Being Grateful

I am just realizing now all of the amazing opportunities that I have done and had, and how many more I will get to partake in before this adventure called life is over. It must be something about exchange and Amsterdam (And no its not the pot) because I am suddenly feeling much more positive about everything. And its amazing.

I used to get bogged down in the tiny details. I naturally had a negative way of thinking which I thought was totally normal. I thought that everyone had the same thought patterns I had. Boy was I wrong. For a year or two now I have been trying to work out how to become a positive thinker, and it was trying. I wished so much that I could have a positive outlook on life. It was something that I was really struggling with.

And now I do. Just suddenly and completely it snuck up on me.¬†One day I just realized that hey I haven’t had any negative thoughts for awhile and it felt so good. I became so grateful that I was given the opportunity to go on exchange to Amsterdam when before I was homesick and just wanted to go home. Now, even if I am having a rough day, I am able to to think that at least I was able to accomplish this or that. Even if its small.

I became grateful for so many other¬†opportunities in my life. The fact that I got to go on countless road trips with my family to the US. Being able to attend university. All of my amazing friends and family. The fact that I was born in an amazing country like Canada. Knowing that in the future I will have many many more adventures. These opportunities that I am grateful for aren’t over. There are many more to come and just knowing that makes me so happy.

I used to be anxious and saddened seeing what everyone else is doing. The things that other people get up to always look so much better. For me, that was one of the terrible things about social media. I always felt that I hadn’t done enough with my life, when this wasn’t the case at all. Somehow I can see everything a little more clearly now and know that I have achieved just enough for now. And knowing that there is so much more to come makes me feel better. Life hasn’t ended yet, there are so many more things to partake in.

So cheers to this crazy lifelong adventure!

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I Love Art

1One thing that I have slowly begun to notice when it comes to my blog, is that I never talk about art. Even though I am an art history major, and if all goes well, will be spending exorbant amounts of time in museums in the future, I don’t think I have ever once made a post relating to art history. This is something that I have been trying to come to terms with over the past couple of days….

And after much thinking, my answer as to why is: I don’t know.

Over time, this need has started to grow where I feel like I need to talk about art. All the time. Wherever to whoever. I’m not sure why, but I think it may be because I just recently decided that I love art. Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve always loved art. I don’t think I could have made it to third year if I didn’t. But recently, I just sort of said to myself, “hey, I really love art. I love how people can express their feelings and emotions with art. I love how art can broach controversial topics. I love how art is so creative. I simply love art.” However, these are all rather recent discoveries.

And then I asked myself another question…

Why did I choose art history as a major and career choice?

The answer to that once again is, I don’t know. I always tell people that I became interested in art history because my sister would come home from university and tell me all of the things she learned in class that day. One of the most memorable being Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delights. But then I started thinking, before I enrolled in art history, I knew absolutely nothing about art. Not enough to warrant my being so interested in art history to major in it. So now I am rather confused and just a little bit thankful. Thankful that I was curious enough about art to choose this path that I am currently very happy with.

After all of this thinking I decided that maybe I will start to share some thoughts on art here soon. :)

P.S. Please excuse these ramblings of an art history major. I just wrote a ten page essay this week on controversial art in Canada so now my brain is going haywire. Time to relax before final exams!

Until next time x

 

 

Living In the Past

As some may know I am a lover of vintage things. I have even begun to collect vintage cameras and also got a typewriter for my birthday. The past seems so elegant to me, and elegance is something I crave, as ridiculous as it seems. I know, I am romanticizing it beyond belief and ignoring all the problems, such as voting rights and the fact that we had two Wold Wars. But even when I think about all that, I can’t help it.

A couple of years ago I began writing letters to two pen pals in the US. There is something romantic about letter writing that really gets to me. It seems easier to write down all your thoughts with pen and paper rather than a keyboard and mouse. I am hoping that when I got to Amsterdam I will be able to write a lot of letters home to friends and family. It takes a lot more effort, but thats also the appeal. It is such a good feeling when someone sends you a letter!

Constant Puyo, Au Jardin Fleuri ,1899

And of course because of my love of photography, I love looking at old photos of people living in the 20’s and 40’s. It seems like another world entirely! Sometimes I really think that I would prefer to live in those times rather than todays modern world. Where if you can’t keep up with it, it will just leave you behind.

My favorite genre of movie is definitely period dramas and even book wise I love to read about places set way before my time.

My love for old things is also a key aspect of why I love art history. Its fascinating to see the things that people were interested in painting years ago and how the styles evolved up till now.

Robert Frank, New York, 1950s

I am thinking about all these things right now because today a random thought popped into my head. I began to think that I should stop living in the past and start being more conscientious of the present. I spend so much time thinking about how other people lived that I am not properly living my own life. However, as soon as this thought came up I immediately waved it away. Vintage things are sort of a passion of mine. I love reminiscing, seeing how photography advanced and how computers came to be. The fashion in the 20s was to die for and I love seeing photos of pin-up girls too. So for now I’ll give myself an excuse. This is just a distraction for when things get hard. For when I am stressed out beyond belief and need an escape. I’ll escape into the past.

