Posts Tagged ‘best friend’

I watched a special on HBO while stuck in my house due to an ice storm this weekend. It was called “Every Brilliant Thing”, and it’s definitely worth checking out. But, it inspired me. I want to start making a list of every brilliant thing to me in life. Everything that makes life worth living.

It’s no secret that I struggle with depression. I have for over half of my life, now. Usually, I manage just fine. But some days, it gets to me. It’s like a poison spreading through my system, leaving me weak. I can’t find the light, and that’s my biggest problem in that state of mind: I’m lost in the darkness, and cannot find the good to pull me out of it.

So, I’m giving myself a list of things. Things to read and remember what makes me even slightly happy. I’m giving myself a way out of the darkness.

Let’s start by cheating a bit with my list of things I was thankful for a few posts ago:

1.) Movie nights with someone you love.

2.) My Batman collection. 

3.) My nieces. 

4.) Fur babies. 

5.) Feeling inspired. 

6.) Productive nights of insomnia. 

7.) Feeling accomplished. 

8.) Qdoba nacho dates with my  best friend. 

9.) The hunt for collection things.

10.) Long calls with your favorite person.

11.) Clear nights with the moon and stars shining bright.

12.) Hoodie weather.

13.) Nature walks / Hikes.

14.) Road trips with good company and good music.

15.) The exhilaration on your favorite rides.

16.) Doing something kind for someone else, and knowing they appreciated it. 

17.) Knowing this was the first December in a few years I didn’t have a surgery scheduled.

18.) The catalyst of meeting Kevin Smith a little over one year ago. 

19.) Filling up a box of comics.

20.) The excitement of somewhere new.

21.) Being so happy that I can’t stop the big, dorky grins. 

22.) Painting with music blaring days. 

23.) Adventure. 

24.) Chinese food. 

25.) Supporting the dreams and projects of others.

26.) The Bat Force / Bat Force Radio while working on my collection. 

27.) Naps.

28.) My fandoms.

29. ) People equally passionate about the same things I am.

30.) Good memories.

31.) Cards Against Humanity nights. 

32.) My closest friends.

33.) My BEST friend.

34.) Everything about a certain someone. 

Now, let’s add a few more on, to make it a proper new post:

35.) Meeting your heroes.

36.) Comic Cons

 37.) Finding new movies you absolutely love.

38.) The song that becomes Our Song

39.) Comfy socks.

40.) The first day of feeling better after being sick.

41.) Peanut Butter M&Ms 

42.) Art days after school in high school, working on projects with people that meant the world to me.

43.) Hot apple cider in my Ouija mug when I’m sick.

44.) Good, long conversations.

45.) Dressing up as Harley Quinn

46.) Poetry

47.) The work of Charles Bukowski

48.) Unexpected gifts of things you want, but didn’t ask for.

49.) When the person you fall in love with, falls in love with you.

50.) Happy dances.

There we have it. My first 50 things. I hope to read through them when I’m down, and then add to them, and hopefully use this tool to pull myself back out of the grips of depression.

~Angel

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I had a bad day yesterday. Not the worst day ever. I didn’t have a great appointment about my kidneys. Not the worst news ever, just more worry and stress. But because of the bad day and the bad news, I decided I’m not devoting any more energy to bad things. So, today I want to focus on something good.

Here’s something about me that confuses people: I hate Christmas time. I’m getting better about it, but it’s mostly one of those situations where 1.) there are several bad memories tied particularly to Christmas, and 2.) I get irritated with people that ruin it for me because everyone seems offended by something, or people lose the basic point of Christmas, or whatever. That isn’t what I want to get into, since it isn’t the point of this post.

Now, while I become a tad bit Grinch-y during Christmas time, I do love giving. I try to do what I can for people I love, pick a perfect present (in my mind at least), to let them know I actually put thought into what I bought instead of generic body wash gift baskets and junk they won’t really like or use.

But besides the things I buy for friends and family, I also work with local organizations as much as I can to help get things for people who have lost everything, or who are alone (a lot of times, these are Veterans), or people who just don’t have the money to do anything for their family for Christmas, etc. My mom and I will buy the things, give them to the organization responsible for distributing them to families in time for Christmas, and go on with our lives. We don’t give our names. Most of the time, my friends and family don’t realize I do this, except in instances where they ask me what I want for Christmas and I give them one of the people on my list to help and have them buy for them instead. Because trust me, I’m not in need of anything. I’m perfectly fine buying myself Batman collectibles and random other junk.

