The Summer I Grew Up

The Summer I Grew Up

Living with your eyes open.
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You don't realize how fast life is going until you really look into how much time has passed between each memory. I think about when I was sitting in the car as my mom drove me around because I didn't have a license. It feels like that was simultaneously yesterday and a lifetime ago.

There was a time when you worried about getting up early enough so you don’t miss the school bus and about what you’re going to wear for Halloween. Problems were so simple and you had time to worry about them. Now it seems we move so fast that you have to have all of the solutions in place before the problem occurs. “I have to have a minor in case my major isn’t good enough.”

The summer between freshman year of college and sophomore year is where I’ve done the most growing up. Obviously once you leave home and you have to fend for yourself (for the most part), you start to grow as an individual. However I’m not talking about individuality or relying on yourself, but growing up in the context of perception. I now see that time is precious and every minute has to be taken advantage of - and in this I have found a way to make an experience out of everything.

Sunsets used to just happen every single day; that is all that they meant to me. It signified the end of my day as I worried about how my mascara was running out. I remember looking out of the window on a car ride and noticing the sky looked pretty, but then I had to choose the next song to come on. I went to school in Manhattan freshman year and this is when I realized how much they mean to me. I couldn’t see the sunset from my apartment and there was nowhere nearby to fully enjoy the sunset in its entirety because buildings were always in the way. Like they say “you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.” Now I go outside every day and I sit behind my shed and watch the sunset. I have come to realize that every sunset is a new experience; some more marvelous than others but they never fail to empty my mind and make me feel better.

Everything about our generation is planned. It’s so important to find time for yourself and appreciate the life you have, the people you get to love and the beauty. Beauty being in whatever you want that to be: the windows down as you drive on an empty road with music blasting, the feel of your favorite blanket, the smiles on your friends' faces because you said something witty, the silence, or the sunset.

I've been alive for 19 years now, but I feel as if I have been living with my eyes half shut. I realize now there is no such thing as wasted time or need for regret. This is what living is and the sooner that's realized, the better. The best moments are unexpected and time is fleeting. Make sure to catch those moments before you realize they're gone.

“Forever is composed of nows.” - Emily Dickinson

Cover Image Credit: Emma Korpics

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23 Things That Defined Your Childhood If You Were A Late 90s/Early 00s Baby

Own that pony tail. Work that up-do!
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If you were born in the late 90s or early 00s then you grew up in the age of youtube, computer games, and Disney Channel. As we become adults, we are coming to the time what we love to reminisce on everything we played, watched, and listened to while we were growing up. We went through many stages of computer games: from Freddi Fish to PhotoBooth. If you are a millennial, you will know these 23 things as a huge part of your childhood.

1. FRED Youtube Videos

The annoyingly funny, fast-talking, youtube star, Fred, began the youtube craze that has yet to end.

2. Disney Channel Computer Games

Disney Channel's website had a plethora of games that we played for hours. Recently, BuzzFeed found links to the best of the best to let us relive our childhood.

3. The Amanda Show

Everyone's favorite show!


4. The Disney Channel Games

Our first (and best) version of the Olympics!

5. Webkinz

Let's face it. Most of us had 20+ Webkinz and spun the Wheel of WOW every day!

6. Space Jam

Classic movie turned frat theme.

7. Bon Qui Qui

"SECURITY. THIS MAN HAS GOTS TO GO."

You can follow Bon Qui Qui on Instagram @bonquiqui.

8. That’s So Sweet Life of Hannah Montanna


The crossover episode of a lifetime!

9. Razor phones

Everyone's dream phone.

10. Lizzie McGuire Movie

What could be better than Lizzie McGuire singing to Lizzie McGuire?

11. Can I Have Your Number

"The back of your head is ridiculous."

12. Neopets

Before Webkinz came around.

13. Tamagotchi

From keychain to Wii game, we had it all.

14. Bratz

The cool kids had Bratz dolls.

15. Potter Puppet Pals: The Mysterious Ticking Noise

"Ron... Ron... Ron... Ron WEASLEY."

16. Charlie The Unicorn

This youtube video was oddly entertaining.

17. Club Penguin

When we weren't on Webkinz, we were on Club Penguin.

18. Guitar Hero/Rock Band

We were basically all rockstars.

19. Steve Irwin

RIP

20. Life With Derek

A forgotten treasure.

21. The Potential Breakup Song

Aly and AJ rocked it when they weren't busy working in a dairy factory.

22. The Clique

These book-turned-movies were epic.

23. Charlie Bit My Finger

OUCH CHARLIE.

Although the youtube craze hasn't ended, it sure has changed!

Cover Image Credit: @alyandaj

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A Letter To My Family As I Study Abroad

Thank you for giving me the world
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To My Dear Family...

Studying abroad is a once in a lifetime opportunity, I am so grateful for this opportunity you have given me. I'm so lucky to be able to spend six weeks in Florence and being able to travel around Italy. The time I have spent here so far has been nothing short of amazing. I have been given the incredible change to view so much that others may have never had the opportunity to see. It is an honor that at such a young age I have already been able to travel and view the world. While it is sometimes difficult to step outside the comfort zone and leave home for a bit for a new place, I wouldn't change it for the world. While I miss every single one of you, you have given me the greatest gift a girl could ask for.

While studying abroad in Florence, I have learned more about myself and what I am capable of. I have learned that I'm independent and am becoming more of an adult each and every single day. I am strong and I can take a care of myself. I've learned these traits and skills from my parents- you guys are the best. To my Mom and Dad... you are the reason that I am the young woman I have become, you are the reason that I am here. You have taught me that I can be adventurous and that there is a great big world outside of our home that's just waiting to be discovered. You have pushed me to take every opportunity that comes my way and go for it.

To my siblings... thanks for keeping in touch and checking on me while I am away. I'm grateful to have that piece of home just one text away. I can continuously count on you all to brighten my day and make me feel a little bit better when I am missing home a little extra. I hope for the both of you that in your future you get to have this opportunity. In addition, I desire that you both travel and get to experience the great big world as well.

I love you all so much and I will be home before you know it, and while it sounds cheesy... thank you for giving me the world!

Love you always xo

Cover Image Credit: Rachel Abriola

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