🍁Happy Thanksgiving 🍁🍂

Hi guys!

How are you? I was having a few issues uploading my first podcast on WordPress, but at least the link is there. If you know how I can use a player instead of a link, please let me know. But click the link and it will take you to my podcast. I like the “waves” in the background on the podcast, it’s cute. I’m new to this whole podcasting thing, so please excuse the tiny clip at the end that suddenly gets loud and cuts off. I tried editing that out, but it stayed! Anyway. Stay well and take care of yourselves. I’ll be back very soon!

Much love.

https://anchor.fm/amanda261121/embed

xoxo

Life update

Hi guys!

How is everyone doing? I hope everyone is doing well and hanging in there. I know it’s tough, I truly do. Sometimes I feel like I am talking to an empty auditorium, but when I go and see on my stats that people still swing by to see if I’ve written or have read my posts, I feel all good & fuzzy. Those feels, ya know? It can bring a blogger back to write again. So that’s what I’m doing right now regardless of who is in here. First and foremost, allow me to deeply apologize for being MIA for most of last year. As you may know, I had a knee surgery back in June of 2020. I had a minor fracture on my femur during the operation and it put me back 6 weeks in wearing a leg brace and a walker. Yes, I felt like a 98 year old woman walking around with a walker, but I loved the fuss I got as a result. I would get these looks of “Aww, poor girl all disabled and stuff” or “Why is she using a walker, she doesn’t look old” to the outright outburst of “What happened to you?!” I got a lot of “medical ageism or medical stereotype” statements directed at me like, “You’re too young to have a total knee replacement!” Often I’d have to defend myself stating that I had bad arthritis and it wasn’t my fault. Things happen. I just happened to draw the card in life of having bad arthritis in my knee. What can I do? I had to make do of it and take care of my condition. Do babies ask for childhood cancers? No. Do they deserve it? Of course not! Did I ask for my spinal cord to be squished by my back bone and therefore need an emergency surgery in May of 2019? No. Things happen and I feel like people think you need to be a certain age to experience “old people” things. Having a physical therapist assistant tell me, “Oh, I thought by now you would’ve been able to do that (a certain exercise)” and expecting me to fit the mold and comparing me to what other people with knee replacements go through in their success stories. My surgeon said it would take about 18 months until I would feel like myself. It’s been 8 months and I am still going to physical therapy. I am improving! Those are just some of the negative things I’ve experienced other than the loneliness and isolation I have felt since January of 2019. I’ve learned you can’t rely on people for feeling good in lonely times. You must truly love being by yourself and make yourself happy. People will let you down. But in saying that, it doesn’t mean to stop checking up on other people and making sure they are ok. I’m not one to beg people to check up on me. I’ve discovered which friends are real and which ones have been fake from the beginning. It’s ok because I now just invest on those friendships that are genuine and it’s quite lovely. I’m sorry for ranting!

The beautiful thing about isolating and feeling lonely is that you are more in your head than usual. You get a clarity about life and future goals. I start thinking of where I’d like to be once things appear to be normal in society. But what will be normal? I think the world will open back up and we will see people doing things we used to see. However, there has been a sense of emotional trauma we have all experienced that we will be bringing into the “new normal”. Side eyeing someone when they cough or sneeze. That used to be normal, right? All you said was bless you and you went on with life. Now, when someone coughs or sneezes innocently (even due to allergies like myself), people will most likely step away and act like you have some crazy disease. There’s a lot of arguments of wearing masks and not wearing masks. I don’t want to get into it, but I wanted to show this cute mask from Snapchat which is much cuter than the blue mask I usually wear. Ugh. My hair is so 2020. Time to add highlights again!

