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tutus & sparkles

The life of a working mom with two little girls who love tutus & sparkles

Every 98 Seconds

Every 98 seconds in America, someone is sexually assaulted. 1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in his/her lifetime

 

 

I have toyed a lot about the idea of opening up about my own sexual assault experience from my teen years. I kept thinking about how others would view me, what they would say about me, and how society would continue to discredit me. I kept thinking about the people that would be effected if I were to speak about my experience or if it would make them uncomfortable. And then today, I woke up and decided I didn’t give a shit. I don’t care who is uncomfortable, and if you want to go ahead and say something nasty, please feel free but just know that it just shows your true colors and not mine. If you want to share your story with me, please feel free to reach out to me and I would be happy to chat. I am sharing my story today because I am 1 in 6. It happened to me, and unfortunately, it most likely happened to many people I know as well. Though details at this moment in time about my assault are not necessary, I hope that any other survivors out there feel free to share their story.  We should not feel like we don’t have an outlet or shouldn’t be able to talk about our experiences because we are ashamed or afraid of how the media and society will pick our stories apart to the point where we are being victimized all over again.

Just remember everyone: rape is rape. Sexual Assault is sexual assault. There should be no other questions. There should be nothing else that needs to be discussed beyond that point. We should not hear anything else. What does it matter what she/he was wearing, what he/she was doing, why does that change everything.  We should not be focused on if she had a boyfriend or was on a TV show or anything.  NO MEANS NO.

To my babies

Today I graduated college after a 10 year journey. But that’s not what this post is about. This post is dedicated to my children. My three gorgeous and amazing children.

My babies:

I want you to know that you can do whatever you want. The world is at your fingertips every minute of every day. You are the only person stopping yourself. It doesn’t matter how long it takes – if you truly want to do something, do it. You have all the power in the world to be the best you can be and do whatever it is that you want to do. My goal to graduate from college was a personal goal, but by accomplishing something I set out to do so long ago, I hope you learned that you can also do whatever it is you want in life. I hope you learned that the journey is always worth it, even if it doesn’t always go as planned. I hope you remind yourself that you can do anything; be anything. You three are my pride and joy in this world and I am beyond lucky to be your mother. I enjoyed graduation so much but I enjoyed it even more knowing that the three of you were looking up to me and so proud of your mom.

To my Hailie: I know that you are going to change the world. You are smart, driven, and have the biggest dreams. Go after every one of them. You can do whatever you want to do.

To my Aubree: My fearless little girl. You have that, I don’t care what people think attitude and you go after everything you want. I hope you keep that spirit as you continue to grow up and achieve your dreams.

To my Chace: Though you are only three months old you are so happy. I know that just like your sisters, you too will do big things.

I am so proud of the three of you and so lucky to call you mine. If you ever have doubts, mom is always here to remind you that you are amazing, smart, loved, and that you can achieve anything and everything you set out to do.

I love you my babies.

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My Journey to my Bachelors Degree

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I graduated from high school in June of 2006. In August of 2006, I moved to Iona College and started my college journey. On the 21st of this month, I’ll be done with that journey and moving on to the next one!

2007: This time in the year 2007, I had just joined my sorority, Gamma Lambda Rho. I was called the Mayor at Iona because everyone seemed to know me and I seemed to know them. I was finishing my freshman year of college, one of the best years of my life. I met friends I still have today, advisors and mentors I will always treasure, and I was having a damn good time.

2008: The year 2008 brought about my sophomore year at Iona. I continued to make new friends, meet new people, and join the Student Government Association among many many other organizations. Still having a damn good time.

2009: The year 2009 was a crazy one. I moved off campus with three of my best friends and we were having the time of our lives. My junior year of college was another crazy one and in march of that year, found out I was pregnant. Decided to move home and promised myself I would finish my degree at some point, but moved back to Rhode Island and left my Iona home behind. September 3rd, 2009 – Hailie was born. My heart was so full and I was so in love.

2010: Decided it was time to go back to college. Took a few classes at the Community College of Rhode Island while getting everything together to apply as a transfer student to the University of Rhode Island. Also thought I was going to switch my major from social work that I was working on at IONA to during. This did not last, nursing was not for me.

