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Sunday, January 7, 2018

Four Years of [S]iW

Happy 4th Birthday to my blog! :D

Seriously, I can't believe this blog has been around for four years as of yesterday. I have documented so much of my life onto this little space, starting with my last semester of college.

Also, do you like the new colors and logo? I did a little bit of rebranding, and now the blog has a fresh coat of (holographic and neon pink) paint.

So, on to brass tacks - what can you expect out of [Savannah] in Wonderland this year?


Just me.

And my passions.

What do I mean by that? Well, to be honest, I burnt myself out on blogging a little bit last year. I became so wrapped up in adsense, potential blog growth, and other things like that to the point that I lost why I started this blog in the first place: to share my passions: faith, writing, and everything else important to me in my life, along with every adventure in between. I became so caught up in appearances and being "on top of things" that it just became a chore and a job more than a hobby I love.

So what else can you expect from [Savannah] in Wonderland in 2018?

  • So. Much. Adventure. I can't wait to share this year's travels with you! I will be going to a couple of planner events, and I'll be doing some other traveling, too. I also want to share some more packing tips (i.e. how to pack light, especially in the winter.)
  • Writing. I haven't really filled y'all in on the author side of my life since I created a separate author website, but this year, I'm planning on condensing both those sites here. [S]iW was always meant to be my one and only internet space. :) So, I'll be filling you guys in on my writing process, revising the novel I wrote last year, what I do as a writer and freelance editor, and more!
  • Faith. I've missed faith blogging, and I've had a lot on my mind lately. So, get ready for posts on that, too! I want to share some insights with you I've learned recently and over the years.
  • The little things. I love sharing Friday Fives, my favorite bands, and my favorite things with y'all. I hope to share even more of that with you, too.
I can't promise a set schedule all the time, because I am pretty busy these days. But I can promise you this: [Savannah] in Wonderland is going to have an amazing, bright - literally - and exciting 2018!


Friday, October 13, 2017

Friday Five | 10/13/17

Happy FriYay once again, dear readers! 

A lot of wonderful things happened this week, and I'm so excited to share them with you guys. :)
I’m 26 now!
My birthday was this past Sunday, October 8th. Every birthday has been better than the last, but this year is probably one of my all-time favorites.

I got to visit my boyfriend!
One of my birthday presents was a round-trip ticket to visit Cody in his college town. Of course the trip was awesome. :)
It involved wonderful things like street tacos, chargrilled oysters, and general birthday shenanigans.

I went to the Varsity!
On my way back home, I had a layover in Atlanta. I knew that I had to stop at one of the Varsity locations inside the airport.
If you’ve never been to the Varsity, it’s a delightful drive-in that’s been around for decades. It’s always been a favorite of mine because when I was growing up, we’d make the drive to the Downtown Atlanta location when we were visiting my grandparents. It was the same location my parents went to when they were dating and first got married. So, needless to say, it’s pretty special.
But that day, I got a Frozen Orange. It’s an orange creamsicle slush that’s out of this world.

I’ve been listening to great music lately
Favorites this week:
  • "Silence" by Marshmello feat. Khalid
  • "Save a Little Love" by Don Diablo
  • "Thriller (Steve Aoki Midnight Hour Remix)" by Michael Jackson (because it’s that time of year ;] )
Actual Fall weather is FINALLY here!
I know I’ve been talking (and getting excited for) Fall weather a lot lately, but this week, it actually got cold. I was standing outside one night this week thinking, “Why didn’t I bring a jacket?” And I was already wearing flannel.
It usually gets colder in my hometown the week of my birthday/generally the second week of October, so I’m not a bit surprised at this cold snap. Honestly, I’m good with it. It’s high time it actually felt like Fall around here.

What have you been loving this week?

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Tips for Conquering Layovers

I did a lot of traveling this past weekend. I got to visit my boyfriend in his college town, which was awesome. :)

This round trip involved one layover each way. Personally, I’m no stranger to layovers; I don’t hate them, but sometimes, I’m not eager to sit and wait in an airport for my next flight (or run/walk briskly to the next flight depending on how much time I have). It’s sometimes a necessity to have that extra time.

