Live Every Day to the Fullest

I sat down a few times to write this post yesterday and it was a little difficult to rearrange the words in a way where they would best describe my thoughts and feelings. I know that tons of readers love when I put style on the back burner every now and then and write about something personal and that’s what I will be doing today. If these aren’t your favorite posts, a style post will be up on Saturday and a funny college related post will go up tomorrow! I also ask that you be respectful in the comments if you choose to leave one! Thanks!

March 16th used to have no significance to me. I didn’t think twice about it…until three years ago. Three years ago today was the first time I ever lost someone. I was 15 at the time and was a sophomore in high school. Being so young, people would assume that the first person I lost would be a grandparent or an older aunt or uncle. It turns out that I lost a friend that morning, a young girl only a few months older than me. We went to school together for 9 years and then ended up going to different high schools. I’m not going to sit here and write that we were inseparable but we definitely were within the same circle of pals in middle school especially. We ate lunch together, we went to middle school dances together, and we sat next to each other in french class. Once we graduated middle school, we went out separate ways and had a falling out but texted every now and then and went to Confirmation class together in 2013-2014. She was a great athlete being a competitive swimmer; one of those swimmers who woke up at 4am for practice and sometimes swam after school as well. She was also a great sister, friend, daughter, student, catholic, and all around a free spirit. She had a vibrant personality and a big heart. She loved her friends and family more than anything and sought every day to be the best person she could be.

On March 16, 2014 she woke up in Virginia Beach, ready to run the Shamrock Half Marathon (13.1 miles) with her best friend, Abby. They had trained for months and months for this race and were so pumped to get going. Despite a great first 10 miles, she began to severely cramp but continued the race in determination to cross the finish line. Once crossed the finish line, she hugged her parents and about 50 steps later she collapsed and slipped into the Lord’s arms almost instantly.The news of her passing quickly spread over social media through people from her high school and down to our middle school group of friends. The funeral was the saddest day of my life and struck a deep chord in me and the Richmond community.

This girl, 16 years young, passed away with only a sliver of her life lived. She never took an SAT, applied to college, graduated high school, voted in an election, got married, had kids, got her first full time job, or was able to attend another day of school. For months I couldn’t help but think about all of the things that she wasn’t able to do. It took me months and months to finally accept her passing.

Cameron’s death transformed my thought process. First, it made me appreciate small things, minuscule events of my life that we are so used to taking for granted. Whether it be finishing another year of school, making it home safe after work, or just texting my family, I think about how blessed I am to be able to do just those things. To tell my mom I love her when we text, the feeling I get when I finish a semester of college and get one step closer to my degree, and the comforting feeling when I pull in my driveway at home are all things that my friend doesn’t get to experience now. I also think about her family, the kindest family full of God’s spirit. I think of the empty spot at the dinner table they have each night, never to be sat in again or the stocking that won’t be full of gifts for her each December.

Each day for me and for you is a new opportunity to share what we want to say, work towards what we want to accomplish, hug the one who we love, fix what we have broken, and smile for the things that make us happy. If this story teaches you one thing, please remember that life is a crazy thing and it can be taken from us in the blink of an eye. Whether it be ours or another person’s, live each life to the fullest. This means not only should you take risks and work harder than you did the day before, but it also means that we should refrain from saying hurtful things and should treat each other with respect because who knows if we’ll get the chance tomorrow to apologize. Look at each new day not as a continuation as the one before but a fresh start, a new gift given to us by God to help us write another page of our story.

Since her passing back in 2014, Cameron’s family has started a charity in her name to help fund projects to end teenage depression. If you have a few minutes, please take a minute to check out their website here, read her story, or even donate to the cause! 

Stay Preppy,

Lucy

 

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Four Bible Quotes to Live Each Day By

I understand that some people aren’t interested in religious and more spiritual posts on Daily Dose of Prep, but I want to share this part of my life with everyone. If it isn’t something that you are particularly interested in, please return back to DDoP tomorrow for another fashion or lifestyle post!

