Thursday, January 23, 2014

26 Lessons on my 26th Birthday [& a giveaway!]

Today is my 26th birthday!  After last year’s extravagant festivities I decided to keep things a little more low key this year… I don’t really have many plans except dressing my little niece up in a cute outfit, and a family dinner. Relaxed, but perfect! :)

In honor of my birthday I wanted to write a little post collecting a few (26!) lessons I’ve learned thus far… Some serious, some not so serious.  Just a random collection of things I’ve realized.  Plus, my first ever giveaway at the end of the post!

26 little lessons

1. Expensive jeans that fit perfectly are worth the splurge. A few pairs of expensive jeans are better than tons of cheap ones that don't fit right.

2. Everyone should work in customer service at some point in their lives. It's very humbling, and teaches you basic rules of respect. 

3. Chicken soup and ginger ale are great, but nothing beats the comfort of your mom when it comes to being sick.

4. On a rough day your favorite caffeinated beverage works wonders.

5. Love is both the most simple and most complicated thing in the entire world.

6. Find a friend you can ask advice from, one who knows how to comfort you best, one who can always make you laugh until you cry, one you can sit around and do nothing with, and one to go on spontaneous adventures with... Then marry the man who is all those people wrapped in one. 

7. How to lose a guy in 10 days is the most underrated movie ever. Watch it again and again and again.

8. When you are compromising who you are to please someone else, it's time to move on... They are not worth your time. 

9. A 20 minute drive for the world's best donut is always worth it. 

10. Mental snapshots. Always.

11. ”No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” –Eleanor Roosevelt.  I finally understand the weight of what this means and remind myself of it often!

12. Ice cream is a good idea. Always. Even if you're lactose intolerant...

13. Planning your own birthday party/day is ok!  It will be exactly what you want and who you want to celebrate with. There will be no disappointments...just fun!

14. It's ok to speak up for what you want... You don't have to be rude about it, just assertive. 

15. Life happens. Take a break. It's ok... 

16. Your family is forever... Love and cherish this special bond! 

17. It's ok to be happy with a calm life.  I am learning this daily… I’m sure you will read more on this soon. :)

18. When you are angry, hurt, disappointed, upset... Pray first. Let it all out. This will impact how your next conversation goes greatly!! 

19. You can't get along with everyone. You just can't... And you won't. That's ok. Think of the difficult people in your life as gifts. People God is using to challenge and shape you as a person. (This is from a book I am currently reading, review soon!)

20. …and on that note, remember that God loves, values, and respects those difficult people too. I try and think about this to change my perspective.

21. Spend the money on an expensive hair straightener. Just do it. It's worth it. You've probably spent just as much on the 10 crappy straighteners that don't work already anyways... 

22. When in doubt, Hillsong on top volume.

23. No matter where you are in life, or what your job is... You can always be a light. 

24. Live with your best friends at some point in your life and cherish those moments... Having your closest friends a knock away is priceless! 

25. God often uses the thing that crushes us most to heal us completely.

26. Find the little joys in each day. Reflecting on these at the end of the day really turns things around.


…and now a giveaway!

I am super excited to giveaway this sterling silver branch necklace from Blue Nile.  They were kind enough to not only give one to me for my birthday… but to one of YOU also!  I love the dainty feel of it, it can be styled with a casual or fancy outfit.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. These are some great life lessons! Happy birthday!!

  2. Happy Birthday!!! there is so much goodness in this list!!! Loved it!
    Your number 2 - yes totally agree this is so true!! I think more people need to do this just out of school!
    Coffee = happy hehe
    Your number 6 - my goodness Angela this is the sweetest and truest thing! You made me smile a lot with that one!
    and your 18 - this is something i need to keep putting first!
    Thanks - loved it!!!
    Enjoy dressing your niece up and celebrating your birthday :D can't wait to see the photos!

  3. Happy 26th birthday, sweet friend!!! I hope you have an absolutely wonderful day and evening! By the way, this makes us the same age until the end of July! :) Great list of things you've learned! I am with you on investing in quality over quantity (both with jeans and straightners and other things). And I love how much you love your family - it really shines through in this list. Love ya, girl!

  4. happy birthday!! :) that is seriously the CUTEST necklace ever!!!

  5. Im working in a customer service now and I have learned so much about myself...sometimes I went "woah I didnt know that was in there" .

  6. Every year I get older, I prefer the more low-key birthdays. Just a quiet day spent with my favorite person is fine with me. : ) Happy birthday! I'm so so glad you married Zack. You make him so happy.

  7. Great post and great list of advice! And Happy Belated Birthday! I hope you had a wonderful day!

    Here are my favorites from my list and the ones I GREATLY agree with! :)
    #2 -- I haven't worked in customer service per say, but I feel like anything in the food industry or being a barista like me, kinda fall into this category.
    #7 -- YES! YES! YES!
    #10 -- Always.
    #11 -- May be a hard lesson to learn, but so, so true.
    #18 -- This is something I need to remind myself to do. Emotions can be so hard to keep in check, especially in the tough and frustrating moments of life.
    #22 -- Preach it, sister! :)
    #23 -- Amen!! He puts us exactly where He wants us!
    #24 -- The memories I made when living with my best friend are ones that I will NEVER forget. Some of the best days of my life. :)

    OH and LOVE the necklace. Definitely entered the giveaway! :)

  8. Happy Birthday, sweet friend! Hooray for January birthdays! :)

    I so agree with you on these little life lessons, too--especially these ones:
    -Hillsong. Yep, you never can go wrong wit Hillsong!
    -Life happens. That is also so incredibly true.
    --Family. :)
    -Praying first. That one is so tough for me (especially when I'm angry) but it really is the best cure out there.
    -Tough people being challenges and gifts. This one is so incredibly true as well. Man, you're wise! :)
    -Calm lives. I see that pin every now and then on my feed/on blogs and fall in love with it a little bit more each time.
    -Finding joys. Loved this one, too.

    Okay, so I actually love all of these little life lessons. Man, you picked some great ones!

    p.s. You are so pretty! I love your outfit and that necklace is cute, too!

  9. oh man. i love #13, planning it yourself. i NEVER do anything for my birthday because i always hope someone else will step up and do it... but maybe this year i'll have to take matters into my own hands!!! happiest birthday :)

  10. Happy belated birthday!!!! I too, LOVE hillsong!!!!! Hope you had a great day!

  11. I'm so behind on my blog reading! Hope you had a wonderful birthday my friend! I'm so thankful to have met you through this little blogging world!

  12. This is a GREAT list! I agree with all of them, but I especially love the one about drinking your favorite caffeinated drink on a bad day (mine is Diet Coke), praying when upset, taking a break and mental snapshots. (Happy belated birthday by the way). I discovered your blog a while back through The Word of a Nerd, and I been enjoying your posts.


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