Thursday, June 1, 2017

Wrap Up


LIFE

   Where to start. I guess I'll begin by saying, "I'M DONE WITH SCHOOL!" *dances around* I graduated from school and now have the whole summer to conquer the world. XD  I'll be attending college in the fall, so there's also that. (It's such a cute campus. I really love it and am so excited and nervous about it.) This month went pretty well actually. We had my graduation ceremony, and then the party a week or so afterward. My grandparents were all able to come and visit for a week, so that was really cool to see them again, and to have them see my graduation. I even was able to go to prom, so that was a lot of fun.

   Also, I got a new phone! There's a long and complicated story about my previous phone (which was only like 14 months old) but the short version is that it no longer would be able to serve me. I ended up switching phones, and now am the owner of an Apple. So yeah, it's been nice figuring out all the cool stuff on it. (rose-gold is such a pretty color) I feel like I have a complicated life because everything seems to have a long explanation lol.

   On a travel related note; I was suppose to go on my graduation trip in July, but it ended up getting canceled. Though I'm bummed I won't be able to go on that particular trip, I am super excited for Plan B. My grandmother and I are going to be going on my new trip this upcoming weekend (so soon!), and I can't wait. (If you follow me on my social media -Instagram/Facebook- you'll see where and what it is before I actually post about it on here) It was really last minute, but am so glad it worked out, and that God has provided for the trip. There were a lot of things that could have not made it enjoyable, or possible.


                                     RANDOMNESS:


I ate a candy bar before going to bed, and it was delicious. Whatchamacallit is now my favorite. <3

I am saying words incorrectly more often-so I got to play it off cool (yay)

Guy from my youth group calling me and not realize he was talking to me until 10 minutes later. Very awkward conversation

The moment when my heart stopped while in the library. I looked over to see someone standing in front of a bookshelf with no head. I was so freaked out for the half-second it took me to realize that they had their head was turned sideways. (I tried to get a pic, but she moved and I was trying not to appear stalkerish)

Sending a letter to a friend in Europe, and her getting it. (was so nervous it wouldn't go to the right address since we don't speak the same language XD)

Friend: "I think the icing on the cake is melting."
Me: "Nah. That's just the water affect of the ocean."

Savvy: *gasp* "My foggied window!" *silence* *crickets chirp* ..."I mean. My window fogged."

Savvy: (talking about mom) "How long has she had this cough?"
Biz: "A couple days. A Lot of couple days."

(So this is like a "thing" Savvy asks every so often now. Biz's responses get cuter each time)
Savvy: "Why are you so cute?"
Biz: "Because God made me that way because he wants me to be cute, and he wants cute kids so he made them that way."

Biz: "Can I put water in the gun?"
Dad: "No, you do not put water in the gun."
Biz: *gets toy and shoots Savvy with dart gun*
Savvy: "Wow. That actually hurt"
Biz: That's 'cause it's a real gun"

Biz: "Did God make our eyes by getting marbles and painting them?"

Biz: (explaining to us her conversation with Lacy our cat) "'So here's the deal. I'm looking for Buttercup. Have you seen her?' And she was like 'No. Have fun looking for her' and I was like 'Ok. Have fun licking your paw.'"

Biz: "I need to eat lots of candy so I can be sweet."



Also, I had a couple people that asked commented, but I still have room for some more if anyone wants to enter some questions for my Q&A post. I may answer it in a video....but that's only if I get enough interest XD

Monday, May 15, 2017

This Chapter has Ended



I'm done. High school is over. Sitting in my room, where my lil sis is quietly playing with her toys and my books, it's strange to think today was my last day of high school. I didn't have a normal childhood. I didn't have a normal social life in school. Do I wish I had the normal American upbringing? No. I have loved every memory and adventure my parents have given me. They've taught me so much, and have given me wisdom to prepare me for the future. They protected me, and shown me how to have discernment. I'm so thankful that I didn't have to worry about the social drama that is in school; that I have experienced so much in my young life. I had no clue what would happen after I finished school, but God has guided me, and I now have an idea on what will happen. This only the beginning. The next chapter has yet to be written, and I can't wait.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Giveaway Winners!


