The Armour We Wear

Hello my lovelies!!

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We like to protect ourselves-our innate self-defense mechanisms accommodate this need for protection very handedly, allowing us to physically or emotionally seek shelter from a threat to our safety. These mechanisms originated to protect us on a biological level, but can become a hindering roadblock in connecting with other people, especially if our need to self-protect has been heightened by our past.

As a result, these self-defense mechanisms form ways in which we try to protect ourselves from harm. As warriors facing a battlefield, we don armour that will aid us in dodging the bullets we fear. The armour begins to form for us a safe place, a place to conceal who we are to avoid pain and stay safe. 

This internal armor weighs down on us, and can obstruct connection with other people. Connection-possible when something mutual is shared-can be lost when we shell ourselves in, making it impossible for us to share our story, what has shaped who we are and what we want to become. In order for relationships to thrive, the armour needs to fall away.

My armor has always been the protective shell I retreat into, a way for me to stay secure in keeping vulnerabilities nestled inside, so the world cannot have access to them. Not once has it been the sole enabler for me to trust another person, open up, or be vulnerable in any way.

What is the armour you protect yourself with? And why are you wearing it?

Your desire to protect yourself, to guard your own safety and well-being is necessary, but should never be what interferes with your discovering how much more life is than that. The armour is not the bad thing-the issue arises when you don’t know how to let the protective armor go to accomplish a lifelong dream, find love, or chase after something bigger than yourself.

It takes courage to acknowledge how our self-protective ways have helped us through difficult times, and its also an act of courage to recognize when those protective ways gone unchecked could self-sabotage.

You were not made just to protect yourself from the pain life can bring-you were created for trust, closeness, and belonging. More than anything, you have been made for much, much love, in whatever form that you find it.

Until next time,

Veronica

you are far more than pretty

Hey my loves!!

People, especially women, are held to some pretty impossible standards when it comes to appearance. These conventions and arbituary notions of what beautiful is has embedded itself deeply within societal attitudes, perpetuating the idea that there is one particular way we should all look.

“You are under no obligation to look pretty. Pretty is not the rent you pay to exist in the world as a person. Your humanity, kindness, and mercy is what you pay.”

-Rohan Mathews

This idea that beauty equals success, defines our femininity and lends you value as a woman or person, is simply untrue.

The freeing truth is that you are not obligated to be beautiful, and you are far more than merely pretty: you are capable of being much more than that.

Each of us as unique human beings with endless potential are beautiful, but I use that word in a sense rooted far beyond what the naked eye could ever perceive. While each and every person was created beautiful, that beauty reflects the love of a Creator who had no beauty standards or expectations in mind when He formed you.

While putting effort into presenting ourselves well, conveying respect through how we choose to look or expressing ourselves through our appearance is a positive thing, it can also be twisted into a need to “match up” or meet a standard that shouldn’t have existed in the first place. This notion of what a beautiful person should look like misses the mark, because it turns a blind eye to other forms of beauty, assuming what only can be seen is all that exists.

You do not need to be pretty in order to be successful, the best version of yourself, and confident in who you are. What will unlock your potential is not how society or others perceive you. Rather it is in recognizing how much potential you possess as a person on your own: the passion you radiate, the joy you experience, the kindness to impart, and the strength you exude-those are indeed beautiful things, on a interior, personal, and deep level. All your nuances, flawed notions, original thoughts, quirks, personal experiences and hopes-make you, you.

 

You are far more than pretty.

 

Lots of love,

Veronica Marie

some inspirational reminders for 2020

Happy New Year’s my loves!

I am desperately hoping to keep my new year’s goals to a minimum this year (the more resolutions I write down, predictably, the less I am apt to accomplish any of them). While we are all setting goals and making plans for this year of 2020, I think it is far too easy to get ahead of ourselves in sometimes arbituary resolution-making, so here are some reminders to inspire and motivate you to reach your goals.

