The Fight

I had a thought earlier: it’s always when I need people the most that they neglect me, but I realized it’s the opposite: I neglect them.

We all have our issues, our internalized crisis that needs to be solved. And while I’m conquering my internal crisis, everyone else is fighting their own battle. I realized that while I think I need an army of loved ones to fight my battles, I just need another Commander in Chief. Someone beside me who is fighting their own fight, simultaneously alongside me. We can’t combine forces or fight each other’s fights, but we can lean over and ask for battle tactics.

This metaphor may have become too far-fetched, so I’ll summarize.

I don’t need to depend on others to help solve my problems, I just need someone there who understands what I’m going through and who can give me advice. I have those people. While I’ve always expected them to know exactly how I feel and have sympathy for me, I realize now that everyone has their own internal battles, everyone has their own fights, and they’re not meant to be fighting mine.

Today I had to try a lot harder to find what made me happy. And I had to try and figure out why I wasn’t getting the help I wanted. But I realized now that my loved ones, friends, family, boyfriend, they’re all there for me. They love me no matter what, I just have to accept that they don’t know all the strategies in my battle, only I do. Today I found genuine happiness in others, and happiness in myself.

The moral of this whole post is, if you’re fighting your battle and don’t think you can take it anymore, let out a wild war cry. Literally. Just scream. Get it all out. Do it with your fellow Commander in Chiefs.

Okay, in all seriousness, remember that they’re there for you, though they’ll be unsheathing their swords for different battles.

Bee happy,

Sam 🙂

 

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Driving Thoughts

Driving, for some people, is a way to get from point A to point B. No attention is given to the surroundings, the dogs on the sidewalk or the wild-flowers growing by the curb. Thinking about it, it’s probably safer, as people’s eyes should be on the road and not the side of it.  As the typical cliché goes, “stop and smell the roses.” In this case, taking it literally wouldn’t be a good idea, unless you’re driving down Lombard Street in San Francisco. But the point behind the cliché still applies.  I find that driving is a way for me to think about, and enjoy, my surroundings without distractions. We’re all driving down the same road, but in our own little metal bubble. That could, honestly, go up in flames any minute. Cars are scary. As per usual, I digress. I have compiled a few of my thoughts while driving this week that have made me smile.

On my way home from school, I drive past a couple elementary schools, and therefore, a couple crossing guards. This past week the lady was directing traffic in the intersection in front of the school, and she started almost-dancing. It only lasted a second, but it was there. It was probably a response to a car that had driven past that was blasting music, and I started thinking about how many different songs traffic-directors probably hear everyday. They only hear each song for maybe 5 seconds, but that’s enough to get a song stuck in one’s head. My train of thoughts quickly fell off the rails into a rabbit hole, and I started thinking about how interesting being a crossing guard would be. There are loads of elementary school kids that a crossing guard gets to talk to during the wait for the light to change, and while crossing the street. Similar to the music, the conversation is short lived, but it’s enough to get to hear some quality stories.

Being a dog in a car seems like such a liberating experience. Sure, people can stick their heads out of car windows too, but they don’t get the “AWW that person is so cute!!’ it’s more of “Umm what is that person doing.” Ugh, social standards. I just appreciate the people that bring their dogs in the car, and I pretend they’re doing it to show off their prized pet. The dog’s probably pretty proud of himself too. Like “look what I can do, you silly human, if you did this people would judge you.” Sidenote: my family once dog-sat a golden retriever and he loved car rides, and would stick his head out the window and leave a trail of slobber like there was no tomorrow. The entire side of the car was stained with slobber marks for a week.

I want to register my car in a different state and get that state’s license plate just to drive it around in the state I live in… and to be different. My new favorite past-time is punching the people in the car with me when there’s a different license plate nearby. When I say people, I mean Trevor or my brother, because no one else will play with me. But I want to be driving the car that people go “woah! that person’s from *insert state here*” Or i could just move across the country and bring my car. That’d work too. But anyways it’s always fun seeing the different license plates and wondering why they’re visiting. Are they staying with family? Just on vacation? Each license plate has a story, and I think that’s pretty cool.

Something I tried recently was just driving in silence. I turned off the radio and just sat with my thoughts. It almost acted as a semi-therapy session. Usually I just blast upbeat music to fix my mood, but this time I attempted the opposite. It was eye-opening. The fifteen minute car ride allowed me to address some thoughts about current events at school that have had a negative impact on my life, after I attended a school district board meeting, and it was a good idea. I could reflect on the meeting without the interruption of other people’s opinions, especially after hearing them expressed for two hours straight. I highly recommend it.

