Category Archives: Personal

We moved! (+ an empty house tour)

Hi friends! I am finally coming up for air after our big move to Alabama!! I certainly didn’t mean to be absent from the blogosphere for this many days… But between the multi-day drive (our movers were SUPER late and that put us behind schedule), getting settled in the new house, AND going without internet for the first week (obvi not by choice!!)–it’s taken me a minute to get back in the swing of things!

But now I’m back! And comin’ atcha from a sweet lil blue-doored house on a quiet road in Alabama. While our furniture arrived just a day after we did (the moving company told us it could take as many as 7!), I thought it might be fun to show ya around the place as we saw it on our first day. *Apologies in advance for the poor photo quality and lighting.*

Living Room

We brought our tv and a couple camp chairs just in case our furniture didn’t arrive right away. Now that our couch is here, it is oriented in much the same way (but the tv is on a stand and up against the wall, lol). I’ve chosen to use the space you see behind Chet as a sort of entryway.

Kitchen

The kitchen is super bright and open with room for a table and chairs beneath a window. And can we talk about that subway tile? Obsessed. The storage space is a little lacking compared to our last place but we’ve gotten creative with solutions — including getting one of these guys to fill up some open wall space. Wink likes the flooring. 😉

Chet’s Office / Guest Room #1

This closet situation means the master bedroom closet is ALL MINE! Mwahahaha! This room is at the front of the house with all sorts of beautiful trees right outside the windows.

My Office / Guest Room #2

I can’t tell you how excited I am to have a space for my desk/computer that isn’t about a foot from where I sleep at night!!! This room looks out at the backyard and is bright and quiet and as far away from our bedroom as possible (work from home WIN!).

Laundry

Another huge upgrade for us? Our very own washer and dryer right behind those closet doors! (The open door is the guest bathroom.) Sure our apartment in Miami had access to laundry facilities on every floor but a) it was $3.00 to wash and dry a load and b) everyone and their mom wants to do laundry on Sunday afternoons…and now I won’t have to wait my turn.

Master Bedroom

Finally, our master bedroom! This room proved to be a bit of a conundrum once our bedroom suite arrived. It is very rectangular and I’ve only ever set the furniture up in more square spaces. So, the bed and dresser have to go side by side. Not sure I love it…but the movers assured me lots of people do it this way, LOL! I DO love the room though…and that giant closet.

And there you have it! While much of our furniture and *stuff* is set up at this point, there’s still a long way to go when it comes to decorating! The first area I want to tackle is the entryway as you come into the house through the front door. Shall I show you an update once it’s complete???

Oh, and since I have home decor on the brain, I’d love to know —

Where do you go online for home decor inspiration? Any favorite blogs or YouTube channels? Any tips for decorating a home on a budget? What are your favorite stores? LEAVE IDEAS BELOW! I’d appreciate it a lot! ❤ 

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The YouTuber Instagram Accounts You Should Totally Follow

Much like BLOGGERS, folks who share on YouTube are already offering us a glimpse into their worlds. Whether their channel showcases travel, food, style, or minimalist living…we get a backstage pass. All from the comfort of our homes!

[For more accounts to follow, check out these FOODIES and these CELEBS!]

And because YouTubers are already masterful video creators, following them on IG is EVEN MORE fun thanks to the advent of Instagram Stories. (Admittedly, one of the biggest time sucks in my day — whoops!) So, let’s take a look at a few of my favorite vloggers!

You Should Totally Follow —

kittenxlady … check out her channel HERE.

thebudgeteers … check out their channel HERE. (I can’t wait for Season 3 to drop!!)

simpleliving13 … check out her channel HERE. (Brittany shared her favorite mantra with Finding Delight readers in this post.)

badyogiofficial … check out her channel HERE. (Erin also shared a favorite mantra. Check it out!)

mrsvitale … check out her channel HERE.

demicouturestylist … check out her channel HERE.

I have one more crop of Instagram accounts I’d like to share with y’all before I close out this series and that’s the TOTALLY RANDOM ones. I think I have a fair few of those (as I’m sure you do too!). If you’d like to follow me, I’m at @BBerg1012 and I’d love to connect! Leave your handles below!! 

We’re moving to…

…ALABAMA!!!

As promised, I’m coming atcha with a bit of a life update today! At the end of the month, Chet and I will be relocating to Huntsville, AL.

We’ve known for a while now that Miami wasn’t going to be a forever home. We were just waiting for the right opportunity to come along. And a few weeks ago, it did! I’m so excited for this new adventure. So far it’s been a whirlwind of packing, scouting places to live, and learning as much as possible about our new home-base.

