Heeeelp!

Y’all! I’m so excited! It’s almost my blog’s second birthday (say whaaaaat??!) and I’m really looking forward to having myself lots of happiness on that day. Also I’m the bestest at grammaring.

The long anticipated date is February 22, and it’s fast arriving.

But here’s where I need your help!

This blog, obviously, is not about the numbers but, looking around at other blogs (seeing blogs that have only been running for a few months and already have 150+ followers) is making me feel a little… under accomplished.

I only need 20 more followers to reach that amazing milestone of 100 followers! Please spread the word or if you’re reading this and you don’t follow, please do. (If you’re using a computer there’s a subscription box on the right side, if your on a mobile device scroll way down ’til you find it.)

At the same time, I don’t just want empty numbers, so if you don’t think you’d actually read the blog or enjoy it, then don’t feel like you need to follow/subscribe.

But if you DO have any interest in reading this lil’ ol’ blog of mine, I would love to have you follow along!

Thank you all so much for your support! It means the world to me!

100??! Can we do it?

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Sweet 16

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The day has finally come, folks. The day where I stop procrastinating and actually post these pictures from an event that happened over a month ago #IPutTheProInProcrastinate. So without further ado I shall show you. (Fun fact; did anyone know that the ‘ado’ in ‘without further ado’ means ‘hubbub/flurry/fuss’? I sure didn’t. And that explains why Shakespeare named his place ‘Much Ado about Nothing’, I never understood that before. *ahem* anyways…)

For my sixteenth birthday party, I had an elaborate costume party, in which you had to come dressed as a movie character. I had been planning this seriously for a year, and speculating about it for even longer. I have always wanted to dress up, like really dress up.

I have, hanging in my closet, an actual ball gown, with tons of layers, a hoop skirt, puffed neckline, etc. From the moment I saw the movie Cinderella (2015), I knew I wanted to wear her blue dress someday. The dress isn’t exact, but it was still so fun to wear. It was a little ill fitting but hey, it came from China through eBay and I was pleasantly surprised with the quality.

The night before the party was also a ton of fun, making the cake, eating too much junk food, our tongues turning blue, wrestling a dog out of it’s cage, and, of course, watching Cinderella (2015). I cried a lot, the best movie ever. I had so much fun with my four friends and my sister, y’all are the the best!

The party was so much work (ahem not to mention money *cough cough*) but it was so worth it. Thanks so much to all my friends and family who contributed so much help, hard work, supplies, pizza consuming, and ideas. The party was better than I ever hoped for, thanks to all of you. Also to all my guests (except one), THANK YOU FOR ACTUALLY COMING IN A COSTUME. Out of thirty people, only one person was a party-pooper. I was so happy, I was not expecting many people to have a costume.

Thanks to Ashley for coming in last minute to take pictures at the party 🙂

Onto the pictures:

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The invitations were written by hand. By me. I think I did 22 of them. It was a lot of hard work and they don’t look perfect but I ‘m pretty happy with how they turned out!

IMG_1179It was so exciting getting all the pieces, whether for my costume or for the decorations, it was so fun (albeit stressful) gathering it all.

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It looked much better in person btw

We hardly got any pictures of the decorations at all, or the table full of food, except two. I took a few on my phone the next day, but it’s not really the same. Oh well. You can get the gist by these. The decor theme was winter, with a hint of Cinderella and movie. The games and activities were either about me, or about movies.

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The top of the dress was not very accurate to the movie, and a bit too large, but all that was quickly forgotten because just moving around in it was so incredible. I hope to do an actual photo shoot (and a photo shoot of ‘Susan’/my best friend whom you will see in a moment) of me in the dress, especially once we get our swing put up. Besides swishing around in it, the colors are stunning, I was so impressed with it. Also bad news, guys, I cannot curl my hair for the life of me. Like I tried so many times with several different tools and I just couldn’t. I didn’t ask anyone else to help because I knew everyone was getting ready. Except my dad bu that would have been no help. But the sparkles in my hair turned out so much better than I expected! They stayed in the whole time and I think they captured the effect perfectly. The bad news is, the ‘slippers’ i spent about 5$ on and probably 20 minutes making fell apart almost right away, the butterflies fell off and we just couldn’t repair it. But no one could really tell that I was barefoot, because I was under all those layers of beautiful dress.

