Cheers to 5 Years! Happy Birth-a-versary!

 

happy 5th

I baked some red velvet cupcakes just to celebrate a bit!

 

Let’s take a look back…

5 YEARS AGO I posted my first blog post here on michelle leigh writes… 

Hey there…and welcome ❤
January 8, 2013

I guess I should introduce myself. I’m Michelle  and I’m going to be writing for you. Writing is something that I’ve always enjoyed. It’s difficult to put one’s writing out into the world and have others read and speculate and generally speaking, critique your inner most thoughts. I’m very modest about my writing and often get nervous to share it with others, but this year I’ve promised myself that I would start changing that. I know, I know, once the new year strikes often many of us make promises we know we can’t keep…or won’t keep. But starting a blog has always been on my radar and I’ve always made excuses not to do it, but not this year. This year it’s happening. So if this blog speaks to you please read along, if not no hard feelings. But all I ask is to let this be a safe place for the written word. I’m not claiming to be an award winning writer, I’m just a girl with a lot of heart, who has A LOT of thoughts like I’m sure many of you do. Thoughts that may serve better being read then being cooped up in a journal. Who knows maybe you’ll find that someone else understands you. Here’s to writing! and Happy Reading Folks! -xoxo Michelle Leigh

To say that as I’m reading these words today, and I still feel a strong connection to their meaning is amazing. For the most part, I’ve overcome the fear of posting my work for strangers. Not that the fear is no longer there, I still find it difficult at times, but I continue to do it anyway. Sometimes I still worry what others who know me may think if they read my blog. If a family member or friend reads it, what will they think of me? Like- oh SHE wrote THIS? I know people may think of me a certain way and then they may read a “scandalous” scene in one of my short stories and think wait what? Ew. Lol. But I can only be true to my writer’s heart and to the characters I create in  my stories. At the root my stories are all about love, friendship, family. Things that make life worth living. 

Below are  all the celebratory birthday/anniversary posts over the past 4 years

“Secret” Society, “Resolutions”, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! + (My 1st VLOG)

Happy Birthday or Happy Anniversary?

Dear 2016, + Happy 3rd Anniversary!

Happy 4th!!!!!!!

In 5 years, I’ve managed to form a post schedule, share poetry, short stories, fangirl experiences, music and movie reviews, fashion, lifestyle, female empowerment, party planning tips and Writing experience/tips, with you. I’ve given you my heart for 5 years and it has been such an important part of my life. And I’m really glad that my motto, “A safe place for the written word,” still holds true for me. Because this blog has really been my writer’s outlet.

We’ve gotten to explore different writing styles, I’ve posted vlogs/videos, and I even have social media accounts for this blog now too. Come and follow along, talk to me! 😀

Social Media Links:

Twitter

Facebook Page

Instagram

It’s crazy to me that it’s been 5 years!

I’m excited for the future. For the new characters you’ll meet and the new poems that will come together and if you are reading this or have read any of my blog posts, I thank you for your support.  I know that I may not have thousands of readers, or comments, but that doesn’t matter to me.  What matters to me is that for those who do read along, or manage to stumble upon my blog, that they take something from it. That they find something in it that they can relate to. I hope you continue reading! And I hope to continue to grow this blog with all my heart.

Happy Birthday/Happy Anniversary or (Happy Birthaversary) if you will,

michelle leigh writes!

(I still don’t know what to call it!) 😉

Again THANK YOU, thank you!

See you Thursday- with an *ALL NEW* Chapter of Move! 

MOVE poster

 

-<3-

 

 

 

 

 

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Filthy Friday

Although it’s been about 5 years since a Justin Timberlake album, we still had a lot of music from him 2 summers ago, when he did the soundtrack album for DreamWorks “Trolls,” where he also starred as “Branch,” and released the mega summer anthem “Can’t Stop The Feeling.”

But it’s that time again, my fellow fangirls… Justin Timberlake is back at it again, with a full solo album!

It all started last weekend when his website JustinTimberlake.com just displayed this logo…

tease

Then shortly after he released a trailer introducing his new album…entitled “MAN OF THE WOODS.” It was a very artistic, beautiful, scenic video, with Justin’s voiceover explaining how this album is very personal, inspired by his wife and son, as we see him with them in the video. Something that I feel is very rare for him to do. And at the very end of the trailer it is announced that Justin’s 5th solo studio album will be released February 2nd. 

Along with that announcement came the announcement of the album’s 1st single, “Filthy.”

filthy

“Filthy” was realized along with a video to go with it, at midnight last night-January 5th. 

*Read the lyrics HERE

I have to say upon first listen/first watch I was not completely in love with it. Which you know as a MAJOR JT FANGIRL I was quite heartbroken to admit. But I heard the song for the first time as I watched the video. And I think that’s what threw me, it was too much to take in all at once. I was confused by the song, something felt like it was missing, I kept waiting for a mega chorus that didn’t come. I kept grooving, then stopping, I was unsure if I liked it. 

