treatment for alopecia

Bread, Goals and Break ups

by Emma on December 8, 2011

in Personal

About a month, or so, ago I went through a break up. It was a very discouraging time but I knew that I wanted to try to take this difficult situation and turn it into something positive in my life.

I won’t pretend that I’m the only one who has had to deal with heart-break before, from what I can tell from friends and… well… movies, it’s a pretty common occurrence. (But so is love, so don’t be discouraged!) We all have to go through hard times, whether it’s a break up, getting laid off from your job, or other set backs that life brings our way sometimes. It happens. It’s tough. But for the past few years I’ve been trying to take these hard moments and let them shape me into a better, stronger person.

And you can too. I mean, if I can do it, you definitely can!

One of the most important things to remember during a tough season in your life is to spend your time making and completing goals, rather than feeling sorry for yourself or dwelling on things you can’t change.

I won’t bore you with all the little goals I’ve been trying to work on this past month…. but here’s a few:

-Started baking a loaf of bread every week. I’ve always wanted to get better at bread baking ever since I read this book. So I’m doing it. I’m going to try to do it for a whole year (52 loaves by Nov 2012). I just want to get better, and get to place where I can easily make a loaf without a recipe. It’s been fun (and delicious) so far. I will probably share a few of them with you in the coming months as I get better at it. :)

-I stopped biting my nails. I’ve been trying to do this for years. I’m now 30 days in without slipping up yet. And I am OBSESSED with painting my nails now. Girlie, I know.

-Work related goals. I have a bunch of these, and a lot of them are still in progress but I will be sharing a few in the future. One that’s well under way is the Red Velvet Workshop series. You can see episode one and two already!

-I’ve gotten really into decorating my home. I’m starting with my room and bathroom. I’m not a home decor whiz like my friend Rachel, but I’m into it and will be sharing more projects and (maybe) a home tour sometime in the next year. We’ll see.

Anyway, if you’ve gone through something tough recently please know that you are not alone, and that you should do your best to make this time an opportunity for growth! Good luck, and if you want to share a goal you’ve been working on lately feel free to leave me a comment. (Note: if your goal is awesome, I may try to steal it for myself. You have been warned.)

xo. Emma

P.S. In case you know me (or my ex) personally please know that we are still friends. He’s a good man, things just didn’t work out.

P.P.S. I shared a recipe for Gingerbread cupcakes over at the Rock Star Diaries today, so you should check that out. Even if you don’t like gingerbread. It’s one of my favorite blogs. Like ever.

Also today I was featured on the ModCloth blog, it involves pugs…. just saying.


Sys December 8, 2011 at 4:43 pm

Hi Emma,
This post is amazing. I feel like I’m about to go through a break-up (I really hope that I’m wrong), and this blog is probably something that I’ll come back to and stare at and read over and over. I hope you’re okay. I hope I’m going to be okay. Break-ups are the worst.

Sarah Rooftops December 8, 2011 at 5:05 pm

Hey, sorry you’ve been going through a tough time – sounds like you’ve got a good approach to coping with it, though!

My goals right now…? Finish a bunch of sewing projects… And I have some ideas I can’t start until 2012, so I’m obsessing over them a bit.

Internet hugs to you :)

Tatiana December 8, 2011 at 5:06 pm

Sorry to hear about your breakup. I went through one earlier this year and totally agree with the fact that it’s best to keep moving forward and making goals. I’m so excited to read about your bread-making adventures. I got into bread-making this year as well and so far have only conquered pizza dough… but now I’m able to make some amazing homemade pizza dough! Take care, lady.

Amy Powell December 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm

While I haven’t gone through a break-up recently, I can say your goals definitely apply to other issues I’ve had & I really love the idea of little goals to get through hard times. thanks for the inspiration :)

Urban Wife December 8, 2011 at 5:12 pm

Virtual hugs to you! Stay strong….and keep baking bread. That’s totally the best.

The life after December 8, 2011 at 5:14 pm

I love the smell of fresh bread!

