Today is strange.

I am going to get some stuff off of my chest right now. You’ve been warned.

Yesterday, I wound up having to move the rest of my stuff out of the apartment that I used to share with my (now ex) boyfriend of almost 6 years. It was terrible. I’ve never cried so much in my life and I’ve never experienced so many emotions at once. His story is one that he has decided he needs to live without me. I don’t know if it’s permanent, I don’t know what it means, and I don’t know what he is feeling, but he believes that he needs to do his own thing right now.

The hardest part about all of this is that his decision to end things actually has nothing to do with anything I did or didn’t do. It’s solely something internal that has been eating at him over the last year. I can’t tell you how many times he’s said that to me and apologized for everything – for being the catalyst for all of this. When he told me he “hadn’t been excited about the relationship for over a year,” my heart felt like it had shattered into 5076575806257635 pieces. I was so taken aback – so thrown off. I don’t understand and I’ve never been more confused. At the same time, while trying to deal with my own emotions, I like to think that I understand what he needs. His honesty was both refreshing and heartbreaking. He has always been such an honest and amazing person, and that is why this has hit me so hard. I don’t know what changed inside of his head, but I can’t help but think I had something to do with it, despite his constant, “No, this is all me.” It almost feels like he’s lost himself and that destroys me, down to my very core.

The thing here is that I love him SO much, that all I want is what is best for him. I am devastated that what he believes is best may not involve me, but I am doing my best to respect his decision. I gave my keys back yesterday, we’ve switched the phones over, all of the technical things have been done, and now all that’s left for me to do is grieve. This wasn’t a hostile break-up; this break-up has come to fruition because he is missing something inside of himself and all I want is for him to find his peace.

I know that I’ve mentioned this before, but I have to keep reminding myself of it: “If you love someone, let them go. If they come back, they are yours, if they don’t, they never were.”

I hope with every fiber of my being, that he finds his way back to me, but I know that I cannot will something like this to work in my favor. Only time will tell and only fate can guide something like this. My heart is so heavy. I don’t know what else to say.

Traveling more, with less.

Good morning everyone! I am currently on my way to New Jersey. I’ve never been and I am looking forward to it!

My trusty little carry on bag and I are on the Amtrak now and ready for 2 days of concerts and the Asbury Park boardwalk. Bring it on!

I only packed essentials this time around, just like I tried to do for my last weekend get away to NY.

Here’s the list of stuff I’ve brought along for the trip:

2 plain tank tops

1 fancy tank top (concert attire)

2 pair of jeans(1 I’m wearing now + 1 backup)

1 pair of shorts

Bathing suit

Beach towel

Flip flops

Sneakers

1 bra

1 bralette

3 pairs of underwear

3 pairs of socks

Sweatshirt

Lint roller

Phone charger

Chambray button up (which I’m using as my beach cover-up)

Travel-sized shower things + travel sized hair spray & make-up wipes

Sunscreen (!!!!)

1 pair of sun glasses

Hair brush

Toothbrush/toothpaste

Basic make-up (cover up, foundation, mascara, lipstick)

Aside from my book and my headphones and phone, that’s it!

Packing less has made the entire travel process so much less stressful and my carry is good for any form of travel – trains, planes,automobiles. It’s versatile and it works so well for me!

I am looking forward to roaming about in a new area with my friends! Should be a great time! Enjoy the rest of your week!

“Retail Therapy”

Okay, okay, guilty as charged. I went shopping a few times over the last week to try and make myself feel better . Post break-up therapy, if you will.

Not for nothing, the task of shopping itself didn’t really help anything…HOWEVER, the pieces that I wound up buying? They make me feel like a million bucks! I am beginning to realize that many of the clothes I wound up keeping in my wardrobe before were sub-par, at best. I bought them because I thought they were things that I should wear to work, but hardly any of them really made me FEEL good about myself when I put them on, you know? The whole point of this simplified life/closet thing I am doing is quality over quantity and to keep only the pieces that make me feel GOOD!

I am happy to report that I was able to keep myself from going crazy on impulse buys (a thing that has proven to be incredibly difficult for me in the past) and really did my best to buy pieces that really reflected MY personal style, which is a thing that I have ignored for many years and am finally beginning to rediscover.

I haven’t worn EVERYTHING yet, because this is a short work week for me (I am going away Thursday through Saturday), so below are just two pictures, for now.

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This Calvin Klein dress is fabulous and it was on sale at Marshall’s ($40)! It’s compliments my figure AND it’s super comfortable. It will be great for work, weddings or any other special events that require me to dress up. Big win.
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This black and floral print tank blouse ($15) from Old Navy is super cute and, paired with two other pieces that I already own, created a great work look! (It also goes well with all of my work pants/skirts and cardigans.)