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sitting

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here they are being read the answer key to the quiz about me.

signSo I made this pretty sign ^ that said ‘Melissa’s Sweet 16’ for people to sign, ya know, and this one kid wrote “I’M BATMAN. Since I have never been I have no advice. ~Batman” I’m still laughing.

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Okay, so my favorite thing we did was play a game where a snippet of a song from a movie would be played, and the two teams would rush to ring (or fling as ended up happening) the bell first. They would guess and if they were wrong the next team could guess. Not everyone played, but those of us who did had a good time. ‘Cleopatra’ from the left side and myself (on the right) knew almost all them, so much so that we had to sit out for a while so the others had a chance to play.

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photos with me family by family and some of the gals and then the group photo

Melissa’s Sweet Sixteen costume party attendees (not sure on all the names but this is what I think) :

Ella (Cidnerella 2015), Sara (Serendipity), Zipporah (Prince of Egypt), Clark Kent (Superman), Ellie (Jurassic Park), 3 Jawas (Star Wars), Dr. Quinn (Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman), Alice (Alice in Wonderland) a party pooper, Doctor Strange (Doctor Strange), Little Joe Cartwright (Bonanza), Susan Pevensie (Chronicles of Narnia; The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe), Sherlock Holmes (not sure which movie), Batman (Batman Begins), Elizabeth Swan (Pirates of the Carribean), Cleopatra (Cleopatra), Elsa (Frozen), Wesley (Princess Bride), Princess Lea (Star Wars), another Cleopatra, Marmee (Little Women), Captain America (Captain America; First Avenger), Darth Vader (Star Wars), Han Solo (Star Wars), Heidi (Heidi), Jack-Jack (Incredibles), Bob (What About Bob), and Violet (Series of Unfortunate Events [the movie not the show]).

Susan Pevensie won the best costume award since she and her grandma homemade it all! Elsa and Princess Lea were close seconds. Everyone was amazing though!

This party was so amazing, I’m so grateful for everything about it. I don’t know how we pulled it off, but we did!

Keep your eyes out for a photo shoot of Cinderella (and hopefully Susan Pevensie as well) in a few months. (I need to wait for our swing to be put up, drier weather, and to fix the top of my dress).

Hope you enjoyed the photos!! Which costume is your favorite?

Liebster Award

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The Bookshop Barista (I love that name) nominated me for the ‘Liebster Award’. To be honest, I don’t know if any of us bloggers knows what that means, at least I sure didn’t. So I looked up the word and I think it basically means ‘dearest’. Anyways, check out the Bookshop Barista’s lovely blog.

Onto the rules;

The Rules:

1. Acknowledge the blog that gave it to you and display the award.

2. Answer the 11 questions that the blogger gives you.

3. Give 11 random facts about yourself.

4. Nominate 11 blogs. (I am NOT going to nominate that many people… That’s a lot of people.)

5. Notify those blogs of their nomination.

6. Give them 11 questions to answer.

Now for the questions, my dears.

1. Favorite book?

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Well I wouldn’t say I have an all-time favorite book, but one of my favorites is Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. Such a beautiful, sad, moving, and important book.

2. What type of music do you find yourself listening to most?

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Okay so I use Spotify to listen to music, and if you have premium, they give you a review of your year at the end of the year, and they tell you cool stuff like what artist and what song and what genre you listened to most. It told me the genre I listened to most is ‘Neo Mellow’ which I had absoloutly no idea that a genre named that even existed. Anyways, the genre includes songs by Five for Fighting, Daniel Powter, Gregory Alan Isakov, and The Head and the Heart. So almost indie chill sorta? But I listen to soooooo many types of music, 40s, 50s, 60s, country, pop, Christian, indie, instrumental, crooners, jazz, folk music, opera, soundtrack, bluegrass, and even a little electronic. So yeah…

3. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

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Italy. Without a doubt. I’ve always wanted to live there, and when we visited there, I knew that would have to. I’m seriously hoping to live there for at least 6 months when I’m like in my 20s.

