Plans for my 18th Summer

Plans for my 18th Summer

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Hi there! Hey! You there! Yes, you.

Listen up because I’ve got some stuff you want to hear.

First of all, despite the fact that today marks 268 days after I last posted (YIKES!), I’m not in the mood of leaving things unfinished (especially this blog), so be ready for some regular updates! *cheers*

So many great things have happened in my life since we’ve last communicated. For one, I’ve graduated high school! I’m also going off to college in three months (like four hours away, going off) and I want to make the most of my summer before then.

What follows is how I plan to do so.

This is my second point. For those of you who have stuck with me through thick and thin, remember when I made that summer goals post for last year?

For those of you who don’t know about it, I basically wrote out ten major goals I wanted to reach that summer. None of them were something I could accomplish in one day, but I had to work towards all of them over time. You can check it out here if you’re interested.

And if you’re wondering how many of those goals I actually accomplished, well, the number was quite paltry . . . only half :/ I wrote about the exact ones I reached here.

But alas, it is a new year and you’d probably much rather be reading about what I hope to accomplish this summer than my goals from last year, because that was the past and this is now.

So without further ado, here is how I plan to make my last summer before college memorable as well as productive.

1. Earn over 2.5K

College is expensive. ’nuff said. This number pans out to about forty dollars every weekday.

2. Apply for 2 scholarships a week

I have to be specific or I probably wouldn’t do this one. Honestly, I’ve applied for a few scholarships thus far, but since I can’t see the immediate results, I’ve kinda lost all faith in doing so. Nevertheless, if I can manage to snag a few this summer, it will help a lot with college costs.

3. Keep up with Bible reading plan

I got this really cool journaling Bible last Christmas, and in the back there’s a reading plan for the entire year. I made it through February, then kinda gave up. So I definitely need to get back on track with that.

4. Finish “The Day Hope was Murdered”

I started this novel on Wattpad in April of last year and um . . . I don’t think I’m even ten chapters in. But I will finish it this summer! Right here, right now, I’m committed to updating twice a week. Friday and Tuesday.

5. Declutter & Organize

Over the past month, I’ve slowly but surely been going through my clothes (I got rid of 5 big garbage bags full of them so far!). But I still have so much crap I’ve collected over the years that must go. In addition to material things, I have over 2000 photos on my phone and way too many apps taking up space.

6. Craft Crap

Tying into the last one, I have this huge container of yarn as well as tons of fabric, jewelry making supplies, and other craft stuff that I definitely DO NOT have room for in  a college dorm. My sister and I are going to make stuff out of it and either sell them locally or on a site like Etsy. I think this will be a great opportunity to grow closer to her as well as learn a lot more about crafting.

7. Exercise twice a week

About a month ago, I finished 90 days of torture called P90 X. I was working out for nearly an hour (sometimes more) six days a week and was following a strict diet that consisted of a LOT of protein. Since that ended, I haven’t worked out once, and am losing the muscles I obtained during the torture. Needless to say, I need to get back into the habit of working out.

8. Spend time with those I love

Rather than wasting away the summer with people I honestly don’t care about or spending all of it holed up in my room, I am going to work towards spending time with my family and friends more. It was really hard to do so during the school year, but as I will be over 4 hours away in three months, I should probably learn to appreciate what I have before I go.

9. Play a musical instrument every day

For years, I took piano lessons. Then a few years ago, I quit taking lessons. Since then, I have played, but not much. Therefore, right here, right now, I’m committing to playing a musical instrument (either piano or guitar) for at least 30 minutes a day.

10. Blog every week

I was thinking of making it every other day, but I don’t think I can commit to that, so once a week seems plausible, right? As of now, I have no idea what I’ll write about, but as I always do, I’ll figure it out.

So there you have it! My top 10 goals for this summer. Of course, I do have smaller things I’m hoping to do this summer, but instead of having them on this list, perhaps I’ll make a bucket-type list with the small things. What do you think?

