Tag Archives: life lessons

A Girl Always Needs Her Dad

I might be in my thirties, but if there’s anything I’ve learned in three decades, it’s that I’ll always need my Dad.

He’s also taught me some pretty great lessons over the years.

In honor of my old man’s birthday (November 1st for those of you who know him and want to wish him well) I’ve put together the top 15 lessons I learned from the best Dad a girl could ask for.

me and dad at the game

At Fenway with the best Dad a girl could ask for

1.) Take care of your car. I’m pretty bad at it, but I know I should check my oil, tire pressure, and miscellaneous fluids on a regular basis. It also couldn’t hurt to give the old girl a vacuum every once in awhile either.

2.) Family first. Friends come and go but your family is forever. Take care of them and they’ll take care of you right back.

Family :)

Our family 🙂

3.) A deep and unwavering love for ALL things musical. Of course he taught me to appreciate the classics but the man has the MOST eclectic taste in music. Pretty ironic considering he can’t hear for shit! Just kidding Dad 🙂

4.) Gratitude and appreciation. Every night at dinner, without fail, Dad proclaims to Mom, “This is the best thing I’ve had to eat all day!” It doesn’t matter if it’s fish sticks or filet mignon, he appreciates the hot meal she takes the time to make for him. Thank yous go much farther than you’d ever think.

5.) Hard work pays off. The man worked a rotating schedule and almost never had a weekend off for 20 years, but he retired at 50. I call that WINNING.

Retiring at the ripe old age of 50!

Retiring at the ripe old age of 50!

6.) Celebrate your victories. No matter how small you think a win is, take a moment and appreciate a job well done.

7.) A place for everything, and everything in it’s place. As kids, if we didn’t put our stuff away, it was likely to get thrown out. On the plus side, if you always put your shit away, you always know where it is.

8.) Paddling a boat around a lake brings a unique sense of accomplishment and peace of mind. It’s pretty hard to be anything but happy surrounded by calm waters and wilderness.

canoe with dad maybe fave

Paddling around Emerald Lake 🙂

9.) Anything worth doing is worth doing well. Take pride in your work or no one else will.

10.) Be kind. It can mean the world and it costs you nothing. I’ve never seen my old man be rude to anyone. That includes people I’m pretty sure he can’t stand. Exclusion is for assholes. Being nice to people you don’t like doesn’t mean you’re fake, it means you’re mature enough to tolerate your dislike towards them.

11.) Bitching and moaning is a waste of time. If you can fix something, FIX IT! If not get over it already.

12.) Make some “me” time. Whatever it is you enjoy doing, make time for it. A hobby is a great way to blow off steam and challenge yourself.

The man's a 6 handicap. That doesn't happen by accident!

The man’s a 6 handicap. That doesn’t happen by accident!

13.) Find the funny. Trips home from the Cape usually included a stop at Friendly’s before the bridge. One time, as Dad went to put ketchup on his fries, when he shook the bottle, he (and the whole restaurant) discovered the cap wasn’t fully on. Ketchup sprayed EVERYWHERE! The first person to laugh was my old man. That always stuck with me, because really, if you can’t laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at?

14.) The value of a dollar. As kids we got paid to rake the acorns in our yard. Let me tell you with four oak trees back there, that’s a shit ton of acorns. All I had to do was look at the calluses on my palms to realize money was something you earned.

15.) Enjoy life. No one gets out alive so you might as well have some fun while you’re here.

That's the smile of a man who lives life to the fullest!

That’s the smile of a man who lives life to the fullest!

Happy Birthday Dad!! ILY

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Filed under Family + Friends, Following Your Dreams, My Favorite Things

I Got It From My Momma

In honor of my mother’s upcoming birthday, (June 24th for those of you who know her and want to wish her well) I put together a list of things she taught me over the years. Obviously it’s not an exhaustive list – that would be impossible.

Some of the lessons were appreciated at the time.

Some I didn’t fully understand until years later.

But they all remind me how lucky I am to have such an amazing Mom.

Me and my Momma

Me and my Momma

THINGS I GOT FROM MY MOMMA:

(besides some pretty amazing bone structure)

  1. Never show up to a gathering empty handed and always ask the host/hostess if you can help upon arrival.
  2. Dance whenever possible. (Some of my fondest memories are family dance parties in the living room.)

    dance party with mom

    Madonna dance parties are the best dance parties 🙂

  3. Pay off your credit cards EVERY MONTH and always have a little mad money set aside.
  4. Reading is AWESOME and will take you places you never dreamed of.
  5. Homemade food tastes the best. Extra points for growing your own.
  6. You can learn how to do anything you set your mind to. It won’t always be easy but it IS possible.

