Friends Pushing Me to Be Better

I just ate a dinner of popcorn, Chex Mix, celery, chocolate cake, an apple, “gorilla dip”, and a singular chicken wing.

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#nutrition

Also, the only thing I watched from the Super Bowl last night was the halftime show and the Honda commercial with the singing sheep, and that was everything I needed.

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I love Coldplay, Beyonce, and Bruno Mars, but did anyone else feel like the halftime performance as a whole was a weird combo?

Anyway, I have nothing more to say about the Super Bowl, so let’s talk about how my wonderful friends have been kicking my butt in the best way possible.

Rewind to Friday: I had biomechanics in the morning, a good lunch with friends, bible study, a workout, homework, and productive procrastination (working on a birthday gift for someone!).

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Two of my dear friends, Mai and Kelsey, are in my bible study, and listening to their perspectives and insights on Scripture and faith in general was so inspiring. Most of all, their willingness to share their own doubts and trials humbles me to face my own doubts and trials.

Saturday started off with a walk through winter wonderland to get to work (unintentional alliteration).

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I tried to pack more substantial snacks so that I wouldn’t be so lightheaded and cranky like I was last week at work, but I guess all the walking, cooking, and cleaning I do (and the fact that I end at 2pm) just does me in. Needless to say, lunch was again demolished.

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While I was studying, my pal Connor came up to chat with me for a bit, and he gave me nuggets of wisdom to deal with my academic stress. His words were simple and things I knew logically, but I still needed someone to tell them to me in order to internalize it. 1) Happiness is important. 2) Don’t stress out because other people have more knowledge than you. Do what you need to do, but there’s no good in comparing and worrying.

Good stuff.

Saturday night involved a workout, some studying, and Tasty Burger (!!!) with the best friend.

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A cheeseburger from this joint was on our food bucket list, and Saturday night was the night to crush it.

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We liked their milkshakes as much as we liked their burgers! The shakes were uber thick and creamy. Like, you had to work those cheek muscles to drink it through the straw.

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love at first bite

Rachel and I talked about our Lent resolutions since it starts this Wednesday, and one of my things to “give up” is makeup. I don’t wear a lot, but I do wear a little every day. I told Rachel with hesitance that I would give up makeup, but the next day I told her I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do it. She insisted that giving up makeup would be good for me, and that I shouldn’t cave just because it’s hard (it’s definitely not supposed to be easy!). I agree. Wearing no makeup will help me focus on my character and fight vanity.

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My roommate Jordan also gave me a great slice of humble pie when I told her that I’m not always early (and sometimes a little late) to things, especially if I’m meeting with a close friend. She told me that everyone, close friends or professional mentors, should have their time respected. Duh, common sense, right? But it’s easier said than done for me these days (punctuality is slacking). Jordan is 100% right though. I should never take advantage of my friends’ time just because I’m close to them.

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Lastly, my amazing friend Christina invited me to do mobile soup kitchen with her last night. I joined her and some other kind volunteers, but I knew that I wanted to make it back in time for the Super Bowl halftime show. Towards the end of the route, I started to get impatient and antsy to make it back to campus, but just watching how patient, considerate, and kind Christina was with all the people we met was a humbling and beautiful sight. A lesson in selflessness right in front of me.

I am constantly in awe of my friends and the beauty of their souls. God is definitely shaping me up through their example and words. And of course, so many bloggers push me to be better too. Thanks, guys ♥︎

Hope you all have a happy week! We’re kind of hoping that BU calls in for a snow day today…

So tell me:

Do your friends keep you “on track”?

What is one lesson you learned/were reminded of this weekend?

Thoughts on the Super Bowl/halftime show?

Best thing you did this weekend. Probably Tasty Burger with Rachel!

The Great and Small Things I Learned {Sophomore Semester I}

We back, we back, we BAAACCKKK.

Back home. Back to the kitchen. Back to sleep. Back to blogging more than once a week (hopefully)! For now. 🙂

Needless to say, finals were exhausting, and we all lost another half a year off our lives in the process, but it all makes winter break that much sweeter.

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not gonna lie, I’ll miss you, human physiology

I came home by train on Saturday, and since then, I’ve caught up on the 500+ blog posts that I haven’t read since Thanksgiving, cooked, watched Food Network, and {sorta} caught up on sleep.

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kitchen is where the heart is ♥︎ 

With the close of another semester of college, I think it’s only appropriate to share my third edition of “The Great and Small Things I Learned”! Some of the things might overlap with my first or second freshman semesters, but I know the Lord blesses/humbles me with many more lessons constantly. So without further ado…

the great and small

1) I am probably Boston’s #1 peanut butter consumer.

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finished a little over seven 36 oz. jars

2) The weather has a bigger impact on my mood than I thought.

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3) No matter how often I feel like there’s no time to pray: a) there is always time; b) it’s always worth it; c) prayer helps me focus and use my time more efficiently.

4) Simply logging off of social media on all my devices deters me from going on and getting majorly distracted.

