Category Archives: Learn Something New

Cool and/or interesting topics I learn about that I want to share with you!

Two Weeks

I hate it when I break a streak. But who doesn’t? You go for so long without breaking your habit, but when the streak ends, it seems to take forever to get back into the groove of the habit you created. That’s how I feel about this blog.

Life sometimes gets insanely busy, and because of that, you have to put somethings that are awesome on the back burner. That’s something that I’ve learned these past two weeks of not blogging. I love writing, but with the craziness of a new show, the final weeks of classes, the flippin’ ACT and work, I had to let something that was really fun go for a while to focus on what was really important. I broke my streak of consistently blogging because I had to do other things that are more important right now. And that’s okay. Seriously guys, all I really want to do right now is devour  with my copy of 5th Wave and binge watch 30 Rock while hiding in my Fortress of Solitude (aka my loft bed). Sadly though, I have to be responsible and put my school stuff first.

If you are dealing with a ton of stuff and just wanna cry in a corner….

tumblr_inline_nm9603vNJ61t2kp90

Know that you are going to get through it, even if it means not getting to do all the fun stuff you would rather be doing. Learn to prioritize and how to say, “NO”. If you do, your life will be a tad bit easier.

images

To all my friends gearing up for finals while dealing with a hundred different responsibilities , I feel your pain and I am right there with you. Hang in there, folks. Summer will be here before you know it!

I’m hoping to get back into my usual schedule of blogging this week! Thanks for sticking around 🙂

giphy

Until next time,

Abby

Lessons You Learn When A Buddy Moves Away

Friendships are one of the most precious things you can have as a human being. People are made to love other people. Because of this fact, when a friend moves far, far away, it can really suck. A buddy of mine was back in town visiting for his spring break and it reminded me of a few things that I have learned from having a close friend move across the country. These things are important for friends who live down the block and those who live a plane ride (or two) away.

  1. Appreciate hugs

Hugs are the best, and whenever you have the opportunity to give/get a hug from a friend, take it.

  1. Listen to people

Like, really listen. We often get so wrapped up in our own lives that we forget to catch up with the people we care about and don’t hear what they are saying to us. Their lives are just as important as yours. Learn about what’s going on in your friend’s life, especially if they are only around for short periods of time.

  1. Take pictures

This might just be me, but I think it’s really cool to see how we change and grow up in photographs. It’s wonderful to have little reminders of friends in a 4×6 frame or an online album. Besides, selfies take about two seconds to take. ;P

  1. Get over yourself and past issues.

Seriously. It’s not worth being awkward around people. It takes more energy to be irritated with someone all the time than it does to just be kind to them. Letting weird situations or anger come between two people being friends is just dumb, and a big waste of time.

  1. Cherish the friends who don’t live crazy far away.

You never know when a friend might end up leaving your life sooner than you’d like. So appreciate the friends who are close by, and don’t take them for granted.

I encourage you to reach out to others this week; whether it’s a close friend or a person you haven’t talked to in a long time, make the effort to tell someone that you care about them 🙂

Until Next Time,

Abby

Miss you Mac! Thanks for inspiring this blog ;D 

Mac

Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey… Stuff

Have you ever had one of those weeks when time seems to be going really slowly, but is flying by at the same time? Well, that’s been me this week. The days have seemed super long, but here we are, and it’s Thursday. Almost to the weekend! Since time has been such an issue for me this week, I decided to share some interesting facts about the subject that I thought were super cool (and it was totally NOT inspired by me procrastinating working on a paper by looking at one of those boredom websites with really weird fun facts that no one really needs to know….).

  1. When the second hand on your clock appears to take longer than a second to tick, it’s your own brain working against you.

Studies about brain imagery have shown that our perception of time stretches backwards when our eyes shift from one point to another. Our brains “fill in the gap,” creating the illusion of a drawn-out second. That’s why it sometimes seems that the second hand just jumped back.

Unknown

  1. The average person falls asleep in 7 minutes.

This might be a shock to those of you who have a hard time falling asleep, but on average, it takes a human about 7 minutes to fall into a steady sleep cycle.

b6c91ee3397c8a01e9efa1d80260d874

  1. Halley’s Comet passes the Earth every 76 years.

The next time it will pass by us will be in 2062.

Halleys-Comet

  1. There are 31,536,000 seconds in a year

That’s 525,600 minutes. And now all the musical theatre nerds are humming a certain song in their heads.

rent_la_vie_boheme

  1. The longest time a person has been in a coma is 37 years.

I guess they aren’t counting Captain America’s 70 years as a Cap-sicle.

