Category Archives: My life

“You must be Caroline. You look just like the girls Max used to give wedgies to in the cafeteria” -Mr. Huck

This week I had to opportunity to partake in very exciting activities. What were those activities? Well, I was able to go meet Ian Harding and Lucy Hale on Tuesday evening for Ian Harding’s book signing and photo-op. He recently released his first book, “Odd Birds” and is on a book tour right now. I was then able to meet Beth Behrs last night at her Q&A/talk/book signing for her newly released book “The Total ME-Tox.”

First off, I will talk about how I found out about these events and how you, too, can find something near you. Living in the L.A. area for about a year and I had absolutely no idea these things happened. I would have been there for so many other people had I known. I was actually on Facebook last week just looking at events happening in the area when I saw it, “Ian Harding celebrates Odd Birds with Photo Op & pre-signed book.” Of course, seeing Ian Harding’s name got me excited all at once so I clicked. And that introduced me to other goings on in the area.

So how do you go to one of these events? You get yourself down to the Barnes & Noble store before it opens, stand in line to buy the book (the day of) in order to get your wristband, then go home and do what you need to do until it’s time to get back. They don’t start lining up until about 6:00pm so there’s no use in staying the entire day. Plus, whatever band you have is where you will be at in line. Because I have plans to see more people, I became a B&N member so I get to be up at the front of the line. A membership is $25 per year and gets you great perks.

ian          So what was it like meeting Ian and Lucy? Well, very short to tell you the truth. It was a pre-signed book so there is no personalization. BUT, getting a picture with the two of them was wonderful. I told them my name and we got a few pictures and hugs. They are very nice people. There was even a girl who traveled from Mexico to see them.

beth          What was it like meeting Beth Behrs? It was definitely different from the night before. First of all, the crowd was much smaller so that was a plus. It was also a Q&A rather than just a photo-op. She talked to us, which you can see in the video below. She is a very funny and wonderful person. My photo with her was also just as wonderful. I am very thankful I got to meet such an inspiring woman. I have also had the opportunity to see her perform on 2 Broke Girls (tvticket.com has free tickets to tv shows like her’s).

Will I do this again? YES! We actually have plans for a few other ones soon so keep an eye out for that. If you’ve ever been to one, please comment below with your thoughts. And if you were at either one of these, let me know. As always, thank you for reading! I hope you have a great day.

“Have no fear These are nowhere near The best years of your life” -Brad Paisley

Dear 16-year-old Carra,

16          Your life will change in the next year and I know it will be hard. Just remember that there are people who love you and are here for you. You will be able to grow and learn so much because you will be getting out of your comfort zone. You’ll lose people you love, you’ll move twice in one year, and you’ll grow closer to Heavenly Father.
When given the opportunity to go see Mountain Grove High School, you’ll do it, you’ll meet the counselor and come out of the meeting ready to move. Actually ask questions this time, don’t be afraid. It’ll be exciting but sad. Leaving your friends will be hard, it is worth it.
See your mom before you move. It’ll eat at you if you don’t. She wanted to say 16 3goodbye but you left before she could. Also, spend more time packing and less time playing. You’ll have a week to pack all of your stuff. Make sure you put Whoonu in a safe spot so you don’t lose it because if you don’t you’ll find out it’s $60 when you’re looking into buying it again.
There will be many boys interested in you, say no to all of them. I mean it, all of them. Don’t even text Casey after Christmas, you’ll thank me later. Boys are no good and you deserve better than all of them. Having Dakota as a friend is enough, he’s a nice guy. But seriously, do not date any of them.
16 1          Don’t give your friend Megan money because you’ll never get it back. Also, don’t spend your first week not eating and hiding in the bathroom at lunchtime. Make friends.You will become really good friends with the girl who you have almost every class with, her name is Shelby. She’ll introduce you to people and you’ll become “popular” because everyone in your grade knows you.
When your English class gets into a discussion about Mormons, don’t be afraid to turn it into a teaching moment. Straightening out the lies will help them in the long run. Tell Derek that chocolate doesn’t destroy your soul, tell Rachel that we are Christian, stun everyone because they had no idea there was a Mormon in the class. You can do it, don’t be shy.
Another thing to consider is your career project in Personal Finance. You’re 16 2thinking about doing it on OB GYN. Don’t. That’s not really what you want to be, you want to be a teacher or a writer. Don’t pick OB GYN just because it makes more money and it goes with what your classmates are doing. Be yourself Carra, it’s ok.
Finally, don’t yell at your grandparents. You’re going to miss them one day and all of those times you screamed and fought will flood your mind for a time. Try to see it from their point of view. Also, learn all you can from grandma, make it a point to cook with her. Ask her about her life. If you don’t, you’ll regret it later in life.
You are a very smart, beautiful, and caring young woman. Don’t let anyone change that or tell you different. Stay close to your family, spend time with them. Garden with grandma, play pool with grandpa. You’ll miss out on all of that if you don’t. They love you and I love you. Stay strong.