5) Boston has so many hidden gem restaurants. (Thanks to this list for introducing Rachel and me to some incredible food!)

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y’all know how I feel about sandwiches…

6) I used to feel like I physiologically had to exercise if I sat for too long, even if I had already worked out and walked around that day. It was all in my head.

7) How to ask better conversational questions in order to get to know people better. People’s life stories or daily stories can be so interesting, and friendships can sprout from them.

8) How to be more attentive and compassionate. All thanks to my friends who are so attentive and compassionate towards me.

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9) I can better observe my emotions objectively. I can better understand why I feel a certain way, realize that it’s okay to feel that way, but know that I can control what I do with those feelings.

10) The ravioli in the dining hall is delicious and I need to get it more often.

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11) Friendships > romantic relationships. That sounds like I’m bitter about not being in a relationship, but this is true whether you’re in a romantic relationship or not. Friends if you have no significant other, friends if you do have a significant other, friends who become significant others, friends with your significant other… You get the point.

12) Taking yourself too seriously is stressful.

13) Your girls Rachel and Alison here love us some brussels sprouts. We can and WILL finish a whole pan in one sitting.

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14) If I am being honest with myself, I cannot effectively study while listening to music with any sort of melody. As much as I want to rock out to cool music while reading about the cardiovascular system, I just cannot focus fully. These videos were my jam (sans melody) during finals week.

15) Going to the gym once or not at all during the week is okay.

16) I still love dancing, and I hope to continue dancing for as long as I can.

17) Doing the readings for your classes is not always necessary, but it definitely makes life a heck of a lot easier when it comes down to the exams and papers.

18) How to accept days when I just don’t have the time or energy to work out, even if I haven’t worked out for a few days in a row…

19) …But any sort of movement is worth it and helps me focus for the rest of my day.

20) I hate rain boots. I’d rather wear sneakers and get my feet soaked. (Probably just need better rain boots that don’t chafe my feet.)

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21) I need to write down the order in which I want to complete my daily tasks. Otherwise, I feel like a lost duckling and end up getting distracted.

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22) I need to work on punctuality. Rachel thinks so too.

23) Good people are medicine for the mind, body, and soul.

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24) Watching my friends grow in mind, body, and spirit is one of the coolest things ever.

25) How to trust in God a little bit more.

26) My blog is transforming as I am being transformed. (Duh. But it’s interesting to observe.)

27) There is much more to learn.

I actually don’t know the next time I will check in with you all, since this week is Christmas week. Crazy pants. We’ll be driving up to Canada on Christmas day, which isn’t quite my ideal of how to spend Christmas, but a) it’s not about ME; b) I’ll be with my family; c) Jesus, Mary, and Joseph were traveling on Christmas day; d) traffic will be pretty light!

Hope you all have a joyful week ahead ♥︎

P.S. Just saw the whole Miss Universe mistake and I am feelin’ so bad for both Miss Colombia and Steve Harvey. Also kinda chuckling, but mostly feelin’ bad.

So tell me:

What is one lesson/thing about yourself you learned this fall?

Can you relate to any of the lessons I learned?

What did you have for dinner last night? I made pesto chicken with maple balsamic kale last night for Pop and myself! (+ Asian pear, pomegranate, toasted pecans, and two cornbread muffins with honey and butter as sides/snacks/dessert)

How do you go about making to-do lists? 

Letting Go

I’m starting to sneeze more often. You know what that means…

Spring!!! Or a cold, but I’m hoping it’s just spring allergies.

Besides a freak blizzard on Saturday here in Boston, the sun has been shining and the temperatures have been creeping up ever so slightly in the past week. It was nice enough for me to want to run, so that’s saying something. I even did homework al fresco last Wednesday, holla!

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The shadows on my face are freaky

I’m not even going to tell you that much about school, because it’s just busy. I must admit that there were some waterworks over an essay draft this weekend because the frustration of not being able to sort my thoughts was gettin’ real. The mantra that has been running through my head the whole weekend is this:

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Wise words of Elsa, am I right? I needed to tell myself over and over to let go of my pride, perfectionism, and stress. It’s okay to ask for help, take a break, say no to people, and to cry and sing songs with yourself while folding laundry. You let it go and move forward.

End rant.

God is always good, and He still put a smile on my face through some small yet beautiful things this weekend. One of those things was an a cappella concert featuring my amazing friend, Adrienne (girl on the left).

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Even though I gave up listening to music for Lent, I decided that the concert didn’t count because I was supporting a friend 😀 Although, I nearly cried/jumped out of my seat to dance because all the groups sounded incredible.

P.S. I miss dancing so much.

This breakfast has been making me smile as well. I’ve been adding frozen blueberries to my oatmeal from the pancake toppings bar in the dining hall, and I am diggin’ it. Adds some tartness, antioxidants, and color!