Thank you all who entered my giveaway. I was glad there were so many entries, compared to just one. :) And now for the winners..... *drumroll*

Faith Potts

Anika Joy

Congratulations! I sent you both an email, so be sure to check your inbox.

 A lot of you requested posts of my current work-in-progress (Changeling), life-related (college), or a post of my bookshelves. So I will be working to have those as my next posts, or a little bit down the road.




(and don't forget I'm still collecting questions for a Q&A in my last post!) 

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Five Year Blogging Anniversary + Q&A + Giveaway!



 Here is my mystery post I promised you guys! April 6 was when I first started blogging. Five years ago. O.O I didn't realize it was that long ago. Although I'm not the most avid blogger, I have to say I love the blogging community. Some of you guys have been with me since the beginning, and others have just recently started following me. Whether old or new, I am glad you found my little corner where I tend to ramble a lot, and often forget to post, but either way, I hope you'll find something here that will offer you encouragement, or let you glimpse into my adventurous life.

 To celebrate my 5 years of having this blog, I am hosting a giveaway for the next 6 days. (yay!)

Also, I'm collecting questions for a Q&A post. So if you've always wondered something, or just want to give me a hard time by giving some complicated question, feel free to leave them in a comment below.

Now, for the giveaway. I will be giving two prizes:

Prize 1: King's Blood by Jill Williamson




Prize 2: Broken Window by Christa Kinde (signed!)


This giveaway is open only for those whose mailing address is in the U.S. (sorry, international shipping is just a bit too much)
Good luck!



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

March Wrap-Up


So.....this is late. Usually I am good, and post my monthly review on the last day of the month, but someone (*glares at wifi*) decided to act up this whole weekend. I decided I still wanted to post, but this wrap up will be brief.

Life
I had such an amazing time this March. I turned a year older, I got to visit all of my friends (I hardly get to see most of them, but then I saw them all in the same month?! Definitely a gift from God.) I went up and visited my friend in Chicago for a whole week (and I may or may not have returned with a suitcase full of books XD) We had one "good" snow, but it went away pretty quick. We've had such a crazy winter, and not it's spring, so who know what'll happen. Also, I got my own room! So now I just stare at my books all day long and do nothing else (kidding)


Randomness

Dad: that's too loud
Izzy: just plug your ears

When I flew to Chicago, the kid sitting next to me had the same birthday as I did. O.O it was meant to be

Forgetting the date
*when you forget it's March and say February*
*writing 2016 instead of 2017*

*visiting friend's house for a week*
*walk in the house at one point and see a stranger*
*pretend all is normal, and I expected them to be there*

*orders a shake and float with someone*
 employee ask: "is a float mixed?"
 owner: "no. A float is not a milkshake."
response: oh dear

Eating ice-cream in 20 degree weather

Izzy 'calling' me in the car, pretending to be mom and saying I could bring Izzy to Chick-fil-a
(it was adorable. She legit thought it worked.)

The time I randomly my ear was shocked by an earbud.

Izzy asking if Jesus was invisible and camouflaged since we couldn't see him
Then asked if a sycamore tree was sick. XD

And now my lil sis knows how to pick locks*shakes head*
me: locks door. *hears Izzy trying to open it*
*she runs back upstairs*
*runs back down*
*fiddles with the doorknob*
*she opens the door with a grin*
apparently she just finds little tiny stuff like a key ring and a dime to turn the slide that locks my door. So no escape from her! ;)

Losing my pen 10 times in the span of a few seconds (note to self, don't have a pen on your bed. It will get lost)



So there was my month in the matter of minutes. XD (I know it's missing some sections, but I'll do my best to get them back in my next monthly post)
Anyway, I have news! I'm not going to say a whole lot just yet, but be on the lookout for a post in the next few days. There I will reveal a surprise! (super excited, and and trying to get everything ready.)

How is your April going? Can you believe it's already the 4th?! Will you check back for my post?