One of my goals for this new year was to listen to God more, seek out his voice, and actively acknowledge Him instead of ignoring His messages to me. I want to make sure that I am spreading His loving words and hopeful messages to all of you as well. Everyday has a purpose and sometimes we all just need a little bit more motivation than other days. Sometimes, we just can’t quite get a grasp on specific tasks or securely juggle everything the day throws at us. With God, however, all things are possible. Here are four Bible verses that we can all use to help us live out each day to it’s fullest.

If Jeremiah 29:11 teaches us anything, it should be that God has a plan for us all. This is such an ambiguous yet safe verse from the Bible. On one hand, Jeremiah is telling us that we have to sometimes lay down the control we long for and trust in the amazing plans the Lord has for us. This can be so scary to do sometimes! On the other hand, it provides us with comfort because for those who believe in Jesus Christ we know that God is with us and is holding our hand throughout both our good and bad days. If we can cling to the Lord, he will show us his plan that will help us thrive and be happy.
This is my favorite quote from the Bible. Religious or not, this phrase can relate to all of us as human beings. I am a firm believer that there is way more good in the world than there is bad, but the bad events are the ones that make headlines. Romans reminds us that we all have the power to bring a little more positivity into the world. We should not be overpowered with negativity and sadness, but focus on spreading and accepting positivity and joy. If more of us were to live by Romans 12:21, we would all live in a happier and healthier world.
Tha Gospel of Matthew reminds us of a very important message that we would be wise to remember. In laymen’s terms, Matthew tells us to take things one day at a time. We never know what the next day is going to bring so why worry about it? This connects back to the ever mysterious plan that Jeremiah has told us. Just remember that each day is full of moments, issues, and events. Don’t dwell in the past or worry about the future, live in the present and take everything day by day.
Finally, Psalms brings us all a simple yet powerful message. The book of Psalms reassures us that with God, failure is not an option. If we pray to God, talk to Him, ask Him questions, and live out His messages, nothing is impossible. If we have big dreams, projects, or problems when we call on Him he can help us solve our issues through His teachings. With the Lord, nothing but success is in store for us.
Stay Preppy,
Lucy

 

Life Update: Christmas is about Family, Friends, and Faith

I hope that everyone had a very Merry Christmas and that Santa treated you well! I can tell you he sure did make a stop at the Smith house and was very kind to all of us here. I took a break from the blog for just two days to spend time with family and friends. Don’t worry, I took plenty of pictures because I wanted to share the weekend with everyone.

Over the past 72 hours, so many fun things have taken place. Christmas Eve kicked off the festivities with church, as explained in my previous blog post. After church, my family met up with all of my cousins, aunts, and uncles for a fun Christmas Eve dinner. That evening, there was a Chinese gift exchange where I copped the ultimate prize of a two pound bag of Sour Patch Kids. I can’t explain to you how absolutely stoked I was about this gift because I felt the need to redeem myself from last years gift exchange.

 

 

The following morning was slow and easy. My family gathered around the table around 9am to enjoy a delicious Christmas morning brunch. My mom went above and beyond and created the most beautiful table along with the most delectable breakfast treats. Following brunch, the family took the rest of the morning to open gifts and laugh together — the way Christmas morning should be spent. A stop from the maternal grandparents and nap later, we were off once more to my paternal grandparents’ house to spend the evening once again, with family.
Monday evening, as many Instagram followers saw, my family and some of our close friends took a tacky light tour all around Richmond. Richmond is the tacky Christmas light capital of America so why miss out on the opportunity to see some amazing creations! My dad was so generous and rented a party bus for all of my sisters and I to bring one friend to enjoy the ride. So last night, my sisters, mom, dad, and four close friends all piled into a party bus singing songs from the top of our lungs taking in the city. It was one of those nights I will never forget — the love in that party bus was one of the best feelings in the world. The love my sisters and I had for our friends, the love my parents had for one another, and the love my sisters had for our parents showed me that Christmas really does have a deeper meaning than gifts.