In total, I purchased 6 new items and, to make room for the new stuff, I got rid of 4 old items, all of which were torn, faded or stretched out. Those items were: 1 pair of olive green work pants with some weird, sort-of visible oil stain on the front, 1 stretched out, super casual LBD, 1 black & white striped cardigan that was just too big for me, but I had been holding on to for some reason and another casual dress that I was “keeping just in case.” (TBH, not sure what I was keeping it “in case” of, so it’s been donated, along with everything else).

Alongside the 2 pieces pictured above, I purchased the following:

  • A light blue and white striped maxi dress from Target. $34. I have never owned one of these before. It looks really great, too! Which surprised me, since I am so darn short. It can be dressed up or down and can also work well for a beach day! Hooray  for versatility! 
  • A short-sleeved, white, collared button-up shirt for work. It is a loose fit and will pair really well with both the black and the grey, pixie-style work pants from Old Navy, that I have owned for MONTHS and/or any of my jeans/shorts.
  • A pair of black skinny jeans from Target for $24 + a pair of ankle length, straight leg blue jeans from Old Navy for $34. These two pairs of jeans will replace the two ratty pairs I’ve been wearing down for YEARS. Both of those pairs had slowly succumbed to the dreaded inner-thigh wear & tear and had to be replaced. I’m sad to see them go, but they had a good run!

I am pretty impressed with myself because none of these items broke the bank and I also shopped around before purchasing anything. I actually tried everything on, which I have been guilty of avoiding in years past (why? no idea. I just did), and I m really happy with the results.

There’s no motivation quite like post-break-up motivation; that’s the undeniable truth. This whole thing has provided me the opportunity to begin rediscovering myself and MY style and I look forward to seeing how that all plays out. The goal is to re-focus on self-love, self-care and self-confidence. Baby steps.

That’s all for now! Enjoy your day!

Going through the motions…

My boyfriend of 5.5 years broke up with me. It’s been a very weird last few days, to say the least. I am certain that I’ve experienced every emotion you could possibly imagine – anger, depression, defeat, betrayal, relief, regret, loneliness, self-doubt, distrust, exhaustion, incompetence, nervousness, I could go on, but I’ll save you the time. To sum it up, I have felt like absolute sh*t. I realize that this is normal, but I almost feel like I should somehow be over it already (which is absolutely ridiculous), but that’s where my brain is at currently.

Life throws curve balls (to put it lightly) and no matter the state of things prior, no matter how “prepared” you thought you were, you won’t be. It’s just not possible. It is a difficult reality to face that the last (almost) 6 years of my life were spent pouring my whole self into a relationship, only to have it end. If I could have it my way, we would have worked through whatever this burden is together; I would have helped him heal and all would have been right with the world, but that was just not the case. Everyone has demons, everyone has to face certain things on their own, I am just devastated that I can’t help. It is the worst feeling that I have ever known.

Despite all of this and no matter how down on myself I am right now, my friends and family have all been there to try and pull me back up and I am BEYOND grateful for that. It helps prove to me that I must be doing something right. If I wasn’t a decent person, this support system simply would not exist. So, as much as I am blaming myself right now, the truth is that this situation has absolutely nothing to do with me. There is nothing that I could have done to prevent it. For him, this battle is internal and I, unfortunately, have been caught in the crossfire. I have to learn how to focus on healing myself.

I wish him peace. I wish him love. I wish him self-confidence and the ability to learn to love himself – because no matter the situation, loving another person is impossible, unless you have tended to your own needs first.

ALL I WANT IS WHAT IS BEST FOR YOU. Please, take care.

“If you love someone, set them free. If they come back they are yours; if they don’t they never were.” – Richard Bach

Decluttering my closet!

Happy Friday (well…technically, it’s Saturday now…) everyone!

I came home to my package from The Container Store, waiting for me on the porch! Maybe I was a little too excited about that… on second thought… no I wasn’t. I WAS STOKED! (Is this what “adulting” is – getting super jazzed about closet organizer stuff that you got one sale? If so, I don’t hate it.)

ANYWAY, I clean my closet out often, but SOMEHOW, a huge mess always manages to recreate itself within a couple of days. Maybe I just suck at not throwing things on the floor, but that is a reality that I have learned to accept; it is a reality that looks a lot like this:

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SO, I decided to try something new…

TAAA DAAAAAHHHHHHHH!

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That right there, lovely readers – believe it or not, is 3/4 of my year-round wardrobe! I need to do laundry, so some stuff is missing, but CHECK THIS SH*T OUT!

I. AM. ELATED. Weird? Maybe to you, BUT am I ashamed that this brings me so much joy? HELL-TO-THE-NO. Clean(er) house, clear(er) mind. I’d say my Friday was pretty  productive!

I think that my next update will be a “What’s in my wardrobe?” post. I am super curious to see how many items I actually have. I have done A LOT of decluttering and donating over the last few months, so I would like to see where I am at. Please let me know if you guys would be interested in reading something like that (TBH, I’ll probably do it either way, but…) it would be nice to get some feedback!

That’s all for now! Have a lovely night!

Quick update!

