Road Trip Out West

March 29th, 2015 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »

This post is longgg & LONGGGGG overdue (about 3 months – oops), but whatevs, enjoy!

Starting December 30 2014, Craig and I went on a road trip out west!  LOTS (seriously, LOTS) of things happened.. I’ll dish out as much of the trip I can remember (or want to share) & a good amount of it was caught on camera, so look forward to seeing too many pictures!  (:  *Events may or may not be in perfect chronological order.

<Packing>

12/30 – We left Austin, TX for Salt Lake City, Utah!  We drove straight through the night and hit a little bit of a snow storm in north TX, but we made it safe to Dan, Ben, Titus (the sweetest big & fluffy dog), and Edgar’s house!  On our way to SLC, we drove through beautiful Moab, UT and nommed coffee & food while being mesmerized by the red rock wall surroundings.

<Utah Mountains>

12/31 to 1/4 – We were in  SLC for Criag’s fantasy Snow Cup Quidditch Tournament.  NYE was spent at a party with a bunch of Quidditch players (who are all awesome, btw)!  The days following were at the tournament, staring at majestic mountains with our jaws agape, drinking, being hungover, and playing fun games like Werewolf, Coup, Waterfall, Ticket to Ride, etc.  On the 4th (our last night there), we partied hard with Quidditch players and all I really remember from that night was getting a giant pizza and going to bed early, haha.  :b

1/5 – Craig & I slept in super late and headed toward the Grand Canyon!  Side note: before this trip, I had never been west of NM, so all of this was so new to me and so very wonderful!  We arrived late and it was dark outside, so we crashed in my car and woke up early to see the sun rise over the breath-taking Grand Canyon!

<Grand Canyon>

1/6 – After we regained our breath from being in complete awe, we drove around the South Rim of the Grand Canyon for a few more views, then headed to LA (not before stopping to take a few pics at the Flintstone Bed Rock Cafe)!  Once we hit Cali, we nommed a few samosas from an Indian restaurant/gas station (random, but good), and then drove to Andy’s house.  Andy is a really fun & outgoing guy that we met via couchsurfing.org!  He took us (Craig, Margo, Amanda, & me) out to a local bar to dance & drink the night away!

<Bed Rock Cafe>

1/7 – We got up as early as we could muster and left Andy’s house to head for Hollywood.  Before we ate some delicious Thai food at Ruen Pair on Hollywood Blvd and toured the Hollywood Hills in the Mt. Olympus neighborhood, we took a wonderful nap at Ernest E. Debs Regional Park.  (:  That night, we crashed at Julia & Diana’s (Quidditch players) place.

<Hollywood>

1/8 – Craig’s 25th Birthday!  We ate a late breakfast, then went to be part of the audience for a Bill Maher taping at CBS Universal Studios in LA!  They tried out a bunch of jokes on us to see which ones they wanted to put on air.  After laughing for a hot minute, we went to Starbucks, where Craig found a “slug” in his coffee.  That night, we went to a Quidditch practice in Long Beach, then spent the night at Lee’s (Quidditch player)!

<LA View>

<Slug>

<Night Quidditch>

1/9 – We had breakfast at Lulu’s Cafe, then drove to Zuma Beach (def my fav beach on the entire trip)!  This was my first time ever to step into the Pacific Ocean!  Oh my, I am such a beach girl.  My heart was soaring and there was literally nothing you could have done to take the smile off my face when my toes hit the sand and I saw those gorgeous never-ending waves crashing on the shore.  <3  Once I pried myself away, we got in the car and took Hwy 1 to Pismo Beach and ate some of the best damn clam chowder I’ve ever had at Splash Cafe (thanks to the recommendation of Quidditch players Liz & Dan).  We then set up tent and camped out at North Beach Campground for the night.  Funny True story: we tried to start a fire, like 20 different ways, but it never caught because the wood there was too wet from heavy sea air & light rain they had been having.  We lost many socks and about half a bottle of rubbing alcohol in the attempts, haha.