Kind of like Perez Hilton’s reaction- 

I cracked up so hard watching this, because I was just like same, Perez, same. Except maybe not so vulgar in my dance moves. Haha. 

But then again I was watching this bizarre futuristic robotic performance. The video is basically this tech conference held in Malaysia in 2028, as Justin performs behind the scenes, a Robot takes his place on stage. Like a literal Robot Justin, grinding on Malaysian girls quite vulgarly.  I was so confused. It wasn’t at all what I expected after seeing such a rustic, woodsy, man living off the land trailer.  

Had I just listened to the song on it’s own, I think I would have had a different first reaction. However, as I gave it a second listen it began to grow on me. And I started to vibe with it. In other words, I’ve been jamming to it all day! 🙂 I feel like I had the same experience with Sexy Back when it first came out, it was so produced and you could barely hear his true vocals and it wasn’t something I was used to. But after a while it grew on me, and it became a song I love and that album became an album that I loved and that broke records! So I figured I had to give this one a minute to sink in. And it has. And I’m so glad. Because trust me, no fangirl ever wants to admit they don’t like bae’s music. But honestly speaking, I just can’t vibe with that music video. It’s too futuristic, Steve Jobs on crack for me. Lol. Artistic, Sure. Different, Absolutely. So I guess that’s enough…for now. 😉

Timberlake has since released his album artwork along with his track list…

album artwork

track list

Timberlake enlisted long time friends and partners; Timbaland and Pharrell Williams (the Neptunes) for this album. That in itself should tell you this album is going to be a force to be reckoned with!

The track list looks like it fits much more along the lines of the trailer video, with titles like Flannel, and Livin’ Off The Land. I’m super excited for HERS, I loved all his preludes and interludes on Future/Sex Love Sounds, and I just feel like it’s going to be like this sexy love ballad.

A.K.? Could that be ya girl…Alicia Keys, that would be an incredible collaboration, if I remember correctly pretty sure they were photographed together recently at the Rock In Rio, event…coincidence I think not! 😉 

I googled and looks like I’m right… Read More HERE 

The C.S. stands for country singer Chris Stapleton.

If you noticed in the Filthy artwork he posted to his social media (shown above) it reads “1 of 4,” as quoted in the article linked above…

“The remaining three singles will be released weekly beginning January 18.” 

In other words we’ll be getting weekly singles, until the release of the album, and just two days after the album release, Timberlake will perform the coveted Half Time show at this year’s Super Bowl on Sunday, February 4th! This will be his first time since his  “wardrobe malfunction” incident with Janet Jackson in 2004. I’m just hoping he brings out *N’SYNC, who’s with me?. 😉 No but really, who’s with me?

 

*I do not take credit for any images used.*

 

-<3-

 

 

2018 Inspiration and Planning Ideas

I’m a planner and I love to know what’s ahead of me. Granted, I realize that’s not always possible, but having some vague plan in mind, tends to lessen my anxiety so I go with it.

I recently bought myself a new planner. Nothing fancy, as much as I love how they have all the stickers and the sticky notes and all that, I just don’t think I would actually use them. So I just went to my local Walgreens and picked up a Blue Sky, monthly/weekly planner. 

When I start to plan for the new year, the first thing I like to do is reflect on the year that just passed. As you can see in my- 2017 Memory Jar Review post.

I go back through my memory jar, my instagram posts and my blog posts and see what I accomplished. I also review my goals list and check off the things I accomplished, and narrow in on the things I still want/need to work on, or continue to implement. 

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Because even if I did accomplish a specific goal in 2017, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t carry over into 2018. For instance like personal growth- and working on my anxiety, that’s a goal that’s on going, bettering my mental and physical health is always a goal every year, as it should be. 

After I reflect, I review my old goal list, and check off, or add to it. And then eventually I’ll probably make a new list. 

After that I will look at the many many things on my list and realize that it is VERY overwhelming!

So this year I’ve decided that from that big list I will pick 4-8 things that I want to ABSOLUTELY accomplish this year. And so that way my brain knows what it needs to focus on. Categories can help- so for instance- Health/Self-care, Relationships, Career.

After that, this is where my planner comes into play. 

I like these planners (Blue Sky) because they have the monthly calendar and then the weekly where you can write in things per day.

However in hindsight, I usually end up needing more space, no matter what. So I’ll either use post-its or a separate sheet of paper/notebook or notepad for daily To-Do Lists or if something I’m working on needs a little more planning. 

I’m debating getting just a desperate notebook for To-Do Lists, because I feel like I make them so often, I end up with all these sheets of paper all over. So we shall see. 

It’s only January, things are definitely going to change as we go along.

I’ve started to do like weekly to do lists, and goals, and also I think eventually I may try monthly. Let’s be real January is a total hangover month. I’m still on 2017 time, so everything is trial and error at this point for me.

