Tag Archives: grow

girl writing a letter jpg

A Letter To My 18-Year-Old Self

When I was 18 years old, you couldn’t tell me anything! I was grown and I knew everything about pretty much everything. Oh how laughable that is now! When they say hindsight is 20/20, they couldn’t be anymore correct! I don’t know if it’s my ten year High School reunion quickly approaching, or that my 20’s are going to be coming to an end, but I have been doing some serious reflecting lately. Although I wouldn’t say I have any regrets about the last ten years of life, because ultimately they lead me to where I am now, I would definitely tweak a few things if I ever had the chance. Those tweaks are listed below in a letter to my 18-year-old self.

Dear 18-year-old Leigha,

Don’t Be Such a Bitch.

You know the expression, “I thought you were such a bitch before I got to know you”? Yeah well it definitely applied to me, except that a lot of people still thought I was a bitch even after they got to know me. I honestly don’t know why I was so mean at 18. Sometimes I think it was attributed to growing up in a home where anger was an easily expressed emotion, so I behaved the same. But then other times I think it was just because I had a sour attitude and needed to grow up. Regardless, my first advice to little miss sassy brat, is don’t be such a bitch. The things that are making you angry now won’t even matter in a few years. Like, the boy who was sleeping with his ex-girlfriend the whole time he was dating you. He really isn’t worth the anger that causes you to strangle him in-between classes in front of the whole school (guilty). And the girls that you and all your friends swear you HATE, are actually going to turn out to be respectable people that you don’t even have a problem with. So don’t stress everything as much, and don’t be so ugly! You’re going to soon learn that your favorite people in life are the genuinely kind and compassionate ones, not the bitchy ones.

Don’t Date for at Least the Next FIVE Years.

Trust me on this one girlfriend. You will save yourself from some bad heart breaks and SO much wasted time. Now, I know every relationship is a learning experience; learning what you do and don’t want in a partner, learning what you will and will not give to a partner, and ultimately learning the type of relationship you want to strive for. However, I think learning all of those things closer to your mid-twenties is the better route. Instead of spending all that time in relationships that aren’t the right ones, save these years to focus on yourself; to learn about yourself, to grow as an individual, and to dedicate to making life long memories and friends. And let me just give you a sneak preview sister, the boy you spend hours commuting home to see every weekend, the one you miss out on your college football games and beach parties for, he cheats on you at a house party and then tells every lie in the book to cover it up (true story). And then the guy who you try so hard to impress to be what you think he wants from you, you run into him downtown one night where he blankly stares at you while holding hands with another girl (also true story). Just do yourself the favor Leigha, don’t date for the next five years. Your early twenties are your selfish years, so you go be selfish girl!

Study abroad!

Okay, I may have lied when I said I didn’t have any regrets. Looking back on this one, the chance to take college classes in another Country, with your peers, all set up and organized through your school, yeah I DO regret not doing that. Never in your life are you going to have a more perfect time to do this. You have no huge responsibilities, no career, no babies, AND a twenty-year-old drinking ability! (Gawd how much fun that could have allowed you to have). Forget about the hundred excuses you tell yourself on why you can’t go, like how much it costs, or your restaurant job, or who will feed your cats. Just do it! Take out the student loan to pay for the extra tuition. Put in a leave of absence at your job. Bribe your roommate with sweet sediments to keep your cats alive for the semester. Whatever it takes, make it happen. Cause life is only going to get busier, crazier, and more stressful the older you get. You won’t get an opportunity like that again. And if you’re smart and listened to the ‘don’t date anyone’ advice, you won’t have that stupid relationship holding you back either!

Lastly, for the sentimental side of yourself, hug the ones you love a little tighter each time you see them from here on out. You’re not going to have them all forever.

XO Leigha Signature JPG

Houseplants-Green Plant in white vase

Startup Guide to Houseplants

Let’s be honest, we’ve all killed a houseplant or two in our lifetimes. It just happens. One day you think your plant is thriving on life, and then in what feels like the blink of an eye, it’s dead. Along with your spirit. That is, unless you’re me. In which case, this hasn’t happened to you once or twice, but rather to every single houseplant you have ever owned in your adult life. It’s sad, but it’s true. However, there is hope! About a year ago I decided that phase of my life was over, and I was going to have not only houseplants in my home, but flourishing ones to say the least! During this year I feel like I’ve grown (see what I did there) from brown thumbs to green thumbs, and now I’m confident to share my tips with you!

ONE. Picking out your plants is really the most important part, for many reasons. If you’re a beginner, avoid plants that require lots of maintenance or care. Plants marked with a “Plant of Steel” tag are going to be your best friend. That tag basically means, give it some light, maybe some water here and there, and it will survive. My very first, and still my favorite “Plant of Steel” is my ZZ Plant. This bad boy has grown so much I’ve had to repot it three times! Those other tags you see in the plants pot, the ones I used to only look at to read its name, yeah those are super helpful too! The back of that tag is basically the plants life manual. It literally lists out how much light, water, and the temperature range the plant will do best with! Hallelujah! Secret tip: I like to keep those tags hidden from sight but still in my plant for when I forget exactly what I’m supposed to do to keep that thing alive.

TWO. You’re going to want an idea of where this plant will go during your picking-out-process. Obviously a plant marked as “low light” is not going to do well on your cute little kitchen windowsill getting direct sunlight for 6+ hours a day. However, that plant sitting in the corner of your cute little kitchen will be perfect! My top “low light” plant is the Chinese Evergreen. It sits pretty behind my couch where it does not receive any direct light. With your location in mind, pick the houseplant that has the appropriate light description listed.

THREE. Next up, soil! My fail-proof soil is the Miracle-Gro Moisture Control Potting Mix. It advertises as protecting from over AND underwatering! A win-win in my book. Plus, it does all the other stuff Miracle-Gro is known for, like feeding and fertilizing or whateva! (Bonus, the back of the bag tells you exactly how to repot your plant. I mean, how was I SO bad at this before?!)

FOUR. Lastly, and most important for aesthetic purposes, is the pot or planter you choose! Pick something that goes well with your house decor; I personally love ceramic neutrals! I also make sure I stick with ones that have 1. A drain hole in the bottom, and 2. An attached plate. The drain hole helps to let the plant absorb as much or as little water as it wants, and the attached plate catches my water run off. You know, for when I accidentally over water my “keep soil on the dry side” plant. Eye roll.

Once home with your plant, soil, and pretty little pot, it’s time to create and grow!

Out of the plants I have tried over the last year, my top 3 recommendations for the beginners would be: (drum roll please) the ZZ Plant, the Chinese Evergreen, and the Snake Plant! Feel free to try these, and others during your houseplant endeavors!