Bucket List : The Little Things

Friday, June 26, 2015

Hello! :D
I haven't done one of these in a while and recently I've been adding to my list a lot, so I though I'd update you on some more of my ideas :D
There's so many things that I want to do before I get older. Whether I do these alone or with someone by my side, Here are a few more things I have on my bucket list... 

1. Surprise Someone

This one is pretty self explanatory. I've always wanted to do something really nice for some one.

Me: *Shows up with something they've always wanted*
Them: This can't be real!!




2. Ride a train

When I imagine a train ride I imagine the ultimate freedom! I've never been on a train but have always dreamed of riding one. And I'm not just talking one of those in the mall trains, I'm talking a real one that takes forever to cross at the railroad crossings.  I think these are more common in European countries so maybe I'll take a train when I visit there :D

3. Visit Alaska in the Spring

Let's just take a moment to appreciate all that beauty.

Need I say more?

4. Be a Camp Counselor

I've always wanted to attend a camp after watching The Parent Trap but I never got to go. Yet I never really looked into it.  I feel like this would be a good way to kind of live out that dream now :D

5. Learn how to play an instrument

There are so many amazing instruments out there and I don't know how to play a single one. Well other then the chorus of Mary had a Little Lamb on the piano haha (my specialty). I'm not quite sure which specific instrument I'd like to learn, but I'd love to learn anything from the piano to the violin to guitar to the drums.

6. Learn a new language

I was reading an article the other day about how scientist (or students at a university) think they've found a way to prevent or at least reduce the chances of Alzheimer's. One of the tips was to always keep learning. And a way to do that is by learning a new language. Not that I'm doing this merely to reduce my chances of Alzheimer's, but because I think it's also a great way to make yourself more diverse and if you ever need to ask for the bathrooms in French, German, or Japanese you'll know what to do haha (comes in handy if you have the bladder of a squirrel like yours truly).

7. Re-invent myself (sort of)

What I have in mind for this one is to get a new hair style and a new wardrobe. I feel like most of my life I've just always looked the same and dressed the same. One day (if money permits) I'd love to just buy an entire new wardrobe! I've never really felt like the style of clothing I wear now has ever really been what I liked or would like to wear. Also my hair has just always been a similar style and I've only ever cut off the ends and gotten layers. I want to just one day go into a salon and have a professional hair stylist just do what they want with my hair (with some restrictions of course). I want to feel like a new me, kind of like being re-born in a way (too much?)

8. Meditate in some place breath takingly beautiful

I'm a huge fan of mediation. I haven't gotten around to it in a while, but it really does help a lot! Especially if you have anxiety; meditation can really help release a lot of the stress that you bottle up. Even just by simply doing some breathing exercises you can help reduce a lot of that stress. I think meditation is such a nice feeling, it kind of feels like a bit of an out of body experience, in a good way. I feel like your body goes a little numb and it kind of feels like your levitating (if thats possible?). Meditation gives you time to yourself to just relax and disconnect form the world for a bit. Now add that to a view like this....

9. Stay in an Over water Bungalow

Keeping Up With the Kardashians did this to me!! I'd just love to wake up to this once in my life. Not a care in the world, just absolute bliss.

10. See the Northern Lights 

After watching the Polar Express I've been dieing to see the Norther Lights <3 I never really knew where I could find them but (correct me if I'm wrong) I think they are in Alaska? So maybe when I go visit I might just get lucky and get two things done at once :'D.

Before I go I just want to take a moment to say how HAPPY and PROUD and beyond EXCITED I am that today America has finally legalized same sex marriage in all 50 states!!! ❤️💜💛💚💙  
I think that it is just so amazing that after so long everyone now has the privilege/right to love and marry who ever they love. And to all those who did not make it to this wonderful momentous day because of hardships and the battles that they had to fight, May they rest in peace. 

*Just a little side note - if your on a computer you probably won't see the emoji's I used and just end up seeing question marks but they're supposed to be the heart emoji's in every color*

"There's no race, no religion, no class system, no color, nothing, no sexual orientation that makes us better than anyone else. We are all deserving of love" - Sandra Bullock

Crystal ❤️💜💛💚💙

Leadership Conference in New Mexico

Monday, June 22, 2015

Where do I even begin to talk about this trip. It was honestly one of the most exciting things I have ever done. Okay so maybe it's not risky exciting or I'm so happy I could just explode exciting, but it was definitely exciting. I looked forward to this trip for the entire year hoping that I would be one of the 10 students that got to attend. When I received the email notifying me that I had been selected I was so excited I could almost explode excited ;) I immediately responded that I would love to attend and so it began....

Santa Fe, New Mexico

We were to be in the downstairs lobby of our dorm building by 4:30 a.m. so that we could leave at 5 a.m. Once our coordinator arrived we all got in the van and headed off. We drove there in one of those 12 passenger vans. It was probably the longest 12-13 hour long drive I've ever been on, but nonetheless worth it.

