A Summer To Remember (#224)

That’s it.

I have a hard time believing it’s somehow already August 3rd. I still remember jumping up and down in my room in sheer disbelief I was offered a paid internship working in England for the summer. I called my parents immediately to share the news, quickly followed by the anxiety of organizing a trip that would take advantage of every second I spent abroad. I had plans to go to Italy and Spain, I had to think big! I found my way to Iceland, I navigated big cities in the UK, and I did it all on my own. I was enjoying this new freedom I felt…and that was all stripped when I found out I filled out my VISA incorrectly. I was sent home shortly after starting my international adventure and suddenly my world began to crash before it even had a real chance to take off.

Sitting at home was a nightmare. My positivity could only last so long. I was lucky enough to see my brother graduate high school but once the shine wore off, I couldn’t get out of my own head. I was resilient up until the point I wasn’t. I struggled to wait to return to England and when I FINALLY got back, I felt homesick and depressed. I never would have thought transitioning back would have been as hard as it was. So I buckled down, I developed a new routine for myself and made a plan. I took control of my time and I stopped making excuses for my negativity. I realized I made a mistake but there was no changing the past.

Gratitude. Gratitude is what allowed me to be present more than anything else. In another life, I was born and raised in England. I’ve wanted to visit the UK for as long as I remember wanting to travel anywhere in the world. AND, I got to be there during the World Cup and enjoy the sport’s biggest tournament with people like me. No, my summer was far from perfect but it didn’t have to be. I learned something new about myself every day abroad and found new purpose within myself. Who knows if the same would be true if everything had gone according to plan. Change is good and it may not always feel like it but it propels us in ways we could never imagine on our road to BECOMING.

I want to thank everyone who reached out over the summer, my readers, my followers, and my family for keeping me going. I could not have done any of this alone and my gratitude for you all deserves more than a line in a list. Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, I am a stronger person because of the kindness and patience that has been shown to me. Thank you. This was a summer to remember.


Today I’m Grateful For…

  1. A couple deep breaths
  2. Learning through adversity
  3. The reliant sunshine and summer warmth
  4. Exercise as a tool for my mental health
  5. Morning hikes and catching the sunrise
  6. The World Cup and sharing it with my brother
  7. My parents and their unconditional support
  8. The smell of the ocean and the sound of the waves against the dock
  9. CLEAN WATER! Check out my project and see how you can get involved!

  10. Talking things out with my sister
  11. My summer audiobooks and the escape they provide
  12. My parents’ home cooking. I tried my best this summer but I miss theirs
  13. Getting organized and having a plan for the fall semester
  14. New perspective and clarity
  15. Time to journal and having a place to spill my thoughts
  16. Shared laughter and fun memories
  17. Change, and all it brings
  18. My comfy green sweatshirt as I wait through my 20-hour layover
  19. Good music to get me through my lows
  20. Walks through campus to work in the morning
  21. Routine and consistency to ease my mind
  22. Finding my way in a completely different country
  23. Sharing my daily gratitudes
  24. Life itself. I know I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be
  25. The here and now


As always, check out my first blog, 25 Things I’m Grateful For (#1) to know why I’m writing this list and why I want you to start yours.


Featured image of my favorite night in England this summer. I’ve been saving this picture and between the colors of the sunset and the moon, I’ll always have this. 

To Be Honest… (#216)

To be honest, I’m exhausted. I’m staying up and writing this blog but having trouble making the list and reminding myself of the lessons I preach. I need to remind myself that I’m human, that self-care is important when I feel like this. I’m ready to go home. England has been an incredible experience and this summer has taught me so much. In a future blog, I’ll sit down and take the time to write about the lessons I’ve learned but for now, I’m just grateful to be here.


