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December 15, 2013


As finals are rapidly approaching for some of you, have already started for others, and others still are done with them, I thought I'd share with you a few tried and true methods for dealing with stress and how to identify that you're actually stressing about something.

Personally for me, there are different levels of stress. I experience moderate stress on a daily basis at school with pressure on me from all sides. That kind of stress is easily dealt with, a good laugh with a friend is an easy cure. (Anything chocolate is as well, although that's how I got to be this…plump is a nice way of putting it.) Another kind of stress is when I was at a swim meet lining up behind the blocks, that kind of stress made me have to pee really bad before I actually jumped in the pool, at which point the urge disappears in the excitement of the race. And then there's the feeling when your room si a total mess and you're trying to pack for a trip and you're leaving the next day and it's just so overwhelming.

The kind of stress I'm dealing with now is probably the worst kind. I first experienced finals stress last year when I took 'real' exams for the first time. I get nauseous and sick to my stomach, I cannot eat one bite of food all week until exams are over, which is not conducive to good study habits. My muscles tense up and I get sore all over. Here are some solutions I've found that actually help me calm down and eat some toast or yogurt. Maybe they'll help you too!
  • Take a nice, relaxing bath (I give you some tips on how I take my best baths here
  • Get a massage from a friend, 'special someone', or even a professional if you have the means to do so
  • Take a power nap, no more than forty minutes 
  • Rock out to your "Study" playlist whilst working, and then listen to your "Relax" playlist whilst reading a good book or surfing the internet for a small break
  • Curl up with a cup of tea/mug of hot chocolate and a good book/television show
  • Open up to a friend or a close family member, share the load 
  • Plan ahead so you don't get overwhelmed at the last minute
  • Take care not to get dehydrated if you're like me and can't eat when terribly stressed, drink a bottle of Gatorade or Powerade or eat an apple or something to make sure you don't pass out during the exam

All of this won't work at all times, it helps me for an hour or so a day before I get really stressed again, but it does help relieve stress at sometimes. Take care to breathe slow and deep and don't get too shaky before/during the exam. I know I am guilty of getting really snappy with people around me when I get stressed, so take care to check your attitude before talking to people when you have lots going on. Let me know in the comments below, or on one of the avenues through my Connections page how you de-stress your life.

XOXO
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December 9, 2013



Okay so my brilliant love Tate came up with an idea: we would both give each other a word and then write a short post about it. I gave her the word "star(s)", easy and beautiful right? What word did she give me? Xanadu.             Yeah, I had no idea either.
So I looked it up and it means: "used to convey an impression of a place as almost unattainably luxurious or beautiful." Alrightie then…I have a place that I find very unattainably luxurious and beautiful that others may not find that way. My grandparents estate home on the beach is probably my favorite place in the entire world and it is so beautifully luxurious to me and the feeling it gives me is unattainable from anywhere else. I spent a good chunk of my chubby years (aka years 7-12) living in this house and I still visit it at least twice a year.
There is one specific place on the estate that I really really love: the hammocks near the water to the back of the house. I spent a great deal of time there this past summer, as Ammie and Dani can attest, and the feeling I get there is the most peaceful, the most serene in the entire world. There really aren't any more words to describe the exact feeling I get while I'm there, nor the reason why I get this feeling there specifically. I went there after one of my lowest moments in my entire life, I sat there with my best friend in the entire world and we dreamt together, I figured out a lot about myself and who I am whilst swinging there.
And it's not just the hammocks, it's the actual house itself. In fact, it's the memories I have of the house. The house itself is really just a shell and if we were to sell it tomorrow I would weep only because the stone marking some of my best memories, some of the memories that still continue to shape me today, will be gone, swept away like sand in a windstorm. We, as a family, designed and helped to build this house together, it is truly ours, and the fact that something so full of memories is so attainable to me, and me alone, is something I could never hope for in a million years. 
I can only guess what T is doing with her word…but I do have to say that if "The Fault in Our Stars" does not come up, I will be so shocked that I might fall right out of my chair. I hope we can do these challenges more often because it was a lot of fun (although if she picks another word out of the X section of the Thesaurus, I may have to issue her a bigger challenge…such as Chicicomicomico maybe? Well, we'll see.)
XOXO
[Update: I fell out of my chair in shock, but her writing was so damn good I felt so inadequate about this post so I added a bit to it]
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December 4, 2013


As anyone who has ever talked to me for a decent amount of time knows…I hate running. Hate hate hate it. Hate it with a passion. And I know I'm not alone with this because not only do 97% of my friends hate running…99% of all swimmers hate running as well. I know, I did a non-scientific study on it. Between the panting and heaving for breath while hot sweat drips off your forehead to the aches and pains it's just…euck no thanks! I'd rather be in the pool not feeling my sweat as it mixes with the chlorine water.
However… I just went running. The logic of this decision is mind-blowing I know. But I do have my reasons. Even though I hate running, and yes I still hate it with such a burning passion, I love the feeling you get after pushing yourself really hard through any workout and running was my choice today. Mom and I want to run together over Spring Break when we take a trip to….[a destination to be revealed in a longer post later] and since I am working hard at my 'revenge' plan (although it's not really revenge…more on this later as well) that includes two steps: indifference and sexiness, working out consistently and eating right is my plan.
Let me explain how, even though je d├ęteste running, I get motivated enough to run hard. The tools I use are: kick-ass music and memories. The music part is pretty self explanatory, choose whatever song/artist/album/playlist that makes you just want to work faster, push yourself further. Today I chose the always-motivational Nicki Minaj who took turns singing "Moment 4 Life", "Super Bass", and "Starships" in my ears as I ran. The memories part requires a bit of explanation.
By "memories", I mean every time you've felt awkward/out of place/self conscious because of how you looked or felt. By "memories" I mean every time someone has called you a name, pointed at you, laughed at you, anything that has made you feel awful. This might make you feel bad if you think about it now, so don't. I choose not to think about all these things that I experience on a somewhat-daily basis because it depresses me, and being depressed is not a fun experience. So I only think about these things when I'm swimming a long set or running on a fast interval or doing pushups as way to motivate myself.
(That's actually my biggest key to how I stay confident and 'cheerful', I try not to think about all the negative things people may be saying or have said about me, and even what I've thought about myself. I worried about it too much in the past and it caused problems, one of my problems anyway. Just don't go there with yourself unless you have an outlet to deal with it.) Today when I was running and thinking over these, I actually started to run faster and realized my hands were curled into fists. It's a great way to get your anger and frustration and hurt out, without hurting anyone else or yourself. And I must say, despite the heaving and the aches, I loved seeing my tomato-red face in the mirror and those beads of sweat dropping off my face onto the treadmill track as I bent over when my set was done.
I may not like the process of running, but when this is all over and my 'revenge' plan can be put in place…I'm going to thank my lucky stars for sending me to the gym to workout on days I felt like I couldn't, 1) so I can get the 'sexy' part down and 2) so I don't have built-up anger and resentment. However, I'm doing this for me. That's the most important thing. Don't change yourself for others, do it for yourself. (Cliche I know, but there's a reason it's stuck around so long: maybe it has a point!) To quote the [insert-your-adjective-of-choice-here]
Kim Kardashian: "It was my big middle finger to the world." Running and exercise where I think about all the people and things trying to tear me down, and yet I keep rising higher is my middle finger to the world. What's yours?
Wow this post is actually a lot longer than I thought it was going to be… oh well. I'll be posting again sometime soon so I'll keep you posted lovelies! 
XOXO
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December 2, 2013


