I Met An Online Friend And It Wasn’t Creepy + Niagara Falls Travel

This accidentally got posted on Tuesday, but I was busy and had forgotten to fill it in (AWKWARD) so now it’s the legit post! Sorry, about that! Now on to the actual post.

Homeschooling and online friends

Often with homeschooling, people are concerned about socializing and how it is done when kids are not in a traditional school. (you can read my post where I talk more about socializing here!) Just because it’s not the traditional way doesn’t mean we don’t make friends. We make friends everywhere from homeschool groups to communities classes, one just has to be creative.

A big source of friendships for me has been online. It allows for a broad range of friends and people around the world who you can interact with at any time (or not interact with if you don’t feel like it!) as opposed to if they were friends from school who you would just see during school hours or when you hang out after. This is good for homeschoolers, too, since they can interact during the day. I will definitely talk more about online friendships in the future, but for now, this is on meeting one of my close friends for the first time!

How we met online and meeting IRL

We met each other in 2016 (I think??) on a game and the first day she invited me to join in on a Skype call with a few others from the game to chat while we played. A little while later I created a group of a bunch of people that I liked and wanted to get to know better and since then we’ve had many calls where we do things like try to recreate makeup looks, watch movies (usually Disney Channel classics that I haven’t seen because I failed at Disney Channel watching besides Phineas and Ferb), cook or sometimes just talk. From calling and the amount of time spent together we had gotten to know each other for awhile before the meeting, just needed to get that in so it doesn’t sound too creepy. We found out we didn’t live too far away from each other and decided we would plan a trip to Niagara Falls together on my birthday!

  Niagara Falls has an amusement park where for a pretty good price (about $30) you get tickets to 6 attractions, which were a lot of fun. It’s a good idea to have something to do when meeting so it doesn’t become too boring or awkward, plus it’s in a public area for safety.

We found each other and took pictures right away and got some food before starting with the attractions. It would seem like meeting someone for the first time in person after years of knowing each other would be weird, but it felt pretty normal besides that fact that we were in an amusement park.

The first attraction we did was the Movieland Wax Museum, quite creepy to be honest, but fun to take pictures with all of the celebrities. There was a haunted hallway (I’m not actually sure what it was but it was like a haunted house as part of the museum) that we walked through and I was absolutely terrified and screamed like crazy when there was a loud noise. We tried to get out fast. Next was Ghost Blasters which was built into The Great Canadian Midway. It sort of reminded me of the Buzz Lightyear ride at Disneyworld only in 3D. I did not win at that and also jumped at anything that was coming towards me in 3D. I have the best of nerves. After that, we rode the Wild West Coaster, which is a 3D movie in special chairs that make it feel like a roller coaster. With the Fun Pass, you get arcade tickets so we played there and won 2 matching bracelets (which we both ended up losing).

There is a giant Ferris wheel over the falls also included in the pass. It provides good photo opportunities of The Falls.

Next on the pass was glow in the dark mini golf which was very fun and a 6D zombie ride similar to the coaster but with lasers shooting the zombies. After we had finished the pass we walked down to the falls then got tea before heading off. All in all a very fun and memorable birthday.

Have you met any online friends before? Have you been to Niagara Falls before?

P.S. It’s Peri

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March Break + University Tour

Hello, readers! Sorry, I’ve been so inactive, I was feeling kind of uninspired but I’ve had several blog post ideas and will be posting them for the next little while!

 

March break

I kind of forgot it was spring break here. The break should really be in February, by March I feel like I can make it through until summer but February feels like it’s never-ending. I only slightly this week off because I wanted to keep busy. Friends who go to school were off and bored so I got to get together with some of them and there was extra practice for dance because of the fast-approaching competition season.

 

University

One of the 3 main universities I’d like to go to was having an open house for spring break. I am very lucky to live close to several universities which really narrowed down my choices. This one is the closest, but I wasn’t too sure if their programme was the best. Now it might be my first choice after having spent the day there it felt like I could live there and be comfortable and I’m excited about their Kin programme! I got to see some of the labs, hear about what it’s like studying there and explore the campus, plus got to tour one of the residences which were really nice. Since I still have another year before applying to universities this was sort of just to stake out what this particular university is like.

 

How did you spend your March break?

 

P.S It’s Peri

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OMG am I weird? #homeschoolproblems

“I forgot you were homeschooled!” the best compliment I can remember getting. There are so many stereotypes about homeschoolers being weird, unsocialized and incredibly awkward and I took forgetting that I was homeschooled as a great compliment to me being able to blend in with the other kids. I’ve been homeschooled my whole life and it’s always been a fear of mine that I would end up like an alien to everyone else having not had that common experience. I want to fit in but not too much.

