“I Can’t Wait Until Tomorrow”

How many times have you heard someone utter the words, “I can’t wait until tomorrow,” “I can’t wait until Friday,” or “I hate Mondays?” I find myself saying this on days I feel sick, lonely, or even just bored.

Somehow the future is always more bright, beautiful, and easier than today. Nobody warned us that there would still be trials, loss, and unplanned twists and turns where you least expect them. That being said, why do we still always hope for tomorrow to come, even when we have so many blessings today? I think a big part of it has to do with boredom. It’s hard to sit still and have a mundane schedule and so much easier to “live for today” when today is exciting and great.

Getting sick with POTS really opened my eyes to the harder parts of life. One of the most difficult lessons I’ve learned is that the future isn’t promised, and some dreams may never come true. You know what else I learned from these lessons, though? That this is all okay! I learned that you have the opportunity to grow and learn from trials, and that you can always handle so much more than you realize. I learned that sometimes the hardest thing you have to go through can turn into the biggest blessing you’ve ever had, and that God’s plan for you is even better than what you have planned for yourself. Finally, I learned that sometimes all you can do is take life one day at a time, and focusing too much on the future can actually be harmful when you are dealing with a particularly difficult trial.

Instead, on the harder days I try my best to list my blessings. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve surely seen my “Five Blessings” posts. This was the most recent one:

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Instead of having the mindset that life is going to be better tomorrow, count the blessings you have today. Don’t get me wrong; it can be really hard sometimes, but if you can find even just one thing to be grateful for, life quickly feels a little bit easier. Sometimes you need to just take baby steps, even if it’s just counting your blessings — one day at a time.


Update: Still trying to change my domain to KristaLauren.com, but it’s taking forever because I need technical help and it hasn’t been the biggest priority on my list. Keep in mind this site will be changing, though!

No, You’re Schmoopie!

Sometimes I feel like I’m pulling a “Schmoopie” when I write about my dating life

Sadly I have realized not everyone in my generation has seen Seinfeld, so here’s a clip if you have no clue what I’m talking about:

It definitely takes a lot for me to share such intimate parts of my life on this blog sometimes. I know I’m taking a risk at putting my heart on my sleeve in front of all my friends (including my new blogger friends!), and I know not all of my relationships — romantic or otherwise — that I write about will last. I do, however, always want my blog to be an honest account of my life. I want to be transparent with y’all through the bad times and through the good, which just happens to be the beginning honeymoon phase of a new relationship, the comfortable parts of a longer-term relationship, and the vulnerable parts about putting your heart in the hands of another human being.

I love love in every form, whether it’s in a friendship or a romantic relationship. As I have mentioned before, I think I’m one of the few people who gets giddy with excitement when I see even a distant Facebook friend get engaged or have a sappy status. I love seeing new jobs, dreams come true, and celebrating in the victories of friends — no matter how great or small.

Sometimes it gets a little annoying when people proclaim their love to one another constantly on Facebook — can you not say “I love you” via text? For the most part, though, I hope my friends will keep posting a million wedding pictures and sharing in their excitement with me and everyone else. After all, that is by far the best part about social media, and the more love we put out in the world the less room we have for hate. That is the best lesson we can learn, especially during this crazy time in America where the country — and even Facebook — feels so divided and confused.

So I would like to encourage you to keep sharing photos of your GNOs, engagement photoshoots, and selfies that make you feel fierce. If people don’t like seeing the happy parts of your life, the “unfollow” button is really easy to find. Spread happiness, joy, and beautiful friendships on social media, even if they don’t rack up as many “likes” as you’d want… After all, your social media pages are yours for a reason!

Today’s lesson: I have found that being open and vulnerable has enriched my life in so many ways. Not only do I have so many friends to share excitement with, but I also have an army of support when life gets tough, and have been able to learn from people who have very different lives than my own. So here’s to being authentic and spreading love and positivity in the world.

Feature Friday: The Face Behind 100 Selfies

If you didn’t catch my feature post last week, go check it out and then come back to this!

We saw how much Stephen cares about his fiancée… But how did she feel about being the center of attention every day for 100 days? I sat down with Kylie to find out and had the pleasure of learning what a sweet and wise young lady she is.

