Saturday, December 31, 2016

My 2017 Goals

Every year, I make New Year's resolutions, and every year, I never keep them (except for one: to cut down or stop drinking soday; I have had probably 2 sodas in the last 10 years).

I have decided to make 'goals' for 2017, instead of resolutions, in the hopes of actually achieving them, and to inspire me to work at them.

Without further ado, here are my 2017 goals:

  • Get my driver's license
  • Pass my classes (C or better)
  • Get a job that I will love (preferably in a bakery)
  • Eat twice as much healthy food and half as much unhealthy food than I do now
  • Learn how to sew
  • Try out a regular running routine
  • Take up yoga and practice regularly
  • Take self defense classes
  • Practice cake decorating skills once a week
  • Write in a journal regularly again
  • Contact my friends on a regular basis, just to see how they are doing (email, text, call, etc.)
  • Go to bed by midnight each night
  • Wake up by 9 am each morning
  • Learn to love myself more
  • Become more outgoing by doing things out of my comfort zone
  • Save up for a DSLR camera
  • Start and maintain an essential oils routine
  • Take 30 minute walks 4 to 5 days a week, if possible
  • Take better care of, and keep better track of, my possessions
  • Get bedroom cleaned up, and keep it clean
  • Get into a relationship with someone who will love me for me, who will support me
  • Bullet journal better
  • Learn how to cook better
  • Learn how to cook/bake new recipes, cook/bake at least least 2 times a week
  • Learn Spanish again, and become fluent in it (both in speaking it, and reading it)
  • Learn Italian, and become fluent in in (both in speaking it, and reading it)
  • Save up for, and buy, a full-size violin
  • Take more photographs, and learn how to take better photographs
  • Read at least two books a month

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

A Letter to My Younger Self

I have seen and heard about people writing letters to their past and future selves, and I wanted to do this as well.

I will start with the letter to my younger/past self.

Dear Younger Me,
First off, don't hate wearing glasses. They are NOT that bad!!! Wearing glasses does not hurt, and they are pretty stylish too! Also, pretending to forget bringing your glasses to school in second grade was not the wisest move.

Now, about homework. It woulde have been wiser to get it done asap, instead of putting it off, or not doing it at all. Asking for, and getting help, is not a bad thing, either. I know you were/are capable of doing well in school; you just underestimated your capabilities and strengths. You are a smart, capable, beautiful person, and I wish you had known that back then.

In relation to homework and school, it wouldn't have hurt to join a club or two, to make school more enjoyable (and likeable!!). School doesn't have to be a bad thing, if you just put in the effort to do your work, participate in class, and just do your part. Clubs can help you come out of your shell, find yourself, and do better in school.

Clubs and after-school activities are also a great way to make friends, because they share a common interest with you.

Next, about journaling/writing. It's great that you journaled in elementary school, but I wish you had kept it up through junior high and high school. And beyond. It would help with figuring out everything that was going through your mind, and everything that was going on in life. Writing things out helps you understand things better.

You don't have to keep everything bottled inside, and have it explode from you later. That is not healthy. Talking about it, even writing about it, helps make sense of things, and you will feel so much better afterwards.

Another thing I would like to tell you is to please believe in yourself. You can do anything you put your mind to, if you just believe you can. Being afraid to do something doesn't mean you can't do it. That just means it is worth doing. Especially if it is something you love, something you have a passion for.

You do not have to doubt your self-worth, or your beauty. You are an amazing woman, and I wish you could see that. Don't ever let anyone dictate what your self-worth is, nor your beauty. You have every right to feel confident about being yourself, to love yourself, to just be.

No one should make you feel inferior, like you don't belong here, like you aren't worthy of a life worthy of living.

People who make you feel bad about yourself, are crying out for help, and they need to be listened to. They feel like if they make someone feel worse than they do, they aren't as bad off as others. Their actions reflect who they are, how they are feeling, not of who you are.

Also, being that painfully shy is not doing you any good. It doesn't hurt to speak up/out when you want/need to say something. Being shy isn't a bad thing, but being severly shy like this keeps you from reaching your potential, from doing the things you want and need to, and from people getting to know you. It doesn't hurt to get out of your comfort zone every once in a while.

People are going to be judgmental about anyone who is different, no matter what you do or who you are, so don't be afraid to be yourself. Being yourself is the best thing you can do for yourself. Conforming to who and what others think you should be is not the key to being your true self, to being happy.

Do not change to make others happy. If you want to change, change for yourself, not because others say you should. If you change who you are, because someone wants you to be something other than who and what you are, than you will be very unhappy.

Do what makes YOU happy, what makes you, you. You are beautiful the way you are, no matter what other people may think. What others think about you is a reflection of them, not of you.

Present Me

Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas 2016

(Disclaimer: I am not trying to brag in any way, shape, or form about what I got for Christmas, or what I did. I just wanted to share, for those who are interested.)

I hope everyone who celebrates Christmas, had a wonderful day yesterday!! For those who celebrate Hannukah, I hope you had a wonderful start to Hannukah, as well!!

I had a good Christmas. On Saturday, my dad, 2 brothers, and I opened presents, and had our traditional pizza for dinner from Giordano's (probably my favorite Christmas tradition!).

I got the first season of Bonanza on DVD (it's one of my favorite shows), an Obi-Wan Kenobi lightsaber that lights up, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children book, Hollow City book, It's Christmas to Me by Pentatonix CD, Night Visions by Imagine Dragons CD, a Hagrid Funko Pop figure, a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Funko Pop figure, slippers, a bed sheet set and pillowcase set, and the Harry Potter Character Vault book.

On Sunday, my dad and I went to the 9 am mass, and then I took a nap, as I didn't sleep much the previous night (I am a major night owl, so I am always up pretty late most nights).

Then, my sister and her family came over for a few hours. We had some appetizers, and the cookies that I made for the holidays (sugar cookies, shortbread, and cream cheese chocolate chip cookies).

We then opened presents. My niece and nephew absolutely loved their presents.

From my sister and her family, I got a hair dryer (yes, I did ask for a hair dryer), a Wilton cake leveler, a Wilton fondant smoother, and a Wilton cake stand.

I am going to school for my baking degree, so I was super excited to get the baking tools!!

I am looking forward to using, reading. listening to, and just enjoying the presents I got, and I loved getting to see family over the holidays.

For New Year's I am staying at home with my dad and brothers, and we will be watching New Year celebrations on TV, and eating appetizers. I can't believe it's almost 2017 already. The days just seem to fly by this year.

I will be taking a food prep essentials class next semester, one of the four remaining required classes I have to take for my degree.

I hope everyone has an amazing New Year!!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Miscellaneous

Buy a full-size violin and start playing regularly again
Post at least one video on YouTube
Buy a DSLR camera
Get my driver's license
Write at least one book
Grow my hair really long
Ride on a cable car
Jump out of a plane
Ride on a motorcycle
Ride in a hot air balloon
Take a helicopter ride
Go zip-lining
Have a professional photo shoot
Create my own Adventure Book (from the movie Up)
Build something at Build-a-Bear
Drive down Route 66
Dye my hair rose gold
Dye my hair purple
Dye my hair orange/red
Make homemade pickles
Learn how to use hand, power tools
Create pocket letters and send them to 'pals'
Get a caricature done of myself
Make a mini movie
Donate unwanted clothes, shoes, books, etc.
Write a song
Learn how to surf

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Learning

Learn how to play the ukelele
Learn to play the piano
Learn to skateboard
Learn how to do fishtail braids
Learn how to French braid
Learn how to bake bread
Learn how to do calligraphy
Learn to sew
Learn how to change a car tire
Learn to apply my own makeup
Learn to grill
Lean sign language
Learn to cook better
Learn Italian
Learn French
Finish my baking and pastry degree
Get my photography degree
Get my special education and/or teacher's aide degree/certificate
Re-learn Spanish
Learn to tie a tie
Learn to whistle with two fingers
Be able to do the splits
Learn how to do cartwheels

Sunday, December 11, 2016

My Winter 2016-2017 Bucket List

Here is my winter bucket list.