This move will put us closer to family and friends. Plus, the size/climate/culture of Huntsville is much more in line with the type of location we see ourselves in long term. (I guess you can take a Kentucky girl and a Louisiana boy out of the South…but they sure will miss it a whole bunch!)

Have you ever been to North Alabama? Any recommendations? I’d love to hear! Leave a comment below or feel free to drop me an email at ebeth.berger@gmail.com. ❤

The Blogger Instagram Accounts You Should Totally Follow

Bloggers already offer a great window into their world. They share insights and offer a peek at their lives in the form of blog posts, which often include beautifully crafted prose and top-notch photography. But sometimes you wanna see what’s going on in their lives in between these posts.

Enter Instagram. A great way for bloggers to share on the fly and show off their photo styling skills!

I’ve shared my favorite FOODIE and CELEB follows but today let me hit you with some Instagram accounts that are near and dear to my heart — BLOGGERS!

You Should Totally Follow —

carrotquinn … who blogs HERE.

taralynnmcnitt … who blogs HERE.

hannahcozens … who blogs HERE.

jjjasuuu … who blogs HERE.

latonyayvette … who blogs HERE.

and stella.blackmon … who contributes to THIS BLOG.

Oh and perhaps you’ll consider following yours truly at BBerg1012 … I blog right here! But I guess you already knew that. 😉 Don’t forget to leave YOUR handles in the comment section, sweet internet friends!! xoxo

Are You Spiritual?

*This post may contain affiliate links.*

Readers, do you consider yourself spiritual? No matter what you believe, I’ve sorta come to the conclusion that as long as you are happy to take what works for you and put the rest aside, you will find there is great benefit to be had from living in a more spiritually aware manner. Whatever that may mean to you. For some people that’s weekly trips to church, others it might mean a daily mantra practice, or setting out into nature alone with your thoughts once a month. 

Here are three spiritual practices I try and incorporate in my life —

Keep Your Eyes Open

It can be amazing what you miss when you aren’t really looking – and by that same token, what you can see when you make a concentrated effort to keep your eyes open. Keeping your eyes open simply means you are on the lookout for anything which might spark joy…or delight ;). [I talk more in depth about how I incorporate this practice HERE.]

A friend of mine pointed out that when she started living this way, she was surprised by how the same things cropped up over and over again. So often that they began to feel significant. Her advice? Whether it’s the recurrence of specific angel numbers, a certain theme that seems to reappear in your relationships, or anything – whatever it is, pay attention and see what you can learn from it.

Spread Compassion

Something else which all spiritual traditions share is a focus on helping others and spreading joy and compassion towards them. Learning to do this in your daily life takes time, effort and courage – but you will find that doing so really does make for a much more fulfilling life. If you find that there is some kind of blockage stopping you from doing this, then you might want to think about what you can do to make it easier for yourself. In most cases, it begins with first spreading joy to yourself – so that you can then be more compassionate to those around you. You know what RuPaul says, right? “If you can’t love yourself how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else?” CAN I GET AN AMEN? 

Remain Present

One tenet most spiritual traditions agree upon is remaining present as a way to feel more in tune with reality and more at peace. Presence is hard to fully comprehend until you have practiced it. You might think you’re always present in the here and now. While this is technically true, if you’re anything like me, your brain is always moving…even in neutral! Reigning in your thoughts to focus solely the present moment actually takes a lot of work. Who knew!? But it is SO worth it. Of these three principles, this one is definitely where I struggle the most. Got any tips? 

Are you spiritual? What does living in a spiritually aware manner mean to you? 

The Celebrity Instagram Accounts You Should Totally Follow

Are you as obsessed with scrolling through Instagram as I am? I thought so.

The last post in my little IG series featured FOODIES. This time, I’d love to talk CELEBS! I mentioned before that this social media platform feels like a combination of a few of my favorite things — magazines, photo albums, and…well…diaries (what can I say! I’m nosy, lol.)

As someone who used to impulse buy trashy celeb magazines at the grocery check-out counter, following a few of my favorite famous folk is a great (and FREE) alternative.

You Should Totally Follow —

michalabanas … for her stupid memes (that I secretly love) and her goofiness.

kristenanniebell … who I started following during Hurricane Irma but stuck around because how adorable are she and Dax Shepard!? 

parisjackson … because she’s a magical hippie starchild. Exhibit A. Exhibit B. Exhibit C.

busyphilipps … for the Instagram STORIES, of course! But also her cute kids and bestie Michelle.

mindykaling … because she is major style inspo and she’s always down to offer a hilarious look at on set life.

britneyspears … everything about this Instagram is PERFECT and if you’re not following please do yourself a dang favor. (Also, if you love this account as much as me, give this podcast a listen. #obsessed)

Over to you! Leave your fave celebrity follows in the comments below. Oh, and drop your IG handle as well. Mine is @BBerg1012 and I’d love to connect (even though I’m not at all famous, lol). 