Today I was asked a peculiar question by my trainer: "When you get married, will you be loyal to your husband?" I was shocked that he even had to ask the question. My answer? A rather splutter-y "Of-of course! I mean…is that even a question? Like…what? Of course!" He caught me completely by surprise with that question…and it got me to thinking.
So many people today are moving just so. damn. fast. in relationships that it's head-spinning. And not only are they moving fast in relationships, but they're not lasting relationships. I can see how 'moving fast' is okay if that person is in your soulmate-circle* and the relationship will last a lifetime, but these relationships are two months-max and then it's over and you've "done" it all. It's crazy, at least to me!
Call me sheltered, old-fashioned, a 'prude', [insert your own adjective here] but I've always grown up with the belief system that sex is for someone you love, something that shouldn't come until you're completely ready (in all ways including emotional, physical, psychological, material etc.) and something that I personally wouldn't even consider at this age, and I know people who have done it waaay before now. I've met some people *cough* Jules, Peter, Ammie *cough* that think the way I do, which reassures me that I'm not crazy, but the majority of people have already 'done it', are 'doing it', or are doing variations of 'it' that, quite frankly, make me want to gag when thinking about 97% of the time. (I talked to Mom about it, and my wise owl informed me that the 97% gross-out comes from not finding anyone I want to do any of the above things mentioned with. The other 3% I'm not grossed-out is me thinking about people I wouldn't mind doing the things with, if you couldn't figure that out already)
Circling back to the original point of this post: loyalty. I think one of the major problems modern day relationships have is that they move too fast, and then find themselves not attracted to the person at all except for physically and so their loyalty breaks and the relationship ends. (Btw, for me there is a difference between being 'attractive' and being 'hot'. Attractive people have a nice personality, attitude, and the looks tend to follow from that. Hot people are just good-looking, either shallow and stupid or I don't know them so I wouldn't know if they're attractive or not.)
The one person in this world that I've found myself the closest to being in-love with, not mentioning any names to keep the last shred of dignity I do still have intact, shares this belief system with me. He believes sex is for later, for someone you're in love with and actually refers to himself as a 'prude'. His past girlfriends have both cheated on him/broken up with him because he doesn't, quote, "do anything". For our entire 'relationship' (or whatever the hell it was), he held my hand twice and only because the situation called for it emotionally. (Well that kind of gave it away didn't it? Oh well.) He actually lists sex as something on his bucket list, something he wants to do "eventually". It's this belief system that I found really intoxicating about him (among several other things), because I just don't find that anywhere else. I didn't appreciate it when we were spending time together, because I was very naive all those months ago (I was a total idiot this summer if you haven't figured that out already), and now that I'm a world away I realize exactly how special he is. Oh well, I can't spend my days pining after him (although goodness knows that's all I want to do some days). I have a life to get on with. But I haven't given up completely on us yet either. We're on hiatus, there's a bookmark in our story, [insert another time-pause cliche here].
So what do you think? Am I old-fashioned in believing that waiting is best? Or is rushing through a relationship a better solution to finding 'the one'? (Yes I am fully aware some people don't believe they have one) Let me know what you believe.

*--I don't really believe in 1 soulmate-per-person, but I do believe in the idea of a soulmate-circle which is a few different people you could end up with, all of them equally 'perfect' for you, depending on what paths you decided to take in life and where you are. But the idea that there's one person out there that you'll find no matter what, out of 7+ billion people, is too illogical for my astrological beliefs.

XOXO

[Revision: 8/23/14: Completely disregard everything I said about the one person I was almost in love with or whatever the hell I called him: he was an asshole, a cheater, a liar, and I know now that I was not even CLOSE to Love when it came to him. But, the message of the rest of the post still stands.]
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November 30, 2013

As anyone who knows me will tell you, I like to plan everything in advance. Like…way in advance. *cough* I may have planned out my entire wedding about six times *cough* But I have gotten better as I've "grown up", I'm letting things happen as they happen and not planning out things. I no longer have a selection of five wedding dresses for the five different weddings planned at different points during the year, depending on when the proposal is. (Don't judge me I was like 12 when I planned this all out, also the phase where I wanted to be mummified when I died)
However, the thought that has paralyzed me for years is that I do not have a Plan B. All the extensive planning and worrying about this issue has not resolved it still, which freaks the hell out of me on a daily basis. Suppose this writing/directing thing doesn't work out, what in hell am I supposed to do with my life? I have put all my eggs in this one basket, and if it fails I literally have no idea what I'm going to spend my life doing. So let's explore the options I've thought of so far…
There's always the 'housewife, stay-at-home Mom' option, but that requires a living, breathing male with an occupation that actually wants to spend his life with me to exist so that kind of rules that out. Option B is to enter the Special Service or whatever the hell it is that Mom has pushed for for about the past 13 years…(ever since I gave up on my dream of being a trash man) someone that travels around the world and helps developing countries with issues I do believe is what she's referring to. I think she's finally realized that it's not my dream to do that, it's hers. She's very supportive of my writing though, which is a big relief and a weight off my shoulders. I don't think I'd even pursue this without her immense support and I will always love her if only for that (besides the other billion reasons). Then there's C, being a reporter for a magazine or news agency or something…but that's never really interested me very much. In truth, nothing interests me as much as writing/directing which is my passion in life. (I've also considered being a therapist because I do like to give advice and help people, but that's very…eh…I've also been told that I'd make a good social worker and a nurse but, again, not really what I can picture myself doing for the rest of my life...)
I guess what I'm trying to find out here is…is it okay to not have a backup plan? I know some people say "Well that just pushes you to make sure your dream comes true", which is correct. But I am not so naive to believe that some people don't try their hardest and give their dream their all…and it still doesn't work out for them. I've seen it happen and it's crushing, heart breaking, humiliating, all at once. I couldn't handle that, I know that right at this very moment. I just need reassurance, I guess, that it's okay to really believe in this one thing and to only go for that without a safety net. There are both good sides and bad sides of having a Plan B…but right now I don't have one and it's really frightening me into working and striving harder for this "dream" to become a reality because if not, I fall. 
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November 28, 2013

Considering today is National-Turkey-Slaughter Day, I thought I'd do some research and find out exactly how this whole tradition started and what exactly we can all be thankful for.

The 'first Thanksgiving' that we Americans recognize happened right after the pilgrims harvested their first crops in the 'New World' and was a grand 3-day feast between the Indians and Pilgrims. However, Thanksgiving Day did not become a federal holiday until President Abraham Lincoln declared it a day of "Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens."

Exciting stuff huh? Yeah, I didn't think so either. Thanksgiving today is less about the pilgrims and more about an excuse to gather the family together and enjoy stuffing and pie (somewhere Dean Winchester's ears are ringing). I know that some of my favorite memories from childhood are my multiple Thanksgivings (I say multiple because I have 2 each year, 1 with Mom and 1 with Dad on alternate days and schedules) with my family. From collecting the fall foliage outside (more like jumping into great big pile of leaves in my grouchy neighbor's yard and running with my Aunt who is an adult might I add) to 'helping' to cook inside (aka stay out of the way except for tasting runs), Thanksgiving has always been part of my favorite time of year.

This year I am thankful for the wonderful life I have been blessed with, my very best friend Ammie, my wonderful and kooky family, my kick-ass friends, and the fact that I am who I am and I actually like who I'm becoming (excuse the major corn factor here, you are what you eat and I've been stuffing myself with cornbread). What are you thankful for this year? Make a list and share it with those around you, I promise they'll love it.

