Tuesday, April 4, 2017

what have I been doing lately?

The last time I wrote on this blog (I had to specify that it was on this blog because the last time I wrote period was this morning. I have an obsession) was when I turned 19. Whoa, still feels weird to say that especially since I don't even think about the fact that I'm 19 like... ever. Who cares after 18, right?

The month after my birthday was pretty much a blur. I finished up my classes for winter term, which was a struggle cause 2/4 of the classes I didn't like. But nonetheless, I finished.
I also got to have a couple adventures with T and Mox.

It was super weird being up at Starkey without our whole Waite family, but it was a fun little Sunday after noon with my roomies.
That was the quiet before the storm.

I only had one in class final, and it was on the Monday of finals week. Previously, I had asked if I could have spring break off and that was a negative (Everyone was getting it off so that meant ella had to stay. I wasn't too bitter). So Since I wasn't scheduled on Monday or Tuesday of finals week, and my coworker offered to cover my Wednesday shift, I headed off to Portland.

It meant to be a surprised for my mom and Lilli and Kellen, but I can't keep anything from my mom. Plus I shared my location with her so that kinda makes it hard to go anywhere without her knowing.

After my noon final, I headed out.

I decided, in the effort of money saving, that I wouldn't buy an audio book for this trip. That was a mistake.

But audio book or not, I made it through Portland traffic, and was greeted with surprised faces and ice cream. We mostly just hung around and talked that night.

The next morning I took my car to Les Schwab's to get my snow tires taken off and my regular ones put back on, which took sooooo long. I sat there by myself for two hours. It's okay, I got a lot of reading in.
Mom picked me up and took me out to lunch and we went shopping.

We picked the kiddos up from school and then picked my car up from the dealership.

We had dinner at the cutest place ever.


Tim took Lilli and I to finally see Beauty and the Beast. We all three loved it.

I go to get the kids dressed and take them to school the next day, but not after a game of headbands.
When did they become perfect mini people? They were just babies, weren't they?

Then I was off again. Because I was kinda dreading my ride home, and the next week that was coming (I was scheduled to work the next 7 days in a row), I decided to make the trip as fun for myself as possible.

My first fun stop was Multnomah falls. It was fun, for sure, until I locked my keys in the car on accident. This has NEVER happened to me before, and neither have I ever forgotten my wallet or cellphone anywhere. If you know me well, you know I have a system. Before I leave any place, I make sure I have my wallet, keys, and cellphone. It was torture to see my keys just sitting on the seat and me basically bashing my head in wondering how the heck I didn't notice I never put them in my pocket. This was my second mistake of this trip. haha

So what do you do in this situation?

Call Mom.

Mom does this new thing where she tells me what to do, she doesn't do it for me. It's super annoying, but I guess I'm supposed to learn or something like that ;)
I called road side assistance and within an hour, a 60-year-old man who smelled like weed and had three cats in his car pulled up and helped me break into my car.

I thought, of course this happens to me. My life sucks.

Mom told me it shouldn't ruin my day. There she goes again, trying to teach me things... how annoying ;). Since she's a smart women, I decided to listen to her.

Next stop on ella's fun filled 5 hour drive was one of our favorite restaurant in the Dalles.

And to answer your question, no, I didn't realize their personal pizza was this small. But I dealt with it. Plus, it was picture worthy.

Next stop: a different state.
You're probably like "WHAT?" and I'm like "YUP!"
I make the drive from La Grande to Portland and Portland to La Grande A LOT. I'm no stranger to all the cool things along the way. Two of those sit across the river, in your eyesight. The Maryhill  museum of art and the replica of Stonehenge. I've been to both of these cool places before, but since I waited for an hour at Multnomah falls for road side assistance (which is like the coolest thing ever, by the way), I decided to just stick with the less time-consuming and free Stonehenge.

I crossed the bridge into Washington. I'm not gonna lie, I love this age. I love being able to basically do whatever I'm feeling, and send my mom pictures afterward, and then her reply "how cool!". The first road trip I took, when I was 16 to Roseburg, this would not fly with her. But it's okay, I'm older and wiser now.