Today I’m Grateful For…

  1. Sitting in the sunshine
  2. My audiobooks
  3. Second Chances
  4. Love and support
  5. FaceTiming with my cat
  6. The sound of rain
  7. Weekend hikes with my friends
  8. Time at the gym
  9. A couple of deep breaths
  10. New perspectives
  11. Patient teachers
  12. Handwritten notes and letters
  13. Calls from my dad
  14. Homecooked meals
  15. Learning from my mistakes
  16. Local Amherst pizza
  17. Teaching CORE again in the fall
  18. An empty campus
  19. Working Orientation in the summer
  20. Trailers before the movie
  21. Celebrating others
  22. Safe travels
  23. CLEAN WATER! Check out my project and see how you can get involved!

  24. Leaders of all kinds
  25. My family


As always, check out my first blog, 25 Things I’m Grateful For (#1) to know why I’m writing this list and why I want you to start yours.


Featured image is not my own but I can always appreciate a beautiful skyline from a high up place. 

Making Time For Gratitude (#212)

Your gratitude list doesn’t have to take hours or be eccentric in any way. Sometimes, a simple thank you text can go a long way. Make time for gratitude in whatever way you can.


Today I’m Grateful For…

  1. FaceTimes with my dad
  2. Ice cream trips with Mel
  3. Time to journal
  4. Walks home from school
  5. Finding my place at BSU
  6. Good communication
  7. Leadership lessons
  8. Friends from home
  9. The summer rain
  10. FIFA games with Lucas
  11. Monopoly nights
  12. Local pizza
  13. Relaxing Sundays
  14. Peanut butter sandwiches before class
  15. Safe travels
  16. Climbing with Erika
  17. Sharing a birthday with my sister
  18. CLEAN WATER! Check out my project and see how you can get involved!
  19. New opportunities
  20. Friendly competition
  21. Soccer in the yard with my brother
  22. Indoor with my friends
  23. Friendly pets
  24. Another day of gratitude
  25. The here and now
  • As always, check out my first blog, 25 Things I’m Grateful For (#1) to know why I’m writing this list and why I want you to start yours.

    Featured image from the Scottish Highlands. The land felt primordial, I felt in tune with the earth and the mountains that stretched overhead.

    Right Before Bed (#207)

    Today I was asked how I manage to make time to keep up with my daily blog. In truth, the routine has been cemented into my brain. I do my best to be consistent but there are times the blog gets posted an hour (or more) later than when I usually post. I don’t always write a huge blurb about the importance of gratitude or a life lesson that’s been on my mind, but the process still takes some time.

    Writing my blog right before I fall asleep works for a couple reasons. The easy explanation is my blog gets to include every ounce of gratitude I can squeeze out from the past 24 hours. That made the most sense before I started. What I didn’t anticipate was how it would make me feel as I ended my day and as I start the next one. Regardless of what may have been bothering me from work, an anxious thought, or something with my friends, I have gratitude to clear my mind. It’s helped me let go of any negativity I was holding on to and start my next day with a positive outlook. Each new sunrise brings change and gratitude has helped me embrace that fact.


    Today I’m Grateful For…

    1. Old home movies
    2. The warmth of the sun
    3. My siblings
    4. Positive influences
    5. Good teachers
    6. Talks about space and our existence
    7. New audiobooks
    8. Time at my Grammy’s for holidays
    9. A good album all from front to back
    10. The rain
    11. My time in Cambodia. Check out my CLEAN WATER project to see how you can help too.
    12. New friends
    13. A bed long enough for me to fit on
    14. The change of seasons
    15. Carpools with Carley
    16. New ways to stay informed with the news
    17. Sharing music
    18. Gratitude
    19. Buffalo chicken dip and Pats games
    20. FaceTimes with my cat
    21. Understanding from others
    22. Patient people
    23. Quotes that make you think
    24. Safe travels
    25. The here and now
  • As always, check out my first blog, 25 Things I’m Grateful For (#1) to know why I’m writing this list and why I want you to start yours.

    Featured image of the fog resting over the lake in Scotland we stopped at. A peaceful place I got a lot of great pictures from. Grateful I have a place where I can share my photography.

