October 20, 2012

Just Another High School Homecoming

Ah, homecoming! It was always my favorite week of high school. Well, that and powderpuff. To me, those were the moments that everyone was closest. Everyone really came together for the greater good of the class; it didn't matter what clique you were in or who you normally talked to, you were all there for a common interest; to make something great and having the hopes of being the best. I remember working on the floats, the spirit days, and looking so forward to the game on Friday night, being with everyone to see what the results were, all decked out in the appropriate attire.

I was never much of a social butterfly, like I am learning to be now, so football games always felt more like a chore to me. I usually felt awkward the entire time, and the forget the bleachers, I didn't want to go anywhere near them for the most part. Senior year, I made it a goal to go to all of the home games, and it was fun, but it wouldn't have been complete without drama and trying to keep up with everyone. And there was plenty of that. After graduating, I didn't really have a desire to go back. Four years felt like enough time for me. I went to homecoming in 2010, and haven't been back since. I felt like most of the people didn't care about who I was or what I was doing then, so why would they care now? But, after talking to Marissa, I decided to go. It was always a good time, so we were looking forward to it this time around.

Marissa picked me up around 6:30 or so, and I was finally able to meet her boyfriend after they've been together like a year now. CRAZY! Later on, I also got to meet another one of her really good friends that she's known forever and told me a lot about. We didn't have to pay, since we were alumni, then headed inside the gates. It was weird walking onto the grounds and not really knowing anyone, except for a few teachers and a few seniors I had known at the time, and not recognizing any of the names they'd call for the football players. It's sad how as time goes by, you're less and less connected to things that were once so familiar and second nature to you.

I talked to my old english, Bible, and chemistry teachers. It was good to catch up with them, and see how their kids had changed in just a couple years. I also thought it was funny that almost all of the teachers and students I ran into said something about me meeting with Carrie Underwood the night before and asking how the concert was, I guess that's what happens when you're all still friends on Facebook. They'd ask how I was doing, what I was majoring in, and other things like that, but I was just glad they remembered me after having so many students in the meantime. It's also crazy to me, that some people I used to talk to quite a bit, now we just stick to the small talk. "How are you?", "Where are you going to school?", "That's good," "It was nice seeing you." And that's that. But, people come and go from your life for a reason. I just keep holding onto that, rather than looking back. Why hold onto something that isn't there anymore?

We went over to the special "Alumni" section on the football field to visit with teachers and some students that were in our class. It was fun getting to catch up, but around halftime, we were kind of over it. We grabbed something to eat, walked around for a little just to explore, watched the floats (the theme was "All Around The World" or something like that, so they played the Justin Bieber song by the same name) and ended up right back where we were. I did appreciate all the country music they were playing; they were always pretty good about that, since a lot of the kids that went there had families in dairy and agriculture, and lived that kind of life. We talked to Marissa's boyfriend and friend, Mike for a little while, and a few others, which was fun and the game ended. Our school won! Woo! There was a dance afterwards, but we didn't go. I rarely enjoyed going when we were in high school, so that didn't even seem to be a question now. Plus, I'm not sure if alumni was actually invited anyway.

Marissa and I recalled some moments at football games in the past. She remembered how excited she was for our first football game, and I remember getting ready that night, thinking, "Ugh! Do I really have to go?" I was extremely insecure, and felt like I didn't really have any friends and didn't look like all the other "pretty faces" that seemed to be getting all of the attention. Looking back on that now, it's hard to even imagine that I felt that way, but it was something I struggled with for quite some time.  It was sad not seeing a lot of the main group I used to hang around with, but we've all seemed to have moved onto other things, and others are out of state, so it's hard.

It was a good night to reminisce, and to see how we've all changed since then. I think I've grown up a lot since then, even though I have a long way to go. It's good to remember that a lot of important memories still happened there, even if it wasn't exactly the way I had planned. It was a great school, and a good four years. Could I have made them better in certain areas? Absolutely. But, I'm not going to sit around wishing I would've. I love my life exactly as it is. It all happened for a reason, and brings me to now. The friends that still want to be in my life are still there, and the rest are just beautiful memories of what used to be, and I can still treasure those just the same.

That's all for now,

The Weekly Review

It's that time again, folks, bringing you The Weekly Review! What another week it has been. I feel like I don't really remember the last time I just stopped and did nothing. Then again, I like it that way. Usually, I'm complaining I'm bored, so this is a nice change.  Let's just go through the week, shall we?

It was back to reality with the family leaving. My mom and I went to the grocery store, then stayed home the rest of the afternoon. I had a lot of work to get done and turn in. Usually I'm way ahead of the game, but with everything being so close together, it was hard to squeeze in a time to do it.
That night, the Presidential debate was on, and usually I'm not into those as much as I probably should be, but I know the issues and I'm aware of what's going on. Anyway, Ian Somerhalder had a live chat during the debate, so we could ask him questions and just "openly discuss" some of the issues. I gained a lot more respect for him by doing that. Even though I don't agree with some of his politics, I think he's an amazing person for doing that.
While the debate was going on, my friend, Sarah, and I were talking about some of the debate and of course, The Vampire Diaries. She's my go to source when I feel like talking Ian or TVD, since she's just as into it as I am. In fact, we started planning on making some videos to recap some of our favorite moments of TVD and all that jazz.

