2018 I’m Ready For Ya!: 15 Resolutions

Hey Y’all!

I’m sitting here writing this blog post and I can’t believe 2018 is here. I have been looking forward to this year for a really long time and its really hard to imagine that it is actually here. So many big things are happening: I’ll be graduating high school and attending my first semester of college! I have an awesome trip planned with my family for spring break, and I’m really cherishing the time left I have with all of my friends before we all go our separate ways! It’s going to be a BIG year and I’m so excited, and theres also a lot that I am going to learn and experience! I’m so ready for this year and what God has in store for me!

I have set some goals for myself this year. Some  B I G and some small, but I hope to accomplish all of these and maybe even some more that I don’t mention to y’all. My main goal {not on my list} is to really, truly, be 100% authentically me. There are so many times, especially in high school where you feel the need to hide or not be yourself and I strive to be more me. I hope all of you will strive to do the same and just be yourself!

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I hope to keep track of my progress on all of these and remember all of them. I am so excited for this year and I hope that it is 10x better than 2017! I hope y’all have a fabulous New Years and thank you for sicking around and reading my blog. I am thankful for each and every one of y’all! Stay tuned and keep an eye on the blog for some upcoming big things in my shop and more blog content coming soon!

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What I Learned in 2017

Hey Y’all!

2017 has been a hard year, and I really, truly mean that. There were many ups and downs and many mountains to climb. Looking back on it now, I’m proud of myself for getting through all of it, and I learned a lot. I lost and gained friends, turned 18, went on some great trips, had my final marching/football season, got accepted into college, and many more things. And like I said, I learned a lot. I really did. You can go through such a big year and NOT learn. It really was such a rollercoaster year. And because of this, I wanted to share what I learned this past year.

In regards to that dreadful end of junior year and beginning of senior year…

Don’t leave your SAT and ACT until the end. I took mine 3 times the last semester of junior year and it really set me up well. Don’t underestimate the power of an SAT class or getting a practice book. But also, don’t kill yourself over it. It’s an important test and you should try your hardest. but colleges look at so many other things. Don’t let it consume you and stress you out so much.

College applications are no joke. Don’t be afraid to go visit colleges! I toured them at the end of junior year and then revisited during the first semester of senior year so I got to really get a feel for everything. And not everything is going to be exactly perfect. You should like where you are going. In most cases, you’ll be living there so you should like it.

Friendships

Friends are such a big part of High school. Don’t miss out on spending time with them and hanging out. Keep your real friends by your side and really, truly, cherish them. After senior year, there is a huge chance you won’t seen them for a long time. I’m so thankful I’ve gotten such a great group of friends this year who really care. Remember that you don’t need a whole crowd, a few really good friends who really care are better!!

Senior Year: Slacking, Wishing + More

Senior year is something everyone in high school cannot wait for. It’s greatly anticipated and I really put it up on this pedestal and put way too much worth into it. It’s really just another year, but it is in fact special. I didn’t really feel like a senior until homecoming when I got to wear an all white mum or when I got to finally wear all black for class color day. Football games had a whole different meaning where now I cherished each one and really valued that time I got on the field each week at halftime performing with my band. I wish I had more time sometimes but I do still want to hurry and get to college. It’s an odd balance of wanting the old to go away and the new to hurry up and get here but also wanting the old to stay. But don’t wish it all away because you really will miss it. Tonight, the clock is going to strike midnight and it will be 2018. And then it will only be a few more months until June 1st when I finally get to walk across that stage in my cap + gown and officially graduate. I’m a little in shock that it’s so close. It just makes me want to do all of the things that I haven’t gotten to do and for my friends and I to hang out as much as possible before we all go our separate ways. Cherish this time and be so excited!!! But really, don’t wish it all away because it is already going SO FAST. Don’t wish it away, and don’t slack off. There is still so much time left and your grades really still matter. Don’t get lazy and not study for that big Anatomy or PreCal test. There are hard classes and teachers but senior year is definitely not an excuse to give up or slack off. Even when you have been accepted and committed to a college.

College: Applying, Deciding, Etc.

College was such a hard process for me. In August, I really had a hard time grasping that a year from then, I would be in a completely different stage of my life. That I would be living in a dorm on my own or with a roommate and that I wouldn’t be waking up in the same house I have been for the last few years. I couldn’t really grasp the thought of being so independent and living on my own and really being in charge of what I eat and my education. It was really mind boggling and still kind of is.

