A Year in Review: 2015

It’s that time of year again. The time when I reflect back on my year, 2014 was a reflection, but I prefer the Year in Review of 2013, so that’s the title of this one. All in all, 2015 was a strange year, a good year, but a strange one. Looking back at it, it’s like I lived this life that wasn’t mine, I don’t know if that makes sense. For the most part my anxiety has greatly subsided and only surfaces at the most inconvenient of times, like parking lots, highways, riding bicycles through London, and when I have too much stuff to be done. My blogging hit a creative roadblock for a while and that was really hard for me to deal with, I just wanted to create great things and I couldn’t. Recently, I’ve been feeling better about that though and that helps a lot. 2015 brought the biggest adventure of my life yet, I lived in another country for three months, and that was probably the coolest thing I’ve ever done. If I had to describe 2015 in a phrase it would be: unexpectedly expected.

January

In January it seemed as if I was going through some self-evaluating. I had almost all classes for my major and minor and it lead to some major self reflection and evaluating. This was the semester that I went back to school and I felt content for the first time about that. Before there was always that bit of dread, but not that semester. Molly, Eric, Logan, and I all went on a little day trip to a bookstore in Harrisburg and to Chocolate World.

February

February is when the not blogging every day kicked in and I started to slack. I celebrated being single with two Galentines days I think I failed the 3-5 days a week. In order to try and combat this I started the 30 Day Blog Challenge. This is also when my blogging rut began. There were highs and lows of it throughout the year. However, because blogging had hit a rut, I was enjoying my life. This is also the last month that I would go home for the job that I hated so much.

March

At school March means spring break, which usually means a week of working, for me, it meant quitting my job. I had never quit a job before so it was this huge step for me in my life. I was kind of afraid, but also so glad that I did. I quit in order to go Florida with my friends for spring break, which was a great decision if you ask me. This was also the month where I honestly almost stopped blogging if I’m being honest. I hit a rut, I didn’t always enjoy blogging, I stopped doing the 30 Day Blog Challenge, I was at the peak of my creative roadblock. March was a month of highs and lows.  However, by the end of the month I felt that I was slowly climbing out of my rut and onto better. This was also the month I found out that I had been accepted to go to Dublin for the semester, it was official that I would be studying abroad in the fall.

April

To be honest. I don’t remember anything about April.  April is a weird month where nothing really happens. We had May Madness at my school and it was like 45 degrees outside. I don’t know why we had May Madness in April, I think it had something to do with finals week. Other than that, I feel like April is such a filler month. It’s project after project and paper after paper, other than that there’s not much to it.

May

May means the end of school. This year, I went home without a job and with fewer friends waiting for me than I was leaving, and it just felt weird. Normally I go home to a routine and this time I was going home to job application after job application. All of this time was good for me to start to get ready for studying abroad. I went on some hikes and just took some time for myself. At the end of the month, I was back working at my new job that I love.

June

 

I started LNBM in June which is the best and worst thing I’ve ever done for this blog. While it greatly feeds my laziness in the blogging department, it always seems to decently well with readers. I also continued my visits to Frederick to see Logan, Molly, and Eric. They also came to PA a few times, it was easier for me to go there just with schedules and everything. June was another month of severe bloggers block. However, this was the first time I didn’t keep it a secret. I was open and straight forward about it, which I think made it easier to write.

July

In July I went back to Florida, this time with my family. I got to accomplish a life dream, to stay at the Animal Kingdom Lodge and see the giraffes from my hotel window. I also got to experience the magic of the updated Harry Potter World, which was absolutely amazing. The bloggers block start to wear off a little bit and I felt like I was doing good in the blog world.  I always start to get a little restless in July. I’m ready for a set schedule and this summer I just never really got that. I like structure, and there was not a lot of structure in my life this past summer, which was probably a good experience.

August

August was a month of restlessness. I felt stagnate.  Everyone was getting ready to back to college and I was just waiting. Do you know that night before you leave before you go on vacation? That’s how August was for me. To me the world was paused, crawling until I made it until September when I could finally go to Dublin for the semester. I did go on my first solo trip to the beach which was the type of relaxation I really needed. I don’t like to wish away time, but at the time I was just wishing that August would just hurry up already. I celebrated my 21st birthday and going away with family and friends.  My friends slowly started returning to college and I continued to work, just waiting for the day that it was my turn to leave.

