Daily Gratitude

Early in the day I’ve been trying to make a list of things I’m grateful for currently in my life. When I start off my day by making a gratitude list (either written down or just mental) it can change my outlook to my whole day!

Before I had a chance this morning to create my gratitude list I unfortunately got into an argument with a close family member. When something negative happens in our days its even more important to combat the negativity by thinking of something positive- and the more the better!

The more you are in a negative mood the more likely something negative is going to happen. The same thing if something positive is going in your life. For example, I’ve yet to make the list and two women just cut in front of me at Panera. This normally wouldn’t bother me but because I’m already annoyed I started thinking negative thoughts about these women that I don’t know and that’s just bad karma and nobody wants that.

Here’s my list!

Today I am grateful:

  • that I got the chance to visit my sister this weekend in Washington, DC. Not only did I have a really fun time going to dinner and drinks with her and her friends but we got we went to a really interesting exhibit at the Artisphere in Arlington that was showing photographs that the Mexican painter, Frida Kahlo took during her lifetime.
  • I am also grateful that I had the opportunity to walk around downtown DC all day Friday, while my sister was working, dropping off my resume and introducing myself at different public relations firms- hopefully something will lead to a job opportunity when I graduate.
  • I’m grateful for my sweet friend Alli, who watched my cat, Prince Louis, while I was away!
  • I’m SO grateful for the people I’ve met through my past internship who have been helping me in my hunt for a job by introducing me to their contacts in different cities that I hope to find work in!
  • for my MyPanera card which I was able to get a FREE carrot cupcake this morning!
  • that I was able to find a coupon for $20 off my haircut at a really nice salon in Tampa for when I’m home next weekend! (I REALLY need a cut!)

So that was my list today! I’m not feeling 100% back to my normal chipper self but I am feeling better and I’m ready to take on my day!

I hope everyone has a great week!

Love,
Liv

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Independence

I always get urge to write in the middle of the night right as I’m falling asleep. I plan on getting up and writing it down first thing in the morning but as soon as my day gets going a million other things are more important to get done and writing gets pushed further and further back on my to do list. So here I am at 1:30 in the morning with class at 8 but I’m going to type this thought out anyways.

I like making hard decisions. I always have. The thought of doing something because it feels comfortable or easy makes me nauseous. Aside from a couple guys with sports scholarships, I’m pretty sure I’m the only person I know from my graduating high school class that went to a school that not only was out of state but also where I knew absolutely no one. I don’t even think I had ever visited Boone before when I made my decision to spend four years of my life here. Not to mention, I went to a school where if I check the weather during the winter and its between 30-40 degrees I think to myself, “that’s not that bad.”

Now that I’m nearing the end of my college career people keep asking me if I’m going to move back to Tampa or go to Charlotte or Raleigh or somewhere else where everyone goes in North Carolina. As much as I love Tampa and my wonderful friends back home I feel like it would be a cop out if I were just to move there and work. I think Charlotte or Raleigh would feel that way as well because now I know so many people who will probably be moving back there too.

I don’t know why I run from everything/everywhere I know. I can’t tell if this is a character flaw or a character strength.

And most of my friends will live a die in this zip code and it might be for me, but until I go how am I ever supposed to know?”
The Band Perry, Independence

Mind, Body and Soul Project

This past semester I took a class called Woman Artists with Professor Lillian Goudas teaching the course. When I first selected to take this class I was just looking for credits to help fill my art history minor requirement but I ended up learning much more than the what was listed in the course description.

I first want to mention how highly I think of Professor Goudas. This was the second class I took from her and she is everything a professor should be. She is intelligent, passionate and enthusiastic. She works hard to engage her students and get them excited about not only learning her subject but she encourages them to be excited about the entire process of learning.. and she succeeds in doing so. At the end of last semester she invited students from our class to a delicious dinner at her house (which more professors should do). Having dinner in her home gave us a better chance to get to know our professor a little outside of the classroom.

A wall in her dining room is what her family calls the “Art Wall.” Each year she picks a theme she wants her three young children to focus on. This past year the focus was their mind, body and soul. Each day they were to do something that helped either their mind, body or soul grow, then they create an illustration and hang it on the wall. I thought this was such a fantastic idea I thought I should write that down to be something I can do with my future children. Then I thought that maybe I shouldn’t wait to practice this idea but maybe it could be a personal project this summer. Kind of a “practice what you preach” thing.

