Friday Five: Blogger Love v.28

Another week gone by… and it was the last one of July.  I don’t know about the rest of y’all, but I’m having a hard time believing that tomorrow is August 1st.  Where is our summer going?

On another note, I know I haven’t posted much in the past week – I had a job interview, took an unexpected trip to the Peabody Museum of Natural History and got called into work for an extra day of filming.  Next week will probably be a slow week as well since I’m leaving to go camping for a few days.  After that, it’s preparing to move!  August is always my busy month.

One last thing, I want to give a happy birthday shoutout to my best friend!

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  1. Do We Still Have to Talk About Texting and Driving? by Becca Dorr.  Unfortunately, we do.  This is an issue that irritates me to no end.  People get seriously injured or lose their lives over a stupid text message!  Becca has a challenge for everyone, and that’s to refrain from using our devices while driving… if you think you can handle it for an entire week.
  2. 5 Ways to Know Yourself Better by The Fairy Princess Diaries.  We think we know everything about ourselves, but sometimes we don’t.  Sometimes it takes therapy to bring out something inside of us, or maybe we forget our feelings from years ago (in which case a journal is good to have).
  3. 20 Lessons from Freshman Year by Coffee With Kara.  School is fast approaching for students, but this is a good read for those who are starting their freshman year of college.  Listen up Freshers!
  4. Why You Should Attend Your High School Reunion by Amanda Moments.  I personally am looking forward to mine.  Even though I might not have been friends with everyone in high school, I’m still curious as to what everyone has been up to (especially since about half of them don’t have/use Facebook).
  5. How I Unplug form the Internet & Why You Should Too by The Cuteness.  Just three simple steps Esther takes to spend some time away from the Internet and spend time with loved ones or just to relax.

 

All the Joys - Blogger Love

So there’s my five favorite posts of the week and I think y’all should go and give them a look.

As always,  don’t forget to check out the host of Blogger Love, Meagan on All The Joys and give her some blogger love as well!

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Mid-Week Inspiration {video}

This was more of a spur of the moment video – there is no direction or plot, but I hope that it will be inspiring to anyone who is feeling like they are being criticized or judged by others.  As children of God, there is only One who we need to focus on pleasing and living for.

About two years ago there were some issues I was going through as well as observing in the lives of those around me.  One day as I was on one of my walks with my mom, I came up with this video idea.  It took me a few weeks to actually write up any sort of script, but the idea stayed never left my mind until I did.  About a month later, I told my best friend about the idea and she loved the idea.  So we made some finishing touches to my script, then set off to the park after classes to film and later record the voiceover.

Again, I hope this will give you some inspiration for this day (whichever day you’re viewing it).

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Friday Five: Blogger Love v.27

I honestly don’t understand how it’s Friday again already… but it is.  I hate that the week goes by so fast, but at the same time I’m eager to start our move to our new place which won’t be happening for another three weeks.  It’s good that it’s still a ways off because I have to get my stuff together and go through it and pack what I’m taking.  Fun.

So this week, along with five of my favorite posts of the week, I’m also going to share two of my favorite podcasts that I listen to regularly.  I’m also in the market for new ones, but I don’t think any will top my two favorites:

  1. How Did You Get Into That? with Grant Baldwin
  2. The College Into Geek Podcast with Thomas Frank

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  1. 5 Things to Expect From a Christian Blog by Coffee With Kara.  I’m finding that there are actually quite a good amount of Christian blogs out there, and this excites me.  These are just some things you can expect from a Christian blog when you decide to follow one.
  2. The Summer I Unplugged by ever emma.  A few things that Emma learned during a summer she was away from technology.  I think it’s important that we all take a break from technology and social media once in a while… even if it’s only one day.
  3. Are thank-you notes outdated? by The Life of Bon.  A good question, and a good way to strike up a debate.  I’m on the pro-thank you card side… I think they’re a nice gesture.
  4. Count Your Blessings by Knock on Wood.  I’m sorry to hear about Amanda’s friend’s sad news… I don’t know what’s going on, but for it to make Amanda count her own blessings, I’m thinking we all need to stop and do this once in a while… or five times a day.
  5. 5 Tips for Hosting the Perfect Book Club by Sage the Blog.  I think book clubs are great – I’ve always wanted to join one, but I don’t know of any in my area and I’ve never had them at my schools in the past.  I guess with these tips I could start my own!

