Thursday, December 1, 2016

A Letter To My Younger Self

A few weeks ago I was inspired to write this letter about what I would say to my younger self. I'm a pretty open person and strangely enough I found this kind of difficult to share, but from my experience everything brought out of darkness and into the light brings nothing but healing. Mind you this is what I would have NEEDED to hear years ago and it may be disturbing to some of you, but this in fact was my reality and is the reality of so many teens and young adults.

To my younger self,

I know your suicidal thoughts.
I hear the lies echoing in your head about your self hate. 
I see your tears, your blood and mutilated limbs. 
I see past your tough exterior you use to hide in. 
I know you're broken and I know you're hurting. 
Your pain is real. 

You may not believe me when I tell you this,
but one day you will experience the highest of highs
and I'm not talking about any drug.
It's natural, it's so real and it's something greater than you, something from outside you that lives, moves and breathes and that will move through you. 
You can't see it now because it's very dark where you are, bu there is hope.
You are not alone.

One day you will actually love you.
And one day you will actually love your body.
You will quit hurting it for temporary comfort.
You will be kind to it. 
One day you will see yourself as beautiful.

Will you please fight to live another day?
Because I promise you this pain and internal suffering will stop.

Will you please fight to live another day?
Because the pain you feel right now will one day be use to bring other girls hope.

Will you please fight to live another day?
Because you are deeply loved.

Please keep fighting,

I know you're tired, but I believe in you.

You are so strong.
You are courageous.
You are worthy. 


Your Older Self 

"We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed but not in despair, persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed."

Thursday, October 27, 2016

My Birthday Surprise to Köln, Germany

For my birthday back in September, Michael totally surprised me with a weekend trip to Germany! He had given me a card with the news of us leaving early the next morning written inside. I didn't believe him, I thought he was pulling some sort of sick prank haha but he wasn't! It was so sweet! I was in such shock and I burst into uncontrollable laughter and tears, I don't think I've ever felt so loved!

So we were off at 5am the next morning to Köln, Germany. Our stay consisted of staying with family friends (who were extremely hospitable), exploring the massive Köln Cathedral, relaxing in the peace and quiet of small villages with cobble stone streets, hiking, a date along the Rhine River and drinking lots of German beer. (Cause how could you it was the beginning of Octoberfest!). 

Thank you Michael for going above and beyond to make me feel special! And thank you to the friends and family that helped make this surprise possible! I'm so blessed to have the people that I do in my life and Germany was amazing!

Michael has been getting into film and digital photography lately so almost all of the pictures on here Michael took :)

Also when you pack for a weekend trip in my rule book you can only take so many things so I packed three days worth of clothes that could be mixed and matched and put in a small suitcase.

What I packed

Taupe Hoodie - Urban Outfitters

Black Wide Brim Hat - Lack Of Color

Black Beanie - Brixton

Vintage Harley Shirt - Thrift Store

Ripped Boyfriend Jeans - Urban Outfitters

Black Jeans - Urban Outfitters

Vintage Jean Jacket - Urban Renewal

Black Boots - Doc Martens

Leather Jacket - Zara

Selma Purse - Michael Kors

Stripped Shirt - Brandy Melville

Sunnies - Forever 21

Monday, October 17, 2016

Stevie Nicks You Inspire Me

Here is an outfit I pulled together that was inspired by the legendary Stevie Nicks. I'm not sure where this dress even came from because it was a two time hand-me-down from a friend who knew I would be happy to twirl in this thing. I matched it with some Steve Madden lace up boots that I found thrifting, a leather choker adorned with an opal from Urban Outfitters and a black onyx ring. Obviously there is a lot going on with all that floral so I didn't wanna over do it with accessories, which I tend to do every other day. Note: if you're ever struggling to buy my something, rings and bracelets with a big stone are the way to my heart *wink, wink* ;)

Photography by Kiersten Fienning

Friday, October 14, 2016

Finding Rest In Spain

As most of you know I am in Barcelona! (Yah!) I have been here for over a month and I will be here for about 3 months. Currently I am volunteering with YWAM (Youth With A Mission) and am staffing a 3 month long school for artists and creatives. The school is facilitated in a way where we have speakers come in from all over the world, every week to teach and challenge the students in their art or craft; proposing thought provoking ideas and questions but always bringing the focus back to how we can use our passions and gifts to glorify God and share Gods love with humanity in a powerful way. We will be putting on art expositions every couple weeks through out the city to reach out and share our creations with the community and connect with people on a deeper level using the universal language of art.

And I apologize for my lack of keeping everyone up to date with what we have been doing!  Barcelona has been fun, it is a lot different than I expected. The first couple weeks was lots of rest after a long year of almost no rest. My first month here has involved lots of "pruning",  as my friend Brooke would say. Pruning as in taking the time to reflect on where I am in life and cutting off old habits and ways of thinking. It's just been a very intense and fast time of growth. Which some of you may know isn't always easy, in fact most times it hurts, a lot. Just like when you're in those awkward teenage years where your legs throb from growing and all you wanna do is sleep. That kind of sums up a lot of this past six weeks. Tons of growing pains and lots of rest (which is really hard for me, all I wanna do is go, go, go).

Since the school has started though it's been full of joy and inspiration. Even though I'm staffing and helping lead students, I've been so deeply inspired by speakers who have come in and out of our classroom. I'm inspired by peoples lives and how they have pursued their dreams, how they've joined God in "co-creating", and how many amazing and impossible things they have created and accomplished by partnering with God. Needless to say, so many of my dreams and ideas over the last few years have become more solidified in a matter of weeks. I still don't know when I'm leaving here or where I'm going to end up, but I know wherever I Mike and I find ourselves we are gonna hit the ground running!


Night of my birthday after eating the best ramen where we couldn't hear each other talk because the restaurant was so loud
View from our flat // That is La Sagrada Familia in the distance

Nomad Coffee Shop

My favorite coffee shop and plant store Espai Juliu // I LOVE plants!
Being a tourist for a second at the Arc de Triomf

Dancing the night away // Film shot by Mike Penhale
La Marcè Festival // Film shot by Mike Penhale
La Mercè festival has been celebrated in Barcelona for hundreds of years. The Catholic church made this festival as a time when the "gates of hell" would open so they could scare people into salvation. The towns people would go to the church and pay money to get saved so that they wouldn't go to hell when they die.
What I experienced was quite similar...other than the church collecting money for salvations. There was a huge wooden door surrounded by boards shaped and painted as flames where huge mythical creatures with people inside walking them would come out of the gates shooting fire from their mouths. "Demons" or people dressed us a little Satans ran around with sparkler torches dancing with attendees and shooting fire at peoples feet. There we also many drum bands walking down the street following the demons and mythical creatures.
This is probably the craziest thing I've ever seen!

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