Little Accomplishments – June 16th, 2017

Little Accomplishments – June 16th, 2017

What have you accomplished this week?

Welcome back to this week’s Little Accomplishments!

Hellooo guys! Man, this week was so productive for me, it was a bit overwhelming haha! I looove getting things done, don’t get me wrong, there was just so much productivity happening this week that it was a bit much lol 😱

I’m debating over whether to pick the best ones to share, or to just dump all of them into this post. I’m not sure. We’ll see! Update: I’m doing all of them.

I hope that all of you had an absolutely beautiful week! And hey, if it wasn’t the best, there’s a shiny, brand new week up ahead for all of us. The weekend is here (what, what!!), which is the best way to start these next seven days. xxx Make sure to comment down below what you’ve been up to this week. 🙂 Enjoy!

Let’s celebrate all of life’s joys – no matter how small!

This past week, I…

  • got all the photos and videos off my phone. (YAY!!!! This is actually a gigantic accomplishment for me because I’ve been attempting to do this for weeks, and finally [upon my mom’s urging to try again – thank you, thank you, thank you!!], my mom’s laptop registered that my phone was plugged in and let me transfer everything. I can’t express how happy and relieved this makes me feel.)
  • finished the Spanish 4 course on Memrise. (Woohoo! This isn’t quite as big of an accomplishment as finishing Spanish 3 a few weeks ago, as that course had over 600 words/phrases to learn, and Spanish 4 had about 150, but hey, I was still pretty excited to see the little badge that pops up upon course completion!)

  • caught up on all classic reviews for Spanish on Memrise. (This always takes me a while, as even taking a couple days off from language learning gets me so behind on review, but that makes me even more excited when I see what I took a screenshot of below! Four completed courses, with no words to review on any of them. 😀 )

  • took multivitamins for one full, consecutive week. (This is one of those accomplishments that’s boring, but soooo necessary!! The multivitamin and vitamin C I take are both chewable, and I can’t stand how they taste, so most days for a long while, I’d “forget.” But now I’m back to taking them 😀 )
  • planned everything out so that I can have a laid-back week of blogging. (It won’t look like much of a difference to the readers, but for me, it is a much-needed break. The May blogging challenge I did was an epic whirlwind of creative blog post writing, but whew! It took a toll on me – and I know that it was challenging for Cheila and Angela, too – my lovely fellow challenge buddies. So, over the next week or so [possibly longer], I’ll be publishing you guys’ summer stories every other day until I don’t have anymore. I am taking a break from interviews, recipes, and Sunday inspirations. For right now, I’m focusing on just getting Little Accomplishments posts, as well as the summer memories, ready to post, and just working on behind-the-scenes stuff for now. ❤ )
  • updated my About page and sidebar picture. (How do you guys like it?? I looove the new About page! Click here to check it out. ❤ )

Comment what YOU’VE done this week down below – last Saturday through today!

— Maggie

Little Accomplishments – May 26th, 2017

Little Accomplishments – May 26th, 2017

What have you accomplished this week?

Welcome back to this week’s Little Accomplishments!

My baby sister, Elizabeth, turns eleven months old today!! She is the sweetest little girl ever – I love her soooo much, and I can’t believe she’ll be a year old just a month from now! You’re growing up so fast ❤

This past week, I got some different, miscellaneous things done! Not as much as past weeks, but I still enjoyed myself, lol.

Let’s celebrate all of life’s joys – no matter how small!

This past week, I…

  • revived my Twitter account. (I hadn’t tweeted since September, but I’m back to being on there again … at least for now! Add me if you like 🙂 @lovelywriter16

  • reorganized my bookshelf. (I had it set up the same way for a couple months, but I looove how it looks now!)

  • went through all the pictures on my phone. (I emailed some of them to myself, but the rest are still in my camera roll, lol. Now to transfer all of them to the computer where they belong!)
  • got a podcast app (Podly) and found some cool podcasts. (I subscribed to a few that my friend, Pamela, recommended, but I also found a few that look really cool – including Master of Memory! We’ll see how I like them 🙂 )
this is a really cool one I’m interested in listening to!
  • found a new music artist that I love. (Jordan Feliz has a beautiful voice and his songs are so meaningful. ❤ Beloved, Best Of Me, and The River are on repeat!)
  • finished reading Death on the Nile. (Once again, I must admit that Agatha Christie is a brilliant novelist. This novel was SO good!)

Comment what YOU’VE done this week down below – last Saturday through today!

Happy Friday, y’all!

— Maggie

Blogging Challenge – Day 20: Favorite Apps

Blogging Challenge – Day 20: Favorite Apps

Hi guys! I hope that your Saturday has gotten off to an awesome start. Thanks for coming by today’s prompt! Today, I’m writing about some of my recent favorite apps. (I don’t have an Etsy shop, so today’s actual prompt isn’t going to work for me lol! I hope you enjoy.)

You can read about what this challenge is here. And make sure to check out Cheila’s and Angela’s posts for today, too – we’re all doing the challenge together!

Favorite Apps

(all of these are available for free in the App Store. Not sponsored.)