I carpooled with my friend, Michele, again to school. I only have one class that starts a little later than hers, so I watched The Vampire Diaries in the library. The girl next to me was watching Pretty Little Liars, which made me extremely excited, and I was going to talk to her about it, but she didn't seem to want to be bothered, so I fought back the urge. Then, while I was lost in this fantasyland, my friend from creative writing reminded me that our critiques were due, and I remembered I hadn't finished mine, so I hurried to get them done.
We went into class, sort of dreading it, because it feels like it lasts longer and longer each time. It actually wasn't too bad, though. Usually the three of us that sit in our row, keep each other entertained. 
I came home that afternoon, had lunch, worked on a little more homework, and my friend, Rebecca and I set up a google document, so we can start working on our story more and the song we are currently writing. It's coming together, I just need to find time to actually sit down and focus. 
I ended up taking a short nap that day; watched a little Gossip Girl and dozed off. Although, I feel like I woke up more tired than I was before. Oh well!

I don't have a class, so Wednesday's are usually my favorite. If nothing else is planned, I just stay at home, and that's exactly what I did. I didn't really do a whole lot of anything. I decided to pass on homework, and just watched TV and played a complete bum. My mom had a doctor's appointment, so I just chilled at home. She brought me back the new Rolling Stone issue with Taylor Swift on the cover, to which I was eternally grateful. I also introduced my mom to another one of  Ian Somerhalder's foundation projects. Him, his brother and nephew find old barn wood pieces, and turn them into some really cool treasures. My mom is now really into the site! 


Obviously, this day was dedicated to Carrie Underwood. I woke up a little later, had my quiet time with God, had breakfast, and while it was still early enough, decided to go on a bike ride. It was such a gorgeous day out, and I didn't want to miss out. I cranked up my iPod and off I went. Bike riding is seriously the best "me time" I can think of. 
I also found a couple pictures from Schyler Dixon's Instagram that my cousin and I are in. SO COOL!
Can you spot me? ;)

The rest of the afternoon was pretty laid back, and I even had time to finish working on my Wilmington video, that I had started the night before. Until then, here's the trailer I made a couple weeks ago!
It's coming together, so I should be able to post it pretty soon. Finally, it was time to get ready, and there was so much that happened after that, I had to make an entirely separate blog post for it. Read the previous entry, if you're interested :)
And of course, the highlight of everyone's Thursday night, The Vampire Diaries. 

Credit to : IanSomerholic on Instagram

Yesterday, I was still on a high from the concert, so it took us a little while longer to get ready than we had hoped. Then, it was the usual running errands. I wasn't in the most cheery of moods; having one of those days, but I managed. We went to the bank, my mom had to stop at the doctor's office really quick for a test, Target, the car wash, and finally to Chipotle to pick up lunch. 
We came home, I relaxed for a bit, and took a shower to get ready for my old high school's homecoming. I hadn't been back in awhile, so it was weird, yet oddly the same. I think this is another one of those things that deserves its own post. It was fun, though. 
I came home, hung out with my mom for awhile and got ready for bed. It was almost 2:00 a.m and I decided to watch The Vampire Diaries yet again. I think I have an issue HAHA. 
But, Sarah and I made plans to get together this weekend and for her to spend the night, which should be a blast! After months of talking about how we need to hang out, we'll actually get to! Stay tuned for that :)

That's all for now,

Carrie Underwood Concert Review

WOW.WOW.WOW.WOW. WOW. Carrie Underwood has done it again; she never ceases to amaze me at just how talented she is, and with every headlining tour, she just gets better and better. I skipped my creative writing class, just in case something ultra exciting with Hunter Hayes or Carrie took place at our radio station. Unfortunately, it did not, so I lounged around the house getting ready.

A little before 4 o'clock, my mom and I started getting ready and headed off to put gas in the car, then had lunch/dinner at Chic-Fil-A. The anticipation was really starting to build then, and I was starting to yammer on about who knows what. I tend to talk a lot and fast when I'm nervous or excited. After we finished eating, we realized we didn't really have as much time as we'd anticipated, but still had plenty of time. We drove to Rabobank Arena, picked up our meet&greet passes at will call, then waited for Mina to take us to the designated area to meet Carrie.

We talked to a few people that were from the fan club, then we all lined up and headed inside. We made a quick stop at the merchandise table, where there was so much to choose from, that it was a good thing I was broke...Well, kind of. Everyone bought pictures, t-shirts, or whatever else they wanted and we were off to line-up. After only a few minutes of waiting, we reached the room which was dimly lit with "Blown Away" themed colors (i.e blue, gray, purple), with a few tables spread around topped with candles. There were a couple directors chairs with Carrie's name and "Blown Away Tour" written  on them, which I said would look quite nice in my room. It smelled of incense, and had a very (dare I say it) T-Party room vibe to it. There was a TV set up playing random Carrie videos or sketches of her and Brad Paisley hosting the CMA Awards. While we were waiting in line, I joked with my mom that I wanted Mina's job, the one who is in charge of the meet and greets, and is basically her assistant. I was like "Well, a meet and greet line is how Taylor Swift met her (former) backup singer, Liz!" My mom added, "It's also how Kevin met Danielle (Married To Jonas)" To which I added, "Technically, it's how Carrie met Mike, even though it was a mutual friend with Mark." One of these days, something really magical is going to happen for me in a meet and greet line, and it won't just be to meet a celebrity! HA! The people before us went, then all of a sudden it was my turn to meet Carrie.