So I grabbed some pens and paper and I started making some lists of what I would count for each category that I’m doing this summer… (BTW, I love lists).

Mind:

  • My internship
  •  This blog
  • Reading one book a month (I’ve already finished Nicolas Sparks’ The Wedding and Kathryn Stock’s The Help).

Body:

  • Waking up at 5:30 a.m. during the week to go on a morning bike ride before my internship
  • Going to the gym each day on my way home
  • Also, spending as much time as I can doing outdoors exercising including the sailing lessons I just begun last weekend.

When I got to the Soul category and realized that other than to unsuccessfully attend mass each Sunday I didn’t have too much planned for my soul. I wanted to do something to help others but being as I’m a poor college intern I didn’t have much time or money to do so.My original plan was to put my PR skills into practice and plan an event or dinner that would raise money for a cause that I thought was particularly important and that I cared about.  After talking about some of my ideas with my boss, I decided I should focus on something that involved less planning. Since I am new to town, what I had originally had in mind would have been difficult to successfully pull off with my current schedule. I started on researching an organization where I could volunteer once every week or two.

My junior and senior year of high school I volunteered twice a week at a place called Everyday Blessings, which was a home for children from abusive families. Some of the children living there were up for adoption but most of them are only their until their parents are legally allowed to be their guardian again.  During my time there I helped out in the nursery which was the home for up to five newborns to toddlers at a time. I’ll never forget Sean*, a two year old african american boy, who I loved. Whenever I showed up Sean would run and jump to give me a hug and tell me, “I wub wou, Ms. Wibia,” which I believe translates to, “I love you, Ms. Olivia.”  I would always come home and beg my mom to please adopt him so he would be my baby brother. Which I knew was unrealistic but it didn’t stop me from trying. The week I found out that Sean was finally able to return to his mother I went to Everyday Blessings on his last day so I could say goodbye. I stayed as long as I could and cried the whole drive home.  Although he will grow up and probably has already forgotten me I’ll never forget that sweet little boy or my experience volunteering at Everyday Blessings. Since then I have known that one day I will adopt one of my children from one of these types of organizations.

Anyways, didn’t mean to get off topic but I wanted to try and find a similar organization nearby where I could volunteer again. I searched the internet and called different churches in the area and I couldn’t find anything that really seemed to interest me but the idea of volunteering at Hospice kept popping up. In middle school, high school and college I tagged along with my mom almost everyday to hospitals and nursing homes when my Lita (grandmother), Lolo (grandfather) and Tia (great-aunt) got sick. As much as I hate hospitals, I hate seeing sick old people by themselves alone even more.. especially if they’re IN hospitals.

I enjoy talking to people and making others feel happy so I think that the best place for me to spend a little free time this summer will be helping out once a week or every two weeks at Hospice. I still need to sign up and do some more research on the one nearby but that’s the plan as of now.

That’s my Mind, Body and Soul Project.

These are two quotes that I like a lot and wanted to end with:

“As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” -Audrey Hepburn

“The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up.” -Mark Twain

Love,
Liv

*Name has been changed

Liv Learns:

As I come to the end of my fourth week interning I’ve only just begun learning about all the ways PR techniques work their way into many of the different aspects of organizations and companies, especially those related to tourism.

One of the main projects I have been working on during my time at the CVB is planning  familiarization tours, also called a FAM tours. The point of the FAM tour is to help give those who work directly with tourists (concierge, bus drivers, hotels, etc.) an idea of different suggestions for activities that our location offers that they may not already know about.

The FAM I’m currently finishing up on is one that focuses on family fun activities that are offered in our county… and there are a LOT! There are so many that we decided to divide the county into North and South sections and do a tour for each part of the county. So I’m actually finishing up on two FAMs (after this I have to work on two more.. actually four more possibly)! In order to come up with fun family activities I have to do research through internet and making phone calls to various venues and companies.

Mapping out where all the different places are located and possible routes for the two tours are also part of what I have been working on. Also, since there will be two tours mapping possible routes and itineraries are also part of the process. We decided that it would be really neat for the the North tour to instead of using a boring regular bus to rent one of the old fashioned beach trollies instead!