 

Different

Being homeschooled, you might be different. Just going to face it. You don’t have that common experience that the majority of other people have that’s school in a classroom with other people the exact same age as you. And honestly, that is such a good thing! Don’t wanna be basic like that.

ninabasic

 

It also doesn’t mean you’re completely insane or anything, either! I think that homeschooling really lets you be yourself because there isn’t really the pressure to be like the “popular kids” or anyone else, you can just be you.

fullsizerender-14

I kind of pride myself on being very much myself and sometimes I can be a bit weird, but it’s me. I am still a pretty typical teenager, though. I fangirl over anything fangirlable LOL, I go to the mall with my friends, I spend way too much time on Instagram stalking makeup accounts and way too much time on Snapchat, but not using the dog filter because, again, not basic LOL. Sometimes, though, I don’t really feel like a teenager, which is probably a good thing, or at least I tell myself it means I’m more mature, even though that’s probably not true at all.

It is a great thing to find out who you are and really embrace it. People spend their whole lives trying to find who they are and some never do, they just live a life like everyone else. Public schools build mental models that shape the way kids think, forcing them all to think similarly and live the same. Go to school, get some sort of job, start a family somewhere in there, retire then just hang out until that’s it. I want to be different and not fall into the typical life flow because that doesn’t sound very fun to me.

WOO! That was a good little rant!

 

Sheltered

There is the stereotype that homeschoolers are very sheltered and don’t know what’s going on in the world or anything from pop culture. There were a few years where I definitely was sheltered, but I was also not that old so that was good and I’m thankful for maintaining a little innocence as long as I could but not too long.

 

Avoiding being sheltered

One word for how I’m not sheltered – Internet. I love social media, it’s one of my crazy dreams to be kind of Internet-famous so I tend to be on it a lot. Some of my best friends all go to public schools. I listen to music that’s popular, occasionally watch popular TV shows. My family has a joke that we have “culture class” if we learn any new term or anything from pop culture. I kind of try to not be sheltered by making sure I’m sort of up to date on trends and things but really, as long as you’re not completely out of it, it doesn’t matter at all.

 

Not every homeschooler is weird, we’re just like everyone else, just not in the same place as everyone else – in a public school. But embrace all your differences because it’s what makes you, you!

 

 

P.S It’s Peri

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The S Word – Socializing ( #homeschoolproblems )

Every homeschooler has probably been asked at one point “But how do you make friends?” or had relatives ask about how you’re getting “socialized”. It makes me think of when my family had just gotten our dog and we were doing training at PetSmart and they said to make sure the dog was socialized so he wouldn’t be afraid of other dogs.

 

History of my socializing?

I’m not going to lie, I haven’t done the best with socializing. That just made it sound like I have never seen people, or I’m a hermit, but no, here’s the story:

My first friends were probably my neighbours when I was really little then at some point really early on we joined the local homeschool group and were quite active in there, plus when you’re little you kind of have to go with your parents everywhere so I was really comfortable with talking to adults. I was always called shy, though, probably because I wasn’t that crazy of a little kid and would just stand by and join in the conversation with my parents and other adults when it seemed fit. We lived near a park so I would make friends with kids who regularly visited the park, I took lots of different lessons, there wasn’t a lack of socialization at all! When I was 8 we moved into a typical suburban neighbourhood with the hopes of more kids my age around. It took awhile, but eventually, I met other kids in the neighbourhood ( and I’m still good friends with some today! ) and we had a pack of lots of kids that would roam the neighbourhood. Plus on top the neighbourhood pack, I still had Taekwondo, homeschool group, and other classes.

When I was 11 we moved to Louisville, Kentucky. It was a huge change, and I had to leave all my friends from Canada. At that point, I think the stress from moving had kinda gotten to me and I was actually a little relieved to be left alone for awhile. Looking back that would have probably been a time when I needed to have friends most, but live and learn! I really didn’t feel like I needed them, though, so it didn’t bother me then. I made a few online friends from games I would play, and I would try to Skype my friends back in Canada at least once a week, plus we were exploring the new city so I wasn’t sheltered or alone. We tried to get into the homeschool group there a bit, and I took a couple classes and met some people there but didn’t really become friends. We moved into a neighbourhood in Kentucky and my brother made good friends with the neighbour boy which was good because I didn’t always have to join in the games but could when I wanted to.