And that’s totally okay, because you don’t need a new year, to make a change. I kind of feel like I implemented some new things into my life last year around fall time, because I felt inspired to do so with the new school year starting up again. So you can always renew, revamp, and reflect. There are no rules. 

Last year I said my “mantra word” was CHANGE, and ALOT changed around me, and I adapted and am continuing to do so, and although I feel I made some changes for myself too, I want to continue to grow and change on my own this year as well. However, I’m going to add another word to my mantra this year and that is DETERMINATION. There are certain things I want to do, that are big, BIG CHANGES I want to make in my life, and in order to do them, I’m going to need that fire, that determination. So I’m going to aim to up that factor in my life this year, because let’s be real, we all get in our lazy funks. It’s winter after all, and there’s a huge snow storm outside. So nothing says “it can wait til tomorrow…” more. But here I am trying to stick to my Monday/Thursday posting schedule anyway, while the tv is calling my name- waiting for me to catch up on all the shows I’ve missed over the past few weeks. Determination, Michelle, DETERMINATION.

Another thing I find that inspires me is looking up videos on YouTube. Some of those ladies make the most inspirational planning videos! And they just give you the pep you need to get planning.

I’ll link a few below, that I’ve watched this year for inspiration. I’ve definitely pulled from them when doing my planning.

I also like to have a visual to display so that I can see it. I never shared last years with you-(it was just a bunch of fun images with the word CHANGE), but after a while, it ended up getting buried in a corner of my room when I was reorganizing, but it’s back up and I’m going to add one near it to display images of my 2018 MAIN GOALS and the word DETERMINATION! 

vision board 2018

***

So to review the steps I use to plan:

Step 1: Reflect on the past year

Step 2: Review 2017 Goal List/Write a New One

Step 3: Narrow Goals Down (to the most important you want to focus on)

Step 4: Buy/Use a planner/To-Do List (to keep track of everything)

Step 5: Find inspiration (if you need help planning your goals)

Step 6: Choose your mantra word (the theme for your year)

Step 7: Create a vision board (to keep visible as a reminder of your goals for this year)

Step 8: Breathe & Believe in yourself ❤

MY MAIN BIG GOALS FOR 2018

*Get healthier- mentally/physically/emotionally

*Take the next step in my career

*Save money for my best friend’s wedding festivities!

*Get my permit/take driver’s ed (yes I know I’m way behind on this, in life- but hey I live in NY, technically- I don’t NEED to drive) 😉

*Work on relationships

*Self-publish a body of work (not on this blog, but elsewhere)

*Write my Pilot episode

Now that I have this locked down, I can go through and plan how to accomplish each one, step by step. I haven’t done that just yet, but…I will. The year is new, the year is young. 

Happy 2018! Now let’s crush it! ❤

Tell me how you plan for your year ahead in the comments below, and if you have any other YouTubers you find inspiring!

-<3-

*I do not take credit for the images used in my edit or otherwise.*

 

 

 

 

 

2017 Memory Jar Review

HAPPY NEW YEAR FRIENDS!!!

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As I reflect on 2017, sifting through my memory jar, my Instagram and my blog posts, I realize SO MUCH happened this year. At the start of the year I made a vision board that I framed. It was made of just cool funky colors and images to match my room, but it also had one main word in the center and that word was CHANGE. I wanted to change and work on so many things and I wanted to make that word my mantra. As someone who fears change, I wanted 2017 to be the year I embraced it. And even though I had my ups and downs, my tearful breakdowns, my stressed out moments, and I lost a very special person- My Grandma very early on in 2017, I still managed to make some incredible memories. 

I’d I have to say that I rose to the occasion and embraced change. I changed. And this year I’m hoping to continue to change. To better myself, my life, my relationships and my career.

So here are My 2017 Highlights.

(in no particular order-but categorized)

 

*FAMILY/FRIENDS* 

-I rung in 2017 with my dad’s side of the family- my parents, my cousins, my aunt, and my grandparents. We even got to skype my brother and sister in law who were on their honeymoon in Hawaii at the time. I dressed up, made glitter cups, ate fun finger foods, and lit up sparklers as we had an impromptu dance party outside. It was a blast. It was in fact the last Holiday I got to spend with my Grandmother before she passed in February. I’m glad my family got to have that time together. It was also a huge family reunion when she passed, family and friends from all over came to be together. Although such a sad time, it was beautiful to see how much love there is and how many people wanted to share in honoring her life. Read more about that journey HERE. 

-Many family dinners, my brother hosted a few holidays at his new house- memorial day, mother’s day, father’s day, Christmas 2017, and New Year’s! My mom also hosted a few family dinners too. A lot of time spent with my immediate family. ❤

-I became a Titi. (In Spanish it means Aunt.) My sister in law and brother found out they were expecting their first child, so we got to be apart of the baby kicks and all that, I even got to sit in on one of their sonogram visits! We were all there for the birth and for hospital visits and for her Welcome Home. We also got to be with her for her first Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year! She’s precious. I’m obsessed.