Gobble Gobble
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November 23, 2013

As any female will attest, periods might just be the worst thing on Earth. And it's not just the pain, oh no, it's the constant ups and downs of our mood, weird cravings, and bouts of just plain bitchiness. One of the major antidotes to these symptoms is the bath. More specifically, the bubble bath. I just had the most wonderful bath. It may have been my best bath ever…it's definitely up there with the 2 hours I spent christening my grandparents Jacuzzi addition at their estate home last summer (wooow I sound hoity toity). I am going to share with you the incredible secret of this bath and why exactly it is the best bath to have when you are on your period or have just had the worst day ever.
Today I woke up only to discover that my period had started. Fantabulous. My mood was constantly all over the place, apologies to Mother for snapping at her about a billion times today, and by 5:30 I was just in a state of complete blah-ness that not even Zoella's videos on Youtube could cure (that's how severe it was). Two of the best tried-and-proven methods of relieving just about everything horrible that comes along with the regular juicing of your uterus are: exercise and relaxing baths. I experienced both today, which is good because without it I might have just blown up something or someone without them. My trainer worked me hard, but also noticed my bitchy mood (although I tend to always be bitchy when someone is making me sweat on purpose). He knew just how to clear it up, lucky for him otherwise I would have dropped a dumbbell accidentally-on-purpose on his foot. (Btw, the way to clear it up is to tell me that I'm extra-cute when I'm mad, and then keep calling me gorgeous throughout the entire session, in case anyone was wondering. Now I just sound like I'm bragging…moving on) But that didn't help the complete feeling of magenta that hit me later. For those of you who are new, I will define magenta for you. Magenta: When you're feeling down, but not quite completely 'blue', when you're randomly envious but not exactly 'green with envy', and when you're blech-y but not exactly 'yellow'. Boom, magenta. I hate the color, and the feeling, magenta. 
I will now share with you the recipe for this incredible, incredible bath that is only to be used in extreme cases for fear of over-using it in which time it stops being special.
Things You Will Need

  • Bubble bath (Bombshell recommendation: Lush Golden Wonder Bath Ballistic, one of their coveted Christmas items and lemme tell you, this is the best thing ever. It is all shimmery and gold on the outside, but as soon as that dissolves, it's TEAL inside! And inside that, there are actual little balls that are the 'present' of all different colors that swirl around in your bath making it look like a Monet painting. The resulting color of your bath water is teal, and throughout the entire bath it smells like literal heaven, and it's very rare to find something that keeps the bath scented for the entire time without being overpowering. This thing is pure magic. Word of warning, it leaves some golden sparkles in the bottom of your tub after draining so just be prepared to wash those out with a shower head or something.)
  • Your favorite coffee mug and hot chocolate mix (Bombshell recommendation: I used my "Diva to the Max" mug that Ammie gave me for Christmas two years ago, it remains one of my most prized possessions. I also recommend the Starbucks Peppermint Hot Chocolate mix for this particular bath because it is so luxurious and lovely that it is only fitting to have something this fancy-schmancy for this bath. Being lactose intolerant, I made my hot chocolate with soy milk which doesn't affect the taste in the slightest, still delicious.)
  • The biggest wine goblet you own and cool water, NO ICE 
  • Something to snack on (Bombshell recommendation: I decided upon those little single-serving packets of Goldfish for this bath because I didn't want anything sweet and this is the perfect size. You could choose fruit like strawberries or grapes, or even raw vegetables like cleaned raw green beans or sugar snap peas. It's really whatever you're craving at the moment.)
  • A playlist/CD full of your most relaxing songs (Bombshell recommendation: My current 'Relax' playlist is comprised of the following songs: All The Pretty Lights by Andrew Belle, The A Team by Ed Sheeran, World of Chances by Demi Lovato, A Drop in the Ocean by Ron Pope, Half of My Heart by John Mayer, Paradise by Tyler Ward, Home by Philip Philipps, The Way You Look Tonight by Frank Sinatra, The Lady in Red by Chris de Burgh, Lego House and Autumn Leaves by Ed Sheeran, Summertime Sadness and Blue Jeans by Lana Del Rey, So Sick by Ne-Yo, Loved You First and They Don't Know About Us and Last First Kiss by One Direction.)
  • A fresh, new, clean towel
  • Either your a) snuggliest or b) silkiest robe. (Bombshell recommendation: I went with my silkiest robe that is actual silk and feels so wonderful next to my skin after a bath)
  • Candle(s) (Bombshell recommendation: go with whatever scent you've been loving lately, and try to get scents that compliment the soap and bubble bath scents you'll be using. I used a snicker doodle candle who's scent perfectly complimented the Golden Wonder Bath Ballistic and the Miranda Soap I used which by the way leaves your skin soft and supple and only a touch waxy, in a good way.)
  • At least 2 beauty magazines, NO TABLOIDS (Bombshell recommendations: I re-read one of my old Allure magazines, one with Katie Holmes on the cover, and discovered a makeup trend I'm thinking of trying tomorrow when I go out to dinner with friends. I had another Allure and a Seventeen magazine at the ready as well.)
  • Your favorite comfort book (Bombshell recommendations: I chose the book 'You Have 7 Messages' which is just..ahh amazing. I highly recommend it to everyone. Although it's not a challenging read by any means, the story it conveys is just incredible and is indeed my comfort book of choice.)
Once you have gathered all these things in your bathtub, start the bath. Fill up the tub a little bit with lukewarm-ish water and crumble the bath ballistic/pour in the bubble bath and swirl it around. Do not get in yet. Light the candle and turn off as many of the lights as you want. I left one mini blue light illuminating the mirror on and that was it, that and the candle. Turn the water a little hotter and sip your hot chocolate a few times before stripping and getting in. Don't have the water be the hottest it can go right now, it will get too hot too quickly and spoil it. Start playing the music softly if it isn't already and lean back, only sipping your hot chocolate whilst the tub fills around you. Inhale the scent of the bath and really taste the peppermint chocolate on your tongue. Don't read, and really don't look at any electronics. Except for what's playing your music, I suggest you leave all other electronics out of the bathroom.
You can turn the bath water a little hotter now, but don't do anything until you finish your hot chocolate. (Bombshell recommendations: I didn't ever turn the water as hot as it can possibly go. It may feel good for a few seconds, but soon it gets way too hot and spoils everything) Even after the mug was empty, I just sat and half dozed off as the water filled around me. After I turned the tap off, it was steamier in that bathroom than in Lil' Wayne's hotel room. After my tiny power-nap, I picked up the Allure and read that for a while by the flickering candle light (I'm sure my optometrist will be thrilled to hear about that)--first learning about the "sunset eyes" makeup trick used by Louis Vuitton and Gucci in their latest fashion shows. I look forward to trying it. Afterwards I read '7 Reasons Why' for a while and then used my Miranda soap for the first time. I still smell amazing! All-in-all I give this bath a 9.5, only the 2nd bath in my lifetime to achieve a rating that high. Why not a 10? It's a rather personal reason…let's just say that something or someone was missing and that's all I'll say on THAT! I hope that you have as wonderful an experience as I had with this bath, my apologies for the gargantuan post.