So going to physical therapy has been beneficial and I am gaining strength on my operated leg. I still use a cane, but am lifting it up every 5 steps to get used to not using it when outside. Inside my home, I force myself to walk around as best as I can without a cane and it’s been helping. I went back to my original physical therapist in October of last year and it’s been going well. I like that my physical therapist believes in me. I don’t give myself enough credit when it comes to some things. My last appointment, he observed me walking with my cane and said I should try holding a 10 lb kettlebell on my left hand and walk one small lap. I did it. He walked beside me to make sure he could catch me if I fell, but I didn’t fall. I thought to myself, “Omg! I’m walking without a cane carrying a 10 lb weight…what is this wizardry?” Even I was surprised at how easy it was and it felt comfortable. Today I was a bit sore from yesterday so walking a few laps made me a tiny bit shaky. Having a determined spirit, I will begin walking carrying a 10 grocery bag in my home to practice. Technically, my surgeon does not want me to lift anything 20 lbs or heavier. He doesn’t want me to hop either! I was joking around with my surgeon and asked if I could hop (I was trying to ease into asking if I could do jumping jacks once I am all healed for exercise) and he said absolutely not! There goes my dreams of being a hip hop dancer! I do love dancing and I will consider watching my Tahiti dance training videos instead, hmm! I’ve accepted that my healing process is my own unique journey. When I see older people in their 80’s walking around after knee surgery at my physical therapy place, I only am happy for them. I am not jealous or anything like that, but just truly happy for them. I’m sure they have lovely grandchildren they want to do activities with as they should!

As a girl who grew up in the Amazon who began to learn early on to appreciate my “home” where ever I was at the moment, little did I know I’d grow up with the mentality of being a free spirit. This way of growing up helped me to adapt to places much easier and made me begin my sense of adventure. I’ve moved 18 times so far and traveled to 13 countries (or is it 14?). I’ve loved it. The downside of this, my friends can attest to this too because they have felt the same way, is that you get that 5-7 year itch to move again because you’re so used to moving! Putting down roots somewhere and buying a forever house? Crazy! When I moved with my son in NJ, it was so he could go to a better school or the rent was more appealing in a safer neighborhood. It was mostly to improve life and not so much about my own happiness. I mean, I was happier as a result, but it was not my dream home or place. It’s funny how one’s dreams in your 20’s or even 30’s are mostly for where your job takes your or where you want to get a job. At least it was for me. I don’t think I really sat down and asked myself if I moved if it would be somewhere I could be totally committed to. One of my biggest fears in life was to be bored of where I eventually would settle down. There’s so many gorgeous places I’ve wanted to live at like Lake Como, for example. Being analytical about things in life, I weighed the pros and cons of moving there. Something just didn’t feel right. I think I was almost forcing myself to be excited about it. Lake Como is gorgeous (from the California side) and it offers views of the mountains and lots of outdoor activities. The idea of moving there eventually died somewhere in the halls of other places that I once dreamt about living at. Settling down doesn’t sound so scary anymore. Neither does maybe finding “the one” either as in the person. I’m pretty open to that. Trying to manifest the man of my dreams. I hope he finds me. So come on baby, wherever you are! Wink! I feel like I am at the stage of life where I can finally breathe and think it’s time. No more reindeer games of hopping all over the place. It’s fun while it lasts, but eventually finding a place you can call your home and where you can wake up every single morning and be glad you are where you are…that is a fabulous feeling to have.

Credit: dloudermilk

I realized finding “the place” must be like finding “the one”. Once you know, you know. And like they say about finding love when you least expect it or not even looking for love, it happens. That’s what happened to me. I found “the place”.