Single in The Suburbs:
It seems like there is a lot of positive feedback from friends about the Kylie selfies. How does it feel being featured every day for 100 days in a row? 

Kylie:
I have loved the 100 Kylie selfies! Initially I was so surprised — my friend was actually the one that showed me the first post and I cried at how sweet of an idea it was. Stephen’s thought that went behind the posts is very special to me. I knew he had been collecting them, but I never knew how he would end up using them. A lot of the selfies I took certainly were not meant to be on social media so they are not as flattering as what I would normally post myself, but that makes it funny and real and meaningful. I love reading the messages that go along with each selfie and seeing how many pictures have been posted — because each day I’m getting closer to marrying him!

2

“I love sharing about my day with you after work. ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬

SITS:
What is your favorite thing about Stephen? 

Kylie:
There is so much I could say about Stephen! I’ll name a few favorites. First, he has a quirky sense of humor filled with sarcastic jokes and puns that I absolutely love. Second, he is incredibly passionate and hardworking at everything he does. Third, he loves music just as much (or more) than I do. I love being able to share that with him.

5

“I love figuring out chords and harmonies to new songs with you. ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬

SITS:
How many selfies do you think you have sent to your fiancee?

Kylie:
Ha! I could not tell you. I didn’t even realize I had taken over 100 on his phone, but I definitely think I’m below the 150 mark. I don’t know. I think selfies are weird and funny, especially when they go unnoticed in your photos for a while! And I definitely have forgotten about some of them. It’s cool, though, because I’ve mostly been able to pick out when and where each selfie was taken!

1

“Thanks for your grace in my failings and the constant support to be a better man. I love you. ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬”

SITS:
How does it feel that even strangers (like me!) are happy for y’all and following your “100 Selfies?”

Kylie:
It’s great that people are enjoying the posts and are happy for us! I think it is funny that my face is on all of our friends’ newsfeeds each day and all of a sudden. We have even had some friends call him out on their expectations for this series! Honestly, I don’t mind whether or not the selfies receive a lot of attention on social media. This is something that I personally look forward to and enjoy because it is from Stephen. When I see the selfies, I see us, and not so much of everyone else that is liking and commenting on them.

3

“You are more beautiful than the roses you sometimes hide behind. Can you spot Kylie in this picture? ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬ ‪#‎camouflaged‬

SITS:
Are you doing anything as a countdown until the big day? 

Kylie:
I have considered doing a 30 day countdown with Stephen’s selfies and doing the same thing (things I love about him, things I look forward to in the future with him, etc). I am not the only one who sneaks selfies — his are just less consistent! However, I really will have to see if I even have 30 of his. I may be short a few.

4

“I love spending my weekends with you. Unfortunately this isn’t a weekend we get to spend together. But the good news is that this two week stretch will now be the longest time we spend apart until we get married! ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬

SITS:
You and Stephen seem to be very happy together! What kind of tips would you give my single readers for finding someone who is a good fit for them?

Thank you! We really are. Stephen and I were friends before pursuing a relationship.  When I started crushing on him, I wasn’t expecting anything to come out of it and I did not let it affect who I was. I would say that being comfortable with yourself and who you are is absolutely the most important thing. Everything else just happened to fall into place for me. Then at that point, reflect on yourself and who you are. If who you are as an individual aligns with who you are with that special someone, I would say you’re on the right track. Nothing is more special than someone loving and appreciating you for exactly who you are (all the quirks and faults included)!
couple

This is the first of several “Feature Friday” posts to come. If you ever want to be featured, send me a message or leave a comment on any of my posts; I would love to share the story of you and your boo!

Feature Friday

I am a huge sucker for romance.

That’s what makes running a dating blog such a joy for me. So many people have reached out asking for dating advice or just to tell me about a great date or love interest in their life. I genuinely love hearing about it all, so please keep writing me!

Anyway, I had noticed a friend of mine from high school got engaged and started a countdown of 100 Kylie Selfies dedicated to his fiancée until their big day, so naturally I had to reach out and see if I could hear their story — it must be great, since it was clear he just adored her.

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Kylie and Stephen met about three years ago at a Christian organization called Cru at James Madison University. They both played in the worship band and started dating shortly after they became friends.

