Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Life Lessons I Have Learned From Being An Adult (For Two Weeks)

As some of you may know, I just recently became a "legal" adult in the United States. There are many things I have learned in my short time of adulthood.

1) You will get hurt....a lot.
        I mean, obviously. You get hurt a lot as a child/adolescent/teenager. However, on my birthday, I managed to stub my toe, get a paper cut, and scrape my ankle on concrete (Yes, this is a sad attempt at being funny. Pity laugh if you have to for my sake).

2) Sometimes you will hurt other people.
        Again, on my birthday, I accidentally ruined the end of How I Met Your Mother to a friend who is still only on season five. Am I a life ruiner? According to him for the rest of the day, I was. I just accepted the fact that in adulthood, you're going to ruin many people's lives, if only for a few hours. (Another sad attempt at being funny. I'm so sorry).

3) There is a reason people become addicted to the lottery.
        I waited a good week and a half before I bought my first lottery ticket. Mainly because I was waiting for my actual drivers license to come in the mail so I wouldn't have to use a piece of paper, but also because I didn't want to suddenly become addicted to gambling (don't judge me, I am a naive adult). I finally went to the gas station and bought a lottery ticket...and another...and another...and another. In the end, I won $10, and only spent about $5 (because I had gotten some of my tickets "free" with my previous winnings). I instantly understood why people become so addicted to the lottery because there's that wonderful "What if...?" feeling. I thought to myself more than once "What if I win the jackpot?" Will I buy more lottery tickets? Probably. Will I make sure it doesn't become a habit? Most definitely.

4) Really though, it's not as great as it's cracked up to be.
        Yay I get to vote and have a drivers license without a curfew on it and buy lottery tickets and cigarettes (I will never smoke anyway so the last one doesn't really apply, but you get the point)! Woo! But honestly, I don't feel any different except for the fact that if I wanted to buy a dog from Petland, I totally could. It's just really anti-climatic in all honesty.
Look at this cutie though. Who wouldn't want that fur baby?
5) Sometimes good things come along in the blink of an eye...and leave just as fast.
        The same day I started my senior year of high school, I started my first job ever. I was so excited because I was finally going to have a sense of independence. However as the weeks went on, I found myself becoming moody, stressed, and not motivated or driven to do anything involving school (which if you know me, is nothing like how I normally am). This amazingly wonderful blessing quickly turned into a burden. It was so hard for me to get out of bed in the mornings for school because I knew that after school, I would have to go to work. I honestly think it just wasn't the right environment for me. And so, with that, my job ended just as fast as it had began. In a way, I was sad to see this milestone go, but it was such a weight lifted off of my shoulders that I knew it was supposed to be this way.

Yes, most of this post was meant to be comedic, but I was serious on a few aspects. Do I know everything about life now that I am an "adult"? Definitely not. Will I ever? It's doubtful. In my short eighteen years of life, however, I have learned that the most important thing to me in my life is happiness. That is my goal for the rest of my life. No matter what I do, I want to be happy. 

Monday, July 27, 2015

Hanging Out in The Big Easy

Hello out there! I arrived in New Orleans Saturday night around 8:30, and I didn't do much yesterday, so today was the first time I went out with my camera. I got some really cool shots today. New Orleans is so beautiful!

I'm also adding a few bad iPhone photos into this mix from my first two days here (and yes, I did dye my hair auburn).

Fried alligator...it was surprisingly good!

I bought a cool mask.

Snapchat photo because I'm classy.

My first po-boy! It was wonderful.

So anyway, that's it from me today. I'll be posting more on my Flickr (although I don't know when..the internet is pretty slow in my hotel) so go check it out if you wish!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Looking Back on WJMC 2014

Since it has been about a year since WJMC (in one day) I suppose now is the time I reflect back on my time at George Mason. A lot has changed since I got back from WJMC.

1. I'm so much more social than I have ever been in my entire life. It doesn't scare me to go up to someone and strike up a conversation. As I mentioned in a post from way back in the beginning of 2014 and this blog, I have struggled with social anxiety for the majority of my life. So to be able to go up to people and just talk to them is still so weird for me.

2. I met the most wonderful people while I was there and I still talk to them a year later. Even though I never see them, it's still really fun to have friends from all over the country.

3. I'm more mature, I think. I actually pay attention to the news and *gasp* politics. Crazy, right? Now I'm not saying that keeping up with current events and who is running for president makes you mature. I know plenty of people who do just that who are the farthest from mature you can possibly be. But I'm saying that's one thing I never really bothered to do because "it didn't apply to me." Newsflash past me, it does. It very much does.

