Thursday, July 31, 2014

College So Far: Year One is Done!


      It's been about a month and a half since I officially finished my freshman year of college, and now I've come here to tell you all about it! (The photo above is of me the day after winter quarter finals. My roommate and I went on a hike in a field!)
      College is way different than high school. First of all, I found it way more academically engaging (most of the classes I took in high school were forced upon me and not that interesting). I've learned so much in one year, especially about my art practice. Secondly, people are way friendlier. College is not at all cliquey the way high school is. I made a lot of friends this year and I'm looking forward to seeing them again in October. 
      Aside from being a place to learn and make friends, though, college was (and still is) a HUGE life transition for me, and for a lot of people. Going to college essentially means you gain both personal freedom, and personal responsibility. You become the sole influence on your own life. Which is great, but also super challenging. I basically had to learn how to take care of myself this year, both physically and mentally. Between having to make my own doctor's appointments, remembering to eat every day, making sure I spent a healthy amount of time doing things like studying, socializing, or cleaning my apartment, there was a LOT of stuff to learn this year. 
     Aside from being able to feed my basic needs, I was also put in a position where I had to make decisions like "Do I like these people, do I want to be friends with them? Do I like doing this? Do I care about that? Do I have time to do this?". This year became The Year of Extremely Busy, because I've found myself bouncing between friend groups, family, work, classwork, extracurriculars, and personal interests (which I have a LOT of).Time management skills have always been my forte, but this year, they were definitely put to the test. 

My friends Carina and Theron with my dog Chilli on my bed in our room! (I brought my dog to college for a weekend)
      On top of figuring out what and who to spend time on, I also started to realize I needed to be discerning about who I was hanging out with. Before going to college, I'd had the same two best friends for almost my entire life. I had other friends too, but those guys were my foundation, and with them around I didn't have to make a lot of conscious decisions about who to befriend, who to trust, how to open up to people, and so on. I made a lot more decisions like that this year, and I'm still getting the hang of it, but I have a few friends who I really love (like my roommate, Carina, who took the pictures of me up above at UCSC).
      For me, college also became a huge mind-opening experience. Since I go to UCSC, which is a very liberal school, I learned SO MUCH about social issues, environmental issues, and all the different activism efforts to alleviate them. I even got involved with a few, especially Take Back the Tap! I'm going to be the campaign co-coordinator for UCSC next year, along with one of my friends. College is full of awesome opportunities to learn and get involved, and I'm really glad I took advantage of some of them. I took a class about activism and self-compassion, participated in an internship, and also helped plan UCSC's PRIDE festival. I also became more interested in and appreciative of nature, since UCSC is a beautiful campus. 
      Freshman year was a huge opportunity for growth, and there was so much to learn. And I'm still learning. That's the thing about life, it's a continuous process. And you get to have fun along the way :)
     
My housemates and I in our living room!

     To those of you who are getting ready for your first year of college, I have a little bit of advice:
- Bring cleaning supplies (especially if you have an apartment like I did). Clorox wipes are your best friend. And laundry detergent!
- The classes are really not that hard as long as you study. You HAVE to study. 
- Get involved with stuff! Go to events and activities, learn about campus organizations, and see which ones interest you
- Take at least one class that's just for fun or sounds really interesting even if it's outside your major
- Get to know people in the years above you. They know stuff. 
- Do stuff around the town your college is in. 
- A Costco card will not hurt you. Neither will a decent speaker. 
- Set aside "you" time to check in with yourself once every couple days. 
Good luck! You can do it!

Friday, July 25, 2014

No Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars


HOLY YUM!  I brought these to a class potluck yesterday and everyone went nuts over them! {Get it? Nuts? Peanut Butter? Ayyyy ;)} These are super easy to make, and are great for summer since they require no oven time, plus they only have five ingredients! The recipe comes from Sally's Baking Addiction! YUM!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup (115g) salted butter, melted (you can also use unsalted, just add in 1/4 tsp salt with the peanut butter)
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 8 full sheets)
1 cup (120g) confectioners' (powdered) sugar
- 3/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons (215g) creamy peanut butter (not natural style)
1 cup (180g) semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions: 

1. Take 8 sheets of graham crackers and put them in a zip lock bag to crush. Meanwhile, melt the butter in the microwave. 

