Monday, March 31, 2014

A+ Spring Break

I was so disappointed that we weren't really going to be "doing anything" over break. We had not vacation or day trip plans or anything so I was expecting to be bored or worse, have to spend all my time on school work. However, this break ended up being one of the best in a long time. Here are the top 5 moments:
  1. Seeing Claire! I got to roadtrip with her, go out to eat, visit a local farm/petting zoo and just hang out. I can't tell you how nice it is to spend time with my best friend. 
  2. Sleeping in...oh it was nice. In the summer and on breaks I typically wake up at 9:30 and watch TV/chill in my room until 11 or so. I love this time, it's so relaxing and peaceful. 
  3. Working on my "project" AKA the name I've given my resolve to watch all major gymnastics events from 1996-present. 
  4. E's birthday, it was such a fun party and I love celebrating with my family. Unfortunately E fell and "hurt" her foot on the morning of her bday so that set the tone for how her day went. She was a poor sport but came around eventually. 
  5. Taking OFF my flannel sheets and washing all of my bedding for spring. I also bought new sheets that match my comforter better, it was so nice to crawl into my bed and smell the fresh scent of detergent and feel the smooth sheets. 
Needless to say, it was a break of fun and simple pleasures. I cannot believe today is the last day of March, this month went faster than any month in awhile. Time flies!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Happy Birthday E!

Today is E's 15th birthday, I honestly can't believe she is that old! I remember very vividly the day she was born. It was warm outside and sunny. My grandma was at our house when M and I woke up and she told us that our mom was having the baby! We hung around the house because our new couch and chair were being delivered as well (haha). My grandma was a little stressed to be overseeing the furniture people and was really worried my mom would hate it. We got locked out of the house and my dad had to come home and let us in. I remember telling M to "keep her shirt" on as she was getting anxious. It was a phrase I'd heard on Arthur and my grandma though it was so funny.

Later on we went to the hospital to see my mom and E. I actually don't remember holding E for the first time, I've only seen pictures of it. I do remember being really excited to be a big sister and passing out pink "It's a girl!" suckers to my preschool class the next day.

I am so happy to be blessed to be a little sister and a big sister. I know it's not what you usually hear but I love being the middle child and I am so happy that I get the best of both worlds. I have had the immense pleasure of watching E grow up and come into her own. I really think she is starting to mature and lately we have been getting along really well. I look forward to the day when we are older and both moms and we can hang out with little Polly and Violet :)

Here is one of the pictures I put in the birthday collage I made for E's birthday and put on FB and instagram.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Claire and Grace Take on Tires, Georgia and Sheep

Last week Claire's mom Mary (who is my dads cousin) wanted to know if I could join her on the drive to go get Claire from school for spring break yestreday. Unfortunately, I was scheduled to work 7-3:30. I was really bummed because, what's more fun than a 2 hour drive with your best friend? So I headed into work with a heavy heart and low and behold, it was such a slow day that they sent me home at 11 so I was able to go!!!

The ride there was super smooth and when we arrived at the dorm building I waited in the car since Claire didn't know I was coming. When she came out and saw me she was SO excited and so was I. We both road in the back seat together. Mary wanted to stop at a big furniture store in the area before heading home so off we went. We got chocolate bars and some other household items there and returned to the car. Claire told us about the workshop she'd attended over the weekend at Purdue. Claire is studying to be a set designer and wants to design TV sets or Circ de Sole shows and I'm telling you, that girl is going somewhere. I know it with all me heart. She has the drive an the talent and she can do anything if she puts her mind to it.

Anyway, we were driving alone, about 45 minutes from home when a truck driver next to us beeped a few times and motioned that our tire was flat. Mary didn't believe it but Claire convinced her to pull over just to be safe, and sure enough, the left back tire was flat. We considered changing it ourselves, or pumping it up but in the end we called AAA and waited. We talked about names we liked, accents and we laughed a lot. I shared my snacks and even my water (a true rarity). The AAA man came and changed the tire in no time and we were on the road again. We did make miss one exit but other than that, everything was smooth. I got home at 8:40, tired but so happy to have spent the day with my best friend.

Today Mary was watching El who we haven't seen in awhile so M and I met them and Claire for breakfast and then went to a farm where we got to see baby sheep, lambs and pigs. They were so cute! Some of them had just been born. Clarie and I bonded with a lone sheep we named Maria. I rode back with Claire and we talked about the plantation she wants to own in the Georgia one day as her summer home. We'll make pies and have a peach orchard where we'll watch the sun rise and set. We'll drink ice tea out of mason jars and catch fireflies at night. I'll bring my kids there during the summers and we'll host 4th of July parties. I know it sounds far fetched but I wholeheartedly believe that one day Claire and I will be sitting in rocking chairs on the front porch of a sprawling house drinking lemonade and laughing together.

