1. "Its the first time you’ve seen snow. Why does it make you cry?"

    Prompt: “Its the first time you’ve seen snow. Why does it make you cry?”

    It wasn’t a harsh cold, the kind that makes your nose tingle and shiver. Instead, it was the kind of chill you feel in your toes through your blankets on that first real winter morning. I knew something was different when I woke up and realized it was the middle of the morning yet there was no light from outside brightening my room. I couldn’t see much out the window from my bed but could tell the sky was solid fluff and a mysterious lite gray.

    I crawled, still covered in blankets, to the window at the end of my bed and slowly peered over the window sill. My breath caught in my chest. My whole small world outside was draped in sheets of soft cotton, lacie designs covering the trees and whispering promises of magic.

    The chill in my toes was becoming less subtle and I broke away from the window for my slippers. I tiptoed downstairs through quiet air but could smell coffee brewing in the kitchen. My husband greeted me in the doorway and said warmly, “Welcome to your first official winter.” We walked to the front door and stood out in the snow in slippers and P.J.s. Our breath escaping in snow clouds, our cheeks blushing with joy and surprise.

    I always imagined winter as a lonely and empty time. Cold, desolate and harsh. But here I was, standing amongst a world of delicate snowflakes and I couldn’t help but let my eyes tear up. In that moment, surrounded by the cotton and lace of winter, I had never felt more beautiful.

  2. Morning Joe

    I decided to paint last night

    Check out my Etsy page for more info!

  3. Callings and Grad Schools

    Have you ever known someone who passionately pursued their dreams and just knew they were going in the right direction? It did not matter what stood in their way, what people said, what they had to do….they knew their dream was more than just a dream. It was a calling.

    I’m fortunate enough to have someone like that in my life. He knows what he loves, what he is supposed to do and he is pursuing that full heartedly knowing full-well that God is pushing him that way. It is really pretty remarkable and really causes me to examine my life.

    Am I doing that? Am I pursuing something like that? Is there something I feel that strongly about that? I have spent the last couple months after graduating college asking myself those questions. What do I really want to do….what do I feel called to do? And do I have the guts to pursue it?

  4. We are having a swanky 20’s party and I am pretty darn excited about this awesome invitations we made!!!!

    We are having a swanky 20’s party and I am pretty darn excited about this awesome invitations we made!!!!

  5. Those moments.

    You’re in the passenger seat sitting at a stop light. The streets are empty except for you and the car idling next to you. You watch the lights as your friend talks about how this is the longest intersection in the city and they always hit the red light. Out of sheer curiosity you turn your head to see who is sitting in the car next to you.
    A normal looking older man, maybe mid-thirties. It looks like he is still wearing a suit from his work-day and is probably headed home after a long day at the office. His hair is tussled and he hasn’t shaved but he looks professional. As your analyzing your street-side neighbor suddenly he turns and looks at you.
    Despite your immediate sense to turn your face away you do not. Instead you and this professional man look at each other until you both shyly smile. Your friend lets out a sigh as the light finally turns green and speeds off while you blush. You don’t know why you’re blushing but you feel somehow you and this stranger stole a moment in time unintended to be shared and for that moment, there was a bit of magic surrounding you. You know this moment, do you not?

  6. Week 2 and 3 

    Alright lets get real.
    Week 2 was TOUGH. I started a summer class so I am working full time, doing a class from 9am-2pm mon-thurs. A class on wednesday night from 6p-10p plus homework and those 40+ hrs at Starbucks. So I feel off the band wagon a bit on week 2 and it hurt!

    My biggest enemy is not planning ahead enough. I have discovered I have to really intentionally plan ahead for more than just a few days otherwise I go to cook dinner and..i have nothing to make! i will say I have successfully done no soda, no fast food, no gross food for over a month! That alone is making me feel better!

    However, after only a week and half my body has already started to adapt to the changes. i decided i really wanted pasta so Sam (my roommate) and I went to Olive Garden. We had a normal meal. Salad, breadsticks, split an appetizer and a pasta. Then we went to a movie and came home. I was totally fine! Until about 4am when I woke up and my body totally rejected everything I had eaten and I had some quality time on my knees next to my toilet. A little graphic, sorry, but i have never had that happen to me! I was grossed out but also shocked that my body reacted so quickly to what I had eaten when it had only been a week or so.

    Week 3 i intentionally planned more. I bought myself a little mini fridge for all my fruits and veggies and am thinking ahead. For example: Tomorrow is a BUSY BUSY day so I made a beef and veggie stew in the crockpot. Makes me not have to cook when I get home AND makes my roommates happy too! I also started thinking leaner about lunch. I packed a little lunch of turkey, a pear, a plum and some veggie chips (AMAZING).

    I have also found that if people that love me KNOW about what I am doing they are more than happy to jump on board. this has been a huge help.

    i can’t wait til my schedule calms down a little so I can work out consistently too. Week 2 I was working out almost everyday and it made a huge difference. I am looking forward to my 60 days where I can record the whole change. People keep asking me how long I am going to do this and I am starting to wonder if i’ll stop!

    There are still some things I allow myself to have once in a while. you cant be 100% everyday but the biggest change is just how much better I feel. Tomorrow I measure and weigh so we will see how the week went tmrw morning!


  7. Week 1—Paleo-dium

    So I finished my first week of on the Paleo Diet which I have affectionately decided to call Paleo-dium. :)

    I really expected to feel tired and hungry all week but I surprisingly I felt GREAT all week! i got a couple caffeine headaches but I work at Starbucks so switching to Americanos or black coffee was a stretch for me.

