Before I Die…


Before I die, I will accomplish my goals.

Before I die, I will love unconditionally.

Before I die, I will find inner peace.

Before I die, I want to change someone’s life.

Before I die, I want to travel the world.

Before I die, I want to overcome the struggles.

Before I die, I want to see a cure.

Before I die, I will find someone.

Before I die, I will live.

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Because I Said So…


This past week I started my placement for my service-learning course – Project Outreach. I am working with a group of adolescents at a youth residential detention and treatment center in a nearby county. We are working with an organization called Youth Arts Alliance! and during our first workshop, we did an activity we called “Because I said so.” 

We each had four slips of paper that we wrote down 4 goals/dreams/etc. with each sentence ending with “because I said so.” I wrote down four things nonchalantly, not really knowing how serious the kids would take the activity. After we all grabbed four random slips of paper out of the bucket to read aloud to the group, I was absolutely blown away by the things I was hearing. 

“I will get a bachelor’s degree and become a business owner…because I said so.” 

“I will be a better sister – because she deserves more than this…because I said so.” 

“I will get out of here and make a life for myself…because I said so.”

“I will be better – for myself, my family and my future…because I said so. 

So, forgetting the simple things I wrote – something about college, traveling and getting a dog – I thought I should re-evaluate what I would do because I said so…so here we go.

I will do what I love because I said so.

I won’t let people tell me what I cannot accomplish, because I said so

I will take care of myself, because I said so.

I will learn how to say “no” when I need to say “no,” because I said so.

I will be spontaneous, because I said so.

I will be happy, because I said so.

So, to this group of kids who stole my heart after only an hour together – I will do these things because I said so, and because you believed in me. And you can do the things you said – you will go back home and be so successful and happy, because I believe in you and you believe in yourself. I know you do.

becauseisaidso

On Cabbage, Black-Eyed Peas & Resolutions


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The black-eyed peas (the food, not the band) are on the stove, the champagne glasses are ready and the TV is constantly on Anderson Cooper’s New Year’s Eve show. This year is ending and I am so ready for 2015. As I said in my last post, I’ve never been one to make a big deal about New Year’s. I take it as an opportunity for reflection on how I am at the end of the year – what did I improve from last year? What do I need to work on in the coming year? Every year, I would write down a few notes in my journal – goals of how to develop, quit bad habits, start new habits, etc. Writing these ideas down makes me feel a little more committed to them. So this year, I’m going to take it a step further and publish them on the Internet! Oh goody!

I hope as you’re trying to think about your 2015, my goals can help you out. So, here we go!! (This begins where I start talking to myself…I apologize)

  • Healthy Habits – It seems this always gets put on this list, and at the end of every year I realize I didn’t really get any better at any of it.
    • Eat better! – Avocados are your favorite food…can it be that hard? Also, you work at a smoothie café – take advantage of that.
    • Exercise! – You used to be so in shape! Remember that? Yeah, me either. One day you aren’t going to have a free gym membership within walking distance of your house and you will regret these missed opportunities. It also makes you a lot less anxious when you exercise.
    • Quit all the bad habits! – No fast food! It’s just so bad for you. Please stop. Go to sleep at a decent time! There is nothing on Tumblr that cannot wait until the weekend. Write more often. Read more often. Take time for yourself more often. It’s not only good to lie down and chill for 20 minutes, but it’s necessary. Your Spanish homework can be patient.
  • Bank the Benjamins – You’re 19 years old and drowning in so much debt that you only just now realized you never learned how to swim. Translation: Stop spending on ridiculous things
    • Stop online shopping. It’s okay to buy yourself something every now and then, but you don’t need another Harry Potter book (you know, unless they come out with new covers ❤ ) or t-shirt that you will never wear.
    • That paycheck you get every other week? Put a portion in your savings account. Before you know it, you’ll have enough to actually pay for all those trips you want to go on, or all those books you want to buy.
    • Make a budget each month and stick to it!! Keep track of your spending. It’ll teach you a lot.
  • Snatch the Memories – You’re traveling a lot this year – keep track of it!! Take photos. Write about each place you go. Buy a postcard or some other cheap souvenir from each place you go to keep forever!
  • Yes, No – Maybe? – Start making decisions that will benefit you. Start to say yes to things you may not normally say yes to! Learn to say no to things that are not benefitting you.
    • When in Rome – Literally. You’re going to be spending a month in Europe this summer. You will have opportunities to do things you will never have the opportunity to do again. Do them.
  • Love yourself – Go easy on yourself. Stop caring so much about what other people think. You are you and you make your own choices about your life. You want to be the person you enjoy being, not the one someone else says you need to be. 

There are honestly a billion more things I need to work on this year, but these are a few I am going to be focusing on. What are your resolutions for 2015? Leave them in the comments below! I would love to hear them!

 Best wishes and a Happy New Year!