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Joy’s Journal 2-23

My cousins Elli and Ana were staying with us for a week. They were very understanding, and did a lot to cheer me up. They didn’t blame me for my mistakes, something that it felt like everyone else did, especially me.

Elli was a few years older than me, but she didn’t treat me like I was an immature little kid.

I think she realized, that with all I’ve been through, I’m NOT an immature little kid. I’ve changed a lot during these past few years.

crayons now my dear

Elli would come hang out in my room sometimes, even if I wasn’t willing to talk, just to be there. We usually did talk though.

And now she is wearing a scruncie on her head

Elli and I had these long talks, about anything and everything. We talked about lamas, food, illness, the future, how crayons are made, everything.

A hamburger now

I remember one day Elli put a tray of food in front of me, then sat down to talk.

And now it's not ana

After a few minutes Elli commented on the food that I hadn’t eaten. “Is anything, wrong, or are you just not hungry?”

“I’m just not hungry.”

We sat in silence for a few seconds, and then I said something I’d thought I would never say.

“What if I don’t get better Elli? What if I’m like this forever? I ruined everything. If only I’d taken care of myself? Would things be different now.”

Elli took so long to respond that I thought she wasn’t going to.

At last, she started to talk. “I think,” She said slowly, “That everyone makes mistakes. And some of them are bigger than others, some of them have more consequences than others, some of them are more life changing than others. And you can’t change what you have done, no matter how hard you try, you can only learn from it.  I know it’s hard right now, but you will adjust, and, though it make take a long time, you will learn to forgive yourself. Don’t hate yourself for this Joy. Everyone makes mistakes.”

Ana is the best

And then there was Ana. She was several years younger than me, but she loved to hang out with me.

I know she looked up to me, and though that was cool, I didn’t want her to look up to me, a person who had messed everything up with a few big mistakes.

One time I told her this, but she just said “I know that you did some mistakes. I like that you are so brave and cheerful through all of this.”

Colored pencils my dear

Sometimes Ana brought in her treasured colored pencils, and we would draw.

Ana had the most unique, innocent outlook on things, and she was a very cheerful little girl.

I was still stuck in bed, but having my cousins there helped a lot. They gave me something I hadn’t had in a long time.

Hope.

Lexie

Joy’s Journal 2-22

If you want to read the last part.

I was having a really hard day. I was feeling kind of hopeless about getting better, my stack of schoolwork was probably taller than I was, and I felt alone. 

From it’s spot, my laptop started ringing, a video call alert from Savana.

I didn’t really feel like talking to her, but I didn’t want to disappoint Savana.Laptopyop.

The laptop beeped, and we were connected. Savana had moved into a room with Callie, and it was the same as ours, but flipped.

“Hey Savana.” 

We talked for a few minutes, but I wasn’t very enthusiastic. I answered her questions, but she was the one leading the conversations.

Finally Savana noticed something was off.

“What’s wrong Joy? You don’t seem much like yourself.”

I sighed. “Do you think it’s easy to act like yourself when you are stuck in the same room for days?”

“I didn’t mean it like that Joy.”

“How did you mean it then?”

This is not a watch

“I.” She stopped.  “I don’t know. I guess I meant that it seemed like something was wrong.”

“Of course there is something wrong.” I started to explain about how I was feeling, but then stopped.

“Go on?”

“You wouldn’t understand.” I told her.

“Try me?”

“You wouldn’t understand Savana. No one does. They can’t. You can’t understand how hard it is to be stuck in bed, and for it to be all your fault.”

“Joy, I-”

Yup

But I cut her off. “You can’t understand Savana. You have been having fun with your friends, having the time of your life. You are probably glad that I’m not here, probably enjoying your time with Callie!”

“Joy.”

“Even when I was there, all you talked about was Callie, Callie, Callie.”

“That’s not true!” Savana’s voice was starting to rise now. “You spent all your time with the ‘popular group’ You refused every invitation of mine. I TRIED.”

“But-”

“Look, this is hard for me too, okay?”

“You? You have absolutely nothing to feel bad about. You have everything perfect right now.”

