Tuesday, January 20, 2015

What's in YOUR future?

Hey guys! How is your 2015 going so far?

I've been wanting to share this drawing for some time. Remember that amazing, talented, wonderful fan named Anastasia? Well after reading The Secret of Darkwood Castle, she sent this image of Caleb and Julia. It just really made my day. One of the most rewarding feelings as an author is meeting readers who were inspired by your writing. Thank you so much, Anastasia! I love it.


I don't know why, but reality has just decided to hit me. I feel this sort of sadness knowing that The Shapeshifter's Secret trilogy is done. It's weird. 

Anastasia's drawing reminded me of something from long ago. I pulled out these sketches I drew when I young and daydreamed about being an author. Next to my drawing of a girl is a list of possible character names. One of the names is Julia. As a thirteen year old, I had already picked out my main character's name. 



It got me thinking. 

It seems that undoubtedly what we fill our heads with daily will affect our future. Our day to day actions will add up and one day we will look back and reflect on them. If we constantly think negative thoughts, how will things turn out? But on the opposite side, what if we constantly think positive thoughts? What if we dream big NOW and fill our heads with hopes, goals,  kindness, and world-changing ideas? Where will that put us in the future?

It's something to think about. 

Oh, and by the way, it's never too late.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year!


What a year! Isn't it crazy to look over the past twelve months? Though some days might feel insignificant, all together the ups and downs of everyday life make for an amazing year in review. I decided to share some of my favorite memories from 2014.


The husband and I were thrilled to find out we would be having our first baby.


And after endless guesses, we found out it was going to be a girl! 


A little later in the year, I was so excited and absolutely honored to be a part of UVU's Alumni magazine.


Then the pugs and I celebrated birthday month in March--like party animals.


At the end of march, I was a apart of Barnes and Noble's Authorpalooza, which is always one of my favorite events. 


Then came third trimester in late spring.


My writing friend Shannen Crane Camp and I were involved with Salt Lake Comic Con and were so happy to sign and speak on writing. 


LDStorymakers was wonderful in April. I loved being there with my writing group clan, Mikki Kells and Lisa Harris. 


Then in May I released the final book in my Shapeshifter trilogy, The Secret of Darkwood Castle. I was overwhelmed by your support! 


In early June I celebrated my five year anniversary with the love of my life. 


Then.........Our sweet baby girl came in late June! 


Our lives became completely centered around our little girl, and were were so excited to bless her in September.


A little later in fall we went on our first family trip to Florida (traveling with a baby was a whole different experience). We loved seeing Disney World and both Harry Potter parks. 


In the past couple of months, we watched this blue-eyed babe grow up WAY too fast before our eyes. 


So much happened in 2014 to our little family and I can't what to see what new adventures 2015 has in store. I hope you had a wonderful year and wish you much happiness and success in this new year! 

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Thank you for a great year!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Writer's Group: Wedding Edition


Can I tell you  how much I love my writer's group? Sometimes we dress up when we meet together and this month's theme was the wedding edition. Yes, you heard right. We dressed in up wedding gowns, ate wedding cake, and took wedding pictures. You can see more proof below.

I love these girls a) because we can have fun and be silly, but mostly because b) they help me so much with my writing, and their friendship has been invaluable. If you are serious about your writing and want to meet your full potential as an author, I highly recommend finding or creating a writer's group. How do you do this? Network, connect with and make friends with other writers at events like LTUE, Storymakers, Comic Con, or even author signings. I met some of these girls at Barnes and Noble's Authorpalooza and one through an English class. Find a few writers who write similar genres to you and make it happen!





Monday, November 3, 2014

The New Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Orlando, Florida



The new Wizarding World of Harry Potter is incredible. I'm sure you could have guessed that with how Hogsmeade turned out in Islands of Adventure. Universal has researched every detail perfectly to not only get the fans approval, but also J.K. herself. Yeah, they've done their work, and it's paid off. The rides, the shops, the interactive wand experiencesit's all as it should be, making you feel like you've been transported into Diagon Alley. (That might sound cliche, but that's just how it is). 

You'll probably just scroll through this to the pictures, but I thought make a list of what you'll encounter below:  

Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes.
Potions everywhere.
The Knight bus complete with Stan Shunpike.
Hedwig and Harry's trunks at King's Cross station.
Platform 9 3/4 (you actually disappear into the wall as you enter).
My baby trying to eat Butterbeer ice cream, which was way too good to share with her.
The queue line for the Escape from Gringotts ride with plenty of glaring goblins.

My favorite parts that I wish I could show you: 

Knockturn Alley. My Nikon died right then. But guys, it was freaky and amazing.
The whole ride Escape from Gringotts. It's everything you want it to be, and pardon the cliche again, makes you feel like you are really there.
The train. It was different going each way from Hogsmeade to Diagon Alley with magic happening on the windows outside as well as the compartment inside the train.

Enjoy the pictures and the surprise videos at the end!

























video


video

Friday, October 24, 2014

St. Augustine, Florida


My family and I just got back from Florida. It was such a good break and I was thrilled we got to visit the seaside village of St. Augustine. Deemed the oldest city in America, you can feel a rich sense of history the moment you arrive. St. Augustine is said to be haunted and offers regular ghost tours daily throughout the city and museums.


 One of the most infamous haunted historic sights is the Fort Castillo De San Marcos. We got to roam around the fort (as best as we could with a stroller) and learn about the endless pirate attacks on St. Augustine.


Can you believe this city was established in 1565? 


Pirates lurking everywhere...


Why does Spanish Moss make me so happy? It's the perfect backdrop for such a historic and eerie city.


Ghost tours anyone? 


In the heart of the city are these charming shops featuring old fashioned ice cream, candy, and restaurants. Can you see why I love it here? 


St. Augustine also has the Fountain of Youth! But unfortunately, this isn't it. The fountain is located next to the Fort Castillo De San Marcos. In 1513, when the Spanish explorer Ponce De Lion came to Florida, he thought it was the actual site of the Fountain of youth. It was believed that the healing waters could reverse the signs of aging. 


Mill Top Tavern. Doesn't it remind you of Hocus Pocus? 
This city is incredible. If you ever get the chance, make the visit to St. Augustine, it's worth the trip!