1

9944

I honestly don’t remember learning to cook, to bake or to feel comfortable in a kitchen. I remember spending time next to my mom, my grandma and my aunts following along while they were making dinner, standing around talking about my day at school while dinner was being made, the first batch of cookies I made and how I fell in love adventuring with food and recipes while in college. I vividly remember a conversation I had with my Mom and Grandma when I was younger, telling them that we should have a family restaurant because our family is full of good cooks… I put that idea on the back burner for a long time, until the kettle it was in whistled louder than any other idea I’d had.

I finally took the leap in July to start my business. I posted a picture of my filed Fictitious Business Name paperwork on my Instagram, but other than that, I didn’t make a big deal about it. I was afraid that I would want to back out and not go through with a dream I’d held onto for so long. When I decided to start this blog, it was going to mostly be about the trials and tribulations that occur when you’re starting a business, but somewhere along the line I got distracted and made the choice to start writing about more personal things. This wasn’t a bad thing at all, just not my original intention (don’t worry, I’m totally going to write random posts about things.. especially if Brittany Gibbons continues to come up with writing prompts!). Yesterday I skyped with my friend Caitlin and told her that somewhere along the line, I started evading the idea of posting progress made toward starting my bakery; mostly because it would mean that I have evidence of what I’ve done and I’m accountable for it. It’s quite a scary undertaking and I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to actually do it. We talked about it and I decided to throw caution to the wind and post about my progress.

IT'S HAPPENING

IT’S HAPPENING

In short, there it is. Each piece of that multi-colored pie is something that I still need to do to get this business off the ground. It doesn’t seem like a lot, but each step has a lot that goes into it. The diagram reminds me of a Trivial Pursuit game-piece, and I guess in a way that makes sense. It can be difficult to collect each little wedge to fill the pie, but those who do win, and I like winning. I’m nervous, and I’m scared, but I know I’ll be able to cross off a couple things in the next month or so, and I promise that when something gets crossed off, I’ll post about it.

On top of being nervous and scared, I’m also insanely excited. I have great friends who are more than willing to help me along the way. Kayla Ihrig is designing my logo, Caitlin is most likely going to help out with my website, people are signing up left and right to taste-test and I have support coming out of the woodwork. I think that’s part of the anxiety, I don’t want to risk letting these people down. I know, I know; if I don’t try, it’ll be a bigger let down than failing.

I’ve decided to start Autumn working towards the loudest whistling dream and taking a HUGE step forward in building the life I want because no one else besides me can do that. Here goes nothing.

1

10 thousand years.. will give you such a crick in the neck.

One year, two months and three days ago. I know, it still hurts and it’s still hard to go home knowing that your grandma isn’t there. I’ll start by telling you this, it gets a little easier, but you’re still going to miss her a hell of a lot, even 11 years later. 
 
Today though, you need to understand what is about to happen. Right now, you’re heading to Knott’s Berry Farm for a fun day with a couple good friends. You’re going to ride a roller coaster with loops for the first time and your best friend is going to give you advice that help save your life later on. She’s going to look at you dead in the eye and say “When we go into the loop, close your eyes. You won’t freak out about being upside down, you’ll feel like you’re flying and it’ll be awesome.”
When you leave the park that night, you’ll be laughing and happy and you’ll have memories to last a lifetime. Brace yourself because the ride home is going to change your life. 
That Jeep Wrangler you saran wrapped a couple months earlier for your best friend’s birthday is about to look a lot different. You’re going to get into a horrific car accident. You’re going to get hit in the carpool lane, teeter for a while, spin a couple times and flip. You’re going to end up in the middle land of the 91, some strangers are going to cut you and the other two girls out of the car and make sure you’re okay. I promise you’ll walk away from it with only a few more stitches and some oil from the freeway in your wrist that the ER doctor couldn’t get out. 
I’ll show you pictures of the car after the fact, just so the nausea will subside:
This accident will change you. You’ll be fearful of cars and going too far from home. You’re going to pull away from everything you know and you’re going to quit the track team for a couple days. You’re going to develop insane anxiety that you don’t know if you’ll ever overcome and you’re going to hate, absolutely HATE being in the car for a very, very long time. Freeways will always be worse than they once were, and big intersections will terrify you in ways that are hard to comprehend. 
 
