August 20, 2014
"As the years had swept past, I had outgrown her, the way I had outgrown favorite pajamas and stuffed animals I had once clung to."

— Khaled Hosseini, And the Mountains Echoed

August 19, 2014
College Tips: 10 Dorm Essentials

1. Snacks.
You will need studying snacks. You will want late night snacks… And you will probably gain the freshman fifteen, but it’s part of the college experience. Embrace it or pick healthy snacks. Your choice. I was a big fan of Cheerios and pretzels, but I was a weird kid.

2. Shoe hangers.
Use them or lose your shoes to the other side of the closet. Oh yeah, in case you didn’t already know, you will be sharing a closet in addition to the 10x10 space with your new roommate. Shoe hangers are like walls blocking your clothes your roommate’s.

3. Night lights.
One of you will be up later than the other so invest in a great lamp or a night light that will allow you to study without distracting your roommate.

4. Fans.
Unless your dorm has air conditioning, the first month will be hell if you don’t use a fan. And most dorms control the heat, so the fan will be utilized in the winter, especially if you plan on blow drying your hair. Trust me, that’s too much heat in one space.

5. Slippers.
The dorm hallways are dirty. So is the bathroom. Just buy yourself some slippers. Nobody cares what they look like.

6. Shower caddy.
It will become your best friend. Be kind to it… That means cleaning it every once in a while. Or heck, buy a new one every year.

7. Clean sheets.
Do your laundry! Your Mom’s not around anymore and I know it’s shocking, but your sheets do get dirty! Clean them. And your clothes.

8. Posters.
This is the last time in your life you can plaster posters on your wall. Want to stare at your celebrity crush, a photograph of Paris, and a movie poster of Fast Times at Ridgemont High? Go for it! When you graduate, you will have to throw the posters out.

5. Ibuprofen.
Hangovers are very real, just like the pain in your forehead. Party hard, but not too hard, and take ibuprofen; it won’t interact negatively with the alcohol in your body as it doesn’t go through the liver. Yay!

6. Dry shampoo.
You will use this more than you will ever be willing to admit. And don’t be surprised when you stop wearing makeup and start wearing your favorite baggy sweatpants in public. No shame.

7. First aid kit.
Yep, your parents packed you a kit for a reason. You will bruise yourself. You will get sick. You will be researching your symptoms on google. Be prepared. You may even discover new allergies… Aren’t you excited?

8. Pictures.
You’re going to miss your family and friends… For the first five minutes. The pictures are there to remind you to call your parents and your friends once in a while.

9. Water bottles.
You don’t want to wander down the hallway every time you need water. I only use water bottles now when I take an exercise class, but in college, I had one on me at all times. It’s ok, you can refill them.

10. Your favorite stuffed animal.
Don’t feel weird bringing it. In fact, most people bring one. Just don’t let it leave your dorm room…

August 17, 2014
"The sun cracked the horizon, split it with light that spilled through the sky in streaks of orange and deep red."

— Derek Landy, from Skulduggery Pleasant: Mortal Coil (via the-final-sentence)

August 16, 2014
"Hold fast to the hope that lies before us… This we have as an anchor of the soul."

— Hebrews 6:18-19

August 15, 2014
Vacation weekend in Michigan, August 2014

Vacation weekend in Michigan, August 2014

August 15, 2014
Andrew Belle - In My Veins - Official Song

Friday Flashback:

I love reading, always have. I like the feeling I get when I dive head first into somebody else’s story, fictional or otherwise, doesn’t matter. It’s a rush. It’s an illusion… It’s as if my life is somehow colliding with the character’s and in some strange universe, we’re together to nod at each other and say, “I understand.”

It’s precisely this feeling that I love and hate. I’m nearly done with “And the Mountains Echoed” and all I want to do is finish it so I can know everything there is to know… And yet, I don’t want to finish it. I want the pages, one by one, to continue forever and ever…

One of the saddest realities in literature is that books always end and when they do, we, the readers, must return to our everyday lives as if the book never existed.