Friday, March 17, 2017

Chicago












My family flew me out for my birthday to visit an old friend in Illinois. I had such a blast this past weekend with her (we may or may not have stalked the people on the train. They made very good subjects for our photography lol)
We attacked the used bookstores, and had some great finds. Went to local coffee shops and had conversations over coffee and cocoa, and deep talks over lunch. We caught up on each other's lives and just had a fun time hanging out.

For my "Chicago experience" we went to the Bean (I am not totally sure why this is so popular) and then walked down to Navy Pier. I got some awesome pics, and loved the old buildings and bridges. I also had a Chicago hot dog, which was actually really good. (I'm not a big hot dog fan, but I did enjoy it.) I molded pottery as well, and I look forward to sharing pics once it's glazed. I saw La La Land and...I have to say that I loved that intro scene. It was amazing. *dances/sings and pretends I'm half as good as the actors in the movie*

I got an Instagram, so I'll be sharing my photography with my lovely followers. Excited, and hope I won't explode with pics all at once XD



Have you been or want to go to Chicago? What are your thoughts on La La Land?

Thursday, March 2, 2017

February Wrap-Up


Life:

This past month was pretty amazing. I had the opportunity to compete at the Bouldering Nationals  (rock climbing) in Utah. I didn't make it to day two, but I still had a blast, and felt like I did a great job from where I had been in the past. I got to meet up with my old coach. Was awesome getting to see him, and I also went and toured at Antelope Island with my dad, which was really cool. The weather was really nice, and we had some amazing views. (it was actually warmer there the first day than when we had left VA. If that doesn't tell you something about southern winters) We had quite the experience trying to get out there, which I'll post about later, but it all ended up good.

I went down and visited a friend and my grandma, who both live a couple hours away. I was so proud of myself for not getting lost while driving through the city. (the new GPS is proving its worth ;)  ) It was great seeing Sami again. She told me about her new book and the series she is working on- which sounds amazing! We talked writer details and then went to searching for treasure in the local thrift shops (I found some great books). I had a fun time with my grandma. We met up for supper and had a good talk. She had been up north, so I hadn't been able to see her for a while.

And on a random note, I went through my keepsake box. Saw all those school worksheets from kindergarden (my only non homeschool year) and the adorable pictures I drew. Was super cute and some of the stuff was quite comical. I found taped pieced of paper and a note my mom put on it saying I made my own Blue's Clues notebook, and a spot for the crayon. I was four years old <3
My two favorite shows when I was little was Blue's Clues and Bear in the Big Blue House. My little sister is watching them now, so it's been cool seeing it be passed down :)





Reading

Goodreads added rereading on their website! Now I can reread, and am excited to try it out. I have never reread any books before, so it will be quite interesting I think. (Just kidding. I reread a ton. I've lost count of how many times I've read thru my books. Hundreds, perhaps thousands of times. Who knows)

I got a few really good books this month. And although I have slowed down a bit in reading, I still got in a nice amount of like 17 books. (had quite a long time to read at the airport lol)

*Shiver not listed

And of course I got a new story idea. *shakes head* And it was really random too because I was doing my hair. (writer problems) XD It's really cool though. It's sci-fi or something, which is totally not my normal genre, so we'll see how it turns out whenever I try to write it. This is like, idea three this year?


Randomness:

When you take your phone out of its case and it looks and feels so strange   (what is this?!)

We were in a drive thru and I handed my sister the receipt and all of the sudden showed me the receipt again. Apparently our cashier's name was Kashiana. Kashiana the cashier. *nods*

When your lips feel like they're dying. Even when you slather chapstick all over them (it happened)

When you are trying to choose between sleep and a movie

When you realize that your one page paper is suppose to be an eight page paper, and it's due tomorrow.  O.O (I died)

I got my hair cut, which is a big deal because I love my hair and like it long. I really like the new length though. (Just chop it off!)  ;D

I have been winning quite a few giveaways lately- not that I'm complaining. Just that it isn't normal XD Mostly book stuff, but still :)

You know your at a small airport when the attendant is calling for people to board (going thru all the many different members) and finally says over the intercom after no one gets up "How about is there anyone headed to Philadelphia on flight - ?"

