summer bucket list

school ends for me in about two weeks, so i thought it was an appropriate time to post this. i’ve been joking about how this is my last summer of freedom before i go to public school full time, but i guess it’s actually true. i’m going to try and have fun this summer, so i made a list of ten things i want to do over the next few months.

when i go back to school, i’ll make another post about this to see how close i got to accomplishing all my goals.

1) explore

there’s an old dam down the road that’s covered in graffiti. it’s got a river on one side and forest on the other, and i think that’s where i’m going to be exploring this summer. i’ve only been there twice so far; the first time i biked and checked out the graffiti, and the second time i went fishing. and my family just bought a bunch of inner tubes, so hopefully i can get a friend to head down there and go tubing with me.

2) read 15 books

i was originally planning on reading 100 books this year, but i’m way behind on that, as i can’t seem to concentrate on anything. reading even 15 books in a few months sounds kind of difficult for me, but i’m still going to try.

3) nail my back handsprings

one of my gymnastics coaches was helping me with back handsprings one day, and she told me i twist to the left when i do them. the same thing happens when i do bridges or back walkovers. but i think that if i can straighten them out, i’ll be able to do them by myself.

4) vbs

i think the theme my church picked for this year’s vacation bible school is “road rally,” or something like that. i’ve already signed up to be a crew leader, hopefully for elementary school kids. izzy tells me that our age group is only allowed to work with preschoolers, but we’ll see.

5) hang out with friends

since my friends all go to different schools, i don’t get to see them that often. in fact, the only friend i’ve hung out with regularly since school started is izzy, who i see 3-5 days a week. i miss my friends and i want to have another summer with them before i go to public school, my schedule gets crazy, and we drift apart.

6) earn 2 ahg badges

(ahg is my scouting group, for those who don’t know.) i’ve almost completed the gardening and plant science badge, and after i get that i think i’ll work on nature & wildlife. doing badge requirements is sort of my go-to boredom buster, and i’m trying to see how many i can earn before i age out of ahg (i currently have about ¼ of all the available badges).

7) go to camp

going to ahg camp with my best friend is always the highlight of my summer. i’m excited to see my camp friends again, swim in the lake, go to the shooting range, and hopefully buy a rainbow knife that i couldn’t get last time because the staff heard me talking about murder with izzy. :)

i’m actually going to two summer camps with her. the other one is a weekend camp at beginning of june, and we’re going to be counselors.

8) garden

i got my garden planted a few days ago, so i’ve already kind of done this one? i have some herbs, mint, daises, aloe, a succulent, primroses, and some little flowers that i don’t know the names of. i’ve also been growing cacti from seeds, and hopefully i’ll be able to keep them alive.

9) get a tan

i currently have a slight shinguard tan from soccer, and it’s only going to get worse as the season goes on. for anyone who isn’t familiar with what a shinguard tan is, it means my thighs and calves are pale, and just my knee is tan. the only way to fix it is to go outside for something other than pratice/games, which i will unfortunately do if i want to look less like a zebra.

10) go swimming

my family doesn’t actually go swimming that much, but since i just got two new swimsuits, we kind of have to. one is a maroon one-piece with a kind of crisscross thing on the chest, and the other is a black bikini with a bunch of different colored stripes. i did a really bad job explaining them, but they’re very cute.

 so that’s my plan for the summer! it’s unlikely that i’ll actually do everything on my list, but i’m still going to try.

let me know in the comments what you’re looking forward to doing over the summer!

xo apollo


sketchbook (8)

hey, friends! :)

it’s been a hot minute since i’ve done an art post, hasn’t it? i haven’t had much creativity lately, so some of these are old projects that i never got around to sharing.

i made this at about 2 a.m. one night while listening to sleeping at last. i can’t remember the official name for this kind of thing, but i think it’s a wax resist. i drew the constellations (the big dipper and orion) with a white crayon and painted over them with watercolor.

