26 November 2016

In Which Morning Has (Another) Crazy Idea.


One of the biggest traits that strongly identifies who I am is the number of ideas spewing out of my mind daily, and while a lot of them are pocketed away in speculation, some ideas are too big to put aside. Today, an idea—defined as crazy, and somewhat hopeful in the time crunch given by the rest of the year—occurred in my mind.

What if the blogging community decided to create a sort of end-of-the-year yearbook, where all of us collectively organized everything together to place not just a snapshot of ourselves, but of the entire year? The time the project demands and the demands that life calls on us at the end of this year is insane, and while I know that this is potentially the worst time to plan something as grand as this, there is a good chance that we can pull this off. Certain details are still murky, but they mainly pertain to the design aspect.


This is a proof example of what the layout may be like, but it isn't the settled, in place layout for now.

This is where the blogging community comes in.

Below I’ve inserted a form to collect the main aspects each person in the yearbook will have: portrait photo, a preferred first name they are called, blog address, and a section like a senior quote, 150-characters maximum.

CERTAIN FORM SPECIFICS:
// As I know that certain people do wish to have their privacy protected or they're just really uncomfortable with photos (because I'm pretty sure that we have at over one hundred photos where we're caught making awkward faces at the camera). If that is the case for any of you, readers, may enter in a nom de plume that you go by in the blogging community and if you cannot show your face, you may use a photo that does represent you without showing your face, such as covering your face while reading a book.


// Photos must be in color, landscape oriented, and in the highest resolution possible-- otherwise, it may turn out grainy and pixelated. It's also super preferable to have it be a photo from this year, because if this yearbook idea is continued for subsequent years, then it would be neat to see how you have grow.





The one thing I would like to ask the blogging community before closing out this post is to invite bloggers to come take part in this. This is a small idea which can grow big, and for a lot of bloggers, they haven't met the other sides of the community, from the book bloggers to the thought bubblers to those who wish to carry out ministry work. Email blogging friends, share on social media, mention it on your blogs, do what you can to let this idea spread. The deadline call for submissions within the form is December 8th, which is plenty of time. If you have any more questions, ask below!


Ready to take on this seemingly impossible challenge?

24 November 2016

Thankfulness Thursday

Conversations ranging from deep to random
Snail mail and greeting cards
The role of writing in my life
Introverting with introverts
Good books and local coffee shops
Inside jokes and pranks
Candid photos
The Olympics
Math epiphanies that pull through at the last second
Musicals and music contrasting the English language
The people I have come across this year (and matter)

///

I got this idea for a post from Grace Anne, who by the way, is an amazing person despite the fact that our only difference is our preference in breakfast foods. If you're looking for something to post, definitely take part in this. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

///

p.s. Idina and Kristin are the originals, but I like the key change of Lea and Chris's.

12 November 2016

Why Religion Is Personally Hard to Talk About


Several months ago, Livy, the founder of Crown of Beauty Magazine, asked me to review her book Secrets of Royalty, and I was super ecstatic about being able to write a review because one, it's something that hasn't been done on the blog before, and two, this sounded huge!  Amidst all the summer air and the bottles of lemonade inhaled during lunch times at the university where I spent much of my time, the book's message nestled on the surface, but time passed and there I sat at the computer screen, somewhat nervous as to how to write the post.

I'm Christian—but I hardly ever discuss the fact openly on my blog. I feel overly self-conscious, like a book removed of its flap. Sometimes I wonder how Lauren and Clara are just so open to speaking about religion as if it were second nature. The outside world urges me to engage in a place where religion is something that falls next to the categories of name, date of birth, and address whenever pried at for information. As I'm typing this, my mind is literally calling out to me, "Why is this uncomfortable task so freaking hard?"

Life has been kind enough to not belong to a church stifling every ounce of difference that comes around and demanding conformity. I'm not exactly what you'd call the model Christian, though. I attend church, Confirmation, and youth group-- the latter being something that hardly anyone in my grade level does. It's so minuscule than what you're being called to do. I know stories from the Bible, not verses. Never in my life have I been called to do choir or be an altar server. I am so far from living in the image of an ideal Christian. Most pancake breakfasts are left unattended by my family.
Even if one isn't in the same religion as I am or if they don't believe in any religion at all, anyone can relate that there those out there asking more out of what they can manage, sometime.

Is it all right to harbor some feelings of fear talking about one's personal religion? Feelings of self-consciousness? Doubt? Uncertainty?

Absolutely.

If one is spiritual, their spiritual life is going to have both its high and low points. I'm one of countless who ends up struggling at times, asking why certain bad things happen. It's probably the most common question that many Christians who turn away from the faith will ask. "Why did said thing happen to me?" It's completely easy to tumble down a road where the path is too hard to see through, where kudzu vines slap cheeks, mud cakes feet, and everything seems horrible to the point where one may exclaim that they feel kind of let down.

I'm not sure where I'm supposed to go, religious wise. I think that good and bad things happen for a reason. This has been proven countless times, from stories of crying to socializing to slowly conquering my fear of talking to people by the power of the written word, which is a slow problem. I think that everyone's existence means something, that it's valued. Call me a bit of a hopeful dreamer surrounded by a world that likes to showcase the negativity.

Livy's book affirmed that we are all accounted and valued, and that's incredibly important. We are cherished. We are more than what we think we can accomplish. We are royalty, in the eyes of God. I'm not sure if I'll write more posts like this; it all comes down to what calls out to me. However, I'd just liked to thank her so much for opening my eyes and giving me the opportunity to go out and have the courage to say this. I still struggle with my religious beliefs, but at least I'm going to try to understand more.

p.s. heading to a retreat & will lack contact with the internet world until I get back! Will reply to all comments then; wish me luck!