2. Line a 8x8 or 9x9 square baking pan with aluminum foil. Set aside.
3. In a medium bowl, mix the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, and powdered sugar together until combined. Stir in 3/4 cup of peanut butter. Spread into prepared baking pan.
4. In a small bowl, microwave 2 Tablespoons of peanut butter with the chocolate chips until melted. Stir until smooth. Spread over peanut butter layer.
5. Chill until completely firm, at least 3 hours (I chilled it overnight). Allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes before cutting. Bars stay fresh stored in the refrigerator.  Serve chilled. Enjoy!




Monday, July 21, 2014

Summer 2014 Gift Package Exchange!


Hey everyone! Long time no blog! I've been busy with work and summer classes, and I can't wait to show you all what I've made so far. But that's a story for another time. Today, I have some very exciting news. It's summer time, and here at Good Vibrations, that means it's gift package exchange time!! Are you guys excited or what?

Okay, without further ado, here's how it's going to work this year:

1. You email me your mailing address at aplleegrl@yahoo.com. 

3. You assemble your care package you are going to send. 

3. I randomly pick an address for you to send a care package to and email you the address by Sunday, August 3rd. 

4. You ship your package by August 4th, the Monday after next. 

5. You receive your own package and enjoy!!
Please note that you must join the swap by Sunday, August 3rd. 
I advise joining well ahead of the shipping date, which is the next day, August 4th. That way you will have a lot of time to prepare your package and make it look nice. Also, everyone must pay shipping for their own package

Sound good to you? Rad. So, now that you've decided to participate and have emailed me your address, you have a care package to assemble! But what are you going to put in it? Well, I happen to be participating in this swap myself, and I have a few ideas (of course!). 



- Some rad art prints for them to hang on their wall

- A cool movie for them to watch (VHSs are so cheap you guys)

- Delicious homemade cookies!

- A summer-themed mix CD

- A cute little zine, made by you! Try your hand at poetry, collaging, whatever you want! The recipient is sure to appreciate your artistic efforts. 

- Offer to be their pen pal :) Send a picture of yourself and a nice letter!

- A nice smelling mini body spray or lotion


- A handmade patch that says something sassy on it

- Glitter. Because why not?

- A cute folder or notebook to keep them organized

- Try writing a note to them with this theme: Your 5 best pieces of advice! Chances are they'll appreciate it. 

- Make them a mini photo album or scrapbook where they can put pictures from this summer

- Yummy homemade fudge

- 5 bucks, because they will definitely appreciate that!

- A cute little tin or box for them to use. You could paint it yourself!

Don't forget to look at my posts here  and here for other lists of ideas and look here to see what packages we sent and received last year! These are just a few ideas I cooked up, if you think of more, that's great! If you want to go the extra mile, try and make the package itself look pretty and festive as well! If you need inspiration, check out The Happy Mail Project, which is where the top photo is from. 

Please note that the last day to join the swap is Sunday, August 3rd. 
After this time I will not be accepting any more potential swappers. 

Email me at aplleegrl@yahoo.com if you're interested and tell your friends about it too! The more people we get involved, the more fun it will be!


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

June Playlist


Hello, friends! It sure is good to be back on the blog. I took some time off to focus on finals and moving out, and then I went on a vacation to Cape Cod for a week, so I've been really busy. I'm back now, and I'm starting up my new routine of summer classes and work, so I will also be back to blogging full time. Yay! Here's my playlist:

June Playlist

Higher Ground - Stevie Wonder

House of the Rising Sun - Animals

Bad Moon Rising - Creedence Clearwater Revival

Don't Look Back in Anger - Oasis

Come With Me Now - Kongos

Tin Man - Future Islands

Genesis - Grimes

Brown Eyed Girl - Van Morrisson

Good Times, Bad Times - Led Zeppelin

All Along the Watchtower - Jimi Hendrix

Hell's Bells - AC/DC



In May/most of June, I: 
Worked really hard on my projects, finished spring quarter and got good grades, said goodbye to all my friends and moved out, made red velvet cinnamon rolls with one of my high school friends, started my summer class, and went to NYC and Cape Cod. I've been very busy indeed. 

During the rest of June, I hope to: 

Finish cleaning my room, work on some travel plans, and start working on my Etsy shop. 

Hope you all have been having a wonderful June!


Friday, May 30, 2014

May Links

Cap off your month o' May with a little bit of web-surfin'! Enjoy!