2011: Applied to the University of Rhode Island as a transfer student. Started in the fall taking a few classes while everything was transferred in, hoping I would get a majority of my credits. Still hadn’t decided what to major in because I kept changing my mind and ultimately had NO IDEA what I wanted to do with my life.

2012: Acceptance was official, all classes were transferred, and I was taking the general required classes that didn’t transfer over. At this time I decided to major in psychology.

2013: I got engaged!!! It was surreal and I couldn’t be happier. Started taking classes geared towards my psychology major. Found out I was pregnant with my second child in September of this year.

2014: Aubree was born on 3/4/14. I was still only taking a class here or there and finishing many in-completes I had acquired due to many excuses on my end. I also got married this year! Decided that I wanted to change my major to Communications because it was where I truly felt my heart was.

2015: Decided if I was ever going to finish my degree, I should probably get my butt in gear. Finished all in-completes and general education classes in the spring of 2015 and started taking my communications in the fall of 2015, taking 5 classes at a time.

2016: Spring of 2016, I got another 5 classes under my belt in Communications and was making a lot of progress. I was truly happy with my chosen major and was happy with my grades! Took another 3 classes in the summer of 2016. Two of interest to gain enough credits and a communications class. Fall of 2016 I finished my Communications major. At this point, I was applying for graduation for the spring of 2017. I spoke with an advisor who said if I wanted to double major, I only needed three more classes in Psychology. I figured, why not. In August of 2016, I found out I was pregnant with my third child, A BOY! When I registered for my spring semester, I told all my teachers before class started that at some point during the semester, I would be having a child. They were a little concerned with how I would be able to finish out the semester, but gave me the chance. I was also asked to join the academic honor society for Communications, which I happily accepted! I also started a new full-time job in December of 2016.

2017: The spring of 2017, I started taking my remaining five classes. Three of them were online, one was an independent study, and the last was on URI’s Providence Campus. I am happy to say that I only missed ONE class that entire semester and all my work for my other classes was submitted within a week of my son being born. Chace was born on 2/22/17. During my time at URI this semester, I was asked to be apart of two other academic honor societies and presented with an award for academic excellence in Communications. I finished my semester on 5/10/2017.

I have had too many jobs to count but those were all a part of it too! I met so many amazing people on this journey and I count my lucky stars for them each and every day.

To the sisters of Gamma Lambda Rho: Thank you for always sticking by me no matter what and continuing to be my closest friends to this day.

To Iona College: Thank you for everyone I met, everything you taught me, and all the fun times.

To my friends: You are all amazing. Thanks for listening to me vent, helping me re-read my papers, and cheering me on every step of the way.

To my children: I hope that you will learn that no matter what happens in your life, its never too late to go after your dreams and be your best self.

To my husband: thank you for your support and love every step of the way. I couldn’t have done it without you.

To my family: Thank you for everything. From watching my kids so I could get homework done or go to class, from cheering me on, from having drinks with me to keep me sane, and for just being you. I am truly blessed.

On Sunday,  I will graduate. Thanks to everyone big and small, near and far, for your love, support, help, and wisdom over these last 10 years. I couldn’t be luckier to have such an amazing group of friends and family.

 

 

The view is better when it is earned

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Sometimes it is important to recognize your own accomplishments.  I think everyone needs to pat themselves on the back or give themselves a round of applause every once in a while.  I truly believe that the world would be a happier place if people were happier for themselves.

Today, I start my last semester of my undergraduate degree.  The same degree I started back in 2006 when I was fresh out of high school.  The same degree I left and never finished when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter and decided to start a family and put school on hold.  I made myself a lot of promises when I chose to take that path in life and I was worried I wouldn’t follow through and I truly hate breaking promises to other people but especially myself.

Continue reading “The view is better when it is earned”

2016 Tribute

Another year has passed.  It is insane to see how fast it went by. I remember sitting on the couch and thinking – wow 2016, I can’t believe it and I  can’t wait to see what this year brings and it’s already over!

Though I saw a lot of negativity throughout 2016, I tend to do my best to focus on the positive of things.  I really didn’t think 2016 was all that bad but I love change, so I am always ready to embrace another year!

Here are the things I am choosing to highlight that sums up 2016! 