“No. I don’t.”

Oops

I heard a clunk as Savana’s tablet hit the floor, and then my screen went black too.

Joy is tired

 

Later in the day, I was trying to take a nap, to forget all that had happened, but it wasn’t really working.

CUPCAKES

 

Mom came into my room. “Hey Joy, want a cupcake?”

“Nah.”

Being a good cupcake

Mom set the cupcake on my dresser and sat down. “What’s wrong Joy?”

“What do you mean?”

“Something is obviously wrong.”

I sighed. “I had an argument with Savana.”

“Hmmm.”

“She doesn’t understand.”

“You know, this has been hard on her too Joy.”

“Her? But I’m the one who has lost everything!”

“Yes, and she couldn’t do anything to stop it. And I’m sure she misses you.”

I didn’t say anything. It was a lot to think about.

The timer beeped, and Mom got up to leave.

“But what do I do?”

turning back

Just before she left, Mom stopped. “You could try talking to her.”

I took a deep breath and pushed the video call button. It rang fourteen times before she finally accepted.

Yay except boo

For the first few seconds we just stared at each other.

Then I started talking.

“I’m so sorry Savana. I know you didn’t do anything wrong. I was jealous of you and Callie, and I thought you didn’t want to be my friend anymore.” I was desperately hoping that she would assure me that she did still want to be my friend, but I wasn’t expecting it.

“Of course I still want to be your friend Joy!” I guess I needn’t have worried. “When you left I felt so bad, like it was my fault you had to go home. Callie helped assure me that it wasn’t my fault, and I needed a friend after you left. And,” she admitted quietly, “I was jealous of you also.”

“Me? What in my life could possibly be worth wanting?”

Savana and her computer

“For awhile you seemed to have it all. You had a big group of friends that you hung out with all the time, and you didn’t seem to need me anymore. You refused every invitation of mine.”

It came upon me, that I had, in fact, refused all her invitations. It wasn’t because I was trying to hurt her, it was because I was too sick to enjoy them.

a couch and a computer

“This has been hard for me too, Joy. You were always my friend, and then you left. Now you are stuck at home, and I’m stuck here. It’s hard.”

“I’m so sorry Savana.”

“I am too.”

 

savananana

“I have to go now.” Savana said. “But if you ever need to talk to me, I’ll be here.”

“Same for you, okay?”

Lexie

 

Joy’s Journal 2-21

This is the part I posted last.

This part doesn’t have any pictures, just words, because I don’t have any pictures for this part, and I don’t have a way to take some.

After that after hike, after I told, I went home. It wasn’t my choice, and I didn’t want to, but everyone decided that it was for the better. 

At this point I was so sick I didn’t really care. I had wanted to go home the whole time, but was too scared to say anything.

“But what about Mom?” I had asked Ellen.

“She’s getting better, and she wanted you to come home.”

So I did.

I took all my school stuff home, and communicated with my teachers to get the assignments and turn them in.

After like a week of doing almost nothing but sleeping and being bored, I started my schoolwork. I had to back up a lot to understand everything that I hadn’t really done before.

It was frustrating. There was so MUCH of it, things I didn’t care about, things I didn’t want to do.

I just didn’t have the motivation to do it. What was the point if I wasn’t ever going to get better. When would I use it? Would I ever get better? Would I be stuck in this bed for the rest of my life? Even if I did get better, would the better be worse than how I was before all this?

I didn’t tell anyone, and my schoolwork just heaped higher and higher, and with no one to help me do it, I don’t think I ever even ended up doing it all.

Savana and I spent a lot of time talking through the internet. She didn’t understand why I came home. Sometimes I felt like she thought I was lying about being so sick, and that I really just wanted to get away from her.

It wasn’t true, but I didn’t know how to tell her that.

 

All these things piled up on top of me, and made it hard to focus on school, letting alone getting better.

I was trying to believe I would get better, but it was hard.

Lexie

Joy’s Journal 2-20

Here’s the link to the most recent part.

