July Favorites

Books:

The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan

The Opposite of Loneliness: Essays and Stories

I can’t even say enough good things about this book. Incredibly sad and inspiring and one of my all time favorites. I also have an entire post going up about this on Friday and will discuss it in my reading wrap up so all I’ll say is that I highly, highly recommend this book. It’s a collection of essays and stories by Marina Keegan who passed away in 2012. She was 22 and had just graduated from Yale the day before her death. Marina is a huge inspiration to me and I urge all of you to pick up this book if you haven’t already.

Graphic novels

I read a number of graphic novels to try and kickstart my want to read again. It definitely helped. I’ll talk more about the specific graphic novels in my July Reading Wrap Up post and will link that here when it’s been published!

But I really appreciate the artistry that goes into making graphic novels and I have so many favorites that I will continue to reread time and time again because I enjoy the illustrations and the stories so much.

If you have any suggestions for graphic novels that I should pick up, comment them on this post! I haven’t read a ton, I’ve stuck to the ones I’m familiar with for the most part so far, and I would love to branch out and read more.

Other Media:

Letterkenny

Image result for letterkenny

Over the last couple of weeks of June I kept getting ads on Hulu for this show called Letterkenny. On the Fourth of July, or actually on the third technically, I decided to start watching it. I’m not even going to lie to you when I say that I made it through five seasons in that weekend… And I may or may not have already rewatched the first two seasons since then.

This show is just perfect to me, the running jokes, the physical humor, the absolute absurdity of so much of it. It has overtaken Parks and Rec as my go-to show when I need mindless humor. Check it out on Hulu! They’re going to begin filming a new season in the next few weeks!

Machine Gun Kelly’s album Hotel Diablo

Image result for mgk hotel diablo album cover

Last month I talked about one of the singles off of this album (I Think I’m Okay) and now the entire album has been released. I’ve listened to at least one of the songs every single day since it came out. Also still can’t believe that I like rap, used to be the only music I could not listen to but here we are…

BooksandLala’s entire YouTube channel

I want to say that I discovered her channel in May? But I’ve increasingly just really found myself enjoying to watch her videos. And then her Reading Rush vlogs were my favorites of all the RR vlogs. She just has so many unique video concepts and reading challenges and watching her videos always makes me want to push myself to come up with new ideas for this blog. Also her son looks like my youngest brother and it makes me smile whenever I see him (they’re the same age too which I think is such a funny coincidence!).

Makeup:

Colourpop’s new lip tints

I saw them on Twitter a few days before they were released and I bought the entire collection the day they were released. They are so nice!! I’ve been looking for lighter lip products that aren’t drying and these came out at the perfect time. They’re apply light but you can build the color easily and they fade so nicely. I’ve only gotten a chance to wear a few of the colors so far but I’ve really liked each one! Colourpop is one of my favorite brands to use to experiment with colors because they’re so cheap.

I’ll insert some swatch pictures when I have a chance to take them in good lighting 🙂

Clothing/Accessories:

Tevas

I had to finally bite the bullet and purchase a new pair of Tevas because I lost the pair that I got last summer (very sad about that, I wore that other pair constantly last year 😦 ). This new pair is really cute and comfortable (despite the fact that they’re slightly too big, which is unfortunate because they’re technically in a children’s size). I wore them quite a bit after I got them. They provide a lot more support than my old pair did and honestly what more can I look for in a shoe, support and ease of wear. PERFECT.

I’m also really excited to have these because I finally got a new state park pass so I can go hiking!! I have a camping trip planned in the middle of August that I’m really looking forward to and I know I’ll be wearing these shoes for that entire trip. I have a big issue with hiking in close toed shoes over the warmer months. My feet get too warm and if my feet get too warm then my entire body overheats and feels really bad (thank you sensory issues) so I prefer hiking in sandals. I’ve tried Chacos but could never get the pair I had to fit my feet well and they took forever to put on so I’ve turned to Tevas instead and have not looked back. In the cooler/muddier months I wear a pair of hiking boots from the brand Oboz.

Food/Drinks:

Lychee Bellini tea from David’s Tea.

