Tag Archives: You can do it

“You can never understand one language until you understand at least two.” -Geoffrey Willans

When you hear people say “I’m learning a new language” what do you automatically assume? Often times you think they’ll say Spanish, an Asian language, or maybe even Russian. For some reason, our minds don’t think of American Sign Language. Why is this? It is so important to learn, especially if you work in a hospital setting because you never know when someone will be in your care you is deaf.

Sign language has always interested me, ever since I was a kid. I remember I was in about 3rd grade when there were kids on the playground signing and I watched in awe. I learned most of the alphabet that year but that’s about it. It wasn’t until I was making my 30 before 30 list that I decided to really focus on learning some sign language.

Well, I signed up for two ASL classes and I am so excited. I can not wait to learn sign language. I know there is something that has attracted me to sign language, even if I don’t know exactly what it is right now. I just wish I had known how to communicate when I was on my mission because we knocked into a family who were all deaf and it would have been really cool to meet with them.

Why is it important to know ASL, though? I found a nice article title “5 Important Reasons For Learning Sign Language” and, though they aren’t all important reasons, they are good reasons.

  1. It’s all around us. Seriously, though. If you pay attention, you’ll see it in your every day life.
  2. It’s easy to learn. It really is, I’m enjoying how much I am learning from apps and other sites.
  3. It allows silence. This is a big one. Our lives are so full of noise, from music, to the neighbor’s lawn mower. Sign language gives our ears a break.
  4. It becomes exceedingly useful. Like I said at the beginning, if you work in the medical field, ASL is vital. What if someone comes in for an emergency and they are trying to sign to you and you have no idea what they are saying. You have to scramble to find someone who does know ASL and by the time you find someone, it could be too late.
  5. It is beautiful. Ok, this is not important but it’s true. Have you ever seen someone sign before? We always talk about how the romance languages are beautiful but to see what people speaking ASL can do with their hands to communicate is amazing. There are a few videos below showing people speaking in ASL.

I am looking forward to crossing off another thing on my 30 before 30 list. Of course, I will be keeping you all updated on my ASL journey. I may even decide to post some pictures on my YouTube channel, I haven’t decided yet. Let me know if you all would like to see that. For now, here are a few other article for you to check out:

  1. College Students Share The Importance of ASL and Deaf Culture in Today’s Hearing World
  2. The Benefits of American Sign Language
  3. American Sign Language

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. I hope you keep checking back each week for new posts. Comment below with your thought and feelings on ASL. Do you know ASL? What resources do you use? My resources are below. I use an android for my apps so check with the iTunes app store to see if they are available to you, as well.

  1. American Sign Language Phrases
  2. Signing Savvy
  3. The ASL App
  4. Spread the Sign App
  5. ASL American Sign Language App
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“The space in which we live should be for the person we are becoming now, not for the person we were in the past.” -Marie Kondō

29920718_1802825500025840_1792278_nGood news everyone! I completed something on my 30 before 30 list! What did I complete? Marie Kondo‘s method of tidying up, aka “the Konmari Method.” It’s number 29 on my list and I am I’ve been wanting to do it for a while now.

First of all, you probably want to know what the Konmari method is and how I stumbled upon it. Here is an excerpt taken straight from the website: “The KonMari Method™ is a way of life and a state of mind that encourages cherishing the things that spark joy in people’s lives. Belongings are acknowledged for their service and thanked before being let go of, if they no longer spark joy. People are drawn to this philosophy not only due to its effectiveness, but also because it places great importance on being mindful, introspective, and optimistic.” So what you do is you go through everything (and I mean everything) you own, category by category, and touch each 30020583_1802825496692507_1848334969_nitem. It’s important to touch everything! If it brings you joy when you touch it, you keep it and if it doesn’t then you thank it and bid farewell. Marie Kondo’s method of organizing focuses on what we are keeping now what we need to get rid of.

I came across this method in a bullet journaling group I am in on Facebook. I don’t remember exactly which group it was but several people were discussing pages to create and keep track of their progress. Of course, all things organization interest me so I asked what it was all about. That’s when they referred me to her books, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and Spark Joy. I immediately checked my library mobile app to see if they had the books and sure enough, they did. So I checked out the first one and from chapter one I was hooked. This was when I lived in a tiny 500 square-foot studio and most of our belongings were packed away in storage so I was unable to do the whole thing. Now that I have everything I own in one room, I decided it was time to get into it. And in the span of just a few hours, I was done.