It was the end of the year, and finally warm enough to spend time outside. So we had an “educational” hike thing. It was required, but I probably could have gotten out of it if I wanted to. And I wanted to, but I couldn’t bring myself to say anything. So I went on the hike.

Joy Is Silent.png

Savana and Callie joined forces, but I was left behind. I was last to get to the clearing we stopped at for a break. There were people scattered everywhere, teachers, kids, Callie and Savana on a log, but I felt so alone.

Joy Isn't Paying Attention

Not long after I sat down on the grass, some teacher appeared. She was talking, but I was hardly paying attention.

“Joy? Did you hear me?”

“Huh? Oh, yeah, sorry. I heard you.” But I had no idea what she said.

“Go sit with your friends, okay?”

“Okay.”

I really didn’t want to, but I got up and joined Callie and Savana on a log.

Joy Is Not talking

“Oh, hey Joy.” Savana acknowledged me, but kept talking to Callie. I didn’t pay attention to them.

Callie and Savana looked so put together, so cute. Me? I was wearing clean clothes for once, quite an accomplishment, having to do my own laundry. I felt so out of place beside them. They chattered on, and I listened, but didn’t say anything. I’m not sure they even noticed I was there.

I was tired and didn’t want to walk, but I wanted the break to be over, I wanted to get away, to be alone with my thoughts.

Joy Is Left Behind

And finally it was, and we moved on. I lagged behind the others, going slower and slower. I was lost in thought, not even realizing that I was alone till I came into a fork in the trail and didn’t know which way to go.

I picked one, but it must have been wrong because I didn’t come across anyone.
Joy Is Just Here

Eventually I gave up, and sat down in the grass, realizing I was lost, but not really caring. I knew how to get back to the school, I just didn’t have the energy to do it.

Joy Is Found

I didn’t think anyone had noticed I was gone, but later-minutes or hours, I don’t know-Ellen showed up.

“There you are! We were so worried!”

Joy Is Annoyed

Ellen sat down next to me. “What happened?”

I shrugged. “I got lost.”

“Why were you so far behind everyone?”

“Tired.”

“You didn’t have to come, you know. You should have stayed and rested.”

“It doesn’t matter.”

“Yes it does Joy. I don’t want you to get sick.”

Joy Is Screaming

And then I lost it. I don’t remember standing up, or raising my voice, but I was on my feet screaming at her. “You wouldn’t care if I got sick. No one does. People only get mad at me when I stay and rest, so I had to come. You don’t understand.”

Joy Is Leaving

As tired as I was, as much as I didn’t want to move, I got up and walked away.

I heard Ellen call my name, but she didn’t run after me. She let me walk away.

Joy Is Alone

I leaned against a tree and sat down. For the next few minutes I didn’t care, I didn’t think, I was just there. Like always, but this time I was truly alone.

Joy Is Not Alone Anymore

After a few minutes I saw Ellen standing over me. I don’t know how long she was there. I didn’t say anything, I didn’t look at her, but when she asked if she could sit next to me, I nodded.

Joy Is Talking

We sat in silence for a few minutes. And then I began to talk. I don’t know what I said, but I remember pouring out everything, and I mean EVERYTHING.

And then I was silent again. Ellen asked some questions, but I only nodded, or shook my head, or shrugged.

“Let’s go back to school.”

I nodded.

“Can I have a hug?”

I  started to get up to give her a hug out of instinct, but stopped. She asked again, and I shook my head. I had realized that I could say no. It was probably the second time I had done that in my whole life, but I wasn’t ready.

I got up and started walking toward camp.

Joy Is Okay

Ellen joined me, but we didn’t say anything.

We just walked back to school.

Together.

Lexie

Joy’s Journal 2-19

The link to the last part 

Finally, finally, One of my teachers figured out something was wrong. I’m not entirely sure how. I was trying really hard to act normal and not show how bad I felt. But they must have thought something was wrong, so they sent me to the nurse.  

Ellen

Ellen was doing stuff in her office, obviously not expecting me. She was very ingrained in whatever it was she was doing and didn’t notice when I walked in. I stood there for a moment, thinking.

I went to the nurse’s office. That’s all they told me to do. If I left before she noticed me, I would have gone to the nurse’s office, but not have to talk to Ellen.

Joy is talking to Ellen

But as I turned to leave, Ellen noticed that I was there and turned around.

“Joy! What’s wrong?” Ellen asked with concern. 

Joy and Ellen

I hopped up onto the bed. “I’m fine.”

“Then why are you here during classes?”

“Um…We are doing hearing tests apparently, and I was supposed to be first….” I trailed off. It was a lousy excuse, but I couldn’t think of anything better.”

“Oh, well, your teacher must be mistaken. No hearing tests today. But while you are here, how are you doing?”

“Good.” I fibbed.

“Are you getting enough rest?”

I know she was asking if multiple things, not just what she said, but also if I was caring about myself.

“Yes.”

I tried to convince myself that because I was getting enough sleep, I wasn’t lying, but I knew I was, and that I should tell the truth, but I couldn’t do it. What would I even say. I wanted so badly for someone to know, but it would only make things worse. At least she didn’t know I was lying.

Looking back on that day, I realize that she probably knew I was lying, but decided that if I didn’t want to talk I wasn’t going to talk, and I’d talk when I was ready.

“Well then, I’d better get back to class.” I wanted to get out of there before she started asking questions I couldn’t answer.

“Yes, yes, you probably should. Have a good day Joy!”

And so I walked away.

Lexie

Luciana Out Of This World

Image result for Luciana out of this world

*This post, while I tried not to put spoilers, does give away a lot of the story*

This book came in the mail today. I was so excited, I took the book and read it right away. It was just as good as the first two, maybe better. I love that these books explore things that are unusual in books for girls that age, such as science and space, but also have morals that many people can relate to, such as friendship, working together, and thinking before you act.

I didn’t realize there was going to be a third Luciana book, let alone that it was out yet. I hadn’t heard anything about it, but when my mom asked if I wanted any books from Scholastic it was listed on the page, so we bought it.

It’s not available on the American Girl website yet, but you can get it from Scholastic, Amazon, and probably a few other places.

I’ll review the other two books eventually, I LOVED them both, but I wanted to share with you this amazing book.

The book starts with Luciana going to visit her family in Chile for winter break. She is so excited to visit her four cousins the same age as her, but when she gets there they don’t seem excited for her to be there. They are all good friends, and Luciana thinks that they don’t need or want her as part of “Los Cuatro” the four.

Claire, a girl from the training camp Luciana went to last summer, not a girl that Luci is really friends with, is also in Chile. Her scientist dad is doing studies in the dessert, and had to drag Claire along because there was no one to take care of her. So Claire invites Luciana to come with her to the dessert. 

It would be a great opportunity for Luci, she would get to meet real space scientists, sleep in a Mars habitat, and maybe even do some tests of her own!

But Luciana doesn’t really trust Claire, after some events that happened last summer. Some really scary, life threatening events. Luci still has nightmares about these things, is scared of things because of what happened. Besides, she believes her mission is here with her cousins, to just be with her family. Luci turns down the invitation without even asking.

But when things between her and her cousins get worse, and she doesn’t feel connected at all, she feels bad that she turned the opportunity down. It would be an amazing experience, and maybe she would have more fun with Claire then with her cousins.

So she talks to her parents, and they are skeptical of Claire, after what she did last summer. They are also worried about the aftershocks of an earthquake, An earthquake in that makes her grandparents’ house unstable, unsafe to live in. But Luci convinces her parents that Claire has changed, and that no aftershock will come. And her parents let her go.

Claire is nice to Luciana the whole way to the dessert, and Luci believes that Claire really has changed. But when Claire’s dad has to go to a meeting instead of taking the girls to see the geysers Claire turns into the same girl Luci knew before.

Luciana talks Claire into going with the other scientists to take samples of the dirt, but Claire won’t talk to her the whole way there or back, a total of four hours. And when Luci accidentally ruins all the samples and the scientists have to go back Luci is left alone with Claire.

They are in bed when disaster comes. Claire helps Luciana, but then runs off into the dessert when Luci needs her most. Luci begs Claire not to leave, afraid she has abandoned her again, but Claire comes back and saves the day.

They forgive each other, and Luci learns to listen more. Things between Claire and her dad also work out.

When Luciana gets back to her family, she works things out with her cousins as well, listening instead of doing all the talking, and they accept her into “Los Cuatro” making it “Los Cinco”.

Things don’t work out in favor of her Grandparents’ house, but they decide to hold onto the memories.

Overall, I loved the book. I liked how it carried on the science/space theme, while also having a theme of listening and forgiving.

I rate this book 5/5 stars. Even though the grade level is a few years younger then mine, I thoroughly enjoyed the book.

I recommend this book. It would be great for 9-13 but also for any age reader.

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Craft Tag

So Victoria from Reverie Dolls nominated me for the Craft Tag. (Okay, technically she just said “you”, but I think this is really cool, so I’m doing it. Kaylyn created this tag.

The rules are:

Answer 5 questions

Create 5+ new questions

Tag people

 

Victoria’s questions:

What is your favorite craft supply?

Almost anything, although some of my favorites are; cloth, yarn, pompoms, shells, and paint.

Hot glue or liquid glue?

Definitely hot glue, though liquid glue is better for some things. But if hot glue will work, I probably will use it.

Wing it or plan it?

Depends on the project. If it’s small, and I do it as soon as I get the idea, wing it. If it’s really big I’ll probably write some stuff down. Usually though, I’ll plan it in my head, but not write it down.

Have you ever made crafts to go in your bedroom?

Yes. A lot of what’s in my bedroom I made. I’ve made a quilt, some pillows, almost everything on my wall, my bulletin board, a few clothing items, a small dollhouse, and quite a few other things.

Favorite craft you’ve ever made?

Hmm, that’s hard. I love almost everything I’ve made. My quilt is pretty cool though, and I love the rain-forest house I made for Lea.

Okay, I nominate,

Jewel from The Doll Notebook

Julia from Love My Dollies

Gracie from Smile And Craft AG

Kiki from Kiki Through The Looking Glass

Tess from Silver Sky Dolls

My questions are:

What is the weirdest craft material you have ever used?

What kinds of things do you like to make?

Do you use materials from the craft store, or do you use other things also, like recycled or up-cycled things?

Are there any craft supplies that you hate or won’t use?

Do you have a craft area / where do you do your crafts?

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The Dolls’ Christmas Outfits

Merry Christmas!

I hope you are having a good one!

 

 

Yesterday (After I spent most of the morning cleaning my room, of course) I dressed all of my dolls in Christmassy (Or wintery, I only have so many red doll pieces.) attire. I was going to post about it last night, but didn’t get a chance.

So first of all I undressed all the dolls thinking random thoughts like “I thought this was Abby, why am I doing Joy?” “How did I get so many dolls?” “Where is Mckenna? And Hope, and Faith, and…Oh, I forgot to get that shelf of dolls.” Etc. Then I put the clothes away. Then I picked out sixteen Christmassy or winter outfits. (Actually I counted first. How did I get so many dolls?) Then I laid them out and dressed one doll at a time, picking an outfit for the doll as I dressed it.

And now here they are.

All of them

First of all, here is all of the dolls along one of the purple walls in my room. (We repainted last summer, and I love the walls being purple.)

As you can see, not all of the dolls are in red or green. I only have so many pieces of red and green doll clothing.

Now here are pictures of each doll next to my mini Christmas tree. It’s blue, so not all of the outfits match, but whatever. The dolls are in no specific order, just the order the computer chose.

Riley's potrait

Here is Riley. I love the red of her hair against the outfit. (And the tree, and the wall, and the floor, you get it.)

Oliva's potrait

This is Olivia. She is a doll I randomly got at the thrift store one day. I had a bunch of dolls I was going to give away, but that might not happen. Her dress came on an also thrift store doll, but it’s perfect for Christmas.

Mia's portrait

Mia’s outfit is kind of random, and I’m not sure I like it, but it’s okay. She’s wearing a tree skirt from the dollar store I bought a few years ago. It looked bad the first year, (It kept falling down, and there are probably pictures you could find of Mckenna in her underwear,) but I finally got it to stay, and it doesn’t look bad now.

Mckenna's Portrait

Mckenna refused to wear a skirt, or really anything nice, but she agreed to wear the green shrug. She wouldn’t change into matching shoes, insisting that it was Christmas and she should be allowed to wear comfortable shoes.

Maria's Portrait

In person Maria’s shirt and skirt and shoes match, but not in pictures I guess. And her shirt looks a lot more like pajamas than I would like. It’s festive at least…

Lea's portrait

Ooh, I love this picture. Nothing about Lea is Christmassy, but she looks nice.

Kaitlyn's portrait

The dress Kaitlyn is wearing I made a long time ago. I don’t like it as much as I used to, but the fabric is perfect for Christmas.

Joy's Potrait

Joy isn’t looking at the camera, but I love this one all the same. She kind of looks like a dancer, which she’s not, she’s a writer, but it looks nice all the same.

Jenny's Portrait

Ha! I knew this dress would be useful for something someday. Jenny doesn’t care if she looks old fashioned.

Hope's Portrait

And, Hope is wearing rain boots. Why? It snowed here! (For the first time I can remember we got a white Christmas!!!)

Grace's Portrait

I love this one. Grace is all blue. Even her earrings are blue, though you can’t see them. And her shoes match the hat, which sparkles everywhere, and the sweater.

Callie's Portrait

Callie! I love Callie. For Christmas, my little cousin received a doll from our Grandparents. Callie. My Grandma had asked advice from me on which one to get, and I told her that as far as off brand dolls go, I love the Journey Girls. So now my cousin has Callie too!

Gabi and Keirra's Portrait

Kierra wanted to be in a picture with her sister. Her outfit doesn’t match at all, but she insisted on wearing the leggings so she “wouldn’t be cold.” I don’t know why she can’t wear shoes, but no shoes for Kierra.

Faith's Potratit

I finally have given up on Faith being older than the rest. She doesn’t look like it, and none of my doll clothes make her look older.

Eileen's Potratit

For Eileen’s outfit, it was the same as mine yesterday. Last year I made myself a red and green plaid skirt, and a doll one to match. Since Eileen is my mini me, she wore it, though the proportions are better on mine. Her outfit is mostly the same, except I had a black turtleneck, a necklace, and headband (Which was actually a necklace, and kept falling down, but was otherwise cool.)

Abby's Portrait

And now Abby. Normally I don’t like Abby’s outfits or pictures very much, but I like this one a lot.

 

So there are my dolls in their Christmas outfits this year. I hope you enjoyed.

Merry Christmas!

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Gabriela: Time for Change

This was such an amazing book. Best American Girl book I’ve read. I loved it so much. It was so relatable to normal girls. I related to it quite a bit, though I am way older than the target age range.

 

I requested this book through our library system, but I didn’t read it right away when I got it. To be honest I wasn’t all that excited about it. But I finally started it. It was a little slow to get into, but it was so, so, good.

 

The story is about Gabriela dealing with several different things. Her ballet class is working on pointe shoes, something Gabi has dreamed about for most of her eleven years, she is helping plan a halloween party with her co ambassadors, and making a costume with the group. She is making a costume with her best friend Teagan, and working on multiple poems for the upcoming poetry slam she is doing with Teagan, and some other friends.

With all that is going on, some things get pushed aside, especially her friendship with Teagan as she becomes better friends with her co ambassador and former enemy Aliyah.

In the end Gabriela must make a choice about which things mean the most to her, and which ones are only weighing her down.  

 

But, to me, the book is about friendship, being overwhelmed with too much stuff, and being a good friend even when it’s hard.

I loved how there were lines from Gabriela’s poems in the book, and how one of the poems changes as Gabi grows and changes.

I liked the message that friends are as important as dreams.

 

But mostly, I loved the decision Gabi had to make, and how it only made things better, though it was really hard.

 

Go read this book. It’s seriously amazing.

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