4. Have any siblings? How many?

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Yes! I have six siblings, all older than me. (I also have two brothers-in-law and a sister-in-law.) We also babysit my two nephews during week days, so they’re basically like little brothers.

5. What color is you bedroom?

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here you can see some of the blue with the white.

Oh yeah! I was gonna do a room tour! Once I finsh putting up all my decor I shall do that. Anyways I have several colors in my room. I have a dark indigo wall with white splotted all over, like a night sky. I have a mellow soft-ish blue on most of the other walls and the ceiling, and in my window seat I have a pinkish-red (the only pink I actually like) that reflects sunlight so beautifully.

6. Do you like road trips? Or not so much?

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Yeah! For the most part. I normally enjoy them. I wish cars were more comfortable and everyone could control their own air with out affecting other people, but I love listening to music, reading books, watching movies, eating snacks, taking pictures, seeing new places, and staring out the window dramatically.

7. Is there any food you will not eat for anything?

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Well I mean for a couple thousand dollars maybe, but yeah, I’m a picky eater. I don’t like tomatoes, meat that has pink, mangoes, coconut/coconut flavored things, and lots more.

8. What are your hobbies?

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Well, photography, blogging, crafting, painting, singing,  pretending/attempting to play guitar, banjo, and ukulele, thrift shopping, movies, pinterest, and eating haha.

9. Favorite movie?

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Wow so many tough questions. I’m gonna go with Mary Poppins, The Patriot, Return to Me, Enchanted, Saving Mr. Banks, Cinderella (2015), and Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. But I like so many movies.

10. Favorite musical? If you have one.

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Probably Mary Poppins and Sound of Music. Because Julie Andrews = #bomb.com But I do enjoy many musicals.

11. Favorite/usual coffee drink? It can be tea if you’re not a coffee person.

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Makes me happy you noted that maybe not everyone in the world loves coffee. I personally dislike coffee. So I love Bigelow’s Vanilla Chai Tea, and basically any chai tea. But tea in general is just awesome. Also hot cocoa is amazing.

Alright, now for eleven random facts about me:

  1. I am basicaly allergic to Asian cuisine. Even the smell nauseates me.
  2. I fell out a second story window once. Now, thankfully, I didn’t land on the ground, there was a roof beneath, but it was very scary. I was probably eight or so.
  3. I have technically been to five countries, because, the Vatican in Italy is actually the smallest country in the world. I don’t normally count it though.
  4. I really don’t like white chocolate. At all. There’s this one type of cookie that is dipped in white chocolate and that’s about the only white chocolate thing I like.
  5. I’ve had this blog for almost two years!
  6. I have never broken a bone.
  7. I have held a baby fox before, at a wildlife rescue thingy at our old library.
  8. I am afraid of frogs, sharp things that can puncture my skin, and wading deep in a big body of water.
  9. I strongly dislike the smell of lavender.
  10. I like old movies and music. And by old I mean 1930s-1950s, not like the 90s.
  11. Rain makes me incredibly happy. Also, I always prefer to be colder than warmer.

That was so difficult, way more difficult than you would think. I don’t know why coming up with eleven facts is so hard but it is.

Here are the questions for the the people I am nominating:

  1. What book were you expecting to be amazing, but it wasn’t?
  2. Have you any irrational fears?
  3. What’s your biggest pet peeve?
  4. If you could have lived in any decade, which decade would that be?
  5. Which do you think is more poetical: The sea, or the sky?
  6. How long have you had your blog?
  7. What do you think of people who buy everything name brand?
  8. Have you ever seen a play in a theater? If so which ones and how many?
  9. What fictional world do you wish you could live in?
  10. Does the idea of being a celebrity or famous person appeal to you?
  11. If you could eat any food right this minute, what would it be?