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*Go easy on yourself when you fail. Its okay to fail. Its okay to fall, and not to reach the unattainable perfection we tell ourselves we should be able to reach. Don’t let failing drag you down. Focus on the fact that you rose back up.

*But continue trying to reach for what is most important to you. Whether that is pursuing a practical goal or pushing to become your healthiest physically or mentally…prioritize what will help you to be happy in the long run and do the most good in the world.

*Self-care isn’t always bubble baths, sleeping in, and nights in. Sometimes, instead, caring for yourself is getting up rather than hitting the snooze button, going out and spending time with friends, and challenging yourself to extend beyond where you are comfortable.

*Don’t fear taking chances-on others, yourself, or life. Instead, fear living with the regret of never knowing what would have happened had you braved the risks.

*Think of something you have been hoping to do for a long time but you “haven’t gotten to yet.” Go actually do it. 

*Be open to the new. Whether that is a new friendship, experience, unexpected opportunity, or an unforeseen relationship or job, work on becoming open to what is new coming your way.

*Don’t hesitate to express your love to those you care about.

It is always infinitely better to have cared too much rather than not at all.

*Treasure your past. All your past experiences, with their struggles, pain, memories and joys: those things formed you and made you who you are now. I’m of the mind that even the toughest things from your past helped you in becoming tougher than you ever would have been otherwise. Treasure those past experiences that helped make you, you.

*…While looking to the future with hope. Its a new year, new decade, and absolutely the right time to become a transformed, happier, better you. Seize the moment and look forward to where life is taking you.

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Have a beautiful rest of your day loves, and a very Happy New Year!!!<3

XOXO,

Veronica

 

‘A Quiet Place’ review

Hello everyone!!

Typically, I am someone who very stubbornly resists watching just about any horror film-but as I made an exception to watch A Quiet Place-and wanted to also write up a review for the film-hope you enjoy reading a few thoughts of mine on it!

In A Quiet Place, and at the head of the Abbott family forced to live in a post-apocalyptic world, are parents Lee & Evelyn (depicted by John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, married in real life). Their sacrificial love for their children is depicted through the simple life they lead as a result of their world being overtaken by mysterious monsters. While the family has stayed close and found ways to survive amid their post-apocalyptic surroundings, the dedicated love of Lee and Evelyn for their children is constantly overshadowed by the threat of the monster’s extremely keen hearing, making all but the slightest of sounds a threat to the family’s safety.

The film’s horror elements rarely resort to jump-scares and gory deaths more typical to the horror genre; instead, it builds suspense through extended periods of silence throughout. The film’s simple yet effective use of silence-only broken with crashing sounds or non-diegetic music-is accompanied by the fact that the family daughter, Regan, is deaf making American Sign Language the Abbott’s primary form of communication with each other.

It seems rather rare to find such a realistic, heart-wrenching depiction of family as exists in A Quiet Place: creating a world with characters determined, for the sole sake of their loved ones, to survive amid near-constant threats to safety.

Beyond its cinematography, masterful use of sound and silence, and strong acting-this film has loving relationships within a family at its heart. A Quiet Place‘s portrayal of family engages its audience with the story of one family’s struggle for survival, surely, but also quietly points to deeper truths about ourselves, and what we would do for the sake of our loved ones. Its a beautiful contemplation of love and family, powerfully presented on-screen.

XOXO, 

Veronica

what gives you joy?

hey my lovelies!!

It has been awhile since I’ve gotten to updating my blog and one thing is for sure, I definitely do not hope to take such a hiatus from blogging again. But that said, I’m seriously excited about today’s blog post. I think it’s topic is something that is so easy to overlook and not consider nearly enough, hence why I decided to write it. I hope it is able to encourages& uplift you in some way ❤

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How often is it that we find ourselves in painful, worrisome, difficult times in life, only to dwell and ruminate in them, rather than seeking solace or hope? I think its only natural for us all to want to focus on what is worrying and troubling us, perhaps so we could only find a solution, a way out. But there’s not always a way out, and if there is, sometimes the best way to seek it is do some outside looking in.

