Category Archives: Hobbies

“In your name, the family name is at last because it’s the family name that lasts.” ― Amit Kalantri

I apologize for being a little later today. I hope everyone is enjoying their Labor Day.

Today I wanted to talk about something that I was actually doing last night. Have you ever looked into your family tree? Have you ever wondered if you were related to your friends or famous people? Well, I have. And thankfully there’s a place to check that out. Visit the website here.

Relative Finder has helped me find out some really cool things about my family. For example, I grew up being told by my dad that I am part Native American. But I look at myself and don’t see it. Plus, he has no evidence to back this claim. I never really believed him, and had good reason not to given previous history. Well, fast forward to last night and I decide to hop onto Relative Finder to see if any more of my friends would like to see if we’re related. Of course, no one had done it other than the two people who did it a couple of years ago.

I continue to look around the site and decide to look at my relatives. There is an option to see direct relatives or all (like cousins, aunts, and uncles) so I decide to click direct. Low and behold, there is was! My dad hadn’t just made up some story. I am related to the one and only Pocahontas. The real person the Disney movie is based on! She is my 13th great-grandmother. Needless to say, I am ecstatic and decide to keep looking.

Of course, I could go on forever listing all the cool people I am related to but I won’t. I will encourage you all to check out the website though. Of course, this will only work if you have a Family Search account, so you should make one and start adding to your family tree. And no, you don’t have to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in order to create a free account, it’s free for everyone.

Let me know in the comments who you’re related to. And if you want to join the group I made specifically for you guys, search for Carra’s Blog Followers and the password is blog or join with the link here.

As always, thank you for stopping by. I hope to see you all next week and I hope to have my blog out at a normal time. Again, I apologize that this blog is so late.

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“Her Success is Not My Failure” – Latasha Haynes

39020342_937536426429734_388514911870779392_nI gotta say, life is really funny sometimes. I want to post but something always gets in the way and I hate typing up blog posts on my phone because it’s a little harder to write and research. Plus I like the bigger screen of my laptop so much more. Anyway, today is the first day of my last fall semester at the community college and I could be more nervous and excited for this semester. For one, I am not for sure in two of the classes that I absolutely need. I’m also enrolled in statistics this semester and I hate math, have never been good at it. But somehow, I managed to pull off a B in my algebra 2 class this summer so I’m pretty proud of myself for that.

39012887_2096769243975848_2542323556344135680_nI decided to write about my bullet journal in this post. Why? Because it has helped me through so much in the last 2 years and I know it will help me through this semester. So, I hope you’re ready to see my work! And I will be hiding all of my personal information because the internet does not and will never need to see that.

So, if you don’t know what a bullet journal is then you will after this. A bullet journal can be something different for each person. For me, it is a planner, a way to tracker certain habits (like reading, praying, etc), a place to write down stuff I want to do, I even have my education plan in it. All of which you will probably see throughout.

39062187_217046682323227_4004356661857746944_nI am in a few bullet journal groups on Facebook, one of which I actually created. The biggest group, by far, is Boho Berry Tribe. I asked the group what bullet journaling is to them and I loved the responses. I decided to add them here and no names or personal information will be posted.

“A record keeper for the important things in life, big and small. A goal keeper/ tracker for my business. And a creative outlet. Like a diary without the drama.”

“It’s literally everything and anything I need it to be. It’s a calendar, task list, journal, reading log, list of things I want, quotes and inspiration, reminders, a master syllabus for my classes. A place to draw and be goofy but also serious and poised. It’s messy and imperfect and a true reflection of life.”

39087742_683142718713110_5828806834454003712_n“It’s my journey.”

“My bujo is what helps me realize how productive I really am. It helps me give myself credit for all the things I do. Trackers help me stay motivated, act as a reward for following through and help me find patterns in symptoms. My monthlies and weeklies help me stay organized. They keep me from getting that ‘I’m forgetting something but I don’t know what’ feeling. I am so much more organized and productive now, and I have no clue how I got anything done before!”

39069487_232406970953171_1639907883292295168_n” I tell people it’s my life. It’s the extension of me that I don’t have to worry about not being perfect, or presentable to others, I never have to fake it, it changes with me, for me because of me. I can be sloppy messy neat and it makes sense to only me. It’s my friend, keeps me on task and organized with every part of my life. From bills to volunteering, to city events and concerts/movies.”