I did NOT drop a Gatorade bottle on top of a woman while putting my bag in the overhead compartment on the plane. O.O  *glances around and hides evidence*




Little Sister

Hearing this conversation:
Sis1: Why are you so cute?
Sis2: Because God made me cute.  <3
How did God make me? Did he paint me?
Sis1: In a wayyy....

"My ears hear dat!"

*is vacuuming in another room*
*hears screaming and sobbing*
*wondering what's going on*
*hears family consoling her*
Turns out she had vacuumed up her dolls pj pants. Very traumatic XD


So there is my wrap up. (A bit shorter than usual, but limited WiFi has been the main reason)

Sunday, February 26, 2017

February 26






it’s been four years
since I’ve seen your face
seeing you only at family gatherings
or a random meeting now and then
i still look for you
i drive by where you lived
and I look up
waiting to see your face in the window
but it’s just as I notice it’s empty
that I remember
you’re gone
you will never come back
i seem to forget that
whenever I go by
because no matter what
i always look
but you aren’t there
i can no longer go to that building
walk through those sliding glass doors
and press the button on the elevator
i can no longer come knocking on your door
and hear you tell stories
of who you helped save
or the cars you had back in the day
no longer can I dance with you
spinning me round on the dance floor
as you did that once



[seeing my grandpa’s window]

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Time to Think


   I've had a few things I've been wanting to post, but I just haven't had time this past week, as I'm preparing for my trip out of town. Technically I don't have time to write a post now, but I'm going to squeeze it in anyway ;)

   One of the things I love most about driving by myself is that I can either drive in complete silence, or crank the radio up as loud as I'd like. It's my free time. I don't have to worry about other people in the car. I could sing as loud as I want, or not talk at all. It's just me. It's a time where I can be filled with peace.
I'm often distracted for most of my day, trying to finish my daily tasks, or preparing for something that is due that week. Any free moment I'm just resting and doing whatever I want.  Driving was no different. I could think what I wanted, or just not really think at all about life (don't worry, I still pay attention while driving XD)

   I get so busy- or think I am- that I forget to take time to pray and spend time with my Creator. It starts off small, but then more and more time is gone. It's one thing I am trying to work on lately, but even so I still end up doing other things that could wait.
Recently I've been doing something different. Instead of just "wasting" my time while I drive, I try to put it to good use. I pray. I usually end up praying for people, whether a close friend or someone who just had a prayer request, and I pray for them until I can't think of anything else to say. Other days I'll turn my radio up and just let the song play, listening and appreciating the lyrics, and then a moment later I may be singing praises out and thanking God for how awesome He is. It may only be a ten minute ride, but it's ten minutes of where I can be in God's presence, away from distractions, and just listen. It's hard sometimes to not turn the radio on and have it as a background noise, to sit in silence. It's not something our culture does. We fill up every moment we have. It's strange to be somewhere where there is no other noise. We might not like the silence because we feel alone, but it is in this same silence where if we focus on God, He will speak to us.

I just want to challenge you to think more about what you do with your time. How much time do you spend with God vs. social media? (I know I need to change my routine so I can read my Bible and pray consistently) Instead of having the radio on for no reason at all, turn it to a song that is worshiping God. Sing to Him with all your heart. Just listen to a song in silence. Talk with your Maker. It may only be for a moment or two, and you may think it doesn't make a difference, but it does. You get to spend that time in fellowship with the One who created you. He wants to know your thoughts and desires. He longs for you to be with him.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

January Wrap-Up




I can't believe it's time for another monthly wrap up, but here it goes...