So last week on a normal day of googling something, I was looking at homes because of something else. It was in a State I told myself I would never, EVER move to. No way! I was gobsmacked at the homes I saw and everything the city and suburbs offered. I literally had a Big Fish moment! I couldn’t get over how beautiful and big the homes were and this State has palm trees in it! I thought this city would be boring, dry and deserted, but the city I like is full of lush trees, incredible parks and lakes. I checked out what this particular city offered and it offered everything I could dream of. It was like something clicked in my mind and I thought to myself, “Yes, this is the place!” THIS is the place I want to grow old at. I can see myself happy here for a long time. It’s got a bit of Philadelphia in it, some suburbs remind me of the nice neighborhoods of New Jersey, the weather is nice and sunny…people are nice and the fashion, omg!” Where is this place? Texas baby! I know, I know. Texas just experienced a freak snowstorm and blackouts, but when you find “the place” nothing will stop you. I know things will get better in Texas even though they struggled this past week. Texans are strong people and resilient. I want to buy a home there, but only after renting there for a small amount of time. I’m not saying which city just yet, but believe me, it’s a fun city with so many things that will keep me happy for many years. I don’t know anyone there, but that’s fine. I’m very used to moving and not knowing people. That’s the fun part of starting a new chapter in your life, no? I’ve looked at organizations I can volunteer at and I found one that is unbelievable. I miss working with people and this particular organization is perfect for me. When will I move there? I’d like to say within 2 years or sooner. I’m going by my healing and how mobile I am. My son is gradually warming up to the idea. I did say he can stay in Colorado with his friends if he wants, but he will always have an extra room if he wants to move in with me. I’m crazy about my son, so I’m hoping he’ll move with me too. So far, he likes that there isn’t an income tax in Texas. So that is my life update thus far. I can write more, but I’ve rambled on too long. I’ll try not to be away as much now that I have gained a sense of stability for once in my life. So right now, with this new sense of a permanent life time goal, I feel happy. I’m looking at places to rent down there and comparing prices. I like to plan way ahead so I don’t get stressed doing things last minute. I haven’t felt this excited about the future in probably decades.

Things do get better.

Lots of love. Until next time.

xx

Goodbye 2018!

Here’s to all of you who fought the good fight in 2018, didn’t give up and came out victorious! Gather around guys.

Hey, hey my friends!

I’m sitting here on a Sunday night, listening to “live” music on YouTube of Bossa Nova Jazz because it make me feel like a grown up. Just kidding. I love jazz and especially Bossa Nova because your girl is a true Brazilian girl. Anyways, so I decided to give my two cents of my humble thoughts of this year and how it impacted me and how it will impact going into 2019.

I didn’t write too much this year because I had a lot going on and I’m still without a good video software that I like to edit any videos. I love making videos to post on my blog and also my job took a lot of my time, especially after I came home. Towards the end of the day, I basically konked out on my bed and fell asleep after making dinner. I just could not devote enough time to this blog. I felt bad, but I still love ya WordPress. You’re my first love.

So if you have read my blogs this year, you’ll know I had to deal with some serious issues like going to New Jersey to testify for a crime committed on me many years ago. It was a cold case that was reopened and I was the main witness. Emotionally, this year, at least the beginning was mostly me prepping emotionally to do something very hard and come face to face in court with this perpetrator. My emotions were mixed. I survived the ordeal and discovered I am a strong person and that I don’t give myself a lot of credit for a lot of things. I have confidence, it’s just giving myself due credit where it should be given. I don’t know if self-worth goes hand in hand with it.

I was able to continue going to work and doing well at it. In fact, I got “EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH” this past September. I felt honored and appreciated. My supervisor is amazing and has really been the kindness boss I’ve ever had. I’m really going to miss her.

But unfortunately, my knee issues was getting worse. I was getting injections in my lower back to help relieve some of the pain and numbness, but it only helped for a few days. Then I got an injection in my knee and it only helped for a week. This is only being done until I get to see a Orthopedist in a few months who will then actually “fix’ my knee issue. The pain management is all just basically a “band-aid” to help with the pain. I had to leave my job due to it affecting my driving and my job being 90 percent driving. My boss and friends all told me to just take care of my knee issue and make it a priority. It has been difficult since I’m an extremely independent and carefree person who is used to just getting up and going somewhere at free will. Now, it’s been harder. But it is what it is. I must relax my knee and stay put. Through all this, I’ve done my best to stay positive and see the brighter things about it. Which, I must admit has been very hard. Some days it’s very hard to walk because every step is painful when I put pressure on my knee as I walk. the waiting game is hard. I’m a bit impatient because it’s like I have things to do, places to see and places to explore, so this has been a bit of a damper to my spirit. I do have help and I’m glad I have friends who have come to my rescue.

