Posted in Travel

Sequoia National Park

On the same trip to California, we went to Sequoia National Park for a few days to see some of the most amazing and magnificent trees on the North American continent. It was breath-taking to drive up to the trees and even drive through the biggest tree in the world. Pretty spectacular!!

We walked around the park for a good while, looking for the various trees that were recommended  by the park maps and spotted them all, including the Lovers, General Sherman, Franklin, Adam, and more. It was just astounding to think about how long these trees have existed and how long they will hopefully continue to thrive. I thought about how many people had probably walked through these woods as I had done myself, I thought about the peace and quiet that one felt as they wandered through the woods. I felt like I’d stepped into a fairytale and was looking for that enchanted garden, or waiting to stumble upon a stream with wildlife ready to sing and dance along side me, or waiting for my prince charming to come galloping out of the woods.

I’d love to go back again, and that’s just another place on my bucket list because it really is truly a magical place on this earth.

h&k

N

Posted in Advice, Love

It’s a day to celebrate!!!

Today is the day that my best friend was born. January 16th 1991.

I’ve known her since we were about 6 months old, and it’s fitting that in almost 21 years, we’re still inseparable (when we’re in the same state).

Through it all, this girl has been on my side. We’ve had our problems, like any and all other friendships, but the difference is that she’s my family; my best friend, my sister, and most of all, my other half. We are like night and day, she’s the tomboy and by comparison, I’m the princess. She’s quiet and I’m loud, she’s a righty and I’m a lefty, but that’s the thing we complement each other in every way. Granted we’re both girls who ain’t afraid to get a little muddy, we love the outdoors, we love horses, we love who we are, and most of all she loves me and I love her- flawed, screwy, crazy, wrong, and all.

This is us forever ago, playing on my old van.

Our past holiday tradition where we celebrated Christmases between families. It was always such a fun evening!

20 years of friendship, and it keeps growing stronger.

I’d like to dedicated to my best friend in the world, that life is just what we make it, we have to do things for ourselves, we fall but we get back up and it’s really always nice to know that someone- no matter how far away they are- will always come and help, we need to find our passions and loves for our lives, but as we grow up, we’ll never grow apart. I am so proud of you for who you’ve become and the amazing person that I am grateful to say I’ve known since forever. Life doesn’t let us choose our families, but we get the good grace to choose our friends. I don’t know where my life would be without her, but I’m damn glad to have her in it.

Forever and always to my sister, my friend, my PERSON.

h&k

N

Posted in Travel

Yosemite National Park

I’ve travelled to a lot of the national parks in America, but one of my favourite ones was Yosemite National Park in California. I’ve been there twice now, once in the summer of 2006 and once in the winter of 2008. When I was there in 2006, we camped for 3 weeks facing Half-Dome, one of the highest peaks and trails of Yosemite, and right along the river that weaved around the park. We had bear lockers because of the high bear population and were told to make sure nothing was out in the open when we weren’t near the site. We also got to see two bears, a momma and her cub, running down the road one evening, which was quite an experiences. We also saw a few deer grazing really close to the road and weren’t that spooked by humans. My aunt touched its antler, all while she was warned to not in case it started to attack her (it did not, luckily.)

Because we were camping, we had to drive to the showers that were a little ways away from our campsite, but it was a beautiful few minutes in the car where we were surrounded by trees and mountains, Half-Dome was in the background and more often than not we saw the sunset light up the peak in such amazing ways. We spent a lot of time hiking and relaxing, but we did go on a trail ride around the national park on mules. I rode a lovely mare, named Viva who was half Donkey, half Thoroughbred. I fell in love with her and am still convinced that one day I’ll find her again!

Yosemite National Park, is a park that’s worth visiting because it’s just amazing and breathtaking and it’s such a unique experience from other national parks (they aren’t all the same either!)

h&k

N

Posted in Advice

Stronger Than That

It’s funny how things can change so quickly, how we always seem to underestimate our ability to cope, change, and overcome, but yet here we all are, still standing and ready for more.

I’ve learned through all this time that the best thing about learning from our mistakes is that we’re wiser to what has hurt us, but we’re also dumber because something new can hurt us this time. I’m always amazed at how much pain the heart can take, how much hurt the bones can feel, how much love the soul gives, and yet here we all are, broken in one way or another.

It takes a person with limitless love, compassion, empathy, and heart to feel that even when those hurt take you down, you still want to love them even harder. I know that we’ve all faced our own types of pain and hurt, but I think it’s important for people to know that they’re not alone and that someone is always in your corner, even when you try to push them away.

 

 

Strength isn’t always seen, sometimes it’s keeping it together when all you want to do is fall apart,  but it’s all about knowing you’re going to survive and you’re stronger than you think.

h&k

N

Posted in Travel

Mexico – Part One

I’ve been to Mexico countless times, well actually about 6 times. I can’t really recall the first few times we went, but I do have a few memories that do come to mind, which trip I’m not sure, so bear with me!

The hurricane season of 1995 or 1996. We were in an outdoor restaurant and the tide all of a sudden came up to the restaurant and I must have been 4 or 5 at the time and knew I couldn’t get to my parents who were by the actual building in time, so I did the most logical thing for a kid to do- I climbed up a beam that held up the thatched roof. Naturally I scurried as fast as my little legs and arms could get me, but I was safe. Once the bigger of the waves had receded, one of the guys who worked in the restaurant, laughing of course, came down to get me, he picked up and took me back to my mom and dad.

The same flood season, we came out of a restaurant that was elevated, only to find that the water was taller than me and my brother, so my dad picked my brother up and my mom put me on her shoulders until the water levels were lower elsewhere.