Picture from the David’s Tea blog

I bought two new teas from David’s Tea in July and the Lychee Bellini kind was my favorite. I’ve only made it a few times because I’m lazy but I’ve been brewing it hot and then sticking it in the fridge overnight and mixing it with lemonade before drinking it. It’s from their Mocktail Collection and I highly recommend it! It smells wonderful and is really fruity and sweet. I’m really trying to make myself drink more tea and less pop but it’s a struggle.

Other:

Crossword puzzles

I spent many, many hours doing crossword puzzles in the last few weeks of July. It was my way to force myself to stay off of social media and still act like I was being productive. Things just got pretty bad with burnout in July and I stopped doing everything that wasn’t just scrolling mindlessly through social media until I literally ran out of stuff to scroll through. I couldn’t hold my concentration to read anything longer than a Tweet and I basically just gave up on doing anything other than go to work and sleep. I’m pretty sure that if I hadn’t done crossword puzzles that I would’ve spent my weekends starting at various walls in my house and acting catatonic. Tons of fun.

Anyways, so I’ve been working my way through a book of crossword puzzles and really enjoying that. It’s a good and easy way to do something without really putting out too much mental power so it felt like I was still basically doing nothing but I didn’t feel as guilty about it.

My new logo

cropped-alexis-hikaru-1.jpg

I gave my blog a little bit of a makeover when I finally had the motivation to do so and I created a really basic new logo. I really like it and I’m excited to continue on in this blogging journey!

So those are some of the things that I enjoyed in July. I can’t believe tomorrow is already August. This year is going by way too fast and I hate it!! What do you guys have planned for August?

Advertisements

The Books That Shaped Me: Part 3

I honestly thought that I would only be doing one post for this series but the more that I thought about all the books that have meant so much to me over the years, the more that I realized there were way more than could fit into one post.

Part 1 consisted of the books that I read throughout elementary school. Part 2 was all the books that I read throughout middle school. And now this post, Part 3, is going to showcase all the books that I read throughout high school. There could possibly be a Part 4 someday with books that I read in college (my first attempt at college anyways) but I’ll have to see, I might also lump a few of them into the end of this post because there really weren’t many that I read. Homework kinda got to me and I avoided reading so much!

So high school was when I discovered BookTube and Goodreads. I joined Goodreads in November of 2011 when I was a freshman.

Books by Sarah Dessen

sarah-dessen_23771169_78ec836a4e01fde920df6a14d5ed8f63a0f82821

Her books are some of my favorite YA contemporary books and whenever I need something happy to read I pick up one of hers. I haven’t read all of her books yet but I’m working on it. She and Maureen Johnson are two of my absolute favorite authors and I will probably buy every single one of their publications from here on out.

The Top 8 series, which then turned into my love for Morgan Matson starting with Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour

I don’t even remember why I got the Top 8 series, I’m sure I had a gift card to Barnes and Noble, looked inside, liked the formatting and then bought all of them. But the Top 8 series were written under Matson’s pen name, Katie Finn. I’m not even sure when I found out that Finn was Matson but I remember being absolutely shocked because I had had books under both of her names for years before ever realizing.

Dystopian Books: Hunger Games, Delirium, Shatter Me, Divergent)

I would honestly be shocked by anyone who was into reading from around 2012-2014

Smile by Raina Telgemeier

6393631

Her books introduced me to graphic novels! And boy did I reread Smile so many times, like I would be genuinely interested to see just how many times I checked it out from the library back then before I owned my own copy of it!

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

11870085

Oh good ole TFIOS. I don’t think I could make a post about books I read in high school without mentioning this gem. This was also the first ever signed book that I owned and I literally shrieked and danced around my kitchen when I saw that that’s what my grandma had managed to purchase.

The Possession of Cassie Quinn by Kathryn Knutson

13677127

My sister bought this book at a local bookstore in the town that my grandparents live near. After she read it, I picked it up and I loved it. I’ve read both this book and her second book and I’m so glad that I liked them because I love having the opportunity to support a Minnesotan author.

It took me a really long time growing up to get into horror things. I mean, I used to be terrified by the show Ghost Hunters and either had to leave the room or put on headphones to block out the noise. I was scarred pretty early on in life by the movie Arachnaphobia and while I’m still terrified by spiders, other horror stuff doesn’t really scare me anymore. I love the spooky stuff.