I walked around the corner, where the curtain background was set up, and there was Carrie. I'm still always speechless at how flawless the girl always looks. She shook my hand, and we said hi to one another. I was really hoping she would remember me again, but if she did, she didn't say anything. I stood there for a minute, not really knowing whether I should wait for her to look up or what, then I just started talking. The meet and greet was a lot more rushed than usual, so the whole thing happened extremely fast. When we got out, it was a bit of a blur. Neither one of us could've told you the shirt color she was wearing. My mom said gray, and I was thinking white (as you can see in the picture, it is black. We were wrong). I don't think she really had time to look at anyone either the way it was moving, haha. Here's how the conversation went in script form:

Me: So, are you guys watching any TV shows on the bus this time around? I know it's usually like Grey's Anatomy or something like that? (While she's signing my picture)
Carrie: I'm a really big fan of The Walking Dead, so we're into that
Me: Oh, that's right! You're a zombie fan!
Carrie: (She said something agreeing with me, but I can't exactly remember what, then she immediately stood off to the side, posing for the picture, so I followed)
Me: (After we took the picture, I glanced over to the side table to see that the gift bag I'd brought in earlier had been set aside, and I had planned to give it to her) Oh yeah, I was going to ask you if you wanted to wear what we got you tonight, (pointed towards my mom) She's a moderator on your site.
Carrie: (Sort of gives a deer in the headlights look) Uh, it depends on what it is!
Me: I promise it's not anything crazy or weird! (my mom also says something along those lines)
(Her people hand her the bag, and I'm not really sure whether she's going to open it or not)
Carrie: Let's see what it is (she continues to pull it out  to see a "Bakersfield Sound" shirt) Oh, Bakersfield Sound! Cool! (For some reason I said it out loud with her like she wouldn't get it..Dumb me! LOL)
Me: I thought you could wear when you're on the stage above the audience. I know sometimes you wear things that represent that town or whatever...
Mom: We thought you could wear it on the raft stage (just clarifying what I'd said...)
Carrie: Okay, yeah. I'll have to try it on and we'll see how it fits and everything! Thank you!
I moved off to the side, so my mom could make her way in for her time with Carrie.
Me: Thank you!
The shirt we bought her!

Autograph! I wanted to have her write, "You shine like a diamond, glitter like gold..." But, there didn't seem to be enough time for that! Maybe next time..LOL
My mom talked to her a few minutes, telling her how she had been a moderator on her site for three years now, and also how she had to make sure that she didn't schedule her surgery for the time of the concert. Carrie said, "I hope it was nothing serious like an appendicitis or anything," with this worried face. My mom reassured her that it wasn't; they took their picture, and Carrie continued to thank her for everything. We finished up, said goodbye to her security guard, and the security in the hallway pointed us in the direction to find our seats. We found them with no problem, and waited for the show to begin.

Hunter Hayes was her opening act, and I couldn't have been more thrilled. Hunter is such a musical genius; he plays basically every instrument, writes his own stuff, and he's a true visionary for everything that he's doing. I call him the male version of Taylor Swift, just a couple years younger. But, he has the maturity of someone who has probably been in the business at least ten or so years. I saw him perform at CMA Fest over the summer, and he was seriously a big highlight for me. After seeing his performance of "Wanted", where the entire stadium of LP Field was involved, I became an even bigger fan of his. What a lot of people don't know is he has been around in the business for most of his life, even having written "Play" for Rascal Flatts. He was just as good last night; singing his radio hits and a few of his other catchier melodies that had people bobbing their heads along, and feeling the music. I don't think it'll be too long before he's headlining shows of his own...This kid's going to be BIG!
However, during most of Hunter's set, I was trying to figure out what setting to use so the pictures wouldn't come out horrible. By the time I started finding something that would work, he was almost finished. There were a few decent pictures, though.

There was a short intermission between Hunter and Carrie, of course. My dad made it just in time! We filled him in on the details of the meet and greet, though it was extremely hard to hear, because the music was blaring in there. We saw a few people from church that we knew, which was cool! It seems like concerts always bring the entire community out, basically. Then, the arena lights went out and Carrie made her entrance to the stage.

