Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Things I Learned During My 1st "Dead Week"

I know that Dead Weeks (the week before final exams) vary depending on the school, and that your stress level during dead week depends on how well you've already been doing in your classes. At the school I'm attending, Dead Week is when teachers aren't allowed to give us any tests. We still go to class. For most of my friends, they don't have classes at all during their Dead Week because it's when they're meant to study for their final exams... I guess my school wants to squeeze in as much learning as possible, which I guess is more of a negative thing because we have more information to learn before we take are last exams.

Over the course of this past week, I realized that closer you get to finals and to semester break the less you want to go to class. Most of my professors post the lecture notes online, and all homework is done online for all of my classes, which makes it even easier to talk yourself out of going to class. However, I never used the extra time I gave myself by skipping class to study or to work on flashcards to study later. Oh no, that would be too responsible of me! I used the extra time to sleep, read books for fun, and watch Netflix. After talking to my friends, I found out that I definitely wasn't the only one doing that very same thing.

During Dead Week, everyone acts like a zombie. The level or stress and readiness for the break turns everyone into mindless creates that only care about making it through all of their tests. I'm one of the unlucky ones who has a night test the last days of finals week. No one should have to take a test from 7-9pm on a Friday night before semester break! It's my first semester and I got one of the worst testing times ever. Of all time.

Even though Dead Week is the second hardest week (behind actual finals week) of the whole semester, you really learn to rely on the studying skills that you developed for the previous quizzes and tests in your classes and you're able to break the barrier of asking for help, which for me was a huge step because I absolutely don't like talking to people I don't know, especially when those people control my grade.

What things have you learned during dead week? I hope you all do well on your final exams!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Taking a Shot in the Dark

This school year has been going really well. Next week is Finals Week for me, which means that my first semester of college in coming to an end. I absolutely love my college and all of the friends that I've made here. I've also loved a majority of my classes, and I've gone to loads of different events that have taken place on campus.

After this school year completely ends, I have no idea what I'm going to do with my life. I don't know where I'm going to live for the next school year, or how I'm going to pay my tuition. I don't even know what I'm going to be doing over the summer. If you've been reading my blog for a long time you'll know that I had the hardest time trying to find a job and going to different interviews. For this summer, I'm worried that I'll have just as hard a time finding a job this summer.

I also want/hope to do an internship over the summer. Everyone here at college that I've talked to has told me that I need to start proving how much I want my future career as soon as I can. And, apparently, the way to do that is by doing internships and gaining as much experience as I can. So, without telling anyone except for my boyfriend, I applied for an unpaid internship in a different state working with Elephants. I have no idea if I'll get it, or how I'll get to the other state, and if I'll be able to find a job in that state in order to live there during my internship... I honestly just took a shot in the dark and applied. I was shaking the whole time I was applying!

I'm not typically one to move forward with something when I don't have all the details worked out. I've always known what I've wanted to do for a living and when I was looking at colleges I knew right away which one I was going to attend. I even have all of my classes for the next 3 years of schooling all planned out and written down. So, when applying for an internship in a different state without having everything already worked out about my living situation and when I could work is something really new for me.

Like I was telling my boyfriend before, my life after this school year is going to be an adventure because I have no idea what I'm doing!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

My 19th Birthday

This year, I had one of the best birthdays ever. I'm not saying that because I got a load of presents and all my friends came over and I was able to go out partying. Nope. I got the presents that I had asked for, some that were just for fun and others that were more practical for my job and for school. I was able to go shoe shopping with my grandma (my current shoes were taped to hold them together, so her present to me was a new pair of shoes) and then we watched It's a Wonderful Life together! I had never seen it before, so even though it was a Christmas movie and that's one of my pet peeves I was okay watching it because my grandma was so excited about watching it with me for my first time seeing it.

In addition to getting the presents that I both wanted and needed, I also got my present in the mail from my boyfriend! He had it overnight shipped to my house so that I'd for sure get it and open it on my birthday. He and I are really bad about waiting to open presents. If we receive it early, chances are that we'll open it early as well. He was at work when the package was dropped up, so I did wait a few hours until he was off work so that we could video call and he could watch my reaction when I opened the present. Honestly, I think the reaction is the best part, so I always make him video call me as well when I send him a present. 

For my birthday in the past, my mom goes and gets me a huge Costco cake, so that we can eat some of it on my actual birthday, and then we put the rest on the Desert Table on Thanksgiving for my extended family to eat and enjoy as well. This year, however, I requested a confetti cake because it's my favorite kind, and my mom agreed to make it! She made a BEAUTIFUL 3 tiered cake with while confetti frosting and pink sugar sprinkled on it with a lovely ring of 19 pink candles. I bet you can all guess what my favorite color is! 

I put a pair of number shaped candles on my cake after my mom asked if I wanted them on or not, and I unknowingly put the numbers on the wrong way! How is that even possible!? My mom took pictures of me with the cake and then moved the numbers. I had absolutely no idea that I'd put them on wrong! Hahaha I'm in college and I put the numbers on my own cake the wrong way!

After coming home from my Grandma's house and eating some cake, my mom and I cuddled on the couch with our dog and watched Miracle on 34th Street because, again, I'd never seen it before. This time, however, it was my mom that was really excited about watching it with me. 

At the end of the day, I was really tired and really happy about being able to spend so much time with my family and being able to eat the best cake ever! (Some of my friends hadn't come home for Thanksgiving Break from school, so I didn't have a party with my friends because only one or two of them were in town and they wanted to spend time with their own families)

All in all, it was a really amazing day!

Thursday, November 26, 2015


I'm home for Thanksgiving because I'm on break from school. I absolutely LOVE Thanksgiving, and I could be happy about how today has gone! (I also had an amazing birthday - I'm going to post about that next)

Everyone has gone home, and the reality that tomorrow is my last day at home has set in. I've been sat in my room trying to work on some papers that I need to write so that I can print them for free here at home before I make the journey back to school, but by the looks of things I'm not sure that's possible. I was having some issues writing one of my papers and figuring out the formatting, so I decided to take some time to clear my head and blog about what's been going on today.

It's a tradition for the Thanksgiving activities to occur at my house because my dad loves to cook all the food, and we have a large living room that can seat everyone who comes. The day before Thanksgiving, my family always spends the entire day cleaning and getting as much of the food ready as we can (some of it we prepped to be cooked the next day) and setting up folding chairs around the old tables that we carry in from the garage. I cleaned the sinks and vacuumed the floors because I've been rather sick recently and my mom didn't want me touching the food or trying to carry things (I don't have any upper body strength, which is even more apparent when I'm not feeling my best, so I was perfectly happy not having to carry chairs or tables).

Today, after we'd put everything that needed to be cooked in the oven and had all the tables and chairs set up, I got out my math work to try and get more of it done before people started arriving for the meal. My family watched the Macy's Parade during that time as well, which I thoroughly enjoy because I like to watch )and sometimes criticize) the Marching Bands. I was in Marching Band for 3 years, and as any Marching Band member could tell you, it's easy to criticize other bands because you know what the techniques are and how the players are supposed to look and march.

After the meal was in full swing, we were all sitting around and eating and enjoying each other's company. There's no better way to catch up on the lives of your family members than while you're eating a ton of really good food. Everyone mainly wanted to know how I'm liking college, and how well my classes are going, which I knew would be the main topic that I covered while at the feast.

My family has this funny tradition of, after we've taken down the tables and chairs, putting on a really cheesy of dumb Christmas movie to watch together (which I don't really like, but I do like spending time with them all so I'll sit through a Christmas movie or two before I suggest a non-Christmas movie that we would all enjoy) while eating the various pies that were brought and what's left of my birthday cake. It's a very normal thing for me to have my birthday cake on the pie table at Thanksgiving, it's always been put there every year which is fine by me.