30007435_1802825493359174_979829267_nSince my first encounter with the Konmari method, there have been more things happening for Marie Kondo. Just last year she released The Life-Changing Manga of Tidying Up. She saw how popular her book was, selling millions of copies world-wide, so she developed this book. There is also the mobile app. Unfortunately it is only for iPhone so I was unable to use it but I have heard great things about it. Now, just a couple of months ago, Marie Kondo announced that she is working on a reality show about the Konmari method. There is no release date or much of any information out there about it but it will be released on Netflix and the first season will have 8 episodes. I don’t know about you all, but I am super excited to see the show because I think this method is so healing, especially when you are going through a lot in your life.

I urge each of my readers to look more into the Konmari method and try it out. It helps to read the books first but it’s not required. I can garuntee that if you do this and complete it, your life will change. You will feel cleaner inside and out. Letting go of your physical clutter clears your mind, whether you realise it or not.

As always, I thank you for visiting my blog. If you have done or are in the process of doing the Konmari method, drop a comment below and tell us about your eaperience. Was it easy or hard for you? What category did you struggle with most? Did you learn anything about yourslef? I know I did!

“Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow.” -Helen Keller

26994833_1771124659862591_1429434973_n          Life is full of surprises. Some of those surprises are good, some are bad and we never know when they are coming. The thing you have to remember, though, is that they happen for a reason.

Lately, my life has been twisted and turned upside down. When I felt like I was at rock bottom, it shifted and I fell deeper. I was talking to a good friend recently about my struggles and this is what he said to me,

26996560_1771124649862592_130041946_n“There’s always worse. You think you’ve hit rock bottom but there’s always lower. But guess what…You can keep going higher, too, Once you start climbing again, you’ll think you could never be happier but then things keep getting better.”

Those of you who suffer with depression, those of you who are battling life’s biggest challenges, those of you who are looking for the light in the dark….you are not alone. It seems like it will never end. It seems 26994720_1771124683195922_1436369907_nlike things will never get better. I promise you they will. Just stay positive. Trust me, I know it’s hard. I have difficulty sometimes, too. It’s even harder when I can’t handle my depression anymore and I have to just lay in bed and cry. We all fall on hard times but they don’t define who we are, it’s what we do in those hard times. Just know that you are loved and every battle has to end sometime, even if it feels like it never will.

This post may not help you at all but I know music can be powerful. I encourage you to listen to the following songs. Be strong, be brave, be you.

 

27140430_1771124653195925_550787904_o          As always, thank you for visiting. Please comment below if you want to talk through your struggles or if you want to give words of encouragement to someone who may be struggling. I hope you see just how strong you are and just how strong you’ve always been.

“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

“There are only two choices: keep it or chuck it. And if you’re going to keep it, make sure to take care of it.” ―Marie Kondō

tidy          I recently finished the book titled “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo. It has truly inspired me. If you haven’t read it, you should! You can find the book here. It is an easy read and very detailed. I even began reading her second book “Spark Joy.” Which you can purchase here. I’ve also seen it at stores such as The Container Store, Michael’s, and Barnes & Noble. I checked the book out at my local library via Amazon so if you don’t want to purchase looking at your library would be a great option.

The thing that sticks out about these books is that we not only clean up and get rid of stuff but the whole thing is about WE KEEP WHAT MAKES US HAPPY. Let me repeat that, we only keep what “sparks Joy” in our lives. Sometimes that means that we have to get rid of something we were gifted many years ago and have held onto it for one reason or another even though we never use it and we barely even enjoy looking at tidy2it.

Another thing that sticks out in this process is to go at it by category rather than by room. This is contrary to most of what we’ve heard which is why it sticks out to me. Marie Kondo maps out 5 categories: clothing, books, paper, komono (miscellaneous), and sentimental. First you gather every clothing item and place them on the floor (or the bed, as I did) and physically touch each item one by one to see if it sparks joy. If it doesn’t, get rid of it. Then you do the same with the rest of the categories. There is a great printable here. Another blog to reference can also be found here.

Here are a few comments from others I spoke with who have done this method:

“It has been great for my mental health. Less anxiety triggering crap. Something I’d mention is that KM is very much a middle class privilege. To be able to throw out perfectly good clothes just because they’d don’t spark joy is something I am very grateful for.” -Nicholas

life’s too short to be surrounded by items you don’t love.” -Robin

“Drastically reduces your interest in shopping when you only buy things you really like and know you need a place to store it.” -Blair

“Definitely brought a sense of calm and tranquillity to my home.
Feels so peaceful in the bedroom especially” -Victoria

“Getting rid of books was/is the hardest part for me until I realized that this was a metaphor for my life. Holding on to stories that in many ways defined me felt safe. Making space for new books also meant making space for new ideas, new line of work, new friends. I see now that not only do you need to make time for new things to come into your life, you also need to make space.” -Maria

“I found the ‘wasted money’ hard to get over. At first I wanted to sell everything as I spent good money on items. I bagged up 8 bags in my first clothes KM but don’t have time to photograph and list items. I took the plunge and donated and chucked them and the relief of things being gone was instant and made me feel lighter. 28 bin bags later and I’ve not regretted not selling anything. I’m always interested to read how people overcome the ‘wasted money’ thoughts.” -Kerrie

I encourage everyone to give Marie Kondo’s method a shot. It may just change your life. If you have done this before, comment below with how it has helped you. I love hearing personal stories. I just started the method so I’m not done yet but it has really helped me enjoy living in our little studio.