All the Joys - Blogger Love

So there’s my five favorite posts of the week and I think y’all should go and give them a look.

As always,  don’t forget to check out the host of Blogger Love, Meagan on All The Joys and give her some blogger love as well!

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New Selena Gomez Album, FINALLY!

For those of us who still adore the former Disney star, we’re all excited to learn via Instagram that she is finally releasing her new album, Revival.  The only problem, it’s not going to be released until October 9th!

What?

R e v i v a l. 10.9

A post shared by Selena Gomez (@selenagomez) on

 

It might not seem like a big deal to those who aren’t fans of Selena or are only casual fans of her music.  While I’m not a crazed fan, y’all need to remember that it’s been two years since she released Stars Dance back in July of 2013 and since then she’s only released two new singles – The Heart Wants What It Wants and Good For You.  So I’m pretty excited to hear what she has planned for this new album.

What music are you excited for that’s coming out this year? 

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To Prompt, or Not to Prompt?

In my experience of writing over the past 12 years, I think writing prompts are essential for writers.

“But isn’t everyone just writing about the same thing?”

Well, yes and no.

on using writing prompts

While writers might use the same prompt, the separate pieces of work will never come out exactly the same.  Everyone has their own interpretation or story that goes along with a prompt, so when there are 50 or more responses to a prompt, it’s pretty much guaranteed that no two responses will be the exact same.  That’s one of the beauties of writing, everyone has their own story to share.  It’s similar to coming across two different ‘mom blogs’ – they might both be written by mothers with 3 kids, but I can tell you the posts will all be different because these two women are having different experiences with their children.

The thing with prompts is that sometimes the possibilities are endless – you can go with it in any direction you wish to.  In that case, it can be hard for writers to narrow down and choose just one way to write about, which puts them in the same spot as before… not knowing what to write about.

On the other hand, some prompts can be very specific and be very limiting.  Some people would say that these kind of prompts are too limiting.  I, however, think that a limited prompt can really help a writer.  It challenges you to stay within the borders of the prompt, or in other words, color within the lines.  Especially if it’s a topic you’ve never touched before, now’s your chance to push yourself into that genre or topic of writing.  Even if you don’t come out with a great piece, so what?  You tried it.  You pushed yourself.  Go pat yourself on the back.

Writing prompts, in my opinion, are tools for writers to learn and challenge themselves – not just for when you can’t think of anything to write about (although that’s a good perk).

And go figure, this entire post was in response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “A Little Sneaky.”

Well played WordPress, well played.

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Friday Five: Blogger Love v.26

Another week gone by, and I’ve been linking up with Blogger Love for half a year now!  I think the longest I’ve ever done anything (blog-wise anyway).  Although, I can already tell y’all that in a few weeks I might be missing a week here and there due to going camping and moving.  I can’t tell you how excited I am to move… I’m looking forward to it so much.  Plus the fact that we’ll be able to get kittens is such a bonus!

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  1. How to Keep Blogging When You Don’t Feel Like It by The Private Life of a Girl.  I’ve heard summer can either make or break bloggers.  Right now, I’m feeling like I’m one of the ones who’s breaking, seeing as I’m not posting as much.  So these are some good tips to keep up the blogging process.
  2. College… It’s Not For Everyone – a guest post on 99+ Sly Thoughts.  A little story about Sly’s brother (told by said brother) and his experience in finding out that college just wasn’t for him, and more importantly, being okay with that decision.
  3. 6 Things They Don’t Tell You About Post-Grad Life by Coffee and Cardigans.  The truth about post-grad life.  I’m currently a few months out of college myself and I’m learning a few of these on my own.  I feel it should be added that finding a job right after graduation isn’t always easy… it can take a while before you get a job in the field you’re searching for.
  4. 7 Ways to Live in the Moment by Chasing My Extraordinary.  A few ways we could all take a breather and really enjoy this life we’re living… not just passing through it.
  5. When You Date Your Ex’s Best Friend by Misty Write Now.  A personal story of taking a risk and how it turned out… for good.

All the Joys - Blogger Love

So there’s my five favorite posts of the week and I think y’all should go and give them a look.