I toured colleges and ranked them and really looked at their programs for design and what their campuses were like. I liked things about all of them and really wished I could have taken little things from all of them and built my dream school. I thought Texas State had a fabulous program and it amazed me with the river flowing through campus. But I just didn’t feel like there were enough opportunities for me there in that small college town. I toured University of Texas at Austin and their dreamy, up on a pedestal school honestly just scared me. Their printmaking studio like TXST was to die for and I loved the program, but I felt so small and the school was absolutely gigantic. I didn’t feel comfortable. Austin is such an amazing place and I adore it and the opportunities, but I didn’t like the strenuous feeling and how intense everything was with the application process. And then there was University of Houston. I had attended band camps there and played there for concerts and competitions, gone to football games, walked around when my Dad taught there for a little while, and I just felt at home. When I toured the art program, I fell in love with the graphic design studio and everything that came with it and all the other classes. I loved how gigantic this school was but also how I didn’t feel irrelevant and tiny. I felt like I belonged and I already had friends attending the school as well. I felt like I could really fit in and I decided that it was really the place to be. I found out later that I got in and I have been so excited (and scared) all at the same time. The future is such an unknown territory, but it is waiting to be explored. I’m so excited for what’s to come and I cannot wait for August of 2018!! But the point of all of this, is that it might take a really long time to figure out what feels right for you, it might take years or months and even then, you might change majors or transfer school and it’ll be okay. College should be what is right for you and not just going to the biggest or most well known school or where every friend is going. And, the unknown is terrifying but also there is excitement all wrapped up in it and it is just out there waiting for you to explore. So apply to a few colleges and tour them and really research your major(s) and find out what is best for you. And if you don’t know yet, research your interest and see if there is something that sounds interesting or cool. You’ll find your calling even if it isn’t right this moment when everyone else seems to have it figured out.

Try New Things

This year I ended up getting placed into a class I wasn’t super excited for. I was supposed to be placed into another art media class but instead got placed in photojournalism because of the way my schedule worked out for school. I was sad and frankly quite irritated that my senior schedule wasn’t exactly how I wanted it. But I gave it a chance and now I am so in love with photography and every aspect of it. I love taking my camera every where I go and taking pictures whenever I can. Don’t be afraid to try something new, you never know what will spark an interest or a new love!

Family

Senior year has made me realize that I won’t get to spend as much time with my family next year. Applying to schools and seeing my college friend’s schedules as shown me how busy I will be. I’ve realized how much I really love my family and spending time with them and that’s another reason I chose a school so close to home. I absolutely adore my family and I have been trying to spend a lot of time with them. We lost my sweet Nana this year and it’s been really hard on us. It really made me realize that I can’t take anything for granted because you never know when the people you love most won’t be here anymore. So go spend time with your family and really be present. Don’t be on your phone or zoning out. Talk to them and really be there and enjoy them!

I feel like I learned so many other things but it’s hard compiling them all into one giant post.

I’m honestly really glad 2018 is here because I am so ready for a new start!

☆☆☆ Happy New Year!!☆☆☆

xoxo, Annie

DIY Christmas Cards

Hey Y’all!

Merry Christmas Eve!

Today I am back with a brand new addition in my Christmas post series! Today is all about some easy, last-minute DIY Christmas Cards that are so fun to make! I will show you how to make two separate and fun cards that will take you only a few minutes each!

White Christmas Card

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First up is this darling and oh so cute White Christmas Card! This card requires only a few items and is very each to make!

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For this card, I used white + blue card stock and construction paper, snowflake ribbon (you can use any ribbon you like), a black pen, orange + brown markers, scissors, a white gel pen and a hole punch.

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1. First I cut some snowy hills out of the white card stock and glued it onto the blue construction paper (after folding the blue construction paper in 1/2).

2. I used my hold punch and the white card stock to punch out little white circles. Then I glued these down above the snowy hills on the blue construction paper to make snowflakes.

3. I took my black pen and lettered out “Wishing You a White Christmas” on the snowy hill. For the lettering: write the phrase out in cursive and then every time a line goes down, make the line thicker. You can see this process step by step below in the mistletoe card.

4. Then I cut out 3 circles: large, medium, and small to create my snowman’s body out of the white card stock.

5. Then, I took my black pen and drew 5 dots to create the snowman’s smile and my orange marker to draw a small orange circle for the carrot nose. Instead of just drawing 2 button eyes and leaving 4 holes in the middle not filled in, I took a white gel pen and drew 4 dots on each black circle to create the button effect. You can easily do this by just drawing the circles and not filling in those 4 spots if you do not have a white gel pen.

6. Next, I glued my snowman’s body down on the paper with a glue stick. Then I drew 4 buttons down the body and took a brown marker to draw the stick arms.

7. I took my black pen again and drew a little hat for my snowman to wear.

8. Then I took my white gel pen and drew one line at the top of the hat to create the effect of there being a top. After that, I did a thick strip above the rim of the hat to make a band on the top hat.