Another thing my mom and I have done over the years, which even less people realize, is buy a bunch of things for the residents in nursing homes and deliver them for Christmas. It can be anything from crossword puzzles, card decks, or handheld poker games, to body wash or blankets, treats, etc. There are a surprising number of people that are alone on Christmas in those facilities, because their families don’t bother to visit, or maybe they don’t have families for whatever reason. This kills me. If I had more free time, I would like to go in and visit the people that won’t have visitors but would like to. I can’t imagine myself ever being in that scenario, where I’m alone in a home with strangers, bored and basically waiting to die.

Again, we don’t give our names, we don’t want to be praised for doing something that I wish more people would do, just because it’s the right thing. We’ve started involving Lillie and Dica, my two nieces that live with me 50% of the time. One year we dressed them as little elves and took them into the nursing home with us to drop off the presents. The residents that saw them loved them, and the girls liked being “Santa’s helpers.” I was proud to have started showing the girls at a young age the benefits of giving to someone, not because you have to, but because you want to. Because it feels good.

This year, I hope to involve them more in the buying for families tradition, and have them help me pick out things for little kids their age that aren’t going to have much of a Christmas. I’d like for them to help with that every year, to see that not everyone gets quite as spoiled as they do every year, and that they can help make a huge difference in someone else’s life.

But I don’t just do things at Christmas time. Many friends, family, acquaintances, people through work, etc will tell you that I readily give when needed, and sometimes just because. If I can avoid people knowing I did something, I will avoid it, and let it be a miraculous gift from the Universe. My mother and I have bought and delivered an entire Thanksgiving dinner for a family I barely knew, because they had just lost everything. The home of some of my friends burned to the ground and they lost everything in it,  just a few days before Christmas, and we didn’t hesitate to go get them some clothes, food, random things they may need until they could get back on their feet. Mom and I have bought groceries for families struggling to pay bills and keep food on the table.

I’ve bought many, many friends random little gifts, just because. I’ve offered to buy or help with paying for the purchases of someone in front of me in Walmart, because they didn’t have enough to buy the things they need. I donate to the local no-kill shelter, where I got my big baby boy Lenny. I’ve donated to random charities, both with money and item donations (food drives, toy drives, etc). Every single time the gas station I frequently use has the donate $1 or $5 Shamrocks for Muscular Dystrophy, I buy the $5 shamrocks every time I’m in there, or at least the $1 ones if I’m short on cash that day. And trust me, I’m in that gas station A LOT. I organized the Legends of the Knight screening in Eric’s memory and, while I’m still gathering the money from that event, I’m happy to say that so far we’ve sent more money to the Muscular Dystrophy Association than I ever thought I could from one thing. At Hot Topic, and various other stores, when they have the round your purchase total up to donate your change – I usually do it. I leave some really good tips for exceptionally nice waitresses having really bad nights. Plus other things I can’t even think of at the moment. When I have more free time, I plus to volunteer at a place or two locally, even if it’s just a few hours one day of the week. If I ever make it big as a writer, and am more than financially stable, you can bet I will be donating monthly to Muscular Dystrophy, and offering any and all help that I can to the organization.

Now, here is the point of all of this babbling, because I sure as hell wasn’t doing it to praise myself. I wouldn’t keep most of the stuff I do a secret if that was the case. I don’t do any of this because I want people to think of me a certain way. I don’t do it for brownie points with God or the Universe or any other deity or religion or cosmic force you can think of.

Be the change you want to see in the world.

I do it because I want to give the world my very best. I want to do the best I can to put everything I can back out there into the world. I do it because I’ve been there, stuck at rock bottom, and I’ve been lucky to find my way out. I do it because of the kindness of strangers and family and friends that I witnessed as a child, when we were going through rough times. I do it because my mother taught me by showing me how good it feels to know you’ve helped someone else, whether they know it was you or not. I do it to pay it forward for the help I’ve been given in life. I do it because I don’t want to be part of the problems in this world, but rather because I’d like to help see those things change. I’d like to teach other people, whether or not they know it’s me, to give back too. Because maybe some day their stars will change, and the opportunity will present itself for them to help someone else. I’d like to think I could be a part of something like that. That if I’ve inspired at least one person to help another, that maybe my life has been worth something.

