lindseydaffin

Live Free & Be True to Yourself

“All That I am or Hope to be I Owe to My Mother” — May 10, 2015

“All That I am or Hope to be I Owe to My Mother”

There are no truer words to describe the woman I am today than that saying above. However, it was a rocky road to get here. You see, I was an awful child. “Lindsey Michelle the kid from hell”, I can’t make that up. That was what my parents and some of their closest friends called me. They were somewhat kidding but mostly serious. After some of the stories I have been told about myself I can’t say that I blame them. I was that kid that you see in stores or restaurants having a complete melt down because they didn’t get their way or something. You know, that kid that you always say you will NEVER have. Well, I was THAT kid. (Sorry mom) I’m thankful she didn’t strangle me in those early years because I know I was a terror.

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(in the famous words of Elvis “She’s the devil in disguise”)

I made it into early childhood but I was still an awful child. Not in school of course, the teachers told my mother I was such an angel. HA!! Not so much to my parents especially my poor mother. I was a smart mouth, back talker and an eye roller (I still haven’t outgrown that…my husband despises it). Looking back I really don’t know why I was so terrible, but none the less I was. Don’t get me wrong I could be really sweet and I wasn’t a trouble maker, I just had a big smart mouth on me. Again, thanks mom for not killing me… you have great restraint.

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(obviously I was pissed and in trouble)

Growing up I never appreciated all that my mother did and all that she taught me. She was, in my eyes, insane with all of her crazy and obsessive cleaning habits, her shopping and price comparing drove me bananas, and how she would always call to dispute billing issues no matter how small the amount. I ALWAYS said that would never be me. I kept my room in shambles and she would yell for days. Of course, I thought she had way too high of standards and swore I would never ever be that anal.

Well, the apple didn’t fall from the tree. I am my mother made over. All of those things she was trying to teach me while probably feeling it was useless and like talking to a brick wall weren’t useless at all. My house now stays pretty spotless and I price compare like no ones business. Oh and disputes on bills…I learned from the best! My husband makes me handle all of the phone calls with important stuff because he know I will ALWAYS win. (thanks mom) All of the things I thought she was obsessive about I see now weren’t obsessive at all. She just wanted to take care of her things and I was such a brat about it.

I can’t thank my mother enough for all the things she taught me and always loving me, now matter how terrible I was towards her. I know that I am the woman and the wife I am today because of what she taught me and I hope that I can one day be the mother she was for me, for my kids. Although I will be praying very hard that none of my kids are as rotten as I was.

So Happy Mothers Day to the awesome lady who raised Lindsey Michelle the kid from hell. I love you mom!

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True Life: Living with Vampires — May 7, 2015

True Life: Living with Vampires

I wish I could say that the vampires I’m living with are the beautiful creatures seen in Twilight or True Blood. *ahem hello Eric Northman, yes, you may enter my home* Unfortunately the vampires I am speaking of leave you itching like a dog with fleas and covered in whelps.

I grew up in the south, so I know what mosquitos are but they were really only an issue when camping or at bonfires, and even then they were manageable. When I moved to Albuquerque I would have to say my favorite part was the lack of bugs. There are hardly ANY bugs there and no mosquitos (at least not that I ever discovered). IT. WAS. GLORIOUS! Now we have moved to Florida and I think the entire mosquito population lives in our yard and is trying to make up for the time I was away from their bloodsucking mouths.

Florida claims their state bird is the Northern Mockingbird. The lie detector determined that was a lie. Mosquitos are the state bird and they are the devil! When I look out my back door I literally see swarms of them. I can’t go outside to give my dogs water without being attacked by at least 10 at one time. They are invading my house. My husband and I literally run around the house clapping our hands together killing the mosquitos that come inside. We have decided to make a game out of it, winner with the most kills at the end of the week gets a prize. Also there are trick kills, like the other night I took a running start to leap into the air to kill one headed for the ceiling. Mosquito – 0 Lindsey – 1

While we are awake we dominate against the mosquitos but when we go to bed they go to town. When we fall asleep at night we are basically a Golden Corral of goodness for these monsters. I counted the other day when I woke up and had at least 20 bites covering my body.

