8 Lessons My Younger Sister Has Taught Me About The World

8 Lessons My Younger Sister Has Taught Me About The World

She's only 10 but she knows a whole lot more about the world than any adult I know.
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My younger sister and I are nine years apart, but that has never stopped us from being a dynamic duo of sorts. The gap in age has also never stopped the 10-year-old ball of spunk and sarcasm from teaching her older sister a few lessons throughout the course of our lives as sisters, and best friends.

1. Stop and smell the flowers.

Jasey Gearhart

Clichés are okay if it means taking time to appreciate the world and people around you more.

2. Strutt your stuff no matter who's watching.

Jasey Gearhart

Hold your head high, walk with a purpose: become a beacon of confidence.

3. Snapchat filters can create models...

Jasey Gearhart

... but you're only as beautiful on the outside as you are on the inside.

4. Lead a happy life, but know it's okay to be sad sometimes.

Jasey Gearhart

Life is filled with so many colors, and that includes the blacks and whites.

5. Your world is only as great as you let it be.

Jasey Gearhart

Soft-serve, hand-dipped, froyo? Ice cream never fails to make life better.

6. Rule the world you live in.

Jasey Gearhart

Whether it's invisible, made of fake flowers, or one of those plastic ones from a dollar store: wear your crown and be the empowered queen that you are.

7. People aren't always watching, but you shouldn't care even if they are.

Jasey Gearhart

Want to eat an entire tray of pizza rolls by yourself in public? Go ahead, the opinions of those around you shouldn't affect how you live your life.

8. Talk often, smile often, laugh often.

Jasey Gearhart

Talk with kind words, smile to brighten the day, and laugh at your own jokes.

Cover Image Credit: Jasey Gearhart

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The Thank You My Dad Deserves

While our moms are always the heroes, our dads deserve some credit, too.
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Dear Dad,

You’ve gone a really long time without being thanked. I'm not talking about thanks for things like opening the Gatorade bottle I couldn't or checking my tires when my car’s maintenance light is flashing, but rather the thanks I owe you for shaping me into the person I am today.

Thank you for teaching me what I deserve and for not letting me settle for anything less.

While the whole world was telling me I wasn’t good enough, you were there to tell me I was. Whether this was with boys, a friend, or anything else, you always built my confidence to a place I couldn’t build it to on my own. You showed me what my great qualities were and helped me feel unique. But most of all, you never let me settle for anything less than what I deserved, even when I wanted to. Without you, I wouldn’t be nearly as ambitious, outgoing or strong.

Thank you for giving me someone to make proud.

It’s hard to work hard when it’s just for myself, but so easy when it’s for you. All through school, nothing made me happier than getting a good grade back because I knew I got to come home and tell you. With everything I do, you give me a purpose.

SEE ALSO: 20 Things You Say When Calling Your Dad On The Phone

Thank you for showing me what selflessness looks like.

You are the prime example of what putting your family first looks like. If me wanting something means that you can’t get what you want, you’ll always sacrifice. From wearing the same t-shirts you’ve had since I was in elementary school so I could buy the new clothes I wanted, to not going out with your friends so you could come to my shows, you never made a decision without your family at the forefront of your mind. If there is one quality you have that I look up to you for the most, it’s your ability to completely put your needs aside and focus entirely on the wants of others.

Thank you for being the voice in the back of my head that shows me wrong from right.

Even though many of your dad-isms like “always wear a seatbelt” easily get old, whenever I’m in a situation and can’t decide if what I’m doing is right or wrong, I always can hear you in the back of my head pointing me in the right direction. While I may not boost your ego often enough by telling you you’re always right, you are.

Thank you for being real with me when nobody else will.

Being your child hasn’t always been full of happiness and encouragement, but that’s what makes you such an integral part of my life. Rather than sugarcoating things and always telling me I was the perfect child, you called me out when I was wrong. But what separates you from other dads is that instead of just knocking me down, you helped me improve. You helped me figure out my faults and stood by me every step of the way as I worked to fix them.

