What I Learned my First Semester of College

I’m basically a real adult now that I’ve finished my first semester of college (haha, that’s a lie. I mean, I DID finish my first semester of college, but I don’t know about the ‘real adult’ part. 😉
What I learned my first semester in college:
When I first started college I was really nervous and not really looking forward to it at all. I was homeschooled my whole life and I wasn’t sure exactly how different it would be being in a classroom with several different students, and having a teacher that’s not my mom (and I therefore don’t want to talk to… especially because of said other students) and it didn’t help that literally like every college student that has ever breathed complains about school. (Thanks, guys, it’s really encouraging…)
So like a nerdy homeschooler, I sat down in my math class the first day of school. I opened my empty notebook and gotten my freshly sharpened pencil ready, and…
The teacher basically read us the syllabus. She went over each page and explained it clearly. She seemed nice. Her smile made me think of Anna Kendrick. My first day of notes looked something like:
1. No phones in class
2. Raise your hand before asking questions
3. And so on…
Did I really need to take notes? No. I already established I was nervous, though, and I figured I had nothing else to do, haha.
That math class was the only class I had in person, but during my first semester I also had two English classes, and one College Success Skills class all online. I could go into detail and complain about how my College Success Skills class and one of my English classes was really dumb. (In one of my English classes we learned about marijuana for two weeks? I am still trying to figure out what that has to do with English!)
While I don’t want to say I didn’t learn things in my one other English class, my favorite class was math class. (which is weird if you know me because up until like a week ago I was adamant that I’m not a math person.) I really enjoyed that class though, and my teacher, and then I started my summer semester—a math class as well and so far I’m doing really well in it—so I guess I sort of am a math person? Who knew! (Besides my mom who is a genius and told me all along I did fine, if not well, with math in high school.)
Anyways, one day I got up in the morning, it was a school day. I didn’t feel well though and I really didn’t want to go to school. I was determined to go to school, though. So I went.
And I got my mind blown.
The teacher started talking about Fibonacci, and while I can’t explain it well enough, I’ll try.
Fibonacci is where you start off with 0,1 and you add the 0 and the 1 and you get 1(so it would then look like: 0,1,1) and then you add the 1 and the 1 and get: 0,1,1,2. Then you add the 1 and the 2 and get 3 and it would look like: 0,1,1,2,3.
You keep taking the last two numbers and adding them to get the next number.
Eventually it would look like: 0,1,1,2,3,5,8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144… and so on.
At first I was less than impressed because, can’t you start with anything and add anything to it? You can start with a 2 and add a 5 and get 7, and then add 5 and 7 together and so on. (2,5,7,12) but then she explained it even more.
Fibonacci is a sequence of numbers, but it’s a sequence of numbers that show up all around us. It shows up in nature all the time! The Fibonacci sequence is related to spirals and you know how leaves can grow in spirals on plants? Plant leaves grow in spirals so that each leaf can soak up as much sun as possible without blocking any beneath it! And in seed storage plants use Fibonacci to store as many seeds as possible in a small space!
Now, I realize I’m not explaining it well at all. So you should look it up yourself. I recommend YouTube videos (because I’m a visual learner—another thing I learned in college!).
But the reason I was so blown away and amazed by what little I understood about Fibonacci is because for the first time in my life (not an exaggeration at all) I viewed math as a science not as… torture?
It made me realize, God made math. It wasn’t just a bunch of evil bored people who were like “Lets make innocent children cry” but more like, “Our God is so big let’s try to unravel a piece of this world He created.”
And you know what else is cool?
We have algebra, and calculus, and Fibonacci. We have too many different types of math to count! But all of that added together and we don’t begin to uncover a piece of what our God has made.
And you know what the best part is?
The same God who made math, who made Fibonacci, who thought up having plant leaves grown in a spiral so they would each get as much sun as possible… He didn’t stop there. He decided the world needed each one of us as well.
And that’s what I really remember learning from my first semester in college.

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What’s Next?

