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December Snippets

I feel like December just started, yet here I am, and its already December 30. It is the end of the month, which means its time for another snippets post. I don’t really know the point of this type of post yet, but I think it will be like a diary type thing.

For the beginning of the month, nothing really eventful happened, because I spent most of my time getting ready for finals. At our school during finals week we get out at 11. On that Tuesday we had a snow day, which was awesome! It also meant that for the rest of the week we had extra tests. On Friday I got out 9:25 because I only had one test, which gave me time to start my Christmas shopping.

Dec.18 – After finishing finals a group of us went to a nearby Thai food restaurant. The restaurant is quaint and it has an area where you can take off your shoes and sit at a traditional Thai table to eat your food. You sit in butterfly position and the area is away from the regular tables. We did a Secret Santa as a group, so at the restaurant we exchanged gifts. I gave my friend a cookie in a jar type thing, where it is a pre-made mix in a cute mason jar, and all the person has to do it add butter and an egg and maybe some water. I got some chocolate and a cute bag 🙂

 

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Dec.20 – A couple of friends and I went to go see the James Bond movie Spectre. I thought it was pretty good, but one of us fell asleep for most of it. It was my second time seeing the movie, so I just went for the popcorn. I don’t usually like seeing movies twice, so I just liked going for the food and seeing my friends. It was around 50 degrees outside the theatre, and no snow was visible. After the movie I went to my friends house because she had cake, and I love cake. So after I ate three slices (no regrets), I went home. On the way home I got stuck in a lot of traffic, and I am not good in traffic, especially when the roads are icy. Don’t worry, I survived though. But barely.

 

 

Dec. 21 – Finally got around to baking, and I decided to raid my friends kitchen to do it. We made the Nutella cookie bars that I did for a collab. My friend doesn’t really have a ton of baking supplies, so we made everything by hand, including the dough. *Tip – if you have to make a dough with no mixer, melt the butter until its soft and partially melted, it makes everything easier.* It actually tasted pretty good (how could it not with it being cookie dough, Nutella and sweetened condensed milk), and we went to Pho while the bars were baking (the waiter has a crush on my friend, so we get a lot of free food. You have to capitalize on these moments). That night we had family friends over, and we played a version of truth or dare for a solid three hours.

 

 

Dec. 23 – My brother’s thirteenth birthday. My grandpa’s birthday is also in December, so we celebrated them at the same time. They both love crab, I personally am not a fan. There was also homemade ice cream though, so I ate a ton of that. I was also given the job of being the creepy family member taking photos at all time.

 

 

Dec.24 – Christmas Eve. We went over to our neighbors house to celebrate. My brother and I only stayed for a little awhile before we went back home. After all, I had to make the crock pot hot chocolate. It consisted of condensed milk, evaporated milk, cream, whole milk, and chocolate chips. It. Was. Delicious.

 

Dec.25 – CHRISTMAS!!! So we opened presents. And ate tons of food. 10 croissants to be exact. Side note, we did not open presents in the dark, I took these photos before Christmas, and before the chaos. My grandpa came over, and my dod assisted in getting all the wrapping paper off presents.

 

 

Dec. 28 – Went to a friend’s house to try traditional Chinese food. They had lotus flowers, they had taken the base of the flower and cooked it. It was really good, and all their food was really unfamiliar to me (except the rice). Then we went downstairs and took photos for probably two hours. It was actually really cold in my town, as in 18 degrees cold. So going outside didn’t really sound pleasant.

 

 

Dec.29 – Went up to Vail. It was super cold but we went to a really nice restaurant and went to many stores. Vail is set up to look like a European ski town, so it is super pretty seeing all the German and general European architecture. The drive up is also super pretty, and since it was a week day there wasn’t much traffic. Ski traffic is the absolute worst, trust me. No one wants to sit in traffic for 6 hours after skiing all day.

 

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I hope you all had an amazing December! I feel like it just started, along with this winter break. I think today I may go see the Star Wars movie and go eat at Noodle’s and Company. I will probably do a New Year’s post, but if not I just want to say how grateful I am for all of who who read this blog. This blog has opened me up to a whole new community and I couldn’t be more happy. I am excited to see what the new year holds for me and this blog.

As Always,

xoxo Em

Thanksgiving.

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you all experienced  a loving day with family and friends.

My day started off normal, with a cup of English Breakfast tea with an unhealthy amount of sugar in it. Next, I watched Legally Blonde while trying (unsuccessfully) to start on some homework. Once I had woken up a bit, I made some homemade green bean casserole. Personally, I don’t like the kind where you use canned cream of mushroom soup, so I just made my own.

While dinner was getting prepared, my grandpa came over and my brother and dad played several rounds of chess. At around 3:00 we ate dinner, so I guess you could say we had a late lunch.

 

 

 

 

 

We have a small family, so it was just my parents, brother and grandpa. Nannie or Auntie, if you’re reading this, we missed you and wished you were here with us!