Why do I write out my goals like this?

If you’re wondering why I have done this for the past two years, keep reading.

Without this list, I never really know what to do during the summer and by the time summer ends, I usually feel that I have accomplished absolutely nothing. By writing the most important things out and sharing it with you guys, as well as hanging it on my wall, I find that I’m a lot more motivated and excited during these months off of school.

I encourage you to make your own list of things you want to accomplish this summer. You only have so many summers in your life. It’s important you make them worth it. If you do commit to a list, let me know, and maybe we can keep each other accountable.

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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

It’s Alright to Cry | A Song

It’s Alright to Cry | A Song

You said goodbye just the other day
You left me all alone
You said you would never leave me by myself
But I guess you were wrong

Chorus
It’s alright to cry sometimes
It’s alright to say what you feel
It’s alright to think about the past
It’s alright to cry

Said you would be just fine
But you knew it all along
I could see it in those troubled eyes
That something was wrong

Chorus

It has been a year now and I am moving on
But you will always be in my heart
Death is such a terrible thing
But it will not tear us apart

Chorus (x2)

So my sister, neighbor and I wrote this song quite a while back. I’d have to say I was 10 or 11 at the time so about 6 years ago. I have no idea what rhythm we had for it back then but ever since I found it recently, I’ve been trying to come up with something that works. I have something down for the chorus,  just not the verses yet. It’s not much but I just thought I’d share!
Ashlyn Taylour

The Amazing Land of Youtube

The Amazing Land of Youtube

If you didn’t know, I’m kinda obsessed with youtubers. This obsession started out about a year ago, and ever since, I can go on youtube and watch videos, while the time flies by.

Obviously there’s hundreds of different types of videos on youtube. Here’s my three favorite.

Vloggers

People like Connor Franta, JennXPenn, thiskidneedsmedicine, etc. are classified as what’s called vloggers. They basically post humorous videos in which they talk to a camera. My favorite vlogger is Alexis G Zall. Her sense of humorous is, well, humorous. While she looks like she’s 14, she’s 17. Same for me. And every Sunday, it is my sister and I’s tradition to watch her latest video. Seriously. If you’ve never heard of her, watch this video:


Short Films

These are like movies, but usually less than 10 minutes. They usually have a great message to be learned. They’re not super common on Youtube, but I love them anyways.


Music Videos

Whether they’re from a professional singer/ band or a singer who is just famous on Youtube, I absolutely love music videos! Covers, mashups, etc. are addicting as well. Sam Tsui and Anthem Lights have the best covers and mashups by far.



If you’ve never gotten into the world of Youtube, then you’re missing out. You need to do it, like, yesterday.
Ashlyn Taylour

When life doesn’t go your way

When life doesn’t go your way


Admittedly, yesterday was not my best day. It started out fine and I hung out with a friend for a few hours. Watched Catching Fire. But as I pulled into my driveway at around 9:30, everything went downhill from there.

Perhaps it was the red and blue flashing lights in my driveway that for a moment, I thought was an ambulance, or perhaps it was the cop that got out of that car and started yelling at me that made me break. Maybe it was just an accumulation of events that led up to the explosion. Who knows.

After being scolded by my mom, I climbed out on my roof around 10:00 and I tuned out the world. Blasted my music full volume. Sitting out there, in the chilled air, made me think. About my life. And somehow, I felt desperately lonely. It makes no sense, because I have so many great friends, and I had just had a great time with my friends that day, but it happened nonetheless.

I, Ashlyn Taylour, let the flood gates break. We all need to cry once in a while, and my time was overdue.

In this time of my weakness, after a good thirty minutes of tuning out the world, I started to pray. And then I searched “Bible verses about loneliness” in Google. And realizing that Jesus had went through the same thing and felt abandoned by God, caused me to feel less lonely.

I have no idea why I’m writing this at all, but I guess I’m hoping I’m not the only one who has felt this way.