It was kinda a thrill to cross the bridge!

My feet on Washington soil!!!!! (technically concrete)

Hi Oregon!!!

Basically, the replica is dedicated to vets from the area who took part in the War to end all wars (WW1). So not only was I in Washington, not only was I pretending I was at the actually Stonehenge, but I was also paying my respects to Vets who fought in a war I've heard so much about. This is one of my favorite things to do. People go to the Portland Zoo? I'd rather walk around the Vietnam memorial on the same property. Man, I'm always in awe and full of respect and sorrow when i'm in these kind of places. It was cool.

I got a pop from pilot and cracked. Yes, people, I caved. I bought an audio book.

Stephen King, have I told you lately that you're a creepy genius?

Finally, I was home.

I worked my butt off for a solid week. I hung out with my aunts and cousins who were in town for their spring break, and I watched a lot of Netflix. I talked to multiple people on face time. I cleaned out my room and threw away a bunch of junk. It was all a blast :)

School started again yesterday and even though I've only had two of my three classes (my math teacher is at a conference so we won't be meeting until Friday of this week) I'm loving them both.

Well, this was long. And I'm EXHAUSTED. And I need to go shopping for food.

Hopefully, I'll write soon about something cool.

THANK YOU FOR READING AGAIN!! You guys are the best fans ;) I love you, truly.

Singing off until the next time I ramble,
Ella Frances Waite

Friday, March 3, 2017

turning nineteen years old

I feel like it's been such a long time since my fingers typed viciously on this keyboard for the reason of blogging. But it really hasn't even been a month yet! I guess it feels like such a long time because so much had happened.

I think the biggest thing that had happened is I changed!

From an eighteen year old to a nineteen year old ;) So in all honesty, I haven't changed AT ALL. I don't feel ANY different. 19 is such a weird age where I don't get any new freedoms like I did when I was eighteen (I made a list of all my new freedoms last year :)). AND I'm still a teenager, so that's weird, too. I can adopt a child, but I'm still a teenager. So silly :)

The week before my birthday weekend, my dad and step mom and two of my step brothers came to visit!! It was super quick but it consisted of a trip to Pendleton (in which my dad looked at a gravel lot and said "Trampis was born there, when there used to be a hospital". and to which I said "uh HELLO!! I was born there too!" which had the whole car laughing), shooting guns, dinner, and milkshakes. It was short but fun.

I snapped some pictures of us shooting.

ANYWAY!! On my birthday for the last three years, my mom has planned some kind of day-trip instead of gifting me things. I guess this tradition started when I was 16- when mom and I made a trip up to Portland (I was living in Roseburg at the time). When I was 17 we went to seaside with Mom, Tim, Lilli, Kellen, Trampis, Jess and I. 18 was Seattle, with the same group of people. This year was just a day around Portland with the same group of people plus one :)

The weekend started with traveling.

And the next day began with Lilli and Kellen's basketball game. And yes, that's my friend Coulsen as the guest. Oh! And my grandpa and his friend Julie :)

Lunch at Chick-fil-a.

These were all taken at my fav place THE PITTOCK MANSION! I just realized that all of these pictures are of Coulsen, Lilli, and I haha. That's because, since there were so many of us we kinda split into groups. As you can see, Lillian tagged in with Couls and I.

The next stop on the birthday train was Salt & Straw. SO YUMMY! We also looked in a few stores around that area, because it's so dang cute.

The rest of the day we spent at pioneer square shopping and looking around. We ended the day by eating at Gustav's. Also yummy.

We hung around for the rest of the night and had a good time just being in each others company.

This was short but I wanted to get it up there to just inform everyone about what's been happening. I'm sure many people already know because of all the social media I have... But I just thought I should say I LOVE MY FAMILY! Both sides, each and every one of them. Although 19 doesn't seem like that big of a milestone, I know it's just that much closer to the rest of my life. I'm not trying too hard to grow up but I'm just so excited. College does this to you! Presents you with this plan for the rest of your life and then says, "well, you actually have to wait four more years". How lame is that?


