Saturday, January 28, 2017

what my novel sounds like

Good day, humans. First off, I wanted to thank you all for taking my survey! (It should still be live for a few more days if you want to take it here.)
I found out lots of things, such as what day you like to read posts on and that most of my readers are Slytherins (muahahaha!). 

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I also discovered that you all like when I write about my novel and other such writerly things, so without further ado, I give you....

Maybe this should have been a post for my music blog 
but it's Saturday and YOU CAN'T STOP ME

"The Leaf Maker"

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I find it hard to listen to music with clearly articulated lyrics while I write my novel (does anyone else find this distracting?!), so this peaceful and sometimes unintelligible album of forest sounds and haunting vocals is perfect! One listen to this and I am instantly transported to the arms of the pine trees, even if I'm indoors. Shout out to the glorious Abbie for introducing me to this artist!

"Love's Crushing Diamond" 
Mutual Benefit
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This is my evening stroll album, y'all. It's dreamy and contemplative and reminds me a bit of a kaleidoscope with its whimsical sounds and album art. I recently bought the vinyl LP of this record (as you can see above), and it is the perfect calming soundtrack for writing. I may or may not have listened to it while writing this post. ;)

"Milo Greene"
Milo Greene

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Ah, Milo Greene. This album is MY JAM. It's nostalgic and cinematic and woodsy and harmonic and a billion other good, warm things. My cousin, sister and I all obsessed over this record for years. It's a keeper.

"Woodgate, NY"
Novo Amor

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Novo Amor is my new favorite artist. His music sounds like a coastal take on Bon Iver, with heartfelt vocals, soaring melodies and pained lyrics. I find that I can really visualize and feel a scene while listening to Novo Amor. Take a listen to my favorite song here, and get ready to explode with emotion.

This is just a small selection of the albums that inspire me to write. The soundtrack to my novel is ever-growing and expanding, so I'm sure there will be more albums to add in the future. In the meantime, have a stellar Saturday, friends! 

+ What about you? Do you listen to music when writing? 
What music helps you find inspiration?

Friday, January 20, 2017

the survey of glory

I figured out how to use the hover-over button.

First things first, I just wanted to say how Very Sorry I Am for inflicting my horrible graphics skills on you. If you clicked on this post regardless, you are a real trooper. For real, my photography skills ain't what they used to be, y'all. But that is BESIDES THE POINT, because...
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Yes, you read that right: A SURVEY! I have been meaning to make one for sometime now, to get a better feel for what y'all like to read about/don't like to read about/all the opinions/etc. And I also just really like asking questions. SO LET'S DO THIS THING
Click here in case you missed it. Thanks, friends! 

+ Please let me know if for some reason the survey isn't working for you. 
I will go in and fix it!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

let the light in

Do you ever slow down and really appreciate the beauty of the little things? If ever there was a time I needed to do this, it would be now. This week marked the beginning of my final semester of college ever(!), and it was kind of intense.

Sometimes life seems to just go, go, go 
at a hectic yet monotonous pace.

 Just finished your homework? There's another assignment due. 
Just completed work? 8 hours til the next day's round. 

It can all be a bit much. 

Although I can't change life's pace, I discovered that I can change my own. I can be more deliberate. I can change the way I let life get to me. I can pray for a healthy mindset and heavenly perspective, because at the end of the day, this world ain't my home, yo. And I'm slowly trying to take time to be conscious of, and truly thankful for, all the little details of life.

There's just so many things. I could go on. Maybe I should. I think I need to take stock of these things more. It's a part of that gratitude-deep, quiet life that I'm after:
"He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters." 
~ Psalm 23:2

He makes me. I can't do it alone. 

On the weekends and in every moment of my life, I want to have that calm, all-is-well attitude, with a smile on my face and joy inside my heart, because I AM ALIVE. And so are you. Every day we are here, Christ has a purpose for us. And I think that's just the bomb.

+ What about you? Fill up the comments with as many ludicrously little things to be thankful about as possible! I'm talking eyelashes, people. Commas. Rocks. Lady bugs. LEGGO   

Sunday, January 8, 2017

positive thinking 101

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Hello, friends. 

A couple of months ago I posted here about wanting to pursue positive thinking more. After reading Katie Grace's post on Burning Youth, I'm convinced that bringing positivity and joy and encouragement into others' lives (and our own) is something we all really want to accomplish in 2017.

And let's face it, folks, the world needs it. 

We need it. 

But how do we actually do this? 
How do we become positive people, anyway?

I'm convinced that positive thinking and positive actions all begin with our self-talk. Self-talk is what I consider to be the narrator in your head. It's what you tell yourself in reaction to the day's events and life in general. 

Here's an example:


These shoddy graphics I made in Microsoft Paint are the result of my resolution to try and actually produce visual content for this blog, aren't you proud #sendhelp #oracamera

Same situation, different reactions. We can't always control the circumstances in our lives, but we CAN control how we react. So, if you struggle with negativity like I do then yo, IT'S TIME TO CHANGE UP YOUR SELF-TALK, SISTER 


About a week ago, my father encouraged me to check out this video.
Yes, it's a bit of a dinosaur, and yes, the intro music reminds me of Space Mountain, but I DIGRESS

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True story.

The main point of the video is that we can change our negative self-talk by repeating positive statements to ourselves about the things we dislike or have trouble with. The speaker encourages making a list of these positive statements and adding to it overtime, which encourages gratitude and is basically #thebest.

It might feel odd at first to repeat positive statements to yourself such as "I love my figure" or "I love my talents and abilities," but if you are struggling with body image or comparison, you are already repeating something to yourself, and it's negative self-talk.

I'm not saying positive self-talk is some magical incantation that will make everything ok, but it does create a habit or pattern of positive thinking. 

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You can also do this with Scripture. For example, if you struggle with speaking encouragements, try memorizing and meditating on a verse, such as Ephesians 4:29, that directly addresses this.

Positive self-talk = positive thoughts overall = 
positive actions = changing the darn world 

Maybe this isn't groundbreaking to everyone, but to me, it was much needed. I wrote out a list of positive statements to combat the negative ones and repeated them to myself when I woke up this morning, and you know what? It was a pretty good day. 

As my friend Manasseh says: 
It's all about perspective. 

+ In other news, I just saw La La Land and it was EVERYTHING. I may or may not have openly wept multiple times in the theater last night. Can't complain, folks, life is good. What is one thing you are grateful for today? 

For more positive vibes, check out Olivia's rad resolutions here.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

bonfire boys

You don't know my boys, but I do.

You don't know what they sound like laughing at 2 a.m. in the church parking lot, but I do.

And ten years ago, we were sitting in the same place, laughing about the same things, probably. Ten years ago we were just teenagers who didn't think about the future, we just breathed.

But now we're adults and even though this isn't supposed to happen, we still have each other. Sitting in the same church parking lot talking about our dreams and relationships and nothing in particular. Laughing and wondering how it could be that even now we are still here.


I hope we have ten more years, thirty more years, fifty more years. I hope I live to see the day you all marry, and know your children's children.

I carry you all with me, every moment of every day. 

Past, present, future.

My boys.

+ Shout-out to #myemotions for making me write this post. 
And two more shout-outs to Z (who left too early) and C (who arrived too late) for a bonfire photo.

If you are fortunate enough in this life to find your people, never let them go.

+ P.S. Click here  if you'd like to read my latest post for Burning Youth! *dances in confetti*