June 16, 2016

Graduation... 12 Years Time

Well it seems to me like I did it. I graduated High School! I remember being a Freshman, cheesy I know, but that was four years ago. That was ONLY four years ago! Four years can seem like eternity while you sit in your 9th Grade Advisory class having the Seniors come in and give you advice for the next four years. Four years can also seem like it flew by, the position I am in right now... graduated.

Let's talk about the past TWELVE years! When I started 1st grade, I was six, now graduated high school, age eighteen. Yes, probably the majority of these things I've learned and really grown from apply to my most recent years, but collectively, I think they represent me as the grown individual I am today.

12 things I've learned and live by

1. Appreciate life as it happens. Moments will soon pass and you will have wished you cherished them more. The only time we truly have is the present, so BE present and enjoy every little thing that happens today.

2. Be Kind. Don't you love getting compliments? Who doesn't! People appreciate compliments just as much as you do, and they appreciate it when others are kind. When you're kind and compliment someone, you feel good and benefit too. So win, win! Everybody benefits and feels good about themselves. The Ripple Effect.

3. Positive mind, positive vibes, positive life. I've noticed that if I keep my mind positive, I produce positive vibes, and that makes certain my life is positive. What you think, you become. Simple as that.

4. Your vibe attracts your tribe. So if we're talking about these vibes we produce (hopefully positive ones) then that means the right, positive people are going to find you and enter into your life.

5. Comparison is the thief of joy. We are constantly comparing ourselves, unconsciously. Not are we just comparing ourselves over looks, clothing, material goods, and where others are according to social media, but it is especially easy as an artist to see an amazing wedding or editorial shoot someone did and to go look at your work and think it is "not enough." We all just have to keep creating and being inspired.

6. Change is the only constant. Life is a series of changes, and how we react to these changes is what determines our attitude and energy. One of the biggest changes, for myself and the Class of 2016, is happening right now. We have to adapt and let new experiences through our arms. The time is now, and if we ever let the "fear of change" in the way, we're going to miss the little magical moments in-between.

7. Let go and live. Life is happening now, if you blink for too long, you're going to miss it. Enjoy every minute you spend with people you care about, push yourself by taking risks, and don't take yourself, or others too seriously. We're all just trying to function.

8. Exist to be happy and to spread it. Why do some people walk around, with a heavy head sitting on their shoulders? Things happen, and life goes on. If we spread true happiness that is not forced or fake, we could make this world a much better place.

9. No one is you, and that is your power. No one in this world looks or thinks like you, and this is what makes everyone so special. We all find certain things that we love in others, so lets look in the mirror and find things we love about ourselves. At the end of the day, you are the only one looking out for yourself, and you have to be strong enough to keep pushing forward. Whether that be pushing yourself to make more photos, finish that long run, meet your goal, or receive that grade you worked so hard for.

10. The goal isn't to live forever, the goal is to create something that will. What do you want to be remembered for? Smiling at every person on the street? Being truly happy in the work and relationships you create? The world is literally your oyster, so go find that pearl, that thing you love, that creative spark, bring it home, and polish it to make it the most beautiful gem you can.

11. We can't force things that aren't meant to be. They just won't work! This leads me to the last, but not least...

12. What's meant to be, will be. Everything always works out. It always does.

In 12 years, where will I be?

2028, I will be 30 years old. I honestly can't believe that the age of 30 is less than 15 years away.

Time starts to fly as you get older and it's a crazy phenomenon! When you're young, it seems like time takes forever to pass, probably because you're always thinking of being older and wishing you were as old as everybody else. As we grow up, time starts to go by faster because we are a little happier with where we are in life, and once we grow up to be adults and are finally the age we wanted to be when we were kids, all we do is wish that we were kids again. So why not be a kid for life?! We will always be someone's child, so let's keep coloring outside the lines, running through sprinklers, jumping into the leaves, making snowmen in the fresh snow fall, and eating lunch in the park. Because without these "childish" activities, life would be mundane and we would loose inspiration. Cultivate that momentum and keep it with you to be inspired and to inspire others.

The BEST parents EVER!

Callie is next in line of the cousins to graduate!

7 years later... 5th grade graduation to high school graduation

Nicole painted my cap!

Huge thanks to Amanda Passey for capturing these priceless moments!

xo, Hallie

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