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

Run-On Sentences – AKA – My Life Right Now

August 27th, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »

Time for an update in the world of Betty Leigh Verbeke!  (:  Get ready for some longgg run-on sentences.  Haha.  Yeahhhh.  Thought-streaming is what this is.  Enjoy!

1.             I’ve been living at my new place for a little over a month now and completely love it.  My roommate is super chill and easy to live with.  He is clean and has a great sense of humor and has introduced me to some fantastic music.  We are really comfortable with each other & it feels like we have be living together for much longer than we really have.  We both run different and busy schedules which allows us to have our time alone when we need it.  I really appreciate that.  This last weekend, I finally finished hanging up all of the art in the new place and now it feels even more like my home.  I’m still wanting to buy curtains and a new duvet comforter set, but those will surely come over the next few weeks.

2.            I haven’t heard anything back from the Peace Corps application yet.  I have tried to contact their recruiting office in Dallas 3 times now, but I have been disconnected every time, so I feel like I should let things unfold naturally.  I know the Universe is taking care of me, so I’ll just let it roll this Peace Corps thought around in its mouth for however long it wants to savor the idea.  (:  What I find a tad concerning is that my friend who has been a paramedic for a few years was denied his application because he doesn’t have a 4-year degree.  I also do not have a 4-year degree, instead I have 4 years of college with 2 unfinished degrees.  HAH.  And for now, I don’t plan on going back to school because (after many in-depth conversations with multiple people) I still don’t see the point in spending a bunch of time and money for some temporary knowledge to pass some tests to earn a fancy piece of paper to put in a frame to hang on a wall if I’m still not entirely sure what I want to do with my life and if I will even need that piece of paper to get where I want to go.  Actually, I probably do need it, but I’ll figure that out later.  Right now it’s just a back-burner idea while I live my life in the present.

3.            It’s been over 4 months since my ex and I broke up and about 6 weeks since we’ve seen each other and I truthfully want to say that everything has healed and I’ve moved on and I hope he has done the same.. and I suppose, for the most part, I can truthfully say that.. but I also sometimes catch myself lost in sweet memories of “us” and it makes me feel like I have cotton filling my chest cavity like a child’s favorite stuffed animal that they squeeze too tight when they are in bed alone at night in the dark and I have to learn how to breathe through it.  So there’s that.  Also, on Sept. 2nd it will be exactly one year from the day I met him.  That blows my mind that I fell in love so deep and so fast and it feels like it lasted so long but not nearly long enough and we made such a connection that his ghost rests in my bones with the rest of my past’s spirits.  Ohhh deep love, you’re such a wonderful thing.  I can’t wait to find you again.

4.            I celebrated my one-year anniversary on July 24th of quitting a terrible habit and dealing with the ups and downs of reality appropriately instead of taking it out on my body with guilt and self-loathing.  Yikes, that sounds really terrible.. So to be black and white about it, I stopped eating my emotions and then vomiting them back up.  (Wow.  That too sounds kind of terrible, but it also feels really freeing and terrifying to admit on my public blog when I know there are probs going to be people reading this who know me but don’t know this about me.  So.. Surprise!  I’ve dealt with some heavy shit and I overcame it because I’m a badass!  Haha.)

5.            In the same food-related-realm as the previous paragraph, after the last 3 years of being vegan, I started eating non-vegan things on occasion and I’m deciding not to feel guilty about it.  For the most part.  I suppose part of ridding myself of that guilt is being open about it.  In short, sometimes I crave fish or eggs, so I go get sushi or a breakfast taco every now and then and I enjoy it.  It’s my conscious decision and I know by doing so I am putting my taste buds above my morals and I am probably supporting a terrible industry that is abusing animals and destroying ecosystems.  But maybe all the restaurants I go to in Austin are awesome and don’t purchase from such horrid corporations?  Eehh, maybe some, but def not all of them.. quick, someone call the Vegan Police!

6.            I went to my first ever Quidditch Tournament and really really enjoyed it!  I met some awesome people and animals.  (:  I loved seeing the friendly competition and incredible athleticism and agility and skill and determination and shit-talking and strength and stamina and yeah! (Growing up with 10 years of dance, I didn’t have this.  Though I do appreciate dance and what it did for me, I wish I would have participated in sports instead.  Aah, maybe in the next life?)  Everyone I met was open and chill and hearing the people on the side-lines talk was extremely entertaining.  Esp listening to the older couples (I’m assuming parents of the players) debate over the game and explain the rules to each other.  Haha, I think I could explain it to anyone at this point & I never even finished the Harry Potter series.  Shhhh, don’t tell anyone!

7.            I’ve been seeing a lot of improv at the Hideout Theatre I’m seriously impressed with these talented actors who off-the-cuff make up great shows.

8.            I went to the Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival for the second year.  If you know me, you know I LOVE SPICY FOODS.  This year it was only 104 outside instead of 112 like last year, & those few degrees made a huge difference. I went with Jeff and Renee and some of their friends and we tried probably over 60 hot sauces. Our last line to walk through was deemed the “Line o’ Death” and oh my goodness some of those were dangerously spicy.  I’m surprised I didn’t get a chemical burn on my tongue from trying so many, but I did get a nice little endorphin high!  Haha.