The Life After

Lisa December 8, 2011 at 5:21 pm

your goals are all awesome and I’ve been loving the Red Velvet Workshop series!! I just started making our own bread instead of buying (one of my goals) and I LOVE it!! can’t wait to see some of your recipes!
PS – hugs for the break-up. It’s nice to see you sounding so positive though.

Destrehan's Daughter/Sarah December 8, 2011 at 5:23 pm

It’s sad to hear you have had a struggle lately. I a glad you have a bright outlook to keep you moving forward.

Michelle E December 8, 2011 at 5:24 pm

Aw – that really sucks Emma! But your attitude is totally inspiring and could be applied for any rough stage of life. Some goals I’m working on are – volunteering with the youth at church, I’m gonna try to make a quilt in 2012, I want to get smarter – by reading the Wikipedia featured article every day!, and I think I want to copy you and stop biting my nails!! Good job!

kate December 8, 2011 at 6:25 pm

great way to channel your energy! and hey, now you have more time for goals ;)

i also recently stopped biting my nails (again, this is round zillion) and LOVE painting my nails!! the one thing differently i did this time was take Biotin (sp?) it’s a B vitamin that helps strengthen your nails and hair. it totally does. beginning to think the reason i was biting my nails was because they were so weak and wimpy! now they are all strong and pretty with polish! :)

i love that your goals are so realistic. baking bread is AWESOME! and since it’s real fresh bread you just gotta use it all up! mmm bread pudding! :) can i add a goal to YOUR list to share a bread pudding recipe with us?!

Emma December 8, 2011 at 8:07 pm

Oh I will for sure- bread pudding is one of my favorites. It was a food obsession of mine for a while. :) I made this one last year, but I get the feeling that there will be more in my future.

teddi December 8, 2011 at 6:45 pm

and you are a good woman, but that goes without saying, doesn’t it? that bread looks like heaven. what a fantastic weekly goal. you should be so proud of your none nail biting, & polished to perfection (ha!) self. the work goal accomplishments are a given internally motivated bonus, & surrounding your home with stuff you love is never a bad thing. rock on strong one! next… ;)

Lo Hood December 8, 2011 at 7:07 pm

Emma, I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been having a bit of a rough patch…break-ups are no fun for sure. I’m glad to hear that you have been able to turn it into positivity though, and congrats on your goals that you’ve been reaching. You should be very proud. I loved you on the mod pillow video! :) -Lo

Trish December 8, 2011 at 7:16 pm

When I saw this post I was encouraged because I broke off an engagement earlier this year and it’s been so hard but recently I’ve been setting lots of goals and trying to rebuild as well as better myself. One of my goals is to stop biting my nails. : )

Sys December 8, 2011 at 8:36 pm

Okay. I’ve spent the afternoon thinking about it and I’ve come up with some goals to help me take my mind off things.

1) I want to have an indoor herb garden and a creeping tomato plant. I want to be the kind of Practical Magic girl who seasons everything with fresh herbs from home.

2) I want to get fit in the most fun way. I want to skate, swim, and hike.

3) I want to give myself a crash course in cinema history. I’ve watched a few of the classics (Sabrina, All About Eve), but I really want to be an expert. I’m going to go home and watch Some like It Hot.

4) Once a month a pub near my house has a Mad Men themed night. They bring in a big brass band, serve themed drinks, and you only get in if you’re wearing Mad Men themed attire. I always say that I’ll go and I always bail. I’m actually going to go this month.

madge December 8, 2011 at 9:10 pm

aw, emma, i’m sorry about your breakup! so often, they are for the best, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t suck for a while! good job taking care of yourself through the sucky parts and focusing on the positive!

also, this is the easiest, best bread i’ve ever made! maybe you’d like to try it?

Abigail December 8, 2011 at 9:21 pm

Sorry to hear about your rough time. You seem very balanced about it and like you have a great focus on other things. Way to go!

