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?

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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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Average Adventure Preview: Where I’ve Been

Well hello there everyone, I’m back to blogging (finally). The past few days I’ve been without wifi so no blogging can be done without that necessity. Currently I’m sitting in Orlando International Airport waiting to fly back to DC so I can finally be home after a week vacation. My family (well most of my family) has been hotel and theme parking hopping for a week, from Animal Kingdom Lodge to Cabana Bay (and a few other not as exciting hotels) as well as seeing all of the countries in Epcot and pixie dust in Magic Kingdom to seeing the fantasy lands of Diagon Alley and Hogwarts, even riding the Hogwarts Express. While I’ve had a great vacation, my new tan (and sunburn) and I are ready to go home.

Since I’m in the airport and there is no outlet to be seen I thought my best bet is to do a preview of the places I’ve been. By this I mean the few pictures I got to edit at the last hotel that are mostly of giraffes. I don’t know if I’ve ever expressed my love for giraffes on here, but I really love them, so staying at the Animal Kingdom Lodge was really a dream come true for me. I even got to see a few baby giraffes. I only have pictures (not today) of the babies from the safari ride at Animal Kingdom because the one at the hotel was too far away, even with my zoom lens, but it was amazing.

Okay so there’s a bunch of giraffes and one zebra as my preview. I do have more to come (not just of animals). That will be up either later tonight, tomorrow, or Sunday. Maybe all three. There’s a lot of  pictures so it’s definitely going to have to be multiple posts, so I here’s me showing off so far.

I am very glad to be headed home. My first thing will be off to Target for several facemasks to replenish my skin that has been mistreated on vacation. I am very glad to be back to blogging, maybe this was the break I needed to figure out what I’m doing.

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Anxiety and Traveling.

travel and anxiety

Anxiety and traveling for some people aren’t a good mix. For some people who don’t suffer from general anxiety like myself, they can suffer from travel anxiety. The act of traveling alone can cause anxious feelings and can even result in panic attacks which can seriously make a vacation turn sour.

One of my biggest fears since I deal with anxiety is letting it ruin things I want to do, and one of the main things I want to do in life is travel. Because of this I do try to take my traveling as relaxed, simple, and as smooth as possible. So here are some tips so that you can do the same!

  1. Keep mental list of where all of your important documents are. If you’re going international be sure to keep your passport and boarding pass together, as well as any other documents you might be. For example in the fall when I get off the plane I’ll make sure to have my passport and entry note in my hand.
  2. Have a plan for the travels. If it’s a new airport, look up where your terminal is online. Know where you’re supposed to go and be. Have print out directions and use your phone or GPS to travel. It often helps if you have various sources to ensure you’re traveling to the right place.
  3. Have a plan for the arrival. If you have something to look forward to it can make the traveling process seem more worth it. If you have anxiety about being away from home, you can do a countdown of day until you get to leave, just don’t forget to enjoy your time away. If the journey makes you anxious looking forward to what the reward is can really help to relax your mind.
  4. Bring comforts. For some the unfamiliarity of traveling can cause anxiety, if you have something that comforts you and you have the ability to bring it along, do it. It’ll definitely make the journey easier.
  5. Know things can go wrong. I honestly go into everything expecting the worst. There are a lot of things that can go wrong when you travel, if you’re prepared for them it won’t make them seem as bad.
  6. Be early. I know this is like my life motto, if you aren’t early you’re late, but when it comes to travelling it’s true. I would rather sit in an airport for three hours and people watch than trying to rush through security and running to my terminal. Same goes for driving, you can’t always plan for traffic. Leave early. Always be early. Rushing can cause anxiety, so the less of it you can do the better.
  7. Plan ahead. When you set an agenda and plans months in advance you can start to prepare your mind for the travels. If you have your mind prepared you will be prepared and less anxious. This really helps for just keeping a sound mind.
  8. Be ready for panic attacks. Be ready to calm yourself down. If you can have exit strategies, if you can’t try to have someone with you who understands. If you can’t do that either, make sure if anyone notices they understand what is going on. The last thing you want is a lot of attention because it will only fuel the anxiety. If you’re on the plane take a little walk through the aisles so you feel less claustrophobic. If you are in a car, pull over. Know how to slow down the panic or stop it, or know techniques that work for other people. It really is the worse case scenario that this would happen, but it does, and helps if you are prepared.
  9. Create a happy place. Make a distraction from whatever is stressing you out. Try to focus on something that doesn’t fuel the anxiety. Make a happy place in your mind where you can go when you close your eyes.
  10. Take a break. When you feel anxious sometimes you need a break. You just need to take a step back and breathe. Walk away, refresh your mind, don’t forget to drink lots of water. Take care of yourself. If you have to remove yourself, do it. You know your limits, don’t forget them.