9.            I curled by hair again!  I’m still kind of in after-shock because it’s a few inches shorter and REALLY CURLY and I don’t really know how to handle it, but it’s growing on me.  Literally.  Hah.  I remember loving it last time I did it and this time I really wanted to curl it because I was in a “I need to change everything in my life as much as possible” mode and now I’m not so sure I would have made the choice if I would have waited a little longer, but I’m beautiful either way, so whatever.  Haha.  Did you know Humility is my middle name?  :P

10.         I started running again!  Exercise releases the most wonderful endorphins into your brain!  Yeah, it’s a fact.  Science.  FTW!  Haha.  :b  Anddd runner’s high is easily the best high.  After a run, I not only feel better about myself and am proud of myself, I also get a fuzzy-coated-synapse-feeling that is quasi-orgasmic.  I’ve been running 4-5 days a week for the last 4 (going on 5!) weeks!  Oh, and there is the bonus of losing weight and gaining muscle too.

11.         Another ritual I’ve been committed to the last 5 weeks is attending the Austin Poetry Slam every Tuesday like I used to (it’s crazy to think I’ve been going to this on and off since like 2010/2011ish).  But oh my good feels, talk about a fuzzy-coated-synapse-feeling!  The everything that comes seeing and hearing absolute raw beautiful truth gut-twisting honest heart-wrenching secrets being shared in an intimate setting with talent and strength and vulnerability brings me to tears literally every fucking time.  Unfff, I can’t get enough!  Those wordsmiths know how to tell it & they tell it so fucking good.  If you’ve never been, please please please go and give yourself that experience.  Tuesdays, 8:30p, Spiderhouse Ballroom.  I hope I see you there.  I might even buy you a drink.  (:

12.         I’m journaling all. the. time. Whether it’s art or poetry or just thoughts or scribbles or blog posts that I don’t post or blog posts that I do post or whatever, I’m doing it.  This self-expression thing is a great way to.. well, express myself.  Haha.  I digg it!

13.         && on that tangent of self-expression above, I’m slowly but surely gaining my independence and confidence again to tackle the world head on and on my own.  It’s surprisingly easy to live a sub life, but I used to be a dom & I’m rebuilding that idea in a different way now and I like how things are turning out.  I’m getting to be more and more balanced & so is my life.  Thanks Science/Universe/Mama Nature/Higher Power/Insert-Name-Here for this life and how it’s unfolding absolutely perfectly!  <3

14.         Idk if he would approve of me using his name, so.. I’ve been hanging out with my friend for a few months now, and I am really enjoying it.  Like, more than a lot.  (:  I think that we connect really well on some levels and that we are going through similar situations and can empathize with each other and have fairly mutual thoughts on what is happening and enjoying each other and sharing each other and I am grateful and happy and feel pretty fulfilled that I have that with him and I am hoping/guessing he would say the same.  Plus, the laughing and good looks and sweetness and orgasms and silliness and fun adventures and spoiling and differences in our personalities and being ourselves and being comfortable and feeling understood and open and vulnerable and and and etc. etc. etc.  Yeahh, the list keeps going and it’s all pretty fucking great.

15.         I’ve been catching up with and chillin’ with different new and old friends and with my family because I have had some more free time and have given myself a very engaging and diverse social life since my ex and I split ways and I feel pretty satiated and fulfilled outside of the workplace and that feels phenomenal.  <3  Making new male friends has been somewhat interesting though because I am a very open person and can connect with just about anybody and enjoy connecting with just about anybody, but some can take that as me wanting to connect on a different type of level.  And yes, I know that I am a sexually driven person and technically I am not in a committed relationship, so I am open to connect with people on that level, but I don’t necessarily want to at this point in time unless it feels right.  Did you read #14, the paragraph before this one?  Haha.  Anyway, I guess I’m saying I’m finding it difficult to define boundaries and lines with new friends when I do my best to go into all interactions with love and openness.  It’s like there has to be an awkward moment where clarity is made..  For some reason I feel like that shouldn’t have to happen, but maybe it does?  I am not really sure how to do this yet – clarify things with people.  The sentence I try to form in my mouth is something like “I just want to be a platonic friend with you right now, but that isn’t necessarily how I will always feel as I get to know you more” and that sounds so weird, so I never end up saying it.  But I’m learning.  I’d like to talk about this topic more with people so I can get different opinions and input besides the most common “well maybe you just shouldn’t hang out with them if it’s so awkward” because that isn’t the answer I’m looking for.

16.         Back to speaking of the workplace and tossing in some awkwardness, things are good at the law office, but have been a tad bit “off” lately.  Idk how to explain it, but I feel like the air is different and the vibes have changed.  I understand that totally happens naturally over time, but lately it’s been kind of forced and yeah..  Maybe it’ll clear?  Either way, I am about to celebrate my one-year anniversary at the office on Sept. 16th, so that’s cool!

Okk, I think this incredibly long post covers basically everything that’s been happening as of late.  It does feel really good to do an overview like this.  It’s eye-opening and I have a deeper appreciation and understanding for my experiences when I relay them like this.  You should try it.  (:  & if you read through all of it, thanks for reading!  I love you!  <3 <3 <3

Application Sent!

July 1st, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »




Yes, you read that correctly, the PEACE CORPS!


Lately, I have been wanting a change.  NEEDING change.


I have been wanting to be a volunteer for the Peace Corps ever since I started canvassing with Texas Campaign for the Environment in 2012.


So, I did it.  I submitted my application.


I got a follow-up email stating I would get another email in which I have to fill out my health history information, then everything would be complete.


Oh my gosh, I am so excited!!!!!


It’s possible that this time next year I could be helping a community somewhere across the globe!


<3 <3 <3


Also, I start my new Bikram yoga class tonight!  Hooray for change!  :D

Quarter-Life Crisis?

June 24th, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »


Oh hey, it’s been a while…

And I’m going through some changes.

I guess we all change a little every day, don’t we?




TMI interjection – I’m pms-ing and emotional as fuck, which started this whole post to begin with, which may turn into a ranting-melodramatic-blah-whatever-post…  Buckle your seat-belts boys & girls – you’re in for a long one.  Hah.