LIFE
January went pretty well for me. We got some snow for a couple of days, so that was quite enjoyable. (dull, gray and cold days are no fun) It was quite fun to wake up to my little sister screaming when she saw the snow.
My mom baked a lot during this month, and it was AMAZING. Due to some stuff, she decided a while back not to bake frequently so she could focus on other things, so when she baked rolls, bread, and cinnamon rolls, it. was. heaven.
In the middle of January I had a climbing competition, and it was a lot of fun. I had only just started back into training a couple months ago, and was quite happy with my performance. Not only that, but I made it to the national competition, and will be competing in just one week! So I am cranking up my training and trying to stay healthy until then. (which didn't really work out, as I got sick this week XP)
This month was also the winter retreat for my youth group. It will be my last year to take part, and over all it was great. I was able to study the Word more, fellowship with others, and read what the Scripture says about being a woman of God. We studied the passage of Proverbs 31, as well as other passages. Our group found some things that none of us had really noticed before, and that was pretty cool. We also spent a lot of time praying for our nation, and God brought up a few things that we didn't have planned. Reminding us that if our country continues to fall away, that he will remove his blessing, but if we repent and turn from our sin that he will hold back his judgement and pour out his blessing, even though we don't deserve it.


RANDOMNESS

~When your family spends the day picking all the locks in the house just in case....(you never know when you might need the skill. getting locked out of the house for instance)

~Things you never though you would hear your dad say: "Man, nail polish takes forever to dry!"

~*little sister begins to run in the snow*
    Mom: "No running with a shovel!"
    lil sis: *pauses*
              *turns around*
              *walks toward me with shovel outreached*
              *begins to run again once I take the shovel*

~The awkward moment when I tried to put the milk up:
   *pulls out jug of milk*
   *pulls out a cup*
   *pours milk*
   *tries to put milk up and notices it doesn't fit*
   *realizes I'm trying to put the milk in the cupboard*

~When my dad got his drone up in a tree due to an unforeseen breeze at night. A few days later he was able to get it out.



BLOGGING
I'm happy to say that I was able to post at a semi consistent rate this month. This is my sixth post for January, so I have to say I think I did pretty good. The two highlights are:
A Poem: The Silent One
A Blogging Bake Off


Favorite posts I read:

Savannah: The Girl In The MirrorHow To Liven Up Your Mentor Character
Olivia: When They Don't Like Your Dream
Cait: 10 Classic Retellings I Want To Read But Don't Exist
Clara: I Don't Want To Just Exist , Your Past Does Not Define You
Julia: To Dance,
Rebekah: 21 Answers to the Question: What are You Planning to Do In Your Future?
Sare: Random Things You Find On Your Phone // The Flexible Ruler


WRITING

I actually did write this month. For fun. I meet up twice with a friend I'm co-writing with, and was able to up the word count by 1,000 (don't judge. I know I've written more in that time span, but when you both have lives, and are sharing a story, it takes a little more time. Plus, we don't want it to be a messy rough draft, so we're plotting a lot of the time too) 
 I did write part of the new prologue for Changeling. So once that is done I'll let a couple people read it and see what they think. I'm still writing the updated outline for Changeling, as well as the stories before and after, and stuff. Also, I just realized that I don't like writing a particular type of fantasy. I was just thinking about the final contest A. E. Stengl is doing this year, and that I want to try and take part, but that I will probably have it set in the same world of Changeling, instead of the fantasy world I created last year. So there's a rabbit trail.  


What is something you think I should add in my wrap up posts? Your favorite highlight from January? 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Blogging Bake Off


What happens when you have writers and bloggers come together to bake?
 Well, come find out



One of the things that tends to happen when you have a bunch of people in a chat group that are homeschoolers, and are in large families, is that they know how to cook. I'm amazed at all the stuff my fellow friends can do, and how well they do it. But today, as one of the gals and I were chatting, we decided to do a bake off. We ended up recruiting a couple others, and all baked the same recipe today. It was a lot of fun watching everyone's rolls come together despite being in four different states.

[During my time of baking, I found out that there is a thing called 'celery salt'. No clue that existed, but now I know- and yes, I did taste just a bit. Not nearly as stringy as actual celery ;p ]

And now we have our first baker. She has made these many a time, and it shows. The browning on top looks perfect, and the biscuits themselves look quite fluffy. 

Julia: Finished at approximately  2:48pm




Oh and it looks like we now have our second batch of rolls coming in right now. Nice touch of sprigs to give a great aesthetic touch. I like how she styled them differently to be a scone type look.

Abigayle: Finished approximately 3:30pm



Our third competitor's rolls look amazing. Great memories right here. Feels like I was just transported into another time of where it'd be biscuits and milk.