Sincerely,
25-year-old Carra

“Oh, so you GOOGLED him Oh, well, that changes everything then, doesn’t it? What could I possibly worry about now that I know you’ve conducted such a thorough Internet search?” ―Alyson Noel, Fated

Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 3.05.27 PM          Google is a crazy invention. You can get answers to so many difficult questions, find perfect images to show exactly what a certain creature looks like, and shop for all of your needs. One thing I believe everyone has done at least once is Google themselves. Come on, I know you’ve done it. No need to be embarrassed.

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I decided to Google myself and see what would come up. It was actually really interesting. I looked myself up with my maiden name as well as my married name. I want to share with you my results. At the top of this page is the image results for my maiden name while the second one is with my married name. Below I have included images of the first pages with both names.

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Why did I share this with you? Because I really wanted to see what would come up when I Google myself. It was an interesting find! And as you can tell, there are a lot of images that really are me as well as a few from Redheaded Owl. I want to see what your results are so post them below! Share what the craziest thing you found on your name was. And I know that everyone won’t have as much fun as I did nor as positive of an experience as I had but I think it’s still a good idea.

As always, thank you for visiting. Don’t forget to follow my blog for more from me! I hope to hear from you in the comments. Have a great day.

“Mexico is a mosaic of different realities and beauties.” -Enrique Pena Nieto

17836970_1660350574273334_712357375_o          I first want to say I apologize for not posting on Tuesday. I got home later than planned. This post will actually be the one that should have been posted on Tuesday, so nothing will be missed.

On Saturday morning I left with my husband and my in-laws to go to Mexico. Not the Mexico that tourists flock to but the Mexico where my husband’s family resides. His grandma and many of his aunts, uncles, and cousins all still live in Mexico so his parents visit at least once a year. This is my second time visiting them so they all knew who I was. The first time I went was a couple of months before we got married so we were able to take them invitations.17837709_1660350420940016_1661096531_o

This time wasn’t much different from the last. We visited family, I understood very little because they all speak spanish (though a couple of them do speak English), we ate a ton of wonderful food, and walked around looking at all of the shops. We bought candy, Hector bought some shoes, I found a pair of boots that I love but they didn’t have my size, and we had so much food. So much so that I gained a few pounds that I now have to add that to my goal that I already had.

17820387_1660350500940008_176045479_o          One thing different from last time is the amount of spanish I learned. Last time I was too shy to actually ask about any spanish words but this time I was very into learning. I hope that I will one day be able to actually speak with Hector’s family but for now, I am a beginner. I will be the first to say that some of the words I learned won’t help me much but it was still fun to learn. I think the thing I loved the most was learning how to say baby animals. Hector’s grandma had little chicks in her backyard (pollitos) as well as one of her cats had 3 little kittens (gatitos).17820043_1660350464273345_735349511_o So, of course I learned how to say what they were. I also learned to say a couple of food things so that I could order for myself sometimes. For example, I was able to tell the person that I wanted a Strawberry Fanta at one of the places we went to eat tortas. If you have never had tortas, I highly recommend them because they are great.

 

As I mentioned previously, we ate A LOT. We probably ate too much, to be honest. But we don’t get good Mexican food here in the states very often so we took what we could get. A few things that we ate includes the following:

  • Tortas17837708_1660350517606673_878834059_o
  • Tacos
  • Mariscos
  • Churros
  • Mangoneadas
  • More tortas
  • More tacos
  • A stew with cactus in it (I have no idea what it was called, Hector’s grandma made it)

I absolutely loved the food and can’t wait to have it again. The picture to the right is actually one way that they made taco meat. I have to say that the place we ate this at makes the best tacos ever. Absolutely delicious. We hope to go again in October, when his parents are going to help Hector’s grandma fix up her house, but there is no guarantee. If not, at least I have pictures to drool over this time.