2256608-avengerfrozen3212012

  1. A lion eats once every 3 to 4 days.

It probably helps that they spend about 20 hours a day sleeping/lounging around Africa.

Unknown

  1. The human body creates 2,500,000 new red blood cells every SECOND.

Every second guys.

micro-discovery-human-red-blood-cells

  1. It takes 22 months for a elephant to develop from a zygote to a full grown infant.

Nine months doesn’t sound so bad now does it?

Unknown

  1. In one year, light will travel a distance of 5.86 trillion miles, which is 240 million times around Earth.

Albert Einstein wrote a series of papers in 1905 that use this concept of light years as a main focus.

slide_216171_797726_free

  1. The longest running sci-fi television show is “Doctor Who”.

Come on, I couldn’t not put in a Doctor Who fact 😛

11th-Doctor-the-eleventh-doctor-33248859-500-537

If you know any other time facts, post them in the comments below! I’d love to read them! Have a great rest of your week, folks!

Until Next Time,

Abby

Spring Break

So, all my friends are starting Spring Break this week, but I am back in class. Why you ask? Because my college is annoying. But, I am glad that I had this past week off to get used to that awful time change. A lot of people use spring break to goof off, but since most of my friends were still in school, I used my time getting stuff done that I’ve been putting off for a while, and I learned a lot of really random lessons throughout the week.

Unknown1) I did a ton of Spring Cleaning

Lesson Learned: I have too much crap. I went through a ton of old art supplies, clothes, and books to get my room organized for the coming spring, and I got rid of so much stuff. I am working on trying to live more simply, and eight bags later, I’m on my way to reaching that goal.


2) I went and had lunch with the lovely Mindy.leomnade

Lesson Learned: Chick-Fil-A’s new Frozen lemonade is delightful.

3) I went to my favorite juice shop and got my first check from selling in a store.11066612_1016383878390560_1205432677090031789_n

Lesson Learned: It takes a lot of work and time to make $44. Being an artist and entrepreneur in general takes a lot of time, effort and patience. But it’s worth it whenever you get to chat with Amy and get a drink at Marketplace Justice 😀


4) I went on my first real college visit.10406354_934411033238901_7622352562982178574_n

Lesson Learned: If I go to KCAI, I will be doing a lot of walking. On top of that, it takes a lot of work to go to this school. A lot of people feel that art school is a waste of time, but I would be thrilled to be part of the Illustration program at this school. They do a really good job of teaching students fine arts and the business side of art, so that way students are ready for work after school.

5) I dyed my hair.10599294_990180384367903_4671262503124264415_n

Lesson Learned: I look like Tinker Bell with lighter hair. It’s funny, cause my parents still call my Tink every now and then 😛

6) I saw THE THORN.

Lesson Learned: Passion plays can be amazing. I’ve seen and been in many a church play and a lot of the time they aren’t the highest quality. But this show was incredible. It is definitely on my list of things I want to do before I settle down someday. Here’s a link to check out more information about them:http://thethorn.net

1392983_251054495052082_1714540673_n

7) I had a Princess Night with my Meltonshire family and we saw Cinderella.11050300_10153118802822416_8277926190453277477_n

Lesson Learned: Seven girls and one boy can indeed pull together eight costumes in thirty minutes to go to a 10pm showing of a Disney movie and look awesome. So much glitter and magic. It was a very good night 😀

8) I went and saw CYT’s The Little Mermaid.

Lesson Learned: CYT volunteers can make super beautiful sets and costumes (though I already knew this from past experience ;D). Musical theatre is wonderful. Also, shiny sharks are awesome, French chefs are hilarious, making a 6’2 guy a bird was a great choice, mermaids pull off Heelys well, tap dancing crabs are the best, and Flounder was a rock star. Congrats cast of Mermaid: You’ve got a beautiful show. I can’t wait to see it again!

FotorCreated

9) I found an audition song.

Lesson Learned: It is possible for me to find an audition sooner than the day of the audition. Procrastination has been defeated this round 😛godspell

10) I slept a lot.

Lesson Learned: I love sleeping.

I am back in school now missing my time off, but I am grateful for the time I had to get stuff done. To all my friends on Spring Break this week, I hope you have a great week and that you get some much needed rest and fun times!

Until Next Time,

Abby

Don’t Take The Easy Route

Don’t Take The Easy Route

 

It’s probably one of the cheesiest things I could say, but it is so true: Don’t Take The Easy Route. Here’s why.

