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“Beauty, to me, is about being comfortable in your own skin. That, or a kick-ass red lipstick.” ―Gwyneth Paltrow

Something that has been on my mind a lot lately is my outward appearance. For most of my life, I wore little to no makeup, and comfy clothes. But as you get older your fashion tends to change. I have been wanting to buy makeup and learn how to actually apply it. I have been wanting to buy clothes that aren’t just jeans, t-shirts, or yoga pants. Yes, I have a new-found love for joggers but I know there is a time and a place for everything. I wear yoga pants and joggers to school because I have yoga class as my first class of the day and don’t feel the need to change.

Now, I am by no means telling you that you need to dress better or wear makeup to feel like an adult. No way. Do what you feel comfortable in. I, however, have acne that I want to cover up and I want to just dress overall better than I have in the past.

Unfortunately, acne is something that goes with having PCOS. It may clear up if I had a better diet and exercised regularly but right now I’m not. And I know that makeup can enhance the beauty I already have. I don’t want makeup because I think I’m ugly and want to hide who I am. I just want to enhance my beauty. Also, acne makes me look younger than I am and people tend to treat “younger” child care workers different from older ones.

And for those whose main argument  against makeup is that it’s just to hide behind something, no. That’s ridiculous. If you say that women wear makeup to impress boys, yes, some do but most want to wear makeup for themselves. It makes them happy. And don’t forget, makeup used to be for men…so stop shaming people for wearing it.

I’ll get off my soap box for now on that. I just wanted to share my thoughts that I’ve had lately on the matter. Do you wear makeup? What YouTubers do you watch? Share below! As always, thank you for coming to my blog and listening to me ramble.

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“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” –Buddha

Sorry this is two days late but better late than never, right? Today I want to talk about having confidence because I feel that it goes well with my 30 before 30 number three which is to love myself again.

First off, I want to be honest, I don’t think I ever truly loved myself. I’ve loved aspects of me at different times but never really looked at myself and though “I love me.” And that is a problem. I also know I’m not alone in that feeling. We are conditioned from a young age that of we don’t look, act, or sound a certain way, we aren’t good. So, our self confidence depletes and there’s nothing there to love.

When I was in third grade, I remember hating my middle name. I have no idea why but I did. Fast forward to high school, I never liked my eyes because they weren’t the blue color I had longed for my whole life. Fast forward to post high school, I gained weight and had acne and saw myself as ugly.

Now, I love my middle name because it’s unique. I love my eyes because they are beautiful, and as a bonus, they change colors sometimes (yay hazel eyes) so I occasionally they appear blue. I’m still struggling to love the way I look, though, even at 27 years old.

However, I am learning to accept me and the way I look and I think that is the first step. I’m also making steps to change some of it.

Unfortunately, with PCOS, it is a little more difficult to lose weight or get rid of acne but it will happen. I try going to the gym regularly with Zack and I’m really enjoying yoga and will continue on when the class is over.

My next objective to loving myself? Take care of myself and the environment around me. If I do that, my body will thank me and show me love in return. This will making me loving myself almost automatic.

I know other people struggle with this so please know you’re not alone. Comment below with ways you have found to boost confidence and love yourself.

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. I hope you continue stopping by. Have a great week and weekend!

“Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘It will be happier.'” -Alfred Lord Tennyson

Snapchat-1311408993Hello everyone! I hope you all had a great Christmas. I for one had a rollercoaster of a day. The morning was great and I’m super excited about the new mouse and mousepad I received because my 12 year old mouse I got with my first computer had died finally. The bad part? I accidentally locked myself in the garage. I have spent a few weeks alone in the house because Michaela and her family went to Florida for the holidays and on Christmas night, I went out to the freezer to see what I wanted to eat for dinner. Well, apparently the door wasn’t unlocked all the way and when I shut it behind me, I locked myself in. It’s a long story but thankfully I was in there for less than two hours. Zack was able to get the neighbors help to cut the chain off the front door and come into the house and let me out of the garage. So, crisis averted, no living in the freezing garage for two weeks.