I’m losing the war against the vampires and I don’t know how to make them leave. I think I am going to have to add spraying myself down in bug spray part of my daily routine when getting ready. Do they make body wash with mosquito repellant? I am desperate. Hello Florida I love your beach but not your “birds”.

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The 5 Stages of Moving, or Something Like That — April 23, 2015

The 5 Stages of Moving, or Something Like That

We all know them from a psychology class or just common knowledge; The five stages of grief or loss. You know: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and then acceptance. Well did you know that, similarly, there are 5 stages to moving? Yeah, neither did I. Not each stage is the same as grief but like the stages of grief, you have to work through each stage to get to the next. I discovered them on my first move and with the knowledge of what I went through I was prepared for the rollercoaster of emotions coming my way for our next move.

I was raised in the same house my whole life. I have been told that my first two years of existence were actually spent in another home, but I only have a few photos to go on and no real concrete memories. So, as I said, I was raised in one home. Twenty-one years I spent in this home, this same small town. A life like this is sometimes hard for people (such as my husband who was moved multiple times growing up) to imagine. The same house? The same town? Yes. Through high school and college I dreamt of the day that I could move off to a new place. I couldn’t wait, life held so many potential adventures. Well, as you may have read in my previous post, “What Happened to Miss Independent?”, my moving became a reality when I married my man.

So began the adventure, and this is where I will explain the 5 stages of moving. My now husband was stationed in Albuquerque, New Mexico when we were dating. I went to visit him there and that is where we got engaged. My initial thought of Albuquerque was that it was beautiful. I was so excited to be moving there after the wedding.

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(it IS beautiful)  

Excitement. This is stage one. The idea of moving is so exciting that nothing else really crosses your mind except the ideas in your head of what life is going to be like and all the cool stuff you will do and see. All I saw was a blank canvas of life waiting for me to make a masterpiece. Bring it!

Stage one lingers, for a moment when you first move but then it wears thin and you enter into stage two: Depression. After the move and the newness wore off I began to really, really miss home and the things I knew. I cried. (no shame) A lot. I was in a new strange place where I knew no one, didn’t have a job and didn’t know my way around town yet. It was intimidating and I didn’t have family to run to. But I worked through that stage and entered the next stage.

Anger! This stage may not apply to everyone but for me it was a very real stage. Most of my anger came from trying to find a professional job (I have a degree in communications) and the market in Albuquerque was quite lacking. It was frustrating to say the least. My anger was made worse by the fact that my husband got sent to Philadelphia for “clinicals” not even two months after we were married. So here I was, in a new town, with very few people I really knew, jobless and now husbandless. Cool, now if I could please have a punching bag that would be great.

After the anger settles, you make your way towards Acceptance. The fourth stage is not the “everything is great” stage. It is, simply, acceptance. Acceptance of what you cannot control or change. I gave up on chasing the professional dream and just found a job that could provide an income. I didn’t love the job, actually I hated the job, but it did introduce me to a great group of women some of whom I am still great friends with. During this stage I was just going through the motions. In order to move to the last stage you have to open up and quit feeling sorry for yourself and start to explore; quit being scared. Once you accept where you are and open up, you finally make it to the final stage.

Happiness! I found my happiness in this new place by exploring and finding new hobbies such as hiking. Holy cow! The views and mountains there are amazing, and I found great friends to do it with.

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(who knew the desert could be so pretty?)  

I quit the job I hated and found nanny job where I kept the cutest set of twins you ever saw! (I miss them). We did some super fun things in the state of New Mexico. Then we found out our next duty station, after my husband graduated, would be Florida.

And so began the stages of moving. I am currently in Acceptance, fresh off of Anger. I didn’t think I would miss Albuquerque so much, but man do I miss it. I made some of the best friends there and did some pretty cool things. Below I will share some of these cool things and photos I took. I know down the road I will be saying the same things about Florida. Gotta love the military life.

