Thursday, May 30, 2013

May Cara Box Reveal


So this was the first month I participated in Kaitlyn over at Wifessionals Cara Box Match Up. Basically you get matched up with two other bloggers to get to know and you send one a box, and then the other sends you a box. It was a pretty cool experience that I heard about from one of my other blogger friends. 

This month I was matched up with two awesome bloggers, Deana at Tesori Belle and Michelle at Life On The Horizon. They are both amazing bloggers and I was so lucky to get matched up with them. I felt bad that I didn't get to connect with them as much as I would have liked, the beginning of May was kind of a whirlwind for me, with finals and working two jobs and things like that. But they were both very understanding, and I hope to keep in touch! If you want to see the Virginia Tech themed box I sent to Deana, you can read about it here

The box I got from Michelle was absolutely amazing. She really took some of my interests and found awesome items that represented areas in which she lived, and used to live. I thought it was really cool that she also had her daughter, who is graduating from high school tomorrow, help choose things for the box! 

Michelle really went above and beyond on my box, but I LOVED everything in it. 


I got 3 books, and as everyone knows from my last post I am obsessed with books. The first one is a book called "Fifty Places To Hike Before You Die". Hiking is something that I have been into since high school (and by I mean into, I mean my parents used to take my brother and I on hiking trips instead of trips to the beach during summer vacations) but once I came down to Virginia, I really started hiking a lot considering how close we are to the Appalachian Trail. I have actually already been to two of the places described in the book Oregon, at Mount Hood National Park, and Washington, in Olympic National Park. But I digress, needless to say, I am so excited about this book and to hopefully hike some of the places in it in the near future! The second book is called "Texas Braggin' Rights" and is winning recipes of the best Texas cook offs. There are some really yummy sounding recipes in here and I can't wait to try some of them. The third book is called "Romance and Bared Wire - Cowgirls in Love" it is one of those little coffe table knick knack books but I love having those around to read through. It has a bunch of philosophy and quotes about love and life, all in cute little southern ways. 


The next thing she sent was a jar of this Roasted Raspberry Chipotle Sauce, Michelle recommended it over cream cheese and crackers, which sounds absolutely amazing, and I can't wait to try it! I will definitely be on the search for this stuff at my World Market so I can have a stash. 


The next part was PERFECT (but also dangerous) for my very very very sweet tooth! I also liked these treats because this is what her daughter picked out. All of these treats have sentimental value to her and her family, which really meant a lot to me. This gum, "Mexican Wedding Cookies" and Dulces Mexicanos, probably won't last that long in my house, and being honest I've already broken into them and starting snacking, THEY ARE DELICIOUS! 


Okay, for everyone that knows me, this next item was PERFECT. I am a little bit of wine obsessed, and was so excited when I unwrapped this from it's safe packaging. White wine is my favorite, but Moscato is kind of my weakness. Also I would never tell on Michelle for shipping wine, and was so exciting she broke the rules a little just for me :) This wine comes from a winery in West Texas, and I can't wait to sit down on my back patio with a glass of it with dinner (maybe a recipe I'll attempt to make from my new Texas cook book). Literally, I can't get over how much this fits me. 


The final item I found all wrapped up safely in my Cara box was this beautiful cross that Michelle gave to me from her collection. I can't wait to find a place in my room to hang this, and it reminded me of my  own mom because she collected crosses as well. It came from El Paso and will be reminded of a new friend every time I look at it. I love the color blue, so obviously I love it, but the detail and design is beyond gorgeous. 


I am so happy that I decided to participate in Cara Box this month, and will for sure be signing up again in the future! It is a great way to get to know other bloggers, and I highly recommend it! 



Cara Box


Also, that was the first time I successfully used a button on my blog, and I am WAY to excited about it! :) :) :) 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Summer Reads

So I know this is such a cliche title, and I really tried hard to come up with something else. But it really was not working for me. There is a lot of stuff going on right now 1. I just got back from a 5 day vacation/marathon weekend in Baltimore/NOVA 2. I am sick and have been in bed at all times that I am not at work 3. Honestly there is just a lot going on in my life right now that I don't feel like sharing with everyone on the internet at the moment, so I'm just going to preoccupy myself with this little post about what I'm going to try to read this summer. 

