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Monday, November 25, 2013

Mean People

Y'all. This week....I can't even anymore. It makes me so angry to even think about everything that has happened. I remember thinking that by the time we got to high school, everything would be great - I'd have wonderful friends and teammates and everything would be just peachy. Well...no.
Over the past week or so, I've been experiencing some difficulty with some of these above people. It's not even over something huge. And yet, it's eating away at me.
By nature I'm not a confrontational person. I don't like to fight with people and I don't like it when things get ugly, which lately, they have been. The worst part is when you know that people are mad at you and they talk about you behind your back. Nothing, and I mean nothing, makes me angrier.
If you have an issue with me, have the guts to handle it to my face.
That being said, I've had to figure out a way to deal with all of these...issues.
My friends have been very supportive, and it really is true that when tough times come around, you find out who your friends really are.
I know that this song is super overplayed, but Taylor Swift's "Mean," is just so on point right now that  I can't help but listen on repeat.
I hate to be such a cynic, but some people are just mean. You can't do anything about them but deal with them as best you can. It really sucks most of the time, trust me, I know.
But I encourage you, the few people who read this, to not be one of those mean people.
You can't change other people and how they treat you. But you can change how you treat them.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

What IS that?

As I was perusing Tumblr the other night, I stumbled upon a music post. These are rather common on Tumblr, but the title of the post was "Miley Cyrus - Summertime Sadness." I really liked the song Summertime Sadness (originally done by Lana del Rey), so as I skeptically clicked on the link, I was blown away. I don't even like Miley that much anymore (ahem, VMAs...) but this version was seriously good.
After I listened to her version several times, I clicked on a few other links. BBC Radio 1 has famous artists come in and cover trending songs...and I LOVE it. I listened to several others, but my favorite ones had to be Thirty Seconds to Mars' version of Rihanna's "Stay," and Kelly Clarkson's version of Coldplay's "Princess of China."
Also, the same day that I was perusing Tumblr, I came across another YouTube video that is pure satirical genius. Lily Allen, hats off to you. She recently came out with a music video for her song "Hard Out Here," in which she challenges the ideals put forward by Robin Thicke's recent song/video "Blurred Lines." If you listen to the lyrics, she is making a stand for female equality while having a hilarious video to boot. Definitely worth a watch.
What are you all watching?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Beauty Brag

"Eyes are the gateway to the soul..." so they better be well-framed.
I'm a big big fan of exaggerated lashes. The more defined your eyes are, the better in my opinion!
I've used CoverGirl Mascara for as long as I can remember, and I've tried a majority of their different lines... Luxe, Length, LashBlast, Flamed Out, etc...
But my favorite one of all?
Clump Crusher. Hands down.
Besides being fun to say, the Clump Crusher Mascara is actually wonderful.


I'm pretty picky about my eye makeup, but Clump Crusher, although it doesn't exactly crush clumps that well...it does lengthen and volumize my eyelashes really well, and I swear by it!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Student Commodity

I recently read an article called "America's Dumbest Idea: Creating a Multiple-Choice Test Generation". Erika Sanchez, the author, could not be more right - education has gone downhill. I attend a private school and I feel the same way about what she says, which in short is that children are now being trained to regurgitate information to score well on a test rather than foster a love of learning.
The atmosphere my school creates is very pressurized, and there is a strong sense that if you don't have this score or this GPA, you aren't going anywhere in life. You'll be stuck working at McDonald's or Walmart and your education will have been a waste. This kind of pressure is crippling. I feel so much pressure to get all A's or to get into this or that college.
It's such a shame.
I used to love school. I had so much fun being able to understand or explain things that I had always been curious about, or even things I didn't know I wanted to know. School was my gateway to the world around me, and that just isn't the case anymore. It's so disheartening to students everywhere to know that the world doesn't see us as people anymore. They see us as ways to make money.
In public schools, there is profit to be made from the standardized test materials that the government requires. In private schools, there is profit to be made not just from tuition, but from the corrupt advertising of student success. In other words, the love of learning that was supposed to be the foundation for schools has been exploited.
It makes me so sad that I dread school now. The worst part is that I've always had these grand ideas of upon graduating high school, I would be ready to tackle the world and to really get out there and make a difference. I was always taught that I could do anything. I'm not taught this anymore. I'm taught to answer standardized test questions, be that the SAT or an AP exam. I'm taught to write essays that will get me into college or that will get me an A, not what I really think. I'm taught to think the way an administrative body wants me to think, so as to represent the school the way I'm supposed to.
I'm taught to conform now. And the worst part is, that all this time, I thought I was being taught to stand out.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

What I'm Listening To

A few songs that I cannot stop listening to...