So, on that note, let’s ramp up these mixed emotions & start with some gratitude:


I am so very grateful for my family & my friends!  I feel like I can’t see them enough & can’t say “I love you” enough!  <3 <3

I am grateful for my job, which is super easy and pays very well.  I am grateful I work around a group of people who appreciate me and we all get along (not like I didn’t have this in my other jobs, but still, it’s really nice to have).

I am so grateful for my little car.  She is so good to me.  (:

I am so grateful I am financially independent and sound.  I am grateful that I am able to pay double rent (last month at the old place and first month at the new place) and it doesn’t put me in a hole.  I am so grateful I have never missed or been late on a payment to any credit card/rent/bill/bank/etc.  I am so grateful I have a savings account.  I am so very grateful I bought myself Invisalign!!  I am so grateful I never worry about if I can afford food or gas.  I am so grateful I am being a fairly responsible adult.

I am so mother-fucking grateful I am about to move into a townhouse closer to the heart of downtown and close to all the places I frequent and out of the fucking east side and with a cool new roommate who seems super chill and is easy to get along with.  I am so grateful I am going to be living with someone again.  I love the contrast of living alone sometimes and living with people other times.  I am so grateful for contrast and how quickly life changes.

I am so fucking grateful for intimacy and orgasms.  And sex puns. :P

I am so grateful to be inspired by myself and by others.  I am surrounded by so many talented and thriving people and it inspires me to do so much with my life!  Literally, as I typed that last sentence, my eyes started to prick with happy tears and my heart started to race with joy.  I am so grateful for life and all of the possibilities I have and get to witness in others.  I have a drive/pull for more and more and more.  I always want more, to learn more, to create more, to be more, to strive more, to change more, to love more.

I am so grateful that I have CHOICES.  I can choose what I want to eat and wear, what I want to purchase and where I want to work, where I want to go to school, where I want to hang out with friends, where I want to spend time alone.  I am grateful that I can feel proud of most of the choices I make.

I am so grateful that next month is my 1 year victory!  I am so grateful for anniversaries of awesomeness, like I’ll be 3 years vegan in October and 5 years cigarette free in December!  I am so proud of myself for these accomplishments!

I am so grateful for self-love.  You need to love yourself first before you can know how to love someone else fully.

I am so grateful for reflection.  Looking over my past – the places I’ve worked, the friends I’ve made, the people I’ve dated, the places I’ve been, the drugs I’ve done.. I can’t change any of it, and honestly I wouldn’t because all of together it makes me exactly who I am today and I am happy to be me. (:


So this is where the questions of “who the fuck am I at the core?” and “what the fuck am I doing with my life?” come in..

Hahaha, yep.


Like I mentioned above, I have this drive/pull to do more, but what do I want to do?  I have so many interests and sometimes it seems impossible to pick a career out of them.  Which is why I have two unfinished degrees in Architectural Engineering and International Business.. And now I kind of want to go back to school, but I don’t know 100% what I want to go back to school for.

Job wise, I want to go back into nonprofit work because it was SO FULFILLING and it kept me active – mind & body.  (I don’t like sitting at a desk and behind a computer all day – I don’t want to do this for the rest of my life & I literally can’t or I will go insane.)  I want to focus again on the environment and human rights through some type of nonprofit work.  I am still very politically active and want that to be more of my job in general and not just something I do in the down-time at my current job.  But I want to keep my current salary so that I can keep my current worry-free lifestyle.  And unfortunately, I know that I would not have the same money flowing with nonprofit work.. not with the canvasser lifestyle anyway.  And I know that I got super burnt out on canvassing, so I don’t think I want to do that type of non-profit work again.  What are my options?! Tell me!

Also job wise, I want to focus on fitness/nutrition.  This has always been a HUGE part of my life.  I eat healthy and get in shape, then I get out of shape by being lazy and binging on emotions.  I spent the last year overcoming a major battle that I have been fighting for years and I am SO PROUD of myself for this, but I still have a long way to go and I feel like if I focused on this for my career/school that it would instill my ideals and my personal accomplishments even further into my lifestyle and heart.  Maybe it doesn’t have to be my career, but I would love for it to be!  I want to share my accomplishments with others who need the motivation to get to wherever they want to be.

Honestly though, I really want to just get the fuck out of Austin, but then again, I don’t want to leave this great city.  I don’t know if that means that I need to travel more or what…  I love the city, the people, my friends, my family, everything.  But I also want to go SO BADLY.  I want to get a job in a different part of the world.  I want to travel all over the world.  I want to go to school in a different part of the world.  I want to get out, but still have the comfort of home.  I want a permanent apt/house in central Austin, and be able to leave for months at a time knowing that everything will still be there when I get back.  And I want to have the time/resources to create too – I want to be able to express myself through art and writing and dance and any other outlet that tickles my fancy.  I want bookoos of cash and endless hours so that I can do all of this effortlessly!  …  I guess you have to play the lottery to win, huh?


Bah, back to reality – should I go back to school for nonprofit management and/or personal fitness and/or nutrition?  I think that would be the ULTIMATE career – working part-time at a nonprofit for human rights and/or environmental justice and part-time as a personal fitness/nutrition trainer.  Can this be my little niche in the world?! THIS IS AN ATTAINABLE GOAL, RIGHT? .. I suppose anything is an attainable goal if you want it bad enough and are willing to put in the effort..

