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Life Remedies

As always, I apologize for my lack of blogging this year! University certainly takes up a fair amount of time, and when I write, I feel like I owe y’all something really worth reading – not that my little rambles aren’t worth reading, of course.

First order of business: I’m looking for inspiration. I’ve been thinking about it, and I want to write a story, and I suppose sitting here waiting for inspiration to strike me isn’t quite the way to do it, but I need a good character or two to get going. I’ll get there eventually, but in the mean time I thought it might be nice to share two little videos I find very inspiring.

The first is an awe inspiring talk by Sarah Kay – and her amazing performance of “B”. The second is my favourite of all stories, Jonathan Harris’s story collecting. I hope you enjoy them both, and I’ll try to stay in touch over the Christmas break! I’m on my way westerly in just under two weeks, and I’ll be taking lots of relaxing time – which we all know means lots of blogging time! I’ll work on blogging next term as well, now that I’ve got a routine, and a handle on this university thing.

Hello all! So as you all know, I’m busily working away at my first semester of university – henceforth why the blog is well… dun dun duuuunnnn, as of late.

I know it can be hard to stay positive as winter sets in – nothing like dry skin, staticky hair, and permanently cold feet to make you feel quite dull. But look on the bright side of things! Only just over a month until Christmas [meaning only a few more days before it’s entirely acceptable to play Christmas carols at any time]! I’m personally excited for that eight hour plane ride home for the holidays. After spending four months nonstop in university residence – eating meal hall food, and dealing with one-ply ridden communal bathrooms – there is not much else I want to do except see more of my family than their heads and necks [over Skype], be able to cuddle my darling kittens, and have a good long chat with my Daisy-dog. Not only do I get to go back to my beloved west coast, my family, and my animals; but I also get to partake in my favourite Christmas activities!

So in the spirit of keeping things positive, I’ve decided to share some of my favourite new things about the holidays so those of you who aren’t so into the whole concept of winter can keep the holidays in mind as something to look forward to! [

Some people have old traditions that they do every year, but new traditions can be fun too! And yes, there are such things as new traditions, because they have to start somewhere. My favourite new holiday tradition is the musical production of White Christmas. It’s been part of my holidays for 2, going on 3, years now! The first year I played Betty Haynes in my high school’s production of it, then last year I went to see it done by the Arts Club in Vancouver – ours was good, but those Arts Club performers tap dance like fiends! I love the festive air in the theatre around that time, getting to get all dressed up in my fancy going-out wear, and watching people sing and dance and celebrate the holidays!

Another thing my family started doing last year was celebrating Solstice! It’s a super fun holiday where our whole town gets together at the community hall and has a big feast, and the kids from the school sing Christmas carols, and people just enjoy each other’s company. Then we all go outside and light a big ol’ bonfire, and use sparklers, because Solstice is all about making light on the darkest day of the year. It’s a fabulous time!

Of course my favourite part of the actual Christmas part of the holidays is giving gifts. Of course I like to receive them, but my very sweet friend taught me [subconsciously – he wasn’t actively trying, I don’t think] just how satisfying gift giving can be! A few Christmases ago I painstakingly sought out the perfect gift for my [ex] boyfriend [now that very sweet friend], and when I found the perfect thing [in mid-November] it took all my self-control not to just spill the beans and give it to him. The self-control won in the end, and the look on his face showed me just how much I really love giving people wonderful, thoughtful, personal gifts. Who knew you could learn so much from a skateboard deck!

This year, might I recommend giving your gifts a little differently? Last year my sister and I decided to wrap our gifts in brown paper and make pretty little decorations for the wrapping ourselves. It was an inexpensive, really fun and creative way to make our gifts even more meaningful. I also learned how to make reindeer garlands that day, so now I’m obviously Martha Stewart’s heiress. I’ve also heard of people wrapping gifts in newsprint, or scarves, or other creative little ways. I think I’m going to give some thought to cute reusable packaging this year!

So there are a few things that keep me excited for the snowy, wintery days ahead of us! Well, snowy here on the east coast – probably quite rainy and mild on the west coast. I hope y’all feel inspired for the Christmas season, and I’ll be back with more holiday and final exam inspired posts later – get stoked, finals are the BEST PART OF UNIVERSITY.***

*** I don’t actually know this for sure – I haven’t experience finals yet. I feel like I might be being sarcastic, though. No guarantees! I will let you know.

For Him…

A set of 4 sterling silver cocktail picks (Tiffany & Co.) for only $305?! A steal, I tell you.

Every fashionable, modern day golfer has one. A sterling golf tee (Tiffany & Co. $125)

A beautiful pair of sterling silver ice tongs (Tiffany & Co. $600) for the warm heated, but chilly fingered giftee.

Disclaimer: I confess to actually being truly, madly, deeply in love with Tiffany’s. And yes, I do have the movie poster for Breakfast at Tiffany’s on my wall. This is all just one giant joke. But if anyone feels the urge to get me some overpriced cocktail picks, I wouldn’t object.

So there are a few things that I have learned over the last couple months, my first months of university, and I am going to share them with you now. So get stoked. Free, unsolicited advice – the best kind. A lot of this advice is based from things I’ve learned at university, but I feel like it applies to a lot of places, and situations.

1. Don’t take home for granted. Tell your parents you love them often, tell your friends you love them often, snuggle your pets as often as you can, and enjoy the peace and quiet of home before you move to the land of paper-thin walls, and neighbours that like to think they are nocturnal.

2. Accept change. Allow yourself to discover who you are. Don’t make a plan, and follow it like it’s the only option. You’ll find new things that you like, and new things you want to pursue.

3. Be a grown up about things. If there is something you don’t like, and it bothers you, confront it. Unless it’s a whole lot bigger than you… then bring reinforcements.

4. Like what you like! I really am over people telling me what I should like. You’re not soooo smart because you like indie things. Get over yourself. I know we go over this on a  regular basis. But just do what you want to do. You’re you for a reason, and if you don’t like who you are… well, let’s face it, you’re probably not being yourself.

5. Don’t tie yourself down too soon. Be flexible where friends are concerned.

6. Get out there! Studying is important, but so is having a social life. Unless you have a History midterm that’s worth too much of your mark to not study for all weekend. That’s okay. You’re forgiven for an antisocial, sweatpants weekend.

7. Have a good time. And make sure the good time is you’re idea of a good time. If you don’t like to party, don’t party! If you don’t know if you like to party, try it and judge that. If you don’t like studying… well… don’t go to university… or learn how to make it bearable, and fast.

8. Make sure you have something that cheers you up no matter what. I like to talk to my friends and family, or do yoga when I’m upset. I do familiar things when I’m feeling homesick, and sometimes just going for a walk + rant really does help.