Jesseca. Finished approximately 5:30pm




And now our final competitor. A nice and decorative display, lightly dusted cheese on top I presume.

Mine: Finished approximately 5:20pm



And now the bake off has come to a close. Whose rolls would you choose???

TAKE THE POLL!



Don't they all look amazing? ( for some reason my lighting was off, so they don't look nearly as delicious as the others lol)
I am now off to my virtual ship where I will go and taste test for them. (I'm nice like that. No need for anyone to get poisoned tonight.)
Do you think we should do more bake offs? *looks around and whispers* Because I have ideas *nods*

I gotta go. Just arrived to my first stop, and the rolls are running out quickly.





Does one roll look more aesthetically pleasing? Whose house would you want to go and eat at tonight? Have you done a bake off before?

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Taking the ACT // How I Survived




I know that a lot of people will be taking their ACT or SAT pretty soon. I happened to have taken mine in October, and it was quite the experience. So I thought I would just share a few tips.

~ PRAY
Whether you plan to attend college, or just taking the test and will have to give the score for when you apply for jobs, you want to have a reasonably good score to show. It may sound strange to pray for just a test, but this isn't just a normal test. It is very hard, and it will show all your weak-points. You want to do your best, and to glorify God in your life, so when you're having a hard time opening the study book, send up a quick prayer that God will help you remember and study well for the ACT/SAT.

~READ AND STUDY
It's hard to pick up your study tools and want to use them. It's repetitive and exhausting. But, it will make a difference. There are many tips and tricks that can make a difference for when you take the test (I recommend getting a few different books for studying. I took a class, but then had other things on top of what I did there) So whether its books, practice tests, online class, flashcards do as much as you can that is formatted in the way of the test.

~PREPARE
Take a prep class. You'll be able to learn some tips about the test. If you know of an area where you are weak at, get a tutor. Maybe you can't have a personal tutor for much time, but even a day or two can make a huge difference. I am really weak at math, so I went to a tutor two times about a week and a half before my test and it made a difference. Don't think you don't have enough to get help. Anything is better then nothing.



~BE ON TIME
Make sure you are at your designated test center on time, if not a few minutes early. I got there before they opened, so I had time to get to my class, drink water, go the bathroom, etc. Don't bring your phone in, or at least turn it completely off. I left mine in the car just so that way there wouldn't be any complications.

~BREAK
Bring some water and a snack. You'll be there for a while, so there's no need to try and become dehydrated. If you're like me, you probably won't be hungry before hand, but having a snack is good.

~SKIM
Don't read all of the long paragraphs that are there for the problems. Skim through them and underline/circle anything you think will be important. For area's like the Science and English, I read the questions first, and skimmed through for the answers. Of course, you'll want to be sure, but if you take the time to read every single word on your document, you will run out of time.

~ANSWER EVERYTHING
Even if you are only halfway through one of the sections and are almost out of time, take the remaining couple of minutes and circle in the remaining answers. Even if it's wrong that's okay. You don't have any deductions for wrong answers, and if you get one right, well, that's worth it for sure.

~TOOLS
Calculator- make sure you bring the right calculator, and an extra one. (don't want it to die on you!) You want to make sure you calculator is high tech enough to help you with as many problems as possible, but not to where you can't bring it in because it remembers all the equations and stuff. So make sure you check to see if your calculator is what is allowed before hand.
Pencils -they very are important. That is what you are using the entire time. I brought a whole box of pencils I sharpened before hand, so I had a pencil per test, and then more just in case the world ended and all but one broke.  :)


So there are some tips for you. Hope you find some of them helpful (perhaps I should do "how to study post" that is totally comical and not helpful at all? XD)

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The Silent One




I am the one who never speaks
yet I have much to say
The one who is full of words
yet can only say so much
who is silent when the room is full
who disappears in the shadows
who is not noticed
it is almost like a gift
to be able to disappear in the background
yet also a curse.
I do not want to be alone
I do not want to be surrounded
I love being near people
but it is too overwhelming
The Silent One they call me
whose words are hardly over a mutter
whose thoughts can be so loud
who is often dreaming of other worlds
who can be in a room all alone and feel safe
yet be in a room full of people and feel so insecure.
I am in the shadows
I am a daughter of Light