Now that the craziness of school and finals and everything else is over (except work, I need to make some moolah somehow ya'll) I try to spend time in the summer reading more. AKA what everyone else does. But I'm not the person that tries to read 20 new books in one summer, I'm the person that will re-read about 5 books I've already read before and know I love, and then throw in a few new ones. So here are 5 books I am committing myself to reading this summer. Some are old, some are new, and I am ALWAYS open for recommendations! 

Another thing about me, I am a book collector HOARDER. Literally, I will go to a thrift store and spend hours looking through the books. I absolutely cannot walk into a Borders or Barnes and Noble without walking outta there with at least one book. I usually don't pay full price for a book cause it's silly, when I can get the same book on Amazon for at least $10 cheaper. I can't help it, I just have sticky fingers for books. I love having them in my room, on my desk, on my bookshelf, on my night stand, kind of everywhere. And I know it's a little vulgar, but for lack of a better way to phrase it...


Despite the fact that this hasn't applied to me in quite a long time, it's kind of a way to tell who people are. I don't trust people that don't have books. So before I get any more obscenities up in this b*t@h, let's get on to my summer reading list of 2013

1. Catching Fire - Suzanne Collins, This is the 2nd book of The Hunger Games Trilogy. I read these books winter break of my freshman year, before they got big. And if you have been living under a rock for the past year and haven't read this series/seen the first movie yet, GET OUT FROM UNDER YOUR ROCK AND GO DO BOTH OF THOSE THINGS RIGHT NOW! This is a dark series but it is oh so good. Since the 2nd movie is coming out in November, I have decided to re-read this one so I can be refreshed. 


2. Revolutionary Road - Richard Yates, I bought this book years ago when the movie was coming out with every intention to read it, and guess what, never happened. So I am gonna give it another shot this summer, with the motivation that I can finally watch the movie afterwards. Because by principle I have not seen it just cause I haven't read the book, and I LOVEEEEE me some Leo DeCaprio so this has been quite the challenge for me.


3. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen, As a 21 year old girl, I am a little embarrassed that I have never read this. It is such a classic book, but I never had to read it in school and was just a book that I never read before. So I figure this would be my summer to read it. If I get through it and am disappointed, I am going to blame all of society for making it such a big deal. 


4. Hard Love - Ellen Wittlinger, This is a book I read during my early high school/middle school days. I remember being obsessed with it then, but haven't touched it since. So I decided to see what 14 year old Kate was all hyped up about and see it if still holds its own. I am hoping it will be a quick read since it is one of those books you find in the "Teen/Pre-Teen" section of Borders. 


5. Commencement - J. Courtney Sullivan, So I am going to confess, I saved the best for last. This is literally, my favorite book of all time. I read it for the first time the summer after my senior year of high school (thinking it was about high school graduation from the title) and have read it at least twice a year every year since. It is one of those comfort books. It is the story of 4 women who start their college careers, their life in college, and their life "post-college". It is told from all 4 points of view, and each woman is unique and amazing and hilarious. There is one character that I identify with quite strongly, and it is just such a comfort to read her story, and even if it is fake, know that at some point someone had to understand what I was going through or feel the same way in order to write about it in such detail. It's about that time of year again where I read this book again. It's like a comfort blanket, or hanging out with your BEST friend, or sleeping in your own bed after you've been on vacation; it's comfortable and familiar, and it makes you feel safe. Every time I read this book again, I am different, and I get something new out of it. I remember driving down to Virginia Tech for the first time with my parents sitting in the backseat reading this, and I think it is kind of ironic that I still read it every summer. (Realizing now that I could have written a whole post about this one book, woops)



I can't wait to hopefully lay out by the pool and get through a couple of these amazing reads in the next few weeks. Blacksburg has graced me with amazing weather this first week of summer so far, let's hope it keeps up! (But in my heart I know it'll probably rain all next week of course or something, so we will see about that). 