“I was introduced to Bullet Journaling after complaining to an intern at my job about how I just can’t retain any information from school. I’m an older student at 38, work full-time, have 2 kids, a hubby, a live in 19-year-old niece (who’s a saint thank God), 4 fur babies, my nieces bunny and parrot, a house and I run the communications dept. at my church, I’m tired lol. This intern just turned my life right side up when she introduced me to bullet journaling and it has saved my sanity. The actual method used for basic BuJo is amazing to me and now I can remember things again. I write everything down in it and I can find everything fast.”

39042008_967692503403036_8159637658453147648_n“my brain! if it’s in the book, it gets done. it’s entertainment. it’s a creative outlet. it helps me sort thru my life.”

As you can see from what was said, bullet journaling has made an impact on many lives. And the best part, to many of us, is that you can do whatever you want with it. Plus, there’s no wrong way to bullet journal. Some people make very elaborate pages while other keep it simple. I’ve seen people use water colors to make their bullet journal pages and I think it’s absolutely amazing but I could never do it. I use stickers, a ruler, and several color pens.

39062955_1673301316101687_8339909835436851200_nYou’re probably wondering what all of this has to do with school starting up. Well, I have made a few pages specifically for tracking school related things. I have all of the important school dates written down, a few pages made up of two weeks each for writing down what homework I need to do, and what classes I need for each degree I’m getting next year. It keeps me on track and I know where I can find each thing all in one place. It’s great! And each of my classes are their own color so that’s helpful as well.

I hope that everyone at least tries out bullet journaling because it honestly could change your life. I know it sounds so cheesy but it is so true. I started bullet journaling because I saw many beautiful pages and started learning about what it is. Just remember, you can use whatever you want and do as much or as little as you desire. There is never a wrong way to do it. That’s the beauty of the bullet journaling system!

Thank you all for visiting my blog, I hope you enjoyed this weeks post. I apologize for being so absent. I will try my hardest to post weekly again. Until next time, enjoy your week!

Helpful links:

Boho Berry

Bullet Journaling System

Bullet Journaling California Facebook Group

Boho Berry Tribe Facebook Page

“Do not read, as children do, to amuse yourself, or like the ambitious, for the purpose of instruction. No, read in order to live.” -Gustave Flaubert

summerreadinglist_istock_34481384_hires_983px          Today I decided that I would share my reading list. I keep adding to it because there are so many good books to read but I figured some of you would benefit from my list. I will put a check next to the ones I’ve read. So, here we go!

  1. ✔️ Spark Joy -Marie Kondo 
  2. ✔️ Daring Greatly -Brené Brown
  3. ✔️ The 5 Love Languages -Gary Chapman
  4. ✔️ The Miracle Morning -Hal Elrod
  5. The Metabolism Plan -Lyn-Genet Recitas
  6. The Latter-Day Morning -Mark Bacera
  7. Overcoming Destructive Anger -Bernard Golden
  8. Claim Your Power -Mastin Kipp
  9. Happiness: A Memoir:  The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever After -Heather Harpham
  10. Self-Esteem Bible: Build Your Confidence Day by Day -Gael Lindenfeild
  11. The Modern Girl’s Guide to Life -Jane Buckingham
  12. Your Best Year 2018: Life Edition -Lisa Jacobs
  13. The True INFP -Truity
  14. Rising Strong -Brené Brown
  15. I Thought I Was The Crazy One: 201 way to Identify and Deal with Toxic People -Amorah
  16. ✔️ Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix -JK Rowling
  17. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince -JK Rowling
  18. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -JK Rowling
  19. ✔️ Wild -Cheryl Strayed
  20. Total Me-Tox -Beth Behrs
  21. Odd Birds -Ian Harding
  22. Tales of Beedle the Bard -JK Rowling
  23. What I wish I’d Known When I was 20 -Tina Seelig
  24. Bridget Jones’ Diary -Helen Fielding
  25. Buckland’s Complete Book of Witchcraft -Raymond Buckland
  26. The Time Traveler’s Wife -Audrey Niffenegger
  27. PCOS for Dummies -Gaynor Bussell and Sharon Perkins
  28. Organize Now! -Jennifer Ford Berry
  29. Madly in Love with Me: The daring Adventure of Becoming Your Own Best Friend -Christine Arylo
  30. My Zero-waste Kitchen: Easy Ways to eat Waste Free -Kate Turner

I added links to each book in case anyone wants to check them out on Amazon. Each book has something to offer, whether it be something to learn or a way to escape reality. I hope you all find your next read from this list! Let me know if you’ve read any of these books and how you liked (or disliked) them.

