Thursday, August 15, 2013


Addiction has been a big part of my life for too long. My own personal experience was not a substance addiction, but a psychological addiction to self-injury. It's not something I'm proud of, but it's also not something that I'm wanting to hide. It's not even something that I viewed as an addiction, but it was definitely a coping mechanism. It wasn't until I was ready to stop that I realized how difficult it was to break away. I went a year and a half and still caved. I can happily say that my 3 years is on December 23rd of this year. I will never let my guard down with it though and although the urges are minimal, it is almost an instinctual reaction that I will always have to fight when I am in crisis mode. I smoked socially in high school whenever I would drink. I realized how much I enjoyed it so I stopped. I drank a little bit in junior high and more so in high school when it was a social and cool thing to do. And I kept up with that until it became unhealthy.

Now, I get to watch my little sister waste away with her addiction. It's not something my family is proud of, but I'm also done hiding that. I know what ignorant people say about addiction and "junkies". I know it's easier to judge addicts for their actions, rather than their actual disease. Does it mean the actions are any less devastating? Of course not. I know that at this point drugs are more important to my sister and that everything else (including her life) comes second. I'm not here to air out dirty laundry so I won't go into it much more than that, but it is heartbreaking to have no control over what is to surely come.

I am worried for my family. I am worried how we will get through everything no matter what the outcome. I feel like either way it is not going to be easy. I worry that the struggle has already exhausted my family beyond repair. I have learned a lot over the last few years and that is that my family sticks together and stays strong no matter what. I wish that my sister could be a part of how amazing that is and we would welcome her in a second, but I don't know if that will ever happen.

There's so much I don't know about what is to come now. All I know is that I can't control any of it and it sucks. All I can do it look to the future for what I do know. For the good things and for the people that I have in my life now.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Ashton Kutcher's Life Advice: Actually Pretty Amazing

So, the above video is currently circulating around the internet like crazy. And, to be honest, I can see why. I don't know how truly genuine Ashton Kutcher is as a person because I don't know him. However, this advice freaking rocks.

Opportunity being dressed as hard work (or in his case, looks like hard work) is not the first time those words have been spoken. In fact, Thomas Edison spoke the following words:

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

It is very refreshing to hear those words spoken again in a generation that is absolutely entitled. I am afraid for when I have children because I am going to have to do everything in my power to teach them such a simple lesson. My kids will probably complain to me when they realize that they aren't going to just have everything handed to them. I got my first job at 14 because I was told that I needed to earn what I wanted and I honestly would go crazy without a job now. I will take this advice more into consideration and work harder at my current job and hopefully the doors will open. ;)

The second piece of advice is what is considered sexy. Being smart, being thoughtful, and being generous. At first, this seems like a cliche. When I think about what I appreciate most about my husband though, a lot of those qualities really do revolve those three things. More than anything, I love Kyle for the amazing man that he is. He is extremely caring and always doing what he can to make our lives better. Even when we first met, he would stay up late with me while I studied just to help keep me awake even though he had to work at 7 am in the morning. Fortunately, my parents gave me the advice of sticking to who I am early on in life so I was never afraid to be the smart kid in school. So, I completely agree with this statement of sexy. And honestly, the people that are attracted to purely shallow features are usually just shallow themselves so it's a good fit when two of those kind end up together. It is a strong reminder to me to strive to be this kind of person and to look outside of myself more often.

The third piece of advice was about not conforming to what society says your life should be. That, people who made the rules of "life" are no smarter than you are and that you can build your own life. I hope that I can implement this in my life so much more. I will admit that I am easily fearful about trying anything out of the box because I like the safety net of following the rules. I know that if I do A and B I will get to C. However, that doesn't mean I can't or shouldn't chase my dreams as I see fit. There are so many things I want to do with my life and I would hate to look back and think that I had chickened out at the end of it. It reminds me of the Four Agreements which talks about how everyone is living their own version of a dream of life. That, if we can pull ourselves out of the negative mindset, that life can change completely.

I loved this speech more than the person who gave it. It was a good wake up call for what I already knew, but it was much needed and truly an inspiration. I am already going to start working on my new and updated bucket list. To be honest, my bucket list from when I was a teenager is mostly accomplished. As I grow as a person, I hope that I can incorporate my dreams into my life and also have a family. Honestly, that is one of our biggest dreams right now that we are holding out on. We can't wait to be parents. The time, however, is just not right and we want to be in a better place financially (at least as much as we can control) before we make that commitment.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Honeymoon Memories

I keep dreaming about being in Mexico. To be honest, our honeymoon feels like more of a dream. It was honestly amazing though. Our wedding night we stayed at Anniversary Inn in Salt Lake City and  it was definitely an "experience". By the time we got there it was 10:00 at night and I just remember thinking that we were in the wrong place. It definitely looks more like an old creepy house than a romantic hotel. However, we were up for the adventure. Our room was the hayloft but besides the general decor it didn't really feel like being in one lol. We snuck in bubble bath and acted like children by making a huge mountain of bubbles and I scarfed food down since I hadn't been able to eat at the whole wedding. Despite just being married, we were still acting like the goofs we were and spending time as best friends. I won't get into any more details about that night, but the next morning I just remember how freaking cold the room was and how exhausted we were. Our flight departed at 7:30am the next day so we had to get up super early to catch the cab to the airport. I don't think we even were able to try the famous cheesecake that morning, but breakfast was pretty good.