Stay beautiful lovelies XOXO
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November 20, 2013

Today's society measures everyone by one simple rule: where do you fit in? This is probably most evident in High School (nicely portrayed by HSM I believe) when you're either a Jock, a Nerd, a Plastic, or a Stoner, among countless other categories. But it doesn't stop at high school, oh no. Your whole life you will try to be filed carefully in one category or the other: Employed/Not Employed, Famous/Ordinary, Rich/Poor etc. (Side note: we won't get into race because that's a whole different kind of categorizing that is also wrong) What I have found, in my very full 15.76 years on this Earth, is that a lot of people don't fit so neatly into these basic categories, and they worry about not being accepted because of it.
Take Rich/Poor for example. A lot of 'rich' people, are only wealthy in material possessions and have poor life and people skills (i.e. Donald Trump) where a lot of people who are 'poor' because they don't have the frivolous material things the world insists upon, are often the richest in heart where it truly counts. This isn't always the case, Bill Gates is a 'rich' person who also has a wise outlook on life and looks to help others as much as he can, and sometimes 'poor' people are people who have the worst outlook on life and are truly poor inside as well. These are some of the many exceptions to 'the rule'. 
Now let's look at high school, the main focus of this soap box-worthy speech. Stereotypically, the Jocks and the Plastics (Mean Girls, anyone?) rule the school jointly, often mixing between species. In America, the football players (quarterbacks most usually) are the top of the food chain, their head cheerleader girlfriends the lead bitch for the girls. Everyone knows their names, and usually everyone hates them. I've always struggled with this concept: why are the 'popular' people most often the most hated? But I digress…the 'nerds', 'dorks', and 'geeks' are often at the bottom of the food chain and yet at the top of every class, with braces and big thick glasses. I challenge all these parameters and think they should be completely disregarded in all walks of life.
For example, who says that the 1st string, starting quarterback that leads the school to victory in the big championship, can't also have an A+ in chemistry? Or…that girl with big glasses and frizzy hair that loves reading and kicks ass in math class can't be Prom Queen? (I know, I sound like a Selena Gomez song meets a Taylor Swift music video) My point is…finding where you fit in your school/life/work/wherever, isn't easy because people do file you away like this. I don't know about you, but my personality doesn't fit so neatly into a form.
Personally…I am still figuring out where I fit into this big spiderweb of life, and high school. At first I also thought that I had to find one specific group and let that group define me, that I've since found out is completely bs and the mere attempt is exhausting and painful. I joined Academic Bowl this year…but do I fit in completely amongst the school's smart elite where they all know the answer to 'Who was the 37th President of the United States and what was his favorite breakfast food?'? Not completely…which scared me a bit at first. I mean, I do have my place among them, my nerdy side as I like to call it (pretty much stereotyping myself with that one), but I don't completely fit with nothing left over. Then am I a Jock? (Or…was I is a better way of putting it but whatever, just pretend I'm still swimming) Well…I didn't really feel welcome by the swim team, which is why I left, but I have been swimming competitively for approximately 13.5 years now. But that's not exactly me either….then comes the group I'm with the majority of the time. Definitely not the top in the school, but so far from the last. We kind of just sit in the middle of the hierarchy, maybe one of the more genuinely-friendly groups, in our grade anyway. (I'd rather not pick a category for our table, lest I offend the people sitting at it) Well what about the Youtuber-artsy-girly-beanie-wearing group? I fit in there a lot, but not completely. (And the word 'artsy' covers poetry-loving and all writing) So where in the hell do I fit??
The truth is…I fit in all of them. That's something that makes me incredibly unique, I'm part nerd, part jock, part comic relief, and part 'preppy'. This is just who I am. It took me a while to figure it out, sure, and it wasn't the easiest thing in the world to accept, this existing without one specific category, but like it or not…this is where I 'fit' in my school. I have friends from all sides (and actually I fit into a lot of smaller categories in a lot of smaller ways but these are the biggest ones) and I love spending time with all of them because it's always a different experience with each of them. Sometimes there's a bit of friction and tension between the groups, which is only to be expected. They're two puzzle pieces that don't exactly fit together, but are forced together in the person that I am. I've come to terms and made peace with all these things, indeed I'm quite happy that I have found places where I feel accepted and loved, but I know a lot of people who don't understand this concept. They leap from one group to another in search of where they are completely accepted, and the truth is that they may never find it. 
Sure, some people fit completely into one category and that's okay as well! You shouldn't feel bad for 'only' fitting into one category, just like you shouldn't worry if you fit into multiple social orders. It all depends on the person that you are (and/or want to be) as to where you fit in. Think of it all like you're baking something. You can either use the pre-made mix (one group) to make it, or you make it from scratch with all different ingredients (multiple groups). The biggest thing to keep in mind, is to not let any group define you, you should define yourself first, find a group (or even form one) later.

Letting others define who you are is the surest way to lose yourself.
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November 17, 2013

(Told you I'd be back soon!)
So today was one of the more-fun days I've had in a while. After the longest time I went on an actual girly shopping spree with Tate (aka Carla), a friend I've recently rekindled my friendship with. As you may know, we were on hiatus all through 9th grade (some immature differences, it's all water under the bridge), and now we have rekindled. Our friendship is actually stronger then it ever was before and I am so grateful, she has offered a new dimension to 10th grade that I never knew I was missing. She and I are so alike it's incredible, we are both writers, both have the same ambitions in life, and there is so much more. In an attempt to make up for lost time, we planned a shopping trip. (I'll tell you more about Tate at some point later in time)
We met at, where else, Starbucks and immediately went from there. Where you may ask? LUSH of course! Above in the picture (my apologies for the rather crap lighting) is my 'haul'. Tate's is much bigger, much more of an actual haul. She has ten items whilst I have 7. But nevertheless, lets walk you through my mini haul because Lush is my most favorite store on this entire planet (besides maybe Forever 21 and Charlotte Russe and Wildfox…okay I have a lot).

  1. The white stuff in the bottle is "American Cream" hair conditioner because my hair needs some serious TLC. 
  2. The purple stuff in the bottle next to it is "Daddy-O" (the title is weird but just go with it). It's shampoo for blondes to help my hair not be so gross.
  3. The big yellow-wrapped one next to it is the "Space Girl Bath Ballistic" it's a little blue/purple space ship that smells so yummy I cannot wait to use it!
  4. The yellow packet after that is the "Lord of Misrule Bath Ballistic" that is a greenish teal color with sparkles and specks of color in it that smells like heaven, literally. 
  5. The top rectangle bar, top of the two bottles, is the "Wiccy Magic Muscles Massage Bar" that has white on one side and like a purple layer with the actual massaging part that smells like spicy peppermint. 
  6. The one new to that is the "Golden Wonder" thing that looks like a Christmas present with a gold  bow tied around the white box, part of their wonderful Christmas collection. It smells like an angel.
  7. And my final one on the top is the "Miranda Soap" that smells like how you would imagine Miranda Kerr to smell, all sweet and fresh.

Lush is like my favorite place ever, it smells so wonderful going in there and then it's just ahhhhhh heaven. Tate and I went in there THREE TIMES during our shopping spree and stayed for at least 40 minutes each time I bet. It was so much fun! We also popped into Topshop and found out that we both can indeed rock beanies, which is a fact neither of us knew before, and we even stopped by a few mens clothing stores to shop for our boyfriends (neither of which exist might I add). I always have fun with Tate and this shopping trip was very much needed. I HIGHLY suggest you pop into the next Lush shop you see and expect to spend a good hour drooling over their products.

XOXO
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September 15, 2013

Sexualization in the media has always been a hot-under-the-collar topic among people everywhere, both men and women taking sides. I never really took a side until probably the middle of the summer this year when I started noticing it everywhere. And then all the news articles starting popping up about women getting criticized for breastfeeding their babies in public. It got me thinking...

In movies, in commercials, proudly displayed on billboards for thousands of motorists to see as they spent their daily commute in traffic, are women's breasts or butts or bellies. It's quite sickening if you think about it....people don't see a problem with a women wearing a skimpy bikini top (or no top at all and just some strategically placed arms or hair) to sell cigarettes or new drink, but as soon as women start to use their bodies how they were intended to be used, people are "disgusted". And it's not just women being sexualized, have you seen all the commercials featuring a half-naked man that looks like he's 98% percent rock instead of an actual person? It's really not okay anymore, for both men and women.

