What I Learned From a Year of Blogging

Today my blog turns one. I am very proud of this baby of mine, and blessed by all of those who have brought me to where I am today. Writing has always been a passion but I could never quiet find my “writing rhythm”. Every writing class I ever took was greatly treasured, even if I barely made it out with a B minus. Putting words together in a way that makes sense to many, as well as sounds good when reading, will always be a challenge. Yet this writing journey is something I have fallen in love with and hope I can do this for years to come.

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When I started this website, I was excited for every Tuesday morning when my piece would go live. Each Tuesday was spend replying to comments and enjoying the encouragement I would receive. Quickly, however, I learned that not every week was going to be an amazing week. Too many moments were spent looking through my analytics page, seeing what people were reading, and seeing what people weren’t reading. There were times I published something I personally loved that many did not read, and vice versa. It was hard to find my niche. But I will be forever grateful for the human beings who constantly reminded me that its not about how many people read my writing, it is about me writing. Many of us focus our creative passions around whether or not it is noticed and praised by others. We get so caught up in recognition that we forget the beauty of the practice itself.

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During the first few months of the blogs existence I came to another conclusion: I am really bad at taking my own advice. Each topic that I had planned out would always end up being something I struggled with the week I decided to write on it. Ideas would come to me about how to deal with sadness or jealousy and that same day I would have to put those ideas into practice. This is not easy. But I was thankful that 2018 was the year were I gave myself grace, the year I said no more than yes. Maybe that sounds unproductive, but for that season I became enriched. The Lord showed me that it is okay to not be all together, it is okay to not be everything to everyone.

The main lesson that I believe I have learned is this: when we are stuck about what to do in our own lives we need to ask ourselves this question: “If a loved one was in the same situation, how would I approach them?” then relay that same message back to ourselves. It blew my mind when I struggled for the words to write, the advice to give, the topic to write about, and The Lord took care of me every single time. Majority of topics were born and written in the same night (usually the night before my own deadline). Many weeks I believed I needed to hear the words God gave me to write. None of this is really easy, and it never stops humbling me. Each piece of my pride and ideas of what I’m “supposed” to be has been slowly chipped away. What is left is a woman who is thankful. Thankful for the love of family, friends, online acquaintances, even strangers. Moral of the story (and my 2019 resolution) stop making decisions (or not making decisions) because of fear. Pursue your passions and do not shy away from any opportunity to learn.

Going into 2019 beyond excited for what’s in store. Thank you and keep on reading!

Going into 2019 beyond excited for what’s in store. Thank you and keep on reading!

Autumn Series: Magic, Mental Health, and Butter Beer

When Fall rolls around it seems that watching the Harry Potter films is just as seasonal as binge eating all things pumpkin and trick or treating. These are some of the most beloved films of all time. I started obsessing over The Boy Who lived the summer I graduated High School. Everything about the story transfixed me. Then a year later I got the DVD boxed set for Christmas. Thus began the tradition of watching all the films every fall. The other night my mom and me finished the sixth film, The Half Blood Prince. No matter how many times I watch that one, my heart breaks. The genuine pain and heart that is shown through not only that particular film but all of the movies truly blows my mind. So today I want to highlight my favorite meaningful words that have come from this beloved franchise.

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“It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live” Dumbledore

This sentiment is something that I am trying hard to be better at. There is so much joy that has come to me in seasons of trials simply by focusing on my present blessings. It is not an easy thing to do but my life is far better for it.

“But you know, happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light” Dumbledore

Yes most of this is Dumbledore quotes, but who is surprised? This also reminds me of the quote where Mister Rogers talks about how, in the midst of tragedy, always look for the people who are helping. If we work hard enough there was always be something that creates light in the midst of darkness.

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“We’ve all got both light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on. That’s who we really are.” Sirius

These words acknowledge the brokenness we all share. No one is perfect. There is grace in every situation and we as humans have been given the gift to reach out and grab it. We do not have the power to change our circumstance, but we have the power to choose how we react.

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“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean it is not real?” Dumbledore

This quote is probably my favorite. These words make me think about myself and anyone who has struggled with mental health. It can be easy to discredit someone because you know their feelings or fears are not actually “real”, but we must remember that they are real for the person involved. This is why Dumbledore has remained an icon in the same realm as Atticus Finch, Aslan and Gandolf. He reaches his hand out to others and makes them feel valued and seen. Every person needs the chance to have someone else to that for them.

Now tell me: what is your favorite Harry Potter Quote? How have these timeless stories impacted your life? I will forever get excited to watch and read these stories till I am at least ninety-nine.


Quick Butter Beer Recipe:

Take a mason jar, put in two big scoops of butter pecan ice cream then top the rest off with cream soda. Then stir it up really quick and that delicious foam will form on top. This is the easiest way I’ve found to have that quick Butter Beer fix right at home!