Don’t let anxiety ruin adventure and travel for you. There’s so much to see and do in the world, and if you don’t want to see it that’s okay, but if you do, don’t let anxiety take that away. I am so afraid of that, but it also helps me be aware. You can travel with anxiety, it doesn’t have to stop you, I refuse to let it stop me.

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The Mistake Hiatus.

So I told you guys I was going to Florida and before I went I was supposed to do the blog posts ahead of time so I wouldn’t have to worry about them. I guess it’s safe to assume I didn’t do them ahead of time and I also didn’t do any while I was there. It was a vacation. A much needed vacation at that.

So yeah I took four days off. Whoops. I think WordPress was concerned about me because I got an email from them this morning saying they missed me (I bet they say that to all the pretty ladies *insert winky face emoji*) so my guess this is also the longest I’ve ever been of the site so that in and of itself is almost an accomplishment.

I will tell you guys a lot about my vacation. I had a lot of fun, it started off my spring break with a positive step. I feel like a real college kid! I don’t want to get back into the swing of thing though. Like I really want to go to bed, I was in a car from about 4:15 p.m.  yesterday until about 4:40 p.m. today. We stopped for a long dinner, to sleep for about 3.5 hours, and made the journey back to school where my car was and then I had another two hours home. Then I had a ton of work to do for this week and before I go back to school.

Vacation is over and I’m back in reality. I will finish the 30 Day Post Challenge and share my Florida pictures with you guys as soon as possible!

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30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 16

blog challenge day 16

I’m a person who loves to travel, like there is not a place in the world I don’t think I would say no to visiting.  I want to see the world by any means necessary so almost everywhere is on my travel bucket list.

This post is actually falling on a very appropriate day. By the time this goes live, I’ll be packing to leave for Florida around 10 p.m. for most of my spring break. Travel is something that I hope is eventually an active part of my life. Right now it’s based on opportunities given to me and hardly ever found, I hope that soon it will become something I can do myself on a regular basis.

There are a lot of places in this world that I would love to travel. I would like to visit every continent- including Antarctica, as well as all 50 states. There’s no where that off the top of my head I think “No, I don’t think I would go there.” I think that the world has so much to offer and that’s why I want to travel. I want to find all that it has to offer. I want to see everything it can give me.

Right now I would say my travel dreams include going back to England, which hopefully I can do while I’m hopefully studying abroad next fall. I would also say that Charleston NC is still pretty high up on my list, it just looks so pretty. I would also really like to see things like the Great Wall of China, the pyramids in Egypt, and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

I want to adventure with my life. I really enjoy not knowing all there is to see because that means there’s more out there for me to discover. I don’t know what the world has to offer me.

So my dream travel destination is really no where specific because it’s really just my dream to travel.

Do you have a dream travel destination?

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Update

Hello, today I’m writing through blurred glasses. I’m mostly just too lazy to clean them, however there is a huge smudge on the left side of my glasses and I’m just going to let it go.

Anyway today has just been one of those days where my head is getting the best of me, my anxiety levels are high and I have broken down in several crying fits, however, no full on panic attacks which is a relief. I have a lot of things on my mind and they’re all things that I’m afraid of but still have to do. I don’t really feel the need to elaborate but let me just say my mind needs a break. I’m very tired of my brain overreacting to everything, it’s really not appreciated.

Anywho, I’m not going to go on and on about myself, because really I don’t need to complain anymore than I already do. I also want to finish this and find a sweatshirt to buy, any online shop suggestions? Okay focus Mary, focus. An update.

It’s been forever since I’ve properly updated you and I don’t really want to right now because I just don’t feel like it, but it’s also getting late and I want to get to bed. I actually have a lot coming up soon so it’s probably good that I do an update.

Let’s start with this month, this weekend/upcoming week is rather boring. However, next Friday Meag is visiting and I’m going to lug her all around Lancaster County and we’re going to have oodles of fun! Then she’s going to leave Sunday morning, and I’m going to New York City with my family. So if any of you guys are from that area keep your eyes peeled, however you aren’t the only ones who need to because I’m going to be in several different states this week, so if you’re on the east coast beware. I’ll be getting back Monday evening, and then very early Tuesday morning I’m going to be going to New Jersey with my friends and Lindsays’ mom for the day. THEN Jade, Lindsay, and Lauren are sleeping over at my house on Tuesday and very early Wednesday we’re leaving for Rhode Island! We’re going to for two nights and I’m really looking forward to it. Lindsay said something today about making it kind of technology free, however I will still be posing while I’m there. I’m pretty excited for everything but the drive.

So then August is coming with going back to school and that’s about it. I’ll be wrapping up my internship, trying to pack and buy some last minute supplies. I found out yesterday that my roommate is the girl that it’s supposed to be, so that’s a relief. I’m actually exactly one floor above where I was last year, right next to the bathroom, oh yeah. I go back August 23 and to be honest I’m looking forward to it more than I thought I would be. There’s just a huge difference between being here and being there, both have it’s perks but I miss my friends and I’m not exactly a fan of Lancaster County, I miss more of the city atmosphere, even if it isn’t quite a huge city there.