September

September started with two visits to Hood. I finished working, went down for Eric’s birthday and then the next day I was off for Dublin. This was the start of my greatest adventure. This was the part of the year that I was looking forward to the most. After all of the paperwork errors and thoughts crossing my mind that I would never be able to actually go, it was time for me to go. I left on September 13 and got to Dublin on the 14. Right away we had walking tours, bus tours, and just sightseeing things. I had my 21st birthday in a different country where it doesn’t really matter because the drinking age is 18 there, but still I turned 21, that’s a big birthday, or so they say. I visited the Cliffs of Moher and just explored Dublin.

October

October was when life started to get crazy. I went to Howth which is a small little suburb type place of Dublin. I went to Paris to meet up with my dad who was on business, how many 21 year-olds can say that? Then I went to Galway, another little seaside town for a night with my friends. I ended in October in London, England. That’s just absolutely crazy. I did so much in one month.

November

I feel like November was yesterday, it went by literally in the blink of an eye. I went to London (again) and Brighton. I also went to Madrid and Sevilla. I was away from Dublin for a whole week and then I made the decision to not travel again while I was away and enjoy my last four weeks in Dublin. This is the first time any of my pictures from Sevilla are being posted, the adventure post will come soon. My family came for Thanksgiving and I got to enjoy more time with them which was great. When I said at the beginning that looking back on this year it’s like looking at someone else’s memories, that’s what November is for me, it’s so surreal that it seems like someone else’s life.

December

December brought an end to my biggest adventure. I spent my last two and a half weeks in Dublin with final assignments and seeing as much of the city as possible, going to all of my favorite places and just taking everything in before I left. Then I headed home. It’s still weird being home. It’s been about two and a half weeks now and it’s still just weird. I’m not used to it yet. I’ve been trying to see all of my home friends and family before I head back to school in a little over a week. I went to Frederick for an interview

2015.

All in all, 2015 was great. It was just a whirlwind of a year. It was a year of new friends, new people, new experiences, and new places. The last fourth of 2015 could be described as the year of new, and I want to keep that going. 2015 was great, but I’m ready for some more change. I don’t like change, but I don’t know, I feel like 2016 is the year of change. Resolutions to come tomorrow!

Happy New Year Everyone!

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Average Adventure: Animal Kingdom and Animal Kingdom Lodge

So I’ve edited a few more pictures from Animal Kingdom and Animal Kingdom Lodge and I decided that there are way too many for just my blog. So the rest (of the ones I like) will be up on my Flickr within the next few days. To be honest, I’m not fully sure how that website works, but here’s the link for it: My Flickr.

Here are a few of my favorite pictures from the trip. Honestly, most of them are giraffes (if not all). I’m literally obsessed with them. These are also just from the ones I have on my computer so far, there’s like another 500 on my camera from all of the places we went.

P1080325This was from the balcony of the room we stayed in. When I say this was a dream come true for me, it really was. For as long as I can remember I have always loved giraffes, I remember being like three or four and my aunt trying to figure out what sound they made before we went to the zoo. I’m not sure if that was the moment that they became my favorite animal, but that’s the first time I remember loving them.

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Again this was taken from the balcony. I found it really cool how they fed the animals. They put food in the most random spots for the animals to get, it was hilarious watching the giraffes trying to pick food up from the ground.

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Another one from the balcony. I cannot get over how majestic and beautiful they look just walking around. I would never get tired of looking at them, I could sit on that balcony for hours no matter how hot it was. It was incredible.

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It’s just amazing what they can do. They just reach up to the trees and eat. It’s breathtaking.

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This was the window on the Safari tour in Animal Kingdom. I thought it looked cool and kinda old, and kind of also a little authentic.

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Here’s an elephant to break up all the giraffes. They were also pretty cool on the Safari, but not as exciting for me.

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This was also on the Safari. It was a little harder to get pictures there because of the jerky movements. I was so happy in the moment, the one on the left is a baby. They might both be babies, but for sure the one on the left is.

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If I would’ve been sitting on the other side of the bench during the Safari I would have been able to touch this one. On my bucket list is feeding one, touch one would also be amazing. It was so close to the jeep/truck/tour vehicle.

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This is from the walkout section of the hotel. It’s like this area where you can get the closest to the animals at our section of the hotel (we stayed in the newer “Kidani Village” area). I got some really amazing shots there.

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The interactions among the giraffes were so peaceful. The zebras were ramming heads so were the other animals I didn’t care as much about, but the giraffes just grazed gracefully.

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Sometimes they would just walk places together or run around together. I thought it was really cute.

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I can’t get over how pretty they are.

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Okay so as not to overwhelm this is the last one I’ll post. I just love the patterns and the details that they possess. It’s just pure and complete beauty that they are completely unaware of, it’s just breathtaking.

I will be uploading all of the pictures at once onto flickr so it probably won’t be for a few days, but keep a look out for those!