Today, however, we were sort of abnormal and we watched 4 or 5 different movies together, most of which were Christmas movies! I don't think anyone was really watching them, they were just to fill the spaces between the conversations that people were having. I didn't notice this right off the bat, because one of my younger cousins had asked me to color with her, so I was focused on finding the perfect color for seaweed and some shells to make her two dolphins in the picture stand out (the coloring book was desk sized, so it had a lot of different elements in it that took quite a long time to fill in).

After the last movie ended, it was about 8 and everyone was very exhausted and ready to go home and sleep off all of the food and fun that had been had. All in all, it was a really amazing day.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Power of Rug Naps

When I started Junior High, I realized how hard it is to get up early in the morning. Now, I'm mildly a morning person. I'm perfectly fine waking up really early as long as no one talks to me until after I've brushed my teeth. However, if I have to wake up early several days in a row like, for example, getting up for school, I feel more worn out and exhausted by the day!

Then, I discovered the most magical thing ever! Rugs! More specifically, the Me sized rug in my bathroom along the double sink! Hooray!! Every morning, I would get up and leave my bed to sleep on the not so comfy rug in my bathroom before showering and getting ready for the day. I'd set an alarm on my phone to wake me up after 15-20 minutes (depending on the day) and I would nap that long on the rug.

The rug wasn't particularly comfortable, which is why it made such a perfect place to nap! It kept me from going back into a really deep sleep, while still giving me the extra time to relax and feel more well rested. It also made it easier to get back up and finish getting ready for the day because it wasn't as hard as getting out of my actual bed.

I've also taken a few rug naps in the middle of the day on bad or hard days. The plus side of it being a bathroom is that I could lock the door and not be bothered for the 15-20 minutes that I napped!

In my book, there's nothing more helpful than a rug nap! If you're having a bad day, or you feel run down, I highly recommend it!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

My Favorite Book Series - Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer

In the 7th Grade, when the hardest part of my life so far was just beginning, one of my friends got me hooked to a book series that was really recent in coming out. After the very first chapter, I was hooked! There literally aren't enough words for how much I love this book series..

There are a total of 12 books in the series, the first one was published in 2002, the last book was published in 2014. The series starts out with Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventure of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship's Boy, which is where you're first introduced to Jacky, the protagonist that you can't help but love! These books have everything! Romance, adventure, suspense, comedy, history, and it'll make you feel excited, frustrated, sad, and angry! And that's just scratching the surface!

The Bloody Jack series is amazing because, the farther you read into the series, the better it gets. There are so many different events and different lines going on that it's nearly impossible to try and describe them to someone. I found myself, with every single book, staying up until the middle of the night frantically trying to get to the resolutions to relieve all the emotions going on. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for something new to read!

I started reading the books before they were all published, so my friends and I were constantly waiting for the next book to come out after we sped through the one before. At one point, we felt so in love with the series that we wrote some fan mail to the author! We talked about how much we loved the books, and how ready we were for the newest one to come out (we secretly hoped that we were the first ones to send him fan mail, which me most likely weren't, and that he'd send us a sneak peek of the book before it was published!). After several months, when we'd given up hope of getting a response, we received a manila envelope in the mail, and we almost peed ourselves with excitement! Along with a short letter that illustrated how much he appreciated taking the time out to write a letter, and how happy he was that we enjoyed the books so much. To our delight, he also included a signed photo for each of us from Jacky! (My thumb is over my name) Goodness! Just writing this post has gotten my heart racing again!

What's your favorite book series? What did you think about the Bloody Jack series?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Holiday Pet Peeve: Skipping Thanksgiving

To me, it seems as though stores and the mindsets of most people shift from Halloween straight to Christmas. I've posted before about how much I dislike when Thanksgiving is skipped over, but now I'm going to explain why it bothers me so much in more detail.

One beautiful day in November, a lovely little baby came into this world screaming her lungs out and being caught by the arms of a nurse because the doctor wasn't there. On that day, the 24th, the baby that was born was me! I'm a Thanksgiving Girl! (Keep in mind that the date Thanksgiving is on changes every year, so every once in a while it does fall on the 24th for my birthday)

Ever since I was a kid, on my actual birthday my immediate family would give me the presents that they got for me, and then on Thanksgiving, my whole extended family would be together (and sometimes a few of my friends would be able to come as well) and they'd sing to me and then everyone would enjoy my huge Costco cake together. For the amount of people that would come, one Costco cake was more than enough for everyone to get a slice. So for me, Thanksgiving was a sort of "extra birthday" where I was able to spend a lot of time with my extended family.

As I got older, I'd always get extremely excited for Thanksgiving after Halloween ended, and I'd want to go to the store with my mom to pick out festive Thanksgiving napkins and paper plates, but the stores we'd go to would very rarely have anything more than half a shelf of a few Thanksgiving themed products (like the napkins and paper plates), which was really upsetting to me because it's the next big holiday after Halloween, but no one seemed to be decorating as much for it! It was just skipped over when it came to stores and the order that people think of the holidays in!

Don't get me wrong, I love Christmas, just not in November. I wouldn't mind if stores had a Christmas section as well as a Thanksgiving section, but they should at least have a Thanksgiving section! To me, Thanksgiving is the best holiday ever so I feel a bit let down when other people/stores don't treat it with the same value that I do.

That was a tad rambly... Hopefully you enjoyed my little explanation! I hope you have a wonderful day

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Haunted House Amusement Park Ride

When I was younger, my family went to the same Amusement Park every summer. I'm not much for scary rides, so I'd normally go on the little kid rides that were more gentle and didn't run as long. This specific Amusement Park has a few "haunted" rides that they run year round, one of which is an extremely old haunted mansion themed ride that was built a few decades before (I'm exaggerating, but as a child it seemed that old) and consisted of a small cart that rode around on a flat track past different scary robots.

Now, a little bit of context, I can't handle scary things very well. If someone was to jump out at me to make me jump I'd probably pee my pants and start crying. I can't watch scary movies, and I can't think about scary things late at night without getting nightmares. (This is why the podcast I talked about before, Lore, is a good fit for me because it's not particularly scary it's mainly informative... But even then, I only listen to Lore in the mornings when I have time to let it get out of my thoughts before trying to sleep). So, when two of my brother's came off the ride and told me that it wasn't at all scary because of the age of the ride, I somehow decided that it would be a good idea for me to ride it.

Even though they'd just gotten off, my brothers agreed to go on it again so that I wouldn't be alone. We got into the little cart (the worker manning the ride let us all get into one cart because we were small even though they were only meant to hold 2 people) and we listened to the rules before we went through a doorway and were approaching the first scary obstacle of the ride.

We were going down a sort of hallway towards a big picture frame of a woman in a big, elegant dress. I didn't think that that was strange, because I figured that she was wearing something that was normal at the time the ride was built (now that I'm older I realize that she was wearing a Victorian style dress, which is not at all the era when the ride was built). We were looking at the picture for several minutes, but when we passed it in our cart, a back-light turned on to reveal a scary robot woman in the same dress behind the photo.

I don't think anyone was expecting the scream that came shooting out of my tiny body!

However, a cart on a ride doesn't care whether you're scared or not, and continues to go along the track. My brothers, after hearing my scream and realizing that I would most likely find the rest of the ride completely terrifying, had me crouch down inside the cart by their feet so that I wouldn't see anything else. I bumped into their legs and feet a lot the rest of the ride, because it was really rickety and the cart didn't move very steadily, so I can only imagine what they were thinking while the ride went on.

