She believed she could, so she did…

Last week I received a phone call that would be the phone call I had been waiting on for just over a year.

In August 2014 I received my Bachelor of Science degree in journalism. It was more than a major I studied but an extreme passion of mine. I couldn’t wait to see what job opportunity would be awaiting for me once I received that official piece of paper and started applying for my dream job.

Well, it turns out, landing my dream job would take much longer than I anticipated. I applied anywhere and everywhere I could think of. At first I limited it to just Michigan but then after some time I decided to apply outside of Michigan as well. But, as more time went on I decided that I in fact DID want to STAY in Michigan. After all, I grew up here, most of my family lives here, and I just like Michigan.

After three months of having graduated I finally landed a job at Becky Beauchine Kulka Diamonds and Fine Jewelry. I was ecstatic, especially since I love jewelry (and later on became OBSESSED with Alex and Ani). I worked there until July of this year when deep down I knew my one and true passion was to work in the news industry. I enjoyed my time at BBK and definitely learned a lot, especially about great customer service, but, I knew I wanted to focus on pursuing a journalism job. While my ultimate goal was to work in the news industry, I knew that was probably going to take some time, again, to land so I decided to apply and work at Bath and Body Works in the mean time to focus on gaining sales experience. I had gained some while at BBK, but, I wanted to expand on it at BBW. After being at BBW for little bit, I learned I was accepted into an internship program at HOMTV in Okemos. I was beyond excited, thrilled, and couldn’t wait to start. I was going to be a social media/promotions intern and I knew this experience would help me in the long run. But, little did I know, I would later have to respectfully rescind my acceptance.

A week ago on Wednesday was when I received the call I was being offered the job of news assistant/producer at WILX in Lansing. I kid you not as soon as I got off the phone I was jumping up and down freaking out. I couldn’t believe it and was BEYOND excited that my dreams of working in a newsroom were FINALLY coming true. During the phone call I immediately said yes before Kevin, the news director, could even finish explaining the details. He even paused for a minute to say how agreeable I was being. I told him I had been waiting for over a year for someone to give me a chance to get my foot in the door. He said, well, now you have your foot in the door. I couldn’t stop smiling after I got off the phone. I was on cloud nine.

He asked if I could start one week from that day and I of course said yes. So here I am on my second day of work and I still can’t believe it. It’s an incredible feeling working in the field I am most passionate about and to be surrounded by people who share the same passion for news.

While this journey took a long time (to me anyway) and at times I wanted to throw in the towel and say “forget it”, I’m certainly glad I didn’t. And I didn’t because of the constant and continued support from my family, friends and colleagues. And after experiencing it myself, I’m telling you, to whoever is reading this and still waiting to land their dream job: DON’T GIVE UP. It can be easy to want to but, like so many people told me, something WILL come along. So hang in there, and don’t stop trying. You never know when you’ll get that dream offer via phone call or email. 🙂

As I continue to learn I will be trying my best to blog about my experience on a daily or weekly basis. As you know, I LOVE to write and being able to share my experience working at WILX is a great way to showcase that love.

Also, before I end this post, I must give a shout out to a former WILX member for being an inspiration and a huge reason I wanted to work here. I can’t wait to learn from the best and showcase what I learn. So thank you, for the advice and support along the way to landing this job. It’s nice to know I can now call you a colleague.

Until next time…

XO,

Ana 

Advice for incoming freshmen preparing for college…

Six years ago I was packing up everything I could fit into suitcases, bags and boxes to get ready for the move up to Mount Pleasant, Michigan. It would be a matter of days before I began my first day of my first semester at Central Michigan University. I was sad to be leaving behind my friends and even more so, my family, but I also couldn’t wait for what was ahead for me. As a new school year is set to begin for returning college students and a brand new, first school year for incoming freshmen, I thought I would share some ways you can prepare yourself for that transition.