As always, thank you for stopping to read my blog. I hope to hear from you in the comments. I enjoy your feedback. If there’s something specific you want to hear about, let me know.

“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.

“I knew that if I allowed fear to overtake me, my journey was doomed. Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. Nothing could vanquish me.” -Wild (Cheryl Strayed)

Being in nature is something that everyone should have the opportunity to experience. I grew up going camping and I have always loved it. It was, more often than not, due to hunting season, but it was still a blast. My senior year in high school, my friend and I decided to do our senior pictures while camping. We brought along a couple of outfits, our makeup, and our hair stuff. The company that our school went through was very expensive me 1.jpgso we decided to do our own. It actually turned out nicely, considering the lack of photography skills we had. I, sadly, don’t have access to them right now but I did find one picture from that weekend (it’s not one of the Senior portraits, though). I had fallen and my friend decided to snap a picture of me. I’m sure you can see that I’ve changed quite a bit since then.

Another wonderful time I can remember being in a nature setting is our Summer 2008 Girl’s Trip. My grandma, aunt, cousin, and I went on an adventure. We were driving along when all of a sudden we see a bunch of elk on the side of bearthe road. Being from California, you don’t see that. We decided to stop and take pictures of them and, upon further inspection, we figured out that it was part of what is called Bear Country USA. We all agreed that it would be a nice little detour so we paid for admission and drove on in. There is a wide range of animals to see but one of my favorite parts was when we got to drive next to bears. There were so many of them and one was even walking along our van.

If your haven’t had a fun experience in nature, you need to get out there and just do it. That’s what my friends and I decided to do. On Monday, we decided to plan a backpacking trip. Yes, it’s insane but we’re really excited. Jewel is one who is fearful of the outdoors but wants to overcome that fear and Michaela wants to challenge herself. As for me, I want to get out and be in nature for a few days.

Michaela is actually the one who brought up the idea and Jewel and I agreed to do it. Ourpct.jpg plan is to backpack through a small section of the Pacific Crest Trail. If you have never heard of this trail, it’s a trail that spans about 3,000 miles over 3 states. It starts at the California/Mexico border and ends at the Washington/Canada border (or vice versa). We decided to backpack through part of the trail that goes through the Angeles National Forest.

We have never been to the area, we’ve never been backpacking, and we’re all untrained. So, is it really such a good idea to do this? Some will say yes while many will say no. We have, however, signed up for multiple REI classes specifically for backpacking and Jewel and I have multiple overnighters planned before our full 4 day trip (yes, only 4 days) in the area. We even already have plans for how we are going to obtain some of the necessary equipment for this journey.

One important thing we have done is talk to people who know what they are talking about. I spoke to my uncle for about two hours on safety and what we needed to know or do (or not do) while we are out there. Talking to people who know what they are talking about is always a good idea. Jewel has also been able to talk to her dad, who has been backpacking multiple times.

wild.jpgAnother thing we decided to do was to pick up a copy of Cheryl Strayed’s book “Wild.” Why did we do this? Because it is about her travels through the entire Pacific Crest Trail. What better way to learn about the trail than to read a first hand account?

Are we afraid? Of course we are! There are bears, mountain lions, rattle snakes and other various things that could potentially kill us out there. Why should fear stop us from pushing ourselves? We are strong and willing to let life teach us a lesson so we’re going to do this. Are we excited? Most definitely! It’s something new and new things are always exciting. We are doing something that will challenge us more than anything we’ve done in life this far.

Have you ever hiked a section of the Pacific Crest Trail? Maybe even the entire thing? Please comment below with a story from your experience. I will be keeping a journal while we are out and I plan to write all about it when we are done. Maybe I’ll even be able to backpack through the entire trail and write a book based on my experiences, just like Cheryl Strayed.

If you haven’t been to the Pacific Crest Trail, comment below with any memory you have about being in nature, good or bad. And as always, thank you for stopping by. Hit the follow button to get more updates on everything in 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

 

16910796_10208900351486262_1183850086_o

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.

“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!