About Me

Hello! I’m Amalia.

I’m a Senior English Major in a small Christian college, a book nerd, a cook, baker, and a chronic illness warrior. You’ll learn a lot about me in this little site of mine, but I’ll highlight some of the most important things:

I love reading, writing, audiobooks, and literary adventures. Literature is one of my biggest passions, which is why I worked at a small independent bookstore for five years, why I’m working on gaining my Bachelor’s in English, and why I have so many unfinished stories, poems, and books sitting around in notebooks, journals, and on my computer!

Lots of people ask me “so you want to teach?”

And I reply, with a sigh, “no. . .” and try to explain that no, I do not want to be a teacher, and that even though everyone assumes that’s the only thing you can do with an English degree, I actually want to write books, not teach them.

My dream is actually to create good (new) literature for young adults. Often I find that the YA section is. . . lacking, to say the least. I rarely read new YA books because a lot of them, I think anyway, aren’t great. Granted, there are good new books out there, but very few are in the YA section. I personally read the classics, because I believe we should focus on the amazing amount of good literature we have at our fingertips, instead of reading dubious or bad books, even if they’re new and popular. But that I could talk about for hours! Moving on…

In the National Library in Vienna, Austria. Basically Beauty and the Beast’s library, it was massive, and amazingly gorgeous.

I’m also involved with theatre at college (as my siblings did before me!) I’ve been doing theatre since I was 12, starting out in my parents’ home school melodrama group, joining a community theatre group during the summers, and now, onstage at my college!

I also love to cook and bake.

I say I was a professional baker for five years, because my family baked for our local farmer’s market, and maybe I shouldn’t really claim that. . . but I will continue to claim that I make the best muffins. And I’ve had people tell me that my lemon bars spoil all other lemon bars for them. Not that I would say that, “but my friends say, I do know how to bake.” My love of reading and baking combine admirably, as C.S. Lewis noted, and those passions combined in a Tolkien-inspired e-cookbook my Mum and I published a few years ago, called “Recipes from a Halfling’s Pantry (lots of these)”.

I was home schooled.

And I’m immensely proud of that fact. I loved being home schooled, with my Mom as teacher, and five siblings as schoolmates. I tell a lot of stories about my family, and that’s simply because they’re such a huge part of my life. I’m the fifth of six children, and one of many cousins in our large family. Our extended family is close, and we love to do holidays and get-togethers with them, so I got to grow up with my cousins being some of my closest friends.

I love to travel too.

I’ve mostly traveled with my family (even going to New Zealand with my parents and siblings twice, before leaving home), but the summer after my Freshman year at college I had the opportunity to study abroad in Vienna, Austria with my college. I was blessed by this trip, spending six weeks in Europe studying, traveling, learning, exploring, adventuring. We spent the majority of our time at the base in Vienna, but we also had group travel to 5 other European countries (Slovakia, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Germany), and individual travel where I was able to visit Italy and Greece! I have so many, many places I want to visit and explore. . . I’ll get there someday.

In Greece, after getting Henna with my friend. Just hanging out on our balcony, looking at the Acropolis. . .

Another thing. I have a chronic illness.

This is also a huge part of my life, but I only started talking about it a few years ago. I’ve been in constant pain for 9 years now, because I have chronic daily headaches, chronic migraines, and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS). And I write articles about it on The Mighty (some that I don’t post here, so you can also follow me there).

Until just a few years ago, I didn’t admit, even to myself, that I had a chronic invisible illness. I just “had a lot of headaches”, and we thought I would grow out of them. But eventually it got to where the never-ending pain was too much, and we abandoned our search through diets, supplements, workouts, and went to the doctors. So many doctors. And eventually I got my diagnosis: POTS. I’m still learning to manage the pain and the symptoms, and it’s likely I’ll never outgrow or ‘cure’ it. But I’m still learning, every day, to love and live my life, instead of just surviving.

One way that makes this easier, still finding joy in the midst of unending pain, is that I’m a Christian. And my joy in God is greater than my fear. I trust that although I may never have pain-free days in this life, in the end I will be pain free, and I live in the joy of the knowledge of that.

. . .But that’s getting close to the story behind ‘Joy Runs Deeper’, so I’ll leave you here, with that little bit about me, and just say thank you. Thank you for joining my blog family, and coming along on this adventure!

Oh! One last thing. I grew up on the family farm, we have lots of gardens and animals, and this is one of my favorites: Scout. Our sweet puppy is now 2 years old, and has a puppy of her own! But this is from when we first picked her out. . .

Isn’t she the sweetest little fluffball? For my fellow booksters out there: Yes, her name is Jean-Louise (Scout) Finch, from To Kill A Mockingbird.

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