What's one of the most scared you've ever been on Halloween or on a Halloween themed ride?

I hope you all have an amazing Halloween! Stay safe and eat tons of candy!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Weirdly Excited for Halloween

Halloween is full of tons of candy and loads of awesome costumes. Halloween is one of those holidays that can be celebrated in a millions different ways like going to haunted mazes or going to non-scary corn mazes. However, one thing that everyone participates in regardless of how the like to spend the rest of their Halloween, is Trick or Treating.

Now that I'm in college, it would seem really weird for me to go trick or treating where I live because I live in a dorm that nonresidents can't get into. Basically, I live in a Halloween candy free zone! Even though I'd definitely buy my own, it wouldn't be worth doing the bus ride.

In addition to not being able to go trick or treating, I also have to work about 17 hours on Halloween day after working about 7 hours the day before, so even if I wanted to go trick or treating or go to a party of some nature, I couldn't because I have to work!

However, despite all of those things, I'm still really excited about Halloween! I'm excited to see other people's costumes when they try to wear them into the Stadium for the game, and to have random people offer me candy even though I'm not allowed to accept it while I'm working. I'm excited to see all the hilariously drunk people having a good time and laughing hysterically at nothing.

When I get home from working so long I'm most likely going to sleep until Halloween is over, but if it's as great as I think it's going to be I'll be okay with sleeping the rest of the day away!

What are your plans for Halloween? I'd love to hear about them!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Growing Out My Hair

I talked about this a few posts ago... Being annoyed with my floppy hair and not knowing if I was going to keep the length that I'd already gained or try to grow it out once more! Well, as you can guess by the title of this post, I did decide to grow my hair back out. I went in to my hairstylist today (I actually got their awkwardly early so they managed to work me into the schedule earlier) and she talked to me about the different ways that we could go about growing it out, and I picked the option that I liked the best! Hopefully my hair won't go through an awkward stage of growing out...

Thursday, October 22, 2015

More Computer Issues

Remember in one of my last posts when I was doing laundry and I mentioned that some of the sites I needed for schoolwork were probably joking blocked on the WiFi in my building? Well... I was wrong.

After talking to a few of the sort of friends that I've made here at school, I discovered that I was the only one experiencing said blocks. Everyone else was having a perfectly normal time getting into everything that they needed to while I was off in my room trying to figure out why they hadn't fixed the WiFi!

So, as I'm writing this, I'm sat in the school library in the middle of the night trying to get my homework done because I of course got behind... Never believe me when I say I won't procrastinate everything as much as possible.

Well, that was my little update! Back to work for me. I'll update you guys again later on when I figure out what's going on with my computer.

Trick or Treating

When I was a kid, I absolutely LOVED trick or treating! It was something that I looked forward to every year, because I got to dress up in awesome clothes and I was allowed to talk to strangers who would then give me candy!

One Halloween, I went into the neighborhood with my brothers and my mom is search of the houses giving away the biggest candy bars. At one point, we hit the jackpot!! Someone had purchased several different types of king sized candy bars and had entire cases sitting out on their porch with a sign that said to take as many as we wanted (within reason)!! My little candy loving heart almost couldn't handle the excitement!

After it started to get really dark (because of me and my siblings age we were one of the groups that went around before it was dark to go trick or treating for safety reasons) we headed back home to go through our bags and to trade with each other for the candy that we liked best. Then we ate a few pieces of candy and put the rest into our backpacks to take to school with us! This may only have been a thing at my school when I was little, but the day everyone was back from Halloween, we'd have a "parade" where each student would wear their costume to school and the younger classes would go around to older classes to show off how super cool their costumes looked and to get more candy from the teachers (who usually only gave one small piece of candy to each person because of the class sizes and the number of classes). After going through to the different classes, we'd get an indoor recess to sit on the floor of the classroom and trade candy with our classmates.

After having traded candies twice, I was confident in the awesomeness of my candy selection that I'd be eating out of for the next year.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Laundry, Procrastinating, and Floppy Hair

At this very moment (the moment that I'm writing this, maybe not the moment that you're reading it) I'm sitting in the laundry room on the opposite side of the building from where I live doing laundry because the laundry room by where my room is is currently being hogged by a young lady who decided to use all of the washers, and in turn all of the dryers, to wash her entire wardrobe and all of her bedding. However, I actually quite like this other side because they have couches in their laundry room instead of groady metal chairs that scrape your arms and legs if you move around too much. I only have one load of laundry to do, so the whole ordeal should only take about 2 hours.

When I walked down to do my laundry, I brought my computer and my notebooks and some pens with a plan to get ahead on my math homework as well as completing an essay that's due this upcoming Sunday. However, after trying to login to the various databases that I needed, I found that the WiFi has blockages for those sites (which I'm assuming is a sort of prank that will be discovered and removed eventually) that made it impossible for me to access the things that I needed to work on. So instead I've opened up this here blog of mine to talk about stuff that's on my mind.

As of right now, I do consider what I'm doing to be procrastinating. I very easily could turn my phone into a mobile hotspot and use that to gain access to the things I need, or bring the blockages to the attention of someone who could fix them rather quickly. Instead, I quickly came to my blog to spend the next few hours writing out some posts that I've been wanting to do for a while. (Don't worry, I'm planning on going to the library after eating dinner tonight to work on my homework using that WiFi)

Last Christmas Break, I got all of my hair cut off into a cute little pixie cut, that I really loved and was really excited about. Ever since I first got it cut, I've gotten my hair cut every 4 weeks to keep my hair at the right length to be styled without looking awkward. However, now that I've come to college, I've had to set up my own hair appointments, and find my own hair salons that aren't overly pricey. Preface this by saying, my hair is naturally very thin and it show every cut that's made on it. Essentially, it's a hairstylist's worst nightmare. My first time going to the hair salon I found here, my stylist told me repeatedly how hard a time she was having getting my hair to look nice as she was cutting it. After she was able to get the hang of how my hair "works", I felt more confident going to her to get my hair cut. (No way did I want to get a bad haircut in college and have to live with it for 4 weeks!)  However, this stylist has an extremely different work schedule from my own schedule of availability, so after my last haircut the only opening she had was 2 months away. Not wanting to wait longer than 2 two months to get my haircut, I asked to be put on the waiting list for other appointments in case someone cancelled so that I could come in.

*sigh* There have not been any cancellations that have matched up with my schedule. So, a week from today I'm going to be getting my haircut.

At the moment, my hair just bothers me, because the "shape" of it isn't right because of the length. I typically curl my hair slightly to give it a bit of volume, but it's too heavy for that type of styling now! So it's basically long and floppy and very annoying!

I'm actually debating about whether or not I should just keep letting it grow, only get it cut to get it reshaped to that it's less awkward.

Growing my hair out and having it short is always a hard decision for me, because there are things I like and don't like about how I look with my hair either way... Oh well, that's a topic for another time!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Podcasts, Podcasts Everywhere!

I know that they may not be growing in popularity very recently, but I've absolutely adored Podcasts for about a year now. Originally, I was really into audio books, and I'd check them out from the library up the street from my house in large amounts. When I was in my Senior Government class in school this past school year, my teacher got me hooked on a podcast that was new for the year (I'm going to talk about it when I give the list). Then, for graduation, my parents got me an Iphone, which has a podcast app downloaded on it! Needless to say, I've been putting the app to good use...

This podcast is produced by This American Life, and is voiced by Sarah Koenig. Currently, there is only one season (12 Episodes) of this podcast that has been published so far. This podcast covers a nonfictional court case because of the Murder of Hae Min Lee in 1999. Seriously, even if you hate podcasts, you'll love this one. Serial was introduced to me by my Government teacher, and after she did I binge-listened to all 5 of the episodes that had been published at the time. Every time a new one would be published, I'd listen to it as soon as I possibly could. This is the type of podcast that you'll want to throw against the wall and stop listening, but your ears will be too glued to the action to let you stop or give up.

