Sunday, August 31, 2014

There is nothing flowery about this post

Happiness is a form of courage...I honestly never know who reads my posts on social media and I don't know who reads my blogs since most of my friends don't tell me they read it. I don't post it to get compliments. I post it to say what needs to be said. That is how I view all my internet posts. So reader disclaimer: if this post offends anyone, I'm just brave enough to say what nobody else is saying.♥

Before I get to the heart of the matter, I guess I'll give you an overview as to what life is like now that I live at home and do school from home. At first, it seemed like a pretty heavy burden to know I was going to be stuck at home and not going back to physical school. Not really for any specific reason other than freedom and the life I had there. It's a life I don't have at home. One where I have a job, a room of my own, food usually always at my disposal or thrown down the garbage disposal (depends on the day), and the ability to hang out with people my age (including members of the opposite sex). Ultimately, it was almost like I forgot basically how much I hated living on campus and why.

I'm not going to go on a rant of all the reasons why I think Saint Leo isn't the best school because I'm still a student there but I will just say it's nice that I no longer have to spend the majority of my time feeling like I always have to be on, as in feeling like I have to measure up and impress everybody  and I don't have to eat any meals alone anymore, so that's a wonderful change in pace.

Long story short, I had so much less pressure doing my schoolwork from home. I didn't have to waste time going to a physical classroom and listening to a professor just preach to me about nonsense instead of the material. I could take breaks whenever I wanted and I also didn't have to stress wondering if I was going to complete all my homework in time because I had to go work endless shifts at a work study job where I was expected to also always be on. I didn't have to dress up or even put on make-up. It's not like I never left my house because now that my sister Jayde is in college (and no, she isn't attending Saint Leo) , I go to the public library with her or I even visited her college campus which was awesome (they had this whole welcome week event going on all week (I don't know about you but I cannot turn down free food ) :)

Plus, it's important that I am with my family during this difficult season in our lives. I'm loving being with my dogs every day and my family and I are becoming closer now that we are all together again. It isn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. It's not perfect, that's for sure, but it's perfect for right now and I'm learning to be grateful for this season I'm in every single day.

I also started journaling more via Tumblr since I really hate being that friend that constantly texts her friends when she's going through a trying time. I prefer to be the friend that keeps it all inside and just places a smile on her face and helps others feel better. As for me and my problems, I don't like to bother people.
Joyce Meyer always says, "Don't go to the phone, go to the throne."♥

 All in all, I enjoyed my first week of doing college from home.♥

A funny thing happened yesterday. I visited Saint Leo and I realized that it's totally not the same anymore. I just went there for the free printing and to see how my beloved prodigy (the free coffee) was doing. Not good, I might add. It was missing the love in every cup. Anyway, long story short, I slipped on and off campus like a ninja and it was awesome. It cured my nostalgia for the place. And I understand now, that God is writing a new chapter in my life. I'm not stuck; I'm actually on my way to a greater destination.♥

 Thank you Mandy Hale who I'm proud to say is a NYT best-selling author now! Seeing her become a best-selling author and knowing how hard she's worked and how patiently she's trusted in God, just goes to show that NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE WITH GOD. It only inspires me more since I also have a similar dream to be a NYT best-selling author♥

Which leads me to my final point.

Lastly, I've put myself in the running for a scholarship competition sponsored by Dr. Pepper. You can vote for me here I WANT OTHERS TO KNOW NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE. Please be advised that it takes all of two seconds to complete the voting process(you must vote from a computer as voting from a phone doesn't work for most people) and it costs you nothing. It would mean the world to me if by October 20th (the first deadline for the contest) that I could make it to 250 votes at least. Yet, I've been extremely upset with how lightly people are taking this. I'm not asking for an organ donation or even any monetary support from all of you. I'm just asking for you to BE A FRIEND and support me for literally two seconds. I could care less about anything else right now. I'm just determined to get people involved in believing that nothing is impossible. I'm not concerned about winning as much as I am trying to like always, change one person's view on life. 

It honestly sickens me that the majority of my votes were from strangers instead of my friends but to the friends who have voted and shared the link, thank you for supporting me in my day of small beginnings because in my day of great endings, I will remember the goodness and kindness you showed me. I'm just that type of person. That's how I was raised, to always be grateful. And plot twist: a grateful attitude means a happier person♥ If you think of all you have to be grateful for, instead of all you do not yet have, you will be happier, believe me. It's how I start all my prayers. It's how I start my night time journaling. I literally have a blessing journal where I thank God for each of the good things that I experienced that day (even if it just happened to be that he gave me another day, or a goodnight's sleep, or even just a day where my dogs were extremely loving to me on a day when I may not have been lovable).

So I'm done listening to everyone I know give me excuses of why they can't vote for me and instead like all matters of free will, I'm giving this whole Dr. Pepper contest to God because if not, I will become a completely different person. And yes, I mean, I may have to start removing kneecaps. And as much as it's fun to joke around about mob strategies, I'm not really interested in the effort it would take for me to want to do that to people who obviously can't even give me two seconds of their time.

