January was one heck of a month. There were some tests and trials, yet through it all, despite it all, there were some beautiful moments of transformation that I am confident came to be only because of those few misadventures. While I’m thankful for the lessons, I’m also beyond glad January is over. Who needs a 2016 restart? I know I do! So, instead of focusing on the unfortunate moments, let’s look at the five things that made me smile, shall we?
Five: Ugg Boots. I’ve been an Uggs hater for as long as I can remember. While in high school, I recall proudly wearing a Paul Frank t-shirt with the words “Ugg is for Ugly” spread across it. You couldn’t pay me to wear a pair, well, until this past Thanksgiving morning. After throwing on my 13-year-old niece’s pair of Uggs to volunteer at a local church soup kitchen, I was immediately converted. I just had to purchase my own, but I didn’t feel comfortable splurging. Luckily Nordstrom had a sale on Uggs the week before Christmas, and when they arrived just in time for the new year, they were the perfect pillows for my feet to walk around on after dancing the night away. I know I’m late to this party, but better late than never, right? My feet are thankful, and I’ve consistently worn them every day since they came in the mail. #blessed
Four: Recovery Road on the new Freefrom. In case you missed it, ABC Family officially became Freeform in an effort to better reflect their target demographic: those becoming adults, and with the change of their name came the launch of their newest series, Recovery Road. Recovery Road is based on the young adult novel with the same title by Blake Nelson. The series follows teen alcoholic and drug addict Maddie Graham’s journey to sobriety, a road to recovery required by her guidance counselor as Maddie is unaware that her addiction is a problem. Hulu Plus had the first three episodes available for streaming, so I took the liberty of watching the episodes last week. To say I am hooked is an understatement. Jessica Sula shines as angsty Maddie, and with a great cast of young actors and talented executive producers, the series reveals the complexities of addiction from a unique, teen perspective. Tune in to Recovery Road every Monday night at 9pm EST.
Three: White Privilege II. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis haven’t released a studio album since their 2012 hit The Heist, and with compelling and thought-provoking songs like “Same Love,” it’s no surprise their upcoming album, This Unruly Mess I’ve Made, is already sparking some powerful discussion. “White Privilege II” is a sequel to Macklemore’s solo “White Privilege” (2005), and explores white privilege and social justice in the age of the Black Lives Matter movement. For the most part, I’ve steered clear of discussing issues of racism, sexism, homophobia, and injustice on Kermit Says… because of fear or inciting intolerance. It is exhausting to be discriminated against because of the color of your skin, who you love, or what God you do or do not serve. It is even more exhausting spending energy explaining and trying to convince people of these very real injustices. This is why I enjoyed this song: because it is a statement that implores people to not only be aware of racism, but also (and perhaps more importantly) to speak up and out about it. Demonstrate. Protest. Stand for something. Take a listen. The song asks a great question: What are you willing to risk or sacrifice to create a more just society? Comment below.
Two: Barbie’s Rebranding. I don’t know about you, but I have had Barbie dolls since I was a little girl. They came in two shades: white and Black (and I’m pretty sure the Black Barbie was actually Stacie). They came in one size: unrealistic. And that hasn’t changed…until now. Barbie has received a lot of flack over the years for its lack of diversity and both unrealistic and damaging representations of womanhood, and the company (surprisingly) listened. This is revolutionary! Check out this video to see the great lengths the company has gone to to bring Barbie into the 21st century…and this is only the beginning. How exciting is that?!
One: Recommitment to Self. I’ve been dancing around the fact that January was a bit rocky, mostly because I compromised parts of myself, and I made some decisions I completely regret. I ended relationships, reflected on my life, and decided I needed to make some changes if I wanted to walk into the fullness of my destiny. I’ve always been a glass half full kind of person, but whether or not I lived with intentionality and purpose was questionable. Whether or not I lived life and loved myself wholly was debatable. After feeling a little broken in the first half of January, I decided to shift those things and recommit myself to myself. There’s nothing more powerful than knowing who you are, loving yourself as you are, and doing whatever it takes to be a better you. There’s nothing more powerful than deciding what you want from life, realizing your potential, and making your dreams come true. This is a lifelong journey, and I look forward to seeing who and what is on the other side.
That just about wraps up my January favorites. What were some things you loved most? What are you happy to leave behind? Comment below!