Set List (If you don't want to know...Don't keep reading):
  1. Good Girl 
  2. Undo It
  3. Wasted
  4. I Told You So
  5. Two Black Cadillacs
  6. Last Name 
  7. All American Girl
  8. Temporary Home
  9. Jesus Take The Wheel (I miss the days when she would sing How Great Thou Art with it)
  10. Cowboy Casanova
  11. Get Out Of This Town
  12. Nobody Ever Told You
  13. Thank God For Hometowns
  14. Crazy Dreams
  15. Do You Think About Me
  16. One Way Ticket
  17. Leave Love Alone (Duet with Hunter Hayes)
  18. Sweet Emotion
  19. Remind Me
  20. Cupid's Got A Shotgun
  21. Before He Cheats
  22. **Encore** I Know You Won't 
  23. **Encore** Blown Away

It wouldn't be a Carrie Underwood show without costume changes, and there were plenty of them! The cool thing about this tour wardrobe is that she said she doesn't plan on wearing the same thing twice. There are a lot of mix and match pieces so she can switch it up every night! The awesome factor doesn't just stop there, either. Her graphics and effects are fantastic this time. Her Play On tour had a lot of great elements, but I think they just built on from there this time around. Everything had such a constant flow to it, and went along perfectly with the title track, and the rest of the music. 

I couldn't think of a better title for this tour, other than what it is, "Blown Away," because that's exactly what you are after seeing this show! My favorite part of the concert was the floating stage above the audience. It was going to be the moment of truth as to whether she had decided to wear the shirt I'd given or not. I was afraid she'd walk out and I'd be disappointed that she'd chosen something else...When I saw the yellow of the Bakersfield sign from a distance. I was freaking out that she had actually worn it! I definitely teared up, and my parents and I looked at each other, like "Wow!" What do you say to something like that?! Looking at this picture, I still can't believe it actually happened. Then, right before she sang "Thank God For Hometowns," she talked about how cool it is to know you have somewhere like your hometown to rely on when things are crazy, and mentioned all of us from Bakersfield. I might complain about it here a lot, or that I don't want to be stuck here the rest of my life, but in that moment, I don't think I'd ever been more proud to be a "Bakersfieldian." 

Not only was it the best part of the show, because she wore my shirt, but because a lot of my favorite songs were in this segment. Her last song, "One Way Ticket" is always such a blast to hear live! It's one that she really lets loose on, and so does the crowd. There were beach balls flying all around, confetti falling to the ground, and everyone was waving their arms around like they didn't have a care in the world. I think it was a lot more natural for her to do some of the more "cutesy" songs, and made everyone else just smile. 

The rest of the concert was honestly a blur, because I couldn't get over the fact that she had worn the shirt, which probably sounds lame, but I was extremely excited! She sang several more songs, then came back out for the encore after minutes of chanting "Carrie! Carrie! Carrie!" She returned in her Blown Away dress, with the background designed as if we were in Kansas and a twister was about to hit. She sang a slow song, then knocked it out of the park with Blown Away. Her vocals get better and better every time. After the thunder stopped rolling, lighting stopped flashing, and the last confetti had fallen to the ground, Carrie said goodbye for the last time, and exited the stage. What a blast! It was certainly a night I will never forget.

After the concert ended, and we made our way to the front entrance, I was dying of thirst and so ready to get out. But, my mom wanted to make one last trip to the merch table. I ran into one of our good family friends, Mandy, and she told us all about her eventful night in the show. They'd gotten beer poured on them, because they wanted to stand up for a couple songs. CRAZY! I filled her in on meeting Carrie and all that jazz, and she left a few minutes later. After waiting awhile in line, my mom got a Carrie shirt and phone cover, while I got a Hunter Hayes shirt. We walked back to the car and drove my dad over to his parking lot, then headed home.

I was on a buzz the rest of the night. I watched an episode of The Vampire Diaries, and tried to call it a night, but it just wasn't working. Everything that had happened just kept running through my head, and I couldn't wait to see my meet and greet photo, which I got this afternoon. Around 2:30 or so, after flipping through the TV channels and a few dozen tosses and turns, I was finally able to fall asleep. 

Thank you, Carrie Underwood, for yet another incredible memory for the books!

That's all for now,

October 17, 2012

Carrie Underwood Is Coming To Town (Tomorrow)

Carrie Underwood is one of my favorite people on this entire planet. I love what she stands for, her music, the way she handles herself in the public eye, her fashion sense, how she's an activist, the fact that we are similar in so many ways (journalism majors, close to our moms, can be a little on the quiet side at times), and she is truly the epitome of class. I have defended her like no other too. You mess with her, you mess with me. I'm sorry, that's just the way it is! :)

Tomorrow, I will be attending her concert at Rabobank Arena in my city! I have heard nothing but amazing things about this show, and I truly believe this is Carrie at her best, theatrically and musically. She really showcases her best vocal ranges on this CD and I can't wait to hear a lot of the songs live. She blows me away every time, and this will be no different. From the pictures I've seen, it's really different from the headlining tours she has done before, which is exciting! Plus, I'm extremely excited about Hunter Hayes; He's super talented at everything (songwriting, singing, playing instruments).

Having followed Carrie from the very first day of her journey, it has been so cool to see how far she has come. I have made so many wonderful friends and memories myself, along the way! In some ways, I don't feel like she's Carrie Underwood the superstar. To me, I feel like she's an acquaintance! The last time I really talked to her, she said remembered my mom and I, and I just about freaked out. I know I was screaming on the inside. When we met her at Jimmy Kimmel, it was dark and happened really fast, so I'm thinking she just didn't pay much attention that night. But, I know that she has remembered plenty of people from the fan club; giving specific memories, which is really cool to me.

