in a writing funk

I’ve tried and tried all month, but I can’t seem to focus and just finish a blog post. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m burnt out by all the academic writing I’ve been doing at school, but blogging is seriously a challenge these days. Hitting publish is even harder.

I want to write more substantial and interesting posts on here, but I often feel weird and vulnerable publishing them. I think that’s because I want to pursue something within the writing/editing field, and I want to my posts to be “impressive” (to who, exactly, I really don’t know…).

I often don’t think I’m a good enough writer to post something that has value on here (ex: something that isn’t simply a playlist or travel recap). However, I keep forgetting that this is my blog, and there are no standards! From now on, I’m going to stop trying to write as though I need to impress or inspire someone, because that’s holding me back from getting better. I’m just writing for fun on here; that’s what this blog is all about.

I googled “fun writing prompts” and decided to try one to get my creative juices flowing (and I apologize for using that disgusting phrase). This Buzzfeed post was the first thing that I clicked on, so I completed the very first prompt, which was to make a list of alphabetical advice. Much of this advice I should probably listen to myself. Here’s what I came up with:

Accept differences.
Be optimistic.
Create, don’t imitate.
Dive right in.
Eat dessert.
Free your mind.
Graciously accept compliments.
Have patience.
Interpret your own happiness.
Journal every day.
Keep dreaming.
Listen to new music.
Make goals.
Never judge.
Observe the world always.
Pay attention while conversing.
Question everything.
Record special moments.
Sleep well.
Teach others.
Undertake risks.
Vehemently practice the things you love.
Work hard.
Xtra effort pays off. (There is no decent X verb besides xerox, and I don’t think there’s any good advice that has to do with xeroxing.)
Yabber often and with no shame.
Zoom through hard times.

PSA: I am not a life coach or therapist, so all of this advice might be complete crap! It was just a writing exercise, and it has absolutely no substance to it. I am not particularly thrilled to post this, but I just needed to do something — anything — to write, publish, and, hopefully, begin to get out of this funk.

All I ever think about is how much I want to write, but I can never seem to build up enough confidence or motivation to just start doing it for fun. This blog is not my job, and for the past few months, I have been approaching writing in a way that made it both intolerable and tedious. I love to write, and this is the one place (besides my journal) I can write whatever I want and in whatever way I want. Starting now, I’m going to take advantage of that and just have fun on here.

Anyways, I hope you’re all having a great 2019 so far! Hopefully my motivation will remain constant after I post this, and perhaps I’ll try another writing prompt this week.

Have a great Sunday and MLK Day.

Advertisements

Fall Playlist 2018

Yes, I’m still alive!

No, I’m not done blogging!

So yeah… I just took an unexpected three-month break. Let’s just say AP summer work killed me this year! I’m sorry to say this, but don’t think I’ll be writing any posts about my summer. Don’t get me wrong, it was awesome! I just kinda want to jump back into the blogging world and post things that are happening right now.

I am so happy fall is here! Today I thought I’d ease my way back into blogging with a fall playlist I’ve been working on.

 

1. Heavy Petals by Laura Veirs

2. September Song by Agnes Obel

3. Texarkana by R.E.M

4. The Darkest Season by Deb Talan

5. The Big Guns by Jenny Lewis & The Watson Twins

6. Wildrunners by Hugo Hans

7. Knock It Off by Aimee Mann

8. Washington by Sarah Harmer

9. Last Lion of Albion by Neko Case (my current favorite song!!!) 

10. Sit & Listen To The Rain by Whiskeytown

11. Stand Inside by Kurt Vile 

12. Tiger Mountain Peasant Song by Fleet Foxes

13. Thanksgiving Theme by Vince Guaraldi Trio 

14. Till The Water’s All Long Gone by The Decemberists 

15. Pictures of You by The Cure 

I am really excited to be back blogging again. Sorry for being gone for so long AND for totally slacking off on posting my summer pictures. You can follow my Instagram (studiojosieblog) if you want to see a few summer photos. I’ve been pretty inactive on there, too, though hahaha.

ANYWAYS, it’s almost Halloween, and this year I need to put together THREE costumes. Two for a school event and one for a party. Yikes! I have never shared my Halloween costumes on here, but I think I will this year. I’ve already started on one and I am loving how it is coming together. I’ll give you a hint: it has to do with the GALAXY!