- What are some of your favorite books? 
- How many books do you usually try to tackle during the summer? 
- Do you have a "comfort book" that you re-read every year?


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

#SterryBachelor(ette)Party2013 #Baltimore

Weekends are for hangovers right? Well I think this weekend would have to take the cake for me so far on my list of college adventures that lead to the longest lasting hangover. This weekend I had the pleasure of going to one of my best friends' Bachelor(ette) Party Extravaganza! From here on out, if I am going to refer to my friends, Stevie and Terry, they are going to be called Sterry. That is their "celebrity" name that their friends gave them, since they have been together for so long. If you are interested in learning more about them, you can head over to my friend Stevie's Blog Colorful Commotion. Basically they are the coolest. I can't even begin to describe how fun this weekend was, and how happy I was to be a part of it. Their idea of a Bachelor(ette) party was so they could spend their weekend together, as well as their wedding party and friends could get to know each other before the wedding weekend so it would be more fun! Needless to say, it was a successful weekend, and there is no way I could accurately depict how fun it was in just words, so I'm going to use lot's of photos as well.


The weekend started on Thursday with a 3 hour drive up to NOVA where Sterry live, oh and their adorable kitty child Rosie too. So needless to say, there was lots of napping and cuddles this weekend. 

Obviously when you have 3 girls together for more than like 30 seconds, lots and lots and LOTS of snapchats/selfies are going to ensue. There was a recoccuring theme this weekend, that seemed to be, eating TOO MUCH FOOD, about 300 snapchats a day, and me always being on someone's lap in the backseat because we were squishing so many people in the car/cabs we were in. Safety first! 
Then Friday night, we all went to a Philly/Nationals game in National Park. It was really awesome to go to a new stadium and go watch some good old baseball, even though I didn't care for either team. So naturally I just wore red white and blue (both teams colors) and was cheering for America and the sake of the sport. Sterry and a lot of their friends are from Hershey, PA so they are major Philly Fans...it's fine. It will forever be a clash of the PA sides. Unfortunately, it was FRICKIN' COLD! Like it is almost June, why were we so bundled up? Despite the cold, we found some saving grace in one of my favorite restaurants in the whole world...SHAKE SHACK! I don't even know how to describe it. It is a burger and fries and shake joint, but that doesn't even cover it. It is literally life changing....

Once we got to the hotel, Paige and I realized that we were literally LOOKING INTO CAMDEN FIELDS. So of course we went on an adventure to the stadium. We were just going to walk around until we realized that there was a private wedding going on in the stadium, so it was open! We just waltzed right in, took a couple pictures, and left. It was literally closer to the hotel than the walk to the parking garage, so it was kind of a cool experience. DISCLAIMER: Being born and raised in Pittsburgh, I was a little skeptical of going to Baltimore, aka they are our biggest rivals ever. But it was actually kind of a cool city, from what I saw of it. THIS DOES NOT MEAN I APPROVE OF ANY OF THEIR SPORTS TEAMS. REPEAT: THE RAVENS STILL SUCK. GO PITTSBURGH! 

Next it was on to Baltimore for the Bachelor(ette) Party! We got a hotel right near inner harbor (I think) in Baltimore. It was very nice, and so the festivities commenced! Us girls had a little pre-game in the hotel before meeting the guys for dinner. We played games, made drinks, and Alex's friends Alex and Mel were nice enough to get party favors for everyone, it was a really fun girly time! Also, Stevie was given a Penis wand....this would come back to haunt assault much of the wedding party later that evening...But Stevie was a gorgeous Bachelorette and I was so excited to be there celebrating with her! 


After our little bachelorette hotel room party, we met up with the guys for dinner at this place called Bertha's, they had AMAZING seafood, as most places in Baltimore do, but it was a ton of fun. It was a good chance for us to all mingle and get to know one another before we split up for our respective Bachelor and Bachelorette party festivities. 

