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!
This semester was harder than I ever expected, but I learned more life-lessons within the past sixteen weeks than any of the other semesters combined. Looking back, I am not really sure how I made it through everything, but I couldn’t be more thankful for the experiences that helped me become who I am today despite the challenges.
I always use to tell myself that nothing is impossible and that I could do anything I set my mind to if I was determined enough. This helped me achieve great things in the past, but this semester humbled me to realize that some things truly aren’t possible. I was pushing myself harder than I ever had before, and I was setting unrealistic expectations for myself. This year, I took a full semester at the college through dual-enrollment while dancing full time as a professional trainee ballet dancer. Though I had done this before, my academic courses were more difficult this time, and the demands were a lot higher. I was only getting about five hours of sleep every single night just to keep my feet on the ground, and the exhaustion/stress really started to take a toll on my health.
I learned that “you can do anything, but you can’t do everything.”
The problem was, I was trying to give 100% effort at both school and dance because I didn’t know where I would end up or what I even wanted anymore. A professional career in ballet is extremely competitive, and universities are also highly selective; I needed to be perfect at both. It was about mid-October when I realized that something had to change because I physically couldn’t do everything anymore, and I was wearing myself out… I had some big decisions to make. After thinking everything through, I decided to no longer pursue a professional career in ballet after Nutcracker which was one of the hardest decisions that I have ever had to make. Even though it is a huge change in my life, I know that I made the right decision, and I did what it best for me. Since then, I am so much happier, and I passed all of my classes!
Through it all, it truly was bittersweet to walk off campus for the last time knowing that some of my friends wont return in January… From the coffee shop shows, Friday morning laughs, “flying squirrel” (inside joke), study groups, and hot chocolate chats, I couldn’t have hoped for a better group of people to hang with. I made some great friendships, and I am so thankful for all of the wonderful memories! It certainly wasn’t an easy semester, but we got through it together. The Fall semester is officially complete. I can’t believe it, but we did it!!
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!!
It’s been awhile.
How have you guys been? I know this isn’t the first (unintended) hiatus that I have taken this semester, and it probably wont be the last if I’m honest. However, I really hope that you guys stick around because I am not abandoning the blog! Life has just been quite crazy lately…
I have spent more hours in the school library than I can even count, and chemistry is definitely proving to be an “adventure.” I like all of my classes and professors a lot, but the work load/studying is much more intense and time consuming than previous semesters. I also took my SAT this morning, and I am beginning to narrow down universities that I want to apply/transfer into. I am really anticipating the score because it was my first time, and I really wonder where I will end up… On the other hand, I forgot to tell you guys that the college, where I am currently dual-enrolled, has selected me into The National Society of Leadership and Success!! I am incredibly honored to be a member of this reputable program, and I am so humbled for the opportunity.
Lastly, The Nutcracker will be brought to the theater in one month, so that is quite nerve-wracking. Rehearsals are well underway, but there is still a lot of work that has to be done! I will be sure to keep you all posted, and I hope that you are doing well. Also, an October playlist will be released very soon, so keep an eye out for that…
What have you been up to? How are your classes going so far? Are you a member of the NSLS? Are you planning on watching or dancing in The Nutcracker this season? Thank you for reading this super long post if you are still there!
*Photo: Flashback to last year’s family trip up to the apple orchard.
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?
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…
“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!
A blanket of sand covered our toes, and the cool water brushed our skin.
Everything was just beachy.
I used to drive by the beach on my way to school everyday last year, and I would always gaze out at the peaceful solitude. Birds would occasionally fly through the wakening sky, and a light layer of fog would gently settle on the water. The sun would peek through the clouds while boats danced with the waves… I would long for that freedom as I sat in traffic preparing for another lecture-filled day. After months of fantasizing, I finally stepped into the water for the first time this summer, and I was so lucky to have had such great company. I had so much fun; thanks y’all!
Do you enjoy going to the beach? Anything exciting coming up? What is your favorite thing to do during the summer? Is there something that you often find yourself longing for?