After I finished listening to all of the Serial episodes, I had to find a new obsession! So, after looking through all of the "suggested podcasts" I discovered Lore! It's my current obsession. It's a bi-weekly podcast created by Aaron Mahnke where the truth behind popular horror characters and events are revealed. The tag-line that goes along with the podcast is "Sometimes the truth is more frightening than fiction". Now, I know that makes it sound like something terrifying and undesirable, but trust me, it's awesome! To me, this podcast isn't as scary as much as it is factual and (occasionally) pretty disgusting, which is partially why I enjoy it. I'm the kind of person that gets nightmares from 1960 Horror Flicks, so if this was too scary I wouldn't be able to listen to it. The way I look at it, it's sort of like figuring out how a magician does his/her tricks. It's enlightening.

Being the average white girl that I am, I love John Green's books (I was originally interested in this podcast because I recognized his name). However, this is now one of my favorites! This podcast is essentially John and Hank Green answering the random questions that people send in, and giving us some "News from Mars". The way the answer the questions is both honest and hilarious, so during the weeks that Lore doesn't have a new episode, I'll listen to Dear Hank and John. If you're looking for a podcast to start with, I highly recommend this one because it's easy to follow, and missing an episode doesn't impact your ability to understand what's going on. Plus, it's hilarious, so who wouldn't love it?

Along the same lines of Lore, this podcast is about a woman named Lia Haddock working to uncover the mysteries around Limetown, a town whose inhabitants all disappeared even though it was under surveillance. Haddock meets some survivors and is runs into a lot of road blocks that only make you want to listen more. This podcast is slightly unnerving and had led to a lot of frustration because I really want to know all the answers. If you're like me and you like an awesome, thrilling mystery then this is the podcast for you!

This podcast doesn't have a specific topic or theme, but it's always hilarious! Jenna and Julien talk about random things ranging from Kanye West to MMA, and they occasionally have guests to talk about things like Serial Killers and Clubs. Basically, they'll talk about anything they want. It's really similar to the Dear Hank and John podcast, but they don't answer questions, and there's more celebrity gossip and swearing.

What are some of your favorite podcasts? Should I check any of them out? Let me know!

Thursday, October 8, 2015


The building that I'm currently living in at my school was built in 1936, which essentially means that the architecture and the fixtures in the building are incredibly beautiful and old. In each of the rooms is a radiator. Yes, a real one (here's a photo).

Radiators aren't very common, so I'd never been around one or had one in my room before. I moved in when it was still fairly hot outside, but now that it's the fall and it's been getting a lot colder outside, they turned on all the radiators in the building. Now, that's all well and good, except for that fact that they turned them on in the middle of the night and that I had no idea that they made noise. So, in the middle of the night, I was woken up by what I thought was someone breaking into my room through the window! (the radiator in my room is right under my window) I jumped up out of bed and frantically tried to find something to protect myself with before approaching the window to confront my imagined burglar. After looking out my window and seeing that no one was there, I realized that the loud thumping noises were coming from my radiator! That was one of those times that I was glad I didn't have a roommate because I probably looked like a crazy person in my boyfriend's shit and a pair of shorts, with my hair messed up, wielding a medium sized flashlight.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Buses Aren't My Friends

After moving into my dorm, my parents took me to the store with them several times to pick up things that I'd need (like food and contact solution) so that I'd be stocked up and wouldn't have to worry about getting to the store for the first several weeks of school. Now, that's all well and good, but the only way to get to the store is to ride on the public buses.

Where I'm from, only scary people ride the public buses and have bus passes, so I'd never been on one before and I had no idea how the routes worked. I googled the routes and picked the ones that would work the best in getting me to and from the store with my groceries and then I waited at the bus stop outside my building to start my new journey with the bus system.

As many of you know from my previous posts, I get motion sickness. As soon as I boarded the bus, I knew that I was going to have a really hard time not dying while I waited for the bus to get to the store where I'd get off. The buses have a been "wrapped" with a big decal that has the school mascot on it, which makes it so that you can't see out of any of the windows while you're on the bus. In addition to not being able to look out the windows, all of the benches in the front of the bus aren't facing forwards! Only a few benches in the back are facing forwards! Basically, it was a recipe for puke.

I sat as close to the front of the bus as I could, trying to look out the front windshield, and sat crooked on my bench so that I was facing forwards. At first, this helped and I was fine. Something they may not have realized when designing the buses is that it's easier to tell when you get off when you can see outside and look at the landmarks or street signs. When you can't look out the windows of this bus, you have to look at the lit up signs on the bus that stated where it was headed (they had one on the inside of the bus). However, reading moving words on a screen isn't what you want to be having a motion sick person do, so I got off at the wrong stop when I felt lost and like I was going to throw up.

I walked to the store from where I got off, and was very relieved when I got there because I could breathe fresh air and walk around at my own pace. I roamed the aisles looking for the things that I needed, and then I checked myself out (as in I went to one of the stations where you scan your own items and pay for them).

When I got out of the store, I walked to the bus stop that was right next to the store (as I'd planned) and looked on the pamphlet I had grabbed of the bus routes to make sure that I was getting on the right one. When the bus came, I loaded up my things and sat in the back in one of the front facing seats to see if the results would be better than they were when I was sitting in the sideways seats at the front of the bus. They weren't. I started to feel just as sick as before.

The longer I was on the bus, the more confused I got. According to the route map that I'd planned around, my stop was supposed to have been the 5th one, but the bus just kept going and going and none of the stops were at the right streets (this bus driver announced the upcoming stops over the speaker system). Even though I knew it wasn't a good idea, I looked at my pamphlet to try and figure out what was going on. As you can probably guess, I just got off at the next stop with all of the groceries.

My dorm was about a 10 minute walk away from where I had gotten off the bus, but 10 minutes while carrying groceries feels like hours! Especially when you have no upper body strength.

I made it back safely, and all of the things I bought were still intact, so that's good! Hopefully I won't have to ride the buses again soon.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Struggle with Motion Sickness

I don't know if I've said yet, but I'm prone to motion sickness. I have been ever since I was little. I've wanted to make a post about it for quite some time, but more recently I've been able to collect my thoughts in a way that made writing the post easier.

Recently, I went on a weekend road trip with one of my friends (who does not get motion sick) and I assumed that it would be perfectly fine because I would be in the front seat and able to look out the windshield. However, much to my dismay, my friend (who was driving) would ask me to do various tasks that involved turning around, cutting up fruit, making sandwiches and *puking noise* scrolling through the songs on her iPod. Long story short, I was green with anticipation for the end of our trip.

For the journey home at the end of the weekend, I ended up taking 4 Dramamine pills and I slept for several hours.

After this experience, I realized how little people who aren't prone to motion sickness know about it. I've been at the end of several nasty arguments with teachers as well as random others about the extent of my motion sickness and my need to leave the room, close my eyes, or open a window. Now, I know for a fact that I'm not an expert on the subject, but I do know some of the things that cause motion sickness, and some tricks on how to help manage it.

For me personally, there are a lot of things that cause me to get motion sick. Subtitles, ceiling fans, swivel fans, roller-coasters, car rides, things moving in the corner of my eye, flashing lights, reading while in a car, watching videos or movies that have a shaky camera, etc. (The things that cause motion sickness can vary depending on the person.) To the extent of my knowledge, things like that cause motion sickness because they confuse your mind/body. What your brain says you're doing movement wise, and what your eyes says your doing movement wise conflict with each other, resulting in vomit and other uncomfortable upsets.