It’s okay to be scared, I promise. You’re going to make it and you’re going to do some really cool things in the next few years. 
 
You’re going to start college a week or so after the car accident. You’ll be walking with a crutch and your wrist will be all wrapped up, but you’ll manage to get around the campus just fine. You’ll join the track team and you’re going to have the hugest crush on one of your teammates… those feelings are going to linger for a long time, and you’re not going to act on it. You two are going to be good friends for a while though, and you’re going to transfer to your university at the same time too. You’re going to be amazing at shot put and discus, but guess what? Just like with basketball, you’re going to get hurt and you’re not going to be able to do all the things you want to do because your back is going to be shot. You’re going to transfer to the school that you’ve wanted to go to since junior year and love it. You’re going to become an RA and you’re going to make great friends. You’re going to call that same guy you had that crazy crush on when you find out that your old teammate passed away, and you’re going to go to the funeral together. 
 
You’re going to be insecure about a lot of things, and, as I write this, that one thing you hope will have changed by now will not have changed – I know, stupid right? You’re going to finally find a doctor who cares about your voice and who will listen to you when you tell her all the things that are “off” and she will help you find out what’s up with your body… your body will still frustrate you, but at least you’ll know why and how to combat it. 
 
You’re going to have some TERRIBLE bosses. You’re going to become so stressed out that you lose 15 pounds. You’re going to cry a hell of a lot because of all this, but it’ll get better. Because of that job, you’re going to cross a lot off your Bucket List, starting when you turn 27. You’re going to go to a lot of concerts, you’re going to travel, you’re going to get tattoos and laugh, loudly. You’re going to find confidence in the weirdest places, one of them being a Bikram yoga studio. You’re going to do incredible things that you never thought you’d be able to. 
 
Don’t tread too lightly, regardless of your fears. Stay true to what you know is right and you’ll get to where you want to be, just not on the schedule you want it to be on. People are going to badger you constantly about driving and you’re going to get very angry about it. Do the best you can, keep trying and the anxiety and fear will slowly subside. The part that is going to be hard to get a better grasp on is being in control, not being able to control the people around you is going to drive you crazy. Keep trying though, okay? Even when you think the mountain is insurmountable, keep pushing. Trust yourself because it’ll happen. You’ll still struggle with it at 28, but you’ll be a couple steps away from getting there, not miles away like you’ll feel like. Keep thinking that being in a car and driving is a normal thing, everyone isn’t trying to kill you, and you’ll make more progress than you realize. You’re also going to become a champ at navigating public transportation in just about every city – some people are going to think it’s weird, but you’re going to love it. Especially riding the subway in New York City and DC – yeah, you go to both of those places.
 
You’re going to become your own worst enemy for a long time. You’re going to be emotionally and verbally abusive to yourself and you’re going to suffer quietly but eventually you’re going to become better and be kinder to yourself. You’re going to refuse to be bitter about the cards you’ve been handed and start creating your own deck. Keep taking those baby steps forward, it’ll be so worth it. You’re going to gain and lose friends that you thought would be there forever, but you’re going to feel a great weight lifted when you move on. It sucks, you know this already, but it’ll feel so much better once you realize how much further you’ve gotten because you don’t have people constantly doubting you.
 
Keep going. Keep moving forward. Despite your doubts, you’re going to make it through the hard times and you’re going to have a blast.
 
Don’t give up on yourself, okay? You’re only 18, and it’s super cliche, but you’ve got the whole world ahead of you. Go adventure.
 
2

fat.

Fat.

I don’t remember the first time the word was said to me. I don’t know if I overheard someone saying it, using it to describe me, or if it was a self-directed jab.

I wish I knew.
I wish I knew where that feeling came from.
I wish I knew so that I could make it stop.

