Let It Snow

I’m 27 years old, and I just saw falling snow for the first time. EVER. Yes, it’s true. It’s easy to go 27 years without seeing falling snow when you live in beautiful, sunny Southern California. Even with the mountains a short drive away, I managed to miss out on this for so long. Just two weekends ago, I was invited up to Big Bear for a short off-road trip. I knew that snow was in the forecast so I practically begged my boyfriend to take me. (His Jeep is better equipped for the trails in Big Bear than mine is.) So we left early Saturday morning and headed for the mountains.

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Here’s the girls and I just a few hours before the storm hit. (Love these ladies!)

For those of you who have been through a winter storm, it’s probably nothing special. But to me, it was unlike anything I had ever experienced. One minute, it was sunny and the skies were mostly clear. As we made our way into Lake Arrowhead for the second trail, the sky got incredibly dark. First we got hit with rain and a few loud claps of thunder. Then, it hailed heavily for a while. John (my boyfriend, I should introduce him here sometime) assured me that there was a huge difference between hail and flurries of snow. So, I waited.

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By the time we made it up to the start of the trail, we had full on SNOW. I can’t even begin to describe how excited I was. It made me feel very young and innocent, always a welcoming feeling. I didn’t get to play in it much, because I wasn’t quite in the right clothing for running around in the snow. I did, however, jump out of the Jeep to just stand there and let the snow fall on me. I also managed to snap this picture.

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IT WAS AMAZING! I know, it’s such a simple thing. People in other parts of the world experience snow like this, and worse, every winter. But for someone who had never seen it, it was EPIC. The rest of the trip was a bit stressful, but John and I managed to have a good time regardless. We spent hours in Big Bear, driving around, getting out to play and being stuck in traffic. The traffic part wasn’t too fun, but the snow made up for it. By the time we got back home, I was already preparing for our next mountain trip.


Here’s the video of falling snow I posted on Instagram.

Where do you live & how do you feel about snow!? Are you as excited by it as I am? Or is it a normal thing? Let’s chat!

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2016 Gift Guide: For the Adventurer

Happy December! ‘Tis the Season for holiday gift guides, right? I know there seems to be a million of them out there this time of year, so I hope I can make mine a bit more unique. We’ll see though. I know for sure these are all on my personal wish list. They’re all found on Etsy, because well, I love Etsy and supporting small businesses. So here they are – gifts for the adventurer in your life!

1. “Adventure Awaits” Hand Painted Globe
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2. Wild at Heart Camping Mug
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3. World Map Explore Pillow
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4. Adventure is Out There Art Print (Inspired by the movie Up)
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5. Adventure Pin
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6. World Map Zipper Bag
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7. Wanderlust Adjustable Ring
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Do you have any favorite gifts for the adventurer in your life? Comment below & let’s talk!

Also, I have started a brand new Facebook group for lifestyle bloggers. I’d love it if you joined!
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Squad Goals Met

One of the many trends floating around the interwebs lately is the term “My Squad”. I’m guilty of using it, so there’s no judgement here. Seeing people’s photos and definitions of their “squad” had me thinking. Excuse the rambling that is to come, but this is as real as it gets.

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I’ve come to realize that my squad is not limited to a specific group of people, or a certain number of people. It’s not “these people” or “those people” or “no boys allowed”. My squad is anyone willing to go outside and get a little dirty. Anyone willing to sit around a campfire, throw back a few beers (or non-alcoholic beverage of their choice) and have a good conversation.

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My squad is anyone who has my back and is willing to stand up for me when I’m not around. Those who empower me and support me. My squad is those who help without judgement and give advice when needed.

My squad is so much more than the people I can fit inside one photograph. There’s no limitations. My squad is bigger than I could have known or imagined, and (at the risk of sounding “basic”) I am incredibly blessed to have people like this in my life.

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The Gilmore Girls are Back!

I think everyone is aware that the Gilmore Girls are back this week. If you didn’t know that, I don’t want to know what rock you’ve been living under. I have a confession to make, though. I didn’t start the Gilmore Girls series until this year… When it started streaming on Netflix I was finally like, hey, maybe I should watch this, I’ve heard good things. So while everyone else was re-watching it on Netflix, I was watching for the first time. I quickly became addicted though and of course had to binge-watch as often as possible. Now, I am just as excited as everyone else that they are coming back to Netflix.

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I watched this video on the Gilmore Girls Facebook page, where the actors/actresses are talking about all of Rory’s boyfriends.. They’re all picking teams, apparently. While I have different opinions about all the guys in Rory’s life, I think Matt Czuchry (Logan) said it perfectly. He pretty much said that these guys gave Rory what she needed at the time that they dated. With ALL the talk of Rory’s boyfriends, someone finally said what I was thinking.

