Recently Reading (February & March 2017)

As I am sure you've noticed, I am a little behind in blogging in general, but especially with Recently Reading posts. I was going to do a really long post for spring, but instead I split it up into two posts.

Dreamland by Sarah Dessen
By now, most of you probably know if you like Sarah Dessen's writing or not. Personally, I enjoy her books and find them to be nice light reads, so I enjoyed reading this book! 
"Love can be a very dangerous thing. After her sister left, Caitlin felt lost. Then she met Rogerson.When she’s with him, nothing seems real. But what happens when being with Rogerson becomes a larger problem than being without him?"

Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist
I had heard a lot about this book, so I quickly devoured it once it was in my hands. Overall, I enjoyed it and left feeling that I won't ever be perfect, and that's okay. Sometimes, especially in college, it can be so easy to take on more than you can handle and act like you have it all together on the outside. But it is important to make sure you aren't taking on too much, and be able to be present. 

"A few years ago, I found myself exhausted and isolated, my soul and body sick. I was tired of being tired, burned out on busy. And, it seemed almost everyone I talked with was in the same boat: longing for connection, meaning, depth, but settling for busy.
I am a wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, neighbor, writer, and I know all too well that settling feeling. But over the course of the last few years, I’ve learned a way to live, marked by grace, love, rest, and play. And it’s changing everything.
Present Over Perfect is an invitation to this journey that changed my life. I’ll walk this path with you, a path away from frantic pushing and proving, and toward your essential self, the one you were created to be before you began proving and earning for your worth."

Along For The Ride by Sarah Dessen
Again, another Sarah Dessen... you probably see a trend. I am trying to finish all of her books that I haven't read by the end of this summer, so we will see how far I get! This was one of my favorites by her. I really liked the characters in this one especially. 

"It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started.Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.
A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend."

Utopia by Thomas More and Candide by Voltaire
I had to read these two for history class...  I don't recommend unless you are into that kind of book. I'll stick to books written within the last century or two personally. But I wanted to include them because just for the record I did read them! 

The Choice Nicholas Sparks
Low key I never realized how many books Nicholas Sparks has written. Slowly but surely making my way through, and I would recommend this one if you are a Nicholas Sparks fan. 

"Travis Parker has everything a man could want: a good job, loyal friends, even a waterfront home in small-town North Carolina. In full pursuit of the good life-- boating, swimming, and regular barbecues with his good-natured buddies--he holds the vague conviction that a serious relationship with a woman would only cramp his style. That is, until Gabby Holland moves in next door. Despite his attempts to be neighborly, the appealing redhead seems to have a chip on her shoulder about him . . . and the presence of her longtime boyfriend doesn't help. Despite himself, Travis can't stop trying to ingratiate himself with his new neighbor, and his persistent efforts lead them both to the doorstep of a journey that neither could have foreseen. Spanning the eventful years of young love, marriage and family, THE CHOICE ultimately confronts us with the most heartwrenching question of all: how far would you go to keep the hope of love alive?"

Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

And I am sure most of you have heard of this book, and maybe even had to read it long ago in some English class in high school. I know years ago my English teacher made us read just a chapter out of this book, and that chapter made me think I would never like this book. Now I don't think I would have read it for fun, but since I had to read it for my literature class this semester, I did. And it ended up being a pretty good book!

Have you read any of these? Share in the comments below! And stay tuned to see what I read in April and May!

xo, Scarlett


Choosing To Major in Speech-Language Pathology

Somehow I realized I am two years into undergrad but I don't think I have ever done a post specifically saying what major I am! I am in the Speech Pathology and Audiology program at my school and I am planning on becoming a Speech Pathologist! And now I bet that most of you are quietly wondering what in the world that means. Don't worry, I had no idea a few years ago either! Many people in my program have wanted to do this since they were born, but I only decided on it after I pretty much said no to every other major out there.

This image pretty much covers the basics and gives you a better idea of what an SLP is!