Anyway, we finally made it to the airport and it really wasn't all that stressful to be honest. I've flown a few times. We did lose our bubble bath due to it being the value size (lol) going through airport security but otherwise it was pretty painless. The flight from Salt Lake City to Denver was extremely quick and then we had an hour wait in Denver. This is when we started to discover that our travel agent had not booked our seats together. So for every part of our flights (return trip as well) we had to wait in line and try to trade seats with someone. The flight from Denver to Cancun was also pretty fast but mostly because I was so exhausted I slept on Kyle most of the time. The first thing we noticed when we arrived in Cancun was the instant wave of humidity. I had been wearing a sweater on the plane and immediately I was in the regret stage ha ha. It took us about an hour and a half to get to our hotel with our transportation. It was interesting to get offered beer while a car was in motion and we were able to meet two other newlywed couples. They all wanted to talk about their weddings, but I was ready to just enjoy the honeymoon at that point and forget about all of the stressful details.

Our hotel was amazing. Probably the nicest one on all of the stops we made. We got checked in and then went to see our room. The room had a lounge area, balcony, and a really nice bathroom. Definitely the nicest hotel room I've ever had. While we were waiting for our luggage, we went to eat at the buffet. The food down there wasn't amazing,  but we quickly learned what was good and what wasn't. Kyle also learned that even in Mexico you have to wear a shirt to go eat. We also booked our meals for the week for the fancier restaurants.  We discovered our love for hammocks as well. Multiple nights we laid in a hammock and just talked and cuddled and were amazed at the fact that we were in fact finally married. 

The next day we booked our excursions for the week as well and were happy to find out that we would be swimming with Dolphins that afternoon. :) Swimming with dolphins was quite the experience. It was so amazing to be that close to something that I had really only see from afar at seaworld. The best part was that the dolphin would only turn on it's back for me. I was able to rub her belly twice and she would not do that for the boys. I truly felt connected to this amazing creature. We were also able to experience something really cool called a foot push where two dolphins push you through the water using their noses on your feet. The only downside to that experience was that when we went to buy the photos it was $170 to get our photos. I was amazed at how outrageous that price was, but I was still sucker enough to pay for it. After all, it was a once in a lifetime experience.

Tuesday was one of our down days and we spent a lot of time at the adult pools and beach. We rented a waverunner for the ocean and that was also an amazing experience. I was excited as I was when I was a little kid. We also tried snorkeling which was interesting, but very claustrophobic considering the humidity. That night was our first sit-down meal at the french restaurant. This was definitely our favorite meal. We tried escargot (snail) for the first time which looked disgusting but was delicious. Our waiter was so awesome that he kept telling us he would bring us new things if we didn't like our first choices. Our first choices, however, were amazing.

Wednesday was our 10 hour excursion to Coba and then a mayan village. Coba was definitely the cultural experience I was looking for. We were able to learn a lot about the history as well as some of the customs that were practiced. We rented bikes and biked around all of the different ruins. It was honestly something that I would compare to riding mopeds in Italy. After that visit, we went to another area were we were able to canoe through a lagoon, hike through a jungle, witness a purification ceremony, and then swim in a cenote. The cenote was cold and it scared me to be honest lol. The water was so clear that you could see the rocks in the bottom and they always looked like you were going to run into them. After the cenote, we made our way to a zip line area where we got to experience our first time. It was a pretty fun experience. :) After that, we made our way to a mayan village where we were prepared some awesome delicious food. We also took tequila shots after the meal. I hate shots, but when in rome right? I must say that tequila is much better in Mexico. We also bought pictures from that excursion but they were a lot cheaper at about $70. Memories apparently are very expensive but it was for a good cause. We also were able to rappel off of a cliff (don't look mom!) and did another zip line which was also fun.

Thursday was another relaxation day on the beach and at the pools. We also did a lot of shopping in between (mostly because we loved the air conditioning in the stores). We rode giant water tricycles which actually made me pretty sick lol. That night we ate at the Mediterranean restaurant which was pretty good. I had caviar for the first time which wasn't really as exciting as I thought it would be. The Lobster was also amazing. 

Friday was our day for horseback riding. As much as I love riding horses, we were pretty miserable. It was extremely hot and we hadn't needed bug spray our whole trip so we skipped out on that. HUGE mistake. I probably had 30 bites just from our two hour ride. I was literally swinging my camera at them to get them off my legs. I picked a more stubborn horse which was kind of fun and Kyle got in trouble because he kept letting his horse stop and eat. Lol, it was a very fun experience though. Friday, we got a little tipsy and decided to check out the dance club which didn't last very long. Apparently, the club scene in Mexico isn't all that exciting.

Saturday, was our last day and also involved a lot of beach and relaxation time. We also got hit with some amazing thunderstorms. Before going out to the Italian restaurant that night, we spent a lot of time on our balcony just watching the rain pour down. We also though we saw some type of critter on the ground so we kept throwing peanuts to it trying to get it to come out ha ha.   The Italian food was very good, but by that point we were both pretty exhausted from our trip. We walked from one hotel to the other in the rain and it was super relaxing and peaceful. There were a lot of weddings that had to be moved indoors due to the rain and we decided that even if we had gotten married in Mexico we still could've had stress. It was so nice to just be together.

Sunday was our day to travel again. I was sad to be leaving but oh so excited to be home with my puppies again. Traveling home from Mexico was very stressful as our first flight was delayed due to thunderstorms at the airport shutting down the fuel tanks. We were an hour behind with only an hour and a half layover in Denver. We literally ran onto the plane to make it in time. It felt like that scene in home alone where everyone is running through the airport. We made it home that night though and it was good to be back home.

To sum it up, our honeymoon was amazing. I literally have a dream at least once a week about being in the ocean with Kyle or being back in Mexico. We will definitely go back one day because the price is so great for everything you get there and the climate it amazing. It was definitely a great way to start off our journey as husband and wife and I will probably have these memories for the rest of our lives.