Guest Post: The Truth About Therapy

Just the other day, one of my students asked me why I, a seemingly well adjusted adult who is the leader of her classroom, would ever go to therapy. She said the word with disdain – therapy– as if it was something to be ashamed of or embarrassed about. I chuckled, wondering just how much time I had to enlighten her on all the reasons why I do need it, and why I have been going to a therapist since college.

I’m an open book, someone who is not afraid to share her story or struggles with the general public, but I was not always that way. When I first started treatment for my eating disorder back in 2013, I was terrified about letting the world know that was what I was doing. I covered up my move to New York as a career move (I’m in the arts so it wasn’t a stretch), but the longer I was in treatment and the more I opened up to my therapist, the more I knew I needed to open up to the rest of the world. I needed the walls to come down, and little by little, they did. Now, I can’t imagine my life without being someone who shares what she went through with anyone who asks.

Because I am the passionate, go-getter individual that I am, when I started recovery I set a very high goal for myself. I remember saying the words out loud to my therapist. “I am going to love my whole self, 100% of the time.” She laughed at me. She literally laughed, and said, “that’s an impossible goal, Katie. I’m not letting you set that.” I was angry at her for doubting me. Hey, you barely even know me!! You don’t know what I’m capable of! But it’s true…I would be disappointed every single day when I woke up and looked at myself in the mirror and didn’t fall in love with the broken, changing girl in front of me. She was trying so hard. She also believed that therapy was something that you accomplished, and then you were done. Much like how I viewed recovery when I first began the process. I would quickly learn that, like almost everything else in recovery, it was not that simple.

To an untrained eye, I am recovered. I eat normally, I have restored my weight, I don’t have panic attacks daily, and I’m not a slave to my compulsions like I used to be. But I know that recovery is a lifelong venture that doesn’t end just because you aren’t in treatment anymore. Because of the nature of this ongoing journey, I firmly hope that I am always in therapy. It’s a safe space – a place that taught me how to be open to trying new things, how to speak authentically, and what empathy really means. Most importantly it showed me how to begin a conversation about mental health with anyone who asks, including my students.


Katie Berger is a musician, performer, and teaching artist based in St. Petersburg, FL. She is the writer and composer of Full the Musical, which details one girl’s battle with her eating disorder and struggles with childhood trauma. She began treatment for anorexia in 2013 and is so grateful to her treatment team and the people who supported her through the worst of her illness. She is a mental health advocate and an ear for anyone who might need one.

This guest post was inspired by BetterHelp, a website that makes professional counseling accessible so anyone can get help – anytime, anywhere. If you’re interested in learning more about online therapy , CLICK HERE.

30 Days of Ballet Training

I don’t know if this will be interesting to anyone but, for the sake of accountability, I’m gonna blog about my current fitness challenge! You might know from this post and this one, that a) I love creating my own fitness challenges and b) I love pretending I’m a ballerina.

I love creating my own fitness challenges because I’m a self-proclaimed decisionphobe. Now what does that have to do with working out? Well, I LOVE exercising. The brain break it gives me during and those sweet, sweet endorphins after. But without a clear plan in place…I’ll often just skip exercising entirely. Making the decision about what to do and when to do it leaves me at an impasse. Because I know this about myself, I plan ahead and make all the decisions in one big batch!

I love pretending I’m a ballerina because ballet is something I’ve done since I was itty-bitty. In my experience, finding delight as an adult is often as easy as reflecting on what brought you joy as a child and doing THAT.

So with all that out of the way, let’s chat about my 30 days of ballet training!

The challenge is made up of 5 types of work-outs:

STRETCH – That’s an obvious one. Stretching.
STRENGTH – Less ballet inspired, more building strength in key areas NEEDED for ballet.
TRAIN – Ballet-inspired workout to train a specific body part or aspect of ballet.
CARDIO – Center work without breaks to get the heart-rate up.
BARRE – Also an obvious one. Barre work.