Now to tag some people. Not eleven, but some. I nominate:

And that’s all I’m gonna nominate. Note to those of you whom I did nominate, please do nooooot feel obligated to do the tag, it’s fine if you don’t, my feelings will not be hurt haha, I just think y’all deserve the award 😉

What’s your irrational fears? What’s your emotions on lavender? Thanks for reading 😀

and all the sudden 2018 arrived

2018

Crazy, isn’t it? That all the sudden there’s a new year. The start of a new beginning.

2016, I worked really hard making and breaking habits. I did a lot of hard work and reaped the rewards. I’m gonna be honest, in 2017, I really slacked off. But I hope to do better this year.

Normally I wouldn’t post my ‘goals’ or ‘resolutions’ but I think if I post them for the world to see, it will make me more inclined to follow through. So here goes.

2018 GOALS: 

  • Exercise daily. In 2016 I was exercising three times a day and I felt amazing. So I need to start exercising at least once.
  • Drink even more water. I drink a good deal of water now, but I should be drinking even more.
  • Eat less junk. I don’t want to say ‘go on a diet’ or ‘lose more weight’ but I just need to create a habit of eating better.
  • Arrange and follow through with an actual sleeping schedule.
  • Floss daily (yes this is how honest i am, i’m letting everyone i know know that i need to floss more regularly #brutallyhonest).
  • Apply essential oils to hair and face daily.
  • Make a weekly schedule at the beginning of each week.
  • Blog regularly, plan out posts each month.
  • Complete room decorating.
  • Earn more money.
  • Find/accept more opportunities to earn said money.
  • Smile more. Frown less. Watch body language.
  • Explain instead of express my frustrutions.
  • Become the ‘awesome big kid’ to the younger kids I know.
  • Go somewhere exciting.
  • Learn a little dancing. Whether random steps from tap or ballet, or a little bit of swing.
  • Volunteer somewhere.
  • Contact at least one family member (that I don’t see constantly) every week.
  • Go on an awesome outing with a friend or family member once a month.
  • Drink more tea.
  • Do a cleaning/organizing project once a month.
  • Be braver, take opportunities even if they sound scary.
  • Do a morning and evening stretch session every day.
  • Spend more time in nature.
  • Learn to accept compliments and criticism like an awesome warrior.
  • Get my camera out at least three times a week.
  • Create in my art journal at least twice a week.
  • Sell my crafts somewhere (my paper crafts). Etsy… a store… idk somewhere
  • Get to a point where I can do the splits. Y’all. I was almost there last year (as in 2016). But I stopped doing the stretches so I’ll now have to start from scratch. But I’m almost positive I can do it.
  • Read more books. Hopefully about 60.
  • Cook/bake more.
  • Watch sunsets. And even watch sunrises.

So that’s what I’ve thought up. Habits to make. Habits to break.  Things to do. Etc.

So what do you think? What are some of your goals for 2018? And doesn’t that sounds strange? 2 0 1 8 !!! Here’s to the New Year!

Tis’ the Seas- Wait what?? No Christmas?

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Yep. We don’t celebrate Christmas *cue some dramatic music, the hissing, and the yelling ‘You ol’ Scrooge, you!’*. (a person sharing my mindset = often compared to Scrooge, the Kranks, and the Grinch)

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You ol’ scrooge! How could you?!

Y’all. Get real. No, we don’t ‘do’ Christmas. What does doing Christmas even mean? Isn’t it supposed to be a celebration? And where in the Bible does Jesus say “INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT, like way more than obeying my other commands, make sure that you celebrate my birthday, on a date that was originally pagan, and celebrate it by spending months stressing and going broke so you can satisfy your kids for a few minutes and then you all eat way too much junk food and say ‘thanks Jesus for being born so we can do this’ and etc.”

