love: graphic design?

A post about the people, places, and inspiration I love.

So as I have mentioned before, I am obsessed with blogs. I spend nearly an hour everyday just going through some of my favorites, soaking up inspiration. Yesterday, my boyfriend called me out on a few things that are wrong with this though. First, I’m being selfish with this hour of my day by absorbing inspiration but not giving anything back. To quote The Great Gatsby (the movie, not the book), I contributed nothing.

Secondly, I spend so much time admiring the work of these people, drooling over their custom fonts, envying them their graphic design skills, dreaming of their beautiful gardens, and wishing I could be like them, but if someone were to ask me why I didn’t strive to obtain those things as well, I would laugh at them. Of course I can’t do those things! I’m not awesome like that. I’m just me. So I continued to look at other peoples’ abilities as though they were completely unattainable, all the while wasting precious time I could be spending working toward those skill sets.

Well, no more.

Zach finally called me out, and so here I am, showing you the work of my yesterday. I spent maybe four hours watching tutorials on pixelmator (a PhotoShop knockoff, because let’s be real, who can actually afford PhotoShop to support a day-old hobby? not this girl) and trying to create… something. The results were a few images that I’m not exactly proud of, but thought I’d share anyway, because hopefully they can be the BEFORE pictures to go with my some-day-in-the-distant-future AFTER pictures. We’ll see. Either way, here they are!

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Above is my first attempt to take something from paper to computer. Yes, I agree, not good. But I just wanted to prove that I actually did make SOME progress during the four hours I spent on this yesterday.

ImageZach helped me with this one. I drew the elephant design, and he helped with the transferring process from paper to computer. I can’t claim this one as completely my own, but I will admit to squealing like a little girl when I saw MY drawing on MY computer. Call me naive, call me old-fashioned, but this is awesome!

ImageThen I saw this tutorial about adding light leaks to pictures and went a little cray cray. Why yes, this is now my profile picture, and I don’t even care that it is so obviously edited. It reminds me of the first time my mom let me buy a disposable camera, and every picture looked like this. Good times, friends. Good times.

ImageMy last attempt of the day looked way too much like something on observando, but I didn’t care even slightly. I’m obsessed with that site, so it makes me happy.

Well, now that you’ve seen my first attempts, don’t judge. This is day one. I’m new and intimidated by it all (who even really knows what selection tools and magic wands are anyway? still don’t really know how to use them…), but I’m excited! I had even considered not telling anyone that I was working at this, and then amaze everyone with my awesomeness after I had worked on it for a while, but that lasted all of twelve hours. Guys, I even made a secret pinterest board of graphic design stuff so that no one would know what I was doing. Ridiculous. All that to say, thanks for looking at what I have so far!

PS: I mentioned the blogs I follow like 18 times in this post, so no worries. I’ll put up a post about my favorites soon!

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live: senior showcase

A post about the events of my daily life.

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I have been a member of class cabinet at Asbury all four years of college, and I have absolutely loved it. Though it is often crazy and overwhelming and emotional, I wouldn’t trade my experience as a student leader for anything. With a group of other devoted Awakened class members, I have helped plan all of our class events, such as the Mr. GQ contest, class retreats, formal dances, class picnics, and more recently Senior Showcase.

For almost a month I poured 40+ hour work weeks into planning this event and a few others, in addition to studying for my 18 credit hour classes and working in the training room almost 10 hours a week. There were a few particularly busy days where I don’t think I cleaned my room, did my laundry, or showered at all. So, with a shout-out to my roommates who didn’t disown me, my professors who didn’t fail me, my boss who didn’t fire me, my boyfriend who didn’t dump me, and my God who didn’t leave me, I would like to share with you a short blog post that a junior here at Asbury wrote about this year’s Senior Showcase. It touches my heart that after so much time thrown into one event, there are people watching who recognize the hard work and raw emotion that was necessary for it to all come together. So please, read Caleb’s blog post here. I hope you appreciate his honesty and personable writing style as much as I do!

walk: a chapel reminder

A post about God’s love and continual grace throughout my walk with him.

At Asbury, students are required to attend a chapel service three times a week. At first I thought that this was unfair and annoying, but over my four years here I’ve come to the surprising realization that my favorite thing about Asbury is my time in chapel. It’s the only place where the entire student body gathers on campus, which makes it not only a big attraction for school pranks, but also the primary location for the development of school community. Our experiences in chapel are shared by every student at Asbury, which means that we talk about them over lunch, tweet about them, write Facebook statuses about them, and use them to propel discussions during student congress events.