-My family/friends welcomed a few new babies- my cousin’s baby girl, my brother and sister in law’s baby (my niece!!!!), and one of my oldest friends- Kate’s baby boy. 

-I attended special occasions like, my little cousin’s first birthday- it was a mickey mouse clubhouse theme!, my best friend Roe’s engagement party (where I was asked to be one of her maid of honors), I also went for several bridesmaids dresses, and got to see both my best friend’s in their wedding dresses during their hunt for the perfect dress! Attended my other best friend Jenny’s shower, bachelorette party, rehearsal dinner and wedding, where I was her maid of honor and my other friend Kate’s wedding/baby shower and her wedding! 

-Took a Zumba class.

-I caught up with some friends I haven’t seen in a while! 

-Had a few girls nights/day in/out. Got to see my best friend Jenny’s new place. Had lunch with my mom and my best friend and her mom. Met up with a high school friend a few times, had some sushi and froyo with some work friends, and went to visit with old middle school friends. 

-I dragged my Aunt and my mom to the Mermaid Parade, in the rain and we ended up having a blast! Of course I dressed up! 

-I got to see my two little girl cousins in their Talent Show, my other boy cousin in his school play where he played Mufasa in Lion King Jr. and my God Daughter’s first dance recital!!! I love going to creative things like that, they are so inspirational. And I always end up tearing up. I love art!

-I read milk & honey.

-I went to the Polar Express again!

-My cousin moved back from Florida for a few months. So I got to see him, and it was nice because he hasn’t been home for that long in a long time. 

-Had a fun park day with my God daughter and her baby brother. 

-I spent the 4th of July at home with some family, we had food outside and then went on our roof to watch fireworks. 

-I got to treat my mom to another play- this time I took her to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and then I took her to Olive Garden. 

-My family and I went to this old neighborhood amusement park we used to go to as kids, and we played mini golf and I beat my brother! HA! 😉 

-Had a fun Beach Day with my mom, cousins, and Aunt. I only made it to the beach once that summer, but at least it was once!

*WORK*

-Started doing holiday/festive themed bulletin boards for my classes to display their Creative Writing work.

-My job hosted a Talent Show and my class did a skit called “School Struggles,” and they did so good! 

-I got a bunch of last day of Summer cards from kids I work with. The word around my co-workers was I got the most.  😉 I was kind of super flattered and I felt all warm and fuzzy inside! 🙂

-A few movie projects were completed by my kids in my Film Making class. 

-Chaperoned a few trips- one was to see Captain Underpants (which was surprisingly really entertaining!) at this really cool theater with reclining comfy seats, blankets, pillows and food service! The other was to the Museum of Moving Image which was really cool! We even got a special viewing of Moana. 

-My job hosted an end of the year carnival- with blowup rides, a photo booth, DJ, and a Taco truck…can you guys what was my favorite part—T-A-C-O!!!!

*BLOG*

michelleleighwrites turned 4 years old!!!! (it turns 5 next week!!!!)

-I finished the short story series- Welcome Home! (Start the series from the beginning by clicking the title.)

-Started a new short story series MOVE (will be continued this year).

-Also posted two themed shorts- one for Halloween entitled RED THIRST & and the other for Christmas entitled A Husband for Christmas.

-I did BLOGMAS! (and posted to social media regularly.) 

-Someone made “She Said” into a little video and sent me it, I found out it was also used as someone’s monologue. 

-I created social media accounts for MLW!

^(Accounts are linked in the BLOGMAS RECAP! post.)

*TELEVISION/NETFLIX/MOVIES*

-I fell in love with Hallmark’s  When Calls The Heart and #JACKANDELIZABETH

-I started watching Supergirl

Stranger Things & Fuller House released new seasons and they are killing the game!

-That’s So Raven got a Reboot- Raven’s Home– the nostalgia is real! Raven and Chelsea still crack me up!

Will & Grace got a Reboot as well, and they haven’t changed a bit!

-Got hooked on and binged Scream the TV series

-Also got hooked on Riverdale…and fell in love with a new ship- #BUGHEAD

-Bethany Joy Lenz was in a new film on Lifetime- Snowed Inn Christmas, and my best friend Roe and I watched it during our “Best Friend Christmas” tradition we have every year where we get together and exchange our gifts and watch a Christmas movie and drink hot chocolate and Sangria while munching on snacks. And let me tell you this movie was AWESOME! It had everything- Christmas magic, humor, romance, heart, a handsome guy, and our girl Joy! Duh? 😉

-I found a bunch of good movies on Netflix!