This post isn’t about the horrors of the holidays, though. It is yet another post about setting goals. As I was looking over things that I want to improve I saw an overall theme: ME. I want to work on me; physically, emotionally, mentally, financially, spiritually, socially…literally every way possible. So, here is what I’m thinking:

  1. Physically:
    a) Start yoga -I’m taking yoga to fulfill the PE requirement for my AA-
    b) Go to the gym -Zack has a membership for a gym and can take one person with him-
    c) Drink more water -or water in general-
    d) Try my hardest to cut out gluten
  2. Emotionally:
    a) Write in a journal
    b) Look at the positives when I get really down
    c) Listen to uplifting music
  3. Mentally:
    a) I’m seeing a personal counselor through the church so I want to continue meeting with him
    b) Continue growing by reading -my goal is to read 7 books-
    c) Finish community college -finally-
    d) Keep up with my blog -maybe I can do better than I did this year-
    e) Write my book -I need to just do it-
  4. Financially:
    a) Sell my wedding dress FINALLY -I’ve been trying to sell it for a year and I’ve added a slideshow of it below- 
    b) Get a job -this will happen this year-
    c) Create a savings plan
  5. Spiritually:
    a) Read the Book of Mormon again
    b) Read the Bible through for the first time
    c) Go to all church activities I am capable of going to
    d) Get into family history more
  6. Socially:
    a) Find free activities to do with friends
    b) Take a few trips with friends and/or family -go white water rafting and hiking, specifically-
    c) Host a family reunion -this is happening in June, whether people come or not-
    d) Visit family in Idaho

Yes, I am aware that this is a long list but if you stop and really look at it, it’s very doable. I didn’t make unattainable goals like travel the world, get married, or have my own house because realistically that won’t happen. But I do have the ability to take care of my needs. As this is my last post of 2018, I wish you all a happy and safe New Year! Comment below on ways to help me sell this dress, I honestly want it out of my closet already.

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“Like all pure creatures, cats are practical.” -William S. Burroughs

I apologize for not posting last week, a lot has happened. This isn’t a post about PCOS this week, though I know that it is still September. Instead, it’s about why there was nothing written last week.

oliLast Monday, on my way home from school, I found a cat in the bushes. He was very friendly so I took him home and took pictures of him to post on Facebook. Turns out, he was an abandoned cat. A nearby woman had been giving him food but was unable to keep him due to her husband being allergic. So, meet Olivander; a fun, cuddly 4 month old kitten.

In just one week he has had so many changes in his life. He was living outside for who knows how long and now lives in a house. He got fixed on Friday and has had an infection that we are giving him medicine for. I’d say his life is pretty great right now. As is mine, I always loved cats and I’m so happy to have my own. I’ve never cared for a cat on my own before so this will be a new adventure.

I also signed him up for a photo contest because he is an adorable cat. Please vote here to show your support. You can vote every 10 minutes, 10 times per day (unless you wanna pay). We are currently at 14 votes and we want to be in the top ten. Thank you for your votes!

As always, I hope you enjoyed my random post. There will probably be more about Olivander on my blog, since he is my new baby. Check back weekly for posts like this and more. Have a great week!

“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.

“Don’t be discouraged Oh I realize It’s hard to take courage” -True Colors Lyrics

36517389_1849541408687582_7254849853488889856_nHello everyone! I apologize for being MIA for so long. Has it really been since May? Well, Not too much has changed in my life as of late. Still no work, still going to school, still dating the same guy. One thing to note is that I finished my Drama 1 class last week with an A, I actually loved it. I’m now focusing on my ASL 1 and Math classes that I have left this summer. I hope to post more about my ASL class later. Today I want to be real with everyone. Life is hard, sometimes it feels too hard. It’s even harder to admit that it’s hard for you. Sometimes you have to just pull yourself together in the morning and pretend you aren’t hurting inside.

I’ll be the first to admit that I feel this way sometimes. It’s been more often than not lately and I hate to burden people with my struggles because they’re already doing so much for me.

Life has been really discouraging lately. I have applied to over 100 places; office jobs, fast food, retail, child care. So far, I had two interviews, the first one I was emailed less than a week later saying they went with someone more qualified and the other one I knew I wasn’t going to get because the interviewer was really rude to me at the end. My bank also feels the need to remind me that I have $11 to my name right now because I don’t have a job. Thankfully I have people willing to support me with the things I need so I’m not homeless, starving, or having to drop school. But I don’t enjoy relying on others to buy me food, pay for my textbooks and school fees, living in a house with no way to chip in. I can’t even qualify for food stamps because I’m taking more than 6 college units and not working at least 20 hours a week. You may think I’m exaggerating but I’m not, that is literally the policy. Apparently if you’re going to school full-time, you can afford to pay for food yourself. I also was wanting to take up YouTube gaming and created my channel and everything but ran into an issue when my computer couldn’t run the software. So, I’m at a loss.