4. DEADLINES ARE A BIG DEAL. That was the one thing I tried to enforce all year as editor in newspaper. Now did anyone listen? No. But I tried, because I understand that the news doesn't wait.

6. I'm not afraid to take a leadership position. I was/am editor of the school paper. Two years ago, I probably would have crawled into a whole and refused to take charge. Being in a leadership position terrified me two years ago. I also ran for NHS president and GOT IT, something I NEVER would have considered doing.

7. I have more self confidence. I'm not afraid to dress the way I want or do my hair/makeup the way I want. I wear whatever I feel like even though I'm not a size two and clothes don't fit me the way they fit the models (something that I was really self conscious about my first two years of high school).

Return of the bad iPhone photo to show off my freshly chopped hair and cool new glasses - a couple things that I have wanted to do for about a year!

I only have one regret: that I didn't talk to as many people as I possibly could and that I didn't make more friends than I did because I was too shy.

WJMC wasn't just a journalism learning experience. Sure, I learned a lot from my advisor and the various journalist speakers. But it helped me open up and not be afraid anymore. I can talk to people now, actually talk, without being afraid I'm going to embarrass myself (I still embarrass myself but that's a whole different story. I can laugh it off now at least!). I will be forever thankful to WJMC for getting me pumped about my future journalism career and for helping me gain important social skills that I had struggled with before.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Bonjour! Checking in.

Hello, hello, hello! It's been awhile. Firstly, I would like to announce that I successfully finished my junior year (and yes, there were plenty of stress tears) and I am now relaxing until I start my senior year next month. Time flies.

I haven't done much in the past three and a half months. I took the ACT again (because all juniors had to) and I studied furiously for my finals. I had a week off from school before I started school again, this time with a dual credit psychology class. I know, I know, "Alissa why on earth would you take a class during SUMMER??" Well my friends, simply because I want to get as many general education college credits out of the way so I can spend more time working on my degrees when I get to college.

Speaking of college, I have decided that not only am I going to major in journalism, but I'm also going to major in French. I know, I know, "Alissa, TWO majors? What are you thinking??" Well friends, I can earn a second arts and sciences degree at Mizzou in just nine to fifteen extra credits. And to that I say, why not? Why minor in French when in so few extra credits, I can major in it. Also, two degrees looks wonderful on a résumé.

Anyway, I leave for New Orleans in two weeks so I will be checking back in much sooner than I have been recently. Hooray! I absolutely can't wait to go. So many people have told me how fun it is! It's so colorful and so full of energy, so I'm predicting some really fun pictures to come.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer. Check back soon for New Orleans photos. À plus tard!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Annnnnnnnnd Six Months Later.....

Well it's been six months....but I'm alive and well. Just very busy with school and such. There's two months until I'm a SENIOR, which is utterly terrifying. College, scholarships, and the like.

Anyway I will give you all a quick summary of the past six months:

I started school in August and I believe my last post was written on my second day of school (wow, it's been a while..). Anyway, my journalism teacher gave me the position of editor for our newspaper, I covered the entire football season for a local newspaper that was lacking a photographer, a new editor was hired for said newspaper, I got to know her and I now may be very close to obtaining to a freelance position. I joined NHS and I took the ACT in December and my score was only two points away from my goal score (yay). I covered the majority of the basketball season that just ended two days ago. I joined speech & debate, and I managed to get fourth place at my very first tournament.

I also managed to get on the 2015 WJMC Youth Advisory Board so I guess you could say I kind of help plan the conference (maybe?). And to top it all off, I started teaching myself français.

Well I think that's about it. The past six months have gone by so fast.

I'm going to New Orleans this summer so there will be new pictures to post. Until then, I'm not sure what I'm going to do. Just live life I suppose.

Happy March! Salut!

Thursday, August 21, 2014


Well the new school year has started and I am already swamped with things to do. Dual credit college algebra, chemistry, ACT prep, choir, journalism, NHS, and soon, speech & debate. And I'm trying to find a job on top of all of that. Keep in mind that today was only my second day back. I can see how my junior year is going to be.

I emailed Carol back, and I haven't gotten a response yet. She must be busy just like I am.

I'm sorry for the short posts recently, but school has taken over my life. Hopefully I can write more soon.


Sunday, August 10, 2014


Hey everyone, it's late and I'm currently in Minnesota, but I just thought I should share the big news. Carol emailed me back this afternoon! I may or may not have hyperventilated and cried in the Mall of America, but that's an entirely different story that I'm too tired to tell at the moment.

Anyway, basically she said would be happy to keep in touch and give me advice on photojournalism. I plan on emailing her back as soon as I get home Monday, as I am super busy here in Minnesota.

More updates to follow.