Just a couple snapshots from that night downtown. We headed into Fell's Point, Baltimore where there is a whole block of bars. It was a ton of fun. One of the coolest places we went, and the entire group planned to rendezvous there at the end of the night, was The Horse You Rode In On, and it was the last bar that Edgar Allen Poe went to before he died, FUN FACT! We also had a scavenger hunt for each party, just silly stuff to see who could get the most points. I'm not sure we even ended up counting them all up, but it was a hell of a time and we made some new friends along the way!  

And of course, what weekend Bachelor(ette) party would be complete without a Sunday full of mimosas, matching tshirts, brunch, hangovers, sunglasses inside, brunch and enough piecing together of the drunken night to make everyone half wish that we wouldn't? 

Honestly, I cannot express how happy I am I went this weekend to spend time with my close friends and all of their friends! It was a killer time, and I'm sure I will be recovering from it for quite a few more days. It was well worth it. This just made me way more excited for the wedding now, and I can't wait to celebrate! 


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Knowledge Gaps

For those of you that watch How I Met Your Mother, this post reminds me of the episode where all the characters decide to call each other out on their "gaps in knowledge" aka Ted's mispronunciation errors, Robin using the word "literally" all the time, Lily's bad aim, etc. I love that show so dearly, and after recently watching that episode, was trying to think of things I am bad at. I couldn't get as on point as the show did, but here are a few things that I am abnormally bad at. So I'm going to go ahead and write about them, and check day 24 off of my "Blog Everyday In May" Failure. There is probably going to be more than 3 of these too, so hold on to your seats ladies and gentleman, here we goooo!!!!!

Day 24, Friday: Your top 3 worst traits
 
1. Napping - so usually, this would probably be a good thing. My ability to nap seriously helps me out all the time. Wanna catch a quick 20 minutes of shut eye before class? No problem. But I am a public sleeper. I will sleep anywhere, anyplace, and anytime. I'm the person that falls asleep during a movie at the movie theater. I have slept in airports, on a couch in my school's library, on a couch in my school's student center, I constantly fell asleep in English class in High School, I feel asleep every day in Biology lecture my freshman year of college, I am also that person to fall asleep in the car after approximately 5 minutes.I'm that weirdo person that sleeps in public and everyone else stares at. And, frankly my dear, I don't give a damn.


2. Affect/Effect - I understand that this is probably one of the biggest grammar problems in the world aka the English Language, but it still gets me every time. I know I have learned it on more than one occasion and I have gone over and over it with people, but it still just doesn't stick. I know my English major friends are probably cringing as they read this, but sorry, it's one of those things that I will always struggle with, whatever. Anytime anyone asks me the difference between affect and effect...


3. Basic Math - Okay, I officially sound like a complete idiot. I promise I'm not some non-functioning member of society. My brain just doesn't work like that. Unless my bill at a restaurant is $10.00 or $100.00 the probability of me figuring out the tip on my own is zero to none, which is about the probability of my bill at a restaurant being $100.00 let's be real. I'm the annoying person that asks everyone else at the table how much tip they are leaving, or pull out my phone and calculate it myself. Another example is me going to the grocery store. I suck at adding everything up before I get to the register to make sure I'm not spending all of my bank account. Sales at stores? Forget about it. A sale is a sale to me, unless I am with someone who does math, it's a surprise to me how much the $45.99 shirt is going to be at Old Navy for 30% off.



4. Responding to social media/text messages/phone calls - I am the person that will look at a text, not know how to respond, and just not say anything for the next 4 hours. Thankfully my iphone has this awesome little invention where people can see whether or not I have read their message, and I have that turned on to hold myself responsible for responding in a timely manner.
This is usually me getting a text if I'm doing something else....



5. Flexibility - Never have I ever participated in a sport like gymnastics or ballet or something when I had to be super flexible. I have always been super active in sports like running and swimming and all that, but it still pains me to reach down and touch my toes. Probably because I am so out of shape thanks to college, but it has been something I have always struggled with. It's embarrassing how inflexible I am.  I can't touch my toes without something feeling like it's going to break, can't and never have been able to do a split, and definitely, definitely cannot be a functioning member of a yoga class, no matter how hard I try, and trust me, I do try!