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I also tried Larabars for the first time last week! There were some Larabar representatives on campus last week, and they were giving out free samples. It was my lucky day, because guess what flavors they were giving out. Peanut butter chocolate chip and peanut butter cookie. I KNOW, it’s like they knew I would be there to take them!

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I took four of their mini samples (they said take as many as you want, but I decided to be a good girl and not take the whole jar), and I have one left now. *sniff*

A Sunday morning workout helped me to escape some of my homework blues. I snapped this (#nofilter) on my way back from the gym:

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 What a fabulous start to Holy Week, eh?

Lastly, blogging makes me happy! Typing these words right now is like therapy. YOU make me happy and don’t forget it.

I said no to a lot of activities this weekend, and I definitely could have said no to more, but that would have driven me up the wall even more. Sometimes I just have to let go of the fact that I can’t figure out my chemistry question. Let go of the fact that I can’t bang out an essay in two hours. Let go of the fact that I’m not “on schedule” (a schedule that I made for myself on Saturday). I need to walk away, do something that makes me smile, and come back. Sometimes I still don’t know what to do, but more often than not, I have a fresh mind that can tackle the work.

Happy Monday 🙂

So tell me:

One thing that made you smile this weekend!

What do you need to “let go” of in your life?

What is your favorite Larabar flavor? I want to try some more if I ever find them (or attempt to make them myself at home)!

Fascinating Friday Links #40 + Jumping for Joy

Hi!

I went on a 4 mile walk/run at a shady trail yesterday, and there were some beautiful things I saw along the way that made me want to jump for sheer joy. I’m not kidding; I actually did this when no one was around:

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I saw an elderly couple walking back and forth on the trail holding hands, a smiling lady praying a Rosary, a man pensively sitting on a bench while looking out into the lake, and a bunch of chipmunks (one of which scared the crap out of me when it popped out of the trees all of a sudden).

Not so beautiful was a bug flying into my nose. EW.

I was listening to “I Got Rhythm” at one point as well, which put some major pep in my step. I was doing leaps and turns in my sneakers until I saw a lady walking towards me. Guatever, “Let them praise Him with dancing!” Moving and grooving at its best.

I also played frisbee— the only hand-eye coordination activity that I’m actually good at—with Jordan and Michael for a couple hours and it was the best thing ever (they told me to say that). But seriously, it was really fun! Except when they each hit me with the frisbee accidentally— once in the collar bone and once in the shin, right where my burpee wound is. Abusive.

These cookies at Mike’s house made up for it though:

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Anyway. Long time, no links! I took a break from Fascinating Friday Links while in Florida because there was just too much happening on the trip that I wanted to recap, so the links had to scoot over temporarily. I’m happy to be bringing them back this week!

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Health and Fitness

[Ideas] What Do Registered Dietitians Feed Their Kids? via The Lean Green Bean

[Pick up those kettlebells!] Top 10 Benefits of Kettlebells via Cotter Crunch + Lifting Revolution

[Very good to know] Popular Fitness Myths Debunked via Your Trainer Paige

[Perfect for those taking it easy with exercise] 21 Low-Impact Workouts That Are More Effective Than You Think via Greatist

[Move and groove] Backyard Total Body Circuit via Run Pretty + Lower Body Blaster via Purely Twins + 8 Minute No-Crunch Ab Workout via Fit Foodie Finds + 45/15 Circuit Workout via Peanut Butter Runner

Food for Thought

[The secret is simple] I Know The Secret to Skinny via The Healthy Maven

[So relatable] Worry Less, Live More via The Lean Green Bean

[For any relationship] The Secret to Having a Marriage That Never Goes Stale via Goins Writer

[Dedicated to all my best buds] 40 Things We Forget to Thank Our Best Friends For via Marc and Angel Hack Life

Food for Belly

[I ♥ muffins] Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins with Brown Butter Banana Streusel via Edible Perspective

[Summer perfection] Summer Pesto Pasta via Chocolate and Carrots

[Yes, please] Apricot Pistachio Squares via Smitten Kitchen

[Fancy] Baked Figs with Bacon, Cheese, and Pecans on Grilled Bread via White On Rice Couple

[Anything smothered in cheese] Cheesy Stuffed Poblanos via How Sweet It Is

[Up my alley] Peanut Butter Cookie Energy Bars via GI 365

Miscellaneous Fun 

[Beautiful] This Guy’s Girlfriend Drags Him Around The World in 21 Gorgeous Photographs via Distractify

[For us spice-lovers] Mouth on Fire? The Best and Worse Ways to Soothe the Burn via Greatist

[Applicable] 17 Things That Happen When You’re Perpetually Clu1msy via Thought Catalog

[Word] The Four Keys to Finding Love for Women (and  Men) via Chastity Project

Hope everyone has a lovely weekend!

So tell me:

Do you ever get so happy that you want to dance and jump?

Do you like to play frisbee?

What are you doing this weekend?

I’m going to church, packing for Boston, and hanging out with friends most likely! Also, I’ll be buying books for college. Yikes.