Thursday, March 4, 2021

i forgot how to write...again

Hello there my friends,

Do you remember two years ago when I wrote a post updating you all on my life, after a super long absence? Remember how I said I needed to write more? Here I am again, writing a very similar post, with only three posts sitting in-between them. I suppose keeping up with my blog and living life was more complicated than I thought. I long to write and to be more present on this little corner of the internet. Writing truly brings me so much joy, as does interacting with each and every one of you. Plus, I love looking back at my old posts and having a tiny little scrapbook of my life.

All of that to say, I am sure I am not alone in thinking, wow. It's truly been a crazy eventful year, and not just because of COVID. Life has thrown me some curveballs, changes, and major joys. Almost all of it, though, has been unexpected.  I often take time to reflect each year where I was in life the previous year, and how much everything has changed, but 2020 has possibly topped them all. Where do I even begin?

Spring 2020. I suddenly found myself with a lot of time to read, hangout with my roommate Chloe, do school, and just generally relax and take it slow as the world turned upside down. After returning from traveling to Germany and North Africa for a few weeks, we were thrown into quarantine. As an introvert and homebody, this seemed like a welcome break from the world for a little bit, but I do have to admit that after a month or so, I did find my mood becoming quite withdrawn and depressed. I'm so thankful for the many mornings spent laughing with Chloe, a bookcase full of books, plenty of time to experiment with new recipes, social-distanced walks and hikes with my family and friends, and school assignments to keep me busy and engaged. 

Summer 2020. Lots of sunshine, adventures out in nature, and picnics with friends outside-which. funfact!-five minutes after the photo of my friend Demi and I picnicking was taken, two cops came speeding over and pulled a gun on a man who was 30 feet away from us. Only slightly sketchy. But one of my favorite changes that Summer brought me, was Walker. Our love story came from out of nowhere it seemed, and quickly turned serious. From friends from church, to boyfriend and girlfriend in just a few weeks, it only took a couple dates for us to figure out that this was forever. Our summer was filled with long conversations in his 4runner, walks along the water, picnics at the park with cards, and trying new things (like rock climbing). Never has there been a summer for me more filled with smiles and giggles.

September 2020. Walker and I accompanied my family on a roadtrip to Montana. We explored all over Glacier National Park, even in the intense smoke. We went on a few incredible hikes, saw some beautiful waterfalls, and got to even catch a few glimpses of some grizzly bears (though granted, from pretty far away). Afterwards, we spent some time with my brother and sister-in-law, and later visited Walker's sister, before returning home to Washington. It was such a special trip full of memories and experiences I know I will remember fondly for years. Plus, after spending hours and hours in a car together and not getting sick of one another, we returned home pretty certain that we'd be taking all of our future roadtrips together.

October-December 2020. My last quarter of junior year began to kick my butt. Balancing work, relationships, church, and university was challenging, yet I wouldn't have wanted to drop any of it. Walker and I continued to enjoy many outings together. I started a new job as a preschool teacher and suddenly found myself spending a lot of time with four and five year olds. I took an Old Testament class at a secular university, which, wow, was so interesting to hear what others believed, and, at times, proved difficult to defend my faith. Walker, Chloe and I enjoyed decorating our apartment together (we needed Walker to get to all the high places for us). And finally, the end of the year found me engaged and ready to plan a wedding in just six weeks.

February 2021. Walker and I got married, moved into our first apartment together, and began learning how to live life as a married couple. As I'm writing this, it's been almost a month since we said our vows, and time has just completely flown by. Really, this entire year has taught me just how fast life goes and how important it is to be thankful for every moment. The Lord has blessed me immensely, and I would never want to take a smidgen of it for granted. 

How has your year been? What have you been learning, experiencing, facing challenges with? As I said, I am certain that I am not the only one who can attest to this being a crazy time. Let me know what kind of crazy it's been for you down below in the comments.

