Friday’s focus and fairy tales

I’ve always loved fairy tales, ever since I was little. When I was three, I was a princess for Halloween and continued to wear the costume as much as I could possibly get away with after that. Now, I’m 22 and my favorite show at the moment is ABC’s Once Upon a Time.

What everyone loves about a good fairy tale, is that they give us hope. Hope that no matter how bad things may seem to be, they can get better. Hope is something everyone should have. Especially when times seem difficult in the world. There are natural disasters and crazy people on our news every day that makes it difficult to see all the good and possibilities in the world.

I do believe that there is more good in the world than bad.

This weekend don’t just try to be hopeful for yourself or the world, but be the hope for others. Talk to someone you don’t know very well, or at all. Everyone can use a friend and a simple smile at stranger could be the lift they need. Take time for others this weekend and help them see the hope in the world; Help them believe in fairy tales.

Love,
Liv

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Split and Dubrovnik

Even before I knew how I was getting to Dubrovik, I knew I had to get there. Not just because it’s in “1000 Place to See Before You Die” but because I had already booked my flight from Dubrovnik to Madrid at least month or two prior.

It may not seem as though that it would be that difficult to get to since it’s literally next to Italy but you’d be surprised!

Easy Jet starts flying direct from Rome to Dubrovnik but not until July 1st. The only flights currently available had ridiculous connections and were really expensive.

After a lot of research, I figured out the best way to reach Croatia would be to take two trains from Florence to Ancona, take an overnight ferry to Split, and then a four hour bus ride from Split to Dubrovnik.

Phew! It took a good minute to get there but it was worth it!

Three days and nights of a peacock inhabited island, sea kayaking and going out and getting to know the locals a little bit and I found myself falling in love with this small city.

I’ve been to the Amalfi Coast, the Italian Riviera, the French Riviera and Sicily and the ocean and beaches I saw in Dubrovnik easily topped them all.

As of now, I’d officially rank them:

1. Dubrovnik
2. Taormina (Sicily)
3. Sorrento (Amalfi)
4. Cinque Terre (Italian Riviera)
5. Nice (French Riviera)

olivia leigh gaggi

Cliff jumping is supposed the be the thing to do in Dubrovnik. I didn’t do because I was travelling solo but it looked like so much fun!

Love,
Liv

What I Learned in College

For the past for years I’ve answered the same question countless times.

“So, you’re from Florida, how did you end up at Appalachian State?”

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Four years ago, when I was a senior in high school, I knew I wanted to get out. I wanted to have the ‘going away to college’ experience. I wanted to try something new and live somewhere new. I wanted to grow up and become the person I wanted to be.  So many people I knew from high school (not all though), went to the same college, hang out with the same people, went to the same parties– Personally, I just don’t think you really have a chance to grow as a person and mature if you don’t challenge yourself and put yourself in new situations that may even feel uncomfortable at first.

Everything I had hoped I’d get out of college, I got. I definitely have had a lot of lessons in the past four years and looking back I got everything I wanted for out of college. It didn’t happen as easily and smoothly as I had imagined (nothing does) but I got there and I’m better for it.

At the end of each semester the seniors in my sorority stand in front of chapter and read a letter to the younger girls. I really liked mine. It was more of a list of things I wish I had known four years ago and lessons learned. Maybe I have regrets. I’m not sure, I’ve always believed you shouldn’t regret anything. But lately I think people who have regrets are good. They’re the people who look back on their life and thought about how they could’ve done better, how if they’re in a similar situation in the future they’ll do it right. As long as you don’t dwell on regrets and use them to give you direction in the future and be a better version of yourself I think they’re healthy and a good thing.

Anyways as cheesy as it is here is my list of things I wish I had known four years ago.  Continue reading

“When the going gets tough, the tough get going”

As a college student I have the tendency to look at my never-ending “to do” list (I’m a list maniac) and feel incredibly overwhelmed. As do most of my friends, I’m sure. It probably doesn’t help that I’m blogging at the moment instead of studying for my three tests I have this week or my three upcoming research papers that I’m know are going to “suddenly” sneak up on me in couple of weeks when they’re due.

A few days ago I was looking at my list of everything I had yet to do and feeling at a complete loss at where to even begin (ADHD and long lists don’t mix well). Papers, tests, homework assignments, and projects have a tendency to pile up quickly. Lately, during the school week I’ve been noticing that most of the things I say or talk about are pretty negative. “I have so much to do.” “I haven’t slept in days.” “Is it summer yet?” or “When did college stop being fun and started being so difficult?” This is what most of my recent conversations with others have consisted of and I HATE it!

I’d like to think of myself as a usually upbeat, happy go lucky person. I’m usually the person who tries to see the silver lining on every cloud.

Yes, college can be stressful, hectic and downright depressing at times but we have to learn to give up that attitude, or at least try to. Everyone is entitled to a bad mood every now and then. We need to figure out a way to snap out of these moods. So that we can go back to living life and meeting our full potential (you always do better work when you’re in a good mood).

So here’s how I snapped out of my bad mood. I closed my lap top and my textbooks grabbed my pen and a pad of paper and I wrote down everything I could think of that makes me really, really happy. I know, it sounds like a pretty huge waste of your already small amount of time, but it worked!

I listed everything from the avocado cheeseburger at Chilli’s, to running at the beach during winter, to the Gasparilla Art Festival, to day-drinking at Klondike with my sorority sisters. I soon realized that I did not have enough time or enough space on the paper to list the many things in my life that make me truly happy. I also realized that the stress and lack of sleep I’m dealing with now will all eventually lead me to even more things that make me happy. Even just looking at the list and all the reasons I wrote, puts a smile on my face and ease on my mind.

So while it does suck at times, I’ll do my best to envision that brand new car I’m going to buy myself in a couple of years when I’m makin’ that monaayy in the real world.

Love,
Liv


Yep, my dream car is a pink Mini Cooper… except mine will be a convertible
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