Gina_AcuteDesigns December 8, 2011 at 9:25 pm

I have bene trying to quit biting my nails since..I was maybe 7 years old. How did you do it?! Sorry about the break up, it seems that you have a positive outlook and are doing your best to move on, which is really great :) .

Jean December 8, 2011 at 9:52 pm

i love reading both elsie and your blogs! they are so cute and encouraging!

you had me laughing when you said you haven’t bit your nails in 30 days. plz tell me how you did it. i have been doing it for 27 years!! i think i have you beat on shortest nails! LOL! the sad thing is, one of my sister’s in-laws own a chain of nail shops & i can totally get my nails done for free & all the little cutesy stuff, but no…. my nails are too short and i can’t handle fake nails, so pretty, but unnatural to where i bite ‘em off too :( i have issues.

and your bread looks delish! i want to try and bake bread. not quite the baker, but i do try :)

erin December 8, 2011 at 9:55 pm

Emma, so sorry to hear that you are going through a hard time, but it sounds like you have such a great attitude, and I admire that so much. Thanks for being real in this post, you are a fantastic woman!

Chris December 8, 2011 at 9:56 pm

What a great attitude to have in life! Congrats on kicking the nail-biting habit. I was a nail biter all through childhood and my early adult-hood too and I know how hard it is to kick. Good for you!

I love to bake bread and will be looking forward to your bread making posts. There is NOTHING as theraputic as baking bread, nothing!

Shannon December 8, 2011 at 10:38 pm

I also went through a break-up about a month ago. He was my first love. We were trying to do a long distance relationship and it didn’t work out. It’s been hard because I know if we lived in the same city again, it wouldn’t have happened. Anyway, your post has inspired me to set some more goals for myself. I’ve had some ideas but nothing I really set down as goals per se. Here they are:
1) Take better care of myself. I gained about fifteen love pounds while we were together. It was fun putting them on, but now it’s back to business. I’m having to relearn how to cook for one person.
2) Work on my novel. I didn’t realize my short story was a novel until just before the break-up. Now I have three weeks of winter break ahead of me-perfect for getting a big chunk of that written.
3) Finish watching Lost. I first started watching it two summers ago. I just got to season four- it’s about time to finish.

Lesley Myrick December 8, 2011 at 10:55 pm

Emma, I’m a fellow nail biter who has been trying for-like-EVER to stop. The photo of your nails totally made me smile, because when my nails get that “long”, I’m super proud of myself – even though most people look confused when I tell them that I have long nails. :)
Have a wonderful Thursday, and enjoy your bread! xo

ellie December 8, 2011 at 11:01 pm

ah I’m sorry to heard about a breakup, no matter how civil they are they still aren’t easy. I love that you didn’t let it slow you down. I had a similar reaction to my last breakup in may, except my goal was much more general, have the best summer ever. Sure the intentions came out of some bitterness, but it motivated me to try so many new things, and it was one of the best summers I’ve had.
keep going on that bread it looks magnificent! and congrats on 30 days, I’ve yet to make it past 4 without bitting my nails. you’re better woman than me.

Amanda December 8, 2011 at 11:28 pm

I went through a big break-up several years ago and took the same route you have…lots and lots of goals! I started a business, went to Ethiopia, and knocked a few other things off my bucket list. It’s a good feeling and a much more positive approach than sitting and moping!
P.S. I’m also a nail biter…I stopped for about a month last Spring, then picked it up again, then stopped in October, and picked it up again about two weeks ago. I need nail biting rehab. ;)

Taylor Lynn Bump December 8, 2011 at 11:43 pm

I’ve been reading your blog for awhile and never left a comment till today, but I love love love this. You are inspiring. I love how chill you are about everything, like how you called your ex a good man. That’s pretty dang awesome in today’s society of people who get so consumed in themselves and blah blah blah. Basically, you’re cool.

the end.

Danavee December 8, 2011 at 11:49 pm

Gosh, you are lovely and this entry, where you put your heart out there for us, was so real and perfect. I love reading every single word you write. Can’t say that for many blogs.