1/9/17

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Winter Wonderland

















(side note, we may or may not have tried to fly a drone at the park, and landed it in a tree. If you know any expert tree climbers for small, tall trees, feel free to recommend ;P)







I must say, when I woke up this morning and saw the world covered in while outside my bedroom window, I was quite happy. (even though I may or may not have rested for a few more minutes before getting up.) Though as soon as I heard my little sister scream in the house, I knew exactly what it was for. She was excited for snow. In the past, she had a sort've "traumatic" experience with the car slipping on ice one winter, and never forgot it. (We got stuck, and when some of us got out of the car to push it, she was quite frantic) For the past couple of years she hardly wanted to go outside, but as soon as she saw the white powder covering our yard today, she jumped at the chance to go out.
And I'm glad she enjoyed it because snow is something I love. Yes, there are many things that may be inconvenient because of it, but its beauty always astounds me. So as the day went on, tramping through what was suppose to only be an inch of snow (those weather-forcasts XD) and pulling out my camera, it made for a day full of warm layers and many smiles. Plus, my mom baked all day, so all the smells from the cinnamon rolls and bread filled the house.


                                       [finishing the day with a sparkler]








Do you ever just stop and look at the snowflakes?

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Looking Back at 2016



Life:

I can't believe it's 2017. I mean, it doesn't even feel like twelve months have passed and already a new year is coming. So many things happened this past year. From things like my dad skiing on the city street at the beginning of the year,  to driving our mini in the neighborhood.
 I got to travel to Russia, then go on a trip with my family across the country again. Once back home I studied for my ACT before I  applied to and was accepted to college.
I wrote a first draft during NaNo, which was really exciting for me. I haven't written anything this large since like, 2012, so it was encouraging and exciting to write another story with great characters. I got to get to know some awesome bloggers this past year. Not sure what I would have done without my writing buddies or my sister- who kept me going and helped me write as much I did. (It's a lot more encouraging to write when you have others wanting to read your work when you give them a snippet here or there)
 I was able to hang out with some close friends, and make new ones as well.
My dad graciously allowed for me to keep a kitten that was born this year. (she looks similar to my last cat.)
My love of traveling continues to grow, and am excited for the adventures coming next year.

Adventure:


  • Ice skated  
  • Mountaineered with my dad 
  • Drove Friesans in Canada
  • Visited Red Square in Moscow
  • Rock Climbing at nationals
  • Zip line course with my distant cousins
  • Outdoor climbing and hiking with my family



Music:

I listend to a lot of great music this year, and was able to go to some concerts this year as well. I'm one of those people not perhaps the random one) who lives a wide variety of music compared to just one genre. I love old time music like Nat King Cole, Big Band sounds, all the way to modern Christian Contemperary. So you shouldn't  be surprised if one song is a classical piece, and the next is the occasional rap.  (I have never been a huge lover of rap, but I have lately been listening to NF, and have really enjoyed his lyrics)
And I have recently I become a lover of acapella.  (BYU Vocal Point/Noteworthy, Peter Hollens, Bri Ray)



Movies:

Priceless- I really enjoyed this. Especially liked reading the book, as it gave a little bit more to he story.
Ben Hur- My sister and I fell in love with some of the songs that promoted the movie, so we were excited to finally see it. Wish is was longer, but over all I enjoyed it.
Captain America: Civil War- Not really sure what to put here XD It was good, and I look forward to the next movie with the characters.
Finest Hours- I really enjoyed this movie. It was based on a true story, and it made it even better.
Now You See Me Two- This movie makes me wish I could do more tricks. (they had an epic card scene)
Rogue One- I wasn't too sure how this would be, but then when I started watching it I was really excited. I loved all the comical scenes that were in it (the new droid was pretty witty) and I really liked how they brought back some of the characters from the past movies
God's Not Dead 2- This movie was amazing. About issues that have happened, and most likely will happen again.