When I am not wallowing in my thoughts, I discovered this podcast called Beautiful Stories from Anonymous People. My friends in my journalism class were talking about it, and so I looked it up. The last time I listened to a podcast was in eighth grade, and I was excited to find something new. And it paid off. I turn on this podcast whenever I’m in the car now, because my music was getting to be kind of repetitive. It’s hosted by Chris Getherd, a comedian, and the premise is that people call in to talk about anything, but they’re completely anonymous. The phone call can only be an hour long, so they have an hour to just chat with Chris, and it’s pretty rad. The topic that they start with when they call him usually diverts into a completely different topic. This is almost completely credited to Chris, who somehow knows the right questions to ask to delve into this anonymous person’s life. Without knowing their identity, he gets to know who the person is and their struggles, and tries to help them. It’s a super deep premise, but the podcast itself is pretty lighthearted. It’s great alternative to sitting in silence, and I highly recommend this as well.

I apologize for the length, but these have been accumulated over a week. Also! I forgot to add, but the sunrise on my way to school is pretty impressive and it’s a fantastic way to start the day. But anyways, I find that looking for small delights while in traffic helps me forgive those idiot drivers that decide that they’re going to just do their own thing and not pay any attention to those around them, and not get so frustrated.

I’m not usually adamant about you guys taking something from my posts, but I truly hope that this one inspires you to take a minute while driving and just breathe. Times are stressful right now, and we don’t need anymore added stress. I know that preventing stress isn’t really possible, but lessening the frustration in driving has helped me put things in perspective.  The world is having a hard time right now, and though driving in silence seems like a small thing, or listening to a lighthearted podcast maybe won’t dramatically alter your life, but it definitely helped me this past week. If the silence or podcast trick don’t work, maybe try sticking your head out the car window and slobbering down the side of the car. Preferably when someone else is driving.

Bee happy,

Sam 🙂

Color

The coloring book phenomenon has been going on for a few years now, and I am going to spend a minute focusing on why these previously childlike activities have taken the adult world by storm.

  1. The whole stress-relieving aspect. I think it’s interesting how coloring books are now used as a tactic to relieve stress. It makes sense, since a lot of people find solace in art, but are not necessary Picasso-ranked artists. Coloring books are a way to express that left-side creative brain in a way that does require immense skill. Coloring book coloring is a skill one acquires at a young age, and so it almost comes naturally.
  2. The aesthetic of it. A finished page leaves one satisfied and (hopefully) proud of their work. It looks nice, and it is full of appealing colors. A good color palette is something that never fails to make my day, and I know I like to be surrounded by bright colors. My favorite movies have very specific color palettes and I find that so pleasing, and this applies to coloring books as well. If a certain page is colored well, it brings me joy.
  3. The chance to bond, or find solitude. Coloring is something that doesn’t require a lot of brain-functioning, so it’s a chance to talk to friends while having something else to entertain you, or when there’s nothing to say, to sit quietly and scribble. Play calming music, watch a movie or show that works as background noise, and chat with friends. Add some snacks and you got the perfect Friday night. Now let’s say one doesn’t have friends (let’s hope this isn’t the case). How about we say one needs to get away from the world. There’s a lot of stuff going on in the world, and everyone needs a moment to get away. It’s the perfect opportunity to escape from the world and delve into a world of color (trademark Disney 🙂 ).

I could go on, but there’s only so much about coloring book I’m sure you guys want to read, so I’ll stop it here. Now is the time I invite you to join the coloring-book club and see what the buzz is all about. Though, due to the hype, I’m sure you have purchased a coloring book and it is collecting dust on your desk somewhere. I’m guessing it has approximately two pages colored in. Now, I invite you to take it out and spend ten minutes coloring. Those five minutes you just used reading this to get to this point, you could have been coloring. So stop. Go. Go color. Goodbye. Have fun.

Bee happy,

Sam 🙂

The Last Beginning

As I always say, consistency is key. Also as I always say, practice what you preach. This blog follows neither of those statements.

Moving on!