<Zuma Beach>

<Hwy 1 Hills>

<North Beach Camping>

1/10 – This morning we had the best breakfast burritos (in my opinion) of the entire trip at Willie’s Cafe in a gas station store.  They were huge and spicy and cheap and yummy.  Once our bellies were full, we grabbed some coffee and headed to giggle at the lazy & loud Elephant Seals!  Then we drove to watch the sunset at Big Sur and headed to Oakland/Piedmont for some Indian food at Marhaba, then finally crashed at Craig’s uncle Phillip’s house/mansion.

<Elephant Seals>

<Big Sur Sunset>

1/11 – During the day, we went to an event to celebrate the inauguration of Oakland’s new Mayor where we saw some badass metal sculptures with killer pyrotechnics, and that night we hung out at the Starry Plough Pub where there were locals playing traditional Irish music.

<Oakland’s New Mayor Event>

<Starry Plough Pub>

1/12 – Uncle Phillip took us on a “little” tour of San Fran! We visited the Golden Gate Park, Twin Peaks, Ocean Beach, the Sutro Baths, the Golden Gate Bridge, then the Castro District (yay, gay pride!) where we had delicious Sushi & the most decadent truffles for dessert.  We ended the night by driving down Lombard Street and visiting Bliss Dance on Treasure Island (a beautiful sculpture from Burning Man 2010)!  Well, I guess our very last stop was at In-and-Out where I ate for the first & last time.  That was gross.

<Twin Peaks View>

<Ocean Beach>

<Sutro Baths>

<Golden Gate Bridge>

<Castro District>

<Bliss Dance>

1/13 – Laundry day, finallyyy!  Laundry took up most of our day, but we watched the sunset at Stinson Beach, then went to Smiley’s bar for a few drinks & crashed in my car for the night.

<Stinson Beach Sunset>

1/14 – 1/15 After waking up with some coffee from Toby’s in Point Reyes, Craig and I stocked up on essentials from Trader Joe’s and headed to Yosemite (so far, this is my fav park I’ve ever visited) for some camping!  When we got to the park, we quickly learned from all the buzz that history was made that day: two climbers just finished their 19-day free climb of El Capitan!  Pretty freakin’ awesome.  The next morning, Craig and I ventured up about 8 miles and 2000 feet to climb to some of the most beautiful falls in Yosemite.  For dinner that night, we dined in the park’s version of Luby’s, haha.  Blegh.

<Yosemite>

1/16 – Much needed showers were had, then we drove to the wrong part of Sequoia for sunset (fyi: no trees in the PARK, you have to go to the FOREST about an hour north of the park), and ended up back in LA for some crazy good Thai Food and stayed the night at “The Lost Boys” (Quidditch team) house.

<Sequoia Sunset>

1/17 – 1/18 – Craig snitched for the LA Open Quidditch Tournament and I got to see some familiar faces from Utah & Texas.  (:  During the tournament, I wandered off to Hermosa Beach for some alone time with the ocean.  Our second night there we had some interesting (but yummy!) seafood from a tiny restaurant called Baja California Fish.

<Craig Snitching>

<Hermosa Beach>

1/19 – Craig and I stopped in Long Beach for a walk, which sucked.  Haha, honestly, this is the ugliest beach because of all the industrial shit happening around it.  There was tar and oil in all the sand and it made me more sad than anything else.  As a cheer up, we drove through Joshua Tree National Park on our way to my Aunt Betty and Gary’s place in Lake Havasu, AZ.

<Joshua Tree>

1/20 – 1/22 We all slept in because we were up till like 4 in the morning having fun, drinking & chatting with my relatives.  (:  Then we went to cry our eyes out while watching American Sniper.  After the movie, we went to Javelina Cantina for a pick me up of margaritas.  The next day, Craig and I went to see the London Bridge (seriously, the REAL London Bridge is in Lake Havasu) and took the ferryboat over to CA to gamble for a few hours.  It was Craig’s first time at a Black Jack table and he did really well!  The next morning we left for TX, but ended up spending the night in Albuquerque, NM, where we rented our only hotel room of the entire trip (!!) and ate a giant NY style pizza.