Sure, these guys weren’t the greatest. But think about who she dated and WHEN. Of course her first boyfriend was kind of an ass and she didn’t really know that she deserved better, because you DON’T know any better when you’re 26. And then of COURSE you fall for the “bad boy.” And what teenager hasn’t gone BACK to her first boyfriend even though your mom tells you it’s a bad idea? And Logan.. Yeah, he was a bit of a douche in the beginning, but I think they really grew together as a college couple. Whatever your opinions are about these guys, Matt Czuchry was spot on – these guys were right for her in the time that she dated them.

I can relate to that all too well… Sometimes I think back to some of the guys I dated when I was younger and start to think, “my GOSH, what on earth was I thinking!?” But let’s be honest, I probably wasn’t thinking. Or, at the time, they were exactly what I needed. You learn from every relationship and you take that knowledge into the next. It’s the way we grow. With all that said, I am #TeamDean, #TeamJess AND #TeamLogan.

Also, you should watch this video about not giving out any spoilers…

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Coffee Date

If we were on a coffee date, I would apologize for being a few days late with this post. I just decided to get back into blogging and needed a quick and easy post. Thank you ladies for having me!

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If we were on a coffee date, I would be drinking out of this mug because I’m obsessed with it right now. It’s the first Christmas related item I bought this year, almost immediately after Halloween. Although it’s not too Christmasy, so I’m sure I’ll use it all year. I found it at Target and you can see it here!

If we were on a coffee date, I would also be drinking a peppermint mocha, like Erin. I too prefer the holiday flavored drinks over pumpkin spice.

If we were on a coffee date, I would probably first ask how YOU are. I almost always want to know about you before rambling about my own life. I don’t think enough people ask “how are you” and really want to hear the answer.

If we were on a coffee date, I would tell you how excited I am that the holidays are upon us! I absolutely love the holidays at my house. I have a big family, so things are always exciting. The last two years I have done most of the decorating, which really puts me in the holiday spirit. The weather here in Southern California has finally started to cool down a bit, too. YAY! Maybe we can light a fire here one of these nights…

If we were on a coffee date, I would confess that I am really looking forward to 2017. This year has been absolutely amazing for me and I can’t wait to see what next year has in store.

If we were on a coffee date, I would tell you that I love this blogging community and I hope I can get back into the swing of things very soon!

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Things I Have to Remind Myself on a Daily Basis

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If there’s one thing I’ve learned for sure, it’s that I cannot minimize my struggle just because someone else’s struggle is worse. Therefore, I have no problem saying: My adult years have not been the easiest. (Are they for anyone, though?)

There are days that are rough for me, internally. I keep a smile on my face, but inside, I struggle. I have to take a step back and remind myself that my path is just different from those around me and THAT IS OKAY. It’s something I have to constantly remind myself of. Sometimes daily. It got me thinking of the other things that I remind myself of on a daily basis.

1. There is a light at the end of the tunnel.The struggles I’m facing right now won’t be struggles forever. I WILL achieve the goals I’m working toward, in good time.

2. Just because my path is different, doesn’t mean it’s wrong. It’s something I’ve struggled with for years. I’m constantly comparing my path to those around me, second guessing decisions I’ve made in my life. Wondering if I should have just gone to college at 18. Thinking how things could have been different had I been dealt a different hand. I have to constantly remind myself that thinking like that is a complete waste of time. It gets me no where.

3. Stop caring what others will think! I hate admitting it, but I do worry about what others will think. Not much, but enough.

4. Keep moving forward. There are days that I get so caught up in the “what if’s” of life that it distracts me from the here and now. I’m constantly reminding myself to forget what’s happened in the past and focus on the future.

5. Forgive yourself. I’ve made a handful of pretty bad decisions in my life, and there are days when I still carry a lot of guilt over those decisions. Forgiving myself on a daily basis is, and probably will always be, a struggle.

6. Above all else, be grateful. At the end of the day, (especially the bad days) I have to remind myself of all that I have to be grateful for.

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Here We Go Again.

I don’t know why I keep doing this… I start this blog up, write a few posts, and I LOVE it. Then, I start paying attention the numbers; the page views, the followers, etc. I worry that because I don’t really have a niche, no one is going to read what I have to write. Apparently that stresses me out a bit and I end up quitting altogether. What’s the deal with that? “Lifestyle blogging” is TOTALLY A THING. (I’m lookin at you guys, Helene & Taylor.) I also have no obligation to be here and write interesting posts. So what am I so worried about?

