A Year in Charlotte

Knock, knock. Is this thing on?

It’s certainly been long enough where I feel like I need to reintroduce myself and give this little blog a revamp.

Where have I been you ask? Or didn’t, either way… I moved to Charlotte last September and have been MIA pretty much in the blogging community since. I’ve definitely missed expressing myself and unloading on this platform and would love if I could be better about keeping up on it (I’m totally in a better place than I was last year!). 

So, what’s new? Well, take a seat boys and girls because I’m here to tell you. Within this last year I have had exponential growth. I experienced feeling alone for the first time. Not like moving out of your parent’s house but still living in the same town alone. I mean my car broke down a couple weeks ago and I called my dad and he told me he couldn’t help alone. I get it, I’m 25. I’m an adult. When will I get off the tit? Side note: I think my parent’s love it when I call them for help so probably never.

Let’s rewind a bit here and jump back into last November. As some of you may know, I’m a girl that has always held many jobs. I love being busy and often times take on more than I can handle (I’ve tried to outgrow this but I think it’s just who I am at this point). So when I first moved here I was working constantly. I think I was trying to fill the void of feeling lonely. It helped in a lot of ways but always hurt me too. Because on days where I didn’t have anything going on I would find myself sleeping to pass the time until I could work again. Yikes, that’s hard to admit!

If you’ve followed my blog in the past I have always been open about mental illness and finding ways to deal with anxiety. I have far from perfected it but I have totally found some ways that help me when the going gets rough. Onto December, the holidays are a very hard time to be away from your family for the first time – I learned that reallllll quick. But I was lucky enough to visit my family in Florida for Christmas. We had an incredible time and it was so nice to have some R&R time with the people I loved the most.

Fun fact, it doesn’t really snow in Charlotte so that was a very interesting season for me. In Montana it starts snowing in October. In fact, my mom texted me the other day and said that there was going to be snow this upcoming week! Get your Carhartts out ladies and gents! I brought mine to Charlotte and it’s the most worthless thing!

Right around springtime I was slowly starting to enjoy what this city has to offer. Charlotte in the Spring is beyond beautiful. All the flowers are blooming and everything is incredibly green. I was spending more time outside hiking and on the off-chance I would stay inside I would do things that would make feel fulfilled (making dinner or taking my dog on walks).

Summer has been hot but a growing time as well. I often times feel like I’ll never stop growing and as I age I understand that maybe that is what life is about – constant growth to be the best person you can possibly be.

Although Summer is still going strong I’m one of those basic girls anxiously waiting to eat, drink, carve anything pumpkin (I was actually ready in September but my roommate would not allow me to jump-the-gun). I have so many fun plans coming up for the rest of the year and I feel like I’m finally finding my grounding again. Also, moving is expensive and mentally/physically exhausting. So, yes. After an entire year of being in Charlotte I am finally starting to feel financially stable again. It did not help that I took a 3 week vacation back in May (will create a separate post for that later) but I would do it all over again for that incredible experience.

Anyways, there is the quickest update that I could possibly do! I’m happy to be back and hopefully I will be better about keeping up this time around.

Until next time,

Christine

QUESTIONS FOR YOU:

1. What’s your favorite Fall item?

2. Have you ever moved far from home?

Moving!

Well, everyone,

I MOVED. After the months and months anticipation it finally came. I was at a loss for words from the outpouring love and support from my family and friends the night before we took off. It was so much fun (some of us had too much for, cough-me) and really made the trip the next day feel so surreal.

We named our party Bye, Felicia of course.

Billings, Montana has always been home to me and it will always be home. I honestly just left and I am already looking forward to going home and visiting all my family and friends. Although I miss them, I still feel like this was the best decision for me.

I know I’ve discussed this topic before but I was soooo unhappy with life in Montana and I could never figure out why. I was surrounded by the most wonderful people, I was in my junior year of college, I got to see my family as much as I please, etc. Then point of all this is to let anyone know that is struggling is the smallest (or largest for some) changes can literally change. your. life.

At the end of the day I feel incredibly blessed to take this leap with my two wonderful friends. I feel so blessed that they wanted to move across the country WITH ME so we could all take this journey together. I know that there will be times of sadness but I also know there will be times of greatness.