After 2 years of being in Kentucky, we moved back to where we originally came from in Canada and I got to see a few of my old friends again. A lot of the homeschoolers had gone off to high school or went the next year, so I didn’t really see a lot of them again. This is where things kind of went the wayside. Being back in the same city and older so I didn’t have to go with my parents everywhere, I started staying home more and was less motivated to actually meet friends. A little while after moving back, though, I joined a  dance class and did some things in the homeschool group. I honestly don’t remember 2014 for some reason, but I still didn’t get out too much and made a few new online friends again. 2015 was pretty much the same, and so was 2016. I didn’t really realize how much work one has to put into making friends especially if you’re homeschooled and have to try to get out more. I’m naturally a pretty friendly person, though, so that isn’t an issue. I’ve figured out several ways to get out and make friends and this year I got this!

 

Some tips

It has been a bit of a struggle, and something that I wish I had realized doesn’t magically happen and takes work and is important, but now I’ve figured it out and can work on it!
If you are homeschooling or going to start and this is a concern my advice would be to figure out how much socialization you need, are you an introvert or extrovert? Then work with that and try to plan things out of the house, take opportunities to do things. If you feel like you’re being deprived of social interaction then just do even the smallest thing to get out or talk to people, even if it’s through social media or on the phone. Like I said before, it doesn’t just magically happen, you have to go out and be friendly yourself. And if you’re a homeschool parent, don’t forget it’s important for you to get out, too and talk to people if you can! I know it’s wayyyy easier said than done but with some effort, it starts to become easier.

 

P.S. It’s Peri

 

Hobby Hunting 

I talked about trying to find a hobby and things to do in my free time in my post on balance, here’s my hobby hunting adventure!
Hobby hunting is a lot harder than I thought it would be. I either don’t really care what I’m doing as long as I’m doing something, or I pretty much hate everything and nothing is enjoyable, there is no in between, so it’s a little hard to find enjoyable things. It’s also winter in Canada so outside isn’t really an option. I came across this awesome post by Lifestoned Adventures from Pinterest ( Pinterest is my main form of entertainment, right now )  and it was a great place to start to get ideas for possible hobbies! 
I sort of have a lot of hobbies or things I do but don’t actually do often or always forget about so I decided to make a list of things to do that I like and that make me happy, separating them like they are in the graph thingy above and laying it out like a Bullet Journal because I’m a little obsessed with those!

 

It’s still a work in progress but here’s what I have so far.


The little purple heart means that I find it a key to happiness or that it feels like it “heals” my soul, those things just make me feel good and the more I do them the better!




I was debating on adding in baking but that can be so dangerous with the number of brownies I would probably eat from it.

 

Finishing up a post always seems so awkward. Thanks for reading lol?

 

P.S. It’s Peri

Balance + Motivation

One of my words for 2017 is “balance”. Balance in schoolwork, social life, mood (LOL??), workouts, food, just balance in everything.

 

 

Motivation

As a homeschooler, I find one of the problems is motivation and actually getting schoolwork done ( #homeschoolproblems ). You have to be pretty self-driven especially if you take a lot of the control over your own work and curriculum. There isn’t really the peer pressure to get things done, or time limits, you can just stay in bed all day and never have to get out. It isn’t a bad thing but I find I need to be doing stuff, to actually get out of bed and get dressed and leave the house, in order to stay sane ( slight exaggeration ), so it’s super important to me to try to stay motivated and get things done, that’s where balance comes in.

 

 

Balance

I am really bad at balance. Like really bad. I procrastinated most of my schoolwork last year until the last month before summer break and got it all done then. I was highly motivated because it was almost the summer, and I couldn’t get summer break without having done any work. Learning doesn’t really work that way, though, and I’m thinking I should change my ways of binge learning. No more ( or at least less ) procrastinating, and no more time spent in these “down”, no motivation periods.

 

Balance in being social

There are times when I will barely be home from all the things going on, then there are times when I won’t leave the house for about a week straight. I would really like to change this because those weeks when I don’t leave the house can become very boring and the others very overwhelming.

 

Balance in schoolwork per day

When I do schoolwork, I usually do it after breakfast then right up to when I go to bed with taking breaks for tea, dance and running. But then I get burnt out because that’s all I do all day.

 

Balance in workouts

I often don’t really take days off of working out, except one day I do not run and have about 2 hours worth of dance class. Usually, I don’t take breaks just because I don’t know what else to do.

 

 

The plan

First and foremost – get motivation, and for it to be constant motivation instead of the sudden spikes of heavy motivation. I’m not quite sure what that would be to me, and I’m going to work on finding out what is motivating. Currently, I know that stretching after a tough run is motivating because I love stretching and it’s so relaxing, it’s like a reward once the workout is over. And in the morning if I make a little sweet potato hash that motivates me to get up and get cooking.