  1. Buy a planner/get one for free at campus (at CMU they gave them away)
    I can’t stress the importance of a planner enough. Some students may think they have a great memory, which they might, but between everything else that goes on at college (football games, parties, extra-curriculars) it can be tough to remember what day and for what class you have an upcoming exam for or project due. I had a planner and I used it all the time–l used it so often that I did color-coding with pens and highlighters. I was a bit obsessive. You don’t have to be as obsessive as I was but it is definitely handy to have a planner to write down important dates and meetings.
  2. Make sure your classes don’t overlap/make sure you have enough time to get between classes
    While some professors simply don’t care or have the attention span to notice if you’re absent from class, others do, and will even even just tardies against you if you make being late become a habit. In college it isn’t required for you to go to class like it was in high school and before that, but, when you don’t show up it will inevitably hurt you. Most of the classes I took the professor offered 3 unexcused absences before he/she started counting them against you. Although some professors don’t even allow that. So be sure to plan your classes accordingly and actually GO to them ALL the time.
  3. Invest in a few staple pieces of clothing
    I’m not saying you need to dress up fancy for every single class–and you can actually even go in pajamas if you wish (I never did, but, to each their own)–but, you’ll be happy you wore something other than fuzzy printed pajama pants for your solo or group presentation and/or club meeting(s), etc.
  4. Talk with your roommate(s) to make sure you don’t end up with doubles of items in the dorm room 
    You don’t need more than one microwave, mini-fridge, shower curtain, shower caddy, multiple lamps etc. Plus, checking in with your roommates before gives you the chance to get to know them a bit before sharing the same corridor with them.
  5. Take the time to walk around campus before classes start
    Depending on the size of your campus and number of classes you’re taking you’ll be thankful in the end if you spent time prior to classes starting getting to know the layout of the campus.
  6. Read the syllabus for your classes
    As crazy as it may sound, some professors post the syllabus for his/her class several weeks in advance. It’ll have important information such as if a textbook is required, office days/hours, exam dates, etc. Plus, if you have that planner I mentioned earlier, you can write it all down so it’s easily accessible later on.
  7. Do proper grocery shopping
    It can be easy to get caught up eating Ramen noodles and leftovers from the night before, but, trust me that there will be times you wish you were eating a home cooked meal, especially when it’s still a ways from a holiday break when you can actually go home for a properly cooked meal. It’s fine to indulge in junk food every once in awhile (or more than that for me, oops) but freshman 15 is real if you let it be. 😉 Also, like #4, be sure to talk with your roommate(s), if you wish, to decide what you guys will be sharing/buying or not sharing/buying so you don’t have doubles of everything or eat food that isn’t meant for the other. Set some ground “rules”, if you wish.
  8. Bring sentiments from home but, don’t go overboard
    Depending how far you live from your college and how often you plan on going home, it could be a few months before you see your friends and family again so it’s important to bring items/pictures that you remind you of them until you get to see them again. Pictures are always a great choice and also can serve as decor, or something small like a trinket. For example, my grandma bought me a tiny giraffe trinket to remind me of her because her favorite animal is a giraffe. 🙂 It was the perfect treasure.
  9. Take advantage of the various events held before classes start–they tend to give away FREE stuff. And who doesn’t love free stuff?
    At CMU they have different events that give away freebies like planners, coupons, etc. (I can’t think of specifics right now, lol, sorry) and like I said, who doesn’t love free stuff? Plus, it’s a great way to meet other students who will be there and make plans for welcome weekend.
  10. Don’t forget to fit in fun along the way
    Obviously your main goal in college is to be successful and pass your classes and eventually graduate, but, don’t forget to fit in some fun along the way. And as the saying goes, “If it’s something you’ll regret in the morning, sleep late.”

Tell me, what advice do YOU have for incoming freshmen/returning students at college? I know I didn’t add everything they should know but, I tried to highlight what I personally thought were the most important. In the end, regardless of how much or little you are prepared for college, enjoy every single moment because it truly does go by in the blink of an eye–even for me, who was in college an extra year beyond the traditional four.

Until next time…

XO,

Ana

To travel is to live…

Wanderlust: A strong desire to travel

It’s my last day in California and while it’ll have been a brief stay, I am already wondering when I can make another trip out here.

Back at the end of January/early February a conversation was struck up between old friends. I didn’t realize that just a few months later I would be flying across the country, alone, to visit this friend.

I’ve traveled by myself to Tennessee before, which was no biggie, considering who I was going to visit was my roommate in college for four years. But this time, getting on a plane to head thousands of miles away, I felt a little, well, nervous. 

Don’t get me wrong, I was super thrilled and excited to come out here but I’m not gonna lie, I was nervous. But that feeling went away as soon as I set my eyes to the gorgeous scenery awaiting for me outside of the plane. In that instant I knew this was going to be a trip for the books.
The scenery/land here in California are like nothing I have never seen before. It truly is stunning and breathtaking. Now unfortunately with the state being in a drought, everything is brown, but nonetheless, still beautiful.

 

Nate took us on a scenic drive today and I wish I could take the views home with me. It’s that amazing. So many vineyards, hills, pretty landscaping. So much to take in, it was hard to know at times where to look. 

On Friday when I arrived we went to the Walt Disney Family Museum and San Francisco. The WDFM was awesome! As a huge Disney fan it was cool to learn more about Walt Disney and his family, along with his vision to make Disney World and Disneyland what it is today. After the museum we headed to Ghiradelli Square and Fisherman’s Wharf. We walked around, ate lunch and did some shopping. I even found a little California souvenir license plate with “Ana” on it. My one “big”, “tourist-y” purchase but well worth it, lol. Oh, and I totally got to ride on the Golden Gate Bridge and it was so awesome! Happy I can check that off my bucket list! 