I got a bit of a shock in early November. Initially, I had gotten a letter in August stating the perpetrator was going to stay in jail until next year and I was so relieved. However, due to him being in jail during the investigation and trial for two years, he maxed out. I got a letter stating he was coming out Dec. 4th. I was devastated and scared. I was mad and confused as to how he was able to come out a lot earlier. I focused on mostly my knee issues and I forgot to be scared like I had been thinking he’d try to hunt me down and do something, especially now where I feel so vulnerable and like a sitting duck. It’s the end of the year and nothing has happened and I’m safe. I will, however, buy one of those doorbell cameras that detects motion whenever someone comes near your door. It alerts your phone and you can see who is at your door or who was at your door when you’re not at home. I’m trying to not focus on my fears of what may happen and live my life and not have him on my mind. I hate living in fear and knowing he’s out can cause that. As it would any victim.

Not much else happened.

For the next year, 2019, I will be healing myself physically. This year was healing my mind, my emotions due to having to remember the past and telling complete strangers about it in court. It’s easy for me to write things such as my blog to you all because you’re part of my blogging journey, but to sit up there and tell very hurtful details of the crime to the jury was hard and opening up about such things was hard. I’m going to work on not worrying so much about the future.

This year I want to connect with a painter I admire. Not in a romantic way, but in a way saying how much I admire his artwork and ask if we could become bestfriends tell him about my life in Brazil. i just think it’s pretty unique he comes from a completely different world from mine and we are so opposite in our childhood upbringing, but we still have a lot in common with art, interest in nature and space. It’s like meeting your favorite author, or singer…. mine just happens to be a painter living in France out in the country. I think a nice letter, some photographs I’ve taken of Colorado and a Colorado shirt would make a nice gift to send him. I should throw in some Rocky Mountain Chocolates. I’ll keep you guys updated on this. I could also just say hello on messenger since he is on my friends list on his personal FB page. He has a public FB too, but I am one of the few on his personal FB page. I’m old fashioned, so a nice letter and a package will suffice for now. When a blogger connects with her favorite artist in France. Sounds like an adventure even Carrie Bradshaw (from Sex in the City) would want to read about.

I’m feeling positive of the next year. I truly am. My son will be going to college in 2020 instead of 2019, so he’ll be still around to help me out and go on adventures with me. He’ll also be driving in a few months, so that makes me anxious, but I trust him. I know he’ll be a great driver. The thought of how much longer we’ll stay in Colorado continues to haunt me. I love upstate New York and would readily retire there, but who knows. Life has a funny way of changing things around. A few days ago, I asked my son, “What would you think if we just moved to China for a year or six months while I taught English as a second language?”. He just smiled and nodded. I’ve always wanted my son to live overseas to experience life, but he’s already been to 6 different countries, so he has some handle of what life is like in other countries.

Thank you for sticking by me this year. Thank you and welcome to my new subscribers! At one point, I thought this will be my final and last blog ever on WordPress, but not this year. I’m not finished yet. Maybe I never will. I’ll be home warm and watching the ball drop in New York City on tv as my son will be with his friends watching fireworks here. What are your plans?

This has gotten too long, but that’s just an update. Here’s to the New Year folks. I’ll do my best to write more and post blogs of weird and strange places like I used to. See you next year!!

xoxo

Why does he keep showing up? His name is…


Photo credit: Google

I’ve been sitting on my couch staring out into the wilderness outside imagining what life must’ve been like when Colorado was being explored by pioneers. The trees are slowly and gently changing colors and it’s as if nature is showcasing it’s last scene before the curtain call. The sounds of birds are heard as they chirp happily whilst flying around and dodging the colored leaves that fall to their fate to the splendor of the ground; its final resting place.