Rachel December 8, 2011 at 11:59 pm

I also have gone through a break up in the past month. It’s a hard time, but you learn valuable lessons about yourself. Not to wallow but to grow. It’s amazing how it can be both devastating and revitalizing.

My goal, after finding out that I am too late for law school admissions for next fall, is to try to get a teaching job in South Korea. And to de-clutter my life. I have waaay too much stuff!

From one Springfieldian to another, good luck with your goals!

Stefanie December 9, 2011 at 12:01 am

Hi Emma, it may sound weird but it felt really good to read your post because I can relate so much. I’m going through a really hard time because my dad fell ill and it turned our whole lives around. It seems like nothing’s going the be the way it had been. But at the same time it made me feel like I have to live in the moment, make my wishes come true the best I can and, like you, make lists of all the things I want to accomplish. And it turned out that I have never been so happy with my own life even though I am really miserable at the same time because of my family’s situation. Life’s a funny thing…

Caitlin December 9, 2011 at 1:00 am

Emma, this is beautiful and you are amazing and inspirational. I am sure there are lots of good things in store for you, in both love and life! xx

Amy December 9, 2011 at 2:43 am

These sound like the healthiest, most positive goals – especially post break-up. My past post-break-up goals have been to eat my weight in ice cream and listen to Patsy Cline.
That bread looks DELICIOUS. Bread and sweet roll dough (so I can change up the filling) are top on my list of skills to perfect. Please share more about your weekly loaves – very inspiring.

heh December 9, 2011 at 2:45 am

I got dumped on Halloween this year, probably around the time of your break up. He was still in love with his ex.

It sucked, it was the first time I had gotten my heart broken. It was a short relationship and my 4 year relationship that ended didn’t hurt nearly as much. I felt that it was the first time I had ever been in love. (Sad, huh?)

But there are too many people in the world to be hung up about one person. And I don’t know what you mean by you’re still “friends”– whether you’re just on good terms, or whether you’re still going to randomly hang out and be around one another. For me, I usually have to cut things off cold. I can’t move on unless I do. It’s kind of a longer story, but… anyways, I’m on decent terms with my heart breaker… (he works with his ex, one of the reasons he probably didn’t get over her) Talking with him made it easier to get over it, for some reason (though I’m not 100% moved on… maybe 92%)

Emma, I may not be the most positive person in the world 100% of the time, but you are awesome and that guy is an idiot. I’m not going to be nice about it. He’s an idiot. Whether he hurt you–he’s an idiot. Or whether he wasn’t up to your standards and you dumped him–he’s an unfix-able idiot.

Be glad you didn’t spend any money on him for an xmas present. If you did, return it!

P.s. I just made some homemade tomato soup and my homemade soup ability/desire came from you!! I bought an immersion blender several weeks ago because of your Cajun tomato soup post (I never knew it was that easy). I made broccoli/cauliflower soup the other week… and want to try your black bean soup recipe soon.

Hang in there.

jen king December 9, 2011 at 2:51 am

Hi Emma,

I went through a break up recently and its definitely been up and down. You wrote this little post at the perfect time because I’m feeling pretty down today and I have the whole weekend home a lone and I was thinking it’d be lonely…..but now I’m thinking, wow I have all weekend to create or do something for my shop! Thanks for the boost – its kinda amazing how much better you feel when you know you’re not the only person having rough times. I love your positive thanks – thanks for boosting me!

And one of my little goals this month is to sketch more. Lots! I wanna fill up my sketchbook this year.