  

 We also walked by a cupcake shop that I of course had to try. I love my cupcakes. Plus, they had the cute little pink boxes and you know if they come in a pink box they’re bound to me good. Okay, maybe that’s just me, but still. I got a chocolate cupcake with peanut butter ganache frosting and it was DELICIOUS! Kara’s Cupcakes knows what’s up. 

At Fisherman’s Wharf they also had a Madame Tussaud’s wax museum and while we didn’t actually go through it, there were wax figures of Beyoncé, Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio outside to take pictures with. I was so excited! I’ve always wanted to see the wax figures in person and that fact that I did was awesome.

  
There were a lot of people at Fisherman’s Wharf and lots of camera shops, which was just an observation I happened to notice and I thought was kind of strange. But, I guess people do still use cameras to take pictures, not just their cell phones. Ha ha. 

Another observation I noticed are…

– Starbucks are a plenty around here

– People love their In-And-Out Burger

– Mexican restaurants on what seems like every corner (my kind of city!!)

– You have to PAY for your shopping bag at most stores here if you buy something. If not, you end up like me at the Disney store walking out with my t-shirt and receipt in hand. 

– The bathroom stalls at the Oakland airport are nice and ROOMY! (It’s the little things that excite me, lol)

– The sales tax here is higher than ours, ouch.

– People driving motorcycles are allowed to pass other vehicles via in the middle of the lane–looks scary, I wouldn’t dare try to do that

There’s probably more but I can’t think of any off the top of my head so moving along…

  
Yesterday we went wine tasting and it was so much fun. The woman serving us has been at that vineyard for just four months but with how knowledgable she was I was impressed. There’s a lot to know I feel like. But she knew her stuff and even explained to me what the difference between “dry” and “sweet” were since when people ask what kind of wine I like I just say I like ALL and ANY. (Side note: My sisters and aunt are probably shaking their heads right now over me not knowing the difference, LOL)

  
After that vineyard we went downtown and ate lunch (can’t recall the name right now) and ordered a flight of beer. Yeah, not the best idea because I was so tired after that. But, I hung in there and after we ate lunch we stopped by a restaurant called Barn Diva where Nate’s friend works at. They have mixed drinks there like none I have ever had before but boy were they good. Plus, we basically had the place to ourselves since they were closed and had a wedding going on. Of course those drinks only made me more tired but I hung in there the best I could, lol.

After that we walked around for a bit more and then came back to the apartment. Later we ended up going to La Rosa, a Mexican restaurant, where I had a burrito with, get this, FRENCH FRIES in it. Talk about beat of both worlds. I love me my carbs and potatoes. 🙂 Their chips and salsa were on point too, delicious!

Once we got done with dinner we met up with Nate’s friend from earlier, Chris, and got drinks at Bear Republic Brewing Company. So Nate told me this is THE place for people to hang on any given night. I was still surprised to see there was a line and while I am not one to wait in lines (I’m so impatient) I was pleased we did because the beer was so worth it. Something worth mentioning… I’m definitely not used to drinking “good” beer back home–I always stick to my usual Bud Light (lol)–and so having all of these IPAs caught up with me quick. Still had a fun time though and glad I got to meet and hang out with Nate’s friends.

Today was fun being able to simply enjoy the scenery and check out another winery. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to since I felt a tad hungover from last night (oops) but a little hair of the dog seemed to go the trick. As did the In-And-Out Burger I had.

So, I guess In-And-Out Burger is like THE fast food place to eat here in California? Or maybe just Santa Rosa, but, the place was packed and there were cars wrapped around the building for drive through. My verdict: it was good but not a place I would spend that much time waiting for to go to. But maybe don’t listen to my verdict since I’m not even a burger person to begin with so… Moving along…

Oh, so there was a shop nearby I found out that sells Alex and Ani and while I didn’t want to buy them elsewhere, I couldn’t pass the opportunity up, especially since they had some really cute beaded ones that are being discontinued. Sales people know how to get me to buy–discontinuing, you say? I’ll take them! 😉

An unexpected but nice surprise after that was getting to meet Nate’s parents and grandparents, and finding out his sister is engaged. His family was so sweet, they treated us to ice cream and his grandma had me cracking up. They were all very sweet and it was a pleasure to meet them.