So you graduated.
You’re going to walk across the stage, be handed your diploma, and beam as you walk off the stage.
People will ask you, “What next?” (but let’s be honest they’ve been asking that for a long time, right?)
If you’re anything like me, you’ll say, “I don’t know. I was thinking about this idea I had but I don’t know if I like it enough to resign myself to being stuck doing that every day for the rest of my life.” (probably not word for word, but the same sentiment.)
You’ll probably meet people who will have (what they genuinely think are) good ideas of what you should pursue. “You need to go to college so you can get a good job.” Not necessarily.
I once told someone I was thinking about being a high school history teacher and she said, “You don’t want to do that!” (She pretty much had the same reaction anytime I told her something I was thinking about pursuing now that I think about it.)
If you’re anything like me, you want to have a plan. You would be pleased beyond measure if God said, “Okay, so here’s the five year plan.”
But…. He didn’t. At least for me.
So then it wasn’t just other people asking, “What’s next?” But me too. “What’s next, God?”
It was easy (and still is if I let myself!) to get stressed about not having a plan, or having a plan, but not sure if it’s the right plan.
I’ve heard people say things before like, “You can edit a blank document!” And it’s true. The idea being you should write what you want and just fix it later. I think it can be the same for a plan (this isn’t an excuse to do whatever you want.)
You can always have a plan and change it later. Has anyone in the history of the entire world actually have some go 100% according to plan??
So, I’m here to say, if someone asks you, “What’s next?” It’s okay to respond with, “I don’t know.”
It’s not okay to use that as an excuse to do nothing, to try for nothing. But it is okay to say, “I don’t know” as you pray, and work, and try. It’s okay to think that as you go to college, or work at your job. It’s not an excuse, or an end at all! It’s a beginning of something.
So, what’s next?
I don’t know.
Who knows what the future holds? God. And in the end, that’s all that really matters, isn’t it?

(and congratulations, graduates of class 2017!!)

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Currently~ July 2017

Hi! *waves*

I don’t know if I should apologize for the crazy long break I unexpectedly took or just awkwardly ignore it…. So yeah, I haven’t died yet.

Anyways, I lot has happened since February, I’m going to catch you up on some of it!

Reading…

Glass Girl by Laura Anderson Kurk

I’ve barely started and so far I love it! Weird fact? I’ve had it for a couple of years but haven’t read it yet because at first I couldn’t stand it. XD I don’t know what’s changed, really, but I do know that I’m reading it and thinking, “My main character would be, like, best friends with Meg.”

So maybe I’ll have to do a review of it when I finish. 🙂

Listening too…

Taylor Swift.

I actually have a radio car in my car now so I bought of a couple of older ‘classic Taylor Swift’ (I call it) CD’s and I’ve been listening to that lately. (Disclaimer: I do like her newer music too, but they ARE different.)

Watching…

Once Upon A Time Season 5! Things are happening. O.O

My sister Kristin is watching it too, but we’re not at the same place, so she came in the other night to say goodnight and I freaked out and stopped the DVD and leaped up to cover her eyes and almost hit her. 😉 I take fandoms and spoilers seriously.

Eating…

Cucumbers. It’s summer! I think my mom has picked over 100 cucumbers so far. I sliced about 50 one day before work to help her make pickles. It’s a little crazy. But very yummy.

Driving…

MY CAR.

I bought my first car. I’m excited and happy. 😀 It’s a little two door Ford. It’s only 13 years old! I was driving a 25 year old Honda, so my car is practically brand new. 😉

Finishing…

My second semester of college. When did that happen? I only have, like, a million years left until I’m done!

Really, though, it’s crazy and I actually have a blog post coming up on what I learned my first semester in college.

(I’ve learned I’m still 1,000% in favor of homeschooling. I don’t despise college, but I can really see the benefits of homeschooling when I compare the two.)

I only have a couple of weeks left of my summer math class, and hopefully by this time tomorrow I will have finished my CPR class– and I’ll be done with all health classes that I need (for now. Don’t be impressed, I only need one credit hour, haha)

So, what’s been up with you for the last forever?

I make no promises, but I DO want to get better at blogging…. 🙂

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You Should Homeschool

Now that I am a mature adult (haha, I try anyways) I am going to talk to you about homeschooling. I know have before…. but it’s something I am very much in favor of. 🙂

I tell pretty much everyone they should homeschool. I don’t try to shove it down people’s throats but offer it as an alternative that they might not have thought of. When presented with the idea of homeschooling though I think a lot of times parents are scared (and I’m not saying they shouldn’t be!) but they think things like, “I can’t teach calculus– they’d be better off with something who could!”