Happy holidays :)

debbie December 9, 2011 at 4:00 am

oh that bread looks so hearty and delicious! I’ve been wanting to learn how to bake bread for years but haven’t been brave enough to take the plunge yet, unfortunately…

I do agree that The Rockstar Diaries is a brilliant blog!<3

mel December 9, 2011 at 7:53 am

dear emma, so sorry to hear about the break-up. that sucks!
thanks for sharing your thoughts, it is really encouraging.
i was ill the last months, not seriously, but my quality of life sunk near zero. I am better now, taking baby steps back to “normal” also with the help of small projects. they keep me distracted, motivated and give me a great feeling when accomplished. creativity grows in difficult times. i am sewing cushions, crocheting rugs, baking up a storm and found back to illustrating.
looking forward to read about your goals
take care

MsVeve December 9, 2011 at 10:13 am

Dear Emma,
I read your blog but don’t think I’ve ever left a comment yet. But today I felt I had to, to let you know that through your blog I feel like I know you and we’re blog friends. (Not in a creepy way.) Anyways, I love how open you are and your receipes. Though my own kitchen is more of a dust collector than a place to cook, you inspire me to want to give cooking and baking a try. Anyways, I just wanted to say thank you and that I wish you the best. As for goals, I really liked Elsie’s birthday oriented list of goals (hers was “28 before 29″? Not sure here, but I bet you know what I mean right?:) and I tried writing my own: (this is what I have so far)

24 before 25
1. Write a book
2. Visit Vienna
3. Redo storage system
4. Learn to take better photos
5. Learn to sow
6. Photoshop
7. Cook meals :)
8. Start going to the gym again
9. Paint flat
10. Finish second year at uni
11. Go to Dubai
12. Get modeling agency
13. Publish paper for the lab
14. Lab web-pages
15. Fall in Love
16. Be a better person
17. Make a nice corner in the flat for outfit photos (eg. clean up flat)

Anyways, I hope this comment made you smile.. oh, I know what you should have on your list!!:) You should definitely come & visit Prague (yeah,it’s where I live and all but really it is super pretty and magical)..

Veronika (

rach December 9, 2011 at 12:53 pm

Hi Emma. I usually read but don’t leave comments but I wanted to say that I’m real sorry to hear you’re going through a tough time. Your attitude about it is amazing and inspiring! I’m working on letting people be people and not putting expectations on them. When I’m better at this, everyone makes me happier and no one brings me down. But I’ve been worn thin recently, hence, working on it…

Eleni Drinks Tea December 9, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Well I mentioned on here before that I recently expreienced the same thing (although well done for mentioning it on your blog…I’ve alluded to it on mine, I think, but I’m not quite brave enough to just come out and say it). As it was the beginning of November I felt perfectly justified in spending the rest of 2011 hybernating, concentrating on making Christmas as nice as I can for the people I will be able to share it with (and trying not to think about the one person who I really, really want to share it with but no longer can!). But come January, I think I will follow your lead and make some plans for myself. I’m thinking an evening class, and some dressmaking projects.

By the way, do you knead your bread by hand or do you use a food processor/bread maker? My tentative attempts so far have failed due to insufficient kneading, I think, but I have no machine to help me and my weak little arms just aren’t up to the task yet!

Katha Strophe December 9, 2011 at 2:12 pm

I’m really sorry to hear about your break-up, but I think it’s great that you focus your energy on your amazing goals!
I really want to learn how to make bread, so I found a new goal for myself here.

The Red Velvet workshop series is so much fun – and you’re my favorite! You would make a fantastic tv presenter! :]

Baily Hollen December 9, 2011 at 2:37 pm

This post encourages me. Whenever I have gone through something really difficult, I find that I write goals down like crazy and actually start to accomplish them. It’s usually just the drive I need. Hang in there! Also, I adore the idea of baking a loaf of bread every week. I have just started making strides in the world of bread making and nothing is more therapeutic than making bread from scratch and reaping the benefits. (usually that involves some butter.) :) Thank you for this post. It inspires me.

Jade December 9, 2011 at 3:16 pm

wow, I really needed to read this. I’ve been going through such a rough and stressful time lately and sulked all day long. this has inspired me to really do something productive with my day. (As relaxing as it was to do NOTHING all day, it didn’t really help anything). Yay for self improvement!

Kellie December 9, 2011 at 3:38 pm

So sorry about the break up. Those are always tough. But you are seriously my hero for turning it around for the good and making all these awesome goals for yourself!!