  • Make a snowman
  • Go ice-skating
  • Drink hot chocolate
  • Watch all versions of A Christmas Carol
  • Watch A Christmas Story
  • Make/give sweater to dad as Christmas present
  • Make cozy slippers for myself
  • Go to the local Winter Fest
  • Help put up Christmas decorations
  • Listen to Christmas music
  • Watch Elf
  • Watch Arthur Christmas
  • Have a snowball fight
  • Have a winter photo shoot
  • Bake holiday cookies
  • Make DIY Valentines
  • Host a game night
  • Make at least one cheesecake
  • Have at least one at-home spa day
  • Make beignets
  • Start and keep up an indoor exercise routine
  • Start an essential oils routine
  • Practice cake decorating skills
  • Put together a gingerbread house
  • Make at least one winter hat
  • Make snow ice cream
  • Make paper snowflakes
  • Go sledding
  • Make fondue
  • Watch A Charlie Brown Christmas
  • Watch Fred Claus
  • Watch Miracle on 34th Street
  • Watch The Polar Express
  • Watch The Santa Clause movies
  • Go on a shopping spree
  • Binge watch TV shows
  • Bake once a week
  • Make a French silk pie

Thursday, December 8, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Volunteer

Attend a Joni and Friends Retreat as an STM
Volunteer at an animal shelter
Be a Big Sister in Big Brother, Big Sister
Go on at least one mission trip
Volunteer at a Children's hospital
Volunteer at a homeless shelter
Volunteer at a soup kitchen
Volunteer at Special Olympics
Build a house with Habitat for Humanity

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Personal Growth

Become more outgoing, more confident
Learn to love myself
Get over my fear of heights
Get over my fear of death
Do one thing a month out of my comfort zone
Get over my fear of public speaking
Be able to handle my depression better, so I can get off of medication
Speak up for myself when needed
Learn not to underestimate what I can do
Create more (knit, crochet, draw, paint, etc.)
Try not to let what others think of me, get to me
Make a better future for myself
Journal every day, or as often as I can
Learn how to cook and eat healthier
Learn how to budget and spend, save, and invest wisely
Be able to properly protect myself from any form of danger
Learn how to budget my money, so I can feel good about the future
Learn to accept, love my flaws
Keep a regular journal/diary again

Sunday, December 4, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Birthday

Have a piñata
Make pottery
Go ice skating
Have a tie dye party
Have a game night party
Have a spa day
Have a paint fight
Have a silly string fight
Go on a shopping spree
Have a glow in the dark bowling party
Build something at Build-a-Bear
Have a party at the local Escape Room
Go golfing
Go horseback riding
Get a bedroom makeover
Have a movie night
Have a surprise birthday party thrown for me
Make a homemade confetti cake
Masquerade party
Art party
Glow in the dark party
Photo booth
Sleepover/pajama party
Decade parties
Harry Potter party
Carnival party
Pool party
Winter Wonderland party
See Blue Man Group in person
Concerts of my favorite artists/music

Thursday, December 1, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Career/Work

Become a baker
Become a professional photogapher
Become a special education teacher or teacher aide
Become an author
Learn how to network right
Participate in company activities outside of the office, if offered
Make business cards
Open a bakery
Know my strengths and weaknesses
Know how, when to take risks
Manage my time wisely
Start my own photography business
Be confident in my work
Get at least one internship at a bakery, restaurant, or other food shop
Learn to speak up for myself, others, if something isn't right

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Thankfulness in November: Days 21 Through 30

Monday, November 21
-Getting to go to school this week

Tuesday, November 22
-Getting a good night's sleep

Wednesday, November 23
-Being able to rest when I am sick
-One of my brothers making cheesecake for me, for Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 24
-Being able to get over a sickness/illness
-Celebrating Thanksgiving with my family
-Cooking my first Thanksgiving meal myself

Friday, November 25
-Getting to volunteer at the library this week
-Getting a present from one of the people I deliver library materials to, who is moving and wanted to give me a thank you/appreciation gift for what I do for her
-Helping a children's librarian put out Christmas and Hannukah books, music and DVDs on showcase, for people to check out

Saturday, November 26
-Having books to read
-Having movies to watch
-Having music to listen to
-Having the items to listen, watch them on

Sunday, November 27
-Having a working washing machine, that can effectively wash laundry

Monday, November 28
-Getting to go to school this week

Tuesday, November 29
-Living close enough to a library that I can use any of the resources they offer anytime

Wednesday, November 30
-Having restaurants close enough that we can order from them anytime
-Being alive

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Health and Safety

Get certified in First Aid and CPR
Take self-defense classes
Get down to, maintain goal weight
Start, keep a regular essential oil routine
Participate in a Color Run
Be able to run a mile easily
Take up a regular exercise routine
Take up yoga
Be able to do a pull up
Become a Black Belt in Karate
Take a belly dancing class
Take a kickboxing class
Be able to do push ups properly
Eat twice as much healthy foods and half as much junk food
Increase my flexibility
Sit, stand up straight
Take up Zumba
Walk 4 to 5 days a week
Be able to hold a plank for a minute

Saturday, November 26, 2016

15 Things I Would Like For Christmas

I heard someone do a 15 Things I Would Like For Christmas list, and decided to do my own. I do not expect to get all 15 things, and I am perfectly fine with not getting all of them.

Here is what I would like for Christmas:

  1. A new jacket/coat
  2. Slippers
  3. Gift card(s) to Old Navy, Famous Footwear, Walgreens (yes, Walgreens)
  4. A violin
  5. A Turbie Twist
  6. Elf on the Shelf
  7. Portable DVD player
  8. A watch
  9. Harry Potter coloring books
  10. That's Christmas to Me by Pentatonix
  11. All the Star Wars movies
  12. Believe by Jonathan Antoine
  13. A bike helmet
  14. Zootopia DVD
  15. New bedding
What are you wishing for, for Christmas this year (or Hannukah, if you celebrate that)?

Friday, November 25, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Animals and Nature

Kiss a dolphin
Visit a pumpkin patch
Stay at Giraffe Manor
See a panda in person
Feed a giraffe
Plant a tree(s)
Go canoeing
See the Northern Lights
Go whale watching
Swim in an ocean
Hold a tarantula
Swim with turtles
Horseback ride on a beach
Go on a horse and carriage ride
Try snowboarding
Go whitewater rafting
Have my own garden (fruits, veggies, flowers)
Swim with dolphins
Visit Lincoln Park Zoo
Adopt at least one dog
Visit a farm
Hold a sloth
Hold a monkey
Feed a penguin
See a tiger up close
See a kangaroo up close
See elephants up close
Hold a koala
See the World Famous Lippizaner Stallion Tour
Raise at least one horse
Watch baby turtles hatch
Ride a camel
See a zebra up close
Plant trees
Lake Hillier in australia
Ruby Falls in Tennessee
Isle of Sky in Scotland
Swim with a manatee
See the Aurora Australis
Explore Hoh Rainforest, Olympic National Park, Washington
Oneonta Gorge, Oregon
Sit on a giant lily pad in the Amazon River
Gieranger, Norway
Plitvice waterfall in Croatia
Ebor Falls in Australia
Barossa Valley in South Australia

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!!

To those who celebrate, I hope you have a wonderful, happy Thanksgiving!!

I got to cook Thanksgiving dinner for the first time, and it came out well.

I was going to make cheesecake for today, but I got sick and didn't feel up to making it (I am feeling much better today, though). Fortunately, one of my brothers was kind enough to make it for me, so that was nice.

My oldest brother called us today, to wish us a happy Thanksgiving. I love hearing from him, as we don't get to see my brother very often (he lives half a country away from us, and is busy with work). But I was happy to hear that he and his wife are doing well.

There is much that I am thankful for, not just today, but every day. I hope those who celebrate have a lot to be thankful for as well.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Entertainment/Fun

See The Book of Mormon in person
Attend a Chicago Bulls game
See Wicked in person
Go to a Chicago Blackhawks game
Go to a Chicago Wolves game
Write a song
Go paintballing
See a movie at a drive-in
Go to an opera
See Cirque du Soleil
Go on a mini golf date
Try archery
Try fencing
Go to a high school football game
Learn how to play tennis
See the Harlem Globetrotters play
Go to a paint night
Visit the Art Institute of Chicago
Ride on a motorcycle
Go to a festival
Play Jenga with a giant Jenga set
Go out and try line dancing
Scavenger hunts
Water balloon fights
Play frisbee
Tie Dye
Laser tag
Messy Twister
Relive my favorite childhood toy, and buy/use a new Easy Bake Oven
Buy/use a new Skip-It (if they are still around)
Have annual girls' night in/out events
Try out different science experiments
Learn to make a clay cup, bowl
Get to the end of my video games
Go snow tubing
Go inner tubing on water
Se Finding Neverland in person
See A Christmas Carol in person

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Thankfulness in November: Days 11 through 20

So, I have decided to do these thankfulness posts in groups of 10 days, for the rest of November.