    I have been drinking unsweetened green tea and water all week mostly. I have been really surprised because I feel like the more veggies i eat the more I like them. Usually I pull tomatoes off of things or push them aside but now I want them! I have gotten a ton of compliments on my skin this week too.

    The hardest part for me so far is just planning ahead. With school and work I really have to think about what I am going to eat so that I don’t end up with no options. I just have to change the way I look at things. Instead of eating Doritos I am eating Apple Chips. Instead of ice cream I blended up a banana, some cinnamon and almond butter and froze it. t was great!

    Honestly after I hit my breaking point it hasn’t been too hard to stay on track. Today was my first “reward” day and I had frozen yogurt and I actually felt SICK! I think it must have been the dairy and sugar. But it was so weird to feel sick after eating something I would normally love!

    I also bought a black bikini and hung it up on my wall as motivation.
    I’m done making excuses. I’m done being unhappy with how I look and feel and see myself. I’m done seeing pictures of myself and being appalled that that is how I look. I want to keep feeling great and getting stronger and really be proud of what I am doing.

    My body is mine and if it is not how I want it than it is up to only me to change that. I have to live with it for the rest of my life so I want to be happy about the decisions i am making and what I am putting into it.

    Week 1 was a success. I even lost .8% body fat! I’m not really sure if that’s a great result but it is SOME results so i think that’s great! On to week two where I am trying to add daily exercise, even something small.

    Here is a quote I found that I really like:
    “Women are so good at hiding things, but instead of trying to hide your body, start working it!” - Elsa Pataky

    I wear loose clothing and I love how it looks and feels. But lately I think I started wearing it because it hides things rather than wearing it because I love how it looks. I want to be able to work on my body and wear whatever i want because i like how it looks not because i do not like how I look.

    So let’s get workin’!

  8. APU Confessions or APU Complainers?

    So it’s been a little over a year since I started PostSecret APU (facebook.com/postsecretapu) at my school. It was a powerful semester and a lot of people had their eyes opened to what students were really dealing with on our campus.

    Last week a new “community” started on Facebook called ‘APU Confessions.’ I believe I have some right to have an opinion on this page as it based loosely on what I created and lots of people are comparing it what I made.However- when looking at this page it is clear to me there is nothing in common between the pages or the creators.

    Now, I’m not saying the person running it is a bad person, I am just saying perhaps they did not think it through. Post Secret served as a platform to share secrets of things they were struggling with. Secrets that were hurting them, haunting them, embarrassments….it was created as a safe place where people could see they were not alone and their peers could encourage and support them.

    APU Confessions, I find, has no redeeming quality about it. Yes, a lot of people have joined the page but what good is it actually doing anybody? When I asked the moderator what the point of the page was it was not so that people could be free from their secrets or find help…it was simply self expression.

    I find it very disappointing that my peers at APU would find a page like this tasteful. That they would write horrible comments on these “confessions” and find it amusing that the behavior being confessed is so vile, rude and sometimes just really awful. It makes my heart really sad that we can take so many steps back and now be creating pages where students are slamming on the school, on their roommates, and being down right disrespectful.

    When I see things like this come up all I can do is pray that people see the differences is what is here and what PostSecret APU was. I do not want any comparison or relation to something that is so mean to other people. I only see this page encouraging destruction and I think that says a lot because I spent a lot of time defending the voice of our students. If THIS is what our students choose to do with their voice when they have one then maybe I was wrong.

  9. ruineshumaines:

    Private Moon Project

    Russian artists Leonid Tishkov and Boris Bendikov created a fantastic world illuminated with the moonlight where they tried to convey relations between the man and the Moon. This is a romantic story about a man who met the Moon and decided to stay with it forever. They named the installation ‘Private Moon’.

  10. Clean Eating

    So tomorrow I am going to begin embarking on trying to be healthy.
    December 1st.

    I like to start at the beginning of something.

    I am going to start working out tomorrow and eating better (although that will be easier when I get paid).

    The truth is, I am just really unhappy with my body and my the way I am taking care of it. so something has to be done. I feel like maybe if I make a public declaration it might help :)

  11. Art for Christmas

    I am going to take custom orders for my paintings so you can give your friends and family a gift that will really last. Check out my Facebook Art page and/or my etsy page and let me know if you’re interested!


  12. "I love borders. August is the border between summer and autumn; it is the most beautiful month I know. Twilight is the border between day and night, and the shore is the border between sea and land. The border is longing: when both have fallen in love but still haven’t said anything. The border is to be on the way. It is the way that is the most important thing"
    Tove Jansson (via birdieinwonderland)
  13. New paintings!

    I just added about 15 new paintings all ready for sale on my Etsy page. If you are in the close area let me know and I can give you a code to waive shipping. Please check it out and let me know if you have questions! www.etsy.com/shop/shannonraeart

    Here are some previews::

About me


I have many names.
Been called many things.

The one on my birth certificate reads "Shannon Rae Galford"- I prefer Shan and have frequently tried to convince the world to call me Shay.
I have been unsuccessful.

I hate to wash my hair or jeans,
if I do anyway then you are special.

I want to help people see the beauty in a world that is so often taken over by harsh tones and hollow promises.

because wouldn't the world be a nicer place...
if everyone saw something beautiful in it?