Becca December 9, 2011 at 3:40 pm


You’re such a beautiful and funny girl and I am so inspired that you are turning something sad into something to encourage you to make goals. When my ex boyfriend and I broke up, I had to pack all of my things and move put of the house we had shared. As I was packing, I made a goal to throw away all the junk and clutter and it seemed like some of the bad memories got thrown away too!

I promise the hurt will eventually fade! :) I know lots of devoted blog readers that would be happy to help lift you up!

My goals for this month are-
1. Make a baby blue cape
2. Bake cut out cookies without burning them (accomplished!)
3. Eat less junk food (maybe a bad goal when you are also trying to perfect cookies?)
4. Conquer macaroons!

You’re awesome possum Emma!

Katia December 9, 2011 at 3:49 pm

This post was a really nice read :) You’re so strong and positive, and making goals for myself is actually the exact same way I cope with things!
One break up, a particularly bad one, led me to start a “creation a day” blog which I am still working on until the end of 2011 (though I have not been good at posting lately, been really busy with school)
that one’s

My new blog, Kitty Snooks, is actually the result of yet another break up, but also just something I wanted to start anyway because I felt limited by a “Creation a Day” blog.

Other things include working out at least 4 times a week, keeping a journal, making christmas/birthday presents for friends and family, etc. etc.

Stay strong, you’re a wonderful person and thank you for sharing this post :)

Giulia December 9, 2011 at 4:05 pm

A positive approach (and ginger cupcakes) is all you need !! ;)

Candace December 9, 2011 at 5:05 pm

Thanks for sharing such encouraging advice! Dwelling on things that are unchangeable is one of my strong suits. This was really nice to read after living through a pretty tough year.
First goal is to get organized, as I’m a perpetual mess-maker.

Kacie @ A Collection of Passions December 9, 2011 at 5:21 pm

Sending love and good baking thoughts your way. Cooking is so therapeutic. You are inspiring and awesome.


Tuuli December 9, 2011 at 7:14 pm

Hang in there and virtual hugs your way!!!

Busy Bee December 9, 2011 at 7:57 pm


Sorry to hear you’re now a single gal again- break up are a pain in the arse, but a necessary evil of dating.

Hang in there and keep baking the bread! It looks amazing…

Bee x

kristi December 9, 2011 at 8:25 pm

Thanks so much for sharing your post. I completely admire your ability to set goals / and achieve them! instead of being sad about the situation and/or dwelling on it! I’m almost a year into getting out of a 5 year relationship and I still find myself getting caught up in what was / what I wish was different even though it’s over and no point in dwelling… I will take your inspiration on myself and try and set some goals for me. I tend to get on the negative side every once in a while…so ONE thing I have been doing is:

I found this quote that says: “Every day may not be good, but there is something good in every day” and I have created a moleskin and written down one good thing that happened every day, even if it was hitting all the green lights on my way home from work. It’s been helpful, and nice to look back on when I’m having a bad day. I’m going to do it for at least a year but would love to fill up the entire moleskin.


Lauren December 9, 2011 at 8:27 pm


I’m sorry to hear about your break up. I have had my fair share of hardship this year as well. I have been struggling with illness. I feel so blessed to have stumbled upon you and your sister’s blog. You both have given me loads of inspiration to pick up the pieces and begin doing art again. It helps a lot to take my mind off of things! Not to mention the wonderful feeling of self accomplishment I get when I complete a project. Thanks for sharing!


linda December 10, 2011 at 12:17 am

i always check your blog because i love it. you are your sis are so inspiring. i am going through a break up right now and this was the best post to come up on. i waste so much energy on dwelling and hoping! it’s time to get my butt in gear and start moving on my own goals and my own life! thank you sooo much! and lots of virtual hugs for you! keep strong my sistah!!!!

