Monday, September 1, 2014

Summer 2014

Hi there! First off, happy September! Crazy how we're already into the ninth month of the year, eh?

There's absolutely no doubt in my mind when I tell you that this has been the best summer of my life. I set the bar pretty high for myself and I had very high expectations of the previous two months back in June, so I'm very pleasantly surprised to have enjoyed myself so much. 

It still hasn't quite hit me that today is the last day of summer yet, but I'm not dreading school, which is a good sign. Honestly, I haven't been dreading very many things lately which has contributed immensely to my good mood. I say "lately" but it's been about four months now, aha.

At the beginning of summer, I wrote a to-do list of what I wanted to get done this summer and I actually completed a good 87% of that list. Keep reading to get a peek into how I spent my days.

New York was my favourite vacation of all time. There's not another one that really comes close to it, if I'm honest. Ones I've had in the past were fun and exciting, but this one was eye-opening and inspirational. Definitely a highlight.

1. Check mark symbol Complete Camp NaNoWrimo successfully - After a long, long month coupled with summer school, I was able to complete the 50K and I was very, very proud. Still am, actually.

2. Check mark symbol Pass Civics and Careers in summer school - Summer school was fun with my friends and all, but I'm never doing it at a school again, just online. Jesus, it was a very long month.

3. Check mark symbol Have a picnic, preferably with triangular sandwiches and lemonade - There were no triangular sandwiches nor lemonade, but there were bagel sandwiches and Nestea and it was in the rain, so close enough.

4. Check mark symbol Spend a day writing in a coffee shop - It was a super fun day despite how we barely got any writing done, aha.

5. Check mark symbol (kind of) Learn how to sew properly, meaning just making basic things like tops, skirts, dresses, etc. - Again, this is something I really have to work on and I know the very, very basics, hence the "kind of," but I'm making myself learn during the school year, so wish me luck.

6. Check mark symbol Makeover blog (I’m pretty darn excited about this now that I have some more knowledge on all this techy stuff) - The evidence for this one's pretty clear, I'd say. ;)

7. Check mark symbol Get a account - Here it is and there's absolutely nothing on it right now, aha.

8. Check mark symbol Start a photo blog with my best friends - I'm kind of glad I wrote "start" instead of "have" or "keep" because we just started it and each of us posted, and then it all just stopped.

9. Start photo wall - I still haven't picked out all the photos I want on my wall yet, so that's why it hasn't been started, but the post is on my schedule for the near future, therefore this wall will have to get started soon.

10. Check mark symbol Volunteer at a homeless shelter (or anywhere, really) - I volunteered a bit online but that was about it.

11. Paint a really big painting and actually put it up in my room - Sigh. The sad part is I'm actually really excited about what I'm going to paint (it's a quote that's going above my bed), but I just haven't gotten around to it yet, unfortunately.

12. Check mark symbol Organise files and photos on computer (this is going to be a pain, but the clean and organised files that will great me every time I open my computer will be worth it) - Thank God I did this because now I just smile a bit every time I see how clean and organised my computer is.

13. Check mark symbol Have a barbecue for my birthday - I didn't take nearly enough photos of this occasion, but it was a fun, fun time despite all the things that kind of went wrong.

I also had such a fun birthday on the day of and you can read more about it here.

My lovely mom also got me some roses for my birthday. She has a thing for flowers and while I'm not the biggest fan myself because they all end up dying, it definitely warmed my heart.

14. Check mark symbol Take a Zumba class with my friend(s), I usually go with my mom or by myself, so it’d be fun to switch it up - I didn't go to the gym as often as I should've this summer, but I did enjoy all the times I did get to go with my friends. It was definitely a nice change to get to work out with someone else as I usually go solo.

15. Check mark symbol Frame stuff and put it on my wall, it’s not as vague as it seems, I promise – I just have a bunch of artwork to put up and Broadway tickets to frame - There are actually so many things now on my wall, it's great.

16. Check mark symbol Buy my own domain for this little blog (finally) - Psst, look up on that bar, you know, the one that says the URL. Isn't it beautiful? Yeah, okay I know I'm weird. I'm just really proud.

17. Make bread pudding like the one I had at Borgata's in Atlantic City - I indulged more than enough this summer, so it was probably a good thing that I didn't complete this item.

18. Check mark symbol Reorganise bookshelf - It's a bit cleaner now and actually makes me want to look at it, but it needs to be redecorated, which is the next step.

19. Check mark symbol Reorganise closet (again) - I got more clothes hangers and put stuff in boxes, so now my closet's clean! Woot woot.

20. Check mark symbol Reorganise and completely redecorate desk - You can see the full transformation here.

21. Check mark symbol Decorate headboard - I thought that my headboard was actually in really bad shape, but it wasn't that bad at all and I just took off all the childish stickers, so I'm just going to say that I "decorated" it.

22. Check mark symbol Paint the deck and any empty places on walls (this seriously needs to be done asap) - My beautiful deck has finally been painted and I'm pretty sure everyone in my family is so excited and happy about this fact.

23. Journal everyday - I had a hard time making this happen, so I just forgot about it a couple days into the summer. However, I did write a line a day in a separate book, so that might be able to count?

The next few photos are just random photos taken during the summer...

That's me doing a weird face reacting to what the camera man said and my brother looking cool and collected on Canada Day. July 1st was definitely one of the best days of summer for me.

I just got to hang out with a couple of friends and my brother and it was great. Plus, there were fireworks and chocolate fondue.

I got to try an eggs benedict for the first time this summer and I was so incredibly excited. After watching 4+ seasons of MasterChef and the Food Network every single day, it was really exciting for me to be able to get a taste of that lovely poached egg and hollandaise.

And it certainly didn't disappoint.

I don't know if I've ever mentioned this before, but I have a thing for pineapples. I don't necessarily adore eating them raw or just by themselves, but I absolutely adore them in other foods, especially in Hawaiian pizza. Just so perfect.

Overall, I had a pretty freaking amazing summer. Everything was just perfect, or at least very nearly there. I got to spend so much time with my friends and family, particularly my brother and I felt as if I'm a much happier and more motivated, and determined person now. I also felt like I got to know my city a whole lot better since I bused around town so much.

I guess the past two months puts a lot of pressure on next summer and I'm not sure how I'll be able to top it, but a fashion course or two might make that task a bit easier. ;) More on that later.

What was your favourite part of summer? What is your favourite memory of past summers, or maybe a favourite summer of yours? Are you excited about school starting again (if it hasn't already started for you)? Leave your comments and share your stories below!

Thank you so much for reading!
- J


  1. Just wondering, where do you do online volunteering? It sounds like ssomething I may be interested in doing.
    Glad to hear you had a fun and productive summer!

    1. Oh, that was more of an intern-y position if anything. Just look on websites with job ads and you might find one! - J

  2. I'm so thankful and happy that we spent a lot of time together this summer! I'm really sad that summer's over, especially because it limits our time together, but I'm hopeful that the school year will be kind to all of us. x

    1. I'm so happy that we got to do that, as well. :) I'm hoping that we'll still be able to make time to spend time together despite our busy schedules. - J