Rediscovering Home

Rediscovering Home

Small Memories in Big Places
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With family in town these past few days, I have had the amazing opportunity of becoming a tourist in my hometown. When I was forced to come up with fun activities that did not involve going to work, running errands, going to a friends house or doing something so generic and to be honest boring in the town that I grew up in, I realized that maybe I did not know my town at all.

Being born and raised in one place, for me Denver, Colorado, you tend to forget the amazing things that make your town so special. Destinations and tourist attractions seem to get lost in your memories of fourth grade field trips and tedious family car rides to the mountains. However, rediscovering the very things that make your hometown unique and wonderful is both a grounding and eye-opening experience that I am so happy I got to enjoy.

I was able to spend an entire day in one of my favorite mountain towns, Glenwood Springs. After going to my favorite coffee shop there, The Bluebird Cafe and spending hours in the the town's famous hot springs, I felt so peaceful and nostalgic. Returning to one of my favorite places at home brought back so many fond memories and made me realize how lucky I was to have made them.

I got to spend the next day with my family in downtown Denver, at the Rockies game. I had forgotten how long it had been since I had actually been to the city for the day, and going down 16th Street Mall reminded me of watching fireworks on New Year's Eve and finding parking spots for prom pictures and taking pictures in Writer's Square with my friends. I realized that the places where people travel to see are the places that I grew up in, the places where my childhood took place. It's easy to forget these moments between school and sports and sleepovers but sometimes little things happen in big places.

Going around my city with the eyes of a tourist taught me what an entire year away from home didn't- I have a lot of different memories here in a lot of wonderful places, and it really does feel nice to be home.

Cover Image Credit: ingrid cherry

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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If Shonda Can Do A Year Of Yes, Then So Can I

Yes.

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A few years ago, Shonda Rimes decided to do a year of saying yes, after her sister told her she says "No" to everything. It ended up changing her life.

So, I've decided to embark on my own year of yes.

Sure, it may be easy to say yes to everything when you're a millionaire with a bunch of record-setting televisions shows, but the rest of us can do it too.

Say yes to treating yourself.

Say yes to taking care of yourself.

Say yes to saying no, don't stretch yourself too thin.

Say yes to new opportunities

The year of yes is about taking better care of yourself.

My year of yes starts right now.

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