Friday, November 11
-Volunteering with the library this week

Saturday, November 12
-Going to a Harry Potter party at the library
-Seeing two friends today, whom I haven't seen in a very long time
-Seeing a rabbit outside of church

Sunday, November 13
-Having heat in cooler weather, and cooling in warmer weather (we have a central air system that was installed several years ago)
-Getting a package of items that I bought from a family, which they were selling to help them out with financial matters

Monday, November 14
-Being able to go to school this week
-My teacher saying hi to me, and asking me if I was feeling better (I missed school last week because I wasn't feeling well)

Tuesday, November 15
-Seeing the movie Trolls in theaters

Wednesday, November 16
-Getting my flu shot

Thursday, Novenmber 17
-Being able to relax at home

Friday, November 18
-Volunteering with the library this week

Saturday, November 19
-Going to a thrift store and finding some good items there

Sunday, November 20
-Seeing Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in theaters

Friday, November 18, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Family and Friends

Get married
Have biological children (I would love to have two girls and two boys, or 1 girl and 1 boy at least)
Adopt children
Live on a farm and raise (mainly) horses
Host a Friendsgiving at least once
Get a tattoo in memory of my mom
Go on a road trip with friends at least once
Go on family bike rides
Go on family picnics
Go bowling
Visit the zoo
Visit a farm
Fly a kite
Play mini golf
Go ice skating
Start a family recipe that will last through the generations
Bake holiday cookies (Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc.)
Go camping
Write letters to my children, and give them the letters when they are older
Cook/roast food around a camp fire
Go on weekly/monthly dates with my significant other
Do arts and crafts often with my children
Have game nights once a month
Go to local carnivals/festivals
Get manicures with friends
Have barbecue parties
Make homemade ice cream
Play on a slip-n-slide
Get family photos taken every year
Photo shoots
Shopping trips
Go on annual hikes
Visit a water park or amusement park every year
Host a fondue party
Give each of my children their own email, then send them pictures, letters, stories, etc., and give them the passwords on their 18th birthdays (saw this idea on Pinterest)
Take pictures at a photobooth together
Take at least one big trip a year
Go to a midnight movie premiere
Have a weekly family movie night
Have a weekly family game night
Do a color run
Go on a girls vaction with friends
Take handprints and footprints of my kids as they grow, as mementos
Have a girls' spa day
Go on a road trip with friends
Dance with my dad at my wedding
Be fully present in my childrens' lives
Be able to see my children get married

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

My To Be List

I saw this on Instagram and loved it.

As well as those listed above, I want to be:
Outgoing (or, at least, more outgoing than I am now)
More active
The best me I can be

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Dating and Relationships

Find, and be in a relationship with, someone who will love me for who I am
Have my first kiss
Go on an ice cream date
Go on an ice skating date
Go on a picnic date
Go on a dinner and movie date
Take at least one cooking class together
Go on a date to the zoo
Dance in the rain
Kiss in the rain
Have a baking date
Have a water gun fight
Go on a road trip together
Go on a mini golf date
Ride in a horse drawn carriage together
Go camping together
Go swimming at night together
Cook meals together
Take photos in a photo booth
Play board, card, video games together
Get frozen yogurt together
Go on a bowling date
Go on a museum date
Go on a go-carting date
Go to a baseball game together
Go on a carnival date
Have a silly string fight
Bike ride together
Take dance lessons
Go to a football game together
Volunteer together
Go on walks together
Write each other letters
Build snowmen together
Go sledding together
Make a gingerbread house together
Put puzzles together
Go to Medieval Times
Play laser tag
Go horseback riding
Go to a pumpkin patch
Have a breakfast date
Spend a day at a waterpark
Spend a day in the city
Go on a beach date
Take a painting class
Spend the day at an amusement park
Go to the local farmer's market
Build something at Build-a-Bear
Go on a Disney date
Have date night q and a's
Decorate mugs for each other
Make marshmallow guns and have a marshmallow war
Breakfast in bed
Go berry picking
Take a pottery class
Participate in Operation Christmas Child
Drive in movie date
Learn to argue with each other without it getting out of hand
Learn to speak up for myself if something in the relationship makes me uncomfortable
Fix our favorite dishes/desserts
Create a "love jar" and write notes every day to each other
Become comfortable holding hands in public
365 Note Jar (Pink: reasons why I love you; Blue: we're doing this; Green: quotes and lyrics; Yellow: memories), one note read each day
Write Open When... letters to each other
Write love letters to each other

Saturday, November 12, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Holidays

Host a 4th of July BBQ
Make a Thanksgiving dinner myself
Visit the 'real' Santa Claus in Finland
Drive a snowmobile
Go sledding
Do You've Been Boo'd at least once
Do You've Been Jingled at least once
Donate toys for Christmas
Go see the Festival of Lights at the local zoo
Start an Elf on the Shelf tradition
Make an advent calendar each year
Relax by a fireplace
Go on an ice skating date
Make and drink eggnog
Make and drink hot chocolate
Watch holiday movies for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas
Volunteer at a soup kitchen over the holidays
Create a Thankfulness Tree
Make paper snowflakes
Bake cookies for the neighbors
Make a gingerbread house
Make a popcorn garland
Have a snowball fight
Roast marshmallows
Go sledding
Go skiing
Go snowboarding
Start a new tradition
Send Christmas cards
Make ice bubbles
Eat a Christmas meal with friends and family
Do a Friendsgiving at least once
Camp out under the Christmas tree
Participate in an ornament exchange
Do random acts of kindness
Make New Year's Resolutions that I will actually keep
Get my picture taken with Santa every year
DIY Fall/Halloween crafts
DIY Thanksgiving crafts
DIY winter/Christmas crafts
Visit Halloweentown in St. Helen's, Oregon
Try a peppermint mocha at Starbucks
Make and drink apple cider
Attend a football game
Develop a fall/winter exercise routine
Picnic by the Christmas tree
Host/go to holiday parties
Make treats/gifts for friends
Go on a Valentine's Day date
DIY Valentine's Day crafts
Celebrate Christmas, New Year's in Hawaii
Open Crackers on Christmas (a British tradition)
Make and donate animal toys/crafts to local animal shelters
Make scarves, hats, gloves/mittens to give to homeless shelters, those in need
Break open pinatas for each holiday
Bake and decorate cakes for each holiday
Make peppermint/chocolate bark
Make and give holiday fudge
DIY Advent calendars
Host a Halloween party for kids, adults
Make caramel apples
Dye hair red or purple vor Valentine's Day
Dye hair green for St. Patrick's Day
Host a New Year's party

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Thankfulness in November: Day 10

What I am thankful for today:

My wonderful family and friends
       They have always been there for me through everything, and I am so thankful for that.
My cats, whom I have had for about 6 1/2 years now
      I can't imagine my life without them; they bring us so much love and joy.

Being able to blog whenever I like
      I am a shy person, so I don't talk much. Blogging and writing help me to communicate what is on my mind, and I am so very thankful for that.

Having a warm, cozy bed to sleep in
      I know some people don't have a bed of their own, so I don't take having one of my own for granted.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Thankfulness in November: Days 1 through 9

I was planning on posting every day in Nevember, about what I am thankful for this November, but I completely forgot until now. I will put days 1 through 9 in this post, and then post the rest of the days separately after that.

So, here is what I am thankful for this year.

Tuesday, November 1st
-Having warm water to drink, wash with, and use however I need/want to

Wednesday, November 2nd
-Having clothes to wear

Thursday, November 3rd
-Having food to eat

Friday, November 4th
-Volunteering with the local library today, delivering library materials to homebound patrons
-Helping a children's librarian get crafts ready for a children's story time craft

Saturday, November 5th
-Buying a luminary from church, for their Christmas celebration

Sunday, November 6th
-Having a roof over my head
-A portable speaker coming in the mail, that one of my brothers ordered, so I can watch TV shows/movies in the kitchen (yes, we have a TV in the kitchen), without worrying about the sound going out anymore (the sound has been messed up for quite some time, so it was really nice to get this; it was also a surprise, as I didn't know he bought it until today)

Monday, November 7th
-Planning a Thanksgiving dinner for my family
-Being able to get a college education (I am going for my baking/pastry degree)

