10 Things I’ve Learned at 25

Ahhh man, I remember turning 24 and being told that I couldn’t say I was in my mid-twenties yet because I wasn’t 25… and now here I am. Granted, I turned 25 in October of 2020, but that’s besides the point. So- here are some thing’s I’m learning now as a person in my mid-twenties.

Listen to your gut feeling. Seriously, my gut feeling has never proved me wrong. Whether it be about something small or large, I tend to listen more to my intuition and what my body is telling me about the situation I’m in.

You don’t need as much support from other people as you think you do. You are enough to support and encourage yourself. Just trust me on this one. Not everyone will be on board with you and all of the journeys you take… but as long as you are, it’s cool.

Be selfish. I think most people can relate to putting your own dreams on the back burner and someone elses dreams ahead of your own. Just know you can still support and work hard on your own endeavors while cheering them on too.

Say no. And “no” doesn’t require any sort of justification. Don’t let someone turn your no into a yes if it’s about something serious that you know in your heart you don’t want to do. Whether it’s saying no to going to a Mexican restaurant and you don’t like Mexican food, or something more consequential.

Don’t let people mispronounce your name. Ever. My full first name is KellyAnn. For whatever reason, when people ask me what my name is and I say “KellyAnn”, they always say, “What?” ultimately leading me to just say “Kelly”. And, if I’m being honest, I prefer KellyAnn. You are disrespecting your boundaries by not correcting people who say your name wrong or just telling people that it’s okay to call you something that you actually don’t want to be called.

Learn to love yourself. I could tell stories of people blatantly making fun of the way I look. My hair. My face shape. My acne. My body. “The way you look with your hair wet”. Still not sure about that one. But the important thing is that I like the person I am on the inside and the outside. And to be real, no one is perfect. No one has flawless, poreless skin. Everyone has stretch marks. Everyone is beautiful.

Set boundaries in relationships. I can’t stress this enough. Know your non-negotiables when it comes to relationships and do not disrespect yourself and the values you’ve set for yourself. Some of my non-negotiables are unwillingness to communicate, any kind of abuse, and anger issues.

Communication is key. Communication in all relationships is key. I’m not the perfect communicator. And sometimes I may have a hard time getting out what I want to say, but I’m going to try. Communication is tricky and can be anxiety inducing but you don’t want to be the one in the end who didn’t fully communicate, trust me.

Everyone is on their own timeline in life. I’m a 25 year old in community college and if that doesn’t tell you I’m clearly on a different path than others, I don’t know what will. Your time will come. Don’t set a timeline for big life events- I can’t even tell you how many friends (all, actually) grew up telling me they wanted to be engaged by this age, married by this age, and have kids by this age and let me let you in on a secret now… they’re all disappointed.

You’re not indestructible- and that’s okay. I feel like as a teenager, a lot of kids tend to think they’re indestructible, untouchable. I was certainly one of those kids. This was a huge lesson for me in the past year. As a former gymnast of over ten years, I was a pretty buff kid. Full of muscle. Full of body confidence because I knew I was strong. And I was strong. But I wasn’t indestructible, and if the past couple of years has taught me anything, it’s that I’m very lucky to have the health that I do and that I need to take care of my body and be proactive about my health.

As I still have five years left in my twenties, I’m expecting some pretty tough, and hopefully good life lessons are to come. I also have so many more lessons that I’ve learned in my twenties in general, so there may be a part two to this coming soon! In the mean time, I’ll be over here attempting to take my own advice on one of these… Here’s to more lessons!

Spring 2021 College Schedule + Positive Affirmations

This semester has been a complete whirlwind so far. Filled with uncertainty, but also so much hope- it makes me happy to even think about physically going back to school and meeting some of the incredible people that I’ve met so far this semester. This semester is really important for me because I’m taking the very last classes I need that are considered co-requisites for both of the nursing schools I’m applying for for this Fall. So each class will hopefully boost my acceptance chances!

Below is my current course schedule for this Spring semester, enjoy!

