TIGF: Thanksgiving Edition

Sharing what we're grateful for every week with Ashley from After Nine to Five. 
Let us know what you're grateful for too.

Yes, I know it's not Friday, but it's Thursday and it's Thanksgiving, so close enough! 

It's been a chaotic year, it's been a messy year, but I am still here, and honestly, that in itself is a reason to be thankful. But there are so many more things that I am grateful for.

Family: My family and I have really become closer (at least in my opinion) and I am so happy that I have them. I cherish every weekend I get to spend with them. They're my home, the people I can be myself around. The people I can be loud and goofy with and I fit in perfectly.

Friends: Call them my extended family, but I've really learned a lot about friendship this year. Whether it's fun trips home or Castle dates, these friends have really been there for me in my darkest hours and I would not replace them for the world.

Self-Employment: It's hard in a college town, but I've met some amazing people and it is so rewarding. Whether it's Mary Kay and making a woman feel beautiful when she forgot she could, or it's my photography and capturing people in their life, I'm so blessed to take these skills and forge a career and a life off of them.

Life: I feel like every year, I just continue to grow as a person and learn more life lessons, both the hard and the fun. But you only have one life to live and I don't want to waste it, that's for sure. And I certainly don't feel like I am.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! 


Hunter Hayes

photo credit: 99.5 The Wolf DFW 
photo credit: 99.5 The Wolf DFW

Friday night, Amy and I traveled down to Grand Prairie (which is only, like, 30 minutes away) through the cold and the rain and slush to go see Hunter Hayes. If you've read my blog, you probably know that I may just a little bit too much of a fan girl. ;) I spent this whole summer listening to his album driving to Downtown Dallas every day. 

"Storm Warning" is my song with my sister. We've spent countless car trips singing that song at the top of our lungs, even when other people are in the car. So, this summer when he announced that he was coming to Dallas, I knew I had to get tickets for Amy and myself. But, because I didn't get my act together, we got seats way up there.

And that's with it zoomed in. I left Suzanne in the car thinking she wouldn't be allowed, but in hindsight, I would have been fine taking her in. No one cared and the pictures would have been way better. 

Despite the fact that we were way in the top, Amy and I still had a great time. We sang, we danced, we played air guitar on "More Than I Should", and we laughed at his jokes. Considering that I never get to hang out with my baby sister anymore, spending all that time with her Friday night was really great. Now that I don't live at home anymore, I miss her a lot and I cherish all the silly shenanigans we do when we are together. 

That and Hunter Hayes is amazing. Just watching him, you can tell that he absolutely loves what he does and it's infectious. He's up there running around, goofing off, singing twenty songs, and he had the whole music hall doing the same. 

Here's a few videos of a few songs. Sorry for the craptastic quality and the singing of teenaged (and a twenty year-old) females. 

"Where We Left Off" is a song Hunter wrote for the movie, Act of Valor. It's a tribute to the service men and women of our great nation and it was phenomenal. 

This one is called "In a Song" and the first time I ever heard it, I had to stop and just take it in because it was so true. anytime something rough happens in my life, I turn to music to pick me up and this song talks about that. I loved the acoustic way he did it, added something new to the song. 

All in all, it was a fantastic experience. I'm glad I got to share it with my little sister, and I told her we'd get better seats next time. 


burned out

it's been quite around here. And for good reason. 

I'm totally completely burned out.

I'm running on "e", just trying to survive the end of the semester. Trying to get to thanksgiving break to recharge myself and just take a break. 

I feel like I've hit a snag in life and I absolutely hate it. One of my biggest fears in life is the fear of stagnation, just staying the same all the time. 

And I think I've finally succumbed to it. Maybe it's the inspiration in my life. I see people succeeding, getting out there, falling in love, having everything I could possibly want in my life right now.

And I don't have any of it. 

Lately I've felt lazy, fat, unimportant, useless. Just taking up space.

Don't get me wrong, I feel like this a lot, but maybe now, instead of fighting it, I've just come to accept it. I'm struggling finically, I'm racking up student loan debts like crazy (and I'm not even halfway done with college yet). I'm loathing Huntsville, taking every opportunity to be home in Dallas because there are people there. 

I feel alone here. Yes, there are people who care, I know there are, but I've gotten to a point where I just feel like needing people to be there for me is a waste of time for them and I don't want to be a waste. 

It's moments like this that I feel the monster taking over again. That damn monster inside me, depression. It's awful. 

What do you do when you get to the point where you feel like there's nothing worth fighting for? Cause I'm pretty much at that point. 


