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Gifting, Lifestyle

The Best 30th Birthday Gift Ever

I turned 30 last month. I intended to write a post or two reflecting on the milestone but everything I wrote sounded cheesy and done before.

The truth is, I am excited to be 30. I have no feelings of dread entering a new decade and I count the newly found wrinkles as laugh lines. 😉 It is truly an honor to be able to age and I’ve always kept that feeling near to my heart.

While I never wrote about it, I did spend a lot of time reflecting on my life and the freaking awesome people in it. I felt like this before I got the best gift ever from Tyler so imagine how I felt after…

the best birthday gift EVER: letters for 30

Tyler asked 30 friends and family members to write me a note, letter or email for my birthday. Some were short, others were long and every single one of them meant the world. I haven’t ugly cried that hard in awhile.

I had my best friends reminisce about taking shots in college then fast forward to having babies together. My mom expressed that I was her best friend. My aunt talked about my dear grandma who passed and how proud she’d be of me. Running friends, who you get close with quickly when you’re on double digit training runs, talked about runfies and bear encounters and falling in the mountains. Best friends drew pictures of flamingoes. Heather wrote hers in Comic Sans and I wasn’t even that mad at her.

the best birthday gift EVER: letters for 30

It is such a priceless gift.

“I wanted you to be able to read about the light you bring to people’s lives when you are in a dark place.” Tyler said these words to me when he gave me the letters. You all can just give him the Husband of the Year award right now.

I haven’t talked about it much aside from family and close friends but 2016 was a really hard one for me personally. I battled with anxiety and depression that left me feeling like a fraud and a crazy person in every aspect of my life. It was only through the support of Tyler and the people closest to me that I got through the worst of it.

It’s an ongoing battle but these letters are such a wonderful reminder of my worth. 

It’s overwhelming but I am so thankful.


BGD, Lifestyle

2016 Can Suck It

We’re all in agreement that 2016 is quite possibly one of the worst years on record, yes?  The Internet is with me on this one, at least.  Aside from these absolute gems and the birth of this adorable, sweet angel boy (ok, there’s a little bias with that) this year can shove it.


Photo: Lindsey Erickson Photography

With all the suck that was 2016, I’ve been eagerly awaiting 2017 and the fresh start of a new year.  I’ve reflected on the past twelve months (probably too much) and now I’m ready to take on the next twelve.  Well, more realistically the next week because that’s really all I can handle at once, but work with me here.

I really like the idea of using a word to define or guide the year.  Resolutions are long and I need simple and clean cut, otherwise it will be lost in the abyss I call my brain.  One word keeps coming back up in all areas of my life.


There are so many demands on my time.  There are a million things pulling me in a million different directions, often at the same exact time. I feel spread so thin.  Nothing has been getting my full attention and that’s really not fair.  With so much important stuff vying for my time (my kids, my husband, being me and not just Mom) and all the less important stuff (hello, social media) I need to filter what wins my attention and get rid of the distractions.

These are the freaking days of our lives.  The ones little old ladies in grocery stores tell me I’ll look back on and miss.  I’m tired of bogging them down with a bunch of crap that I think I should be doing, should be buying, should be saying, should be thinking.  I’m done doing things just because they look good on paper or I think it’s what someone else wants me to do.

It’s time to take stock of where I am, where I want to go and only say yes to the things that are going to get me and my family there.

The same goes for BGD.  We want to say yes more often to the exciting things we love and think with the end in mind.  “What do we hope to get out of this?” is a question I plan on asking Brittany a lot, so hopefully she’s ready! Ha!  It’s so fun to jump on every opportunity we’re presented with or every exciting idea we have, but if it doesn’t line up with what we’re trying to do, it’s ok to let things pass or table them for when the timing is right.

So here’s to doing things we actually want to do because they make us happy and not doing things because we think we should.

And don’t let the door hit you on the way out 2016.