You and I are Only One Grain of Sand on Malibu beach

You and I are Only One Grain of Sand on Malibu beach

Life is crazy.

Despite the fact that there are billions upon billions of individuals upon this earth, somehow, we pursue the belief that ours matters.

Think about that.

You and I are just small beings on this planet, a grain of sand on Malibu beach. Not even that. One song in all the songs out there. One letter on the pages of the great and legendary Harry Potter series.

According to the laws of mathematics, and the fact that the limit of a small number over infinity is zero, you and I mean nothing. We mean a number that has infinitely no end in a world with an infinite amount of people.

And thinking of not just those alive and breathing H2O right now at this instant, we have to consider those beings who once breathed H2O and then didn’t. Those such as Abe Lincoln who are gone. Who walked this planet at one point, but no longer do. We have to consider those beings that may or may not be in another universe.

Why should we care about our own lives when there are so many more lives out there? Why should we care that ours is crazy?

Why should we care that we, who are only a grain of sand, stand out? That’s impossible. A grain of sand simply can’t be noticed when surrounded by the infinite number of other grains of sand that are either sitting out on the beach, frying in the sun or lost deep under the waves of life.

Why should we even try?
Ashlyn Taylour

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How Many of my Summer Goals were Accomplished?

How Many of my Summer Goals were Accomplished?

Exactly three months ago, I wrote a post title Plans for the Summer. It had ten things on it I hoped to accomplish over the summer. I am writing to you today because my summer is officially over. I started school yesterday and so, as promised, here’s how many of my goals I actually met. (I’ve put the ten goals in italics.)

1. Earn over $2k and put most of it in savings ✖

So guys, all the money I earned over the summer, I put in an envelope, and just wait here for a moment while I go count it up. I’m doubting it’s over 2k but we’ll see.

I’m back. Drumroll please! Okay, so I made around $1800 over the summer. While I didn’t reach my goal *sad face* that’s a pretty decent amount if you think about it. Because I was gone for half the summer. Literally, I was only home for six weeks. I’d go for $300 a week, $40 a day anytime.

2. Write my college essay and perfect it

Ha. . . ha. . . Sike. I didn’t actually do this. Whoops…

3. Learn a cool talent

Okay, yes, if you remember, I wrote that I’d like to learn to baton or a backflip or ambidexturity. And guess what? I’m pretty good at twirling a metal bar around my fingers. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I can baton.

4. Attend a pre-college program

Smith college was a great experience. I was a bit disappointed with my classes but the people I met there were amazing. My roommate was from Pakistan and it was so cool to hear about the different cultures. Smith made me realize that there’s actually some good poetry out there and it gave me an appreciation for a different type of writing: screenwriting. Did I mention I wrote a movie? Anybody personally know Josh Hutcherson so he can act in it?

5. Volunteer

I’ve volunteered with my church a handful of times this summer and I went to a summer camp for a week where I was on the media team. The camp was a great experience and I’m definitely going back next year, hopefully for two weeks or ever more. I had to constantly step out of my comfort zone as I was the main photographer and I had to ask kids and their counselors to pose for pictures. I had to talk to people and joke with them so they’d show their real smile. It was undoubtedly hard but so worth it.

6. Keep up this blog

I did this a lot better at the beginning of summer. I published a new post every day of June which I’m mighty proud of if I do say so myself. I wrote 42 blog posts in 62 days. Wow.

7. Finish a novel

I told you guys I’d finish “The Day Hope was Murdered” by the end of summer but plot twist, I came up with this idea for a new book called “The Story of the Moon and the Sun” while I was at Smith. I tried so hard to finish it on Sunday but life got in the way and I’m literally so close to finishing it. Nonetheless, I still failed this goal.

8. Keep playing guitar and piano

I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but despite my hopes and dreams of getting better, I only played once or twice a week at most.

9. Narrow down my college list

Interpretation of this goal may differ from person to person. I now have a list of all the colleges I’m applying to. HOWEVER, this list has at least ten colleges on it. Most of them I don’t even know much about. The reason for this being that most of them I got a waived application fee for because I’m a National Merit Scholar. Yay me! I might as well apply if I can do so free of charge. So it’s not really that narrow but here are the colleges at the top of that list: Smith College, Taylor University, Cedarville University, College of Wooster, and Scripps College.