Single in The Suburbs:
How did you come up with the idea for “100 Kylie Selfies?”

Stephen:
Honestly, I’m not sure how I came up with the idea. I have been saving these selfies basically as long as I’ve known Kylie and figured that one day I would use them or go back through them. About two months ago I was thinking about how she and I are close to being under 100 days until we get married and the idea just came to me as a funny way to celebrate the countdown.

SITS:
Did she know that you were going to do the countdown or did you just start posting the pictures?

Stephen:
It’s funny because when I came up with the idea I was really excited about it, so I texted her something like, “I just the had the BEST idea!” Then I realized I didn’t want to tell her what it was until the countdown began.

She was upset with me because I teased her with that text, but I was just excited and wanted to share the idea until I realized it would be more fun to wait. On the first #100KylieSelfies post, Kylie was actually playing with the Cru Band (which she took over leading after I graduated). At the end of the meeting her friends showed her the post and she loved it.

kylieone

“Over the last few years Kylie has taken my phone when I wasn’t looking to leave surprise selfies for when I would next look through my photos. I’ve been collecting those pictures for a long time but haven’t been sure what to use them for until now. Today marks 100 days until I marry this beautiful woman and to celebrate the countdown, I’ve decided to post some of my favorites from the collection along with reasons why I love her. Here’s to ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬. I love you, Kylie.”

SITS:
What is the sweetest thing you have ever done for Kylie?

Stephen:
I suppose the sweetest thing I have done for Kylie is proposing to her. I am really particular about the word “love” and actually waited until our engagement to tell Kylie that I love her. I know that withholding might sound extreme, but to me love is not a feeling, it’s a choice. I feel like saying “I love you” is as strong and committed as saying “I will choose to love you no matter what.” So getting to propose and finally say, “I love you” was the biggest/sweetest thing I can think of in our relationship.

That said, I feel like the sweet things we do for each other aren’t necessarily big, stand-out things. For example, I call her every morning on my way to work to wake her up and say hi. That’s a small thing, but it means a lot to her. She always just says “Mmmm” because she’s half asleep and I tell her that I hope she has a great day. I think it’s the little things that add up in our relationship.

kylie_selfie

“These just get better and better. Kylie is persistent and extremely hard working. She is equally persistent in leaving selfies on my phone. I love her. ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬”

SITS:
That’s adorable! What is the sweetest thing she has done for you?

Stephen:
Kylie does a lot of little sweet things for me… Things like surprising me with my favorite coffee — triple tall americano black — or sending me funny memes over Facebook. She is also just generally an awesome supporter.

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“I love the notes you leave behind. #100kylieselfies #notaselfie”

SITS:
Do you have a favorite selfie?

Stephen:
Man, I’m not sure if I have one in particular, but my favorites tend to be the sillier ones that capture our goofiness in small ways. Like the post I made yesterday about Kylie’s obsession with pillows — we have had serious conversations about how we need to limit the number of pillows on the wedding registry because we don’t want to end up with all the pillows we are asking for, haha. When we go to Target together I have to steer her out of the bedding section or we’ll get lost in it. I like posts like that because they remind me most of the quality time she and I spend together — especially when it is a fun, not overly serious thing like exploring the pillow section in Target.

kylie_pillow.jpg

“I love your strange obsession with pillows. On our wedding registry, I have put a thousand unnecessary coffee-related things and Kylie has put a thousand unnecessary pillows. Your excitement over different colors, textures, and fluffiness has not gone unnoticed. I love you even though we won’t have enough room left to sit on a couch at this rate. ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬”

SITS:
Describe as best you can how excited you are to marry Kylie.

Stephen:
Kylie is truly perfect for me in every possible way. I feel that we are perfectly compatible with each other in all the big ways as well as the small ones. Everything this year has been building up to when we will finally get to be together and continue our relationship into some exciting life changes. The anticipation is huge and I am excited for just about everything that is to come very soon.

kylie_adventure

“I love our adventures ‪#‎100kylieselfies‬”

Come back next Friday to hear what Kylie thinks about being featured on her fiancées Facebook every week.


This is the first of several “Feature Friday” posts to come. If you ever want to be featured, send me a message or leave a comment on any of my posts; I would love to share the story of you and your boo!