This Monday was no exception. This Monday was staff and faculty testimony chapel, which has traditionally been one of my favorites every semester. We heard from a woman who works in the registrar office about her walk with Christ. I would highly encourage you to listen to her message here. Make sure to click the “Glen and Nancy Elwood” link. I’m not going to spoil the ending for you, because the way she presented her story was so powerful that I don’t want to interfere with that at all.

There are many things you can take away from this message, but I think the most important of them is that you should never give up in praying for others. This message was convicting for me because so often I’ve given up in my prayers after a year or so simply because I think that the situation is hopeless. The woman who spoke in chapel gave me an entirely different perspective however. For sixteen years she prayed for someone, with miraculous results. I had to share her message because it holds such truth and such hope. Please listen to the link. In the four years I’ve attended Asbury’s chapels, this is only the second message that has gotten a standing ovation. Her devotion to God in times of despair is truly inspiring. If nothing else, she so gracefully reminded me that we believe in a God who answers prayers. Nothing is impossible with him.

live: Junior-Senior

A post about the events of my daily life.

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Just thought I’d share a picture from our Junior-Senior formal last weekend. Zach and I had a ton of fun, and I learned how to do the wobble in heels! It’s so sad to think that in two weeks this undergraduate season of my life will be over…

walk: physical therapy school

A post about God’s love and continual grace throughout my walk with him.

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When I was in high school, I read this Groucho Marx quote, and I remember thinking that he was crazy. Back then, I thought I was awesome. Why wouldn’t a club want me as a member, and why wouldn’t I want to join other elitists in a club that celebrated our superiority? God knew that it would take a lot (read: PAIN) to change my thinking, and that’s exactly what happened. I went from a 4.35 GPA in high school to a 2.95 GPA during my first semester in college. I lost my scholarship, lost respect from my peers and family, and also lost the pride I had for my own accomplishments. Through that drastic change and a few others, I learned that I am nothing without God and the gifts he has given me.

But I am stubborn, and I didn’t learn my lesson well enough the first time.

This year I was reminded of this lesson in a very different way. Instead of failing at something I thought I deserved to win, I succeeded at something that I knew I deserved to lose.

I got into graduate school.

I applied to the physical therapy program at the University of Kentucky along with four of my friends from Asbury. I thought that I could possibly get an interview because I would be an in-state student, I had good references, and I had a lot of volunteer work under my belt. Of course, I knew that all of my friends would get interviews too, because they had MANY more observation hours than I did, better grades than I did, and had pursued physical therapy longer than I had as well.

We all got interviews, and I was the last one to have mine. All of my friends said that it was easy and actually a lot of fun. They told me about how they had joked around with the interviewers, how they had been asked all of the right questions, and how they felt very confident that they had put their best side forward. My interview was different though. Afterwards, I told everyone that it went great, but I was lying. My interview was terrible. I stuttered over my words, I wiggled in my chair, I tried to crack a joke but neither of my interviewers thought it was funny. I asked all the wrong questions and felt like they asked questions that didn’t highlight my strengths. Afterwards I was so flustered that I got lost in downtown Lexington for almost an hour and missed my lunch date with two of my friends.

I was devastated. This was my one shot, and I had ruined it.

Two weeks later, we received the news: I was accepted into UK’s DPT program.

…but none of my friends were.

I can’t even begin to describe the emotions that swept over me in that moment. I felt so completely and utterly undeserving of this gift. I felt like I had suddenly been accepted into a club that normally would never have invited someone like me in, but for some reason made an exception just this once. I knew that whatever had happened, it was all God.

I don’t deserve to go to UK this fall. I don’t deserve to be a physical therapist. When I told my friend Jessica about what happened, she said that my attitude toward graduate school reminded her of how Christians should feel about our salvation. We are so undeserving of any love, grace, or redemption from God, but he still offers all of those freely. We should be eternally humbled by this offer, but instead we take it for granted.

Because of all of these events, I have chosen to view my acceptance into graduate school and my acceptance into God’s kingdom in a completely new way. In a culture that continually tells us that we deserve the best and that we deserve to be happy, I know better. I deserve nothing, and have been given everything. I am a steward of these gifts, and along with that comes great responsibility. How can I not strive to do my best for Christ at every moment? I am clearly here for a reason, and I don’t want to disappoint the One who gave all of these gifts to me freely. God chose me, and now I must choose to bring him glory in everything that I do. I am eternally grateful to him for everything he’s done for me, whether that is as small as getting me into graduate school or as vast as welcoming me into the family of God.