I know this post is semi-sappy and I promise to give an update of my apartment and decorations as soon as we get settled. But for now, I leave you with this.. I GOT A PUPPY!

We were going through so much change as it was that we felt we should throw something else into the mix.. whoops!

Her name is Pippa (Pipp for short) and she is the absolute sweetest. She is 1/4 American Bulldog and 3/4 French Bulldog. I’ve wanted a frenchie for awhile but I knew that they often have a lot of health issues because of their big ol’ heads. So I opted for a mix – and to say the least, I am not disappointed.

Training her has been a task in itself but she is such a love bug.

I am thrilled that I finally had some down time to update everyone on life and can’t wait to start up Wellness Wednesday again soon. I have a few posts I’ve been dying to write so be on the lookout, friends!

Thanks for always being there to support me in all my endeavors.

Xx, Christine

PS. Quick question. How do we all feel about Colton being the new bachelor?

Wellness Wednesday – 4 Wellness Tips

Welcome back to Wellness Wednesday!

This week I wanted to touch on 4 wellness tips that I try to practice daily. They are all simple, easy and healthy and definitely make me feel better when I’m consistent with them. So, with that, let’s get to it.

  1. Eat Breakfast

Everyone has heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. You need to make sure that you are boosting your metabolism first thing in the morning and starting off your day with a healthy breakfast! When you eat breakfast you providing your body energy and helping your focus for the rest of the day.

I also utilize breakfast as a tool that will ensure I eat healthy the rest of the day. When I start my day off right with a smoothie, protein pancakes, eggs etc. I know that I have already taken a step in the right direction for the day and don’t feel exhausted and tired. Often times when I eat a heavy breakfast or brunch (my favorite meal of the day) I tend to need a nap afterwards. Every once and awhile I love doing that but nothing makes me crankier than waking up and feeling bloated and still sleepy. Therefore, eat healthy breakfast and kick off your day the right way!

2. Drink Water

Since the human body is made up of about 60% water you want to make sure you’re giving it the proper nourishment! I love to always drink a glass of water before each meal. Sometimes when you are craving food or sweets it is actually because you are thirsty! So put the brownie down and take a big ol’ gulp of water before biting into that treat.

Above is the main reason I like the drink water below are a few other fun facts I wanted to shared:

Without water your muscles feel extremely fatigued. When fatigued, muscle cells will actually shrivel until replenished. This for sure goes hand-in-hand with drinking water while exercising. Before I go to the gym I make sure that I am completely hydrated so that my muscles are able to stretch and grow versus just trying to replenish themselves. Since you’re sweating your body needs water constantly to replace the loss of fluids.

I also notice that when I am drinking enough water my skin clears up! When you are dehydrated your skin starts to look wrinkled and dry. But once you hydrate enough the skin will loosen and the kidneys will start to secrete the extra fluid through urine. Once enough water is drank, it is important to moisturize to lock the water into your skin.

3. Eating Habits

So this one is super short and sweet! Throughout the day I try not to eat two bad meals in a row. When I eat one bad meal I’m instantly craving another one … but if I don’t allow myself to do so then it resets myself back on track to continue eating healthy for the rest of the day.

4. Apple Cider Vinegar

So this is one that I have yet to try but I’m going to start incorporating this into by everyday routine! Every morning I want to drink a cup of hot water, lemon and apple cider vinegar. It has sooo many health benefits and I will list a few below.

· Weight Loss

· Reduced Cholesterol

· Lower Blood Sugar

· Kills Bacteria

· Heart Health


Well that’s all, folks! Since I’m preaching breakfast, breakfast, breakfast. This week I’m going to share a smoothie recipe! It actually isn’t mine … I stole it from my friend Jayde. But I started drinking these in the mornings and they fill me up and make me feel energized.

Pineapple/Banana/Spinach Smoothie

Prep Time : 10 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients:

1 Pineapple

4 Bananas

1 tub Croyo (Natural Grocerers)

Vanilla Extract

Hemp Hearts

Chia Seeds

1 bag Spinach

Unsweetened Almond Milk


Step 1: Add 8 drops of vanilla extract to the coconut yogurt (this sweetens it just a tad) and stir well. Divide the yogurt into four mini-mason jars.

Step 2: Chop one pineapple and divide it into four ziplock bags. Cut four banana and also add those to the ziplock.

