I think it's easy as human beings to take things for granted sometimes. It sounds bad, but we all do it in some form or another. We get busy with work or school or getting caught up in something to realize what's really important. And that's okay. It's part of being human.
Some days, I find myself feeling extra special and blessed than others. Maybe these days come when I need it; maybe they come just because I finally have time to relax and reflect.
And so today, I sit and feel extra blessed. Here's why...
I'm blessed to have been able to spend the weekend at my boyfriend's beach house. Good people, always fantastic food. And I officially painted a fish plaque that each member of the family and close friend has. Pretty cool!
I'm blessed that I have a car. Not only do I have a car, but I have a pretty darn nice one. Thank you, Mom and Dad.
I'm blessed that I live somewhere where I can ski or go to the beach (depending on the season, of course) in about a one-hour drive.
To have my brother calling me to spend time with the family.
To have friends all with wildly successful futures ahead of them.
To have a sister who is growing up and looking at colleges. Good luck to her in her softball state's game today!
To know how to read and write. Do you know how many people can't!?
To not be lactose intolerant. I like cheese and ice cream.
To have been welcomed into my grandparent's house for the last five months.
To still have a great-grandmother.
To have planned a trip to see family members across the US for the 4th of July.
To have these flowers on this post's picture because Ryan got them for me "just because".
I'm blessed to have Ryan.
To have the opportunity to go on several job interviews already. And to staying positive and optimistic about getting hired for September!
To have sunglasses.
To know how to throw a ball and probably strike you out. Thanks, Dad, for always taking me to lessons and sacrificing your shins.
To group texts. (Currently missing my college roommates!) And for Brielle coming home soon!
To have running water.
I'm blessed to have kept the same girlfriends since middle school. Not many people can say the same.
To have had some really awesome teachers and to have stayed in contact.
To have the greatest, most supportive, and intelligent parents.
To live in the good old USA.
To have Mr. Jackson as a cooperating teacher and role model during student teaching. Now, I feel ready for anything thanks to the chaos of Room 18.
I'm blessed to have the people in my life. I'm blessed for the experiences I've had and the ones I know will come.
Whether we want to accept it or not, it's happening. In a few days, the Class of 2014 will officially be college graduates and are now expected to find real jobs and function like real human beings in the real world...whatever that all means.
I can't help but think and reflect on my [five] years of college. (Maybe I shouldn't have changed my major so many times...) I can finally say I'll have a fancy piece of paper to validate the thousands of dollars my parents paid (thanks, Mom and Dad) that essentially says, "Hire Me".
What if we could go all the way back to Day 1? Remember that nerve-wracking first day of college when we pulled up to the parking lot, unloaded the contents of our unearthly small dorm room, and started making friends? What if we could go back to that day to give our "past self" some advice?
Here we go.
1. When you go out on Friday night, don't wear a lanyard around your neck. It screams "freshman".
2. Everyone wants to be friends. Literally, everyone. Each and every other freshman is in the same boat as you and is nervous, whether they show it or not.
3. Try to say "no" to the ice cream on the way out of the cafeteria.
4. Say "yes" to the gym at least a few times a week...if not more. You'll make some friends and have a fighting chance of preventing the 'Freshman 15'.
5. Take pictures. Lots. Some will be funny. Most will be embarrassing.
6. Call your parents. They want to know you're alive and they love you.
7. Sit in the second row in your class. Everyone knows the student front and center is a suck up and the kid in the far back is just a slacker.
8. Walk with a buddy.
9. It's okay to talk to a boy.
10. You'll probably have a mental breakdown or two (or three or more). Things might get stressful. Find good girlfriends to help.
11. If you have a boyfriend/girlfriend, you will probably break up within your first semester. Sorry.
12. Maybe you'll meet the actual love of your life.
13. Wear flip flops in the showers.
14. Be nice to your RA.
15. Take chances. Whether this means signing up for a new club or hanging out with new people, do it. You won't regret it.
16. Don't forget your good friends from home.
17. Read the syllabus. This isn't high school anymore. Read it and do your work.
18. When it's a nice spring day, sit outside with your friends on a blanket listening to music. These days will be good memories forever.
19. Even if you're tempted to, don't show people how to do the Irish Jig. You'll fall down and end up in a cast.
And last but not least...
20. Enjoy every minute. The next four (or five) years of your life are going to be filled with laughs, love, memories, learning opportunities, new friends, and so much more. They'll be the fastest and most incredible years. Make the most of them.
Happy Graduation, Class of 2014. Here's to us all finding employment sooner than later, keeping the incredible friends we made in college, and cherishing the beautiful memories along the way.
Mother's Day brings flowers, chocolate covered strawberries, and family celebrations. On this sunny Sunday, we recognize the women in our lives who have shaped us to become the people we are today. The older I grow, the more I learn and realize how blessed I am to have the mother I have.
As my student teaching experiences has come to an end on Friday, I can't help but compare my upbringing to some of my students'. Many of them have mothers in jail/addicted to drugs. Some spend their weekends bouncing from one house to the next, spending as much time as they are "allowed" with their family members. Thinking about my childhood and teenaged years, I couldn't imagine not having my mother. I couldn't imagine her not cheering me on at my softball games or baking me cinnamin buns every October 23 for my birthday morning. I couldn't imagine not having her to cry on when I was scared to graduate 8th grade or to take prom pictures with when I was 17. Every moment, our mothers shape us to become who we are.
From my mother, I've learned strength. She has stood by my father when his mother was sick and helped every minute along the way. She's dealt with situations with such strength and bravery that I can only hope to have when I am a mother. (Plus, she can probably do more kettle bell swings than me.)
From my mother, I've learned that women are just as darn good as men. My mom's somewhat spunky attitude has taught me that I can do whatever I want, just as good (if not better) than a man.
From my mother, I've learned love. Watching my parents' love has been a true privilege. I aspire to have the love and beauty in my marriage one day.
From my mother, I've learned to tie my shoes, to stay away from strangers, to make a friend, to bake that saltine caramel chocolate dessert thing, to balance a check book (kind of), and to know right from wrong.
Maybe we don't think of it every day just how lucky we are to have such magnificent women in our lives. Sometimes, life can get the best of us. Sometimes, we fight or become busy or forgetful. But today, let us celebrate the mothers in our lives. Let us recognize their strength and love.
Happy Mother's Day, Mommys, Grandmas, Great-Grandmas, and Aunts!