1. Monster // Eminem ft. Rihanna

2. Timber // Pitbull ft. Ke$ha

3. Let Her Go // Passenger

4. Just Another Girl // The Killers

5. The Idea of Growing Old // The Features

6. Wetsuit // The Vaccines

7. Daylight // Matt & Kim

8. Mine Would Be You // Blake Shelton

9. Locked Out of Heaven // Bruno Mars

10. Midnight City // M83

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Cold Weather

I know winter is kinda a joke in Tennessee, but really y'all it's cold.
Winter in the south is just miserable. Typically, it's just cold. It never snows, but just gets windy and freezing. I've had to find ways to get comfortable with the cold, because I cannot do anything unless I'm comfortable.

1. Tea/Coffee. I am an iced coffee addict but when it gets cold I'm forced to switch to hot coffee. The good news is that I drink it much more slowly...right? At night if I'm cold I'll get decaf tea and sip on it while I study.

2. Candles. Even if it's freezing, it can smell warm. I love love love seasonal candles. This time of year, there's a plethora of great seasonal candles. From pine scents to cinnamon apples, there are TONS of wonderful candles that will make your space smell warm, even if it doesn't actually feel that way.

3. Blankets. Obviously this is a no-brainer, but I personally think that the best blankets are super soft and are toasty as all get out. The only downside to such great blankets is when you have to put them away...that rush of cold when you take a blanket off...truly heart wrenching... but anyways a snuggie is a great alternative for being cold while you're trying to work. Seriously, I know they look silly, but they are so great. I have one from Brookstone and it is possibly the best present I've ever received.

How do y'all stay warm?

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Looking Silly

Yesterday, I got up in front of the entire school and taught them our swim cheer. I got some weird looks, yes. But, the student body paid attention. So in my eyes, it was totally worth it.
One of the tougher things I've had to learn about being captain of the swim team is that a lot of times, people are going to think you are a complete idiot for whatever you're trying to do. This isn't just for swimming though, it's for any type of leadership position, big or small. A good majority of the time people are going to think you're stupid. You're dumb, you're crazy, you're making a mistake.
I disagree.
I've already started to learn that you have to be willing to put yourself out there to be a good leader. You have to be able to ignore other's opinions while simultaneously listening to them - you have to see the fine line between listening to your gut and straight up ignoring other people.
So yes, yesterday I stood in front of the entire school and sang a cheer. I did. I looked like an idiot, I know, but I commanded the undivided attention of 800 people for almost 2 minutes. I consider that a worthwhile cause to look silly for.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Beauty Brag

My sophomore year, I cut all my hair off. It was down to the middle of my chest, and I chopped it off. However, I did this with good reason - Pantene Beautiful Lengths.
Pretty crazy huh? After I cut it all off...I wanted it back. I missed my hair. It's almost as long as it was sophomore year now though, thanks to...
This stuff seriously works. Combined with taking Biotin, a natural supplement for hair and nail growth, my hair has grown much much faster than expected. It doesn't exactly smell wonderful, but the scent rinses out clean and your hair will be longer in no time!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Morning Glory

"Rise and shine! It's time to wake up!" That never ever runs through my mind. Waking up is truly the worst part of the day for me, but once I'm up, I'm up. Over the years, I've come up with some strategies to conquer brutally early mornings...
1. Coffee. Duh...I mean how else do people who stay up way too late function?

2. Clean up. I normally shower at night, but when I first wake up I always wash my face. The only exception is when I'm headed to morning practice, in which case there's really no point. You don't have to get one of those crazy morning burst wake-your-face-up cleansers because it's really the water temperature that will do the trick. I prefer colder water at first and then it gets warmer as I continue to let the water run. I use Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser every single day (PS it's great!).
3. Move a little. I'm not saying you need to go run 5 miles the second you wake up, because Lord knows there's no way I'm doing that. But a little motion, even something simple like making your bed (which doubles as cleaning your room!) gets a little blood flowing and can wake you up a bit.

4. Get some music going. You don't have to dance, you don't have to sing, but a little bit of peppy music can really make a difference early in the morning. I cannot handle rap or crazy dance music when I first get up, but something like the songs below is the perfect mix of upbeat music for me.


How do you wake yourself up? Comment below!


