Hey folks.  I’m feeling quite a bit down in the dumps today…  considering everything is going pretty well for me, I’m not sure what has brought this on.  The weather (minus the frigidness today) has been lovely.  My mom came into town over the weekend and we attended the gallery hop with my boyfriend.  There were a few people that made inquiries on my artwork!!!  I mean, other than the fact that I twisted my ankle that night, it was a good time.  My job is going well, although I am a bit stressed about the fact that I’m not really sure what I am going to do in the summer.  I am an assistant to a school photographer and we go with the school season so while having the summer off from it will be nice, a girls gotta pay bills.  I suppose I have a little bit of time to find a summer job, so I shouldn’t worry as much as I am right now.  It’s not even crunch time yet.  I’m finally catching up on bills and am not in so much debt.  I’m going to California on Thursday for the weekend with my honey (super stoked to get away with him and get out of town for a bit).  All things are on the up and up for me.

Depression is very hard and can rear it’s ugly head even when things are going really well.  I think I’m just going to chalk this up to lack of sleep and the fact that I’ve still got this damn cold.  I definitely wasn’t even close to 100% today.  And this damn twisted ankle is killing me.  Maybe a nap will make me feel a bit better.  A good nights sleep is always important for a stable mood.  Too bad I rarely get a good nights sleep.  When this ankle gets better I’m definitely going to start training for races again.  I’ll keep you posted on my progress!

“Life is short, live it. Love is rare, grab it. Anger is bad, dump it. Fear is awful, face it. Memories are sweet, cherish it.” – Unknown

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Hello everyone.  I realize that it’s been such a very long time that I’ve posted anything.  I’m going to be completely honest, it has been a very difficult road this past year.  I’ve made huge mistakes and I spiraled out of control because of them.  It has been the hardest time of my adult life.  I’ve cried a lot and been severely depressed most of the past year.  I didn’t do that 5K that I was training so hard to do and in all honesty, I completely lost control of my life.  I gained 10 pounds back of the weight I worked so hard to lose.  Only those very few who are closest to me know anything about this year but I have decided to expose myself in hopes to let people know that in the end it doesn’t matter that you have fallen down.  What truly matters is that you get back up.

I will start off by talking about how I lost the best job I ever had due to one of those the huge mistakes that I made.  As if that mistake wasn’t bad enough, I had to start all over again trying to build a career.  I left on good terms, no bridges burned but there was no way I could fulfil my obligations to this job at the time.  I had to take a bunch of low paying, part time jobs just to survive. I worked multiple jobs at a time and had more jobs in one year than I had in my entire life.  I realize, that a job is a job.  I respect anyone that is working an honest job to survive, but I had lost everything that I worked so hard and so long to achieve.

I tried so hard to continue in my field but just kept getting knocked down, time and time again.  Months and months of this.  It was a slippery slope.  I would be on such a “high” when I would try to advance and think things were going well.  Then when I got knocked down, I would be on such a terrible low.  I would go through periods of drinking.  At first it was just to have a good time, and it was fun for a while.  Then things got out of line.  I’m not talking about “normal” drinking… I drank heavily and got wasted just to try and cope and forget.  That would just make things worse.  I was tired of trying.  I isolated myself from my friends and my family, my support.  They started to worry about me, it was that bad, which made me feel worse.  I started to hate myself and it became harder and harder to pick myself back up. I spent a lot of the time when I wasn’t working in bed, miserable and self loathing.  Self  harm came back into my life. It had been years since I had done this.  I guess I just felt like it was the only thing I could control in my life and I liked the pain, although always felt guilty and dumb the next day.  Don’t worry friends and family, I realized that this behavior wasn’t good for me and have since quit doing this.

I met someone who I deeply love and care for, and for the past several months we have been helping each other.  You see, we are both fragile creatures but we’ve been there for each other through all the ups and downs.  I’m am inspired by him, thank you for everything you have done.  I’m grateful to have you in my life.  So with the help of him and friends and family, at the beginning of this year, I decided I didn’t want to be like this anymore.  I was tired of hating myself and tired of hurting the people I cared about.  I wanted to do something with my life and wanted to BE someone.  So I started to take action again, with more determination and willpower.  I heard about a new local coffee shop that was opening in January so I contacted them about putting artwork in their shop. My brother came down from Chicago for a show he was doing in Morehead and he helped me get my artwork into that coffee shop.  I have framed photos, sheathed photos, photography greeting cards, and jewelry in there.  I’ve recently contacted a few galleries to try and get an exhibit going for my birthday of my abstract photography (if anyone has any info on how to go about this it would be greatly appreciated).  I got a  new camera and have began taking photos again.  I’ve been working on my etsy shop harder than ever.  I also got a new job as a photography assistant. I’m not taking the photos but at least it’s in my field and have learned a lot from  my boss.  I’ve also been working hard on my other artwork, I am designing my next tattoo.  I’ll post a pic when it’s done and I’ve got the ink tatted on my body.  I have really started to believe in myself, my talent, and my potential again.