Tuesday, November 8th
-Being able to vote in this year's presidential election

Wednesday, November 9th
-Watching my favorite YouTubers

My Life Bucket List: Food and Drink

Bake a giant cupcake
Visit a chocolate factory
Try lobster
Make a Thanksgiving dinner myself
Visit restaurants in my state that I have not been to before
Host a cookie exchange
Make and try different cheesecake recipes
Make Monte Cristo sandwiches for my family
Make Croque Madame sandwiches for my family
Make homemade pasta
Try a pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks
Make gnocchi
Make gumbo
Make Pad Thai
Get better at cake decorating
Get better and cookie decorating
Learn to grill
Learn to make doughnuts
Try fish and chips in England
Bake a rainbow
Bake a tie dye cake
Buy something from Georgetown Cupcake
Buy something from Carlo's Bakery
Go on an ice cream date
Go on a baking date
Take at least one cooking class
Make cake pops
Make homemade jam/jelly
Make beignets
Have someone make me breakfast in bed
Make a chocolate milkshake
Make a strawberry banana milkshake
Eat out at Messy Crab
Make tater tot casserole
Make homemade eclairs
Learn to make the perfect buttercream
Bake a pizza from scratch
Bake cinnamon rolls
Make at least one wedding cake
Make homemade bagels
Try fried ice cream
Make a Harry Potter Monster Book of Monsters cake
Make at least one Minions cake
Start a cake/bakery order business
Make a galaxy mirror cake
Get better at making roses (chocolate, buttercream, etc.)
Make macarons
Make Star Wars cakes
  -Darth Vader
  -Darth Maul
  -Light saber
  -Storm Trouper
  -Jabba the Hut
  -Other characters
Make animal cakes
  -Polar bear
  -Koala bear
  -Parrot/Parakeet/Other Birds
  -Guinea Pig
Make a hamburger cake
Make snowball cookies
Make scones
Try making homemade ice cream
  -Other ice creams

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Six Years

It has been six years to the day since my mom passed away, and I miss her more every day.

She was in the hospital for about 5 weeks before she died, and that was a very tough time for the family.

For at least six months or so, I was having a hard time coping with my mom's death, so I was able to go back to my therapist for a while, to help me out.

Every time I had a dream about her (which I had a lot of for a while after she died), it made me wish she was still here, so I could tell her about them. Almost every single dream was about her going back to work, as she loved what she did (she worked at a local library).

By a year after her death, I was surprisingly ready to go back to school (I was taking college classes through all this, although, I did miss a couple when things took a turn for the worst with my mom's health), but, things didn't work out with school just yet, so I had to find something else to do.

At some point after my mom's death, I took up knitting to help with the grieving process.. I have always wanted to learn how to knit, but couldn't get the hang of it at first. I found a knitting and crochet store a few blocks from my home, that taught people how to knit and crochet, and that helped me out a lot.

So, I would go there on a regular basis to learn knitting, and to help me cope with my loss. It has helped me very, very much, and I am so thankful for that.

I wasn't trying to forget about my mom; I just needed something to get me through each day, so I didn't do anything I would regret.

I went back to school after year and a half, to two years after this, and I have been really enjoying it for the most part.

I still miss my mom very much, and I wish she was still here, but I am not nearly as bad as I was at first. I can get through most days without feeling like my world is crashing down around me. As much as I did not want to go through this, my mom's death has shown me just how strong (emotionally) I really am. If I can get through this, I can get through most anything. I hope my mom is proud of all that I have done, in these past six years.

I will always miss and love you, mom!!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Travel Part 2

The Enchanted River in Surigao, Philippines
Sacre Coeur, Paris
Kauai, Hawaii
Cenote Dzitnup, Yucatan, Mexico
Inside Iceland’s Thrihnukagigur volcano
Oxford, England
Cape Town, South Africa
Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah
Ilulissat, Greenland
Lalibela, Ethiopia
Mount Evans, Colorado
Uluru, Northern Territory, Australia
Koh Samui, Thailand
Cliffs of Moher, Ireland
Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Paje, Zanzibar
Heidelberg, Germany
Epcot at Disney World in Orlando, Florida
Tunnel of Love, Ukraine
Happy Magic Water Cube, Beijing
Città Del Mare Hotel, Italy
Chimelong Paradise, China
Hersheypark, Pennyslvania
Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai
Long Island, New York
Splish Splash, Long Island, New York
Suoi Tien Park, Vietnam
Great Wolf Lodge, Washington
Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon, Florida
Wet ‘n’ Wild Water World, Australia
Legoland Water Oark, California
Magic Springs, Arkansas
Atlantis, Bahamas
Disney’s Blizzard Beach, Florida
Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari, Indiana
Tropical Islands, Berlin
Noah’s Ark Water Park, Wisconsin
Raging Waters, California
Waterville USA, Alabama
Antelope Canyon, Arizona
Oneonta Gorge, Oregon
Skagit Valley Tulip Fields, Washington
Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness, Colorado
Zion National Park, Utah
Watkins Glen State Park, New York
Yosemite Valley, California
Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming
Haiku Stairs of Oahu, Hawaii
Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico
Whitaker Point, Arkansas
Hamilton Pool, Texas
Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Bryce Canyon, Utah
Lake Tahoe, California/Nevada
Smoky Mountains, North Carolina/Tennessee
The Wave, Arizona
Sequoia National Park, California
Thor’s Well, Oregon
Badlands National Park, South Dakota
Palouse Falls, Washington
Glacier National Park, Montana
Nā Pali Coast State Park, Hawaii
Devils Tower, Wyoming
Marrakesh, Morocco
Bora Bora, French Polynesia
Tamil Nadu, India
Torres del Paine National Park, Chile
Forbidden City, Beijing, China
Fiordland National Park, New Zealand
Bagan, Myanmar
Havasu Falls, Arizona
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Lisbon, Portugal
Fernando de Noronha, Brazil
St. Basil's Cathedral, Moscow, Russia
Blue Lagoon, Iceland
Sossusvlei, Namibia
Hawa Mahal, Jaipur, India
Spray Park, Ashford
Hurricane Hill, Olympic Peninsula
Horseshoe Lake, Central/Western Washington
Perfection Lake, Enchantment Lakes
Hoh Rainforest, Forks
Skyline Divide Trail, Mount Baker area
Priest Point Park, Olympia
Harry's Ridge Trail, near Toutle
Bean Creek Basin
Duncan Garden, Spokane
Tree Cave in Kalaloch, Olympic National Park

Les falaises d’Etretat
D-Day Beaches
Strasbourg’s Christmas market
Les Gorges du Verdon
The old city of Dinan
Bonifacio, Corsica
L’Ile de Sein
National Regional Park of Camargue

Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park
Koreshan State Historic Site
Highlands Hammock State Park
Venetian Pool
Washington Oaks Gardens State Park
John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art
Cinque Terre, Italy
Bariloche, Argentina
Silfra Fissure, Iceland
Ponta Da Piedade, Portugal
Tian Tan Buddha, Hong Kong
Piazzele Michelangelo, Florence, Italy
Canggu, Bali
Phuket, Thailand
Sloth Sanctuary in Costa Rica
Take a picture with every state sign in America

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

My Life Bucket List: Famous People

These are the people I would love to meet someday.

  • Johnny Depp
  • Andrea Bocelli
  • Harp Twins Camille & Kennerly
  • Jonathan Antoine
  • Joni Eareckson Tada
  • Buddy Valastro
  • Bindi Irwin and her family
  • Jorge Garcia
  • Francesca Battistelli
  • Pope Benedict XVI
  • Tom Felton
  • Emma Thompson
  • Daniel Radcliffe
  • Rupert Grint
  • Emma Watson
  • Robbie Coltrane
  • Celtic Thunder
  • Celtic Woman
  • Andre Rieu
  • Jazz Jennings
  • David Tennant
  • Maggie Smith
  • Garth Brooks
  • Morgan Freeman
  • Tom Hanks
  • Billy Connolly
  • Elijah Wood
  • Gary Oldman
  • Harrison Ford
  • Ian McKellan
  • Alan Jackson
  • Brad Paisley
  • Michael Buble
  • George Strait
  • Julie Andrews
  • Patton Oswalt
  • Peter Dinklage
  • Ralph Fiennes
  • Bethany Hamilton
  • Jack Hanna
  • Alexis Bledel
  • Katherine and Sophie from Georgetown Cupcake
  • Jonathan Teows
  • Marion Hossa
  • Meet Patrick Kane

  • Tuesday, October 18, 2016

    My Life Bucket List: Travel

    Like many people, I have decided to make a bucket list, and I will be posting mine on here, in several posts, as it is a very, very, very long list. I may add more, if I find other travel destinations/attractions that I would like to visit one day.

    I will start with travel.

