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Out with the Old, In with the New

January 11, 2020

I used to be an elementary school teacher and ed-tech consultant; now I'm a mom of twins and aspiring children's book author.

This blog is a place for me to write about personal life experiences, gleanings from books I've recently read, past and current DIY projects, and reflective thoughts that need a home outside my heart. Here at HeartEyes, I am opening my heart and eyes to yet another new chapter of my life, and my hope is that by joining me here, your heart and eyes would be opened to a more thoughtful and intentional life.

Hi, i'm tiff!

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It has been a rough couple of months, and by rough I mean my 2.5+ year old daughter has been screaming bloody murder multiple times just about every single night since October. Three. Straight. Months. ALMOST as bad as the newborn days that I never in a million years would want to relive.

But then daytime comes and she’s her normal, thoughtful, chatty, and observational self, so I love her by day but hate her by night. Motherhood is freaking WEIRD.

For the past 3 months, but really for the past 3 years, I’ve been having a really hard time thinking positively and feeling grateful. To this day, I’m still not glad that I have kids. Do I love them? Absolutely. Am I happy that they’re generally healthy? Definitely. But do I wish I never had them? Sometimes. Actually, more than sometimes.

And that’s such an awful thing to think, isn’t it? There are so many women who dream of being mothers who never get a chance to be. Then there are mothers who have children with all sorts of health problems who would give anything to have healthy children. And then there are the heartbroken mothers who have lost their children whether by miscarriage, cancer, sids, or accident.

And here I am with generally healthy toddler twins, being ungrateful for what I was given.

So, 2020, let’s work on that. And let’s start by reflecting on the past decade’s happenings:

– Family-time in Hawaii, Japan, & Taiwan.
– Started Bible school and went to Bolivia for a mission trip.
– Broke off a 6-year toxic relationship.
– Met my now-husband.
Grateful For: Family, Travel, & Healthy Relationships

– Went to Bolivia again for a mission trip.
– Graduated from Bible school; probably the most meaningful 2 years of my life.
Grateful For: Life-Purpose & Lifelong Companions

– Started dating my now-husband.
– Started a small-group that included some of the people I care about most today.
– Started a job which required lots of travel that I absolutely loved.
Grateful For: Trustworthiness, Community, & Growth

– Went to London for a mission trip.
– Sold my sporty little Lancer and fell in love with my new VW Golf TDI.
– Got engaged.
Grateful For: Happiness

– Married the best partner and team-player ever.
– Went to Turks & Caicos for our honeymoon.
– Moved out of my parents’ house, kind of for the first time, to LA.
Grateful For: Growth & New Beginnings

– Family-time in Taiwan w/ the bro & new husband.
– Took the husband camping for the first time w/ the fam.
– Little brother moved to Ireland.
Grateful For: Family

– Went to Cabo for our anniversary.
– Went to Hawaii w/ the BFF for our first BFF trip.
– Went to Israel for 2 weeks; the most meaningful trip I’ve ever been on.
Grateful For: Travel & My BFF of Now 23+ Years

– Family trip to Ireland.
– Went on the most epic trip w/ the husband: Bahamas, NY, Greece, Italy, France, Chicago.
– Scruffy passed away at 15 years old.
– Moved to Chicago.
– Got pregnant with twins.
Grateful For: Travel, Furry Friends, & An Uncomplicated Pregnancy

– Had twins via C-section.
– Little brother got married.
– Took twins to Cali, Boston, Vancouver, then Cali again.
Grateful For: Not Dying After a Traumatic Delivery

– Started physical therapy for the 2-inch gap in my abdomen.
– Twins turned 1.
– Took twins to Orlando, Cali, Dallas, & Boston.
– Started therapy for anxiety, depression, & thoughts of suicide.
– Started my blog.
– Reconnected w/ old friends via Marco Polo.
– Went back to work.
– Went to London for a siblings & significant others’ reunion.
Grateful For: Family & My Extended Support System

– Went on a snowboarding trip for the first time w/ the husband.
– Had surgery to remove an enormous cyst.
– Twins turned 2.
– Took twins to London, Ireland, Taiwan, & Cali twice.
– Moved to DC.
– Hayley passed away at 15 years old.
– Twins started Preschool.
Grateful For: New Friends, Health, Travel, Furry Friends, & New Beginnings

One of the biggest things I learned in the past year was how to identify triggers for my anxiety, how to determine when anxiety was creeping in, and how to deal with the anxiety once it manifested itself. It’s definitely still a work in progress every single day, but I think I’ve come a long way.

In this new decade, but especially in 2020, I really want to focus on shifting my negative mindset to a more positive one, which is so incredibly hard for me. I’ve noticed that my negativity feeds into my depression, which feeds into my lack of productivity, which cycles back into depression, which makes me isolate myself, which cycles again back into depression, and I’ve been in this cycle for a few months now.

While in this cycle, I can never think of anything to be grateful for, and I’d like to learn to change that. I’d like to learn how to identify when my negativity is too much, and be intentional about changing my mindset so I can think more positively in difficult situations. I’d like to learn how to be grateful even in frustrating and annoying moments, and most of all, I’d like to learn how to not just survive motherhood, but thrive.


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  1. Hannah D says:

    LOVE THIS! And love you! ❤️

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Pondering thoughts, personal life experiences, things I love, mental health, marriage life, and everything in between.



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Everything from my birth story to postpartum anxiety and depression, from c-section recovery to mom guilt and judgment. Prepare for raw and emotional posts!


Books + Podcasts

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Gleanings from books I've read and podcasts I've been impressed with, with the occasional children's book recommendations!


DIY Projects

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DIY project tutorials from six years of projects in my home! Very much a work in progress, migrating tutorials from my Instagram page to my blog!


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