But I’m not writing this so I can rant and rave about how bad Christmas is. I fully understand the intent behind it, I really do. We did Christmas for many, many years, it was a huuuuuuuge ordeal, and it was fun. My parents were really great about making it all about Jesus, but still.

Anyways, I don’t judge anyone who does Christmas. I just wish it was easy for everyone to see why it might be better to not do it.

This is not me trying to stuff my beliefs down your throat. These are just words. But words do have meaning, and I hope you can see the goodwill in mine.

The origins of Christmas are incredibly pagan. Let’s face it, December 25th was a pagan day. The ancient pagan Roman midwinter festivals ‘Saturnalia’ and ‘Dies Natalis Solis Invicti’. Saturnalia meaning Saturn, the god, and Des Natalis meaning birthday, and Solis Invicti (unconquered sin) was the official sun god of the Roman Empire, who was apart of Roman cults. So why did early Christians chose this day to celebrate the birth of Christ? Apparently because Mary was supposedly told on March 25 by the angel that she would have the child, and nine months later is December 25. Or because of the roman festivals, people were already celebrating, so people attempted to switch what they were celebrating to Jesus instead of the sun.

So that in itself makes me uncomfortable, why would we want to celebrate Jesus, pureness itslef, on a day full of sin? Many people have said things like ‘well, it’s okay, because we really are celebrating Jesus.’ and I believe the intent behind it, but that still doesn’t make it okay. If a day is that awful, you can’t really redeem it.

It’s not commanded anywhere in the Bible to celebrate Jesus’ birth, so why not instead celebrate His birth everyday by following in His footsteps, celebrating the holidays He celebrated, and the commands He obeyed.

I won’t go into the rest of the pagan origins (Christmas trees, mistletoe, santa claus, etc),  but there’s other things that confuse me. Even as a child (and my family celebrated the holiday until i was 8 or so) I always wondered why we gave/got presents on this day, in my head, it was about Jesus, so why did we actually make the holiday about gifts? I always thought, hey why not give gifts on Thanksgiving?

Here’s a link to an article sharing some other views from Christians who have chosen not to participate in Christmas. I don’t agree with everything they say but it gives an interesting perspective, and brings up some points I didn’t mention.

Anyways I’m just letting y’all now a little bit of why we don’t celebrate Christmas, but I do hope you enjoy your time with your family, and the coziness that comes from the holiday, and that you will truly try to keep Jesus at the center, just like we should year round.

❤ Lissa

What’d y’all think? Did I offend you (hope not)? Do you agree/disagree with anything?

Pictures in the Park (Part 2 [of two])

So a couple weeks ago you saw part one of Pictures in the Park, and so here’s part two! These are very autumn-y photos so I’m glad I finally got around to posting them, just in time, the last day of November. Enjoy :]

IMG_1408Look at the reflection of the tree! It’s so clear, and almost metallic looking.

IMG_1389It’s fuzzy, because we accidentally didn’t realize it was on manual focus haha.

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IMG_1214Another berry bush. I’ve no idea what it is, do any of you?

IMG_1136I really like this photo.

IMG_1221Look at the greenness, the wide-openness! So nice.

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IMG_1276I like having the bridge and the river, and it’s different than the others because of the sitting pose instead of standing.

IMG_1252You can see the action of the leaves, there were constantly little gusts of wind that sent the leaves twirling down, as if it were autumn snow.

IMG_1336Happiness :]

IMG_1373My friend said this is my ‘ready to face the world’ face and pose 😉

IMG_1400I really liked this one, with the logs, and the leaves climbing all over.

IMG_1318I love the dark contrasts of this one.

So yep that’s what I have ;] Hope you liked it!

I loved my time in the park, and the photo shoot, and spending time with my very dear friend. Hope y’all enjoyed it too. Did you have a favorite photo? 🙂

when it’s hard to be thankful

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Let’s be truthful here, life is really difficult sometimes.