 

Schoolwork balance

I need to set certain times for myself that I should be working, like do schoolwork for a bit in the morning then lunch break, and for all the afternoon plus workout break, then that’s it for the day so it’s not too much. Oh, hey I just set my schedule right there! Then I need to take long-term breaks as well, like actually not doing things on the weekend. Now I’ll just need to find things to do in the breaks.

 

Workout balance

One word – yoga. Balance is the whole point of yoga, isn’t it? Or something along those lines. Yoga is not as strenuous as always running, and it’s stretching which I love!

 

Social balance

This can be hard because my friends who go to school often can only get together when there’s time off of school, so it all tends to be at around the same time. But I will try to spread out things and keep a little busy all the time!

 

 

Officially getting back to school tomorrow so more posts on homeschooling are coming soon! Also, do other homeschoolers struggle with balance, too? What keeps you balanced? And what do you do in your break time?

 

P.S. It’s Peri

 

 

 

 

Looking Back

Sometimes I can be a bit too sentimental and it seems so old fashioned or melancholy but it’s kind of nice to look back on the year and see what happened since it felt like it flew by with nothing happening.

 

January

I’m not going to sugarcoat it, January was not the best. Instead of taking 2 months off of school in the summer I took 1 the previous summer and then half of December off and half of January. After Christmas was over I was very bored, there weren’t that many people I could talk to, I wasn’t pushing myself to do my best in anything, I wouldn’t get tired because I was only taking a little walk for my exercise and I need more than that. But in February I worked to fix all that!

 

February

I tried to surround myself with people I had met and tried to make new friends online, it was pretty successful and I met lots of great people and would call with 3 of them every day which really helped me get to know them and others! During the day I would wake up super late because of being on calls all night oops LOL, and do school, dance and walk. Not a lot of change from now. For school I did Math U See as always, then some French videos off of YouTube which helped me learn to pronounce things but didn’t really work with me for learning words, I worked on Khan Academy’s computer programming a lot then, too.

 

March

This was when I started to really journal so this is more documented! I remember just being really bored in March, baking a lot because I wasn’t sure what else to do lol, I started digitally drawing. School was pretty much the same as in February.

 

April

The first week in April was a dance competition and I got to help out at some of the dance classes while others were at the competition. I got my haircut for the first time in 5 years. And it was my birthday, all I can really remember from my birthday is making muffins at 3 am for breakfast, otherwise, I didn’t know what to do for it. And I got braces, can’t forget that! I started to feel more motivated in school so I did Georgia Public Broadcasting’s chemistry course and Khan Acdemy’s biology.

 

May

More dance competitions, more drawing, I talked to someone who was going to school for illustrations and decided that I wanted to work on that more. Every day in May I did at least 200 squats, which was crazy but it really built strength fast! Took lots of pictures of spring showers, got lots of school done, assisted with a dance class for a bit, made a contentment plan, got my first phone, walked outside and explored the area a lot. In May I was pretty motivated since spring had arrived and it would soon be summer! It was a good new start from the winter.

From a walk.

 

June

June was the end of dance classes for summer, there was an end of year recital and my company choreographed a dance together for it, I started to run a tiny bit, baked lots, started my hummus obsession, tried to finish up all the school I had procrastinated before it was summer break, put up our trampoline for the summer and got really sunburnt and that was probably the most I was outside all summer. No one ever talks about how hard it is to put a trampoline together, but it’s really hard. A bunch of my friends started calling every night. I decided that I liked Troye Sivan’s music.


A sunrise before I had gone to bed one very late night.

 

July

Finished all the school that needed to be done before the break. Started summer break!! Basically, all I did in July was stay up for most of the night with my friends LOL which was so much fun and I definitely do not regret! That also sparked my newfound love for coffee in order to actually stay awake during the day.


More super late night sunrise.


Coffee and a half eaten black bean brownie.

August

The same thing as July!! But at the end of August, I had Summer Dance that is all afternoon spent at the studio learning routines, strength and conditioning, stretching, it’s one of my favourite parts of summer! I got to go see some world class theatre, as well. I also discovered the TV show Glee which I was really late to but now I love it. And dyed my hair purple!



Random pics.


Hair dye mess.