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

13079982

This was one of the only classics that I was forced to read in high school that I genuinely enjoyed. The story sticks with me even to today and there are just so many quotes from this that make me feel all the feels.

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

2623

And this one is not on here for a good reason. I HATE this book, like it is one classic that I genuinely despise. I usually dislike classics for one reason or another (most of the time being that I have the hardest time reading them) but I actually have a deep seated hatred of Great Expectations. I’m now kind of fuming right now just thinking of it and almost want to write an entire blog post dedicated to my hatred of this book.

Quiet by Susan Cain

8520610

I read this book so that I could write a paper about it in my tenth grade English class. I have absolutely no recollection what that paper was about but

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

16068905

One of the first books I’ve ever read where I saw myself. It hurt. It’s still absolutely everything to me.

Anna and the French Kiss/The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight/My Life Next Door

I also started to get really into YA contemporaries when I was in high school. I bought Anna and the French Kiss at a Borders Books store on the way back from New York one summer (does anyone else fondly think of Borders? I might like it too much because I don’t have any access to small book stores and I’ve never been a big fan of Barnes and Noble). I even saved the sticker from AatFS because I wanted to preserve the last Borders purchase I ever made.

Anyways, I very quickly fell in love with the contemporaries that I read. The idea of having an open ended happy ending just made my heart happy. I devoured happy endings as much as I could, breaking my own single little heart time and time again. I pretended that they taught me a lot about what I wanted in relationships and in guys.

So overall, my reading in high school was full of contemporaries, classics (forced reading), and dystopian. I definitely started to hone in on my favorites and began to read a bit more critically than I had in the past.

Now that I’ve written about a lot of the books that have shaped my reading and myself over the entire course of my life, I’ve started to think about a new series of posts. I would really like to start rereading some of the books featured on these posts and discuss them now. Why I loved them when I first read them, why I still love them today (or not love them depending), and if they still hold up today. I’ll preface it all by saying that I almost always fail with my post series though so we shall see how far this idea takes me.

What were some of your favorite books in your teenage years?

 

I Miss London

The London trip that I went on two years ago happened again in May/June and so I saw a ton of Facebook posts about it and it makes me miss my time there so much. Yes, I’m 100% that person that thinks about her study abroad experience so much and I talk about it a lot too.

It would be my absolute dream to live there someday, like I truly felt so at ease there and comfortable that I wish I could go back almost every day.

Anyways, today’s post is just going to be a photo dump of a bunch of my pictures from London because damn I miss it!!! I really wish that I had more pictures but I was in a stupid phase where I needed to just be “in the moment” which was great but there’s a lot of stuff I realize I’m missing in my memory because of whatever dumb memory issues I’m having. I have decided though to not include the 200+ pictures that I have from the Harry Potter studio tour… You’re welcome.

fb_img_15639776345911926968519601524736.jpg

I loved just walking the streets, seeing all the old buildings and aimlessly wandering in our free time. We had a lot of planned things but had weekends free, as well as at least a few hours every day in which we had time to ourselves.

fb_img_15639775959357710966078493506841.jpg

 

 

Oh gosh and the food. Coffee, pizza, fruit, tea. So good. That bottom right picture in the grid is a waffle topped with Nutella and ice cream. There was a group of us that went to Hyde Park twice and got these waffles both times. If I’m being honest, I didn’t try a whole ton of stuff while I was there but that’s mainly because I tried to keep my food budget as low as I could. We paid for most of our own meals and I wanted to be able to splurge when I felt like it so most of my meals came from Pret a Manger (GOD I MISS THAT PLACE SO MUCH THEIR CHEESE CROISSANTS WERE EVERYTHING) and Tesco.

fb_img_15639775987765764627961505070700.jpg

fb_img_15639776114455520153267955787849.jpg

I miss the public transportation. I have a huge phobia of driving and living in a suburb means I have to drive literally everywhere because there is absolutely no public transport in my city at all. Being able to hop on the Tube or take a bus just about anywhere I needed to go was something far more wonderful than I ever considered it being. And being able to walk a lot of places was great too, like there is so much to do so close together, it’s crazy.

Of course I miss the access to theatre too. These are a bunch of pictures from when I toured the Globe as well as some Shakespeare wall art/graffiti/mural thing that we saw somewhere else. We saw so many good shows. When we did go to the Globe for a show, we all took the standing 5pound tickets and wow, it was so immersive to stand that close to the stage for the show it didn’t feel like we were standing for over three hours at all.