Most of all, thank you for showing me what a great man looks like.

I know that marriage may seem very far down the road, but I just want you to know that whoever the guy I marry is, I know he’ll be right because I have an amazing guy to compare him to. I know you’re not perfect (nobody is), but you’ve raised me in a such a way that I couldn’t imagine my kids being raised any differently. Finding a guy with your heart, drive, and generosity will be tough, but I know it will be worth it.


Dad, you’re more than just my parent, but my best friend. You’re there for me like nobody else is and I couldn’t imagine being where I am now without you.

Love you forever,

Your little girl

Cover Image Credit: Caity Callan

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'I Have A Date With My Dog,' And 9 Other Excuses To Get Out Of Plans That Might Actually Work

Sometimes you just have to bail.

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We occasionally get a call or text message asking if we want to hang out. There are times when we become so busy with either homework, family dinners, or other important events that we cannot attend the outing. There are several ways to avoid getting involved in these situations, like forgetting about it or just being honest. You can also try being creative, but it can be really challenging making up excuses to get out of plans. Here are 10 excuses to get out of events that you were invited to attend.

1. I have so much work to do

Work can mean a variety of things. Nobody will know if you have to leave for your part-time job, treat yourself to a nice dinner, or catch up on your favorite shows. Doing activities like cleaning your college dorm or house, finishing a paper for class, or going to the gym would be considered work by many people. You do not have to tell your friends the real story.

2. The prices for an Uber are too high

Depending on where you live and the location of the event, the price of an Uber will change. As a college student, you do not want to pay more for traveling across town. Tell your friends that the cost is too much. When the price does go down, apologize and make plans for another day. This is a good excuse if you are low on cash and want to save your money.

3. I ate something earlier and now I feel sick

Try making up something you had eaten for lunch or dinner that caused you to get sick. Cough to make it believable. This is a good excuse to get out of going to a party if you have plans or do not like the location your friends chose.

4. There are relatives coming over for dinner and I have to get ready

Give the names of some people in your family (or just make up names) for this excuse. Tell your friends what you are going to eat and the occasion. Examples could be a birthday or a graduation. Apologize and say you need to reschedule.

5. I have to do laundry

We need to keep our clothes washed and stay updated with fashion trends (which change every week) in order to fit in with the public. This is an excuse for when you do not have time to meet friends at that fancy bar or restaurant because you need to go to the store, gym, or bank. Laundry takes a few hours so this excuse will sound believable if you use it.

6. The hot water is not working

This is a perfect excuse if you want to relax at home after being out all day. There are many ways to follow through with this one. Try adding to it by saying you were at the gym, running in the park (if the weather is warm), or working in the backyard. Friends will understand after you explain that you do not want to show up looking dirty and smelling bad.

7. I have a date with my dog

This excuse can mean a lot of things. You can say the date is either going to the vet, caring for your sick dog at home, pet sitting, or anything related to pets. If your friends love animals (especially dogs) then this one will definitely work.

8. I lost my keys

Here is a classic excuse that most people will understand. Losing your keys is a serious thing since you will not be able to travel without them. Tell your friends you need to clean the house to find them and ask to meet them another day. Do not talk for too long or they might talk you into calling for an Uber.

9. The batteries in my GPS need to be replaced

Use this excuse when you have a way to get the location, but do not want to go. Tell your friends that you have enough gas in your car, know the time of the meetup, but cannot input the location into your GPS. Say that another time will be better since you need to go down to the store and purchase some new batteries. Do not allow them to ask you about checking Google Maps (which will most likely give you unfamiliar directions) or printing out a physical map.

10. I have to study for an exam tomorrow

This excuse is believable (if you are a student and are not in the same class) because students take a lot of exams during the semester. Mention what class you are taking and tell them that the test is in the morning and you need rest. Only use this excuse if the plans were made on a day when you do not have class the next day, and then reschedule for another week.

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