Now, I don’t share my struggles to get sympathy or to become a charity case. I tell you these things so you know where I’m coming from. I am discouraged and I’m struggling. I’m also not saying I’m not extremely grateful for all that those around me have done to help me be where I am right now. I am more indebted to those people than even imaginable. Michaela literally changed my life. 2018 has not been the year I had hoped it would be, it started out in the worst possible way and has been a swirling rollercoaster ever since.

The question remains, though. What am I going to do moving forward. Everyone has their opinions on what you should do to get back on track.  The following are my plans:

  • First, I will continue to focus on my education because that’s all I really can do right now. I am on my last year of community college and I’ll be done.
  • Second, I will be doing is writing. I want to write more of my book, I do have less than 4 years to make my goal so I need to get on it. I also want to write in my journal each day, even if I don’t have much to say.
  • Third, I will be diving back into bullet journaling. I have let it slip away as of late and I want it back, I felt so happy and together when I was bullet journaling.
  • Fourth, I will be working on my art. I got a drawing notebook and pencils and haven’t done much with them. I think it’s time I do that.
  • Fifth, I will be working on my health. The stress of the last several months has taken a toll on my body and it’s showing, anyone who has seen me lately can attest to that.

I think those things are a good start. Of course, I’ll still be trying to find a job but I need to take care of me because no one else can do that for me. No one can fix the inside when it’s hurt, only I can do that. And I am ready to do so.

I thank you all for being on this ride called life with me. I will be back posting every Monday, I was away for far too long. I thought about posting so often but I was in a rut that I couldn’t get out of. But being in school (physically rather than online) has helped me immensely and I am starting to feel a little bit more like myself. I want to be me again. I, of course, won’t be the same. We’re always changing and this year has changed me a lot.

Thank you for coming to my blog and I hope you keep coming back. My posts aren’t typically this heavy but I wanted people to know my heart.

I want to close this post with something very off topic, though. This coming Saturday is International Save the Vaquita Day. Check out this link here to see if there’s an event near you. And if you don’t know what vaquitas are, they are the world’s smallest porpoises and they are going extinct. There are about 12 left and they only live in one place, the gulf of Mexico. They are being killed because they are getting caught in illegal gill nets. If you can, donate to their cause. They are amazing creatures that are suffering at the hands of man.

“In search of my mother’s garden, I found my own.” -Alice Walker Read

It’s hard to write today. I have been sick in bed all weekend. But I want all of my readers to know one thing, I am working on being GDPR compliant. I know that I may not reside in the EU but it still affects me so. Unfortunately, many of the things that I can use to help make my blog GDPR compliant cost money. But if you start seeing pop ups, that is why. I’m hoping WordPress will come out with new things, like you may have noticed at the bottom of your screen. Until then, I hope I am at least better than before.

momAnyway, Yesterday was Mother’s Day. So I wanted to do a little tribute to many of the women who changed my life.There are so many women who have had a hand in making me who I am. Many of them don’t even realize how much. Mother’s Day isn’t about celebrating the women who have birthed you, or even women who only have kids. No. It’s a woman’s holiday, to show your appreciation for all that the women in your life have done for you. If it was only a day for people who physically birthed you, many people would never celebrated it.

grandmaI have been blessed with many wonderful women in my life who have been there for me, no matter what. There are too many to make a list but I will try to include photos of everyone.

As many of you know, I had a rough start in life and at the age of 7 I went from living with my mom to living with my grandparents. I spent some time at aunts and uncles homes but mostly with my janellegrandparents until I was 17, when they passed. I went back with aunts and uncles. I have been in and out of homes, my life has change a million times, but no matter what, I am cared for and loved. From family, to friends. From beds and couches in various cities and states. I know that no matter what, I will always have somewhere to go and I am grateful to know that.

I can never thank these women enough but I hope they know how much I love and appreciate them. Below I have a slide show of many of the women who changed my life as several videos to for you as well.

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. I hope you continue to come back each week. Comment below with how you show the women in your life that you appreciate them.

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“Prayer is not asking. Prayer is putting oneself in the hands of God, at His disposition, and listening to His voice in the depth of our hearts.” ―Mother Teresa

This past week has been a test of my patients. The college I was planning to go back to keeps blocking all ways of progress for my degree and I was at the end of my rope. I didn’t know what else to do, I was ready to just give up. Instead, I prayed. When we take that leap of faith and pray, it will surprise you what answers will come to you. What came to me? Well, I was prompted to no longer pursue that school. If the institution is no longer willing to work with me, there is no reason to give them any more of my money or time.

