Make your own luck.

I have been terrible about updating this little dear lately. I converted to the dark side and started a tumblr account and basically abandoned blogger. If you would like to see it (assuming you haven't done so already when it clogged up your news feed by automatically updating itself to my news feed on facebook) click [here] to do so. You may be converted as well. I will probably use it exclusively pretty soon, but for now I am still here.

One of my recent posts on there had to do with things I have learned so far this summer. One of them reads as follows:

"Being hit in the stomach with a frisbee during ultimate is probably equivalent to being hit in the stomach with a piece of rebar during a gang fight."

I know what you are thinking- 'how would you know what either of those painful sensations feels like?' Well friends, I have no idea what it feels like to be hit with rebar, and sadly I have never been in a gang fight (but you can imagine what it would be like if I had). I just thought it was the most descriptive way to explain how I felt after being an accidental target during ultimate frisbee at work yesterday.
(don't mind the icky tummy veins, the settings I used for the picture to accentuate the bruise made them look bolder than they normally are)

Maybe it doesn't look so bad, but I can assure you it isn't the most comfortable bruise. It feels like a rib was possibly broken in the process, or something like that.

As far as fun summer activites are concerned, I did get to spend some time in Cali last week. I. Love. California. The point of the trip was to help my little brother get over his fear of roller coasters via a surprise trip to Six Flags (mission accomplished). While there we also crossed another Hard Rock Cafe off my list (Athens, Rome, DC, NYC, Orlando, Vegas, now Hollywood.. hollaaaa). We didn't take many pictures at Six Flags because we were busy, you know, riding roller coasters. Being beasts. No big.

We did, however, take time to make memories at Santa Monica Pier.

It may be my very favorite place in the world. I haven't been everywhere, but I have been blessed to see a lot of places; for some reason this one just holds a special place in my heart. I am a beach lover. I am a city lover. I am a sunset lover. All these things are represented in this little piece of sketchy-and-scary-after-dark bliss.

We also saw a different side of Hollywood thanks to a few Flagstaff friends who happened to be there as well.
Hollywood city lights- feelin' like a boss.
I started out with a point to this post... I spent (wasted) half my day today watching the Fantasy Factory Marathon on mtv. I took a few things away from this pointless experience, some of which I will be happy to share:

1. If you rock at skateboarding and act on every crazy idea you have you can live the dream.
2. Live your brand. (this applies to almost nobody, but I still learned it)
3. Make your own luck.
Honorable mention: I still want an english bulldog.

Numero tres was the one I wanted to talk about. Make your own luck. What does that mean, exactly? Well, I like to think that although you can't predict everything in life and sometimes life throws you curves you aren't expecting that change your situation beyond your control, you can still- in many ways- decide your fate. Often, people see those around them who are successful as 'lucky'. They often think those peole were just handed a good lot in life and that everything they have is due to some out of their control force that chooses who gets good and who gets bad. Not. true.

There are things out there that you can't control, do not focus on those things. Focus on what you can control and what some people view as 'luck' will follow. I've heard it said that:
"The harder I work, the luckier I get."
-Samuel Goldwyn

True. So true. If you just take everything life hands you and do nothing with it, you will be 'unlucky'. If, on the other hand, you take everything life hands you and work on it, with a goal in mind, toward what you want, you will be 'lucky'. Make sense?

do nothing = unlucky
work hard = lucky

Therefore, if you work hard, stay driven, think positively, keep moving forward, and always have a goal in mind, you can make your own (good) luck. If you do just the opposite (take what life hands you and do nothing, avoid making goals, and think negatively) you also make your own (bad) luck.

I think I am a pretty lucky girl. I have seen much of the world, I have a degree, I have a job. Granted, life has handed many good things that are out of my control. I was blessed with my health, a good family, raised with the gospel in my home- all things that are for the most part out of my control. But I have not been without my share of struggles. My parents were divorced when I was young, I have memories of things I witnessed that no child should have memory of, and many more that I choose not to focus on. Taking those bad experiences that I could not control and focusing on them would have not lead me to the luck I have now. Taking the good things in my life, however, that were out of my control and applying them to my goals have lead me to be a pretty lucky girl.

I am now at a crossroads in my life. I have many choices ahead of me. I have the oppotunity to make what I want with what I have. There are things out of my control that effect the choice I will make including the current economy, the fact that I am not married, etc. I can take these things and do nothing with them, or I can take them and 'get lucky' by working hard to achieve the goals I have. In essence, I plan on making my own luck.

