Update: August 22nd, 2017

Hey everybody!

So its been pretty quiet on my blog lately because the past few weeks have been pretty hectic. From my mom going to Las Vegas for work, to taking the CSET Multiple Subjects exam (all 3 subsections), to a vacation that seemed much too short.

Having my mom go to Las Vegas was hard for me because even though it was just for 2 days, she is the base of my support system. I had to find something to distract me from missing her, especially on the first morning. I turned to books, and that helped immensely. Overall, I realized that I was fine on my own, even though I did miss her at times.

I was not worried about studying for the CSET until it was almost too late to start. I looked at what I would need to know two days before the exam. I took a practice test and panicked because even though it helped me get a feel for the format, the questions were written by random people. I downloaded a study guide and spent the day before the test reading my way through it. I also got to see my Aunt the day before the test. She had taken the CSET Multiple Subjects after being out of college for 2 years. She only had to retake one of the three subtests. I took my CSET Multiple Subjest exam, all three subtests, about two weeks ago and I have to wait a few more weeks before my results for two of the subtests to come in. The last subtest had recently been changed, so I will have to wait even longer for the results of that test to come in because they have to first decide what a passing score will be.

Vacation was amazing, but still way too short. We have been planning this trip for quite a while, because it would be late enough into the summer that my sister and I wouldn’t be in school yet, but a majority of primary schools would be. We drove down to Southern California, went to the beach on the first day, and then spent four amazing days in Disneyland. I have always loved Disneyland, and have been lucky to go every few years. Though the magic has begun to wear off as I get older, there are still some things that make the whole trip worth it. My favorite thing by far is the shows. We saw Fantasmic, the Main Street Electrical Parade before it was being sent back to Walt Disney World on August 20th (it was just brought back to Disneyland for the summer), World of Color, and Frozen Live (twice). The shows were all very magical and totally worth standing in line for fastpasses or standing spots. Sadly, we didn’t realize that there were other shows until it was our last day there and the shows had already finished, but now we have something to look forward to next time. The next most magical thing was seeing the little kids and how excited they were for everything. Seeing them experience the magic made the trip all the more magical for me, and I look forward to one day bringing my own kid(s) to experience the magic. Then was the magic of the rides, which while they have lost their thrill, bring back an air of nostalgia for me, because I remember what they were like when I rode them for the first time. The entire trip was worth it and while I got a blister and some sunburn (sunscreen made me burn worse), I enjoyed the trip and just wished my sister had allowed us to take it a little slower, but alas she wants to be either on rides or in line for rides practically every waking moment. Overall, the trip was just what we needed.

So that is what I’ve been up to for the past few weeks. Plus some reading. And I start an internship in a 5th grade classroom for one of my classes tomorrow. I have a couple more weeks before I go back to school, but I can truthfully say that I am looking forward to going back to school.

Perception

So you know how everyone perceives things differently?

Something that drives me crazy is when people only focus on what they feel are flaws.

I know this girl who is beautiful. She is just over 5′ 6″, 145 lbs, and wears a size 4. Yet all she ever does is complain about her body. She has curves, but isn’t super curvy. She has a little bit of tummy chub, but who doesn’t? She always complains she has no clothes that fit her right, but when we go shopping she is so super critical that she either buys nothing or gets something and has a high chance of returning it later. She looks good in almost anything, and I tell her this, but she only sees the flaws. She complains that she is getting fat, but thankfully she doesn’t skip meals. She also doesn’t get as much exercise as she used to, but that just means she is a little less toned. She doesn’t want to workout alone, but she doesn’t take into consideration that I like to workout differently than she does. She did three years of dance in high school, which included cardio, squats, crunches, and so many other exercises.