Besides prepping for Halloween, I’ll be going back to school tomorrow after this three day weekend. Then I have PSATs on Wednesday. My last one! :0 I have my first SAT in the spring. That sentence alone makes me stressed! Aghhhhhh! Other than that, though, junior year has been pretty tolerable so far. I’m writing a rhetorical analysis on “Me Talk Pretty One Day” by David Sedaris so you could say it’s the best English class ever! Speaking of that, I need to go finish my rough draft. Hope you have a great week!

The First Week of Summer

HELLO? Is anyone still there???

Oh, thank god. I thought everyone left.

I’ve been slacking AGAIN with my blog, but this week I intend to catch up so you don’t miss anything that’s been happening during my extremely eventful summer.

Just kidding. You haven’t missed much at all. But I’ll share what I’ve got.

It is now officially summer, and I am officially a junior in high school. Unless you’re one of those people who don’t like referring to themselves as being in the grade they’re entering AFTER summer break. (That made no sense, but you know what I mean!) If you are one of those people, then I guess technically I’m still a sophomore. Cool.

I don’t really feel like talking about school, though. I got out, like, three weeks ago, so I’m kiiiinda over it. (I’m 100% over it, to be more precise.) So today I’ll talk about the very first week of Summer 2K18! (Do people still do that 2k thing? I remember scrolling through Instagram a couple years ago, and I swear to you that EVERY.SINGLE.CAPTION. was “summa 2k18,” or at the very end of summer, it was “rip summer 2k18.”) Anyways… here we go:

My last two days of school were half days because I had finals. On the actual last day, I took the bus home, and automatically flipped through my brain’s homework agenda. Then I screamed, “I HAVE NONE!” Just kidding, I didn’t actually scream that. But I scream-thought it.

So I was kind of at a loss over what I should do. I could do a craft, I could read, I could watch TV… without homework, the world is my oyster! I honestly don’t even remember what I did that day. I probably ate lunch and just relaxed. No, wait. I think I took a shower because I was so gross and sweaty from sitting in a desk for, like, FOUR HOURS STRAIGHT taking my finals!

God, I’m so happy school is over. (I technically have two classes worth of AP summer homework, but we aren’t going to speak about that.)

Later that day was my brother’s middle school graduation. If that event reassured me of anything, it was that middle school sucks, and I am very happy to be DONE with that phase of my life. While there were definitely upsides to middle school, high school has wayyyyy more of them. Even though I already said it AND signed a card for him, congrats on graduating, Milo! God, I can’t wait to torment him in the halls.

So during that first weekend, my friends and I went to see INCREDIBLES TWO, and it did not disappoint. I loved it. We also finally got to hang out without having to worry about HOMEWORK and STUDYING UGHHHHH, so it was awesome to just sit, talk, and enjoy each other’s company.

The next day, I worked on an embroidery piece in honor of Pride Month:

And OMG THEN THERE WAS AN ACTUAL RAINBOW. I wrote on Instagram that Mother Nature loves Pride Month, too.

That weekend, my friend Ali and I went up to Boston for the Families Belong Together rally. It was technically my first march/protest/rally ever; I did the National School Walkout, but that was not nearly as big as this one. It was honestly such an amazing experience, and I am so happy I went. I hadn’t been able to make it to any of the marches that have gone on over the past two years, so I was super excited that I was able to do it. Despite the weather, (it was in the 90s and super sticky out) it was super inspiring to be surrounded by people who are trying to spark change and make this country a safer and more welcoming place. (btw the super blurry photo is of ELIZABETH WARREN, so obviously I HAD to share that even though it’s a sucky photo!)

I don’t like to talk politics on this blog very often, (I typically save my opinions for my personal Instagram) but as MLK said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter,” so I will use this tiny outlet to spread awareness on issues that are important to me and hopefully influence some sort of change, no matter how small.

A speaker at the rally said that when we go home, we cannot just forget about everything and say, “Oh, I marched today, so I’ve done my part.” One march will not change everything. Even though we have participated, there’s always more to do.

This, I think, is very important for everyone to hear because it happens all the time. After there’s a shooting, people forget about it after a week. And even after thousands of families have been separated, right now it’s definitely not as talked about as it was when the issue first became known. There are still children who are separated from their families and have yet to be reunited, so even though it’s not #1 Trending on Twitter, these things are still happening.

I’m only sixteen, so unfortunately I can’t vote this year. I also am not really able to donate to any organizations. However, one thing I’ve done quite a lot is use the ResistBot over text (Text RESIST to 50409) to message my reps and senators or actually call their offices. These are simple, free resources that I use to try help out as much as I can about issues that are important to me. I encourage you to do the same! Anyways, the march was truly a great experience, and really I hope I can go to more!