Mariana December 10, 2011 at 1:38 am

Thanks for this post! I just broke up with my boyfriend today and it was nice to have a little encouragement :)

alysakimiko December 10, 2011 at 2:07 am

sorry about the break up girlfriend, all it takes is time and having good girlfriends around…and maybe some wine too ;) but! although i do not know you, you seem like a pretty rad girl surrounded by great people.

ps your dress is really cute!

lizzy December 10, 2011 at 3:27 am

you’re amazing, emma. and even though things didn’t work out with your relationship, i love that you’re not letting it get you off track.


lacey December 10, 2011 at 5:46 am

breakups suuuuuuck. it’s nice to know everyone else has been there at one point or another. still, it doesn’t make it an easier when you’re the one going through it. keep trucking along. keep baking bread. i enjoy reading your posts-so funny! merry merry christmas season!

Tirzah December 10, 2011 at 7:19 am

Rock on, lady! Keep it positive, and keep growing.

Love your way!

Erica December 10, 2011 at 3:43 pm

Last week my boyfriend ended things the day after our 3 year anniversary. We have been living together in Pa, I moved there because of his job. I now have to rebuild my life there because I am in school. I have been through break up’s before but for some reason you never get used to that feeling of stinging pain. I am really working toward seeing this as a positive and moving forward and your post just helped reassure me that it will get better.

skunkboy December 11, 2011 at 6:20 am

Rough patches suck (speaking through our current one), but turning it into something positive is almost a must. Look at how awesome we are right now… you have pretty nails and I’m taking my kid to Disney World. We win.

P.S. She still doesn’t know.
P.P.S. High five for the nail thing. That is hard work and I am proud of you. <3

Happyhibiscus December 12, 2011 at 1:22 am

I know you don’t live near the ocean, but maybe there is something that clears your emotional soul and rejuvenates you. I said ocean because when I go to the beach (at least a few times a week) it cleanses my emotional soul and rejuvenates me.

Michelle Sexton December 12, 2011 at 1:52 am

I’ve had a hard time over the past six weeks or so. It’s not so emotionally difficult as going through a break up or anything, but I got a serious high ankle sprain at the end of October. It’s been really hard on me and my family for so many reasons. I have to spend most of my time resting on the couch in order for it to heal. But I’m also a stay at home mom with a toddler. Plus my husband’s work schedule keeps him so busy that when he gets home at the end of the day, he is drained. My house is totally falling apart with work up to my ears! I have so many more woes to express, but I don’t want to bore you. Anyway, I’ve been going through a difficult time too.

Mary from O+A December 12, 2011 at 6:45 pm

Last year, my dad was diagnosed with cancer while I was 3 months pregnant. He passed when my daughter was 6 months old. Sorry for the somber tone but I love this post! I think when it comes to creativity that emotions, all of them, even sad ones can inspire something great! I was feeling so stuck unable to mourn fully, unable to be joyful fully for the completely opposite occurrences of life and death at that time. I started reading blogs and crafting because it allowed me to be alone and still and think of my dad while still dreaming and looking forward to mother/daughter things because i was making crafts or learning to sew for my new baby. It was a big thing for me because I work in finance and crafting was always a passion that I shied away from. Life is too short to waste an opportunity to grow. Thanks for sharing!

Rachael December 12, 2011 at 10:37 pm

Emma, this post is really wonderful and inspiring. I went through something similar a few months ago. He is a wonderful guy and still a close friend. Break-ups suck. They are never easy and they are never supposed to be. Recently I decided to work on myself as well. I entered the world of blogging, took the Blog love course and the Dream job course on A Beautiful Mess, and jumped right in. So far so good. Thanks for being inspiring to the rest of us! You’re doing great.

Lily December 12, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Emma you are so charming and lovely and your honesty is so, very really refreshing… It’s been a while since I’ve been through a break up, but I really appreciated this post. I think it’s applicable to anyone who is experiencing pangs of disappointment for any reason.

Up with positivity!

Jessi December 13, 2011 at 3:14 am

Hi, Emma! Thank you so much for your frank honesty and openness. It is not very often people open up about their lives – and you do it with grace. Your blog is refreshing and encouraging (note: the dozens of above comments).