Like I mentioned above, I only decided on it because I didn't want to do anything else. I really enjoy nannying and working with kids, but I just knew I was not cut out to be a teacher and deal with the same kids all day every day. When my parents brought up being an SLP, I literally had no idea what it was. But then senior year I ended up shadowing a few in settings around me, and it was something that I could see myself doing. I also love that there are so many options for SLPs, such as working in a school, hospital, or clinic setting. Someone who graduated from my school years ago came back to speak to our program this past spring, and one thing she said really resonated with me. She said that she never has been bored in her career, and I don't think that is something that many people can say! To me, that was a major thing when picking a major. I didn't want to end up doing an office job that I hated and felt stuck in. Also I have already gotten so many cool opportunities from being in this program! One example was that I was able to spend the month of January in Jamaica learning about programs that have been set up for deaf people there.

I get this questions so often from people, and the short answer is yes. Basically, you have to get a master's degree before you can practice as an SLP. At first this almost turned me away from this major, because 6 years of school sounded long and expensive. But, I was able to find a school that has a 5 year program, so long story short I only have a little over a year beyond normal undergrad. Which means I am already almost halfway through! Plus, the last year or two is almost all clinical anyways, and the classes you are taking are interesting ones that pertain to your major.

Many people assume that all bloggers are going into marketing or communications, and it is weird that they could have a major that doesn't really relate at all. But my blog is a great creative outlet for me when I am tired of studying anatomy and need a break from all things school related. It also does sort of fit in, since I have learned how to communicate better with others through this blog, and I will be communicating with clients and families in the future!

Overall, I have realized that very few bloggers are majoring in speech pathology, so I wanted to use my blog to share with others about my amazing major! If you are still trying to pick a major, I highly recommend looking into it. Feel free to contact me by email if you have any questions! I also would love to hear if any of my readers are also majoring in speech pathology. Comment below if you are, or if you are in college let me know what major you are! I love hearing about other peoples majors and passions.

xo, Scarlett


A Monday In My Life: Spring 2017

Recently I haven't had much time to blog, let alone read others blogs. But one type of posts that I always love to read is day in my life posts. So today I wanted to run through what a typical Monday in my life looks like this semester. It is also so interesting for me to look back on what a day in my life was like a year or two ago! Also, this semester I don't start classes until 10:30 on Mondays and Wednesdays, but slowly I have started to love slow mornings even though it means I am in class until after 3.

9:00- Wake up and check phone. 

9:10-Eat breakfast and drink tea while doing devotions

9:30- Get dressed and ready

9:45- Do a little cleaning, reading, or homework that I still have

10:20- Leave for class

10:30- History class 

11:20- Lunch 

11:45- Study 

12:30- Walking class (low key the best class ever. I just get to go for walks in the neighborhoods by my school and catch up with friends. And it counts for PE credit.)

1:30- American Literature

2:30- Developmental Psychology 

3:20- Go back to my room, eat a snack, and do homework

5:00- Dinner

6:00- Work 

8:00- Homework 

9:15- Social events planning meeting- this is only bi-weekly, but I still included it since I had one on this day!

10:00- Shower, get ready for bed, etc

10:30- Homework 

11:30-12- Sleep

Every day of my week is pretty different this semester, but this is a glimpse at what a typical Monday looks like! Comment below any other college related posts you would like to see!

xo, Scarlett


How To Pass A Hard Class

Now that second semester is here, you might find yourself with a class that you are dreading going to. But just because you are struggling at the beginning does not mean that you are destined to fail! Here are a few tips to help you succeed in a difficult course.

1. Go To Class
This is pretty self-explanatory, but if you are struggling you need to actually go to class. Even if you feel like you are learning nothing in class, the professor will probably at least notice you are in class and are trying to succeed.

2. Get A Tutor
At many schools, getting a tutor through the school is completely free. Every semester so far I have gotten a tutor for my hardest class, and it has been really helpful most of the time! Even if you don't need the tutor to explain concepts, they can help quiz you over the material and force you to study. Also, I usually try to know my stuff before I go to tutoring because I don't want to look dumb in front of my tutor! This gives me an extra motivation to study.

