Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Give Thanks, Please.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday (other than my birthday, of course), and this year, more than ever, I can not wait to celebrate it surrounded by my family.

My family has two Thanksgiving traditions: 1. Around the Thanksgiving table, each guest gives a schpeal about what they have done throughout the last year. 2. Someone in our family types up a questionnaire that each guest must answer about their year (This goes back to when I was 12 years can imagine that the answers from a 12 year old are much different than those of a now 20 year old).

Even through all of the rough times that my family has dealt with, Thanksgiving day has been a constant reminder of how close we are and how we will always support each other.

The other day as I was walking towards my car to go home for Thanksgiving break, I watched an elderly man pick garbage out of a campus trashcan. It broke my heart as I watched this continue and yet it made me feel so gracious that I had a warm house and a loving family to come home to.

This Thanksgiving, I ask you to really consider the change that you have gone through this year, and be thankful for it. Sometimes we forget to acknowledge the things that make us who we are and that make our lives so special. This Thanksgiving, acknowledge those things and enjoy your family.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Back By Popular Demand....

Things Marietta has taught me thus far:

Friends really can be second family: For the first time, in a very very long while, I feel as though I am surrounded by a core group of friends that I have quickly fallen head over heels for. And, for the first time in my life, I actually believe that the people that you meet in college will end up being your life-long friends.

It's okay to be yourself: Going into a whole new school, not to mention living with 7 other girls, I decided that being myself was the only way to survive in Marietta. Well guess what? I'm surviving and loving every minute of it.

The more you grow up, the more you need to handle things the adult way: So many times, the middle schooler in us wants to come out-- especially if you are in a conflict and the other person's middle school self is coming out.... Being the bigger person will always make you come in first. Especially if it smacks the other person in the face ;)

Get involved in your current community: Cliche, but incredible. There are so many things to experience, many of which probably sound stupid. However, the things that sound stupid, and the things that you originally really don't want to be involved in, end up being the funnest times of your life (Thanks for that, Mom!)

You don't need to date your girlfriends: Make sure that you are friends with people that don't constantly need your attention. You waste a lot of time trying to make everybody happy and life is too short for drama. You need to make sure that you are living your life, and that nobody is living their life through you.

"You can retake class but you can't relive a party": Self explanatory. Thanks Roomie Brittney Knellinger & Dan Hartman's FB status.

More to come I'm sure....It's gonna be a long year :)

Saturday, July 10, 2010


Though I was born in Pittsburgh, PA, the only time that I call myself a Steelers fan is when I am around my Pittsburgh family, or when I am feeling particularly loyal to my Steel City bloodline.

I am a Cleveland Sports fanatic. I guess that's why I teared up when Lebron James announced that he would be "taking his talents to South Beach" in the fall. Wow. #1, I can't believe that I am publicly admitting that I teared up due the "loss" of a sports figure and #2, I can't believe that LEBRON IS ACTUALLY LEAVING THE CAVS!

(I could go on about the latter for years, but I'll save you the unproductive arguments that would arise...)

Rewind to Thursday Night at approximately 9:28 P.M. Lebron announces his fate and Cleveland breaks out into pure and utter chaos. Surprise, surprise.

As Lebron headed into his free-agency, Cleveland headed into a protest era. Never, in my 14 years of Cleveland residency have I WITNESSed (no pun intended) this city pull together so tightly for one cause.

Billboards were hung everywhere, t-shirts were made and proudly worn, restaurants and businesses switched their promotion signs, the governor of Ohio lead local celebrities in a song and dance YouTube video; and all with one purpose: to remind Lebron of the love that Northeast, Ohio has given him, not just for the past 7 years, but for his entire life, and to convince him to stay and play where he belongs.

When Lebron announced his "decision", Cleveland was silent. It was as if God had come back to Earth and stabbed everyone in the back.

Looking back, that is kind of the shadow that Lebron cast over Cleveland, and I'll be the first to admit that I was under his spell. For the past few months Cleveland has literally worshiped Lebron James (not to mention the love that we gave him in the years that he has played here...oh wait, that was his whole life). Lebron, undoubtedly, turned into Cleveland, Ohio's own personal God.

This made me think. Where is God, and better yet, who is God, in my life? I can tell you one thing, "King" James is out of the running...