Yesterday was the start of senior year! That’s so crazy to think about. As of this moment, I have NO IDEA where I’m going to be in a year’s time. I have lived in the same house since I was three, and I have gone to schools in the same district with the same people since preschool. And next year, there will be MAYBE one person going to the same school as me, and that’s even a stretch.

The start of senior year is the start of new beginnings, but also the ending of this chapter of my life. It is the beginning of the end.

As I watch my friends and boyfriend leave for college, and decorate their dorm rooms, create new friendships, and start anew, I realize that I have to savor these last moments.

I have to appreciate being surrounded by people I have spent the last 14 years of my life with, appreciate that I am in the same literature class as the boy in my pre-kindergarten class, appreciate the drama teacher I’ve had for four years in a row.

Though my classes this year seem kind of bland and boring so far, I am going to try to make the best out of this year. I’m going to try new things and step out of my comfort zone, while I’m still surrounded by all of those who love and support me.

All the more reason to find those little smiles in everyday.

Bee happy,

Sam 🙂

New! (8/6/17 & 8/8/17)

As usual, I am inconsistent and poor at making time to write. But have no fear, Sam is here. Though I doubt you had fear… It’s just a saying. Moving on.

8/6/17: Today was a day for new adventures! I went on a plane by myself for the first time. And coincidentally, I saw someone I knew. Out of the hundreds of people in LAX, and the three gates I walked past to find mine, I saw someone I knew! Small. World. Seeing him made me happy because I was feeling very lonely, sitting at the gate on my phone was not sufficient entertainment.

The plane ride was average. Nothing special. Didn’t crash so that was good. It was a short flight, from LA to Washington (the state with trees, not the one with the White House). Once I landed, my aunt and uncle picked me up from the airport (I haven’t seen in them at least four years!). They have a four month old puppy that they brought along, and we drove to my cousin’s house (who I haven’t seen in at least five or six years!). He has a son now, who is three-years-old, and is the cutest thing ever. So that’s today, a day filled with new experiences, new people, and old people (not old in age but just people I’ve known for a long time).

8/8/17: Building upon the “new experiences” theme I seem to have made, I visited Seattle for the first time! My initial impression was… blah. The streets seemed like any other city, and I wasn’t very impressed. But I think we were just in the blah part of town, because once we got to the Seattle Center, containing the Science Center, Space Needle, and Art Museum, my spirits lightened. We went to the Science Center to see the Terracotta Warriors (the old clay soldiers that the Chinese buried underground).

A (not-so) fun fact about Emperor Qin is that in an attempt to live eternally, he consumed mercury. They say the mercury probably contributed to his death. Ironic.

Now the Warriors were cool, but even cooler was the table where you could make a kite! (Picture included below). After I made a kite I got a cookie! I promise I am not five years old. Post-kite-flying and cookie-devouring, we went on an adventure to Pike Place Market, which was a lot cooler than I expected. It’s just a row of fruit shops and flower stands, and my aunt bought a bouquet of flowers that I took from her, I pretended they were mine and took pictures with them all around Seattle. (Pictures below). We trekked over to the ferris wheel after that, and took a ride on that, and then I coerced my aunt and uncle into taking me to the carousel. Again, I promise I am not five years old. One ferry ride later, we arrived back in Bremerton (Or Bummerton, as my uncle calls it), and spent a few minutes with my cousins and came home!

It has been a successful few days of bonding and reminiscing on family memories. Only four days to go. 😦  I apologize for the inconsistency, but as you can see, I have been swamped in puppy fur and flower petals.

Bee happy,

Sam 🙂

Music (7/31/17)

I find it amazing how music can dramatically alter my mood from being down in the dumps, to being upbeat and happy. 

Work put me in an icky mood today, (I don’t understand why people think it’s okay to be rude to people trying to help them) but after work I blasted my music in the car and it really helped. In the fifteen minutes it took for me to get from work to home, I felt a little better. 

Following my movie recommendation from yesterday, I will list a few songs here that really cheer me up. 

  1. Put Your Records On by Corinne Bailey Rae
  2. Staple It Together by Jack Johnson
  3. Father and Daughter by Paul Simon
  4. Barcelona by George Ezra
  5. Nancy Mulligan by Ed Sheeran
  6. Listen to What the Man Said by Paul McCartney and the the Wings
  7. Count on Me by Bruno Mars
  8. Blame It On the Boogie by the Jacksons
  9. Stuck on You by Meiko
  10. Twist and Shout by the Beatles

And with that, I leave you to your listening.