Step 3: Add 1c spinach, 2 tbsp of flax seed, 2tbsp hemp hearts and 2 tbsp chia seeds

**These nutritional fats add so many benefits to your diet

Step 4: Freeze the four baggys and place the mason jars in the fridge. When ready to drink, add all ingredients together in a blender and add 1/2c unsweetened almond milk. Drink up – you won’t be disappointed.

Tune in next week for another Wellness Wednesday!

Toodles,

Christine

Fourth of July Recap!

I haven’t posted a recap in forever so I thought I would fill everyone in on what’s new! If you haven’t picked it up in the previous posts; I am moving to Charlotte, NC at the end of August. I was dying to expand my horizons and start a new adventure so I decided to take a leap and move in the fall. But, besides that.. I’ve just been a busy little worker bee and just saving as much money as possible and trying not to put myself in a poor position when I move.

May

May brought the end of a semester and a small vacation. My best friend and I traveled to Portland so I could visit some friends and she could visit her sister. While I was there I got bangs, many brunches, and lots of clothes that I didn’t need. I had so much fun visiting my friends and was sad to come home. On the way home we drove an hour in the wrong direction, yikes, and had to turn around make it a two day trip. Although it felt like a lifetime to get back home, it’s always nice to travel with someone that you’re so close with because it never makes for ‘awkward’ car silences or conversations.

ALSO! My sister graduated high school! Woohoo! I’ve never been more proud of anyone and she is such an inspiration to ME (even though she is the younger sister!).

May also brought my friend Michelle’s birthday. We went out to a few bars and definitely had a few too many drinks! We had sooo much fun and it was totally a night to remember. Sometimes it is so nice to catch dinner and drinks with friends instead of curling up at home and watching movies (which is what I would rather do 99% of the time). I felt so blessed to be apart of her special day but I was for sure regretting some of the drinks the following morning.

June

This month I got to go to… Taylor Swift! She was playing in Denver and it was a last minute purchase. Kenzi, Michelle and I were spontaneous and just randomly bought the tickets to go see one of my favorite pop stars. And it was safe to say that she put on the most amazing show. Besides that, the trip was cut super short because it is hard for us all to get the same time off. We drove back in a hurry but it didn’t make the trip any less amazing.

Believe it or not, but I went to four movies in June. I am beside myself that I spend that much money on movies but who doesn’t love a good matinee? I went to see Book Club (awful, don’t see!), Incredibles 2 (movie of the year for sure!), Tag (so incredibly stupid), Jurassic World (eh) and Oceans 8 (Sandra Bullock will forever be a babe). Even though all these movies were so wonderful, I think the best movie that I have seen this year yet would be Love, Simon. It is so touching and heartfelt and if you haven’t seen it – you need to.

July

Well, it is only the 7th ..  but my fourth was pretty great with great friends. Besides getting sunburnt to a crisp while on the lake with my family, my friends and I went to the lake and had some drinks and basked in the sun all day (woohoo!). It is so rare to get these times with my friends and I really do cherish every single moment.


I know my life seems super boring at the moment but I promise I’ll be more exciting soon! Until then .. here are some photos my sister took of me last weekend to practice studio lighting. She is so talented and if you all don’t follow her on Instagram already then you should start! @alexajorgensonphoto

ttfn,

Christine

PS. This week on Wellness Wednesday I’m going to be discussing 5 wellness tricks I practice daily. It will also be featuring a cilantro lime shrimp salad! Check back Wednesday & subscribe!

Wellness Wednesday – Social Media Detox + Recipe!

Happy fourth and welcome to my second Wellness Wednesday.

This week I’ve decided to talk about the social media detox I did a last month and how it affected me and why everyone should give it a try.

I was definitely the typical girl who was always sending her girlfriends memes on Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat etc. I was constantly scrolling through the popular page and comparing myself to fitness models, makeup bloggers, YouTube stars and so on. I was so consumed in other people’s lives that I felt like I truly wasn’t living mine to the fullest. The point being, why was I doing that? I decided that it was extremely unhealthy to be doing so and honestly exhausting mentally. I hate participating in things that make me feel sad or upset afterwards and I knew that I could easily make a change for the better by just putting my phone down.