The same thing keeps bringing me back, though. This is a place to put my thoughts, emotions, and everything else out into the world. One main reason I started this blog was because I knew I had a story to tell. I suffered from depression and anxiety for almost 10 years, and somehow managed to come out of it better than I ever was before. That’s something I know I have to share with the world. This seems to perfect place to do so.

I love the Internet, I love social media, and from the small bits I’ve seen, I love the blogging community. So for now, I’m back. I won’t say I’m here to stay, because who knows if I will or not. But for now, I’m here. I’ll be focusing on writing posts that matter to me, and trying to stay away from the “fluff” posts. Screw the numbers. This is for me.

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A Week in Photos (#2)

I’ve been slacking a little the last two weeks.. I’m a little off my blogging game. Since it’s Friday, I thought I’d share some photos from this last week with you.


On Tuesday, I got myself some iced tea from Starbucks and took a drive through one of the canyons here close to home. There’s a few that kind of wind and loop together, and I absolutely loving cruising through them. If you go at the right time, there’s hardly anyone else out there. It’s so quiet and peaceful, even with my music turned up and the windows all down. I drive these canyons to unwind or think, or even just for a change of scenery. It’s one of my absolute favorite things to do.

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Wednesday night I went to an Angels game with a few of my friends. These are friends I’ve met in the Jeep community, and these three in particular are a bit younger than I am. I’m 27, and they’re all under the age of 22. Sometimes I feel old being around them, but most of the time, I feel like I’m 22 again. It’s interesting to be around people who are in different stages of life than you are. Even though I felt old at times, (and sober – I was the only one choosing to not drink) I always have a great time with those kids.

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Thursday night, my family & I went to the brand new Karl Strauss Brew Pub in Anaheim to celebrate my brother being the SOLE brewer there. They don’t open to the public until Monday, August 22nd, but we were amongst a handful of people who received a special invite. My brother has been in the brewing industry for a little while now, and was just given the opportunity at Karl Strauss to essentially have his own brewery. He’ll be the only one brewing there, AND everything brewed on site will be his own recipes. As his big sister, I am BEYOND proud of him. Words can’t even begin to describe the feeling. The food is amazing, and all the other beer is good as well, so if you’re in the Anaheim area, GO CHECK THEM OUT.

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So here’s kind of a funny story… I found these cactus PJ pants (above) at Target, weeks ago. I’m kind of cheap, and couldn’t justify spending almost $17 on a pair of pajama pants. (Especially since I wear shorts most of the time. It’s hot in SoCal!) I knew there was a good chance of them eventually going on clearance, so I waited it out. Yesterday, (Thursday) I FINALLY saw them on clearance! I quickly grabbed a pair, finished my shopping, and headed home. When I got home and put them on (because I had to) I realized they were a bit tight. Usually I get pajamas in a bigger size so they’re comfy, but apparently in my excitement, I forgot. So I took them back to Target, returned them, and went to find a bigger size. I was then very disappointed to see that they didn’t have a bigger size. So what did I do? Went to another Target. They didn’t have my size either. Neither did the next Target I went to. That’s right.. Three Target stores, no cactus pants. I could have cried. I woke up this morning feeling a little antsy and almost immediately decided I would go hit up another three Target stores. I got some coffee and have my route all planned out. I was SO EXCITED when I found them at the first Target I stopped at and didn’t have to drive all over SoCal! I LOVE THEM SO MUCH. They’re just too freaking cute. Now I’m starting to think maybe I should make the rounds again, buy them all on clearance, and get them up on Amazon. Seriously people. How freaking cute are they!?

That’s it for this week, folks. I’ll try and be a better blogger next week, I promise!

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Why I Can’t Stop Watching Bachelor in Paradise

NO JUDGING HERE. I really can’t stop watching Bachelor in Paradise. This is new territory for me! I’m not generally a fan of reality TV shows. (Although I did watch a few seasons of American Idol) I haven’t even watched The Bachelor/Bachelorette on a regular basis. Even this last season, I jumped in and decided to join my mom about halfway through JoJo’s “journey to find love”.

I know that reality TV Is somewhat cheap and I wouldn’t doubt that maybe some parts are a little scripted. But I can appreciate the Bachelor/Bachelorette for what it is. Bachelor in Paradise, on the other head, is a horrific train wreck and I can’t seem to look away. I just pour myself a drink and get comfy on the couch.

I love watching these people make incredibly dumb “dating” decisions just to get the attention of someone long enough to stay on the show another week. Like when Evan decided to go after Amanda… WRONG MOVE, BRO. She’s way out of your league.