Both semesters that I have taken an art class at college level, I have strived to be better. After all, I’m competing with kids that have been at this longer than me. So I decided without really realizing it that I was going to really challenge myself with each project. I wanted to make something that I wouldn’t normally make, and improve with each project. And because of that, I’m a much better artist now.

I say this now because I am in the middle of a tough project. In Drawing 2, you have to do a piece based off of an emotion. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as it conveys some sort of deep emotion. So I decided to do a self-portrait. I hate doing portraits, especially of myself. I don’t know why I don’t like drawing myself. Many artists like drawing themselves as apposed to other people because if they mess up they don’t offend the other person. I dunno what my deal is, but I don’t like drawing my face. I also decided that on top of doing a portrait, I was going to use a technique that involves covering the whole paper in charcoal and erasing to draw your lines. Very messy, very frustrating at times. It’s nowhere close to where I want it to be yet, but I’ve already learned a lot from this project.

Whatever you’re doing, don’t take the easy route. When you take the harder road, you learn more and grow more. Don’t give up. You got this. Prisoner WIP 1

            I will share my finished project with you when I get it done! I hope you will enjoy it!

Until Next Time,

Abby

Find An Amanda

You are never gonna be the best at what you do. Whether it’s sports, theater, academics, art, or apple pie making, there will always be someone that is better than you. And that’s awesome.

10982207_889529911068473_6655976454121931389_n As you grow older and develop skills in whatever you do, (let’s say art for an example) you will constantly be learning. To help in this process, it helps to find people to mentor and/or inspire you to be better. Even John Green (the author of The Fault in our Stars and co-VlogBrother) had a mentor: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBKKcxCuH-g) I have had many people like this in my life, but I would like to highlight one in particular: Amanda.

1939829_836947219660076_4886078506899368476_nLast spring was when I took my first college art course: Drawing 1. I was pretty nervous being the youngest in the class and working with people that had done art a lot longer than me. Amanda was in the class too, but then thing about her was that she was one of the only people in Drawing 3. And boy was she wicked good. We would do critiques every other week and we always had a hard time giving feedback on Amanda’s stuff because it was so great. Most of us didn’t really know how she could improve on her pieces, because she was way ahead of us.  The few critiques where she commented on my art are the ones I will never forget, because it felt so cool to have someone so talented complimenting my work. I ended up talking with her over the semester, and I was really excited to introduce her to my family at the art show at the end of the year. I was so bummed when I found out that she was moving to Virginia, where she’s at now furthering her study of art.

1450226_836940302994101_7281774416530864193_nWe still keep in touch over Facebook, commenting on each other’s art. I don’t know if she knows this, but I often creep on her art page to motivate me to work harder. It sucks that I don’t get to continue an in person friendship with her, but I am thankful for the time I got to observe her at school last spring. I have had other people in my life who have inspired me to be a better artist, actor, writer and over all human being, but Amanda is one that has stuck out to me over the past few years. She worked hard to get where she’s at, and is a great example of how hard work really does pay off. You can’t expect to wake up one day and be able to paint a masterpiece. It takes time, effort, and a lot of patience.

10014589_836938556327609_6333656827532512806_nEven if you’re amazing at what you do already, there is always room for improvement. It’s not a sign of weakness to have a teacher to guide you or a person to motivate you to be better. All great leaders have to know how to be led. So, find someone to push you to be the awesome human you were created to be.

Find an Amanda.10277329_762491297136814_8183378722769922818_n

Until next time,

Abby

*All art throughout this post belongs to Amanda Brooke*

Fantastic People to Check Out who inspire me to be awesome:

Amanda:https://www.facebook.com/amanda.brooke.gustin

Sylvia’s Art: 71488_10151626859416663_1142336742_n1456488_10152057976586663_1652354052_n

537019_10152057977371663_768614313_n

Matthew:https://www.facebook.com/haveanartattac

Justin:https://www.facebook.com/fullsailbyjf

My Momma 🙂http://awomanwitharmor.com

Words of Wisdom from Dr. King

MLK Day 1Today marks the 29th Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Many people spent the day at home, enjoying a day off. Many others though  participated the in National Day of Service. This is the first year that I didn’t just stay at home. Being part of a leadership club at school, I spent the day serving the community alongside my peers. While sleeping in would been nice, I MLK Day 2think it’s really cool that I got the opportunity to serve others. We worked in a huge cave that is used as a storage unit and my team sorted out Christmas lights. The copper from them will be used to pay the rent of the homes that the charity owns to house the homeless. It was really cool to spend the time team building with some really awesome people.