I go into the kitchen and make myself a cup of tea and once again curl up on the couch looking outside. It is quiet. Too quiet. My teacup is surrounded by both hands as I blow to cool the steaming tea. Autumn is here once again and I love it. Nothing beats wearing warm fuzzy socks, hair up in a messy bun and curled up on the couch.

I hear a knock on the door. Who could it be? Why now? Do people not ring doorbells anymore? Or call? I’m scared. I don’t like strangers coming to my door. I put my cup of tea down and tip toe to my window. Socks or not, I feel stealth as if a jaguar hunting its prey. I look out my window briefly to see who it is. I quickly retreat back after I see who it is. I release a long sigh. Him again?

I open the door.

“Hey” he says.
“Hey” is all I can reply with a downcast look on my face.
“Can I come in?”
“I guess so. Why are you here? You seem to show up when I really don’t want you to show up. This isn’t a good time.”
“I just came to see how you were doing…”
“You know perfectly well how I’m doing, this is exactly why you’re here. But come on in. Do you want anything to drink?”
“Yeah, sure. Do you have coffee? I like mine black”, he says as he walks around and takes in everything in my home. I’m secretly hoping this isn’t a long visit. I’m already plotting to see how I can get rid of him. He’s annoying af.
“So, where’s your friend? You guys are always hanging out together.”
“Oh him? He almost came, but I felt like I’d come instead…alone.”
“Good”, I replied. His friend is more annoying and both of them together is a nightmare.

Too lazy to really heat up a pot of fresh water, I instead took out a cup from the cupboard and put tap water in it. I put it in the microwave to heat up for 2 minutes. After making small talk with my visitor, I added instant coffee and handed it to him. We both walked to the living room and sat down. He looked across the room at me which felt like forever. I couldn’t tell if he was totally relaxed or just waiting to see what I would say next. I can play that game too.

I look at him for a long time without saying anything. We both know what each other is thinking. I break the silence.

“I’ve been going through a lot. I have a lot on my plate right now. ”

“I know”, he says as he takes a sip of his coffee.

“Wait, are you reading my tweets on Twitter?” I ask innocently. Of course, he’s reading my tweets.

“Ok, ok. You got me. I do read your tweets. That’s why I’m here. To see how you really are. ”

“Well, to be perfectly honest, I have to deal with you. You and I know what’s going on between us. How are we going to deal with this? I told you I don’t want you in my life, but you keep showing up. This month has been bad too. Especially the past 2 weeks. ”

“Geez. What about me don’t you like?”

“Are you serious?”, I sarcastically ask. “I don’t like how you make me feel. You make me feel confused. You’re the reason I stay up late at night. You’re the reason why I want to be left alone to think things over…and over.  There’s going to be a lot of life changes in the coming year and you’re not making it any easier.”

“I know what you need. You need a plan. Maybe that will help?”

“That’s what I’m trying to do now. I’m thinking of my backup plans. With my knee in pain, I’m not sure if my current job is a good fit anymore. Maybe I should stick to an office type of job. I have to start looking for another apt when my lease ends in December. Do I buy a home here in Colorado or move out of State after 4 years?”

“I’m sorry”, he quietly says. “I know I’ve been coming around a lot lately, but this is the first time you’ve let me in to actually talk to you.”

“I just don’t know how to deal with you sometimes. You’ll always be a part of my life and I knew especially this year, you’d come around a lot.”

“Listen, all I can say is ask advice from people who are much older than you. Wiser, if you will. See what they have to say.” He gets up to walk towards the window and stares out into the courtyard taking the last sips of his coffee. After a minute, he turns around and puts his coffee cup down on the table.

“Do you mind if I come back again Thursday?” he softly asks.

“Yeah, I actually do mind. I’ll be busy and I have a doctor’s appointment that day. I really, really don’t want any visitors, especially you. I just want to come home and rest and go from there.” It feels good to say that to him. He’s heard this many times before and sometimes he listens, other times he comes anyways.