It was such a fun and simple day. I was bummed that I wouldn't be going on a vacation or trip over spring break but I've been having a great time just hanging out with the people I love and doing things that don't cost much at all!

I love you Claire, you're my best friend in the entire world!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

My (bad) Dreams

For the past 4-5 days I've been having bad dreams every night, I don't know why but I thought I'd document them:

Tuesday Night: 1st I dreamed that I was being held hostage in the bathroom of my towns old library, I did break free though and run to a librarian for help. Then I had a dream that some girls on my floor stole my moms afghan that her grandmother gave to her as wedding gift, stuffed it in the trash and cut it in half.

Wednesday Night: I dreamed that I had an adopted sister (who happened to be a little girl from Church) was being taken away from our family. The whole dream I was sobbing at my kitchen table while my parents worked out the paperwork with my adopted sisters new parents who were very shady folks. I woke up crying.

Thursday Night: I dreamed that we were sailing on Lake Erie and my dad almost drowned like what happened in North Carolina.

Friday Night: First I dreamed that we were having a party at our house and this creepy neighbor made his way inside, I tried to tell my parents that I just had a really bad feeling about him but no one listened. My second dream was the worst yet. I took E to school with me and some teacher went rogue and was shooting a gun everywhere and got E in the head twice. Once we got home we put E in M's old room and bed and I kept trying to call 911 but the phone kept cutting off reception so I ran across the street to my grandmas house and used her phone. Then I returned to E who had two bloody holes in her head but was coherent. I kept telling her that everything would be ok and then I ran downstairs to meet the ambulance and the dream ended with her neck and head being stabilized on a stretcher and she was loaded inside the ambulance.

Geez, I hope I can stop with these horrific dreams.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Welcome Spring!

Today is the first day of spring!! And it's my last day of school before spring break! Yay!!! Today is actually really gloomy, cold and cloudy but I have other ways to feel spring-y!

Yesterday I painted my nails using all of my pastel colors! It wasn't the best job I've ever done but I love all the colors together. They remind me so much of the these waffle blocks M and I had when we were little.

It took me forever to make these flowers to put on my door but I love how they look!
And finally, the print on my shirt today. A nice flowery pattern that really makes me excited for the real deal, I can't wait to see real flowers growing from the grass!

Happy Spring!!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Release Your Inhibition

Anyone else love that song by Natasha Bedingfield?? I know I certainly rocked out to it in 7th grade...

Inhibition is defined (from google) as: a feeling that makes one self-conscious and unable to act in a relaxed and natural way.

Ohmygosh, I have so much inhibition, I can't even explain. I don't know when I got to be this way. I was not like this as a kid AT ALL, I think sometimes I had so little inhibition that I was a bit crazy sometimes. And really, I'm very uninhibited a lot of the time now, like I'll do silly things out in public with my family or close friends and what not. But the inhibition I have in school, with my peers is really quite intense. I'm constantly worried about how I'm perceived, not necessarily how I look but more how I act or come across. I never want people to think I'm weird or stupid or rude. I honestly get so nervous when I talk to my classmates or even other people my age. Put me with adults and I can charm their pants off, I have no problem talking to patients at work or the nurses but I turn red as soon as I'm called to speak in class. 

It's so strange to me that I'm like this because before college I never was. I wasn't the most outgoing person in high school but I didn't stress about about the things I do now. I wish I could just start up a conversation with someone and not feel so nervous about it. I wish I had the sort of relaxed demeanor that allowed me to have tons of friends or have boys falling at my feet (haha). All I can say is I'm going to try and work on it. After all, doesn't everyone deserve to feel the rain on their skin? 


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Rays of Sunshine

I've been really stressed out about many things lately and just feeling generally overwhelmed in a way that I haven't for a long time. I had to meet with my TA after social psych class about some attendance stuff (I was sick and missed too many days). So I felt a bit defeated but then I walked outside and for the first time in 5 months I was able to shrug off my coat and just be in my t-shirt and jacket. The sun shone down on me as I began my way back to my building and then along came an older lady walking three dogs. One of them was a Boston Terrier like my Ruby and guess what her name was?? Ruthie! I talked to her for a few minutes and then continued on. I can't tell you how nice the warm breeze felt, I just felt peace.

People say that God works in mysterious ways and maybe that's true sometimes but I think He also works in very obvious ways. Like today, all I needed was that sunshine and that dog to give me a little encouragement that I could push through the tough times because, like the sun, He is always there. I can't always see Him or feel Him clearly, sometime there are clouds of struggle in the way but beneath it all, He is there! And I can make it through, I can be strong and I can relax even amidst the trials of life. I walked back to my room feeling so full, full of happiness and full of excitement for the future. I know there will always be something for me to stress about or dwell on, that's just life but I also know that there is always something to look forward to and strive for.