That was a wrap up of the day today since Nate has a rehearsal for his play to go to tonight and poor kid is driving me to the airport super duper early tomorrow. Yikes! I’m bummed to have to leave, although I am looking forward to sleeping in my own bed. So hopefully it’s smooth sailing tomorrow and I get home at a decent time so I can get some sleep. There’s a three hour time difference between here and Michigan so that’s cutting into my sleep schedule, lol.

But anyway… I’m definitely going to be coming out here again because like I said it’s so beautiful and I just want to experience what not only this state offers but this country too.

Well, better get to making sure I have everything I brought with me here packed and ready to go home.

Until next time…

XO,

Ana

Believe you can and you’re halfway there…

I really need to maintain this. For a girl who loves to write and always literally has lots to say, this blog says otherwise.

Anyway, after some time I think I may have finally found a topic I can write about–at least for this blog post. We’ll see how long I can stretch it out, maybe more than just this post but, here’s go nothing.

So, sometime back in February–the end of it–or early March–hell, I literally can’t even remember, oops–I finally decided to make a change. A serious one.

Within the last couple years, more than during earlier years (i.e. end of high school/early college), I have been not the most happy with my weight. I figured “meh, this is me. This is the weight/size I was meant to be so there’s that.” It got to the point where I became focused–no, fixated–on it. I was constantly thinking about my weight and wondering why I had to be given the gene of HATING exercising, LOVING food AND having a SLOW metabolism.

Once my weight became a constant thought on my mind I always told myself I would do something about it. I told myself I would eat better, not eat fast food; exercise, lift weights, etc. You name it. And so began when I half-ass attempted “working out” by walking like 30 minutes on the treadmill twice a week and not eating certain meals throughout the day. Yeah, a lot of good that did me, right? I got so bored on the treadmill that my motivation was quickly lost after a only few times. Plus, skipping out on meals only made me cranky and eat twice as much during my next meal. This inevitably lead to more weight gain.

I’m not sure exactly when my specific wake-up call was to do actually do something about my weight but once I started I got this sense of excitement and accomplishment once I started to see the number on the scale go down. I had done Weight Watchers in the past, started in 2013, and did it for a little while but then lost the motivation to keep going and I constantly felt deprived of not just my favorite foods, but food in general. I won’t deny I like food. In fact, I LOVE food. That’s why I hate the word “diet”, and seldom use it. I considered and researched other popular diets but I didn’t like the idea of a) having to pay for special food, etc. for weight loss when quite frankly I was already “paying” for having gotten to the weight I was. Wasn’t about to add insult to injury. Anyway… and b) I didn’t want to feel deprived. So, I took another approach. I decided to count calories and acknowledge that I would go over some days, but for those times I would make up by exercising to burn them off and then some or simply burning them off and breaking even.

It was, and still to this day, is a struggle for me to work out. I’ve been going at this counting calories and exercising thing for about 2-2.5 months now and let me just tell you–I didn’t like working out before and even to this day I’m still not the world’s biggest fan. Some days I FORCE myself to do it or actually just don’t work out period. (Bad, I know, but a girl’s allowed to have a rest day) But, one thing I’ve learned during this journey is that I actually, really do feel better, even if I am physically sore, after I work out compared to if I DON’T work out at all. I don’t work out every single day of the week even though some would say I probably should but, I do average about 3-4 times per week, which is better than those who don’t at all–which I used to be one of those people. And that’s not to say people who DON’T work out are lazy because some people are naturally fit and just don’t need to work out.

Anyway… In the past, after a few days of “counting points” and walking at a speed of 3.0 m.p.h. for 30 minutes, I was quickly disappointed by the lack of change in the number I saw on the scale. I was constantly looking for a quick fix and when that didn’t happen I gave up and thought, “Well, I guess maybe I was just meant to be this size” OR, “Guess I’ll just be this weight forever.” It’s not a healthy mindset to have and even now, fast forward, I still feel that way some days except, I KNOW I DON’T HAVE TO BE that size, or even my current size now. I CAN get to my dream/goal size with more hard work and dedication. It won’t come overnight just like my weight gain didn’t come on overnight as much as I like to think it did.

Like I said earlier, I can’t pinpoint exactly when I decided to make a serious change and actually on it but I think it was time back a few months ago and I realized if I kept eating and NOT exercising at the rate I was, I was going to have to keep buying BIGGER clothes–and that was not something I wanted to do. Not only that but I also didn’t want to gain any more for fear of a bigger issue at hand–like any health problems that can arise from being overweight. Well, and I had actually Googled peoples’ BEFORE and AFTER pictures and I thought, I want to be one of those people–I want to be my own success story.

So, after that moment I decided to act on the change I constantly talked about and I reminded myself daily that this was going to take time–weeks, months–but, that in the end, it would be worth it. I am not yet to my final goal weight but I’ve lost some weight already and can definitely tell in the way my clothes fit–they’re getting too big–and that serves as motivation to keep me going and to be proud of my accomplishment. It’s also motivating and reassuring when my family and friends tell me that they too have noticed a difference.