The college years and beyond seem to be a time for exploration. It's funny how many times in my life that I have thought that I finally know who I am and who I am meant to be. Is it possible to ever truly and certainly know yourself? Doubtful. You, like the rest of the world, are forever changing.

It's funny to me, that even though I have pretty much morphed out of my "go to church every Sunday, I love church retreats more than anything in the universe" self, I've found God in a different way; a very un-Lebron sort of way.

I've realized that even without going to church and/or without being very "religious" (at the moment), there are other options to fulfill the need in life for belief in a higher power. Praying when convenient for you, or when you need it the most is refreshing (especially because it isn't early on a Sunday morning after your parents have forced you to attend the earliest service that your church conducts). Knowing that there is someone watching over you at all times feels safe. Being spiritual, so to speak, is A-OKAY.

This is not to say that Sunday morning church isn't beautiful and moving. As the granddaughter of an Episcopal priest, and the daughter of an Episcopal Youth Minister, I will forever refer to myself as an Episcopalian, and will forever feel rejuvenated at a church service. What I have come to realize, though, is that it is perfectly okay for me to conduct worship that is between me and God, alone, and in the comfort of my house, my room, and even more conveniently while laying in bed on Sunday morning before I start my day.

What's so special about this is that it is personal. When you are "spiritual", God Time, though always convenient for God, becomes convenient for you, as well. Afterall, unlike Lebron, God will never leave you hangin'.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A Little Catching Up.

It's amazing how much can happen in the course of a second, minute, or hour. Yet, when I think about all that changes over the course of a month or year, my mind boggles and I can't help but to think about what is yet to come.

Unfortunately, it has never been easy for me to just roll with the punches. I constantly want the answers to every question in my mind. I guess (I'll never admit that I know) that's why change is so stinkin' hard for me.

A little over a month ago I was all set to attend Ashland University in the fall. I had made the dance team, I had a room mate all lined up (I LOVE YOU ERIKA !!! ), and I was going to be 50 minutes away from my mother-- what more could I ask for? Yet, I will never forget opening up the piece of mail that would change my college experience forever.

It's amazing how much money can change plans. Marietta College offered me $10,000 more than Ashland could. And, when I took the financial argument to Ashland's financial aid department, they admitted that they could not compete with the offer.

Did I mention that I HATE change? Did I mention that my boyfriend of 2 1/2 years, and my best friend both go to Marietta? Yeah, there's change for you; Did I mention that I HATE change?

I lingered on the decision for days. Okay, weeks. I kept asking for extensions, for more time to allow my mind to sit on the pro's and con's list that I had formed in my head. The biggest surprise to most people was that my boyfriend/best friend combo actually fell onto my con's list. If you know me, you know that I like to be an individual and have individual life experiences. If you don't know me, you just learned a fun fact.

I was sitting at my desk, financial aid packages scattered out in front of me, phone in hand, texting my mom. I was complaining that I hate decision making. If I remember correctly, she was reassuring me, in the nicest way possible, that money was a humongous factor in this decision. My next text back to her was "I am a Marietta Pioneer!"

WHAT! I made a decision? How? My fingers moved and my mind hadn't caught up to them yet.


I'm alive. No decision that I have made thus far in the whole transferring process has killed me. I still have feeling in all of my limbs and I can still get out of bed in the morning without an ounce of regret. I know that Marietta is the place for me and there is no doubt in my mind that I will thrive there. Sometimes, time tells all. My fingers moved because they knew what my heart wanted.

If I've learned anything from this whole process it's that life goes on. Will it change the way that I make decisions in the future? Probably not--that's just who I am.

"If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans."

Monday, May 31, 2010

People's Choice.

Recently, I set my facebook status to "I need to write a new blog post. What about?" Never did I imagine that I would get 11 answers.

When I think about my life, I often think about the struggles that I've dealt with, the adventures that I've been on, and the love that I've felt. All of these have one common denominator: the people that I've met on my journey thus far.

People often tell me that it amazes them at how many people that I seem to know, or at least be acquaintances with-- it amazes me as well. I find the amount of people that I have gotten to know through my 19 1/2 years of life fantastic. Though impossible to become best friends with everyone that I meet, I often wish that it were possible. Anyone who knows me knows that I love relationships, personalities, and the quirks that people possess.

