Farewell, 2016.

This is the time of year most perfect for celebrating friends, family, and life itself. I looked back at my New Year’s posts from this time last year, a goodbye to one year and a welcome to the next, and I’m surprised by my optimism. Even though I crossed a few things off my bucket list (!!!) and traveled the world, this year was nothing like I expected it would be. (I mean, did this year somehow just kick everyone’s ass or what?) Now, it is time to say farewell and move on to something, hopefully, better. Read More


A Year in the Making

It’s been one year since I made my first post on from earth and stars. Twelve months of new adventures and new paths. Three hundred and sixty-six days (thanks, leap year!) of living, learning, and traveling the world. And it’s all right here.

In many ways, I am the same as I was last year. Read More

The Start of Something New

Hello! Welcome to 2016! (Yes, this post is named after the High School Musical song.)

For some, we’ve only had a few hours to enjoy the new year—a fresh start, a blank page—and on the other side of the world, others are already well into their second day.

There’s a quote from the first season of The O.C. that says, “The way you spend New Year’s Eve is the way you’ll spend the rest of the year.” If that’s the case, I think I’m off to a good start—as my evening was full of laughter and good friends and joy. Read More


With each year, there are some things that change and some that remain constant, some you gain and others you lose. In the moment, sometimes these things seem greater than they are. And sometimes they really are just that great.

When I was young, each year came to a close on a good note—because how could it not? We banged on pots and pans with wooden spoons, blew on party horns, threw confetti, and danced with sparklers. We danced and sang and celebrated. Then, just when I thought I was starting to figure out things in my life, everything changed. Read More

Cleaning Up

There is something about cleaning–washing dishes, folding warm clothes straight from the dryer, or vacuuming a rug–that has a cleansing effect in more than one way. If you’re frustrated, angry, or just not at your best, put on your headphones and sweep, soak, and scrub until the negative feelings dissipate. And if that’s not enough, there’s something even more cathartic about getting rid of old stuff. Decluttering your spaces. Clearing out your life. Putting things back together without the mess.

Ask anyone who knows me–I’ve spent at least one third of my life, so far, cleaning my room. (And probably just as much time complaining about cleaning my room.)  Read More

Living Up to a Word

When I came home for the first time during my freshman year of college, I got my first tattoo. A single word in a simple black script, three inches long on the inside of my left wrist.

The tattoo artist questioned why I wanted the tattoo to face inward, as it would be visible to me but appear upside down to everyone else. Art, after all, is meant to be shared and enjoyed by many, not just one. But I wanted a constant reminder that I could see at any moment–one that would give me both comfort and courage, especially as I faced new challenges every day. And then there it was, right in front of me, for me to see every time I looked down or caught a glimpse of my wrist as I moved through day to day life.

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To a New Year

I am nearly two weeks into a new year in my life, a new age.

As per my usual pre-birthday ritual, I panicked a bit. I always worry that between one day and the next, there will be some massive change. That things will get drastically worse simply because I’ve celebrated another year of my life. There was a period of time when I wasn’t wrong–things felt like they just kept going from bad to worse, and my birthday was always right in the middle of it. And then there was a period of time when I was wrong–things were okay. More than okay, often.

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