A Years Time

It’s amazing how much can change in a year. From last August, to this current August, my life has changed drastically in ways I wasn’t expecting. Often, we know when to expect change. I always knew ever since I was a little girl that the year 2015 would be a big year for me and I would graduate from high school and leave home for college. I knew this change was coming. I was ready for it.

Still, some changes aren’t quite as expected. This year has brought a lot of change I wasn’t expecting. This day last year, my stepfather passed away suddenly, and I think this is what has caused me to analyze change so much. This one, hurtful moment changed my life in many ways. It affected me emotionally, and heavily impacted my family dynamic. It brought a lot of heartache and created many obstacles for my family that we are still working through. This was a change I did not have planned. This was a change that was not welcomed.

There have been great things that have happened this year too. I started dating my best friend, I got an internship, I got a position on the executive committee for my sorority, I made new friends, although while also losing some, and I declared myself as a double major. So much can change in a day- a minute even- let alone a year. It’s crazy to think how far I’ve come from last summer to this summer, and yet how much I’ve stepped back. Some aspects of my life that weren’t blooming quite as much last summer, such as my professional life or my love life, are doing very well now. Other aspects that may have been great, seem to be at a low point right now.

Still, I am not worried. I know that soon, even more crazy unexpected events will occur, good and bad. The good might not be good forever, but neither will the bad. Even more change is expected to come by next summer as I will hopefully be graduating college and officially moving out of the home I’ve been living in for the past ten years. I’ll have to say goodbye to a lot of great people, but I believe when the time comes I will be ready. For now, I am going to live in the moment and do my best to accept change as it comes and believe the universe has a plan for me. Still, it’s nice to look back and reflect on what my life once was way back when.

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Favorite Childhood toys

Alright so I’m cleaning out my closet and attic in hopes for a yard sale, and I’ve encountered some of my old childhood toys, so I thought I’d share some with you guys. I was a toy hoarder. Basically when I’d find a style of toy I liked, I’d go all in and collect as many as I can. I went through many phases as a kid and I have so many toys to reminisce. Let me know if you collected any of these toys as a child either.

One of my first, and most basic, phases include my passion for stuffed animals. I loved stuffed animals. I mean to be quite honest, I still love stuffed animals. They’re just so cute and decorative and my heart warms any time someone gives me one as a gift. But my obsession when I was younger was real. I had stuffed animals all lined across little chairs in my room. I had bunk beds and the top bunk was literally full of stuffed animals. Like you couldn’t see the bed at all because there were so many of them. My two favorite stuffed animals I still have today. My one favorite was my first ever stuffed animal and it is a little blue and green rhino that I named.. wait for it.. Rhino. Wow, I was so creative! In my defense I don’t even remember naming it, and I got the stuffed animal literally as soon as I came out of the womb so. Whatever. My dog chewed off his ear once and I was really devastated, but my grandmother sewed it back on so no worries. Rhino’s been through a lot but he’s survived. My other favorite stuffed animal is a stuffed bunny named Beatrice. This bunny was my great grandmother’s and when she passed away I was given the stuffed bunny. I wasn’t close to my great grandmother or anything, but I really cherished the bunny when it was given to me. Not to mention it’s the cutest little bunny ever!!

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Another intense obsession I went through was Bratz dolls. Yes, I had a ton of Barbies too and I dabbled a bit with My Scene, but Bratz were my thing. Not gonna lie, they totally freaked me out at first with their big heads and attachable feet, but they grew on me. I liked that there were multiple characters and they all looked really different. And I liked their clothes because it was very risqué and my six year old self was totally into that.

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Another phase I went through was the Littlest Pet Shop phase and I still have a box of them underneath of my bed. I even had the Littlest Pet Shop Nintendo DS game because they are just so cute. OMG how I loved these things. My collection grew HUGE! It got to the point where I had so many that I had a list of all of their names because I couldn’t remember. And then I got so overwhelmed by having so many and not knowing which ones to play with that I just stopped playing with them all together and moved on to the next toy. What a rough life for a nine year old. Being too overwhelmed by how many Littlest Pet Shop Toys you have. I really had over 100, plus several different play houses.

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OMG speaking of play houses, I totally forgot about Sweet Streets. Like I seriously forgot that was a thing. Probably because that obsession happened when I was super young and then they kind of went extinct. Sweet Streets had to be one of the coolest toys though because they all came with their own little houses. That’s such a great toy invention! I used to set up all the houses outside and create my own little Sweet Streets neighborhood. There would be homes, a hotel, a dog salon, a ballet studio. Honestly shout out to whoever made Sweet Streets because they were one of the best toys to ever exist.

