These words of Tolkien are so powerful and especially touching at this moment in time because he reminds us that there is strength in the darkness. Hope is never lost, and there is still so much beauty in the world beyond what we can see right now. Better days will come, and the light will always shine in the end… Never forget that.
Isn’t it amazing how simple words on a page can transport you to another place in time… how colorless sentences fuse together to create a world so vivid right before your eyes? Page after page, the imagination runs free and pulls you into a new reality.
This summer, I have spent my free time indulging in lots of great books… Some of you may know that I have been wanting to write my own novel for awhile. I had an idea spark about two years ago that I never revisited, but I remembered it recently as I was trying to fall asleep one night. This time, an entire scene flashed through my mind, so I quickly grabbed a pen and recorded as many details as I could in a small journal. Ideas continued to flow ever since, and they have inspired me to finally begin plotting. It will be years, of course, before its publication, and I know that I wont have much time once school starts back up. No matter when or if this book is ever released, I really hope see my own novel on a shelf someday somewhere…
Do you have any advice? Have you published or aspire to publish a book some day too? I would love to hear from you, and thanks for reading!
Hello again. I know it is a little late, but I hope that you all had a very Merry Christmas! I spent my week visiting with family almost twelve hours from home, so it was really special because we don’t get to see them very often. I am also thankful that I was able to be there to celebrate three big birthdays this year! This was actually the first winter that we have ever traveled to that part of the country, and the weather couldn’t have been any better. Though it was much colder than it was back home, it didn’t approach the sub-zero temperatures that we were expecting. Everyone kept telling us that it was unseasonably mild, so we were lucky that we could actually enjoy ourselves at this time of the year.
I also ate one of the biggest sandwiches that I have ever had at Primanti Bros. It was delicious, but it was ginormous; I have no idea how I was able to fit it into my mouth. I think my favorite part of the trip has to be snow-tubing with my cousins because I loved the adrenaline rush of racing down those tall, icy slopes. From snowman building to ordering a table-for-twenty dinner, we all had a really great time, and we certainly filled this Christmas with many memories.
Have you traveled anywhere recently? How was your holiday? I am super behind on the Reader, but I will try to catch up to some of your posts within the next few days. Thanks for reading!
Study Tips: Finals
It is finals week!
Before you surround yourself with a monstrosity of textbooks and attempt to recall that lecture back from August, I want to share a few study tips that might be beneficial to you… I have compiled a small list, so I hope this helps!
1) Write with red ink
I have read several articles that the color, red, is most effective for enhancing memory, so I write in red ink when I am studying important concepts or formulas that I need to memorize. I believe it really works!
2) Go to the library
Honestly, it’s really difficult for me to study for a long time at home because I constantly find excuses to get up or become distracted with something else… I am much more productive when I go to the library because I am surrounded by people who are working as well. I get more done, and I am more focused in the end.
3) Keep a paper and reread it constantly
Everyone has their own way of retaining material, but it really helps me to write down all of the concepts that I am struggling on a few sheets of paper, keep them with me, and reread them several times throughout the day. It keeps the material fresh in my head, and I am able to recall it much quicker.
4) Set aside a specific amount of time
We all know the classic excuse: “I ran out of time to study…” That mentality just leads to cramming the night before an exam which is the worst (believe me.) Therefore, I set aside a specific amount of time each day, and I study for that full amount of time even if I don’t do it in one sitting.
I tell myself: “Set a time. Make it a priority. Do it. No excuses.”
The semester is almost over, and we are right at the finish line… We can do this! I really hope this post was helpful, and please don’t hesitate to share your own study techniques in the comments. Good luck on your exams!!
do you hear that?
the echo of the trees
conversing among each other
dispersing messages in the breeze…
do you see that?
the array of golden leaves
painting the earth’s canvas
letting beauty run free…
I was walking to class the other day, but I had to stop to take a picture of this beautiful moment. It also inspired me to write a poem, so I thought I would share it with all of you.
Also, I am loving this song.
I am in the process of putting together this month’s playlist, so be on the lookout for that as well. I hope you all have a great rest of the week, and thanks for reading!
Do you have any plans for Thanksgiving? What are your thoughts on this post? Did you like the song? Has anything inspired you recently?