Even though tomorrow will be back to the winter gloom, I know better days are to come. I got a taste of it today and soon they will be here for good!


Monday, March 10, 2014

Have I Mentioned I'm Writing a Book?

Back in January I decided to start writing a book! This has been a dream of mine since I was very young. I'm taking things at my own pace and hoping to be finished within the year, maybe even by the end of summer if I really work hard.

I'm so excited about this because the storyline is really something out of my comfort zone as it's really more creative than what I typically write. The characters are slowly becoming more real to me and the process seeing everything unfold is going to so much fun.

So, I just thought I'd share and if it is ever published I promise to reveal who I am!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Scripture Sunday

"'For I know the plans I have for you', declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.'" Jeremiah 29;11

This is my favorite Bible verse of all time. Happy Sunday!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Fact Friday

  1. My pinkies are double jointed, Claire's are the same way. 
  2. I find water far superior to all other drinks.
  3. I'm not allergic to anything. 
  4. I have a deep love for the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants books. 
  5. I'm extremely ticklish, to the point of peeing my pants :)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for:

-The best sleep I've had in weeks (10 hours! I guess I needed it)
-Watching a movie in my Japan class
-Amazon Instant Video when Netflix fails
-A nice full lunch to enjoy momentarily
-A good head start on my Social Psych paper
-My parents coming to pick me up later
-Iphones, Ipads and laptops
-Finishing a book
-That spring is actually in sight!

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Word Wednesday

Writing Prompt: Tell about your proudest moment in life.

I have been proud of myself a handful of times. I'm happy with myself a lot but I think proud is a different type of feeling that can't be taken lightly. The proudest moment of my life (so far) occurred in May of 2008.

The elementary school that my sisters and I all attended holds a talent show at the end of the year for 3rd-5th graders, you have to audition and it's rare for younger kids to get in, while fifth graders almost all do. I was in it every year, I sang the national anthem, mimed and did a skit. This year, E was in third grade and I really wanted her to be in it, in fact I wanted to be her coach. Both of us were really into hula hooping at the time and were good at it. So with my encouragement, E agreed to try to hula hoop for the show. Every day after school we would go into the living room where I first taught her a routine and then spent many weeks polishing it. The song I picked was from teh preview of the movie "No Reservations" with Catherine Zeta Jones and Abigail Breslin, it was called "Count on my Love".

I didn't want E's routine to be mediocre like all of the little dances that littered the show each year, I wanted her to have stage presence and poise. She already had an actual talent with the hula hoop, unlike the little dance moves anyone could do. E could easily maneuver the hoop from her neck to the torso and even down to her knees and ankles, all in one clean swoop. She could walk while hula hooping, run, jump and even spin. I taught her to always smile and take advantage of the stage, not just to stand in one spot. There was a part in the routine where she twirls the hoop on her writs and walks back and forth with her hand on her hip, it was very pageant-y but also adorable.

It wasn't an easy road though because E needed constant bribing and rewards, every day I brought her home a poptart or rice krispy treat that I had bought int he cafeteria. Finally, the day of the auditions came and I sent E off to school with my precious ipod and speakers, with explicit instructions on how to play her music during the try outs after school. Everything went well and the next day she found out she made it in the show! I was so excited and we continued to work on the routine for the two days before the show.

The morning of the show we got up early and I put E's hair into a slick ponytail and curled it, I used a lot of hairspray so it would hold. The whole day in school I was so nervous and excited for her, finally it was time for M and I to leave early so we could catch the show. My parents were late in getting us and I was so worried we'd miss it but we made it to the school in time. All of the kids in the talent show were at the front of the gym and I ran up to E and gave her some last minute instructions before taking my seat. I waited through all the typical acts before another little hula hooper came up right before E! She wasn't very good so I actually felt bad that she was about to be upstaged. Then E came out, wearing my old blue velvet figure skating costume. She confidently took her place in the middle of the floor. Her routine was AWESOME and watching her was the proudest moment of my life. She looked so happy and relaxed. Everyone was in awe and totally blown away by her performance, afterward she got a huge round of applause and so many people came up to her and asked if she was in some sort of lessons, my mom told them that no, she was just taught by her sister. Me! We worked together and the outcome was awesome.

So there it is! My proudest moment.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Truth Tuesday

Q: Are you still gluten and dairy free?
A: I was really doing well with the whole thing but after awhile it just became to difficult. I'd buy food for myself to eat but then it would only last so long and I'd have nothing left so I wouldn't eat. Not to mention how difficult it is to eat healthy in college, let alone eliminating two very big ingredients! It was a good experience though and I think I'd try it again someday.

