Tag Archives: Akron

Monday motivation

20121022-124036.jpg I could see the checkered flag waving in the short distance, the finish line just a few paces beyond it.

My stomach had began cramping just a few moments ago, as I entered the final leg of the race. By that point I had established a very slow, yet steady pace – an old lady shuffle, if you will – but I had not stopped running at any point along those 3.2 miles behind me. That was my one goal.

So although I felt like I could pass out, throw up and/or collapse all at once, I kept chugging along until the end. I thought to myself, “Why stop now?” as I remembered past moments of more extreme pain while I trained myself to run longer and longer distances. Modern English’s “I Melt With You” serenaded me as I crossed the finish line to greet my mom waiting on the other side.

All that time I spent searching through my iTunes to perfect my running playlist have apparently paid off.

That mindset was the motivation I had been building up all these months. And it’s a similar feeling of motivation when I work on my cards, scrapbooks and other creations for fun, for gifts or for profit. Just keep going, enjoy it, and you’ll benefit in the end.

So, here’s to a week of productivity.

What motivates you to start working on any given project? And what keeps you going?

PHOTO: My expression of relief as I crossed the finish line at the end of my first 5K race in Akron, Ohio, on Saturday, Oct. 20. (2nd annual Race Around the Park, to benefit the Knights of Columbus; Schneider Park, Akron)


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El Anatsui Gravity & Grace exhibit, Akron Art Museum, Akron, Ohio


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September 30, 2012 · 5:08 pm

Try something new while the sunshine lasts

To me, summer is all about adventure. There’s more free time to explore the outdoors, check out new shops and try things you’ve never encountered before.

This year, I was more than ready for summer. I even came up with a slightly ambitious summer bucket list for the nearly four months I’d be free from classes, homework and stress. It’s still pretty full, but I’m working on it! Below I’ve shared some experiences I’ve had this summer so far, most of which appear on my bucket list, believe it or not!

In fact, I encourage you to work on a bucket list of your own. What do you want to accomplish this summer? It’s nearly mid-July already, so what are you waiting for?

Personal adventures

An adventure doesn’t have to stray too far from the home. On Saturday morning, I woke up at 7 a.m. (as I’m aware, this is quite early for a weekend), went for a walk and got ready for a morning errand-run in the hot, summer sunshine. I first drove to the Kent Free Library, somewhere I’ve never been before. There’s too many books on my summer reading bucket list, and since I’ve finished reading the ones on my shelves at home, I figured I should start there.

I then drove to the Aurora Farms Outlets and picked some bargains in Banana Republic. My last stop was the Haymaker Farmers’ Market. Although I caught the last 15 minutes of this week’s sale items, it felt great to purchase some local produce–the tomato I bought was delicious!

And of course, I finished the afternoon with some scrapbooking. I couldn’t have asked for a more productive day!

Fun with friends and family

I’ve also traveled to events and other venues outside of Kent this summer, including ComFest at Goodale Park in Columbus, a Florence + the Machine concert in Indianapolis on July 4 and a Bruce Springsteen tribute band concert at Lock 3 in Akron. Besides the Indianapolis concert, these events were free. Not only did I have a good time, but also I didn’t have to spend much money. I simply enjoyed the company of my family and friends and the summertime atmosphere.

Scrap it

Although they require some extra creativity, I’ve come up with some ways to convey unique adventures in your scrapbooks. Think beyond self portraits of you and your friends in front of the concert stage. What’s the scenery like? What features will you want to remember about the moment?

  • Farmers’ markets–Take photos during your visit. Ask vendors if you can take close ups of their fresh produce and baked goods. In many locations, these markets occur at least once a week. You’ll probably want to come back sometime, so make friends, too! Write about the people you meet in your layouts.
  • Poolside–Photograph the necessities of a perfect day by the pool. A pair of sunglasses, a book, sunscreen, a fun mixed drink–whatever! These are objects many people think of when summer comes to mind.
  • Road trips–If you’re GPS-less and kicking it old school, keep the maps you use to find your way to your destination. Recycle them and use as alternative paper styles. Take photographs of the different stops you take along the way, including funny road signs you might find. Scrapbook them as a timeline in your layouts.
  • Food–Summer boasts some great eats, so why not take pictures of that festive summer salad before you dig in? You can memorialize your favorite meals in your scrapbooks or keep the photos to remember the recipes you’d like to try in the future.
  • Scrapbooking–Why not create a layout about your favorite hobby? It might seem silly to take photos of photos, but future generations won’t know what the (organized?) mess looked like as you slaved hours over the scrapbooks they will eventually enjoy.
  • Internships–This is something I wish I had taken advantage of, photo-wise, during my year-long internship at Akron Children’s Hospital. Take photos of the building where you work, your desk, your name badge and even your co-workers, if they’ll let you! These experiences are so important for career development and even equally as important to remember for years to come.

Let me know what you’re up to this summer, and maybe we can find ways to create unique layouts for your scrapbooks!

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