Because of that, I decided to deactivate my Facebook, delete my Snapchat and Instagram apps from my phone and take a break from social media for awhile. At first I was constantly grabbing for my phone to start scrolling through mindless posts that I’ve already seen a hundred times. But after just a few days I noticed that I was reaching for my phone less when I was at home, with friends, driving (we are all guilty) etc.  I really was trying to focus on being aware in every situation. I’m so tired of hanging out with people that are constantly on their phones! Please put it down and be present. If I could have a life motto it would for sure be to be present. 

I did have certain vices that helped this detox. I definitely saw myself on Pinterest more and instead of browsing or being so invested in other people’s lives and what they were doing; I was getting ideas for my new home in Charlotte. What I really wanted from this was to pull myself away from everyone else and focus on myself instead. And you know what? I truly believe that is the reason I came back to blogging! I wasn’t comparing my blogs to other blogs, or myself to insta-models anymore. I was so consumed in my well being and it really opened my eyes.

Moral of the story – everyone should take some time off social media and be more engaged in conversations with anyone you encounter. Make sure you are listening and giving your full attention to the people that deserve it. Because at the end of the day, that Instagram model you stalked for over an hour and ended up on her brothers-daughters-friends page doesn’t give a crap about that hour you gave her. But your friends/family/strangers will remember these moments forever.

——————————————————————-

Since we got the ‘serious’ talk out of the way I wanted to start incorporting recipes in my blog. Soooo, starting this week I hope to have at least one recipe up a week of healthy eats that are easy to make. This weeks topic is Sweet Potato Brownies.

Ingredients:

· 1 medium sized sweet potato (finely grated)

· 1/2 c of cacao powder

· 1/4 c coconut oil

· 1/4 c honey

· 3 tbsp almond meal

· 2 tbsp pure maple syrup

· 1 tsp vanilla extract

· 2 tsp baking powder

Directions:

1. Preheat over to 320° F

2. Combine all ingredients into a bowl once sweet potato is finely ground.

3. Line a baking tin with parchment paper and pour batter into tin.

4. Bake for about 25-30 minutes.

5. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 5 min.

6. Place in fridge and eat next day – they are much better and more dense when chilled until the next day!

——————————————————————-

Topping:

Heat 1 tbsp of peanut butter, 1 tbsp cocoa and 1 tbsp coconut oil and combine together. Wait until brownies are completely cooled and then drizzle overtop. Enjoy! 🙂

 

Wellness Wednesday

Welcome back to my blog! Might I say .. it’s good to be back. I’m so sporadic with my posts but I’ve just been the busiest little bee working as much as possible before September (if you read my last post you know I’m moving to North Carolina this coming fall!)

What brings me here today is that I have decided to start a weekly segment regarding health and wellness. I know that in the past I have discussed fitness tips and workouts- but I actually wanted to use these posts to focus on something else … mental health. 

I know that so many people are more concerned about their physical appearance but forget that really it is what’s in the inside that counts. More so, how you feel in the inside that counts. Everyone needs to make sure they are taking the steps to ensure that their mental health and happiness should always come first. Often times people will put everyone else above themselves and truly forget how to feel happy or even content. I am definitely someone that realizes that the ‘highest highs’ will never hit us as hard as our ‘lowest lows’, but I am here to share some tips that have helped me lately with alllll of the stress of moving and working and how I  have managed to feel at peace.

For those of you that don’t know know me, I’m Christine. A very high stressed (always), constantly on the go, cat lovin’ gal. I have recently taken certain precautions towards bettering my attitude and ensuring that I feel beautiful on the inside and outside. I’m going to start small with some tips and tricks that should be done often to make sure that you are feeling good.

I know sometimes you haven’t showered in four days, haven’t brushed your hair in five and haven’t brushed your teeth in two and there isn’t anything that you/anyone could say to make yourself feel beautiful (guilty!). But it’s soooo incredibly important that you feel confident because it really does illuminate off you and make marks on the people around you.

So after all of the talking, here are 5 small tips I do to make sure I’m feeling the best of the best:

1. SLEEP – oh my goodness, we get it.. we need 8 hours but we don’t have time! Well, it’s okay to not always get 7-9 hours of sleep a night. And guess what, IT IS OKAY TO NAP. For a long time I felt so guilty napping and would try to force myself to stay up all day when I worked early and had a break in the afternoon. My mood was awful and people around me definitely noticed.