With that said, it was kind of interesting that most of the responses to my status question were inside jokes, amusing remarks, or just plain out-of-the-blue. All of the answers made me laugh and reminisce-- most explaining my exact relationship with the person that wrote the answer.

Samantha Jones "sunshine and happiness": Although I've never personally met you in person, we've connected over facebook through out love for fashion, the environment, and our pure appreciation for the beautiful side of life. I smiled when I read your comment because it was typical of you. Never forget to love the sunshine and recognize happiness as it appears in life, which, I hope, is everyday.

Austin Buit, Brittany Cook, and Nate Potter "me": You guys would put "me" as an answer. Though I could go on for hours about each one of you, I will save everyone else from boredom ;)

Laura Amari "Wall-e": Wall-e and bio II changed my life-- as did you. I am so happy to know you and I want you to know that I really do look up to you. You know who you are and you won't change for anyone, I wish I could constantly say the same about myself. Stay true to yourself girl. Wall-e taught me, in a round-about way that sometimes you don't have to say anything to get your point across. And Bio II, well, that taught me that I hate training animals to do stupid things.

Daniel Parker "relationships": Funny that if it weren't for relationships, I wouldn't know you. Also, I have to quickly apologize because dating Mehgan is kind of like dating the both of us at once... You're a good guy, and though you, Mehgan, and I have had our rough patches, I know that you are truly worthy of the presence of both of us ;) Relationships will never be easy, but that might just be the best part of them. You need to work everyday for the best things in life. That way, you can see your progress. If you want a longer explanation, read my previous posts.

Michael Bennett "blonde hair superiority": You have, and will forever be, my best friend--since we were blonde bombshells at age 2 to being the less-blonde version now. I have never regretted going back to my blonde roots, just as I will never forget that family is the most important thing in life. Without you, I would never have gotten through the hard times that I have overcome. And, with this major decision of college over my head, at least I know that the superiority of being blonde is on my side ;)

Jillena Arendt "Wallace Lake": Wallace Lake is what brought us together, and I am happy for that. Funny that I never thought that I would actually look forward to going to work until Wallace Lake came into my life. Summer is about kicking back, going to the beach, and making memories--and while Wallace is not as picturesque as the above sentence, it'll do. Here's to summer lovin' and a gross "lake" to call home.

Darren P. Lorenzi (and Danny pt. 2) "waka flacka flame and his influence on the 18-25 culture": Of course I wouldn't understand what this means, but I wouldn't expect anything less. Frankly, I don't have the time to even figure out what this means, but you probably don't expect me to. You were probably just saying it to confuse me and to make my eyes roll. Congrats :) Thanks for the smile, babe. I wouldn't be the same without you.

Eric Luebke "Jose Leonel Canales": Jose deserves his own blog, not just a portion of one. But, with that said, I probably will never ever write him his own blog. So, I'll just thank him here for the laughs, the frequent "what the hell did he just say's?", and the tornado dance.

Mommy dearest "souse!": Only unworthy men use the word Souse. Remember that. Some people aren't worth your time, your attention, or even your annoyed moods when they've pissed you off. Men who use Souse fall into this category...although I will, until the day that I die, give him credit for my realization of this.

Relationships find their way into your life in the strangest ways. Be thankful for the people in your life, and remember that the love and interaction from human to human is the way that the world keeps turning.

P.S. Happy Memorial Day.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Are you rich?

While an economic crisis is among us, many people find themselves cutting finances and equipping their budgets for what might happen next. But not Jill Zarin. You may recognize her as one of the main ladies of The Real Housewives of New York.

The show, a guilty pleasure of mine, depicts the lives of a handful of well-to-do women and their families surviving in NYC. I've always looked to this show as a no-thinking-needed source of entertainment drama, but I most always find myself jealous of these women and the "Sex and the City" lives that they lead. Today, I changed my mind.

I've tried for 20 minutes to find the exact interview online to share with you, but I have failed. I hope that my depiction works almost as well.

BBC on Sirius Radio went on "tour" interviewing people on how the economy is hurting their lives and what adjustments they have had to make. Let me just warn you, Jill Zarin's adjustments might make your jaw drop.