Bee happy, 

Sam 🙂

A Movie Moment (7/28,29/17)

7/28/17: In elementary school, I found the CD (back when people listened to physical CDs) of the soundtrack to Across the Universe. It belonged to my parents, and it made me angry. All of the songs were Beatles songs, but they were not sung by the Beatles. Eight-year-old me was mad at these phonies and vowed to never listen to this CD, or watch the movie it partnered with. How dare they.

Flash forward eight years, and Across the Universe was added to Netflix’s expanding stash of movies. I broke my vow. Eight-year-old me would have been so disappointed. Sixteen-year-old me was amazed. The talent, the filmography, the music, the everything is fantastic. I watched the movie twice in one month, and then betrayed my young self even more by digging up the ancient CD.

The reason the CD made me so upset when I was younger was because I had a strong attachment to the Beatles. I felt so cool in fourth grade, because I was a die-hard Beatles fan while the other kids were fawning over Miley Cyrus. I was the cool kid, walking around with my Beatles t-shirt and telling people that Ringo Starr was not dead.

The Ringo Starr conversation came up more often than one would think.

I digress.

This love for the Beatles carried into my teen years (though my obsession toned down, since I realized no one really cared that I had three Beatles posters stuck to my walls), and I still listen to them quite frequently.

But my love for the Beatles is besides the point. The point is, I just watched Across the Universe for a third time. I noticed the small things that the director hid, and tried to find a movie critic who noticed them too, but I found that no one really discusses the small details. So I have taken it upon myself to list a couple things I find to be pure genius.

  1. The names! Almost every name in the movie is either the title of a Beatles song, or featured in one. (This was actually brought up in a couple critiques)
  2. Going off of the name thing, their characters match the identity in the song they are named after. (Examples: First, Jojo makes his entrance alone, walking through the streets of New York, weaving through the masses by himself. It may be a stretch, but the first line of “Get Back” is “Jojo was a man who thought he was a loner” Second, there’s a character named Max, and there is a joke at one point that he killed his grandma with a hammer, and then is later shown fixing a fan with a hammer. ~”Maxwell’s Silver Hammer~)
  3. There is a bridge near the beginning of the movie that has the word “FREEDOM” written on it. The bridge is in the background, therefore it is not very prominent but freedom is an important theme of the movie and I just thought that was cool.
  4. The replication of Beatles performances and movies. As a dedicated fan, I have watched many of the Beatles’…interesting… movies, and noticed many similarities in the execution of their films and Across the Universe.

This post somehow turned into a movie critique (oops), but the purpose of this was to address how happy this movie makes me, not because of the story line (it’s really quite depressing), but the quality of the movie . A well-made movie is capable of great things, and that will forever impress me. The amount of talent and creativity that went into Across the Universe, and most movies, is so commendable.

Side note: There are mixed reviews about this film (I came across various opinions in my search for critics with an eye for small details), but I personally would recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good musical-movie, or Beatles songs, or a fantastic mix of colors. Not only is the singing good, but the film is very aesthetically pleasing.

7/29/17: To make up for the five-year-long story up above (sorry…), this one will be short and sweet. My manager at work said my smile was contagious, and that made my day. Especially because I had convinced myself that she hated me. Good times.

Bee happy, 

Sam:)

Disney (7/20,24/17)

Both very separate days, with different moments. Brace yourself, this is a long one. Here we go.

7/20/17: Started off bad. But that is not the point! After having a day not worth writing about, I went to see Mary Poppins (the stage musical version) performed by a local theater company. Not only is Mary Poppins one of my favorite childhood movies, but it is now my favorite musical. The choreography and costumes were just fantastic, and Mary Poppins has always been a dream role of mine. Now I just need to learn how to sing. And become practically perfect in every way. Super. (califragilisticexpialidocious).

Nonetheless, this show reminded me why I love theater so much, and how my love for the stage began. Though this seems cliché, the actors all seemed to be having the times of their lives and I could picture myself being on stage with them. The hard work the entire cast crew put into this show truly paid off and it made me miss doing shows (I haven’t been in a show since end of March!). I frequently question my choice of being in drama class for my four high school years, because I don’t have a strong desire to pursue it as a career, but this show made me realize why I have been in the class for so long. I love love love being in shows and performing. The people I have met through theater have truly changed my life and I am forever grateful for the experiences I have gained these past three years. Though next year will more than likely be last year in a theater class, I will continue to love and support the arts no matter what career I end up in.