Girls face, and have faced for some time now, a growing amount of pressure from the media to be sex symbols and sex objects for guys to play with. They tell us that if we're not sexy enough that we won't get the right guy (or girl or barn animal or whoever floats your boat). Which, first of all, is completely backwards from the way books told us love was. And really, it is backwards. A toy company unveiled a Pole Dancing Kit intended for children, young girls specifically. "Unleash the sex kitten inside" was the slogan plastered all over the box. Thankfully a lot of parents saw something wrong with that and the company pulled that product from the shelves in the toy aisle, although it is still available to purchase. The television shows on TV, from the Girls Next Door to America's Next Top Model, that tell us that, as women, we need to be stick-skinny with lots of makeup plastered all over our face. It's the portrayal of these women as beauties that has girls everywhere starving themselves and spending their emotional energy, their time, and their money on products that promise to make us look hotter, sexier, more attractive to the opposite sex.

Guys are not excused from this either. First of all, no girl wants to cuddle with a rock. I mean it's nice for guys to be built and have muscles and abs (if they want, it's completely up to them to get into shape and women shouldn't expect it just like guys shouldn't expect Barbie breasts and thigh gaps from girls), but if we can see them through your shirt that's not okay. (General rule for the majority of girls I know, just a tip guys) Second of all, it's not really discussed, but guys go through the same pressure that girls do to be "perfect". The media puts us all under such pressure that we feel we have no choice but to go along with it otherwise be an outcast. There was a boy who died because he wanted to "buff up" and he was doing 1,000 push ups a night without eating the right foods because he wanted to look like the buff models that he saw on the runway. He died. It's really not okay anymore, and I'm not sure it ever has been.

Along with the increased sexual pressure put on teens and young girls, there is the ever-present backlash against breast feeding. This really does tick me off because a) that's what breasts are intended for in the first place, not toys for boys to play with when they're bored and not pillows for them to lay on, and 2) this practice is as old as the time since women have been having babies (aka forever) and is literally the most natural thing on earth, so who the hell gave you the right to call out a women for feeding her child with what she is meant to feed it with? You need to get over yourself. If you don't have a problem with all the breasts and the sex featured in today's music, cartoons, commercials, TV shows, movies, magazines, books etc., then you have no right to call out a women for breastfeeding.

I researched a bit about this topic and I found an amazing video that explains it all so well, it's only 5 minutes long and really really worth watching. Click here for the link to the video. I also used an article which you can find here. Thanks as always for reading and feel free to leave me a comment explaining your thoughts on this post below!
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September 12, 2013

I now understand why Peter Pan never wanted to grow up. Now, considering the fact that I'm an adolescent and haven't even seen the dawn of 16 years on this earth, you might think this statement a hyperbole and I am greatly exaggerating the truth. Not so. (Ask anyone in my Geography class, and you'll understand quite well what I'm talking about.)

In high school, for those of you who are home-schooled or have the blissful experience of going to a school such as the liberal arts school of Victorious where very little actual schooling goes on and, in its place, a lot of shenanigans happens that the teachers are ignorant of even though it's happening right in front of their eyes, there is just so much expected from you, both academically and socially. It's incredible the amount of (and I hate using this word because it's over-used so terribly but, what the hell) pressure.

I mean there is just pressure from every side.

  • Your teachers demand respect and your full attention, which is quite difficult if you haven't slept in two days because you are doing different projects and logging in 12 hours at a time on Tumblr, as well as your full capacity as a student (and to be fair, these are not unrealistic aims. Without the invention of the Internet, we wouldn't have over half the problems that we do, I'm convinced of that fact. But also without the Internet, we would have a shit load of more problems. It's a never-ending paradox.).
  • And then there are your friends, they need your attention and your help with their problems and you really want to be with them at all times because you want to make memories because the media focuses so much on how short life is (more on this ever-annoying plot line in a minute), because my generation seems to be focused on the idea that being alone is taboo and to be avoided at (pretty much) all costs. Girls don't even want to pee alone anymore, and why? Because we're afraid of being judged. Walking into the cafeteria without a person by your side, you can't help but think that others are looking at you and judging you. But think about it, if you were sitting at a table with your friends and saw someone walking in alone, would you even really think about it? You would go back to telling your friends how you "scored" last night (guys) or how your favorite band member got a new tattoo, again. 
  • Parents add just another level of pressure. They push you to be your best and when they feel you haven't achieved it they give you that look that makes you feel like the worse person on the face of this planet but I have generated a theory as to why this is. Parents push you to be your best because they can't help but think back to when they were your age (cliches are running rampant right now, oh em gee) and how they wished they had turned out better than they actually have (and unless your parents are Mark Zuckerburg and Ellen DeGeneres, they pretty much always wish this) and they want to push you hard enough so that maybe you'll reach your dreams, the ones they could not. (Just a theory, don't go telling your parents they're losers now because they aren't and that's really rude and obnoxious)
  • The media adds probably what can be perceived as the most pressure. And, anyone who has talked to me in the past week knows just how obsessed I am with this movie at the moment, Allison from the Breakfast Club phrased it well, "If you don't do it you're a prude but if you do, you're a slut." It's a never-ending battle that never needed to be fought in the first place. (Okay this lecture is somewhat out of place here, but whatever. People nowadays are moving WAY too fast in relationships, aren't they? Or am I a prude? But I see all of these people just all over each other after two weeks and then the relationship just ends after a while and the vicious cycle starts all over again. I don't understand that. I think that taking things slow is necessary for a good, solid relationship to grow. But then again, I'm "Waiting for A" and looking for something big and long-lasting so maybe it is just me. My personality just works that way.) We live in a "Size Zero is Beautiful and Expected of All Girls" society where Twinkies were brought out of retirement because of backlash against dis-continuing them. Something has to change, fast. Too many girls have cried themselves to sleep trying to ignore the growling of their bellies because the media tells them that skinny is beautiful. Let me tell you a secret, guys worth getting to know, like girls with curves. (This comes from a valid source too, my brother actually. We had a discussion about this, and he did say several times that he, and most guys that are actually worth dating or having a relationship with, prefer curvy girls, not stick-skinny ones.) Personally, I am FAR from the skinniest girl out there, I have big swimmer shoulders that make me have to buy t-shirts that are baggy around the middle because they are the only ones that fit my broad shoulders, I have a solid core (no lie) but there's a small layer of blubber over top of them (although you can feel the abs down there, currently working on bringing them out more), my thighs are about the size of a Christmas ham and quite jiggly, my face is fat-ter than I would like that makes taking good quality photos difficult....I could go on. The point I'm trying to make is, I'm comfortable with the way my body is right now. I do go to the gym and work on toning it to be stronger and for my own self confidence, but I have come to the realization that I will never ever be the tiny size-two girl, and you know what, I no longer want to be. Sure I envy the size of the varsity volleyball girl's thighs, but I can work to achieve something similar to that that works for my body. I'm not interested in being the skinniest girl around. I have a big personality, a twig body couldn't handle that.
  • We add our own pressure by thinking about all the above sources and how disappointed everyone will be if you fail this test or eat that candy bar. Let me tell you something. The whole entire universe centers around one point and that point, is not you. It's not me either. Brutal honesty hurts doesn't it? Try thinking about it this way: when you're 98 and sitting on the porch rockers in front of the nursing home, are you gong to regret the Kit-Kat you ate in 10th grade at lunch that made you feel like dirt? I seriously doubt it. You want good memories to think about in your last year, so curtail your plans and think too much about what other people think. (Miley Cyrus is a good example of this, watch her "We Can't Stop" video and then read the awful comments below. Does she care? Doubt it, because she was comfortable with what she did.)
My point here is this: I'm sick and freaking TIRED of having to think about what other people will think if I laugh too loud at something or stuff my face with a bag of Skittles once and a while. As long as I'm happy doing what I'm doing, why should I care what other people think? It's not hurting me, so just....why think about it because that will only make you unhappy. There's no single definition of "beauty", the person who finds it in you is a person worth having in your life. The people who don't? Screw 'em.
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September 9, 2013

So....as you are all blithely aware of, since I posted two entries about this very subject not long ago, I am (or...used to be I suppose) a swimmer. Have been all my life. But today I was just thinking, and there's a reason for this (but isn't there always a reason? I mean really....), what's my biggest fear?