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“What Happened to Miss Independent?” — April 20, 2015

“What Happened to Miss Independent?”

Queue the 2003 hit by Kelly Clarkson. I keep seeing all these posts on social media from twenty-something girls (yes, I know I fit into that category) about being perpetually forever single or why dating a independent free spirited girl is the best or just about being a gypsy-soul girl and not needing a man and blah blah blah. It’s really annoying and now I laugh because those girls just simply have NO clue.

Not so long ago I was in my senior year of college thinking all the same things; I WAS that girl. I had ended a serious relationship because I was too young and not in love. I thought it was my time to be free and single and make my own plan, be independent. I was convinced it would be a long, long, time before some guy came in and swept me off my feet and changed my last name. I thought that I would graduate college move off to some cool new city and start a career. Finding someone to be my significant other was absolutely the last thing I was worried about. I was finally just dating with no serious feelings involved and it was awesome. I was looking at places to move, like Nashville, Memphis, or Dallas. I had lots of cool jobs I was asked to interview for. Life was going to be awesome and I was going to do it single. I promised myself that I would make decisions that revolved around me from now on and that I wouldn’t deviate from my wants, plans, and desires based on a guy ever again. I had done it so many times before and I was done.

Now I’d like to tell you how the girl who was so “free”, “hip”, needed no man and had her own plan ended up married a year and a half later. Married to a military guy none-the-less.

It was August of 2012 I was about to begin my senior year of college and I was newly single. I went over to one of my best friend’s apartments where she was having a little pre get together before moving the group to a favorite local bar. I ran into my now husband at said get together. I knew him from school and we had talked a few times and he was good friends with my brother. He was the good-looking guy at school and all the girls secretly wanted him. But he was also such a “John Tucker”. There is probably still a group of scorned girls who get together to plot an evil plan of revenge against him. He was a player and I knew it, but I was single and not looking for any attachment so I was good. We began talking and hit it off. When the group moved to the bar, somehow he and I stuck together and I honestly have no idea what happened to the rest of the group. We played darts and next thing I know we are kissing in the middle of the bar. Hey, I didn’t say it was a classy story. I knew he was leaving in a month or so for basic training for the Air Force so I wasn’t planning on it going anywhere from there. It was just fun. I was a “free spirit”. Right?

Well the fall semester passed and into the spring I went. We had exchanged a little conversation here and there, all via text. Spring rolled around and we were texting more and more but I’m no idiot. I was sure I wasn’t the only girl in his recent texts. I was fine with it though. I was dating other people too.

Graduation came and went and I was spending the start of the summer searching for a big girl job. I was still steadily talking to him but I honestly had no idea why, because I was interviewing for a job in Memphis, considering a move to Nashville or really anywhere new. The thought of getting seriously involved with a guy in the military was just plain silly. I never in a million years would have said I would marry a man in the military.

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 (that’s a smile of no return… I was done for)

By the end of June that summer, it was official, I knew the man I was going to marry.

Shit! This messed up everything. I was supposed to be moving off and making my own start. Solo. And here I was making private wedding pinterest boards with my best friend. How had I gone from the girl who was independent and free to this gushy girl planning a secret wedding to a guy who hadn’t officially asked me? Not only was I going to marry this guy which screwed up my plans of being solo obviously but, military life really hampered my career starting because I have zero say on where we live. I don’t think I could have gone against everything I believed in for myself if I had tried.

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(well that escalated quickly)

We got engaged on August 17, 2013 and laughed off the pregnancy rumors and convinced friends and family that we weren’t on drugs and we were, in fact, in our right minds. On December 28, 2013 I said I do to the man who wrecked my plans.

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(Mr. & Mrs. Daffin)Photo by: laurenathaliaphotography

Turns out Miss Independent the free spirit gypsy simply hadn’t truly fell in love until this man swept her off her feet while playing darts in a bar. So to all the ladies who think they’re so independent and will never change their plans for a guy. Never say never.

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 (The perfect pair)