3. Find A Study Buddy
In high school, 2 of my friends and I would study for chemistry and physics together before quizzes and tests. It worked out well because even though we got distracted sometimes, we still got a lot done and learned from each other. So far in college, I have found that study groups seem to distract me. But I know from experience that if you can get the right group together, you can get a lot done! Now, I try to just have a friend or two in each class that I can text or email if I have a question about the class or the material. Even if we aren't actually sitting down and studying together often, it is really helpful to have someone to ask questions!

4. Meet With Your Professor
Profs have office hours because they want to be able to help you! If I have a question that my friends (and tutor if it is a class I have a tutor for) can't answer, I will usually email the prof and ask. Usually they can quickly answer it over email, but if it is complicated or if I am struggling with multiple things, I will set up an appointment to go meet with them.

5. Make Flashcards
Depending on the subject, sometimes I like actual flashcards but sometimes I just use Quizlet. For anatomy last year (one of my hardest classes) I turned my notes into Quizlets so instead of reading over my notes I actually was quizzing myself through Quizlet to study. But when it came to memorizing the different bones and muscles, I printed out pictures and made actual flash cards to learn them. Find what works best for you and your class, and go from there!

How do you do well in hard classes? Share in the comments below!
xo, Scarlett


Recently Reading (January 2017)

Wow, I cannot believe it is already almost Valentine's Day! I can already tell this semester is going to fly by, but I am excited for summer and warmer weather. As you know, I traveled during January, so I had time to read a few books between plane rides and car rides. I wanted to recap the ones I liked, and the one I just couldn't get into in this post!

"What would you do if your husband suddenly wanted to rewrite all of the rules of your relationship?  This is the question at the heart of Skipping a Beat, Pekkanen’s thought-provoking second book. 

From the outside, Julia and Michael seem to have it all.  Both products of difficult childhoods in rural West Virginia – where they were simply Julie and Mike – they become high school sweethearts and fall in love.  Shortly after graduation, they flee their small town to start afresh.  Now thirty-somethings, they are living a rarified life in their multi-million-dollar, Washington D.C. home. Julia is a highly sought-after party planner, while Michael has just sold his wildly successful flavored water company for $70 million. 

But one day, Michael collapses in his office. Four minutes and eight seconds after his cardiac arrest, a portable defibrillator jump-starts his heart. But in those lost minutes he becomes a different man. Money is meaningless to him - and he wants to give it all away. Julia, who sees bits of her life reflected in scenes from the world’s great operas, is now facing with a choice she never anticipated. Should she should walk away from the man she once adored – but who truthfully became a stranger to her long before this pronouncement - or give in to her husband's pleas for a second chance and a promise of a poorer but happier life?" 

In my last Recently Reading post I said I really liked These Girls by Sarah Pekkanen, and this book was just as good, if not better. I definitely have all of Pekkanen's books on my to-read list now! I highly recommend this one!

"A new day. A new place. A new life.
In the past few years, Mclean has pretended to be so many different people that she hardly remembers who she really is anymore.
The adorable guy next door might be able to help her figure it out.
But is she ready for it?"

Sarah Dessen is an author I find myself going back to if I am unsure of what to read. I really have enjoyed all the books I have read by her, but for some reason I don't find myself gravitating to them often. This one was truly a good, yet quick read, and I found myself finishing it and wanting more after just a few days of reading. If you are a Dessen fan but haven't read this one yet, I recommend trying it! 

"In this timely and provocative novel, internationally bestselling author Sarah Pekkanen takes us inside a family in crisis and a marriage on the brink after a tragic shooting.

How far would you go to save your family?

Every morning, as her husband Mike straps on his SIG Sauer and pulls on his heavy Magnum boots, Jamie Anderson tenses up. Then comes the call she has always dreaded: There’s been a shooting at police headquarters. Mike isn’t hurt, but his long-time partner is grievously injured. As weeks pass and her husband’s insomnia and disconnectedness mount, Jamie realizes he is an invisible casualty of the attack. Then the phone rings again. Another shooting—but this time Mike has pulled the trigger.

