Open Floor Plan

Thursday, December 27, 2018

San Francisco - Spring 2018

This morning, I looked at my half full closet and 80% occupied dresser...with much space for more stuff...but also feeling like I don't even need all the space I have. A sweet reminder of how much space I've created for the unexpected and how stuff really doesn't make me any happier.

2018 has been more than enough for me, and this is how it has shown up...

I am thriving in my own skin. I listen to my body, and I am learning to rest.

I am loving God and faith without constraints of what it should look like.

Writing. I've had so much time to write and blog, and co-blog with beloveds.

Continuing sacred's and rituals - cousin facetimes, bestie birthdays, 3rd of July reunions, pageants over Thanksgiving, 4th annual Giants game, and a yearly hello email to all my former student leaders and teams.

Co working dates, daily starbucks runs, and new happy hour spots.

Got to officiate my besties' wedding; Saw Drake in concert; Traveled to Mexico City.

Hosted 26 visitors between San Francisco and WA.

Walked through the streets of San Francisco after a rowdy rooftop bar night.

Went go carting on the gravel roads passing through my family's acres on a warm July evening.

Felt the worn out moving boxes holding my belongings that are mostly gifts and the art I feel connected to.

And with who I've become and what I've done, this is where it has left me into 2019;

I miss driving on the Bay bridge into San Francisco at night. The lights were bright enough to reflect off the water and warm enough to make me feel at home.

But the green and precipitation of the Seattle sound is enough to nourish my soul, and I know I'm blooming in a season of what feels like starting over, but really it's just a continuation.

Love really does exist.

I also learned what it meant to let go of someone you have love for because that's what that person really needs...and also hoping the absolute best for them.

I like my grey hairs and wrinkles around my eyes, and the stretch marks on my thighs. It shows a well lived body participating in the life in front of me.

My smile feels so real; My heart is a direct line to my smile.

Getting to see the fridge with my loved ones holiday cards on it - each one of them drenched in memories.

I like moons, flowers, reading books that I bought so long ago, but never had the capacity to indulge in. I love celebrating. I like cheering people on. I love all the things that make others feel good about themselves.

I'm operating this next chapter of life like an open floor plan.

My family is healthy, strong, and very happy. That's probably the highlight of this all.

Experiences over things.
Presence over presents.
Humanity over perfection.

& Turning 30 this year, and I feel like life is just getting started!

South Dakota - Summer 2018
Seattle - Winter 2018

Death & Birth

Friday, November 30, 2018


While November started off as a total sham...Let me bullet thy ways.

  • Got into a car accident, had to buy a new car, got a $1200 tow, and a parking ticket
  • Grandpa died, bought last minute plane ticket to South Dakota for funeral (It was cheaper to fly to Ukraine)
  • Found out a friend got cancer and then their little brother died...in the same 24 hours
  • One of my best friend's dog died, who was her whole world
  • I had 3 rounds of meds to get rid of my 2 month Pneumonia...to finally get better before Thanksgiving, only to now be sick again and breathing through my mouth like a Jurassic Park dinosaur...you can make fun of me, I know I am

Am I ready for November to be over? Uh yes. But with death, and well, adulthood - I can say that my life is truthful, good, and exactly where I want it be. And frankly, although November was a sham, it could have been much worse. Death has manifested itself in many forms in this transition, but it's also birthed a life I had never anticipated. A life that's been a subtly sweet surprise.

Here are some of my reflections from November, a month of death & birth:

Love
I thought I loved X, but I loved the idea of X. I thought I loved Y, but I just had mad love for Y. I tell Z I love Z, but that love has had so few hours on earth that only time will tell if that love will last.

Church
I reconciled the ways of how I do Church & love God a long time ago. But today? Today, I love the way I do Church...in nature, in relationships, in solitude, in journaling and prayer. In long conversations with those of us who grew up in Church, but have later reclaimed our relationships with God in a very personal and deep way that only God can really understand.

Priorities
Unless you are my Home Team, Hustle(s), Spiritual Rhythms, & Rest, you matter, but you are not a priority in December.

Address Changes
This week, I finished changing all of my addresses from California to Washington. Erasing CA from my address has felt like changing my last name. Knowing the best is yet to come, but leaving a part of your identity in your past - is a sad & seems like a too soon goodbye.

Decision Making Committee
I don't make a big life decision without mentors, home team, and essentially my decision making committee. But lately, I've learned that some decisions are best decided alone in a quiet room. I am my first relationship and I'll be my last relationship, best to make decisions that's best for her.

People I Don't Deal With
Shauna Niequist's book, Bittersweet talks about making a list of THINGS I DONT DO...and as counter intuitive as that is, it also helps me re gain insight to my priorities. But this month, I also wrote out people I don't deal with, because I refuse to do others emotional or intellectual labor, and this is separate from empathy and grace. But reality is that some people are looking for layers of me that I shed a long, long time ago. 

Practicing Hospitality

Sunday, November 4, 2018


There have been many perks about living in a larger space, and with a roommate (Cher bear) who also values the practice of hospitality. I learned hospitality from my parents, specifically my Mother. She is the hostess that makes a full course meal, makes your bed with love, and greets you in the drive-way even in a blizzard. 

