Category Archives: Me Myself and Abby

Thoughts and studies on the human that is Abby (aka, Me :P)

Leap Day 2016 Time Capsule

It’s not every year that you get an extra 24 hours! As I was driving to school this morning, I was listening to a radio show where a mom was talking about how she had made a Leap Day Time Capsule for her kids back in 2012. So, in spirit of this Leap Day, I thought I would make my own time capsule of sorts on my blog so that when I’m 21 (goodness sakes) in four years, I’ll be able to look back and see what’s changed and/or stayed the same. Feel free to steal my list if you’d like!

2016 Abby’s Leap Day List

Favorite Color(s): Green and Purple

Favorite TV Show: Right now, The Office

Favorite Movie: Star Wars

Favorite Musical: HAMILTON

Favorite bible verse: 1 Timothy 4:12

Favorite show I’ve been in: Tie between Mulan and Godspell

Favorite Class: Dark Room Photography this semester, but Design last Fall was amazing.

Favorite Teacher: Carlos Bass

Favorite art medium: Graphite and really good colored pencils

Favorite show you saw this year? Newsies

Currently reading: “Trust me, I’m Lying” and “Taming of the Shrew”

Best place you’ve traveled: San Diego (TAKE ME BACK)

Education so far: About to finish my associate’s degree at Maple Woods this spring.

Biggest achievement?: Almost finishing my associates degree before I turn 18

Top 5 favorite pieces of art you’ve done?

Lowest time?: October 2014-July 2015

Highest time?: New friendships during Mulan

Present Goals? Finish raising money for my missions trip; Get my portfolio ready for art school; figure out exactly how I’m going to get my BFA; not fail College Algebra

 

Favorite thing about Abby?: I haven’t given up and I won’t quit now 🙂

A lot has happened in my 17 years of life, and I can’t wait to see how much will happen until the next Leap Day comes around. Treasuring the time we have is so important, and I hope to use everyday I have to the best of my ability.

Happy Leap Day, everyone!

Until Next Time,

Abby

How to Feel a Little Bit Better in 1 Minute or Less

This past week and a half has been really weird. I’ve been lacking motivation and have been having some really weird moody spells. Sometimes, when I get down, I like to sit down and think about all the good things that I have going on. By having that list, I’m able to see how many awesome things are going on, and that often chases away some of my down-in-the-dumps thoughts.

Today, I decided to set a timer for a minute to see how many good things I could think of, as opposed to thinking about my soul-crushing homework. Here’s what I wrote:

Seven Brides Rehearsals

Hanging out with Suz

New Dresses

Finding a good new book

Finally getting my print right in photography

Rewatching the Clone Wars with Grant

Toby being home from the vet

Ice Cream

Starbucks Mornings

Jesus Time in the Morning

Carlos’s Backwards To-Do lists

In just 60 seconds, I was able to come up with 11 things that were positive in my life. While things on my list or your list might not make sense to other people, knowing for yourself that there is still light during icky times is really important. Give this a try yourself! You don’t even have to do it for a minute; try 30 seconds to get yourself started. Or, set more time aside to write down things that make you thankful to be alive 🙂

Now, I’m back to the constant battle of Abby vs. Homework. Hoping that the homework won’t beat me 😛

Until Next Time,

Abby

Thoughts I Have While Practicing Piano

After playing piano for twelve years, there comes a point where you are able to just sit down and work on a new song with ease. Then, there are those other times were you want to throw your piano out the window because the song you’re working on has five key changes on every page. During my practice sessions, there are usually a few reoccurring thoughts that run through my head, and sometimes come out of my mouth as I mutter angrily as my dog looks at me like I’m crazy.

 

And what better way to illustrate these thoughts than with Hamilton? 🙂

 

“Aw, this looks easy!”

It’s probably in the Key of C at the beginning. False hope. It’s always false hope.

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“Shoot, octaves.”

My hands are small; octaves are hard.

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“Oh right, there’s three flats.”

Everything now and then, you forget, especially after you’ve already changed keys twice.

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“YEAH I GOT THIS!”

When I get the first page down of an eleven page song.

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“I’M THE WORST MUSICIAN EVER!”

When I can’t get the fourth page down of an eleven page song.

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“Why am I even doing this?”

When the music is no longer pretty.

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“Well, I guess it isn’t that bad.”

When someone says what I’m playing sounds nice.

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“YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES!”

When I finally finish a song.

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Sometimes practicing can be a real pain, but it pays off in the end 🙂

 

 

Until Next Time,

Abby

 

 

Me, Myself, and Star Wars

Star Wars Episode 7: The Force Awakens is continuing to smash box office records in its fourth week in the theaters. For the past few years, fans were worried about this new installment to the franchise, fearing that Disney would run the series into the ground.

