Young Teen Girls, Now And Then

Young Teen Girls, Now And Then

My sister seems so much older than I did when I was a freshman in high school.
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Recently, I compared the difference between how I looked when I was a freshman in high school and how my sister, currently a freshman in high school, looks. I never looked like my younger sister when I was a freshman. I was still going through a major awkward stage. My hair was short, I had braces, and I had horrible and I mean horrible fashion sense. I didn't understand how to put makeup on the right way, and I thought that putting an absurd amount of eyeliner on made me look cool.

Now, my younger sister looks like she could be older than me. She completely skipped the whole awkward stage, and she has a pretty good sense of style and she can put makeup on. I think part of the reason that she knows how to dress is because she learned from my mistakes, but it isn't just my sister who looks and acts older than her age.

My sister seems so much older than I did when I was a freshman. I was still really nerdy my freshman year of high school and my sister is the total opposite of a nerd. She knows how to socialize in an acceptable way with people at school, and her face doesn't turn completely red when a cute boy speaks to her. That was a major problem of mine my freshman year of high school. I am pretty sure every boy I ever talked to my freshman year thought I had a crush on them just because when they talked to me my face turned fifty shades of red.

My sister just carries herself with so much more confidence than I ever did. I think that is one of the qualities that makes younger teens now so much different than how my friends and I were when we were their age. These girls walk around like they own the place, which is very annoying. However, they can easily grab the attention of the room more quickly than I ever could when I was younger.

Teenagers and even pre-teens just look and even act a little older than I did when I was their age. I have only seen a select few kids in my sister's grade that look like they are going through an awkward phase. All of my sister's friends seem like they have their lives together, and some look even older than I do and I am four years older than them. It's frustrating, in a way, to look at pictures of my sister now, and pictures of myself when I was her age. I would've loved to have been as attractive as she is now; instead, I got braces and an incredible awkwardness.

However, there is something a little freaky about the way that girls who are 14 and 15 look so much older than they should. I think there are way more social pressures on girls in their early teens to look and act a certain way. There weren't as many pressures when I was their age. I mean, sure, I wanted to look like some of the other girls in my grade, but I didn't really see their pictures broadcast all over social media because Instagram was just becoming a thing back then.

Now, I feel like girls see so many pictures of other girls posted everywhere and that just feeds their need to act and look so much older than they really are. I'm not against social media at all because I use it basically every day, however, I feel like my sister's generation is more affected by the negative aspects that social media poses.

Cover Image Credit: CDN

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A Senior's Last Week Of High School

The bittersweet end.
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Well, this is it. This is what we've worked so hard the last four years - who am I kidding - basically what seems like our whole lives for. This is the very last week we will set foot as a student in our high school's hallways. As most schools are getting ready to set their seniors free at last, it all begins to set in - the excitement, the anxiousness, and also the sentiment and nostalgia.

For seniors, the years since our first day as a freshman at the bottom of the high school totem pole have seemed endless, but as we look back on these last few weeks, we realize that this year in particular has gone by extraordinarily fast. It was just yesterday that we were sitting in our classrooms for the very first time, going to our 'last first' practice, and getting our first taste of the (very real) "senioritis". With all that's going on in our lives right now, from sports and clubs, finals, and the sought after graduation ceremony, it's hard to really sit down and think about how our lives are all about to become drastically different. For some it's moving out, and for some it's just the thought of not seeing your best friend on the way to fourth period English; either way, the feels are real. We are all in a tug of war with the emotions going on inside of us; everything is changing - we're ready, but we're not.

THE GOOD. Our lives are about to begin! There is a constant whirlwind of excitement. Senior awards, getting out of school early, parties, and of course Graduation. We are about to be thrust into a world of all new things and new people. Calling our own shots and having the freedom we have so desperately desired since the teenage years began is right around the corner. Maybe the best part is being able to use these new things surrounding you to grow and open your mind and even your heart to ideas you never could before. We get the chance to sink or swim, become our own person, and really begin to find ourselves.

Things we don't even know yet are in the works with new people we haven't even met yet. These friendships we find will be the ones to last us a lifetime. The adventures we experience will transform into the advice we tell our own children and will become the old tales we pass down to our grandkids when they come to visit on the weekends. We will probably hate the all night study sessions, the intensity of finals week, and the overpowering stress and panic of school in general, just like we did in high school... But it will all be worth it for the memories we make that will outlive the stress of that paper due in that class you absolutely hate. As we leave high school, remember what all the parents, teachers, coaches, and mentors are telling you - this are the best times of our lives!

THE BAD. The sentimental emotions are setting in. We're crying, siblings are tearing up, and parents are full-out bawling. On that first day, we never expected the school year to speed by the way it did. Suddenly everything is coming to an end. Our favorite teachers aren't going to be down the hall anymore, our best friends probably won't share a class with us, we won't be coming home to eat dinner with our families...