<London Bridge>

1/23 – After a good night’s sleep, we drove the last leg of the trip back to Austin while munching on pizza leftovers.  We got to Craig’s late at night & crashed HARD, glad to be home & happily soul-filled from our road trip out west.  (:

It was by far the most amazing road trip I’ve been (for so many reasons) and I am so so so very grateful that we were able to have this adventure together.  I honestly wish it could have been much longer (there are too many places I still want to see), but I ended up staying with Craig the entire month of February & that was kind of like being on a little stay-cation with him here in Austin.  :b  More on that and what’s happened since we’ve been back in the next post.  XoXo – Love you all!

December’s IDKs

December 13th, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »

Oh hey, my life is ALL “I don’t know” right now, but that also means it’s full of possibility.  (:

 

I no longer work at the Law Firm & I don’t know where I will work next.

My ankle is hurt from being my clumsy self and I don’t know when it will be healed, but it’s in a cast for now.

I am possibly going to Ethiopia in June of 2015 with the Peace Corps, but I don’t know for sure.  My application is still being processed & I’m not sure where I will be in my life that time next year.

I want to go to California on a road trip at the beginning of next year.  I don’t know if I will go by myself or with someone.  I don’t know for sure how long I’ll be gone.

I don’t know if I’ll stay in Austin or maybe I’ll fall in love with another town on the road trip and end up moving there shortly after the road trip ends.

I don’t know if I will have enough money to float financially for a few months or if I will have to find work pretty quickly after the trip.  It depends if I move and how much money I spend traveling.

I don’t know what I want out of my relationships with different people, but I am feeling half-full right now.  What I do know is I should focus more on loving myself and not rely so much on getting love from others.  This is not the easiest lesson to re-learn over and over again.

 

Welcome to my very indecisive world! :b  Next time I update, maybe I’ll have something a little more concrete to share.  I don’t know.

XoXo

12.12.14

December 13th, 2014 Posted in Photos Of Me | No Comments »

#iwokeuplikethis #flawless

12.08.14

December 13th, 2014 Posted in Photos Of Me | No Comments »

12.02.14

December 13th, 2014 Posted in Photos Of Me | No Comments »

11.12.14

November 13th, 2014 Posted in Photos Of Me | No Comments »

Winter Is Here, Damnit

November 13th, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | 2 Comments »

I don’t like the cold!  D:  *stomps foot like a child*

I loveeee EVERYTHING about the heat (except maybe sweating profusely when it’s like 100+ degrees, but even that I can handle).

However, I love very few things about the cold..

1.  Scarves

2.  Soup

3.  Reasons to drink more coffee & tea

4.  Snuggling with blankets & people

5.  & how it looks outside.  I love that during every season though.  Nature is just so beautiful!

I think my least favorite thing about the cold is having to wear socks.  I seriously DESPISE socks.  I want to be barefoot or in flip-flops forever.  Socks suck.

End of rant.

Since I last posted….

1.  I celebrated my 3-year-veganniversary!  I’m like 80% vegan / 20% pescetarian right now.  Sushi happens.  Breakfast tacos happen more often than sushi. #sorrynotsorry  HAH, but still – 3 years is impressive & I’m proud of myself!

2.  Went to my second Quidditch tournament to support Craig & his team (& I’m going to my third one this weekend)!  Even though it was cold & rainy, it was still awesome!  (:  & Craig’s team won, of course!  PS, you should watch Mudbloods – it’s a documentary on Quidditch!  It’s even on Netflix.  Check that shit out!

3.  I decided internet dating is lame & people portray themselves online wayy differently than they do in person.  & everyone is THIRSTYYY.  Hahah, for real though.

4.  I finally got to hang out with my good friend, Mark, after not seeing him for almost 2 years even though he lives just 3 hours away in Dallas..  *cough cough*  Haha, anyway, it was SO VERY good to see him!  I am so glad that he is doing well & kicking ass in school!  (:

5.  I went to the TCE Trash Makeover event!  It was great to see all the impressive recycled fashion designs & hang out with my old co-workers & celebrate all of TCE’s victories they have achieved over this last year!  I’ll love all the TCE-ers forever & always!  <3

6.  The love/lust/longing/whatever the fuck it is that I’m feeling right now is really fucking complicated.  I know what I want & I know what I don’t want & I don’t know what I want & I don’t know what I don’t want & I’m fucking confused by everything related to my love life.  Bleghh.  *takes deep breath*

7.  My dad turned 59 & still looks like he is 40!  Hahah, yeahhh, so glad I have those genes!  We went to Jack Allen’s Kitchen for their breakfast/brunch and it was absolutely DELICIOUS.  The tomato-basil-feta-quiche-pie-thing… *drools*  :b  Then we watched the movie Divergent, which was pretty good – it kind of reminded me of Hunger Games.