Maybe it was the fact that she had to reduce her charity event tickets to, at the least, $300. Maybe it was because she considers marrying into the Zarin name (her husband is an incredibly wealthy NYC fabric guru) "working her way to the top". Or maybe it's her father's words of wisdom that she follows on a daily basis: If you spend less than you have, you will always be rich.

Let me tell you, ripped her apart on that one, saying, "I'm pretty sure that a mother of two working three jobs with $50 in her bank account doesn't feel rich."

Or how about this gem? “Considering the economy right now, I don’t think it’s appropriate to spend a fortune of money on my birthday present.” — This would be a great lesson if the gift she had settled on wasn’t a $16,000 purse. Later in the episode, Jill’s husband got her an SUV to round out this “frugal” birthday.

Dear Jill, you have officially made me sick. As far as I am concerned, you should stop giving financial advice. You have not met my family, nor do you have any idea of the struggles that we, even just as middle-class people, go through. Nor do you have ANY idea of the struggles that people are going through in the classes below us.

My mother, a youth minister in one of the worst neighborhoods of Inner-City Cleveland, is in-love with her job. She is also in love with being a mom and raising three teenage kids. How she supports us on a youth-minister's budget I will NEVER know. But, if you ask my mom if she's rich, she'll say yes.

My Mom has always told me that rich has many different meanings: money-rich is just one.

After ranting on, I've realized that I just feel sorry for Ms. Zarin. Through the many shows and interviews that I have watched involving her, not one has shown her indulging in the richness of family, love, struggles, or exploration, where money is not involved. Though my family may not be financially rich, we indulge ourselves in the above riches every single day.

I will always have a backbone because I know that it is like to struggle and to make it without financial stability. I have felt what it is like to love and be loved without money involved. I have been able to have fun with my friends in a Wal-Mart parking lot, without having to spend $300 for entertainment. I know what it is like to be rich without money. I think that is as rich as you can get.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Puppy Love.

I read a pretty interesting quote today, "the best relationships are centered around lust."

I'm not quite sure if the nineteen year old college freshman that posted it on HIS facebook status meant it the way that I took it, but here are my thoughts:

I've been wanting to write a blog about puppy love for a while. Until recently, I always believed that puppy love is that little kindergarten crush that you have on a boy or girl in 6th grade; the one where you hold hands, get butterflies, and honestly believe that you have the potential to spend the rest of your life together. But does puppy love ever have to end? Can happily married couples be in puppy-love? I think to be a happily married couple, puppy-love has to exist.

It's kind of like the honeymoon stage of a relationship: Boy and girl (or girl and girl or boy and boy) meet, are instantly attracted to each other and for the next 3 months are connected at the hip and constantly giggly and obnoxiously involve themselves in gross, annoying PDA. Yet, after the 3 month mark, the honeymoon either ends or continues, as does the relationship.

This quote made me think a lot as well as analyze my own relationship. The if the relationships that continue on past the honeymoon stage are strong enough, the lust of puppy-love has to exist.

Not to get mushy, but I can honestly say that I still get butterflies around my boyfriend of almost 2 1/2 years. The two of us have been through some uneasy obstacles through our relationship, but I believe that if it wasn't for the lust and the ongoing puppy-love that exists between us we wouldn't be where we are today.

At the retirement home, I constantly see husbands pulling out chairs for their wives of sixty + years, holding their hands as they walk slowly through the hallways, and not to mention, arguing stupidly like couples always do. Things like this are the crutches to many relationships. If puppy-love stopped in 6th grade, two residents of the retirement home (both in their late 80's, maybe early ninety's) wouldn't have just gotten engaged.

Be in a relationship with someone who makes you smile, gives you butterflies, and who takes care of you. Make sure that you never lose sight of the lust that you felt when you first met each other. On the other hand, be the same way to your partner. Never lose hope in puppy-love.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Hi Mommy!!

Ok, so I'm copying off of my mother who was up at the crack of dawn writing a blog about Mother's Day on her brand new wordpress account. You should check it out none the less:

I guess I've always just seen Mother's Day as any other day because I can honestly say that I celebrate my mom's presence in my life every single day. With out the amazing, beautiful, talented, smart, and absolutely hilarious woman that I call my Mom, I would, for one, not be here, nor would I be as spectacular as I am today...