Despite how weighty our life’s worries and problems are, we need to hold onto what we know and are living for ultimately. Not only that, we need to make more of a point to pursue the joy and things that deep down matter most.

For me, what ultimately matters is my hope in God. I’m living firstly for the faith in a God who loves. The trust I have in God gives me such renewed peace and joy each day. There is truly nothing that satisfies my heart more than to know I have God to trust in no matter what else the future may hold.

Beyond my faith, my writing and similar things give me incredible joy. Even writing a simple blog post like this; sharing thoughts and ideas through words, makes my heart happy. Reading and cherishing my absolute favorite books, listening to favorite music tracks, spending time in nature, laughing, talking with, and bonding with other people-all these things give me immense and endless joy. You would think that these are things I pursue every day without fail, but they are often things I neglect to nurture and direct my time towards. It is ever so easy to distract ourselves with things both nonsensical and useless in the long run-as if we’re afraid to chase after what our heart truly loves.

Do you find yourself doing the same? I find that while writing is something I absolutely love to do, I hesitate often in making it something I consistently practice and work on. While its something that gives me joy and satisfaction in my abilities, as if I’m afraid to put my ideas out there and try to find the joy I am certain it will give.

Perhaps you need to do some soul-searching, to find those things that set yourself alight and give you joy. But I can promise you that once you are able to identify what those things are- those things that don’t just fill and occupy your time but brighten it-you will be all the more content and happy at heart. What gives joy, in a sense, seems to be the same for all human beings-we all long for a little heaven on earth. While in that sense joy is the same for all of us, it becomes unique to each person when we discover what form this heaven on earth takes for each of us.

So; what is it that gives you true and lasting joy?

Lots of love,

Veronica

how to sophisticate your style // starter guide to elegant fashion

Hey my lovelies!!

Recently I’ve been trying to update my wardrobe by wearing many new pieces and changing my style up a bit. Dressing in an elegant, classy way is very appealing to me so that’s what I’ll be writing about today.

Also, to clarify, dressing in a classy and elegant manner isn’t about covering up but rather choosing to present yourself in a way that conveys who you are while expressing respect for yourself.

Dress for the occasion

Perhaps the most important essential in dressing elegantly is to simply consider time and place before putting together an outfit. Is this a formal or casual occasion? How can I dress up or down this clothing piece I have in mind?

Consider what the appropriate sort of attire is for an event, and then dress accordingly.

Buy less of trendy pieces, and invest in more timeless ones

If a piece that is on-trend attracts your eye and sense of style, consider whether you can be wearing this several seasons or years from now or not. Make sure that a major portion of your wardrobe is made up of pieces that will outlast the test of a trend’s time.

Choose a fashion icon to inspire you.

Perhaps its your sister, Blake Lively or Audrey Hepburn-choose someone whose fashion to you is both appealing and timeless, and take note of how they wear and style the sort of fashion your eye is most drawn to.

Choose clothing that fits (instead of clings) to your figure

One of my favorite fashion quotes is “your dress should be tight enough to show you’re a woman and loose enough to show you’re a lady.”

Aim to wear pieces that fit you rather then cling to your figure. This is not to say there are some more form-fitting (or loose fitting!) pieces that are a no-go. But, if clothing is skin tight and uncomfortable to wear, its going to ultimately be an unflattering look for you, so opt for something that fits you well instead.

Match your metals

Have metal detailing throughout your outfit? Pair those with other silver (or gold, etc) toned metals in other accesorries throughout. This will make for a cleaner, more cohesive look.

Thanks so much for reading this post!Do you have any go-to style tips?? ❤

XoXo,

Veronica

books to read this summer ❤️

Hey my lovelies!!

Summertime is the perfect time to catch up on reading take advantage of sunny days at the beach and outdoors to grab a book while enjoying the weather. I hope you enjoy these short(er) books if you choose to read them! ❤️

The Blue Castle

L. M. Montogomery
This is one of my favorite books for so many reasons, one of which is that the main character, Valancy, is delightfully unconventional. (SPOILER) Instead of waiting for the man she loves to propose, she proposes herself to him (take note that this book was set and written during the 1910s). The Blue Castle is a story that overflows with warmth, heart and humor.