    Channeling her inner Amelia Earhart.

    Channeling her inner Amelia Earhart. That’s right my bad-ass Momma flew that plane!

  7. Your skin is your largest organ. Wash your face EVERY night, moisturize, and always use sunscreen.
  8. Ain’t isn’t a word. Use proper grammar.
  9. If you can’t carry it – don’t pack it. Chivalry is kinda, sorta dead. Be prepared to carry your own luggage ladies.
  10. Go outside. Better yet – go camping.
  11. Mind your manners. They’re called “magic words” for a reason.
  12. Barefaced is beautiful. Growing up I rarely saw my Mom wear much make-up and I wasn’t allowed to paint my face until high school. (It’s easy if you have great skin – see #7)

    Making it look easy somewhere in Korea.

    Making it look easy somewhere in Korea.

  13. You can’t say you don’t like something if you’ve never tried it. Try everything at least once. Twice to make sure.
  14. Tequila is the nectar of the Gods. But don’t be a dumbass – call a cab or have a designated driver.
  15. Stick up for yourself. No one if going to fight your battles for you.

Bonus:

Driving fast is a necessity in life when you’re ALWAYS 10 minutes late for EVERYTHING. It’s also a helluva lot of fun 🙂

Happy Birthday Mom!! ILY

Happy Birthday Mom!! ILY

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Filed under beauty, entertaining, etiquette, family, growing up, money, music

It’s Finally Friday!!!

Quote of the Day:

make mistakes george benard shaw quote

Climbing the Ladder:

Feel like the walking dead at work? How to get rid of fuzzy brain.

How to accept and decline job offers like a pro.

Body Lovin’:

Think you don’t have time to workout? All you need is 7 minutes!

Round the World:

Unbelievable places that actually exist.

Techie Love:

Do you use Spotify to listen to your favorite tunes? Check out these tips and tricks.

Inspirational:

Goosebumps are the smiles of our spirit. 101 ways to make your spirit smile 🙂

5 ancient mantras to transform your life.

Giggles and Such:

Inconceivable!

43 revelations guaranteed to blow your mind and make you feel wicked old.

FridayHave a great weekend!

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Filed under Climbing the Ladder, Finally Friday, fitness, inspiration, quotes, technology, travel

It’s Finally Friday!!!

Quote of the Day:

everything happens for a reason marilyn quote

Music Makes me Happy:

I been tryin to do it right, I been living a lonely life…

Live Out Loud:

Have trouble asking for what you want? 8 tips for communicating effectively.

Luscious Locks:

Gorgeous half up look.

Inspirational:

Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special.

Wine Me, Dine Me:

Do you like tacos? Is the sky blue??

Health and Wellness: 

Stiff neck? Check out these yoga poses.

DIY: 

Super cute Valentine.

Giggles and Such:

it's winter

i'd explore her

big dill

Have a great weekend!!!

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Filed under dating, DIY, Finally Friday, following your dreams, food, friendship, giggles and such, growing up, hair tutorials, health, inspiration, looking for love, music, quotes, videos, work

Thirty Life Lessons

There’s this great list from Glamour I kept on my fridge for years.

When I cut it out I don’t think I really understood it, but I figured they were things I could work towards (I was sixteen at the time).

There’s now an equally amazing book that came from said list, full of wonderful life lessons from awe inspiring women (my personal fave is from Maya Angelou).

I’m not 30. I’m 29.95 plus tax

As I approach my big 3-0 I’ve been thinking about all the life lessons I’ve personally learned along the way.

I’ve forgotten some of them from time to time.

A couple that I’m definitely old enough to know better!

So I figured I’d write down the top 30 lessons I’ve learned thus far and see if I could save someone else a little trouble 🙂

1.) Family is the most important thing. And it’s not just the family you’re born with.

2.) Stop making up stories explaining the events in your life and just except them. The more time your spend analyzing you life the less time you spend living it.

3.) If it seems too good to be true – it is.

4.) Always trust your gut. That niggling feeling that something isn’t quite right, is always right.