6. Cooking - If you know me at all, you know that I hate cooking. I hate preparing food that takes more than 5-10 minutes. My usual meals consist of Ramen and mac and cheese. And or cereal. If it takes real preparation, there is a chance I won't eat it unless someone else is making it for me. I'm inpatient, and would rather just eat food cold than heat it up. Pizza, pasta, mac and cheese, pretty much any leftover that SHOULD be heated up, I would just eat cold. There has been an instance where I have eaten Ramen for all three meals, as well as eating leftover pulled pork straight out of the refrigerator. I also drink coffee at odd temperatures. Aka I don't care if it's hot or cold or has been sitting out all day, I'll drink it.


Alright, well that is it for now, but I'm sure at some point I will be doing a sequel to this post, as I enjoyed it a lot. Hope ya'll liked learning about the things I am terrible at!




 

Wanted: Short, Awkward, Brown-Eyed Neat Freak

I always end up doing this to myself. I get really good at writing for a while, then I get SUPER BUSY (hello, life, nice to see you again) and then once I go to start writing again, I get overwhelmed by everything that has happened and want to write about it all, but then the post just becomes a jumbled dump of my crazy life the past two weeks, and nothing seems meaningful. So I will put off talking about my wild and crazy past two weeks another time, and explain why I was too incredibly busy/stressed/unavailable to blog for a while. But since I have been SUPER slacking on my "Blog Everyday In May" thing, I am going to catch up on a few of those now. I have decided that I am not going to write for everyday as catch up, but instead I will use those topics to write about when I am stuck in writer's block for something to write about. I think that's a pretty good idea if I do say so myself.

So one of the few topics I will try to cover today:
Day 11, Saturday: Sell yourself in 10 words or less
I'd like to say I know myself pretty well, so here goes nothing. I figured I would make a list, because that is the most efficient way to name things. Also, I was going to write a little disclaimer or note with each word, but then I realize that would be more than 10 words. I am so smart sometimes.
1. Short
2. Loud
3. Organized
4. Driven
5. Strong
6. Motivated
7. Brunette
8. Funny
9. Educated
10. Clumsy
and that about sums it up. Some other posts I read on this subject people were all creative, and write poems or used song lyrics. I guess me doing this as a list really shows how organized and task-driven I am. I need to have that checklist that I can cross out and see everything in order. OH WELL. I LIKE IT!
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Fun Friday!

So this week's Friday post is going to be short and sweet. Between being sick with strep throat and an ear infection, to my 4 finals due within a two day period, and being up in Pittsburgh for the weekend. I've had a crazy past few days. So here is a wrap up!
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1. I got these coral pants at Old Navy last week, and I'm OBSESSED with them. I have been wanting a pair of coral or mint or super stylish jeans sometime, and everything was 30% off at Old Navy that day, but oh my god do I love these. Also, excuse the tag on the shirt still....which isn't new. I bought that a whole year ago and didn't have anything to wear it with until now!
2. At work, we had our superlative presentation this week, and my best friend and I won the coolest staff duo. Needless to say, I'm a little bit obsessed with us.
3. While out celebrating one of my good friend's birthdays, the local Mexican place was having Cindo De Mayo deals and were serving Corona-itas! My two favorite things in one! It was delicious!
4. While I was sick in bed with strep throat and an ear infection, this cutie was there by my side to keep me company.
5. What college experience would be complete without a toga party? I finally got to go to one. Check off the bucket list!
Hope ya'll have a great week!
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Talkative Tuesday and Thursday