7/24/17: As they say, Disneyland is the happiest place on Earth, and I do not disagree. This trip to Disney easily became one of my most memorable. Before I continue, allow me to set the scene.

In an attempt to get the best seats to see our friend in the Electrical Light Parade, my two friends and I claim our spot on the curb. Time: approximately 6 pm. Estimated time until parade: 2 hours and 45 minutes. Dedication. With more than two hours on our hands, we are left to entertain ourselves. The brilliant idea to eat while we wait comes to our heads, and Alyssa journeys off to get chicken nuggets. While she is on her quest, a family of four comes up behind us (One mom, three daughters.) And this is where the story begins.

The mom, Heather, asks us (my friend Chloe and I) why there are so many people just sitting on the curb, and we tell her there is a parade. At 8:45. And yes, we are crazy. We tell her our absolutely genius plan to get dinner and bring it back to the curb. It has a real curb appeal. (ha). After giving Heather the lowdown on the tricks of the trade (She agrees, it is absolutely genius), Alyssa returns, chicken nuggets in hand. After a brief hesitation about leaving her children in the care of random teenagers, Heather departs on the chicken nugget voyage. During her absence, Chloe, Alyssa, and I bond with the three girls. We quickly learned they are from Hawaii, are in California after being in Spain for ten days, and their dad has returned to Hawaii for work. And Maya’s favorite animal is an elephant.

Though I did not know them for very long, and will probably never see them again, these three girls and their mom made my day. The odd meeting made me feel like it was meant to be. Out of all the wacko people sitting on the curb waiting for a parade, Heather chose us. Though I can’t say exactly why it’s meant to be, I just hope that maybe my friends and I had some impact on them, or maybe they sparked something in us. Or maybe it was just an odd coincidence that resulted in a friendly interaction. Whatever it was, those two hours were the highlight of my day.

It also turned out that our friend was not performing in the parade, so we technically waited two hours and 45 minutes for a ten minute parade that our friend wasn’t even in.

We had also searched for a custodian I took a picture with a year ago, his name is Uncle Steve and he’s a nice man. After a long day of searching, we found him after the parade. All in all, those two hours and 45 minutes were worth the wait, even if we didn’t see our friend dancing.

Bee happy,

Sam 🙂

Trails and Shakes (7/16/17)

Today there were a few moments that made me smile, and I’d like think my positivity spread onto others. I went for a run this morning, on a trail near my house, and every person I passed either said Hello or Good Morning, or at least smiled. The friendliness of everyone on the trail made me smile and started my day right. I was called into work immediately after my run. It was actually somewhat enjoyable. This one man commented on how I should stay happy, and a 95 year-old-lady told me I was pretty (she was old, her eyesight was probably a little off) and that my mom should be proud of me. In exchange for her small act of kindness, I gave her and her daughter a free milkshake. (which, granted, is against the rules, but I didn’t take a break or eat, so I made up for it) The small exchanges I had with strangers today affected my day, and I just hope that I had a similar impact on their days.

Bee Happy,

Sam

That’s Pretty Neat (7/12/17-7/15/17)

I’m mushing the past four days together, due to a camping trip that included my closest friends and nature. The small moments of the trip included:

~Stars! The sky at home is lacking in the amount of stars that can be seen at night, but while camping, they filled the sky. I saw a shooting star the first night, worthy of a wish (a wish I cannot disclose).

~Bears! My goal of the summer (second to learning to play the ukulele) was seeing a bear in person. The family friend of my friend saw a mama bear and her cubs, and it gave me hope. My desire to see a bear became an inside joke with the group, and I offered to leave food out for the bears, or go on a walk to find them. BUT! That second night, the bears were up the hill from out campsite, sitting near a tree. With a flashlight, we could only make out their outlines, but I still saw little cubs and it made my entire summer!

~Ukulele! As I mentioned above, my primary goal of the summer was to learn how to play the ukulele. I got back from the camping trip, and the ukulele I ordered was sitting in my room. I still need to learn how to play it, but owning the instrument is one step closer to playing it! I’m so excited!

~Photography! Overall, I got to practice my photography skills on the trip and captured a few great photos, so I’ll include them here. Even though with social media, photography is a very wide-spread art, I still enjoy taking pictures and seeing beauty in the simple things.

Bee Happy,

Sam

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