*MUSIC*

-Bruno Mars “24 K Magic” Album (songs rolled over into 2017)

-Ed Sheeran “Divide” Album

-Sam Smith “The Thrill of it All” Album

-New Selena Gomez Music

-Demi Lovato’s “Tell Me You Love Me” Album 

-TAYLOR SWIFT  “Reputation” ALBUM!!!!!! (And Music Videos)

*PERSONAL/PARTY PLANNING*

-I fell in love with lighting candles, and wearing big comfy sweaters, which if you know me I used to shy away from because scents and fear of overheating myself would cause my anxiety to spike. I know that sounds like a weird highlight, but for me it means that I’m able to manage my anxiety in a way I wasn’t able to before. And do things people normally don’t think twice about. 

-I had a pretty fun fall- a lot of fall vibes, went to a pumpkin patch and got my fall goodies, lit candles, bought festive soaps and décor. Watched a bunch of Halloween movies, I even ordered Halloweentown on DVD, (FINALLY!). 

-Mini When Calls The Heart Premiere Party!

-I hosted a PUMPKIN PARTY! (Which I always wanted to do!)

-Had a Stranger Things Premiere Party (post COMING SOON!)

-I had a really special moment in confession this year. Read more about it HERE.

-I sent my god daughter and her baby brother (my second cousins) and my niece my special hand made, Santa Letters. It’s a tradition I started with my God daughter when she was born. I write a letter to her from Santa and mail it. So I continued it for her brother and of course I had to start it for my new little niece! ❤

-I was given a few special gifts in honor of my new role as “Titi,” two t-shirts, a bracelet and an ornament.

-I celebrated My GOLDEN Birthday! #26OnThe26th 

-I had some fun fashion moments! Palazzo Pants 

-I baked my butt off for this holiday season- for Thanksgiving I made Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter cookies with Reese’s Pieces, and for Christmas I made Chocolate cake batter cookies with Peppermint kisses in the middle and then White cake mix cookies with Milk Chocolate kisses in the middle and I also made a Berry Crumble.

-I’m learning my limits, and when to say no. I’m a fixer, and I realize rationally I can’t fix what I can’t control. And in this life there is a whole lot we have no control over!

-I finished editing a bunch of VLOGS!

-I put my birthday gift-Ninja bullet to good use and started making smoothies!

-I continue to decorate and organize my room. 

-Last Summer, I died my hair BLUE! and now it’s like a green/teal. I have yet to post pics, but that’ll be a post COMING SOON! After the last wedding I’m in, in July, I’m thinking of doing another color next Summer…maybe purple? 😉

***

That was my year in review as you can see, A LOT HAPPENED. And after my family was hit with a major heartache and loss early in the year, it’s an amazing thing to say that for the most part 2017 was a really good year. Looking back on all these memories, I realize that so much change happened and I managed to get through it all and make the most of it- at least I tried in most cases. That doesn’t mean that it wasn’t hard, or scary, but I realized that a lot of the changes were good, happy things. And although they can come with stress too, I’m happy to say that I had so many good things to celebrate. I hope 2018 is just a celebratory for my friends and family but also for myself. 2017 was a lot about me showing up for other people, and although I don’t regret it, I realize I still didn’t get to do a lot of what I set out to do in 2017. So I hope to accomplish them in 2018. That doesn’t mean I won’t continue being there for my family and friends, it just means learning when to say no, and learning when to make myself a priority. Like Sophia Bush once yet,

“You are allowed to be both a masterpiece and a work in progress, simultaneously.” 

I wish you all a Happy, Healthy, 2018! May all your dreams for this year come true. Cheers! 

-<3-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BLOGMAS -Day 12- Snowed Inn Christmas

Hallmark is usually the place I go to get my Christmas love, fix. Romantic movies full of Christmas cheer. But since I no longer get the Hallmark Channel, I’ve turned to Lifetime. I love Hallmark way more, but this year Lifetime is stepping up their game. Their new Christmas Movie, stars one of my absolute favorites- Bethany Joy Lenz. And it looks adorable, I for one, can’t wait! 😀 (I may even do a Movie Review later on!)

lights blogmas edit

Movie description: Jenna Hudson (Bethany Joy Lenz, “Colony”) and Kevin Jenner (Andrew Walker, “A Bride for Christmas”) are polar opposites, working for the same online publication in New York City. With both having nowhere they want to be for Christmas, they volunteer for a special writing assignment. After a snowstorm forces their plane to land in none other than Santa Claus, Indiana, the two are placed in a Christmas Wonderland and the focus of their story shifts to saving the historic town inn run by Carol and Christopher Winters. As the two overcome their differences, they also rediscover the magic of Christmas. But with the inn’s fate in jeopardy and the return of someone from Jenna’s past, Carol and Christopher lend a helping hand to bring Jenna and Kevin together. The film also stars Tasha Smith. 

Check out the trailer:

Joy and her oh so handsome co-star Andrew Walker even filmed a little music video performing a duet to promote the movie. Take a look- It’s perfect! Joy is really in her element with the polka dot dress and the bluesy song. 

