Things I Would Tell Younger Me

8:39 AM

As you all know, college prep is upon me now. I am starting to dive into the enormous lake called "COLLEGE ADMISSIONS". It's a very scary place! And I'm discovering different little things I should have started preparing for one to two years before. I am not bashing my parents, but I have basically home schooled myself since 8th or 9th grade with the exception of scheduling, buying books, and occasional school exercises help. I haven't done to badly...I'm proud of what I have accomplished in that time with God's help. Buuuut, there are some things I totally wish I knew when I was younger and had time.

1. Do things. (Hehehe. -_- Don't laugh at me.) I don't know if you're socially awkward or if you're really talkative, but I'm definitely socially awkward. You wouldn't believe how long it took to get me to where I am today, which is-- I can talk with people I don't know reasonably well. Soo...that was way off topic. Sorry. Do activities outside of school like volunteering, sports, or art classes. Colleges, especially really good ones, are crazy about extracurricular activities. They also like it if you concentrate on two or three instead of ten. Me? I got nada here. Hey, I'm an introvert, okay?

2. Plan for letters of recommendation in advance. Usually letters of recommendation cannot be by a relative. And the more prestigious you go in colleges, they'll probably tell you that the letters can only be from "academic teachers". Colleges also emphasize wanting to get to know you and prefer that the recommenders know you for a good little bit of time. This is where dual-enrollment comes in. I know me as a home schooler never did anything school-related outside of what I did at home (thus, the name "home school"). That was a slip-up. If you can, take dual-enrollment classes. In my state, you can start in your junior year, which is probably what I should have done (I also was enrolled under an umbrella school which made it a ton easier for applying for dual enrollment). Right now I am enrolled in a Composition I class at my local community college, but I am applying for a college that requires two letters of recommendation by January 1 which is somewhat problematic for me. If you have any suggestions, please comment. 

3. I don't really have any experience with the "pure homeschooling" type because my parents joined an umbrella group just before I started 9th grade so that I wouldn't have to do state-testing. My grades get sent to the group, my ACT scores got sent to that group, and it provided official transcripts and will provide (when I graduate) a High School Diploma. 

4. Push yourself to do things you don't really feel like doing. I have three personal examples :) 
#1 Two years ago, on summer vacation, we were staying at a hotel with a pool. The deep end was something like 8 1/2 feet. Now let me tell you something-- I am scared of deep water and I am only around five foot four (back then I was even shorter). But I made myself jump into the deep end several times. I'm still scared of deep water, but I have a sense of accomplishment because I made myself do something that I was scared of. 
#2 On the same summer vacation, we were at a beach. And neither my cousins or my sister (who were all there) is afraid of water. At all. They had all rented boogie boards and were out having fun in the ocean. And I was like "That looks like fun!" then "But the water is so scary." Guess what? I finally decided to go and I had a great time. However, I did leave the huge/nasty waves by the wharves (I'm not sure if that's the right term) to my guy cousins ;) 
#3 I signed up for a college class on campus. Yaya! Yes, I'm talking about what I'm doing right now. Guys, you do not know how much it freaked me out to do that. But here I am :) Going every Thursday, doing well, and not minding it too much (people interaction still worries me). 

These may not seem like big things, but they were for me. And you may have little/big fears of things that you think other people think are silly. They might think it's silly (or they might pretend to think that because they have their own fears), but it's not. Fears are fears. If you get over them, push through them, you have won a personal victory that you should be proud of. No matter how many socially-at-ease, afraid-of-nothing, good-looking people you are surrounded by. You are you. And you is awesome the way you is.

                                                       Let's Go Get'em Together,



Herd of Black Beauties

3:49 PM

Wow, I think it's high time for another post, don't you?

I don't know why, but the last two times I have gone to my favorite used-books store I have gotten a different copy of Black Beauty by Anna Sewell.

Why? I don't know. I think it's a disease. I now have three different copies of Black Beauty sitting in my bookcase. One of the reasons I have gotten more than one copy (I don't know why I have only done this for Black Beauty so far. Hmmm....), is because 1) the new/used copies have amazing illustrations and 2) they both have names written in the front and one even has the original receipt. I'm a total sucker for anything old like that. It just fascinates me. And now for you to see my beauties. Get it? Beauties...Black Beauty.... hahahaha. I'm the only one laughing, aren't I? Oh, well.

And just excuse me in advance for the bad quality because I'm using my phone and the digital camera's too far away.

So this one is the first "Black Beauty" I ever got and my aunt gave it to me. It was already used, but I didn't care. I got it about five years ago. It's a more cutesy, kidzy version (and the photo quality is awful like I said it would be). No, my names is not Emily. Hehehehe, you thought I would slip, didn't you?