Every time I think about all the shows I saw, I can’t help but think of how grateful I am to even have had that opportunity. Matilda, Kinky Boots, The Woman In Black, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, and so many more. It always makes me want to pursue theatre again. I was really into it back in elementary school and then social anxiety took away all my confidence and I’ve forever wanted to be able to try acting again, or I guess just anything in theatre again and I have no idea where to even begin… So I just keep avoiding it altogether and getting just a little bit sad every time I see a new play or musical.

Also I love that I had to take a picture of the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child theatre but never saw it.

fb_img_15639775182802585629006251392509.jpg

I spent quite a bit of time walking through parks with some of the other people I was in London with. The weather was really nice most of the time that we were there (bordering on hot most days and I definitely wish I would have reevaluated my clothing) and the parks were gorgeous. So many flowers and cool trees. And swans that liked to flirt with one of the other girls. We spent a good amount of time just sitting around in the sun and reading, writing, people watching. Sometimes too much time in the sun though, a number of us got pretty bad sunburns (I somehow magically avoided it).

fb_img_1563977501540891085976513223514.jpg

Another thing that London is full of is museums. I spent so much time going to museums because they’re all FREE. The amount of stuff that I learned and saw, oh my heart.

fb_img_15639774281897725141041079320479.jpg

I mean look at all of this. I got to see two of my favorite paintings in person. How crazy??!!

I’m still just so in love with London. And I wish that I could go back. I learned so much, saw so much, just did so much. It was truly life changing and I love looking back on these pictures and remembering all that I got to do. Truly, if you ever have the chance to study abroad, do it!!

fb_img_15639776054265135534053149633970.jpg

Guilt and Burnout

So I decided to take a break.

And it wasn’t because this blog made me feel burnt out or stressed. In fact, I have so many post ideas for this blog that I’m a little overwhelmed! However, this blog doesn’t provide me with any income and because of that, I work full time outside of putting effort into this blog. And the longer that I work my full time job, the more I’m feeling burnt out on anything that actually brings me joy.

My acid reflux is back, to the point where I can’t even bend over when I wake up in the morning or I risk throwing up (sorry if that’s TMI). I’m also falling asleep before 8:30 almost every single night. Literally nothing is bringing me joy (like I got accepted into an online college program and I cried because I was scared over how I’m going to balance full time work and full time school instead of getting excited over finally going back to school). So I got burnt out and this blog took the brunt of that. And I felt guilty, so so guilty over taking a break because this was the last thing that I wanted to take a break with. If anything, I need a break from my full time job! But that will never happen…

It’s frustrating to feel guilty over needing a break. But I don’t know what else to do. I’ll be starting classes at the end of August and I know that school needs to be a priority, but I also really need the income that my full time job provides. I’m at a crossroads that looks like the only choice that works is to let myself continue to get burnt out and continue to be exhausted and sad all the time because I can’t prioritize my happiness. And I know that sounds awful but I have no idea what else to do.

I’ve been off this blog for almost two weeks and it would be so easy to just continue to not post. Like that would be so easy, but that’s not what I want to do. I just finished rereading The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan and was so inspired to start writing again but when everything else in my life piles up I just break.

I really miss when seeing my “path” was easy. I miss having simple choices and being inspired and joyful. It’s been a long time since then.

So anyways, to make a long story short. I’m back. (LOL how many times have you heard that line from me??) I’ve got a number of posts I’ll be working on this weekend, I’m planning on spending most of Saturday at the library since I have to register for classes too. I just really hope that something magically happens that makes every decision clear to me in the next few weeks.

Thanks for reading my drama. Happy Friday.

A Trip To The Zoo

I went to the zoo with my best friend last week for their Adult Night Out event. And since I have no other posts ready to put up today I figured I would share some of the pictures I took there!

We saw some llamas and didn’t feel like paying $7 each to get an up close picture and walk them so those were the pictures we took from a distance.

I treated myself to a mango margarita of some sort and got my best friend to try it. Managed to catch part of her reaction in the picture below. So far she’s only found one drink that she actually enjoyed. Still fun to make her try everything though.