We took lessons to learn how to speak Spanish, only my brother and I taught our teachers English. I remember watching water bugs at the fountain with another little girl.

That’s all I can think of from the first few trips, but you’ll get the stories of Cancun, Cozumel, Playa del Carmen, and more soon enough!

h&k

N

Posted in Advice

A love of what I do

I’ve always loved to write, it’s been my thing. It’s the best kind of therapy there is, to get out your true feelings- even if you never share them, you get them out of your mind and release them to the universe (as Booth says to Brennan in Bones). Once it is written, it is no longer a burden to your beautiful self. It’s really easy for people to laugh at my dreams, the fact that people don’t regard the art of English to be a “real” career choice, but the problem them seem to forget is in order to do any other job, one must be able to communicate through words, thoughts, speech and have it all cohesive, which is what English and any other language is.

People have asked me so many times what I want to do with an English degree. I want to write, about the beauty that is all around us that people fail to notice. I want to have people feel the world I’m describing. I want people to feel a loss when a character dies. I want people to embrace what literature does to the soul. I want people to know that there is so much we miss and if we took a beat, we’d enjoy life as it was once enjoyed.

Sure there’s a lot of white noise out in the world, distractions with TV, films, electronics, but there is something about reading words, entering someone’s imagined world and getting to know their characters. Writing is as essential to me as breathing and eating.

Some people don’t know what they want to do; I do, it’s just a matter of time before it comes to dancing life for me.

h&k

N

Posted in Advice

I Wish Someone Told Me….

We all have those regrets as a child, teenager, young adult and finally all throughout our lives. I came across a writing prompt a few years ago and wrote about things I wish someone had told me.  I thought I’d share because it’s a part of the journey we all partake in called life.

 

I wish someone told me that I was going to mess up. I was going to make the stupidest decisions in the heat of a moment and regret them a heartbeat later. There are so many little things that we do, each choice shapes us (yea, it’s a big freaking cliché, but it’s really got truth) and each decisions takes us one step closer to being who we’re either fated to be (or if you don’t believe in fate, who we’re choosing to be).

I wish someone told me that there are people in your life who are going to let you down, hurt you, make you cry, and leave you. It’s happened to us all, whether or not we want to admit it- is a different story. I can say from personal experience that it’s hard to accept and even harder to move past, but it makes you stronger. I learned that I couldn’t really trust people to not take me down and humiliate me, but I learned with the support of my two best friends that I could heal and become a person I would be proud to have as a friend. Anyone can leave you, nothing is certain in life, not even parents. Some can be taken by fate, some because they are learning how to protect themselves as they should have, some were never really yours. There’s that damnable expression about how family is forever, but that’s a load of crap. There is so much history that tells us otherwise it’s not even really arguable that family is there for you. Family is more likely to stab you in the back with no hesitation. How’s that for morbid but true?

I wish someone told me that there is more to life than that first rush of desire. I wish that someone told me that a first kiss is just that, a first kiss. Where you’re going to feel shy, embarrassed, and awkward, but no one ever talks about that. It’s so hyped up by others (usually peers and friends) that it’s so great, everyone wants to do it too, except it’s only great when it’s with someone you can’t stop thinking about. It’s only great with someone you care about. It’s the moment your lips touch, it’s the moment you feel the electricity and the moment you realise it’s exactly how it should be. Kissing just anybody is like kissing a rock.. Why would you do that? EXACTLY! It’s weird to think about, but it’s true.

I wish someone told me that there is more to the world than what I know. I mean I’ve been travelling a lot since I was young, but that doesn’t mean I know everything. It means that I’ve been places around the world. I wish someone could have sat me down and told me that these years of college are the most amazing and free and independent years of your life. I wish for my children that I remember this and let them know that if they have a desire to go around the world, to do it. If they want to learn something new, learn it. If they want to just work, work. Because at the end of the day, it’s what makes you happy that will make your life.

I wish someone told me that it’s possible to love more than one, each in their own way. People feel that there is some law that we can only love one (and while that is true by law) our hearts operate under different laws, the laws of love and human nature. I’ve learned that you can love many people and always care about each of them as they are. We get in our minds that only one person is our Prince Charming or our Fairytale Princess, but it’s simply not true. I wish I learned that life is alike love, very very unpredictable and amazing.

I wish someone told me a lot of the things I know now, but then I think about it and realise that I’m glad I learned them myself because I understand the lessons a little better and in the end that’s really what this is all about. We pass on what we learn in hopes that someone won’t feel the pain we felt, or experience the love we shared, but really at the end of the day – our life is ours to do with.

h&k

N

Posted in Advice

Always Room to Change

I’ve learned the different life lessons people push onto you from their own experiences, but the best way we learn is by making our own mistakes, failing, getting back up and also finding ourselves in our own journey.

We’re not the person we were yesterday, and we’re not yet the person we are to become tomorrow. We have to make that decision to live larger, love bigger, and be better everyday while we can make what we want from our lives.

I’m the biggest believer that a person can change only because it’s in their heart to do so, because they’re willing to go as far as possible, push past their known limits into something completely different, make themselves into someone; because when we’re willing to push that much harder, we’re going to make it. I think that from personal experience, the more we want something, the more we’re willing to fight for it; but also we’re also careful to make the right choice at the right time.

Change is scary, changing yourself is even scarier, but it’s one thing about life that will never change; change is our constant and even with our best intentions- change is inevitable.

That’s all I have for daily advice, while trying to take it myself.

h&k

N