This is the second one I got...I think a few months ago or something like that. Who keeps track.. I definitely don't. Anyways, the cover is a painting and it seems to be in a sepia tone or something similar. I got this one (I don't remember what it cost) because of the faded receipt tucked in the front pages. I was so excited! Note the names scribbled in the front :) AND the awesome painting ( i repeat painting) on two of the pages. *le swoon* The Hermitage, by the way, was the home of one of our presidents-- Andrew Jackson. 

This one is the latest I got (just last Sunday to be precise) and it was three dollars as obvious from the big, white sticker on the cover. I don't usually spend three dollars on a book at my fave bookstore. I know, I know. You must be thinking I'm stingy (I am, but it's because I have an allowance). But I was like, "Hmm, no, I mean, I already have two perfectly good "Black Beauty"s at home." Then I was like, "But the pictures are so prettyyy and there are names in the front." (Note my obsession with names and pretty pictures. I am a five-year-old in a 17 yr. old's body.) I bought it. But I think that we'll all agree it was the right choice as we gaze at the above pictures. How could I resist?!! 

And that's my "why I have so many black beauties" post. 

                                        Remember you're beautiful (or handsome if you're a guy),
                                                            WHOA. AWKWARD. Anyways. 

Deep Thoughts + Writing Picture Scenes

4:58 PM

I realized recently how much I've changed in 3-4 years, because I was reading my first journal that I started when I was twelve (and some other ones as well). One reason I say this is because there's a part in my journal where I'm talking about how there's a line that shouldn't be crossed when it comes to welcoming someone who has problems (cussing, drinking, maybe drugs. I'm not sure what instance I was talking about in that particular entry) and supporting them.

First, I know that you should not support someone who does drugs in that you encourage them to do more drugs. Nope, not my meaning at all. My question is this-- Do you spend time with them? Treat them normally? or do you not hang out with them and completely avoid them because they're "bad"? To be honest, I'm not really sure. 

What about killing? While everyone knows it is definitely not right to go on murder sprees, is it okay if a person kills someone else to defend themselves? 

What do you think?

Sorry for the heavy thoughts...I just wanted to get them off my chest. 

And now for something I don't think I've ever done on this blog (only on my old one)....drum roll please....Writing-A-Short-Story-Scene-From-Inspiration-From-A-Picture. That is the official name. You have to say the whole thing if you ever want to talk to me about it or mention it at all.

Or you will be mercifully killed. By the minions. 

Here is today's picture:

I hid behind the bushes, cursing when the leaves still clinging to the branches barely covered me. I was sure they would see me. At least it was a wet fall day and the leaves on the ground were damp so they didn't make too much noise. 

I stayed still, straining to hear every little noise. This was getting old. This was the third time this month...the patrols were definitely getting too suspicious of this city. Muffled voices echoed in the clearing. I tensed. 

I could barely make out the sound of their footsteps. Which was the bad part of the leaves being damp. While they helped me, they also helped the enemy. Nature had a pretty dry sense of humor. 

Now that the patrols had come into my line of sight, my eyes widened in recognition. Those were the same two patrols as last time. Were they regulars here? Nobody had searched here regularly since...well, never. And that was strange. Why were they starting to look now? 

The taller one cursed and kicked at a clump of leaves. "Lost her again!"

The other one, the one who I knew had steely gray eyes from other closer encounters, didn't reply. He just kept looking, probing the area with his eyes. I slowed my breathing, and exhaled out of my mouth to make it quieter. Gray Eyes' scan of the area stopped at somewhere a little to my right. Not good. 

It was so quiet that you probably could have heard it if a drop of water landed on a leaf. 

The taller patrol waited a few minutes before asking impatiently, "Are you done exploring the scenery yet, Wolfe?" 

Oh. That meant that Gray Eyes was in training. It also meant he was very good. 

Gray Eyes' jaw clenched the tiniest bit. "Yes, Cobra." Tall Guy was a captain, how very inconvenient.

"Good." The Cobra looked up and made a motion. Soon I could hear the light thrumming of a helicopter's blades. 

In a few minutes, the Cobra and the Wolfe had gotten into the heli and disappeared in a matter of seconds. I rolled my shoulders and sighed. I glanced at the sky. I had to get back to the safe house and talk to Kylie.

So....what do you think, my lovely readers? Do you want more of this kind of post? Also, would you like to try the same thing? If you do, I would love to post your work on my blog or link to it if you have your own blog. And also, you might be wondering why I wrote that kind of story scene (sense of danger, darkness, etc.), and it's because the photo naturally looks happy and so I thought I would portray a feeling opposite of that, if that makes any sense. Just wanted to explain that :)


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