10. Expand my vocabulary

I told you guys I’d memorize two words a day but I don’t think I even did that for one day. I’m so disappointed in myself and my laziness.

SO, those were my goals for the summer. I really liked that I wrote all these out for you guys because in a way, it held me more accountable (at least to some of them). I only accomplished 5 out of the 10 but eh, without writing them all out, I probably wouldn’t have even accomplished half of that much.

Now maybe I’ll write a post with plans for the school year… We’ll see.
Ashlyn Taylour

The End of Summer

The End of Summer

With school less than two weeks away, I’ve been thinking about how I’ve spent this summer. By far, this was the busiest summer of my life so far. Admittedly, the majority of it was spent away from home. Over 6 weeks were. These weeks were a mix of vacationing, working and studying. But I’ve learned a lot.

One, I now know that I love independence. I love being off on my own. With being homeschooled nearly my whole life, I haven’t had a whole lot of freedom. But this summer was quite the opposite. And I loved every second of it. The weeks I have been home were spent working and earning as much money as I can.

I’m officially home for the year though. Just got home today in fact. In a way, school starts for me today. Some of it at least. I take the ACT on September 12th and so this next month will be spent studying my butt off for that. I refuse to take it twice. I’ll also be writing a whole lot. I need to finish that book I promised I would, right?

Other than that, these next few weeks will be spent tying up loose ends, finishing projects I started throughout the summer and filling out the Common Application. For all you other rising Seniors, you know how much stress applying to college can be. I’ve waited till now to start the process and that may or may not have been a good idea. But I have a question for you. Would you recommend applying to a lot of colleges or only a few? I’m kinda lost on this matter.

I hope to keep posting on here during the school year, but God only knows if I’ll have the time then. I hardly even have the time these days. We’ll see.
Ashlyn Taylour

A Stalemate

A Stalemate

We’ve all had those days when we don’t feel like trying. When we don’t feel like doing anything. On those days, it’s so easy to just sit around and do nothing. To just sit there and think “I really should be doing this and that.” But you stay seated.

I’ve found that oftentimes that’s how our relationship with God is. It just… sits there. We just want to sit there and not try. So we don’t. We don’t read the Bible, we rarely pray, we skip church a few times, and we don’t live life the way He’d want us to.

I’m currently in this situation. I’ve been in it for over a month. Some days, I sit there and think about how I should be spending time in the Word more and I tell myself I’ll do it soon. But the thing is, I never do it. I stay seated. I occasionally pray, but not as much as I should, not even as much as I used to.

Throughout this time, I’ve learned that it’s a lot easier to let emotions such as anger and worry consume me when I’m not focused on God.

I’ve been wanting to reverse this habit, or rather, non-habit and I still do. Perhaps it’s the idea of summer and the ‘I don’t have to do anything’ mindset that prevents me from reconnecting with God. I’ve went on spurts where I do a devotion for a few days, but then I somehow stop again.

When I promised on here to post every day of June, I stuck to it, I’m still sticking to it. So today, on June 23rd, 2015, I’m promising to read God’s Word every day of July and for the rest of June. Starting today.
Ashlyn Taylour

A Teenager’s Favorite Quotes

A Teenager’s Favorite Quotes

Today I spent over at hour looking at quotes. Now I’ve always had a fanciful obsession with quotes. Don’t ask me why. It’s just something with having a few words that give so much inspiration.

Out of the hundreds of quotes I probably looked at, I compiled a list of my favorites. I must warn you though. I have quite a few by John Green, even one or two by Hank Green. Without further ado, here they are.

Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.

-John Lennon

If people were rain, I was drizzle and she was a hurricane.

-Looking for Alaska John Green

We accept the love we think we deserve.

-Stephen Chbosky

The world may be broken but hope is not crazy.

-John Green

My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Every day may not be good but there is something good in every day.

-Alice Morse Earle

Everything is beautiful but beautiful isn’t everything.

-Anonymous

I am the way and the truth and the life.

-John 14:6

Love never gives up.

-1 Corinthians 13

Some infinities are bigger than other infinities.

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

The world is not a wish granting factory.

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

That’s the thing about pain, it demands to be felt.

