My New York Life #2: Change

Me at the Brandless Pop Up

In 3 months after moving to NYC to work here. I realize that there are so many things that have changed about me. I wanted to just let you guys know what’s up. I go out all the time. On the weekends you can find me at the local farmer’s markets, museums, or just walking in the city. I love exploring and NYC really does wonders to make me feel like I could live here forever because I am usually doing something different every day. However, going out all of the time means that I need a recharge. I always need this, but I need it more now. NYC is overstimulating at all times and it is just really nice to be in my room, being a hermit. I don’t want to really see people because I have seen people all day. On the opposite end of that, I Facetime my friends more often or call them. I actively want to keep up my friendships with people because there is no longer a 4-year something or the other that will “force” me to see the same people every day.

I think that reason I had an urge to really type out my thoughts is because I recently told my brother that I was happy and content. Sure, there are definitely days that are a little more trying than others, especially with all of the people who are just trying to get form point A to point B, but that is NYC. I am happier here than I have been in North Carolina where I was born and raised. I am happy that I don’t have to drive, can you imagine that? But, if you have questions about NYC, leave them down below because I would love to answer them! 

Eating okonomiyaki



Tea Time, Story Time #1: Yogi Tea + My Crush Knew…

I thought that this would be a fun little idea to introduce to you all. I like to drink tea (and sometimes coffee) so I thought it would be a lot of fun to do a tea review and also share a story with all of you. I will separate the tea time and story time so that if you prefer to read one over the other, you can absolutely do so! Give this a “like” if you want to see more. Also, grab yourself a drink of your choice and have fun reading.


Yogi Lemon Ginger Tea

I started to drink this because it was already in the house and because my throat has bee bothering me. I came back from London with an awful kind of cough because of the air from the train. I brewed a large cup of this throughout the day and added about a tablespoon of honey to help remedy my throat. I will say that it doesn’t really help with my throat but I didn’t have digestion problems at all.

Taste: This has a nice lemon taste and I don’t normally like ginger but when you drink, the aftertaste hits you with a sharp hit. The sharpness of the aftertaste is the ginger and it can be quite strong if you don’t normally have ginger in your diet. I will say that the taste is rather tame aside from the ginger and would be really good to drink after dinner when you are winding down for the night.

Rating: 3.5/5



Story Time: My Crush Knew…

Well, I don’t have the best luck with men and that is due to the fact that I don’t present myself as a possibility and that they always fall for my best friend or person I am close with. I met a boy who worked at the same program as me in Italy. He lives up north, so not an Italian boy (sorry to disappoint). But, the first time I saw him, he was shirtless…well darn. This was during my second weekened when I climbed a mountain and he was with friends. I actually remember that he knew my name and I don’t know how. I am assuming he knew because one of my roommates happened to be the girl he was interested in.

I don’t want to get in to too much detail but let’s just say that my feelings kind of grew over the next three weeks of the program. I knew that nothing would happen and I didn’t want it to because it would be unfair to anyone to start a relationship long distance after only a short period of time. I actually found out that he knew that I liked him on our last day in Italy. Some drama happened and he had mentioned that we were never going to work out, he had been drinking and so I thought he meant him and my roommate. I didn’t realize until the next morning when he had messaged me that he was referring to us and that he was sorry that my feelings were hurt but he didn’t want to hurt me by dragging me along. I received apologies from both him and my roommate. I, honestly, didn’t care because I was more upset that the boy I liked was hurt. I am sure my roommate was hurt in some ways but there are aspects of what she did that I don’t necessarily think were the right decisions in regards to me and the boy.

Nevertheless, I feel like this experience of having my crush know and yet he was an absolute gentleman about not dragging me along at all. I grew to care for him as a friend and I told him that. I may still have feelings for him but I have learned that our friendship is more important to me than any kind of romantic relationship. I think what shocks me the most, still, is that he didn’t try to drag me along or mess with my feelings. I am glad that there are actual people out there who won’t manipulate you for sport or for their own gain. I am still good friends with my roommate, too. I know that they might not ever speak to each other again after what happened but I do know that they are still my friends.

Well, that is my story time for now!