Ringing in 2016. The Ice Castles in NH.  Aubree Turned 2!  Kat’s Bachelorette party in NYC! Hailie & Shawn’s First Father Dance.  Our two year wedding anniversary!  Hailie started swim!!! then Hailie quit swim… Got laid off 😦 Got my grades from spring semester & was really proud of myself. Registered for my final year of college undergrad – major life accomplishment!! Kat & Anthony got married!! Shawn turned the big 35.  It has been 11 years since my mother died.  We celebrated Mal’s huge softball playoffs! Owen was born – little boy of our dear friends!  Cassie & Lou got married.  Colleen & Sam got married!  Yearly Outer Banks trip, a shorter one but still one to remember. First time at Rosie’s Beach!  THE OLYMPICS – MICHAEL PHELPS – GOAT.  Found out baby number 3 was on the way and due the day before Aubree’s birthday! Found out baby number three was a BOY!!! Hailie Started the second grade!  Hailie turned 7 and we than hosted a raging olympics birthday party.  Yearly fantasy football draft, but this year I won FIRST place :0 ! 10 year high school reunion which ended up being awesome and I even started up some old friendships which has been wonderful. Shonda Rhimes is still ruining lives.  One of my most favorite people and best friends on this planet got married to her love [Faith & Andy] !! Hailie and Baby O’Reilly started and finished their first 5k!! Waited in line forever to go to a fake Luke’s Inn.  American Horror Story produced the worst season yet – started off great but major disappointment.   TOOK HAILIE TO SEE WICKED AT PPAC – this was one of the best days of the year!  Hailie started Guitar and so far is loving it!   Unfortunately, we said goodbye to Big Papa.  Celebrated my 28th birthday with my hubs, a meatball, and a wicked witch! Donated Thanksgiving baskets to those in need with the girls which was so rewarding.  Took the girls to three movies in the theatre in a month AND they were awesome. Started a new job which I love!!! Finished my semester and again – really proud of myself.  Christmas was a success as we celebrated it as our last year as a family of four.  I made some new friends.  I lost some old friends.  I lost a good job.  I gained an even better one.  Hubs got a promotion and a raise.  We even got to squeeze in a few date nights that we don’t usually get to do.  ECSTATIC for what lies ahead for us in 2017.  

Every single year I continue to state I am lucky and I am blessed and I am honored and happy, but it really is true.  Life could always be worse.  I really enjoyed 2016 and I am ready to embrace another year – because change is good, life is good, and 2017 has a lot in store for us.

I am not really one to make resolutions and if I do, I try to focus on them as realistic goals that I might not necessarily accomplish but it’s something I am working towards each year.  This year’s goals are listed below.  Of course I want to finish and complete them all but even if I don’t, I will be ok with that too.  Please feel free to copy them, send me some good vibes, or share your own goals and resolutions for 2017!

1. Graduate URI in May 2017

2. Start new crock pot blog and post weekly! ( I started this!) https://crock-around-the-clock.com

3.Donate time or items to local shelters in need once a month with the girls because giving is always more important than receiving

(12 times at min)

4.Complete at least FIVE 5k’s

5.Read at least 12 books (1 a month)

6.Monthly movie date with my hubby (at home or in theatre)

then add a review of the movie and post it

7. Take a picture once a day and make a photo book out of it.  For how much time I spend on my phone, you would think I would take more pictures

8. Start doing yoga (at least once a week – at home counts)

9.Do not withdraw from Digit for the entire year. (Savings app, I hear it is genius)

10. Spend more time with ones I love and continue to embrace and enjoy everything life has to offer.  Not really a goal but definitely a reminder!

Compiled some pics from 2016.  ENJOY the last night of 2016, be safe, and I can’t wait to see everyone and talk to everyone in the new year! As I said – lucky and blessed 🙂

 

ONTO 2017!

#whywomendontreport

I rarely touch on topics that are heavy.  It’s not that I don’t want to, I just see myself as an optimist and I like to write about fun and silly things in a world that continues to be downright scary.  However, there was no way I could not write about this.

#whywomendontreport

The first thing I want to say is, if you have not checked out this hashtag on twitter, whether you are male or female, I highly suggest you do.  It is a powerful hashtag to say the least and the reasons why women aren’t reporting, haven’t reported, and continue not to report bring us into a harsh reality that many may not be willing to accept.

Continue reading “#whywomendontreport”

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