Jane Eyre

Charlotte Bronte

Jane Eyre, in my opinion, is gothic fiction at its best, and distinguishing itself from other books of it’s time, is its heroine, Jane Eyre. Despite being in love with a man she later learns (slight spoiler!) is married, she chooses a life apart from him rather than sacrificing her personal standards. She has a fiery spirit all her own, and throughout the book chooses a destiny of her own apart from what others expect from her.

Forgotten Memories

Jansina

This is a sweet book about a girl looking into the past of where she recently moved to, only to discover how much history the small town of Backus holds. If you love the feel of nostalgic romance or books that peek into the past, you will adore this book.

The Help

Kathryn Stockett

The Help is a heartfelt portrayal of the segregated social constructs and conflict African Americans were the center of (particularly in the South) and experiencing during the 1960s. If you enjoy historical fiction, you will not want to pass up this touching read.

A Walk to Remember

Nicholas Sparks

Bittersweet and poignant, A Walk to Remember unfolds through the eyes of troublemaker Landon, who finds himself falling for the least likely girl in his town: church-going Jamie Sullivan.

This Quiet Sky

A lesser known, alike to an historical time period “Fault In Out Stars,” This Quiet Sky is a sweet story that explores first love and the death of a loved one, and while sad, is bittersweet.

Find A Stranger, Say Goodbye

Lois Lowry

Written in the 1970s, Find A Stranger, Say Goodbye is centered around a girl determined to find her biological mother the summer before she heads to college. I personally love that the story reflects the time it was written in so well, and narrates the curosity of humans to seek answers and meaning in our lives.

Gathering Blue

Lois Lowry

Another shorter read, this book is second in the “Giver quartet,” but can also be read as a stand alone novel. Gathering Blue follows Kira, a girl with a physical deformity in a community where one’s abilities is valued most, making Kira an outcast after her mother’s death.

In Between

Jenny B. Jones

Much like an modern Anne of Green Gables retelling, foster child Katie Parker meets kindred spirits around her in an unexpected place: In Between. This book is heartwarming and humorous, especially written from Katie’s point of view, and I never tire of reading it again and again.

Do you have any favorite summertime reads?? Be sure to comment about yours below! ❤️

XOXO,

Veronica

whimsical & calming music // a playlist

Hey my lovelies!!

Recently I’ve been transitioning into listening to more whimsical, calming music whether as background music, accompaniment as I write or for other activities. A playlist like this one helps in creating a calming, peaceful atmosphere in my surroundings, and I hope listening to any of the music in this playlist will do the same for you. Enjoy the coffee shop vibes!❤

meet me in the woods – Lord Huron

wings – Birdy

ophelia – The Lumineers

the night we met – Lord Huron

georgia – Vance Joy

roslyn – Bon Iver & St. Vincent

riptide – Vance Joy

falling in love at a coffee shop – Landon Pigg

skinny love – Birdy

fix you – hearts & colors (cover)

if she’s gone – Hendrickson

turning pages – Sleeping at Last

where’s my love – SYML

the wisp sings – Winter Aid

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Do you have any whimsical favorites to add to the list??? 💕

XOXO,Veronica

my thoughts on Avengers Endgame

Hey my lovelies!!

I hope y’all enjoy this review! I tried to place a few spoiler alerts within this review; but throughout I do discuss much of what happens in the movie. So if you have yet to watch Endgame, do yourself a favour and click off this post x)

Disclaimer: I have not read any of the Marvel comics, so keep in mind that this review is written by a Marvel movie viewer, not a comic book reader. (:

Endgame was packed not only with expected action and the remaining Avengers losing hope and unity in the wake of Thanos destruction after acquiring the stones; it also featured countless moments that were frequently hilarious, heartwarming, or at times, both. (Such as when Tony Stark met his father in 1970, posing as a certain “Howard Potts”.)