But then my head proceeds to flip out on money – “you just signed a new lease!, do you really want to have to pay back school loans?, what about FAFSA?, do you make too much money now to qualify for grants?, what about scholarships?, what school year should I apply for – fall 2015?, do you even need to go back to school to be able to reach your career goals?!?!” …

Then my heart jumps into my throat – “OMG, are you really going to do this?!, are you sure this is what you really want?!, I guess you don’t know until you try – right?!, but what if you just end up wasting time & money like the last 2 times you tried to go to college?!, again – are you sure you need college to reach your career goals?!, and again – are you sure this is what you want?!, UGHHHH – but I don’t want to spend the rest of my life behind a fucking desk and computer – no matter how good the pay is – my soul won’t be fulfilled with any type of basic administrative job!”

And then the break down beings –


WTF do I want to do with my life?!

Is this current idea I have for a career/college change what I truly need/want?!

How do I even get started in making the change, or any change?!

How do I answer these possibly rhetorical and inner-personal-growth questions?!




Breathe.  Damnit.  I am so grateful for breath.  <3


Because I Need It

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

Yup, this post is about the break-up.

Because I need it.

For reflection.  Later.  And now.


Change is inevitable.  It’s the one constant in life.

Funny how that works.

Things didn’t turn out the way I planned/imagined.

Oh well.

I trust the Universe.

It’s unfolding perfectly.




Personal growth is a good thing.

And now I have ample time to focus on myself.


Things I learned from all this:

  • I am more supportive than I thought.
  • I am more patient than I thought.
  • I am definitely a care-taker.
  • Maybe I should own a pet.  Probs not, though.  Pets are too hairy.  I’ll stick to plants.
  • I will be a fantastic wife if/when I get married.
  • I will be a great mother if I ever decide to have children.
  • I am more intuitive than I thought.
  • I am weird/quirky and make little noises all the time that I wasn’t really aware of before.
  • I am more jealous than I thought.  I’m kind of working on it.  Not really though.  More so just accepting it as fact.
  • I am completely surrounded by loving friends and family and I am so grateful for each and every one of them for being so fucking awesome.
  • I am definitely a hopeless romantic.  Ok, maybe I knew this one already.
  • I now know what absolute true and overwhelming love feels like.
  • You shouldn’t put someone else before yourself, because if they leave, then you are left with an un-fulfilled you.  (That is kind of shitty to say following the last point, but whatever.)
  • I am emotionally stronger than I thought.
  • I am pretty good at letting go/I am working on it.
  • I can do whatever the fuck I want and you can’t stop me.
  • I deserve whatever I want because I am an amazing individual.  Bam.  I said it.
  • And much, much more .. that I’m sure I will think of right after I post this.


Finally, I do want to note that we (Ethan and I) shared about 8 months of pure bliss in this relationship and I am so very grateful for the time we had together.

And that’s all I want to say about it.



Cruisin For A Bruisin

April 16th, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | 1 Comment »

Adventures of Betty & Kelly, aka Bets & Kets, aka Belly & Ketty, aka Barbara & Keisha, aka Barbie & Kesha!  :P  So many aliases!

Get ready to see too many pictures of Kelly and I acting ridiculous on our fabulous cruise!

It was 6 days/5 nights of nothing but wonderful on the Carnival Triumph & our ports were in Progreso, Mexico and Cozumel, Mexico!

**I may have left out some events; I had drunk-brain most of the trip.  Shit happens.  :P

Day 1

We were so freaking excited, we got hammered with three drinks each before the ship even set sail, haha!  It was quite a start to a very alcohol-soaked trip (our tab at the end was $800)!

At dinner we met our new BFF, Preston, who we hung out with pretty much every evening for the duration of the cruise.

– first drinks! the green iguana -

– our room! so happy to be on board -

– first little towel critter -

Day 2

We hit the pool decks with our books for a few hours, then went to lunch where the ENTIRE staff on the cruise broke out into the YMCA and dazzled us all!

We hit up an art auction with some free champagne and Kelly almost bought a $150 piece of art, but decided against it at the last minute.

We hit the casino to buy some playing cards for Kelly’s collection and paid a whopping $1 for the deck!  Then we crashed for a quick nap before dinner (we did this every day) and when Preston tried to remember our names, he deemed us “Barbara and Keisha” for the rest of the trip.  :P

We went to make fun of the drunk singers at Karakoe with Preston, the best of which was a woman singing Cher’s “If I Could Turn Back Time” with a raunchy fist pump, ahahha!

We laughed our asses off at the comedy show!  The comedian was hilarious and we made sure to see him again on our last night.

– drinks on the pool deck -

– nothing but ocean -

– a few drinks in -

– YMCA lunch special -

– Kelly doing some hallway drinking – 

– looking pretty for dinner -

more drinking after dinner -

– second little towel critter – 

Day 3

Progreso, Mexico!  Kelly and I walked the beach and settled in the perfect spot to tan and read for while before grabbing lunch and strawberry margaritas at a little beach-front cantina.

We did a little tourist shopping and then hopped back on the boat for a few more drinks & a nap.

We attended a talent show with only 3 acts, but they were good!

We went to the “deck party” with Preston where there were not nearly enough people dancing and an annoying camera man was all over everybody.  Needless to say, we didn’t stay long.

– Progreso, Mexico beach -

– one of many birdie friends -

strawberry margaritas on the beach -


– one of the longest piers in the world -

– back to the boat -

– drinking our calories -

– the ship’s smaller pool & hot tubs -

third little towel critter -

Day 4

We went zip-lining and snorkeling!!  We each only paid $90 and spent a few solid hours at a resort in Cozumel where we played on a zip-line obstacle course, climbing 60 foot towers and crossing rope bridges!  Then we went snorkeling and saw some little & big fishies doing their fish thing.