The best way to prevent and to relieve motion sickness is to sleep. Now, I know that this isn't a very good way to handle it in some cases, because you can't sleep during a class or when you're supposed to be working, but it's something that I think is extremely important to know. I've gotten home and taken a short nap in order to stop my motion sickness so that I'd be able to do homework, or read in my room, or function at all for the rest of the day. But, if you're on a bus or going on a road trip, sleeping in the vehicle is the best way to avoid getting sick. Also, if you haven't gotten a full night's rest, you're going to be more likely to get motion sick. A fatigued body isn't going to fight off sickness as well as a rested body.

I've found that, when I'm thinking about motion sickness and what's happening in the moment that leads to motion sickness, I get sicker and am most definitely going to throw up. So, if possible, try not to think about it (Which is easier said than done). When I think about it, I make the effects more prominent, and a few times I've caused myself to gain some of the upsets just by deciding that something I was experiencing would cause them.

When in a car, try to sit shotgun or drive (the driver is the least likely to get motion sick). Look out the window in front of you and focus on one thing directly in front of you. When you get close to or pass the "one thing", pick another one. If you're doing that and you begin to feel the pangs of sickness, roll down your window and kind of lean into the wind. (This is especially effective if the air is a little bit chilly because it's more refreshing and calming.)

If you're watching a movie, or if there are fans, or something moving in the corner of your eye, closing your eyes helps the most. It gives the opportunity to concentrate on your breathing, and allows your body to relax and stop reacting to the conflict. In cases like this, fresh air can also be a good option if having your eyes closed isn't helping enough to prevent puking.

In my own experience, I've found that counting or singing a song in my head that has a consistent beat helps to take my mind off of the events at hand, and allows me to focus on something positive. While breathing deeply and singing in my head, I've prevented vomit several times.

The last thing I want to explain is the importance of eating good things. If you know you're going to be in the car a long time or doing some other activity that would cause you to get motion sick, don't eat a bunch of greasy foods that will upset your stomach sooner.

There have been times on bus rides and during videos in a class when I've explained that I'm motion sick and had people get angry with me anyway for not looking at them, looking out a window, having my eyes closed, or asking to leave the room or have a bit of time outside of the vehicle.

What are things that make you motion sick? How do you handle it? I'd love to know!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Don't Get Discouraged

A lot of things have been on my mind recently, one of which was the Major that I've chosen for myself for school. Now, I know what you're thinking "If you don't like your major, just change it! Pick something else", but I actually love my major very much. I've known my whole life that I wanted to go into Animal Management to be a Zookeeper in the future. My parents always knew too!

When I was growing up, I was given lots of dolls to play with, and (because my mom and my grandma sew) I had matching outfits with all of my dolls. My dolls and I both had full wardrobes. However, I didn't think that dolls were any fun. I'd change their clothes to match mine, and then I was bored and didn't know what to do with them. My whole life, I gravitated towards stuffed animals and pets. I'd have tea parties where I'd put all of my stuffed animals in a circle around me and gave them all miss-matched cups. Ever since my parents let me, I've had fish and hamsters and frogs and more hamsters and guinea pigs and hermit crabs! I've gladly taken care of our neighbor's chickens and dogs and cats! So, despite being so young, I had it all worked out.

Now that I'm older and actually beginning on my journey to becoming what I always dreamed, I've started to get discouraged. Although I know I'm good at it, I still feel as though I'm behind the others in my same area, which makes me wonder if I really did pick the right path for me. The cost of it all doesn't help. I got in to one of the top schools for this subject, which comes at a top price. It is worth the cost if I'm really not as good?

When I was in the 5th grade, we had a lady come in to our class every day for a whole week, whose entire job was to help us determine what we should be when we grow up. On the first day, she went around the room and had each of us say what we wanted to be when we grew up! I knew exactly what I wanted, so I was perfectly ready when it was my turn. But, to my utter disappointment, this lady (a professional) told me that it wasn't a real job, and that I should pick something else. Now, that sounds harsh, but I know that's what she said. It's bothered me for a very long time, so I hear it as clear as day in the back of my mind sometimes.

That all sounds very sad, but while thinking back on these things, I remembered a TED Talk that I listened to a long time ago (I went back and found it, I'll put it on the bottom of this post). In this TED Talk, Amy Cuddy talks about how it's possible to "fake it until you become it", and how you can achieve everything that you want to by doing a few simple poses.

I've been working on my confidence anyway, which wasn't helped by the discouraging feelings I've been having around school and what I'm trying to achieve, but I found this information really important. It also helped that one of her main examples is about her in college and another college student who felt like they were out of place in the school. When it comes to feeling discouraged, I've realized that I should use it as motivation to work harder and to do those Wonder Woman poses in my room and to go to class to have the best comment ever!

So, if you're feeling discouraged or out of placed, remember to "fake it until you become it" and nothing can stand in your way. As you've probably guessed, I'm definitely putting this to the test myself.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

A Chance To Travel: Follow-Up

So, as it turns out, travelling to work with Elephants wasn't as easy as I had originally thought.

The program had a really low cost, which is originally what made me so excited about it (most travelling volunteer programs cost thousands of dollars). It appeared as though the entire costs were the flight tickets. However, upon further investigation, it was revealed that I'd have to pay for my own air travel in order to attend, as well as paying for the program costs (which I'm now assuming cover food and lodging).

In addition to the newly discovered, extremely high cost, it was revealed that the group would only stay for about 4 days to work with the elephants, and the rest of the time would be devoted to sight-seeing and other adventures that would actually cost an additional fee.

Even though I was accepted into the program and had originally been really excited to go, it hasn't turned out at all how I pictured, so I won't be going to Asia this summer. Hopefully, in the future, other opportunities will pop up that will allow me to work with the animals that I love so dearly in a less costly way.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

My Job

As you know from reading someone of my previous posts, I had a very hard time finding a job in the summer, and eventually got one at school. My job at school is as a Service Worker, where I direct traffic and help at various other events.

So far, I've worked mainly at football games checking in the Alumni who have come in their RVs to attend the games. I work very long hours; on Fridays I work from 2:30 until 10:00 pm and on Saturdays I work from 5:45 am until about Noon depending on whether or not the person replacing me is on time. For the most part, people have been extremely kind, several have offered food, extra jackets, and blankets while I've been working (I haven't ever accepted because I'm not allowed to while working). There have also been some rather interesting people offering me alcohol while I'm working, which I of course said no to.

There have, however, been some people who were less than happy about me and my job. These types of encounters are the ones that really make the job hard. There's nothing more aggravating than being told you can't park somewhere, or that you can't take your car into where your RV is because you don't have a pass for your car. However, I wouldn't be very happy if I got in trouble for letting them in and lost that job that I worked so hard to get.

I think that the hardest part for me is the fact that I've never actually been trained. On my first day of work, I was given a radio and paired with a few people who, for the most part, knew what they were doing. At one point during my first shift, I was left on my own, which proved to be an interesting time for me. There were a lot of people asking for directions and asking where the general/free parking was, but because I wasn't trained, I had no idea how to help them, or where to tell them to go!

Later on in the job, after denying someone access to the lot because they didn't have a pass, I was informed that if they knew their check-in number that I should check them in manually and allow them to go into the lot... Oops... The rest of the time I was working that day, I did indeed enter in the check-in numbers for the people who hadn't printed out their passes and hoped that the people I had turned away would come back so that I could apologize and check them in. (They never did come back.. At least not while I was working.)