The heartwarming and humorous moments that ran throughout Endgame contrasted with some previous Marvel films, including Civil War and Infinity War. These former Marvel movies took on a more serious side to superheroes, bringing attention to conflict among the Avengers of the morality of war, the safety of the world population, and the Avengers’ responsibility regarding the use of their powers.

But I loved this Avenger movie; so much so that it may have surpassed Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 1 for me (which is one of my favorite Marvel movies period). There were a few weak plot points: conflict and character tension in this film seemed very low compared to other movies, and the entirety of the time traveling tied nicely into Ant-Man, but its logistics seemed lacking.

The idea of time travel is so complicated that even the slightest alterations the Avengers made in visiting the past could have completely altered their future selves and events, which would make for many unintended plot holes. (spoiler: for instance, when Nebula from the past is shot by present-day Nebula, did she kill past Nebula by shooting her? If so, wouldn’t present day Nebula then not exist, eliminating the possibility that present day Nebula could have killed her former self…etc, etc. This alone makes for one of many timeline paradoxes that were ignored as the film progressed.) I would say, however, that the lack of attention to consequences of time travel may have been because the movie’s focus was directed towards what the Avengers were doing through time travel rather than with it.

some of my favorite moments in this movie:

-Captain America meeting past Captain
America

-the entire storyline regarding Tony Stark

-Ant-Man being dubbed “Thumbelina”

-the touching, then humorous brief interlude between Starlord and Gamora

-THE ENDING. My hopelessly romantic heart utterly melted at the ending chosen for this movie

As Natasha mentioned early on in Endgame, the Avengers team went from a mere team to an actual family who were loyal and eventually trusting of each other. Perhaps that is what makes Endgame my favorite of all the Avenger films so far: it has a lot of heart and humor packed into its three hours, and emphasized relationships and characterization as much or even more than the usual array of seemingly endless fights, deaths, and explosions of its predecessors.

Have you watched Endgame? How did it match up to your expectations and your impressions of previous Marvel movies? Be sure to comment below and share your thoughts!

XOXO,

Veronica

reflecting on my first year of college

hey my lovelies!!

Have I seriously neglected blogging in the wake of my last couple months at college! I have finished my second semester at university, and all I can manage to consider is how impossibly fast my freshman year flew by, and yet how much was packed into the months I was there.

But without further ado, here are some reflections of mine on the year I’ve had.💕

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It has been a year-(well, a school year’s length) since I packed up my belongings, and began the drive to moving states away to a university. My plans were to forget all the lesser, not-so-great parts of high school while pursuing a degree in English Education.

It is now April 29th, 2019. The school year has wound down, and I am returning to my home state to see family and friends, people whose presence I have felt the lack of while here at school. My mind is trying to make sense of the crazy ride these months have been, how much I have experienced; all the little transformative triumphs, the failures that gradually became life lessons.

There is only word that comes to mind that really captures all of it well enough.

Joy.

There were many points in my high school years when I thought happiness was all I ever wanted. And while happiness is good, it can be fleeting and temporary; joy, on the other hand, can be lasting when you are open to it.

Happiness is a beautiful thing, wondrous like the wind, but just as uncontrollable and impossible to claim for one’s self. But joy? That is like the moon that lights up a night sky, encouraging & guiding you through the night’s darkness. It is something that can always remain with you, despite any of life’s storms that frequent us with their presence.

Without a doubt, this has been a difficult year; there were many lows right along with the highs. But because God has helped me to become more open to the possibility for change, joy has since become something more evident in my day-to-day life.

So, if I were to share all I have learned, this post could be the length of a book. But here are a few things do apply to living life joyfully:

  • Joy is a choice, even when happiness is not
  • Giving of self and being true to self often mean the same thing
  • The gift of listening, rather than merely hearing, is priceless
  • You can only began to grow in true kindness when you are genuine with others
  • And countless other little things…

Yes, freshman year is over, but it is only the beginning of many incredible things to come.

XOXO,

Veronica

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