#writing · Photography · Travel · Uncategorized

Plants = Happiness

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While living in the dorms, it’s very difficult to keep plants alive. From the horrible sunlight, to a small and cramped room, to leaving for weeks at a time, I’ve tried my best. And they’ve all died. Even the piece of bamboo that was supposed to be good luck..

Since I will be moving into a house this coming school year, I thought it would be best to try my green thumb one more time, or see if it really isn’t there. Thus my succulent garden was born. I started with a cute planter box from Target, and went to Home Depot yesterday to try and find a couple small succulents I like. I was overjoyed to find they had a whole section dedicated to folks like me who obsess over the tiny green plants. And right next to it was my other favorite section: the jungle plants. Small fig tree plants as well as some ferns, I was in heaven. I limited myself though, because I wouldn’t want to waste so much money if they’re just going to die on me.

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So I settled on three of my favorites. A little bit of green and a pop of bright watermelon red. I’m hopeful for their growth. As I am also hopeful for my own personal growth over the summer. This past year I’ve changed so much, but I still feel I can spread my roots farther and grow taller. I have learned to love myself more; that is a daily struggle. I have been learning to find the things that truly make me happy, which are not always the same as others’. I thought I had found some of that happiness in another person, but it seems they did not want to grow in the same way I wanted to.

I have been able to bond with friends over God’s beauty and love, and those are some of the closest relationships I’ve had yet. Buying these succulents and watching them grow might seem boring or insignificant to some, but it’s something I thoroughly enjoy. And it’s a small slice contributing to my daily happiness.

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I will keep you updated on their progress, and leave a comment if you have any tips for watering or fertilizing strategies.

I still need name suggestions!

IG – @grateful.grace

Grace

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#writing · Photography · Travel · Uncategorized

13 Reasons Why . . . And More

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The feel of your hand against mine. The smell of old books as I flip through the pages of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass. Smiling as the sun peaks through the clouds, bringing life and warmth back into my skin.

I have aspirations for this lifetime. I have moments that I cherish, and reasons why I choose to wake up every day and seek happiness. I seek it. It’s not always found. But I know that it’s right around the corner.

I want to study Vincent van Gogh’s paintings. Roll in the grass and run through huge sunflower fields.  I want to feel as my eardrums split in two and go numb from the sheer volume of thumping concerts. To slow-dance by myself in the living room, as a record slowly turns.

Shopping for bouquets of delicious smelling flowers for my own enjoyment, to laughing at 10pm in the grocery story as friends and I buy the necessary ingredients for chocolate brownies.

Strolling around the pond my grandmother grew up on, listening to her tell me stories of forgotten times. How the cows would wade through the water and snack on the grass; how she and her brother used a horse to pull the “perfect sitting rock” from one side of the pond to the other. She tells me she wonders if it’s still there. One day she will not be around to tell me these stories.

Watching as my brother grows up from the curly-haired three year old who shared his goldfish crackers, to the day his 6′ 2″ frame strides across the stage in cap and gown, graduating from high school.

Snuggling up with my twelve year old dog, breathing in her puppy scent one more time.

These moments make life worth living. There are far more than 13 reasons why life is so wonderful. Life is not perfect. I have had my fair share of challenges, and I know others have had more. But this life is precious, and should be lived fully and wildly and thriving and as a shooting star bursting through the sky.

These are the moments I live for.

IG – @grateful.grace

Grace

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Photography · Uncategorized

Does Time Heal?

Time seems to stand still while you’re waiting for life to change. You’ll want to freeze time. In this instant, right here right now, because it feels so good. You don’t want it to end. To savor it, ingrain every detail into your mind so you can always come back to it, like it’s never truly over.

Or maybe, you want this time SO DESPERATELY TO BE over. The pain seeps in to you and all you can do is rock with the motion, trembling with agony. Let this be over! To reach out and press the fast forward button, close your eyes and wait until the train hurtles off the tracks.

I want to know what makes time tick. Do the clocks control time? Because time always seems to be going too fast when I’m enjoying pleasant company. The hours tick by like seconds when I’m with the right person. Or I’m driving to something important; time seems to slip between my fingers like slimy glue. I can’t hold it, can’t make it stop.

Time seemed to stop when my parents announced to my brother and I that they were getting a divorce. Everything seemed to stop. That moment is stuck, lodged inside my brain like a piece of lettuce between the teeth. I want to erase it; pick at that piece of lettuce until the taste of the bitter salad has disappeared.

All the tears in my life, pain, suffering, even that time at the junior prom when nobody asked me to slow dance.

I can do without it all.

I will throw away my clocks. I don’t want time to control me.

IG – @grateful.grace

Grace

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@_annalouise_

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Photography · Travel

Fake Social Media

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I often dream that I’m missing out on things.

It always seems that I’m not apart of important conversations, intellectually stimulating moments, or just missing out on people enjoying themselves.

This mainly comes from the persona that comes with social media. It’s literally living life through a lens. Of rose colored glasses. I am constantly opening my phone and pressing my thumb to the social media apps.

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There are always new updates of people posting who they’re hanging out with, laughing about a hilarious moment while studying, or their amazing view while traveling. Whether or not I’m consciously thinking about it, I envy them a little.

Ecclesiastes 4:4                                                           And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one person’s envy of another. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

This envy or jealousy is not healthy. God has provided everything for me. He has blessed my life in so many ways, but it seems so easy to get caught up in analyzing everyone else’s lives and their blessings. I often catch myself having thoughts such as, “but why can’t I have their blessings? Lucky them!!”

That’s the thing about social media though. People post the good, not the bad. We choose to post the highlights of our life. We want others to see how wonderful certain moments are, so we share those. We don’t see when others are suffering or are in pain. We see their lives through rose-colored glasses.

We need to remind ourselves that everyone is human. Everyone has good and bad days. We cannot put others up on a pedestal, believing that they’re perfect or close to it. Sometimes it is so difficult to imagine that everyone else is constantly thinking, having conscious thoughts, just as I do. They watch me as I cross the campus, have a thought about me possibly, and then move on with their day. They plan out their schedule for their week, work on studying for exams or projects, and have extracurriculars. It is insane to think that everyone is that complex. But it’s true. Everyone is. With that being said, we’re all just human.

“What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person.” – John Green

Overall, I’ve learned that I’m not missing out on the things I thought were so great. Often, it’s more boring than I could’ve ever imagined. So don’t worry if you see others laughing in a snapchat video, or an image of a group of friends out on a Saturday. It might’ve been staged, and those smiles could be fake.

Keep living life to make yourself happy. Post the things that bring you joy. I love social media too, and am constantly on it. Just remember that everyone else is posting the “good”, and that there’s more to life, including your own, than those social media apps.

IG – grateful.grace

Grace

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