It’s strange though, and I didn’t think I would feel this way but I bet other people have felt this way too, I feel weird sometimes when people tell me ‘congratulations’ or ‘you look great’, ‘keep up the great work’, etc. Obviously that’s encouraging and motivating too but, I guess I never thought I would get to the point where I would have people telling me that so it’s kind of weird. But, like I said, it’s also encouraging and motivating so I keep people updated via social media with pictures, my work out motivational quotes I Google daily to remind myself to keep going, and even wear my FitBit, with my Alex and Ani bracelets, because I want to be held accountable in any way I can to keep moving and eat right and drink lots of WATER.

Speaking of “eating right” and drinking lots of water…

This brings me to my next point. So, after people compliment me they sometimes ask me what I’ve been doing. I tell them I’m counting calories and no longer drinking pop, which I gave up back in March (yay!) and exercising. And while I am not following a specific diet of only fruits and vegetables or low-carb or fat-free, I am making up what for what I eat in exercise. Now, not every one will agree this is a good approach to “dieting” and/or losing weight but I say to hell with them. It’s MY body and I myself will choose how to lose weight. I know I post it on social media for the world to see but that’s for encouragement–not for people to give their two cents on how I can and should tweak my current regimen. If people have actual helpful advice/tips then I am all ears but when it’s something entirely different, than I really just don’t care.

It’s hard to believe it’s been 2.5 months since I’ve drank any pop. I have to admit, even to this day I still have cravings sometimes. Not nearly as bad as when I first gave up pop but sometimes a little ol’ carbonation just sounds DELICIOUS! Plus, I get bored of just plain ol’ water so I mix in unsweeted regular tea, unsweetened green tea, black coffee and WATER ENHANCERS! I tell ya, water enhancers are the best! They’ve help change things up and make not miss pop as much. It’s wonderful. 🙂 But, I’m human and so of course I am going to have cravings every once in awhile but I haven’t given in yet so that’s good, right? RIGHT!

It’s been a roller coaster of a ride–this “journey” of mine, if you will–but, I like to look at it as a lifestyle change. I can’t really call it a “diet” since then I will probably feel as though I can revert back to my old ways once I reach my goal weight and I can’t. I can’t unless I want to go back to where I was. And I don’t. Ever.

I am saying goodbye to that girl. It sounds so corny but literally saying “goodbye” to my excess weight and becoming a healthier me is what keeps going and pushing harder everyday. And so does looking at pictures from a couple months and beyond compared to now. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at these pictures…

Left: September 21, 2014 Right: May 9. 2015
Left: September 21, 2014
Right: May 9. 2015
Left: April 2014 Right: April 2015
Left: April 2014
Right: April 2015

So, here’s a goodbye to the old, heavier me and hello to the new, healthier me. That’s my number one goal–is to be healthy. My second goal is to feel more good–feel more confident–when I wear clothes without any shadow of hesitation, like, “Did I make the right choice in wearing this?” I love clothes, fashion, and I like to think I have a good sense of style but *loving clothes and having a sense of style* and actually *feeling 100000% percent confident in your clothing choice* are two different things. I’ve felt confident in the past in the clothes I bought (regardless of the fact the size wasn’t a size I wanted to be at/wasn’t necessarily healthy) but, this time around I want to be at that 100000% confident without any about.

Well, wish me luck as I continue this “weight-loss/lifestyle change/healthier me” ride/journey. It won’t be without both ups and downs, high and lows, and setbacks and successes so be prepared. I am only human so I will make mistakes. This lifestyle change (or as some people may see it “diet”) won’t be perfect–and I’m not intending it to be so, it will take trial and error and time. Hopefully I can semi-maintain this blog with results of my weight-loss–oh, that’s another incentive/way to keep me motivated to lose weight–if there are people counting on me or just simply looking forward to my continued progress of weight-loss and becoming healthier. Hmm… We shall see.

Enjoy your Memorial Day weekend, everyone. And thank you to those past, current and future for serving. ❤

Memorial Day 2015
Memorial Day 2015

XO,
Ana

Hello, 2015!

It’s officially a new year. Another year down in the books. Another day, another chance to start fresh. After all, isn’t that what the new year is about?

I know for some people, even myself, the first day of the new year can be so cliche for new things, new goals, new aspirations, etc. to take place. But, if not now, then when? Something about a brand new slate gives people that extra push of motivation to get going on those new “things” they’ve been after.