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. Keep coming back for more! Don’t forget, you can subscribe by email and a notification will come straight to your inbox when I post something new.

“The hard part is putting one word after another.” ―Jo Linsdell

Last week I decided to start working on my book again. I realized that I began working on it 10 years ago, and I desperately want to finish it. Of course, I haven’t been writing continuously for the last 10 years. I didn’t write at all for a few years. Plus in 2016 I decided to scrap what I had and start over. Of course, around the same time my best friend was hit by a car. I was planning to do as much as I could for NaNoWriMo, but life had other plans. Then I planned on writing for camp NaNoWriMo last summer, but school kept me busy. Then I was unable to participate in NaNoWriMo last year due to personal issues. So, I am going to just do it. I want to do it for NaNoWriMo, but I can’t just sit here and wait 9 months just so I can cram 50,000 words onto paper for the sake of saying I did it. Who knows, maybe I will be done with my first draft and working on my second draft by that time.

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All I know is that it is part of my 30 before 30 list to finish and publish this book. I am determined, and my wonderful boyfriend and my best friend are both behind me on this. It will happen, so stay tuned for updates. For now, enjoy this image that I decided to use as my temporary cover. Yes, we all look terrible, we were at a sleepover and I was 17. This is by no means the actual cover, though.

I know this post was completely random, but it’s what I’m doing right now. As always, thank you for visiting my blog. It is greatly appreciated! Keep coming back for new content each week.

Please enjoy my playlist pertaining to my book, it’s the popular songs/songs we listened to back then. https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/carraskye/playlist/6dnlocOoYCaEqFlmYXbmao

“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.

“A Caterpie may change into a Butterfree, but the heart that beats inside remains the same.” -Brock

By the title of this post, I’m sure you all know I’m going to talk about Pokémon. Over the summer, Pokémon Go was released and it was bigger than Niantic thought it would be. The servers kept crashing and players couldn’t log in so they could play, the screen would freeze and players would lose awesome Pokémon, the tracker wouldn’t work. No game is ever perfect and Pokémon Go is no exception. Months after the release and they’re still working on making it better. There is a lot of suspicion on what they will do next for the game, Pokémon trading with other players, generation 2 Pokémon release, gym changes, there’s so much they can do. Many people, however, have stopped playing the game. My husband is one of those people. He got to level 16 and hasn’t played since. I will admit, I don’t play as often as I did when it was first released but I still play. We went on a weekend trip to San Diego a couple weeks ago and it was the first time in a while that I opened my app. I am so glad I did, too, because I caught a few Pokémon I didn’t have yet, like Ninetales and Tauros. I forgot how exciting it was to catch the ones I don’t yet have. Just last night I caught one down the street from our apartment that I didn’t already have; it was Hitmonlee.

pokemonThis week they are making a special Halloween update and those of us who still play are excited. From October 26 to November 1, Pokémon trainers will be able to get more candy for just about everything and (the best part in my opinion) we will see more of Gastly, Haunter, Gengar, Zubat, Golbat, Drowzee, and Hypno. I can do without an increase in Zubats and Golbats because you get them often enough now but the rest, I’d love it. I don’t currently have a Haunter or Gengar so it’d be pretty awesome to catch a few this week.

I have a few favorite Pokémon, as everyone does. Growing up, my number one favorite was always Pikachu and still is. I know that there are a lot of great things coming for the game and I can’t wait to see them. I’m really excited to have all of my husband’s Pokémon, too, because he doesn’t play anymore.

Share what your favorite Pokémon was/is and your favorite catch so far. Also, check out some of my Pokémon below and the Pokémon Go website. Thank you for reading!

 

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“Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” -Vince Lombardi

On Facebook, there are groups to join for everything. For Bullet Journaling, in particular, there are a lot of groups to choose from. There are even Bullet Journal groups for specific regions in the world. However, there wasn’t a group for California Bullet Journalists so I made one. It’s not my first group but it is my first group on the topic. I hope that it can grow into a great group. Right now there are only about ten members but as the word spreads, I know more will want to join. California is big and I know there are more people into bullet journaling than we think. Please spread the word! The group is Bullet Journaling California.

Thanks for reading. I know this is a particularly short post but I hope to see all of my California followers in the group.