I also have some blog posts planned, however, I don’t like sharing those ahead because then sometimes I don’t do them and I feel bad.

Am I visiting anywhere near you maybe?

XOXO,

Mary.

I’ve Defeated the Bikini

First of all, I know it’s really late, but I wrote a post and didn’t like so I didn’t want to post. Okay, I didn’t actually finish it but that’s okay too. I’ve also been catching up on YouTube because I was busy yesterday and today so I’m far behind and I don’t work until noon tomorrow so why not stay up super late?

After reading this article here it’s safe to say that I have not only regained my own body confidence but I’m not going to let people shame other’s weight. I don’t think it’s okay to say “oh her shorts shouldn’t be that short” or “why is she wearing a bikini?” or anything like that shouldn’t be said. You shouldn’t make someone feel bad for being confident. I remember when I came to this realization a few summers ago in the editorial section of Seventeen Magazine someone sent in a comments saying something along the lines of “I don’t understand why the bathing suits in the curvy section were all tankinis or one pieces, I’m curvy and I like bikinis.” I thought to myself, and mind you at this time I wouldn’t wear anything that wasn’t straight so I was just like okay good for you, plus I was like 120 lbs with big boobs and I just felt uncomfortable in everything. Now, that I’m a curvy girl, who maybe’s a little bit chubby bathing suit shopping is a nightmare.

I’ve been postponing this inevitable event all summer but I’m supposed to go to the beach a week from tomorrow (okay well technically today) and my friends are tiny, they are just small, people and they pretty, and that was no motivation whatsoever to try and find a bathing suit. After a full day of anxiety for no apparent reason I decided to go shopping. My youngest sister wanted to join me, her mistake, and mine. She likes to complain. We went to Walmart, Boscovs, Bon Ton, Sears, American Eagle, and finally Target. I couldn’t find one that I liked at all, let alone on me. I found two at Target but I went with the one I liked better, maybe the other one looked better on me, but that wasn’t the one I was comfortable in. I was comfortable in the one I picked.

I’m sure you guys will see it eventually see it since I have many, many trips coming up so do you know what that means? Finally some more adventure posts filled with friends and family.

So yes, once again, don’t body shame anyone, including yourself. Also, please read that attached article, it’s much better written and makes clear point rather than my jumbled up mess of words. This is why I stopped writing in the middle of the night. Please share with me your opinions of bikinis and bathing suits in the comments, I love other opinions too.

XOXO,

Mary.

I’m Craving Adventure

I live by this quote.
I live by this quote.

It has been seven months since I’ve had a good adventure, and that was a trip to the beach. I’m hungry for an adventure. To be honest, I’m not good at this whole doing school work thing. I don’t like it. I’m not a paperwork kind of person. Sure I like sitting around the house as much as the next girl, but I’m getting really tired of it. I started this blog with the idea that maybe soon I’d be posting weekend adventure to downtown, D.C, and Baltimore, but no one wants to do that sort of thing. I’m getting so tired of doing nothing all the time.

This just leads me to thinking about the future. What if I get a real job this summer? I can’t take time off to go away somewhere random for a week. I need the money and taking a week off is expensive. Also what it comes down to is where do I go? The beach with my friends or whatever my family is doing? There is no way I can afford to do both. Then I start thinking, well what about what I want to do? I could get a job in another state maybe, but then there’s the problem of housing, which is another expense and the money is better saved than spent. I go through all of these things in my head and what it comes down to is what is the best for me? I mean I’m to the point now where my parents can ask me to do one thing or another, or advise me, however they aren’t going to tell me what to do about things like vacations (at least I don’t think so). I even consider sometimes just going on an adventure alone because that sort of thing can be just as fun.

Then I think to the future that’s even further down the line, how in the world am I going to have a steady job if I can’t even go half of a year of school without an adventure? People don’t live life like that. I can’t spend my life in a nomadic fashion like I would like to.  I like to write stories about women that I want to be like, but they could never be more than a dream persona. A successful person doesn’t pick up odd jobs in random cities, well not enough to live off of, to be successful you have to have a steady job with a steady income. To someone like me this is super stressful and I don’t know what to do anymore. Am I going to live the rest of my life just lusting for an adventure? That’s what it’s starting to feel like. I want to be the type of person who gets on sites like kayak, and travelocity and find last minute travel deals and explore a new city on random weekend. I would love to be that person that goes on the megabus site and buys tickets for $2.50 months in advance to the point where I’m in a new city every weekend. Yet that’s no way to live a life, so I can’t really chase my dream because it’s impractical. It makes me sad to look forward in time and see that I might not be happy with the way I’m living it because I can’t live up to my dream.