Now, what do I have “new” going on for me this year in 2015? Well, I’m no Miss Cleo and so I can’t predict the exact future, but I can tell you what I am hoping to have happen this year. And, well, some things I know will happen–like me turning TWENTY-FIVE in five months. Ummm, what? :-O

Anyway… With a new year upon us I am looking forward to many things. For starters, I am looking forward to going to Nashville for my third time in 3 weeks to visit my old roommate/best friend Kayla. This will be my second time flying alone but, slightly scarier this time as I have a three hour layover and a plane change. Now I’ve done a layover and plane change before but, just not by myself. EEEEK! Let’s just hope I don’t miss my next plane because I’m caught up getting another cup of coffee or watching my DVD collection of Criminal Minds. 😉  Either way I am super excited and can’t wait for a little getaway from this crazy weather we’ve been having these past few days. (Where was this snow for Christmas? I’m just saying.) I’d say if I’m lucky then it won’t snow AT ALL while I’m visiting there. When I went last February, on my last night, there was seriously the LIGHTEST amount of snow flurries EVER and Nashville had their salt trucks out like they had just had a couple of INCHES fall. It was wild to see. LOL!

On another note… Between that and until June I’ll just be working and dreaming of my next trip to Nashville or elsewhere. Come June it’ll be my 25th birthday. Still can’t believe it. When did it become so close to me being 25? Didn’t I just turn 21 yesterday? Anyway, with me turning 25 the only thing I can REALLY, TRULY look forward to is my car insurance going down. WOO HOO! Oh, and being able to rent a car. That’s cool, I guess, right? 😉

In all reality I don’t really mind turning 25 as it’s another birthday to celebrate and who doesn’t like celebrating birthday with loved ones, regardless of the age you’re turning? In my opinion, turning 25 is when to do something REALLY big. So, my something really big I would love to do is either go to Vegas (better get saving… myself AND my best friends, included 😉 ) or something smaller, Chicago, or even smaller but still super fun–overnight stay at the casino. Who knows? I still have four months to go but you know me, I am a planner and like to get the party started early. HA!

What else is happening this year… Well, nothing too major that I know of. Or can remember. At least, that I know of, yet. Hmm… Hopefully big things will happen, if not for me, then for others. But, we don’t know what the future holds so I guess we’ll wait and see.

While I don’t personally know what else is in store for me, I do have HIGH hopes for things that I would like to happen. Might sound corny and overrated but I have high hopes I’ll find a special someone to start dating. Okay, so it sort of, kind of sounds so corny but who doesn’t want to eventually want to settle down with someone and all that? I do. I know not everyone does, and that’s totally okay and awesome, but for me, I just have a feeling, a desire, a hope, to be that sparkle in someone’s eye. Okay, taking it to too far as being cheesy/corny so I’ll leave it at that. LOL! We’ll just see what fate brings me.

In other news… I am also really hoping I can find a diet/exercise regimen I can stick to. Like I mentioned in a previous blog post, I HATE exercising and dieting. Like both words might as well be banned from my vocabulary. I hate them both. But, while I despise them both doesn’t mean I don’t think they’re important. They are both super important and I give major credit to those who stick to a good diet and exercise program and see actual results–have their own success story. I always tell myself I someday want to be my own success story but it’s just the motivation to get there is SERIOUSLY lacking. I like food too much, plain and simple. And, I HATE exercising. So, until I can tone down my love for food and get over my hate of exercise I have a feeling I’ll just have to deal and settle with where I am at now. But come on, who likes to settle for something such as weight, especially when you KNOW you can lose it. I need more willpower, damnit.

Anyway, enough about dieting and exercising. I really want to keep this blog going consistently this year but I just don’t know what to write about. People tell me to write what I know about but I think I can only write about and people can only read so much about….: My love for food (i.e. Chipotle), love for Starbucks, Criminal Minds, Pretty Little Liars… AND… Shoes. Yup. I mean I know there are others out there who enjoy these things as well but only for so long. I need NEW, FRESH content. So if anyone has any ideas for me I am ALL ears. 🙂

Oh, one more thing before I end this post–something that I found amusing tonight… My dad tried to use my iPad and didn’t have a clue on how to use it. Oh, I love you, dad! 🙂 Thankfully it didn’t take rocket science for him to figure it out but it was just kind of funny I thought. It made me think of how if I ever have kids that in that day and age they won’t know about what’s popular right now for my generation because by then it won’t be popular anymore. Same thing with my dad–the iPad and technology of that nature weren’t around when he was my age and so someday when I am his age I will be in his same shoes as he is now if I have kids and they’re playing with their popular gadget of the future. 😉 Just a little something I found comical, among several other things tonight. I swear, my parents, brother Tom and I should have our own reality TV show. We’re hilarious. Although, other times I am thankful there aren’t cameras around for the comical, nonsense we say. 😉

Hope everyone’s new year is off to a great start so far. Tell me, what are you hoping to happen in 2015? Big or small. Cheers to a great year!