Also, if you don’t want to get on the actual Facebook app, there is a Groups app that you can download so you can skip all the drama on Facebook and just check out all of your groups.

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This is a screenshot of the group from my Facebook Group app. I covered the pictures and names but this is what it looks like right now.

“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.” ― Bruce Lee

Many people have heard about the new phenomenon taking the world by storm, or so it seems. I’m not talking about the United States election. What I am talking about involves a notebook and a writing utensil. This phenomenon is BULLET JOURNALING! I’m sure most of you have heard about it, whether from a friend or through the internet. I first learned about this technique on Pinterest.com, which has many amazing ideas to get you started. Pinterest can be pretty overwhelming, though, so it would be a good idea to find like-minded people who are into the same thing you are into. If you are not so lucky as to have a nearby friend, most people don’t, so there are many Facebook groups you can join (if you have an account), or there are many people on Instagram if you’d prefer to be on there. The main Facebook group page is Bullet Journal Junkies where there are people all over the world sharing their own layout and everyone is very generous.

I would like to share my story of how I began my journey into this marvelous realm of bullet journaling. It started in July of this year (2016), I know it wasn’t very long ago but it has changed my life. I have trouble falling asleep some nights and I toss and turn, not even feeling tired. When this happens, I typically go on my phone until I do start feeling sleepy. One night in particular, in July, I was on Pinterest not doing anything useful. I stumbled upon a couple of pins about bullet journaling. It was interesting because I had no idea that my best friend was into bullet journaling and had been for months. So, she introduced me to the Bullet Journal Junkies group and off I went.

Many “newbie” questions are asked on the group so it was quite helpful for me. Yes, questions get asked more than once and yes, you can use the “search” function in the group but with so many new members added to the group almost daily there are so many more takes on the subjects. I will give you little start in the right direction with a few of the “basic beginner” questions that I’ve seen or asked.

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Q: What exactly IS a bullet journal?
A: The best place to start with this question is to visit the creator’s website, bulletjournal.com. He can go more into detail about why he started it and how it has helped him. Anyone you ask will give you different variations of what a bullet journal is but it’s because they have adapted the original format to meet their needs. The website says, “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.” For some it’s a way to keep track of their work, whether it be teaching or accounting or nursing (which is hard because you can’t just carry a notebook around with you on the job) or even a stay at home mom (which is still a very difficult, very rewarding job). Some people use it to stay on track in school, I personally do that. To put simply, it’s like a do-it-yourself planner. As you move forward in your journey, you, too will learn what bullet journaling is to you.

Q: What items do I need to buy before I start?
A: There are no specific items you need. You just need the two basic items: a writing utensil and paper of some kind. Anything else is just “fluff” that makes your bullet journal even more personal but you can get those later, as you get a deeper feel for your system.

Q: What notebook do I buy?
A: Many people in the group use Leuchtturm 1917 Notebook or the Rhoda notebooks but they can be a bit overpriced and many people will tell you that the best thing to do, especially if you are a little iffy on bullet journals, is to either buy a cheap spiral notebook (the ones that are less that $1 at Wal-Mart) or to use loose-leaf binder paper as your very first bullet journal. I don’t particularly like spiral or paperback notebooks so I went to Wal-mart and saw the perfect $10 journal to start my bullet journal process in. Of course, I waiting and missed out on a few days of what could have been productive so don’t wait to have the perfect notebook or pen, just start!

Q: What writing utensil(s) do I use?
A: What writing utensil do you feel most comfortable using? I have seen some members of the group use pens (of all colors), pencils, crayons, markers, you name it you can use it. The beauty of the bullet journal is there is not specific way to do it so you can use whatever make you feel most comfortable.

Q: What if my bullet journal isn’t any good?
A: The only one who needs to see it is you. Your journal doesn’t need to be the next Instagram model. It’s yours and yours alone. Everyone makes mistakes. People in the group do it all the time, their handwriting may not be what they want (I know I hate mine most of the time), they misspell words, their lines aren’t straight, they aren’t artistically inclined. None of that matters because it’s yours and you’re the only one who needs to like it. If you make a mistake, it’s ok because you’re human and if you hate it that much then you can do what some people, myself included, do and print an inspirational quote or picture and glue it over and try again. Just don’t give up!