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Plans for the Summer

Plans for the Summer

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “The Satisfaction of a List.”


I finished school for the summer last Friday, so alas, I will be on break for three whole months! *cheers* In past summers, I’ve often found myself sitting around on my butt all day wasting the time away. But I do not want that to happen this year. I want to make the most of my summer, and here’s a list of exactly what I hope to accomplish this summer. Kind of like a summer bucket list, you could say.

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

I have two jobs currently. I caddy at a country club that is literally 2 minutes from my house and I work for my dad’s computer business. At both of these, I make a pretty decent amount of money and this goal is a bit unrealistic. Heck, I’ll be lucky if I make $1k, but according to Minho in the Mazerunner, it’s better to shoot higher.

2. Write my college essay and perfect it

Pretty self-explanatory, but my friend told me that she planned to write her essay for appying to colleges in the fall, and that set off a spark inside of me. It’ll be 500 words that’ll make all the difference for my future.

3. Learn a cool talent

I’m thinking maybe I’ll learn how to baton. I’m decent at it now, but my mom was a majorette in high school. You know, one with the fire and all. Although I’ll never be that good, I want to be better. Or maybe I’ll do a back flip on the ground. That’d be pretty sick. Or maybe become skilled at writing right-handed (I’m a lefty). Idk, if you have any ideas for me, comment them!

4. Attend a pre-college program

Back in February, I applied for a scholarship to a summer program at Smith College and Harvard University in Massachusetts. I got into both of the colleges, and received $3000 from the scholarship. I’ve decided to attend Smith’s Young Woman’s Writing Workshop and I’m psyched! I’ll be staying there, in a dorm, for two weeks!

5. Volunteer

To be honest, I haven’t volunteered much in high school, and I’ve been told that colleges really look at that and extracurricular activities. Ever since I heard that, I’ve been trying to find places to volunteer! Currently, I volunteer at a local Boys and Girls Club, and I’ve found the experience highly valuable and quite fun. This summer, I’m volunteering at a Christian summer camp for a few weeks. I’ll be a photographer and I’ll take videos of the campers. Only downside is no electronics, no phones, and that means I won’t be able to update this blog. Eh, hopefully I’ll survive and hopefully you will too.

6. Keep up this blog

Perhaps this is one of the easiest things on my list. Or at least, it seems to be the case now. But my goal is to write a new post every day in June, and if I have time at Smith, to update while I’m there. It’s just so freeing to write what’s on my mind and I know if I continue this, I’ll be an overall better person.

7. Finish a novel

I’m writing a story right now called “The Day Hope was Murdered” and I definitely want to finish it by the time school starts back up again.

8. Keep playing guitar and piano

I’ve played piano for years and years, however, I just recently started teaching myself guitar. With all my schoolwork, I didn’t have much time to spend on playing instruments this year and that makes me sad. I definitely want to start playing a lot more this summer now.

9. Narrow down my college list

As of now, I have no idea where I want to attend college. You’ll know a bit more about this if you read my post from yesterday “What Scares the Crap out of Me.” My mom wants me to start applying in the fall, so I need to figure out some potential candidates.

10. Expand my vocabulary

My vocabulary isn’t that hot right now, and ever since I read John Green’s novel “The Fault in our Stars,” I’ve been obsessed with unique words. Also, when I took the SAT, my vocab section was one of the lowest. So, I have taken upon the challenge of learning not only one vocabulary word a day, but two. We’ll see how it goes.

As you can tell, I have a lot planned for this summer. I’ll be gone, away from home, for an entire month. It’ll be jam-packed and I’m happy about that. Most people want a calm, relaxing summer, and don’t get me wrong, I want that too. But sometimes, it can be too calm. And that’s not what I want. This is a lot and even I’m doubting myself right now, but I’ll let you know in August how much of this I accomplish.

What are your plans for the summer?
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