Earlier that day, my friend and I planned to meet up at this juice-bar / restaurant called Cocobeet which was right in the same plaza that the march was. I got an açaí bowl, and it was delicious.

Alright, guys. That was my first week of SUMMER 2K18. I’ll be back either tomorrow or Tuesday with WEEK TWO! Oh, I’ve also got a playlist to share, so that’ll be up this week as well!

Happy Sunday, y’all.

Jenny Lewis & An Evening in New Haven

Last night, we went up to New Haven for the Jenny Lewis show at College Street Music Hall. I LOVE Jenny Lewis, and I was so excited when I heard she was going on a mini tour this year. In case you haven’t heard any of her music, here’s a playlist with my personal favorite songs by her. (Most of her bigger hits are on it along with a few songs by Rilo Kiley.)

We got down to New Haven around 5:30pm. After parking, we walked to Mamoun’s Falafel.

I got the falafel plate, and wow! It was SO good. Then we got baklava for a dessert. That has got to be in my top 10 favorite desserts. So delicious!

Coolest elevator button design! And the most awesome pink wall outside the elevator. So much color!

And now, the concert…

There are a few of the better photos I took. I forgot to take any pics of the opening act, Karl Blau, but he was awesome!

Jenny Lewis totally exceeded my expectations. She did the perfect mix of songs, (including NEW SONGS!!!) and she sounds even better in person. Her voice is just so beautiful. The band was awesome, too!

We got seats in the second row of the balcony, and they were actually pretty great! I could see the whole stage perfectly.

The two songs I wish she had done are “The Voyager” and “Under The Blacklight” by Rilo Kiley. But she ended the night with “Acid Tongue,” another one of my favorite songs by her, so I’m happy! She also did “The Big Guns” AND “Just One Of The Guys.” Yesss!!!

I’m so happy I got to see her in concert. She said she was working on a new record, so I’m hoping she goes on another tour so I can see her again!! 100% did not disappoint.

My last day of school is this Thursday, and I’m VERY ready. Going to this concert made me forget about ALL the studying for finals I have to do *sobs*. For a good 2 hours, it felt like I was already out of school. But it was a nice distraction 🙂 I’ll be listening to her on repeat this week because all the songs are stuck in my head!

I hope you have a great week!

I Sewed A Skirt!

GUYS. After a year of frustration with my sewing machine, I finally did it.

I sewed my first piece of clothing!

I’m not a huge skirt person, however, so I don’t think I’ll wear it out anywhere. It’s not totally seamless anyways, and I’d hate to go out and ruin it. The area where I tried to sew over the elastic band is a mess. But other than that, I’m super happy with it. I hemmed it pretty well, too! (At least I think I did…!)

I ordered some new fabric, and I’m super excited to get to work on my next project. Hopefully by the end of the summer I have at least one garment that is pretty seamless so I can wear it!

Sewing has been an on-and-off struggle for me. Like all crafts, it’s fun once you get going, but if you don’t have the right materials and skills, it can be soooo frustrating. Once I start something new, I either a) get bored and never try it again or b) keep doing it until I get better! For sewing, I can tell it’s b.

I’m so happy I finally decided to just start sewing again last weekend. I’m pretty proud of this skirt! If you have any beginner sewing tips I should know, please tell me!

Happy Wednesday!

Josie

Three years!

Today is my three year blogging anniversary!

Three years ago today I was thirteen, in eighth grade, and I had no idea what I wanted to do with this blog.

Today I am sixteen and in tenth grade. I still don’t really know what the “point” of my blog is… but I’ve learned that that’s not a bad thing. In fact, I think that’s what I love most about blogging. If I have an idea, I just start writing. There’s no template or guidelines I have to follow regarding what I can and can’t write about, and for me, that makes it ten times more fun.

I’ve had a blast writing posts and taking photos to share with you all over the past three years. I just wanted to pop in today to say thanks to all the readers who have been reading my blog for three years, two years, one year, or even just a day. It means a lot. I hope I’ll still be writing on here three years from now!

Happy Monday!

The Beach

Last Saturday, we took a quick day trip to the beach in Rhode Island. Unlike the obnoxious 80 degree weather we endured this week, it was only in the high 50s/low 60s that day. We braved the slight chilliness and had fun playing catch, sticking our toes in the freezing cold water, and collecting pretty rocks. When we first got there the sky was super foggy, but after about ten minutes it cleared up and looked beautiful! I brought my camera, so I thought I’d share a few photos…

Have a great weekend!