These are some other pics I snapped of her.

Saw a lot of animals, ate some decent food. Would definitely want to go again!

It was a really good night! Weather was gorgeous! I still sweated buckets but it was totally worth it. I haven’t been able to spend a ton of time with my best friend basically since high school just because of how hectic our schedules are but we’re both in the same city for at least the summer and it’s been great to see her more often!

Have you guys done anything fun recently?

Author Adventures: Camp NaNoWriMo Week 2

I think I’m officially calling it that I’ve failed Camp NaNo yet again. I’ve been sitting at 12,413 words since last Tuesday, I think?

Anyways, I know that I didn’t want to talk about mental health on here anymore but I figured I might as well say that I’ve entered a really bad depressive episode and I just have no motivation to do anything. AKA: What’s the point in writing anything? (It’s not like you’ll ever get published) What’s the point in trying to be happy? (You’re just going to end up sad again) Why bother doing anything? (The world is horrible and we all die in the end anyways).

Sorry if that was really negative but that’s about all I’ve been thinking about. Like I even got to the point with these blog posts that I was writing them the day of trying to get them published before my normal scheduled publishing time. I just started feeling like everything I do is completely pointless and I wanted to give up. So with Camp, I did.

Usually I get a bit more creative when I’m depressed but more recently it just turns me into an unproductive crying mess. Like yesterday I spent hours watching Black Mirror and true crime documentaries and doing crossword puzzles. And then I forced myself to go to bed because I was sad that I hadn’t done anything productive all day.

Things are just going really poorly in my personal life and it’s hard to feel like anything is worth doing because I’m pretty sure I’ll never get out of the hole that I’ve been in for 2+ years.

So yeah, that’s basically what’s been going on. Here’s a really short excerpt from what I have written so far (I know it’s not great):

“I didn’t know what forever felt like until I met you. Forever was a tattoo, a bad decision, something that would ruin my life. I never knew that forever could be home. That forever could be family.” Alyssa turned towards the rest of us then, I can’t tell if she’s on the verge of sobbing or laughing. Her smile is radiating and Beth grabs onto her hand.

I sit back in my seat, thinking about the concept of forever. I don’t know what I think about forever, the evidence is all around me. Happily ever after runs rampant in my family. Beth and Alyssa are further proof of that. I think about my friends back in Minnesota. Of Carter, Adam, my roommates, and then of Austen. It never occurred to me before that maybe Austen could be a forever. That maybe I had finally met someone that could love me the way that my parents love each other, or the way that Beth and Alyssa love each other. I can’t help but wish that Austen was here with me now, thoughts now wandering to him driving me to the airport when I left for Washington for the wedding. 

He’s my best friend and maybe I love him. Maybe he’s the one I’ve wanted all along. 

Alrighty then, hope y’all have a decent week. Happy writing and all that jazz.

Review: Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey

Fix Her Up

Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey is a “romantic comedy” about Georgie Castle and Travis Ford, childhood friends that have decided to fake date to look more adult to those around them in their hometown and beyond. It’s a smutty mess and doesn’t compare to the description that’s listed on Goodreads whatsoever!! (Can you tell I’m salty about having actually read this book or is that just me?)

This book had been raved about by multiple people that I follow and then two people absolutely hated it. I had just gotten my copy from the library and decided to pick it up and see where I stood on it.

I ultimately rated it 2/5 stars because the plot didn’t align with what I went in expecting it to be, the romance felt toxic, and the timing felt completely screwy throughout the entire book. There were very few things that I actually enjoyed.

The rest of the review contains spoilers.

The plot was supposed to be a fake dating plot but there wasn’t a single part of it that felt like it was actually them fake dating. The more that I think about the more that I realize that there wasn’t a single aspect of this book that was truly fleshed out. It jumped around from one plot point to another so fast that I just got tired of reading. I ended up skimming the last 75 or so pages because I was so bored.

So much of the summary on Goodreads is about a life makeover… There was no true makeover scene, it maybe lasted three pages, if that. And that in and of itself was frustrating because it seemed like Georgie had her own style and was comfortable with that. Why change it? It was the stereotypical “girl wears not so flattering clothes so must change and start wearing sexier clothes to be appealing to literally anyone”. The girl “club” the Just Us league or whatever that they created was hardly a club. They really didn’t do anything other than sit and chat. It felt like it was just thrown in there to add some form of “feminist” tones even though they mostly just talked crap about the guys in their lives.