Crossing my fingers that she'll remember us tomorrow night at the meet and greet! If not, it's totally cool and I'm excited anyway. But, I had a dream the other night that I was in the meet and greet line, and we had just made our way up to Carrie, after anxiously awaiting our turn. I said, "Hey Carrie! Do you remember me?" as she started to sign my picture, waiting for her to burst into a huge smile or to get really excited. She looked up at me, and was like, "No, sorry, I don't!" So...That pretty much scared me off from directly asking her whether she remembers us. HAHA. I laugh, but seriously....

Either way, I'm so excited and anxious for tomorrow night! I'm even skipping the one class I have tomorrow in order to prepare ;) LOL. I will be sure to update you lovely folks on everything. Though, it might be a couple days because the meet and greet pictures won't be posted right away!

That's all for now,
Shelby :)

Life Is Good

"Just because you make a good plan, doesn't mean that's what's gonna happen."
~Taylor Swift~

What I've learned most about life is that you can make all the plans you want, but ultimately God has the final say. Life has a way of leading us to some pretty unexpected places, some good...and some not so good. We have to learn to just go with it and make the best of the situation or make ourselves miserable. I used to get my heart so set on whatever idea or plan I had in my mind, and when it wouldn't work out, I'd be devastated. As I've gotten older, I've learned to not think of anything as set in stone, because people will break plans and unforeseen things will happen. It's just a way of life. 

Life has been really hectic lately, but really awesome! There have been so many out of the ordinary moments, that I don't think I've had much time to fully process it all. I really take my life, the things I have and the people that are in my life, for granted. I don't truly appreciate my normalcy until something strange occurs. As much as I love being gone, and doing things A LOT...I forget how nice it is to just sit and BE at home for a good amount of time. There have been things I've wanted to do lately, but keep putting off, because I haven't had much time to just sit down and focus much. 

My family and I have been going like crazy for almost the past month with vacation, remodeling, family coming out, and just the everyday stuff like school and work. There have been random events in between, and a short break before my mom has surgery. Surgery is surgery, but luckily it's not too serious as of now. It'll definitely throw things off a bit, and then the holidays will be here before we know it. The rest of this year is going to be a whirlwind, and I'm trying to get ready for it. 

I don't know if we're ever truly ready for things that we know will change a certain period of time in our life, but you just have to go through with them anyway, dealing with them the best that you can! Here's to the next three months and making them count!

That's all for now,
Shelby :)

Inspiration-Ian Somerhalder

"You can't get anywhere without the people who have come into your life."
~Ian Somerhalder~

While I'm on the topic of The Vampire Diaries, I thought I'd talk about one of my new inspirations and favorite people, Ian Somerhalder. Honestly, he's the reason I started watching in the first place, so why not talk a little more about him? I had been to a couple different events in LA, and of course, you end up talking about the other "Hollywood" things you've done, like comparing stories of meeting celebrities. Well, several of the people I met, had met Ian a few times during filming in Georgia and other events. At the time, I was just like, "Oh, yeah, I know who he is...", they'd show us pictures,"He's pretty good looking," etc. They all went on and on about how gracious he was, how cool he was at taking time for the fans, and they all talked about his organization, which helps out with animals, among other things. I thought that was so cool that he was actually doing something about the things he believed in. I was like man, I just want to watch the show to support him, but I didn't have a way of catching up at that point. Long story short, I finally got Netflix and caught up in a few months, and here we are.

The more I've learned about Ian, I love what a "go-getter" he is. He doesn't just talk about doing things, he makes them happen. He is also very proactive about making others aware of what's going on in the world, and things we should be concerned about. He is extremely passionate and driven, which I think shows even in his character as Damon. Whatever he's doing, he throws his heart into 110%, and we should all be that way. He loves helping out the environment, helping animals find homes and to stop cruelty, as well as getting youth involved in giving back and getting active with organizations and charities that they are interested in.

I don't agree with his politics, but I do love the fact that he has done his research, and that he believes what he believes. That's the beautiful thing about America; we're free to think differently and it's okay. I like that he is promoting for the younger generation to get involved with this presidential campaign, and vote for who best represents what they believe. Our voices matter, and we should speak up about the issues that are important to us. He is seriously the male version of Sophia Bush. If he wasn't already in a relationship with Nina Dobrev, I would totally encourage the Sophia Bush thing, because they're both so much alike!
Besides, who else would host a live chat during the debate to talk with everyone and make sure that they were informed to what our country is about to face? Ian hosted a live chat from the computer in his living room last night, and it literally felt like we were all just hanging out with him. He would add his two cents here and there about Obama, but he answered a couple questions that people had on Twitter and Social Stream, as well. Here's this incredibly talented actor, who is probably exhausted after long days of filming, but is more concerned about the important issues in our world going on right now and thinks that talking it out is a much better way to come to a conclusion on who to vote for. He is very open about how he feels about women's rights and the pipeline, which I think are good, even though I don't agree so much with all of the details.