We were going to do a Tequila tasting, but we decided against it and headed back to the boat for lunch, some more shopping/drinking, and then took another much need nap.

We went to the Magic Show where we saw so many beautiful dancers in elaborate costumes and a few pretty good magic tricks!

We went to a show with Preston after dinner called “A Kiss Goodnight” which was a burlesque-ish show… they said you had to be 18+, but there was not one tit shown!

– snacks for later :b -

– resort in Cozumel, Mexico -

zip line obstacle course -

snorkel snorkel -

– Kelly being adorable -

Carnival Triumph -

– fourth little towel critter -

– we’re cute -

Day 5

We spent most of our day on the pool decks with our books, took a nap, and went to dinner.  This was by far the laziest day.  <3

We went to a double comedy show with Preston and got shit-faced with 2 bottles of champagne plus a few glasses.

We drunkenly stumbled to the piano bar for a few drinks and a sing-along sesh.

We took black-out pictures before passing out…  Oh joy.  :P

– last day view on the pool deck -

– our hilarious, handsome, and “humble” friend, Preston -

- black out pictures… not bad (; -

fifth & last little towel “critter” -

Day 6

We ported in Galveston around 8:30 in the morning.  Kelly and I were more hung over this morning than any other on the trip, haha.

We endured a nauseating breakfast, packed up our last belongings, stood in the customs line for a relatively quick period, and then drove back to Austin!

Once home, I unraveled with the love of my life.  (;  So good to be back in my own bed and in his arms.  <3


I am so very grateful for Kelly Joy Mullen and our 6-year friendship that continues to be fantastic fun!  Cheers to a great vacation & hopefully many more to come!

My Birthday Month

March 4th, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »

February should be a longer month.  It’s the shortest month of the year, yet it really has some great stuff.  I mean, come on – It’s the month of love!  Don’t get me wrong, I think Valentine’s Day is totally for boosting Hallmark and Hershey sales, but love is a great & powerful thing and it should definitely be celebrated!  And duh, it’s also my m-f-ing birthday month & I’m awesome!  Hahah.  :P

Alright, so this is what I experienced in this glorious & short month:

Feb 1 I went to Carnaval Brasileiro with Ethan, Sean, Laura, Kara, Billy, Forest, Jeremy, Malinda, Meredith, and Jordan. (All thanks to Kara because she had a bunch of free tickets to give away!) In sum, we had a drunken blast!  Haha. Ethan and I weren’t wearing a costume (because we decided about 2 hours before it started that we were actually going to go), so we were some of the weirdest ones there, but at one point Ethan lifted me up and put me around his neck and said that I was his costume.  :P  He’s so silly.

Feb 2 I spent half of the Super Bowl with my family & friends up in Cedar Park and half of it with Ethan & his friends. I found this year’s Super Bowl to be uneventful in that the game was a total domination of one team over the other and I like to watch in suspense as one team and the other fight their hardest to the end with just a few points separating the winner and loser. However, the commercials were pretty great in that they were laced with human rights/ equality!  :D

Feb 3 I went to see Buddy Wakefield’s World Tour with my friend, Meggan & her sister. I had never seen Buddy before, but I am a huge fan of slam poetry and he had some great stuff to share with us. I definitely wouldn’t mind seeing him again.

Feb 4 I finally got my license renewed! I have had the same license since I was 18 and it expired on my 24th birthday, so it was time. And wow, the DMV is just a lovely place, really buzzing with good vibes and provides an absolutely enthralling experience that can’t be replicated anywhere else. I can’t wait to go there again. (Where is the sarcasm font?)

Feb 5 My friend, Molly and I had dinner at El Alma! I think I mention her in every monthly update because we have monthly meet-ups, haha. But there was a lot to catch up on this time and it was great, as always, to see her. (:

Feb 8 I had lunch with my friend Tristan, aka T-Cup at one of my favorite places to eat, Bouldin Creek Cafe. I should really eat there more. They are soooo good and their menu is pretty much all vegetarian/ vegan! (:

Feb 9 I got in some sweet nephew snuggle time (like I do every weekend) and then met up with some old TCE friends that I haven’t seen in wayy too long and they all seem to be doing well, which is fantastic to hear!

Feb 10 Kelly Joy (who I’m going on a cruise with in April!) and I had dinner at Mama Fu’s and then I met up Jessica & Kelly for some late night fun to bring in my 24th birthday right!

Feb 11 My 24th birthday! I got off work early because my bosses are awesome. :D Then, Ethan surprised me with a bouquet of my favorite flowers (lilies), a plate of vegan dark chocolate covered strawberries & jalapenos (that he hand-dipped himself), a box of bon-bons, and a bottle of red wine!  Then he took me out to eat at New India (because Indian food is my favorite cuisine), and after that we went to the Austin Poetry Slam (because like I mentioned earlier, slam poetry is just wonderful and has a huge part of my heart)!  Oh, and while we were there we ran into my friends, Meggan and her bf, Freddy!  It was a great way to celebrate by 24th – I couldn’t have asked for anything better!  :D


Feb 12 Ethan and I went to the Austin Network Mixer which had a panel of different acting agents talking about their process and answering questions for the audience.  I surprisingly really enjoy going to acting events like this with him.

Feb 14 Valentines Day! <3  I had Jessica and Kelly over to my place for the first time since I moved in (which is insane because I have been there for almost 8 months). After that, I went to Ethan’s – I only got to spend the last 30 min of this day with him because he got off work so late, but we made the most of it! (;

Feb 15 DonNell & Vladimir took Ethan & I out to lunch at Haiky for a late b-day lunch! They also gave me some amazing vegan chocolates (one with lemon, one with honey, and one with walnuts & mushrooms) and a cute picture frame with a picture of me & my sweet little nephew in it!