In a season of recovery and rest, Cher bear and I wanted to provide that same experience for our loved ones while visiting...and we absolutely love it. 

Whether it’s our mismatched towels freshly taken from the dryer, grabbing blankets that have many stories attached, late night airport runs, getting people’s favorite snacks, bringing home fresh flowers, the smell of brunch filling our home, or the excitement of writing WELCOME _____ on our white marbled marker board...we love exercising the practice of loving others and doing it well. 

Our Midwestern and Southern roots have felt so watered welcoming, by the end of next week our 20th visitor since July. Twenty people who we have gotten to fill our bellies with laughter with, exchange mutual love with, and created some new memories with.

Our home, truly is your home. 

Solace in Seattle

Friday, October 5, 2018

I have seasons of wild, chaos, or slow.

But this season is none of the above.

This season is about finding middle ground.

Finding middle ground habits I've been enjoying:

Being okay with night's IN...I know, I know.

Using a paper planner for personal life and digital planner for work and not mixing it.

Work doesn't come home with me, or as often.

Writing.

Reading more.

Slow walks downtown and watching the leaves change colors.

Making the right friends and saying yes to the right things.

Mini road trips.

Saying positive things out loud about the people around me, often.

Texting my parents more often

Listening to podcasts each week.


Writing more gratitude & thank you cards.

Learning to take my time.

Opening my window to listen to the rain...the closest sound I have to waves of the ocean. 

Collages and art.

Playing with my new tarot card set.


It's been nice. Nice finding some solace in Seattle.

San Francisco to Seattle!

Wednesday, July 4, 2018


Christmas 2017 in San Francisco
During Christmas, I started to thin out my apartment - getting rid of excess clothes, books, decorations, and items that aren’t useful or memorable. I was starting to mourn San Francisco - I stopped making new connections, only strengthened ones I had, I started visiting all my favorite places, etc...

What. Was. Happening.

Every time, high school, college, grad school, my 3 moves in Northern California...this was a trigger that change was in the air.

When I was in South Dakota back in March, my friend who is getting married this weekend also on her 3rd move post college, asked me, “Are you a pre griever or a post griever?”...I never even thought of it like that, but I am a PRE griever.

I didn’t want to leave San Francisco. I don’t want to leave San Francisco.

But when I was talking to my best friend, I said that "I don’t know what it is, but truthfully, my life was evolving more a year ago:...and I can’t let another year go by without making some changes in my life.

So, I started slowly to job search.

In reality, my contract at work was up this next year, I am in a phase of life where I want to slow down, invest in more personal projects, and start making moves to move closer to home eventually. Professionally, I knew this was the time to move up the ladder in my field and that I needed to build new skill sets that don't currently exist in my experience.

Similar to every next life chapter, I made a list of requirements: X amount of salary, must be in a city that is diverse, title and responsibility bump, healthy work environment, room for creativity, near an international airport to get home quickly, and a role where I had less emotional stress compared to my current role.

After 29 applications, only 10 call backs, and 2.5 on campus visits...this was quite the process.
But in May, this small tech school interviewed me and gave me the salary range...I immediately declined. Taking advice from friends and mentors, and wanting to practice the advice I give, I knew that salary amount was not competitive to the city I’d be living in and it was about a $600 pay cut per month on my paycheck. Last week, they reached back out counter offering more money to the range I had asked for. 1) This meant my potential new supervisor likely advocated for the role and for me to receive a more competitive compensation. 2) This meant, I finally found a mutual fit!

I will be at a small tech school in the Seattle area! Although I am extremely sad to be leaving everyone in San Francisco...a post for later, I am also looking forward to a fresh chapter while I continue to move up the West Coast.

Seattle 2018

It's funny as I mentioned I was a pre griever. Because I've made every life decision not very excited about the future...when I was picking a graduate school, it made logical sense I go to this East Coast public school, but no I went to the private expensive Christian liberal arts school in Southern California. Then, I was set on the University of Connecticut as my first job out of graduate school because of the pay and the name behind the school. My mentor told me I needed to visit Monterey Bay since they offered an on campus...and guess where I went? Monterey Bay. After that, I was hesitant to move to San Francisco for a job and live with a family that I didn't know, but it got me into the city and then when a role popped up at San Francisco State, and after being asked 5 times to apply for a Residential Life role where I'd be on duty / on call again, I said NO. And then on the 6th time, I said yes...and although SFSU had its moments, its been the biggest learning and HEALING experiences of my life. So...if you ask me if I am excited to move to the Seattle area, I am...I am just a pre griever who has to take about 6-8 mos to warm up to change.

Although this 3 week turn around time is short, some things I still continue to learn - don’t settle, speak into existence what you desire, WORK FOR IT, and regardless of what happens, enjoy what is. You will never have the phase of life you’re in right now ever again. I will never be the Jayme experiencing what July 2018 has to offer again. So many celebrations to be had in the midst of transition and the space of no longer and not yet.

I am also now accepting moving boxes, tissues for tears, hugs, and get togethers :)

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