And since it is November, and this is the time we all try to mention the things we are thankful for, I thought I’d mention a slightly different group than I normally do in my Thankful posts.

creativeminds

I’m becoming surrounded by these wonderful people in my life. Even though they may not all be physically close to me – some several states or farther away – they help and inspire and teach me to grow.

There are plenty of friends and other people that inspire me in some way, but these people inspire me, motivate me, and make me want to keep growing as a person and giving back to the world. These are a very particular set of inspirational people:

First, I do need to say that a lot of my drive to do better, to give, to inspire, and just live the best life I possibly can, comes from my friends Eric and Whitney, both of which are no longer with us. Eric died many years ago, and Whitney died in 2013. Both of them were dearly loved, and deeply missed. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of either one, because I miss them both more than I can say. They were some of the most beautiful souls I’ve ever had the privilege of meeting. I know I have to live the best life I can, or it would be a dishonor to their memory.

our dead

I have a friend, Sky, that’s about to embark on an amazing adventure, volunteering in other countries and traveling for at least 11 months. She’s saving and working hard to pay her way on this trip to help other people and grow as an individual through this experience. And you know what? I think that’s absolutely beautiful. You can check out Sky’s journey on her blog: Sky vs World.

There’s Brett Culp, his amazing family, and the incredible people in Legends of the Knight. Because of the hard work Brett and their team and the people interviewed put into Legends of the Knight, so many people all over the country have gotten to host screenings of the film, and not only inspire everyone that watches it, but also help raise money for so many different charities and people that need it. I’m one of the many people that were inspired by their great work, and was lucky enough to hold a screening myself for Eric. I was even more lucky that Eric’s mom and brother were there, and we could cry together when we thought of how proud Eric would be. This is a blessing I will never, ever forget. You can learn more about Legends of the Knight on their website and order a copy of the DVD.

Which leads me to the amazing duo: Tommy and Samantha Castillo. Tommy is an incredible artist, and Samantha is his amazing wife (with quite a bit of her own talent.) They were kind enough to donate several signed prints of Tommy’s work to us for the Legends of the Knight screening. Tommy and Sammy visit a TON of conventions, if you want to meet them in person for some prints, or you can order online on their website. I have a huge collection of his work, myself, and it is gorgeous.

And these are just a few of the people I can think of that inspire me on a regular basis. People that motivate me to keep going for my dreams, and to keep trying to give the world my best.

Now tell me: Who inspires you to give the world your best?

~Angel

In one sentence is the spark of a story. Ignite.

 My apologies for not posting quite as much, but it can be blamed on something very, very good: I have been a writing fiend. Despite work. Despite sickness and brain fog and appointments. Despite everything.

I am writing. A lot.

What was a goal of managing one chapter or one short story to Brittaney every Thursday, has now grown into being three or four chapters, on top of a short story. Or, like I currently am at:  seven chapters. SEVEN CHAPTERS IN LESS THAN A WEEK! That’s with work, sickness, nieces, appointments… And Kingdom Hearts and Doctor Who. All those distractions, and yet here I go, writing writing writing.

I give a lot of that credit to Brittaney for motivating me.

TEAMWORK!

BCAP1

BCAP2

BCAP3

Have I ever mentioned how much I adore Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul? Because I do.

Annnnnway. Consider the inspirational spark ignited. I am getting through this revision like I should be, and don’t plan on stopping there. I hope to not only participate in NaNoWriMo again this year, but actually WIN and get that 50,000 words written. And then, the biggest step of all – the manuscript I am currently revising will be going to agents hopefully by February.

It is time I do what I am supposed to do: write.

~Angel

Saturday was the annual birthday party for myself and Brittaney – the big twenty-four. But this year, we combined it into a Doctor Who watch party since the new series started the night before my birthday. Here we go:

Setting up the nacho bar.

Setting up the nacho bar.

Deadpool wants the Queso.

Deadpool wants the Queso.