Feb 20 I had dinner with my long time friend Amanda at Hunan Lion! She is preggers and is having a baby shower next month! I am so happy for her! I can’t believe that I have known her for over half my life.. crazyness.

Feb 23 Marked the begging of the last week of the month, which is National Eating Disorder Awareness Week! This is an issue that is very important it me and it should have more light shed upon it because eating disorders are a fucking bitch to deal with alone. Believe me, I know from experience.

Feb 24 I voted!  Hooray early voting for the primaries!  Can’t wait to see some positive changes in TX government!

Feb 26 Perfectly following that last sentence, it was announced that US District Judge of San Antonio granted a motion for preliminary injunction preventing TX from further banning same-sex couples from marrying in the state! It’s not official yet – but it’s a huge step in the right direction for TX! Hooray equality!

Feb 27 Ethan & I laughed our faces off at the Long Center! Did you ever watch the show “Who’s Line Is It Anyway?” – well Colin Mochrie & Brad Sherwood did a night of audience-involved improv and it was fantastic! Ethan & I even got to participate and make sound effects for starting a boat engine!  Gah, my cheeks are still sore from all the giggles!  Haha, too much fun!  :D

January Letter To You

January 31st, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »

Hello my loves,

I hope everything is going well in your life.  I miss you terribly.  Seriously, though.  I haven’t seen most you in too long.  I wish there were more hours in the day so that I could spend just a few moments catching up with each and every one of you.  I love you all so very much and I am so grateful that you are a part of my life.  <3

This new year has been more than wonderful thus far and I wish the same for you.  To give you some updates, my job at the Law Office in West Lake is still keeping me busy and happy.  I really couldn’t ask for a more fitting job at this point in my life.  I love my bosses and the work that I do for them.  It’s a relatively stress-free environment and I am more financially affluent than any moment in my past, which is so freeing.  (:

My boyfriend, Ethan consumes most of my out-of-work hours and I still wish we spent more time together.  He is one of the sweetest, most attentive, appreciative, sincere, and loving people I have ever met.  I could not have created a better boyfriend for myself.  His acting career has started to really blossom this month.  He has had quite a few auditions, meetings with different agents, acting/improv classes, and networking mixers.  He is making a solid start for himself.  I have so much pride in him and his dedication.  Also, I am more than happy to currently be his manager.  Yup, it’s my second job and I love it.  I am constantly finding a submitting him to casting calls and finding classes and events in Austin that correlate to his acting career.  We make a great team and I am so very excited to see where our future goes together.  <3

On the weekends, I have been going to see my new baby nephew, Arthur for a few hours.  He is a little over a month old and just snoozes/snores little baby snores in my arms.  He is sooo cute and brings so much pure innocent joy.  I am so grateful to be a part of his life.  <3

During this last month, I have celebrated some personal triumphs/changes, and though it may seem like TMI, I think that they are worth sharing.  First, I got the Mirena, a cervical implant birth control that is progesterone-based.  I haven’t been on birth control in over five years, so my body initially freaked out, but now things are settling back to normal and I am so grateful that I have taken the preventative measures to not get pregnant for up to five years in the future.  Can I just comment on how fortunate I am to have this option available to me and that I am 100% covered by my health insurance?  Yeah, that’s pretty fucking awesome.  Second, and also fucking awesome, I passed a 6-month mark of ending a previous destructive habit of mine and I am so proud of myself for this.  Yes, that is vague in wording, but it literally brings tears to my eyes to know that I am passed all that and that I won.  :D

In relation to that last statement, I want to comment on how much I miss my previous job and bosses/co-workers.. they were some of the best friends I have ever made (ones that I shared my last victory’s struggle with) and I wish I was able to spend time with them on a daily basis like I used to.  Not to mention, the empowering job of fighting for environmental justice, which I still do in my own way, but there is nothing like knocking on doors to gather support in passing legislation and holding corporations accountable/ changing their horrid policies.  *Mental note, I need to make time to see them, ASAP.*

Well, I suppose that about sums up what all has developed over the month of January.  It’s crazy to realize the first month in this new year of 2014 is already behind us.  Can’t wait to talk to you next month; it’s my b-day month!

Yours very truly,

Betty Leigh Verbeke


December Days & Ending 2013

January 2nd, 2014 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | 2 Comments »

I would like to start by saying that I am one lucky girl and that I am so so so very grateful for my life.  <3

Oh, and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!  This one is going to be the best one yet, I know it!

The month of December seemed to go by extremely quickly … time flies when you’re having fun, right?  Well, this is how I spent those precious moments that zoomed by:

Dec 1 – I met up with my old friend, Chontelle that I haven’t seen since I was attending UT in 2009.  Needless to say, it had been a while.  Over the last few years we have been in contact via FB, but this was our first time to sit down face to face.  We met up at Spider House Cafe and chatted over a few drinks about life and Jennifer Lawrence (who I apparently remind her and everyone else of, haha).

Dec 2 – Marked 3 months of my boyfriend, my love, my Ethan, being in my life. <3

Dec 4 – I went to Curra’s Grill on Oltorf with my friend Molly!  It is our ritual to nom on Mexican food and margaritas about once a month to catch up and girl-chat like you wouldn’t believe.