    Visit Italy
    -Leaning Tower of Pisa
    -Vatican City
    -Sistine Chapel
    -Mount Vesuvius
    -Trevi Fountain
    -David (Michelangelo)
    -Grand Canal (Venice)
    -Ride in a gondola
    Visit England
    -London Eye
    -Big Ben
    -Buckingham Palace
    -Tower Bridge
    -Westminster Abbey
    -Trafalgar Square
    -St. Paul's Cathedral
    -Covent Garden
    -London Zoo
    -British Library
    -London Paddington Station

    Visit Scotland
    -Glasgow Cathedral
    -Loch Ness
    -Carbisdale Cathedral

    Visit Ireland
    -Blarney Stone
    -Blarney Castle
    -Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin
    -Spire of Dublin
    -Grand Canal

    Visit Germany
    -Brandenburg Gate
    -Berlin Wall
    -Neuschwanstein Castle
    -Cologne Cathedral
    -Berlin Cathedral
    -Berlin Zoological Garden
    -Deutsches Museum

    Visit Wales
    -Cardiff Castle
    -Britannia Bridge
    -National Botanic Garden of Wales
    -Horseshoe Falls

    Visit Australia
    -Sydney Opera House
    -Sydney Harbour Bridge
    -Great Barrier Reef
    -Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park
    -Australia Zoo
    -Daintree Rainforest
    -Wave Rock
    -St. Mary's Cathedral, Sydney
    -Daintree National Park

    Visit Egypt
    -Great Sphinx of Giza
    -Great Pyramid of Giza
    -Mount Sinai
    -Colossi of Memnon
    -Valley of the Queens

    Visit France
    -Eiffel Tower
    -Mona Lisa
    -Arc de Triomphe
    -Palace of Versailles
    -Notre Dame de Paris
    -French Riviera

    Visit the Netherlands/Holland
    -Anne Frank House
    -Van Gogh Museum
    -Rembrandt House Museum
    -Amsterdam Museum

    Visit Poland
    -Auschwitz Concentration Camp
    -Wawel Castle
    -St. Mary's Basilica, Krakow
    -Christ the King
    -Grand Theatre, Warsaw
    -Wroclaw Zoo

    Visit Mexico
    -Chichen Itza
    -Frida Kahlo Museum
    -Guadalajara Cathedral
    -Cola de Caballo

    Visit Brazil
    -Rio de Janeiro
    -Sao Paulo
    -Christ the Redeemer
    -Iguazu Falls
    -Fernando de Noronha
    -Juscelino Kubitschek Bridge
    -Sao Paulo Cathedral
    -Church of Nosso Senhor do Bonfim, Salvador
    -Itiquira Falls
    -Paranoa Lake
    -Rio de Janeiro Bontanical Garden

    Visit Canada
    -Niagra Falls
    -Parliament Hill
    -Rocky Mountains
    -Canadian Rockies
    -Banff National Park
    -Chateau Frontenac
    -Casa Loma
    -Notre-Dame Basilica
    -Hockey Hall of Fame

    Visit Russia
    -Saint Petersburg
    -Saint Basil's Cathedral
    -Temple of All Religions
    -Bolshoi Theatre
    -Saint Isaac's Cathedral
    -Saint Petersburg Botanical Garden
    -Lena Pillars

    Visit China
    -Hong Kong
    -Walk across the Great Wall of China
    -Forbidden City
    -Terracotta Army
    -Mount Everest
    -Giant Wild Goose Pagoda

    Visit Japan
    -Mount Fuji
    -Himeji Castle
    -Itsukushma Shrine
    -Osaka Castle
    -Rainbow Bridge
    -Cherry blossoms

    Visit India
    -New Delhi
    -Taj Mahal
    -Red Fort
    -India Gate
    -Lotus Temple
    -Sundarbans National Park
    -Jog Falls

    Visit Jamaica
    -Dunn's River Falls
    -Black River
    -Dolphin's Cove
    -Y.S. River

    Visit the Bahamas

    Visit Czech Republic
    -Dancing House

    Visit Austria
    -Vienna State Opera
    -Hohensalzburg Castle
    -Spanish Riding School
    -Salzburg Cathedral
    -Melk Abbey
    -Judenplatz Holocaust Museum
    -Vienna Woods
    -Sigmund Freud Museum

    Visit Haiti

    Visit New Zealand
    -Hobbit Town in Matamata
    -See Glow Worms in the Waitomo Caves

    Visit Iceland

    Visit Greenland

    Visit Monte Carlo

    Visit Belgium
    -Grand Place
    -Brussels Town Hall
    -Lion's Mound
    -Het Steen
    -Saint Nicholas' Church
    -Museum of the City of Brussels
    -Gentse Feesten

    Visit Switzerland
    -Swiss Alps
    -Rhine Falls
    -Lake Geneva
    -Chateau de Chillon
    -Palace of Nations
    -Glacier Express

    Visit Easter Island
    -Moai Statues

    Visit Chile
    -Laja Falls

    Visit Puerto Rico
    -San Juan

    Visit Argentina
    -Buenos Aires

    Visit the Bahamas

    Visit Costa Rica

    Visit Denmark

    Visit Ecuador

    Visit Greece
    -Mount Olympus
    -Temple of Olympian Zeus
    -Hagia Sophia
    -Theatre of Dionysus
    -Santorini Caldera
    -Lake Voulismeni
    -Mount Ainos

    Visit Hungary

    Visit Israel
    -Tel Aviv
    -Western Wall
    -Dome of the Rock
    -Temple Mount
    -Curch of the Holy Sepulchre
    -Mount of Olives
    -City of David
    -Tomb of the Virgin Mary
    -Mount of Beatitudes
    -David's Tomb
    -Basilica of the Annunciation

    Visit Lebanon

    Visit Lithuania

    Visit Nepal

    Visit Nicaragua

    Visit Norway

    Visit Singapore
    -Singapore Flyer
    -Singapore Zoo
    -Thian Hock Keng
    -Bukit Timah Nature Reserve

    Visit Spain
    -Almudena Cathedral
    -Alcazar of Seville
    -Plaze de Espana
    -Santa Maria la Blanca

    Visit Thailand
    -Khao Yai National Park
    -Wat Benchamabophit

    Visit Ukraine
    -St. Michael's Golden-Domed Monastery
    -St. Sophia's Cathedral
    -St. Volodymyr's Cathedral
    -St. Andrew's Church
    -St. Cyril's Monastery
    -Vorontsov Lighthouse
    -People's Friendship Arch

    Visit Vietnam
    -Ho Chi Minh City
    -Imperial City
    -Thien Mu Pagoda
    -Temple of Literature
    -Dragon Bridge
    -Turtle Tower
    -Long Som Pagoda
    -Tuan Chau
    -Vietnam War Memorial

    Visit all 50 United States
    -New York
      -New York City
      -Statue of Liberty
      -Lake Placid
      -Empire State Building
      -Central Park
      -Times Square
      -One World Trade Center
      -Brooklyn Bridge
      -Grand Central Terminal
      -Madison Square Garden
      -Adirondack Mountains
      -National September 11 Memorial and Museum
      -Coney Island
      -Bronx Zoo
      -Mount Rushmore
      -Grand Canyon
      -Disney Land
      -Disney World
      -Yellowstone National Park
      -The Pentagon
      -Hoover Dam
      -Hollywood Sign
      -Pearl Harbor
      -Hollywood Walk of Fame
      -Gateway Arch
      -Lincoln Memorial
      -Washington Memorial
      -Space Needle
      -Honolulu Zoo
      -Rainbow Falls
      -Wailua Falls
      -Springfield, Illinois
      -New Orleans
      -Grand Ol Opry
      -Tennesse Aquarium
      -National Civil Rights Museum
      -Fall Creek Falls State Park
      -Natchez Trace Parkway Bridge
      -Titanic Museum
      -Green Bay
      -San Antonio
      -El Paso
      -Corpus Cristi
      -Fort Worth
      -Las Vegas
      -Savannah, Georgia
      -Long Beach
      -Los Angeles
      -San Diego
      -Montgomery, Alabama
      -Juneau, Alaska
      -Phoenix, Arizona
      -Little Rock, Arkansas
      -Denver, Colorado
      -Hartford, Connecticut
      -Dover, Delaware
      -Tallahasee, Florida
      -Atlanta, Georgia
      -Boise, Idaho
      -Indianapolis, Indiana
      -Des Moines, Iowa
      -Topeka, Kansas
      -Frankfurt, Kentucky
      -Baton Rouge, Louisiana
      -Augusta, Maine
      -Annapolis, Maryland
      -Boston, Massachusetts
      -Lansing, Michigan
      -Saint Paul, Minnesota
      -Jackson, Mississippi
      -Jefferson City, Missouri
      -Helena, Montana
      -Lincoln, Nebraska
      -Carson City, Nevada
      -Concord, New Hampshire
      -Trenton, New Jersey
      -Santa Fe, New Mexico
      -Albany, New York
      -Raleigh, North Carolina
      -Bismarck, North Dakota
      -Columbus, Ohio
      -Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
      -Salem, Oregon
      -Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
      -Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
      -Providence, Rhode Island
      -Columbia, South Carolina
      -Pierre, South Dakota
      -Nashville, Tennessee
      -Salt Lake City, Utah
      -Montpelier, Vermont
      -Richmond, Virginia
      -Olympia, Washington
      -Seattle, Washington
      -Charleston, West Virginia
      -Madison, Wisconsin
     -Cheyenne, Wyoming
     -Milwaukee, Wisconsin
     -Kenosha, Wisconsin
     -La Crosse, Wisconsin
     -Wisconsin Dells
     -Port Washington, Wisconsin

    Visit and buy something from Carlo's Bake Shop

    Visit Machu Picchu

    Visit Amish Acres in Nappanee, Indiana

    Visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter

    Visit the Caribbean

    Visit Maldives

    Visit Navajo Falls

    Visit Okavango Delta, Botswana

    Visit the Amazon

    Visit Stonehenge in person

    Go on a road trip/vacation with friends

    Live in a foreign country for 6 months to 1 year

    Friday, October 7, 2016

    My Fall 2016 Bucket List

    One thing about me, is that I LOVE making lists. I don't know what it is about lists/list-making, but I seriously enjoy it.