Can’t seem to get enough of all the DRAMA. Let’s be honest, we can’t create drama in our own lives for pure entertainment purposes. Might as well watch others do it amongst themselves.

I enjoy rooting for the most genuine people, like Carly. She’s definitely my favorite out of all the girls. She doesn’t seem to have a skanky vibe or need to be the center of attention. I felt incredibly bad for her when she was told she had to make out with Evan for a minute and 30 seconds. If a guy’s kiss makes you puke, it’s probably not the right relationship to be in. Glad she ended that one!

THE CHAD. I can’t believe I’m calling him that. When I first got to know Chad on the Bachelorette, I kept saying, “this guy needs to go, now!” I’d read peoples comments about him on Twitter and think, “how can you give this guy any attention!?” He’s clearly an egotistical sociopath who doesn’t need your support. Then as I saw previews for Bachelor in Paradise, I found myself thinking, “hmmm… this might be good.” Then one night, my mom and I decided, “okay, we’ve got to watch this.” I got sucked into Hurricane Chad. Now that he’s gone, I sometimes think I miss that obnoxious freaking smirk on his face. *Facepalm*

Probably my all time favorite character on Bachelor in Paradise is Jorge, the bartender. Leave it to me to love the bartender. This poor man has to sit and listen to all this crap. Not to mention he’s in charge of feeding them alcohol, which ultimately makes things a little worse in paradise. Someone on the show needs to fall in love with him. Jorge for next Bachelor?!

The next episode airs tonight and needless to say, I’m pretty excited about it. If you’re watching the Bachelor in Paradise too, follow me on Twitter! I love live tweeting these stupid shows.

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5 Things You Might Not Know About Facebook

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I think we can all agree, Facebook is pretty tricky sometimes. Once we think we’ve figured it out, they go and change something on us. It’s frustrating, I know. I’ve done some research, though, and I’ve found a couple of cool things that I think can help you and your Facebook viewing pleasure.

1. Interest Lists
Facebook has this awesome feature that allows you to make lists of your interests. Essentially, you can take all of the pages you’ve liked, and put them into different categories. Your news feed may get pretty crowded with cat videos and pictures of your friends’ kids. This feature rocks because you can click on your list, and see posts ONLY from the pages you’ve selected.
1On the left hand side, all the way down at the bottom, you should see a section that says “Interests.” When you hover your mouse over it, you’ll see a link that says MORE. Click on it.
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You’ll want to click “Add Interests” and then “Create List.”
4Then this cool little box comes up that holds all of your “interests,” or pages that you’ve liked over the years. Don’t judge me for liking Nsync, and I have NO idea when I liked a page called “Boys” but that definitely needs to go. So anyway, you just go through and click on all the interests that you want in one list. For example, I went through and checked all of my fellow bloggers! After you click next, it will ask you to give the list a title and give you privacy settings. You can choose to make it public, friends only, or only you – in which case, no one can see it. After you’re done, you’ll have an awesome stream that looks like a news feed, with just those pages you selected. Pretty cool!

2. Add friends you don’t interact with much to an Acquaintances List in one click.
This is another one of my personal favorites. We all have people on our friends list that we don’t interact with much. Click here to see a list of them, and add them to an acquaintances list. It’ll hide these people from your news feed without deleting them from your friends list!

3. Save articles/videos for later!
Have you ever been scrolling through your news feed, see an article of some kind that you’d love to read, but for whatever reason, don’t have time at the moment? Or maybe you’re distracted by the TV show you’ve been binge watching on Netflix. Well, don’t worry. You can now SAVE them for later. It works with things like links to articles or videos. I used this lame article on my news feed as an example.
8Later, when it’s more convenient, you can find all your saved articles on the left hand side, under “Messages, Events, Photos.” It’s a link that says “Saved.” It’s pretty self explanatory..

4. Hide a status update from certain people.
Want to post an inappropriate status, but DON’T want your mom or grandma to see it? Fret not; you can hide the status update from them.
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11Click on the privacy settings for the post, it will probably say “friends” and it’s right next to the post button. Click on “Custom” and in the second box, you can type the name/names of those you don’t want to see the post. Sneaky. πŸ˜‰

5. Stop notifications on a post.
This happens all the time.. You comment on someone’s status, and then get a notification EVERY time someone else comments. It’s annoying as heck, because half the time, I don’t know the other people who are commenting. And I generally don’t care what the other people have to say. Here’s how to stop those notifications from blowing up your phone.
12Just click on that little arrow at the top of the post, and click “Turn off Notifications.” So simple!

Let’s talk. Do you have any Facebook tips/tricks that I may not have heard of? Comment & let me know!

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