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New blog: Trailblazing!

8 May

Head on over to my new blog: trailblazingwithcp.com 🙂 

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Key West: Day 1.

18 Dec

Well, good (late) evening everyone! Sorry to be updating so much later than normal today, but it’s been an extremely busy day!

Today was the beginning of our vacation to Key West, Florida. The day began with waking up at 6am to leave by 6:45 in order to head to the airport in Charlotte. The day began slow since everyone (me, my friend Heather, my parents, my brother Matthew, and his girlfriend Alyssa) weren’t used to being ready to go so early and we’ve all been catching up on the sleep we missed during finals week. Anyway, we made it to the airport with plenty of time until our flight (which was good since the gate we had to get to was at the farthest part of the terminal). I feel like that happens a lot…being at the farthest part of the terminal. It happened on this flight and then my previous spring break flights to Texas. Some luck, huh? Anyway, we flew from Charlotte, NC to Miami, FL, and by the time we reached Miami we were pretty wiped already since the day began so early. The traveling continued with a 3-hour drive from Miami to Key West. By the time we made it, we were ready to be there (since we had so much travel time). Anyway, we all got settled in at the house we rented and then headed out to explore!

I always love exploring a new place. It’s like a present on Christmas morning. You don’t know what you’ll get, but every part of it (even just glancing around) makes your eyes wide and ready to drink it all in. Exploring Key West today was just like that. My friend Heather and I went from the house we’re staying to Duval Street (which is one street over and the main strip in Key West that tourists frequent). The shops along Duval varied from t-shirt shops to tattoo parlors and bars, while also covering pretty much everything in between. After Heather and I spent about an hour going in and out of shops, we met my parents, Matthew, and Alyssa at a restaurant called Caroline’s (where I enjoyed amazing spicy jambalaya). After dinner, Heather and I weren’t looking forward to walking all the way back to the house since we were tired from exploring earlier, and my feet were already sore. So we decided to take a pedicab (where a bicyclist pulls a cart that people can sit in) back to the house. The ride was perfect since were able to rest our feet and get another look at Duval Street in the evening. The house we’re staying at is a bit tight, but it works. One of the pluses is the fact that it has a hot tub. Even though it’s warm here (80 degrees in the afternoon), at night it cools down because of the wind coming off the Gulf, so the hot tub was exactly what we needed after exploring and lots of traveling.

I’m excited to see what tomorrow brings. That’s another thing I love about trips to new places is that you never know what each day is going to be like; it’s all one big adventure. BUT, I can’t wait to see more of Key West and feel the vibe of everything in the heat of the afternoon. Check back tomorrow to get recaps on our first full day in Key West!

Have you traveled anywhere new lately? Where and why? 🙂 

A Want.

12 Dec

Wanting. It can make you crazy…and sad…and every other emotion. It’s human nature to want, but what if just doesn’t stop. What if it pushes through, consequences be damned, and reaches the most vulnerable part of your soul. What then? How do you push a want like that away when it’s taken residence in your mind, your words, your actions, and your soul. Though you can focus your mind on other things….keep yourself busy…how do you stop your thoughts from drifting back to the one thing you feel like could make you whole. Not whole as in happiness. But whole as in..there is nothing in the entire world that could top this because I know that even through the bad crap that the world throws at me, at the end of the day, I have this to fall back on. To envelope me in an embrace so full of comfort and security that I’d chose this over facing reality any day. But what if this feeling could become a reality. What if you could live it, every second of every day, for the rest of your life. How do you push away a want like that if you’ll never know if it can be a reality unless you try? What then? Do you try, against all odds, to make it your dream…your want…your love…your home…your complete world. Or do you walk away…leaving it in the dust. Allowing the shadows to consume every last drop.

A Little Daydreaming.

5 Nov

“Celebrate we will because life is sweet but short for certain.”-Dave Matthews Band.

Max Patch, NC

Life is short. We hear it often, but does it really sink in? Are we ever able to really understand that one day we won’t be able to wake up to the sound of the rain or enjoy a picnic at our favorite place in the mountains? I feel like the only people who truly grasp it are those who are given a certain amount of time to enjoy their life. But shouldn’t we all live each day like it could be our last?

I spend a good amount of time not doing the things I’ve always wanted to with the excuse “Oh, I’ll do it one day.” But honestly, nothing in life is certain. We’ve got to just take life by the hand and let it bring us where it will. Some things we back away from because we’re scared or uncertain, and other times there’s something from our past that’s blocking us. The important thing to realize is that we can live our lives however we want instead of constantly living to please others. Wouldn’t you want to be able to say that you lived your life the way you did because you wanted to and not because that’s how you were told to live it?

We all have that one place that we go to think. Somewhere where we can just let our worries go and just live in the moment. That place for me is Max Patch Summit in North Carolina. Max Patch is a huge grassy bald that has a 360 degree view of mountains. Seriously, every direction you turn you see mountains. It’s one of the most magical places I’ve ever been, and I hope to go back this Spring when the weather is nice. I can just picture bringing a group of people up and have some playing music, some talking, and some just laying in the grass looking up at the clouds. I’m smiling just thinking about it, and I’m not even there. The ability of our mind to escape to some place safe and peaceful is both a curse and a blessing. More times than not though, I find it to be a blessing. A little daydreaming never hurt anybody, right?

“I’m with you kid! Let’s go!”

3 Nov

“Live loves to be taken by the lapel and told: I’m with you kid! Let’s go!”-Maya Angelou.

Artsy pic taken on a trip to Maine

The desire to simply want to enjoy life hasn’t always been a huge part of me. Yes, I’m a happy person, but there have only been certain times in my life where I’ve realized just how happy I am. Now is one of those times. This morning I had two huge tests that I was pretty worried about, but once they were over, it was as if all the stress just evaporated. Plus that fact that I had a massage this afternoon (that definitely helped).

I guess I’ve just realized what a great feeling it is to be happy with where you are. This time last year, I was in a different state attending a college that was so close-minded it gave me a headache. I was dealing with a non-compatible roommate, and I was in a city that is incredibly conservative. Aka I was very unhappy. However, now, I’m at a university located in the mountains (what can be better, right?) that’s in a city that is incredibly diverse and incredibly liberal, which is the perfect fit for me. Yes, it’s been a little hard to make friends since I transferred in, but the friends I have made are so great. The simple fact that I see people sitting out on the quad reading books on a daily basis just makes me smile though. I truly couldn’t think of a better place for me.

I’ve enjoyed exploring Asheville. I’ve found an Indian restaurant that me and my friends really enjoy called Mela. If I had the money to eat there at least once a week, I would. Another great place: The Hop. It’s an ice cream shop that’s only a few minutes from campus, and they have some incredibly original flavors that they make themselves. They also have different kinds of vegan ice cream, which is always a hit with the hippies of Asheville. I haven’t quite gotten into being vegan or vegetarian. I just enjoy meat way too much, haha. 🙂