    Bucket lists are no different.

    Here is my Fall 2016 bucket list.

    • Go to a local fall fest (done: September 24, 2016)
    • Carve/decorate a pumpkin
    • Get bedroom cleaned up
    • Donate/get rid of unwanted items
    • Do a fall photo shoot
    • Start/work on sweater for dad
    • Start/keep regular exercise routine
    • Bake at least one pumpkin pie
    • Plan birthday party
    • Save up for, buy a full size (4/4) violin
    • Start saving up for a dslr camera
    • Watch Hocus Pocus
    • Make cinnamon rolls
    • Host a Friendsgiving dinner
    • Make a vision board
    • Make fall cookies
    • See a h.s. football game
    • Buy some new clothes
    • Go on an early morning walk, bike ride
    • Buy fall candles
    • Make crafts with leaves
    • Watch The Nightmare Before Christmas
    • Watch Corpse Bride
    • Watch The Addams Family
    • Watch Beetlejuice
    • Watch Coraline
    • Watch Monster House
    • Host a fall picnic
    • DIY fall/Halloween decorations
    • Watch Paranorman
    • Watch Hotel Transylvania
    • Watch Frankenweenie
    • Eat Halloween Oreos
    • 'Boo' neighbors
    • Watch It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
    • Watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
    • Roast pumpkin seeds
    • Put together and drop off shebox presents for Operation Christmas Child
    • Watch the Halloweentown movies
    • Find/enter into a meaningful, loving, happy relationship with someone
    • Learn to love myself
    • Try a pumpkin spice latte
    • Bake at least one apple pie
    • Have at least one movie night with friends
    • Start Christmas shopping
    • Host a game night
    • Go to the local farmer's market at least once
    • Build a Halloween gingerbread house
    • Sign up for spring semester classes
    • Practice cake decorating skills
    • Learn how to apply makeup
    • Upload at least one YouTube video
    • Have at least one at-home spa day
    • Apply for jobs until hired
    • Get a new mattress and bed frame
    • Start/maintain essential oil routine
    • Learn how to make Granny squares
    • Learn how to cook better
    That is all I can think of at this point (which is more than enough to get by during the fall). I am looking forward to hopefully trying at least some of these over the next few months!

    Sunday, September 4, 2016

    What Would Your Life Look Like If Money Had No Meaning?

    What would your life look life if money had no meaning? Would you work? Where would you live? Who would you spend your time with? What would you do more/less of?

    I found this question, among others, through a Pinterest post on ideas for journal prompts. I thought it was a good one to answer, so here is my answer.

    If money had no meaning, yes, I would work. If it is something that I love, that I truly enjoy, yes, I would work. I love and enjoy baking, writing, and photography, so anything to do with any of those fields, or a combination, would make me very happy!! Maybe even open up my own business(es).

    I would probably live in England for a year at some point, and maybe somewhere in Michigan or Wisconsin. I would also do a lot more traveling, around the world.

    I would spend my time with my oldest brother and his wife. I haven't seen him in a long time, and would love to see him again. I would also spend time with my cousins, as I don't see them very often either.

    I would do more outings with friends and family, and less time just sitting around the house doing unproductive things. I would exercise more and eat properly.

    I would go on some missions trips, to help people in need, as well as help those in need back home.

    I would live on my own. At one point, I would love to live on a farm with my future husband and kids (I am not married yet, nor am I a parent yet), and raise animals (horses, a few other animals), and have my own garden, with fruits, veggies, and flowers.

    I would try to learn how to play multiple instruments.

    I would get my license, and then get my own vehicle.

    Basically, I would make something of myself. I would be able to do more of the things I would like to do, and feel more confident about myself.

    Saturday, July 30, 2016

    Job Searching...Again

    Well, it has been a year since that short-lived stint at a local ice cream shop (a few weeks; the manager/boss said that I "wasn't a good fit" for the company :(  ).

    And I haven't had a job since then.

    I have started the job search process again, though. So it's not like I haven't been doing nothing since the Cold Stone job (I volunteer on Fridays at the local library as well, which at least gets me out of the house once a week).

    I had gone out to luch with a friend, on Thursday, and she offered to help me make an updated resume, to help out in the job search. It is just about finished; I have a few more things to add, and then it will be ready for those jobs that ask for a resume upon filling out job applications.

    To be honest, I am glad my friend got me to fill out a resume this week, as I don't know when I would have done it if she hadn't.

    I am mainly looking at bakeries/restaurants, or places that have bakeries, as that is my field of study in school (baking and pastry), but I am also looking at places like grocery stores, pet stores, the local library, etc.

    I am hoping that I get another job soon, as it felt good to actually be doing something, and to be able to earn my own money, to buy things that I need and want. I jsut want to feel that independence again.

    So, here's hoping to successfully landing another job, and keeping it a lot longer this time!!

    Monday, June 27, 2016

    101 Things in 1001 Days

    I heard about this a while back. I read a few blog posts from people who made their own lists of things they want to do in 1,00l days (or 2.75 years). I was immediately on board in making my own list, and took a few days to think about what I really wanted to do in that amount of time.

    So, without further ado, here is my list of 101 Things in 100l Days:

    Start Date: Friday, July 1, 2016
    End Date: Friday, March 29, 2019

    1. Post a video on YouTube
    2. Buy a full size (4/4) violin, and play it regularly
    3. Get a job I will love
    4. Get my driver's license
    5. Buy a Wii and Wii Fit
    6. Attend a Zumba class
    7. Get my baking/pastry degree
    8. Go on a Joni and Friends Retreat as a STM
    9. Go horseback riding
    10. Be in a loving relationship
    11. Get/start photography degree
    12. Clean up & redecorate bedroom
    13. Start, keep up an essential oils routine
    14. Make and stick to a regular workout routine
    15. Improve my posture
    16. Learn sign language
    17. Learn to sew
    18. Buy a DSLR camera
    19. Have a picnic with friends/family
    20. Hand write letters to friends and send them
    21. Go on a photo shoot with me in front of the camera
    22. Go on a photo shoot with me behind the camera
    23. Make at least one new friend a year
    24. Dye my hair blond
    25. Take a cooking class
    26. Get a second ear piercing
    27. Get nose pierced
    28. Attend a Bulls game
    29. Donate unwanted clothes, accessories, books, etc.
    30. Watch all seasons of Lost
    31. Watch all seasons of Downton Abbey (finished watching this before I finalized this list, so I changed it to another show) Watch all seasons of Hawaii Five-O
    32. Watch all seasons of Game of Thrones
    33. Swim with dolphins
    34. Unsubscribe from all unwanted email lists
    35. Make sweater for dad (knit or crochet)
    36. See the Bean in Chicago
    37. Go to local Farmer's Market
    38. Make a vision board
    39. Read the entire Bible
    40. Make at least one loaf of bread from scratch
    41. Get certified in First and and CPR
    42. Leave 101 inspiring messages
    43. Grow out my hair really long
    44. Go for a walk (up to thirty minutes each) 5 times a week
    45. Host at least one game night
    46. Get a new bed and bed frame
    47. Get better at cake decorating (a LOT better!)
    48. Take a one week vacation from Facebook
    49. Create/update resume
    50. Buy a laptop
    51. Learn how to juggle
    52. Take a picture of each letter of the alphabet
    53. Learn how to apply makeup
    54. Visit Navy Pier again
    55. Put together and send as many shoebox presents as I can to Operation Christmas Child
    56. Become fluent in Italian
    57. Volunteer at a local animal shelter
    58. Go to an Andrea Bocelli concert
    59. Eat at seven new to me restaurants
    60. Blog every day for one month
    61. Take a trip by myself
    62. See a live musical
    63. Make homemade gifts for friends/family
    64. Relearn and become fluent in Spanish
    65. Learn to grill
    66. Take a self-defense class
    67. Create a list of 50 things I love about myself
    68. Learn how to tie a tie
    69. Decorate a picture frame for a Father's Day gift, and give it to my dad
    70. Get a facial
    71. Start drinking tea on a regular basis
    72. Go to a h.s. football game
    73. Participate in an Escape Room adventure with friends/family
    74. Buy a new bike helmet
    75. Buy a new pair of roller blades (my dad threw out my last pair, which were STILL GOOD)
    76. Do at least one thing out of my comfort zone
    77. Get my eyes/vision rechecked
    78. Buy something from Etsy
    79. Go ice skating again
    80. Go to bed by midnight
    81. Wake up by 9 am
    82. Try one recipe a month from Pinterest
    83. Try one craft a month from Pinterest
    84. Try five new foods
    85. Go on a mission trip
    86. Get down to my goal weight, and maintain it
    87. Make pulled pork
    88. Go paintballing
    89. Start and maintain a dream journal again
    90. Visit Lincoln Park, Brookfield Zoos
    91. Visit Springfield, Illinois
    92. Visit 3 states I've never been to
    93. Get a credit card
    94. Try archery
    95. Go to Medieval Times
    96. Visit the Shedd Aquarium again
    97. Buy good running shoes
    98. Host/have a Friendsgiving at least once
    99. Get new glasses
    100. Get rid of my acne for good
    101. Create another 101 in 1001 list