8.  One of my best friends, Marissa, turned 31!  We had birthday drinks at Sherlock’s Pub!  Yay for birthdays & best friends!  *Note to self:  We need to hang out more often!*

9.  & speaking of best friends, I finally got to hang out with one of my other besties, Kelly Joy, & I got to meet her man, Andrew!  They are such a cute couple!  <3  *Note to self: We also need to hang out more!*

10.  I caught up with my friend/old roommate, Molly!  We normally have dinner together about once a month, but it had been a few months since I had seen her.  I love how she has such a different view on life than I do, yet we are able to share our sides & see things differently & appreciate the other’s view.  Plus, we always have the best girl chat / dishing of dirt over margaritas.  :b  Really, we can’t go wrong.

11.  Craig & I went as Marry Poppins & Bert the Chimney Sweep for Halloween!  We had a blast at the parties we went to & received lots of compliments on our costumes – we even won first prize in a costume contest at a party we didn’t attend!  :b

12.  I moved out of my crazy ex-roommate’s place!  Hooray, that psycho asshole is no longer in my life!  Hahah, seriously though.. I am SO MUCH HAPPIER living with my friends, Sean & Laura!  (:  I am surrounded by good people & sweet dogs.  <3  Zero complaints.

13.  I paid off my Invisalign!  I didn’t necessarily expect to so soon, but the interest rate was fucking OUTRAGEOUS & I about vomited when I saw what they were charging me, so I paid it ALL off.  I am so grateful I have the finances available to do this.  Yay for financial responsibility!

14.  I’m still going to the Austin Poetry Slam every Tuesday!  <3  It’s my version of church..  & I LOVEEE it.

15.  Since it’s cold now, I’m starting yoga again!  Hooray for heated studios!  Oh how I love the feeling of being in a studio again.  <3  I feel at peace & stretched on multiple levels.  Maybe I should just do this instead of focusing on my confusing love life dilemmas?  Yeahh, that sounds like a good plan.  Haha, plus – there is NO WAY I am running outside in this weather.  Nuh uh.

16.  I probs shouldn’t post this last one, but fuck it – I finally heard something from the Peace Corps!  They nominated me for a position in Ethiopia & said they would contact me with more info in a few months & I might have an interview to do in the future!  My goodness, this is a sloww process!  Also, I have super mixed feels about going to Ethiopia for 2 years.. but my friend, Rachel, is headed there in January, so I’m trying to calm myself down about it.   8D  *terrified excitement*

… & that’s about all for now – XoXo – love you all!  <3 <3 <3

September(ish) Scoop!

October 8th, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »

Yay! It’s October now! That means Halloween & Sean/Laura’s BAD ASS Halloween party at the end of the month! :D

So, between my last update at the end of August and me typing this right now…

1. I’m still attending the Austin Poetry Slam at Spider House Ballroom every Tuesday with Craig & I continue to find myself in tears every fucking time at the raw beauty and open honesty of it all. <3 Ugh, endless good feels.

2. I celebrated my one-year anniversary at the Law Office! One of my bosses even bought me flowers and vegan cupcakes to show the love & I most definitely feel it! <3 Also, they have been giving me wayy more work, like actual legal work, which keeps me busy and engaged. (: I’m a happy little legal assistant right now.

3. I finally bought a new duvet cover for my bed!!! I got rid of my old one back in April when my ex and I separated because it was all memory soaked – you know how that goes. Anyway, I LOVE my new one & am SO VERY happy that I can finally be comforted again by my big fluffy comforter just in time for winter. <3

4. I dealt with some family drama/issues, which is always a blast. (Sarcasm font – why do you not exist yet?) But things are getting better, I think, and I am happy that the people close to me are making important positive changes in their lives to better themselves. (: I am very proud of them and I love them indefinitely. <3 (I know I’m being vague here, but I’m not here to air my family’s “dirty laundry,” just my own, haha.)