this is based on a fountain in a d.c. art gallery. one of the statue’s eyes got messed up, the perspective is off, but i like the colors and i guess it’s ok.

rutvi made a really awful duck pun that inspired this even worse comic!

these koi fish look a bit boxy because they’re actually a school project. we were supposed to graph some shapes and make them colorful, and i guess i took it a little too far. but i did get 6/5 on creativity, so it’s cool. :)

(the rest of the stuff isn’t actually in my sketchbook, they’re just various artsy things in my room.)

i was testing out my watercolors one day and accidentally made something pretty. i hung it up on my string of lights next to a love, simon movie ticket.

i made this before i got my succulents, and now that i have so many, i don’t really need it. but i think it’s too cute to throw out, so it’s currently on my dresser. i got the idea from a magazine: paint rocks green, add white dots/slashes and pink blossoms, and stick them in a pot filled with pebbles.

i made this mermaid statue in 2016. my friend izzy and i met up at a ceramic shop a few days in the summer and painted together. i think her project was three fish stacked on top of each other.

for a girl who left the faces off all her drawings, i think young me did a pretty good job, especially on the tail. and it matches the color scheme of my room, which is a bonus.

my brother asked me to draw his dungeons & dragons character for him. it’s a tiefling (half human/half demon, i think) named xerxes the crimson. the horns look rather lifeless to me, but beyond that, i’m pretty proud of it.

this is a doodle from last year that i made when i had just discovered my art style (which is people with slightly disgusted expressions, i guess).

tell me which piece is your favorite in the comments!

xo apollo

washington, d.c. travel diary (2)

i’ve finally finished writing my d.c. travel diary! enjoy, and read part one here if you haven’t already.

« day two »

one of the only things i hate about traveling is that i never sleep well. i always wake up ridiculously early and just wait in the dark until i decide it’s late enough to start moving around (aka 5 a.m.).

my mum made us pack up all our stuff first thing in the morning. we stuffed our bags into the car and went to get breakfast in the hotel’s dining room. i ended up burning my already hurt taste buds on (very) hot chocolate.

bethany and i texted each other while we ate, which was dumb, because we were sitting across from each other. my messages were along the lines of “wish you were here! this trip would be so much more fun if you were with us!” we’re stupid, i think.

we hadn’t picked what we were going to do that day, so we decided over breakfast: the eastern market. mum drove us into the city (we only got lost a few times) and we started walking in the direction of the bazaar.

the capitol building was on our way. being the tourists that we are, we stopped to take pictures by the capitol’s statues and reflecting pool.

bethany was vlogging some of our adventure. unfortunately, the only parts she got were of me making really awful weed and homeschooler jokes. :’)

some of the trees along the sidewalk had words and doodles scratched into the bark.

is it the illuminati or bill cipher? we’ll never know.

ironically found on a trashcan.

space cadet.

no war.

bethany insisted that we pop into one of d.c.’s many starbucks. it had this lovely mural on the wall, so i’m glad we went in. bethany got some fancy cold caramel drink and she let izzy and i taste it. it was the first time i’d ever had starbucks coffee. it was kind of weird and made my throat hurt, but i guess it was alright.

i wanted to take pictures of the pigeons, but bethany was in a modeling mood.

if i had a shop, i would definitely put up lights like these.

we started daydreaming while we meandered down the streets, gazing at the colorful ivy-covered houses squished side by side. we imagined we’d live in one together, the three of us, maybe with a cute puppy. bethany would pursue a career in makeup at the mall, i would become some kind of sad freelance artist, and i guess izzy would just eat all our food. it sounds nice, you know — falling asleep to the sounds of the city beside my best friends.

pastel walls.

color block.

we made a friend. :)

this gorgeous mural is next to the eastern market. it’s odd, but i like it.

i’m convinced that my friends only keep me around to take pictures for their instagrams.

bubbles always make me think of rutvi’s about to burst poem. you should definitely read it. :)

after a lot of walking, we finally reached our destination. the market is a vibrant, buzzing mess of creativity: always something new to see, to smell, to hear. there were paintings, jewelry, honey, flowers, clothes, fruit, soap, candles, live music, etc.

