Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Three Years!

Yesterday marked the 3rd anniversary of Young Yankee Lady!

Most of my blog-iversaries lead to me re-evaluating my entire blog, and making some pretty lofty commitments. For the first time, though, at this point I'm really happy with my blog. I'm proud of myself for sticking (mostly) to my blog-once-a-week plan this year, and now that school's pretty much done I'm excited to bump that up!

I'm also pretty proud of the actual content I've put out this past year. I feel like I've finally gotten my voice, and I like the topics I'm covering. I feel a lot more genuine and connected to what I eventually publish, and the fact that I've been able to interact more with your guys makes it that much better!

To celebrate blogging for three years, I wanted to share the love by listing some of my personal favorite blogs. Honestly, these are the people that have led me to getting my blog where I want it! They are always full of real-life, inspiration, and just good energy. :)

My favorite blogs (in no particular order).

01: The College Prepster

I've religiously followed Carly for probably about two years now! I seldom miss a post, and have really fallen in love with her kind, put-together, quirky style. She always has something valuable to share, and I really trust her opinions. Some favorites: Time Management, How I Get It All Done; Stay In Touch; 5 Ways To Enjoy Spending Time Alone.

02: The Nectar Collective

I just discovered TNC this year, and now it's a regular read! Melyssa is bright and peppy, and her team of writers is always spot on, too. She has great advice about blogging and branding, and I like hear goal-focused mindset. Some favorites: 15 Tips for a Happier Year, How To Get Sh!t Done Even When You're Totally Unmotivated.

03: The Lady Geek

Dia, my in-real-life best friend, writes this blog and always has a fun new project to share! I'm not a super crafty person, but I love getting the scoop on all her projects! We also have too much interacting on tumblr (meher) together. Some favorites: Harley Hammer Part 2, The Jayne Cobb Hat.

04: The Random Writings

I. Love. Rachel. She's a fellow homeschool graduate who grew up primarily in Malaysia, went to college in Michigan, worked as a teacher with her husband in China, and has now just moved to Malaysia. She writes about anything and everything, and you can always count on her for honest conservatism. Some favorites: Grandpa's Marriage Advice, Leaving Well, Fearless Woman.

05: Michmash

Michelle is definitely my favorite 'story teller' blogger. She is one of the few bloggers that has (seriously!) made me roll on the floor laughing. She is hilarious, and I can't get enough. Especially now that she's had the baby, I love keeping up with her life! Some favorites: blogging year 2: lessons and rants, and you CANNOT miss her wedding series. It's amazing. Here's the first one.

06: Victoria Elizabeth Barnes

This is a blog about restoring an 1890 Victorial house. But when you're reading it, it doesn't feel like that. Victoria is hilarious. Smart. And an awesome storyteller. Her husband, Paul, makes frequent appearances and GAH! They are the cutest couple. Some favorites: The Kingdom Mirror--Proving That You Never Know What Is On The Other Side of A Craigslist Ad, The Glitter Troll is Disappointed.

07: Flashback Summer

This is really the only vintage blog I read anymore, and probably who I feel most personally in-line with style wise. I love Emileigh's unique approach to vintage, and her writing style! Some favorites: 90's Mumu to Floral Playsuit, In A Fashion Identity Crisis, Q & A Video.

 08: Girl Meets Life

This is my most-recent blog find, and the closest to what I'm trying to do here. Gracie has great perspective, and I love how well she integrates her whole life into the blog. Some favorites: How Social Media Is Making Us Terrible Daters, How To Stay On Course, How To Make A Personal Mission Statement.

Finally, I wanted to make a quick list of my top favorites posts I've written over the past year. Like I said before, I'm really happy with what I've been writing lately. Here's to a great Blog Year 4!

If I've Learned Anything
25 Ways To Be A Little More Fabulous
Things Cousins Say
new year's eve
Heroine's Aren't Guaranteed A Hero
5 Attitudes For A Happier Spring
Freshman Year
Permission To Shine
Don't Call Me A Good Little Church Girl

Happy Tuesday! xoxo

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Don't Call Me A Good Little Church Girl

Because when you have no other photos to post, post a selfie.

I am on such a high right now after Lady's Day at church. Seriously.

We had am absolutely incredible woman come speak to us today, named Stephanie. She used to run a shelter for homeless women and children in Memphis, and she talked to us about her process, faith, and the important difference individuals can make.

While listening to her speak, it was like every sentence out of her mouth connected dots for me. She echoed some random things I've been thinking about lately, and tied them together in a logical way I hadn't yet.

A theme she kept coming back to was the difference just a small, committed group of people can make. That size and resources don't matter as much in comparison to commitment. That the smallest things we do can sometimes have the biggest impact.

This is actually something my economics class (of all things!) touched on. It talked about how we are all leaders, because there is always someone watching us. Okay, so maybe it's just your little brother or the kid next door....but they might grow up to be a judge, or a cop, or a business owner. And they're watching you.

We all have influence. The only questions is whether it is positive or negative.

And I don't mean this in a 'someone is watching so you better behave!!!!' way. I think it's the difference between being polite, and going out of your way to help someone. Being smart, and being innovative. Being honest, and putting yourself out for someone else.

For the past six months or so, I've been in a fit over the term 'good little church girl'. A guy called me that a couple months ago, and I hated it, although I didn't know why. He meant it to be cute, but it bugged me.

And I've finally hit on why. The world tends to view Christians as those that have chosen to live a boring, low-risk existence. That they avoid 'fun' because they're scared of life. And that thinking is so flawed. To so many people--the apostles, Paul, modern Christians in Egypt--being Christian has meant living a life full of danger, daring, and risk. I bet they all wish their faith was more 'boring'.

But even for Christians living today in parts of the world without persecution, faith isn't (or shouldn't be) boring. There are still so many ways we must live bigger because of it. So many ways we could help. And even if you aren't persecuted for your faith, it still takes guts to live it out despite the people around you.

I don't like being called a 'good little church girl' because that makes me sound naive. And innocent. And dumb.

And my faith isn't naive, it's informed.
I'm not innocent, I'm intuitive.
And my faith isn't dumb, it's wise.

Looking at Stephanie, you would never call her a 'good little church girl'. She has too much depth for that. Her aura is smart, and strong, and fierce, and full of heart. Which, really, is what true Christianity looks like.

The world has it wrong.

Happy Saturday! xoxo

Monday, June 1, 2015

:: May 2015 ::

Stuff that happened this month.....

Prom with some of my favorite people.

Great Gatsby Homeschool Prom from Young Yankee Lady

Prom #2 because dancing's too much fun.

Single ladies high school prom little blue dress little green dress from Young Yankee Lady

Finished lit class.

Mad Max & American Sniper at the drive-in with Dia, and the brothers!

Best friends at a drive-in rockabilly Young Yankee Lady and Time Lady Geek

Presented at my last State Activities Day for 4-H.

Competed with my team at the North Shore Open (and came home with hardware!). 

Theater on Ice Competition from Young Yankee Lady

May was a crazy month. Every weekend was packed....but it was so much fun.

I'm looking forward to a month of just blowing out school, working, and of course TOI Nationals!

What did you do this month?
What are your plans for the month ahead?

Happy Monday!! xoxo