I walk him to the door. We don’t hug. There are no cheek kisses either. I feel the chill in the air and admire the blue sky above. He turns around and walks away and disappears around the corner.

His name is “uncertainty”.

He’s not a real person, of course. He’s a feeling. The feeling of uncertainty.

Sometimes we all need to train our minds to keep out negative thoughts or as in this case, we need to deal with it and find out the reason why these feelings come often. To replace or do something that will help with feelings of uncertainty is a process. Everyone wants consistency and when life throws a fast one on you, it can make you feel unbalanced and a bit stressed.

 

7 End of the Year Questions for Amanda: Year 2015

fireworks-

1. Was I happy?

Answer: Yes, but I believe I had more of a guarded happiness if that makes any sense. I moved to a new State on my own, which I’ve never done before by myself so that was a huge change. I’ve moved about 11 times in my life so I’m used to change, but moving cross country to a completely different place, was a big jump, but it was something I needed to do because I had wanted to do it for the last 10 years. Yes, I was happy this year, but I was also taking in new sights and taking in new experiences so during that moment I would say I was happy. There are still days I wake up and I can’t believe I live in Colorado-it’s so beautiful here! I am currently happy because I now realize what my purpose is now, now that I have moved here. I only discovered or was given that opportunity a few weeks ago. That is why I can not wait until 2016 starts because I am like a runner at the beginning of a race and just ready to burst out with so much energy for this coming year. I am so ready for this new year!

2. Did I live in peace?

Answer: Yes, I actually took a year off from a lot of things (work, relationships, etc) most of this year to really take time for myself and get a grip at what I needed to do next in this new phase of my life here in Colorado. In doing that, I have more peace than I have had in a long time. Sanctuary amongst the mountains and foothills. It is here I love listening to the waterfall sounds and hearing nature. Peace. I’ve always had it, I just needed to lasso it back in being in a new place. Each place I have lived has had its own unique peace about it. You can find a certain peace at the beach. You can also find a particular peace high up in the mountains. You just have to adjust to your local surroundings and find the best place to find it. Every place on earth has it. I promise you. I think with finding balance in your life as well, you also find peace.

3. Did I extend kindness?

Answer: Silly question because I normally practice this everyday. No one is perfect and I do have those days I want to just pull my hair out because people are driving me nuts, but I do like being kind to people. We live in a very selfish world where people feel entitled to how they should be treated. You open the door and they just whiz by you like a princess without a care. You offer to sit down and talk to someone who looks like they are lonely only to be rebuffed and ignored. Or you come across people who just ask so much of you because they know you are a giver (typical ENFJ downfall). They take and take from you until you suddenly realize you’re being completely taken advantage of. Oh well. Those are far and few between. Despite that, I continue on being kind to people. When people are kind to me I think, “Aww, you’re so nice!” It’s the greatest feeling.

4. Did I live in the present moment?

Answer: Yes! Since moving here, I’ve lived more in the present moment that I have in a long time. Sure I’ve shot videos and have taken pictures, but I’ve also learned to just enjoy the moment fully with every fiber of my body. The last “in the moment” I felt was climbing a rock in Garden of the Gods near my home. This place is so beautiful and we always see tourists, not so much now because it’s cold. When the tourist season is mostly gone, it’s nice to appreciate it without all the fuss. After climbing this rock, which you’ll see in the coming video in a future blog, I turned off my camera and just sat on top of the rock and took in the beauty of what was in front of me. America’s Mountain, known as Pike’s Peak, was off in the distant like a familiar friend and below the mountain you could see from that high vantage point the little town of Manitou Springs. Cars were driving along a road that snaked its way through the park and people looked like ants. It was dusk, but there was still a quiet beauty of where I was. Sometimes those off the camera moments you can only store in your heart and mind forever. No one or anything can every destroy that. I’ve experienced a lot of “Ghost Cat” moments since moving here and I know I’ll experience more. All the pictures I’ve posted on this blog, I have had experienced off camera “in the moment” feels. Every single one of them. I take pictures and videos to share with you all, but I also do it to remember it and how it made me feel those few minutes taking my eyes off the camera. I’m a collector of memories and the emotions that go with them. This scene below explains it perfectly. If you are a photographer, you’ll totally understand this scene. This is from one of my favorite movies “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” and I wait the entire movie just for this scene-I love it so much because it means the world to to me on so many levels.