Memrise. Since the end of December ’16, I’ve been learning Spanish with this app. I finished the first three levels and learned over a thousand words, and now I’m moving on to Spanish 4! It is, by far, the best language learning program I’ve used so far – and it’s free. I can’t wait to complete all of their Spanish courses – and I’ve even checked out their French 1 course, too, which also looks awesome!

Pocket Planes. I found this in the App Store a year or two ago, and not only is it a fun, addictive game – you can fly your little planes all over the world! – it has also taught me soooo much about the major cities in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East – which is cool! Up until this game, I wasn’t very interested in world geography, lol. I’ve unlocked something like 60 different airports in those different regions; I love learning all the different names! (Although the actual pronunciation of them is way beyond me.) When you start the game, you pick what region you want to unlock airports in, and it only gets more fun from there. The graphics are my favorite part; they’re so cute!

Plant Nanny. It’s what finally got me to drink more water every day! You pick what little virtual plant you’d like to grow, and as you drink water, you can log that progress in the app, which then feeds your little plant. Make sure not to go too long without drinking; your plant could end up dying on you, haha

Pinterest. I’ve loved this website since I was eleven years old, but as of recently, it has been so helpful to have on my phone while looking at recipes, as well as inspirational quotes, blogging inspiration, and mission trip dreaming/planning!

Dancing Line. My brother introduced this one to me on Wednesday! It is an epic, fun music strategy game (reminds me of Guitar Hero, which is my all-time favorite game) where you tap to the beat of piano music, as well as violins and cellos, to lead your trail through a maze. It’s kind of hard to explain. You should try it out! I can’t get enough of it!!!

Thanks for reading, guys! I highly recommend all of these apps; I appreciate each and every one of them. How about you?

What are a few of YOUR favorite apps?

— Maggie

How To Take AWESOME Photos With Your iPhone

How To Take AWESOME Photos With Your iPhone

Technically, I’m not a photographer. I don’t use a camera to shoot any of my photos; I use my iPhone 5s. Therefore, what I really am is an iPhoneographer.

Over the past two and a half years, I’ve gotten pretty good at the simple art of taking great iPhone photos. I’d love to share my knowledge with you in 7 tips that are very important to remember on your own journey of taking pictures with your iPhone. 😊📱💥

{Master Your iPhone’s Camera Functions}

1. Always take photos full-size – avoid shooting in square mode! Crop later; most, if not all, editing apps have a cropping feature. It’s possible that you’ll regret only having square dimensions on certain shots if you ever decide to get them printed, framed, etc.

unfiltered; flower at an apple orchard

2. Turn off flash. I never use it, and I don’t recommend it; find light sources elsewhere. Plus, flash is blinding 😂

unfiltered; old picture of me being blinded by flash

3. Don’t use the photo filters that come with the camera. I’ve found that once I put those filtered photos onto my computer, the files become corrupt! Maybe it’s just my computer … either way, I think that edit app filters are prettier, anyway. 💕

filtered with Rookie Cam; my brother drawing with chalk
filtered with Rookie Cam; my brother drawing with chalk

4. Use the front-facing camera for all selfies. You don’t necessarily have to follow this rule/suggestion, but the quality of user-facing cameras of all phones are known for their poor picture quality. Save our eyes from fuzzy images; take photos with the outward-facing camera.

both filtered with Rookie Cam; outward-facing (left) selfie and user-facing (right) selfie

5. Learn how to use exposure. If you raise the exposure higher than auto (tap screen and slide up), that allows more light into the camera. You’ll get pictures like this:

unfiltered; trees in my backyard

If you lower the exposure so that less light enters the camera, you’ll get pictures like this:

filtered with Rookie Cam; my brother’s silhouette (pic taken at 4PM)

Different settings, different results. Experiment with both; you’ll soon learn what situations look best in high, low, and auto lighting.

~

{3 Great Tips for Taking Awesome iPhone Photos}

1. Always be on the lookout for natural light. Phone cameras do best in natural lighting, which is why I’m always on the lookout for sunlight. Most shots taken outside or near an open window will turn out clearer and brighter than artificial-lighted photos, as long as there isn’t too much movement or direct sunlight. (If the sun is visible in the picture itself, the brightness of the picture might be overwhelming.)

unfiltered; my brother blowing bubbles

2. Tap to focus – always. Over the years, I’ve learned that auto-focus isn’t foolproof. Get in the habit of manually focusing – just tap the screen once where the subject of your photo is.

filtered with Rookie Cam; my sister laughing

3. Take as many photos as you can. iPhone camera shutter speeds aren’t very fast. (By the way, shutter speed is the amount of time between when you click and when the camera actually takes the picture.) That means that if you only take one picture, you’re not likely to have captured the moment exactly how you wanted it to look. I recommend taking tons of photos, even if they all look like duplicates from a distance. Once you’re done taking pictures, view each one up close, keep the good ones, and trash all the ones that didn’t turn out.

unfiltered; three very similar photos of my sister

Thank you so much for reading! If you’d like to see more tutorials, please comment below on what topics you’d like to see. For now, I’m planning on writing a post about my favorite editing app (Rookie Cam). 😄💕✨ ¡Adiós!

— Maggie