So far, I really love the people that I work with. They're all very understanding and upbeat people that are really nice when I ask them a million questions about the job. I also really enjoy being able to see so many fans of the school that I love so much, and to be able to take part in their cheers as they head to the games. I also enjoy that bagels that we get when we come in at 5:45 am on Saturdays.

Autumn has Come Once More

The days are beginning to get colder, and pumpkin spice lattes have once again because a staple accessory. People are pulling out their sweaters and boots, and the trees are beginning to take the hit and drop their leaves. I've started to consult the weather more because most days are starting off cold and ending fairly hot. When it comes to beverages, I've been gravitating towards hot chocolate (because I don't like to drink coffee) and so I've already broken into the big cylinder of mix that I brought with me when I moved in! My reserve of popcorn has also started to be used up. I joked to my mom the other day that my birthday presents when I'm home in November will probably consist of more hot chocolate, more popcorn, new shoes (I get a new pair for my birthday every year), and a box of those hand warmer pouches. My mom laughed and happily added that they'd probably get me some socks too.

I absolutely love the Fall, not because it's colder or because the days seem more calm, it's because I love the colors. Ask anyone, and they'll tell you that I've got an eye for colors. I don't know how, but I can always tell what the differences in colors are. (One time, I was with my dad picking out brown bathroom rugs and I held up two options, one that was more yellow, and one that was more gray. Later on that day, I found out from my mom that he'd been really impressed by the fact that I'd been able to tell how the two colors were different even though they were both brown.) So when all of the leaves start changing into deep oranges, vibrant yellows, and chocolaty browns, I could couldn't be happier!

When I was out and about, I took a moment to take some photos of the different leaves and trees so that I'd be able to share the glorious colors that I adore when this season rolls around every year.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

A Chance to Travel

In both my Animal Science class and my Biology class, a woman came in to talk to us about a volunteer program that takes groups of people to various places around the world to work with kids, or animals, or construction for two weeks in the summer. Being the animal lover that I am, I went onto their website to see the kinds of trips to work with animals that they're planning for this next summer.

To my absolute delight, they had a trip planned to go to Asia to work with Elephants! I absolutely love elephants! They're not my favorite animal but they have a lot of meaning to me. So, after staring at the application for a long time, I applied!

A few days later, I got an email saying that I was accepted into the group for the trip, and they had attached all the other information that I needed.

Now, that's all super exciting, but as soon as I read that I was accepted, I had this attitude of "Just kidding! I don't really want to do it!" because it's such an intimidating idea to me! I would love to go, and I would love to work with the elephants, but it would be such a long flight to a place that's really far away from people that I know and love.

When I was talking to my mom she said that my reaction to being accepted was really common, and that I shouldn't let it stop me if I do indeed want to go.

I've had friends who have gone of similar trips like the one that I applied for, but they were never working with animals. One went to help teach children English, another went to work in an orphanage to help with health care, and another went with her church to help set up church buildings in another country.

However, I've never been out of the country before! Which sounds kind of sad, but it's true. I've actually only been to a handful of states (the ones close by my own state), and I've only been on an airplane once (It was a 2 hour flight in a tiny plane). So if I did officially decide to go on this trip and pay them the flight costs, I'd be leaving the country for the first time and going on my first long air plane ride.

I'm not very worried about having access to electronics, because obviously I won't be able to use my phone while I'm there anyway because my phone plan only covers the United States. As long as there's a place to charge my camera batteries, I'm golden! It would be pretty cool if I could also make blog posts about it while I'm there, but I'd survive if it waited until after I got back.

I'll keep you guys updated on what happens with it!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Hot Yoga - Bucket List for College #4 Update

Before starting school, I made a list of things that I wanted to do during my first year. On that list of things, the 4th one that I had was to Take a Class (as in a fun class that's purely for my own enjoyment). I looked on the school's website for the Athletic Center to see what classes were being offered there since I had no desire to add another class on that counted towards my credits, and I saw that they had a ton of Hot Yoga classes for beginners.

After spending tons of time reading through all of the times and days, I finally found one that worked perfectly with my schedule. Excited, I signed up and put the class times in my planner. Before my first class, my dad helped me figure out where the building was on campus, and I laid out the clothes I was planning on wearing, my yoga mat, my water bottle, and my towel.

Then, the day for my first class finally arrived, and I excitedly loaded up all of my things and made it to the class 20 minutes early. I signed in and happily laid out my things in the front of the class, and waited for it to start.

What I wasn't aware of ahead of time was exactly how hot the room would be. Just sitting on my mat waiting for class to start, I was sweating like a pig! I wasn't even moving around yet!

After the class got started, I wished that I was in the back, because it turned out to be one of the few classes that wasn't actually for beginners... Oops! So I spent a majority of the class watching other people and sweating a ton. I can't imagine anything weirder than having a really sweaty girl starting at you for an entire hour!

However, after my instructor caught on to that fact that I was new, she started to describe the different yoga positions so that I didn't have to stare at other people as much. My instructor is really really good at what she does! By the end of the class, I felt so awesome! I was pretty stinky and sweaty, but I felt good!

After my first several yoga classes, I got a lot better at it, and I got better at remembering what the positions are so that I didn't have to worry as much about the descriptions or looking at others. However, I did discover that I'm not a very balanced person, so I have to readjust a lot throughout class to keep from toppling over.

There's something strangely satisfying about doing yoga in a really hot room... When you're dripping with sweat and holding a really hard pose, you feel really powerful and in control. It's like you've just run a marathon, and you're feeling the benefits of it. Does that make sense? It also makes your shower afterwards feel ten times nicer, because you really feel like you're getting a deep clean. You sweated everything out, and then you washed it all off.

I'm checking #4 off of my college bucket list! Hooray! I can't wait until I get to go back to my yoga class next week. I'll be so sad when it's over! I'll have to sign up for another one, I guess.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Red Lipstick - Being Brave

I wore dark red lipstick today. Proper red lipstick! And I wore it! On my lips!! For the first time in my life, I went out into the world with that very noticeable color on my lips. I've always viewed lipstick as the sort of thing that people wear when they're going out on a date, or going to a play. To me, it wasn't something that was wore casually or every day. So, because of my view of lipstick, I never actually knew that much about it. I didn't know what colors looked good on me, or how to apply it, or how to make it last for long periods of time.

Before coming to college, my friends and I went shopping for makeup. One of my friends didn't know what colors of eye shadow she should use, so we spent a majority of our time looking at palettes and single pots and at eye shadow primers as well. While we were there, I asked my other friend (who loves makeup, and is a wizard at applying it) to "teach me how to lipstick", which she was happy to help me with. She helped me pick out a lovely light pink shade (Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in the shade Elusive Insaissable) that she claimed would be good for everyday wear. Excited by this new revelation, I was eager to buy the lipstick. Jokingly, my friends picked out a dark red lipstick (Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in the shade Standout Remarquable, which also happens to be the color I wore today). I decided to buy that one as well, because my friends said that it would like nice with my complexion. However, it was the bravest color I had ever seen. I bought it with the intention of only wearing in private when I was feeling very daring.

Today, in my second week of college, I felt the right amounts of daring and confidence to be able to put it this dark lipstick on my face and wear it out into the world. After putting it on, before leaving my dorm room, I gave myself a bit of a pep talk in the mirror.

Ddddaaannnnnggggg, I look good! This color really does look nice on me. Hmmm... *smiles* Nope, none on my teeth. OOooooo It makes my teeth look super white! Ahh Yeah! *pose* Come at me world, I look great!

Then, I actually left my room.

Was that girl staring at me? I wonder what she thought... Right, gotta smile to show off how great this lipstick makes my teeth look. But wait... What if I got lipstick on my teeth after I left my room and I smile? Would someone tell me? Okay, no smiling until I can check. 