i used to knot bracelets like these, they’re really fun to make.

an outdoor display. the market was so colorful.

flower shop.

i ended up buying a tapestry with a dragon yin and yang design in the center. i actually just put it up in my room today!

fairy godmother books & toys

while we were deciding where to go next, we spotted a tiny shop called fairy godmother books & toys. it was super cramped (you could barely move without bumping into a shelf or customer) and a bit messy (lots of books were splayed out on the floor instead of stacked), but they had a great selection.

i bought the screaming staircase by jonathan stroud. it’s the first book in one of my favorite series.

by afternoon, we were really hungry, so my mum fed us chocolate from her purse while we went in search of the food trucks. i feel like most mothers carry little snacks in their bags. it kind of creeps me out, because as soon as you say that you’re hungry, all the moms around dig something out of their mary poppins purse. bonus points if someone has those weird strawberry candies.

while we were looking for somewhere to eat, we took a detour through the national gallery of art. i don’t have pictures of the actual paintings, but here’s a photo of a little café tucked between the wings.

i did a drawing based on this one. i’m working on another art post right now so i can share it with you guys.

i wish this one wasn’t so grainy. :/

there was also this insanely cool pathway between two of the galleries. the ground moved under you, and thousands of lights in the walls lit up as you passed.

isn’t this magical?

i got two souvenirs from the art museum: a color wheel pin and a map of the gallery, which i didn’t realize was in mandarin until it was too late.

once we escaped the national gallery, we bought a really chewy soft pretzel from a food truck to share while we explored the statue garden. most of the statues there are just misshapen hunks of metal that would be hard to call art. still, there were pieces like the amor statue, a creepy rabbit, and two boards painted like the sides of a house that looked complete no matter where you were standing that i enjoyed seeing.

all you need is love . . .

lunch was french fries for me and fried chicken sandwiches for izzy and bethany, which i thought looked pretty gross. idk, maybe that’s just how it is in the south.

there was a street musician playing an electric guitar. he could make his voice do some insane stuff. it was nice to listen to while we ate.

we stopped at the smithsonian museum of natural history on our way back to the parking deck that evening. i’ve been there a few times, but it still amazes me. my favorite part is easily the gem section. i didn’t get any photos of it this time, but there are display upon display of vibrant jewels. and the hope diamond is housed there, which is allegedly cursed, so that’s exciting (read about it here).

there was a tiny garden by one of the windows, mostly orchids. i got an orchid around valentine’s day, and all the blooms fell off over the weekend, so i don’t understand how theirs looked so good.

           bethany must have mentioned these doors a million times. she was really set on getting a picture in front of them, so we paused to get one once we were done with the natural history museum. i think they’re by the building where the declaration of independence is kept, but i’m not 100% sure.

we listened to twenty one pilots on the way home. the blurryface album is good road trip music.

i had an amazing time, and i’m so glad i have friends who are content to just wander around all day. izzy and bethany, thanks for the wonderful weekend. <3

have you ever been to d.c.? if so, what’s your favorite thing to do there? i like people watching and looking at art.

xo apollo

you are allowed to change

 a few days ago, my brother paused, stared at me, and said, “you don’t tuck your shirts in,” even though my shirt was clearly tucked in. it seemed to blow his mind, like styling my clothes slightly differently made me a whole new person.

and it happens all the time. “you don’t like that kind of music.” “but you’ve always hated that food.” “since when do you care about that?” sure, but people and opinions change. i am allowed to grow and like different things and become a better version of myself.

it feels like i am trapped in a box that was the right size for me two years ago, but is cramped and suffocating now.

a few weeks ago, i was talking to a girl i was friends with when i was much younger. i could tell, just from that conversation, that she was confused by how different i am now. but do people really expect me to be the same thing that i was always been?