The timing was nonexistent. There was absolutely no transition that indicated a passing of time. It felt like one never-ending day even though I know that more time passed than that.

I found the romance in this incredibly cringey. It made me so uncomfortable that Travis spent so much of the book telling himself that he couldn’t be attracted to Georgie because of the fact that she had grown up as the the “dorky little sister”. It just felt like he was infantilizing her and it really didn’t help that he continuously called her “baby girl”. In general I find pet names really cringey but the two aspects paired together made me feel kind of gross. They didn’t even last more than a few chapters before the whole “no sex while we’re fake dating” thing went out the window. I don’t know why they didn’t just agree to be friends-with-benefits from the beginning and just ham up the romantic stuff for the paparazzi.

The romance between the side characters felt completely thrown in there too. I felt like Georgie’s brother had a very toxic relationship with his wife, he very clearly wanted kids and it sounds like she didn’t and was getting him to stay with her by stringing him along letting him think she’ll agree to have kids someday. It skeeved me out too when Georgie’s mom played “wing woman” so that Georgie and Travis could go do it in the pool house (omg the amount of public or semi public sex disturbed me too, don’t do that y’all, it’s not sexy), like her mom acted like she just wanted her daughter to get some. I can understand being supportive of the relationship but ew?

Even for the people that love smutty scenes I don’t really see any sort of redemption from them. Travis was grossly controlling and dominating and while yes there are relationships in which stuff like that works, it always needs to be discussed beforehand and safety always has to be a priority. I’m not saying that anything went out of hand or that anything bad happened but with the way that everything else was talked about (including the fact that her virginity was a main component of all the sexual stuff) it felt like Travis was borderline taking advantage of Georgie. One line that really stuck out to me was when Georgie was described as this “man’s pleasure tool”… Um no, I’m sorry but women aren’t for being used for men’s pleasure.

And how overly sexualized Travis was? Ew. He truly had no redeeming qualities. He treated Georgie like his savior which is absolutely bullshit. Women do not need to fix men. This book should’ve been called “Fix Him Up” with how much work needs to be done with Travis. It genuinely made me mad at how much Travis viewed Georgie as his “savior”. I think Georgie was young and is still in the midst of finding her footing in the world and figuring out who she is and what she wants. She’s only 23!! Also I enjoyed that she realized the potential that he clown business had by working to expand it to a full on party business but again, none of that was really fleshed out. All the side plots and side characters were so secondary to this overly sexualized lusty relationship. I hated the ending so much because it was so rushed and seriously, I get that you’ve known the guy since you were a kid but WHY are you agreeing to marry him??? And given that there really was no time frame in this I have no idea how long they fake dated but I just feel like this was the worst way that this could have ended. Way, way too soon to get engaged.

I think this book might end up being one of the biggest, if not biggest disappointments of the year. Despite going into it with slightly adjusted expectations because of the negative reviews that I saw the description itself sounds like a completely different book than what ended up in my hands. This book had the potential to be something really good and it just wasn’t. It could have been a sweet, steamy, well developed romance and all it was was a giant mess. All I want to do is send this book back to the editor and ask how the hell they let this get published as is.

I really don’t recommend this book. If you’ve read it, what did you think of it? I’m still trying to find a romance book that impresses me, but it feels like everything I’ve read has something that just grinds my gears by the end of it.

I’ll be back on Sunday with an update for Camp NaNoWriMo and shocker, it won’t be great! Have a great weekend everyone.

 

College or Bust!

When I started this blog back in 2015 I had just graduated from high school that spring and was about a month away from starting college. I was looking forward to going to school, I’ve always liked school at least a little bit but my opinions of it had definitely gone downhill the longer I was in high school. Part of that, though, was definitely the fact that I decided to take five AP classes my senior year which essentially destroyed any kind feelings that I had towards school.

Growing up I never really had a clear idea of what I wanted to do with my life. My future career prospects came in and out of my life faster than I ever realized, nothing ever sticking as the end all be all career path. No one in my family ever pushed me to apply to college (or anyone that mattered at least) but I always felt like that was the only choice that I had. Doesn’t help that I went to a high school that boasted of high college attendance from graduates. There was just a lot of pressure that I was putting on myself to move on and get a degree even though I really had no idea what I wanted to do.