My Mom has been through some tougher situations then I could ever imagine having to go through while raising three children (and a dog). Though I know of many times when she has wanted to throw her hands up in the air, say she quits, hop on a plane and run off to the Bahama's and find some hot Tiki-Hut man to sweep her off her feet--she never did. As a fighter, she would never allow herself to quit.

Maybe that's what being a Mom is all about-- persevering through hardships so that one day your kids can look back on your life and say "Wow, Mom did all that for me?" I am kind of sad that we need to put aside one day a year to recognize the hard work that Mothers do.

I know that my mom celebrates me daily by making sure that I have food, shampoo, cable TV, and the coolest cell phone possible. The least I could do is return the favor ;) Enough with May 9th; Make everyday Mother's day. I love you Mom!

P.S. The only reason that I DO like May 9th is because of one fabulous woman whom I get my amazing looks and fashion sense from: a BIG BIG BIG shout out to my Nanny. As well celebrating Mother's Day, she is also celebrating her birthday!! I love you Nanny, and this blog speaks to you, also. You are such a beautiful woman, and I am so lucky to be blessed with you as my Grandmother. You and Poppy did well raising my Mom, Aunt Melanie, and Aunt Jennie. They are such inspirations in my life, and not every girl can say that she has that many women to look up to.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


I just posted, and deleted a new blog. I can't really explain why deleting it was necessary, but something about it didn't settle right with me. The blog was on Bigger and Better things and what that has meant to me in the past versus what it means to me now.

I guess I deleted it because I didn't want to post something that I wasn't fully satisfied with. I'm still not sure what the definition of "bigger and better is"-- although I am sure that it means something different for everyone.

Getting a "just thinking about you" card from my Nanny yesterday gave me some good insight on life. It's the little things that prove to be bigger and better in some circumstances. [I Love you Nanny!! ]

Tonight, watching LA Ink, was kind of a slap in the face to wake me back up. I realized that there is STILL a part of me, as much as I may deny it, that wants the selfish, bigger, better, and richer lifestyle that I have never known.

I don't think that there's going to be an inspirational end to this blog. I'm not feeling very inspirational tonight. Sometimes you just need to write down your thoughts to hear truly hear yourself. Maybe that's all this is.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


I have a feeling that a lot of my blogs are going to end up being about one of the residents at the retirement home that I work at, but here goes it...

Everytime that I work, I am delighted to be able to serve one of the sweetest, kindest ladies that I have ever met in my life; her name is Shirley. I don't think I can think of one time in the 2 years that I have been working there that Shirley hasn't greated me with a smile, asked about my day, and told me that I was her "Million Dollar Girl." (This nickname origionally started because of my ear to ear smile that she adores, but recently, Shirley has made it clear that my Million Dollar Girl nickname has evlovled into much more.)

Thursday, I made a quick stop at work to take care of a few things. After doing what I needed to, I scanned the dining room and noticed Shirley sitting alone at her usual table an hour before dinner started. Without thinking, I went over to say hi and switched out an old container that she had been using for who knows what for a new, clean one. As I handed her her new container, she looked at me with the most genuine smile and said "Thanks baby, you really are my Million Dollar Girl. I hope you know I love you and that you are OK in my book". Taken back, I replied "Aw, Shirley, Thank you! I hope you know that I love you too."

Million Dollar Girl? Do I really live up to that nickname? As I walked out of work, this was all that was on my mind.

Impressions really are key. Do something nice for someone and they will thank you. Continue to do something nice for someone and they will think the world of you.

Shirley knows nothing about me outside of work, but that really doesn't matter to her. The simpliest things that I do for her, like getting her a new container while I'm not working or serving her dinner, have lead her to think so highly of me that she can say that she loves me, and in her own way, that who I am and what I do mean a lot to her. What an amazing feeling it is to be thought so highly of by an elder.

Shirley's nickname for me lead me to want to push myself harder to show my Million Dollar self outside of work. Lately I've realized that the little things that you do for people are what shape their impression of you. How hard is it to pick up a dropped pencil for someone, help someone mow their lawn, or return a lost wallet to its owner?

Remember: the little things add up into big ordeals. I challenge you to watch for little opportunities to make someone smile. Making a lasting impression on someone not only changes you, but it changes whoever you are helping because they know that they can count on you. Long lasting impressions never fade, they only grow into meaningful relationships.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Interact With Me.

Does everybody daydream like I do? What are you're aspirations? What makes you get up every morning? What scares you? What makes you smile?