    My Best Bet (#199)

    There are no guarantees in life. It means there’s a lot of trust involved in our lives whether we like it or not. We trust the sun will come up the next day. We trust we’re where we should be in life. If this is the case, I think my best bet is to accept the things I cannot control and live my life patiently with positivity and gratitude. 07.09.18

    Today I’m Grateful For…

    1. Walking meditation
    2. The sound of birds in the morning
    3. The warmth of the sun
    4. Making music
    5. My Peer Mentors at UMass
    6. Spontaneous dancing
    7. Patience
    8. Intentionality and meaning
    9. My Family and my cat Ned
    10. Cheesy Kraft Mac and Cheese
    11. My audiobooks and podcasts
    12. Time at the gym
    13. Summers working as a camp counselor
    14. Long drives and songs to sing
    15. How each breath feels like a blessing
    16. Time to watch the clouds roll by
    17. Games in the yard
    18. The sound of seagulls walking to the water
    19. Pleasant dreams and sleep
    20. Summer hikes and Chipotle
    21. Sleeping next to my cat Ned
    22. Life lessons
    23. My coaches and mentors
    24. Discover Weekly from Spotify
    25. The here and now
  • As always, check out my first blog, 25 Things I’m Grateful For (#1) to know why I’m writing this list and why I want you to start yours.Featured image of Ned curled up. People love the pictures of my cat and I love sharing them!

    When Everything Seems To Go Wrong… (#189)

    After a disappointing morning, three hours of train delays, and when everything seemed to be going wrong, I still had gratitude.

    My brother and I had quite the day traveling but at the end of the day, we talked about what were the five best moments. We talked about the little things, we talked about what made us laugh, and because of that I’m grateful. The world still turns and despite what went wrong, I’m lucky I got to spend this time with my brother.


    Today I’m Grateful For…

    1. Local pizza
    2. Sharing laughter
    3. Sports
    4. Leadership lessons
    5. Understanding
    6. Honesty
    7. Piano lessons
    8. A few deep breaths
    9. Warm sweatshirts
    10. Summer nights
    11. Time with my family
    12. Cape Cod memories
    13. Trying new things
    14. New perspectives
    15. A couple deep breaths
    16. Time to journal
    17. Gratitude
    18. Sharing love
    19. Clean water
    20. Old pictures
    21. Feeling refreshed
    22. Learning new languages
    23. Helpful people
    24. FaceTimes before bed
    25. The here and now

    As always, check out my first blog, 25 Things I’m Grateful For (#1) to know why I’m writing this list and why I want you to start yours.

    Featured image of the collage of tickets my brother and I have collected on our journeys this week. It’s been quite a ride but I’m grateful for this time we’ve spent together.

    Let The Universe Take Over (#188)

    Got a little help writing my blurb today. When talking about happiness, purpose, and love, my friend Ashley had this to say –

    I think far too often we can become so focused and determined on forcing ourselves to be happy, blindly pursuing what we think is fulfillment. We may try to force relationships, both romantic and not, in a desperate search for feeling love. I think true and actual happiness and fulfillment and love come to us in a way out of our control and in their own time and in their own surprising ways! Of course we can make conscious choices that will help us get there but we can’t really control it – all we can do is have faith.

    Wow is she wise or what? I couldn’t agree more with her and as we let go to the power of the universe, we can find what we need most. I’m grateful for people like Ashley and lessons like this.


    Today I’m Grateful For…

    1. Walks down to the wharf
    2. A vibrant sunset
    3. Checking in
    4. New friends
    5. The universe
    6. The sound of seagulls
    7. The smell of the ocean
    8. Being on time
    9. Holding hands
    10. My siblings
    11. Helpful people
    12. The sunshine
    13. My own growth
    14. Lessons learned
    15. Time for hikes
    16. A chance to journal
    17. My fellow gratitude bloggers
    18. Trying new things
    19. Peanut butter
    20. Slow dances
    21. My heroes
    22. Tattoo stories
    23. “The way up”
    24. Comfy pillows
    25. The present

    As always, check out my first blog, 25 Things I’m Grateful For (#1) to know why I’m writing this list and why I want you to start yours.

    Featured image of the sun going down in Liverpool tonight. What a special day with my brother, one I’ll always be grateful for.