Exploring Cherokee, NC
I spent my long weekend in the mountains of North Carolina where I embraced the peaceful solitude and experienced the traditional artwork and culture of the great Cherokee Indians. It was nice to leave all the stress behind so that I could recharge to tackle another crazy month. I will admit that the lack of phone service during the trip was a struggle for me, but the beautiful weather, scenery, and memories definitely made the trip worthwhile. I especially loved exploring the cultural district of Cherokee where I watched some of the native dances and admired all of the amazing artwork. Hand painted bear statues decorated the town, and the detailing of this one in particular caught my eye. It was also fun to peek inside the small shops and see all of the beautifully handcrafted jewelry, baskets, and pottery.
Hiking up Mingo Falls was another highlight of the trip. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting the waterfall to be as big as it was, so I was really surprised when I saw the view. It was absolutely gorgeous, and I am so glad that I was able to see it.
I hope that you all had a Happy Labor Day! I have lots of exciting content that will be released very soon, so I hope that you stick around. Also, Nutcracker casting came out last week, so I will reveal that very shortly as well. Have a wonderful week, and thanks for reading!
How did you spend your holiday weekend? Have you ever visited Cherokee, NC? Do you enjoy the mountains? Are there any special post requests?
Starting a Blog?
Within the past few months, several people have come to me with questions about blogging, so I thought it might be beneficial to share my insight for all new/existing bloggers out there. I have been blogging for several years now, so I am very happy to share my personal tips and advice… Whether you are considering your own site, just starting off, or have had lots of experience, I hope this post is helpful!
1: It’s what you want it to be.
Embrace your unique style of writing because your blog is whatever you want it to be. Don’t feel like you have to follow strict guidelines because there is no right or wrong way to do it. Your blog is very personal, so be creative, have fun, and enjoy writing about anything and everything you want!
2: Be aware of your audience.
The entire world has access to your site at any given moment, so the publicity of a blog (without privacy settings) is pretty immense. Therefore, it is very important that you are aware of the information that you post and pay close attention to photos to ensure that your location isn’t outwardly revealed unless you want it to be. Blogging is one of my biggest hobbies, but safety is always taken into consideration before I hit the “publish” button. I don’t mean to discourage you; I just want you to be aware of your audience and make smart decisions when you post.
3: It takes time to grow.
One of the most common concerns that you may have when you first begin a blog is the lack of readers because it takes a while to become recognized in the community. Don’t become discouraged, but use this time to improve your site and become familiar with certain blogging techniques. I recommend that you engage with other bloggers by following, liking, and commenting on their sites, and it also helps to promote your blog on existing social media platforms. With time, you will gain more followers and your status/traffic will continue to grow!
4: Quality over quantity.
I think one of the worst mistakes that you can make as a blogger is forgetting that the quality of posts always overrules quantity. Don’t rush the writing process just to post something because this will lead to poor quality posts that will bore both you and your readers, so write when you are inspired. Your posts do not have deadline, so you can take as long as you need (days, weeks, or even months.) Whatever you do, you must always maintain quality over quantity.
5: Respond to readers.
When people take time to comment on your posts, it is always good to like and respond to them even if it is a simple ‘thank you.’ They made the effort to reach out to you and express their thoughts and appreciation for your writing, so don’t let that go unrecognized.
6: Research writing prompts.
There are going to be times when you really want to write something, but you just don’t know what. Whenever this happens, I honestly Google writing prompts to get my creativity flowing again. That is my little blogging secret…
7: Why not?
Blogging has really given me the opportunity to express myself, share my passion of writing with the world, meet hundreds of inspiring people, and document memorable moments of my life that can be revisited in the future. If blogging has ever crossed your mind, I really encourage you to at least try it because why not? You can always delete your site if you hate it, but you will never know unless you try. My blog has really impacted my life, and I don’t have a single regret. I am so thankful for all of my readers, and I hope to continue posting for many years to come.
Please feel free to drop any individual questions in the comments section because I am happy to help you begin/continue your blogging journey! A few months ago, I released a post that provided a small overview of my experience on WordPress so far, so be sure to go check that out if you are interested. Thank you so much for reading, and good luck blogging!
What are your thoughts on this post? Do you have any tips or advice? Are there any questions that you still have? Ask away!
Wow, I can’t believe that it has been almost two full weeks since my last blog post, and I apologize for the unexpected hiatus. Life definitely got ahead of me as major deadlines, writer’s block, and other responsibilities hung over my head… I appreciate all of the sweet messages that you have left, and I missed the blogging community so much. I have a lot of catching up to do, but I do not intend to leave again anytime soon. I also wanted to give a shout out to Wild Writing Dreams for ranking “Don’t Be Beautiful” as a top 10 blog post! I am so humbled to have been selected…
8. DON’T BE BEAUTIFUL
“When this post came out and I read the title, it threw me completely off guard, and I tentatively clicked on it.