I'm not asking because I'm nosey, I'm asking because I genuinely care. The only way that the world is going to become a better place is through human interactions. Communication is key. So, communicate with me :)

It's only fair that I communicate back, so here it goes.
-I want to fly.
-I want to be a fashionista.
-I want to make it rich.
-I want to make it poor.
-I want to live in NYC, London, and Memphis.
-I want to help people professionally.
-I want to make a difference in someone's life everyday.
-I often picture myself as a successful bussiness woman in a buzzing city with black, pointed toe stilettos, and a big Prada bag [which I would also use as a briefcase].
-Waking up knowing that it's going to be a lazy day and all I have to do is breath makes me happy.
-It makes me smile when I know that someone is thinking about me, when someone is proud of me, or when someone compliments me.
-I abide by this quote: "You will never remember what people do, but you will always remember how they make you feel."
-I'm scared of change, success, failure, windmills, and ghosts.
-I honestly believe that if I won the lottery, I would be afraid of spending all of my money, so I'd save it and work just as hard as if the money never existed.
-Anything about weddings gives me butterflies; often I dream about my own.
-I day dream about world peace and saving all of the little Ethiopean orphans.
-I save quotes that I hear and like because I never know when I'm going to need them to inspire me.
-Sunflowers brighten my mood, no matter where I am or what I am doing when I see them.
-People make me mad, they make me laugh, they scare me and they enlighten me. I could never live life alone.
-Trusting people scares me. I only trust 1 person outside of my family.
-I secretly want to be a superhero. I want to save the world.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


"Wrong baby, wrong baby, wrong, it ain't the end of the world don't you
worry pretty girl Cause now that he's gone baby gone baby gone you got nothing to lose, count the minutes if you want to. It won't be long til you find somebody new.

Come on now, everyone falls down, everyone crawls now and then, then they
get up again. You can cry if you want to, that's what we all do. But if you
think you'll never move on, you're wrong baby wrong.

Cry baby, cry baby, cry. Go on and let it all out, I ain't leavin' you now,
and we can fly baby, fly baby, fly. Let's share a bottle of wine, we can laugh
about the good times. And you'll know why baby, why baby, why it's gonna be all

Come on now, everyone falls down, everyone crawls now and then, they they
get up again. You can cry if you want to, that's what we all do. But if you
think you'll never move on, you're wrong baby wrong."

-Martina McBride, Wrong Baby, Wrong Baby Wrong

To me, country music speaks volumes. But that's really besides the point...

I've heard this song multiple times, but today, instead of being another break up song, I gave these lyrics another meaning. A special meaning. Perhaps it was because I was on my way home from Ashland University where I had just scheduled my classes for the Fall 2010 semester while driving behind a car with a New York license plate? (For those of you who don't know, I spent the Fall 2009 semester at Buffalo State College in Buffalo, NY and then transfered home for the spring semester.) Coincidences happen, but this one made me think.

I guess you could say that everything that went wrong in Buffalo trapped me into a "funk". I don't think you need details, but let's leave it at this: it wasn't a pretty time in my life. [Shout out to Christy, my amazing room mate, who did the best to keep me sane. I love you, best friend]When you hit rock bottom, it's safe to say that most people can not see the bright light at the end of the tunnel [thanks, Mom, for that analogy ;) ]. But guess what, I promise that bright light exists, you just have to allow yourself to see it.

Once you've realized that you're capable of overcoming life's tricky obstacles, tackle them. Start your expedition through the tunnel by enjoying the little things in life. Smile at a stranger, read a book outside on your deck, take your dog for a walk, pick a bouquet of wildflowers, clear your mind. Next, realize your progression. Without progression, peace will not exist. After that, where you end up is your desitny, and the only person in control of your destiny is yourself.

Examine the bigger picture: Life isn't perfect, honey. You're going to face conflicts. But it isn't the end of the world. Everyone falls down, but the strong stand back up and continue to live. It's okay to cry. In fact, let it out now because once you realize that you're going to be okay, all there is to do is laugh. If you can enjoy the laughter, small things, you'll be on your way.

I can proudly say that I am a long way from being the most content person on the planet. I'm still unsure of my destiny. I'm nervous about transfering again. I question my decisions daily. Sometimes, I still cry. But what I do notice is my progression. Four months ago I wouldn't have even wanted to committ to another four year college let alone see a New York license plate traveling in slow motion in front of me.