5. Speaking of dirty laundry though… the MOST RIDICULOUS thing is happening in my life right now. A few months ago I moved into this adorable little townhome off Manchaca/S. Lamar that I absolutely love, but my PSYCHO ROOMMATE is KICKING ME OUT OF MY OWN HOME WHERE WE SPLIT ALL BILLS 50/50 because I am -get this – “TOO SEXUAL” of a person for him. HAHAHAHA, yes, you read that correctly. Apparently, the sex that I have ONCE A WEEK (maybe twice on a good week) with the SAME PERSON makes me a “sexual deviant” in his eyes and it’s “off-putting” and “disgusting” to live with and I need to “class myself up.” BAHAHAHAHAH. I am not even joking – these are direct quotes & I have the text messages to prove it. So yeah, I’m currently looking for a new place to live (most likely alone again, for self explanatory reasons) and will be moving on Nov. 1st. If you are a friend and have a truck *nudge nudge, hint hint* I love you forever for helping me. (;

6. I went on a lovely beach trip with an awesome group of people that I am so grateful to know! We rented a condo in Port Aransas and stayed there for 4 days/ 3 nights. It was gray most of the time we were there, & the beach was… well – it’s the Gulf Coast, aka the armpit of America. :P If you’ve been, you know. We all had a great time though! The first night we made a large bonfire on the beach and the other two nights we stayed in and hung out with each other and laughed and played cards and such. It was really relaxing trip. I read through almost 3 books and we were sober for about zero percent of the time, hahah, it was exactly what we all needed.

7. I sincerely wanted to go to the Gay Pride Parade downtown (I went last year and LOVED it!), but I totally slept through it this year on accident. /: My heart and spirit were there though! <3

8. I attended the People’s Climate March (we started at the Capitol and walked through downtown while chanting and holding signs) with a bunch of my TCE friends! This was a nation-wide event that collected about 400,000 people in NYC alone! The event was created to bring awareness and make a statement about the severity of the climate crisis that somehow people are STILL denying and/or not addressing! I am so very grateful that I was able to be a part of the march this year!

 

9. I started jogging with Craig’s dog, Molly! We run together almost every day (Monday-Friday) after I get off work. She is the absolute BEST DOG! She is so sweet and obedient and full of love! I love her to pieces and I am so happy I have a little motivational running partner. (: I have a feeling I will be a dog owner myself in the near-ish future.. either that or I will continue to constantly borrow the love & affection from my friend’s dogs, haha. <3

9. I had a FANTASTIC tarot card reading by one of my neighbors. I’ve never had such a revealing and in-depth reading from someone who knew absolutely nothing about me! (Jessica & Kelly, I need a reading asap to compare!)

10. I bought a dresser from my friend, Amy! I haven’t had one in years and it is SO NICE to have a real place to put all my clothes (and my make-up and incense, haha)! Plus, since she is moving & is awesome, I got a great dresser for just $20!

11. I joined the online dating world. HAHAHA. Yep. I bit the bullet and crafted a profile and put pictures up and everything. To be honest, it’s not half bad, but the beginning was OVERWHELMING! I was BOMBARDED with messages and 95% of them were ones that I was definitely NOT interested in reading. It’s calmed down a bit now and I’ve been on a few dates, but that’s about it. Haha, I’m not really sure why I’m using it anyway because I am smitten with someone at the moment (& have been for the last few months), but we are in an “open-ish relationship,” so I guess I am just keeping my opportunities open like he is. (?) Plus, all the awkwardness that comes in the online dating realm makes for a funny conversation topic. :b

12. Lastly, I recently watched Cloud Atlas and it blew me away! There was so much synchronicity with different conversations I’ve been having and all the déjà vu I’ve been getting lately and it made me feel warm fuzzies because I do my best to live my life leading with my heart & love first. It also really got me thinking again about plans for my future career(s) and being a bigger part of the revolution for equality of all people and land. Why this is still an issue endlessly baffles me, but I am more than willing to spend my life being a large cog in the machine of progress!