TIGF :: Things I'm Grateful For

Sharing what we’re grateful for every Friday with Ashely and Nathan from After Nine to Five!
Feel free to share what you’re grateful for in the comments or in a post of your own!

car repair places open on Saturdays | the fact that nothing was stolen from my car | work | TV shows I can get lost in for a few hours in | a window that works so I can open my door from the outside | finding new energy in my Mary Kay business | nice, long hugs from close friends | grapes | the last of the pumpkin pie dip | therapeutic drives singing at the top of my lungs | a real good cry | a little facial relief(at least for now) | motivation to get organized | no allergies! | cancelled classes | trips home

What are you thankful for this week? 


Let's Get Real Here

photo credit //

It's time to get real here. Like, honest to goodness, no one wants to hear the sad truth kind of real. 

It doesn't take a genius to realize that things are slow and kind of quite around here. And it makes me sad, it really does.

But y'all, life is throwing me curveball after curveball. A few weeks ago, I went to the ER for severe neck pains (it was just a side-effect of hitting my head on the trunk door), and I spent two days after sleeping thanks to some lovely hydrocodone to thank for that.

I started a new job the same week, and while it's not a lot, it's still an adjustment on my schedule and life. I'm loving it, but it was something I was not anticipating. 

Then this weekend, that son of a bitch (it's my blog, I can cuss if I want to) broke into my car and my whole weekend of productivity went down the drain (hello trip to Houston!). 

And all of that has happened in the past three weeks. I haven't been home since any of that happened. But I am going home this weekend, and I've got a senior shoot and birthday celebrations (TWENTY PEOPLE. I AM ONLY FOUR DAYS AWAY FROM NOT BEING A TEENAGER!).

On top of that is my real job called being a student. It seems like every week I'm cranking out two or three papers, usually back to back (last week I wrote two papers in a day). I have three to four tests a week, multiple projects and numerous papers.

On top of that, I'm going home this weekend for my birthday, next weekend for the Hunter Hayes concert (HECK YES!) and then I have to come back to Huntsville for class for two days before I go back to Dallas for Thanksgiving. 

After Thanksgiving, we have one week of classes and then finals. After finals, I'll be, like, 45% done with my college career (graduation goal is December 2015 - I should graduate May 2016). 

On top of trying to edit a book for publication (Which is kind of crashing and burning), I literally have no time left. I'm trying to wrap my mind around how the hell I do everything I do. And I can't come up with a good answer because I don't think there is one. 

All of this is leaving me exhausted. I took a nap at 6:45 last night night cause I couldn't stay awake. I feel like many more of those naps will be happening soon. I'm not surviving otherwise. 

Needless to say, if I'm not here for the rest of the month (or the first two weeks of next month), you now know why. 

Now excuse me while I go to math class. 



I was lucky enough to grow up in a super safe city, like, I think it's considered one of the ten safest cities in America...? Ok, correction, one of the top fifty safest cities in America.

So, needless to say, I grew up where crime didn't exist. Crime just didn't exist. It's ok to walk outside at night, it's okay to feel safe there.

Yet, maybe my obsession with crime and Investigation Discovery, plus a natural paranoia, doesn't make me feel totally safe. I'm always on my guard.

And Saturday morning, not even my paranoia could predict what was coming. All my roommates went to their lake house for the weekend, leaving me alone. Whatever, I threw the top lock, locked my bedroom door and slept with my pepper spray. 

At 4:15 in the morning, I was abruptly awoken by the sound of a car alarm going off. I grabbed my keys and ran to my roommate's bedroom (it looks out onto the street). I didn't see anything, and since I didn't see anything, I assumed it was some stupid college kids who couldn't figure out where the panic button on their key chain was.

5:20 AM rolls around and my phone rings. It's one of my roommates, telling me she is coming home in half an hour and to unlock the door.

I unlock the door and ten minutes later, I hear the sound of someone walking in. I text her to make sure it's her, telling her I "have a slight paranoia about people breaking and entering." 



ha. haha. 

If only I had known then.

flash forward to ten in the morning. I'm walking to my car to go pick up my friend. I go one way, get halfway down the road when a cop car turns the corner and I remember that I didn't park over there (parking is hard at my complex). 

The cop car passes me and pulls up to another stretch of parking. I parked over there, but on the back side, so I pass the cop car, the cop and the two poor college kids standing next to their broken in passenger seat window. 

Walked down to my car, turned to the drivers side and stopped.

And the proceeded to walk right back to the cop and inform her that my car had been attacked too. 

Thankfully, nothing was stolen. But they did go through my glove compartment and my middle console and they trashed the front seat of the car. Everything in my glove compartment and console, they took and threw out.

There was glass everywhere. In the parking spot, under the door, on the floor mat, and most of it was the driver's seat. 

When I drove to Houston to get it fixed, I had to sit on my sun visor for the windshield. 