...seriously, those were some guarded nachos.

…seriously, those were some guarded nachos.

Henry the Friendly Dalek

Henry the Friendly Dalek

Even miss Addy was there.

Even miss Addy was there.

TARDIS CAKE OF GLORIOUS AWESOME!

TARDIS CAKE OF GLORIOUS AWESOME!

bday6

It was a fun party. And for my actual birthday, the boyfriend (Taylor) and I went to see Guardians of the Galaxy in IMAX 3D. It was my third time watching it, but first time in IMAX 3D and I must say – it was freaking INCREDIBLE! Definitely worth watching in IMAX 3D.

Well, that’s it for today. More to come soon!

~Angel

Friends are the family you choose – Jess C. Scott

Let me get a little bit squishy and weird and sentimental for a moment, because I need to get something out there. This girl with me in these pictures? She can drive me insane. She’s a tad bit weird. We can get into the most ridiculous fights over nothing, because we’re both too stubborn to back down. But…

marioandluigi2

Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one. ― C.S. Lewis

This girl is my best friend. She is beautiful and funny (mostly in an absolute dork sort of way), smart and talented. We’ve laughed until we thought our sides would rip open, danced like fools in my car, dressed up like rockstars and acted like we were the coolest of the cool, and confided our secrets when we thought no one else in the world could understand them. We’ve stood awkwardly in line for the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disney World with T.J. Thyne from the TV show Bones, then ended up riding on the same boat with him:

tj

We have had great adventures, and some that have been more chaotic than necessary, but usually all are fantastic. Seeing ‘Batman Live!’, seeing WICKED at the Fox Theater, going to Orlando to Universal and Disney World, going to Comic Con together. We’ve been to St Louis for mall shopping and photo shoots. We’ve eaten more Chinese food than I can count. Spent numerous hours working on art together after school. Ridiculous inside jokes. Shared our favorite fandoms and books and movies and everything with each other.

bf2

 

“It is so good to have friends who understand how there is a time for crying and a time for laughing, and that sometimes the two are very close together.”
― Lois Lowry, A Summer to Die

And the main point I’m getting at, the whole reason I’m even making this post, is because I want her to know – and everyone else – that I am grateful for her, and our friendship. It may not always be sunshine and daisies. I am not the easiest of people to be friends with, by far. And I know I don’t always show people just how much I really love and appreciate them. But she’s been there for me through hell. She helps me out in more ways than I think she even realizes, and there isn’t a thing I could ever do that would feel like I’ve properly repaid her.

She is among my favorite people I’ve come to know in this whole world, and that’s saying something. She is my parabatai, my sister that isn’t a sister.

“I am glad you are here with me. Here at the end of all things, Sam.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King

~Angel

I’m just gonna photo-dump my images from April 4th – 6th here for you….:

My best friend, Brittaney, with Matt Smith from Doctor Who.

My best friend, Brittaney, with Matt Smith from Doctor Who.

Myself with Matt Smith and Karen Gillan from Doctor Who.

Myself with Matt Smith and Karen Gillan from Doctor Who.

Brittaney and Bruce Campbell.

Brittaney and Bruce Campbell.

Horrible picture of myself and Adam West. I was too excited to not derp-face it seems.

Horrible picture of myself and Adam West. I was too excited to not derp-face it seems.

Brittaney geeking out over Sean Astin.

Brittaney geeking out over Sean Astin.

Myself, Sean Patrick Flaney, and Brittaney.

Myself, Sean Patrick Flaney, and Brittaney.

Myself, David Della Rocco, and Brittaney. Moments later, he kissed us both :D

Myself, David Della Rocco, and Brittaney. Moments later, he kissed us both 😀

Breaking Bad - Jesse Pinkman's Monte Carlo

Breaking Bad – Jesse Pinkman’s Monte Carlo

SILENCE WILL FALL, DOCTOR.

SILENCE WILL FALL, DOCTOR.

Sean Patrick Flanery REMEMBERS ME FROM WHEN WE MET. He's such a huge inspiration to me, and a gal can't deny he's rather easy on the eyes. Seeing him is always wonderful. Also, he ruined my favorite Boondock Saints shirt for wearing, since he signed it lol.