Rachel December 13, 2011 at 10:26 pm

Hi Emma

I went through a huge break-up this year and it’s definitely tough, but I got through it. I was feeling a little down this evening because I’m recovering from some big surgery and I’m feeling a little weary. This post really perked me up. Keep smiling!

allison December 14, 2011 at 12:02 am

I love that you have shared this and opened up a space for those of us who are working through a difficult time to share what’s keeping us going! My goals at the moment are also centered around domestic pursuits, from home decorating (and keeping up with basic cleaning, let’s face it) to trying new recipes and treating myself to delicious food.
Best wishes to you!!!

maelis December 15, 2011 at 11:31 am

hey emma,
I’m sorry that you went through a hard time. I love your blog and it always inspires me and in some way makes me happy.
That’s one reason I keep baking. No matter how hard a day may be, you ” can come home and absolutely know that if you add egg yolks to chocolate and sugar and milk, it will get thick. That’s such a comfort.”
And it’s true. And after standing in the kitchen for an hour, you feel better, at least I do. :)
Just something I ask myself now and then, because in my baking frenzy I have come across one problem: Who eats all this stuff? I mean, ok, now we have the the christmas season, and people are coming over, you still have your shop at the red velvet store, so I reckon you take much stuff there. But, if you hadn’t. Who would eat all those amounts of cupcakes, etc..?
On every food blog I see various amounts of cupcakes, cake pops, pancakes etc, but I keep asking myself whether there are big families behind eating everything up :P
and in addition, I don’t seem to see anybody in food business gain weight! do you excercise a lot?
also,… do you ever face something like a breakdown? how do you keep your motivation up? or rather, how did you keep it up when you did not have a shop to go to? like, in your starting phase, when many things were not sure.
sorry there, I hope I don’t ask too much questions…., but as this is one of my favourite blogs, I’m sorta… interested. uh. hope that doesn’t sound too weird. :P
as for your goals I’m thrilled and absolutely inspired to stop biting nails THIS MOMENT. let’s see how it goes!
one of my biggest goals is to keep blogging, regularly!

oh..and I’d love it if you share some of those bread recipies with us, I’d love to try it, too.

wishing you and your family the best and a wonderful season,

Anna December 15, 2011 at 10:26 pm

Broken hearts, broken engagements, girl, I can totally relate! I have made a couple goals for myself, but they don’t really have a definitive timeline. I would love to start brewing beer. I have helped a few of my friends before, but I would love to continue experimenting (and enjoying the fruits of that labor, of course). I would also love to learn more about baking bread. I have grown up baking wheat bread, but to experiment and explore would be so fun! Side note: how amazing is it that beer and bread come from wheat? So simple and so complex; love it. Hope you have a great Christmas. xx

Jules December 16, 2011 at 2:50 am

I can totally relate. I’m sure all of us can! I recently lost my job, went through a breakup (we ended up getting back after a few months, but I still went through it!), as well as what seemed like every minor issue there could possibly be. For about two months it seemed as if everything was going wrong. I felt as if I was going backwards instead of forward. But you know what? I eventually got back on track, and actually, more on track than I ever have been. Losing my job and my boyfriend of several years gave me some much needed alone time to find MYSELF. When you turn something negative into something positive it shows how strong you are. Thanks for the inspiration to dream up some goals – both short term and long, both minor and major.

Marie-Claire December 18, 2011 at 11:43 am

Well the gingerbread cupcakes look amazing! And its so encouraging to hear about someone who’s gone through a rough patch and got so much completed from it. I’m currently trying to get lots of goals sorted as well :)

Stef December 19, 2011 at 8:38 am

Sorry to hear about your break up, but I really love your “looking on the bright side of life” way of thinking. And as my mom always said: ” Er zijn meer mannen dan kerken.”

With some Dutch love, Stef

Michelle M. January 9, 2012 at 2:37 am

Seriously this post was inspiring. You really made me want to get out and set goals and try new things. Thanks so much.

Ps. Love the veggie recipes. Gonna try the potstickers soon. I’ve been craving some!