Here’s what the work-outs look like over the 30 days:

Week One

1 – STRETCH: Flexibility
2 – STRENGTH: Legs and Abs
3 – STRETCH & STRENGTH: Back
4 – STRENGTH: Back
5 – STRETCH: Total Body
6 – STRENGTH: Knees
7 – BARRE: Classical Ballet

Week Two

8 – TRAIN: Posture
9 – BARRE: Fitness (in athletic shoes)
10 – TRAIN: Extension
11 – CARDIO: Stamina Work
12 – STRENGTH: Arms
13 – STRETCH: Adagio Inspired
14 – BARRE: Floor

Week Three

15 – STRENGTH: Legs and Bum
16 – TRAIN: Arches
17 – BARRE: Classical and Fitness Combo
18 – TRAIN: Splits
19 – STRENGTH: Arms and Core
20 – TRAIN: Core
21 – BARRE: Fitness (in athletic shoes)

Week Four

22 – STRETCH: Yoga Inspired
23 – STRENGTH: Legs and Abs
24 – TRAIN: Neck and Arms
25 – STRETCH: Active Stretching
26 – TRAIN: Arms
27 – TRAIN: Abs
28 – STRETCH: Active Stretching

Bonus Days

29 – STRENGTH: Back
30 – CARDIO: Classical Center

I’m currently on Day 13 (and yes, my arms are sore from yesterday!) and am loving the training schedule so far. I’m already feeling stronger and more flexible. Shall I report back after Day 30?

If you’re interested in taking on a similar training schedule, I put together this 10-Day Ballet Challenge (using free online work-outs). Let me know if you try it out!

And if you suffer from decision fatigue, I can not recommend making your own fitness challenge enough. It works for all types of exercise and fitness levels! Need help getting started? Shoot me an email! I would LOVE to help you put one together. 🙂

What’s your favorite way to exercise? Have you ever tried a fitness challenge (either one that was already made or something you put together yourself)? 

My Recipe for Self-Love

What you’ll need:

  1. SOLITUDE – Spending quality time alone is one of the number one ways we get to know ourselves. And you gotta know yourself before you can even think about loving yourself. When you’re away from the “busy” of everyday life and the external influences that shape you, you can express yourself however you like. So get creative!
  2. AFFIRMATION – When we repeat positive, encouraging messages to ourselves it can change the way that we feel. Toxic thoughts are bound to crop up — no matter who you are! So why not actively try to negate some of that negativity?
  3. INTENTION SETTING – If we never set a target, who is to blame when we miss the mark? Write down your intention for tomorrow, speak your intentions out loud, share your goals with loved ones. Clarifying what we want to achieve not only sets us up for success, but honors our path as something that is important and achievable.

 

And how it all comes together:

-Schedule some time for SOLITUDE. Spend this time getting to know yourself by brainstorming what you love about yourself in the present and what you’d like to improve on or accomplish in the future. You may want to write in a journal or meditate during this process.

-Begin a regular AFFIRMATION practice. Need help getting in the swing of things? Try a daily mirror affirmation for the next 7 days or check out my 30 day mantra challenge. Remember those things you love about yourself in the present? Start telling yourself.

-Now set yourself up for future successes, and new areas to affirm, by SETTING INTENTIONS. Start writing out a daily intention for the following day before you go to sleep at night. Not only will you sleep better, but you’ll start prioritizing based on your own needs and dreams. Self-love (with a dash of productivity) at it’s finest!

Want to go even bigger? Identify 3 intentions for the year to come. Write them out and post somewhere you’ll see every day. A constant reminder that your goals matter and are possible.

Do you utilize SOLITUDE, AFFIRMATIONS, or INTENTIONS to facilitate self-love? What does YOUR self-love recipe look like? Share the ingredients below! 

P.S. Interested in learning more about the power of positive affirmations? Check out my 4-part series on MANTRAS! 

 

The Foodie Instagram Accounts You Should Totally Follow

Way back in 2014, I wrote this post about why I love Instagram so much. Instagram is like a happy union between glossy magazine, family photo album, and public diary so it’s no wonder I still love scrolling through the app to this day!

With that in mind, I thought I’d do a little series shouting out some of the accounts I love to follow. Starting with a very controversial subject matter — FOOD. Secretly (well, not such a secret NOW), I LOVE the fact that there are folks out there who take pics of their meals. While I recognize the critique of the millennial snappin’ pics of her plate while her food gets cold is a valid one, the entertainment factor on my end is certainly enjoyable. (And if it brings the ‘grammer joy too then I say, “DO. YOU.”)

You Should Totally Follow —

amy__currie … for her Trader Joe’s hauls and serious commitment to Pizza Fridays.

beckyinbold … for the super simple Whole 30 meal ideas and hiker snacks.

chefdphillips … because she’s a Kentucky girl and she wrote an awesome cookbook.

honeysucklebeez … for the beautiful food styling and meal prep ideas for busy bees!

pinchofmar … for fresh fruit and veggie inspo and her realistic healthy meals.

100daysofrealfood … because real food is the BEST food and you gotta love a lunchbox snap!

Over to you! Leave your fave foodie follows in the comments below. Oh, and drop your IG handle as well. Mine is @BBerg1012 and I’d love to connect (even though my foodie IG game could use some work, lol).