Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Hello February | Recently



A month into 2017 already! Time has flown (and seems to have left Summer behind, we've had 3 really hot days so far).

University starts this month, it's 20 days away. I'm so, so excited. I'm ready to meet people, learn new things, push myself further than I ever have before. Because I'm me, I'm even looking forward to being steamrolled by essays and tests and whatever else my lecturers want to throw at me. I have almost all my textbooks, which are wonderfully heavy.

In January, I spent about 24 hours in a sort of creative mode. I painted just over 20 little watercolors, and then mailed them (with notes on the back) to whoever wanted one. It was a really gratifying experience for me, because it made me think about why I appreciate my friends, and their response was lovely.


I saw Moana, which was really cool. As a New Zealander, and someone who feels connected to the sea, it was a story I really understood. I've also been watching A Series of Unfortunate Events, which will never be the same as the movie, but it's still pretty cool. With the fam, I've been watching The Killing, which is a pretty gritty show, but it's really well done.

My best friend and I are really pushing ourselves to be more active, with positive things like "we're doing better than everyone on the couch". We've started going to pilates once a week, which is a harder workout than it sounds, and going for a walk lasting a few hours each Saturday. A redeeming factor about where I live is the number of walks, and bush walks, varying in difficulty.


The biggest thing for me in January was getting my tattoo (and turning 18, I guess). It's only been there for 3 weeks, but I can't imagine ever not having it. The first week it sort of gave me a fright when I saw it - like, hey, I'm still here! But now every time I look at it it's worth everything to me. My tattoo and my greenstone have begun to tie who I am together, as they both mean and represent who I am and want to be.

While we were on holiday (which we returned from at the start of January), my parents bought me a greenstone necklace as a gift. We went to a place where a man found and carved his own stone and I picked one out. He then carved a representation of my family into it. The idea behind a greenstone is that it is a gift to you, and it carries the mana (the force in a person, their honour and spirit) of the wearers before you. It is a stone that lasts for generations and is passed from family member to family member, linking them to each other always. I am the first in our family to own one, and so it is not possible for that to be followed, but each member of my family wore the stone for a night.


This month I'm going out to do field work! I'm going with a group up north to some native bush, where we're going to help a scientist take samples from native bats. It's the sort of biology that you don't get in the classroom, and it's something I'm interested in. While I love learning the theory and bigger picture of biology, to be out, having some part in it, is super cool.

I've been working at my poetry which is way harder than I thought it would be. One poem in particular I have worked over and over, but it still isn't right. It's a different challenge from a novel, and one I'm enjoying. I also set my Goodreads challenge pretty low, and the amount of stress it's taken off me is amazing. I'm not reading to get a head start on a goal, I'm reading because I feel like it.


Wow, what a long wrap up post! What did you get up to in January? Did time fly for you? What sort of project are you working on? Do you have a necklace or something that means a lot to you? How do you stay active? Do you enjoy "book learning" or "practical learning"? Do you have a reading goal this year? What books did you read?
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Opal is sad that some of her friends are leaving for different universities this month. 

15 comments:

  1. Ahh, that's so cool that you got a tattoo! I love the idea of it -- having something mean so much to you to put it on your skin permanently. Maybe someday I'll get one, but right now I change my mind too much for my own good. xD

    katie grace
    a writer's faith

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    1. Thank you! It took a lot of thinking :)

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  2. JANUARY IS OVER I KNOW AHHH haha
    But it is pretty crazy to see how fast the time flies! So far this year I haven't gotten anything major done, (well, a few I guess. I finished painting my room) so I'm hoping that February will be a little less busier so I can focus on other things. I loved the pictures in this post!

    -autumn
    autumn's readings + writings

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    1. I KNOW!! Painting your room sounds major! :)

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  3. congratulations!! and that bit about the greenstone necklace was so interesting :)

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    1. Thanks! I'm so glad to hear that - I'm super interested in Maori culture in general, and I'm always like "am I going on to much?? Is this boring??"

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  4. MOANA WAS FREAKING AMAZING. I watched it in December (I was about to say last month-whoops!) and it was sooooo good. I really like the idea of a greenstone necklaces. My parents gave each other one when they got married, carved with things they thought represented them, but then I think at some point they lost/broke them. I got one when I got baptised, and I really liked it, but then it broke (which is really sad).
    Also I'm so jealous that you get to study bats! I want to study biology, and I've done very little practical stuff. Anyway, happy February!

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    1. YES. YES IT WAS. That is so cool!! Mine is supposed to last a lifetime, but eventually the rope will have to be replaced. I never take it off, so hopefully I don't lose it!

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  5. I also loved Moana! I spent January in my snowy town then went to hot South Indi to an old french colony, and there was sea and one of my best friends who I hardly ever get to see and I read a lot. Your tattoo is really cool, I'm glad you liked it. I'm currently gearing up for my last 4 months of high school. And you reminded me that I really need to do some painting! (I suck, but I really love it)

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    1. YUUS. That sounds so cool! Painting is for all of us, good or not (I'm not good at it either).

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  6. The month really did fly! My Goodreads goal is 55 books. I read The Kill Order, See if I Care, One, Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, Ruin and Rising and Nothing Tastes as Good.

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    1. Nice! Which one did you like best?

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  7. Moana was SO GOOD. Oh my goodness. I bawled watching the movie (one of the downsides of being an empathetic center). A greenstone necklace idea sounds so cool! I hate jewelry, but whoever inherits it after you is pretty lucky. xD

    xoxo Morning

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    1. YESSS. Honestly, I was pretty close to tears in the theatre as well. Thank you :)

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  8. Wooow. Do the months go by quickly. It's awesome that you get to pursue the things you love, and I hope that difficult poem works out in the end. The greenstone sounds interesting! I love the idea of something lasting across generations. Green also seems fitting for your blog's theme. :')

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