'm hoping it will help that I have a new house and I'll be walking a lot more to the subway. I'm also closer to dance classes and that kind of thing now.

    I didn't know you were a singer! Would love to hear you through YouTube - I've been singing both classical, musical theatre, and pop for a long time, but I'm way too scared to put myself on YouTube...there are a few up of me and my band, but I don't share them =p That said...you would be my hero if you did that!

  2. Best of luck with the visa situation, and congrats on your job and your sister's! Also, best of luck with that story! :)

  3. I'm sending all my good thoughts to you and Macky for his visa! Seems like you already achieved some pretty amazing things this year :D

  4. I'm so happy that everything is mostly going so well for you, Alexa! I'm sending happy thoughts your way and I hope everything works out for you and Macky!

    I love Philly! There's so many interesting things to do and there's just so much history as well as art in the city. There are always a lot of literary events going on as well and the Quirk Books blog always has a weekly roundup of literary events going on in the city. Boston is super fun as well! I love going to the harbor and Quincy Market! There's so much cheap food and variety all in one place at Quincy Market.

    I'm still trying to figure myself out and work on the story that I've been writing since forever. There's some progress on both fronts, which is good!

  5. I used to prayer journal and I loved it! I should get back in that habit.

    I definitely love seeing more of your vlogs!


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