As a swimmer it's kind of odd to share this but...the biggest fear, or one of the biggest fears, I have is...drowning. That's right. I'm a swimmer that's afraid of water. Now...what brought about this thinking you may ask?

Well....clubs are starting at school tomorrow and, since I attend school on one of the biggest island chain-nations in the world, tomorrow is my first scuba club meeting. I'll be certified soon and in a couple of months time I will inevitably find myself on a boat heading out to the middle of the ocean somewhere to go scuba diving, my heart pound-pound-pounding away in my ears.

I guess drowning isn't my biggest fear. For some reason, ever since I was about...twelve or thirteen I guess, I've always been super aware of my breathing habits and for some reason there seems to be something wrong with my...breathing.

It's probably nothing and just me getting all worked up over something that's not even there (ever googled your symptoms when you're sick? Yeah, you know what I'm talking about), but I swear there is something wrong. I don't seem to...breathe like normal people. I've tried talking to my mom about it, but she swears that nothing is wrong with me and if she took me to a doctor about it, she would have to take me to a psychiatrist afterwards because I'm making it all up in my head. My breathing either catches in my throat or my heart starts pounding a lot for some reason and I can't catch my breath and it's....terrifying.

To give Mom credit, she did take me seriously one time when I told her and we figured that it was caffeine that was doing it to me. So I cut caffeine out of my diet. It actually helped and I no longer have prolonged periods where it feels like I could pass out onto the floor because I can barely breathe for no reason. Now it's just short periods of time, maybe two or three minutes, several times a day, every day, where I feel like breathing is getting a little difficult. I'm not even doing strenuous activities! It usually happens on the bus in the morning and there's nothing I can do to control it, but at least I'm not letting it control me. I've developed methods of dealing with it and it's not as scary anymore.

Some days it's worse than others, like a few weeks back when I was walking around my city with THC I was having a little problem breathing. I took care of it and he didn't know. If you were talking to me when one of these "attacks" happened, you probably wouldn't notice. I try to keep talking normally because it also helps to get my breathing back under control.

So now that we've taken the looong way around the point (again) let me conclude what all of this is trying to tell you. Every time I would get into the pool I would have a little "asthma attack" (or two or three) and I powered through it. Swimming was a great way of dealing with my breathing, although sometimes I must admit I stopped swimming and feigned a cramp to catch my breath, and now that I'm not doing that anymore, I have to face my fear every day, although I face it anyway just climbing stairs, without swimming being a crutch.

Again, my point: don't let your fears, as irrational as they may be, stop you from doing the things you want to do. Eventually I might have to ask for help with my breathing if it gets REALLY bad, and you shouldn't be scared of asking for help either. I know that teenagers in high school (like I'm assuming most of you are, like me) are afraid of asking questions because we don't want to sound stupid in front of our peers, but if we need help we need to learn to ask for it. I really want to do scuba diving club and I'm trying my hardest not to worry about the breathing problems I may or may not have (I've noticed that if I don't think about it it doesn't happen as much). I'm just going to focus on the joy of what I'm doing. And I hope you don't let anything stop you from doing what you really want to do either.

Thanks for reading lovelies! XOXO
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September 6, 2013

So they have figured out what is wrong, finally. It turns out I have a "crowded and constricted" small intestine. Ouch. They gave me pills and things to take and to start taking once this is cleared up to prevent it from happening again. I'm ready to have this thing be done with and get back to school and normal life. It's been pure hell this past week and I'm SO relieved that I may have some relief soon.

Thanks for reading so diligently as you do. I promise to start updating more regularly about subjects more interesting than my "medical problems".

XOXO
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September 4, 2013

After this morning was full of poking and prodding, I have a few scars and no answers. I had blood drawn and several ultrasounds performed but they didn't see anything unusual on the ultrasound. We will be going back to the hospital later to have the blood work examined. Still in a lot of pain, and no closer to any answers. Hopefully we will find some later today. (But on the plus side, not pregnant! I mean, I knew there was NO WAY IN HELL I was, but it's still good to have that reassurance)

I'll keep you guys updated as things develop. Thanks for reading.

XOXO
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September 3, 2013

For the past week I've been having some stomach cramping issues. And on Monday it finally hit me really, really hard. I was taken to the hospital this morning and I have several tests/scans scheduled for tomorrow and Thursday. They don't know what's wrong yet so I'm just resting with some generic pills to cut down on the pain and waiting for the tests (for which I have to fast which is why they couldn't do them today). I'm pissed that I have had to miss school these past two days and will have to miss tomorrow as well, hopefully it won't go any further than that I want to go back to school!

My symptoms include: extreme abdominal pain, stomach swelling, fatigue, lower back pain, and (after eating) nausea. Blood work tomorrow and then an ultrasound sometime later. I swear I'm not pregnant, even though I have some of the same symptoms. I have now been asked that question about seven times today and you'd think my answer would get around. It's not going to change, you know. It's probably just intestines twisting or air pockets in my intestines or something along those lines, but not a pregnancy (that's biologically impossible, trust me). 

Anyway, I'll post an update sometime later about what is going on. Thanks for reading every week guys!

XOXO
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August 31, 2013

Was bored and scrolling through my blog to see if anything needed fixing, and I clicked on my very first post. Wow. What a difference in content this blog has seen since then!

Basically when I started this, quite honestly, I was expecting to either A) Give up on this halfway through or B) Actually lose the weight I wanted to and become the person I wanted to be. But, as those of you who read my summer blog (My Perfect Summer) can tell, a lot happened over the summer and even on this blog, the content has changed from me wanting to basically overhaul my entire person to sharing the experiences I'm going through. What does this tell us?

Well....I'm still trying to inspire my little social butterfly, which you can probably tell by my recent post entitled "Leader of the Pack", but I've stopped talking about wanting to lose weight and change my personality. So, you might think I've accomplished my goal. HA!

Ah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Okay, I'm back from my momentary laugh attack. Looking in the mirror now, as opposed to say....five months ago when I started this blog, I suppose I don't look that much different. But I feel different. As you (may) know, a lot of stuff happened over the summer, good and bad, and it changed the person that I am.

I got closer to my (younger) brother (and his friends, as you know *sigh heaping with backstory that some of you may know from reading the other blog*) which in turn actually made me think about things differently and influenced my taste in music a bit. I found a boy (or two *ashamed blushing*) that also influence my thinking and (one of them anyway) makes my stomach drop when we talk. I got so much closer, which I honestly didn't think was possible, to my best friend and "was dumped" by another really, really close friend that I miss terribly (although I'm really pissed at her as well) that nearly brought me to an emotional breakdown from all the highs and lows. 

You get the point, shit went down. So what does this all have to do with my original goals of losing weight and changing my personality? Well, I've realized that maybe I don't need to do all of that. I have people I really love all around me and I don't know why I was focusing so much on people that may be saying this or may be saying that. I'm just done with that. 