5. Did I take time for myself?

Answer: Yes, I would say so. A year for myself, abso freakin’ lutely.

6. Did I accomplish at least one goal?

Answer: Yes and it came within the last weeks of this year! My goal this year was to figure out my next step in life here as I started my new life in Colorado. Now that I am learning and training for my dream job (which I’m not sure I can say yet), I have accomplished my biggest goal of the year. This particular goal was going around my mind like crazy and I almost felt like I needed to hurry up and figure things out, but life as we know it, brings surprises and big opportunities when you least expect it. When it came to me, this opportunity, I ran with it and I plan to run with it until I achieve my next career goal with my dream job. I wake up now every morning knowing I am getting closer and closer to it (my dream job) and I get so excited about it. I have never been so excited about this new career change since I was in my early 20’s when I applied for a similar job to what I’m going to be doing in the future. This is my purpose. It’s not because I want to do it, it’s because I need to do it. And that my friends, is the biggest achievement I got this year in 2015.

Here’s to 2016! Let’s do this! Let’s begin a new year with new adventures, photographs and videos! Come with me and let’s live in the moment. Thanks for being part of MY 2015. Even if you subscribed today or even tomorrow, I’m so happy you’re part of my blogging life. I welcome you and I welcome my future subscribers in 2016. I can’t wait to meet you!

Much love from me to you. See you next year!

xoxo

The Lantern Festival 2015 Colorado

Saturday night we went to Fountain, Colorado to attend the Lantern Festival 2015. This was an event that had been planned for about 3 months and I couldn’t wait for it! I’ve always wanted to see one of these lantern festivals and didn’t really know that they had them here.

Attending a Lantern Festival is a fun yet very spiritual experience at the same time. Many people attend lantern festivals as a symbolic way of “letting go” of their past or any regrets that they may have. Many others such as myself wanted to symbolically honor our loved ones that have passed away by “letting go” of a lantern towards heaven as if sending a message of love. As some of you may know, I lost my adoptive mother on Thanksgiving Day at 11:30 am after her battle with breast cancer. I was there by her bedside when she passed away. Her birthday is the day after Christmas, so the holidays can be a little tough for me. Early October this year I also got news that my youngest sister passed away due to medical complications. I have 4 sisters so losing a sibling was new to me and only brought up sadness of losing someone special. On a good note from this news, I got in contact with my older sister in Brazil so we now write each other via Facebook. She will be raising my youngest nephew (3 months old) from my sister who passed away. I got to see new pictures of all my beautiful nieces and nephews. I think I’m also a great-aunt!

I almost got hit by unsuspecting lanterns trying to float up. One minute I’m minding my own business and the next I hear someone yelling, “Watch out!” as I turn around just in time to duck a lantern flying past me. The lantern landed a few feet away and someone picked it up and let it fly up. This was happening everywhere, not just me. Another time a lantern floated by, but not towards me. There was laughter and much chatter among everyone, the air was filled with harmony and love. I can’t pin point the feeling, but it was a positive one. Susie Brown was the guest singer and I just love that girl; she’s just one of the most talented and simply gorgeous singers out there! Her songs are great; I just wish I was closer up to the stage to see her. I may have gotten a haircut a year or so ago like hers. Check my twitter photos to find the picture. You’ll see me rockin’ the black hair and short bangs there. Anyways, check out her Twitter and Instagram profile and follow her like me!

Attending a lantern festival was on my bucket list and I’m so glad I finally went to one. If you ever get a chance, check out one out by your city. Trust me, you won’t regret it, it’s one of those moments you won’t ever forget.