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Sisters.

Incase you didn’t know yesterday was National Siblings Day, and I don’t know why I didn’t think to write about this last night, but hey, I have two little sisters! So today I thought I would do a post all about them and the three of us.

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Look how cute we were! This had to be the summer because Julia’s still little, it’s funny because I’m pretty sure I’m either just wearing a big t-shirt, maybe with shorts, and Sarah’s wearing a nightgown. I’m not sure why this s even a picture, my mom probably thought we were looking cute.

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I think this is in Disney Land and the main reason it’s a good picture is because my mom made us take a good one for a christmas card. I was so tan and skinny, those were the days where I would get tan and skinny.

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My favorite part about this picture is that we were a mess before we left to get it done. I was annoyed with my hair and something happened that I din’t have a brown shirt. Now I’m examining the picture and Julia and I have the same style hair, minus the bags, and Sarah’s looks like hers was blowing in the wind. I also love the smile Sarah has, for some reason it’s reminding me of the “Chole” meme.

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This was the summer where Sarah refused to hold my hand. So Julia and I held hands everywhere we went and Sarah thought she was too big. You’re never too old to hold your sister’s hand! This was in Canada we took a car/boat, it was pretty neat.

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I think for this picture my mom made Sarah hold my hand, like it was the rules of the picture. I’m sure my dad was very annoyed that both Sarah and i were wearing flip-flops (it’s against the rules on vacation). My favorite part about this picture is that Julia is loving it, she never takes pictures now but this one she seems to not mind as much. I also like that we both do the same thing with our feet, mostly because we don’t know what to do for pictures.

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I don’t know if you can see it in this picture, but I look super irritated, I think this picture was Julia’s idea and that’s why she looks the happiest. This was at Ben and Jerry’s. The thing I remember most is that BOTH of my little sisters could finish their pint(?) of ice cream and i couldn’t so mine went bad. How unfortunate.

What it comes down to in the end is that I have to people who will always be there for me- mostly because they have to be there for me. I miss them here at college and it’s weird not sitting everyday. I love when they text/call me because they always make me smile/laugh. I really couldn’t ask for better sisters. My parents better show this to them. Miss you girls. Don’t forget to hug/cuddle you siblings and make sure they know that you love them. Thanks for reading a sappy post.

XOXO,

Mary.

The Problem with Disney

Well I’m writing this post with the belief that everyone that follows me has had an average childhood and grew up on Disney movies, anywhere from Cinderella to Toy Story and I believe that these movies give us unrealistic outlooks on life, especially the princesses.

I mean look at Cinderella, what did she do? She danced with prince and fell in love, like when does that happen? I think the last guy I danced with turned out to be kinda an arse, no prince trying to find me by my shoe. And yes I have seen all of the new Cinderella stories, but they are no better. I mean I love Hilary Duff, probably more than the next girl, but come one, I was the nerdy girl who spent all of my time on my phone/computer/kindle in high school and I can almost guarantee that none of the “popular” boys had secret identities talking to the nerdy girls like me in secret. It doesn’t happen, except some girls have that hope in their hearts that they are going to find that person, but it’s not real.

Now, let’s look at Sleeping Beauty, I mean she doesn’t do anything at all! She slept, the end, there’s the story. So she’s born a princess and gets fairies then sleeps and then falls in love. Like what the heck, that’s not fair. Do some people actually think this happens? I really hope not.  Like if this does happen, please someone let me know so I can sign up for it somewhere because that sounds like an ideal situation to me.

Okay so Beauty and the Beast and this is where it starts to get better, but it’s still a little weird. Like yay! Belle is educated and smart, however how smart are you to go find your imprisoned father, then trade yourself, and fall in love with the beast, not even man, who kidnapped you. Today there are departments who search for monsters like these, they are called things like, oh I don’t know, KIDNAPPERS! Seriously though, come on! I’m pretty sure if I was in her position I would’ve feared for my life instead of did things like eat dinner with him and talk to his objects that talk! Also falling in love with the beast is like falling in love with a talking bear, not normal. This also sparks a whole topic of werewolves and I’m not even going to go there.

This is what a real princess would have to deal with, struggle with her weight and like some guy who doesn't like her back, who doesn't fall in love with her. Then, I would have some respect for Disney.
This is what a real princess would have to deal with, struggle with her weight and like some guy who doesn’t like her back, who doesn’t fall in love with her. Then, I would have some respect for Disney.