I am just under 5′ 7″, weighed 203 at my highest, and wear a 14 or 16. My belly isn’t flat, it has chub. I have curves, more curves than her, but am still not super curvy. To find clothes that fit me, I have to either resort to plus sizes to find clothes that are cute, but actually flatter my body. It is hard for me to find clothes that look good because anything that has a tight waistband or is too tight over my stomach makes me look pregnant. I have full thighs and a belly. Though I get a little down when I see cute things that don’t fit, I take it as a sign that I am not meant to get it. Finding things that fit and flatter my body is hard, but I have tiny victories when shopping at stores. I have a good amount of clothes that I feel amazing in and some that are just comfy. I have exercise induced asthma, so working out is hard for me. I like to take long walks when the weather is nice and I am working on making better food choices now that my appetite has decreased after getting off my antidepressants. This method works for me and I have lost 10 lbs in a few months by just being mindful of what I eat, with no change in my exercise habits.I have been self conscious about my weight in the past. A relative called me fat when I was only 8. When I started antidepressants, I lost a little weight at first, but I gained almost 90 lbs in 9 years.  I now know that most of this weight gain was caused by my constantly being hungry on the antidepressants, and hope that I can continue to lose a little more weight naturally. My goal is 180-185 lbs, and then to slowly get into a routine that could help me tone up a little bit.

I am pretty happy with my body now and most of the time I feel content. I just with other people could see themselves the way I see them. You have a tummy, so what? Practically everybody does. No thigh gap, no problem! Curvy, not curvy, doesn’t matter. Either learn to love your body or learn what healthy changes you can make to get closer to your goal. I know it isn’t always that straight forward, but it is a good place to start.

 

What Is Going On With My Blog?

So I have decided that my blog won’t be just about mental health. Though it is an important topic, I feel that I don’t have much to share about it right now. Lately I have been writing. Not novels or anything, just taking a prompt and writing what my brain comes up with. I am not a writer or anything, my sister is the English major, I am just having some fun and being creative for the first time in a while. And it feels amazing.

Everyone here is welcome to read any of my posts.

All the stories I write are labeled with “Writing Prompt Fun” and a number.

My mental health posts usually have a different title depending on the topics.

Saving Up For Vacation

Vacation season is in full swing, so I thought I would share how I save up for vacations.

My parents always paid for everything for me when we went on vacation. They would buy me almost any souvenir I wanted within reason and made sure that I never had to worry about paying for anything.

Now that I am older, I like to take at least some responsibility for my expenses. After I turned 18 I decided that I will cover my own souvenirs. So me and my mom decided that we were going to save all the change we get will be saved up for souvenirs.

This is our method for saving up our money for vacations.

Supplies:

  • Mason jar or something to put loose coins in
    • I feel that mason jars are great for this because they will not crack or warp when they get full of coins. Regular size mason jars work really well.

Optional:

  • Craft supplies to decorate
    • I ordered a set of “Save”, “Spend”, and “Give” vinyls off etsy. I use save for my vacation fund and spend for emergency cash.
      • The ones I have are sold on Etsy by LittleAcornsByRo, mine are the large size in purple and I love them! https://www.etsy.com/listing/186721829
  • Coin sorter and coin sleeves
  • Larger container for rolled coins

How We Save:

  1. Bring cash. (Paying for everything in cash means you get a lot more change.)
  2. Keep all your change in one spot. (We keep ours in our wallets until it starts to get heavy. When it is heavy, we put them in our mason jars.)
  3. Optional: Roll your coins! (Whenever our wallets are heavy from too many coins, we use my coin sorter to sort and roll our coins. This makes it easier to count up how much you have and when we bring it to the bank to put into our accounts before the trip, the tellers appreciate that they don’t have to spend a ton of time sorting your loose coins.)
  4. Optional: Store rolled coins in a separate container. (My mom has four small tuppers with lids from Dollar Tree and sorts her rolled coins by coin type. I have an old Disneyland popcorn bucket filled with my rolled coins (It’s heavy when it full, but the plastic is really sturdy.)
  5. Optional: Save some quarters and pennies if you tend to collect pressed pennies (the most affordable souvenir) like we do.
  6. Optional: Bring your coins to the bank and have them deposited into your account. (It is easier to have it in your account and use your card than to tote around a bunch of coins.)
  7. Make sure you have your coins and/or bank card that the money was deposited on when you leave for your trip!

Having a place to keep our loose change really made us realize how much we can save up for a trip. In approximately two years, I have saved $135.50 in change for my trip. This is only the change from purchases I make in cash though, because on campus it is much easier to use a card and not worry about change. This is plenty of souvenir money for me. Enough for a jacket or sweatshirt and some smaller souvenirs.