I love Coco's tumblr! Super feminist and awesome to the max.
I love Lois's drawings! Her blog is super inspiring and I love her color schemes. The top illustration is by her.
This little tumblr rant about the presence of misogyny in modern society is on point! If you don't believe there is any misogyny in our society, give this one a little read, see what you think.
Lorde's video for "Royals" is so badass. Read the caption too!!
This little article about DIY Jorts is just silly and too cute!

I'm also enjoying Ana's blog, The Skinny Artist. I really want her Space Girl poster!!
Rookie featured these "film stills" made from photographs that one of their contributors took. What a neat idea!
I enjoyed Gala Darling's rapid fire advice post!
I love Wishcandy's art! I found lots of great artists this month.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

One Cool Chick: Nat P.



       Today I'd like to welcome the next installment in my Cool Person Series, an interview with Nat P.! I asked Nat to share some of her photos whit us, and you can see those below, along with a sample of her poetry. Read on to get to know her:

What do you like to do or create?
My greatest love is styling outfits that are out of the ordinary and ahead or even behind the current trend. I also love photography, especially of art in everyday cities or something out of the ordinary in a basic environment.

What do you do for fun?
Besides being glued to the tv when my favorite shows are on, I make an attempt to write poetry and do some journaling, pressing flowers is something I'm trying to get into more. I also spend mostly every weekend scouring my town for garage sales and heading to the local thrift stores. And I go to a pretty large amount of concerts per year but what can you do? The heart wants what the heart wants.



What do you draw inspiration from?
Tumblr is my main source of inspiration, there's just so many great pictures and ideas on there! Besides that nature and music are my number one influence when it comes to photography and poetry. Besides that I look to Lookbook for style ideas but sometimes I try to stay far away from it in order to avoid the crazy jealousy that comes with it.

How would you describe yourself?
I think I'm pretty contradictory to be honest. I love being alone but my greatest fear is being alone in a large group of people. I try to do my own thing and not be too influenced on societies beliefs and trends. I'm really quiet and shy but when I'm with my friends or family you can't get me to shut up.


What are some things you believe in?
There is no strict path in life. You can live how you want and do what you like and make your own plan. I also think that how good you are as a person is determined by your affect on others. You can drink, party and do drugs but at the end of the day its all about how happy you make the people you love feel.

What are you studying in college/ what career path will you pursue?
I haven't decided yet, I should've mentioned when I described myself that I am terribly indecisive, but I'm hoping to study styling or visual communications at FIDM or maybe up in Vancouver. If that doesn't work out maybe photography, but I always thought it'd be fun to be a tour guide in a country I'd love to live in.





Thursday, May 22, 2014

Things I Love Thursday! Spring Celebrations, Friendship, and Love


Hello friends! Since May is the month of gratitude in accordance with me Happiness Project, I thought I would take this excellent opportunity to do a Things I Love Thursday! Here are some things, people, and places that I've been super grateful for lately, in no particular order:

      I love.... Spring at UCSC! + Improving my painting skills + Mental clarity + Chill time + Looking forward to an upcoming vacation and awesome summer classes + My new job! + Morning breakfast adventures with my b + Deer, they are too adorable + Living in a beautiful and abundant forest + Santa Cruz in general + My wonderful roommates + Finding and trying new recipes! + Making new friends and keeping old ones + Sunshine and beautiful weather + Being a part of UCSC's Take Back the Tap campaign and being educated about water issues + Being involved with my school + Being able to go to UCSC + All the friends I'll get to see over summer + Organic foods! + Seeing other people's artworks + Living in California + Friendly people who say hi to me even if we don't talk very often + Getting lots of sleep + Feeding myself healthy foods + UCSC Summer Sessions + 


Having a solid babysitting gig this summer with an awesome family + Having a laundry machine again soon! + The fact that I have hiked to the top of Half Dome + Finding good new music + YouTube + Having enough money to pay for delicious foods, like apricots! + My supportive and loving parents + My creative sister + My awesome Volvo station wagon! + Eighties music because it's awesome + My Doc Marten Flanagans. I wore them almost every day this school year and they're barely worn out at all, and still very comfortable + Feeling beautiful without makeup + Gettin' my tan game on + Being able to communicate quickly through my cellphone + Having a fast Internet connection + Going to and hosting parties + Finding a free jump rope yesterday! + Printing mishaps with label makers + All the photos I've taken with disposable cameras + Having the freedom to do things that cost money + Sharing clothes with my roommates + Home-cooked meals! + My body, it does so much for me :)

What are you grateful for? 
Try giving it a little thought. 

Happy Thursday!