The Apple

DAY NINE // a photo of the item you last purchased

When I looked at this prompt last night, I thought it was just perfect, because I was planning a trip to Salvation Army today to see if I could find anything to help with organizing my room when I move out. This was supposed to be a fun thrifting haul post.

I did go - but there was nothing. I didn't even find anything when I looked through clothes. Overall a very disappointing trip.

So that makes my Macbook Pro the last thing I bought.

Let's talk for a second about how I've hated Macs all my life.

I've always really hated Macs.

And I tried really hard to find a way out of getting one, but it ended up being the only sensible choice. All of my graphic design labs this semester are Mac based. So here I am, with my fancy schmancy 15" Retina display Macbook Pro, that cost the equivalent of like 5 months of work.

Don't tell anyone, but I kinda love it.

The Start of an Age

Auto Rickshaw by diametrik 

DAY EIGHT // a song and photo to match your mood

I was listening to all the songs on my old iPod the other day, and Long Live by Taylor Swift started playing and it kinda became my anthem for life as of late. Apparently there really is a Taylor Swift song for every occasion.


Your New Favorite Songs

DAY SEVEN //  your five favorite songs

It's so difficult to choose favorites with songs. But here it goes -

#1) Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing
           Post about my love for this song - which started when it was performed at my grandmother's funeral when I was very little - here.

#2) O Holy Night
           I listen to this song all year long. It's too good to be restricted to just the Christmas season.

#3) A Maker of My Time
           Also pretty much every other song by the Paper Kites. They're a bit of an obsession right now.

#4) Hey Pretty Girl
           This may very well be the cutest country song ever sung (a close second right now would be I Don't Dance by Lee Brice ). Well done, Kip Moore.

#5) Biodh An Deoch Seo 'n Laimh Mo Ruin
            I will forever have an affinity for traditional Gaelic music. Julie Fowlis is, hands down, my favorite Gaelic artist.

And there we go. Listen and love. You're welcome.



Or, The Post where I Thought I'd be Clever and Use the Scientific Name as the Title

this is a photo by Eliane Guiheneuf and I am adding this link in the
attempt to eliminate any possibilities of getting sued but really I don't know what I'm doing
DAY SIX // a photo of an animal you'd like to keep as a pet

Actually writing a blog post is not mentioned in this prompt. And I'm tired. Hedgehogs are cute and unfortunately illegal to own in California. Hence my main motivation for moving to Oregon.



DAY FIVE // a photo of yourself two years ago

Two years ago, I spend a night at a bridal boutique with a couple of friends, trying on wedding gowns. Because why not?


The Day We Danced in the Rain

DAY FOUR // your favorite photograph of your best friend

This is by no means a flattering picture. We both look a little insane. But it's a memory. It's a carefree memory of the day it rained and she called me so I drove over and we danced in the rain, in the middle of the street. There weren't many times this year I felt like I didn't have a single thing to worry about, but this was one of them.


Pinching Pennies

from an old, old outfit post, in which everything but
the tights (hand-me-downs) was thrifted

DAY THREE // your favorite store

I am extremely money conscious/frugal/penny-pinching/cheap. That, combined with a pathological fear of finding myself wearing the same thing a someone else, has turned me into an avid thrifter.

When I was much younger, I hated the Salvation Army. It was a dirty place filled with ugly clothes that were only there because no one else wanted them. At some point I came around. For a while I would only buy clothing there that was some kind of name brand. Thankfully it didn't take long for me to grow out of that stage. Now, if you look back at any of my outfit posts, I can guarantee that almost all of every single outfit was thrifted.

I have only two rules for shopping at the Salvation Army:
1) The older, the better. Bonus points for being homemade.
2) NO underwear, swimwear, sleepwear, sheets, or blankets. No amount of washing could make those acceptable.

I'm a bit more lenient with the second rule when shopping at Goodwill. I have a bit more faith in the cleanliness of their items.

Thrifting has been more of a hobby than anything, but as I assume responsibility for my own finances, it'll be a necessity. Even if I'm ever in a position where I can afford full-priced fancy name-brand clothing, I'm not sure I could bring myself to spend that much. I'll be a thrifter for life.



DAY TWO // a photo of something you ate today

My sisters are turning out to be very adept in the kitchen, at least when sweet things are involved. We've consumed a great deal of breads, muffins, and cupcakes throughout the summer thus far.

This morning it was pumpkin pancakes. Which definitely belong in the fall, but I won't complain. The pancakes earned themselves a thumbs up - 100% better than my last pancake-making attempt - and if you're interested, the recipe is here.

Happy Monday!


Self Portrait

Despite an optimistic post and new resolve to begin blogging more often...nothing much has happened blog-wise in over a month since promising to post more regularly.
Nothing at all, actually.

So naturally I turned to Pinterest for help. After a search for "blog challenge" and a quick glance through the results, I decided on one 30-day blogging challenge I like well enough. I'm not sure what the original source is, but I found it posted on Writer's Hub.

And now, without further ado - the beginning of my 30-day blogging challenge.

DAY ONE // a photo of yourself and a description of how your day was

This is definitely not a picture from today - but the prompt never said it had to be. This is a picture from a happier time of year, when the temperature wasn't in the triple-digits every day.

And now for a brief description of my day.

Thank goodness for afternoon church. I'm still adjusting to my new ward, but today was the first Sunday that I didn't feel totally awkward and out of place. We had an ice cream-themed "Linger Longer" after church, featuring all varieties of ice cream and popsicles, and I actually met several new people - and even carried on conversations with them. 

I also found out that being assigned to be the assistant organist doesn't just mean that they want me to play when the regular organist is out of town - it means they want me to regularly trade off playing organ with him. This gave me a mild heart attack, considering that I haven't actually played organ in over a year.

But hey - if I can manage to begin to make new friends, maybe I can pull off playing organ, too.

Even Though It's Tomorrow Already

As far as I'm concerned, if I haven't gone to sleep yet, the day hasn't changed. So although this post will publish saying that it is Sunday, it's still Saturday in my head. And I will write accordingly.

I intended to start a 30-day blogging challenge today (meaning Saturday the 19th). In fact, I had already started the post, which I will finish and publish tomorrow (meaning Sunday the 10th). I can't bring myself to write it today. The prompt involves a description of how your day went. Which is what I'm going to ramble about in this post anyway, but it just feels wrong to include it in the 30-day challenge.

I thought I knew exactly how my day was going to go. I was going to end up writing a pretty boring post about how I spent the morning having fun at the pool with my family, and the afternoon being amused and occasionally mildly annoyed with the customers at work.

Both of those things did actually happen. But I spent the rest of the day with a grieving friend.

Being with someone dealing with a debilitating loss generally leaves me feeling totally inadequate. There's really nothing you can say to make anything better. Although I think it's better to hear the truth - that it's not going to stop hurting, but you're strong enough to push through the pain - than to be told that it's going to get better.

Because it's not going to get better. I don't think the pain from a loss like that ever goes away. If anything, you get used to it. It becomes so much a part of you that you hardly notice it anymore, until something brings it back to the surface and it hurts just as badly as it did the day you lost them.

The amount of times I heard "Jesus will take the pain away" today frustrated me. I believe in the power of the Atonement. I believe that all things will be made right in the end - so I suppose saying that Jesus will take the pain away is a very accurate statement. But I don't think he's going to take it away in this life. Leaning on Him with bring peace, but the kind of peace that comes from knowing that God has a plan, not the kind of peace that comes from the absence of pain. So stop telling her that Jesus is going to take the pain away. Tell her that Jesus will make the burden light.

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