Biomedical Ethics – This class sort of reminds me of my communications 101 class and my ethics class in terms of just the vibe of the class and how we all interact. Mostly everyone is heading down the nursing school brick road and we all freak out about the TEAS together as well as exams. It’s great. 10/10 recommend. But on a serious note, this class is very interesting and I think it will play a vital role in my future hospital experiences as a provider when it comes to different ethical issues which the medical field faces on a daily basis.

Lifespan Development – In the past month, I have learned so much about lifespan development. It’s absolutely incredible and I fully understand why my school requires this for the nursing program. The most interesting thing to me so far is really the combination of nature versus nurture and their effects on children.

Anatomy & Physiology II – My professor is a Veterinarian and actually reminds me of my childhood bestfriends dad- which is oddly comical and comforting at the same time. So far I’m doing really well in the class and hope to come out with an A!

Western Civilization (His101) – Since the beginning of my college career, I’ve really steered clear of any sort of history class but this semester, it was unavoidable. You can’t even get your associates without History 101 and 102! So I was really kidding myself trying to put it off for so long. But alas, just like everything else, it’s not as bad as I expected! In fact, there are no tests in this class, just homework’s (mini research essays), weekly discussion posts, and an unfortunately long term paper that I’m actually not dreading too much because, ya know- I like to write.

I started this semester saying, “I’m going to get straight A’s”. Then, as time went on and I realized the work intensive semester I was in for, I thought, “Okay, maybe a couple A’s and a couple B+’s… maybe even a B”. I was getting discouraged by the uncertainty of never meeting my professors face to face, and I was settling. I had heard of positive affirmations before but didn’t fully understand the concept. I foolishly thought, okay, so if I think really hard and long about wanting to get into medical school, I’ll get in. Says the girl with not even an associates under her belt. But that’s just not what positive affirmations are. They’re putting in the work, believing in yourself, telling yourself that you can do it- and they’re ultimately just a healthy approach to being a badass. So I’m giving it a try. I’ve got nothing to lose, and neither do you! Positive affirmations aren’t just about speaking your goals into existence. They’re about you as a person. You can look in the mirror everyday and think, eh, I look okay today. Or you can look in the mirror and say, “I am beautiful. I am smart. I’m a kind person. I am great at empathizing with people and when I can’t, I’m great at sympathizing”. There are so many beautiful positive affirmations; and honestly, it makes me slightly giddy to wake up and spoil myself with compliments that I truly believe are good hearted qualities about me.

So here’s to putting some positive energy out into the universe for others and for ourselves, and also a great semester!

About me

Hi everyone! I have gotten a few new followers since the New Year and figured I’d do a quick about me post since I’ve never done one before!

I’m 25 years old, and I’m a Libra (I know nothing about astrology, I just know that I’m a Libra, hehe).

I live in New York, and for upwards of 8 years I moved back and forth between New York and South Carolina. The chapter of my life that is South Carolina is closed and, although I don’t like to say never, right now I can say I will likely never move back there.

I’m currently pursuing nursing and have really loved my experience at community college thus far. If you’re interested in college and lifestyle content, this is the place for you and I’m happy to have you here.

I’m a volunteer EMT and this year will be four years that I’ve been with my department, and it is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made for myself.

I struggle with anxiety, health anxiety, and depression (when something traumatic triggers it) and currently see a psychologist to make myself not only a better person, but a better friend, daughter, student, and provider.

I wanted to start a blog years before actually doing so but was too afraid (social media can be intimidating!). One of my goals is to make a YouTube channel when I get into nursing school that revolves around college, nursing and lifestyle content.

I put a lot of emphasis on college and getting my degree, although I know college is not necessary and not for everyone, because when I decided to pursue it, I was told multiple times that I was wasting my time, that I would drop out after the first semester, and that I couldn’t pass a test if my life depended on it. I’m not someone who typically would use hate like that from people I love to fuel me, but I think it would be a little gift to myself, since I’ve worked so hard to get to where I am- to get my degree.

