A Very Canadian Video

My Internet friends Lydia and Elizabeth have a vlog. They’re quite delightful. You should watch their vlog.

My Mom Friend Jan and I decided to join forces with these ladies from Nashville and make a fun little project. Over Christmas break, MF (Mom Friend) and I got together to record our part of the vlog. We discovered that we’re rather delightful as well.

Here’s a Bast (me) and Moyer (MF) History lesson (with lots of links): I prayed I’d meet someone like her (weird, right?), we met at church, we teamed up to teach the toddler Sunday School class, we became good friends, we ended up teaching at the same school, she wrote a guest blog post for me, she joined the blogging world for herself, and this September we started working on the same teaching team at school. We see each other 6 days a week. It’s kind of ridiculous. You’d think we would run out of things to talk about, but we never do (much to MF’s Bearded Husband’s dismay). So put the two of us in front of a camera, and the result? 20 minutes of footage. It’s really spectacular. All 20 minutes of it. I won’t make you watch all of it in one chunk. No no. That’s too much awesome to handle at one time.

So instead, here’s a teaser. A little Canadian treat.

Watch for our L&E debut in the coming weeks!
In the meantime you can follow everyone on Twitter:
Lydia & Elizabeth
Mom Friend

Things You Should Stop Saying

Listen. I’ve got pet peeves. It’s no secret. One of my biggest pet peeves  is when people say the same things over and over and expect them to be funny or clever or original every time. It’s almost as bad as the time in high school my buddy watched the Best of Will Ferrell SNL DVD and quoted it incessantly for months. MONTHS. Goulet.

I’ve created a ranting list of phrases I don’t like. I apologize in advance for the high level of snark you’re about to witness. Because y’all, it’s hiiiigh.

“I’m not gonna lie…”
Oh GOOD. I’m so glad you told me this upfront. Otherwise I would have assumed everything that came out of your mouth was a complete fabrication. Before you say anything else, I request that you tell me whether or not it is truth because I’m too dumb to figure it out for myself. Please and thank you.

“BACON! AHHAHAHAHAHAHHA”
Bacon is a food. Yes, it is delicious. Yes, the general population really enjoys bacon. Bacon is even considered to be “the new black”. But it’s not a punchline. Stop using it like one. Bacon is excellent, but it is not funny. It is a breakfast food. Stop pretending it is anything more than that, you ham.

“That [awkward] moment when…”
Teenagers of the world: I get that you think awkward stuff is funny. For the most part, you’re right. But the problem is half of the stuff you’re labelling as “awkward” isn’t. Seeing your crush in the hallway isn’t awkward. Unless you barf on him maybe. Adults of the world: You’re not teenagers. Stop it.

“This is going to be legen….wait for it…”
NO. No no no. I will not wait for it. How dare you make me wait for half of a word that won’t even describe what you’re wanting it to describe! Having one character in the world do this is insufferable already. Every time you leave your house to do something remotely interesting isn’t legendary. The time you and your buddies went to the bar and drank some beers is not going to be written down in history books. Regular social outings are not legendary. Stop it.

Anyone who leaves a comment using a combination of two or more of these phrases in order to intentionally irritate me.
No.

Do you have something to add to the list?

Get Out of Bed

I love my bed. I love my mattress and my sheets and my duvet and my pillows and my pile of blankets. There is nothing in my apartment that I love more than my bed. I get excited to go to bed early. I adore sleeping in late. Every morning I make breakfast, then crawl back into bed to eat my morning meal. I drink coffee in bed. I drink tea in bed. I watch movies in my bed. I wrote this in my bed. If I have a choice between a chair or my bed, I’ll choose my bed every time. If there were a way to work from my bed, I’d get that job. My bed is my safe place. It is my fortress of solitude and comfort.

When my alarm goes at 6am every morning, I don’t want to leave my bed. It’s warm and lovely, and the rest of the world can wait. Some days there are reasons to get out of bed. There is work to be done, awesome people to see and exciting things to do. I can make an impact and get the job done! I can encourage and bring joy to the people around me! There is a day that needs seizing, and the only person who can do that is me! Life can’t get any better!

Other days? Getting out of bed is hard. I have plans and I cancel them because the thought of being anywhere other than under the covers is terrifying. On the weekends my bed is more attractive than grocery shopping or cleaning. Sleeping in is far more comfortable than dragging myself to church and sitting alone in the back row. My bed is far more accepting and kind than anyone else I know.

That sounds lazy. That sounds like I lack self-discipline or motivation. But sometimes? Sometimes I know my day is going to be a downward spiral from the moment I pull those covers back. Some days are hard to face. Nasty co-workers, a nagging boss, broken relationships, no relationships, a crappy immune system, an aching body, piles of textbook readings, never-ending assignments, dirty dishes stacked up to the ceiling, unpaid bills, an empty bank account, the deafening silence of loneliness, the shame of poor choices. The list goes on. The circumstances in our lives can pin us to our sheets in fear and dread. Some days, all of your energy and motivation is spent peeling the covers back and setting your feet on the ground.