Networking is also a huge part of public relations and promotion. Whether it is relating to tourism or anything else. Meeting as many people as you can and making connections to other groups and individuals in your community and elsewhere helps to create mutually beneficial relationships that will help build your company while creating a positive reputation for others to see.

Another project I have been working on is actually with helping out the film commission. Many of the photos on their database are out of date and need to be updated so on days when I’m not working on the FAM I’m driving around the county taking pictures of what it has to offer. I love doing this because A) I love taking pictures and this is a great excuse to do that! B) It helps me learn the county better and C) I learn another aspect of of the CVB and something else I may enjoy. What I DIDN’T like about it was walking around all day on Clearwater Beach when it was 150 degrees outside (or at least it felt like it)!! All I wanted to do was to RUN as fast as I could into the ocean but I couldn’t because I did not have my bathing suit on and I had my expensive Canon Rebel around my neck… Not to mention, it might have been a bit odd if I returned to the office soaking wet. Not sure what kind of impression that would have left on everyone there.

Also, I’ll be uploading my favorite photos from my film commission scouting every few days hopefully! The previous post was actually from my first day working on that!

Meanwhile, one of my favorite parts of living at the beach this summer are Florida sunsets every night. Even if I’m just watching them with girlfriends or Harry Potter (reading the book, obviously), Florida sunsets are by far the best in the world.

BTW, my sailing lessons begin this Saturday at one of the marinas downtown! There are four days of class, two weekends, each day begins at 2 p.m. and lasts until 7 p.m. ! I’m really excited about adding yet another new experience to this summer!

That’s all for this evening.

Love,
Liv

The Queen of Procrastination

I really am the worst when it comes to procrastinating. My brain always comes up with unnecessary yet interesting things to do/read/make instead of doing what I should be doing. I wanted to write in here in the beginning of this past week about Nicole ‘s (my roommate) brother’s race we went to last weekend, he’s a race car driver and I had never been to a race before, it was really fun! Yet now it’s Saturday and I still haven’t written in here.

See, I currently have three research papers along with regular assignments and extra credit work I need to get done. I made a personal goal for myself to tell myself the due dates are a week earlier than they actually are so that I have them finished a week early so I can make them perfect. So far I’ve gotten one paper done and have been “working” on the other two all week. I’ve gotten a little bit of research done for one of them. But I stayed in last night to work on them but I wound up reading stuff online and looking up PR jobs in England on monsters.co.uk and checking out apartments in London. Definitely not my homework. I always do that though, look up jobs and apartments in cool places I might want to live/work in a couple years. I also spent a lot of time downloading music.

Something else I did instead of working on my research papers was put together a whole internship journal for me to use this summer. I filled it with templates, examples, organizational sheets, tips for student interns, I even made up an organization profile for the place I’m interning at. It’s really great that I did that and I’m sure it’ll help me out this summer while I’m interning… but WHY did I do that for a couple hours INSTEAD of writing my paper that’s due in a couple weeks??? Ay yi yi…

Anyways, I think I’m going to skip our semi-formal tonight, I really don’t want to because I feel like I haven’t been to anything sorority related all semester and that I’m disappearing from the face of the Earth. But I really need to get this stuff done. Maybe after I nap I’ll head to the library (library on a Saturday night.. whaat?). I want one paper done by Tuesday and the other by Thursday. Hopefully by then I’ll be able to go out and be social and see my friends again. In the words of BP’s CEO Tony Hayward, “I’d like my life back!”

Good news: My (21st) birthday is only 36 days away & Vegas is only 35!
Love,
Liv

As you can see my calendar for April is disgustingly full (and that’s not even everything!) and I have so little motivation!

Home is where the heart is?

Andrew: You know that point in your life when you realize the house you grew up in isn’t really your home anymore? All of a sudden even though you have some place where you put your shit, that idea of home is gone.

Sam: I still feel at home in my house.

Andrew: You’ll see one day when you move out it just sort of happens one day and it’s gone. You feel like you can never get it back. It’s like you feel homesick for a place that doesn’t even exist. Maybe it’s like this rite of passage, you know. You won’t ever have this feeling again until you create a new idea of home for yourself, you know, for your kids, for the family you start, it’s like a cycle or something. I don’t know, but I miss the idea of it, you know. Maybe that’s all family really is. A group of people that miss the same imaginary place.”  – Garden State

So lately, this quote has been continually popping up in my thoughts… Continue reading