And this is what I get for wanting one adventure. I can’t wait to go to Boston and New York in April, because that is exactly what need right about now. Who knows, maybe I’ll be on one sooner than that, the wander lust always seems to get the better of me.

If anyone has advice for someone like me, please let me know! It would mean the world to me if someone could give a little sliver of advice. Thanks for reading!

XOXO

Mary

Answer

February 3: The three primary colors and the achromatic colors.

Question

February 4: What baseball legend holds the record for the highest on-base percentage in major league history?

A Year in Review: 2013

So I wanted to something to conclude the year, which I already wrote but it got deleted, so I’m currently crying. Anywho this post may be rather shitty compared to the first one where I went month by month and I think I’m just going to an overview because I’m tired and I want to edit a video before I go to bed too.  I’m going to try and tell the story of my year through pictures with captions, wish me luck!

One of the major things of my year are unable to be pictured and that would be this blog. I am so glad that I started this blog, and I’m so thankful for all of you who read this. I would also like to give a special thanks to The College Misfit, and whether she knows it or not, if it wasn’t for her I don’t know if I would’ve kept up with the blog, she really inspired me. I really hope the new year brings good changes for her, she deserves it. So through the ups and downs of 2013, the downs aren’t really pictured, but trust me they were there, I can only hope that 2014 will bring great things and the guidance of what to do with my life. Once again I’d like to thank all of you followers who read every day/week/month, I never would have imagined having almost 60 followers in less than four months, so thank you so much. Enjoy the story of my year!

XOXO,

Mary

On New Years Eve a bunch of my friends that I made in 2012 went to Kate's house to celebrate and ring in the New Year. I can't imagine a better way to start of the new year.
On New Years Eve a bunch of my friends that I made in 2012 went to Kate’s house to celebrate and ring in the New Year. I can’t imagine a better way to start of the new year.
This was the only, but best Valentine's day card I received this year. I would like to give my friend Shannon a shout-out for this. Take it as you will.
This was the only, but best Valentine’s day card I received this year. I would like to give my friend Shannon a shout-out for this. Take it as you will.

This was one of the high-lights of my year. All of high school I hardly got recognized for anything and to be recognized for something that I wanted but never thought I'd get. I'd also like to apologize for the poor picture quality, but it was a shining moment of 2013.
This was one of the high-lights of my year, being awarded the All-Star Award of my high school’s Quiz Bowl team. All of high school I hardly got recognized for anything and to be recognized for something that I wanted but never thought I’d get. I’d also like to apologize for the poor picture quality, but it was a shining moment of 2013.
One of my goals all of high school was to earn a medal at the regional Science Olympiad competition and finally my senior year along with my test partner Amy we earned third place in Dynamic Planet, an event based around glaciers.
One of my goals all of high school was to earn a medal at the regional Science Olympiad competition and finally my senior year along with my test partner Amy we earned third place in Dynamic Planet, an event based around glaciers.
In May after ten years of being in the Chorus I sat next to one of my best friends, Alex and sang in my last concert of my singing career.
In May after ten years of being in the Chorus I sat next to one of my best friends, Alex and sang in my last concert of my singing career.
After my prom date canceled on me two weeks before prom, I had no time to get a refund but one of my friends was not planning on going and no one should miss prom, so I gave her his ticket and she was now my "date" and I couldn't have asked for a better one.
After my prom date canceled on me two weeks before prom, I had no time to get a refund but one of my friends was not planning on going and no one should miss prom, so I gave her his ticket and she was now my “date” and I couldn’t have asked for a better one.

Even though it wasn't what I expected, I couldn't have asked for a better group to go to prom with.
Even though it wasn’t what I expected, I couldn’t have asked for a better group to go to prom with.
After what felt like an eternity I stood up in front of over a thousand some people, even more watching online, I performed my graduation speech.
After what felt like an eternity I stood up in front of over a thousand some people, even more watching online, I performed my graduation speech.

 

After 13 years of schooling I always had the support of these two people right by my side. My mom and dad, looking rather spiffy for my special day I must add.
After 13 years of schooling I always had the support of these two people right by my side. My mom and dad, looking rather spiffy for my special day I must add.

After graduation, orientation, some work, and a day at the beach I departed for ten days in Ireland with my grandparents and cousin Chris. This was an awesome trip with breathtaking sights.
After graduation, orientation, some work, and a day at the beach I departed for ten days in Ireland with my grandparents and cousin Chris. This was an awesome trip with breathtaking sights.
Not more than a week after returning to Ireland my family left for Seattle Washington. These trips are what inspired the name of my blog.
Not more than a week after returning to Ireland my family left for Seattle Washington. These trips are what inspired the name of my blog. This is the Gum Wall, yes all of that is gum, very gross I know.