 

“Snowed Inn Christmas” Premieres this Saturday, December 16th @ 8pm.

Follow Joy on instagram @joylenz to catch behind the scenes sneak peeks all week!

 

-<3-

 

 

Taylor Swift’s Reputation Review

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I know I’m seriously late to the T-Swift first listen party, but I’ve been waiting to get to purchase a physical copy of the album, and today I got my butt to Target and finally did!

For starters the packaging is beautiful. I love the black and white, newspaper vibe. If you’ve noticed I’m a big fan of using the color scheme black, white, and red when I write my short stories. So I think the packaging is really sleek and chic. When you open the CD, there is a autographed double sided poster of Taylor, and then the CD booklet has LYRICS! I love when they put the lyrics in. I’m such a lyric junkie and this just makes life easier, having them right there in front of me.

**My current favorites include- End Game, Delicate, King Of My Heart, Dancing With Our Hands Tied, and Dress**

The first thing you see in the CD booklet is a note from Taylor herself the headline reads- “Here’s something I’ve learned about people.” In it she talks about how people have many different sides, angles, and feelings. As humans we can’t “simplify” ourselves into just one thing. When we feel emotion it comes in few. She also talks about how you have different relationships in life, and each of those relationships holds something different within you- your lover knows you differently than your best friend. And vice versa. Your mom knows you differently than your roommate, and so on. She also touches upon, how in this generation technology has made it easy for your every move to be documented, but that “we think we know someone, but the truth is that we only know the version of them they have chosen to show us.” And I think all of this is completely on point. And there is a sure relatability to her words. She also concludes with stating how fame has been both beautiful and used against her. How she knows gossip blogs will take her lyrics and run with them, but that “There will be no further explanation. There will just be reputation.” In other words, I think she’ll let the music do the talking. 

Notes Upon Listening: Girl knows how to write a damn chorus! She has this way of using colors, metaphors, and vivid images and displaying them through her words. I definitely saw a lot of gold, blue, red, black, grey colors mentioned to describe a certain feeling. With a 15 song set list, this is one sick body of work. Taylor Swift, as usual,  honey you never disappoint. And can I just say that she sounds AMAZING in this record! She hits some notes, tho! 😉

…Ready for it? 

*End Game [Feat. Future & Ed Sheeran] *A Favorite!

I have to say when I first saw Future and Ed were both featured, I was like what, huh? How’s this going to work? But then I remembered Ed can rap too. And it’s DOPE! I love the theme of the song, I wanna be your end game. End game, your “it”, your “the one.” The one you start and end all your days with. Your forever. 

Fav Lyrics:

[Taylor Swift & Future:]
I don’t wanna touch you, I don’t wanna be
Just another ex-love you don’t wanna see
I don’t wanna miss you (I don’t wanna miss you)
Like the other girls do
I don’t wanna hurt you, I just wanna be
Drinking on a beach with you all over me
I know what they all say (I know what they all say)
But I ain’t tryna play

[Taylor Swift:]
I wanna be your end game
I wanna be your first string
I wanna be your A-Team
I wanna be your end game, end game

I hit you like bang
We tried to forget it, but we just couldn’t
And I bury hatchets, but I keep maps of where I put ’em
Reputation precedes me, they told you I’m crazy
I swear I don’t love the drama, it loves me

And I can’t let you go, your hand prints on my soul
It’s like your eyes are liquor, it’s like your body is gold
You’ve been calling my bluff on all my usual tricks
So here’s a truth from my red lips

I Did Something Bad

I love the rumble right before the chorus. And that weird chant-like thing. So cool. This song is kind of an in your face, song. (Many on this record are, but I dig it!) I feel like she’s kind of just like I did this bad thing, it felt good, because your ass deserved it. Bye Boy! 😉  

Fav Lyrics:

I can feel the flames on my skin
Crimson red paint on my lips
If a man talks shit, then I owe him nothing
I don’t regret it one bit, ’cause he had it coming

They’re burning all the witches, even if you aren’t one
They got their pitchforks and proof, their receipts and reasons
They’re burning all the witches, even if you aren’t one
So light me up (light me up), light me up (light me up)
Light me up, go ahead and light me up (light me up)
Light me up (light me up), light me up (light me up)
Light me up (light me up), light me up

Don’t Blame Me

Girl hints some notes in this track! (@3:07)

Fav Lyrics:

Don’t blame me, love made me crazy
If it doesn’t, you ain’t doing it right
Lord, save me, my drug is my baby
I’ll be using for the rest of my life

My name is whatever you decide
And I’m just gonna call you mine
I’m insane, but I’m your baby (your baby)
Echoes of your name inside my mind
Halo, hiding my obsession
I once was poison ivy, but now I’m your daisy

And baby, for you, I would fall from grace
Just to touch your face
If you walk away
I’d beg you on my knees to stay

*Delicate *An Absolute Favorite!

Getting some Imogen Heap vibes, and I am here for it!