I think it’s safe to say Disney did a decent job with this film.

Thanks JJ. 

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Star Wars has been near and dear to my heart for quite some time now. Middle school was not the greatest time for me. Friends were changing, school was boring, and I was having a hard time finding a foot hold. When I was in 6th grade, it wasn’t the coolest thing ever to be into Star Wars, but never the less, that’s when I began my geek journey. I remember seeing Star Wars books in the school library, and became fascinated by the art and writing. I knew a few things about the main characters, but I had never seen any of the films. So, because I wanted to read the books in the library, I got a hold of the original trilogy. Ever since then, I’ve been in love.

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Like I said, middle school was rough. I had just started doing theater intensely and was considering homeschooling. One of my escapes from the drudgery of  school was Star Wars. I would draw my favorite characters. I would read any book I could get my hands on. I would write fan fiction (granted, really awful fan fiction, but I filled several note books with my stories). I was starting to really understand that I wanted to be an artist and writer like the people who made my favorite fandom.

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(7th Grad Fan Fiction FTW)

Star Wars also creeped into my theatre life as well. I’ve loved doing stage combat for as long as I’ve been a part of CYT, and there were a few summers that I got to do Extreme Theater summer camps, which involved fight training. After a few years of being a camper, I got to be an assistant instructor, one of the camps being Star Wars themed. I was over the moon, and getting to choreograph lightsaber battles for the campers was super fun.

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While being a huge Star Wars fan caused a few bumps in the road when I was younger, I love the universe that has come from the franchise. It has inspired me to be a better artist, writer, and performer. I hope to one day make things that inspire young people to chase their dreams, just as Star Wars has done for me.

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I look forward to the new films with high and hopeful expectations, grateful for the fact that my generation gets to have new adventures to experience in a galaxy far far away.

 

 

Until Next Time,

 

Abby

Dear 2016 Abby

Hey! It’s me, 2015 Abby. You may or may not remember writing this while watching Sherlock for the 27th time, but I’m sure you’ll run across it again a year from now.

You’ve had a lot of “firsts” during 2015. You flew in an airplane. You got your first of four bridges to fill the spaces in your smile. You swam in the ocean. You got your first (and hopefully last) college “C”. There were some bummer times, but there were also some really great times too. You learned how to use oil paints and build canvases. You got to play your favorite Disney character on a CYT stage. You saw “Star Wars Force Awakens” on opening night after bugging Mom and Dad for days.

During 2015, you saw a lot of changes, too. You met new friends, strengthened old friendships, and let some go. One of the biggest things you learned was that people are  so important, and while not everyone you love is going to stay in your life, it’s vital to love those around you while you can. You never know when it’s your last chance to show someone that you care.

Art and writing is something you decided you wanted to do seriously. I hope that when you’re reading this a year from now that you’re still working you tail off to reach your goals. Don’t give up on that; you’ve worked hard, so keep pushing. If things go as planned, right now you’re working on transferring to a new school. Hopefully, you’re taking good advice and finding the place that is the best suit for you. Don’t let the older kids scare you off 😉

Most importantly, I hope that a year from now, you’re still striving to build a stronger friendship with Jesus. Over the course of this year, your joy has been found by having Christ as the root of your life. When things started to unravel, you often strayed away from God, but when you went running to Him, there was always a silver lining. Don’t ever forget that He is in your corner and will always welcome you into His presence.

 

2016 Abby, I hope you are well. While things may be crazy, there’s great, big, wonderful things happening all around you 🙂

 

 

Have a Happy New Year Folks!

 

Until Next Time,

Abby

 

Turning One

A year ago today, I decided to take the plunge into blogging. My mom had been doing it for a while, and I thought it might be something that would help me with writing, since I’m working towards a career in the creative writing/illustration field. Not only has working on this blog opened up new discoveries in writing, it has helped me discover, well, me.

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When I started this blog a year ago, I was not in a good spot. I was not happy. I was struggling with depression. I had a hard time being social, always feeling like I was putting on a mask when I went out with friends. Over the course of this year, I learned to channel my emotions that I was struggling to balance out through art and my writing. Through God’s wonderful timing, He brought me through a rough time by giving me inspiration for creative projects, as well as surrounding me with wonderful people.

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Looking back on this past year, it’s kind of incredible how much I have changed as a person. I have gained so much more confidence and a genuine happiness in my work and relationships. Embracing change and running head on into new opportunities has been full of ups and downs, but through it all, I have become all the more stronger. There are times I look back with regret and wish I could change things, but that’s part of life. You remember the good and bad, but you can’t live in those past memories. As Wilbur would say, you have to “keep moving forward.”tumblr_m88rv7CGku1rcebrco1_500

 

My biggest goal for the New Year is to do just that: Keep Moving Forward. There are going to be bad, awful times, but there are also going to be really great times, too. Over this next year, I hope to be able to spread some encouragement through writing, and maybe even be able to give some light to people who are going through some rough times.