Anyway, as always please comment below. I’d like to hear your experiences in Mexico. If you’d like to see more of my content, please subscribe.

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“Don’t stop when you are tired, stop when you are done.” -Unknown

17499696_10209138932970650_586903153_oHello readers! Today I want to report on what it was like for my husband and I to run in the Bubble Run 5K this17521607_10209138935770720_1927390249_o year. Or shall I say walk? We walked pretty much the entire thing and still finished in less than an hour.

If you don’t know, a 5k is about 3.1 miles. A bubble run 5K is 3.1 miles and every so often you run through a fountain of bubbles, all colored differently.

We attended the Bubble Run 5K in Anaheim, California and it was the best experience ever. There was a great turn out, including many children and babies. The price was only $20 plus a $6 service fee and you get your participant number with safety pins, a sweat headband, a temporary tattoo, 17548751_10209138935610716_53652363_o.jpgand a t-shirt. There are also more things that you can spend extra money on, like socks, tutus, sunglasses, towels, rubber duckies, and more t-shirts but we didn’t do that.

The location of the Bubble Run was the Angel Stadium. It was great because part of the course was on the field and another part was up in the bleachers area.

We do have some videos but unfortunately I am unable to upload any at this time. When I am able to, I hope to come back and add a few. But until then, I will include a slideshow of our photos of this wonderful adventure. I know this will not be the only 5K I ever do and if you are on the fence about doing a 5K, I say do it. It’s fun and you really don’t have to run at all!

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. Your comments are always welcome. Let me know if you were there and maybe even share some pictures! If you want more content from me, subscribe via email to get updated right away.

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“Don’t worry about what you’re writing or whether it’s good or even whether it makes sense.” -Lauren Oliver

Do you know what time it is? It’s time to prepare for Camp NaNoWriMo. If you saw my nano.pngpost from November about NaNoWriMo then you might know a little bit about it. If not, it’s ok. NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. You are challenged to write 50,000 words in the month of November. So what does that have to do with right now? Well, in the months of April and July there is this things called Camp NaNoWriMo. For these two months, you set your own goal for writing and you work to hit that goal. One really cool thing about Camp NaNoWriMo is that you get to be in a group called a cabin. It is a small group, there is a max of 11 people in each cabin. I am in a cabin with other writers who are also Bullet Journal enthusiast.

The reason I am writing about this now, at the beginning of March, is to let people know about this awesome thing going on. I just signed up yesterday and will be preparing for April. I made a goal of 22,000 words. You can make any goal you want, some people in my cabin have a goal of 12,000. It’s really up to you and what you feel comfortable writing. It was a little difficult to get in the 50,000 words back in November and I didn’t win NaNoWriMo but I plan on winning at Camp NaNoWriMo.

To get started, you must visit the Camp NaNoWriMo site. If you have done any type of NaNoWriMo before, then all you have to do is sign in with your username/email and password from your account. If you forgot your password, like me, then you can click “forgot password” and you are able to make a new password. You just need access to the email you signed up with. If you haven’t done it before, then you would click the “join now” button on the left side of the page.

If you are unsure about whether you want to sign up for this or not, visit the Camp NaNoWriMo about page. You don’t have to write a novel, you can write a bunch of poems or a script or even a few children’s books. You are in charge here. Make the goal, whether it be hours spent writing, words to be written, or pages, you make it and strive to hit it or even exceed that. If you still have questions or concerns after visiting the about page, I would suggest the Camp NaNoWriMo FAQ page.

So, you’ve signed up. Now what do yo do? You have to set up your profile, try to add a picture to your account as well. Your picture can be of whatever you want, it doesn’t have to be a selfie, it doesn’t even have to have a person in the picture. My picture is my husband and I. Once you have your profile set up, set up your project profile. You don’t have to include a title for your project, I’ve seen plenty of people who don’t have one yet. Just make your goal and you’re ready. There are multiple ways to be in a group. If you know people, have them invite you to their group. You could also go on the NaNoWriMo Forums to read the “Finding Cabin Mates” post. Another option you have is to make your own cabin, if you have friends you’d like to join you. Your last option is to be randomly sorted into a cabin. For many people, this option works out wonderfully. If I didn’t already have a cabin I wanted to join, I would have selected that option. If you want nothing to do with cabins, that is ok too. There’s an option for you as well.