9. Finally, I took my snowflake ribbon and made a bow, then glued in down in the corner of the card.

Mistletoe Card

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The last card I am going to teach you how to make is this mistletoe card!

For this card you need green, red, and white card stock or construction paper, twine, scissors, a hole punch, a glue stick, and a gold sharpie.

1. First, I took my scissors and green construction paper and cut out these shapes. It doesn’t need to be perfect since leaves aren’t perfect, but try to make a variety of different shapes: some with more leaves and some with one. To create my shapes, I didn’t draw them. I simply cut out a line with a teardrop/leaf shape at the bottom. Cut out a bunch of these because we are going to layer them to create the mistletoe!

2. I folded my piece of red construction paper in half and then started with three simple shapes and glued them down with the tips of the stems touching the top of the paper. A glue stick works fine for this and just layer the the stems on top of each other with them overlapping.

3. After you glue all of your shapes down and layer them, take the hold punch and punch out white circles. Then, take a glue stick and glue them down randomly on top of the mistletoe leaves.

4. Take a decent amount of twine and make a bow to “tie together” your mistletoe. A simple bunny ear bow works great! Then, glue down the bow with the glue stick.

5. Now, take the gold sharpie and in cursive write our “Merry Christmas” at the base of the card.

6. Wherever the curve of the word or letter goes down, create another line that connects to the other line. I like the think of this lettering as the “cheat lettering.” It looks really nice when it is done but it is super easy to do and doesn’t require you to know how to use a brush pen or do real lettering.

7. Now, just fill in the lines/shapes you made and you are all done!

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What I like about both of these cards is that they are 1) handmade, 2) festive, and 3) blank on the inside – so you can write a special message to whoever you give it to! And, since these cards barely take any time to make, they are great for last minute gifts!

I hope y’all have a very Merry Christmas Eve + Christmas and spend today and tomorrow surrounded by loved ones!

Merry Christmas!

xoxo, Annie

Christmas 2017 Playlist

Hey Y’all!

My first semester of senior year is coming to a close and winter break is less than a week away! I am so excited and relieved to finally have the long break and some time to relax in reach! 

It has been hard to sit down and right with the stress of school, band, and figuring out college things, but I am here today with another Christmas post!

One of my favorite parts of each holiday season is listening to Christmas music. My family and I really adore the classics. I love an old sound like Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole! Whenever I hear their voices, I always think of Christmas time.

So instead of the normal December playlist, I decided to do a Christmas playlist! It is full of many classic Christmas songs and some fun ones like the one from Charlie Brown and Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”

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I have linked the Spotify Playlist HERE! Go give it a listen and get in the holiday spirit!

For my other Christmas Posts, checkout the “Christmas” tab at the top of this page!

Merry (ALMOST) Christmas!

xoxo, Annie

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Gift Guide for Him

Hey Y’all!

Here is the second addition in my Christmas series. Today is all about something that I have always struggled with. Gifts for Guys.

I don’t know about y’all, but trying to find gifts for guys is so hard. This year is Sebastian and I’s fourth Christmas together and it still can be difficult. It’s complicated and often expensive and honestly just flat out confusing. SO…because of this, I wanted to write a post for y’all to help y’all out and tell you what I have found that works great!

 

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1. Ties/ 2. Cute Cards/ 3. Sweet Keychains/ 4. Watches/ 5. Picture Frames or DIYs/ 6. Socks

Ties and watches are more on the expensive side, but are really nice gifts. Places like Fossil even engrave the watches for free if you want to put something on the back!

Socks are usually inexpensive and easy on your wallet, but work great. Get a bunch in different colors!

Couple gifts are so fun and sweet! I have made Sebastian countless frames and cards and they are great gifts because they are special and personalized. The keychains are fun too and we still have our halves on our keys!

For personalized gifts, Easy is a great place to look. Cards, keychains and everything are all produced by small businesses and art often really good quality! They even usually have guides like “gifts for boyfriend” or “gifts for him” on their home page around Christmas and Valentine’s Day!

I know this was short, but I figured a short but cute gift guide would be nice for my first guide, especially with how busy school has been for me. But, I hope it was helpful and gives y’all some ideas if you need any!

xoxo, Annie

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25 Fun Stocking Stuffers Under $20

Hey Y’all!

Happy (?!) Monday!

So it is officially after Thanksgiving which means IT IS TIME! Christmas is here and so is this new series of Christmas posts. I will be trying to post some Christmas themed prompts on the blog a few times a week (so stocking stuffers, gift guides, DIYs and more)!