Signing off until next time,
Ella Frances Waite

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

dear love

Dear Love, Thank you for existing.

Dear Valentines Day, Thank you for giving up a whole day in which, no matter what our situation is, we are forced to contemplate love. Thank you for being a day. Thank you for all the flowers and chocolates and dinner dates that you suddenly rocket into importance.

Dear God, Love is the deciding factor to everything you do. I appreciate all the people who were tools in your hands that taught me that.

Dear Single People, Last year I saw so many posts on social media about the devils day that was valentines day, a day to make people lacking a significant other bad. This year wasn't as bad, but I still saw many posts. Please know, you are loved. Even if you don't think that statement is true. There are many people out there who have an overwhelming love for humanity as a whole, and you are included in that. Let other people celebrate their love ones. Celebrate yourself next year, tomorrow, the next day, forever. Love life. Love people you've never met. Love the smell of a candle and the clicking noise of a keyboard. Just love.

Dear people in relationships, know there are some out there who aren't as lucky as you. Remember them and love them, too. Don't neglect them or neglect your significant other the remaining days of the year. Always love.

Dear Mom, thank you for always making Valentines day about family, and about love of everyone. Thank you for the cheesy baskets of candy, the take out Chinese food, the paper hearts, the heart filled paper plates. Thanks for being my #1 example of love. Every time when I say "I love you more", I mean it, but every time you tell me "mom's love their babies most", I feel it. Thank you for your example, your hugs, your advice, the millions of times you made me laugh.

Dear Dad, You were the first man I ever fell in love with. You were the man who showed me how to be loved, how I shouldn't just build people up, that I should be built in return. Thank you for every time you made me feel important, every time you read my writing, every time you told me a history fact, every time you took me to a movie or texted me a selfie and said "just in case you forgot what I looked like". I am so lucky to have you.

Dear siblings, step parents, extended family, I LOVE YOU.

Dear friends, you guys were the family I got to choose, the people who shaped me to be who I am. You taught me lessons, were my shoulders to cry on. Thank you for the love you brought to my life when I needed it the most.

Dear history teachers, you were the main reasons I sit today, in La Grande on a school night, majoring in history. You fueled my love of people, or their nature and of everything they are.

Dear Oregon, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! You're beautiful, you're 158 (158? Yeah? Something like that), and you're my home state. I've moved so much that people often ask me, especially in college "where are you from?" and I have so many "hometowns" I never know what to say. I've found comfort in saying "Oregon" and joy in saying "all over Oregon, and kinda in Idaho, too."

Dear, well, everyone, thank you for reading this short little post!! :)) I LOVE YA FOR IT

Signing off until next time,
Ella Frances Waite

Monday, January 23, 2017

what goes on in my mind?

THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN (and, no, I'm not talking about the most recent presidential election).

It looks like this post will involve a lot of the writing I write when I'm emotional, happy, thoughtful, or bored. This will include a lot of my inner feelings or feelings that are not necessarily mine but someone else's, who had inspired me. I say all that as a precaution.


I don't usually share my writing. As an aspiring writer, this shouldn't be the case, but it is. I get nervous! These are my thoughts, my words, my feelings, my observations out there for anyone in the world to see. If that sentence didn't terrify you, then please teach me your ways.

I was actually explaining to my best friend, Fitzgerald, last night that I want people to want to read my writing but I don't actually want them to read it. It's so ridiculous. But, can you blame me? This is what I want to do with my entire life. I want to help, to feed, to inspire, to educate, to make people fall in love with the pages that hold my thoughts. But what if they don't? What if they hate it?

I heard once, that writing is nothing more than sitting at a type writer and bleeding. For me, it's a notebook, or a computer, but it's the same thing.

So, here it goes, I guess. This will be a random selection of writings, rants, and thoughts I've written down in my various notebooks and google docs pages.