As always,  don’t forget to check out the host of Blogger Love, Meagan on All The Joys and give her some blogger love as well!

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Confession Session {2nd edition}

It’s time for more confessions!  Why?  Because there are just some things that I want to tell you people for the sake of telling you.  So let’s get on with it, shall we?

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One // Blueberry bagels are my new favorite thing, ever.  My mom had me try a bite of her blueberry bagel a few weeks ago and now I’m obsessed with them!

Two // I hate talking on the phone.  I really do.  My outgoing would say, “Hang up the phone and text me,” if I wasn’t applying to jobs right now, ha!  Seriously though, if you want to get in touch with me, text me – don’t call.

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Three // I’ve been drinking coffee/tea for as long as I can remember.  I don’t even know if there was a time in my life I wasn’t drinking a hot caffeinated beverage.  I can remember making a cup of tea as far back as elementary school and being able to brew a pot of coffee around 6th grade.

Four // I actually prefer tea over coffee.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my coffee too, but there’s just something I love more about tea.

Five // I like eggs with my ketchup.  I eat scrambled eggs every once in a while, but I can’t stand the egg taste alone, so whenever I eat eggs I have to douse them in ketchup.

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Six // I still rock the overall look a few times a year.  You can take a girl out of the 90’s, but you can’t take the 90’s out of the girl!

Seven // When I’m home alone, the house is my stage.  It’s a guarantee that if I’m home alone that I’m singing out loud to my iTunes library… and possibly dancing around.

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And… that’s all folks!

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Things Change

Changes are a guarantee in life.  As we grow up we change schools, colleges, careers.  People come and go from our lives.  Our situations go from good to bad, to good again.  Our interests change, and it can be good thing.  After all, it’d be a little weird if I was still into playing with Hot-Wheels or stuffed animals.

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Since some, not all, of my interests have changed since I was a kid… what I wanted to be when I grew up changed as well.  As a kid, I specifically remember wanting to be a lawyer.

Well… that did not happen.

Of course, I would probably be in law school right now if I still wanted to be a lawyer.  I am only 24 after all.  That aside, if the only difference in my life right now was that I was in law school, I know I’d be miserable.

Why?

Well, to be honest, I never really had the passion for learning about the law and making things change.  After my interests started changing I learned that in order to become a lawyer there’s a lot of research that goes along with it, and I’m just not up for it.  My interests and talents lie in the creative arts of shooting and editing video, photography and writing.  When it comes to those areas, I’ll do all the research I can for learning new techniques and about the new gear, but when I do that it doesn’t feel like work – it’s fun.

While I’m sure even a person who is passionate about being a lawyer still finds their work to be grueling at times, if they truly love what they do, it won’t seem as bad as it would for a person such as myself.

Sometimes I look back and wonder why I even thought of being a lawyer when I grew up.  I was always an imaginative child, creating stories and games… plus there was the fact I really enjoyed Legos.  In fact, my enjoyment of Legos lead to my 13-year old self wanting to become an architect, but that obviously didn’t pan out either.  I’m sure that imagination can be a good thing to become a lawyer (how, I do not know), but it’s just not me.

It was after a while that I remembered the reason I wanted to become a lawyer as a child… because my mom had always wanted to be one.  I guess my younger self figured that since my mom never did go to law school, I would do it for her.  As much as I love my mom, I’m glad I grew out of the ‘wanting to be a lawyer’ phase.  Besides, I know my mom would rock that job much better than I ever could.

So there you have it, even career interests change as we grow up.  We find out what we love and what makes us cringe, and that we’re not entirely the same person we were as a child.  Changes are inevitable… we just have to learn to roll with them.

What did your younger-self want to be when you grew up?

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In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Futures Past.”

Friday Five: Blogger Love v.25

I feel like every week lately has just been… weird.  Monday work was, odd.  Tuesday was actually great – I went to see my best friend and we hung out at the house she’s house-sitting and later on went to Panera and Hobby Lobby (boy do I love that store!).  But when I got home that night, my computer was acting up.  Thankfully, after praying and believing it would work right the next morning, it did… and it did again yesterday.

I also started my Rosetta Stone for French Level 1 last night.  It took me a while to set up because I kept getting distracted, but the first lesson was fairly easy (thank you DuoLingo).  Then again, I guess the first lesson is easy for any language… well, most of them.