I mean, I still want to tone up, particularly my back and my legs and my abs and....wow basically everything, but I no longer think I need to lose weight. I'm sure that will happen naturally as long as I keep eating the healthy cooking that Mom makes for us (which means no more runs to 7-11 for a Butterfinger bar) and going to the gym. I try to make working out fun now so I don't get bored of it (because as you know I'm not swimming this year at least and I need to be active, inactivity is not an option for me), and there are several ways to do that that I've already discovered. Such as tennis with Angie, running around the track after school (again with Angie), Body Combat classes (kick boxing and martial arts, I feel so kick-ass afterwards), actually trying in gym class etc. 

So, in short, I haven't lost my goals. I just changed them. It's necessary to change your goals as you grow older, some goals become unfeasible and others just morph into something that you realize later was completely ridiculous. No one should change their personalities just so they can make themselves more likable to other people, who don't even like them in the first place. No no. Change for yourself, not for them. The right people will find you, and if they truly are the "right" people, they won't ask you to change or expect you to. (Total cliche, I know, but hey, if it ain't broke don't fix it so....)

XOXO

P.S. (check me out on tumblr by clicking here thanks a bunch guys!)
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August 29, 2013

A as in . . . amore. The lovely Italian word for love. Or...what about aimer, the just-as-lovely French word for love. Take your pick, but you get my point: "Waiting for Love".

Tiny secret of mine....I have only one jealous bone in my body and that is when my friends, or people around me, are in relationships. Even if I don't like the person that they are with, I get insanely jealous of them and that person. It's not something I'm proud of because I realize myself that I'm ridiculous.

(So, I'm going to take this in a new direction momentarily but it all ties together, I promise.)

My mother and my grandparents and I are all going to Paris during April for my Sweet Sixteen birthday celebration. I am so. excited. Like this is so incredible. And then to top it all off....Ammie might get to go with me!!! My best friend and I in the City of Lights....I can see it now......ahh so amazing. So of course A and I freaked out about this for a good two hours late last night and then I retired to sleep and dream of Paris.

The next morning I woke up in a WONDERFUL mood (which isn't really that unusual for me, I tend to be a morning person I'm realizing, but it was quite an odd feeling for a school day) and I couldn't put my finger on exactly what had me feeling so great. And then suddenly it hit me.

I'm okay with being alone. It sounds really corny, and stupid, I know but it all happened overnight and I'm still kind of on the high of that feeling tonight. But I've figured out that I'm okay being single and by myself right now because there isn't really anybody that I'm interested in that way. And even if I was dating a guy here nothing much would change about my life either. And what I really am dreaming of is life-changing. So I'm okay right now waiting for the guy that will bring amour and aimer with a capital A.

I figure that you have to be comfortable with yourself, by yourself, before you can even picture yourself with another person. Because if you aren't comfortable being alone, then jumping into a relationship (which isn't likely to happen, coming from personal experience here, because you do look just the tiniest bit desperate, again experience talking here) is just going to break your heart, confuse you, and it won't benefit you or the other person. "Don't ruin love by wanting it so badly" is rather a favorite quote of mine at the moment and it finally rang true this morning.

Reading over this, it sounds ridiculously dumb but it's the truth. It all just hit me, and for some reason Paris brought the revelation around, and I'm still getting used to it, but I do know that I'm not lying to myself. My one jealous bone has just been broken and, hopefully, it will never ever be fixed.
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August 21, 2013

So....in one of my earlier posts I mentioned that change doesn't really bother me as much as it bothers other teenagers. I have just discovered that this is a massive lie.

I have been struggling with swimming for a long time now, not wanting to go to practice and such and not getting along with my 'team' mates. Well now I don't have to. I have decided to "take a break" from swimming for this year. ("Take a break" in quotes because that's the Mom term. Basically I'm quitting, giving up, not "sticking with it". Yeah. Depressing right?) I want to see what clubs and other activities I can do to make me happier than fighting with my Mom and everyone about swimming. I'm just over it.

I've been hoping that this would be an easy transition, but boy was I SO VERY WRONG about that. I haven't even told my coach yet, told the rest of my family yet, and already I'm having heart palpitations. (Minor exaggeration but what do you expect? I'm a teenage girl for crying out loud!) I felt a big cry coming on so I jumped in the shower so I could sob in peace without having Mom poke her head in to have one of our talks about life. Don't get me wrong, I love that my Mom cares so much and loves me so much and I basically tell her about everything that is going on in my life. Seriously, she's one of the closest people in the world to me. But sometimes...I just need alone time to think. And the shower is good for that. (Plus I needed to shower anyway, I have been walking around outside with THC all day and I'm sweaty and gross! Blech!)

So I got in the shower and the tears started falling. I kept saying, "If you're this upset about quitting, why quit? Just 'stick with it'!" But I don't think the tears were about that. Because my gut (the famous gut that has gotten me out of several potentially-embarrassing texting/flirting situations) is telling me that I'm making the right decision for me right now. And I have to think about my team. It wouldn't be fair to them to have them depend on me and then have me let them down. I will be taking this year to focus on my studies and on other ways to keep me active. I don't know yet how it will turn out, obviously, but I look forward to the challenge! I think (and hope) that the tears were just me saying goodbye to a big part of my life and not because subconsciously I know that I'm making a mistake and that I'm going to gain forty pounds and feel awful by the time next summer rolls around. (Heart palpitations are back)

Okay....breathing more normally now. All I'm saying is that for right now "because I've always done it" is not going to be the reason I keep swimming and putting up with it and hating it. Right now, I need to try to fine what makes me happy because it's stupid to do something if it's making you miserable....right? (How do you shut off the "What Ifs" part of your brain??? Seriously! I do not need it right now!)

I'll keep you updated about my mundane life and hope you guys will still take five minutes out of your day to read it! (Thanks a million to those who do by the way, it really lifts my spirits, it really really does!)

XOXO

P.S. I just hope I'm not making a big mistake.
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August 16, 2013

Today in my Human Geography course we were talking about Birth Rate, Fertility Rate, and Death Rate of different countries....pretty standard boring stuff right? Not if you put a face to it.

And that's exactly what my Geography professor did, put a face to those statistics. Several faces actually.... He showed us this video which must have been from about 1989 that was a CNN special where they sent their best correspondents to the most poverty-stricken places on Earth to film a heart-wrenching video. The video started off by showing us a woman dying, and then dead, after she had a "backdoor abortion" in Ethiopia which is basically a metal pole stuck through her pregnant womb because she does not want more children and is not educated about family planning and cannot afford birth control. I only felt like sobbing about three dozen times.

After that we moved on to the cheerful subject of women oppression and lack of education in India where abortions are the norm now if the baby is a girl. At this point I am so very uncomfortable and want to leave the classroom and go scream into a pillow somewhere. The girl next to me, "Carla", is a friend of mine and we were both equally disturbed by what was going on on-screen.

But we were both disturbed even more by what was happening in our classroom, off-screen. One of the close-up interviews they had with someone who had been cheated by his government into having a sterilization procedure called them 'Sons of Bitches' and every single boy in my class laughed at it. So much so that we had to pause the video and wait for them to stop. And when the video started up again, they weren't focusing on it at all (not that they were in the first place, really), they were focusing on the "bad words" that the guy said. I don't know why this set Carla and I off so much, but it really did. And I admire her because she had the guts to stand up and tell them off.