Bbuutt….. I’m of the belief you’ll cross that bridge when you get to it. Chances are, if you’re starting with a five year old you would be starting at kindergarten. Which, it’s been a while since I was in kindergarten, but I don’t think the math gets that complicated.

You take it one step at a time. Teach the alphabet and how to count to 10.

I am pro-homeschooling because I believe you should put your child in environment where he feels safe to learn. I’ll be honest here, if I had been public schooled I would have been one of those children who cried every day as they got on the bus. Probably I would have cried every day until I graduated. 😉

Education is going to always be structured to some degree, but in homeschool you have a little more freedom. If something came easily to me I could get ahead (many times on accident) and if something was more difficult for me my mom would go over everything again. And again. And again. Until I got it. While, yes, I needed to pass the test, but my mom wasn’t pressured with twenty other kids to teach, she had me (I’m sure I was difficult enough at times!). And her job didn’t rest of me passing a test. She cared that I understood what I was learning, not that I knew the right answer.

(For example: more then once in math I got the right answer…using the wrong method. My mom wanted to make sure I knew how not that I just knew.)

Being homeschooled brought me closer to my siblings and my parents. My dad didn’t usually help me with my school. He was usually at work and my mom helped me with school. My dad always told me though, if I needed help, he would help me. After a long day of school for me, and a long day of work for him, did I really want to do more school and make him do schoolwork as well? NO. Certainly not. But it is nice to know that I could have. It’s nice to know that he was actively invested in my education as well.

Being homeschooled gave me the freedom to be original. Since I was comfortable in my environment I felt free to ask my mom questions. (and then going back to parents being scared– you don’t have to always know the answer. I remember my mom working through problems with me, or looking up the answer. And you know what? Sometimes– probably if it had nothing to do with what I was learning about– she was completely honest with me and told me, “I don’t know.”)

I love asking questions. And the thing about questions is, you might get one answered and they might open up five more questions! I could get off topic, and I’m sure my mom got tired of it, but it was nice to know that I could ask questions.

I had free time! I never called my school homework. It was just school. So it always throws me off when other homeschoolers say homework because… is that just normal school? Haha, but I never had homework. Not like people who are public schooled do. Often times (in high school and I couldn’t figure out why!) I got done around two o’clock in the afternoon. Maybe even sooner. That meant I had all afternoon to do things!

And what did I do that spare time? It would differ from person to person, but I read a lot, and read about writing, and wrote a lot. I’m glad I had that free time so I could learn to be creative– even if I don’t do anything with writing.

I love that I was homeschooled because I love how it has affected my life. I love that I appreciate my parents so much (but never enough) for all they’ve done. I’m so thankful that I had this opportunity.

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True Dreams

Most, if not all, of us have seen that TV show, or that movie, or maybe we’ve read about it in a book.

Two people, madly in love—maybe even engaged—and then one person gets a job offer.

Not just any job offer. It’s their dream job. The one they knew they wanted when they were five years old.

But along with the job offer comes the different state that it’s in.

So the one person says to the other, “I can’t hold you back from your dream. You’ll grow to resent, or maybe even hate me. I couldn’t live with myself if that happened so you have to take it.”

And then the person takes the job, the couple breaks up, and all the fans are mad. Or sad. Or both.

There are some who would argue, “They could work it out if they just tried!”

Or some who say, “They must not have been truly in love, then.”

(As my dad pointed out, you don’t marry someone you can live with, you marry someone who you can’t live without.)

In my experience, though, sometimes the person who says, “You have to take the job” doesn’t listen to the person who was offered the job!

I think sometimes people fail to realize that dreams can change. Dreams don’t have to be goals, but sometimes they can be people.

I’ve been thinking about this lately, and as I think about it, I keep thinking about in Tangled when Eugene told Rapunzel, “You were my new dream.”

Maybe the person’s dream job did offer them a position. But that dream job may look a lot less appealing then the person they’re in love with—especially if to do that job they have to leave that person.

Just something I’ve been thinking about lately.wuv

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Currently December 2016

Can you believe 2016 is coming to a close? It went by so quickly, and I’m not ready to start thinking about the year being 2017. It’s still 2010 isn’t it? It’s hard to believe that was seven years ago!!

Many things happened this year, and I think all in all it was a good year. A really good year.