I’m currently writing my first book, Pinewood (temporary name). Pinewood is a YA sci-fi book that I would ultimately like to be the first in a trilogy. Writing and reading have been two of my top passions since I was very little and I feel like I would be doing myself a disservice by not publishing at least one book for the world to see. I’m no expert, and I could clearly brush up on grammar rules, but it’s a love project of mine that I’m happy to pursue.

I’m a huge softy. I mean… huge. I am 100% a lover, and not a fighter. I fought so much during my teenage years that it just drained me, and all I have left to give is love. I mentioned in my Valentine’s Day post that I’ve been at that point where I’ve hated the world and was bitter about the hand of cards I was dealt, and I’ve done a complete 360 since that mindset. Granted, it’s been quite a few years (seven or eight, to be exact) since I’ve felt that way, but I’m grateful for the experiences I’ve had that have shaped me into who I am today- because I really like her.

That’s it for me, really. I hope you enjoyed getting to know me and if you have any questions, feel free to ask down below in a comment.

KellyAnn, xoxo

my faves / Netflix series

Bridgerton – Okay did Bridgerton break the internet or is it just me? Phoebe Dynevor plays the stunning Daphne Bridgerton in this incredible series that follows the close-knit Bridgerton family in their ventures for love. This show gave me everything I was looking for and then some.

Stranger Things – UGH I didn’t want to give into the hype of Stranger Things but I did and I cannot believe I didn’t see it sooner! My favorite seasons are seasons 1 and 3 but the entire show ate me up and spit me out leaving me an addict impatiently waiting for season four.

The Queens Gambit – Thinking about a powerful female lead played by the lovely Anya-Taylor Joy (who plays Beth) makes me smile. Every aspect of The Queens Gambit captivated me.

Never Have I Ever – My true guilty pleasure… Never Have I ever star Maitreyi Ramakrishnan plays Devi Vishwakumar as she explores being a first generation Indian-American after a traumatic event in her teenage life. Devi is quirky, smart, outspoken, and honestly, I want her as a friend.

The Haunting of Hill House – The Haunting of Hill House is, in my opinion, the most well thought out horror series out there. It’s been quite some time since I’ve seen it, but I still remember screaming the first time I saw a certain scene- and I honestly couldn’t believe I screamed because I’m just not the most animated person while watching shows or movies (I wasn’t the only one who screamed, by the way). RIP to me that night because my soul left my body.

Unbelievable – Trigger warning for this show: Sexual assault. Unbelievable brings out all the emotions in me and leaves me in a ball of tears. It is a story of survivors, victim shamers, and delayed justice- and I highly recommend it.

Dead to Me – I can’t say enough good things about Dead to Me. Incredible acting and storyline, I really love the whole thing!

Legacies– If you loved the Vampire Diaries, you’re going to love Legacies! This is my go to show and I re-watch it all the time!

Dash and Lily – The ultimate feel good show that ended in an unsuspecting way! Honestly, when I first starting watching Dash and Lily, I had no idea what to expect; and then as the show went on, I thought I had the ending figured out- but I totally didn’t! I watch this show when I want to put a smile on my face.

Jane the Virgin – If you have not seen Jane the Virgin you are missing out! This roller-coaster of a show has made me smile, laugh, cry, and ultimately fall in love with all of the characters.

The Flash – Okay, okay… How could you not love Barry?! He’s such a loveable, smart, humble guy who happens to be in an accident that gives him unhuman speed. With this, you see his ventures along the way of attempting to keep it a secret from the people he loves the most, learning to do everyday things like save the city, all while keeping his unattainable love for his best friend alive.

The Vampire Diaries – An oldie but a goodie. You can’t even tell me you don’t feel nostalgic when you see Season 1 Pilot episode Nina.

Locke & Key – Great series! I’ve only seen this series once but I do recommend it for anyone looking for anything new to watch!

MTV Scream (Seasons 1 & 2) – Admittedly, I have watches these two seasons of this show multiple times, and even got my boyfriend (who really only likes movies and not series) to watch and finish both seasons! My favorite character in this has to be Noah Foster played by John Karna. He really is on the same wavelength as Barry from The Flash- they’re hard not to love!