Yeah... So that's how my day went, for the most part. I count this as me being brave. It seems rather lame to be like I'm so brave because I wore red lipstick!, but for me personally, on my scale of not brave to brave, it was brave. I'm hoping that, eventually, the range of my scale will shift at some point so that wearing red lipstick doesn't seem as daring, and something like traveling across the global will be at the Brave end of the spectrum.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Leadership Camping Trip

At my school, I recently joined one of the leadership programs that's offered. The goal of the program is to receive a leadership certificate from the school, which really is only valid at the school, but I thought that it would be a good way to make friends without going too far out of my comfort zone, so I signed up!

This past weekend, everyone in the leadership program went on a camping retreat, which was super awesome, and way colder than expected! At the meeting to prep for the retreat, they stressed the awesomeness of the water activities that were available, and the beauty of the nearby woods that we could hike in and explore during free time. 

However, after we actually got to the campsite, it was about 50 degrees, which was quite the change after having 90 degree days for the rest of the summer. We got off the buses in our shorts, sandals, and t-shirts, and were immediately rushing into the cabins to warm up. I don't think I've ever been happier about packing a sweatshirt and a heavy duty sleeping bag!

Fun fact, I did indeed bring a sleeping bag with me to college. Like, a legit sleeping bag that you'd use for real actual camping. I brought it because, when I visited my friend who was at her school's summer advantage program, she had a sleeping bag, which made it more comfortable for me to be there on her dorm room floor. I don't know how soon my friends will be coming to visit me, because it's an extremely long drive, but I figured that it wouldn't hurt to just have a sleeping bag in my possession.

Now, the type of camping that was happening on the retreat was no cell service, with the bathroom with working plumbing and electricity is a bit of a walk from the cabins. It wasn't at all the kind of camping where no one showers, and you become "one with nature".

We were split into groups based off of where we live on campus, so I was able to befriend the 19 people in my group who all live fairly close to me, and participated in a bunch of icebreaker activities that were out of my comfort zone.

We did the Human Knot game, where you get into a fairly large group and grab hands with the people across a circle from you to get your arms in a huge knot, and then you have to work together to untangle your arms while still holding hands.

Basically, you stand uncomfortably close to people who all (hopefully) smell nice, and hold hands with them while you argue about who should go under who's armpit to untangle your arms. Which, for me, was more uncomfortable and awkward than funny.

One of my favorite activities that we did was when we were split into group of people who were the same leadership types as us to build a tower out of spaghetti noodles and marshmallows. We all figured out very quickly that it's really hard to make things work out when you're in a group of people who are the same type of leaders as you. All of the people who have the mindset of "I should lead. My way is the best way. Follow what I'm doing." all got frustrated and started working on individual towers by themselves.

All of the more free spirited leadership types ended up making a small "house" that they colored on with pens. Theirs fell over, and they viewed it from the perspective of "Oh well! It was fun to do, and we at least tried it".

I was in a group with people who are very organized, analytical, and quiet leaders (Just in case you didn't catch that, it's my leadership type). We spent the whole time organizing our noodles from tallest to shortest, drawing out what we wanted out final tower to look like, and then spent the rest of the time breaking up the noodles to be the right lengths and deciding how to break up the marshmallows so that we had enough to attach the noodles together.

After that activity, I was kind of amazed at the fact that it was so hard to work with people who were really similar to me. Clearly, I was wrong when I went into the task with the mindset of this is going to be perfect because we'll all understand each other and look at the situation the same way. 

What that activity taught me is that everyone in a group is a leader, they're just different types of leaders, and in order for the group to actually function properly, it's important to have someone from each of the different leadership groups.

Now, I know you're all wondering how the water activities that were stressed so heavily worked out when they were actually allowed to happen.

The day of, it was raining. We were inside the whole morning instead of outside because of the intense amount of rain that was pouring down on us. However, when swimming time came around, the rain had stopped! Everyone rushed to get into their swimsuits, and went down to the water as quick as they could. Several people immediately went up to the Zip Line that ended in the water. Much to their surprise upon jumping off the dock or going down the Zip Line, the water was freezing cold because everything about being outside while we were there was cold.

Most of the people who got into the water got out of it pretty quickly, and substituted swimming for paddle boarding, or canoeing that are more out of the water. Several people went down the Zip Line once, and then they had their fill of the water and went back to their cabins to change into warmer clothes.

I was one of the smarter people who didn't want to get pneumonia that stayed on the beach and watched people go down the Zip Line. I also took tons of photos, which I really enjoyed! When it comes to water activities, there's an endless amount of things to take photos of. I'll be posting some of the photos that I took in my next post on Thursday, so be looking out for them! 

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Avoiding the Cafeterias and Making Friends

During this week before school starts, I've had a hard time getting myself to go and eat in the cafeterias here on campus.

So far, I don't have any friends here. I know about 6 people, some of which went to my same school back home, but they were never really apart of my group of friends. Making friends isn't particularly easy for me because I'm uncomfortable going up and talking to random people, having actual conversations with someone I've just met, and being in front of other people alone (i.e. sitting alone at a table eating food).

The friends I had back at home are all very outgoing and inclusive people, so they weren't deterred by the fact that I was really quiet at the start of our relationships, and persisted until I felt comfortable with them and was able to be myself around them. They also provided me with the ability to not be alone in public. However, they didn't come to college with me!

I've set the standard for myself that I'll at least say Hi to people that I pass by. It seemed simple enough. People say Hi all the time when they walk past each other! Who knew, maybe they'd become my friend after I'd said Hi to them a few times in passing.

However, being the person that I am, I instead found myself staying in my room more often, and waiting until everyone else had left the floor or was in their room before venturing out to the bathroom or out onto campus so that I wouldn't have to say Hi to anyone.

A few nights ago, I was invited to a "Girls Night" where it was advertised that there would be a movie, facials, and the girls who came would get their nails painted if they wanted to. Now, this was exactly the kind of activity that I was prepping myself for. Because of the movie, I wouldn't have to talk to anyone for a very long time. I'm good at painting nails, so i figured that that would be a great way for people to get to know me without me having to talk to them.

As the time got closer for the event to start, I got more and more worried about it even though I was originally really excited to go. I told myself that I shouldn't arrive right on time because then I'd look to eager. I'd need to arrive fashionably late. However, "fashionably late" turned into "really really stinkin' late", but I ended up making myself go even though I was so late because I assumed that they'd all be focused on the movie and on doing each other's pamper things.

I was wrong.

I went to the room the event was meant to happen in and found out that the girls in there were apart of a sorority, and the Girl's Night had been moved somewhere else. Then, after wandering around the building getting really sweaty and upset, I found a Lounge area in the basement of the building where a large group of girls were watching a movie. Assuming this was the place, I opened the door to the room to walk in. I was behind all of the girls, who were focused on the movie in front of them, so I figured that I'd be able to come in and sit behind them all without anyone seeing how late I was.

To my dismay, the wood floors in the Lounge area let out earsplitting squeaks with every step I took! Everyone in the room turned around to stare at me, which was exactly what I was trying to avoid! I looked down and fast-walked to a chair, which also made noises as I pulled it to face the movie so that I could sit down. After everyone's attention returned back to the screen, I wished that I could get up and leave because I didn't see the girl who had invited me in the crowd and I told myself that I'd walked in on the wrong group for the 2nd time.

The movie ended soon after I got there, and I ran out right after the first few girls left and I knew it was okay to leave.