There were a lot of mountains along the way, but they were very pretty! Much prettier in person though because you could actually see the reds and purples! :D As you can see it was pretty cloudy in some areas so the picture is kind of dim.

We stayed at the Drury Hotel which is where the conference was be held. This meant that all the other schools that attended were staying here as well, so you can probably guess how busy with teens and adults this place was. The schools that attended were from all across New Mexico, Colorado, and Arizona (it was just our school from Arizona though).

When we arrived they had been serving dinner at the hotel. They had chicken tenders (my favorite!), Macaroni & Cheese & best of all NACHOS!! :D 
(and some other things that I didn't bother to pick up haha)

After we ate we all had to attend the orientation. They had us play those first day of school games where you have to interact with other people. They had us all stand up and began asking questions, if the statement was true for you then you had to move to an open seat at another table. It went on for a while until they felt that they mixed us all up pretty well. Then they had us meet a partner and then as a group (everyone at the table) had to construct a poster that resembled everyone in the group. Then they just had us do a couple of other interactive games. 

They had so many of these little balcony areas where you could go outside and enjoy the weather. 

One of the things that Santa Fe is most well known for is this cathedral which is called Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi.

At night (10ish) we all went out for a walk around the little town that was near the hotel. It was so much fun walking down here, especially since it started snowing! (very lightly but still snowing!) 
We were all very hungry and were hoping that we would find some place to eat at. We found a small pub that was open but (aside from the fact that we were all under age) it was pretty sketchy. There was a drunk women dancing by herself inside, a really scary screamo style rock band playing, and a bouncer. We also found a club (called Skylight I think) and we tried to get in but they wouldn't let us because again we were all under age. We only wanted food and to dance because to be honest it sounded pretty epic in there and it was apparently latino night. After our walk (since everything was closed) we decided to order pizza. 

Then the next day (before the event) we all went on a walk again but this time with one of our coordinators after breakfast. Then we came back to the hotel to attend the first conference. 

After the "educational" games that they had us play, they had us get into groups yet once again. Our groups had to design a sling shot out of the material that was provided for us. As many of these excursus usually end; no one at the table agreed and everyone had so many different ideas that in the end we just kind of put something together. Then they had a little competition to see which table made the best sling shot. 

As they were having the competition - it started snowing!!! :D I had to go outside, I didn't care about the game anymore, I just wanted to see snow. If you couldn't tell this was my first time ever seeing snow!! <3 (I think I may have shed a tear or two haha). 

As you can see... Snow is in fact not a myth, it is very much real!! 

This is our little snowman that we all built together haha. We tried to build a bigger one but we kept breaking he snow (plus it had just started snowing so there wasn't a lot of snow yet.

By night time, it started coming down!! <3 

And in the morning everything was covered in snow!! 

Just look at all that snow! 

Before the next days activities a couple of us went out onto the roof to get a better view. We heard people down in the courtyard and we decided to anonymously throw snowballs down at them. It was war. Some of the people that were down there came up to the roof and snuck up behind us and started attacking us from behind. 

During lunch time we decided to take another trip into town but this time with both of our coordinators. Look how pretty it is. Does this park not remind you of the Wizard of Oz?

This is inside of the church, it was very pretty and such a nice little experience. The fountain of water was where they had the holy water that they usually have by the door at other catholic churches.

There was a sock shop in town and of course we had to get some (the one on the right is mine - I went with a much simpler version, but I don't even wear them so I just waisted my money) 

The conference was only supposed to last two days. During that time we attended several work shops, interacted with students from different schools through educational games, had several keynote speakers, and they had a little dance thrown for us on the last night. The next morning we had planned to leave but lucky for us we had been snowed in!! :D So we ended up staying an extra day! <3 On the last day we all decided to go and enjoy the snow once again. We ended up getting into a massive snowball fight with everyone there. There were people attacking us from the roof, people outside of their balcony, and there was even an old couple that came out onto their balcony and started attacking us as well :') (it was so cute!!). Snow was coming from left and right, it definitely made up for all those years that I missed out on seeing snow. 

Overall the trip was so much fun and better then I could ever explain. This was my first time seeing snow which made the trip a million times better :D I have a gazillion more pictures but I decided to just include a few so that the post wasn't super duper long. I hope you enjoyed nonetheless :) 

I also wanted to add that at first the idea of going on the trip terrified me. I'm a very anxious person when it comes to going anywhere long distance without my parents or someone that makes me feel safe. There have been several times before when I have avoided going somewhere because of fear and in the end I always regret it after hearing how much fun everyone else had. Nonetheless I miss out on such an amazing opportunity. I'm so glad that I did not back out from the trip because it was such a good experience for me. So if you are ever given an opportunity to go somewhere new, don't say no because you're scared. Sure at first it might seem terrifying but I guarantee you that it will pass and you'll end up having the time of your life. Try to take more chances and say yes to more things. It really helps :) believe me 

What is a trip that was really memorable for you? Have you experienced snow before?

"Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience"