30 Things Before 30

I’m getting old, my mom won’t like to read it but it’s true. I will be 23 by mid September. I started a big girl job. I’ve been eating salad. You know, adult things. So 30 is just under 7 and a half years away and there’s a lot I would like to do between now and then so I thought I would share my 30 things before 30 list!

  1. See at least 30 states.
  2. Get paid for a freelance gig.
  3. Travel to a new continent.
  4. Develop a healthy diet and regular exercise routine.
  5. Visit 7 new countries.
  6. Start the adoption process.
  7. Read 300 books.
  8. Curate a collection of my own recipes.
  9. Take three random classes just because.
  10. Go vegan for a month.
  11. Take a vacation just to relax.
  12. Buy a house.
  13. Volunteer using talents.
  14. Get Leslie a friend.
  15. Visit somewhere new for at least a month.
  16. Become a blogging “expert”.
  17. Make time for vacation every year.
  18. Create a budget and stick to it, allowing it to fluctuate as finances change.
  19. Learn how to let go of material items.
  20. Strive to spend majority of time with enjoyable tasks.
  21. Find a go-to therapist.
  22. Take a real picture everyday for a year.
  23. Post 700 blog posts.
  24. Take 20 minutes once a week to do nothing.
  25. Face a fear every year.
  26. Figure out how to use the Super 8 camera.
  27. Have a real “Treat Yo’ Self” day every year, but save for it.
  28. Live alone.
  29. Share passion with others.
  30. Make a positive impact on someone’s life.

What do you want to do before you turn 30?


Things that Confuse Me: Part 2

There are a lot of things in life I don’t quite understand. So here’s an extension of Things that Confuse Me with added things and advice from my friends here in Dublin (well Galway for the night).

  1. Jenna says fridges, but I think it’s cold water and fans, so Jenna just needs to understand.
  2. Why are flowers romantic? They die.
  3. Rain taxes. It’s natural and you can’t help it.
  4. Why people in Maryland are so obsessed with Maryland. They love the state so much, yes it’s cool, but the flag is everywhere. I just don’t understand.
  5. Jayden, the Californian, why people feel comfortable shortening the name to Cali as if they’re close to the state, like they’re friends?
  6. Jenna says, why people think that everyone in Texas owns a horse, but are surprised when they find out she was in FFA?
  7. Jayden says how can silk be a nasty spider web and a nice shirt?
  8. Why leg hair grows the opposite way on the back of your legs
  9. Reality tv, how is it so good? It’s people leaving over dramatic lives.
  10. Why do walls sweat? Like condensate when it gets hot. (Jayden)
  11. How does a 100 degree bath burn you, but your body is already nearly 100 degrees?
  12. Scabs. Your body just stops the bleeding.

What confuses you? These are just a few of many.


Time Management.


My time management has never been great. I don’t know why but I either have too much or too little, I never feel like, “wow that was perfect timing” because for me it never is. I spend so much time doing things that don’t need to be done for a month and so little time working on things that should be done. You think after nearly 21 years I would realize this and fix it, but I don’t.

For example, I’m currently house/dog sitting and I thought to myself “oh I should go back and let the dogs out before work,” while I was at home getting ready. Well somewhere in my mind I made up that I had to leave home at noon to be able to leave where I was house sitting by 2:30. That just doesn’t make sense but when I left my house at noon it made perfect sense. Now I’m sitting here while the dogs play with their toys thinking about how poor my time management is when I could have stayed home for another hour and cleaned my room or figured out where to put the rest of my dorm things.

To me this time management is more frustrating than anything else because it makes me so anxious. Time to me is the most valuable resource and I hate wasting it.  When I procrastinate, I’m usually not wasting time, I’m doing something I want to do over something I should be doing. However, time management is me just not understanding the value of time and math. For example, my college is almost exactly two hours away from my house, however, there are times where I figure that it will take me 3-4 hours to get there but only an hour to get home. It might come from my perpetual fear of being late, however, my earliness has been getting the better of me for quite sometime now. I’m always adding or subtracting too much time. I need to figure out promptness and how to achieve it.

Time management is my enemy, well really, time is my enemy. Why do we have time zones? Why do we participate in Daylight Savings? Why can’t I figure out how to manage the time I have? I just don’t understand. I feel like I need to start planning out every hour so I can make sure I don’t have any time that goes wasted. Does anyone have any time management tips?? I need them.

Sometimes I’m good at it, like being early isn’t a bad thing. However, it’s bad when I’m twiddling my thumbs for an hour because I’m too early.

Help me and my poor time management skills.


Internet Friends, Welcome to Bowmansville, Pennsylvania!

Since my internet friends can’t visit me because of lack of vacation days, here is a virtual tour of my hometown!


Welcome to Bowmansville!! A small village amongst the corn fields, cows, and Amish of Lancaster County, which happens to be the place where I grew up for the most part. It is so small we don’t even have a police force. However, while there’s not much to do, the culture is interesting and unique compared to most places throughout the world.

In Lancaster County, it not uncommon to be held up by buggies, bikes, and scooters, that’s our traffic. Sunday mornings it is necessary to add an extra five minutes (at least) to any commute because of the old fashioned travelers. The county is complete with one room school house, buggy hitches, and roadside farm stands. It is basically what you would expect to find in Amish Country, just not everyone is Amish.

There’s not much to our little corner of the world, if you blink you might miss it to be quite honest. The main street of Bowmansville is very small and there’s not much there. We have an overpriced gas station, mostly everything in it costs less on the Turnpike, I would never take you there if you came to visit. However, they do have free range chickens and roosters that roam around the parking lot which is a sight to see.

Gas Station Chicken


I did start my life in New Holland, Pennsylvania, where the high school I attended is located. I moved here in mid 2000 and at that point we had a little general store where you could get the things you forgot at the grocery store. It burned down suspiciously a few years later. There, they put a family restaurant, which serves mediocre food to this day. We also have a petite bakery, that is very good despite the constantly empty parking lot. So I’m assuming that most people forget it’s there until they make burgers and realize they don’t have any buns. Up until the very end of 2014 we also had a very gross and dingy bar. I never entered it, but it was the one place in town that always had a full parking lot, what has taken it’s place is a pizza shop.

Now let me tell you about this pizza shop- the pizza shop that we waited a very long time for this pizza place. I lived here for nearly 11 years and we never had a pizza shop. Let me tell you, this was a huge deal, probably some of the biggest news that’s happened here in the 15 years that I lived here. Since moving from the apartment it was located in and taking over the huge bar it has turned from little pizza shop to more of an Italian restaurant.

bella itallia

In a small town like this, we don’t have a high school. We have one elementary school, a few one room school houses, but no high school. This is common for our area, most elementary schools are in smaller towns and then meet up to go to middle school and high school together. The middle school and high school in our area still stands out a little though: the middle school and high school are combined in one building. So for six years, you attend on building, ride the same bus, and see the same people. Although, Middle schoolers aren’t allowed on the high school side, and vice versa.Garden Spot High School


Now our little town isn’t all rainbows and sunshine. In 2003 a State Prosecutor from Baltimore was stabbed 36 times in our little area, the case has gone cold and, by the locals it was assumed to be murder but a conclusion was never resolved. Then in 2005 a tire shop owner was murdered in a robbery gone wrong, however, was quickly solved. Petty crime happens everywhere, so of course it happens here but nothing to make me afraid to walk around alone at night.

Bowmansville is the kind of place where you have neighborhood picnics and you actually borrow sugar and milk from the person next door. It’s the picture perfect version of the small town, but almost smaller than anyone would even picture. All of this has been a brief glimpse into my life that I have lived for so long and so much of what I see on a day-to-day basis.

Thank you for visiting Bowmansville!



2015 Goals Update (Oops it’s Late)

Something I try to do every year is reflect midway through the year on my New Year Goals. This year I know I have not been doing very well so I’m not exactly looking forward to reviewing these because I definitely have not looked at my goals since like January 20th when I moved back into school and I was supposed to hang them on my wall but I didn’t. So here is a wild stab at something that is probably going to make me very upset with myself.


  1. Study abroad. One of my big goals for the year is to study abroad for the fall semester. I really hope this works out, I’ll keep you guys posted once I find out if it’ll work out or not. Well, I’m going to IRELAND. I’ve booked my ticket, I register for classes in about a month. This does seem to be working out.
  2. Take care of self– mind and body. I need to start eating better and caring more of myself rather than just filling myself with crap. I don’t want to set a goal like lose ten pounds or anything, I just want to be a healthier person in general. Well I gave up fried food for a while and I felt good but that was for lent and then I stopped. I need to do it again. I don’t think I’ll do it as extreme but definitely cut a lot of it out. 
  3. Get shit together. Sorry about the swearing, I just feel like I need to get my life organized in way that makes it more maintainable and less stressful. I would say I’ve been a lot more organized. I’m not waiting for answers, I’m getting answers. 
  4. Do not take anyone’s crap. If someone is treating me badly my goal is not to take it. I can be a pushover sometimes and I don’t want that to happen anymore. I am standing up for myself. I’m not letting people take advantage of me. Okay that might not be fully true, but I am stopping a lot of it. 
  5. Develop a plan of somesort. I don’t have a life plan, a five year plan, or even a one year plan. I want to have a plan that I can help guide me so that I feel like my life has some order to it, or at least feels that way. Still don’t have one of these. 
  6. Be more creative. I want to inspire my own creativity, craft more, paint more, just create more. I would say that I have been. Being creative really helps me to relax so the more creative I am, the less stressed I am so I’m really trying to do this more and more.
  7. Blog 3-5 times a week with good, strong posts. I don’t want my blog to slack like I feel like it has this year because I blogged everyday. While it had it’s advantages I don’t feel like I was very good at finding a post everyday that was strong, I hardly planned ahead and there were some days where my posts were just bad. I also want to spend the few days off organizing and elaborating more of the blog itself in addition to the content I produce. I don’t want to talk about this haha. I know that I have not done this. I know my blog is lacking my personality. It’s really making me ask myself a lot of questions about my blog. I am considering going back to daily blogging. It’s a very touchy subject for me that’s hard to find people who can relate with it because I feel like most bloggers are comfortable with 1-2 posts a week, maybe three. I don’t know. I need a schedule or something, so if anyone has any tips, I would be glad to take them. 
  8. Positivity- I don’t have to be the most positive person but make an effort to be a positive person in people’s lives. I don’t need to be an optimist like I said before, I just want to be a positive influence in the lives of the people around me. I would like to think that I have been more of a positive influence on the people around me. I think it’s really important to be the positive light in someone’s day. You never know when all someone really needs is encouraging words.
  9. Surround myself with people who truly care. I don’t want to waste my time with people who only want to be with me when I’m the backup option. I don’t have to be the first, but I don’t want someone to hangout with me because they don’t have anything better. Check, check, and check. I don’t think I have to add anything to this because I could hand you a list of names of people who I know care about me. 
  10. Care more. I care about people a lot, probably to an annoying point where I always ask what they need or what I can do for them and I constantly make sure they’re okay because I worry but I need to care more about myself. I need to care more about what I do and how everything affects me long term. I do care about myself, but I think a lot of times I put other people’s needs above my own. I don’t want to say that’s a bad thing, because as a Christian, I think it’s very important to take care of the people around you before yourself, however I do think there’s a point where if you don’t take care of yourself you won’t be able to help anyone else. Every now and then I get to that point and I need to say “Okay, yes you should help your friend, but if you don’t do this, you won’t be able to do that.”
  11. Develop a passion for something. I have a passion for my blog but nothing else. I want to have passion for something I can do long term and maybe for the rest of my life, more than just a hobby. I don’t know if this just comes down to something as simple as just not being a passionate person. I wish I was but I’m not the kind to just be passionate, I don’t know why.
  12. Work and try harder. I do a lot of things very half-assed. I want to do things in a way where I give it my all. Everything I do should be my best efforts not my an attempt or a try it should be great. This semester definitely showed me that if I put forth my best effort in everything I do I can succeed and I really am trying and working harder. 
  13. Don’t waste time. I feel like I waste so much time just laying around and doing nothing I should do something effective with that time. Ehhhhhhhhh…….. I don’t know what to say about this. 
  14. Be more self-confident. I don’t want to look in a mirror and see things I don’t like about myself or want to change, I want to walk out the door confidently and happy with how I am. I mean after last nights blog post I would say that this answer is more complex. I am content with how I look but I am not confident enough not to care what other people might think when they see me. 
  15. Be more receptive of compliments and criticism. I don’t take either of these really well, compliments tend to make me feel uncomfortable because I question the motives and how genuine the person giving them is. I tend not to take criticism well because I think I’m always right and that’s how I like to live life, but I need to take into account other people’s opinions when it comes to what I say and think. I’m trying. Like there are certain things that cause me to basically shut down and be unable to think  about anything else, but I’m still trying. 

So how are you guys doing with your goals and resolutions? Half way through 2015, isn’t that crazy?????



The Expectations of the Twenties.

I always pictured 20 year old Mary as stable, pretty, has her life together, knows what she wants to do. I feel like growing up you really start to romanticize your twenties. You think that things will be great, college will be the time of your life (okay that I really do enjoy), you think you’ll have the coolest job in the world, have a boyfriend-on the way to marriage(?!?), like you think all of these things about your life, that it is essentially going to be perfect so you can’t wait to get out of middle school and high school to be/have that level of perfect. Like when you’re a kid and growing up you think 20 is so old, like kids I babysit think I’m old. I think I’m old. It’s so weird. Age is one of those things like time that just really make me think a lot more than I probably should.

More recently I’ve also established expectations for myself in my twenties, forgetting that I am in fact already 20, and nearly 3/4 of the way to being 21. These expectations include being a bomb ass* photographer and blogger who does the coolest stuff and everyone just kind of goes “Wow.” when I talk to them. I want tanner skin and a flatter belly, and I want to have not so frizzy hair. I would prefer not to be single. These are all attainable things so I don’t think my expectations of myself are ridiculous.

There are these expectations that I have predetermined for myself for some reason. I can go out and take a million pictures and be that photographer and I can go out and be that blogger I want to be. You might not believe that with my tendencies lately- I honestly don’t even know the last time I got three posts in a week. I can go on hikes, runs, workout, eat healthier and do all of that to work towards a slightly flatter belly and going on hikes and runs also means going outside which means I wouldn’t be as pasty. I mean the single thing is a little more complicated, like I can just make a boyfriend appear out of thin air. That’s not as attainable but I’m sure one day that’ll all work out.

I couldn’t tell you where this point of reflection came from. Maybe the fact that I still think I’m a teenager and can still set expectations for myself. I don’t know where this stemmed from, but I’m kind of happy it stemmed. Self-actualization always helps me for some reason to like better become who I want to be. So what are your expectations for yourself?


*Please excuse my profanity, I just feel as it give it the effect and it’s actually the expectation that I have set for myself.

How to be Mary

becoming mary

I’m not saying anyone wants to be me or anything, but here are some tips on how to be me if you would like to be.

  1. Always get dressed in the dark. That way incase anyone asks “What’d you do get dressed in the dark?” you can always say yes.
  2. Don’t brush your hair.
  3. Always say yes, especially when you should say no but you feel obligated to something anyway.
  4. Sit for hours staring at an empty word document waiting for something to fill the pages you need.
  5. Finger paint.
  6. Get really frustrated at everything and try not to cry.
  7. Email everyone in a group project a million times a day.
  8. Apply for so many jobs.
  9. Try super hard to blog and fail.
  10. Try and find a different t-shirt to wear, but end up wearing one of ten you always wear.
  11. Ask a million pointless questions to see if your friends get annoyed. If they don’t or don’t show it, they’re really good friends.
  12. Talk about how much you hate washing your hair, and see how long you can go without washing it before you’re disgusted. It’s never more than a day, keep that in mind.
  13. Think about and plan everything for the future. Do nothing to achieve that.
  14. Internally perpetually complain about the school’s wifi, when at home yell about how the school wifi is so much better.
  15. Think about how much you want to go to Target, go to Target and either buy things you don’t need and forget what you need or just don’t buy anything at all.
  16. Think about and tweet at IHOP constantly because that’s how much you love them.
  17. Weigh your options for the future and relook all the freakout class planning schedules previously made.
  18. Craft as much as you can as often as you can.
  19. Complain about everyone who doesn’t do their job properly, do it for them.
  20. Outwardly be self-confident so people think you are, no matter how fat you feel that day.
  21. Avoid real pants as often as possible.
  22. Don’t talk to any guys, but complain when no guys like you.
  23. Constantly remind yourself to breathe.
  24. Watch a lot of bad movies but find all the great qualities within them.
  25. Spend too much time on the internet doing nothing.

This is a joke post, I mean I hope you don’t take my advice. Reminder to always be  your own person and never let anyone change who you are.


No Direction.

I’ve lost whatever type of direction I was previously convinced I’ve had. I’m back to this place where I’m convinced I’m going to be a failure in the future. However, I’m assuming that’s not true.

I would say I’m one of few people at least that I know of that has the next two years of college planned out. Like every class that I’m taking every semester for the next two years in planned. I’m taking all these classes to try to get something to click. Find something I could do for the rest of my life. Here the list I have so far: read history books and write history essays, blog, write fake stories for the newspaper, and provide people with random bits of knowledge and fun facts. I don’t know if any of those are actual careers, if you know that they are let me know! Also side note I don’t want to get a history degree so if it requires that, I’ll pass.

I just think it’s kind of hard seeing everyone around you developing plans and making goals. Like I am constantly asked what my goals are and I don’t have any. My goal is just to try to figure everything out. I don’t have anything figured out. Everyone around me has a goal, and whether they view it as attainable or not, I still admire it. I still appreciate that they have them, because I don’t even have one future goal.

I don’t know what I’m doing and everyone keeps saying “You’re only 20, that’s okay.” but I feel like I’m going to hit that day soon where it’s not okay, where someone is uncomfortable with the idea that I don’t know what I’m doing. At what age is it no longer acceptable to not have a plan, because I have to be pretty close.  21? 22? I feel like you’re supposed to know by now. Something is supposed to appeal to you, and you know what appeals to me? Things that aren’t jobs.

So yes, I’m sure you’re all thinking, yeah it’s okay to not have it all figured out Mary, but really we’re going to be to that point soon where it’s really not okay. I don’t have that much time. When I look at how quickly this year is going I’m kind of surprised that college is going really fast and I don’t have as much time as everyone thinks to get my life in order, or a goal in order. I don’t want to be an underachiever, but that’s how I feel.

Sorry this is kind of not uplifting, but the opposite. Is anyone else struggling with this? Please tell me I’m not alone in this one.



A Year Changes Everyone.

A little less than a year ago I wrote this post. A post that highlighted my expectations of what my senior year self thought my life would be like compared to what it was actually and now I’m looking back at my life from last year. This time last year I didn’t even know Eric and now he’s my best friend. This time last year I ate dinner alone in my room almost every night and now I eat with my friends for almost every year. Friends that I hung out with maybe once a month. I was going home almost every weekend because I hated college and now I don’t like knowing that I’m missing out here when I go home for a weekend.

This time last year I spent 95% of my time incredibly anxious and essentially afraid to leave my room. Wednesday I left my room at 10:45 am and didn’t get back until past midnight. I have essentially made a complete 180 with my life and I really cannot compalin. While the anxiety still hits me- the past two days it has, but I moved past it. I’m handling myself and situations a lot better. I would say that I’m anxious about 50% of the time now but I also don’t let it confine me to my room unless it’s a really bad day.

There’s a lot of things that I regret about last year. There was this and group of people reaching out to me and I was ignoring them. I was cutting off myself off and I really don’t like that I was the reason that I didn’t allow myself to have fun. I spent all of my time wishing to be somewhere else and not enjoying the moments I had.

My life has really turned around and I’m really happy with that. I would say I owe a lot of this to my new friends. Especially Logan, Molly, and Eric- if it weren’t for them inviting me to things and making me feel included I don’t know if I would be as happy as I am now. I wouldn’t say I was unhappy before, but I also know that I wasn’t happy. A year can change a lot and I would say that if I would have let myself be open to all of these people I would have been a lot happier a year ago too. I don’t think people make happiness but when you surround yourself with people who really, truly care about you, your life really improves. I don’t feel like second place or second choice, I feel equal and that’s what I really like.

A lot changes in a year and every year a lot will change. You can look back at almost any year and see all the changes in your life and maybe it will be nostalgic. For me it’s not. For me it’s kind of filled with regret. I don’t want to focus on that though, I want to focus on the fact that I have probably the world’s greatest friends. I want to focus on the fact that I’m a lot happier and a lot less anxious. I want to focus on the fact that a year ago I never thought I would be where I am today in the best way possible. Sure people have left me in the past year but I guess sometimes that’s for the best.

I don’t know why I felt the need to share this but I read that old post of mine and I’m amazed at how content and pleased I am with my life. A lot changes in a year and I wouldn’t say that’s a bad thing.


Perpetually Confused.

I’m a thinker, lately my catchphrase seems to be “You know if you really think about it (enter anything here) is really weird,” to just about anyone who’s around. I’m sure it’s annoying because then I’ll go into a huge rant about how weird this random irrelevant thing is and I’ll do it for anything and everything. It’s really confusing to the mind when all you want to do is think about how weird something is and that’s really all I do. Like right now I’m thinking about why people have hair- we don’t need it but we take such pride in it. BUT IT’S DEAD AND CONTINUES TO GROW DEAD LENGTH! I don’t understand. Bald is such a statement that some people make and good for them. We don’t need hair- like I’m sure it’s useful to like regulate body temperatures and stuff like that but it’s not necessary. Okay so even that rant about hair went longer than intended and these are my EVERYDAY thoughts now.

I think way too much and I’m currently taking a philosophy class which leads me to question my existence. I mean I’m assuming and hoping I’m real but I guess I just don’t really know.  Yet my professor stands up in front of the class and starts talking about how the chairs we’re sitting on aren’t real and then I’m like well at least I know I can sit down and I’m not going to fall whether it’s a chair or not is slightly irrelevant, at least in my opinion.

It’s more than just thinking something is weird though, I think about things like my life all the time. I over think a lot. Like I meant to my review my study abroad application six more times that I already reviewed four times but I accidently submitted it.  I overthink literally everything I do. I make a mental pro/con list for almost everything, it’s ridiculous. I don’t understand why I have to think so much about everything. Then as soon as I start to think in depth about anything I get really confused because I overthink it to the point where something as simple as whether or not I have time for dinner confuses me. I  need to stop. Someone stop me. Just kidding you can’t.

Does anyone else do this or am I just crazy? Let me know in the comments!