But the shooting does more than just alter Jamie’s world. It’s about to change everything for two other women. Christie Simmons, Mike’s flamboyant ex, sees the tragedy as an opportunity for a second chance with Mike. And Jamie’s younger sister, Lou, must face her own losses to help the big sister who raised her. As the press descends and public cries of police brutality swell, Jamie tries desperately to hold together her family, no matter what it takes."

Out of the 3 books I have read by Pekkanen recently, this one was the harder for me to get into, but in the end I really did enjoy it. I would recommend These Girls or Skipping a Beat before this one though! 

"Miles Ryan's life seemed to end the day his wife was killed in a hit-and-run accident two years ago. As deputy sheriff of New Bern, North Carolina, he not only grieves for her and worries about their young son Jonah but longs to bring the unknown driver to justice. Then Miles meets Sarah Andrews, Jonah's second-grade teacher. A young woman recovering from a difficult divorce, Sarah moved to New Bern hoping to start over. Tentatively, Miles and Sarah reach out to each other...soon they are falling in love. But what neither realizes is that they are also bound together by a shocking secret, one that will force them to reexamine everything they believe in-including their love."

I enjoyed this book more than I have enjoyed other Nicholas Sparks books because the mystery element of who killed his wife was part of the story the entire time. If you are looking for part romance, part mystery, this book is a good option! 

"Claire Danner Crispin, mother of four young children and nationally renowned glassblower, bites off more than she can chew when she agrees to co-chair the Nantucket's Children Summer Gala. Claire is asked to chair the benefit, in part, because she is the former high school sweetheart of rock star Max West. Max agrees to play the gala and it looks like smooth sailing for Claire-until she promises a "museum-quality" piece of glass for the auction, offers her best friend the catering job, goes nose-to-nose with her Manhattan socialite co-chair, and begins a "good-hearted" affair with the charity's Executive Director, Lockhart Dixon.
Hearts break and emotions are pushed to the limit in this riveting story of one woman's attempt to deal with loves past and present, family, business, and high-powered social pressures. Elin Hilderbrand's unique understanding of the joys and longings that animate women's lives will make this her newest summer bestseller."

This was the first book I have read by Elin Hilderbrand, but it was definitely one I liked! It did take me probably 100 pages to really get into it, but once I had read the first half, I flew through the second half in a day. And I'm not going to spoil anything, but I really loved the ending. 

"Three Georgia peaches are in for one juicy summer . . . 
. . . but Birdie would rather eat Thin Mints and sulk in the A/C. 
Leeda would prefer to sneak off with her boyfriend, Rex. 
And Murphy would much rather cause a little mischief. 
Together these three very different girls will discover the secret to finding the right boy, making the truest of friends, and picking the perfect Georgia peach."

This is the one book I tried to read, but could not get into. I honestly gave it a good try and read about 1/4 of it, but I was having trouble relating, getting into the story, and keeping the characters straight. It honestly pains me to start a book and not finish it, but trying to finish this book just seemed like a waste of time. If you are looking for a new book to try, I would highly recommend picking up any other books in this post before this one. 

What have you been reading recently? Please leave any recommendations in the comments!
xo, Scarlett


Valentine's Day Door Decor

If you live in a dorm or apartment, you might find your door is a little boring. My roommate and I love to decorate our door to match whatever the next holiday is, so recently I was scouring Pinterest to find what we could do for Valentine's Day! Here are the best ideas I found:

Heart garland is always a great and easy option!

Or spice up your heart garland by using 3D hearts!

Make a giant hershey kiss for you, and one for your roommate! 


I really like that this one isn't overly cheesy, and you could keep it up for spring as well! 

With the pinks, this garland is definitely Valentine's Day appropriate and one of my favorites!

Take the donuts up a notch by spelling out XOXO

A garland spelling out Happy Valentine's Day is always a classic yet cute option. 