Until next time x

Traveling vs Vacation

Korea 1010 010I recently read an article in some magazine or other about the difference between traveling and vacation. Many probably don’t see any difference, I for one never did. This article described traveling as an adventure. You’re not going somewhere to relax, you’re going to get lost and hit some bumps in the road and truly experience something entirely new. While vacation on the other hand, is all about going to some island resort and forgetting about all your worries. Its about getting rid of the stress of your everyday life.

For myself personally, I would choose travel every time. Though, I’m sure I’ve used the word ‘vacation’ in more than one blog post without realizing the difference. I don’t want to go to some remote beach and just lay there, I can do that here in my hometown. I want to get lost and immerse myself completely in a new culture while simultaneously not knowing a single word in that language. I think that greater memories come from things like that. Trips such as those are the ones you can truly laugh about later. Of course I’m sure many great memories come from a relaxing vacation as well. I think that my point of view comes from the fact that I want to see the whole world and discover all its hidden treasures.

My perspective is completely biased, of course. I’ve never really gone on just a simple vacation. My family always opts for hiking and camping and outdoor adventures. This is also coming from someone who doesn’t have a very stressful life (except when final exam week is upon me!). So, I have never felt the need to stop everything and relax completely. For me, an ideal trip is getting up at 6am doing as much as possible in one day and not going to bed until well past midnight. By the end of the trip you should be absolutely exhausted and can’t wait to return to your own bed.

I would love to know what everyone else prefers though! Traveling or vacation? Also, do you even think there is a difference between them? Let me know in the comments below :)

The Importance of Friendship

1Over the last couple of weeks I’ve realized again and again how important friendship is and, how important my friends are to me in general. I’ve gotten closer to people I just only met a few times previously and reconnected with old friends. Making new friends is like unveiling a treasure chest. There is so much to be discussed and found from one another. Its almost always surprising when you meet someone else who has the same interests as you or the same quirky habits that you thought you were alone with. Seeing old friends after a long time brings an amazing feeling with it. To see that even though you’ve both changed over the years you still have so much in common and simply go back to your old ways is so rewarding. To know that you haven’t lost touch with them even though you see and talk to each other rarely makes you realize how great of friends you really are.2I also became more aware of the fact that there are so many more memories to be made. In one week alone we celebrated three separate birthdays. We’re all getting older but at the same time, we haven’t even hit our 20s yet (Except Josh :P). And in those times you recall and share old memories that you are fond of while making new ones. Most memorable for me out of a recent batch would be my first time ever being drunk. It was fun but, also makes me question why people actually enjoy getting drunk hah. But what makes this memory for me is the people I shared this experience with. We stared out at the city lights and laughed and loved. The end of the night ended with some puke and Advil but well, the beginning made it worth it. To be able to say that I had that experience is rewarding in itself. 3I think that a lot of the time people feel very lonely but, if you don’t even try to connect with people its all on you. I often feel the same way and I understand that I’m not putting any effort in. But when I actually do get out and see my friends I realize that it was such a big mistake. There are so many nights of laughter yet to be had and goals to conquer, big or small. So, I suppose what I’m really attempting to do is remind myself (as well as whoever cares to listen) to remember the good times so that you can created more in the future, whether equally or, a gazillion times better. Bad things will happen, those times will always be there no matter what. When your lying in bed at 4am wondering what the hell you’re doing with your life, those are moments you shouldn’t forget either. Those will help shape you and make you aware of how great all those other times have been. If your life is filled with contrast, up and down, perhaps thats a good thing. You’ll definitely appreciate the little things more.

Drop Everything and Go

Recently, more and more, I have been thinking about what it would be like if I just stopped everything, booked a plane ticket and started on a brand new adventure. A brand new road to travel. Something all my own.

I think what it really is, is university blues. I am almost done my first year, less than a month to go. And sometimes I wonder if it was a waste to rush straight here. Since elementary school my dream was to go to university and major in art history. I almost think the only reason I am actually realizing this dream right now is due to stubbornness. After telling everyone about this goal of mine for almost 6 years, I couldn’t just give it up.

These thoughts go through my head continuously, yet I don’t regret going to university. I still want to major in art history. At the end of it all I want to say to myself “I did it.”

Its just a lot of what ifs.

I bet some people do just drop everything and go. Only a rare few though. I feel envious of them. Those that have that freedom. I could, I really could, but I don’t allow myself to get that far. One day I want to be completely spontaneous and just drop everything and go. The time to do that isn’t here quite yet, but one day.

A Dream

o-maticI had a dream a few nights ago. I can’t stop thinking about it. It occupies and takes over my mind at random intervals; on the bus, when I am trying to sleep.

The Philippines, a dream destination for me. The sun, the people, the ocean. Essentially, that was the dream. I met people, I swam in the ocean, I bathed in the sun. It was so refreshing, I didn’t know a dream could take this form. Like a retreat further than sleep already is. When I woke up, I was devastated it wasn’t real. I have never felt like that previously, and perhaps not as strongly ever again.

I dream now though, that it will come true. And I will go to the Philippines. And meet people, see the sun, and feel the ocean surrounding me.

And still, I can’t stop thinking about it. A dream. Only a dream. But yet a form all its own.