Therefore, just like Jesus on the cross, I have made this my daily confession: "Father, forgive them, for they don't know what they are doing."♥

Personal shoutout to Jazmine Thomas for being awesome!!! You are the definition of a true friend. I'm so blessed to have "met" you through the Single Woman Crew. I look forward to the day I will get to see you in person. It's going to be epic, for sure.♥

Until next time, remember: No trumpets sound when the important decisions of our life are made. Destiny is made known silently. -Agnes De Mille.

Love Times Infinity,
God Bless
~Just Keep Swimming~

Friday, August 8, 2014

The Bombest Birthday Yet: You Have All You Need♥


Oh sorry, I was just jamming out. It's been about 3 weeks since I let those negative people go from my life and wow, I can honestly say I made a good decision. I don't even miss those people at all. Sorry if that sounds harsh. It's also been 3 weeks since I've updated all of you on my life so here goes.

Anyway, so as most of you may know or don't know, I finally found an internship around the beginning of July and I was all excited about it and it was going lovely and almost seemed too good to be true but because I now have to wait for it either to work out or not, I cannot share the details of it with you like I had wanted to. I find it incredibly hard to believe that God would bring such a great opportunity in front of me only to allow it to fall apart in front of my eyes so I'm going to have faith that God will either cause it to work out or provide me a better opportunity.

Other than that, last Wednesday I went on an job interview for Popeyes. They are opening a new store by my house and I need a job so I applied. I have no fast food experience. Yet, I knew if God wanted me to have the job, he would provide me with the grace to complete it. Yet, the day of the interview, I was running on four hours of sleep and I was completely nervous for it. I'm weird like that. I have no problem talking to people who look like Ryan Sheckler or Ryan Follese' but when it comes to things like job interviews, they are my Achilles heel. I went to the interview and felt good about it. I was literally there for seven minutes. I was proud of myself for doing it afraid. Yet, it's been a week and they never called. Oh well, no hard feelings. My job will come. God provides.♥

Last Saturday was extremely eventful. I went back to school shopping (my favorite kind. Was I the only little kid growing up that was so excited to by new supplies for class. Oops, my nerdy chick is showing.) and I came out alive with only a student planner from Barnes and Nobles that has a lion on the cover that strangely looked like Saint Leo's mascot. Yeah, I can't avoid Saint Leo like I can't avoid Miley Cyrus or Kim Kardashian. Somehow they just show up in my social media feed or on my tv. It's a little bit creepy but I just know for a fact that my God-given destiny is to graduate from Saint Leo. ♥

Anyway, Keegan Allen from Pretty Little Liars was there (at the Wiregrass Mall) and this was as close as I got to him:

In case you are unfamiliar with Keegan, he plays Toby on the show Pretty Little Liars. I'm a fan of the show but I'm not crazy obsessed with the cast so I didn't get in line for his meet and greet. I don't know. He wasn't that cute in person. I also thought it was disingenuous of him to look at each person for two seconds, scribble his autograph, and have them on their way. I understand he had to meet a lot of fans but he could have given them at least two minutes each. 
We headed to Busch Gardens because that night, Cher Lloyd was scheduled to be in concert for the Summer Nights event. For this, I was fangirling. I'm a big fan of Cher Lloyd and her music. For those that don't know her, she's a 5'2" twenty-one year old singer/rapper from the UK who won the UK version of the X-Factor. Ever since, her popularity grew in the U.S. and she is most famous for her hit song, "Want U Back." 
Yet, we arrived at Busch Gardens at around 2 p.m. and we decided we would just chill until it was time for the show. We have annual passes so it is no big deal to spend the day at Busch Gardens. Of course once Jayde's new beau Joe got his pass, we took some pictures:

Once again, I found a penny heads-up and thought maybe I was going to meet Cher Lloyd too but that wasn't what that penny ended up meaning. 
 We ended up seeing two shows Burn The Floor and Opening Night Critters. I already saw Burn The Floor before but this was the first time seeing Opening Night Critters at Busch Gardens. For more about the show, Click here. We ended up going into the show just before a lightning storm came over Busch Gardens so God gave me the penny because he wanted to remind me that he would protect me from all harm. Plus, the show was so cute. I love watching dogs do tricks. All the animals in the show are rescued from shelters so at least they are doing great things with their lives now. ♥

Afterward, the sky cleared up and after stopping by the bakery, we headed to get a seat at the concert. I noticed that there was a lot more people at the park and realized that meeting Ryan from Hot Chelle Rae was a definite divine appointment which still blows my mind. We waited for the concert to start as a heavy breeze started blowing and I had a feeling another storm was approaching. You can see from this picture how ominous the sky looked:

Finally at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday August 2nd, Cher Lloyd took the stage. She opened with her song Just Be Mine. Yet after that her set list wasn't that impressive. So we headed out but first, here's some pictures of Cher on stage♥

Thank God we got out when we did because basically two miles down the road we headed into a torrential downpour and lightening storm and Cher tweeted this about this concert:
I guess her show got cut short. Sucks for all the die-hard fans that came out to see her. 