Until next time…

– Ana

Finding a prince in a pond full of frogs

I don’t know about other women my age or at the same point in their life (post-college) but I feel like the dating pool is kind of small. Or maybe I am just blinded and missing the greater dating pool.

It could just be my over-picky-ness but in all honesty, where are women my age and at this point in life supposed to meet people? Hell, I wasn’t even sure where to find people when I was in college. The bar? A coffee shop? A concert? The bar seems to be the typical place to meet people for twenty-somethings and while I am a twenty-something, I feel as though I am not into finding my soul mate, my one true love, while having already consumed a couple beers and then some.

Don’t get me wrong, I love going to the bar and just hanging out with my girl friends but when it comes to meeting people (i.e. potential significant other) I feel as though it can be difficult. In my opinion people use the bar and consuming some liquor for well, liquid encouragement. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that considering I’ve done the same but, in the end it just doesn’t always work out as well as hoped.

Let me again reiterate that I don’t think there is anything wrong with people meeting their S.O. at the bar. I know some success stories from doing so but, since I’ve already gone through that phase, or at least attempted to (but really, was too shy/chicken shit to) I feel like it’s not for me anymore.

Which begs the question: Where do twenty-something women, post-college, meet men who are at the same point in their lives, if not even more established?

That’s part of the problem. I have people tell me I am much too picky when it comes to guys–whether it be to casually date him or something more serious and long-term. Now I will admit I suppose I am just a tad picky but I also don’t want to settle. On the other hand, the people I know who are dating someone or will date in the future are probably people I wouldn’t ever date. That doesn’t go to say the people they’re dating are undesirable or anything, it’s just a different taste than what I am looking for. After all, everyone has their own tastes, etc. and there’s nothing wrong with that.

I’m sure some people reading have probably written me off as someone whose standards are too high that no guy will ever be able to meet but, I disagree. It might not happen anytime soon but as people always tell me–things happen when they’re supposed to and when I least expect it. I am a firm believer every person has a soul mate in the world (should they believe in/want love–regardless of it results in marriage or just something monogamous without a piece of paper) and therefore that is why I don’t believe my standards are too high. Perhaps to some they are but for me I know what I wan’t and don’t want and I refuse to settle.

Perhaps there is that small part of me that still believes in those Disney fairy tales. The fairy tales where the princess rides off into the sunset with prince charming and they live happily-ever-after. Who wouldn’t want that? Okay, so not everyone wants that or believes in that but I do and I’m sticking to it.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind being single. I’ve been single for some time now and it’s been great. But, at the same time, I’ve always been one who believes in love, wants love, had a great love once, and am looking for one again. I am a believer in fairy tales and while I don’t expect to literally ride off into the sunset with my prince charming, I do look forward to finding my soul mate and well, living happily-ever-after, on our own terms, however that may be.

Not everyone longs to find true love, their “other half”, and that is totally okay. But for me and seeing people in my own family (and friends) experience that feeling of true love/happily-ever-after I can’t help but feel I am meant for that too–and it’s what I want. But until then begs the question of where do I meet my so-called “prince charming”?

Can I still meet guys at the bar? Or am I past that? I personally think I am beyond that stage of my life now but perhaps I am wrong. I am curious, people who are reading this–where are twenty something women my age meeting people?

If you have any ideas on where to meet people I’d like to know. It obviously isn’t my life mission to pin point my prince charming this very second but, it’s certainly something I am interested in happening at some point. In mean the time the hunt for a job continues and hopefully saving up enough money to have my own place again. It’s best to just live life in the moment, right?

Until next time…

– Ana

Exercise might as well be a swear word

If there’s one thing I hate more than anything else in this world it’s exercise.

I hate the sound of it, the meaning of it, the looks of it–everything. You honestly probably couldn’t pay me to do it. That’s how much I loathe it.

Now don’t get me wrong–I’m not saying it’s bad for you, or anyone else, because we all know that’s not true but that doesn’t mean I still can’t hate it.

Why do I hate it? You ask. Well, to be honest I don’t really have a valid reason other than I think it’s boring and I don’t think there’s ever a convenient time to do it. (Which again, we all know is not true)

How I feel about having to exercise--NOT happy.
How I feel about having to exercise–NOT happy.

Honestly, I think what really bothers me (and sorry to all of you naturally thin, in shape people) is the thought of having to go to a gym, where there are other people (and not just any people, but random strangers), and a lot of them are already in shape and so they’re there working out to MAINTAIN their physique. I, on the other hand, am NOT trying to maintain this physique of mine. Over the past few years I’ve become more fixated on my size and the number I weigh but never motivated enough to do anything about it.