You now have your camper profile, your project all set up, and your cabin figured out. What’s next? Well, now is the time that you map out what your project will be about and how you want to get from 0 words to, in my case, 22,000 words. You don’t have to plan anything, some don’t. This whole thing is up to you.

If you’re doing Camp NaNoWriMo, please comment below with your username so we can all be friends! Remember: You can do it!! And, as always, thank you for reading. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

“My family took a vacation to Universal Studios when I was really young. Me and my brother Richard – who’s also an actor – were both really intrigued by seeing the behind-the-scenes stuff of how films are made. We kind of begged our parents to get into acting.” -Jonathan Jackson

To continue what was started last week, I will be giving a brief synopsis of each months’ usvisits to Universal Studios Hollywood. This month I am talking about my trips in February. It was a great time to go, as long as you missed the rain. IF you have a season pass, you probably have little to no blackout dates for February, since it is what is considered an “off-season” month. This just means that fewer people visit.

Overall, the crowds were light and there were plenty of events going on. I was really excited because I finally got to go to the Harry Potter section here, I was blessed with the opportunity to go to the one in Florida last year but wanted to experience it here as well.

Events, that I know of, that happened this month:

  1. Lunar New Year event (official USH event)
  2. Lord Voldemort’s Valentine’s Death Eater Day (Facebook event)
  3. Old Hollywood Day (Facebook event)

I’m sure there were more events that occurred that I was unaware of but these I was aware of.

A few things to be aware of (good and bad) because it is the off-season:

  1. All water related things (other than Jurassic Park) were closed for refurbishment.
  2. The park closes early during the week
  3. There may be rain, it rained a lot this year
  4. Ticket prices are lower
  5. Crowds are lower
  6. It will be cold in the mornings
  7. Some attractions may close that aren’t water related

In the month of February the Jaws, Waterworld, fountain in CityWalk, and glove at the entrance were all down because they were being refurnished.

If you have any questions, comment below. I’m sad to say that, due to circumstances beyond our control, we didn’t get to visit Universal Studios too much during the month. We hope to visit more in the month of March. As always, thanks for stopping in to read my blog. Don’t forget to follow me so you can stay up to date with my life!

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” -Zig Ziglar

After much consideration, I decided to make a 26 before 26 list. With help from my friend Jewel and my husband, I put together a list of 26 things I want to get done in the next year. If you read my post about 25 before 25 post, then you saw that I 16930552_10208900352046276_313945688_owas unable to complete it and you might be wondering why I would do another one. Well, one thing is for sure; I am definitely giving myself more than just a couple months this time so there is a better chance of me completing all 26 items. I’m determined to do it this time! I even added pictures to represent them to my vision board, to learn more about that, click here. Here is my 26 before 26 list:

  1. Finish a 5K
  2. Run a 5K (because it’s different than just finishing one)
  3. Finish Harry Potter 1-7 (I’m still on book 5)
  4. Finish the first draft of my Work in Progress
  5. Host a themed dinner party
  6. Throw myself a fabulous birthday party
  7. Get my food handlers card
  8. Go whale watching
  9. Blog at least weekly
  10. Read 26 books
  11. Make friends in L.A.
  12. Go on a girls-only trip
  13. Take a cooking class
  14. Start a YouTube channel with Jewel
  15. Get a job I enjoy
  16. Go white water rafting
  17. Make a music video
  18. Lose 20 pounds
  19. Learn to do winged eyeliner
  20. Get a calling in the church
  21. Visit 3 temples I’ve never been to (Los Angeles, Newport Beach, and San Diego are my goals)
  22. Buy and decorate a house
  23. Reach level 10 life
  24. Do something that scares me
  25. Be positive for a week
  26. Reach 200 members in Bullet Journaling California

 

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I am very optimistic about this list and I know that I can do it. And to help you know that you can do it too, go watch this video on YouTube from the Steve Harvey Show. Please share with us what you are hoping to accomplish before your next birthday. As always, thank you for reading. If you want to enjoy more content from me, follow my blog.