Anyway, I’m rambling… let’s get to the five blog posts I picked to share this week!

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  1. 31 Days of Writing Prompts by Tracie Nall of The SITS Girls.  These aren’t your average writing prompts you often see in a post like this.  These prompts are more creative and some seem like they’d make for great blog posts.
  2. When the Answer Isn’t Yes by Adventures with Luka.  A very deep and encouraging post for when God says ‘no’ or ‘not yet’ to our prayers.  It’s easy to get disappointed and drive a wedge between ourselves and God, but it’s more valuable to trust God and trust Him and His answer.
  3. 4 Steps to Wake Up At Your Best by Tipsy Writer.  Last week I shared Megan’s tips on getting a good night’s sleep… and now I’m sharing her tips on waking up and getting a good start to your day!
  4. Summertime Makeup for the Pale Girl by Flowers in My Hair.  Now, I’m not one to wear makeup any time of the year, but I do know a thing or two about being a pale Italian girl… sunburn all summer long.  Here are some products for my fellow pale girls to use this summer that will help protect your skin.
  5. Are You Existing or Living? by How to Make a Life.  Sometimes we get caught in our routines and forget to really enjoy our lives… but that’s not really living, is it?  This post really makes you think… are you just existing, or are you really living your life?

All the Joys - Blogger Love

So there’s my five favorite posts of the week and I think y’all should go and give them a look.

As always,  don’t forget to check out the host of Blogger Love, Meagan on All The Joys and give her some blogger love as well!

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Lost Artists/Bands of the 90s-2000s

Have you ever had a song pop up in your shuffle playlist that makes you think, “What happened to this singer?” or, “Man, I miss this band!”?  Well, lately that’s been happening to me and I’ve come to realize that there are quite a few artists and bands in my iTunes library that deserve a shoutout because, man I miss these artists!

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First of all, I’m going to come out and say that the best music came out of the 80s.  I might not have been alive during that time, but my mom raised me on primarily 80s music.  However, since I am a child of the following decade, I have an attachment to the artists who were large in the 90s and early 2000s, as well as some artists and bands that probably weren’t quite as popular as say… Britney, ‘Nsync or the Backstreet Boys.

Whether the artists were well known or not-so well known, their music is scarcely heard anymore… and to me, it’s a shame.

A*Teens // Starting out as the ABBA teens, the A*Teens released their first album The ABBA Generation which was a compilation of hit ABBA songs that they covered.  This group did get quite some popularity after their second album was released, as they toured with Aaron Carter in 2001 and later toured with Jump5, LMNT and Baha Men.  One of their most popular songs was Upside Down, and I remember seeing the music video quite often on TV during my childhood.

Aaron Carter // Probably one of the most popular artists in my list.  While I’m certain no one has forgotten about him, he did drop from the music scene back in the late 2000s.  He first got his start opening for the Backstreet Boys in early 1997 which led to his first self-titled album released later that year.  That particular album was not a fan favorite, as he was only 10 when he recorded it.  His popularity really came when he released his second album ‘Aaron’s Party (Come Get It)’ from which his hit single I Want Candy (which was a cover).  Though he dropped from the music scene somewhere around 2006-2007, he has since released a few songs and does some independent performances to this day.

Dream Street // My all-time favorite band from my childhood/pre-teen years!  Also known as the boy band that brought Jesse McCartney to fame.  If you didn’t know this… go home.  Dream Street was a personal favorite of mine when they hit the scene in 1999-2000 with their song It Happens Every Time, which played constantly on Nickelodeon back in the day.  Sadly, the band didn’t last long due to legal issues with their manager, and in 2002 they disbanded.  As we all know, Jesse McCartney was the one to shine the brightest once they disbanded, but the other boys – Chris, Matt, Greg and Frankie – have kept themselves busy with music since then… just not on the same level as Jesse.  One other fun fact, was that their cover song, Sugar Rush, came out the same time as the A*Teens’ cover of the same song which caused quite a dispute between the two groups.

Jump5 // Jump5 was one of the only Christian pop groups I had ever heard of in the early 2000s. Their post popular song, All I Can Do, was often heard on Radio Disney and appeared on a WOW Hits CD in the early 2000s.  In 2004, one of the band members left the group, and the remaining four went on to release one new album before finally disbanding in 2007.