Next year I'm excited to see:
the live action Beauty and the Beast,
the new Pirates of the Caribbean,
Spider-Man: Homecoming,
Star Wars VIII.


Reading:

I alpha and beta read a ton, as well as read published books. According to Goodreads I:
read 43,000+ pages
read 130 books (not including the re-reads or unpublished books)

Favorite books I read published this year:
Shadows of the Storm by Connilyn Cossette
Unblemished by Sara Ella
Byways 8-10 by C J Milbrandt
Heartless by Marissa Meyer
Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton
Beyond the Horizon by Jesseca Wheaton


Next year I'm looking forward to:
The Returning by Rachelle Dekker (even though I already read it, it doesn't officially release until Jan 2017)
The Voice the Key and the Revolution by Jenny Cote
Byways 11-13 by C J Milbrandt
Unraveled by Sara Ella



Writing:

I wrote a short story, worked on another short story, wrote a flash fiction, and a novel. It was probably like 80,000 words or something, but some of it was handwritten, so...
I did NaNoWriMo, and I got 50,300+ words. Still can't believe it, and I'm not even fully done. And do to getting my wisdom teeth out the previous day, I was able to write 12k in 1 day.
Somehow I gave my unfinished rough draft to some writing friends. Still not sure how I allowed that. But in the process I found out something. You know when you share a Google Doc and there are anonymous animals that pop up? Well, there was one that said "axolotyl" I was like "what in the world is that?!" Turns out, it's this little creature:

Image result for axolotl
Weird huh?


Blogging:

So I ended up posting more on my review blog the past couple years, but I'm coming back over here. I'll be just putting reviews/book spotlights on the second blog. I'm excited to post here again, but am not going to stay to a strict schedule, though I may eventually do one in the future.

Posts from this year:
Don't Worry
Miracles, Blessings, and the Faith of a Child
Hacked 1
Hacked 2
Beautiful Books Post
In Remembrance


My most viewed post that was published this year was: Just a Ramble on Snow (which kind of surprised me) 2nd most viewed was my November/NaNo Wrap-Up

Some Favorite Posts: (there were a TON of great posts this year, but I only have room for so many, and my brain may have been fried by the time I went to go looking through all the posts from everyone in the past year)
Burning Youth
Rebekah
Julia
Savannah
Katie Grace

Randomness:

  • I have begun to use Goodreads more recently this year. Wish they had this when I was a lot younger and reading books. Slowly adding to my "read" list, and adding more "to-read" all the time
  • My name was misspelled into two new ways.
  • Took part in my first writing contest this year
  • Found out that you can own a tiger/lion in the U.S
  • Had some weird and random dreams about some people.
  • Got a few laughs from Studio C (They have some great, clean comedy on YouTube)
  • Locked my keys in the car for the first time #oops
  • Began a friends page- still a WIP
  • Tea is now my thing. Coffee, not so much.
  • When my mom made me a dish from Russia.
  • When your younger sister says she doesn't like ice cream.  O.O 
  • You give a younger sibling a small, gold watering can and they think it's a genie lamp

Special Moments:

-Stars and clouds in the sky at the same time one night.
-Seeing the Northern Lights
-Berry picking
-Watching my little sister sit on my dad's lap during the evening outside.
-The peacefulness of a mountain cabin.
-The special place on the back porch with lights and brisk air.
-My writing place in our extra bedroom lit by christmas lights.
-The time where a laughing child held my hand as we ice skated.
-Where God used a girl in another country who spoke a different language to encourage me
-Those moments when I would blast my radio and sing as loud as I could.

Goal's for next year:


*Finish draft 2 of Changeling
*Write a short story prequel
*Write some good poems
*Finish alphaing
*Finish my friend's page
*Have a guest blogger
*Read and study my Bible more.
*Work on scheaduling my time
*Bible journal
*Travel
*Graduate (had to add this in)
*And this most likely will not happen until the year after, but I would like to go to a writing conference  (RM)
*Maybe try a vlog. O.o



Did you know what an Axolotyl was? What is a special time you had this past year? What is some favorite music you listened to?