Well, that’s about it for now, my loves! I hope you all are enjoying the fuck out of your lives! <3 XoXo

10.03.2014

October 6th, 2014 Posted in Photos Of Me | No Comments »

Duality of Self

September 30th, 2014 Posted in My Writing | No Comments »

Duality of Self by Betty Leigh Verbeke

 

lately, when I spend time in a group of friends

whether it’s with 3 people or 15

I subconsciously count another there

an extra being, or a thick shadow of one

the first time it happened, I was hanging out with two friends at their apartment

we were all seated around a table and I kept sensing that there was someone sitting right next to me

like there was an imaginary barstool with a body resting on it

I could feel their presence, their vibrations

after glancing to my right multiple times trying to see this invisible thing that I felt,

I decided my mind was just playing tricks on me

however, as the night unfolded, the figment of a figure stayed there with us

and I realized that I was somehow switching views with this presence

I was viewing myself from a different perspective,

an outside perspective that I could also feel from the inside view

I was splitting in two and I was literally sitting next to myself

sometimes I would be in my body recognizing my other outside half

and sometimes I would be my other outside half recognizing my body

it sounds insane, I know.. but let me try to explain a little with this:

we are not our thoughts

we are not that little voice inside our heads that keeps us up at night

well, technically, that is us, but that is just a part of us, that voice is just the ego talking

the true us is outside of the ego, it’s the universal us, it’s the everything else that recognizes that little voice

now that we have those terms, the ego self and the universal self, I’ll continue with my story

when I’m in my separate self, my universal self, I’m viewing my own body

I’m watching my movements and I’m watching my ego speak in autopilot on my behalf

my ego self is the girl who was confused as to what the presence was in the beginning of this story

when I’m my universal self, my higher-self, I’m connected to everything

I’m able to view myself from the universal perspective

in those moments, I’m my truest self because I’m the universe literally viewing itself

I’m everything that is and was and ever will be staring into the mirrored reflection of my own creation

and I’m able to appreciate the volnerable skin & bone self that I’m creating

it’s the best work of art I’ve created thus far, and it’s still in the process of being created

it’s the me that is alive and represents the entirity of the universe through the Betty Leigh Verbeke experience

I’m able to see all that I’ve gone through that makes what I’ve currently become

and I can see small projections of where I’m possibly going in the future

the most fascinating part of the duality dynamic is I can’t feel when I switch from one perspective to the other,

whether I’m in body or out of body, I’m still fully me both times, so the transition is seamless

my ego self is able to feel my universal self watching me at the same time that my universal self is observing my ego self live and speak and be me and everything at once

the time I’m able to really tell the difference is when I can feel every single one of the countless number of stars flooding my mouth and veins that seem to have no ends, and then in the next moment I can only feel the stars surrounding me in a blanket of knowledge and love and understanding

when my ego speaks alone, when I’m watching my ego talk from my universal perspective, I can see all the words are saturated with déjà vu

I can see all the little memories that created the ego soaked into every syllable,

just like my pillows and clothes were with your scent when we used to fall asleep together, tangled with each other

when my ego speaks, I hear you on all of the consonants, whether hard or soft, you’re there

the former us, we are there

what we were and why we aren’t anymore, it’s all there

my universe self sits in the spot where you used to stand

I’m viewing myself from where you used to see me and where you used to love me

I question if I now feel myself more than ever split into these two separate but same parts of me because I’m filling the void of where you used to be,

of where you left that empty space when we said goodbye,

the space that I technically created because I was the one who ended it the second time

yet you still take up so much fucking space in my day to day ego driven thoughts and in my universal heart that I’m starting to share with someone new

this someone who is absolutely wonderful and can see my ego self and my universal self as one and can appreciate her in the everything that she is

and I can see his duality of self as well, and I know I appreciate all the galaxies that we share and all the black holes that our egos get lost in

yet somehow I’m stuck wondering why you can’t see me at all anymore

but I guess it’s for the best

I fully trust the universe

I know that it’s unfolding perfectly and that everything is working out exactly as it should

I know this because the ego self and universe self are both me and we are everything that is and was and ever will be and this is all just part of our Betty Leigh Verbeke experience