I’ve already talked about some of the things that have happened this year, I talked about my summer, and I think that’s when the most exciting stuff happened.

It is already the 8th, but I guess I’ll update you all on what I’m up to Currently.

Currently

Listening to~ Christmas music, and the new One Republic Album, and my sister just let me borrow her Piano Guys CD, so I’ll be listening to that soon!

Watching~ Well, I’ve been watching Downton Abbey, I’ve watched several Christmas movies, and this Saturday, I’m going to go see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them!

Baking~ Kristin and I are going to make sugar cookies later and decorate them. It’ll be very Christmas-y and nice. And maybe we’ll have to make it a new tradition. 😉

Reading~ I actually just finished the book I was reading. I was reading (don’t judge!) Twilight for the first time. I’ll admit, I did actually like it. I don’t love it, but I do like it, and I am interested to see how the other books are.

Writing~ Okay, I know I don’t blog that much, but you may know/recall how I’ve been talking about editing for the last 15,000 years of my life. (Okay, but for the last year– that’s actually NOT an exaggeration) and… honestly, I’m procrastinating, but I’m getting closer to finishing (you know, once I start again), and when I’m done I already have the next project picked out! I want to start writing it now, but I know the idea/s aren’t strong enough, and if I give it time it will get stronger… besides if I started writing it now I may not ever finish editing, so maybe it’s a blessing in disguise. 😛

Adulting~ I don’t remember if I ever said anything about this, but I got my drivers license a few months back, so I can drive myself to and from work like a real adult. 😉 I also signed up for a few classes this winter. I kind of feel like I’ll be in college forever, but people keep telling me it’ll go by fast. (And oddly enough, I’m not sure if I’m comforted by that fact… haha, I’m complicated)

Looking forward to~ CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!! Would you honestly expect anything else from me? 😉 Only seventeen days left! I still need to do almost all of my shopping and bake some cookies and put up some outside Christmas lights, but it’ll be fun.

What are all of you currently up too?

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Guest Post With Author Tessa Emily Hall!

unwritten-melody-blog-tour

Today I’m doing something a little different! Tessa Emily Hall just had a new book come out Unwritten Melody and she has agreed to do a guest post for me. 🙂

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About the book: Does breaking free require breaking the rules?

 

Cassie Gilbert lives every day in the shadows of her deceased mom’s rebellion. But now that she’s seventeen, she finds herself longing to break away from her grandmother’s suffocating rules, experience what it’s like to be a regular teenager, and fulfill her songwriting dreams.

 

James Russo, former American Spotlight contestant, escapes to small town Willow Creek, SC hoping to flee from his tarnished past. When a school project pairs him with the shy principal’s granddaughter, he’s determined to get to know this Emily-Dickinson-obsessed and typewriter-using girl. His plan? Convince Cassie to co-write songs for his demo album.

 

As Cassie gets to know James over “project meetings” (more like opportunities to match her lyrics with his melodies), she becomes intrigued by his sense of adventure and contagious passion for music. But soon, his past becomes exposed. Cassie’s left to wonder—did she make the same mistake Mom did by falling for the bad boy?

 

Then, Grandma’s control pushes her over the edge. Cassie must choose between remaining in the chains of yesterday, or delving into her own freedom by completing the melody her mom left behind.

Book Links:

 

 

                                           Behind the Setting: Willow Creek, SC

There’s nothing quite like a small town. Perhaps I’m biased; I have, in fact, lived in a small, southern town for my entire life. But what I love about these towns is the closeness of a community. The way people come together to support one another. Southern hospitality. The familiarity of faces when you go to your local coffee shop or grocery store. I love the unique history that small towns seem to have written onto the old buildings that make up their downtowns.

 

This love for small, southern towns is what initially birthed the inspiration for the fictional town of Willow Creek, SC.

 

Willow Creek is far smaller and more country than the little town I grew up in. It does, however, contain traces of my hometown, as well as the towns that surround it. Willow Creek’s “city life” can be found in the ghost town of downtown, and its rolling countryside stretches for miles. The town’s creek, which is what Willow Creek is known for, is surrounded by towering willow trees. Most of its residents live on a farm, drive a truck, and listen to country music.

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Throughout Unwritten Melody, Cassie is resentful toward this small town of hers. Not necessarily because she doesn’t appreciate it; rather, she feels as though it’s kept her confined within a cage. She’s desperate for the freedom that could come with seeing the rest of the world.