Monday morning I woke up to the sound of thunder and the strange realization that it was my birthday. Then at 8:37 a.m. I was officially 23. My mom left for work at around that time which I thought was kind of funny. Anyway, the storm passed and I went in the family room to check the weather radar (Gotta love Bay News 9) and my youngest sister was in there making breakfast. I was surprised to find her up so early. I walked into the room and she presents me with this, 
 and goes, "Happy Birthday! I made you breakfast." I thought it was the sweetest thing ever. I didn't expect it at all. I love how she knew how much I love when my food is shaped like hearts and she got the whole thing to look like a heart-eyes emoji. Love you Jamie. At least one of us can cook. :)

Then, I went outside and enjoyed a swim in my pool. It was so refreshing. My phone blew up all day with so many happy birthday greetings and it was the absolute best. I want to thank all of those who went out of their way to make my birthday a happy one or to wish me a happy one. You are awesome. I mean it.

A special shoutout to my roommate Carrie who wrote me the sweetest Facebook post, my friend Jazmine who was the first to wish me happy birthday and shouted me out on Twitter, my friend Jasmine who spent the majority of my birthday texting me and keeping the conversation going (i hate one-sided conversations just in case anyone cares to know that), and for unexpected people who wished me happy birthday that I didn't expect was going to even acknowledge me. 

I spent the whole day doing what I love, writing, and working hard on my novel. It was the absolute best. I was also happy to finally type up that chapter because it finally freed me of a lot of the scars I have been talking about in previous posts. Plus, shoutout to my sister Jamie, who bought me a Dunkin latte. You are truly the greatest seester ever!

 My mom made me Twix Pie and my family sang me Happy Birthday. :)


All in all, it was a great birthday. I ended up with money to buy myself some nice things. I ended up getting Hot Chelle Rae's first and second CDs Lovesick Electric and Whatever, Francesca Batistelli's new CD If We're Honest ( I like buying the audio cds because I like knowing who wrote what songs and who the band members thank in the back of the little book that comes with the CD. I know. I'm weird.), and Mandy Hale's new book Never Been To Vegas because I wanted the finalized version even though I already read it and loved it Here is the review I did :) I also finally got to renew my subscription to the Writer Magazine after not reading it for a year. My sister Jayde gave me a $10 AMC giftcard. As you can see, it was a blessed birthday. 

The next day, we went bowling for my birthday as a family: 

 My sister Jayde is a brunette now.

I lost gracefully because what kind of birthday girl would I be if I was the queen of the day and also won the game of family bowling. I did end up bowling a strike. Here's how it went down:

 My dad gave me advice on how to align myself and my wrist so that I have better accuracy. 

 Then, once I got a strike, everyone was happy. 

 My family is a bunch of competitive fools, I tell you. This is why I'm not involved in sports. I'm about the game. Not all about whether I win or lose.

As I turned out, my dad won like the jock that he is and everyone in my family is better at bowling than me. But hey, we all had fun, didn't we family?

Did anyone else noticed that my mom and Jayde matched and Jamie and I matched? We didn't even plan on anything. 

Then, we went home and played a board game as a family. We played the game of Life. I ended up winning with 2, 320,000 dollars collected and what was even funnier was that I married Zac Efron and ended up being the one with the most kids. Who knew the guy was so fertile? ♥

Overall, it was a good birthday and week. Yet, I am fully convinced that I have all that I need. I am fully registered for my classes despite the setback of yet another bill and am excited to not have to physically go to class and sit through a boring lecture. I'm very excited for this school year and believe though it be my last college school year, it will be my best. 

When God knows I need a job, he will provide one. I mean, what are the chances that a Popeyes just pops up five minutes from your house. Right now, God just wants me to finish school and be grateful for what I do have in my life: a loving family, three amazing dogs, a dope group of friends, divine connections, and divine appointments. Sure, I don't have a car but when God knows I need it, he won't be one second late. God knows I need an internship to graduate so he will provide the perfect divinely appointed opportunity (see Galatians 1:1). For Psalm 34:10 says, The lions may grow weak and hungry but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.♥

Before I leave you with a final thought, please remember to be grateful for what you have in your life right now because a bad attitude will lead to you losing it all. Always be thankful and stop feeling sorry for yourself. It does absolutely no one good. For anyone, not even you. Someone needed that. Trust me.
Until next time, remember: "If you will be faithful right where you are; knowing that you have exactly what you need for the season that your in, God will get you to where you're supposed to be." -Joel Osteen♥

Love Times Infinity,
God Bless!
~Just Keep Swimming~