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I also went through a very brief Pixel Chix phase. If you don’t know what a Pixel Chix is.. then I don’t know what to tell you because it’s pretty self explanatory. It’s basically a pixel girl living in a house. It’s so cool it’s like having a virtual friend. Until you don’t play for three days and your Pixel Chix gets mad at you and moves out and a new one moves in. That really personally offended me was I was a child.

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Another phase was a common one for children, and it was the Webkinz phase. These little stuffed animals cost $12 because they were so popular, and now they’re so irrelevant you can buy them for $1. Webkinz were the hottest toy to have when I was in the 4th grade. I had a bunch and I loved playing online and decorating their homes and interacting with other Webkinz users. I believe Webkinz is what started my internet addiction, and I regret nothing. Except for maybe buying 20 of them.

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The last toy obsession I had would be Build-a-Bears. Yes, Build-a-Bears and Webkinz fall into the stuffed animal category, but these are so much more specific and different. Webkinz are different because they have a code to register online and interact with other users. Build-a-Bears are different only because they are stuffed animals you make yourself. Making the stuffed animal myself made me feel so much closer and more bonded to it, even though it’s an inanimate object. I loved stuffing it and putting its little heart in and picking out a sound and outfit, and then making its birth certificate. My fifth birthday party was at a Build-a-Bear because yes, apparently they also do birthday parties, and I was given a Build-a-Bear pillow for all my friends to sign and I still have that pillow sitting on my bed today. After that birthday party, my grandmother took me to get a Build-a-Bear for my birthday each year up until I hit about ten or eleven. I think Build-a-Bear is such a cute idea for children and unfortunately, the one near me closed so I cannot go to one anytime soon, but it’s a place I would still go to because the stuffed animals really are so adorable. I’ll always love you, Build-a-Bear.

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This was really enjoyable to look back on all the toys I loved as a child and reminiscing through all of my phases. I’m sure I’ve forgotten many toys I went through obsessions with so I definitely hope to make a part two of this in the future. If you enjoyed this and had any of these toys as a child, please let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

Reminiscing

I was fortunate enough to go to a high school where we had not only one field trip, but two. My senior year of high school, we went to Disney World which I wrote about here. Disney World is an awesome field trip, but my personal experience was not the greatest.  I found the experience to be quite overrated. The lines were long for rides that were not that exciting. Any good food was far out of my budget, and souvenirs were so expensive and flat out, not worth it. A trip I for some reason, never wrote about, at least not that I can recall, was a trip my school took my junior year of high school. This year, we went to Busch Gardens.

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(wow I wish I wore different socks.. and what the heck is my hair??)

It’s odd that I am reminiscing on this trip now. This was my junior year of high school and here I am going into my sophomore year of college. But this was just one of those trips I will never forget. It has to be in the top five best experiences of my life. It was a five hour bus ride to Virginia, but even that was fun. On the bus ride there, me and my friend took a picture each hour. We watched movies and all hung out on the bus, and it was a great time! The first night we went go-karting which is something I had never done before and I loved it.

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I rode my first real roller coaster in Busch Gardens. I had such a fear of roller coasters and I was freaking out on the inside. A few of my other friends were also afraid of roller coasters and we were the designated bag holders for all of our friends who actually did go on the rides. But no, I refused. I had flashbacks to a trip I went on in the eighth grade to an amusement park where I had a terrible time because I didn’t go on any rides and instead had to wait, toppling over with everyone’s stuff. Not this time. I got over my fear, got on a roller coaster, and well, it wasn’t bad. I’m not the biggest fan in the world of roller coasters still, but I know what roller coasters I can and can’t handle. And because I got over my fear and got on a roller coaster, I had a way better time than I would have on this trip. My first roller coaster was called Alpengeist and it was actually really fun. I went on it twice in a row. I remember going on this one roller coaster that I also went on twice, it was called Verbolten. When I looked at the roller coaster from the outside, I assumed it was a children’s ride. I was so wrong. The roller coaster was actually so intense. At one point it came to a complete stop in pitch black dark and I thought the ride was broken down when suddenly it just did a straight drop… it was intense, but oh so fun.

I also remember one night we had a little party in our hotel where we sang karaoke and danced and it was such a great way to bond with all of my friends.

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As much as I love college, there are some memories from high school I would do anything to relive. This is certainly one of them. My junior trip was such an incredible experience and I am in disbelief it was so long ago. I would do anything to go back.