 

I guess that’s the only flaw in a small town: If you stay there long enough, it’s almost as though you become brainwashed into believing it’s as far as the world reaches.

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Still, though, Cassie does have a deep appreciation toward this little town of hers—even if she doesn’t like to admit it. It’s where she grew up. It’s why she is who she has become. Her family’s history whispers their secrets at the creek, the library, Gary’s Diner, and even Dream Bean Café.

 

Although Cassie is desperate for an escape from Willow Creek, she may very well find that the escape she’s longing for can only be attained by staying exactly where she is.

 

                                                                      Questions for you…

 

If you could live in any fictional town, which town would you choose and from which book? Why?

 

 

 

                                                                  Giveaway!!

 

Enter for your chance to win the Unwritten Melody Prize Pack! Two winners will be selected and announced on Tessa’s blog the final day of tour (Friday, December 9th) and will be notified via email.

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This prize pack includes…

 

  • E-copy of Unwritten Melody
  • Signed paperback copy of Purple Moon
  • Unwritten Melody mug, filled with goodies
  • Unwritten Melody swag, including a bookmark, pen, and poster
  • Starbucks mocha flavored instant coffee
  • Free Unwritten Melody: Page-By-Page Secrets PDF
  • Handmade journal
  • Typewritten thank you note

 

*This giveaway is open to the US only 

https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js“> Make sure you enter the giveaway!

tessa-emily-hall_headshot1

Tessa Emily Hall writes inspirational yet authentic YA fiction to show others they’re not alone—and because she remembers the teen life like it was yesterday (or a few years ago). The debut novel she wrote at 16-years-old, PURPLE MOON (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas) was a Selah 2014 Finalist. Her second novel, UNWRITTEN MELODY, releases with Clean Reads November 2016. She’s the Founder of PursueMagazine.net, a magazine that inspires teens to embrace their calling. She also enjoys helping writers achieve their dreams through her internship at Hartline Literary Agency.

 

When her fingers aren’t flying 116 WPM across the keyboard, Tessa can be found making healthy homemade lattes, speaking to teens, decorating her insulin pump, and acting in Christian films. She writes in a small town nestled between the Blue Ridge Mountains and Southeastern coast. Her favorite way to procrastinate is by connecting with readers on her blog, mailing list, social media (@tessaemilyhall), and website.

Connect With Tessa

 

Thanks for stopping by, Tessa!

And don’t forget to enter the giveaway before you leave. 🙂

 

Blog Tour Schedule

Don’t miss the next blog tour stop! Be sure to visit the following blogs on its designated tour date. You can also email tessaemilyhall (at) gmail (dot) com and request to receive the Blog Tour Packet. At the end of the tour, Tessa will send you the downloadable PDF that will contain all of the content from each blog tour stop.

 

Tues., November 1 – Christ is Write

Wed., November 2 – Adriana Gabrielle Writes

Thurs., November 3 – The Depth of My Faith

Fri., November 4 – Sarah Ruut

Mon., November 7 – God is Love

Tues., November 8 – The Bibliophile Angel

Wed., November 9 – Emily Rachelle Writes

Thurs, November 10 – Word Changers For His Glory

Fri., November 11 – Christian Teen Book Reviews

Mon., November 14 – Phyllis Still

Tues., November 15 – In The Bookcase

Wed., November 16 – Girl Meets Publishing World

Thurs., November 17 – Anna Schaeffer

Fri., November 18 – Ramblings of a Writer

Mon., November 21 – Naomi and Books

Tues., November 22 – Reading is My Superpower

Wed., November 23 – Zerina Blossom’s Books

Thurs., November 24 – Jennifer Slattery Lives Out Loud

Fri., November 25 – Labor Not in Vain

Mon., November 28 – Barbara Bruitt

Tues., November 29 – Katy Kauffman

Wed., November 30 – Jen Pheobus

Thurs., December 1 – Northern Belle Meg

Fri., December 2 – 2Me From Him

Mon., December 5 – Nicole Quigley

Tues., December 6 – The Destiny of One

Wed., December 7 – Catherine Castle

Thurs., December 8 – Rachelle Rea Cobb

Fri., December 9 – Leslie L. Mckee

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