*Side note: I am in no way meaning to look down on people who do go work out to maintain their physique (and/or just happen to be naturally thin/at their ideal weight) but just simply stating my personal observation of “Wow, those people already look damn fabulous and therefore intimidate me.”

One part of me thinks like a ridiculous person by praying and hoping I’ll just one day wake up thinner. It’s this horrible mentality I have that thin people were born just like that, thin, and I, well, I was born not thin. But again, that’s as crazy as saying there is never a convenient time to work out.

Now, I do know genetics play a partial role in the amount someone weighs and so I do believe my genetics are partially to blame for how much I currently weigh but, on the other hand, I do admit I LOVE food and (again) HATE exercise. So what does that equal? Being overweight. I think I hate exercise because I feel as though there is this entitlement to being thin since other people in the world just happen to be naturally thin. Again, though, this isn’t their “fault” but rather just how their genetics are and their lifestyle. Their lifestyle allowed them to earn their thin physique and obviously there is nothing wrong with that!

Anyway… The other part of me thinks I am “pretty much” okay with my physique and the number on my scale even though in reality that couldn’t be further from the truth. Like I mentioned above I’ve become more fixated and desired wanting to lose weight more so in the past few years than when I was in high school or first starting out college. At that time it just didn’t seem like a big deal to me or anyone else so I thought, why bother?

But with heavy emphasis on weight loss in the media and pretty much everywhere I look I can’t help but feel pressured to do something about my weight. Of course it isn’t just the media either. I know too that if I don’t take my health and fitness more seriously than it could develop into more serious issues later on, which is something I definitely don’t want to have to deal with.

However, this is all so much easier said than done. SO much easier. I often think to myself how I will wake up in the morning and go on the treadmill or count points for Weight Watchers for the week but then I think, but I’ll just be miserable and hungry or miserable and sweaty–neither of which sound appealing. But, as we all know what this really does is make me feel even worse later when I eat beyond normal portion sizes and don’t exercise.

It’s a daily struggle. I am currently subscribed to Weight Watchers and have the app but I just get so tired, and bored you could say, of counting points. Oh, and something else to mention that I forgot to earlier, is I also have the mentality of thinking since it seems like my extra weight came on overnight then my extra weight should come off overnight as well, right?

WRONG.

And that’s where my weight loss journey needs to start first–is my brain and mind on accepting it will take time to see progress and that no one loses weight overnight unless they get professional surgery. I really have a love-hate relationship with WW. I do believe WW is a good program as it is helps a lot with portion control, which means you can still indulge in your guilty pleasures without actually feeling guilty after. The bad part though, for me, is the allocation of points women and men get and how those differ based on sex and height and weight.

For example, my daily points fall between 27-28 points. Without knowing anything about WW it might seem like a lot, and to some women it could be, but as a woman who loves food–especially Chipotle–the struggle is real to stay in that allocated amount. See what I mean?

I believe deep down somewhere I have the determination and motivation needed to lose weight but it’s buried beneath the mindset of thinking the weight will come off after one day of dieting and or thinking I’ll just wake up at my goal weight.

STILL WRONG!

As you can see I really loathe the word “exercise” and I also really don’t like the word “diet” either. It sounds just as painful and awful as the other. Aside from my lack of mental motivation I am also physically unmotivated. I always feel “too tired” to work out and while I may actually be a little bit tired, I think I feel more than I actually am because I am overweight. It takes its toll on you. I’ve seen that from other people as well, not just myself.

Now I know both men and women are supposed to love their bodies at any size which, I do to an extent but, health-wise I could stand and would like to lose weight. I want my clothes to become too big, not too small. I want to have that extra energy to do things other than sit around and watch TV all day or eat Chipotle. Because right now I feel trapped. I know it sounds crazy, and while I know realistically I will never be a size small or something near model physique, I know I can be thinner and (based on my height) should be (for health reasons specifically). I know a thinner, healthier version of me is there somewhere. I don’t intend for that to sound so vain or to put down women who are of similar or bigger size to me but for my height specifically (and even age too I’m sure) I am overweight. This isn’t just about wanting to feel better so I think I look better physically but it really boils down to losing weight so I can be healthy and live a long time and be more active in my everyday life. I want there to be a day where I don’t hate exercising and dieting and instead actually look forward to doing those things. I’m sure I can achieve it, sooner rather later, but I just need some tips, tools and resources.

My motivation is around here somewhere but it’s more about “rewiring” my brain and mind to think positive about diet, exercise, fitness and weight loss. So if anyone has tips for that specifically I am ALL ears.

Until next time…

– Ana