With the exception of when I was born and the few months after, I was never a small person. I was taller, I was bigger, I was faster, I was stronger. When I was younger, and sometimes still, I just wanted to fit in, to swim with the rest of the fish and not stick out. I wanted to wear the same clothes, to not feel like a fish out of water constantly.. and to not be in the middle of every class or team picture because I was the tallest. I just wanted to be in the front row and play shortstop, not in the middle of the back row and stuck out in the outfield because no one could hit that far, you know?

I was made fun of a lot growing up, but I never considered myself bullied, and I think that’s partly because people were just talk, they never put their words into actions because I was a head taller. There were some mean kids, and they said mean things, and I’m extremely lucky that I don’t remember a lot of it. I don’t know if I just pushed it from accessible memory, or if it was more self-imposed than anything.

In our culture, the word “fat” carries so many things. It carries strife and anxiety. It carries fear and self-hatred. It carries a feeling of inadequacy and self-loathing. I really don’t like it. In Spanish, when you’re called “Gordit@” as a kid, it’s more of a factual statement. Sometimes its even a term of endearment from your grandma, but in English… nope, not so much.

Being called fat did a lot of subtle damage, I’m finding. I’m still trying to get over and through my own struggles with my body and how it does, or doesn’t, work, and it’s hard. Very hard, actually. The one thing I have learned is that no matter how hard it is, taking even a tiny step forward and out of the shadow of a word is breathtaking in all the right ways.

0

Good News!

Well, I’ve moved the blog over to WP, mostly because the ability to integrate it with sites I’ll be using more and more in the near future is much greater.

I’ve gotten a new laptop, so once I’m home from San Diego, so my blogging, writing and general internet prowess will be much better! I have quite a few things in the works, possible jobs, writing spots and insane goodness. I’m not keen on talking about things before they are for sure, so I’ll make sure to update whenever a new thing presents itself.

I’ve updated just about everything with my about.me link and my new blog address, but in case you’ve missed it, check here: http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/12050999/?claim=vv55e3s5ncu

Happy Wednesday. xo

0

In the corner..

I spent a good portion of my night in a corner with these two hooligans:

After the men’s basketball won their last home game, Loren, Shefali and I headed to The Beach Club for dinner. I haven’t been out to dinner or drinks with many people lately. Working graveyard (and now not working) has kept me home to sleep or to save money, so tonight it was nice to have good girlfriends, good basketball, decent food and incredible jokes surround me. I don’t think I’ve laughed as hard as I did tonight. 
Long Beach, the CSULB campus and the Walter Pyramid are my homes away from home. It’s where I feel comfortable, where a lot of things make sense, and where I really grew up. It’s where I’ve laughed, cried and stayed up learning life’s secrets with my friends til the sun comes up. I truly love this city and all it has to offer. I can’t wait for the day that I move back. 
It’s beautiful, isn’t it? 

0

Re-directing.

I never thought this blog would become one where I talk about what’s going on in my head, or what plagues me at a certain point. Over the last few months, I’ve realized that in order for me to open up and grow and move past some things, it has to. I have to learn to open up because I’m too old to continue building the Great Wall around me. I’ve seen what that does to people, how they become cold and bitter and that’s the last thing I want. 

So I guess here come The Fear Diaries. At least for a little while. 
7

Wheels (almost) up!

There comes a time when we all have to venture, when we set off on our own to travel and see places and experiene things that we never could have imagined. 