Make sure you are waking up everyday refreshed and exhilarated. I’m not going to tell you to ditch the technology before bed or anything like that. I find that watching one of my favorite tv shows when I’m off work really winds me down at the end of a long day. All I am saying is that every one and a while, inside of going out with the girls, maybe stay in and catch up on those z’s you’ve been missing.

2. Tell yourself you’re beautiful even if you don’t believe it – yo, I know each and every single one of you are beautiful. But you know what? If you don’t believe it, it means nothing. This is going to sound super bogus but I look in the mirror everyday and tell myself I’m beautiful. We’ve all glanced at our reflection and immediately picked ourselves apart – and I still sometimes do but I’m getting better at stopping and pointing out things I love about myself.

If putting on makeup makes you feel sexy and fun – make sure you’re putting on makeup everyday. If shaving makes you feel smooth and flirty – shave everyday! It really is the small things that count and I know that when I’m greasy and smelly the last thing I feel is pretty. So going hand in hand with good hygiene look in that damn mirror and tell yourself you are gorgeous. Because, girl you so gorgeous.

3. Mediate Daily – I’ve added meditating to the end of my day for about a month now and boy have I seen a difference already. I lay down on my yoga mat every night and use the app Headspace.

The reason I like this app so much is because it will remind me every night at 10pm to lay down and take some time for myself. I focus on my breathing and take some time for myself after being surrounded by people all day. I never thought I would be one to download a meditating app but the difference it makes in my sleep – is amazing.

4. Be Active – I don’t mean you need to workout every single day. What I mean is by staying busy and not just vegging out at home and watching tv. I am not joking, watching tv is one of my favorite activities, but if you are staying active and always have something going on, by the end of the day your body is ready for bed and relaxation.

I try to always plan something for right when I get off my morning job. I know that when I go home after an early shift I’m so prone to go back to bed (and if I need the sleep, that’s great! But sometimes I just lay down just to lay down and that is no bueno). Make sure you aren’t forcing your body into more rest than it actually needs. It will instead make you more tired and then the rest of the day you will most likely be crabby and then for sure not want to do anything with your friends or fam.

So next time instead of binging your favorite tv show that you’ve seen 10,000 times; maybe go take your cat on a walk and get some serious Vitamin D.

5. Exercise – Alright, alright, alright! I’m sure you are all thinking, ‘I knew she was going to hit us with some exercise BS.’ Well, ya. I don’t know about you but every time I exercise I feel so good, on the inside. Me staying active goes hand in hand with eating well. I notice that when I’m working out (hiking, swimming, lifting, etc.) all I want to do is fuel my body with the proper nutrients.

Personally, 3-4 times a week is all that I can really do with such a hectic work schedule but it truly helps me feel good and even gives me more energy! There was a good amount of time that I took off from the gym and I noticed that my mood was terrible. I felt so uncomfortable in my own skin and it really messed with my confidence. I can see the difference with my happiness even after going one time. Exercise will get your endorphins running and that is the exact high that you need to relieve that extra stress that has been weighing on your shoulders.

Alright, everyone. Thank you so much for joining me for my first Wellness Wednesday post. I hope that you utilize some of these tips and I hope that you share yours in the comments below!

Until next time,

Christine

Rebuilding Bridges

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

Today I wanted to touch on a topic that hits a little closer to home. As some of you know, (or don’t know) I am planning on moving in the Fall. Therefore, I have done a lot of reflecting on my life (which I often do) about what I am leaving behind.

Obviously I will miss my family and my friends but something that I have been working more on lately is rekindling burned bridges with friendships that I thought I was leaving in the past. I know most of you are like, ‘Whyyyyyy?! You don’t have to be friends with everyone and if someone hurt you then why do you feel like being friends with them again?!’ Well, I’m here to tell you three short reasons why.

FIRST OF ALL, I don’t know how old all my readers are but I am 24. I just feel like I am in my MID-TWENTIES (MID!!!) and I don’t need to be dodging people at the bar or in public anymore. Just because someone may have hurt you in the past does not mean we need to be ‘mean mugging’ them when we see them out or whispering about them behind closed doors.