Dec 7 – Ethan tried Indian food for the first time at G’Raj Mahal on Rainey Street, one of my all-time favorite places to eat in Austin.  It was freezing outside by this awesome little food trailer, but they had heat lamps, we had beer, and when the table next to us left, they gave us their blankets as well as some of their left over beers.  Of course, when we left, we passed on the blankets and those beers to the new table.  Tis the season for giving!  After we were happily stuffed, we went to see Ethan’s friend, Steve play a show with his band at Beer Land in downtown Austin.  They were one of the opening bands, but I thought they were the most fun and best on stage of the night!  (:

Dec 8 – I went to Ethan’s acting workshop in New Braunfels and got to meet his acting coach, Gino, who I liked very much, as well as a few of the other potential talents.  Once back in Austin, we stuffed our faces with yummy Vietnamese food at Hai Ky on Oltorf.  Mmmm.

Dec 12 to Dec 15 – Ethan and I were in Dallas for Ethan’s acting showcase!  I don’t think I could possibly express how proud I am of him and how well he did!  (:  I learned here, among many things, that there is a lot of confidentiality when it comes to acting, so expect lots of vague yet giddy posts in the future, haha.  Dec 15th was also the 2-year anniversary of my sister, DonNell and her husband, Vladimir (and I am honored to be the one who united them in ceremony)!

Dec 16 – This may be too taboo for you to read, but I think it is important: I found a new lady-doctor and I really like her (Dr. Jukes on Bee Cave Road)!

Dec 21 – DonNell, Vladimir, and I went to the Blue Genie Art Bazaar to buy Christmas gifts!  Every year my sister and I shop for each other while we are together, which makes picking out gifts a stress-free event.

Dec 23 – I spent some time with my friends, Jessica and Kelly!  They still had all of their art up from the art show they held earlier in the month while Ethan and I were in Dallas, so I got to see what it was all about and purchase some of their art!  Also, they treated me to an impromptu dinner because they are awesome friends.  (:

Dec 24 – My friend, Amanda and I spent a quick minute catching up with each other at my apartment before I got ready for the evening.  That night, Ethan and I had a lovely Christmas Eve at Ethan’s parent’s house with his family.  They are so sweet and accommodating!

Dec 25 – Ethan and I had Christmas dinner with my family (Mom, Dad, Sister, and Brother-in-law) and then went to the Moviehouse & Eatery to see The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.  The dinner was delicious, and the movie was definitely an inspiring one!  I can’t wait to travel more!

Dec 26 – Ethan was super sweet and came to my work to replace the brake lights on my car (we got pulled over on Christmas because of this… luckily we only got a warning) and he met all of my co-workers.  Of course, they gave him great reviews once he left, as I knew they would.

Dec 28 – My sister had her baby!  My little nephew, Arthur is now in the world and is oh so cute!  I went to the hospital and got to hold him for a few hours.  <3  He is just a little bundle of love.  I cannot wait to be a part of his life while he grows up!

Dec 29 – I snuggled with my nephew for a few more hours!

Dec 31 – Ethan and I brought in the New Year on Rainey Street!  First, we went to Icenhauer’s, where we gulped down a beer while listening to not the greatest music in the world, haha.  We then quickly closed our tab and crossed the street to The Blackheart.  This venue had a much more chill vibe and way better music.  Here, we counted down the seconds to the New Year and kissed at midnight.  <3  We stayed till 2:30-ish, talking about various adorable couple-y things and left when they finally took away our drinks and were kicking people out.  Afterward, we tried to go to an after-party that I was told was going on, but when we got there, the house was dark and everyone was passed out, haha!  So, Ethan and I went back to my apartment and stayed up till about 9 in the morning chatting and such.  (;  I could not have asked for a better way to spend this NYE and I hope that 2014’s NYE is spent with this wonderful man of mine as well.  <3

XoXo – kisses and hugs to all of you!  I wish you all peace, love, and happiness in every moment of every day!  Cheers!

See Ya Next Year, November! XoXo

December 3rd, 2013 Posted in Thoughts & Thanks | No Comments »

Well, as you can probably guess from all of my tweets and facebook updates, this month was full of time spent with Ethan.  <3  I couldn’t ask for anything more.  There are not enough adjectives to describe the depth of how I feel for him.  <3  Plus, he did me the great pleasure of not shaving the entire month for No-Shave-November!  Haha.  Beards are awesome.

Anyway, on to the highlights of what happened this November:

Friday, the 8th, I met up with my friend, Kelly Joy for a fish-free sushi meal at Haiku.  We had a lovely time catching up with each other, giggling and girl-chatting our corner of the restaurant.  During our dinner, Kelly spotted one of her coworkers sitting at the sushi bar and sent her a hello-text and smile from across the room.  Her coworker replied with a bottle of sake sent to our table!  So nice.  (:

Saturday, the 9th, Ethan and I met up with my friend Meggan and her boyfriend, Freddy for a fun-tastic night in Austin.  We started at Luster Pearl, getting warmed up with drinks and snacking on some tasty noms from the little food truck parked in the back patio area of the bar.  Then we found our way to The Hideout Theatre for a hilarious competition-based improv show where we all heckled the actors and laughed heartily and downed more than enough beers to last us the rest of the night.. but of course we didn’t stop there!  After the show, we went back to Rainey Street to give our livers a little more to filter at Bangers (our go-to while in the down-town part of Austin).  Once Meggan was officially cut off from the bar (which she was more than ready, so no big) we decided to bounce out.  Ethan and I then grabbed our second round of food at Magnolia Cafe (yes, we ate there twice in one day) and safely found our way back home to sleep through the night and most of the following Sunday.