Do you enjoy decorating for holidays? How are you decorating for Valentine's Day? Share in the comments!
xo, Scarlett


Jamaica Photo Diary

During the month of January my school has a short term between the end of Christmas break and second semester. There are definitely pros and cons to it, but one thing I love is that it gives students the opportunity to travel easily! I went to Jamaica, but my friends were literally scattered across the globe during January. My roommate went to 6 different countries in Europe, another good friend went to Kenya, 3 of my friends went to Greece, one went to Indonesia, one went to Puerto Rico, etc. I absolutely love that I was able to get class credit while seeing part of the world, and it didn't interfere at all with my major and the strict schedule I have to be on for it.

Obviously I took quite a few pictures today, so I wanted to briefly recap my trip and share them! 

We flew into Montego Bay, and then drove about 3 hours to Jamaica Deaf Village, where we would be staying the next two weeks. The class I was taking was focused on disabilities in a developing country, but it was mainly focused on learning about how deaf people live in Jamaica.

The view from where we were staying was stunning! 

Mocha, the village dog.

 Garfield and Aunt Jemima were two cats that hung around our house. Obviously, I was happy! 

 We also visited a coffee shop that students at a deaf school had started a few years ago. It was amazing to see how easily they can communicate and run a business even though they were deaf. Ordering a drink was slightly different than a normal coffee shop, but they had a great and easy system!

 Then we visited YS Falls to go zip lining and explore the falls! This was one of my favorite places that we visited in Jamaica. Somewhere there also told us that this was where Ben and JoJo went on an episode of The Bachelor a few years ago, so that's an interesting fact if you watch that show!

We also were able to visit a black sand beach! On a side note, this beach had so much trash on it that is kind of ruined how cool it was. But it was still fun to see a black sand beach!

 Spot the rainbow!

Another fun fact about Jamaica is that there are goats everywhere. It was so funny just to drive by a bunch on the side of the road chewing grass!

I found 3 more cats by the end of the trip!  

We found this outside on our last day at JDV. We also found a cockroach in the bathroom that night. Needless to say, we were ready to leave the next day!  

Supposedly this is the best ice cream place in Jamaica? The first time we went, I got this coconut ice cream and it was so good!  

Devon House

We also visited Dunn's River Falls to climb the waterfall. This is the beach that the falls ran into.  

Really wish I had a waterproof camera to show Dunn's River better, but it was definitely a cool experience to climb the falls!  

We spent the last 4 days in Montego Bay, and got to watch the sunset almost every night!  

picture via
We also went to see the luminescent waters in Jamaica with Faithful Waters. Basically when you move, the water lights up due to the organisms that live in it. It was not nearly this bright when we went unfortunately, but it was still neat to see the water sparkle in your hands when you scooped some up!

If you are ever in Montego Bay, I recommend going to The Pelican to get chocolate malt shakes. SO good.  

We stayed at El Greco Resort, and the breakfast there was pretty much the only good thing about it. I did not like the location of it, our air conditioning was broke in the bedroom for the first 2 days, and the wifi was down for the last 2 days. I felt like we were always calling the front desk because something broke, and they were not very nice about it. I'm gonna be 100% honest here and say that I probably would not go back to Jamaica solely for a vacation. I enjoyed the class and staying at JDV, but once we went to MoBay it wasn't as good. Mainly because people were constantly harassing us on the street whenever we were trying to go anywhere, either trying to get us into their shops or creepy guys trying to hit on us. Plus, there wasn't a whole lot within walking distance, and we were told that it was unsafe to take taxis or anything like that. If you are planning on going to Jamaica, I highly recommend staying at an all inclusive resort, where you only leave for the occasional outing. 

The sun was setting on the plane ride home, and the clouds were so pretty! 

Phew, sorry for the picture overload, but this is only a fraction of the pictures I took haha. It is weird that this trip is over because I have been looking forward to it for so long, but I am ready to get through second semester now!

Have you ever been to Jamaica? Where are you traveling to next? Share in the comments! 

xo, Scarlett