Ellie Goulding | Worst Concert Experience?!


This is going to sound awful but this concert was the worst experience I have had and now I know why people spend an arm and leg to get the good seats/spots. I went to see Ellie Goulding back in June before I left for Italy and have been excited since November 2015. I was happy to know that she would be the first big performer I would get the chance to see. I loved the wonderful concerts I had been to before because they were intimate. Unfortunately, this was not that case. My sister and I stood in the center rows on the side section. I was not that happy that I wasn’t close but would be happy to see Ellie. Her concert began and she appeared. Unfortunately, I couldn’t see her but saw her on the large screen that the venue had. I couldn’t help but remember my mom’s words, “You can just watch them on TV.” Essentially, I had done just that, watch her on the large screen that had close ups of her and some wider shots every now and then. What didn’t help were these four people who were dancing and moving the whole time to the point where I was about to say something.

This might come off harsh and it isn’t meant to be but if I am paying money to see a concert, I expect to be able to see them, even if they are on a TV screen. I could see her every now and then from afar. I just didn’t appreciate that these people were drinking and making a spectacle of themselves, blocking the very few shots I had to see Ellie on stage. I was not happy the whole night even when she sang some of my favorite songs. I just couldn’t avoid these people in front of me. They were also not accommodating to the people who were trying to get by.


I think my bad experience is a mix of the people and the fact that I would just like everyone to be civil and not make a show of their own to where they feel like they are the center of attention. I told my sister that the next time Ellie Goulding is in town that we will pay for those tickets to stand in the pit and I might be standing like a statue because I don’t like to be touched, but I will deal with it to have a more intimate viewing of my favorite artists. I will say that I felt like there was still this wall between Ellie and her fans because she only went into details about her personal stories, one about her friend, and one other time I can’t remember. I just wish she had more I could relate to on a human level. I really connect to artists when I can hear more about their life, experiences, and moments that we are not present for. I might be asking too much as an audience member and fan, but I wanted to connect.


So, there you have it, my worst concert experience. Let me know down below what your best or worst experience has been. I want to hear it!

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Food For Thought: Who You Are


I think that it is hard not to think about how far you have come in one year. I know that I do. I have realized that this year has been, quite possibly, the best year of my life. I have learned to work hard, play hard, and keep focused on what I love, who I love, and where I love. To explain that a little further…

What I love is what I have been doing in theatre because it makes people happy, takes them away, and it also helps me become a better designer. I want to be able to touch people in a way that will last a while. Who I love became a very important thing in my life. I am not talking about romantic relationships. I entered my new university as someone who had no one except my sister. I have chosen who I choose to love and dedicate my time, my life, and my space to. Who I love is the friends I hope that I will have for a lifetime. Where I love is what I learned once I finished my semester at my new university because there wasn’t a day that I resented the campus, the people, or environment. I think that it was an important realization because I feel like I belong somewhere that will help me grow as a person and professional.


Looking back to where I have come from has reminded me that my decision to leave my previous university was the right one. My choice to work two jobs for a year was right. My experiences from leaving and working have shaped me to be a better person and I have learned to become patient of the things to come in my life. I never really believed “everything happens for a reason” but I think that this year proved that if the above didn’t happen, I wouldn’t be where I am now.


I just want everyone to know that no matter what you are going through that it is important to learn from the experiences. I am still learning but I want to remind myself of the good that has come from most of my experiences rather than focus on the bad.


North Carolina Love


I am sure that there are some of you out there who love their state more than any other state. I get it. I just wanted to share my love for North Carolina a little bit today.

North Carolina is a beautiful place with oceans and mountains and country landscapes for miles. Really, we have it all. I think that there is something to say about how North Carolina shaped me as a person because of the people that live here. I grew up in a place that hustles and bustles and I made sure I could move just as fast. I think that now that I am where I am, it has helped me catch up when I have had to take on two years worth of classes, essentially. I have also learned to adapt to many weather changes, rain to sun and back again. I am also really grateful for having a lot of places/stores accessible to me because I grew up with a lot of stuff around me.