After visiting his website, I am more and more inspired to stand up for the things that I believe and to help others out; to give back to my community and the people in my life that have made so many sacrifices for me and have done so much for me, when they didn't have to. He also has another website, called Built Of Barnwood, that him and his brother launched. They make furniture and wall art out of barn wood (that is "green friendly") that they've found around Georgia. I even got my mom into the site, because she loves Fleur De Lis. Their pieces are pretty reasonable too, and gorgeous! I might be asking for something from them for Christmas or my birthday!

Ian is definitely the number one person that I want to meet, and I hope that day comes really soon! I would love to get involved with his organization; I even sent the team an email, hoping for some info back. We shall see!

That's all for now,
Shelby :)

The Vampire Diaries Season 4 Premiere

I was so glad that I was able to catch up with the show in time for the premiere of season 4! This season premiere did not let me down, as I'm sure other fans would agree. The writing and action on this show never cease to amaze me. One would think that for a show about vampires, they would start to run out of things to do, but somehow they don't run out of things to say. They keep viewers coming back for more.

I hated seeing Elena turn into a vampire, since that's the life she never wanted for herself. The scene where she told Stefan last season that she didn't want that life, even though she loved him, broke my heart! I loved how Stefan and Damon talked about that very thing in the kitchen, and Damon added a bit of his humor to the mix.
"And now the world has one more quarterback...Bravo, brother."
And after turning slightly more towards Team Damon last season, it was sad to see her choose Stefan once again. I was a fan of Stefan's from the very first episode, but the more we see of him, I just don't know. I feel like Damon always gets a bad rap for everything, and that Stefan is just the saint that can get away with going all wonky last season, and Elena still goes running back to him. I think it shows true love, but also contradicts everything she was starting to lean towards in the last few episodes of the season. Now, it's like she's making Damon feel like he was crazy for ever falling for her, yet they both knew the chemistry was there.

I have to say my favorite scene of the entire episode was when Damon and Elena were talking about the accident that Stefan saved her from the car at the bottom of the lake. I really think he loves her more than Stefan, and the same could be said for Elena, because obviously she fell in love with him too, while still "dating" Stefan.

Damon: You would've gotten to grow up and had the life you wanted, the life you deserved. And I know I didn't used to get that, but I do now, and I wanted that for you, Elena. And I would've gladly given it to you and let Matt die, because I am that selfish.

And the fact that Elena is now starting to remember all of those little moments between her and Damon are breaking my heart. Technically, she did meet him first, and said it might have changed things for her. Seeing her watch Damon saying 'I love you' made me think that maybe she'll start to come around with it, but I guess time will tell.

As you can see, I'm way too involved in my TV shows and need to get a life. This is why I have so much time to blog.

That's all for now,

P.S Tune in to the CW Network tomorrow night to watch the second episode of The Vampire Diaries entitled, The Memorial at 8/7c. 

The Weekend Review

I. AM. EXHAUSTED. Now, that I've gotten that out of the way, I can tell you why I am so tired. Alright, so Thursday night, family started coming in and the party immediately started. I was also coming down with a bit of a cold and pretty much going nonstop with everything, doesn't mix well. But, I had one of the best weekends ever, and that's what really counts. YOLO (yes, I really did just say that....)
I also forgot to mention the little prank we played on my aunt and uncle. Thursday night, after they got in, my aunt went to the extra bedroom that they would be staying in, and all of a sudden we heard loud laughter erupt. We knew she had found "Chucky." So, my grandma had this baby doll that she'd had since she was a little girl, and my uncle and dad found it while she was in the convalescent home. Anyway, it was a little beaten up, so we just nicknamed it Chucky, because I hate dolls. While we were in South Carolina, we found the doll a little shirt that said "South Carolina" stuff on it. I thought that might give my uncle the idea to keep it going to try to scare me with it...But he didn't! LOL.

I woke up to a bunch of chatter in the kitchen, which was all good; gives me that feeling of living in a "Full House." One of my uncle's went up to my grandpa's house to visit, and the rest of hurried to get ready while my Uncle Paul was yelling "Let's go! We're leaving in five minutes..." We all got into the car and drove out to the airport once again to pick up my cousin, Tiffany. Well, it turned out that her flight had been delayed, so we went to the Jack in the Box down the street to have breakfast. We talked about Taylor Swift and my uncle even asked me about Nick Jonas (asking which one was in the Les Mis play). When we were finished, we ended up going to the airport, where our conversations jumped around to Chucky and his relationships...I love my family! Eventually, my cousin landed and we were off. But, it was fun people watching. There was one guy standing alone with a single red rose. He stood by the gate, waiting for a couple of flights, but walked away a little disappointed each time. I'm really curious as to what his story was or if the girl he was waiting for ever came. We left before I got a chance to see. I also can't forget to mention the squeezing of the suitcase into the car, after putting up the third row in our SUV. That was so hilarious! About ten minutes after everyone giving a bit of input, we got it all in and were on our way.