September

I got to see the journals of the author of my favourite book series Anne Of Green Gables which was such a cool experience and these particular journals were very exciting with stories of proposals. It always inspired me to journals more. Got them bottom half of my braces, which hurt a lot more than the tops. My one cat ran away for 11 days and we got a call from a couple who he had decided to go stay with, we got the cat back now. Started working on really running and strength building, again. And also went back to doing school and was highly motivated so got lots done. Dance started again, as well. Started to question if I should continue homeschooling. More posts on this later!! I did a little work with my dad. Fewer calls happened as friends went back to school and started to get busy. It was a new start to the school year and I was highly motivated to get as much school as possible done! Added in other subjects that I was interested in like Khan’s Wi-Phi Wireless Philosophy and Khan’s health course.

A picture of Lucy Maude Montgomery in her journal.

October

My friends and I decided to put on an awards show, which we’re now doing for every season. We all suggest categories that there will be awards in, then nominate 3 of us for the award and make polls online. Everyone votes between a couple dedicated voting days, then two people “host” the awards and make a YouTube video together of them announcing who has won. I was one of the hosts for the first one and it took quite awhile to come up with everything so most of my time that wasn’t spent working out, dancing, or doing school, was spent on the videos and the rest of the awards for a good 2-3 weeks of October. It was also Canadian Thanksgiving so there was lots of cooking and visiting family.


Pumpkins!


Leaves changing colours.


Thanksgiving cake fail.


Driving home from thanksgiving visits.


First snow!

 

 

November

By November a lot of my motivation from before had faded, and I started to realise how many things need to be changed to work better for me. Most of November was spent researching universities, careers, laying out pros and cons to going to school, trying to figure out what needs to be changed here, all things I’m still trying to figure out and I will definitely write more on these!

Fresh apples.

Corn maze.

Troye Sivan concert!

December

Still trying to figure out how things need to be changed, more university research, less motivation for school and everything. Then Christmas! See Christmas 2016. Then it brings us to the end of the year and now!
Christmas market.


Snowy mornings.


Cardinal visiting.

 

Not a tonne happened in 2016 which isn’t really a bad thing! What were some of the highlights of your 2016?

 

P.S. It’s Peri

2017 Goals

I really love goal setting, it’s probably the OCD in me that wants to take some control in life. Plus it’s so nice after accomplishing goals. And I think it helps me get closer to where I want to be in life? Or at least it makes me think I am, which is good enough.

 

Where I want to be in a year.

The first thing I do before setting the new goals is try to imagine where I want to be at this time next year. Where I am? What have I accomplished? Has there been major changes in my life? How do I feel? This often doesn’t actually help at all because I can barely imagine where I’m going to be tomorrow let alone a year. It also might set too high expectations, but I like to think I’m a pretty reasonable person.

For the next year I haven’t really pictured where I want to be in a year. This year I was thinking more like “If I could do this past year again, what would I do differently?” I have been craving change. I want to change lots of things this year but not go too crazy. My motto is “rebirth” and “live”.  Just improvement and change.

 

A few of the things I would like to accomplish over the coming year:

  1. To be less anxious. I’ve often struggled with anxiety so I would like to work on keeping it under control and managing stress.
  2. To be kinder to myself. Sometimes I just get a little too critical of myself.
  3. Enjoy being content more. It sounds kind of weird but I like being not happy sometimes or I take being content for granted.
  4. Take more risks. I’ve always been afraid of risks but there’s not a lot of fun in not taking any.
  5. Work harder on being social. It doesn’t just magically happen.
  6. Get school things organized, make a new schedule style, stay motivated, and make it more enjoyable.
  7. Get things together for university.
  8. Job shadow more and/or volunteer, get a job.
  9. Learn to drive!! I keep putting it off.
  10. Keep pushing myself in my workouts and maybe do a 5k or something like that.

 

Categories

I have a big binder that I write down all the goals in and can keep coming back to and see what I have accomplished and add in more. There are 12 categories I have made for myself.

  1. Health and fitness
  2. Self improvement
  3. School
  4. Career
  5. Finance
  6. Style and self care
  7. Interdependence
  8. Friends, social, relationships
  9. Creativity
  10. Fun
  11. Blog
  12. Dance

I kind of know what things I want to accomplish in each of these categories and just take a day to write out all of the goals then make a game plan to get these things done!

 

Game plan

This is the really hard part that I like to procrastinate! But if I’m feeling productive I’ll try to make a plan on how to complete these goals. I haven’t done this for this year yet, but it’s coming!

A couple months ago I read 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens ( Honestly really good but sometimes I couldn’t stand the cheesiness, I would definitely recommend reading it, though! ) and it was really helpful with tips on setting goals, prioritizing, and completing the goals.


I’ll be working on my goals for 2017 throughout the year, but this is how I’m going to start out. What are some of your new year’s goals?

 

P.S. It’s Peri