Now, a quick thing about this necklace is that it is from Jewelmint when I accidentally let them take $29.95 a month from me and forgot to cancel my subscription. Anyway, I got my sister and myself this North Carolina state wooden necklace. The chain is delicate but I think anything sturdier and it might break the wood. I think that this is a great way to say “I love North Carolina” without saying “I LOVE NORTH CAROLINA SO MUCH,” ya know?


P.S. Did anyone else know that Jewelmint changed?! I have to hound them about my credit now…

“So, you don’t hate me.” Thanksgiving + Black Friday


Hi Fleeters! I hope that you had a great Thanksgiving and Black Friday! It has been a while since I have had a good chat with all of you and I just wanted to tell all of you what I have been doing. So, my semester is technically over but I still have exams and two more weeks of work and then I am home free! I went to see my first production of a show I worked on and I am proud of it, even though I just couldn’t stop staring at the costumes. I honestly felt grateful for the time I was able to spend with my family because I haven’t seen them in a month and I really missed my brother.

So, Thanksgiving was a little different this year because my aunt hosted it. I didn’t know how to feel about it since this is the second Thanksgiving without my grandfather, he passed away in 2013. It was a surprisingly good Thanksgiving despite my aunt and uncle failing to reprimand their son because he was literally messing around and making a ruckus in my aunt’s (the one who hosted) house. I got to hang out with my aunt’s dogs, two Pomeranians and a Chihuahua. I did get to look at the Black Friday ads too…


So, I decided to opt out of Thursday shopping because it is awful that people, who are working retail through many other important events in their lives, also have to work through a day that they might only get to see their families. I have realized that Friday morning is the day to really attack all of the shopping. I don’t mean 12 AM, I mean 7-8 AM. I didn’t need anything fancy, no electronics for me this year, or something that had a small window of time to be purchased. I decided to go to: Michael’s, World Market, A.C. Moore, Ollie’s JCPenney, Office Depot, Walmart, Kohl’s, Hancock’s, Binder’s, and Ulta. There might be a few more places but those are the ones I know I definitely went to. I promise if I had something more exciting, I would definitely share it in a haul!

Now, today, I looked at something I had shared on Facebook and a friend who hasn’t talked to me in a long time, commented on the post. I have had this problem before where I think that if I haven’t talked to someone in so long that we are no longer friends or that they hate me. If you remember, “24” from my posts a long time ago, you will know that we hadn’t talked to each other in almost two years because I thought that he hated me. Well, I was wrong on both accounts. I am guessing that my mind travels to the worst conclusions when there isn’t anything wrong. I may not talk to my friends everyday but when I do talk to them, I hope that they miss my friendship as much as I miss them.

On a lighter note, this year I am grateful for my family, friends, new-found happiness, and you. Yes, YOU! I started The Mermaid Network in January of this year and it has grown into my own corner of the internet where I can share my extreme love of mermaids and the ocean and things that I love.

What was your Thanksgiving/Black Friday like?

-The Mermaid Network

Re-Discovering A Product For Dry Skin!

A full review HERE.

Since my dry skin was acting like crazy a while ago, I needed something that wouldn’t be harsh on my skin but would still work to exfoliate my skin and remove the peeling skin. I had pretty oily skin when I first tried this product out, now it is so dry. I love that this helps me remove dry skin so that when I put on moisturizer, it soaks into my skin and not just the flakes hanging on for dear life. I also love the sensation of my St. Ives Green Tea Cleanser with this product on top, there is just a wonderful mint-feeling that is like a breath of fresh air.

-The Mermaid Network

Most Eloquently Written Letter to an Ex

I have never been in a relationship, but I have seen the aftermath of what it does emotionally to people. I see when someone is extremely jealous or plot something to sabotage someone they used to love in their new relationship. Anyway, I don’t want to get into too much detail because Presley does an amazing job of taking you through her journey to finding a way to accept that her relationship is over and releasing all of the petty emotions. Sure, she has sass in her writing but it makes her seem like she is talking with you over coffee. I find her take on relationships refreshing and pretty wise for someone in college. You can read all about below!

-The Mermaid Network

Presley Strickland | To: My Ex’s “Upgrade”