 

Merry Christmas to you all! I look forward to this new year of adventures!

 

 

 

Until Next Time,

Abby

Be a Girl Worth Fighting For

Over the past year, I have learned a lot about myself. Many doors have closed, but so many new ones have opened, and I’ve started to understand who I am. Finding my identity in the right things has been a long journey, but through this process of refinement, I feel that going through some really tough times has been the best thing that could have happened to me.

I recently had the honor of playing the role of Mulan, which made me start to think more about the young woman I want to be. There is a song in the show called, “A Girl Worth Fighting For,” when the soldiers are singing about the kind of girl they want to fight for as they march off to war. The things they sing about are very superficial; they want girls who have good looks, will fawn over their battle scars, and cook a good meal. The fellas don’t really care about girls who have a brain or speak their mind. In our society, girls are often told that looks are the most important thing and that their value is found in what others say. Well, this isn’t the case. To be a girl who is worth fighting for, there are a few qualities that the world will just brush aside that you need to know.

Be a Girl Who is Kind

Make people wonder how  you keep smiling. People are going to hurt you. That’s what people do, but people also have the potential to overcome hurt for the better. There are going to be times when it is hard to be kind, but in the long run, being kind is one of the most attractive qualities that you can have. Keep your chin up, Princess. It’s gonna be worth it in the end that you didn’t spread that rumor or that you don’t retaliate with a hurtful comment.

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Be a Girl Who Doesn’t Compromise

Being strong means standing firm in what you believe. Set high standards for yourself, and don’t let anyone make you compromise. It’s so easy to let yourself slip up and start bending. If you ever find yourself saying, “Okay, maybe just this once,” that’s a giant red flag telling you to get out of that situation. You are entitled to your beliefs and your boundaries; don’t let anyone take that away from you.

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Be a Girl Who is Herself

It’s really easy to want to change parts of yourself to fit in with the crowd. Everyone wants to be liked by everyone else. But here’s the harsh reality: Not everyone is gonna like you, and that’s okay. Granted, there are things that you might want to work on, like being a better listener or keeping your space tidy, but don’t feel like you need to hide the things that make you You. If you love baseball, you rock that jersey. If you like getting dressed up, by all means, you work those high heels. If you’re quiet, don’t feel like you have to shout and if you’re loud, use that to make other people laugh or feel good about themselves. God has given you specific qualities for a special purpose; don’t feel like you have to change yourself just to get that boy’s attention.

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Be a Girl Who Waits

This one is super difficult. You’re scrolling through your Facebook and see all your friends out with their boyfriends or girls you grew up with getting engaged, and you’re thinking, “When am I gonna get that?” Or you might even already be in a relationship, but you hear friends talk about their wild nights with their significant other or run across a magazine that tells you all the tricks and tips to “having a good time.” It’s a battle to wait. I’ll be the first to say that sometimes I get a little bummed out seeing all the cutesy couple pictures as I scroll through my Instagram. But would I rather have a so-so boy now, or an amazing man later? Waiting can be really hard, but it’s so much better than having regrets.

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Be a Girl Who Knows Her Value

Everyone is valuable, and sadly, so many girls don’t understand the concept of being valued. But oh my goodness, you are so precious and wonderfully made. You were hand-crafted by a Creator who is crazy about you, who designed your laugh, picked the color of your eyes, and placed you in this time and place to live an extraordinary life. It’s up to you to realize this for yourself. Those mean girls or dumb boys don’t have any right to assign your value, so don’t let anyone sway the way you view yourself. You are strong, you are beautiful, and you are so loved. This is something that will always be a constant battle, and there are going to be times that you feel that you are utterly worthless. When times like this hit, remember that the God who knitted you together died so that He could spend an eternity with you.

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As I continue to grow up in challenging times, it is wonderful to get reminders of who I am as a child of the King. There are always gonna be hard days, but during those rough times, I’m thankful to know that the One who designed me thinks of me as not only a Girl Worth Fighting For, but Dying For!

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.

Psalm 139:14

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Until Next Time,

Abby

Lord, Carry Me

Overall, life is wonderful right now. Compared to where I was at a year ago, it’s like I’m a whole different person. I have changed and grown and learned so much in this past year, and through ups and downs, I have come out stronger.

The last few days though, I have found myself constantly whispering, “Lord, please carry me.” Juggling school, work, Mulan and my spiritual life has been a struggle this past week especially. The biggest struggle has been with my math class; trying to figure out what the heck is going on in that 90 minutes has been a little rough the past five weeks. On top of that, tests freak me out. To put it this way, I would rather write a 15 page research paper than take a 15 question test, (and I know how long is takes to write 15 pages).

