THESE ARE THINGS NOW

Dear Reader,

A week ago I moved into my house at college that I’m sharing with seven other girls. I am in “living room 2” with another girl, there’s a girl in the “dining room,” and then the other five live upstairs.

I was basically only acquainted with three people when I signed the lease, so these first seven days involved a lot of me getting to know them. In turn, they had to learn some things about me.

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I’m not putting a picture of my real house on here, so here’s a random one from the internet that looks just as homey as mine. ūüôā

Here are my realizations from week one:

Food.¬†First of all, I know I’m not a great chef. I knew coming into this that I wasn’t going to be the roommate to cook five star meals for every dinner–but what I¬†didn’t¬†expect was for everyone else to do just that. My housemates¬†are out here making fancy pastas and baking¬†talapia and boiling corn on the cob, while I’m just sitting at the table eating my daily bowl of ramen noodles. There are even cookbooks¬†in our kitchen.¬†I might start perusing them as I eat my peanut butter sandwiches.

Speaking of peanut butter:¬†I swear, some people have never seen a jar of peanut butter before in their life. Well, none that are the size of the kind I brought. I’m too lazy to check it right now, but it’s about four times the size of a normal one I guess and I’ve had a conversation with every last housemate about this fun fact.

Something else I’ve found myself doing is¬†trying to be more subtle when I’m gross.¬†I do a lot of gross shit, alright?¬†Well, it’s not gross to¬†me¬†to let out the occasional burp or drink out of the milk jug, but I can see why that might cause someone to crinkle their noise. All that happens when I hide doing that stuff, or suppress my bad habits, is realize how many gross habits I have. It’s great.

Medical shit.¬†We’re learning more about each other every day. We talk about our classes and our majors. We’ll mention the organizations we’re involved with and the meetings we have. We bring up our families and bring over our friends. But¬†when¬†is the appropriate time to mention low-key medical “quirks?”

When it becomes relevant I guess.

Every person I’ve ever lived with has found out about my POTS because I’ve had to send¬†them a distress text asking them to bring me pretzels. So today when I came home to a full house after having a bit of an episode in our student center, I decided I should probably mention it soon. I mean, it’s not like they should be worried that I’m gonna drop dead on them or something–but if I come home and act weird or lock myself in my room or the bathroom–or if they see me with my legs in the air and my dad on speaker phone–it might be useful to let them into the loop.

TV/YouTube.¬†I’ve also been way more self-conscience of what I’m watching (especially since I can’t find my headphones currently). You can see right into my room when you open the front door, and because my door is normally open, you might find me watching The Philip DeFranco show or a David Dobrik blog. I always forget how weird that stuff must sound to others.

Also, we all bring out our computers or other devices to watch shows when we’re cooking or whatever. I love¬†playing the game¬†is it Parenthood or Gilmore Girls?¬†because hearing Lauren Graham’s voice isn’t quite enough to make the distinction. But then someone will walk into the kitchen while I’m watching¬†Criminal Minds¬†and cooking my eggs and there’s some rape or murder scene on my screen. Then we have a nice little chat about how disturbing we both find the show and discuss our new paranoias.

So it’s been an interesting few days. You can hear practically every noise in the house, so my daily naps have been a bit compromised (probably for the best, though). Other than that, I’m really digging this house and the people I share it with.

It’s gonna be a good year.

Sincerely,

Sammy

21 PICTURES I NEED ON MY WALL

Hello Reader,

In one of my last posts,¬†Happy List, I mentioned that I love beautiful pictures. I wouldn’t consider photography to be a hobby of mine, but I would love to be able to capture life as perfectly as these people have. So, here are¬†21¬†pictures that I need to have on my walls. Pictures that scream adventure, serve as reminders, or are just simply beautiful captures.

ADVENTURE

A1

I look at this picture and I imagine a couple or best friends or siblings–preparing for the trip by grabbing all the warmest blankets and fluffiest pillows and creating the perfect road playlists. Driving along beautiful roads, only interrupting their conversation when the best songs come up. Finally reaching their destination, jumping out of the car, stretching and making the most embarrassing involuntary noises, setting up everything in the back, and just taking in the view, one deep breath of cool air at a time.

A2

The perfect vacation spot–kept secret in order to be saved for the most daring and most deserving. A hidden gem.

A3

Doesn’t this seem magical? I’d love to spend a day lost on the other side of this gate.

A4

This is one of my all-time favorite pictures. I found it a while back and it quickly became an obsession. It’s so simple and clear, but makes me long for open air and freedom and further inspires me to venture into this world. This is what I see when I think of wanderlust.

A5

I’m immediately transported when I see this picture. I feel the slight ache in my biceps as I pull the paddle slowly through the heavy water. I carefully reach over and run my fingers through the icy stream. I listen to the birds as they sing to each other. I’m in paradise.

A6

Another road trip picture. Just a reminder that beauty is everywhere and it’s true when they say it’s not the destination that matters, but the journey. A good reminder to slow down and look around every once in a while. Pay attention.