"If all you take away from this video is that he said a 'bad word' then you disgust me." was her exact quote, I believe, before stalking out of the classroom. I was too upset to say anything for about an hour, which, if you ask anyone, is QUITE unlike me. I thought it was because of the adolescent jerks in my class until JonJon (my best guy friend if you're new here) pointed out that it wasn't worth getting upset about a few idiot guys that laughed about something in an uncomfortable setting. Then I realized I was upset because the guys laughing, could very well be the next generation of the men we were seeing on screen laughing at the thought of having a girl, or beating his wife when she gave birth to a baby daughter, or even murdering that baby because it is lacking a penis. And if they weren't, they weren't going to do ANYTHING about the women that are being oppressed in this society. It's still a very real problem.

So I have decided to take action. I can't put all the measures of my plan into action right now, for several different reasons that are too tedious to write down here. I wrote this on the bus and would like to challenge every. single. female. to think about this the next time she's laughing at school with her friends or kissing her boyfriend that she chose:

I am one of the lucky ones. Over half the women in this world aren't given a fighting chance from the very beginning just because of their sex. I have been given an education, I was raised to have an opinion and a voice and not to be bullied by my parents or my child-husband. And I don't intend to waste it. My voice should be used and heard where other women's voices cannot be. My voice should be used to represent all the women who cannot speak for themselves. All women who are lucky like me should use their voices until maybe one day every woman's voice can be heard.

Yell Louder!
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August 5, 2013

I don't understand why everyone hates change so much. Honestly. I guess it's always just been a part of my life....I've become accustomed to it so it doesn't bother me so much. I mean, sure, some changes bother me and I talk about them a lot to see if possibly we could get it to change a different way. But I don't understand the people that so vehemently oppose change that they stay the same their entire lives. That seems....frankly? Quite boring.

Well...I guess there was a time where I was greatly opposed to a change in my life. When we moved from my childhood home to a new home in a new state where the only people I knew were my grandparents. I was not too happy about that and when I would swing on the swing set on the playground (hint as to how old I was anyone?) I would actually say to myself "I'm a Virginia girl. I'll never fit in here." (Finally, I just told you one state I lived in over the course of my travels. What are you going to do? Track me down? Seriously, please don't.) But....I actually grew to love the new place we moved to more than anything and was even more opposed to moving away from it. But that's a story for another post.

I guess what the point of this post is....don't be so opposed to things changing. The old saying "the only thing constant in life is change" applies a lot to my life. There are constant changes going on around you, if you start to notice and appreciate them all you might learn to deal with the bigger changes a little better. The people and the experiences that have come into my life have affected it so much and none of it would happen if things hadn't changed. After all, who wants to stay the same for their entire lives?

(If you're wondering what brought on this tiny post that probably barely makes sense about change, I radically changed my hair today (bangs, yay!) and while sitting in the chair staring at my new face I realized that it was a big change and I wasn't as scared as some other girls are when they do something like that. So...yeah. If this doesn't make any sense it's because I am so tired and jet lagged and it's awful. I promise to start making more sense soon and telling you more things about my crazy life.)

XOXO
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July 30, 2013

The title of this post may have you wondering what "look" I'm talking about. I'm talking about the "look" I get when I tell people that I'm a vegetarian. Well....most people anyway. Let me explain.

The first thing people do is look at me out of the corner of their eyes or open their eyes wider and send their eyebrows shooting up into their forehead. The second thing is ask "Why?" or say something unoriginal like "Oh really?". But it's the "look" that bothers me. The "look" I'm talking about is the look these people have on their faces when I start to explain why I am a vegetarian. Some people roll their eyes, others stare at me like I just told them I have herpes.

If you ever come up to me on the streets and ask me why I'm a vegetarian, my answer will always be the same. (Actually if I have never seen you before and you randomly come up to me and ask why I'm a vegetarian I probably will run away in fright and call the cops. But you get my point.) A lot of people assume that I became a vegetarian for the dietary reasons (i.e. to be skinnier), or because I'm going through a "phase" like "all the teenage girls" trying to find themselves, or even because it's a fad that my favorite celebrities are doing.

All of these assumptions are wrong and it's actually a giant pet peeve of mine when people assume things. (I am fond of saying if you assume you make an "ass" out of "u" and "me".) The real reason I am a vegetarian is because something clicked in my head one day: do you know how cruel it is to eat all of these animals when they have done nothing to you? If you think about it . . . it's so mean! I see trucks with pigs that have been branded on the road all the time and I actually cry every time I see it. Those poor animals are treated so badly throughout all their lives and I refuse to eat animals that have been tortured all their lives.

I started off by being a pescetarian, someone who is a vegetarian but still eats seafood and fish. I then thought about it and it's cruel to eat fish when they have hooks stuck through their faces in order for me to eat. So I cut it down to being a semi-pescetarian and only eating fish a maximum of 3 times a week. I have been modifying it ever since. I am now cutting down on eating eggs in processed foods, however I cannot cut out eggs altogether because they are a major source of protein for me and my mother is worried about me not getting the nutrition I need. (Not being an adult, I must listen to my Mommy. :D Actually I'll probably still listen to her as an adult as well...) I no longer eat Pop-tarts, marshmallows, or Jello because they all contain gelatin in them which are made from animal parts. 

Being a vegetarian is hard and it requires a lot of research to make sure you're being true to your principals and morals. People think I'm just trying to lose weight or be trendy. I'm trying to make a difference and my small contribution may not save a lot of animals....but it will save a few I hope. And if I inspire a few more people to truly be vegetarians, then that's all the better. But please don't rush into this decision. Talk it over, do some research and make sure you're doing it for the right reasons. If you need any guidance drop a comment on this post and I'll see if I can answer your questions.

XOXO
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June 12, 2013

I just wanted to quickly post a little thing on here about how much I do love this whole "blogging" thing and that it's kind of weird to me that people actually read it. I mean, I used to want to keep a diary like the ones that you would see in the movies or in commercials, but for some reason, I was never able to keep up with a diary. But now that I know that there are people reading the words I'm writing about my life, it's like it's easier for me to talk. So this is a shoutout to you. Thank you so so much!

Make sure to check back for updates on my crazy life and check my other blog My Perfect Summer for updates on my "perfect" summer which is just beginning!
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June 4, 2013

Have you ever heard the song, "You're Going to Miss This" by Trace Adkins? Well yesterday that's all that was running through my mind. And I wasn't just thinking about how when I'm older, I'm going to miss being this age and all of the wonderful things happening to me (although I might not miss all the crazy hormones that come with being a teenager), I was thinking more about my parents.

My parents are old, in my eyes anyway. They are old-er parents and I worry about them every time they cough or sneeze. I talked to one of my closest friends, Ammie in case you were wondering, and she worries about her parents all the time too. I guess it's just a natural feeling.

Remember when you're little, and you thought your parents were superheroes? I loved that time because I didn't have to worry about them--and I guess I still don't have to worry about them. But I do. All the time. I pray for them every night and every day and I worry about them when they complain about having pains in their back or their arms, or when they have a little cold or even just allergies. I realize that all of this worrying is crazy, and most of it is probably unnecessary, but I don't think I'll ever stop worrying. I'll probably get more worried about them as the years go on and they get older.

But lately, I've been worrying about them (like normal) and I just heard that song somewhere, or maybe I just remembered it, and I realize that the majority of this worrying is unnecessary. I'm trying to help out more, complain less, and try to live in the moment with them. They won't be here forever, and I do realize that (even though I feel like crying every time I think about it), so I'm trying to enjoy the time we spend together.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, enjoy the time that you have with, if not your parents, just your family and your closest friends in general. Don't think about what could possibly happen and all that could go wrong, because that will drive you crazy. Just . . . enjoy.
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