Sean Patrick Flanery REMEMBERS ME FROM WHEN WE MET. He’s such a huge inspiration to me, and a gal can’t deny he’s rather easy on the eyes. Seeing him is always wonderful. Also, he ruined my favorite Boondock Saints shirt for wearing, since he signed it lol.

David Della Rocco... Can't deny how much I love this man, either. Him and Sean are two of my favorite people I've ever had the privilege of meeting.

David Della Rocco… Can’t deny how much I love this man, either. Him and Sean are two of my favorite people I’ve ever had the privilege of meeting.

Can't forget the AMAZINGNESS which is Sammy and her husband, artist Tommy Castillo - who donated SEVEN SIGNED PRINTS of his art to my Legends of the Knight charity screening for MDA. I collect his art, so this was a huge deal to me. It took everything inside of me not to cry on the spot.

Can’t forget the AMAZINGNESS which is Sammy and her husband, artist Tommy Castillo – who donated SEVEN SIGNED PRINTS of his art to my Legends of the Knight charity screening for MDA. I collect his art, so this was a huge deal to me. It took everything inside of me not to cry on the spot.

 

So there you guys have it, some highlights of my Geek-end the beginning of April. =]

NERD PRIDE!

~Angel

Listentoyourheart

Note: I found this on Tumblr, and I’m not sure of the artist 😦 But I do not claim this as my own art. If I find the artists name, I will give credit.

I like to imagine that my muse looks like all of the fan art versions of Notebook from Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared.

Anyway,

So here I am, sitting around with stress and excitement and I’m just about to burst at the seams. Lots going on and so much positive to focus on that the stress of it all almost doesn’t matter. Almost. Because, you know, stress matters since it takes a lot out of you. And mine is taking a lot out of me, usually more than I have to give it.

But that isn’t what matters.

What matters is that I feel better. Obviously, not health better. But mentally and emotionally, I feel like I can handle this. I feel like I’m finally taking chunks of my life back and making my life everything that it can be.

And why, you may ask? What all do I have going on to be so positive about?

 

I’ll tell you:

DHMIS

 BEHOLD. This is my excitement level. 

First things first: I’m proud of myself for bringing my creative needs back to the Priority List. I mean, I’m not writing every single day, or selling books, or painting gorgeous pieces, or submitting more photos to magazines… But I am drawing. I am writing. I am working on this site. I am (slowly) booking shoots again. It’s more than just whining about needing to do these things. Instead, I am. It’s just baby steps for now.

Except, I should have a shiny new in-print article in my hot little hands before long. I’ll definitely post links and pictures and everything once it’s out. XD

Let’s see, what else is there….

 

Oh, yes – travel plans!

While I do have plans for a trip to Chicago, as well as a quick trip or two to Orlando this year, I have a bigger and better one brewing for Orlando next November (2015) with my beloved friends. And while I’m already incredibly excited… As you can see:

MOTIVATION2

I’m also using this as motivation for other things in my life. For example, I’m determined to pay down a bunch of bills (medical bills = evil beasties), and make my body healthier. And by healthier, I mean not only thinner and more toned, but actually HEALTHIER. There isn’t much I can do to slow down the Sjogrens, but I can still try to baby my body into maybe calming down naturally. We shall see.

And one more thing:

LOFK

 

I am hosting something incredible, and I still can’t believe I’m this lucky. I’m hosting an event May 1st at 6:30pm, at AMC Theater Farmington, MO to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Through the creators of the documentary Legends of the Knight, the people of Tugg.com, and AMC, we are holding a one night only screening of the movie Legends of the Knight, an inspirational documentary about Batman and the way he has touched peoples lives and inspired them to do better things. I’m doing all of this in memory of my friend, Eric, who passed away from complications with his Muscular Dystrophy in 2005 when we were both just 14 years old. To be able to hold the event, the theater has said we must sell out the 67 ticket threshold online to make it happen. Tickets go on sale March 29th.

For one night, we can all feel like Bruce Wayne and give a little back to the community.

 

To buy tickets, or check out more info, go here. You can check out more info at their site, http://www.WEareBATMAN.com

 

So that’s it for now! Stay tuned, folks. I’ve got a few more things up my sleeve. Life is getting interesting.

 

~Angel