I spent a lot of time thinking about what I was going to write today. I wondered if I should just pick a topic off the list I have already, or do something to talk this day. So, I went to the place where I get many a question answered: Google. I started looking for information about Dr. King, and I found some facts that I had never known before, like:

  • George Washington is the only other American to have had his birthday observed as a national holiday.
  • King entered college at the age of 15 after skipping 9th and 12th
  • Today over 700 streets in the Unites States are named after Martin Luther King Jr., with one such street in almost every major city. 
  • King is to date the youngest male to win a Nobel Peace Prize, winning it in 1964 at the age of 35.

I remember as a kid learning about Dr. King in school. We would do word searches, watch movies, read books and get homework. But then the week would pass, and we would move on to other things. Yes, I knew that he was a great man. Yes, I knew that he led the fight towards equality. Yes, I knew that he caused people to think. But I didn’t really stop to think until now.

I found a website that had a list of quotes from some of his speeches, these few really stuck out to me:

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

 

“If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.”

 

“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

To be completely candid, I am in a constant battle with myself. The teenage years are rough. (From what I’ve heard, the adult years aren’t easy either.) I’ve made mistakes and said things that I regret. I struggle with the fact that I want people to like me and I constantly want to please people. I sometimes feel as though I am a bother to those around me.

MLK day 3But over this weekend, I had a revelation that I’ve been needing to have for a while now: I am who I am, and I can’t change. Granted, I will always be going through stages of being refined and constantly learning new lessons, but I am stuck with the fact that I am Abby. And that a great thing.

It is my life’s mission to love others. I am, as one friend called me, a “Jesus Freak”, or as my bible says, a Child of God. As a Child of God, I am not asked, but I am commanded to serve and love others. Dr. King knew this too. He knew that his life was constantly in danger. “I’ve Been To The Mountain Top”, his last speech, was given the night before his assassination. It was almost as if he knew he was going to die the next day. Go read it. It’s very inspiring. But even though he knew that he was in constant danger, Martin still actively spoke out against segregation and called everyone out for tearing each other down.

Many Christians today are living comfortably. Loving some people is hard. It can be risky. You could get your reputation tarnished. In some places, there’s a chance you could get hurt. Being zealous like the early Christians is a taboo in our culture, so we just coast through life. We love people that are easy to love. We serve when it’s convenient. We zone out in church and don’t apply the teaching we hear when we walk out the doors.

I’m done coasting. I want to soar.

Dr. King didn’t live to see the change that happened in our country. While I don’t plan to start a national movement to change horrible laws, I want to make a difference. Whether it’s serving others full heartedly, loving people (even if they’ve hurt me), or just learning to love the person that God made me to be, I was to make changes happen that matter. If Martin could keep up his fight after being threatened, scoffed at, and arrested 29 times, I can work to make a difference in the lives of those around me.

Until Next Time,

Abby

MLK day 7

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day! 

How Not To Suck At Art (Or Anything Else in Life)

Vase and Fish Tail One of my biggest pet peeves is people saying, “Aw man, I could never draw like that. I have no artistic ability.” Yeah, that drives me bonkers. It sounds mean, but this is why: I hate it when people put themselves down, especially when they say they could never do something like drawing. Now, I love drawing. I know that not everyone is an art major like me. I know that other people have other talents.

But there is a difference between “talent” and “skill”.

 hand

You are born with talents. I am a firm believer that everyone has a special combination of talents, and that no one is talentless. Some people are gifted with the ability to keep moving for a long time, like at a soccer practice. Other people have an eye for seeing things in different ways and coming up with ideas for creative projects, like in an art studio.

Lightbulb Skill is something you have to develop. While I have been doing art for a long time, I don’t feel that I was necessarily talented when I took art classes at age 6. Now, I was pretty creative, but I wasn’t an art prodigy. It wasn’t until 6th grade that I started to really work on developing drawing and painting skills, and I don’t think I’ll ever stop refining those skills I’ve picked up.

But I’m not just gonna throw a pencil at you and tell you to start drawing. Here are some tips on how to get better at art:

10665163_889489894436953_5175919063925375059_n1) PRACTICE 

You can’t not practice. You have to keep working. I have filled about 12 sketchbooks in the past 4 years with drawings and doodles and scribbles. If you want to get better at drawing hands, start drawing them. Over and over again.