The more I grew up, the more I found myself surrounded by people who had clear ideas about what they were passionate about. There were the kids who dreamed about engineering classes, the ones who couldn’t wait to get into the healthcare fields, some who delighted themselves in talking about teaching or art or politics. I found myself jealous on more than one occasion because for once I just wanted to be like my classmates and find something that truly made me feel passionate.

My list of failed ideas for careers:

  1. Teacher: I have never learned how to explain things to people other than the way that I have learned. So I would never be able to come up with alternative ways to teach kids if they don’t understand what I’m trying to tell them.
  2. Youth Ministry: The big questions about life still scare the shit out of me and I know I wouldn’t be able to help guide kids in learning about the big questions.
  3. Artist/Graphic Designer: Been told too many times that I would never make a living with this… And art classes ruined my creativity.
  4. Author: Never been able to finish writing a book.
  5. Lawyer: Cool idea, but no.
  6. Actor: I got anxiety. Kind of ruined that dream.
  7. Scientist: I mean I excelled in high school regular chemistry and I thought that maybe, just maybe I could go into chemistry in college. And then I took AP chem and threw that idea off a cliff.
  8. ASL interpreter: Of all the things that I wish I wouldn’t have given up on, learning ASL is the one thing that I beat myself up on the most. My high school ASL teacher used to tell me all the time that I should look into going into interpreting and for a good year and a half that was my plan. But I always got anxious when I signed and was scared that if I tried to make a career out of it that I would constantly make mistakes and I knew that me making mistakes would do more harm than good. And then in college I had a professor that basically told me that I was no good at signing and was really, really hard on me in classes because I had leveled out of the first year of basic classes. I felt so incredibly discouraged that even though I only had a few credits left in order to get an ASL/Deaf Studies minor I dropped it as soon as I was done with her classes.

My anxiety has ruined a lot of my future potential for me. But a lot of other things have played into it as well.

In 2017, I decided that it was in my best interest to withdraw from school. I not only was very confused with what I was doing with myself but my former university handled a personal situation of mine incredibly poorly and I found myself feeling unsafe and unhappy in many ways.

I am finally able to apply for new schools and even though I’m still at a place where I have truly no clear idea with what I want to do with my life I’m ready to get back into the academic swing of things. I actually miss homework y’all… How sad is that (jk, I actually find this really funny).

In thinking about future careers, it would be really cool to work in publishing. I’d love to design book covers someday. I would also love to work behind the scenes in a museum, I’m not sure as a curator but I’m sure there’s some role that would fit what I’m interested in. Another thing that really interests me is blogging and small business ownership. I like the idea of being employed by myself. However, I’m not sure if either of these will be more than just side hobbies. But I think I’d be okay with these being side hobbies/hustles if I was more comfortable and content with what I am doing as an actual full time job.

I should probably say that the point of this post is saying that I am reapplying for schools to start classes in the fall! Hence the title: College or Bust! It’s a lot more nerve wracking than I expected it to be but I also have spent a good two years trying to convince myself that I would be okay if I was never allowed to attend college again. It’s really weird being at this stage again, researching schools and spending so much time on applications. When I first applied for colleges I applied to two schools and got into both. I’m not sure how many I’ll apply to this time around but so far I have one application in and I’m working on sending out my transcripts to that school.

When I first started school I was 19, naive and scared out of my mind. This time I’ll be 23, a lot less naive and still a whole lot of scared out of my mind. But I will say though that I am excited beyond belief to finally be taking charge of my academic future again.

I’ll continue to update and make college related posts as time goes on. And even though I will forever drag myself down for withdrawing from school, even though I will always consider myself a failure for choosing a different timeline know that if you are in the same boat that I am being a mean ass bully to myself. Everyone does things at different paces. Everyone can change their mind and choose to do whatever they want to do. There might not ever be a time where you feel like you’ve truly figured everything out and honestly that’s fine.

So here’s to weird life timelines. And for second chances and starting fresh. Here’s to college round two.

FOMO In The Book Community

So unrelated but also sort of related… I finally took the Enneagram test the other day and it was revealed unto me that I am a Type 6 and ooooohhhh boy did I feel SEEN when I read the description for the type.