And let’s be even more truthful. Sometimes it’s really difficult to be thankful.

Sometimes, you search and search and search for something to be grateful for, and nothing comes to mind.

My family and I have been enduring some really awful hardships lately.

And it makes it so difficult to be thankful.

Life is awful, so how could you be thankful? Right?

Yeah, I’m having a really hard time with life right now, and I’m stressed. Life stinks and then you die. That’s my life motto. I’m kidding, I’m kidding, it’s not. But sometimes I feel like that.

BUT LIFE IS STILL GOOD. GOD IS STILL GOOD! God is there.

And I have my family. I have friends. I have shelter, and food, and so much more than life’s necessities.

So yeah, it’s really difficult to be happy. But maybe we don’t need to be happy.

And it’s hard to be grateful when life is so difficult, and things are kicking us down, over and over, but God is with us, and isn’t that enough?

So this Thanksgiving, even if you can’t find much to be thankful for, there is enough, because God is with us.

Happy Thanksgiving, and God’s blessings.

Pictures in the Park (Part 1 [of two])

I had a VERY lovely morning/early afternoon with one of my dearest friends last week. It was one of the best days I’ve had in a few months!

We started off getting warm drinks (I got a caramel chai tea and she got a whole milk latte) and then headed to a beautiful park.

I haven’t gone to a park just to be at a park in I don’t know how long, but I’m so glad we did! It was wonderful.

Thank goodness my mom suggested taking my camera, or we would have not only been there for so long, but would have missed out on so many photo opportunities!

So the rest of this post is kind of a photo spew (some would say a photo dump but somehow that doesn’t sound very good!), but we took so many photos, and I really couldn’t narrow them down, so there will be a part two. All the photos of me were taken by my dear friend, and the ones without me are taken by me.

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IMG_1425Anyone know what these ^ are? I don’t but they’re simply lovely.

IMG_1230Okay so she was adjusting the camera, so i made this silly face, not knowing she would actually take a picture!

IMG_1231And then when I realized she had taken a photo it made me laugh, and she took a photo of me laughing.

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IMG_1141I really like the super light, white lighting here ^, it’s so airy.

IMG_1177There was a gorgeous small meadow of Red Woods ^, and the lighting was so lovely, super dark in some spots and very bright in others.

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IMG_1338I didn’t even notice the lovely orange on the tree when I saw this great background, but it really pops!

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IMG_1125Agh the ivy growing on the trees! There was beautiful ivy all over! I love ivy, so it was awesome.

IMG_1219Benches are so cool. I don’t know why… but they just are!

IMG_1207Me laughing… again. She made me laugh so many times 🙂 It was such a nice time.

IMG_1267This bridge ^ is a really good photo op. Okay also, there was the awesome older lady taking her time walking along and she was like picking up leaves, and she was so story-bookish, like i want to be her! And as she walked by she looked at us and was like ‘that was a good one!’ and also there was this lady jogging by who took the time to slow down, take an earbud out and say, ‘you look really beautiful’. It was so kind. Those are the strangers you wanna be, folks. Those are the beautiful people.

IMG_1249so i edited most of these photos only a little little bit, but I decided to go all out on this one, and am very happy with the result. ^

IMG_1364Me laughing… yet again.

IMG_1281Ah the colors popping in this one makes me soooo happy!

IMG_1237I really like this one ^… 🙂

IMG_1312#gottabecliche and here’s the stereotypical feet on the ground picture ^.

And now… drumroll please…

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My amazing wonderful friend and talented photographer!

Pictured above, with a very large leaf haha, is my AMAZING, beautiful friend, who is always there for me and basically the most swell person ever. She took several hours out of her day to let me drive her around (so close to my licence, guys!), buy me a hot tea, walk in the park with me, and give me a free photo shoot! It was amazing!

So that was my lovely day I had… Be ready for part two soon!

So what did you think? Did you like the photos? Do you have a favorite? Are you jealous of my lovely time in the park haha 😉 Lemme know in the comments!