In the comfort of our bed, we start believing that we’ll accomplish nothing important, so why bother in the first place? We all get lonely and think no one likes us. We have things we’re ashamed of and wish we could erase. We’re broken. Some days will, in fact, be a downward spiral until you seek the solace of your sheets again. Some days you will accomplish nothing. Some days will be terribly sad and full of grief. Some days will be desperately lonely. Some days will be quite terrible.

And on those days? The bravest thing you can do is get out of bed.

Merry Christmas

My dearest blog readers,

Thank you for journeying with me this past year. It’s certainly been a wild ride. This fall has been full of crazy, scary, exhausting trials (to say the very least) and I am looking forward to simply resting and being with the people closest to me.  In the interest of making the people in my life smile, I took it upon myself to take some inspiring Christmas photos. Huge thanks to my sister-in-law for making this happen.

Please enjoy this photo essay of sorts.

Have a blessed holiday season.

Love,

Amanda

 

I tried taking one of those cute Pinterest baby photos, but it was more difficult than I expected.

I tried taking one of those cute Pinterest baby photos, but it was more difficult than I expected.

 

It was puzzling. How DO people take cute pictures of babies wrapped in lights?

It was puzzling. How DO people take cute pictures of babies wrapped in lights?

 

I decided to roll with it anyway.

I decided to roll with it anyway.

 

Because as long as you have a cute face, you have a cute picture. Right? RIGHT!

Because as long as you have a cute face, you have a cute picture. Right? RIGHT!

 

WHAT'S THIS? An unexpected Elfy guest?

WHAT’S THIS? An unexpected Elfy guest?

 

He descended very quickly. I didn't have time to respond.

He descended very quickly. I didn’t have time to respond.

 

HAVE MERCY ON ME SCARY ELF!

HAVE MERCY ON ME SCARY ELF!

 

PLEASE! I'M BEGGING YOU!

Oh. OH. NOW YOU’VE JUST GONE TOO FAR.

 

 

 
*Pictures in this sequence have been removed due to sensitive content not appropriate for all audiences.

 

 

 

Well. I DID warn you.

Merry Christmas, indeed.

 

The Ultimate K-Cup Guide (Sort of)

I like unnecessary organizational systems. They make me happy. In university, I would spend hours at the beginning of each semester coming up with a weekly and monthly schedule of every single reading or assignment I had to do. It was colour coded by course (duh). Once they caught wind of my insanity, I had friends asking me for copies.

When I bought a Keurig, it only made sense that I create an unnecessary organizational system. Initially it was my friend Mark’s idea, and since he’s a Guinness Book of World Records holder, I figured I’d follow suit. It’s been a few months, and it’s now time to share some results with you wonderful people.

So here it is: The Ultimate K-Cup Guide (Sort of) Continue reading

The Thing About Writing on the Internet

I write a lot of things that end up on the Internet. I also write a bunch of things that would never ever end up on the Internet. I carefully consider what types of things I want to share with you beautiful people, and what things need to be kept to myself or shared with a few close friends. I choose my content wisely.

The stuff I do post on the Internet sometimes looks personal, or like I’m sharing the deepest parts of my heart for the whole world to see. While I do agree that my goal is to make my writing transparent and genuine, I never ever share the deepest, darkest (or brightest) parts of my heart with a bunch of strangers on the Internet. I simply can’t do it. It would be foolish. Stranger Danger, and all that. Continue reading

How it all began

“So I’ve been thinking. Who doesn’t love babies? The answer is no one. Everyone loves babies. And I’m pretty good with this camera, so I thought, why not take pictures? Of babies. I know, right? It’s a good idea. But then I got to thinking more. What else do people like? Cute animals, flowers, bumblebees. That’s a universal list of things people like. They’re all such cute things. So since babies are really cute, and other things are really cute, we’ll dress the babies like other cute things. So it’s double the cute.

The babies will probably cry, but really, who cares? Continue reading

Seven Years

Yesterday marked my seven year blog-iversary.

Seven years.

That’s a long time.

My blog adventure had started years earlier, when MSN “Spaces” were a thing. I moved to an actual blog when I was 19. Back in 2006, this blog served as an online journal. I wrote about what I did on the weekend and what I was studying in school. The friends I hung out with that weekend were my only readers. It was for my inner circle. That’s what it was for. Continue reading

When you assume…

I made a terrible mistake. You know that article I wrote that went viral? It got 2000 comments.  I read them. Not all of them, but enough to know it was a huge mistake. I’ll say this: the overwhelming majority of the comments were positive, uplifting and encouraging. But then there were the others. The other comments that made huge sweeping generalizations and assumptions about…me.

Take this [long] comment, for example: Continue reading

I’m Not Prepared For This

A couple of weeks ago I had a discussion with a dear friend that devastated me. He was sharing something happy, and I crumbled. It felt like I was sitting in this huge, empty auditorium that was once packed full with all of my “people”. These people had started to trickle out months ago, but with this one conversation, everyone was officially gone, the lights were switched off, and the door slammed shut. It was very empty. And quiet.

I knew that wasn’t reality. I still had lots of people around, but I didn’t pay much attention to them. I was wallowing and playing the “woe is me” card. I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t engaging with my community or the people I love. I was just plain tired. Somewhere in the midst of that, chaos in our family erupted. Here I was stuck inside this empty auditorium by myself. Somewhere in there, I wrote this piece of writing and sent it to an editor I had been emailing. Continue reading