Stevie Brock // Honestly, Stevie Brock is one of those one-album-hit wonders.  He released his first and only self-titled album in 2002, which featured his hit song, All For Love.  He released a few other songs for Disney soundtracks, including Three Is A Magic Number along with ex-Dream Street members, Matt Ballinger and Greg Raposo.

Take 5 // I can’t say I honestly knew much about Take 5,  since they did not last long.  They just never gained the same popularity as ‘Nsync, Backstreet Boys or even Dream Street.  However, there are a few of their songs still in my iTunes library that I occasionally listen to.

I know there are probably tons more artists that appeared even earlier in the 90s that disappeared without a trace (from the music scene anyway), but these were a few that I still listen to regularly.

Which artists/bands do you miss?

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taking polaroids with the instax mini 8

instax mini 8 polaroid camera review

I can remember using my grandma’s old Polaroid camera to take pictures when I was about 8 or 9 years old.  In fact, a few of my favorite pictures from my childhood were taken with a Polaroid camera (I know for a fact there’s one of me about a week old with my left middle finger up!).  Of course, when I think of Polaroids I think of those square photos that are packed away in a few photo albums.

Then Instagram came along.

Instagram was the first take on bringing back our beloved instant, square photos… only digitally. I know there’s different ways for people to get their Instagram photos printed, so they’re almost like Polaroids, in the sense that they’re square anyway.  But who says Polaroids have to be square?

They don’t.

You’re most likely not a stranger to the new Polaroid cameras that are sweeping the nation – the Fujifilm instax camera series.  There are a variety of these new “toys” including the instax mini 8, 25, 50S, 90 and the instax WIDE 210 and 300 cameras.  I just so happen to have a pink instax mini 8 camera.

Overall, I love the camera.  Yeah, it looks like a toy, but I rather like that appeal to it – not everything needs to look professional.  Besides, it’s cute!  When the camera is on, there is a light indicating where the dial should be for the best setting for the lighting you’re in so that you get a good photo.  Of course, you get the photo instantly and it’s about the size of a credit card (again, cute!).

I’d say the only cons to the camera are that, of course, you don’t always get a perfect shot… especially when shooting outside and the sun changes on you.  The other con is that the film itself can be pricy.  I get mine from Amazon in group packages, so it’s not too bad.

I have to say it’s a cool toy to have for photography lovers!

What do you think of the instax mini camera series?

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Friday Five: Blogger Love v.24

Another weird week here in my corner of the world.  Let me say, it’s a bit hard to concentrate on anything while there are guys tearing up the kitchen floor for two days straight.  And who knows how long it will be before we get someone in here to replace the flooring.  All of this going on just makes me more impatient for my mom and I to move to our new place, but we have to wait until September for that.  Oh well, all in God’s timing, right?

Right.

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  1. 10 Tips to Have a Discussion and Not a Hot-Headed Dispute on the Internet by Young & Twenty.  Ladies and gentlemen, the manual that should be a required read before ever logging into any social media site!
  2. If we prayed like children by A Beautiful Exchange.  It’s no doubt that children express the most faith when something looks impossible, and they’re the most honest little creatures on this planet.  We can learn a lesson from them, even in our prayer lives.
  3. Living in Exile // A Guest Post over at Coffee With Summer.  In this lovely guest post by Ashleigh, she explains how humans (all of us) are exiles.  From the beginning when we were exiled from God’s presence after The Fall to now, Christians who do not truly belong on earth as we are wait to arrive to our eternal home in Heaven.
  4. 13 Tips for Smashing Writer’s Block by Itchy Quill.  Because we are always looking for some ways to power through that writer’s block.
  5. How to Make Sure You Get a Good Night’s Sleep by Tipsy Writer.  I know for a fact I need to follow some of these tips… especially the giving myself a bedtime one.  Though I personally think we all need to quit the habit of scrolling through our phones right before bed… or think of what we have to do the next morning.

All the Joys - Blogger Love

So there’s my five favorite posts of the week and I think y’all should go and give them a look.

As always,  don’t forget to check out the host of Blogger Love, Meagan on All The Joys and give her some blogger love as well!

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