Big Bear. big time love.

Trish and Shelly are two of the most uniquely awesome & fun loving people you will ever meet. If you know them, consider yourself lucky (and probably a bit off your rocker, you have to be to fit in with the likes of these two. I know I am! =P) Well these two lovelies invited us to come have lunch with them at their campsite in Big Bear and my family and I willing obliged. It was quite cold but a great time nonetheless. We took a walk to the lake, sat around the fire and made smores and enjoyed the company of family who don’t get together nearly often enough. I didn’t take enough pictures but I already felt like i was behind my camera and phone screen too much; I had to give them some face time with me.

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Above: Their two pups, Lilly and Sadie. 

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Above and Below: My little brother and his girlfriend Lauren. I took the most pictures of them because theres just something about being young and in love that translates so well to photographs. ❤

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Above: Father and son with their significant others. 

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All the couples!

*When I uploaded the pictures there were no spots or blurs but once I started cropping/editing all these blurry spots started to appear. There may have been someone else there who wanted their picture taken as well.. ?

Happy Sunday everyone. The time has changed and even though we’ve lost an hour, we’ve gained an hour of daylight which I am more than pleased about. Have a great week! 🙂

A meeting 8 years in the making..

I started listening to Say Anything because of a shitty ex boyfriend who emotionally damaged me for years and almost ruined my marriage. The only good thing he ever did for me was introduce me to this band that would change my life. I know it sounds quite melodramatic and cliche but i can assure you, its true.

I went to my first Say Anything show at the Glasshouse back in 2006. I attended by myself and was in the front row; I was that girl- the one who knew every word to every song and loudly sang along with an ear to ear grin. At 20 years old, I was happy to have the lead singer of my favorite band (Max Bemis) shimmy and shake in front of me, who cares if i got sprayed with spit and sweat?! Since then I have attended every southern california Say Anything show but not without incident.

I was young, happy and invincible- or so i thought. Little did I know I was just young and drunk. I attended one show in LA (again by myself) where I got drunk, made friends with a random nice gentleman (who luckily was just that) and had a great time. Then as Im on the phone walking to my car I see Max and friends walking and drunken me “whispers” into my phone, “there he is, hes right in front of me, what should i do?” Needless to say I did not meet Max that night and drove the hour drive home. I made it safely. Thank God.

The next night I asked a friend to drive me to the show so I could drink and not have to worry about driving home. That was a smart decision on my part- I thought I was being responsible. Well as we are driving home we skid across four lanes and hit the center divider head on. That was the absolute scariest moment of my life. My friend had a DUI and for years our friendship was tarnished. I spent Thanksgiving in sweat pants that year not by choice but because I could barely move from being so sore from the accident.

Another show I went to I asked a different friend to drive me- he willingly did and stayed sober. I saw Max walk by on the street but was to scared to say anything (pun intended) until he had passed- and then I told my friend, “oh hey.. that was him.” I did not meet Max that night

Then there was the Ventura Warped Tour. There I was 122 miles from myself, front row. I had a great time and after the show Max shook my hand but i was too dumbfounded to even speak (I dont consider this meeting Max.) After I spent the rest of the day enjoying great bands I walk to where I had parked only to find that my car had been towed. I had to wait the two+ hours for my mom to get there then we slept in her car til morning to get my car out.

I was just a 20 year old reckless, starstruck kid when i started listening to SA but its been a crazy and almost surreal adventure to grow up with the music. Sometimes I felt (like most people do with music) that he wrote those songs about my exact situation. I met Andrew (my most amazing husband who I am lucky to have, hes my partner in crime and my SA show buddy now) shortly after Max and Sherri (Eisley) were married. So obviously I can still relate and internalize all the songs. Now I’m a 28 year old woman who has a respect and admiration for an artist who has grown into a family man and so much more. Going to SA shows has introduced me to some of my other favorite bands (Manchester Orchestra, Fake Problems) and I even found the most perfect song to dance with Andrew to for our wedding vow renewal ceremony, Eisley’s ‘Kind’

So obviously at last nights show I was kind of a mess when my friend pulled me over to meet Max and take my picture with wasnt at all what id hoped for (me being the cool kid with the leather jacket, “hey… sup.” head nod. and then we’d smoke a bowl, have a drink and be best friends.. hey a girl can dream!!) but I’m just happy that I met Max… finally! 🙂

Hello 2014

What better way to start the new year than with a new blog post. 2013 was a great year with some great times but I like to think of it more as a growing year for myself. I didn’t experience any major life changing events however the year as a whole changed me and made me better prepared to conquer 2014. With that said here are some of my resolutions for the upcoming year:

1. Find a home church and attend weekly.

2.Start focusing more on inner beauty and confidence and less on outward appearance

3. Join a book club.

4. Take my health more seriously and make it a priority, not an option.

5. Cook dinner once a week

6. Be a hostess (instead of a guest) more often.

7. Take adventures by myself once in a while. So this one needs some explaining… Before I met Andrew I was fearless in the sense that I could and would go anywhere by myself. Shopping, concerts, festivals.. you name it, i did it. Ive become so accustomed to having someone to go everywhere with that Ive developed anxiety about attending anything by myself. I think its an almost unhealthy co-dependency so id like to take some more solo trips just to maintain my sense of adventure and independence.

8. Develop and STICK TO a budget.  (Its about time, I suppose. )

9. Make a new friend.

10. Travel to a new city.

So what are your new years resolutions? And remember, resolutions aren’t about changing who you are but embracing and enhancing your life so good luck to you all in accomplishing your goals and making your dreams become realities.

A mother’s journey

On December 31, 1985 my mother gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. She named me Celina Michelle Olvera. My moms dream was to watch me and my brother grow, to love us and support us and help us develop into beautiful, strong individuals who would one day give birth to their own beautiful children. She dreamed that we would be best friends. She dreamed of a wonderful life. My moms dreams for her life didn’t exactly pan out. Her marriage to my dad fell apart, twice. She had a closet full of skeletons. She went from one abusive relationship to another. Addiction ruined  her life. On October 31, 1992 she survived being shot in the head. I’ve heard what happened that night but there is still apart of me that believes there is much more to the story. My mom went through phases where she was sober and healthy but since she never stuck with her recovery programs she always fell back into her old ways. Her rock bottom was letting a man into my cousins house who ended up stealing all of my cousins jewelry including her wedding ring. I was so mad at her, I didn’t even want to look at her. I thought she was selfish. I thought I couldn’t forgive her. I thought wrong. My heart was broken. I cried like I’ve never cried before. I felt a sense of fear and loss that I had never known. I thought my mom was going to kill herself. I forgave her quickly and truly. I prayed for her soul. I prayed for forgiveness for myself for having anger in my heart towards her. I prayed for God to save her life. God answers prayers, I promise you that; my mom has been in a recovery home for almost two months now. She will be in there for at least another year. I saw her two weeks ago but it was the first time I had seen her in years. The real her. Her happy, healthy self. Her eyes full of life and hope. Her cheerful smile. She was elated as she talked about how she got to ride a horse for the first time. I felt an overwhelming sense of joy and love as she talked to us about all that shes learning about the Bible, about how shes learning that her way is clearly not the right way and that shes ready to change. She has been given an opportunity to change her life and she is taking full advantage of it. I know she still has such a long way to go and I know she has made mistakes  but I am so proud of her, proud to call her my mom. When my mom pictured how her life would be I’m sure this is not what she envisioned however I know that better days are coming. I look forward to having my mom back and to the day that I get the privilege of being her best friend.