Though I am an adult and can do this on my own, this system could be easily adaptable for kids to teach them about saving their money and spending it wisely.

For kids they could be saving up their allowance or money that they would have spent on other things, like Dollar Tree toys or those little candy/toy dispensers that stores and some restaurants have in their arcades. This method could let your kid pick out one souvenir of whatever they want with their own money. This would be harder for younger kids who don’t yet understand money and that some things cost more than they have, but would work really well for kids 10 and up for sure, possibly a little younger if they understand savings and money and spending really well.

Another method that works for letting your kids buy souvenirs without you paying for them is gift cards for birthdays or holidays. My older cousins have had family give their kids Disney gift cards for their birthdays if they had a birthday Disneyland trip coming up. This way the kids could get whatever they wanted as long as they had money on their gift cards.

This method is fine for now and I hope to extend it to include all aspects of vacations when I am financially independent and have a full time job. I feel that this was a great way for me to start contributing to my own vacation costs.

The Significance of Stars

I realize that I have never explained how I chose my blog name, nor the significance it holds for me.

My blog name is Star Crossed Daydreamer.

I will be honest, I did not know what star crossed meant when I chose it as a name for my blog. For me, the combination of these words brought a sense of something stronger than me. Upon finding out what star crossed means, I am a little disheartened that it means “thwarted by bad luck”, but I guess that works for my blog too. It seems that just like everyone else, I am followed by both good and bad luck. Overall, I seem not to believe so much in luck as looking at the best in things and trying to make the most of what comes my way, no matter how hard that may be.

I had chosen star crossed, because I am obsessed with stars. I have loved the stars since I was very little, and remember staring up at them whenever we were coming home from my grandmother’s house an hour away. These drives allowed me to see the stars much better than I could at home, even though the cities we drove through were very similar to the one we lived in. Everything seemed to be lit up, and that wasn’t conducive to stargazing. When I could see the stars, I would wish on them like many others kids and though these wishes probably didn’t come true, I still love the mystery that the stars hold. Now that I am older, I find looking at the stars to be very peaceful. My family moved last year, and our new house is in a city that promotes low light pollution, so the seem brighter and more mysterious than ever before. I admit, that though I am grown, I still wish on stars every night, either the stars outside or the stars of the star projector I bought last year. I like to believe that wishes on stars can come true and it gives me a sense of hope that there is good in this chaotic world.

I also chose daydreamer, because that is a large part of what I am. I daydream because my mind naturally wanders when I get bored. I think of the future both near and far, wondering what is going to happen in my life between then and now. I know that the future is full of uncertainty, but I am looking forward to whatever it brings. I take my life one step at a time and right now my main focus is graduating from college, but I can daydream in the meantime.

 

My Misson

My primary mission for this blog is to help break the stigma surrounding mental illnesses. So many people have been diagnosed with mental illness in the past few decades, but there had been little to no change in how people view mental illness and many people still refuse to talk about it, either their personal struggles or talking with someone who has mental illness.

I have been very open with my mental illnesses toward those who I feel I can trust, but it was not always easy for me to talk about. I feel that this feeling of uneasiness was because of several factors, but the biggest one was that I didn’t want anybody to know that I was “crazy”. That was how I felt when not long after my diagnoses and starting on medication. I vividly remember being at an appointment with my child psychiatrist and my mom. He was going over what I had talked about during the session with my mom and when he said that he wanted to start me on another medication, I broke down crying. I remember thinking to myself that they kept adding new medications to the mix because I was crazy, but I didn’t want to be crazy. I did not know what all the medications did when I was that young, I just knew that crazy people had to take lots of medications.

It has been a long journey to where I am today and it definitely had its ups and downs. That is why I have decided to share my story, at least parts of it, with others. The story here is my own and I do not expect anyone who reads this to resonate with every single thing I say. As most people who have been diagnosed with mental illness know, everyone has different experiences. Not everyone will understand exactly, but being able to share your story with someone who cares and understands, even just a little bit, can make a big difference, especially when you are going through a rough patch.

Feel free to listen to my story.

Feel free to share it with others.

And most importantly, please help to break the stigma.