Screen Shot 2018-04-30 at 10.20.21 AMLet me tell you all, this school is (in my experience) the worst one in California. Ever since I started there in 2011, I have run into issue after issue. Just last year they wanted to charge me for a book they misplaced. To make it worse, they were charging me more than a brand new book would cost. The book you can see here and in the image is the one they lost. The price is about $15 new and they wanted to charge me over $20. They were withholding my transcripts from being sent to Los Angeles Valley College (where I was transferring). Of course, I took matters into my own hands. I went above the whole staff at the college and I contacted the president of the school system. Yes, the president. Some may think, “why would you bother the president with a silly little book. Just pay the fee.” No, it wasn’t my book to pay for. It was not my fault they misplaced it. Once it is back at the library, it is no longer my responsibility. Well, a couple of days later, I received an email directly from him (crazy, right?) saying that he will be contacting the school to fix this problem. The best part? A couple of hours after receiving said email, I got a call from the school saying all holds and charges for the book had been dropped. What a shocker! It couldn’t have had anything to do with the president, could it?

You could imagine how tired I was of fighting this school by now, right? This is just one example of many and I thought that, when I moved to L.A., I would be done with them but I was so very wrong. Life put me in a place where I was going to go back to this awful place that I despised so very much. It’s not the teachers or the curriculum I dislike, though one teacher I had almost caused a fight between groups of students in the class twice due to her curriculum. No, it’s the staff in the admissions and records department. They are supposed to know more than they do but they don’t and they refuse to work with you to find out. I have had to turn to the counseling department for things admissions and records should have helped me with. The last 3 months have been a nightmare working with them because they are so incompetent.

This is why I prayed. I was ready to  just give up all that I had worked for. I was done, I couldn’t take it anymore. But when I prayed, I felt so much peace. I am about an hour away from the college I was going to go back to and there is another college in the town I’m in. I didn’t want to go to this other college because when I transfer to a university, I didn’t want to have to send transcripts from 3 different colleges. I wanted to just send 2 transcripts and be done with it. But sometimes the plan we have is not what is best. I am now preparing to go to this other college and I have discovered I will be able to receive 5 degrees and 3 certificates (Child and Adolescent Development AA-T, Early Childhood Education AS-T, English AA-T, University Studies in Elementary Teaching Preparation AA-T, Child Development AS, Child Development Teacher Certificate of Achievement, Child Development Assistant Skill Certificate, and Child Development Associate Teacher Skill Certificate). You may be thinking that it’s excessive and unnecessary but I honestly don’t have to do anything extra for these degrees. For example, the Early Childhood Education AS-T and the Child Development AS need the exact same courses.

Anyway, I wanted to let you all know that things really are looking up. I may not currently have a job but I am applying like crazy. I have school to keep me busy and friends on my side.

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. Keep visiting weekly to learn more about my life and the world around me. If you have every felt frustrated about your school, comment below with how you handled it. I love hearing from you! Until next time, have a great week!

“May we long remember that which we have heard during conference,” -President Monson

Just a reminder to watch General Conference this coming weekend.

General conference times:
March 31st at 10am and 2pm (MST)
April 1 at 10am and 2pm (MST)

To watch online, visit this LDS.org page. Watch the videos below to help you prepare! Comment below what you do to prepare for conference.

“Wisdom will come as we listen to learn.” -President Russell M. Nelson

29388561_1796523377322719_4154977917933191168_nThis past weekend I had the opportunity to attend something my grandma used to go to quite often. Time Out For Women is an opportunity for sisters in the church to get together and learn and grow.  A friend of mine had extra tickets and I was able to use them. Let me tell you, the speakers were wonderful!

TOFW is a 2 day event and there are several people who speak to us. Each speaker has something to share to help us grow in faith and support. A room full of women listening to touching stories, you could only assume we cried. Let me tell you a bit about my experience and the speakers for each day.

29389205_1796523660656024_4174583619005710336_oFriday night, there were only a few speakers and each one was pretty heavy. First was Cade and Carrian Cheney. They run a blog called Oh Sweet Basil and they discussed how the blog came to be and how it changed their lives. Carrian had a lot of health complications when she was pregnant and when Cade lost his job their blog provided what they needed. But it became not only a place to share recipes but a place to share their faith. I don’t want to give away their whole story but it was a beautiful and touching one. I love that they talked about how the love of cooking and doing it together brought their family closer than ever. Cooking with your significant other can change your day.29432347_1796523570656033_2126170809096470528_o

Next we heard from Jenny Oaks Baker, a violinist who is the daughter of Dallin H. Oaks (one of the apostles). She shared a little about her life and hardships she’s faced; from losing her mom to getting her van loaded with 9 weeks of belongings and expensive instruments broken into. I love that she also included her 14-year-old daughter, who was playing the piano with her. Listening to them was such a delight! And I loved their dresses.