And then the book hangover begins. It’s worse than the alcohol hangover, because at least you can cure your drunk hangover with Tylenol, water, and some greasy food. How do you cure a book hangover? Read another?

It’s an obsession.

This weekend, I’ll be reading in the hopes of curing the ache I have for the story, the characters, and the fictional lives that I’ll never really know, but I will read and read in the hopes of understanding it all.

August 11, 2014

wordpainting:

“Now cracks a noble heart. Good-night, sweet prince; And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest. ”―William Shakespeare, Hamlet

Like the rest of the world, I am saddened by this sudden and tragic loss.

Robin Williams was truly one-of-a-kind. He was brilliant, hilarious, and heartwarming. He has brought joy to many homes… As Peter Pan, as a psychiatrist, a scientist, a father, a wise old woman, a kid who’s grown up too fast (isn’t that all of us?)… And so on.

His laughter, his comedy, his impersonations, his remarkable spirit, and his inspirational words will live on forever. It’s amazing how many souls he’s touched. Take a look at the Tumblr world and how many stories there are of this man. What a special person.

It’s such a shame that depression has taken another one of us. It’s important to learn from this, to pay attention to those who are suffering around us, and to offer help. I only wish this lesson could be learned sooner.

Watching Mrs. Doubtfire tonight with my family in honor of Robin. May he rest in peace.

"Seize the days, boys. Make your lives extraordinary."

August 11, 2014
A Subway Story

I ride the subway every day. I’ve started taking note of the things I see, because once you leave the subway, you forget who was sitting next to you, across from you, or bumping against you. And then you take the next subway trip and there’s a whole new set of people with weird quirks.

The other day, there was a wide-set twenty-something woman with short blonde hair. Her tank top hung far too low on her large chest. She was sitting behind a stroller. Her boyfriend, I presumed, had one hand on the stroller and one hand on the metal pole. He wore headphones and spent the whole ride staring off while he bobbed his head. 

Two seats away from the twenty-year old woman was an older lady. I say lady because she had short grey hair and she wore a long jean skirt, a white long sleeve shirt, and a flowered purse on her lap, the strap clinging to her body. She was smiling at the little child in the stroller who was maybe 1.5 years old. She was dark-skinned with a pouty lip and curly black hair. The child looked back at me a few times, as I was seated on the other side, and I smiled back. 

As most kids do, the child babbled on, not making any sense to me. Her mother, though, seemed to translate the words “perfectly.” 

"Stop it," she said. "Don’t say shut up to me."

The older lady peered over at the mother with a wide smile on her face, as if this was the most adorable family she’d ever seen. She spoke something I couldn’t hear and the twenty-something mother barked back.

"I know what my daughter’s saying!"

The innocent-looking lady said, “how old is she?”

And the young woman didn’t reply and set her attention back on the child. A few minutes later, she urged the obviously anxious and awake child to sleep.

"It’s bedtime. Go to sleep."

The girl whipped her head around to look at the people filling the train, as any child might, and babbled on and on and on. 

"Go to sleep," the mother demanded and tilted her head to her hands in a sleeping position. "Come on."

Really? Like the child was going to sleep. But the mother persisted. And again…

"I know what you’re saying. Stop telling me to shut up."

I looked over at the older lady and still, she was smiling at this family, as if she’d just seen a double-rainbow. You could say I was confused. Maybe this was her first subway ride. Could she not see the terribly parenting skills from two feet away? 

I shook my head and walked off the subway. 

August 9, 2014
"Aren’t there enough words
flowing in your veins
to keep you going."

— Margaret Atwood, from “The Shadow Voice” (via the-final-sentence)

(Source: growing-orbits, via the-final-sentence)

August 9, 2014

Walden Pond, August 2014.

Day one of my vacation…