We all said we wanted to get out of this place, we couldn't wait, we were ready to be on our own; we all said we wouldn't be "so emotional" when the time came, but yet here we are, wishing we could play one more football game with our team or taking the time to make sure we remember the class we liked the most or the person that has made us laugh even when we were so stressed we could cry these past few years. Take the time to hug your parents these last few months. Memorize the facial expressions of your little sister or brother. Remember the sound of your dad coming home from work. These little things we take for granted every day will soon just be the things we tell our college roommate when they ask about where we're from. As much as we've wanted to get out of our house and our school, we never thought it would break our heart as much as it did. We are all beginning to realize that everything we have is about to be gone.

Growing up is scary, but it can also be fun. As we take the last few steps in the hallways of our school, take it all in. Remember, it's okay to be happy; it's okay to be totally excited. But also remember it's okay to be sad. It's okay to be sentimental. It's okay to be scared, too. It's okay to feel all these confusing emotions that we are feeling. The best thing about the bittersweet end to our high school years is that we are finally slowing down our busy lives enough to remember the happy memories.

Try not to get annoyed when your mom starts showing your baby pictures to everyone she sees, or when your dad starts getting aggravated when you talk about moving out and into your new dorm. They're coping with the same emotions we are. Walk through the halls remembering the classes you loved and the classes you hated. Think of the all great times that have happened in our high school years and the friends that have been made that will never be forgotten. We all say we hated school, but we really didn't. Everything is about to change; that's a happy thing, and a sad thing. We all just have to embrace it! We're ready, but we're not...

Cover Image Credit: Facebook

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15 Items You'll Actually Need For Your Dorm Room

You can thank me later.

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When my parents helped me move into my dorm room, I realized that there were a lot of items that we didn't think about. I ended up purchasing a lot of these items later on because I didn't realize how necessary they were until I was fully settled into my dorm.

1. Extra-long drawers

If you're like me and have a thousand t-shirts and pairs of jeans and leggings extra long drawers are essential for clothing storage. Having four of these drawers helped me store all of my items with ease.

2. An ottaman or stepstool

This is one thing that I totally did not think of when I moved into my dorm. Looking back, I really wonder how I thought I was going to get into my bed. After I moved in, my parents quickly ran to Target and got an ottoman so I could get into my bed. It spruces up the room while also being able to hold my snacks in it.. which is essential.

3. A vanity mirror

I ended up paying a pretty price for my vanity mirror, but its worth it. It has a light, so it became so easy to do my makeup in my room at any time of the day.

4. A planner that works for you

First of all, don't be like me and get a planner that is too small to even write anything in it. I did that and saw my grades suffer. I ended up asking for a planner for Christmas and I couldn't wait to start using it. It has a page to set goals every month and to-do lists for every week.

5. A nice water bottle

I was that cliché student and got a nice Hydro Flask water bottle before I started college. Even though I had to get a special kind with a nozzle, it was completely worth it knowing it would keep me hydrated.

6. Felt hangers

This is one thing that my mom suggested, and I am so glad she did. It may seem like a small change but felt hangers truly make a huge difference in closet space. I have most of my winter clothes and some summer dresses all in one closet thanks to these hangers.

7. Assorted command hooks

These are essential for every college student. I used command hooks for my jewelry, my bathrobe and toiletries and my Christmas lights. They may be a little pricey but its worth it for storage and aesthetic purposes.

8. A toaster

I didn't get a toaster until the second semester of college but it's been a lifesaver. Because of my toaster, I was able to have breakfast in my dorm instead of using my meal plan or spending extra money.

9. A collapsible laundry basket

My roommate actually bought this after the first semester because she liked mine so much. It was not only super easy to store but made doing my laundry so much easier.

10.  A rug

It sounds simple, but its amazing how a rug makes everything look more cohesive and cozy.

11.  A memory foam mattress cover

The mattresses in college dorms are pretty uncomfortable, so getting a foam mattress topper was key. It's made my bed so much more comfortable.

12.  Printed pictures

I printed off many pictures at the end of my first semester. I had pictures from back home, but also from my first semester. Sometimes when I'm feeling down, I like to look at those pictures and realize how grateful I should be for the people in my life.

13.  Spinning toiletry organizer

I ordered this off of amazon a few weeks into my freshman year and it minimized my storage so much.

14.  Large luggage bags

I didn't realize how many clothes I had until I came home from Thanksgiving break. These luggage bags are essential for easy traveling.

15.  A winter coat and boots

This is SO important. I got a winter coat for Christmas during my senior year, and felt really silly wearing such a long coat outside. However, once I got to college I realized that everybody wears these winter coats and so important. So many of my friends bought boots after the first semester of college because they realized how important they are. They not only keep your feet warm but have super good traction which prevents you from slipping while walking to class.

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