Sunday, the 10th, I had a late hung-over lunch with my friend, Jon at Polvos.  This was Jon’s first time eating there, and I’m proud to have given him that experience, suffering from the night before or not.  Haha.  Polvos is probably my favorite Mexican restaurant in Austin, strictly because of their outstanding and unlimited salsa bar.  Plus, their micheladas are kick-ass!  Anyway, I was glad to hear that Jon was back in Austin and canvassing strong with TCE.  Man, do I miss that group of people.  <3

Wednesday, the 13th, I had dinner at the Clay Pit with my friend, Ronnie.  If you like Indian food, then you like the Clay Pit.  Haha.  They are delicious and not over-priced, which sometimes can be the case when it comes to Indian food.  Also, they have perfect serving sizes.  I was pleasantly full at the end of the meal, but not miserable by over-consumption of sinfully-rich foods.

Thursday, the 14th, I hung out with my friend Kara for some much needed girl-chat!  I love this girl so much and she is the queen of holiday decorations!  Seriously, her little apartment is decked out with more holiday decor than some houses.

Friday, the 15th, Ethan and I hung out with my friends Laura and Sean.  They invited us over for dinner (thank you, the tacos were delicious!) and we brought over some yummy beer to share.  It was a chill evening.

Sunday, the 17th, I went out to lunch and went shopping with my Mom.  These days are always appreciated.  <3

Thursday, the 21st, was my sister, DonNell’s birthday!  To celebrate, Mom, Dad, DonNell, Vladimir, Ethan, and I went to see the second movie in the Hunger Games series, Catching Fire at the Moviehouse & Eatery off of 620.  They have a full menu and leather recliners as every seat.  It’s pretty swank and definitely worth the few extra bucks.  Catching Fire is an action-packed film, for sure, is a quick 3 hours long, and leaves you at a cliff-hanger for the third to come out.. and according to my family, friends, and tons of strangers, Jennifer Lawrence is my doppelganger.  So if you liked the first movie, go see the second and see me in action!  Haha.  By the way, not only was this day my sister’s b-day, it was also Ethan’s first day to meet the family.  <3  And of course, I got the “stamp of approval” from them all.  (:

Saturday, the 23rd, Ethan and I went to go see a house my Dad is finishing for a client.  It has a posh retro decor, which fit the style of the house, being that it was located right off of 35th St. and Mopac.  The counter-tops in the kitchen alone cost more than what I make in a year.  I can see myself in a house like this in the future.  :D  It’ll happen!

Sunday, the 24th, I went to a SoLDier meet up hosted by the lovely Emily!  We ordered Conan’s vegan pizza and took shots of vodka while filling out some good-vibes worksheets provided by the infamous Kelly Cree and Jessica Mullen.  The evening was divine!

Tuesday, the 26th, I popped Ethan’ Poetry Slam cherry!  Haha.  We went to the Spider House Ballroom to see a wonderful and inspiring group of poets.  I absolutely love this venue and the poets that slam here.  I think they are some of the most talented and creative people.  I used to go to this particular slam all the time with my friend Dan (go team Red Fish, Blue Fish! haha), way back before I worked for TCE.  I am so grateful I have the schedule available to start going to again!

Thursday, the 28th, was Thanksgiving (duh, like you didn’t know) and I spent the day with Ethan’s family.  <3  It was my first time to meet them all.. and unlike my small family, I met a ton of his extended relatives, probably close to 30 people in all.  It was a stimulating day, full of love and good food.  Ethan’s step-dad’s mom was so sweet and made me a delicious vegan stir-fry and Ethan’s mom bought me Sriracha to go with it!  I couldn’t have asked for a better Thanksgiving meal (I also sampled some vegetarian side-dishes and deserts… mmm, thank you holiday food)!  It was so nice to get to see where Ethan comes from.  His family is not unlike mine, in that they are very kind and can do a fair-share of shit-talking, haha!  We wrapped up the night with a bonfire in the back yard and I relished the smoke smell being soaked into my jeans for the next few days.  Funny story to go along with this: I was cooking some apple-caramel-pecan-pastries to bring to this Thanksgiving dinner at 2 in the morning, the day of (yes, I know, so smart) and I ended up falling asleep while baking them and woke up around 4 am with burned pastries and an apartment full of smoke.  Haha, oops.  Turns out my fire alarm doesn’t work.  Anyway, I ended up just scraping my little muffin pan into my sink while deliriously laughing my ass off and airing out my apartment before going back to sleep for a few more hours.  I was a nervous wreck the day of, but it all turned out fine.  I just hope I got that same “stamp of approval” from his family.. we shall see.  (;

Friday, the 29th, was my friend Cuuhhhrriiisss’ birthday!  :b  Ethan and I joined Chris, Kaitlin, DonNell, Vladimir, Keith, and Greg, for dinner at Uchiko!  Holy mother of all that is fabulous, that dinner was so good!  We let our waiter take the reins on what to brings us to eat.  Yes, the bill was a bit scary at the end of the meal, but we had about 10 courses of decadent Japanese tapas-style dishes.  The way I would describe everything is with the oxymoron lightly-rich.  After the meal of a life time, Ethan and I went to my friends, Jessica and Kelly’s apartment for a quick visit.  We chatted, took shots of vodka, and drew art with our non-dominant hands (it’s silly fun, you should try it sometime).  After our chill visit, we wrapped up the night at Bangers and talked and talked and talked till the early morning.

Saturday, the 30th, Ethan and I woke up more hung-over than I have been in a long time and decided to sober up a bit a Kerbey Lane Cafe, our new go-to place for weekend brunch, even though we have to wait like an hour every time we go, it’s so worth it.  Kerbey was the only place we went to on Saturday.  We spent the rest of the day cuddling and saying sweet things to each other in his apartment.  (Ya, I know, get a room and shut up about it already, but I can’t help it, I’m in love. <3)

Haha, well, that about sums up the month.  I can’t wait to see what December brings!  So grateful for this life!!!