    Monday, May 9, 2016

    Five Minute Friday: Miss

    Yes, I know it's Monday, but I was busy on Friday, and too tired to blog then.

    But, I still wanted to participate in this week's FMF, as it is perfect for how I am feeling right now. So, here is my Five Minute Friday post.

    It is around this time of the year that I am missing my mom.

    She has been gone 6 1/2 years. 6 1/2 years since I said goodbye. Since she died.

    Life has not been the same without her here, and I miss her more and more, each passing day.

    I miss our morning talks, talking about everything and nothing in particular. I miss our outings to restaurants.

    I miss her bringing home movies to watch from the library (she worked at our local library).

    I miss her comforting me when I would have a panic attack.

    I miss her voice.

    I miss her.

    She had a love for all types of food, something which she passed down to me.

    We have a recliner that was 'her' chair, and it took a long to get used to her not being in it anymore. She loved the recliner.

    Even though her health wasn't the best for years, she always wanted to be doing something (she loved going to work every day).

    She is always missed, by many. Not just by me, and my family, but from her work, and the neighborhood. I will always miss and love her. Always.

    Sunday, May 1, 2016

    50 Things That Make Me Happy

    I got the idea for this post here, from Thirteen Thoughts. It was such a good idea, that I thought I would make my own list of 50 things that make me happy.

    1. My family, especially my niece and nephew.
    2. My cats.
    3. Harry Potter (I am a HUGE Harry Potter fan!!)
    4. Baking. I am going for my baking and pastry degree, and I hope to be able to work at a bakery someday.
    5. Online shopping (especially on Amazon). I don't like crowds, so I go online shopping as often as I can.
    6. Reading. I love to read, and try to read as often as I can.
    7. Writing/blogging.
    8. Photography. I am an avid photographer, and tend to take photos every time I go out.
    9. Sleep.
    10. Rainy days.
    11. Alone time.
    12. Bike riding.
    13. Music.
    14. Volunteering with my local library's home delivery program. We deliver library materials to those who can't physically come to the library, due to illness, or disability.
    15. Thrift stores.
    16. Hot chocolate on a cold day.
    17. Lemonade on a warm day.
    18. Violins. I played the violin in elementary school, and I hope to be able to pick it up again someday.
    19. Doodling/drawing with creayons, markers, and colored pencils.
    20. Hanging out with my friends.
    21. Long hair. I currently have short hair, but I am planning on growing it really long, so I can donate to organizations that make wigs for those suffering from cancer, or other illness.
    22. Knitting and crocheting.
    23. School/office supplies. I don't know why, but I just love them.
    24. Bullet journaling (you can find out more here).
    25. Nature.
    26. Walks in local parsk.
    27. New shoes.
    28. Girl Scouts. I was a scout in elementary school, and absolutely LOVED it.
    29. Making lists.
    30. Operation Christmas Child (you can find out more here).
    31. Cheesecake.
    32. Traveling, especially to new places.
    33. French Silk Pie.
    34. Banana Cream Pie.
    35. Arts and crafts.
    36. Dogs
    37. Horses
    38. Candles
    39. Planners/calendars
    40. Flowers
    41. Magnets
    42. The color purple
    43. Sunflowers
    44. Strawberry banana shakes/smoothies
    45. Pasta
    46. Sitting on the porch during warm weather days
    47. Brimmed hats
    48. Eggless cookie dough
    49. Quotes, lyrics, poems that speak to me.
    50. The sound of rain.

    Friday, March 25, 2016

    Five Minute Friday: Alive

    I was originally doing these five minute Friday posts with another blogger, but she stopped doing them.

    When I saw that it was happening with another blogger (here), I was very happy. I loved doing these five minute Friday posts, and have missed it.

    Today's Five Minute Friday is Alive.

    Like Meg from Still That Girl, I am going to do a list of things that make me feel alive.

    1. Bike riding
    2. Delivering library materials to patrons who are unable to come to the library, and them telling me that they really appreciate it.
    3. Journaling/blogging, as it allows me to write what's on my mind, what I can't say out loud.
    4. Listening to my favorite songs/artists.
    5. Laughing until I cry.
    6. New experiences.
    7. Photography.
    8. Baking.
    9. Knitting and crocheting
    10. Making prayer shawls for others.
    11. Seeing flowers bloom in spring.
    12. Friends who truly care for me, and help me in a time of need.
    13. Long walks.
    14. My favorite foods.
    15. Arts and crafts (I LOVE making things!!)
    16. Animals.
    17. Going to places I have never been before, and making new memories.
    18. Road trips.
    19. Warm showers.
    20. Getting to live anotherr day.

    Sunday, March 20, 2016

    Make Today Great

    Yesterday, I saw the above saying written on a sidewalk near my church. It was an unexpected, yet next little experience for me.

    It's unexpected little reminders like this that remind me to truly enjoy life. That life is precious, and should be loved; it should be truly lived. Not just survived.

    Each day should be great, not just ok, or good. Each day should be lived to the fullest.

    I love these kinds of reminders. I shows me that there are still good, decent, beautiful people in the world, and that they want to enjoy life as well.

    Don't give up hope on life. It is worth living, even if it doesn't go the way you planned or hoped. That is what life is all about. Taking the unexpected with the expected.

    So, make today great!

    Saturday, March 19, 2016

    Bullet Journaling

    I just found out about something called bullet journaling (I think from a post on Facebook), and I have become instantly obsessed with it!!!

    The post I saw on Facebook was from Boho Berry, whose website you can check out here.

    As described on, it is:

    The Bullet Journal is a customizable and forgiving organization system. It can be your to-do list, sketchbook, notebook, and diary, but most likely, it will be all of the above. It will teach you to do more with less.
     Note-taking and traditional journaling take time; the more complex the entry, the more effort is expended. The more effort expended, the more of a chore it becomes, the more likely you’ll underutilize or abandon your journal. Rapid Logging is the solution. Rapid Logging is the language in which the Bullet Journal is written. It consists of four components: topics, page numbers, short sentences, and bullets.
    Bullet journaling was created by Ryder Carroll, and I think he is a genius for coming up with it!!

    I love to write, make lists, and all that, so bullet journaling is perfect for me. I can't wait to get started with my own bullet journal!!

    Monday, March 14, 2016

    Not All Disabilities Are Visible

    A while back I saw this post on Facebook, where a woman was accused of faking a disability, because it wasn't visible.

    To those who do not have disabilities, please know that there ARE invisible disabilities, and people with invisible disabilities are NOT FAKING IT.

    Some cause pain, some cause shortness of breath, and many other ailments.

    This quote from the woman's article sums invisible disabilities pretty accurately:

    Just because you can’t see someone’s disability doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
    Invisible disabilities are just as real as visible ones, and should be taken as seriously.

    So, please, do not judge someone just because they are different from you, just because they aren't able to do some of the things you are able to do. Do not judge what you know nothing about. You do not know what they are going through.