I’ve also tried to begin my healthy diet again.  And when the weather is warmer I am going to start training for a 5k obstacle course challenge.  I’m excited.  It’s in July, so I have a few months to get ready.  Any helpful tips on training are welcomed.  I’ve began rebuilding my mental stability with therapy, which has been a huge help.  Everyone needs help sometimes, there is NOTHING wrong with that.

The year 2014 was definitely a tough year for me. I learned a lot and came a long way. I gained friends. I lost friends. Thank you to those of you, friends and family alike, who have stuck it out with me through thick and thin. I love you! I made mistakes. I worked hard.  Yeah it was a challenging year but would I change anything? Hell no, I wouldn’t have learned the valuable life lessons that I have learned and wouldn’t be the stronger person I am today.

And since I am going to post this link to my Facebook page, to all that were wondering throughout the year about my vague, depressing posts… now you know.  I am scared shitless to the reaction I might get from this post but I really wanted people to know that you can come back from the darkness.  it is a struggle and you have to take it day by day.  hell, sometimes minute by minute but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  I also feel that this post was therapeutic for me to write, I feel like a weight will be lifted off my shoulders as soon as hit the publish button.  I’m sure there’s a little bit that I have forgotten to put in this post but you all have had enough word vomit for one day.  Check back to see my progress, positive comments are welcome… Keep the negativity to yourself.

Here we go… 1…2…3… publish!

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I Was Lost But Now I’m FOUND!

Hey all, long time no blog!  It has been quite a roller coaster of a year for me!  How’s your journey coming along?  Hopefully you all have stayed on track!!! Let me update you all on my journey.

I definitely lost myself for a while and unfortunately I have picked up a bad habit again.  I started smoking after 6 months of quitting.  But when life is spiraling out of control, it’s all about taking it one day at a time!  Now, I am NOT making excuses for myself about picking this nasty habit back up but it has been quite a difficult 6 months for me.  Lots of life changing events this year, moving across country after a heartbreak, my dad had a MAJOR stroke (he’s doing much better now though, still a long journey ahead of him but he’s definitely headed in the right direction and making progress everyday!), more heartbreak… the list goes on and on. 

I am finally back on track with life though!  I’ve still been working out and (other than the smoking) staying on track with my healthy lifestyle.  I am signing up for a 5k run that takes place on November 23, a bit later then I wanted it to happen this year, but better late then never!  I am down 70 lbs and running 5 days a week!  I got a new job that I feel that I am going to love and it is actually in the field that I went to school for, photography! 

I have a few goals for the near future:  lose the last 10 lbs. by January 1st, after my 5k I want to start training for a triathlon and by June participate in one, and I also want to have my very first photography exhibit by my next birthday (it’s in August).   It’s about strength and determination, I will make these goals a reality!  Push yourself to make your dreams reality!

Remember, this journey is a tough one and you definitely will have ups and downs (I am proof of that! Just remember, we are all human and you just have to pick yourself back up and take it one day at a time) Dig deep and you will find the willpower and determination! You can and WILL succeed.  That’s all for now folks, until next time! 

Leave a comment if you want to share any success stories, ideas, thoughts, or struggles. 

“It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.” ~Aristotle  Onassis


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Life Happens!

Hey all, how’s the journey coming along? Just a quick update on my journey, over 5 months of no smoking and 60 lbs. lost!

Today I want to talk about life changing events. For instance, a separation from your significant other. Now, trust me, I know that it can be devastating. I know how easy it can be to fall back into to old, bad habits. Don’t! Now, you’re probably saying to yourself, “that’s easier said than done.” But you are strong, look how far you have come since the beginning of your journey! Take this negative and turn it around into a positive. This is an opportunity to really focus on yourself and where you want your life to go! The sky is the the limit, reach for the stars! Stay motivated and determined and never give up on yourself!

That’s all for now folks, have a great day! If you have any thoughts, ideas, struggles, or success stories just leave a comment!

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Stay Motivated!

Hey everyone!  I know, it’s been a long time!  How’s your journey coming along?  Just to update y’all with my journey, I am at 55 lbs. lost and over 4 months since I quit smoking!  I just completed week 4, day 1 of the ck5 trainer app (the 5k training app I told you all about a few blogs ago).  I’m feeling on top of the world!

I want to tell you all about a website I just found today, I’ve explored it a little bit and it looks pretty awesome.  It’s called www.fitnessblender.com  It has workouts and exercises, healthy recipes, smoothie and juice recipes, and much more!  You should explore it and let me know what you think!

As always, I’ve been looking for healthier meal options and I came across this super easy, very tasty meat loaf. Check out the recipe (it’s a Biggest Loser recipe).  http://www.today.com/id/45795398/site/todayshow/ns/today-food/t/biggest-loser-low-cal-recipes-meatloaf-more/

Anyway, that’s all for now folks, until next time.  Stay motivated because with will power and determination, you can and WILL succeed at being a more healthier you!

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Hiya!  Just wanted to share a few things with you today.

  • I came across this video the other day on Facebook and it was such an inspiration that I just had to share it with you all! 


Never Give Up!  Believe in yourself because you can do it!