Well, as usual, I am behind on writing (this everyday thing is FUN but it is KILLING ME) This week isn't even finals week yet (technically) but it's about that time. Good ol' Blacksburg has been rainy and bleak and cold for the past 4 days, so that doesn't really help any motivation to study/be productive/leave my bed. I was up til 3 am last night doing homework/making a scrapbook for my big (TSM, I know). But a lot of exciting things are culminating this week, finals, sorority stuff, and to add to it I am going home to Pittsburgh tomorrow night. I am only going for the weekend, because my little brother is going home to go to Prom with his girlfriend. I haven't been home since the beginning of December so it will be a nice little break away from school and finals for a day or two. But anyways, before I ramble on more...here is the past two days of what I should be blogging about...
Day 7, Tuesday: The thing(s) you're most afraid of
- That I will never be happy. For some reason I have this irrational fear that my entire world will come crashing down and everything will go to hell. I guess that's just anxiety for ya.
- That I will never get married/I will get divorced. I think at this point in my life my future life is so far out there to me, that it is weird to worry about that already. But it is scary to end up alone forever. And although I am young and still have so much living to do, I cannot wait to be a wife and mother and hope to GOD that I get to fulfill both of those roles at some point in my life.
- Bees. To the point that I will usually tell people that I am allergic so it doesn't look as crazy when I run away screaming....cause I will do that EVERY.SINGLE.TIME.
- Ladders. I'm not afraid of heights. But I don't like the process of going up to them by way of ladders. They are unstable and scary. Just get me on some stairs. Unless they are the creepy creaky kind that are basically just planks of wood stacked on top of each other but are really trying to be stairs...you're not fooling anyone....If I can see through you, you are a ladder.
- Bugs. come on. no one actually likes bugs....except this guy...but he is in fact a fictional character, so boom, no one likes bugs.
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I'm skipping day 8 because my brain is fried and I couldn't think of anything exciting enough to write for it.
Day 9, Thursday: A moment in your day (this can be just a photo or both a photo and words)
So today my brother and I road tripped back to Pittsburgh for the weekend. He is going to prom with his girlfriend who is a senior on Friday, and I just wanted to tag along for the ride. I haven't been home since December and am going to be in Blacksburg all summer, so I decided this would be the perfect "getaway". Most of the trip for me consisted of snapchatting friends, as seen here. But it really was a gorgeous day and it was nice to just spend some time with my brother one on one. He and I are always both so busy with school and work and life even though we still only live like 5 minutes apart and go to the same school, it's an occasion if we even see each other once a week.
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Imma Do Me

Day 6, Monday: If you couldn't answer with your job, how would you answer the question, 'what do you do'?
Well, I am a college student, so it's hard to answer this question without saying "I go to school" or talk about my semi-time (recently it has been more than part time less than full time, haha) job here at school, because both of these things have become a huge part of my life. But I guess I will do my best to avoid those two things, and let you all know "what I do".
- I plan. I am the most planning person you know. This is not to say that I can't be spontaneous or whatever, but I have learned with me, I need a schedule, and that I need to stick to it. Sometimes I love it, and sometimes I hate it, but it helps me more than hurts me, so I continue to do it. This is my planner on a weekly basis...colored coded and all.
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- I spend a lot of time alone. Whether it is studying, or going to the gym, or just sitting around at home watching TV, I am usually by myself. I know overall I am an extroverted person, but everyone needs their introvert time. It can get exhausting being around people so much, and things like that I find that I need to just do what I want, and so I spend that time alone so I can accomplish what I need to do. Sounds selfish, but it's not.
- I try to be there for those that I love. I know everyone in this world has such a busy schedule, but whenever the people that I love the most really need it, I try to be there as much as possible. Whether it is to lend some laundry money (my little brother), pick up an extra shift (for my coworkers), Facetime with a friend who lives faraway, or just have a partner in crime to hang out with, I will always be there.
- I sing. NOT WELL and NOT SERIOUSLY. I sing in the shower. I sing when I'm getting ready. I sing when I'm home alone. I sing when I dance around in my underwear. Actually. I do that. It is a real thing. And I love every second of it.
I dream. I dream a lot. I dream about next week. And next month. And this summer. And my college graduation (I also dread it though). I dream of my life after college. I dream of living in my studio apartment in some big city sitting alone on Saturday mornings drinking coffee in my underwear and then venturing off into an adventure in the city (Hence the word, DREAM). I dream of the day I am finally working in a high school as a guidance counselor helping kids get to the best four years of their lives like I had.
I laugh. Whether it is laughing with my friends, being goofy, or telling a joke (I have some super funny penguin jokes) I am always busting a gut at something or the other. I try to smile as much as possible. After going through some pretty tough stuff in my life, I've learned that no one wants to be around you if you're constantly sad. There is just no reason for it.
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so yeah, I guess that sums it up for now. I hope ya'll enjoyed learning what I "do".
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Notable Quotables