PS: to check out the last time I talked about physical therapy school, go here.

live: aurora borealis

A post about the events of my daily life.

There is no time of your life quite like college. These four years are perhaps the only opportunity to live so close to all of your friends, pull three all-nighters in a row, eat anything you want at all times of the day and night, decorate your room with a mixture of Justin Bieber posters and neon pink crates that your mom swore you would need, sleep in all day just because you want to, and travel to southern Ohio with thirteen of your best friends at the drop of a hat because some website claimed that you would see the Northern Lights there.

Yes, you read that last one correctly. Yesterday at around 1:30pm, Zach found out from accuweather.com that there was a solar flare coming towards earth’s atmosphere that would create a spectacular aurora borealis at 9pm… in southern Ohio. Granted, we probably should have seen that something about this seemed very odd, considering that most of these light shows occur 2,000 miles north of southern Ohio, but it was an opportunity to get fourteen people to pack into two cars and drive two and a half hours to Adam’s Lake State Park and lay on the ground for three hours hoping for a miracle. The closest we came to the Northern Lights was a flaming shooting star right above our heads, but that didn’t matter. Somehow, in the craziness of a spontaneous adventure with friends during the sentimentality of the last two weeks of college, we were all perfectly content to just enjoy each others’ company under a not-so brilliantly lit-up sky.

I loved talking about everything from summer plans to intelligent life on other planets to the origin of life on earth with these people. It’s tragic to think that after four years of adventures like these, this might be the end of our journey together. I have thirteen wonderful friends right now though, and thirteen wonderful brothers and sisters in Christ for eternity, and that is enough.

Just for kicks and giggles, here is the map of aurora borealis visibility that convinced us to drive to Ohio:

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And here is the map of what actually happened:

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As you can see, we were just a few miles off target. But I will say this: if you have not canoed to the middle of a very still lake in the middle of the night and seen how the stars reflect perfectly in the water, my dear friends, you have not lived. If you’re lucky enough to have an amazing boyfriend like I do, you can even convince him to do all of the paddling and lay on your back while he spins you in circles. The result: the most beautiful light show I’ve ever seen.

live: spring, art, and pinterest

A post about the events of my daily life.

During the last few weeks, I have experienced balmy warmth on the beach, a mild blizzard at school, and a torrential downpour at a friend’s house. I’ve never been one to love the predictable, but at some point I had to admit to myself: I’m ready for spring in all its predictability. I don’t know where you live, but in Kentucky there aren’t even little green buds on the trees to hint at the coming warm weather, which has thrown me into a certain sort of panic. To help reduce this anxiety, I’ve spent considerable time on Pinterest, pinning every item that even remotely reminds me of spring. Lately I’ve fallen in love with colorful art and bold patterns, and I just had to share them.

Here’s to a warm and pleasant spring right around the corner!

 

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live: birdwatcher in the making

A post about the events of my daily life.

I’m spending this long weekend at home, doing endless amounts of homework by our floor-to-ceiling kitchen windows overlooking the backyard. But I’ve found myself rather distracted because my mom just put up three bird feeders outside and it’s been a colorful show all morning. Here are a just a few birds that I’ve seen in the past hour. At this rate, I’ll be spending my measly income on bird feed and bird houses this summer. Maybe it’s time for an intervention…

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live: my online inspiration

A post about the events of my daily life.

I love to be inspired. I was that kid who, after watching The Lion King, would prowl around the house on hands and knees, searching for some piece of furniture that even remotely resembled Pride Rock so that I could crawl on top of it with my beanie baby clutched in my mouth. When I first witnessed the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, I was found later using my desktop as a balance beam and the coat racks in my closet as parallel bars. Shortly thereafter, I began taking gymnastic lessons. Not only do I love to be inspired, I am easily inspired.

I give you all of this background information to preface what I am about to show you: my current inspiration. These are the Lion Kings and Kerri Strugs of my college years, that have kept my right brain alive while my left brain struggles over countless hours of homework and projects. My hope is that you might find inspiration, or at least a little bit of delight, in these websites as well (ps: click on the pictures to be taken to the sites they represent).