Q: What do I include in my bullet journal?
A: Everyone includes different things in their bullet journals to make them personal to themselves. Most people have an “If lost, please contact…” page at the very front followed by an index, so that you can see everything you have ever included in your journal. Other possible spreads to include are: year at a glance, monthly spreads, weekly spreads, and daily spreads. You can even include more lists/spreads that aren’t typical for a planner, like books to read, movies to watch, tv show log, what your toddler says, anything and everything can go in your journal. Its a representation of your life so make it feel like it.

Q: When should I start my bullet journal?
A: That answer is simple…NOW. Many people get stuck in the “I need to wait for the right ___” (You can fill in the blank). I was one of those and I lost time waisting away desiring for the perfect journal. Don’t wait, you can start being productive today. Even if it’s on a Wednesday int he middle of the month, you can still start today. If it stresses you out too much to start in the middle of the week, start with other spreads for a few days and then on Sunday or Monday (whichever day you choose as your beginning of the week) start then.

I can go on and on with Q&A’s but I won’t. You should do some personal research too. You won’t be perfect right away (or ever) but you’ll get better and find your niche as you do more and more in your bullet journal. So, run wild and have fun. Here’s a few pictures of my bullet journal, too.

 

What makes YOU want to start up a bullet journal? Where did you hear about it? How long have you been doing it if you already are? What other tips can you give to people who may still be on the fence of doing it or not? Comment below and thank you for reading!

“Genius is 1% Inspiration and 99% Perspiration.” -Thomas Edison

First off, I want to apologize for my blog posts being so few and far between. At the moment we have one computer down (my computer) and I have a busy school schedule keeping me from my blogging when I want to.

Today I want to show you my friend Michaela’s work. She makes tutus for a living and is quite good at what she does. She just opened her business to the public and has already handled some custom orders.

Her work is great quality and she puts her heart and soul into every tutu. She has her own little room that she can escape to and work as long as her heart desires. Please feel free to visit  her website for pricing and for any questions. Redheaded Owl Creations on Storenvy or Redheaded Owl Creations on Zibbet

Here is her own dress that she made for a Masquerade Ball we are going to next month…she’s not completely done with it yet but here it is:

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This is a tutu she made for a newborn for a wedding:

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Please, check out her store. She’s great at what she does and she will not disappoint.

Thanks for reading and for supporting her business.

“You’re different. I like it.” -The Corpse Bride

Today I want to talk to you about an activity that my best friend and I have embarked on. First, I want to ask you all a question, though. Have you seen The Corpse Bride? It’s a Tim Burton movie and I’m not going to tell you about the movie but it’s pretty awesome. My post will get into why this is important but if you have then just think about Emily, the bride (the dead one, not the live one).

Next month, my best friend (Redheaded Owl) , her boyfriend, my husband and I are all going to the Labyrinth Masquerade Ball in Los Angeles, California. It is required that you either A) dress in costume or B) dress in formal wear. Of course, we decide that we will be in costume. It’s kind of like cosplaying, which I have never done. Nevertheless, I love dressing up in costume, which is why Halloween is my number one favorite holiday. Redheaded owl decided pretty quickly that she was going to dress as a fairy. I thought about doing the same thing because I have most of what is needed for a fairy costume. Then, I really thought about it and decided to ask if it would fit with the theme to be something dead (I am usually something dead). She got super excited and was eager to help me find a costume. Well, I reminded her that I still had my old thrift store wedding dress (I thought about wearing it for my actual wedding but found a better one I absolutely loved) that was only $26. We thought for a second about what we could do with it and quickly decided that it would be a perfect Corpse Bride costume, after we made a few adjustments to it. Well, with about a month left until the ball, we decided to start on those adjustments.

corpse bride underworld

It’s not too much of an activity but in a way it is. We started working on it. It took a lot of time, though. And we haven’t gotten very far, yet. Really, we just cut up the dress and added some of the blue. We still need to finish the blue, get some blueish tights and add white paint to make bones (using a stencil of sorts) then get another pair and make them for my arms. We also need to get the blueish body paint, a wig, and make the little maggot. Oh, we need to make the flower crown and veil as well, which we bought the stuff already we just need to put it together.

Here are some of the things I just mentioned, if you are thinking of making your own Emily costume:

Maggot       ///        Wig       ///         Makeup Tutorial      ///     Blue flowers

Also, here is the dress… (it is an A-line Jasmine dress that I found at Goodwill):

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Also, here are two images I found on Google to help you see other people cosplaying Emily…

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I will have to post again after the Masquerade Ball with how I look. I hope it turns out well! I still have so much work to do on my dress so here is to hoping!