Check out the new domain name! lindsliveswithless.blog 🙂 Finally, everything is cohesive!

In other news, my closet organizer stuff was delayed, so I will be getting it in the mail tomorrow. I will update you on that whole process once it’s finished, as I mentioned in my last post!

I hope that everyone had a great 4th of July!

I deleted my Facebook.

Okay, it’s Tuesday! Sorry I missed posting yesterday. I had a migraine from hell and didn’t do much all day, aside from sleeping and pounding fluids. But, I’m back now and ready to roll.

This weekend was productive! I started cleaning out my kitchen on Friday night and honestly, I was SO overwhelmed by the amount of tupperware and everything else, that it took me through Saturday to finish it all up. Here’s some before and after photos:

BEFORE – UGH

AFTER 🙂

*Not pictured – I forgot to take a photo of the inside of my cabinets. I got rid of all but 5 plastic tupperware and anything with broken lids/cracks in them. I kept all but 3 of the glass tupperware that I had*

HTG, it felt like a huge weight was lifted after that whole process was finished. It’s nice to have (and only have to worry about washing) only what I truly need.

In addition to cleaning out my kitchen stuff, I also tried to use up some of the (many) leftovers I had in my freezer, fridge and cabinets. If you saw my last post, you know that the list of stuff I still had left over after not grocery shopping for two weeks was EXTENSIVE. In an attempt to waste a whole lot less, I whipped up a few dishes Saturday-Monday, and used up a solid amount of stuff. Here’s some photos:

I also made grilled cheese, rice and beans, chocolate chia pudding and pasta with sauce. Not too shabby, for using strictly leftovers.

I did make a trip to the store last night, just for a few basics that I had run out of. I picked up one thing of fresh strawberries, 8 bananas and 2 things of unsweetened almond milk, I also grabbed a bag of frozen acai packets, because everyone raves about them and I wanted to try them out in a couple of smoothie bowls this week. It’s a short week for me because the 4th of July is tomorrow and I really only needed to come up with 3 days worth of food, so I didn’t want to buy too much. I will probably have to do a real trip next week, but that’ll make almost 3 weeks without a big trip to the store, so I’m content with that.

In other news, I deleted my Facebook yesterday. I went through, saved all of my pictures, wrote down all of the important birthdays and then opted out. I was keeping a low-key tally of how often I checked that app daily, and it was disgusting, the amount of time that I spent, falling down the “I haven’t spoken to this person in years, but I’m curious” rabbit hole(s). The whole point of this #sldmchallenge is to create more time for myself and to start getting (more) in the habit of using my free time more productively. Having Facebook totally goes against all of that, and I decided that it was time to let that shit go. It was weird, deleting it off of my phone. My account is “disabled” for 14 days, before the actual deleting will happen, which…why? I thought that was a bit much, but the creators of that platform must be fully aware of the fact that the temptation is real  for people to sign back in, within that first, two-week period. I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t true, but I am doing my best to resist. It’s weird, because I joined that platform way back in 2008 or 2009, when it first came out, so over a decade of my life was cataloged there. Kind of creepy and kind of sickening to think about. I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off of my shoulders, thus proving to me that social media has a strong effect on everyone and everything. I still have my Instagram account and obviously, this blog, but that’s it. That account is for documentation purposes only, for this #SLDMchallenge. It helps me document my efforts and my progress. If you’re interested in following me on this journey, you can search @lindsliveswithless and hit follow.

20180701_1405037732112231459660449.jpgI donated EVEN MORE clothing this weekend too. I ordered a clean out bag from #ThredUp, which is an online consignment store that will buy your new/gently used clothing. ThredUp* allows you to choose to receive a pay out for the items that you send in OR to donate whatever amount those items are worth to one of the charities below:

Big Brother Big Sister Foundation:  www.bbbsfoundation.org
Feeding America:  http://www.feedingamerica.org/
National Head Start Association:  https://www.nhsa.org/
Girls, Inc.: girlsinc.org
Help a Mother Out: helpamotherout.org
Wardrobe for Opportunity:  wardrobe.org

I think that using ThredUp is a great way to give back. Check out http://www.thredup.com for more information. The clean out bag is free and they send it to you with with pre-paid postage, so you do not have to pay to mail it back to them either. If you choose the pay out, you can select to be reimbursed via PayPal, or opt for store credit, to use on their online shop. If you choose to donate, once your bag is recieved, you will get an email listing the total amount donated to the charity that you chose. *I am not affiliated with ThredUp, I just think it’s an awesome thing!*

Additionally, I ordered some closet organization stuff (which was on SUPER SALE from The container Store!) last week, and it should be delivered by Thursday. I’ll post some before and after pictures of my closet, once I’ve completed that project.

Tomorrow is the 4th of July, so I will be as far away from my computer as possible, enjoying some time with family & friends! Hopefully you all can find some time to do the same! I’ll be back at you with another post by the end of the week. That’s all for now!