SECOND OF ALL, aren’t you tired of holding resentment?! You don’t have to be best friends with these people but I know that I held a lot of resentment towards a few people for a long time that would just eat away at me. It wasn’t even me mourning a lost friendship – it was just me being ornery and being nasty over something petty that may have happened months (or even years ago).

THIRDLY, I’m sure that not everyone will agree with this statement but I like to be liked by everyone. I understand that isn’t always possible and obviously everyone won’t like you but it just feels better to know that you aren’t doing or saying things to intentionally hurt someone and hopefully your friends or whoever are doing the same courtesy towards you.

So what brought this topic on one might ask? Well, about a month ago I had someone that I used to be close with reach out to me and ask to grab coffee sometime. This wasn’t the first time she had reached out but this was the first time that she mentioned it that I was like, ‘Yeah, that sounds nice to meet and chat with you about everything.’ So, we decided on a date and met up.

IT WAS LIBERATING. We chatted for hours about ow we both felt about the situation at hand and honestly, seeing something through someone else’s eyes really opens your own. Of course, in the moment you may only think ‘Well, they hurt me. Why would I want to meet up with someone that hurt me.’ But after months and months of not being friends with that person anymore and reflecting back to the situation it hits you like rock.

 

All I could think was ‘WHY DID IT TAKE ME SO LONG TO GET OVER PETTY SHIT.’ Why do humans get upset over the smallest things and choose not to see things from other people’s perspectives?! Why are humans so selfish? Does anyone have an answer for this?!

Overall, I’m so blessed and grateful to have rebuilt the friendship with this woman and it feels like no time was lost. We caught up and immediately were back to our schemes. What does everyone else have to say about the topic?

 

Until next time,

xx Christine

2018 Update

Hello & Happy Tuesday!

I can’t believe that March is already here and Winter is SLOWLY coming to an end. Today I just wanted to touch on my life and what has been happening since my last blog update.

I’m back in school and just chugging along (more or less), working out about 3-4 times and week still living with my 4 incredible roommates. Seems pretty boring, right?

Well it’s safe to say I was feeling … a bit stagnant. So after weeks and weeks of feeling upset and not feeling like I was progressing I decided to talk to my advisor about what my future held. Once I talked to him I realized we were NOT on the same page and although I was gearing up to graduate next Spring I still had a semi-long road ahead of me.

That’s when I decided. CHRISTINE, you are not happy taking 18 credits, you are not happy with this or with that, you complain too much, you don’t sleep enough blah blah blah. So I decided to make some serious changes. LET IT BE KNOWN: one of my biggest pet peeves is when people complain but don’t do or change anything about it. And I was NOT about to be one of those people.

I decided to drop a few classes that were stressing me to the max. I decided that those classes weren’t worth my sanity or anxiety and I needed to catch a serious break. I blocked off an extra day at work because I wasn’t feeling rested when I was going back to school on Monday and I almost felt suffocated and couldn’t catch my breath. I also decided one big thing that I needed to do to feel happier – but that is a surprise that I cannot talk about right now.

Since I have tweaked just a few things I’ve already felt happier, less stressed, relieved etc. I feel like I have just that much more time to focus on myself and re-find my happiness.

I don’t ever want anyone to think that big changes are the way to always go when you’re having a ‘quarter life crisis’ (that’s what I’ve been calling it) or that you can’t be happy by making just small changes. For me, though, I’ve realized that all the small changes have been adding up for me to make one big change.

Pictures are sure worth a thousand words but just because someone appears to be happy in pictures does not mean one damn thing. I’ve always had an incredible support group to back me up on every decision – and for that I’m very thankful.

As of right now I just wanted to touch base but there is a lot of things I want to touch more on. Soon to come.

With love,

Christine ❤️

2017

WHAT A YEAR. I can’t believe that 2017 has come to an end and 2018 has already arrived! I wanted make a post about what this year has taught me and what I can take into this year with me. I know that you don’t necessarily need a ‘new year’ to make big changes but I feel like the new year does push people to reflect on their lives and see where they need to make improvements. So, in regards to that, let us not make fun of people’s ‘new year, new me’ mentality because it may just be their way of expressing that they need to make some serious changes in their lives.

