For the most part, I’ve been pretty good about making time for friends and I’ve been more spontaneous with our time together. But lately I’ve been turning down activities because “I have to work on my thesis.” I don’t really feel bad about it because I do need time for my thesis and I also need time to myself, although I could definitely be more efficient with my productivity. But anyways, I mention this because my friends are always asking me how my thesis is going, especially around times I have deadlines. For example, I had my thesis presentation last week, so my friends would ask me how it went and stuff. If you read my weekly update last week, you’ll know that it was rough. But when my friends asked me in person, I’d reply with, “It was chill. It was fine.” And then maybe a few days later they would check in with my blog, then come back to me, lay a somber hand on my shoulder, and be like, r u ok. I think the contrast of my feelings and expressions online vs. in real life is interesting and kinda funny. I think I respond more superficially in real life because it’s tiring to go through those emotions again and explain them, whereas online, I have time to sort out my feelings and it feels clarifying and cathartic.
I was invited to United By Blue’s tour and tasting preview for their new store! Ethan — who you probably don’t recall was my point of contact for Lokal Hotel but he’s now over at United By Blue — emailed me out of the blue (ha ha ha) to invite me to their preview event, and after checking that I was indeed free that evening, I wrote back immediately to RSVP. I love United By Blue, their cafe, their aesthetic, their graphics, and their mission, so it wasn’t a hard decision. I stop by their cafe almost every time before my UPenn class if they’re not already full! I also asked Ethan if I could bring my friend Jennifer along because I knew she would be excited to check out their new shop; she’s been following their story for way longer than I have and appreciates them on a whole nother level. Also, I needed the company to support me through this social endeavor! (She was my company for Lokal as well!) I was nervous about asking for another invite as it was a closed event, but Ethan was so kind and quickly put me down for two.
I was anxious all week about my Friday thesis presentation. Throughout the whole week, I felt Friday looming toward me. I didn’t want to talk to anyone (I mean, I did, but I wasn’t into it) and my patience for everything waned. The night before my presentation, I hardly slept because I was not only practising for it, but also still researching new content for it. I was seventh to present out of the ten people in my seminar. My heart was pounding so hard, my teeth were clenched to keep them from chattering, and my leg couldn’t stop bouncing. I contemplated the possibility of dropping my linguistics major and just majoring in computer science, in which case I wouldn’t need to write a whole thesis, only a lit review. I kept reminding myself that this was just a presentation, that in the scheme of the thesis meant nothing, and that in the scheme of my life meant less than nothing, and that in the scheme of the world meant far far less. I told myself that in the worst case scenario, I would give a bad presentation and would have to answer questions with “I don’t know.” And I told myself that I could survive this worst case scenario. Thankfully my presentation didn’t play out to be the worst case scenario and went fine in fact. My mind, body, and soul immediately lifted after my presentation. After my friend and classmate got through her presentation (which followed mine), we congratulated each other and I was grinning so hard.
I was in the city and had an afternoon to kill before meeting friends for dinner, so I Yelped a cafe to be productive at and found J’aime French Bakery. It was marked as “hot and new” on the app, which inspired me to hurry my ass over and snap some fresh content for y’all. (Can Yelp sponsor me??)
This past week was a relaxing one. I did my time the week before and after fall break. Which meant that I was able to work two weeks ahead and make the life of future Audrey easier. Of course, I only worked two weeks ahead because I was procrastinating my second senior thesis presentation that I have to do this Friday. But I’ll get around to that.
I need to pause for a sec and share this little tidbit: So… I’ve just started a new project for my design class, which involves visualising data. I was brainstorming what sort of data to visualise, and I decided to look at my blog’s Google Analytics, figuring it would be easy because the data is all there starting from around May 2015 (which is when I switched to WordPress). Now I usually never check Google Analytics because it’s too confusing and stats can be toxic for me to care about. But I checked for this project and I realised that my stats plummeted after May; like, my sessions/users/page views per month have almost halved 😮
With a bit of reflecting, I feel like my content has started to become very formulaic and I haven’t been very creative with my writing. Sometimes I’m not even all that thoughtful with my writing. This past week was the first time in a long time I drafted a week-in-review blog post the night before I planned to publish it. And I’m doing the same for this month-in-review blog post (eek!).
I guess I’m just saying this to commit to myself to… put more effort into this space? Make this space more intimate? Do more than just documentation? Do more reflection? Find more inspiration? Anywho, since I’m thinking about this right now, I would love if you could leave some of your favourite posts/categories from this blog down in the comments! What would you like to see more of?
This past week was both long and short. It was a blur. Honestly I didn’t do very much. I’m usually good about not sleeping in, but this past week I probably spent most of my time in bed. I was feeling down for no particular reason and found it hard to find motivation to do things. (Don’t worry about me! I’m fine, just a little moodier than usual.) Normally if I feel like this for awhile, I’d go for a swim in hopes of catching some endorphins, but my cartilage piercing was feeling sensitive so I didn’t want to risk it. And also it’s so cold in the mornings, which makes it hard to get out of bed. And I need to get more sleep now that I’m not relying on coffee anymore. This week I’m going to try to get early kickstarts to the days, and get myself out of the apartment with meetings or work sessions with friends.
Azalia got in touch with me about shooting her graduation invitation photos, and I was more than happy to help. And who can say no to a paying gig haha. Previously, I’ve only shot with Azalia during the Bryn Mawr Class of 2018 photoshoot last spring, which was crazy because there were many people to shoot and only one of me, so working one-on-one was a nice change of pace.
This past week I was on fall break! I had a bunch of plans but I’m not gonna lie, I didn’t do most of it. I realised that I’m not good at doing a little bit of everything every day; I’m better at spending one day doing one thing and another day doing another thing. Or maybe one big thing and one or two small things per day. I don’t know if this is something I should work on or work with, but it’s something I have to figure out for days I don’t have classes to structure my schedule (like, every day of fall break).