BEAUTIFUL CAPTURES

B1

Elephants are my favorite animal and this picture was taken at just the right time to show all the beauty.

B2

A true laugh and a yellow umbrella.
B3

Just some harmless PDA that captures true affection and love. Another good reminder that adventures are best shared with loved ones.
B4

Balloons being released by the Eiffel Tower. Love the angle, love the color, love all the messages you can choose to associate with it.
B5

On my bucket list. Not only do I want to visit all of these places and take in all of their beauty, but I want to take stupid-cute pictures and just smile and laugh all the way around the world.

B6

Few things are better than a good belly laugh. And adorable children.

QUOTES

Q1

Everywhere.
Q2

Admittedly a lame picture/quote but I kind of love this. Let people hate you or try to beat you or bring you down, it doesn’t matter. Be you. Be nothing less than fabulous. Always.
Q3

I’m a firm believer that we play a huge part in who we become–it’s not all based on society and how we’re raised. I believe people can change, they just have to decide who they want to become first. And then become it. Also: elephant.

Q4

Friendly reminder that you only live once without the annoying acronym. Also, wild and precious are perfect descriptions of life. Let’s live, shall we?

Q5

Map + Adventure. How could I not have this on my wall?

PLACES

R1

San Francisco: the city I fell in love with because of The Princess Diaries. This love has only grown since.

R2

The Giraffe Manor in Nairobi, Kenya.¬†It’s a hotel where giraffes just occasionally pop their heads in. Going on the wall to remind me to make it over to Kenya sometime soon.

R5

Glethoom: the town with no roads. Guests can rent “whisper boats” that are electronic and noiseless and will take passengers around the area. Added bonus to being super cool: no car pollution and tons of trees. If anything I’ve got to go to breathe such pure air.

R6Last but not least: elephants. Specifically in Thailand at a Four Seasons resort, where these beautiful creatures just roam around and can interact with guests. You know, casually.

So there you have it! I guess it’s kind of weird to put¬†so many pictures on my wall that 1) don’t have me in them, 2) are of places I’ve never been to and random people I’ve never met and 3) aren’t even my own. But these photos make me happy, so on the wall they will go. And¬†maybe someday¬†I’ll take pictures beautiful enough for me to display like this.

Until then, these 21 (not to mention all the others) will do just fine.

Sincerely,

Sammy

PS.¬†Please tell me you’ve heard of Timeflies. If yes, congratulations on being in the know of one of today’s greatest artists. If no, welcome. Do yourself a favor and check them out. My favorite¬†is¬†Time of your Life, but their new album is just as good as their takes on popular songs.

Why I Love Maps

Dear Reader,

I love maps. They’re informational and inspiring and easy to get the hang of. If you use them correctly you can get anywhere you want in this world, and if you use them incorrectly you might just find the adventure you’ve been waiting for. After all, sometimes mistakes are just blessings in disguise.

When I was in eighth grade I had this history teacher, Mr. Hamann, who would give us map tests. These tests served many different purposes, as he pointed out to us at the beginning of the school year. Of course, they were a part of the curriculum, and they did teach us good study habits and test-preparation skills, but these map tests meant so much more than that.

Mr. Hamann told us that when he was a boy, his father would take his family on road trips where the children would¬†sit in the front seat of the car with a map in their hands and he would ask them, “where do you want to go?”

And they got to decide.

If they could navigate to their destination of choice, that’s where they got to go. Ever since then, maps became so much more magical to me; just living off the belief that if I know how to get there, I can go anywhere in this world.

And I’m not talking about money. I know that I can’t¬†just hop around the world, going from place to place, living different lives in New York City and Paris and London. I know that my money would eventually run out (very soon, actually), and I’d be stuck in Ohio for many years to come, but there’s this idea that keeps me hanging on.

If I research it and spend my money wisely and really know where I’m going and what I want to do when I get there and what experiences I need to have before forcing myself to come back home, I could go to Thailand or Luxembourg or Jamaica and really see the world. I could really go anywhere if I wanted to, I just couldn’t go everywhere. Not financially, really. Not yet.

But it’s more than that. Sure, maps show you the big picture and help you navigate across the globe and help you gain a truer perspective of your surroundings, but you can also zoom in. Maps can show you the hidden gems that are¬†in spitting distance! And they can show you¬†how to get there.

And, as the saying goes, it’s not always about the destination. It’s about the journey.

So I love maps. They’re instruction guides just as much as they are reminders of what’s out there and what’s around us. And I’m looking forward to hanging one right above my bed in my college dorm, against my roommates request (sorry Jaden), to inspire me every day. One look will remind me what’s out there and will motivate me to do what I need to do to get there.

And I will get there. One day. I’ll get out of this place and I’ll see the world. Until then, I leave you with this quote (if you know where it came from please let me know!!) that perfectly sums up all of my feelings about this subject.

“Please understand, I have been waiting to leave ever since I figured out there were roads willing to take me anywhere I wanted to go.”

Sincerely,

Sammy

PS. Maps by The Front Bottoms is my current obsession in the music realm and obviously relates to what I’ve been trying to say for the past twenty minutes.