10 Great Summertime Songs

10 Great Summertime Songs

If you're looking for an excuse to get in the car and drive, here's your chance

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The summer and music are almost synonymous. Whether you're by the pool, at the beach, at a barbecue, driving, or sitting around the campfire, good music is sure to be there too. Who isn't looking for a new couple of songs to add to their playlist?

1. "Tequila" Dan & Shay

2. "Rich & Sad" Post Malone

3. "Sleep Without You" Brett Young

4. "The Middle" Zedd, Maren Morris, & Grey

5. "Japan" Famous Dex

6. "Body" Loud Luxury, Brando

7. "Alone" Halsey, Big Sean, Stefflon Don

8. "A Good Night" John Legend

9. "Simple" Florida Georgia Line

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10. "Woman, Amen" Dierks Bentley

There's definitely something for everyone in this list from pop to rap to country, so give it a look and a listen!

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An Open Letter To My 14-Year-Old Self

"Wish you could go back, and tell yourself what you know now." - Taylor Swift

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I remember being 14 and couldn't wait to be one year older so I could finally sing Fifteen by Taylor Swift truthfully. Anyone who knows me knows how much I love Tswift, and her songs were much like the narrative to my high school years. Her song Fifteen reflects back on her freshman year of high school realizing all that she has learned since then and wish she had known. But what I didn't know at 14 is that it was one of the most important years of my life.


Dear 14 year-old-me,

So, I know you have your first serious boyfriend, and you still have all of your innocence. You are naive to almost everything and anything, but all you is to be loved. But take a step back and realizing what you are doing to yourself in order to be liked. You see so many kids walking down the hallway holding hands, the senior boys seem so intriguing, and your straightening the life out of your hair to make it "perfect". The pressure is so on, girl I know.


What does it take to be "popular" and how far will you go to validate your worth?

Don't buy those Uggs you and your bestie saw the most popular girl in school wearing- its creepy and weird. She will probably think you're a stalker. Stop laying your outfits out the night before because honestly no one is impressed with your Holister jeans and Abrcombie zip-up that is sooo last year.

You think that 90 you got on your History test is a clear sign you should be a history teacher. I love that you had so much passion for that then, but little do you know the next year of your life will shape who and what you will become for the rest of your life. At 14, things may seem awkward and embarrassing, but it is one of the best years for you. You are still so close with your best friend. You have weekly sleep overs, your still calling your crushes by their "code-names" (even though everyone knows them), and your metabolism is impeccable.

You finally are liked by the guy you always wanted. You turn down really great guys because all you care about is him. You think that he only has eyes for you and you're meant to be. Girl, don't be so foolish. Even though, in due time, you will realize 4 years later that some things aren't meant to be and that's okay.

The first time he breaks your heart, is not the last, and it will only get worse. And you will continue to let let him hurt you time and time again because you think his love is the only love that will make you feel that you are enough.

I wish you would've walked away when you had the chance, and what I'm about to tell you, you may not be ready for.

Within the next year your depression and anxiety will hit the fan. You will lose friends, lose 30 pounds and lose sight of whats really important, all in order to be "good enough".

Here is the secret, good enough does not exist. It is unattainable, and nothing but a false hope that keeps fueling your desire to obtain perfection. You will isolate yourself, you will lie about everything you are doing in order to protect it, and you won't tell a single soul how much you will suffer.

I lived through your lowest of lows, and I have watched you want to give up. I have watched you cry yourself to sleep every night, I watched you lay on the bathroom floor feeling hopeless and I have witnessed you whip those tears, throw your hair in the cutest messy bun and smile into the mirror saying, "You're okay. Get it together girlfriend." Your eyes are lifeless. Your soul belongs to your disorder. This isn't who you are. But you will become who you were meant to be because of this.

But you will not be okay. You will face the hardest years of your life, and girl I am here for it. Every step of the way. You will not give up, even when you swear the pain of never being enough is unbearable.

So enjoy your last year of innocence because you won't be this happy again for a while. I am telling you this 7 years later. But happiness will come when you rid the toxicity from your life. This is the only way you will only be successful at reclaiming your life back.

There is so much more to you than how many friends you have or the size of your jeans. I need you to be strong, after all- you're going to run marathons soon. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that you become a damn good runner. And that sport breaks your heart more than any boy ever has. But you finally find your passion, and it's to help people who struggled just like you.

Pay attention in your honors chemistry class because girl, this is the field you're going into. Don't entertain boys who want you to shrink in order to make them feel powerful. DO your homework, wash your face and enjoy your icecream before bed. Wear whatever the hell you want because girls are going to judge you regardless- jealously is a real b*tch. No one is going to like you more at your lowest weight, even though the voice in your head tells you so. No one is going to pay you more attention, no one is going to love you more, and no one is going to prioritize your needs more than you can. You have to do all of this on your own, for your own good.

At 14, this world seems like a really good place. Cherish this feeling before the world becomes tainted with your uncontrollable desire to fit its' standard of perfect.

I want you to know the moment that you fall out of love, is when you start to mend the most beautiful relationship you will ever have- the one with yourself. People will come and go, but at the end of the day you have to be okay with who you are.

Lastly, your years with your loved ones are numbered quicker than you know. Hug them tight, call them more often, and see them every opportunity you get. Always tell them you love them when you kiss them goodbye.

Love,

The woman who is still trying to pick up the pieces, even 7 years later. I'm in this all for you and our future. Xo

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6 Years Later...

6 years. 72 months. Unlimited remembrance.

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December 14, 2012. 6 years ago this year. The unfathomable tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut that shocked the world and devastatingly seems to have spearheaded other similar acts of violence in schools around the country. I know that gun violence was a problem before Sandy Hook, but this one hit very close to home for me, making it very real. This was also one of the deadliest school shootings in US history, which brought forth nationwide attention. 20 children and 6 adults lost their lives that day on what began as an ordinary Friday.

I was in chemistry class my Sophomore year of high school when my teacher stopped class to turn on the live news because she simply did not believe that what she was reading could be true. Unfortunately it was.

Since that tragic day, there has been insurmountable grief and devastation but also a campaign that has gained significant following and progress in our country. Sandy Hook Promise was created by Mark Barden, Nicole Hockley, and Tim Makris to bring awareness and change to the problem of gun violence, primarily in schools. They have dedicated their lives to this foundation and are using it as a way to keep their children and loved ones memories alive while fighting for necessary change. I had the pleasure of listening to Mark Barden deliver a moving and inspirational speech about his feelings that dreadful day and how his perspective has changed from grief to anger to determination to hope since then. He truly is passionate about helping others and ensuring that a tragedy like the one that destroyed his world does not happen again.

Gun violence has exploded as a national and worldwide epidemic that needs to be addressed for the safety of innocent lives. Going to school should not bring upon anxiety and stress for parents, who fear if they will see their children get off the bus later that day. However, this is what we are faced with today as since Sandy Hook there have been upwards of 290 school shootings, 17 in 2018 alone. Yes, you read that correctly. So where is the change that so many people are fighting for? How many more innocent lives need to be lost before those who have the power to make change, finally make it? What can you do as a concerned, caring individual to help the effort for ending gun violence in schools? That answer is easy. You can be a partner with Sandy Hook Promise or another gun violence organization in your community. Support their campaign, put forth positivity, and stand up for gun control. No one wants to take the chance for their life to be personally effected by gun violence and the only way to solve the problem for good is to be persistent and determined in pursuit of a better world for everyone.

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