Q: Are you switching schools?
A: Most likely, everything is sort of up in the air right now but I did get excepted into the school I was hoping to!

Q: That's a pretty dress, why did you crop the photo so that we can't see you?
A: This made me laugh because when I posted that picture I was thinking, "Hmm, this is as much as I've every shown of myself on here!". Truth is, I prefer to remain anonymous for now. 

Q: How old are your sisters? Is M older or younger?
A: M is older (23), E is younger (14) and I'm in the middle (19)!

Q: You saw a lot of the Oscar movies, how did  you feel about what won?
A: I was happy with every category actually. Especially best actor and best supporting actor because Mathew and Jared SO deserved it. M and I were divided on best supporting actress because she felt Lupita was hardly in the movie and wanted Jennifer Lawrence to win. I would have been happy with either and actually feel like Julia Roberts was the one who was most robbed!

Q: Will you be doing gymnastics stuff now, on the blog?
A: You know, I planned on live blogging during the American Cup last Saturday but I wasn't home so I didn't and really, it wasn't too eventful. I think I'll try my hand at live blogging for the Secret Classic and Nationals in August.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Memory Monday

Today's memory will be short and sweet. There are a lot of memories that aren't monumental or special in any obvious way and yet I think of them often. I don't know why certain moments stick with me because while I was living them they didn't seem extraordinary, it makes me wonder what I am living through now that will be in my mind forever.

The memory I'm writing about occurred almost 2 years ago.  It was Easter and I had went with my whole family to the first service at our Church. My parents were going to be teaching during the second service so I was just going to stay for both. But as the second one began I decided to leave because I had a bad headache. Since we'd driven two cars I drove myself home. I was wearing one of my favorite dresses of all time, it was 20 dollars at Target and it's so simple and classic. Anyway, I got home to a quiet, empty house and laid down on our old couch. I remember looking outside, it was overcast and not all that warm. I turned on the TV and I had just recently discovered the addicting pleasure that is Lifetime movies. I had recorded one called "Stolen Child" and put that on to watch. I was snuggled under my old favorite blanket, on Easter morning, wearing my Sunday best, watching a movie about a shifty adoption agency. I don't know why I think of this memory so often and literally yearn to be back there, reliving it. The mind is so strange sometimes, even when it concerns my own emotions and desires I still don't fully understand it. What makes this memory stand out? I really don't know, but I'm always thankful for a moment that I can think of and makes me smile.

Here is the dress:
So yeah, it could have been ironed a bit. Ha, and look, my hair is long. Actually, it's already pretty much back to that length.
Happy Monday!

How I Ended February with a Cartilage Piercing

Well, it turns out that I didn't feel better "tomorrow" in fact, I felt worse and had to go home. In fact, I'm still sort of under the weather but I won't complain.

My parents were out of town over the weekend (they're back now!) so M and I had a ton of fun stuff planned. Here's what went down:

Friday we went to the mall to mostly window shop, M wanted to go into a boutique type store so I obliged and saw an ear piercing sign. Now I had actually wanted to get my cartilage pierced for awhile now so I just decided that that was the day to do it. I filled out the paperwork before I could hesitate, picked a titanium earring to match my spine and off I went. I was nervous but really, it was no more than a pinch!!
My ear looks huge in this picture, but I swear it's not!! The purple is from where the piercing lady marked it, it's not a bruise.
After all the excitement we got smoothies and went to pick E up from school. From there we brought her to our cousin B's house for the weekend. B has two cute little girls and E likes go there a lot so the happy feeling was mutual :). M and I went to Redbox with the intention of renting Gravity but it wasn't there so I got this movie called "Grace Unpluggled" that I'd heard about. It was a Christian movie and it was really good! I liked the music in it a lot

On Saturday M and I went ice skating in the morning. She skated for a year and I did for two years but we hadn't been on the ice in probably about four years so it was weird trying to get back in the groove. The skates we rented were KILLING our feet so that kind of put a damper on it, we used to have our own skates but grew out of them. After skating we went out to eat lunch with the gift card from my favorite family and I had a nice salad (don't I always???). From there we rushed to the movie theater to watch 12 Years a Slave. I had to see it for one of my classes and we were trying to see a lot of the Oscar nominated films so it was a win-win. I really liked the movie, it was very well acted. That night we finally did get to watch Gravity after having found it at a rental store. I liked it alright, it was a well made, solid movie but it was boring to me at times.

Sunday morning we went to Church and then to breakfast with our favorite aunt and uncle. Later on we went with my grandma to pick up E and visited at my cousins for a bit. That night we watched the Oscars, M and I filled out ballots and bet on who would guess the most categories right, I won for the third year!

So that brings me to today and I will be doing the first day of Week of Fun later on!