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A Trip Down Memory Lane

On Saturday night, my cousin and his girlfriend were heading to a concert in Camden and asked if I could watch their new puppy, Coco.

Of course I was delighted, a whole night of puppy time. However, I got an unexpected surprise out of the visit.

My cousin and his girlfriend recently moved in to my grandparent’s old house. A house that I once lived in too, (for approximately one summer and month going into 5th grade.)

My parents at the time thought it was a great idea, having a big yard and in-ground pool. After some time though, with our old house still on the market and rough period adjusting to new schools and community, we moved back.

And while I was walking Coco through the big backyard that cool Saturday night, nostalgia hit me.

I remembered vividly going down the edge of the property where the creek sat when I was a kid, finding “cool” rocks, pretending to be damsel in distress, and trying to lure the outside cat Misty to the water.

I remembered the sound of the lightly flowing creek that now sits patiently still among the fallen tree limbs and overgrown plants at its edge.

The aged volleyball net and tether ball game we use to play on hot summer days, gone. All five fury kittens that Misty had and I loved dearly, gone.

However, despite the waves of nostalgia, I felt content with Coco prancing by my side.

This house always made me feel content in some way, – this was the house that my mother and her siblings grew up in, it was a house of memories and love.

I had not realized how much this property had changed over the past seven years, for I had not realized how much I have changed these past seven years.

In that moment I felt as old as this house. I felt all the old memories, the laughter and joy, the egg hunt activities on Easter, the hot summer days spent lounging in the pool – I felt it all.

As I sit here writing this post, I have exactly eleven days until move in and my unexpected gift that I didn’t know I needed was this trip down memory lane, one last time.

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“What are your Demons?”

Publishing your inner thoughts for other eyes to examine, pick apart, or ridicule is simply gut wrenching. It’s an inevitable feeling of crippling anxiety entangled with endless unwanted thoughts. Clicking that blue “publish” button on the top right corner of the dimly lit screen is a moment of sincere dread. Turning in your fresh, vulnerable article to the editor is utterly daunting.

 

Am I going to be heard?

“Are my words going to be appreciated?”

“Are the ones who I love going to help raise me from this foundation or utterly make fun of me?”

“Do I want to put myself in this position of potentially ruining my self-esteem for my one true passion?”

 

These fears creep into my mind as I finish pounding words of thought and deep emotion into my keyboard.

“I am not enough”

“Why am I a journalist? I can’t compete with others”

“Everyone hates my blog anyways”

“No one cares about what I have to say so why even try?”

 

I feel the tension, the exasperation of family, friends, and coworkers who subtly hint at me that they don’t care about my words or thoughts.  

 

“People hate seeing my stuff online”

“Stop writing, you are just a nuisance”

 

But as I sit in this aged chair with rain drops starting to make it’s appearance on the glossy office window, I slowly understand the magic behind the challenge.

“I am more than a girl who is anxious”

“I am a journalist”

“I am a blogger”

“I am me”

 

And as the rain begins to fall harder against the glass, the budding flower outside must learn to understand how glorious it will become with time.

Feature Excitement

For those who don’t know, I have been working at my local newspaper, the Town and Country, for two summers now.

Working here is an incredible opportunity and has shaped my desires for the future drastically (in a good way).

I have secretly loved journalism since I first took the course during my sophomore year in high school. I was lucky enough to get an internship here at the paper the summer going into my senior year.

Recently, I wrote a feature about a certified therapy dog named Ola who visits a local manor care facility here in town.

The link to the online version is here: http://www.upvnews.com/news/article.ashx?article=17822 

I hope you read and enjoy! 🙂

 

Afternoon Thunderstorms

I’ll be quite frank, I am a complete anxious mess when it comes to thunderstorms.

My fear or anxiety of thunderstorms doesn’t have a direct root, no childhood memory that drives this unreasonable feeling. (Maybe it is the loud thunder, who knows)

The anxiety flares as soon as I hear the weatherman say anything about a severe thunderstorm or that obnoxious beeping warning that appears on my phone, radio, or TV.

When storms arrive, my instincts are to hide under a blanket and watch shows I enjoy to take my mind off of the hell that is going outside my door.

Today, I couldn’t do that as I watched hail pound the ground through the big office window at work.

Eventually, the hail chunks turned into pouring rain that monstrous winds blew sideways.

I put my “big girl pants” on and dealt with it, kept working, and forced my anxiety down.

Seems silly, but I am proud of myself. Feels like a mini accomplishment for not letting my anxiety control my thoughts. 🙂

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Tickled Tennis Thoughts

All four years of high school I have played a sport that I love and slowly, but surely, I moved up in position on my varsity tennis team to first doubles during my senior year.

Tennis season was always my favorite and as senior year came closer I considered playing in college.

I continuously jumped between thoughts of – “yes, I have to play” – and –“maybe not, maybe it will be too much for me” 

After I applied to a scholarship through my school, I was contacted by the Penn State Harrisburg tennis coach saying her husband saw on my resume that I played all four years of high school tennis and if I was interested in joining their team.