So now a non-princess movie like Monster’s Inc., now if a monster came into my room at night I’m not sure I would want to go with it ever let alone stay with him and his friend, go on weird trips to try and find my bedroom door and all before my parents wake up to come and check on me? Now, I know this isn’t exactly a love quote, but it’s so true (well at least in my opinion) quite unrealistic and I guess that’s the point of most Pixar movies, just entertainment.

Finally, Peter Pan, so yeah I get it growing up sucks but we all have to do it. So go Wendy for realizing that, but you were still stupid enough to go with him and take his “fairy” dust. Like if boys came in my window and offered me the capability to fly, I’m pretty sure I would flip out, like hardcore freakout. This is not okay, and where are their parents? Like don’t they care? I don’t get it, mine would freak out and try as hard as they could to find me.

Anyway, that’s my rant Thursday. A few problems with Disney, if you liked this you’ll love my friend Logan’s post on Disney Downfalls, she’s an amazing writer and I’m super jealous of her skills on every post. So go follow her, she deserves it more than I do, that’s for sure. (Here is her link http://lexicallogan.wordpress.com/2013/10/17/the-first-of-many-rants-disney-downfalls/)

Thanks for reading, and if you agree or have any of your own disagreements, pop them in the comments, I’d love to chat with you about them.

XOXO

Mary

Answer

January 15: Driving 30 mph in a 25 zone.

Question

January 16: What Hollywood heartthrob provided the voice of Sparky, Stan’s gay dog, in the animated TV comedy South Park?

Forever Alone: It’s not okay…?

For anyone who has ever been on the internet we all know the meme “Forever Alone” and I’m sure everyone at one point or another has felt that way, but no one actually seems to want their life to be that way. I believe this is more of a male concentrated joke, and I don’t know why I think this I just do. However, if I were to wear a shirt, tweet, or write a status about my family would probably ridicule me for it along with the majority of society. A lot of this however comes from where I grew up, but I think this is a widespread problem.  

Where I grew up it is expected that you date, or even court in some instances, then you go on and get married, have kids, quit your job and stay at home until you end up like my mom trying to get back into work but nobody wants to hire you because you have too much experience and they would have to pay you more so you end up with temporary positions. 

For me, this is NEVER something that I wanted. I may have spend countless hours watching “Say Yes to the Dress” and “Four Weddings” and casually browsing the Wedding category on Pinterest, but that doesn’t mean I necessarily wanted to be in that position, and this lead everyone I know to think I’m actually crazy.  While all my friends at school were searching for the perfect mate, I was into reading, coloring, building robots, crocheting, and building roller coasters, this wasn’t always a good thing. I never had a serious boyfriend, yes I did date two people in high school, but I would never say they were serious relationships. 

Anyway this just seems like a double standard to me. Guys can sleep around, have crazy amounts of girlfriends, but I can’t.  They can go around and play girls left and right, but I can’t even talk to a guy without being accused of putting him in the “friend zone” did I even mention how many times guys have put me in the friend zone? You don’t even know! 

So back to being a kid and growing up as a girl. I believe this is something that I have touched on before but I think it is such a problem.  As a little girl I played house with my mom’s friends son Ryan.  He would wear my dad’s tie “go to work” and I would make us dinner at my little pretend kitchen. Like what the hell? I was a stay at home wife at the age of 3 or 4. I hate that.  This brings me to a conversation I had with my five year old cousin over Thanksgiving break. She loves her baby dolls and playing house as well as what I recently found out boys.  As a five year old my cousin does go to preschool and apparently she has asked every boy accept one to be her boyfriend, they all said no, and she was planning on asking the last one the day she went back. This has been something that my aunt has really been trying to discourage because she really wants to raise an independent daughter but with the princesses and so many shows have taught girls that they need boyfriends and husbands and then they can be successful in life, but that’s not true! 

They need to start making role models who are single and independent. I don’t need a man to make me happy.  This time of year I always question that though.  My name is MARY, do you know how many lovey dovey Christmas movies have Mary as the main character who falls in love within the first ten minutes of the movie, A LOT! I don’t want to be one of those girls who swoons over boys and gets caught up in all that love shit because I’ve been there and I’ve hated every moment of it, but once in a while I do get tired of being alone and I want to be one of the many Marys in the movies. But then I remember that I want to be that independent role model that little girls like my baby cousin can look up to and see that you don’t need a man to be a great and successful woman, you can be all of that on your own. 

Sorry about the super long erratic post that doesn’t make chronological sense, but I just have a lot of feelings on this subject and I am a rather erratic person. I would love to hear some other people’s views on this topic, so please comment below (I’ll follow anyone who comments).  Also I was home for the weekend and very busy so sorry about the lack of posts.  Hopefully there will be some more good ones to come soon! Thanks for reading!

XOXO

Mary