JANUARY:

I rang in 2017 in Florida (I generally do with my family!) and was excited to get the ball rolling. I was in my sophomore year of college and excited to hustle through the semester into summer. This was the month that I decided I wanted to start prepping. I knew I wanted to make a big change in my life but I was uncertain of what it was going to be at the time. I’m not going to bombard this post with pictures from prep because I feel like I’ve exhausted them already in other posts!

The far left photo is me in front of our home in Florida, the second one over is me with my beautiful sister visiting this ‘super good’ seafood restaurant in Fort Meyers, third from the left is me and Taylor at my friend’s ‘Christmas party’, and (of course) a picture of my cat, Wallace.

For the most part January was just another month. It flew by quickly and I’m sad to say but I don’t remember too much of the month itself.

FEBRUARY:

February, I remember being happy. I remember taking the photo above and the joy I felt at the time. This was my first month onto prep and I felt that I finally was doing something for myself in a positive way. I had Invisalign at the time I had just gotten my brackets off and was over the moon. I try to find happiness in the smallest of things; but just like everyone else, I sometimes struggle with doing so.

MARCH:

My friends and I had a girls nights planned for quite sometime. I remember going to dinner at The Fieldhouse and having an amazing time with great company. Following the show, we went to go see Jeff Dye (he was super funny!). I love when we plan things like this because it constantly gives you something to look forward to. I think it is extremely important to always be excited about something. It keeps you happy and it keeps you sane.

APRIL:

Well, well, well. Three months into prep and THIS HAPPENS. I was bartending and a bar glass shattered in my hand. Needless to say I needed some serious stitches. After this happened I realized that it was just a setback, that these things happen. I had to take a MONTH off of lifting in the middle of prepping and I WAS UPSET. I really had to refocus my mindset and learn that things come out and sometimes you just have to redirect your goals to what is achievable.

MAY:

In May, my good friend Haley graduated college at MSUB. Woohoo! Looking at that I see the end is near and that I just need to keep my head down and keep working towards my goals. She is an inspiration to me and I’m lucky to call her a friend! The other pictures are just randoms from the month.

JUNE:

June was BUSY. One of my best friend was getting married in July so we had a bachelorette party in Chico and then a bridal shower shortly afterwards. I posted pictures from prep on this month because I remember feeling proud of myself. Proud that I stuck with my plan, proud that I was accomplishing what I wanted to. This was also the month that I started becoming very close with one of my good friends, now. Her name is Natalie, and through Natalie, I met Sidney. Both are extremely important to me and this was the month that I started hanging out with them more and more.

JULY:

WEDDING TIME. Boy, that was an amazing day. Thank you to Amanda for allowing me to be apart of it! This month was full of hiking and outdoors. I really got to enjoy the summer and I wanted to take full advantage of great weather. This was also the month that I quit a job that I was at for SEVEN years. I need ‘new’ and so I took a leap of faith.

AUGUST:

The month I started my blog! After quitting the job I was at forever I decided to start something else that was new, my blog! I wanted to write a blog for as long as I could remember and I decided that the time was now. Just do it! Who cares!

SEPTEMBER:

To Bozeman we went! I had another bachelorette party to attend we had such a fun time! After that came bridal showers and wedding bells. Bozeman is so beautiful and I wish I was able to go up there more often. I was closing in towards the end of prep and I was totally ready to be done and be able to eat great food again.

OCTOBER:

The busiest month of them ALL. We went to Jimmy Eat World at the pub station, I was in a wedding the following weekend, competition the weekend after that and then .. HALLOWEEN! My friend Nat and I celebrated a little too hard since we were having a pumpkin carving party at our house the next day. What I remember from October the most was having a great group of friends surrounding me through a really rewarding time in my life.

NOVEMBER:

Thanksgiving. If that isn’t a good reason to realize what you’re thankful for then I don’t know what is! This month I spent a lot of time with my family and ended the month by setting up our Christmas tree with my awesome roommates.

DECEMBER:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME! Ringing in 24 like a champion with all my wonderful friends. We got brunch and later that day we threw a White Elephant Christmas Party! After all the holiday commotion I ran off to Florida with my family to catch some Vitamin D. I made sure to be home for NYE so I could roll into 2018 with some of the best.

 

Thank you to everyone who has been there for 2017. Cannot wait to see what this year brings but I can only assume great things.