Now the biggest thing with being a Type 6 is that I’m scared. Of everything. Like wow, this has never made more sense to me in my entire life! And right now, one of the things that I’m really struggling with is FOMO. And this post will specifically talk about FOMO in the book community that has been created online.

I would absolutely love to start a BookTube channel but I feel as if I could never gain momentum in such a vast community. I also feel like this blog will never gain momentum, nor will my Twitter or Goodreads. I just feel like I’ll be stuck within this tiny little bubble writing for the two people who seem to read all of my posts.

And yes, I’m well aware that I don’t need a vast amount of followers or anything like that but I have a lot of opinions that I want to share and I want them to be seen widely! So right now I’m struggling with a lot of FOMO regarding the online book community. I think part of this is having seen so many posts about this most recent BEA and Book Con but also just because I’ve been following an increasing number of bookish people on Twitter and I always want to participate in conversations but I almost feel like I don’t have the right to just reply to these public tweets.

I started filming clips to try and make a reading vlog a few weeks back and I keep trying to tell myself to film because I know that I’ll have fun editing the footage once I actually film stuff. I took a film production class back when I was still in school and I had so much fun creating videos and I miss that aspect of being creative. Digital art is how I started off feeling like I was good at being creative and I want to start that up again. At this point I don’t think that I’ll ever feel confident enough to post anything to YouTube and that makes me sad.

For once I just want to feel like I’m part of a community instead of only sitting on the sidelines. My whole life I’ve been on the sidelines. Every friend I’ve had has always had someone that they’re closer to, every group I’ve been in I feel uncomfortable for one reason or another. I constantly feel like the odd one out and it sucks.

But despite all of this, I’m going to continue to persevere and maybe someday I’ll find a bit of a community for myself. That’s all I can hope for.

Also, on a side note, I hit 100 followers on here and I just wanted to say that I am so very thankful for everyone that has chosen to follow me since I began this blog back in 2015. It’s been quite the journey since then and I wanted to genuinely thank you for sticking with me no matter how long you’ve been a follower. Thank you!!

100 Followers!!.jpg

 

Author Adventures: Camp NaNoWriMo Update Week 1

Well everyone, I survived an entire week of Camp and I didn’t give up! I actually wrote something every day! Yay me!!

So as of right now, I am at a whopping 10,417 words. My progress has slowed down immensely since the beginning of the week and I am definitely starting to struggle. I never realized just how hard it would be to write the cheery parts of a love story when I have almost no good opinions about romance at the moment.

I also have spent a good portion of my days streaming shows. I started watching Letterkenny on Wednesday and have made it almost to season 6. And yesterday I started Stranger Things 3. What I feel like my brain is doing right now is the thing that it did back in September where literally all I did was watching Vine compilations for hours on end because it was the only thing that I could concentrate on. Like if I wasn’t staring at nothing, I was watching Vine compilations on Youtube. With watching all this TV I can feel my brain doing the same thing. It’s getting harder to come up with stuff to write and I also can barely read more than a page in a book at a time.

Yesterday I tried to be really productive by cleaning and doing laundry so that I could feel like I was doing something. In the end, though, I felt like I was incredibly unproductive because there were so many other things that I could have been doing too.

Anyways, back to the writing progress. My story has been interesting to write. I think that I have finally realized how nice it is to have an outline when writing but is that going to change the fact that I like to pants my stories? Nope! Once the story is completely finished though there will be a lot of things that I’ll have to go back and rewrite in order to make the story mesh into what I’m trying to make it become. But of course, that’s what editing is for!

Another thing that I’ve realized through writing is how terrified I feel about the possibility of being published someday. Like I know how I tear apart books and I see how other people tear apart books and I just really don’t want my book to be teared apart like that. I know that there will always be people that don’t like what I do but I just want my story to be liked by people. So I find myself questioning everything that I’ve written. I’m questioning the entire plot itself.

Since this is the first book that I’m ever going to finish writing I’m not sure it will ever be published. But if it ever gets to that point my fingers are crossed that it is something that I will be proud to share with people.

So with that, I’m going to try and get as much writing done today as I can. If you’re participating in NaNo I hope it’s going well and good luck with your writing this week!