Fav Lyrics:

I can’t even decide. I love every lyric in this song! But I’ll try… 😉

This ain’t for the best
My reputation’s never been worse, so
You must like me for me…
We can’t make
Any promises now, can we, babe?
But you can make me a drink…

Dive bar on the east side, where you at?
Phone lights up my nightstand in the black
Come here, you can meet me in the back
Dark jeans and your Nikes, look at you
Oh damn, never seen that color blue
Just think of the fun things we could do

Third floor on the west side, me and you
Handsome, you’re a mansion with a view
Do the girls back home touch you like I do?
Long night, with your hands up in my hair
Echoes of your footsteps on the stairs
Stay here, honey, I don’t wanna share

Sometimes I wonder when you sleep
Are you ever dreaming of me?
Sometimes when I look into your eyes
I pretend you’re mine, all the damn time
‘Cause I like you

Look What You Made Me Do

So It Goes…

Fav Lyrics:

Gold cage, hostage to my feelings
Back against the wall
Trippin’, trip, trippin’ when you’re gone

And our pieces fall
Right into place
Get caught up in the moments
Lipstick on your face
So it goes…
I’m yours to keep
And I’m yours to lose
You know I’m not a bad girl, but I
Do bad things with you
So it goes…

Met you in a bar
All eyes on me, your illusionist
All eyes on us
I make all your grey days clear and
Wear you like a necklace
I’m so chill, but you make me jealous
But I got your heart
Skippin’, skip, skippin’ when I’m gone

You did a number on me
But, honestly, baby, who’s counting?
I did a number on you
But, honestly, baby, who’s counting?

Gorgeous

Whisky on ice, Sunset and Vine
You’ve ruined my life, by not being mine

You’re so gorgeous
I can’t say anything to your face
‘Cause look at your face
And I’m so furious
At you for making me feel this way
But what can I say?
You’re gorgeous

Ocean blue eyes looking in mine
I feel like I might sink and drown and die

Getaway Car (Yes I peeped that Hilary Duff Lyric, but I love both queens, so #NOHATE)

Fav Lyrics:

It was the best of times, the worst of crimes
I struck a match and blew your mind
But I didn’t mean it
And you didn’t see it
The ties were black, the lies were white
In shades of gray in candlelight
I wanted to leave him
I needed a reason

*King Of My Heart  *A Favorite!

YESSS with them tribal drum beats, this song has some serious soul!

Fav Lyrics:

Now you try on calling me, baby, like trying on clothes

Salute to me I’m your American Queen
And you move to me like I’m a Motown beat
And we rule the kingdom inside my room
‘Cause all the boys and their expensive cars
With their Range Rovers and their Jaguars
Never took me quite where you do

And all at once, you are the one I have been waiting for
King of my heart, body and soul, ooh whoa
And all at once, you are all I want, I’ll never let you go
King of my heart, body and soul, ooh whoa

*Dancing With Our Hands Tied  *An Absolute Favorite!

This song is a dance anthem. If I make it to one of her concerts, I can just see myself dancing my ass off to this song, singing my lungs out! That beep drop! 

Fav Lyrics:

I, I loved you in secret
First sight, yeah, we love without reason
Oh, 25 years old
Oh, how were you to know and

My, my love had been frozen
Deep blue, but you painted me golden
Oh, and you held me close
Oh, how was I to know what

I could’ve spent forever with your hands in my pockets
Picture of your face in an invisible locket
You said there was nothing in the world that could stop it
I had a bad feeling
And darling, you had turned my bed into a sacred oasis
People started talking, putting us through our paces
I knew there was no one in the world who could take it
I had a bad feeling

But we were dancing
Dancing with our hands tied, hands tied
Yeah, we were dancing
Like it was the first time, first time
Yeah, we were dancing
Dancing with our hands tied, hands tied
Yeah, we were dancing
And I had a bad feeling
But we were dancing

I’m a mess, but I’m the mess that you wanted
Oh, ’cause it’s gravity
Oh, keeping you with me

(^Michelle why don’t you just post the whole damn song!… haha)

*Dress  *A Favorite!

Sexyyyy!!! Such a great song. 

Fav Lyrics:

There is an indentation
In the shape of you
Made your mark on me
A golden tattoo
All of this silence and patience, pining and anticipation
My hands are shaking from holding back from you (ah, ah, ah)
All of this silence and patience, pining and desperately waiting
My hands are shaking from all this (ha, ha, ha, ha)

Say my name and everything just stops
I don’t want you like a best friend
Only bought this dress so you could take it off, take it off (ha, ha, ha)
Carve your name into my bedpost
Cause I don’t want you like a best friend
Only bought this dress so you could take it off, take it off (ha, ha, ha)

This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things 

Getting a bit of a Lorde vibe here! #Royalssss This song is a toast to ex- friends. That laugh tho!