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Lust List

After this week's crazy antics, I could seriously use some TLC. I have some BFF time scheduled with my 2 best friends for tomorrow night and a full day Saturday with my boyfriend. However, to tide me over until then, I've been doing just a tad of online "window" shopping - things that I can't/shouldn't buy, but hey it can't hurt to look right?
1. Anthropologie Paeonia Wallpaper. Since my room is already a blue-green-turquoise color (see What I Love About Sundays for a pic!), this wallpaper would look so great as an accent wall.

2. A French Bulldog. I mean seriously...how cute is this little guy?

3. Dogeared Necklace. I've been wanting one of these for such a long time. They're super cute and have a bonus meaning behind each piece of jewelry.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Breakdown

Yesterday was horrible. A combination of poor grades on three assignments coupled with sheer exhaustion left me hysterical all the way through swim practice and for the majority of last night.
It's rock bottom. I am here, at rock bottom. And it sucks.
I apologize for the lack of better wording, but seriously, whoever told you senior year was easy was a straight up liar. Please don't take this as me whining, but goodness gracious has this year been tough.
There have probably been more bad days than good days so far.
However, I have no choice but to be positive. Honestly, all I want to do right now is crawl into bed and never come out. But I can't do that. I'm here, at school, and I'm going to do my best. I'm going to go to practice and do my best. I'm going to do my homework, and do my best. That's honestly all that I can do.
My puffy eyes are open today, and I have no choice but to see the bright side here.
For after all, once you've hit rock bottom, the only way you can go is up.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Cold E-mail

Last night, I decided that I would not be making an overnight visit to a somewhat local (about 1 hour away) college. I had been invited to visit overnight as a part of their swim team, so when I decided not to go, I needed to tell the coach that I wasn't going. These e-mails are always awkward, but in order to be a functional person with decent manners, you have to tell people when you're not coming. My e-mail went something like this...

Dear Coach ____,
After careful consideration, I have decided that _____ College/University just isn't the place for me. Please know that this decision has no reflection on your swim program, but I am a student before I am an athlete and the school is simply missing a few things that I am looking for.
Thank you for your interest and I wish you the best in the coming season.
Sincerely,
________

No matter how politely you spin it, it's always awkward. However, you can still come out looking like a polite and courteous person.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Beauty Brag.

As I've previously mentioned, I have very sensitive and dry skin. The chlorine I swim in daily just puts it through the wringer. This week, I have to brag on Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps. Weird name, I know, but this stuff is glorious. It's very gentle and it smells absolutely amazing. Plus, it's super eco-friendly!
I use the lavender scent. If you don't like strong, natural scents I would beware of this soap because it is really really strong. But, it smells so good if you like it. My only complaint is that it isn't a very moisturizing soap, but other than that, I have nothing bad to say about this fair-trade brand. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

What I Love About Sundays

Sundays are just the best. For me, they act as "catch-up days" - I have time to do all of the things that I neglect throughout the week. For example, I do a lot of laundry. I even have time to put it away! I always wash my sheets on Sundays. It's just so nice to have a clean bed to start the week in!
All of my bedding is Pottery Barn Teen. They have some of the cutest patterns that are all mix-and-match! 
I also run to Starbucks once or twice a day on Sundays...oops! But in my defense, I need the caffeine to power through all the work I have to do!

Once all of my work is done (eventually that is...) I always try to save some time to hang out with my friends or just relax watching something that I like. For example, today I had powderpuff football practice and later I'm going to watch a movie I rented on iTunes.
Sundays are just great. They're calm, productive, and restful - my 3 favorite things!


Friday, November 1, 2013

Lateness

It's no secret that I adore The College Prepster. I probably check her blog (www.thecollegeprepster.com) at least 10 times a day. Anyways, she just posted a link to an article that we should all read - this. I am a stickler for punctuality. It just drives me crazy when people are late!
What do you think about being late?
Comment below!

It'll All Be Fine

It's November 1st.
And I'm okay.
I decided not to apply early decision to what is still my top choice school, and the deadline for early decision is today. So, no going back. My fellow seniors are running around frantically trying to finish their applications and getting everything done before 11:59 tonight. But, we're all going to be fine.
Last night, I passed out candy at my house with a few friends, and it was actually really fun. It was kind of a low-key night, but it was much needed. I have to confess that I truly have some of the greatest friends in the world. Anyways, we just sat on my front porch and handed out candy to kids as they came by, and it was just a chill, peaceful evening that we all needed.
My point is that amidst everything that is crazy right now for us we still have each other. It's really starting to sink in that our time left together is limited (tonight is our last home football game. Ever.).
So, it's all going to be okay.
Regardless of where I go to school next year or where my friends go too, we're going to make it.
It'll all be fine.