    Be more open-minded when coming into contact with people. More compassionate. It doesn't take much to be nice.

    Tuesday, March 8, 2016

    My Finished Prayer Card

    My church had offered a prayer card workshop for anyone who was interested in making a prayer card.

    I decided to check it out, and to make one for myself.

    The workshop was divided into two parts, spread out over two weeks: the first part/week was figuring out what prayer/quote/saying/etc. we wanted to use, what materials we wanted, what colors we wanted, and to figure out how we wanted our card to look.

    The second part/week was to actual make the card.

    I really enjoyed this process, and am very happy with how my card came out.

    This is what I chose to do:

    The woman who was in charge of this workshop brought in lots of different fabrics, different types of paper, and lots of different decorations for us to choose from.

    I chose Amazing Grace, because that was my mom's favorite. Although, at first I was debating between using Amazing Grace and The Lord's Prayer, because both were/are favorites of ours. In the end, of course, I chose Amazing Grace because of my mom's love for it.

    It was a fun process, and I hope to be able to do it again next year.

    Tuesday, March 1, 2016

    I Am Not What I Have Done, I Am What I Have Overcome

    I saw this quote on Instagram (which you can check out here), and I loved it so much, that I thought I would share it.

    I think this quote is absolutely true.

    People are always making choices, whether good or bad, but that doesn't define who they are. Who they are is what they have gone through in their life. And that is what makes them beautiful.

    No one has the the same experience as anyone else, and that is what makes life worth living. If everything was the same, life would be boring, and not as beautiful.

    Don't be ashamed of what you have overcome. It is what makes you unique; it is what makes you, you.

    Sunday, February 21, 2016

    A Journal of My Favorite Bible Verses

    I recently watched the movie War Room, a movie I have been wanting to see for quite some time.

    War Room is about a woman who works as a real estate agent, and is having a tough time in her marriage. She then meets an older woman, who is selling her home, to move in with her son. The older woman begins asking the agent about her marriage. Once the agent opens up about her problems, the older woman tells her how she can help give her "weapons" to fight for her marriage, and about her "war room," which is an empty room, where she puts prayers up on the walls, for people she prays for.

    The agent is hesitant at first, to pray, and to take this up, but after giving it some thought, she gives it a try, and she sees how much good prayer does, and how much changing her attitude towards her husband, and marriage, for her.

    It is a very inspiring movie, that I would definitely recommend you watch!

    After watching it, I decided to get a journal and write my favorite bible verses in it, like a couple of the characters in the movie did.

                                                  The journal I got for my favorite bible verses.

    I already have about 20 or so pages filled with verses that speak to me. I am also going to put inspirational quotes and songs in it as well, and read this journal when I am having a tough time.

    Monday, February 15, 2016

    Being Single

    Valentine's Day...that holiday for happy couples.

    Well, I am not a part of the "happy couple" equation, so Valentine's Day isn't one of my favorite days, holiday-wise.

    I don't have a significant other to love. Plus, I'm not big on the commercialization of the day.

    I know that people would say that I could love my family, and myself on this day.

    I love my family anyway, and one day devoted to "love" just doesn't cut it for me.

    I am learning to love myself, so it's not quite that simple to "love" me on Valentine's Day.

    Anyway, back to my singleness, and a holiday that reminds me of that every year.

    I have never really had a boyfriend/been in an official relationship with anyone, so Valentine's Day isn't really that special.

    For a while, I have been happy with being single, but now, seeing friends in relationships, and getting engage/married, is making me feel like it's never going to happen for me.

    I really want to have a meaningful, long, loving relationship with someone who will love me for who I am, who will love all of me. Someone who will not ask me to change anything about myself.

    Someone who I will do the same for.

    I want to get married, and have a family, someday. Hopefully sooner rather than later (I am not looking for a relationship, just to be in one. I have decided that I am really ready for love, and for to share my life with someone).

    Although, it seems like it won't be happening any time soon.

    But, I am not giving up hope. I know someone is out there, somewhere, who will be there for me. Who will want to be with me.

    Saturday, January 16, 2016

    People I Would Love to Meet

    There are quite a few people I would love to meet.

    Although, I would most likely be starstruck, and quiet (as I am a very shy person by nature), so I wouldn't say much, at least at first. But, that won't/doesn't stop me from wanting to meet them.

    So, here are the people I would most like to meet:
    • Michael Gambon
    • Maggie Smith
    • Johnny Depp
    • Daniel Radcliffe
    • Emma Watson
    • Rupert Grint
    • Andrea Bocelli
    • J.K. Rowling
    • Jonathan Antoine
    • Joni Eareckson Tada
    • Whitney Way Thore (from My Big Fat Fabulous Life)
    • David Tennant
    • Jazz Jennings
    • Nick Vujicic
    • Camille and Kennerly (The Harp Twins)
    • Buddy Valastro (The Cake Boss)
    • Jen and Bill (The Little Couple)
    • Ian McKellan
    • Andre Rieu
    • Marlee Matlin
    • Katie Leclerc
    • Celtic Woman
    • Celtic Thunder
    • Helena Bonham Carter
    • Emma Thompson
    • Eddie Redmayne
    • Anne Hathaway
    • Viola Davis
    • James Earl Jones
    • Antonio Banderas
    • Morgan Freeman
    • Donald Sutherland
    • Kiefer Sutherland
    • Gene Wilder
    • Craig Ferguson
    • Bindi Irwin
    • Pope Benedict XVI
    • Liam Hemsworth
    • Chris Hemsworth
    • Adele
    • Tom Felton
    • Evanna Lynch
    • Ashley Greene
    • Peter Facinelli
    • Stephenie Meyer

    And, just because, here are the people I wish I could have met, before they died:

    • Alan Rickman
    • Robin Williams
    • Ronald Reagan
    • Richard Harris
    • Philip Seymour Hoffman
    • Christopher Reeve
    • Maureen O'Hara
    • Shirley Temple
    • B.B. King
    • Luciano Pavarotti
    • Andre the Giant
    • Nelson Mandela
    • Steve Irwin
    • Dick Clark
    • Pope John Paul II
    • Princess Diana
    • Rosa Parks
    • Mother Teresa

    Thursday, January 14, 2016

    Rest in Peace, Alan Rickamn

    Today, one of my favorite actors, Alan Rickman, died at age 69 from cancer.

    I was shocked to hear of his passing, and of his cancer diagnosis, as I had no idea he was sick.

    He was one of the people I wanted to meet at some point in my life, but now, that is not possible.

    He was absolutely perfect in Harry Potter as Snape, Hans Gruber in the Die Hard movies, and all his other roles.

    From what I have read/heard about him, Alan was very supportive of others, very funny, an all around great guy to be around.

    It's impossible not to feel sad about the loss of Alan Rickman, aka Snape/Hans/Harry (from Love Actually).

    My condolences go out to his family, friends, and fans (yes, his fans as well).

    Rest in peace to a wonderful man. The world has lost an incredible soul, one that will be dearly missed.

    Tuesday, January 12, 2016

    A Strong Desire to Be An STM

    For some time now, I have been wanting to be an STM (short term missionary) at a Joni and Friends Retreat.

    The only thing stopping me from applying: the money. The one I want to go to isn't super expensive, but I am still unable to pay for the retreat.

    The registration for this year opened today, but I am hesitant to apply. They do have assistance for people who are unable to pay the entire amount, but I'm not sure if I really want to/can do it this year.

    So, I am looking to hopefully go next year.

    You can learn more about Joni and Friends here, and about the retreats here.

    A friend of mine has gone to a few of these retreats before, and loved them. I read about them on the website, and they sound like so much fun. So, I hope to be able to go to at least on retreat in my life.

    Thursday, January 7, 2016

    Musically Inclined

    I was recently chatting with one of the children's librarians at the local library, and we got to talking about music and musical instruments.

    She told me she was learning how to play Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on the guitar, so she can play it at story time.

    I told her that I used to play the violin in my elementary school's orchestra, and took a guitar class my freshman year of high school (yes, they had/have a guitar class!!).

    For quite some time, I have been hoping to be able to buy a full size violin for myself, and to start playing again. I seriously miss playing, and would love to get back into it.

    I quit playing the violin after fifth grade, because I "got bored with it." I have been regretting that ever since. So, hopefully I can start up again, before it's too late.

    I may even start trying to play the guitar again as well. I love music, and actually enjoyed playing instruments. There are other instruments I want to play as well, and hopefully I can maybe take lessons for those too. Although, violin is my instrument of choice, and will be focusing on that.

    I can't wait to get back into things, and to play again soon!!!