We went to my grandpa's house for a little while, then decided to have lunch at one of my grandpa's favorite Mexican restaurants. We sat in one of the back rooms, where there was a table large enough to hold all of us. We were catching up, telling stories, and whatever other random things came out of our mouths. It was a lot of fun!
We all came back to our house for a bit so Tiffany could rest up a bit, and get her stuff situated, while the rest of us relaxed, getting things ready for later that night. I had gotten an email from The Ellen Degeneres show giving me all of the information about Taylor's show. It turns out it's on Thursday. AKA-the same day as Carrie's concert and my meet and greet with her. I was really bummed. After all of the planning and writing to Ellen, it happens to be on the same day. We tried to figure out a way to do both, but the timing is way too close, so it's impossible. So, needless to say, I had to cancel it. The rest of the afternoon was a little eh, in that I didn't feel good and I was still like "Are you serious?!" in my mind.
After we were all freshened up and ready to go...My mom, aunt, Tiffany and I went to the dry cleaners to drop off some suits and to Walgreen's because I had been wanting to go all day to check out the new Taylor stuff that had just launched there. I was going crazy in the store, looking at everything! I was trying to make myself feel better about not going on Thursday, but it was really just a reminder Haha. Either way, I was excited with everything, and after a few more minutes of looking around, we decided it was time to get up to my grandpa's house for dinner.

We spent the night on our ipads, talking, laughing, picking on one another, exchanging witty banter, and my uncle took me and my cousin outside to point out the space station. We had a really great view for quite some time. It was fun getting a chance to spend time with my Uncle David, and my cousin Nick, since I don't get to see them all the time. Plus, it was a gorgeous time of night, where all of the lights in the city were starting to come on. Breathtaking!

We went back inside and a little while after we had dinner. My grandma always cooks enough food for an army, but she's seen our family eat, so I guess it's appropriate ;) lol. When my dad arrived, we caught him up on the day he had missed (since he had to work), and I was in a really good mood, so I was rambling about who knows what and coming up with some pretty great remarks right and left, I must say! Jk.
After dinner, my friend, Kathryn, who is interning on the WB lot text me about the Taylor event going on at Ellen on Thursday. We were finally going to be able to meet and we had all these plans we were going to set up, but since Thursday is a no go, those are put on the back burner. I ended up just calling her and we talked for quite awhile; she filled me in on her run ins with some Pretty Little Liars and other exciting things in her life involving the Hollywood world. We also once again made plans to meet up at some point before she leaves and to skype sometime this week, when we're both free. It was so good actually getting to talk to her, after Twitter all this time!
I decided to go back inside to spend time with family, and we were all starting to poop out. My uncle Bob showed up for a few minutes after working a high school football game, then we all headed back to our house (well, at least Uncle David, Vicki, Uncle Paul, Aunt Debbie, Tiffany, my parents, and I did).
That night, we all slept pretty good!

We didn't really sleep in much. Once again, I awoke to the sounds of my family in the kitchen. If you know our family, you also know that we aren't quiet people; works better than an alarm clock, let me tell ya. I was still feeling sick (the joys of having a cold), so my voice was starting to go as well. We were all visiting with one another; I grabbed some breakfast. A few minutes later, my dad and Uncle David came home with Smith's bakery cream cheese danishes. I didn't know they were bringing those goodies home, or I would've waited to eat. We were pretty lazy that morning, hanging out in our pj's as long as possible, listening to country music, and keeping one another occupied.
Mid morning, my cousin, Tiffany, and I decided to make a recipe I had been looking at for awhile; "Candy corn" cheescakes in mason jars. I thought it seemed like a pretty festive thing to do, so she helped me out. It didn't really take too long to make, but because the kitchen was crowded as it was with my Uncle making boiled peanuts and my mom prepping things for the salad, it was a little hectic, trying to get to things. The steps were a bit tedious, but hey, you live and learn. If I ever make them again, I know what to do differently.

Some family friends came down from Anaheim, Uncle Bob and my grandparents all made their way over. The rest of the afternoon, the house was filled with a lot of noise: laughter, cheering over football teams, and talking. We ate A LOT, watched football, and didn't really do much of anything else.

Still looking up quotes on TVD

When my cousin, Carissa, got off work,  she came over and we got to spend time with her. Its been awhile since we last talked, so I was glad she could make it. After all the football games had ended, my grandparents and family friends had left, and nothing else was going on, I somehow managed to talk the rest of my family into making a music video of "We Are Never, Ever Getting Back Together" by Taylor Swift. Not all were really into the idea much, but that just goes to show you how much they love me. A few didn't know the song that well, so they weren't really sure of what to do, but the few that did know it, were really getting into it. It is HILARIOUS...and I can't wait to put it together to show everyone ;). I'm pretty sure Taylor would be extremely proud of me! It'll definitely put my editing skills to the test. When we were done taping, we all flopped down in the living room and watched the news. I can't remember all of what was said or what went down, but I remember we were all laughing our heads off. Of course, I was jotting down the best quotes in my notebook, because those are things I never want to forget. If only we had our own reality show like The Kardashians. One of these days, I'm going to make it happen!
Everyone started falling asleep around 11, and we had to get up early the next morning. So, Uncle Bob and Carissa left, and one by one, the rest of the family started getting ready for bed. I went to sleep that night, feeling extremely blessed and filled with joy from just a simple day of being with the ones I love.