 

 

This Christmas I came to realize how powerful family and faith are. God’s message is so powerful, it is impossible to ignore his triumphant words. Adjusting to college has been a lot tougher than I thought it would be and I didn’t rely on Christ as much as I should have. This Christmas opened my eyes to how He is always surrounding me; God is everywhere. He is in the people who give me their table at the Library when they’re finished. He is in the kind lady who makes my food at the dining hall so I can eat another hot meal. He is in the crossing guard who makes sure I get from my dorm to class safe. He is in the friends I have made over the past years who still stand by my side. I always knew He was there, but I never called upon him as often as I do now. I am extremely grateful that this Christmas He woke me up from my passive acknowledgement of him. I now actively see him in absolutely everything.
Stay Preppy,
Lucy

50 Things to be Thankful For

Everyday it’s important to count your blessings and thank God for the amazing gifts he has given you. There are so many things in my life to be thankful for that I am simply unable to list them all out. I wanted to share 50 of my blessings with all of you on this beautiful Thanksgiving Day. So sit back, watch the parade, fill your plate, and count your blessings. Here are 50 things I am thankful for this Thanksgiving Day.

P.S. – My 51st thing to be thankful for is the fact that my Dad surprised the family with bringing my sister, Leslie, home for Thanksgiving! She lives in Texas and tickets were too expensive so she was unable to come home. Yesterday afternoon, my Dad and her run into the house screaming! It was a great surprise that nobody was expecting. I am so immensely blessed that my family can all be together this holiday. Nothing beats having all of your loved ones in one place.

 

1. Family – the ultimate support system.
2. Safety
3. Friends
4. Education
5. My religion
6. Technology
7. My readers!
8. My job — the greatest job on earth
9. Christmas
10. Alpha Delta Pi – we live for each other!
11. My cat
12. My home
13. Warm clothing
14. Apple Cider
15. Math
16. Teachers
17. Ben & Jerry’s pints
18. Daily Dose of Prep
19. Plaid
20. Lilly Pulitzer
21. Vineyard Vines
23. J.Crew
24. KJP and Campus Foxhawk
25. The beach
26. University of Virginia – so many childhood memories here
27. My roommate and hall mates
28. Pizza – Papa John’s!
29. Diet Coke
30. 13K ON INSTAGRAM – Woke up this morning to 13,000 followers!! WOW!
31. Broadway music
32. Bean Boots
33. Chick Fil A #5 eight count with a Diet Coke and buffalo sauce
34. Gossip Girl — xoxo
35. Women’s voting rights – thank you, Susan B. Anthony
36. Family traditions — Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter
37. Google
38. Sweater weather
39. Instagram
40. Home cooked meals – dining hall food just doesn’t compare.
41. Gingham, polka dots, and stripes
42. My health – even when it’s not great, it’s still pretty good.
43. Packages I wasn”t expecting – a surprise every now and then is nice.
44. Warm chocolate chip cookies
45. Ginger Ale when I’m feeling under the weather
46. ABC Family’s 25 Days of Christmas
47. Clearasil face wash
48. Fireplaces & wool socks
49. J.Crew Excursion vests

50. A homemade Thanksgiving feast – gotta go eat!

These 50 things above are just some of the blessings that I am extremely thankful for. Many are on a grand scale while others are smaller items that I often times over look when I count my blessings. This past year I have been extremely fortunate to be healthy, safe, and taken care of. I graduated high school and started college without any problems, and for that I am especially grateful. Thankfully, my friends and family have also been blessed with good health and safety as well. I hope to remind everyone to love one another, treat one another with respect, and be thankful for one another and the blessings that God has bestowed upon you.

I also wanted to thank all of the kind and supportive readers who continue to come back to Daily Dose of Prep and support my blog. I really do love writing new posts for everyone to enjoy and posting new pictures on Instagram. It makes me so happy that I can express myself on a public platform without receiving negative comments or feedback. It’s truly a great thing when people who share similar interests, such as fashion and lifestyle,  can come together and collaborate on a grander scale. Without the support of my readers, I wouldn’t feel so appreciated or confident in myself. Thank you, for giving me the confidence to share my life and style with you.

Stay Preppy,
Lucy