If you have any recommendations, let me know in a comment down below! Happy Netflixing (:

Valentine’s Day hacks & snacks

Ahhh, love. I love love. I really do. It sounds sappy, I know, but I’ve been at that point where I’ve hated the world, mad at everything and everyone- and I can honestly say it’s much easier (and healthier) to choose love and happiness. By letting go of anger and resentment, I gave myself room to… well, love me.

Yesterday I ran to Hobby Lobby to go grab some Valentine’s Day goodies to surprise my boyfriend with and I was shocked to see that they had only Easter and St. Patty’s Day decor! So- I went to the dollar store. For just over ten dollars, I got two balloons, two little mini stick balloons, a big Valentines Day basket, all sorts of yummy candy, and some cute decor.

I know V-Day isn’t a big day, but honestly, I love making people feel special. This is the reason why I’m constantly bringing baked goods to my EMS station for birthday celebrations and to celebrate the successes of my friends! It makes me happy to make others happy. So, yes- I realize Valentine’s day is really just another day, but it gives me a reason to go out of my way to remind my better (and smarter) half that he’s still stuck with me.

With help from an old amazon package, I will be making a DIY, Valentine’s Day themed donut board. But the morning of is where the real work comes in- waking up early, heading to Dunkin, grabbing all the donuts, decorating the house, and setting up the donuts (and some baked goodies as well) all before he wakes up! Yes, I can be ambitious when I want to. And the best part is, this is all for under twenty dollars. (P.S. – Don’t let anyone ever b.s. you into saying they didn’t have the means to do something special, a thoughtful hand written letter is enough in my opinion.)

Another p.s.- do something for you. Valentine’s Day isn’t exclusive to those who have significant others. If I were single, I’d still be decorating and probably getting myself some flowers, making some yummy baked goods and probably writing my future self a love letter because, hello, I’m me. Treat yourself.

So remember to do something for you this Valentine’s Day- grab yourself a coffee, take a bubble bath, watch your favorite show, do a face mask, get cozy and read a good book- anything! You deserve it.

Now here’s a list of some yummy, easy V-Day snacks you can make!

Chocolate covered strawberries (my personal favorite)

Chocolate dipped oreos

Red velvet truffles – I Just made these last week and they were a hit at my department. All I did was get a box of red velvet cake mix, followed the instructions on the box, baked the cake, put some gloves on and ripped it up (living my best childhood dream, obviously), added a couple scoops of icing, meshed it all together until it stuck and formed them into little balls of red velvety goodness. You can then dip them in melted chocolate and sprinkle some sprinkles on top- have fun with it!

Oreo truffles – yummy and so easy. Here’s the easy, three ingredient recipe and directions I used! https://www.cookingclassy.com/oreo-truffles-two-ways/

Strawberry & Nutella French toast roll-ups – Okay, yum. I made these for my mom a couple years ago for Mother’s Day and my family couldn’t get enough of them. If you want a special breakfast treat, here it is! There are different variations of how you can do this but I recommend heading to Pinterest, and picking out any one of them that looks good to you! What I did was get a loaf of bread, cut the crust off, roll out the bread, spread Nutella all over, line one side of the bread with strawberries and roll it up. I then put eggs, milk, sugar and cinnamon into a bowl and mixed everything. Put my roll-ups in egg mixture and transferred them to a pan with butter in it on the stove, turning them every couple of minutes. After they were finished, I rolled them in a cinnamon sugar bowl, plated them, and they were done!

Is your mouth watering yet? I hope you all have a wonderful Valentine’s Day with with love, happiness, and good treats!

xoxo, KellyAnn

First thoughts / full time online college

To be honest, I’m not liking online learning. I know it’s popular amongst people who don’t like physically going to class or actually having to study for exams versus looking up the answers, but I enjoy going to campus, seeing my professors face to face, putting in the work- and generally doing well. This semester, the classes that wouldn’t typically be difficult (lifespan development, biomedical ethics, western civilization) are more work than my science classes. How is my science class the least amount of work? Because the professor knows that busy work doesn’t equate to learning. Studying leads to learning. Studying leads to remembering. Assigning 50 pages of a textbook to read for each class weekly, in my opinion, takes away from actually learning! I think I’m one of very few kids in college who actually do the readings and I can honestly say, I get nothing out of it when I read a textbook.

That being said, in work and reading intensive classes like these- my planner is my best friend. I have so much school work, that I need to know what do to, when to do it, and when it’s due for each individual class. Staying organized and on track is vital for a semester like this. It also raises the question of: if I get into nursing school for this Fall and classes are still fully online, will I learn anything? What is it like doing nursing school completely from home? How can I optimize my learning experience? For me, it’s not the typical college experience that I’m craving. I’m twenty-five. I don’t need parties, I want knowledge. I want to come out of the other end better than I came in. I want to come out educated, passionate, and highly skilled in my field. Will online learning allow me to do that?

Until then, I will be online, chugging along through this semester (and it’ll be so worth it!).

The Moonlight Child – Book Review

The Moonlight Child, written by Karen McQuestion is a compelling novel telling several different stories, all intricately entangled within each other. Without giving too much away, the story follows Sharon, a mom who notices something odd happening at her neighbors house late at night as she’s outside enjoying a lunar eclipse, Niki- a young girl in need of some support, the Fleming family- the neighbors of Sharon, and a broken family looking for the lost piece to their home. When Sharon’s daughter convinces her to let Niki stay with her for a little while, Niki notices some suspicious activity at the neighbors as well- but when they try and get it investigated- the two take things into their own hands as they struggle to wait for the authorities.

The ability to structurally navigate a story with various storylines and depths is a wonderful skill and strength. McQuestion’s writing is a great example of flawless execution of a difficult storyline. She didn’t leave one thing hanging, by the end of the book, no questions were left unanswered. The characters were also very well rounded, I had a specific image for all of them in my head and loved that the imagery created by her words played the book out like a movie in my head, for only me to see.

My own personal opinion, I was a little disappointed when I realized that the novel was going to be told from multiple point of views, I’m personally not crazy about books that constantly switch like that, but after a few chapters and really getting into it, I quite enjoyed it. Everything regarding the POV’s was very organized, and with each new chapter you were following one of the main characters lives. If any book can switch my opinion regarding switching POV’s like that, it’s this one!

All in all, I ate this book up in less than twenty-four hours. Something about it stood out to me when I was looking for a new read and for good reason. I give this book a 5/5, and would recommend it to anyone!

First day of a virtual college semester

Usually I’m jumping for joy on the first day of classes- nerdy, I know. When I was in high school, I was excited to get through a year; but, for some reason, I never looked at it as one step closer to a huge goal: graduation! In college, every beginning and end to a semester is one small step closer to my goal of getting my degree.

I took last semester off, which admittedly was a bad idea (but hey! At least I came back right away… right?!). I took that semester off in a panic, I had a horrible experience from the previous semester and was burnt out beyond belief. The silver lining, I got my motivation back. This semester I’m taking every single non-nursing class for two of the nursing programs I’m applying to for this Fall to boost my chances of getting in. Please Lord, let me get in.

Regardless, this semester is my first fully online semester of school- ever. And, to be honest, I wasn’t really that excited yesterday. Two of my four classes have zoom conferences that I’m on for an almost consecutive five hours Mondays and Wednesdays, and the other two are fully online with no zoom meetings. It’s quite odd. Unpopular opinion, but, I love physically going to school. I love getting up, having somewhere to go, a reason to get ready- it makes me excited! Not that I didn’t do all of that this morning, but I obviously didn’t physically go anywhere, and it was a weird feeling. I know this whole virtual new world thing is a learning curve for us all. Today I found myself struggling to post in a discussion because I couldn’t find the post button… yup. But we will prevail! I have so much love and hope in my heart for this year, and I know good things are going to happen.

I’m getting straight A’s this semester. Just putting that out into the universe. And if you are currently going to school, you are too, okay? I’ll just go ahead and say it for the both of us. Once I get my school planner in, I’m sure things will be a lot easier for me to manage. So, here’s to another semester- another slow rolling train taking me through all the curves and stops to get to my goal!