I didn’t regret it.
A simple, yet heartfelt post, Maysa shares a poem by ‘Nikita Gill’, and I wish every girl could realize what Nikita wrote.
It may be simple and short, but it’s a MUST read for all girls. I might not recommend it so much to boys, but for all you girls reading this, you have to check it out.”
I hope that you are all having a fantastic summer, and I can’t thank you enough for the continuous support despite my absence. It is great to be back!
Playlist & Talk To Me
It has been two full months since I released a playlist, so I thought it was time to share again. Actually, several of you have told me that you really enjoy these types of posts, so I am wondering if I should do this more often… Talk to me, and tell me your thoughts!
- What I Want by The Band CAMINO
- Bad by Lennon Stella
- Everything You Want by Vertical Horizon
- Over My Head by Judah & the Lion
- Bottle by JT Roach
- I Don’t Care by Ed Sheeran & Justin Bieber
- If So by Atlas Genius
- Older by Sasha Sloan
Do you want to see more playlists? Were any of these songs familiar to you? What have you been listening to?
***Side note: Get ready for some super exciting posts as I share a video of myself dancing (yes, you read that correctly), a favorite summer recipe, recent happenings, a summer shopping haul, and two awards! These will be up very shortly, so don’t go anywhere. 🙂 Thanks for reading, and I hope that you are having an awesome summer!
Sunshine Blogger Award
“The Sunshine Blogger Award is peer recognition award for bloggers that inspires positivity and joy.”
I am so humbled to have been nominated for this award by one of my awesome followers, rubeenafaisal. I am glad that my blog is viewed in such a positive way, and I hope that my posts continue to inspire my readers. Thank you so much for this recognition! 🙂
- Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
- List the rules and display an award logo on your blog post.
- Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
- Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and notify them by commenting on any of their posts.
- Ask the nominees 11 new questions.
Questions for Me:
1) Name any two qualities a blogger should have according to you?
I think it is important that a blogger is considerate of other readers’ opinions when posting content, and creativity is always a good quality to have.
2) A social incident that shook your head and heart so far?
Honestly, there are a few incidents that would be a great response to this question, but they are quite personal…
3) Name any 2 of your favourite book that you recommend others to read?
I haven’t read many (non-academic) books recently, but I was obsessed with the Harry Potter series last summer. I also loved Almost Home by Joan Bauer because it was so eye opening.
4) if you could change your nationality which one will you select and why?
I have never actually been, but Greece seems like such a beautiful place! The history, artwork, and food is so awesome, so I think it would be pretty neat to be Greek.
5) A place that you’re dieing to visit for a long time?
I would love to cruise through the Bahamas someday.
6) Your favourite spot?
Does my bed count? It is so comfortable, and I could rest my eyes for HOURS if I had the time.
7)watching a movie or reading a book, which one you prefer the most?
Personally, I prefer watching a movie because I have to read so much for school that I have (temporarily) lost the patience/joy of reading a book.
8) Two of your favourite quote?
“A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work” (Colin Powell).
“She believed she could so she did” (Unknown).
9) An adventurous thing to do in your bucketlist?
I really want to go snorkeling by a coral reef again.
10) Name any two famous personality whom you would like to inspire?
I do not follow celebrity news or entertainment, so I don’t have a famous inspiration unless you are talking about ballet. In that case, I think Sara Mearns has been the most inspirational for me. She is so humble which has really motivated me to keep working for my goals, and her optimistic mentality has really kept me hungry for success.
11) Your favourite cartoon character?
Unfortunately, I do not watch very much t.v, so I don’t know. Sorry!
- T.R. Noble
- Girl in the White Shirt
My Questions for Nominees:
- What is your favorite thing about the summer?
- Where would your dream vacation be?
- How long do you spend on your blog/reader each day?
- Pool or beach?
- Have you had a particular song on repeat lately? Which one?
- Lemonade or sweet tea on a hot summer afternoon?
- What is the latest that you have ever slept in?
- Do you have a favorite fruit?
- Where do you go most often when you are with your friends?
- What was the last book that you read?
- Do you prefer the coast or the mountains?
Please do not feel obligated to participate, and I completely respect your decision either way. Thanks again,rubeenafaisal, for nominating me!
*** I do not own the rights to this photo, and it was copied directly from Huguette Antoun.