So, how do you conquer that layover? What do you do? Where can you go? What shouldn’t you do?

Here’s my advice.

For the Short Layovers (Less Than One Hour)

The most important thing is to get to your next gate. So, skip food for the moment and make sure that you find your connecting gate first and foremost.

As soon as you get off your plane, go to the nearest departures board and look for your next city and flight number. From there, you should have the most up-to-date gate assignment. Just follow the signs and you should be good to go.

Then, if you have extra time or if your flight is delayed, grab that snack or that paperback.

For the Long Layovers (More That One Hour)

You have a LOT more room to do things before your flight. Finding your gate, while it’s still a priority, isn’t as rushed when your layover is longer.

So what do you do with your time?
  • Grab food. (Some airports have iconic, state or city-specific food that you can pick from, like The Varsity in Atlanta [see above], or Nuts on Clark in Chicago)
  • Read. Peruse the airport bookstore and find that delightful little paperback to pass the time.
  • Grab a cup of coffee. Airport coffee shops are usually less busy during afternoons, but if you have a long layover in the morning, the long line may help burn some of the waiting time. Just keep your boarding time in mind just in case.
  • Souvenir shop. A lot of airports sell food (keep security requirements in mind, as you may have to check these items going back), or sports team merchandise, or state-specific apparel. Long layovers are a great time to pick out goodies for loved ones back home.
  • Catch up on any work. As someone who has worked as an editor on the go for years, this is a great way to pass time.
  • Write! I’m talking to my fellow writers, bloggers, and NaNoWriMo participants here. Getting your word count up or just catching up on posts can burn through layover time easily. Take advantage of coffee shop or gate wifi.
  • Talk to family, friends, and loved ones. This, personally, has helped me feel safer while flying alone. I've felt more at ease talking to my boyfriend or family before boarding.

Things you should avoid during layovers
  • Restaurants during short layovers. Even if you have a full hour, it’s not worth having to wait for food and risk missing your flight.
  • Not keeping track of time. Make sure your phone or watch matches the time zone you are in. Airports and alerts are pretty good about making sure you’re aware of the time change, but it’s better safe than sorry.
  • Headphones when traveling alone. You need to be completely and totally alert while traveling alone, so make sure you’re paying attention to any PA announcements and what’s going on around you.
  • Sleeping while traveling alone. Again, it’s better to be alert.
  • Accepting luggage, food, or drink from strangers. Yes, it’s okay to accept help (like the wonderful passersby in the Atlanta airport when I spilled my drink who practically showered me with napkins...just one of many reasons why I LOVE traveling in the South). But please use common sense, and don’t accept certain things like luggage or food items. And watch for pickpockets, too.

Do you like layovers? What do you do to pass the time?

Friday, October 6, 2017

26 Things You Didn't Know About Me

I’m turning 26 in two days.

I know, I can’t believe it either. I’m well into my mid-twenties now, but I don’t necessarily feel any different. But all I know is that I’m really thankful for the past 25 years; for all the adventures, highs, and lows. I know without a shadow of a doubt that God has worked through all these years, and He will continue to do so in my life.

Today, I thought I’d do a post that I’ve done a variation on before, but I thought it would be fitting given the occasion. Here are 26 things you didn’t know about me.