I was talking to my boyfriend about it, because it was bothering me that I was so unable to make friends on my own, and I get so upset in social situations where I don't know a single person. He told me that it's okay to make friends at my own pace, and that it's not a bad thing to wait for the outgoing people to befriend me like back at home. So, since then, I haven't been forcing myself to talk to people or to go in public on my own. And, actually, it's made it easier for me to say Hi to people when I pass by them because I'm not forcing it. I'm just letting the Hi happen when it happens when I go by!

Maybe I'll trying facing the Cafeterias next...

Friday, August 21, 2015

"Adulting" at College

So, on Sunday, I loaded everything I had spent a month packing for school into our Van so that my parents and I could leave Monday morning. After essentially playing Tetras with all my boxes and my bike, we were able to get everything organized, and I went to my friend's house for one last night with them. We made cookies (Which I ended up eating all by myself), and watched Leap Year, which is one of my all time favorite movies!

On Monday morning, my friends came over at the awful hour of 7:00 in order to see me off! We hugged and took photos and talked about how exciting it is that we're all going to start college soon. (Out of my friends, I was the first one to leave for the Fall, one of my friends had stayed for the Summer Advantage program at her school, so she'd already experienced some college life).

After driving for about 20 minutes on Monday, I got motion sick and we had to pull over. Now, that may not seem like a big deal, but the drive to my school is about 7 hours minimum, so getting sick that early on was a big let down. I didn't think that I'd make it! My mom, who's a Saint, let me take her seat in the front. (She gets motion sick as well, but she slept for a lot of the drive and was perfectly fine). We stopped for lunch in a tiny town that didn't have cell service, but had the most yummy burgers in the whole world (Or at least it seemed like it at the time). By that point, we were all sick of the drive, and more than ready to be at my school. However, we still had about 2 1/2 hours left to go.

When we FINALLY arrived, my mom went with me to check in at the Front Desk for my building to get my room key and the form for any damages that are already in the room. We then parked at the closest entrance, and started hauling all my things up the stairs. You see, my room is on the 3rd floor in a building that was built in the 1940's, so it doesn't have an elevator. I was extremely appreciative of my parents, who did a majority of the work getting my things upstairs so that I'd be able to hold open the doors and unlock the door to my room over and over.

After we got everything out of my car, my dad took a well deserved brake and my mom and I worked on hanging up my clothes, making my bed, and various other things that we needed to set up. My room started to look more normal to me after we laid out my big pink rug in the middle of the room. After that, the hardest part about my room was the sink that's in the front corner. Don't get me wrong, it's awesome having a sink in my room, and I love it! It's just that it has two faucets... One for hot water and one for cold water. So if I wanted warm water I'd have to try and mix the two in a bowl or in my hands! (I actually ended up getting a small plug for my sink that makes it a lot easier to make warm water).

My parents and I made several trips to the various stores to pick up some of the things that we hadn't known I'd need ahead of time. For example. my bed is really really tall. So tall, in fact, that I can't get into it easily! We went to the store and I got a step stool, which I hadn't originally thought that I'd need! We also got various things to try and get the smell of really really fermented perfume out of the dresser so that my clothes wouldn't smell gross.

Monday night, my first night in my new bed in the Dorm, I kept waking up in the night, panicked that I had rolled off the side of my bed! After sitting up rather abruptly, I'd see that I was still very much in my bed, and not at all on the floor. Then I'd go back to sleep. The second night (Tuesday Night) was much better, I didn't wake up nearly as much.

On Tuesday, I got a tiny Cactus plant that my mom named Sir Spike McCactus, and my parents checked out of their hotel and prepped to leave. While they were with me, I was actually really happy to have their help, but I thought that I'd be perfectly content when they left because I'd be able to become a real college kid! However, after we hugged several times and they drove away from me, I went back up to my room and cried (Which sounds kind of pathetic, because most people probably can't wait for their parents to leave!). However, I remembered that they're always just a call away, and that I'm capable of being on my own because of the things that they taught me when I was growing up.

I've been able to face time my parents and my other various family members to show them my room, and the building that I'm in. They've all been extremely supportive and excited for me and the adventures that I'm bound to experience.

Yesterday, I was able to face time one of my best friends (the one who went to her school's summer advantage program) and talk to her about what's been going on here, and what I think of everything so far. We talked for about an hour. I know we would have talked longer, but her phone battery died so we weren't able to.

I've been extremely thankful for smart phones and face time this first week of school!

Today, Friday the 21st, I've had a terrible day that involved sleeping in past a mandatory class and running around like a scared deer trying to fix it. It really set in that my parents aren't here to remind me to get places on time. This is most definitely going to take some adjusting.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

My Long Distance Relationship

My boyfriend and I met November 30, 2012, on a randomized chat website. We talked for hours on it, and were so worried that we'd hit the button ending our conversation accidentally, so we decided to give each other our phone numbers! It wasn't something that either one of us had done before, but somehow we both knew that the other person wouldn't take advantage of the other. We talked nonstop for months! Then, on February 8, 2013 we decided to become an actual couple even though we'd never met in person before.

The more we talked, the more we learned about each other, the more we liked each other. He somehow learned how to calm me down when I'm anxious, and what to say to cheer me up when I got sad. To my surprise, I was able to remember the names of video games that he liked, and I learned how to get through to him when he got angry or extremely sad.

After over one year together, we were finally able to arrange for him to fly up here to visit me! I convinced my parents to let him stay at our house so that he'd be able to stay for a longer amount of time, and set up everything that he'd need in out guest room.

On the 21st of May, 2015, we met for the very first time. He was originally supposed to come at noon, but because he was flying standby he was bumped until his Dad finally broke down and bought him a ticket on the soonest open flight, which meant that he would be arriving around Midnight instead. I stayed up until then, filled with nervous excitement, and could hardly handle it when it was time to go pick him up at the airport! The whole time I was thinking What if he doesn't like me in person!? What if I don't like him in person!? And then... He was there. It was real. It was actually happening.

We had over a week to spend together, and I took him to all of the different places that I love where I live that I'd told him about a million times. We spend quite a lot of time shopping, and he put up with carrying clothes for me at the promise that we'd going swimming later on so he'd be able to see me in a swimming suit! (Although I think he secretly enjoyed shopping with me).

The hardest part was saying goodbye at the end of the trip. He left before noon, and was back home before dinner that night. We got a quick hug in the airport before he went through security and was waiting for his plane to go.

To this day, we're still as happy as can be, and working on finding another time to see each other. Hopefully, I'll be going down to visit him this next time!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Paper Towns

Paper Towns by John Green, along with the Movie that was released, are both absolutely amazing! My boyfriend bought me a copy of the book because I showed so much interest in it, and I read it so quickly that I hardly needed to use a bookmark at all! Although the Movie didn't follow the book exactly, because movies rarely do, it still stick pretty closely to the original story, and the feelings evoked while watching it were the same ones that I got while reading it.

John Green has perfectly captured adventure, mystery, and an elusive amount of romance within Paper Towns. You'll laugh, you'll worry, you'll wish you could skip to the end! Several times, I wanted to take a peek of the end of the book to find out how the mystery and the bits of romance work out., but I knew that I didn't want it to end sooner than it had to! It was quite the inner conflict!

The book and the movie were both so well made!

While reading the books, and after hearing several of my favorite quotes from the books in the movie, I realized that so many of the things that I'm guilty of doing with other people were explained perfectly. Thinking that others are more than they are, looking at my life as if I'll somehow obtain happiness in the future after I've reached a certain point, and trying really hard to stay within my comfort zone. 

There's no way for anyone who enters the world of Paper Towns to help but absolutely love all of the characters. Everything that they do is so relatable! You feel as though you've joined in, and are searching for answers with them, and have become a member of their group of friends.

What was your favorite part of Paper Towns?
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