POST SHOW RECAP

Hi, hi.

There has been so so much going on in my life lately that I felt like my next post NEEDED to be a recap of what I have been up to!

I am going to start with I COMPETED IN MY FIRST COMPETITION! I was over. the. moon. I will never forget walking off the stage and the feeling that I felt. I was ready to eat. That was for damn sure.

Rolling back just a few days, me and some friends drove up to Spokane (where my show was going to take place) a few days early to get settled in and actually make a vacation out of the whole ordeal. I felt so fortunate to have these people come and support me as I pursued something that I have been working towards for months.

We got in around 1am on Thursday morning and went straight to bed. We were so exhausted from the drive and most of us had a long day on Wednesday. From Billings to Spokane is about 7 hours and we didn’t make it out of town until late afternoon. Going from waking up at 6:30am everyday to being able to sleep in was amazing. A not-so-secret about me is that I loveeeee to sleep. It’s a problem.

ANYWAYS! Thursday evening we went to Scarywood. Ooohhahhhh. If you have never heard of Scarywood before, it is just Silverwood but the employees dress up and walk around and scare you. Turns out, I do not really like haunted houses … I like a lot of scary and gory things but being scared ‘shitless’ is not something that I am interested in partaking in.

Friday we woke up pretty early and I got in my last workout. We were staying with my friend’s aunt and so we were able to cook some food for the next day since we knew that we wouldn’t be at home all day. I wasn’t staying with them that night because I was going to get my supppper dark tan and then hit the rack and prepare for the day ahead of me. I guess the biggest thing that I was nervous about was having my dad and sister coming to my show. I know that they will support in whatever I do but I always have a thought in the back of my head that I want to make them proud. So for me, this was a big deal.

Saturday was exhilarating. People can tell you what it is going to be like backstage and what poses you need to strike onstage but no one can prepare you for the feeling that you get once you are up there in front of all those people. You feel like you accomplished something that many feel they cannot (I believe everyone can achieve anything that they set their minds to but many don’t want to). Although I didn’t place. I came off stage with the biggest smile and I was ready to eat.

 

If you don’t know me then you really don’t know the struggles that I was having about competing. About a month before I was set to walk. I was having serious doubts. I feel like people don’t understand how I felt unless they have actually been in my position. I felt too ‘fat’, my posing wasn’t ‘good enough’, I wasn’t motivated etc. The list could go on and on. I pushed through because people would tell me that I would regret it if I didn’t. I pushed through not entirely for myself but for my friends and family that had given me such kind words of encouragement. And because of them, I chose to be at the most vulnerable state that day.

We came back on Sunday and boy did life not stop. My Coach wanted me back on a reverse diet by Wednesday and at first I really wanted to follow it. But now, after two and a half weeks.. I haven’t been eating the best or working out. It is hard because you go hard hard hard for eight months and you really don’t feel like you get time off. So I took the time off that I wanted and I’ll be going back to the gym this evening. I don’t and won’t ever maintain how lean I was that Saturday and I am ok with that. But since a few of you have followed this journey, I have decided to share my progress photos with you. I don’t look ‘cute’ by any means but these are my transition photos from start(ish) to finish.

I don’t look super lean in any of these but I was also pumping 2 gallons of water into my body each day with a crapton of veggies. I was constantly bloated and doing soooo SOOOO much cardio. On show day I thought it was a MIRACLE how lean I looked and even though I could have been leaner. I was so happy with my progress.

Since next weekend was Halloween weekend. I was DTP. I haven’t been out with my friends in so long that I was ready to dress up and have a good time! I was Pooh and my friend Nat was Piglet. We had a lot of fun dancing and enjoying each others company.

 

Unfortunately, we had so much fun on Saturday that we disregarded the fact that we were having people over to carve pumpkins on Sunday. Ohhhh no. We were not in the mindset that we needed to be to be cleaning our house and decorating. Even though we all weren’t feeling ‘too hot’ we had a heck of a time carving pumpkins with all of our friends.

IMG_2313 2.JPG

Can anyone guess which one is mine?

 

 

I know that this post was long awaited but it took me awhile to decide what I wanted to write. Thank you to everyone that supported me along the way of such a long journey. I will forever hold you all close to my heart.