  1. I was named after the city in Georgia, and I did not visit that city until my freshman year of high school.
  2. As a child, I was frequently called “Samantha” and “Susannah” because Savannah was actually not as popular in the 90s as it is now.
  3. I did not actively start drinking sweet tea and coffee until high school. Now, they’re a staple in my life, daily or otherwise.
  4. I was originally going to be named “Summers Elizabeth” instead of “Savannah Kate”, but the name changed two weeks before I was born after my mom read the sequel to “Gone With the Wind."
  5. I collect Spirit Jerseys.
  6. I've collected dresses from different places I’ve traveled.
  7. My lucky number is always my age. This year, it will change from 25 to 26.
  8. I have been blonde my entire life; my hair has just gotten darker over the years.
  9. I have never actually dyed my hair before.
  10. Bunnies have always been my favorite animal because my mom read me (and decorated my nursery to be inspired by) Peter Rabbit books as a child.
  11. Speaking of books, I read voraciously as a kid, and could speak the whole alphabet at 18 months. I was born to know and love words early on.
  12. My favorite international food is Japanese, followed by Mexican, Indian, Thai, and Italian.
  13. The only “sport” I was ever involved in was dance.
  14. My desire to visit London came from the remake of “The Parent Trap.” Now, it’s one of my all-time favorite cities ever.
  15. The two places I’ve always wanted to go to (but haven’t visited) are Tokyo and Barcelona.
  16. Two of the most mind-blowing concert/Broadway musical events of my life both involve British guys named Dan: the first was when I saw Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) in “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” in New York, the second was when I was within two yards of Dan Smith from Bastille at one point during their concert.
  17. Speaking of Harry Potter, I once stood in line at Waterstones’, a popular UK bookstore chain, with my parents super late at night for the midnight release of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. In Glasgow, Scotland. Meaning, I got to own a copy about 6 hours before US readers.
  18. My favorite color has always been some shade of blue.
  19. I’ve always loved gaming on some level or another, all the way back from playing on my parents’ NES.
  20. My favorite Disney movie has always been Beauty and the Beast.
  21. My all-time favorite movie in general is Legally Blonde (followed closely by Pacific Rim).
  22. My favorite genre of movie is probably action/adventure.
  23. My favorite book always has been (and always will be) The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis.
  24. I can cross my toes.
  25. I’ve loved to draw for as long as I can remember, from doodles and anime/manga-inspired characters to full-blown comics for both high school and college.
  26. I have been a Christian (a baptized believer) for 11, going on 12 years, and I’m so grateful and thankful for that.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

The Story of How We Began

I figured I’d post another story. I feel like this one is fitting for today, seeing as how it’s National Boyfriend Day.

This is the story of how we got together.

For starters, Cody and I have known each other for about ten years. However, we were at such different stages in our lives that we really didn’t have the time to get to know one another…I was in school, then he was in school. Being three and four hours away at a time didn’t really lend itself to getting to know a person well. We were just ships passing at that point.

That is, until last December.

Cody texted me and asked me if I had a ride to our church’s Young Professionals’ group Christmas party, and he offered to take me if I didn’t have plans. I accepted, intrigued. Like I said, we were ships passing, but we weren’t such total strangers that we didn’t at least know the other person as acquaintances.

So, he picked me up, and we soon found out that we had a lot in common. We both love broadway musicals, action movies, and travel, for starters. We went to the party, had a fantastic time…and really, that was the start of it all.

It did take some time for us to get to that point, but I honestly am glad that we took it at the pace we did. I got to know his inner circle of friends, I figured out that he and I are both adventurous when it comes to food, and we went on many, many outings and adventures together. 

And let’s not forget all the surprises he planned for me. I loved them all. I still do.

But eventually, it all culminated on the evening of June 1, 2017. Something was different about that night…I’d felt closer to him than I’d ever felt in the six months that we’d been talking and seeing each other.

It was that evening that we decided to start our relationship. My heart soared that day - and, to be honest, it still is soaring above the clouds, and I don’t think I’ll be coming down anytime soon.

How are we today? 

We’re growing stronger every day as a couple. We are currently long distance as of this post, as he’s working on his sport management degree and achieving his dreams working with his college’s football team. I'm busy with my own writing adventures. But the times we do get to spend together are always the best.

I'm so thankful for him. I'm thankful that he's so spiritually-minded, and I'm thankful for how considerate he is not only with me, but with my family, his family, his co-workers, and others around him.

And, most of all, I’m thankful that God blessed me with Cody as the best boyfriend in the world. 
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