The coach and I talked on the phone for a good hour and afterwards I was super excited.

The season is primarily in the spring, DIII college, with a few night practices a week.

What did I have to lose?

After talking to my parents, I felt very confident and told the coach a few weeks later that I was in.

With 16 days until my college move-in, the nerves are building, but I am so excited to be apart of a team once again.

I will have the opportunity to play the sport I love (just like my older brother played ice hockey for Penn State), all the while traveling and making new friends.

(fun fact: one of my roommates is also going to be playing and I am so happy!)

Do you play tennis? let me know in the comments! 🙂

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A Sign of Hope

I am going to be super real and honest with this post – lately  I have been struggling emotionally with the thought of growing up and going to college.

I know, this is normal thoughts and feelings of a recently turned 18 year old. However, this has been effecting my family as well.

My  mother and I have been having conflicts – emotions clashing with high tension pouring out from our words – this is something we are not use to and do not want three weeks before I leave.

We have always been very open with each other, how we are feeling and why.

For both of us, this new chapter of independence/freedom is straining our relationship, but it is okay. This is needed, for this change is inevitable and we needed to work out our feelings.

After a couple days of not bringing up the topic, we talked.

We talked, expressed our fears/wishes, and we were okay.

After, I left to go to my friend’s graduation party, I saw something that confirmed my beliefs.

Two big, yellow butterflies were flying together across the road while I was stopped at a stop sign.

For those who don’t know, yellow butterflies symbolize emotional growth, as well as, moving through cycle of life and personality.

We are going to be okay and college is going to be exactly what I need.

Starbucks, Makeup, & Pizza

I am 99.9% sure I lived every young girl’s ideal activities yesterday.

After I got done work I met up with my friend Heather, someone I should have hung out with outside of school way before this summer, and we had two things in mind:

  1. Get the Starbucks “pink drink”
  2. Shop for makeup at Ulta (pretty basic, right?)

Even if it was “basic” I had a blast, besides endlessly scratching the mosquito bites I received from fishing the night before.

I had Heather show me around Ulta, basically guiding me to products that would benefit me most and help me crush the gift card I had (I’ll admit it, I don’t know much about makeup at all).

I learned a lot by spending the afternoon with Heather and I am so glad we could fit it into my schedule.

Later that night, I camped out with my long time best-friend Jamie.

The night was filled with endless giggles over dumb YouTube videos, along with, our tradition of ordering Domino’s pizza.

I also did see a dragonfly around Jamie and I at one part of the night, but I kept that to myself.

It was days like this that make me realize that friendships are valuable and do need polishing sometimes, you get what you give and not every friendship is perfect.

The day was also symbolic of making new friends all the while still being connected to those that have been there since elementary, almost similar to what I will be encountering once college starts.

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Ran Out of Data? Don’t Panic

Quick thought- let me just say this – running out of data can actually make your life less stressful.

Yesterday afternoon, I ran out of data and I immediately became:

  1. Annoyed at myself for using that much data
  2. Panicked because I love my social media
  3. More annoyed because I could not use regular imessage or Spotify

Despite my initial response (plus me texting my stepdad asking for another half a gig so that I could survive), I have noticed how peaceful today has been.

No data means I haven’t been checking my phone every 2 minutes to refresh my Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, or Twitter feed to see what everyone else was up to.

I have been more focused on work at the newspaper, along with contributing to my blog in my down time.

Not having data can actually be nice, it’s as if I have had a mini reality check.

Maybe you should run out of data too.

Amateur Fishing Requires Giggling

Last night around 7 p.m., my boyfriend and I went fishing at one of our favorite spots along our local creek, a  huge rock that we like to call our “special/secret place” (trust me, we know it isn’t very secret)

The water was high and muddy, due to recent storms, but overall in good enough condition to amateur fish.

We took turns casting from different angles on the rock, all the while giggling and making jokes as to how lucky we were for catching our twentieth sunny within a matter of minutes and me somewhat struggling to unhook the fish.

The highlight of the evening was my boyfriend’s wide smile when he reeled in the first non-sunny of the batch, a Rock Bass, to be precise.

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Despite swarms of nats, endless mosquito bites, and the occasional fishing line knots, it was a peaceful night.

The sun was setting, the moon rising, and dragonflies bounced around the fishing lines (it was almost  heavenly). I would do it all again in a heartbeat. 🙂

Do you enjoy fishing? Let me know in the comments.

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Milestone Celebration

Hello everyone, I woke up to a very kind surprise that I would like to share with the blogging universe.

I now have, officially, over 50 followers!! 🙂

This may seem like a small accomplishment, I believe it still needs to be celebrated.

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read my posts and follow my blog. You have helped me build the foundation and I can’t wait to share more with you!

Shout out to The Wine Wankers for being my 50th follower. Go check out their blog sometime.