Hand In Hand
Hand in hand they walked down the suburban street.
    Hand in hand, they made small talk about the weather, or about something that was new in their lives, in which the other would say “yes, you told me that”. She sometimes commented about the old houses that they passed, telling him what each house reminded her of. When they past a house where kids were playing in the front yard, they both smiled to themselves, neither of them saying anything.
    It wasn’t awkward because they didn’t want to be there. Both of them did, they kept looking at each other and smiling and squeezing the others hand if the silence lasted too long. It was mostly because, although they hadn’t seen each other in over a year, they had told each other everything in every letter, email, and phone call. When they were away from each other they had no trouble talking, but now, it was like they didn’t want to ruin anything. They just wanted to walk, hand in hand.
    Hand in hand, they walked past an old brown house. In front, there was a wooden and glass case full of books. She stopped there, dropping his hand and stepping close to the glass to look.
    He watched her, almost putting a hand on the small of her back, but decided against it.
    “Anything good?” He asked finally. She slowly shook her head,
    “I’m not sure, I don’t recognize anything.” She paused, stepping back and looking at him, a small smile on her face, “Do you think I could take one?”
    “I’m sure that’s what they are there for.” He said, taking her hand again.
    Hand in hand, they peered at the sign on the side of the glass case full of books. But unable to read what it said, came to the decision that it would be best not to take one.
    He began to walk ahead, so she let her hand drop again, reading the title of a book, smiling,
    “I Should’ve Kissed Her More.” She sped up and began to walk ahead of him.
    “What?” He asked from behind her.
    “That was the title of that book.” She said. She walked under the shade of a large tree, looking over at an old Impala that was parked in the driveway of the neighbor to the house with the books. She opened her mouth to say something about the old car, but was distracted from him grabbing her hip, and turning her towards him. Before she could act, his large hand was placed gently on the back on her head, the other still on her hip, and his lips were kissing her. It was soft, and it flooded her mind with memories that were moving through her mind a mile a minute. She grabbed the front of his shirt and kissed him back, in a vain effort to show him all that she was feeling at the moment.
    He pulled apart a little, smiling, then planted one last kiss. The smile on both of there faces didn’t seem to go away in order for them to talk, so they didn’t.
    They just continued to walk down the street, hand in hand, happy that they were finally together again.

    The years between the closing of eyes and the opening is filled with made up scenarios in which you bravely fight evil and sometimes you’re running from it. I feel bad for the people who don’t experience this. Only seconds between the closing and the opening- nothing but black.

The thing Jackson thought about the most was not the art of war, but the terror, or more so the fact that at times he still felt his heart would explode because of the fear deep within.
    The thing he thought most about was shark-bait. Shark-bait happened to be the youngest soldier in his large and diverse company, and he was the person who was around Jackson the most in the army. Then, he had been a younger man. No wrinkles, more hair, a more athletic build. He had joined the army in honor of his grandfather, who he was a spitting image of and who was a veteran himself. Then, he was called mouse in honor or his quiet personality. That was a whole twenty years ago.
    Shark-bait clung to Jackson like he was his ticket to get out of Vietnam alive. And, in some ways, he was.
    Jackson had been 24, one of the oldest. Shark-bait had been 17. Shark-bait had gotten his nickname when the company was camped on a beach somewhere in southern Vietnam. In the middle of the night, Jackson had been woken up by the squad leader, Watson. The other boys had already gathered around the water, watching Shark-bait (who at that time was called little Sammy Davidson) stand chest deep in the ocean. They tried to yell at him, but he seemed not to hear.
    “What is he doing?”
    “Maybe he’s gone mad.”
    “Sleepwalking, probably.”
    “He better wake up. We should wake him up.”
    “If the leeches don’t get him, the sharks will.”
    “Leeches? Sharks?”
    “I wouldn’t doubt it. There are already too many monsters in this place.”
    After silently listening to the chatter, Jackson laughed his younger man laugh, and quietly said,
    “He’s gonna be Shark-bait.”
    All the heads in the company turned towards him.
    “Did you say that, mouse?” One of them finally asked. Jackson shrugged and nodded.
    Laughs erupted on the dark and quiet beach.
    “That’s funny, mouse.” Someone said.
    Another commented, “That’s the most I’ve ever heard him speak!”
    After the shock and laughs died down, everyone looked back at the water and the person standing in it. Like the company had made a unanimous decision, everyone started yelling,