5.) Music is the miracle of life. It has the power to validate your feelings, make a bad day better, celebrate good times, nurse a broken heart, and help you keep on keepin’ on.

6.) Be honest. It’s hard. I know. If you don’t have the balls to be honest with others, at least be honest with yourself.

7.) No one is going to take care of you. Save your pennies and always have some “fuck you” money stashed away.

8.) Everyone has their own narrative and they are rarely EVER the same.

9.) Always be yourself. The most authentic version of yourself you can manage. Never EVER water down your personality for anyone. It’s the best part about you girl 😉

10.) My parents are truly amazing people.

Seriously! They rock!

11.) Talk is cheap. No matter what people SAY it’s what they DO that actually matters. So pay attention.

12.) You can fool yourself better than you can fool anyone else.

13.) Perception really is reality. There’s nothing you can do to change that, so stop wasting your time worrying about what other people think.

14.) Opportunity is usually disguised as hard work.

15.) Dogs are better than most people.

He might eat your shoes, but he’ll never do you wrong.

16.) This too shall pass is a true story. Good or bad, life changes on a dime. Always appreciate what you have.

17.) Stop trying to fast forward your life. Slow the fuck down and just take it all in. It really is all about the journey. Don’t get me wrong, goals are good, but it’s how you get there that really matters.

18.) Be BOLD. Ain’t nobody got time for that pansy ass shit. Figure out what you want and go for it.

19.) Credit cards are a slippery slope. Pay off your balance at the end of each month. You’ll save thousands in interest rates and countless headaches.

20.) Have an excellent tailor and hairdresser. They’ll make you look like a million bucks even when you can’t afford a cup of coffee. (For those of you in the area: Amber LaBorde at Visual Changes in Longmeadow, MA is beyond amazing and A Perfect Fit in Agawam, MA is the only tailor I’ve ever met who continually tries to save me money and does wonderful work with an unheard of turnaround.)

21.) Mind your manners. Especially if you’re sometimes socially challenged. Remembering what your Mama taught you will get you successfully through most interactions and keep you out of hot water.

22.) Read more. Books have lessons we’re all familiar with but hearing someone else’s troubles helps us actually learn them.

23.) A bra that fits right will change your life. Seriously go get fitted for one. I know, it’s awkward and weird but it’s worth it.

24.) Jealousy really is a monster. Keep an eye out for that bitch. She’ll sneak up on you if you’re not careful.

25.) Climbing a mountain will clear your head of all your worries. Even a small mountain 🙂

26.) Learn how to LET GO. (I have to admit I’m still working on this one. It’s super hard sometimes.)

27.) Expectations can be a dangerous thing to have. Manage yours well.

28.) Sex does NOT equal intimacy.

29.) Learn how to confront people effectively. Keeping emotions bottled up inside isn’t healthy, but neither is flying off the handle when you can’t take it anymore. Address your issues upfront and you’ll feel much better in the long run.

30.) A new pair of shoes can change your life.

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Filed under Change, dating, deal breakers, etiquette, family, following your dreams, growing up, inspiration, looking for love, sex

What would David Petano do?

I was recently reminded how awesome a human being my dad is.

Sunday being Father’s Day and all, I figured, why not dedicate today’s post to dear old Dad?

I went to Georgia to visit my brother and his fiance over Memorial Day weekend.

Downtown Columbus with my amazing little brother and his equally amazing fiance.

Dad was kind enough to drop me off and pick me up at the airport (no, that’s not what this post is about, but that was pretty awesome too!). On our way home, there was a woman sitting at the end of the off ramp with her hazard lights on. I didn’t even notice. Dad, however, stops, rolls down the window, and asks her if she’s okay. She happened to have someone on the way to help but that small act of kindness inspired me to “pay it forward”.

Dude, that sucks!

Later that day I was on my way to a BBQ at a friend’s house when I encountered a woman, broken down, on the side of the road with her two kids. Taking a page out of Dad’s book, I stopped to make sure she was okay. The look of amazement on her face, as she told me she had someone coming, told me I had indeed done the right thing. Dad has taught me so much over the years that I am continually amazed he has any pearls of wisdom left. From now on, I’ll be asking myself WWDPD more often.

What life lessons have you learned from your old man?

My super awesome Dad and I at Fenway

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Filed under etiquette, family, growing up, inspiration