While I’ve been creating the habit of getting in my bible every morning, I’ve found it a lot easier to just talk to God. Through the day, I find myself thanking Him for little blessings, and asking for little  boosts of energy to get through the tasks at hand. It’s amazing how much He communicates with us through little whispers throughout day, whether it’s sending someone to say just the right thing or it’s finding 50 cents on the ground to help you pay for another cup of coffee. I’m learning more and more that God really is always there,we just have to put in the effort of building a relationship. And what’s really awesome is that He wants that relationship from all of us. He’s always ready to lift us up and carry us through situations in life, because He knows that we can’t make it through all alone. He’s already doing His part; we’re the ones who need to invest in growing a friendship with Him.

As I type, a pile of homework is sitting in a stack right next to me, waiting to be completed, and I am again finding myself pleading with God to carry me through my final study time before the day is over. I am so thankful that my God is a God that is alive and active in my life, and that He is the one that will never, ever, ever leave me hanging 🙂

I hope to be back to regular blogging soon! Stay tuned for new updates 😀

Until next time,

Abby

Redoing Homework

I am now in full swing at school, which means homework. It’s not super terrible stuff, but my literature class takes a little bit more time than other classes have in the past. So, today, I did my homework in the office of the art lab, planning to print it out there so that I wouldn’t have to worry about it at home. Well, due to the the annoying fact that school computers are the not the most reliable machines to store homework on, when I went to the library to print it out, the file was gone. Nowhere to be found, even though I saved it three times. Needless to say, I was a little less than thrilled.

Obviously, there’s a chance that I made a mistake when I was trying to save the file, but this isn’t the first time this has happened to me at school. Also,saving files is a habit now. I’ve been doing it since elementary school. It’s been engraved into my brain for the last ten years how to save a Word document, so I don’t know how I screwed it up on the computer at my college. Due to the file running away at school, I had to come home and redo the work, which was frustrating, since I had spent an hour and a half at school getting it done the first time. It’s done and printed out, ready for my class tomorrow morning, but as I reflect on the day, I have come to some conclusions.

My day was pretty swell up until 4:30 when the fiasco with my homework happened. On Mondays and Wednesdays, I have two art classes, and it’s wonderful. I had worked on two projects that day in Design and Painting, and had gotten some really great feedback from my teachers.

After Paris

“After Paris” My line project for Design Project

Monocromatic Painting WIP

“Peach and Flower Still Life” WIP of my first oil painting

I let lost homework almost ruin my entire day. Something that took me only 30 minutes to redo almost messed up six hours of awesome studio time and meeting new people. Often times, I let little things screw up the good things that are going on in my life, and that’s something I’m working hard to fix.

Sometimes, things go wrong. It’s inevitable. But the way that we choose to handle those situations is up to us. God doesn’t ever give us anything that we can’t handle, and through the sucky times in life, He is always there to carry us through them. He cares about every part of our lives, and He wants to helps us through our trails, even if they are smaller ones, like having to redo homework. He doesn’t get mad when we get upset, in fact, those are the times when we can draw closer to Him.

So, what have I learned from today?

  1. I need to put a flash drive on my lanyard and use it all the time.
  2. I need to take my laptop with me to school to avoid the school PCs.
  3. Having to redo homework is not the end of the world (even though it really sucks)

Until next time,

Abby

Isaiah 41:10: Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you in my righteous right hand.

A Toast to 2015/2016

Call me what you will, but I am so stoked for school to start again. It’s my high school senior/college sophomore year, and a lot is going to be happening over the next twelve months. So, I am proposing a toast to the 2015/2016 school year.

*To late night homework sessions and warm cups of coffee,

*To six hour days in the studio getting covered in charcoal and paint,

*To the last two math classes I will ever have to take in my whole life,

*To the study parties with peers in the Student Center, with Skittles positive reinforcement,

*To new YouTube projects and learning how to edit videos properly,

*To finishing a manuscript,

*To my possible last year of performing in four-six musicals a year,

*To my piano students, who I hope to continue to teach to the best of my abilities,

*To getting a solid portfolio together for college applications,

*To finishing my Associates Degree strong,

*To growing relationships with old friends,

*And to meeting incredible new friends along the way.

May this year be full of laughs, joy, learning, and growth.

Cheers 🙂

During the school year, I hope to be doing regular videos on my YouTube channel along with once a week blog posts here. Here’s a link to my channel if you are interested in behind the scenes rehearsal vlogs, book talks, and random thoughts from me: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCN2X7tCWxVG8Ltz3QJPKtZQ

I’m very excited to see how this year progresses!

Until Next Time,

Abby