    Jackson never could quite figure out why Shark-bait immediately took a liking to him. They never really talked much at the beginning, only when they were on watch together, and dug their beds close together.
    Some nights Shark-bait would ask Mouse questions about his home life, and mouse would give a short answer and ask him the same question in return. Shark-bait never gave Mouse a reply.
    Not until the worse night in Mouse’s Vietnam tour did Shark-bait really talk. The worst night followed the worst day, which consisted of too much walking, too much shooting, and getting way too lost. In the middle of a firefight with an unseen enemy (years later Jackson would go to a Vietnam support group and it was always the same thing, “I never saw one Charlie”, “The trees, that's who I fought”, “How they stayed so hidden, I don’t know”) Mouse, Shark-bait and a kid called Tommy hid in a large coverage of trees and when they came out, their enemies, like their friends, were nowhere to be found.
    “They’re going to tell everyone that we’re dead. We’re going to be pronounced dead.” Tommy groaned, clutching his stomach as if his worry had cozied up with his organs. He had turned 21 the day before.
    Mouse worried for a moment about how Tommy’s family would take the news. He had never met them. But through all the stories Tommy had told him, Mouse knew his mother would be hysterical. His twin would break inside even when he put on a good outwardly tough vibe, and his kid sister Emily would be devastated.
    “They won’t assume.” Shark-bait had snapped. “They’ll look for us. If the Charlie don’t find us first, then we’ll stay as we are. Alive.”
    Mouse didn’t say anything.
    Together, the three men decided to head in the direction of their camp from the night before.
    Just like the day had started, it ended in walking.
    When if started to get too dark to see what was in front of them. They leaned against a dense group of trees (not unlike the ones that had sheltered them in the fire fight earlier) to rest for the night. Within a minute, Tommy had fallen asleep.
    Mouse was the one to volunteer to keep watch first. He clutched his gun to his chest as he did so, holding his dog tag tightly with his other hand. One of his greatest fears had been his dog tag getting lost or ruined, and his family not knowing what had become of him or his body. No dog tag, no body shipped back to the states, no proper funeral.
    “Yanno.” Said Shark-bait's voice from a few feet away in the dark, “I have a girl. Back home, I mean.”
    “She’s a year and a half old.”
    This statement had hooked Mouse’s attention much more than the first.
    “A daughter.”
    “Leah, yeah.” He had said. He paused, and Mouse assumed he had fallen asleep. Suddenly his voice broke the dark silence once more, “I haven’t seen her since she was four months old. You see, I messed up, and now her mom won’t let me see her.”
    “You apologized, didn’t you?” Mouse asked. Going along with his quiet personality, Mouse was not a nosey man. He didn’t expect Shark-bait to give him details of the thing he did to break up his young and small family.
    “She doesn’t want to take scum like me back.”
    Shark-bait sat up. Mouse could vaguely tell that he had turned his face toward him.
    “You’re Shark-bait.” Mouse said simply. “You are not scum, you only did a scum thing.”
    “I wish Melony would see if that way.”
    “Do you love her?”
    “Yes, I think I do.”
    “It will work out then. Just don’t stop apologizing.”
    “You’re pretty wise… for a Mouse.” He answered, laughing his young man laugh. “Do you have a girl?”
    Before Mouse’s mouth could form the word “yes”, a gunshot rang through the air, piercing their ear drums. The one was followed by many more as Mouse, Shark-bait, and Tommy all scrambled to gather their little belongings and run.
    The forest grabbed at their packs, their clothes, their faces, beckoning them into its dark depths as they ran. The gunshots continued and some didn’t seem like they were for them. More so they seemed like they had stumbled in the middle of an unseen battle.
After running in a direction that wasn’t thought through, Tommy stumbled and fell to his face.
“Tom!” Mouse had shouted, doubling back to throw him over his shoulder. Mouse didn’t have time to check where he had been hit. It could have been his gut, or his shoulder, or even his head. Tommy didn’t move or put up a fight when Mouse loaded him onto his back but Mouse felt his small and staggered breath.  
    All at once, Mouse was questioning all he had learned in Vietnam. And all he had thought about humanity. It happened quickly, that it was believable when Mouse recalled the story with a simple, “It happened so fast, I don’t remember”.
    Truthfully, he did remember.
    He saw, faintly, Shark-bait in front of him running, then stopping, slowly turning around, and smiling at them.
    Mouse was as amazed when he was a young man, as he is as a middle aged man now, at how fast and how easy bullets tear through flesh.
    He saw Shark-baits face, his chin, his round boyish cheeks that hadn’t yet lost their baby fat, his pointed nose, all becoming one in a loud and terrifying red smear. He crumpled onto the ground like an armful of laundry would. Mouse didn’t scream, although he thought he might, but all that came out of his mouth was a low groan and then bile.
    Tommy was a goner before Mouse- with a lot of luck and a lot of prayer- found the rest of the company. His last breath happened after mouse had gotten Shark-bait's dog tag, which to Mouse’s surprise, had a woman's wedding ring hanging next to it. Tommy’s last breath was long after the last gunshot took place. Mouse talked to him while he slowly died, relaying everything that had happened (mostly because he was trying to make sense of it all). He told Tommy everything he knew about Shark-bait, until he was sure Tommy was with the big guy in the sky.
Random Thoughts
    I had no idea the extent of the hold he had on my heart, until he broke it, handed it back to me, and said he didn’t need it anymore.