Day 4, Saturday: Favorite quote (from a person, from a book, etc) and why you love it
Let me just start this post by saying how much easier I thought this was going to be. For those of you that know me very personally, you know that I have kept quote notebooks. I hate quite a few of them, and the majority of them are FILLED with quotes.
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Movie quotes, book quotes, quotes I made up, quotes people have said to me, basically just important words in my life. I woke up early this morning around 8:00, and it has taken me a good two hours, scouring my quote notebooks, Pinterest boards, files on my computer, and every other sort of media of quotes I have, to find one that I am finally "happy" with. I think if I had been writing this about 3 months ago, I would have found some "lovey dovey soulmate" kind of quote, but that's not how I feel right now. Not that there is anything WRONG with that, but I have been going through some big life changes and transitions lately, and I think this quote fits me quite well. I think a lot of us get caught up in the great race of life, trying to be the prettiest, the smartest, the most athletic, the most fashionable, the mom that can do everything, the perfect wife, the best co-worker, everything! I think people can get caught up in life, and really loose sight of themselves. Something that I have learned through myself these past few months, is that I need to listen to myself, trust myself, and believe in myself, and if I am happy, everything else will fall into place. Who knows, maybe if I were to re-write this again in another 6 months or a year, I would for sure pick a different quote. But at this time, this is exactly what I need, and exactly what I'm feeling. And that's fine with me, and I think that's all I really need.
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I love to surround myself with inspirational words, they really help me think and get motivated. They make me think more critically than I normally would, and challenge myself to live the way I aspire to. Sometimes it can be hard listening to all the voices and words that the media throws at us, but once you find the right words, whether in reading, writing, or speech, they really can mean the world to you.
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Awkward Is My Middle Name

Things that make you uncomfortable:

So this "theme" I guess I thought was going to be SUPER easy to write about, and once I started, it was actually kind of hard to come up with things. Not sure why, as I am probably one of the most awkward people ever. I get embarrassed, but that does not hold me back from doing stupid/silly/crazy things pretty much daily. Considering my twitter name is so__awKWARD (embodying my awkward nature and putting a nice twist on my name in there too) I figured I'd have lots to write about. I guess I am just someone who does a lot of awkward things, but not many things make me feel personally uncomfortable. If that makes any sense. Ask any one of my friends, especially once you get a few drinks in me, there's not really anything I wouldn't do. (Okay that sounded bad, I meant I'm a lot of fun and super outgoing, let's not get gross here...) But anyways, before I say anything else stupid, here we go!

- Talking to professors: nothing is worse than aimlessly making your way into a professor's office to discuss a class related item. Although I do go to a rather HUGE school, I feel like a lot of professors just don't give a damn. Granted there are professors that do care, but they are rare. I have learned to not take them for granted.
- Public Transportation: Taking the bus is just awful. It's always either too hot or too cold. It's also awkward cause I get mad when people sit next to me, but then I get mad if they choose an empty seat next to someone else instead of me (for some reason I get super offended, like what is wrong with me? I showered today I promise). Being a college student without a car has made me rely so much on public transportation I can't even wait to graduate and get a car of my own.
- Talking on the phone, with people I know. I have no problem calling up the pizza guy, or ordering Chinese, or calling a store to ask what time they are open til, but I really dislike talking to my parents and family on the phone. It makes me feel awkward.
- Going to a party/function alone: I am always the person that will text one of my friends or try to meet up with a friend before going somewhere. I hate walking into the party alone, what if there isn't a lot of people there yet, what if I'm wearing the wrong thing, ahh it stresses me out so much.
- When creepy guys hit on me at the bar. Take note of the word creepy.
Well, I guess that's all I can think of now, but I think that is a pretty good list. Can't wait for tomorrow's topic, this is turning out to be tons of fun!
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Swimsuits and Stories