My first post in this series is today’s “25 Fun Stocking Stuffers Under $20” post! Today’s post includes little gifts and trinkets, all under $20, that can be used as stocking stuffers or as small gifts. There will be Pictures and then the word underneath each picture is a link to the item online!

 Keychains

Keychains are great, simple stocking stuffers. There are so many different kinds and can be super cute and even personalized!

1. Happy/ 2. Tassel + Monogram/ 3. Fearless

Beauty Goodies

The holiday season is a great time for finding high quality beauty items for a good price because of gift sets and etc. They make sweet gifts and let you or the person you get it for try out the product before investing in the big, full size product. And sometimes, you just get a better price. BONUS: those mini sets and items near the checkout at Sephora make PERFECT gifts!

4. CLINIQUE Lippies/ 5. Philosophy Gel Set/ 6. Minted Rose Balm

Tech Accessories

Tech Accessories are practical and useful, but the perfect size for stocking stuffers! Phone cases, pop sockets, phone pockets, earbuds, and more all fit in stockings and can work great while still being cute.

7. Happy Pocket/ 8. Marble Pop Socket

Hair Accessories

Hair accessories are also small and fit in stockings. Bows, scrunchies, ribbons, beanies (fold them up and put them in the stocking) and more!

9. Velvet Scrunchie Set/ 10. Preppy Beanie/ 11. Lilly Pulitzer Headband

Stationary and Writing Supplies

Cute pencils, pens, and little notebooks are great for purses, school or work and often fit as well. Pencils with cute sayings and fun printed notebooks are great!

 12. Lilly Pulitzer Mini Notebook/ 13. Ban.dō Compliment Pencils

Accessories

Accessories are definitely fitting because of their small size. Bracelets, sunglasses straps, sunglasses, jewelry, etc. all work great and can even be personalized to fit the person you are stuffing a stocking for!

14. SGPrep Bracelet/ 15. MarleyLilly Sunglasses Strap/ 16. Ban.do Sunglasses

Enamel Pins and Patches

Small but cute, these two things are just right for stockings. You can find them just about anywhere and they go great on backpacks, denim and more!

17. Ban.do Bonjour Patch/ 18. SGPrep Memories Pin

Trinkets

Little trinkets to go around someone’s room like on tables and desks are cute for stockings. This can be anything from jewelry dishes to film holders to little quotes.

19. ILY Trinket Dish/ 20. Mini Instax Glitter Frame

Car Trinkets and Fresheners

For someone in your life that drives, cute car air fresheners would be a great surprise in a stocking! Natural Life makes some really cute ones and a lot of them have sweet sayings on them too.

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Koozies and Stickers

Stickers are small and can be put anywhere, and koozies are perfect for drinks! These can be found just about anywhere and there are ones out there for everyone, but personally I LOVE the ones from Southern Girl Prep!

22. SGPrep Koozie23. SGPrep Sticker

Fun Things!

Sometimes it is just fun to put in some silly or cute things like silly socks or accessories to make someone laugh. Or, it is just fun to have some out of the ordinary or unique things in your stocking.

24. Mermaid Socks/ 25. Disco Ball Tumbler

There are so many more fun ways to fill your stockings, but I just wanted to put together a few! And it is even better when they are all under $20 because they are fun finds with a fun price that is easy on the wallet!

I hope y’all have a fabulous rest of the week!

xoxo, Annie

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Scripture Sunday Vol. 4

Hey y’all!

I’m finally back with a Scripture Sunday post. WOW! It has been quite a while.

Today I picked a verse that I felt like so many of us and definitely me, find it hard to remember and do.

Luke 1:46 reads –

“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior”

Wow. What a great verse. But also, such a hard one to fulfill. Mary speaks of such joy of rejoicing in her Lord and such faith. Often as Christians, we forget or struggle with the fact that we are supposed to reflect and magnify the great love of Christ. We can never come close to this great love, but our job is to show the light and love of Him. I definitely struggle with this and so many of us do. From struggling to keep our hurtful, unthought out words in to arguing with our siblings and parents, there are so many worldly and sinful ways for us to not show our love and magnify the ways of Christ. But, I have to remember to pray for God to give me the wisdom and strength to show love and not just say what I want to. It is not easy to keep those hurtful words in and even thoughts out of our head, but God can give us that strength to show His love to everyone, even the ones we don’t want to.

So this week when I have to go back to school after Thanksgiving break, I have to face things I might not go face: stress, anxiety, assignments, region band auditions, tough people and more. But I’m going to pray that this week and every week, God will give me the strength to push through and reflect and magnify Him and rejoice in him despite the unknown and known struggles and things I will go through.

I hope y’all have a great week back from thanksgiving break!

xoxo, Annie