2) LEARN TO TAKE CRITICISM abstract_pumpkin_by_jediskygirl-d84os9d

This is really hard for me, because I always think I’m right. You have to learn to take critiques from people who are observing your work, especially from people who have been at it longer that you have. I got feedback from a girl named Amanda who I thought was crazy amazing in my Drawing class last spring and I was over the moon that she cared enough to tell me how I could improve. Push the pride aside and learn!

Mac, Hayley and Me3) REALIZE THAT IT TAKES TIME

This is the most important step. 99% of people who start working at art don’t become artistic geniuses over night. It could take years for you to get really good at anything involving art, and that’s okay! You learn from others and yourself how to make things look awesome, and it can build other life skills like patience, dedication and persistence.

These three thinCaffine Blissgs can be applied to anything you do in life. Whether it’s sports, theater, school or even in your relationships, you aren’t born knowing everything. Anything worth doing takes work, but in the end, it really can be worth your while! I tried sports when I was younger, and I didn’t stick with them. I realized that I wasn’t the best suit for athletics, but I still enjoy being active and pretending that I’m sporty. I do believe that if I had stuck with sports and had practiced at them, I could have been pretty good, but I didn’t want to put in the effort. Now, I’m not saying that I wish I was a soccer star. I’m very happy with what I’m doing with my life. But I do know that it is an example in my life where I chose to not put in the effort to get better. Same with any relationship. I have to practice listening to people. I have to take criticism when I screw up and upset someone. I have to put in the time to build a friendship, and it takes time to do that. Whether it’s with a sibling, a boyfriend/girlfriend/best friend or an adult, relationships of all kinds take work, and a lot of people don’t get that.

UP PaintingAll of the art through out this post are pieces I’ve done over the past year. I’m very thankful that I’ve had teachers and fellow students who have encouraged me to keep working and practicing at art. I’m nowhere near where I want to be, but I’m working on it 🙂 So before you decide that you’re never going to try something, like art, give it a second thought. Who knows? You might find a new hobby, or a hidden passion.

Until next time,

Abby

Lessons I’ve Learned From My Dog

Dogs are wonderful. I have a very sweet Golden Retriever/ Chow mix named Toby Jack, and I love him so very much. While he can’t talk and doesn’t go hang out with me like my other friends, I have learned a few things from my precious puppy that I feel that we all need to be reminded of every now and then.

1) Persistence is a good qualityPhoto on 1-5-15 at 10.42 PM #4 (original)

And it can get you treats. Toby is a very good beggar, and he doesn’t give up until he gets a snack. If I were as persistent as my dog, I probably would get a lot more done during the day. I have so many things that I want to do, but I give up easily when things get tough. Toby has stared at me for a good 45 minutes just to get to lick my plate. That’s commitment. If my dog can sit still for that long for scraps, I can get my act together and get stuff done.

2) You can still act like a puppy when you grow upPhoto on 1-5-15 at 10.44 PM #6 (original)

Toby is about 7 or 8 now, but he still acts like a puppy all the time. A lot of people feel that when they are a certain age, they have to stop having fun and be serious all the time. But having fun is a gift from God. He didn’t have to make things for us to enjoy, but He did. So roll around in the grass. Play catch with your friends. Chase squirrels up a tree! Growing up is inevitable, but losing your inner child is optional.

3) Unconditional LovePhoto on 1-5-15 at 10.42 PM #3 (original)

Dogs love you no matter what. It’s so nice to have my furry friend waiting for me at the door every day when I come home from school or work. The past few months especially I’ve been having a hard time loving people. I’ve been hurt, felt stepped on and unwanted. But in this new year, I want to gain back my love of people. Toby still loves me, even if I forget to let him out or don’t give him a treat. God puts up with all of my short comings and junk, yet He still loves me and doesn’t leave me.

4) Wearing a seat belt helps a lotPhoto on 1-5-15 at 10.44 PM #4 (original)

I took Toby for a ride today and he kept slipping on the seats. If he had had a seat belt on, it might not have been as rough in the back. Then again, if he had thumbs and didn’t want to sniff everything, that might have helped as well.

If you are lucky enough to have a pet, cherish them. I find it so awesome that we are able to have companionship with God’s creation. Even though our animals can’t teach us about history or help up with math homework, they can show us glimpses of God’s love, and I find that really neat.

Until Next Time,

Abby

Shout out to Toby for putting up with me while I was trying to get him to take a picture :P

Shout out to Toby for putting up with me and Photo Booth. He was looking up at Mom hoping for help 😛