Four-Legged Friends

A visit to see my sister in Atlanta has been fulfilling in every sense of the word. xoxo

What a wonderful surprise!

As some know, my birthday is coming up. On Friday I got off of work from a bad shift and made my way home to study. The sun was shining and the air was warm. I didn't even notice! My youngest brother texted and saying "We're here!" ...what? My beautiful mother and two younger brothers drove 2 hours to come surprise me, my best friend got off of work early, and Logan all came over to my apartment. WHAT A JOY! I am so blessed. After dinner, we made our way to Grand Haven to get ice cream at Miss Lisa's. What started out as bad day ended up being one that I won't forget. The simple things in life can such a difference. ESPECIALLY when ice cream is involved!

Thanks for the blessing Momma,


A quick rant...

Just diving in right here… i absolutely hate the stereotype society has given women to “sit pretty” and “look like a lady.” For some reason, there’s this preference that a female has to be proper, prim, and pretty. Now, there’s been progress breaking the stereotype, but for the most part, I'm just generalizing here. 

This is my gorgeous friend Ellena. She’s brilliant in every version of the word, gorgeous from the inside exuding out, and a special person in my life. As we ventured out to take pictures, she sat down where I asked her to, saying, “how do you want me?” and stroked a modest, legs crossed, proper pose. Granted, she was slightly exaggerating her pose, but I hit a sensitive button for me. I sat on the pavement right across from her and put my camera down and realized this: women are just as strong as men, women work equally as hard as a man would, and woman are just as courageous and smart. In fact, there are some woman that have absolutely crushed the stereotype and have become extraordinarily successful. 

So I told her this: “No. I don’t want you to sit proper and perfect. Sit however you feel like. I want to photograph you so that others might be empowered by the way you carry yourself.”

Because it does not matter how you sit or talk or breathe or eat. You have just as much right to be who you are as the guy sitting next to you does. 

This isn’t meant to be a feminist rant but something I hope inspires other women to feel like you can choose how you sit and carry yourself. Either way, it’s perfectly okay, but don’t not carry yourself a certain way just because you’re scared: “I'm a girl, i can’t do that.”

You CAN do that. <3

An Anecdote

I was having a moment a week ago… and I wanted to share it with you.

“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy…”

I technically should be graduating this Spring, but life is tipsy turvy and I will officially be at GV for another year. I wasn’t looking forward to it because I’ve been in such a rush to finish. Why? I’m not even sure. I have nowhere I’m trying to be, what’s the point in rushing when there’s so much I have to learn at this stage in my life. I have discovered an immense amount of where my depression has come from and what fed it… and still, feeds it. I’ve approached questions in my life with an open mind to try and understand why I’m on such a dirty and bumpy road. Some days I feel like everything has just gone wrong. I’m struggling financially to get through this last year of school, my grades aren’t everything I hoped they would be, but they aren’t bad, and every day my anxiety can bring my mood 180° and I feel like I'm at a loss for the day. 

But you know what… all of those things aren’t reasons to give in to the emotional power of sadness. I’m grateful for family, I’m grateful for friends, I’m loved by the most kindest people, and I'd like to think I have a greater purpose.

So to all my beautiful friends… life is going to throw some deep sh** your way, and you definitely feel it and it’s gonna feel like you can’t win it. But understand that those experiences can either build you or break you and you have the choice to pick. Pick life because you have so much to offer. Pick joy for yourself because you deserve it. Pick you. Because we’re in it together and you have friends to lean on, just take a leap and let someone hold you for a minute. Being strong all the time is hard. We were meant to share the load. Share the love, my friends.

So today, I'm smiling, because even though it’s a bad day… I have MUCH to be grateful for.

What joy there is to be had...

It's a Tuesday afternoon and the sunshine spilled over the hills. I spent the morning alone and decided there was no better way to spend it than with puppers and the cat. In west Michigan, we've had non-stop cloudy grey days with an occasional gift of sunny bliss. This sunshine, joy, and company has been so wonderful.

In just an hour or so we'll go to the stables and groom gramma's horse. I'm so excited. The non-stop nostalgia is spoiling me.