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

They lost those things to greed, to complacency, to prejudice, and they lost those things not because they were weak but because they were strong.

-Hank Green

We are all people being people no matter where we are or what our circumstances are.

-Hank Green

And my favorite, since it describes my obsession with books so well.

I’m in love with cities I’ve never been to and people I’ve never met.

-Paper Towns by John Green

Perhaps I’ll do this again sometime. I probably will. If you were to go in my room, you’d see many quotes covering the walls, that’s how much I love them.

What are some of your favorite quotes? Any of these?
Ashlyn Taylour

In Which a Girl Disregards a Yellow, Wet Floor Sign

In Which a Girl Disregards a Yellow, Wet Floor Sign

Occasionally I slip up. OKAY, I slip up a lot. SO to prevent that from happening, one, I don’t walk where there’s a “Wet Floor” sign, and two, I constantly remind myself to do/ remember the following things.

1. Smile

Sometimes life can get the best of us but I’ve found that as long as you’re smiling, it doesn’t seem as bad as it is. It’s been proven to boost health and of course, happiness! I find it hard to smile sometimes, because I’m a VERY self-conscious person, and I’m afraid people will think I’m weird for smiling. This is on my list of constant reminders, because really, how can someone judge you just for smiling? Note: a smile doesn’t necessarily mean you’re happy, but it will help you to be so.

2. I’m not alone

It may seem like I am at times. Especially when I don’t have anyone to talk to atm. But in the whole realm of things, I’ll always have someone to talk to. I’ve found it helpful to keep Hebrews 13:5 in mind.

Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

He’s always there. Even when it may not seem like it, or you don’t know him. I find it comfortable to shoot him a quick prayer whenever I feel the slightest bit lonely. It gives me a boost of confidence. And this brings me to…

3. Keep my head up

This means two things: to be confident and never give up. I start a lot of things that I think will turn out great, so much that I end up having too much to do. For instance, when I started this blog last year, it was just too much with school going on and keeping up my Wattpad account. I gave up writing for it. At the time, that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. I just had too much going on. So when I say ‘never give up,’ it doesn’t apply to everything. It’s okay to give up on things that are wasting your time. And the confidence part really gets to me at times. I’m an introvert and I constantly compare myself to other people. It’s a bad habit and I really need to stop because it degrades my confidence. I’m working on it. I have found that writing and opening up about my feelings helps a lot.

4. It’s okay to not be okay

Face it. Sometimes life sucks. My friend just told me a story about her cousin who got hit in the head with a heeled shoe dropped from a ferris wheel. And now her and I are going to drop a shoe from a ferris wheel ourselves because why not. But the point is, that no one is constantly okay. It’s probably not the best, but I’ve often found that reminding myself that there are people out there far worse off than me helps me not to sulk around so much. And sometimes it seems like I always have to be happy and perfect for my family. If I so much as snap at them because I’m having a shitty day, I get grounded which only worsens my crappy mood. If I’m sad and just don’t feel like talking, my mom takes it as me ignoring her and starts freaking out. If the people around you expect you to be a certain way, maybe they shouldn’t be around you. Obviously I can’t leave my family, so idk what the crap to do. Leaving the house for a while helps a bit. What I’m trying to say is that don’t keep it bottled in. Be un-okay every once in a while.
Ashlyn Taylour

Passionate about Jesus

Passionate about Jesus

I was asked to share what I’m passionate about. So many things came to my mind: reading, writing, DIY, music. But what stood out over all of them is my passion for Jesus Christ.

Some of you may disagree with me and okay, fine, I’m cool with that. But I am I Christian and won’t deny it to anyone. Every since I was a baby, I’ve been going to church with my family. As a baby, I was dedicated to the Lord. And I can’t remember the exact age it happened, but eventually I accepted Jesus to come into my life and he’s changed me. I’ve been born again.

I’m far from perfect, and I’ll never even come close. But Jesus is perfect, and he always will be. Without fault, without sin. My life would be so empty without God in it. I don’t know if you’re a Christian, or what you believe. Even if you don’t believe in anyone, I understand, I won’t ever judge.

I’m so blessed to have God with me. Trust me, I’m definitely not the best Christian. I struggle with temptation just like anyone else. But I’m passionate about God, and I love him with all my heart. That’s all that counts.
Ashlyn Taylour