As Always,

xoxo Em

 

 

 

What is Change?

Hello readers! The following is a post written by the wonderful blogger Sarah M.  (to see her blog (her electric ocean) click here). I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I did! Make sure to check out her blog after reading this 🙂

What is change?

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Change. I often find myself hoping for a change; be it in a new haircut, a new pair of glasses, a new wardrobe, or a new adventure. I’m not quite sure why, but change seems to appeal to me a lot of the time.

 

Sometimes, we resist change. Even though change can be refreshing, new, and exciting, it can also be terrifying. Routine can be comforting, and it can feel safe and secure- so sometimes something as simple as changing your morning routine can be that little bit scary. I’m sure that there are many reasons for this, but ultimately I think that it’s because when we change, we finally have to accept that we’re turning over to a new page, resulting in the previous page having to finally come to an end.

Change forces us to grow. Every day we change and we grow, like little caterpillars, who will one day become butterflies. If nothing ever changed, there would be no butterflies. The caterpillars would stay as they are, forced to stay on the ground in a futile attempt to survive. They would never become the truly beautiful creatures that the change would make them. We are much like these little creatures, only that the changes we experience are not usually as sudden as the change from caterpillar to butterfly. When I was looking through my little book of quotes, I came across this quote, which I think fits quite perfectly;

 

“Isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes, but when you look back, everything’s different”

 

Change can come to us in so many different ways, and most of the time we don’t even notice it. Things like age; we don’t realise that we are growing and changing, until we look back and realise that we’ve grown from little babies who could barely speak, to young adults who are going to work for the first time. Or even something as simple as the seasons; we don’t notice the change from summer to autumn until we see the leaves that have turned golden, or the air which has suddenly turned cooler.

 

In time, I’ve come to realise that everything changes. People change, seasons change, times change, trends change… everything. And there will come a time when you’ll look at your favourite dress with disgust and wonder why you ever thought it was nice. That band you obsessed over for countless hours will grow old and stop recording music, or maybe they’ll completely change their image completely. Maybe you’ll change from a little girl or boy, to a young adult, to a mature man or woman. Perhaps your relationship with someone will change, for better or for worse.

 

That’s okay. In fact, that’s great! Change encourages us to grow, and to move on to a better place. I’m not saying that it’ll be easy, in fact I want to warn you that it will be so, so hard at times. It’ll be a challenge. But through this challenge, you’ll be able to become the person you were meant to be all this time. You’ll be able to graduate from being a caterpillar, into a beautiful majestic butterfly.

 

What changes have you experienced in your life, and how have they helped you grow? Hit reply and let me know!

Her electric ocean

Just like always, here is my link to my fundraising campaign for going to Mongolia (Mongolia) 🙂

As Always,

xoxo Em

Kindness

 “I have a goddess of a wife who sweats ambition and empathy and a daughter who reminds me too much of what I used to be, full of love and joy, kissing every person she meets because everyone is good and will do her no harm.”
-Kurt Cobain’s suicide letter
 
Recently I had a revelation that was sparked when I witnessed how cruel humans can be to one another. Before I share my story, I would like you to watch this scene from the movie, The Help.  (It will take you to a site that has taken it down, just click the link it tells you to, so you can get to YouTube :)).
 
When I was growing up I had a nannie who was like a second mother to me. She was from Thailand, and her name was Nataya. She had grown up in rural Thailand as a Buddhist. She told us stories, and one was about a cow she used to have. It was her pride and joy, and she would wash and clean it every day. One day the neighborhood boys tried to get the cow dirty, so she shot them with little pebbles from her sling shot. She was very proud of this story.
She had only been here for a few months when my parents hired her to take care of me and my brother. To relate this to the movie scene, she was what Constantine (the African American nannie) was to Skeeter (Skeeter was played by Emma Stone), to me. Growing up I knew she was kind, but I took her for granted. 
 
Skip forward to now, and we were planning a party for her, because she was going back to Thailand. About a week or so before the party my mom got a call from Nataya’s husband. Nataya had been accused of stealing a Ralph Lauren purse from someone who she worked for, and that person, lets call her Hilly (if you have seen the full movie The Help you’ll understand this) was telling everyone who Nataya worked for that she was a thief and was not to be trusted. Now Nataya had been working for this family for years, and Hilly said Nataya was like family to her. Hilly is also not someone who is short on money, so it isn’t like the purse meant anything to her. That being beside the point, Nataya came from Thailand to America in part so she could make money to buy computers and pay for her families college tuitions back in Thailand. She deserved much more than the purse, she deserved the entire world. She was the kindest, sweetest, innocent person I have ever known. And to be treated like property? To be humiliated right before she leaves by people she thought she could trust? By people she loved, and would do anything for? Now Hilly is a white, Christian suburban, privileged women who knows nothing about struggles or having to work to provide for her family. She even had the audacity to say that as a Christian she would never think of stealing, and if she did she would regret it and say sorry right away. So not only was she degrading Nataya as a human being, but she was also inferring that she believed that her religion was superior to Nataya’s, because it frowns upon stealing. And just for reference sake, this Bible verse is just one of many advocating the idea of being kind and tenderhearted to everyone around you, even if you think they wronged you.
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
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What infuriated me the most was how Hilly exploited Nataya. Nataya grew up without much of anything, and yet is the kindest and innocent person I know. This relates to the Kurt Cobain quote, about his daughter is full of joy and seeks out the best in people. That is how Nataya was, and she was  very exposed and vulnerable in that sense of her personality.
Thankfully Nataya ended up having a party full of people she loved, and is now in Thailand living with her loving family and husband.
 