So a few of the blogs I follow have started this "Blog Everyday In May" thing, and I decided it would be a good way to get me to write more. Since it is already May 2nd, I will use this post to make up for the past two days. I'm kind of super excited for this, cause once I get writing I'm good to go, but it's coming up with things to write about that really gets me. So here goes nothing. WARNING: I think a lot of these topics will make me reveal things I wouldn't normally about myself, so I'm gonna be as honest as possible, even if it is too much info sometimes.

Day One: The Story of your life in 250 words or less: 

My name is Kate Ward, I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I have 4 siblings, three of them are half, and one is real, but we all consider each other siblings anyways. My parents got divorced when I was in 3rd grade. I remember this specifically because my teacher, Mr. Zuppe, talked to me about it to ask if I was okay, and I remember it being one of the nicest things in the world. I started swimming competitively from a very young age (I was 5, and they didn’t usually let kids start until age 6) and did it all through high school. I had a full ride scholarship at a private school to swim, but decided to turn it down. I graduated in 2010 from Avonworth High School, in a class of 98 students, 20 of which I also went to preschool with. I was homecoming queen my senior year, which I have to say was probably a highlight of my time there. My senior year I decided to get out of that small town bubble and move to Blacksburg, Virginia, where I now attend Virginia Tech. I thought I wanted to be an athletic trainer, but after getting my ass handed to me after my first two years here, I have switched into Human Development, with a focus in guidance counseling. I am part of the most amazing sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, and love my sisters with all my heart. (245, just made it!)

 Day two, Thursday: Educate us on something you know a lot about or are good at. Take any approach you'd like (serious and education or funny and sarcastic)

 I think something that I would consider myself good at or know a lot about would be swimming. Like I mentioned before, I started swimming at a local pool because my mom was the owner, and the rest is history. I joined the summer league when I was just 5 years old, and usually they don’t let kids join until they are 6. I was by far the smallest person on the team, but I loved it so much. It’s hard to believe that my first swim lesson I had when I was 3 or 4 I cried and begged to be taken out of the pool. I guess it’s kind of hard to show my expertise on something like a sport, but I swam competitively year round until 9th grade, then I decided to take a break. I then re-joined the league at my high school (it was actually a joint team with another nearby school because my school didn’t have a pool) and I fell in love with it all over again. Whenever I am in the water I feel free, and fast. I also ran cross-country for all for years of high school, and I was mediocre at best. Swimming was something that came natural to me and I was actually good at. My senior year when I was applying to colleges, it was a hard decision for me to make if I wanted to continue to swim in college or not. I had an offer from a private school called Duquesne, about 15 minutes from my house in Pittsburgh, for a full ride to swim. Tuition there is more expensive than most out of state schools, and it would be totally free for me. I decided to turn it down, to move on to a larger, farther away school. Sometimes I think about it and wonder what my life would be like if I had chosen to go there, but I don’t regret it for a second. I love my life here at Virginia Tech, and am confident this is where I was meant to be. Swimming was fun for the time I did it, and I’m sure it will always be something I find joy in. Image 
All of the seniors on my swim team that year!Image Relay team for WPIAL Championships[/caption] [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="650"]Image This is a super embarrassing photo, but who cares. I was stoked.

Also, I wish I was at home in Pittsburgh so I could dig up some awesome swim team pictures from circa 1998, but unfortunately I'm not. So for now, these ones from my senior year (and WPIAL Championship) will have to do!
 UPDATE: I WENT HOME AND BROUGHT BACK EMBARASSING OLD SCHOOL SWIM TEAM PICTURES!

Yeah, we know, I was super hot even as a kid. Excuse the bad bangs haircut, my awkward tan lines, my unbrushed hair, and the fact that I was going through a phase where apparently smiling was painful for me. It's fine.


Alright, so hopefully I will keep up this blog everyday thing going, now that I'm all caught up. Enjoy!
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