Monthly Round-Up: Rose & Thorns – January 2023

January Rose & Thorns – A monthly recap of the highs and lows experienced each month.

Rose: Action Packed Start to the New Year

The first weekend of this year was exhausting and exhilarating. The arrival of my niece has been a long-anticipated event. My entire family has been nesting in preparation for her arrival by stocking up on diapers and collecting the cutest doll-sized clothing. After a successful scheduled C-section, my sister face-timed us from the recovery room with a wide-eyed baby lying on her chest. For a full five seconds, it didn’t completely register that this calm chubby-cheeked baby was finally here. My little sister was a mom. How I viewed her changed as if I had just watched her lift a car to rescue a person trapped inside. She’s a superhero now, and her uniform of choice is shirts stained with baby spit-up and sweats (no cape). 

A combination of too much coffee and the excitement from the day didn’t allow for much sleep between the days. Early the next morning was another monumental day; my one and only brother was getting married. My alarm didn’t phase me, as it broke the silence of the early morning. I was already up; the alarm just made it official. 


Other than our sister not being able to attend, the wedding couldn’t have been a more perfect day. It was one of those January days when the air was cold in the shade, but the earth felt like it was air-conditioned once you stepped in the sun. The ceremony was short but meaningful. Again, I felt those few seconds of disbelief that my little brother was standing at the altar getting married. I had brief flashes of us playing outside as kids playing make-believe moments just like this, and now it was really happening. 

Our entire family made a quick stop at the hospital to take one group photo just before my brother and his new bride set off for their honeymoon. This frozen second has easily become my favorite photo, representing the exact moment our family grew by two in one short weekend. 

Thorn: The War On Smokers

After almost two years with a quiet and kind downstairs neighbor, I now have a new neighbor, and I’m declaring war. I can deal with the loud and endless conversations on the patio late into the night. The issue is the secondhand smoke rising from their patio and filling my entire condo. The beautiful “winter weather” Florida is experiencing encourages opening the windows and doors to my patio, but instead of crisp air, my nose is filled with disgusting cigarette smoke. 

I’ve come up with two solutions to fix my dilemma. One, move my Amazon Alexa out to the patio to play music, forcing them to speed up their time on the patio or avoid the area altogether. Or two, find the landlord’s contact information and enforce the no-smoking policy within our building. I’m leaning towards a two tonged approach to resolving this issue. Annoy from both ends and hope I can sit on my patio in peace before the Summer weather hits. 


January Favorites

Camera StrapMy mom gifted me her old DSLR camera recently. While I still haven’t mastered how to take a decent photo with it, I bought a new strap to at least look cool as I walk around with it. The Etsy seller creates camera straps made from climbing ropes. Making it the perfect combination of style and function. 

Aviator Hat In collaboration with GARIN clothing, I received a leather and faux fur aviator hat to take with me on my trip to Philadelphia. It kept my head warm as I walked around the city and was a great alternative to wearing a basic beanie. 


January Blog Post Recap

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