It's the first time something like this has happened to me, and it's scary. Especially being alone. I keep my personal things private and I'm a private person in someways. And this kid just totally broke through that.

I've spent most of the weekend processing what happened and what I can do to keep it from happening again. I'm planning to thoroughly clean out my car tomorrow so that if the kid comes back for round two, there won't be anything worth trashing it for. 

I guess the moral of this story is, be careful, there's scary stuff out there looking to get into your head and your heart.

Just be careful, don't leave valuable stuff where people can see it. 


Bookish Confessions


So, today was supposed to be the day I released the The Assassin cover. The final one. The one that you'd see when you bought the book.

Obviously, that didn't happen. 

In fact, I still need to take the picture for the book cover. It's been a problem getting all the things to work out together to get the picture.

I promise, by the end of the year, you'll have a pretty cover. I have a vague idea of what I want the cover to look like, and if this idea goes as planned, it'll be a little bit different than the rest of the covers, but I still have hope that it'll look great and stay within the idea of The Assassin. 

Lately, I've been really thinking big for the whole series. Earlier this semester, thanks to Netflix, I got hooked on the wonderful TV show, Scandal, and I feel like it's added a much more politicalized element to the series. And considering that the book takes place in Washington DC, I feel okay with this fact. 

Also on my mind is the idea of something totally different in my writing life. I had a rough idea a few months ago about a chick-lit book. Something light and happy. It's still something I want to try and attempt, but I don't know how well it would work out. 

I also don't know what I'll work on after I finally finish The Assassin. It's weird to think - in a few months, I'll be totally, completely done with this book. This part of the story. I'll have closed the book (no pun intended) on that book. 

After pouring six years of my life into it, I'll be sad to see it go. But I'll be excited to see it fly on it's own. 

Just a few more months, y'all. It's crazy. Someone pinch me, please?


November Goals

Oh my gosh, y'all, it's November! NOVEMBER! In 13 days, I'll no longer be a teenager!! Man, it's a busy, busy month! So, if I fall off the side of the earth and this place gets a little quiet, that's why.

This month, I'll spend three weekends in a row back in Dallas, two weekends in Huntsville and a whole lot of time going up and down I-45.

Once I get through this month, I'll come back the Sunday after Thanksgiving, have a week of classes and then finals week. I feel like I just moved back to Huntsville and I still feel like I haven't unpacked all my stuff from my last house move.

And, last but not least, Amy and I get to go see Hunter Hayes this month in Dallas. I'm really excited to be able to spend the night with my little sister and have it just be us. I never get to just hang out with her anymore, even when I am visiting at home, so she'll be stuck with me for a whole night. Mwhahaha (Love you, Amy!).

I'm also dying to spend more time with my hands on my camera, some hopefully I'll get to do photoshoots here in Huntsville and I have at least one booked back in DFW for when I go home.

Needless to say, October was busy but November is gonna be gone in a blink of an eye! But, I have a lot of things I want to do and a lot of goals I will accomplish this month.


Rebrand old photos from MBB to LEC  - work in progress. I literally started this at 9PM Halloween night 
Add 3 people to my Mary Kay team (I say this every month, but my business is on FIRE lately)
Edit (Have completed, digital copy of edits)
start going back to the gym (did this yesterday. Got a parking ticket while I was there)
Find new photo locations in both Flower Mound and Huntsville
Talk to one person about Mary Kay everyday
Do some research about a new camera lens
Get on target for my Chevy Cruze (or the cash)
Photos from the Special Olympics event I'm going to next weekend
Complete my MCOM 2381 project

November Goals

Start my new job
Find new locations in both Huntsville and Dallas for photoshoots
continue updating my portfolio with old pictures (as I grow my portfolio with updated pictures, I'll take these all down)
Senior shoot in Dallas
Mini-shoot in Huntsville
Learn to manage my time better
Pray a little bit more
Get stinking organized
Do more research on photography businesses
Go to the gym two or three times a week
Read at least two books (I join college and I never read anymore)
Finish or be really close to finishing this round of edits
Book cover!


TIGF :: Things I'm Grateful For

Sharing what we’re grateful for every Friday with Ashely and Nathan from After Nine to Five!
Feel free to share what you’re grateful for in the comments or in a post of your own!

going over math with dad last weekend . not having serious neck injuries after I hit my head . really nice pain killers . long naps . thunderstorms all night long . netflix . better understanding of how the heck I'm publishing The Assassin . pizza . unexpected visits from friends . test grades that are better than the last one . a brand new design . a better understanding what I'm going to do with my life . TV shows . long term plotting for books . a decision that after The Assassin is published I'll work on something new . updating my photography website . days that are so nice, i open the window all day long

What are you thankful for this week? 

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