My time starts in a few minutes when I board a plane for New York City. I decided to take this trip for so many reasons… many of them coming after I initially planned to go. 
I decided to go to Europe because a dear family friend, who is more my cousin than anything else, is getting married in Spain. That said, I hemmed and hawed before I decided that yes, I was going to go to Europe. After coming to terms with that, I figured it would be smart to see if my friends from college who are stationed in Italy. Okay, Italy and Spain. Sounds great, right? Right, I thought so too. Once I got the date for the wedding I started looking at my vacation time (I was still working at the time) and savings and realized that I could take an “extended” trip and have a grand adventure. When looking at prices, I figured it would be cheaper to fly out of a hub on the east coast because it was a shorter flight. Good decision for sure.. so then okay, flying to New York, no big deal, Jet Blue has flights there every day. 
I was able to book my flights from JFK to Barcelona and back, knowing that I would be able to arrange flights aroud Europe later on when I had more of an idea of what was going on. Two weeks in Europe was already the trip of a lifetime, especially beacuse I would be seeing good friends/family and going to a wedding. Another big decision then came up: New York. Should I stay there a few days and see the city, or should I just use that as a stopping point? Knowing that I had always wanted to visit the city in some capacity, I figured why not? Why not spend 3 or 4 days visiting a storied city that has forever been on my list of things to do?
That’s when I realized that I had made a promise to myself a few years ago. “Go to NYC, even if for a few days, and get to Europe before you’re 30.” That’s what I had decided after graduating for college. I didn’t tell anyone, because that would 1) hold me accountable; 2) make it worse if it didn’t happen; and 3) because that would have just made sense. Regardless, I made that promise to myself, and low and behold here I was at 26 making plans to cross two things off my bucket list. 
4 days in New York, the red eye out from Long Beach, everything was making so much sense. I was working a ton of overtime, pushing aside any criticism and doubts from friends and family because I knew that in order to pay for this trip without cleaning out my accounts, I would have to work a little extra. It’s a damn good thing I did. In trying to calculate my vacation time, get it approved by my managers, the more I pushed to do the right thing and work with them, the more hoops I was told to jump through. No matter what happened, no matter how hard it was not to scream, or how much I really began to hate my job, I worked through it, I did a good job and made sure that no matter what I did, it was always the right thing. I jumped through their hoops as best as I could, but still there was push back because my new manager “didn’t like that people were taking long vacations.” Well, I had already booked the tickets and begun reserving rooms and hotels. There really was no turning back and by this time, I was determined to go. 
Thanksgiving and Christmas passed, the new year came and that’s when everything got a little crazy. Things at work were stressful, but still, I came in, did my job to the best of my abilities, and did my best to do it with a smile, no matter how hard some days were. That’s when, on my aunt’s birthday, I was let go. Fired really.. Well, as the official papers say, I was “terminated.” Cue me completely freaking out. This wasn’t how things were supposed to go. But here I was, walking out with bags of things acccumulated from the last two and a half years. I won’t lie, I wallowed for a while, thinking of cancelling my trip, trying to figure out a way to get everything firgured out financially as quickly as possible, constantly overwhelmed by the entire thing. Once the inital wave of freak outs subsided and my ego started to recover, I realized that things were going to work out. People always say that things happen for a reason, and yeah, I believe that to, but this?! In the beginning, this was just added stress, added worry, and added fear that I didn’t need if I was going to be traveling thousands of miles away. Now it was a complete and total blessing, allowing me the freedom and the ability to do as I pleased without having guilt hung over me that “I was leaving.” Now, I’m going on a grand adventure and excited about all of it, even just the idea. 
So here I am, sitting in the Long Beach airport, my bag checked, comfy travel clothes on (yes, with a change of clothes in my bag – there’s no way in hell I’m walking around New York looking ridiculous), books, movies, podcasts and music at the ready, waiting to board. Waiting to start my grand adventure on my mom’s birthday (best kid ever!). Yeah, I was fired on my aunt’s birthday (what a birthday gift, right?!) and I’m leaving on my mom’s birthday. If you know my family, you know that we have this weird thing where dates line up. DIfferent important things for our family will happen on the same day, years apart, or on someone’s birthday, so I shouldn’t have expected this to be much different. 
I’m headed for New York for 4 and a half days, then a travel day so that I get to Italy on May 22nd. then to Spain on May 30th. I’ll be back home June 7th, and as much as I am excited for this trip, I’m extra excited for what will happen when I get home, I have a lot on the horizon. 
I’ll be posting updates as much as I can, probably at random times, but expect lots of stories and pictures about what I ate, where I go and pictures of random, pretty things. and some of me and my friends of course. Then, when I come home, I’m determined to do what I’ve always wanted to do.. some of you know, some of you don’t, so for now, I’ll keep that to myself.. it’ll give me something to talk about when I get home, too. 
Here goes nothing, and everything, all at the same time. Wish me luck, I’m going to go have fun for a few weeks.