    The candle, which sat upon a homemade dresser in the corner of her room, burned. She lit it, for the first time in months, just to see if it still smelled as it used to.

He showed me this song.
The song that has become the soundtrack to my mood. The one that demands attention, the one that demands I feel it's words throughout my body, shaking my bones.
It's that one song that you hear, and that you can't stop listening to.
The song you stay in the car for a few extra minutes just so you can sing to it.

They were stuck, running in place, somewhere between in love and in friendship.
They were intimate without ever touching, and enjoyed the presence of the other without a word.    
She saw the good in him and he realized that, telling her once “Why do you think I like to be around you? You do that. You make me get my life together.”
She knew the details about him, the reason for his cat's name and the torments of his childhood. He paid attention to her interests, feeding them, even when they didn’t capture his fancy the same way it did hers.
    He bought her things, without it ever feeling too serious, and she picked up when he called her at 3am.
    They hugged for longer each time they saw each other.
    She felt uncomfortable when he spoke of sleeping with other girls, and he told her “I don’t want you to” when she said she was getting back together with her ex.
    They made sure the other got home safe, without ever holding hands or kissing or talking about it.
    He respected her and she respected him, finding the good and the bad in each other and embracing both.
    He said “I’m not like you.” And she replied, “You’re better”.
    He told her with sorrow “I want to get an apartment with someone, but you’re leaving.” And she told him, “Come with me”.
    And in the end, they were still stuck in the carousel of unspoken feelings and confused emotions.
They were stuck, running in place, somewhere between in love and in friendship.  

This may have been a little random, but I tried to pick a few pieces that were very different from each other and represented all that I do.

I love writing, you guys. I write in a Journal daily, and if it's not in a journal, it's something else. I had the opportunity to meet one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly, two years ago. I told him I wanted to be a writer, like him.
He said,
"A writer, huh? Well if you're going to be a writer, you have to write everyday."
He signed my book,
If writing is fighting, I hope you go 15 rounds.

If you guys have trouble processing pain, happiness, love, hope, sorrow, anger, than WRITE IT DOWN. I can't even begin to list the amount of times writing has saved my life. And I know I may not be the modern day Ernest Hemingway, but this is what I love and I love to share what I love.

Feedback would be much appreciated :)

Thank you so much for giving my dreams the time of day. It means so much.

Signing off until next time,
Ella Frances Waite