Mini Travel Bucket List

My subconscious sits bitter in the back of my mind as I write this. She and I both want to travel, but we’ll be playing it safe and waiting it out until things calm down in the U.S. a little bit. I typically don’t travel often, but lately I’ve had the travel bug and it apparently wants me to buy an RV and travel the states. Except for New Jersey- because it smells bad. Don’t @ me if you’re from NJ, you know it’s true.

fun lol GIF by Outside TV

When things reopen I’d love to hit the slopes and try my hand at skiing or snowboarding. Preferably snowboarding, I just have a feeling I’d like it better than skiing- but, I’ll take either! I also have no specific place in mind to do this, anywhere I can do it will be made into a little vaca whether it be Upstate New York, Vermont, or anywhere else.

Dog Halloween GIF

Salem, MA– Surround me with all the spooky. Haunted tours? Yes. Salem Witch Museum? Yes. Parts of Hocus Pocus were also filmed here so… Yes.

Montreal Canada– Canadians, I know the United States is like a scary Netflix show to you, however– if you so choose to accept me, I will bring you the best New York bagel you’ve ever tasted in your life.

The Catskills– Waterfalls, hiking, scenery- and fairly close to home? Yes please.

Lake George A lazy day by the lake in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains sounds good to me.

If you have any recommendations for road trips in the North Eastern area of the states, let me know! For now, my subconscious and I will be dreaming of all the places we can go.

College YouTubers I love

I have to admit, I’m slightly obsessed with YouTube. I have been for a long time now. So much so that I asked for a YouTube channel for Christmas when I was twelve… It was a no from mom.

As a non-tradition college student, in the months before my first semester of college, I feverishly searched for anything college related on YouTube. How to get straight A’s, how to get into nursing school, how to stay productive- you name it, I watched it! My searching didn’t let me down though, I found quite a few gems, all in different walks of life, who motivated me to be a better student and who I still love years later!

Abby Asselin: Abby is a graduate from University of Alabama and is currently in the middle of getting her masters degree. She’s inspiring, hard working, dedicated, productive & even has other lifestyle content on her channel including general day in the life vlogs and her fitness journey!

Kaur Beauty: Puneet from Kaur Beauty is an unapologetic, authentic YouTuber. She’s currently in medical school, loves fashion, advocates for others and brings attention to real world issues that deserve to have more awareness. She’s intelligent, well-rounded and has a good head on her shoulders. Although I believe I may be a year or two older than her, I look up to her in more ways than one and highly recommend her channel.

MedBros: Shaman and Harman from MedBros are Puneet’s older brothers! Puneet is also a part of the MedBros channel and their content has quite the wide range of variety. All in top medical schools, these three are unbelievable and they all bring something very special to the table. Their knowledge and input always helps me see issues with fresh eyes and I really enjoy their videos.

Ahmad Shahin: I can’t help but smile watching Ahmad’s videos. He’s smart, passionate about medicine and his fitness, and his happy-go-lucky outlook rubs off on me every time I see his content. Ahmad is a first year medical student at The Mayo Clinic, and although his channel is fairly new, I’ve been watching it since his first video was posted and will continue to watch and support!

Rachel Southard: Rachel’s obvious passion for medicine is inspiring. You get a real life behind the scenes look at what it’s like to go through medical school. She makes a point to not just show the good, but to show the real- and show something that, in my opinion, a lot of people miss, and that’s the fact that doctors are real people, with real lives, and real feelings.

The Kath Path: Kathleen is a political science major at at Stanford University, and her channel is full of incredible college advice. From college essays to a day in the life and everything in between, I find her channel pumping me up to always be a better college student.

Madi’s nursing journey: Madi gets an A+ for all things nursing. Curious about what a day in the life of a nursing student looks like? She’s got it. Lifestyle videos? Got it! And to top it off, she seems like a genuinely good person. Her sweet personality shines through her videos and always puts a smile on my face.

I know a majority of these channels are medical related, but as a non-MD student- there’s such a wide range of content on all of these channels and I believe there’s something for everyone on them! If you’re in college, or going into college and need some motivation- I recommend them all!