“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive – to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” -Marcus Aurelius

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What is privilege? According to Merriam Webster the definition of privilege is “a right or immunity granted as a peculiar benefit, advantage, or favor :  prerogative; especially :  such a right or immunity attached specifically to a position or an office.” The definition used for kids is “a right or liberty granted as a favor or benefit especially to some and not others.” Are we privileged? What makes a person privileged? I know that I am privileged, though when I took a Buzzfeed quiz it states that I am not. It also said that my husband is most privileged, which is interesting. I found the quiz the other day while I was sucked into watching Buzzfeed videos, which most of us know that’s easy to do. I stumbled across the video “How Privileged Are You?” The video takes 8 people from different walks of life and they all take this quiz of 100 questions together. For the quiz, you check which statements apply to your life. There are 100 statements about race, religion, education, wealth, and so much more.
I read a few comments on the video asking why there were no questions about abuse or the like. Abuse isn’t about whether you are privileged or not. Privilege is not like that at all. There are, however, privileges connected with being a certain gender, religion, race, or status. It is not a rule, however, that the middle age white man is more privileged than that of a middle age Native American woman. Like my husband and I, I am Caucasian and he is Mexican. Right off the bat people would say that I am more privileged than he is purely because of my skin color. This is not the case, though. You can see my husband’s results above and my results below. He scored 76 out of 100 whereas I scored 45 out of 100.
I know that, though this says I am not privileged, I most certainly am. The only reason I scored so low is because of my childhood. I was homeless, I skipped meals, I was teased and bullied. I was actually even bullied for being white. You don’t hear of that often but it happened. I was bullied all growing up, even into college. I know am I privileged now, though. I had a house, I am married to an amazing person and we can get by without me working. Some families do not of the privilege of surviving on one income. I have a car, I never have to worry about going hungry, I have clean clothes to wear. Yes, I hear ridicule about the religion I have chosen to be apart of but there are other religions who are suffering more.
Times aren’t like they were in the 1800’s, Mormons aren’t being murdered for no reason anymore. Other people are, such as Muslims. It breaks my heart to go on Facebook and see videos of a woman who was assaulted due to what she was wearing or men who talk about how others were shouting at them to “go back to their country” and calling them terrorists. What a world we live in.
I don’t think I have ever gotten really political on a post in the 4 years I have had this blog running but my heart goes out to those who are suffering. There are many who have lost so much and people look down on them, even though the losses were out of their control.
Please take the time out of your busy day to take the quiz How Privileged Are You? Check(list) your privilege. You won’t regret it. Also, remember that whether you score high or low, there is nothing to be ashamed of. Don’t be ashamed that you went to an Ivy League school but your best friend could barely afford a city college. Don’t be ashamed that your mom fed you hamburgers out of the dumpster while your classmates ate at Olive Garden. Where you went to school or what you ate as a kid doesn’t define you, your actions and words do. Just be a good human being, privilege or not.

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“Ones best success comes after their greatest disappointments.” -Henry Ward Beecher

I talked about the difficulty of getting a job in today’s world a few posts ago. My stance has not changed and I am still frustrated that people won’t give me a chance but I have a new look at it. I have been turned down by 11 jobs in the last month and it was rejectiondisheartening but I have had a realization: the rejection now is preparing me for the rejection I will, inevitably, get from publishers. Just think about how many times J.K. Rowling was turned down; the number is 9 or 12 depending on where you get your information. Kevin Anderson & Associates gives us a list of  Ten Famous Books Rejected By Publishers. I know that I, too, will have my share of rejection when I am ready to get published but I won’t give up, just like J.K. Rowling.

I know this is short but I want all of my readers to know that I believe in you. I don’t know you but I know that you can do it. Just today I jogged/walked 2 miles in 37 minutes. I never thought I coulddo-it do that. In high school I made it a point to walk as slow as I could while doing the mile run. Heck, Redheaded Owl and I took the entire class period to walk the mile in 7th grade. I promise you that you CAN do anything you put your mind to. It won’t be easy but is anything really easy? It will, however, be worth it in the end. And when you look back at ow hard you pushed and how far you came, you will be proud.

As always, thank you for reading. Please comment below with what you are pushing yourself with. What about when rejection had you down but you pushed right back up? I look forward to hearing from you!