My point that I am trying to convey is that you should always love and nurture one another. Don’t ever put material items over other people, because it simply isn’t worth it.
 
Above is a photo of some monks in Thailand coming to bless Nataya’s house in Thailand.
As Always,
xoxo Em
 
*I did not show any clear images of Nataya’s face just for her privacy :)*

The Photo Diaries: Munsungun Lake

Every summer my family and I go to a sporting camp in Northern Maine. A sporting camp is basically a camp that people go to when they want to fish and hunt. We go and fish some, but I mostly go to enjoy getting away from it all and having time to myself. The sporting camp is called the Bradford Camps, named after my Great-Grandfather, who built majority of the camp himself. The camp is made up of a a lodge (pictured below), and eight cabins (one of which is also down below).

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Near the camps is a cabin that my grandparents personally own, which I also spend a good amount of time at. The path leading up to it is full of little stone animals my grandfather bought for me to find when I was younger. There are also waterfalls nearby, called Norway Falls, with plenty of small pools to swim in. This all beings said, just like my previous photo diaries, I like my photos to express my thoughts and my journeys as a whole. Especially with the Bradford Camps, which is a place that makes up a substantial part of me, I tried to capture the essence of my time there through photos. I hope you enjoy!

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L1010076Summer is almost over for me and it makes me very unhappy. BUT!!! On the bright side, I get to reminisce over my time in Maine and Canada as I create these blog posts!!!

As Always,

xoxo Em

A Morning Stroll

I made it a goal for myself to do at least one thing each day during summer break. Yes, this is mostly to prevent me from staying in my room watching Netflix all day. Trust me, this is very tempting.

Anyways, I decided to wake up at 7 with my mom to go on a walk/hike through a trail in the foothills. So after I had my disgusting green smoothie (never again), we were on our way.

We have been having record amounts of water here in Colorado, so the water levels of this stream were very high. It also made for a very muddy trail, my shoes as the witnesses.
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Okay this photo may look a bit gross or odd, but I think its amazing!!! I think they are caterpillar nests, if those even exist. In any case, these “nests” are everywhere, and as the summer goes on the caterpillars get much bigger and start going all over the place.
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Matt12It actually gave me a pretty decent workout, and it took about 1 hr. 45 min. to complete it. I’m being productive though!

As Always,

xoxo Em

Re-Exploration

Today is the first day of summer break for me!!!! Which means that I have a lot more free time to do basically anything I want. Today I decided to do some re-exploration. Now you may ask, what is re-exploration? In all honesty it may not even be a grammatically correct word, but for my purposes it means to explore areas that I thought I knew like the back of my hand. So, I decided to take a walk around my house in my front and backyard. I do this a lot, but not with the focus of finding things to photograph. As I’m writing this I can hear the thunder rumbling outside, so I got these photos right in time! I’m telling you, even though its nice to be out of school, our weather forecast for the whole week is essentially just rain, rain, and more rain. I like rain, just not when I want to be outside swimming or enjoying the nice sunny weather. Never the less, it is giving me an excuse to stay close to home and take worthwhile photos from here!

So I wouldn’t really say taking a photo of a Columbine takes any skill, but I liked this photo simply because I love Columbine’s and their variety of color, shape, and texture all bundled up into one flower.

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This birdhouse has been vacant for sometime, but we keep it up in the hopes that one day a bird will want to call it home.

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This is the apple tree that the birdhouse is attached on, and part of the reason birds never really lived there is for a good 5 or so consecutive years my brother and I would climb this tree every day. Now that we don’t do that anymore I’m hoping they’ll come and live here!!! This being said I decided to climb the tree to see if it was as fun as I remember. Other than the fact that I felt quite big in a small tree, I still felt comfortable and relaxed in a tree I used to spend hours reading in.

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Since I am now on break I hope to consistently post about every three days or so!!!! I believe that most of you are new readers, but thank you so much to the people who followed me from my old blogger platform!!! I was quite nervous in making the switch, seeing how I would lose all my followers (not that I am a numbers freak, I just liked the relationship I had with them) and I also would not be connected to my google plus page. That being said I love my blog so much more now!!! I feel like I gave it a much needed makeover.

As Always,

xoxo Em