29389089_1796523313989392_869140572839870464_nThe last speaker of the night was Tim Ballard. His story was the most emotional of the night. He has a nonprofit organization called Operation Underground Railroad. He and his team rescue children all over the world from sex trafficking. The story he told us was of a bishop in Haiti whose baby boy was taken from him and no one was able to help him. So Tim Ballard looked into it and found where he would have been taken and, to make a long story short, he rescued 28 children from being sold. Sadly, the bishop’s son had already been sold and still, a couple of years later, has not been found. The bishop did end up adopting 8 of the children who were rescued, though. And Tim ended up adopting 2 more, and it’s been a long process because of international adoption policies but they are coming home this week finally.

29365497_1796523823989341_4389166932507492352_oSaturday was another great day with amazing speakers. We started with a woman named Jenny Reeder, who is a church historian. She shared several stories of women in the bible as well as in church history that we didn’t know the full details about. She also shared her story of how she battled cancer 3 times in her life and how she had to come to terms with being infertile because of all the radiation. Her story was touching and, of course, brought tears to my eyes because I, too, may not be able to have children. I know that I still do have a possibility of conceiving but I still feel her pain.

29356713_1796523403989383_5012231331262758912_nThe next speaker was Alissa Parker. Alissa’s daughter Emily was a victim in the Sandy Hook shooting and has since co-founded Safe and Sound Schools. I may not be a mother but hearing her speak made me cry more than any other speaker the whole weekend. I’m not a mother but I love children and I have nieces and nephews. I can only imagine how I would feel if something like this happened to one of them. When I hear stories involving children, my heart breaks. The world is can be a dark place and when I hear these stories it reminds me just how dark. There was something she said that stuck with me. It was about when she gave her anger and sadness of the shooter to God she felt a weight lift from her. It made me realize that I never truly forgave the driver who killed my grandpa. I have internally held onto it, still a little upset with this stranger who I will never meet. But if Alissa can give her anger to God and let it go, so can I. And of course, that made me cry more.

29388402_1796523370656053_149983822799175680_nWe had the opportunity to hear from City of Enoch, a LDS musical group. Their stories and voices really touched me. They actually sang one of my favorite songs, which I recorded and will add the video at the end. Each of them became new parents in 2017 (I think that’s what they said) and 2 of them are expecting their second children this year. Listening to their songs really touched my soul and I hope that more people are able to experience their music because it is so enlightening! I could listen to them all day every day because it’s just that amazing and I hope you find as much joy in their music as I have.

29386614_1796523413989382_7812373145796476928_nThe next speakers were Tamu Smith and Zandra Vranes. They are Sistas in Zion and boy are they funny. I loved listening to them and learning about how sisters can come from anywhere at any time. And that we are each like mitch match socks and together we are a pair. I love that! They were actually wearing mitch match socks, too! You can tell, just from hearing them, that they love each other and the church. I loved Zandra’s spunkiness and Tamu’s testimony. Tamu is actually from Fresno and hasn’t been back in a long while so it was nice to hear from a local. I do wish they had talked more but I loved hearing from them for the time they had. I know I’ll be checking out their website now, that’s for sure!

29365970_1796523353989388_3546723945099034624_nOur last speaker was Elaine S. Dalton, who was the Young Women’s president for a few years. I remember listening to her quite often. I had never heard her in person, though, so it was nice. I loved how shiny her dress was, and I think it perfectly represents who she is. She is so lively and fun and funny. I loved when she talked about being grumpy now. She used a story from her granddaughter and how she was grumpy because she wanted more pita. And she related that to how we are sometimes grumpy and it’s ok. It’s normal to have those bad days but don’t let those grumpy days become who you are or define you. You are not a grumpy person, you just had a rough day and aren’t happy today. You will have a better day tomorrow, though!

This experience was a great one and I feel like I really needed it. I am grateful I got to go and if you ever have the opportunity to attend, do it. It will change you. I know the price can be kinda steep but it’s so worth it!

As always, thank you for coming to my blog. If you have ever attended or plan to attend TOFW, post your thoughts below. We want to hear from you. Stay tuned for more posts each week! Now enjoy a couple songs by City of Enoch! The first one is the song I recorded so I apologize for the poor quality.