  • Tried out a new ab exercise today.  Check it out and let me know what you think.


That’s it for now folks, leave a comment if you have any thoughts, ideas, success stories, or struggles you want to share.

“Pain is just weakness leaving the body.”

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Get Informed!

Hey everyone, how’s the new year treating you?  Are you sticking to your resolutions?  Are you hanging in there with your journey to being fit and healthy?

Today I want to share with you an article I came across on yahoo news.  It’s a poll about how few Americans know all the health risks of being overweight and what those health risks are.  http://news.yahoo.com/poll-few-americans-know-risks-obesity-085408215.html?_esi=0&nopharma=1

Also, I came across this ab workout the other day, I really liked it.  Try it out and let me know what you think.


Well, until next time everyone, remember that losing weight and being healthy is a lifestyle change. With determination you can and WILL succeed.

If you have any ideas, thoughts, struggles or success stories that you would like to share, feel free to leave a comment!


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Happy New Year!

Hey all, how are you doing on the first day of the new year.  2013!!! 

Were we all successful in making our 2012 resolutions come to fruition?  I feel that I accomplished what I set out to do last year.  Lose weight, quit smoking, and get healthy.  Check, check, and check.  Total weight loss for 2012- 52 lbs.  Smoke free for over 3 months now!  Leave a comment and share your success stories from 2012!!!

I’m sure we’ve all made new resolutions for 2013, I know I have.  My resolution list is semi long this year compared to last year, here goes:  Continue on my path to being healthy (lose that final 18 lbs. and tone up), read more, practice music more often (and hopefully learn how to play guitar a bit better), do something bold and daring and completely out of character for me (aka. skydiving, scuba-diving, rock climbing, etc.), get my photography business on the map, expand my reader base and help more people with this blog, and last but not least find an exciting career and not just go through the motions at my current job.  Shew, that’s a pretty long list.  With motivation, I feel that I will be just as successful this year with my resolutions as I was last year. 

I found an article about keeping New Year’s resolutions alive.  If you love technology and apps, I think you will find this interesting.  Check it out: http://techcrunch.com/2012/12/31/seven-apps-that-will-keep-your-new-years-resolutions-alive/

I think I am going to try a couple of them.

I’d love to hear what some of your resolutions are. Leave a comment to share!

Anyway, that’s all for now folks, until next time. Happy New Year!

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3 Months!

Hello everyone!  How’s your journey coming along?  Are you hanging in there, I know it can be tough to stick with it during all the temptations of the holiday season but you’re strong.  I know you can do it!

I just wanted to let everyone know that today marks 3 months of smoking cessation!  My mother came to visit for the holidays (she went back home today and although it’s sad to see her go, I’m glad we had a good visit).  Anyway, it was a test of my willpower while she was visiting because she is a smoker.  I did not slip once!  I did want one but I didn’t have one!  Also, I am over 50 lbs. lost (52 to be exact)! 

I am keeping positive (my motto: positivity is key).  I just opened a shop on etsy and am in the process of updating my website.  FrancesMayoPhotos (etsy) and www.FrancesMayoPhotography.webs.com My website is still under construction but you can still check it out.   I believe doing activities and keeping yourself busy can help you stay on track with your journey of being healthy.  It keeps your mind active!

Anyway, on another note, I wanted to share an article I came across about ways to stop craving junk food.  Check it out:


Remember, this journey is a tough one but I am proof that if you have the willpower and determination, you can and WILL succeed.  That’s all for now folks, until next time!

Leave a comment if you want to share any success stories, ideas, thoughts, or struggles.

“In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity” -Einstein

Happy Holidays!

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The Holidays

Hey all!  How’s the journey coming along?  I know it has been a while and I apologize for that.  With the holidays coming up, I have been working more hours.  I work in retail/customer service so all of you who work similar jobs understand just how crazy this time of year can be.

With that being said, let me get started with todays topic: The holidays!  This busy time of year can be fun and family filled but it is also a time where temptation is everywhere.  Family coming together makes it harder to resist those pies and baked goods and unhealthy meals.  Lets not forget about all that candy that goes into the stockings.  I know it is not easy to resist all of these things, especially when you see family members chowing down, but you need to stay strong!  Make your cheat day the day where all the family is together for that big meal.  That is when you can splurge a bit.  Get your family members to be supportive of you and your journey to being more healthy.  You could even try to get them on board this journey.  I’m sure some of your family members might try and tempt you with sweets and fatty foods but your willpower is strong!  Do NOT cave in.  I Know you can persevere!

On another note, here is an article I came across a couple of weeks ago.  It’s about foods that are under 40 calories per serving.  Check it out:


Ok, I’m off to work, but before I go here are some words of encouragement:

“When you feel like giving up, remember why you held on for so long in the first place”

Oh yeah, a side note, I have been smoke free for over 2 months now!

Well, until next time everyone, remember that losing weight and being healthy is a lifestyle change. With determination and willpower, you can and WILL succeed.

If you have any ideas, thoughts, struggles or success stories that you would like to share, feel free to leave a comment!

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