It was another morning of waking up to voices in the kitchen, which I didn't mind at all. Well, a little, because I was still tired, but comforting to hear my aunts and uncles in the kitchen. We all had breakfast as a family, then had to hurry to get ready. Luckily, church wasn't until 11, so we had some time. Now, I really have no idea how families with more than one kid get ready like this every morning. Since I've been an only child my entire life, I've never had to fight for the bathroom really, except for when on vacation or traveling with friends. I can see why families would have to plan in advance. It all worked out perfectly though.
We made it to my grandpa's church right on time, with a few minutes to spare even. We found a seat, and mingled as the rest of the family found their way inside. It was a great service on missions and going out in the world to reach those who don't know Christ, but we were all feeling a bit sleepy. It woke me up to some things, like how I would really like to travel and use my talents, to reach communities that don't God or have possibly never heard of Him. I want to be fired up to do something about it, rather than just nod my head and think "Something needs to be done."
After church ended, we took pictures, which if you know our family, turns into quite an event. Everyone wants to take a picture with their camera rather than just exchanging them over email or through Facebook. My dad was really loving the camera time, acting goofy and running around, trying to find the perfect spot. We were all laughing quite a bit.

We were going to have lunch at Chipotle, but due to lack of seating and how much space our family takes up, we decided to go to Getaway Cafe. I think by that point, we were all in need of some food. We were able to arrange several tables and all of us were able to sit together. While we were eating, a guy who worked there, walked around playing the Ukulele. Me, being the big Taylor Swift fan that I am, wondered aloud, "I wonder if he can play, 'We Are Never (Taylor's song)." My uncle asked him, and he said he knew it, but had never tried it, so on the spot right there, he started singing a little bit of the chorus, and he was doing a great job. A few of us joined in, and my day was made. When we finished eating, my aunt, Tiffany and I walked over to a school supply store, since Tiffany's a teacher and wanted to check out more things for her class. I was going crazy with all of the posters, markers, notebooks and everything else they had. That would be one reason I would love to get into teaching ;) hee hee.
When we got back to the car, we found out that we were going to the cemetery where my grandma is buried. Honestly, I don't feel the need to visit, because she's not there, but the rest of the family visiting wanted to, so we went. It was a beautiful day; just sad it was at a cemetery, you know? Not a day goes by that I don't think about her, visiting the headstone just reminds me of that.
I was just in the car, looking up Vampire stuff..I thought this one was funny. Damon and the mention of Taylor Swift=hilarity; awesomeness! 
We came back to our house, just hanging out after changing into comfy clothes. My grandparents, Uncle Bob, Nicholas, and everyone else made it back over. We watched more football, laughed, talked, and ate even more! We all gave my grandpa the cards and presents we had for him, and he spent a few minutes telling us stories about back in the day. Later on, Carissa and her boyfriend came over, which perked things up. Tiffany and I hung out with them; talking about all sorts of random things from friends to music to writing styles we like. They make such a cute couple! Who knows? Maybe we'll be hearing wedding bells in the near future....Tiffany has been telling me and Carissa that we need to visit her in Texas, and me being a Southern girl at heart, I'd love to! We talked about doing it sometime next year, but we'll see how things go. I hope it works out, though! It would be such a fun experience.
Me and my cousins. I didn't want to sit on Tiff's lap, I find it awkward...But, they made me get over that! haha. 

After the party started to wind down, the family members that were staying with us all cozied up in the living room and ended up watching a really lame John Wayne movie. I realize he's "The Duke"...But still. Most of the time, we were wondering what the heck was going on or commenting on the hokey scenery and cheesy dialogue. What a great laugh, though, I don't think that's the way it was intended. Oh well.
My aunts, uncles, and Tiffany all had to catch planes to get back to Utah, Texas, and South Carolina Monday morning, so we called it a night.

It was much quieter when I woke up this time around. The guys had gone out to breakfast with grandpa, so it was just the ladies talking in the kitchen. We had breakfast, talked, and my aunts and Tiffany packed things up to go. Tiffany was entertaining me with her Russian accent as she packed, and I was still waking up, but I found it hilarious either way. She's quite good at it. My uncles came back, we finished getting ready, then it was time to go.
We said goodbye to my aunt and uncle that were driving back to Utah, and let me just say that goodbyes always suck. It's so awkward, and after spending a few days together (24/7), it's weird when all of that just comes to an end. We packed up the car, and off we went, after I smacked my head extremely hard climbing in. Go me!
We made it to the airport, and they all checked in their luggage, picked up their tickets, and we waited around for a few minutes. My uncle hadn't been able to find his phone since Friday, but after calling the airport, the security guard had it and brought it out. Just in time before boarding the plane! So cool! We said goodbye to them, spent a few more minutes with Tiff in the gift shop, and it was time to say goodbye to her as well. Then, it was just me and mom; back to reality. I was glad these days didn't go by fast, and that I was able to really cherish them as they happened. I love my family so much, and spending more time with them just reminds me of that.

That's all for now,
Shelby :)