i think my old friends would not like the new me. i’ve picked up bad habits that i can’t shake, i’ve become a pessimist, it’s so hard for me to pretend that things are good. but now i listen to the radio, i cry whenever it rains, i make music, i hold my friends’ hands, i feel everyone’s emotions. every time i change, i like myself more and more. one day i am going to be the best, kindest, most wonderful version of myself, and no one i know now will recognize me.

please don’t be afraid of changing and liking new things. you don’t have to stay the way you are if you don’t want to, and you don’t need to get stuck in the box once you’ve outgrown it.

i sing at the top of my lungs when i’m alone. i write poems for my friends and they tape them up on their walls. i tie knots in my t-shirts and let the sun warm my stomach. sometimes i listen to pop because lighthearted music makes me happy. i cut my hair short because someone told me they only like girls with long hair. i am eager to fight back against those who continually hurt me.

when i wake up tomorrow, i will have changed again, and i will hear “but you don’t do that” for the hundredth time this week. but i will be better than i am now; i will find a way out of the me-shaped box.

i didn’t know i was broken ’til i wanted to change. (i wanna get better // bleachers)

xo apollo

awesome blogger award


mckenna nominated me for the awesome blogger award a few months ago, and i’m just now getting around to it. (i’m not a very punctual person.) thanks, mckenna!

the awesome blogger award was originally created by maggie @dreaming of guatemala . this is an award for the absolutely wonderful writers all across the blogging world. they have beautiful blogs, are kind and lovely, and always find a way to add happiness and laughter to the lives of their readers. that is what truly defines an awesome blogger. ~~~coffeelovingbookoholic

| rules |

– thank the person who nominated you
– include the reason behind the award
– include the banner in your post
– tag it under #awesomebloggeraward in the reader
– answer the questions your nominator gave you
– nominate at least five awesome bloggers
– give your nominees ten new questions to answer
– let your nominees know they’ve been nominated!

| questions |

1) what’s your absolute favorite post you’ve ever written?

i think my answer is always going to be dear blue eyes | love notes. idk, it just means a lot to me and it got some sweet compliments.

2) what do you hope to do in the future?

currently, the dream is to be roommates with my best friends, go on road trips, take long walks, make art and music, get a dog and equal rights, hopefully marry someone who loves me and has soft hair, etc.

3) what’s one of your biggest blogging goals at the moment?

to reach 1000 followers. i’m not that far away, either, since i transferred my followers from let’s be lost. just 110 to go.

4) who is someone you want to meet in your lifetime more than anyone else?

i want to find my platonic soulmate. someone who fits with me like a puzzle piece, whose presence doesn’t make me tired, who accepts me for what i am and what i’m not — who loves me, but not in that way.

5) what music would you be most likely to blast if you were alone in a car?

my mind goes straight to blink-182. nothing better than singing angsty lyrics about teenage rebellion at the top of your lungs.

6) what’s your favorite quote and who said it?

because i didn’t start writing poetry until i met you.

that’s two quotes. whoops.

7) if you could be granted one wish, what would you wish for?

i would wish that i could go back in time and fix things that i did wrong. maybe i would make sure i didn’t lose my first friend, i would keep my cat from running away, i would say “i love you, too” instead of just nodding. i know changing my past would make me a different person, but that’s ok, that’s what i want.

8) who is your hero?

i’m not sure i have one, honestly. everyone is eventually kind of disappointing.


9) what is your all time favorite book?

at the moment, it’s simon vs. the homo sapiens agenda by becky albertalli. i first read it in autumn 2017, but it didn’t mean as much to me then. and i saw the movie based on it at the beginning of april, which reawakened my love for it, so i bought the book a few days later.

sure, parts of it are problematic, but it’s too cute to hate. *sort of spoiler* i love how simon fell for blue before they met each other, because he loved blue for his personality, not his looks. *end spoiler*

“so, i keep thinking about the idea of secret identities. do you ever feel locked into yourself? i’m not sure if i’m making sense here. i guess what i mean is that sometimes it seems like everyone knows who i am except me.”

 10) are you in any fandoms? if so, which ones?
oh boy. i first got into fandoms in about fifth grade, so i’m in quite a lot now. here are just a few of them:

lockwood & co., lord of the rings, keeper of the lost cities, how to train your dragon.

tv/film: doctor who, gravity falls, over the garden wall, star vs. the forces of evil, sherlock.

| nominees |

jenny @ aliens exist
athena @ ath3na’s little corner
lonelymeme @ life in a blogshell
cas @ cas.tle
april @ april’s laundry basket

| questions |

1) what do you usually doodle on your papers?
2) how do you want to be seen by others?
3) do you enjoy people watching?
4) what are your plans for this weekend?
5) what was your last dream about?
6) if you were a color, what would it be?
7) what wouldn’t you do to help a friend?
8) do you think your blog is a good representation of who you really are?
9) what are three songs you connect with right now?
10) do you consider yourself a romantic?

on a different note, i experienced the simple joy of listening to music while showering for the first time a few days ago. i felt like the subtly hot protagonist from a teen rom-com who has a stunning voice but doesn’t like to flaunt her talent. the reason i’ve never tried it before is that i don’t usually have the house to myself in the morning, and i feel weird about playing my music on a speaker for everyone to hear. i guess it feels too personal or something.

plus, i’m not the most coordinated person, and i was afraid i would drop my ipod in the shower. something like that has happened before. i tried the magic “stick it in rice” trick, and it actually worked?? i don’t understand and i’m too lazy to google it.

so long, my friends. have a good day.

xo apollo

got a heart that wants to vandalize

. . . and run away from you for good! (you don’t love me like you should // hey violet)

one of my favorite things to do downtown is to look at the stickers and graffiti plastered on walls and light poles. lately, i’ve been bringing my camera every time i get a chance to go, and i’ve been photographing the more interesting street art. i have enough to share now, so here goes.

no masters, no slaves is from a song by the varukers. by the way, i only know this because i looked it up, since i don’t know enough about 80’s hardcore punk bands to just have that fact ready to go.

the dog/fox thing is adorable, but those wacked faces are the real reason i took this shot.

hey look, it’s my name! and that thing to the left of the signature looks like a sad, lumpy batman in his old age. sorry, i don’t have a great picture of it. :/

i hope whoever did you wrong has trouble sleeping at night.

this reminds me of the illuminati. i don’t necessarily believe that it still exists, but if it does, i hope i’ll be allowed to join.

our vandals are so nice?? look at that. proper spelling and grammar, and they even said thank you.

constant mood.

help me find this person’s social media. i want to follow them.

the sign mentioned in my prose inspired by p!atd’s song hurricane.

a dynamic café in the court square. it doesn’t look like this anymore — the blue is green, some of the murals have been covered, and the giant bucket list chalkboard is gone. but it still makes me happy to see the art whenever i walk by.

the last time i was downtown, a group of people were giving the café a makeover. i can’t wait to see what it looks like when it’s done.

this is the kind of art i want to create. i’ve been to plenty of art galleries with my mum, and i feel like art that’s displayed behind glass doesn’t get admired enough. but with murals, you can run your hands over the brushstrokes and stare up at this giant splash of color in the midst of a buzzing city. and i think that more people would get to see the art, because when you find a mural, you generally take a picture in front of it to show your friends. idk, i just hope i get a chance to make art like this someday.

photo by my mum

this isn’t downtown, it’s actually by a river near my house. but i like it and didn’t know when else i would get to share it.

there are a few more murals downtown that i don’t have pictures of, like a color block one with the outline of a woman’s face, a fortune teller leaning over a crystal ball, an abstract horse, a nervous rock star, and more that i haven’t found yet but that i know are there.

 a lot of people think graffiti is ugly and disrespectful, and i guess some of it is. but as long as it’s not super vulgar or slapped across the front of a fancy building, i think it’s fascinating and definitely a form of art.

have a nice day! :)

xo apollo