Image     kelcieonthefringe.blogspot.com

This blog belongs to a good friend of mine who is an inspiration even (and mostly) apart from this website. Although she hasn’t posted anything in a while (if you’re reading this, Kelcie, that’s a not-so-subtle hint to start posting again), she shares from a range of topics including (but not limited to) fashion, shopping, cooking, poetry, art, soul-searching, theology, movies, books, music, and friendship. Whenever I want to discover a new band, create an inspired outfit from my thrift-store wardrobe, or think about the deeper things in life, I just hop onto her blog and skim through the past months of posts. What’s more, I can testify that she is just as wonderful in person as she is on her blog!

Image     theartinlife.wordpress.com

Last summer I discovered my obsession with blogs, and since none of my friends posted nearly enough to satisfy my constant craving for blog posts, I began scouring all of my Facebook friends’ pages for blog links. As we all know, Facebook friends do not equal real life friends. Which means, I am sadly not real life friends with Hannah, the writer of this blog. My connection with her is actually to the third degree (boyfriend’s best friend’s sister, or something like that). All that to say, I wish I knew her better, and you will too once you read her blog. Everything about it is aesthetically pleasing, inspiring, and artistic. As you read her blog you will envy her travels, deeply enjoy her love of art and photography, laugh at her crazy adventures, and feel real hunger during her cooking experiences. I realize as I’m writing this that I’m butchering what should be a lovely description of her blog. So instead of reading this, read hers.

Image     pinterest.com/sharayahjung/

Before you start judging me, hear me out. I read an article once that said how much healthier Pinterest is than Facebook or Twitter, because it is externally focused. Or something like that. Basically I have used that article to support my Pinterest addiction ever since I read it. The reason I am mentioning it here is because it is a compilation of everything that I have found inspiring: vacation destinations, home decor, photography, and people.

Image     http://en.blogotheque.net

I don’t even know how to define this site. It’s French. It’s music. It’s improv. It’s art. There are thousands of videos of obscure and no-longer-obscure artists who wander around city streets making beautiful music. Jason Mraz, Mumford and Sons, Arcade Fire, Bon Iver… the list is endless. Listen and be inspired.

Image     http://toandfrommagazine.com

This is a new discovery for me, meaning that I was introduced to this today. However, I’m already in love. This online magazine displays hundreds of Christmas gift ideas for friends and family. Although most of the items are overpriced, it’s a good place to start to generate ideas and inspiration. It also has links to dozens of other inspirational blogs.

There are more websites that are inspiring to me, but I will have to save them for another post, since this one is getting too long and I’ve procrastinated on my homework long enough. I hope you find them as inspirational as I have!

live: months of memories

 

 

A post about the events of my daily life.

So I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything on here, which is why I have decided to update you on my life since September 3rd. These are in no apparent order, but have all been highlights of the past two and a half months. Enjoy!

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One of my best friends married the man of her dreams on a perfect September day next to a waterfall. It couldn’t have been more beautiful!

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My sisters and I went to Keeneland to see the races.

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I got to dogsit the most precious puppy I’ve ever seen… four times! I’ll be happy if I never have to clean up dog pee again though…

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My sister got engaged on the beach!

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I got to help one of my dear friends set up the site where he proposed to his girlfriend, who is another dear friend of mine. So magical!

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I went to my first ever UK/college football game! And we were winning at the half, which was enough of an unexpected surprise to make losing very badly almost okay.

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My family went on vacation and I got to join them for a little over 20 hours. It was a much needed break.

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I was on homecoming court at Asbury! Even though I didn’t win, my family came out to watch, which made it completely worth it.

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Two of my best friends got to drive down to the beach with me so I could be there when my sister’s boyfriend proposed. It was a perfect weekend road trip.

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I cut my sister’s hair!

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I took a ton of friends home with me for a weekend of good food, movies, relaxing, shopping, and hiking. They’re not all pictured here, but I had an amazing time with them!

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Thacker Thanksgiving!

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My boyfriend misses me from all the way in Oxford… Only 20 more days until he comes home! And it’s been 131 days since I saw him last, but who’s counting?

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I got to watch my cousin swim in his first college swim meet! He goes to UT and they were swimming against UK, so I felt a major conflict of interest, but it was still fun and he swam so well!

In case you were wondering what I’ve been up to the past few months, there it is! Hopefully I’ll be a little more intentional about blogging now that the majority of my busy semester is behind me. Getting excited about Thanksgiving!