Fav Lyrics:

Here’s a toast to my real friends
They don’t care about that he said, she said
And here’s to my baby
He ain’t reading what they call me lately
And here’s to my momma
Had to listen to all this drama
And here’s to you
‘Cause forgiveness is a nice thing to do
Haha, I can’t even say it with a straight face

Call It What You Want

This song is beautiful. She talks about falling in love with someone who knows her for her and loves her as she is.

Fav Lyrics:

All my flowers grew back as thorns
Windows boarded up after the storm
He built a fire just to keep me warm
All the drama queens taking swings
All the jokers dressing up as kings
They fade to nothing when I look at him
And I know I make the same mistakes every time
Bridges burn, I never learn
At least I did one thing right
I did one thing right
I’m laughing with my lover
Making forts under covers
Trust him like a brother
Yeah, you know I did one thing right
Starry eyes sparking up my darkest night

I want to wear his initial on a chain round my neck
Chain round my neck
Not because he owns me
But ’cause he really knows me
Which is more than they can say, I
I recall late November, holding my breath
Slowly I said, “You don’t need to save me
But would you run away with me?”

New Year’s Day

This is the perfect song to end her album with. A look at the year gone by, full of heart, and full of hope. 

Fav Lyrics:

Don’t read the last page
But I stay when it’s hard, or it’s wrong
Or we’re making mistakes
I want your midnights
But I’ll be cleaning up bottles with you on New Year’s Day

Hold on to the memories, they will hold on to you
Hold on to the memories, they will hold on to you
Hold on to the memories, they will hold on to you
And I will hold on to you

Please don’t ever become a stranger
Whose laugh I could recognize anywhere
Please don’t ever become a stranger
Whose laugh I could recognize anywhere

**Read all full lyrics HERE!

Bravo T-Swift! Taylor Swift is an incredible song writer, yes- but she is also a smart business woman. Her marketing strategy- I don’t give a f- attitude has placed this album in a new league. However she still has her true Taylor heart, writing songs about true emotion, and creating her own world for you to live in for an hour. A Taylor Town if you will. She comes at us with a range of sounds, emotions, and life lessons. Anger, Betrayal, Love, Lust, the list goes on.

As I make reference back to her opening statement in her booklet, she says, “We are never just good or just bad. We are mosaics of our worst selves and our best selves.”  We aren’t meant to be boxed in. And this album shows that Taylor Swift can be anything, and do anything she puts her mind to. Just like you. In many ways she’s quite the role model. Not because she writes vengeful tracks about ex- lovers and ex-friends, or because she has choppy layers now, and wears black eyeliner, and dark red lips, but because she seems to be highly aware of her humanity, and she is highly self- aware as a human being. It can be a scary thing, reflecting on your reputation, and yet she managed to take the good, the bad, and the ugly, and wrap it all up into one big ass blockbuster bow.  

Looking forward to all the new things! Get it girl!

*I do not take credit for the image used.*

-<3-

Found Poetry

As a “teacher” I am always trying to find new and creative ways to encourage students to write. At my job one of the activities I teach is Creative Writing. This past week, I took a suggestion from one of my colleagues, and tried found poetry with them.

Found Poetry is a type of poetry created by taking words, phrases, and sometimes whole passages from other sources and reframing them as poetry by making changes in spacing and lines, or by adding or deleting text, thus imparting new meaning.

I did a listening version of this with them, as I read aloud-Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart” students were asked make a list of all the words they heard that jumped out to them. From that list, students then wrote their own “found poems,” and we shared them. 

After seeing how well it worked, I decided to give it a try myself. It was interesting to see how some students kept in the same darker theme of the story, while others went a whole different almost uplifting route. It’s amazing where the mind can go, and how simple things can spark creativity.

Here is a link to Edgar Allan Poe’s The Tell-Tale Heart

tumblr_ml016gU2QO1s90aajo1_500

My list of words I gathered included; Heart, ill, control, mad, powerful, heaven, hell, sounds, Listen!, reason, loved, hurt, money, vulture, terrible, dies, animal, cold, blood, warm, friendly, evil, clock, careful, door, success, afraid, dreaming, blue, ice, strong, louder, painful, silence, dark, anger, fear, beating, stone, trouble, quiet, hear, stop, suffering, playing, game, smiles. [47 words chosen]

My Found Poem: [32 words used]

Clocks ticking everywhere

You can hear

We give time so much power

It’s a mad little game we play

that steals away our smiles

Listen!

to the sounds of dreaming

Listen!

to your heart-beating

Reason deep within and strong

Terrible fear takes away control

Quiet trouble no one knows

Silence

Anger

Fear of failure

Dreamful heaven turning ice blue

Has hell frozen over

Money Money 

Ill like a vulture

Closed door

Careful not to forget

Open windows instead

Stone heart

thaw away

Smile your way to success

 

-<3-

*I do not take credit for the concept of found poetry, nor Mr. Poe’s literary work I used as inspiration, nor the image used.*