I hope that all makes sense, and I hope we all make it a goal to make our own luck.
Ignore the creepy bunny.
Having the life option to make your own luck and choose what is next is stressful. I have a few options in mind, we will see what works out. I am heavily considering going to Ecuador for three months, to work in an orphanage. My good friend Stormy did it, and I feel like 'why not'? I am young, not tied down or overly committed to anything? I am also looking in to jobs somewhere beyond the borders of Arizona. As much as I love this state, a new chapter in another place is calling my name. I mentioned my love for California earlier, don't think that isn't on the list. Maybe I will follow the dream I always had of New York City, or London... or maybe a mission. Only time will tell, I guess. For now, I am loving the time I have been blessed with to spend with my family. I love those kids more than words can describe. Also, one last season as a seasonal firefighter suits me just fine.

Now get out there, kids, and make yourself some luck.


Be informed.

Warning: This post is wordy. There are no pictures. Sorry.

Dear whoever is reading:

After the past few days of keeping updated on the comments and speculations people have made via social networking mediums such as facebook and twitter, I have a few things I would like to say as well. I guess there is no place better to do it than here; it's somewhere I can state my opinion without the fear of someone interrupting and/or disagreeing. As you may have guessed, I would like to discuss the capture of Osama Bin Laden (I know, everyone has something to say about that).

Although the topic is still very sensitive and people have much to say about it, I am not here to state my opinion on the events that took place. I am not here to place on judgement on those who cried, "ding dong, Osama's dead" in the streets, or those arguing "Jesus said love everyone" (with those very discriminatory and slightly immature descriptions I do not mean to offend anyone, I was just trying to sum up both arguments in a fairly short and slightly humorous way). I believe both sides have valid arguments, and I do not want to state my opinion on such topics at this point. I have one (doesn't everyone), and would love to talk about it with anyone who cares to know, but this is not the time or place for that. 

(Although, as a side note, I would like to pass a little judgement on those people who made horrific "jokes" about the event by tweeting the following:
1. Saddam Hussein
2. Osama Bin Laden
Next: Justin Bieber
I do not care how annoying you think he is, it is never funny or acceptable to compare a harmless 17 year old boy to two power hungry, relentless, mass murderers. If you RT'd this, or even found it funny.. SHAME. ON. YOU. Pathetic and ignorant.)

I would, however, like to state my opininon on some of the reactions that I read on facebook soon after the news was reported. As I was reading through my news feed I noticed a status that read, "already sick of the Osama updates", and another that said, "most redundant news feed ever." Oh, I am sorry, did we interrupt your normal news feed to discuss a major event in history? We will let you get back to reading about what people had for lunch and how well they did on their biology exam.. Grow up.

At times I am ashamed at the way people in my generation view politics, disasters,and current events in general. The majority of them are more interested in what version of Portal is coming out next than the fact that the entire state of Alabama is now homeless because of natural disasters. This was reflected perfectly the other night when I was watching Jay Leno. Jay sent a man to spring break in Cancun to ask college age students their opinions on the US economy.

"How do you believe we can solve the housing crisis?"
"What housing crisis?"
"What do you think will bring peace to the Middle East?"
"Why isn't there peace there?"


Maybe it's the history minor I received during my studies at NAU, or maybe it's my passionate and patriotic mother. Whatever it is, I can not help but be disgusted with people who care more about what happened on this week's episode of Teen Mom than what is happening with the Nuclear melt-down in Japan. They say ignorance is bliss, I say ignorance is ignorant. I don't mean to imply that if you watch mindless tv that you don't care about what is happening in the world. If that were the case, I would be mocking myself; I catch up on plenty of mindless tv. I am, however, saying if you care more about the conviction of Lindsay Lohan than what the President has to say about the capture of the most wanted terrorist currently living, there is a problem. One day your grandchildren may ask you about the war against terrorism. Will you respond with, "sorry kids, I don't know anything about that, while President Obama was speaking I was busy watching 16 & Pregnant"?

My generation is the future leaders of America. How will we lead if we do not take the time to learn from our predecessors? Maybe we don't agree with everything the Government is doing.. that is fine, as long as you learn enough about what they are doing to form an opinion about it. Learn to think for yourself people, please.

As I mentioned earlier, many opinions are being thrown around about the event that took place yesterday, some of which are very passionate and heated. I love that they have an opinion because having an opinion means they care. Caring is a beautiful thing. No matter how you feel about the news you hear, be sure you hear it. Be informed. Watch the news. Listen to the radio. Read the paper. If the President makes a speech, listen to him. Do not shrug off something that will be written in the history books because you were eager to get back to the usual clutter of monotonous status updates pasted all over your facebook wall.

With these statements I in no way mean to offend. I simply hope to bring some small motivation to be involved in the world around you. I am sitting in my nice bed, in a warm house, wearing clothing, with a stomache that is not hungry. If you do not realize how many people in the world are nowhere near being able to say the same, you are exactly who I am talking to. It is nice to be in the ignorance bubble, but it is more important to understand all that is happening around you. Form whatever opinion you like... just care. That is all, please just care.