Until next time my darlings. xoxo

I am because we are….

FACEBOOKSTORY

Fascinating story and one I saw on Facebook by my friend who posted it. I love how these children look out for one another, are selfless and know the meaning of unity. In a society where there is an insane amount of things to fill our every need, it’s great to see these children learn at such a young age that when you do things together, there is a greater leverage of happiness to be shared.

I love sharing. If I find something interesting or read about an interesting place, I have to share it on my blog. This also occurs in my real life too. I absolutely love sharing things with people. It’s fun and there is that moment of bonding over it. Why keep it to myself for my own satisfaction? I want others to see it too and if it made me smile or happy, then of course, I want everyone else to share in that happiness too. That’s the main reason I started this blog. I wanted to share and I will continue to share.

My Saturday

WordPressJavaGirlsLifeBlog2015

Today we strolled through Old Colorado City because it was a festival of sorts and all the stores were showcasing their products on the sidewalk. I bought another cool Mayan calendar to hang on my wall, some homemade soaps (I’m really into natural/organic soaps made with goats milk and beautiful scents) and some local honey. I go through honey pretty quickly, so I was thrilled to get my honey bear! There are many days I just want to just change my blog name from JavaGirl to HoneyGirl, because it just fits me better. I also got to check out some Tibetan sculptures and artifacts as I’ve always been a fan of Tibetan art. I want my living room to have some international flair to it; a bohemian eclectic feel to it if you will. I also noticed a few hookah stores too walking down the blocks. No, I don’t smoke, I like to keep my lungs pure of smoke and because I have allergies to smoke.

With camera in hand, I’m constantly looking at my surroundings and enjoying the atmosphere, waiting to see if anything captures my attention. Something did. This. I stepped aside and snapped a few pictures of this cute window with fake flowers. As I was taking this picture, two elderly ladies stopped and said, “Oh! Well, isn’t that so pretty! We would’ve never seen that up there if you hadn’t been standing there taking that picture!” I smiled and told them I just found it pretty cute. Nothing earthshattering in explanation.

WordPressJavaGirlsLifeBlog2015pic2

People in Colorado Springs are so friendly. I had several people come up to me just making conversation, it was nice. I’m feeling more and more comfortable adapting to my new home. Living by the mountains is so new to me. I’ve lived most of my life in a tropical paradise with swaying palm trees, ocean and constant sunshine and to move to a place where it’s mountains and forests, it’s just new, but a good “new”. I’m also still telling myself not to rush to do lots of things all at once because I live here, I’m not just visiting anymore. There is so much to do and see, it will take a long time to see all.

WordPressJavaGirlsLifeBlog2015pic4

I’ve been to this little spot a few times, but I never get tired of it. This is just a small picnic area in Garden of the Gods. However, I had never gone beyond a certain point to see the whole “rock”. Seeing that the sun was quickly setting and I’d have little time to get the photo I wanted, I raced down the hiking trail to the area where perhaps I could get a better view. Everywhere we looked, we saw people hiking up and down the trails of the rocks and taking pictures. Garden of the Gods truly was busy with activity and tourists today! There were a few girls hanging around the smaller rocks and they were friendly and chatted to me for a bit. Even a cute toddler came up to me and said, “Hi!” as she waved her chubby hands up at me. I love children so I talked a bit to the toddler. With camera in hand and racing against time, I turned the corner and exclaimed, “Whoa! It’s so beautiful!”. There are times when you are just so captured by something that you can’t immediately snap a picture. You want to step back and allow your mind to mentally capture it first. The rock (of many there) reminded me of the one in Australia for some reason. The way the sun was setting giving out warm tones was just spectacular.

I’ve been through a heck of a lot in the past 17 months, I’ve found Colorado to be my sanctuary. Colorado has been good to me and I need it.

WordPressJavaGirlsLifeBlog2015pic6

I love living here. It was a good day.