Talk to you soon my friends,


Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Snapshots of Germany

This past February I had the opportunity to go visit my brother and sister-in-law in Germany. Germany never fails to draw me in with its magic. I could spend forever walking along its cobblestone streets with my face up towards the sky staring at steeples. I adore peeking into crowded bookshops, even when every book is in German or French, or finding tea shops that smell like a million different flowers. And I haven't even gotten started on the food.

But most of all, I love my family there. My brother and his wife. Their love for Christ overflows in their love for one another and the love they have for those around them. Being with them is being at home, which makes Germany feel like a little sliver of home. I just adore anytime spent with them and always leave feeling refreshed and encouraged.

Where/who is a little piece of home for you, away from home? Something or someone that feels just like on giant, warm hug. I dearly hope we all have a place or person like that, and that we can be that person for others. 

Praying you have a peaceful week,


Monday, January 20, 2020

My 2020 Reading Goals

Hello dear friends.

2019 was a wild ride for me, full of travel, growth in my faith, starting a new job, moving into a new apartment, and last but not least-reading.

There were months I read a lot, and months I read not at all. Of course, this had to do with  everything that was going on in my life, but it also had to do with the lack of discipline I had. Reading, yes, should be seen as fun, but I will often allow myself to veg and watch Netflix, or scroll on Instagram for an hour, versus picking up a book.

My hope this year is to read more that I did in 2020, so I created a couple of reading goals that will ideally hold me to that. Guidelines, you could say.

1. Read 60 books (5 books a month)

Last year I read 50 books, which is a lot and I'm happy with that number, but I also know I'm capable I'm reading much more than that. Half of 2019 I spent outside of the States, and while being back home, I definitely spent a large amount of time rewatching shows like Friends and The Office, instead of reading. This year, I've set the challenge to at least 60. So far this is going well, as I've already finished 5 books (yay!).

2. Read at least 1 nonfiction book a month

If I allow myself, I will mainly read fiction. Although there's nothing wrong with fiction (I love a good fiction novel), I want to be more intentional with my reading. I want to make sure to set some time aside to learn about other people, current events, history, etc. Especially if I'm studying English Lit at school, I'm going to need to make an effort to actually read something other than fiction.

3. Read at least 1 classic a month

I tend to be someone who reads classics a lot, but I can also go months without picking up a classic. Come this Spring I will be beginning my English Lit degree, so I shouldn't have too much of a challenge here, but I wanted to make it a goal nonetheless. There are countless classics I want to get to.

4. Read poetry every night before bed

Now I can't be the only person who just scrolls on their phone before bed, ya? But that is something I most certainly want to erase from my nightly routine this year. Instead, I'm trying to replace watching youtube videos or instagram stories every night with reading some poetry. This will most likely not happen every night, as I'm only human, but I'm going to do my best to make it a priority.

5. Read at least 3 books from my bookshelf a month

I've always been someone with way more books on my shelf that I haven't read, versus ones that I have. Currently I have at least 100 books on my shelf, and I've maybe read 25% of them? It's not good guys. My goal is to look at my bookshelf first for books to read, instead of buying more or only using the library (although I whole heartedly love libraries and think people should use them more). I also want to practice only keeping the books I actually enjoy or intend to read, and donating the rest to my local library, or reselling them to my favorite used bookstores.

6. Buy no more than 2 books a month

Going off of my last goal, I want to restrict myself from buying no more than 2 books a month (not including books for school). I'm going to try and buy even less than 2 books a month, but for my own book buying sanity, I've set it to 2 for now. One thing I'll do to help myself in this department is to look at my local library first before purchasing anything. Libraries are such an incredible source and should be used WAY more. Seriously, go visit your local library.

7. Write a review for every book I finish

Finally, I want to get better at writing at least a sentence or two about every book I finish. I find it such a good resource to have a record of my thoughts on every book I read. Star ratings simply are not enough.

What are your reading goals for 2020? Do you have any reading recommendations for me? I'm hoping to update you all only my reading every month, but if you want to stalk my reading life in more depth, make sure to follow me on goodreads.

Have a lovely day,


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