But today was different. Today I sang along to a meaningful country song blasting at full volume on my radio, driving through the countryside, wearing big sunglasses, and probably dancing embarrassingly alone in my car--but I was smiling the whole time, and genuinely happy. Four months ago, I would have thought all of the above sounded like a fantasy scene from a chick flick [the part where the girl leaves the guy after meeting him for the first time, or after a first date, and goes a little crazy by herself in her car...].

Don't allow "rock-bottom" to define you. The cool thing about life is that you are in control of it. The only way to go is up. Make it happen.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Take a Stand.

Why do people hurt other people? It often surprises me the joy that people get from the hurt that they inflict on others. What an awful, uncomfortable life they must live.

And why is it always that the victims of this hurt feel obligated to transform into the people that their abusers want them to be? Everyday, thousands of men, women, and children take harsh words and physical inflictions to heart-- believing whole heartedly that if they change, the abuse will stop. Have you ever been in a situation like this? Unfortunately, I think we all have, or will, at some point in our lives. If you don't, consider yourself very, very lucky.

Be the best you that you can be. Cliche as it sounds, it's true. There is only one you in the world, so find yourself. Don't let someone else mold you into the person that they want you to be. Our days are numbered, there is not use living in a world of "what ifs".

Abuse and cruelty are happening all around the world. Domestically, internationally, everywhere. To stop it, you must report it. Don't be ashamed, in a world like ours, the only person that you can trust is yourself. You are the only one who can create a safer environment for YOU. Don't think twice, act.

Peace, Love, Freedom. That's all you need.

"You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.
I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will live as one."
-John Lennon, Imagine.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


When I think about these past few years, only one word comes to mind: change. Last year: graduation, start college, transfer schools. Year before that: Became and adult, financial responsibilities, fell in love, apply to college. Year before that: First job. This year: bought my first car, moved home, apply to more colleges. All of these have one thing in common: growing up.

It's funny that as you're going through these changes, you sort of expect the people in your life to stay the same. You rely on the the people that you confide in to believe in you, to grow and change with you, to stay a part of you. Yet, realizing that most of those people aren't willing to be patient with your changes ends up being the biggest change of all.

I still have a lot of growing up to do (unfortunately that doesn't end at 19...) and I anticipate that losing and losing touch with friends who were at one point so much a part of my life will continue to happen as the years go on. In a weird way, I almost look forward to it. With change comes adventure, comes hardships, comes living life.

Until college, I spent a lot of my precious time trying to act "cool" to gain friends. I truly believed that it was okay if people walked all over me, as long as I had "friends" to hang out with after school or on the weekends. Yet, it wasn't until I began to lose those "friends" that I started to realize who I am as a woman, and who I could contiune to grow to be.

There are friends for a reason, friends for a season, and friends for life. Let people into your life. Those who are there for a reason will teach you life lessons. Those who are there for a season will bring you memories that you wouldn't trade for the world. And those who are there for life will become your family.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder

Beautiful inspiration is everywhere. If you open your eyes to it, you will be delightfully surprised at the amount of undiscovered beauty that surrounds you daily.

Recently, I visited a resident from the retirement home that I work at in the hospital. Pat, an eighty-some woman with more life in her than I could ever imagine in myself, suffers from dementia.

Seeing this woman, this amazing, lively, incredible woman strapped down to a hospital bed really opened my eyes to what life is about. I couldn't help but to imagine the life that Pat once lived; I can't imagine that she, nor her husband of 50+ years, would ever have dreamed that she would end up in this state of mind. Yet, all I could think about was what incredibly beautiful human beings the Stewart's are. Despite Pat's dementia, this couple works together everyday to continue to express their undying love for eachother.

For every person, beauty has its own definition. You can find beauty in a book, in a tree, in a baby (or in this case, in elderly love), or in a song. Beauty shines through in words, in feelings, and in imagination. I challenge you to open your eyes to what beauty really is. It's more than the dictionary definition, it's a part of everyday earthly existence.

Though the days become harder and harder, the Stewart's never think about giving up. True love exists through everlasting beauty.

Find Beauty. Live in Beauty. Believe in Beauty.